What I like about 3rd edition D&D
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Post Posted: Wed Nov 29, 2006 12:34 pm 
 

With all the talk over the years about 3rd edition and how much it sucks  :D  , I thought it would be fun to make a thread about What We Like about 3rd edition . . .

. . . No, I'm serious!   :)   Even you diehard 1st edition proponents must have something good to say about 3E.  For instance, when it first came out, I bought all the core books - I thought:  Wow!  This is fantastic!  They've addressed almost all the faults I found with 1E and "fixed" them.  Of course, as time went on, I rediscovered my love for RPG and also found that I didn't really like 3E all that much . . . however, there were certain elements that I thought were great and that I would incorporate into a 1E campaign if I were to ever run one again.  :)  

Some ideas were already house rules . . . some hadn't occured to me before.  So, here are ideas/rules from 3E that I like .  I'm sure I wouldn't incorporate all of them into a 1E game . . . but all are things that I like.

I'd like to hear what others like.  REPEAT:  what they LIKE . . . not what they dislike.  And, no, I don't believe you if you say there is nothing that you like about 3E.  You have to post something.

- Character classes for Humanoids.  I LOVE this!  Humanoids were always my favorite type of monster . . . but they were always so weak once the characters started gaining levels.  I long ago adopted PC classes to humanoids and am glad this was addressed in the rules.

- AC class improving the higher it is, the "to hit" roll system.  The way Saves are computed, etc.  

- More advantages for ability scores: I always thought it was a little "dull" the way ability scores worked in 1E.  Often, there was no advantage in a slightly better score.  For instance, a fighter with a 14 dexterity was effectively the same as a fighter with a 9 dexterity.  I like the fact that bonuses accrue at lesser amounts.

- Conversely, I like the fact that the ability scores have much higher upper limits to reflect the fact that Monsters might have very high limits. (However, I don't like the fact that they go so freakin' high and that CON bonuses, Dex bonuses, Str. bonuses need to be computer for EVERY single attack/hp total/AC, etc.

- I like Sorcerers.  I always thought there should be a M-U class that innately "knew" magic instead of having to memorize it.  (It is stupid to make Charisma the stat the affects this, however).

- I like the fact that Wizards and Socerers can get bonus spells based on Int (Chr.) which makes playing a low-level Wizard much more enjoyable.  (Yes, I hated the weakness of 1st level Wizards and found it very illogical.  One spell . . . give me a break . . . )

- I like the fact that wielding a weapon Two-handed allows you to do 1 1/2 times your Strength Damage bonus.

- I like the fact that level limits are removed (however, I hate the fact that any race can be any class).

- I like Feats and Skills . . . but not to the extent that they are used.  I think a very few feats would be a good way to "personalize" your character.  In effect, special abilities that could differ from character to character.  However, in 3E, Feats seem to have gotten way out of hand and have become ludicrous.  And monsters?  Please, I don't need to know every mundane skill an Umber Hulk knows and the respective bonuses.  :roll:

- I like the more "general" proficiency systems:  But, it is, perhaps, too general I think.

- I like the fact that other classes besides Fighters (and Monks) can get mulitple attacks . . . eventually.

- I like the different size categories for Monsters (though not all of the combat rules associated with this) and I like the way monsters are "categorized" with different dice used for HD  (i.e. Constructs, Dragons, Undead, Fey, etc.)

- I like that Rangers can be any alignment.

Okay, I could not stick to my own rule and I did say some Negative things . . . but only in relation to a positive (call it a "partial positive).

What is good about 3E (and don't say NOTHING!)  If you had to incorporate something from 3E into 1E (2E) what would it be?


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Post Posted: Wed Nov 29, 2006 12:39 pm 
 

3E 1s teh R0xx0rs!!1!!!one!!  :P

Seriously though,  I don't know enough about it all to be able to say everything sucks, but from what I have read, there is not a whole lot for me to like.  I always got the impression that if I wanted to read a text book, then I would go back to school.  Oh well, I know that you really wanted to hear what people liked, so I will cease from posting in this thread again. I just wanted to put in my meaningless two coppers.  :)


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Post Posted: Wed Nov 29, 2006 12:58 pm 
 

The current edition is 3.5.  This edition is just like 3.0, but edited for errors and with the rules tinkered.  There are just enough differences to make conversion tricky...although certainly not impossibe.

