What I like about 3rd edition D&D
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Post Posted: Tue Jan 23, 2007 10:40 pm 
 

Kingofpain89 wrote:
I guess you and Badmike are eagerly awaiting Expedition to Undermountain then?


I don't know myself...I'm afraid all they will do is screw it up.  But I suppose they will continue to rape the old settings for all the good ideas as long as they can....hell, is there any doubt someday we'll see "Return to the Return to The Temple of Elemental Evil"?

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Post Posted: Wed Jan 24, 2007 12:03 am 
 

Fundamentally d20 and 3E/3.5 have sound game mechanics. The revamped armor class, ability scores, and combat system are all easier to use and more linear than previous editions. Feats and class adjustments (multi/dual classing) however essentially ruin the improvements for me. I've been the DM of my group since tearing the shrink off my first boxed set. In the 2 decades at the occupation I've found the most fundamental aspect of both a good rpg and a good campaign is balance. Inevitably, pcs are drawn from a fairly wide group of players with different role-playing desires. Finding a spot for most without it being at another's expense is key. This also goes for the DM/PC interaction.

When I say DM/PC interaction I don't mean DM vs. PCs exactly but how do you challenge the pcs within the greater game mechanics while still maintaining game balance? A group of min/maxing players will force a dm to use stronger and stronger monsters earlier which in turn are worth more xp. Eventually you reach a sort of rpg arms race to make games competitive between your ultimately too strong pcs. What usually results is mutually assisted destruction. Game balance was probably the best with 1E but its continued evolution was a jumble of new rules particularly Unearthed Arcana which tipped the scales toward the pcs. 2E was still in favor of pcs but organized everything in a much better fashion while optioning most of the really unbalancing rules.

3E could've reset game balance while improving the overall mechanics in a blissful marriage but instead the scales were broken with feats and new class rules. As I mentioned above I spent about 10 years DMing in 2E and had the greatest games (I also love the ole grey box and FR sups...really superior to the WoG 83 box in my opinion.) After a few months of intensive learning and playtesting 3E my friends and I started a FR campaign. It started well but once the core of the group reached 7th level the aforementioned arms race began and eventually ended with the death of most of party, the death of the avatar of Sebek, and an ancient blue dragon. Without going into detail a group of pcs managed to defeat creature far beyond the challenge rating. Ultimately if game balance was restored with 3E it would probably be far and away the best edition but I feel it was driven even further from the center. Of course I still use the 3E combat system...

  

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Post Posted: Wed Jan 24, 2007 12:17 am 
 

Kingofpain89 wrote:
I guess you and Badmike are eagerly awaiting Expedition to Undermountain then?


Oh yes indeedy :lol: !

(Though didn't I read on these boards a while ago that Badmike had completely inhabited all of the Undermountain maps for 1 grand campaign?)(If so then send me a copy - I'd gladly pay shipping!!)


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Post Posted: Wed Jan 24, 2007 1:16 am 
 

Cattledog wrote:Fundamentally d20 and 3E/3.5 have sound game mechanics. The revamped armor class, ability scores, and combat system are all easier to use and more linear than previous editions. Feats and class adjustments (multi/dual classing) however essentially ruin the improvements for me. I've been the DM of my group since tearing the shrink off my first boxed set. In the 2 decades at the occupation I've found the most fundamental aspect of both a good rpg and a good campaign is balance. Inevitably, pcs are drawn from a fairly wide group of players with different role-playing desires. Finding a spot for most without it being at another's expense is key. This also goes for the DM/PC interaction.

When I say DM/PC interaction I don't mean DM vs. PCs exactly but how do you challenge the pcs within the greater game mechanics while still maintaining game balance? A group of min/maxing players will force a dm to use stronger and stronger monsters earlier which in turn are worth more xp. Eventually you reach a sort of rpg arms race to make games competitive between your ultimately too strong pcs. What usually results is mutually assisted destruction. Game balance was probably the best with 1E but its continued evolution was a jumble of new rules particularly Unearthed Arcana which tipped the scales toward the pcs. 2E was still in favor of pcs but organized everything in a much better fashion while optioning most of the really unbalancing rules.