The feats system allows a great deal of customization.  The choice of feats is a career path that creates quite different characters even if their class is the same.

The skills system is another way that the character classes are evened out.  A rogue can never beat a fighter in a stand-up fight, but the fighter cannot come near to matching the rogue's skill set.

I hate the barbarian character class.  It makes no sense.  All the other classes are professions. The barbarian is a culture.  It is possible to start with a paladin and then, somehow, barbarize into savagery.  Illogical.

The rules for souping up monsters mean that you can never be sure what you are facing.

I like the templates.  One funny thing to try is to begin with a basic monster then make what I call a "squish beast."  What you do is squish template after template onto the beastie, one at a time (like Playdough getting molded) until  you end up with some crazy form of monster.  It can be amusing, although it is a lot of work for one encounter.

In 3.5, the power attack feat is doubled if you wield a weapon two-handed.  This is a problem, as the resulting damage can be off the chart.  High level player characters in my current campaign have recently been wiped off the map by critical hits from giants using power attack.

Player characters end up getting a lot of hit points in 3.5.  They need all of them, as armor class is essentially meaningless once the game reaches a certain level.  All AC does at the higher levels is determine if the second or third swing will possibly miss.  That is, unless certain types of PC have  found sneaky ways to jack up their AC.  Wearing heavy armor is a serious disadvantage to movement and any sort of dexterity based dice roll.

There are far fewer arguments about movement and combat in 3.5.

All the rules in 3.5 are inter-connected, and you essentially have to use them all to maintain game balance.

Clerics in 3.5 are the strongest character class after about 12 levels.

It is far more difficult to "wing it" in 3.5, as the monster statistics are almost as complicated as PC statistics.  The DM has to be more competent.


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Post Posted: Wed Nov 29, 2006 1:07 pm 
 

One mystery to me....

People often mention how demi-humans were limited in level in AD&D.

This is true...officially.

From what I can tell, even the game designers ignored this rule from the outset.

Did anyone here seriously tell the demi-humn player charcters that they could not advance beyone a certain level?

Did anyone here stick to the rule that elven PC's could not be raised from the dead?


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Post Posted: Wed Nov 29, 2006 1:10 pm 
 

MShipley88 wrote:One mystery to me....

People often mention how demi-humans were limited in level in AD&D.

This is true...officially.

From what I can tell, even the game designers ignored this rule from the outset.

Did anyone here seriously tell the demi-humn player charcters that they could not advance beyone a certain level?

Did anyone here stick to the rule that elven PC's could not be raised from the dead?


Okay,  I lied, I am posting in this thread again.  :oops:   Its not bad though, its answering a question.   :)   Yes people did, although I never played that way. It wouldn't be advisable though to ask this same question over at Dragonsfoot.  Some of the hard core AD&D players of old will be quite incredulous that you asked such a blasphemous question. :wink:


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Post Posted: Wed Nov 29, 2006 2:45 pm 
 

This is what I like about 3/3.5e:







...erm...








Wait, it's on the tip of my tongue.....











errr....









No, sorry, can't think of anything.

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Post Posted: Wed Nov 29, 2006 2:54 pm 
 

Otherworld . . . I think you are missing the point . . .  :D


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Post Posted: Wed Nov 29, 2006 4:37 pm 
 

3.x got me playing again, helped to get Judges Guild back into production, got me to write and get published, allowed Ravenloft a small time back into production, made me appreciate all the old stuff I use to run for Basic D&D and 2nd Ed, got me to collect more, cured cancer and has provided world peace, oh and keeps run on sentences alive!

Rules wise, they made Rogues better and the ability of others to take their skills and not conform to the classes as in early editions. (A house rule I had for 2nd Ed actually just better laid out)

Level limits removed.

The AC system is good, though they lost THACO :( which I had no problem with.

And have to agree with Mark about Barbs, should have been Berserkers with the way they allowed the cross class system.

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Post Posted: Wed Nov 29, 2006 5:51 pm 
 

The best thing in the d20 system is the OGL, allowing for better games to be made that actually feel like Dungeons & Dragons instead of merely taking the name.

As for d20 Fantasy, there are a few things to like.  Increasing AC, the core mechanic, and variable hit die types for monsters are perhaps the best things going.  Featz and skillz would be good too if there weren't so many of them.  As it stands, it's overblown and only drags the game down.  Or would if combat didn't drag down the game already.

But, I simply don't stress about what d20 Fantasy has gotten right or wrong, since Castles & Crusades, for the most part, got it all right.



  


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Post Posted: Wed Nov 29, 2006 7:37 pm 
 

Plaag wrote: made me appreciate all the old stuff I use to run for Basic D&D and 2nd Ed


Oh yeah, that was it.  I knew there was something good about 3e, it made me appreciate 1e more.  Actually, it even made 2e look good.  Nice one, Monte!

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Post Posted: Wed Nov 29, 2006 7:45 pm 
 

Beyondthebreach wrote:What is good about 3E (and don't say NOTHING!)  If you had to incorporate something from 3E into 1E (2E) what would it be?

Right off the bat, I liked prestige classes. I think they were done well, too — i.e., needing to earn certain levels and bonuses before even considering adding a prestige class.

The prestige-class concept would have been a huge hit with my old 1e group. Hell, we were stealing character classes — the ones specifically labeled "NPC" — from the pages of Dragon as fast as we could get our hands on them. Remember the bounty hunter? After that issue hit the stands we had two first-level bounty hunters show up at the next session. Remember the witch? (etc., etc.).

Beyondthebreach wrote:I like the fact that Wizards and Socerers can get bonus spells based on Int (Chr.) which makes playing a low-level Wizard much more enjoyable.  (Yes, I hated the weakness of 1st level Wizards and found it very illogical.  One spell . . . give me a break . . . )

Preach it, brother! The absolute low point of 1e was the absurd fire-and-forget magic "system" that turned first-level M-U's into Walking Wands of Magic Missiles that had one charge per day.

It would be fair to say that anything would be better than that mess, but 3e does an interesting job with magic. I don't agree with everything the system tries to do — much of it is still too fiddly and rules-heavy — but, overall, I'll give them an E for Effort. I like the Sorceror concept, too.

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Post Posted: Wed Nov 29, 2006 9:02 pm 
 

Paul, I have a lot of partial positives, I guess ;)

I like the way that 3.x manages physical challenges---swimming, climbing, drowning, holding your breath, etc.  

I like the concept of the flexibility to do/be anything, but I dislike the way that it disrupts the classic fantasy archetypes that D&D leveraged from classic fantasy literature.  

I like the concept of the OGL, but the reality of its "open source" betterment-of-the-common-game-engine-for-the-benefit-of-all-players fails miserably in comparison to its potential.

I like the fact that 3.x brought Greyhawk back from the dead, in the form of Living Greyhawk, but loathe the fact that Greyhawk was bastardized horribly as the "core" world.


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Post Posted: Wed Nov 29, 2006 10:26 pm 
 

Beyondthebreach wrote:With all the talk over the years about 3rd edition and how much it sucks  :D  , I thought it would be fun to make a thread about What We Like about 3rd edition . . .

. . . No, I'm serious!   :)   Even you diehard 1st edition proponents must have something good to say about 3E.  For instance, when it first came out, I bought all the core books - I thought:  Wow!  This is fantastic!  They've addressed almost all the faults I found with 1E and "fixed" them.  Of course, as time went on, I rediscovered my love for RPG and also found that I didn't really like 3E all that much . . . however, there were certain elements that I thought were great and that I would incorporate into a 1E campaign if I were to ever run one again.  :)  

Some ideas were already house rules . . . some hadn't occured to me before.  So, here are ideas/rules from 3E that I like .  I'm sure I wouldn't incorporate all of them into a 1E game . . . but all are things that I like.

I'd like to hear what others like.  REPEAT:  what they LIKE . . . not what they dislike.  And, no, I don't believe you if you say there is nothing that you like about 3E.  You have to post something.

- Character classes for Humanoids.  I LOVE this!  Humanoids were always my favorite type of monster . . . but they were always so weak once the characters started gaining levels.  I long ago adopted PC classes to humanoids and am glad this was addressed in the rules.

- AC class improving the higher it is, the "to hit" roll system.  The way Saves are computed, etc.  

- More advantages for ability scores: I always thought it was a little "dull" the way ability scores worked in 1E.  Often, there was no advantage in a slightly better score.  For instance, a fighter with a 14 dexterity was effectively the same as a fighter with a 9 dexterity.  I like the fact that bonuses accrue at lesser amounts.

- Conversely, I like the fact that the ability scores have much higher upper limits to reflect the fact that Monsters might have very high limits. (However, I don't like the fact that they go so freakin' high and that CON bonuses, Dex bonuses, Str. bonuses need to be computer for EVERY single attack/hp total/AC, etc.

- I like Sorcerers.  I always thought there should be a M-U class that innately "knew" magic instead of having to memorize it.  (It is stupid to make Charisma the stat the affects this, however).

- I like the fact that Wizards and Socerers can get bonus spells based on Int (Chr.) which makes playing a low-level Wizard much more enjoyable.  (Yes, I hated the weakness of 1st level Wizards and found it very illogical.  One spell . . . give me a break . . . )

- I like the fact that wielding a weapon Two-handed allows you to do 1 1/2 times your Strength Damage bonus.

- I like the fact that level limits are removed (however, I hate the fact that any race can be any class).

- I like Feats and Skills . . . but not to the extent that they are used.  I think a very few feats would be a good way to "personalize" your character.  In effect, special abilities that could differ from character to character.  However, in 3E, Feats seem to have gotten way out of hand and have become ludicrous.  And monsters?  Please, I don't need to know every mundane skill an Umber Hulk knows and the respective bonuses.  :roll:

- I like the more "general" proficiency systems:  But, it is, perhaps, too general I think.

- I like the fact that other classes besides Fighters (and Monks) can get mulitple attacks . . . eventually.

- I like the different size categories for Monsters (though not all of the combat rules associated with this) and I like the way monsters are "categorized" with different dice used for HD  (i.e. Constructs, Dragons, Undead, Fey, etc.)

- I like that Rangers can be any alignment.

Okay, I could not stick to my own rule and I did say some Negative things . . . but only in relation to a positive (call it a "partial positive).

What is good about 3E (and don't say NOTHING!)  If you had to incorporate something from 3E into 1E (2E) what would it be?


I guess what I liked about 3rd was the OGL really finally opening up the frontier for lots of gaming stuff...both good and very, very bad...to make their way to the public.  Without OGL we wouldn't have the extra levels of Maure castle, for example, since there simply was no market before 3rd edition tomake it worthwhile to print these.  Most of the stuff is really bad, but I like a few of the offerings from guys like Necromancer, Goodman Games....if I ever ran low on material I guess I could convert a few of these.
 God help me, I love some of the new minis (the plastic pre painted ones).  I really would love that giant Red Dragon on sale now for $75 just to scare the shit out of my buddies next time we game...
   I like the renewed interest in 1st and 2nd ed products as a result of 3rd ed.
  Of the 3rd edition game and rules, I don't like a thing. Seriously.  Almost all the so-called innovations mentioned above, my group has been using for years as house rules.  Unlimited levels for demi humans, expanded alignments (we had evil rangers and paladins for years), bonus spells for mages, character classes for humanoids (btw this was introduced in 2nd edition in the Complete Book of Humanoids), we already had all these.

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Post Posted: Wed Nov 29, 2006 11:04 pm 
 

Beyondthebreach wrote:Otherworld . . . I think you are missing the point . . .  :D

Well, I really tried to think of something but I can't.  Many of the points mentioned I don't consider to be positives.

I didn't actually know about the bonus spells for magic-users.  That one's ok.  (We already had our own houserules for this long before 3E arrived.)

Third edition was a real disappointment for me.  It was full of new ideas as promised, but unfortunately none that I liked.  I guess the one thing I like that young kids are still engaged in the game.  Unfortunately, it appears that they also help write some of the books.

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Post Posted: Thu Nov 30, 2006 12:01 am 
 

Badmike wrote:
  Of the 3rd edition game and rules, I don't like a thing. Seriously.  Almost all the so-called innovations mentioned above, my group has been using for years as house rules.  Unlimited levels for demi humans, expanded alignments (we had evil rangers and paladins for years), bonus spells for mages, character classes for humanoids (btw this was introduced in 2nd edition in the Complete Book of Humanoids), we already had all these.

Mike B.


True, but "House Rules" are "House Rules".  A lot of the things I liked I had used as House rules as well . . . but 3E at least addressed most of these fan favorites and incorporated them into the actual game rules.


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Post Posted: Thu Nov 30, 2006 12:02 am 
 

deimos3428 wrote:
I didn't actually know about the bonus spells for magic-users.  That one's ok.  (We already had our own houserules for this long before 3E arrived.)


There ya' go!  See, I knew there must me something.


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Post Posted: Thu Nov 30, 2006 3:11 am 
 

ok, heres my coin:

instead of writing what i like of 3rd edition, i'll write what i *DON'T* like: seriously, every system have few or several strong points and weaknesses... the point is that my main concern on 3E is that it is leading RPG to a "pencil&paper-xbox-style-game" (othewise PPXSG instead of RPG)!

i played with d20 system, i enjoyed this system till the point we reached the 6/7th level... form that point onward there's an escalation of power that wastes all the rpg flavour! dont want to focus on the technical issues on how this system works: it could be good for certain aspects and bad for others...

the point is that i *DO NOT LIKE* 3.X (regardless if 3E or 3.5) because it is a mere commercial variant of the real RPG... nowadays, boys (aka "the target") love PS, xbox and so on... hence the 1st generation players have to accept that their favourite hobby has to change: in my eyes 3.X it is not anymore an RPG! basically because there's not anymore focus on the roleplaying!


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Post Posted: Thu Nov 30, 2006 8:30 am 
 

aia wrote:the point is that i *DO NOT LIKE* 3.X (regardless if 3E or 3.5) because it is a mere commercial variant of the real RPG... nowadays, boys (aka "the target") love PS, xbox and so on... hence the 1st generation players have to accept that their favourite hobby has to change: in my eyes 3.X it is not anymore an RPG! basically because there's not anymore focus on the roleplaying!

But 3.x does appeal to the video-game crowd.  3.x exists to make money, just like OD&D/D&D/AD&D/AD&D2e.

If some players want to min/max (or whatever it's called nowadays) and emphasize the numbers, that's their choice.  If some players want to emphasize the roleplaying, then that's also their choice.  Hasn't this always been true?

3.x has kept D&D alive.  3.x has kept gaming alive.

I may start buying Troll Lords books.  I laugh at some of the Troll Lords editititing errors, and then I realize that getting a book published is a tremendous creative, financial, and managerial effort.  Who cares about a few spelling and grammatical errors?

  

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Post Posted: Thu Nov 30, 2006 8:43 am 
 

JohnGaunt wrote:If some players want to min/max (or whatever it's called nowadays) and emphasize the numbers, that's their choice.  If some players want to emphasize the roleplaying, then that's also their choice.  Hasn't this always been true?


well, thats not what i want to say... lets make an example: what happens if in 2020 soccer players start to use thier hands (it is not important the reason) and soccer rules are adapted to this new requirement (simply because the mass of the players act this way)? would you call it still soccer?

...the same should be applied to RPG and roleplay... just try to look to the new 3.5 DMG: could you pls tell me how many rows (yes, rows! not pages!) are dedicated to roleplay?


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Post Posted: Thu Nov 30, 2006 9:10 am 
 

The incorporation of house rules into the formal rules is one of the good things about third edition.

The breakdown of role-playing after the mid levels was always a problem with D&D in any rules set - although what constituted mid levels varied from campaign to campaign.

The level/hit points combat system has always been a weak spot in the game...and one could argue it was always a video game-like feature.  It used to be cited with scorn by players of other systems even back in the day.

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