3E could've reset game balance while improving the overall mechanics in a blissful marriage but instead the scales were broken with feats and new class rules. As I mentioned above I spent about 10 years DMing in 2E and had the greatest games (I also love the ole grey box and FR sups...really superior to the WoG 83 box in my opinion.) After a few months of intensive learning and playtesting 3E my friends and I started a FR campaign. It started well but once the core of the group reached 7th level the aforementioned arms race began and eventually ended with the death of most of party, the death of the avatar of Sebek, and an ancient blue dragon. Without going into detail a group of pcs managed to defeat creature far beyond the challenge rating. Ultimately if game balance was restored with 3E it would probably be far and away the best edition but I feel it was driven even further from the center. Of course I still use the 3E combat system...


I think that game balance is better in 3rd edition...with the exception of the bard class...and the rogue against anything that cannot be sneak attacked.

The 3rd edition rules do call for the players and DM to share the rules interpretation and enforcement duties.  There are too many variables for the DM to control and he has to rely more upon the players.  It also takes more preparation.


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Post Posted: Wed Jan 24, 2007 1:59 am 
 

gyg wrote:
Oh yes indeedy :lol: !

(Though didn't I read on these boards a while ago that Badmike had completely inhabited all of the Undermountain maps for 1 grand campaign?)(If so then send me a copy - I'd gladly pay shipping!!)


My notes are all packed away....gotta dig those out someday!  Filled an entire college ruled spiral notebook...plus a folder or two...good times!!!  Someday I'll get all this out and type them up in something resembling a coherent form....

Mike B.


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Post Posted: Wed Jan 24, 2007 9:39 am 
 

Cattledog wrote:When I say DM/PC interaction I don't mean DM vs. PCs exactly but how do you challenge the pcs within the greater game mechanics while still maintaining game balance? A group of min/maxing players will force a dm to use stronger and stronger monsters earlier which in turn are worth more xp. Eventually you reach a sort of rpg arms race to make games competitive between your ultimately too strong pcs. What usually results is mutually assisted destruction.
In that case, I would argue that the DM isn't doing a very good job.  The DM should be finding different ways to challenge the PCs (e.g. smarter monsters, not stronger).

  

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Post Posted: Wed Jan 24, 2007 10:38 am 
 

I challenged the pcs in every way possible but the core of D&D especially 3E given feats is combat. Besides my players have years of experience and are really too smart for their own good. You should probably play one of my adventures before you call me a bad DM.

As for game balance...I really think feats especially the FR feats tip the scales squarely in favor of the pcs.

  

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Post Posted: Wed Jan 24, 2007 12:57 pm 
 

The monsters have the same feats...although some work better for the PC's.

Game balance is different in 3rd edition.  It holds up until about 12th level...as opposed to the sharp break at 7th level in 1st edition that was created by Unearthed Arcana.


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Post Posted: Wed Jan 24, 2007 1:03 pm 
 

I agree with that except I'd probably say that 3E breaks down sooner than that depending on the player. Like I said, the game mechanics are fundamentally better for 3E but the game balance in 2E can be maintained by the DM whereas I feel the pc advantage is institutionalized in 3E.

  


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Post Posted: Wed Jan 24, 2007 1:51 pm 
 

Cattledog wrote:I challenged the pcs in every way possible but the core of D&D especially 3E given feats is combat. Besides my players have years of experience and are really too smart for their own good. You should probably play one of my adventures before you call me a bad DM.
That certainly wasn't my intent.  I apologize.

  

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Post Posted: Wed Jan 24, 2007 1:56 pm 
 

No need to apologize. I think that poor DMing can lead to these problems too but I think (hope) I've been doing it long enough to avoid the common problems. It may be that I'm trying to run a D&D campaign using 3E that is based on the zeitgeist of 1E & 2E. Perhaps that is the problem...

  


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Post Posted: Wed Jan 24, 2007 3:14 pm 
 

I've kind of soured on 3.x having played and DM'd it the past few years.  Things I like?  Some of the Feats from OGL sources like "Unarmored Defensive Proficiency" which allows Characters to have a better AC without armor and OGL derivative games such as Castles & Crusades (OGL rules adapted to AD&D 1E classes and flavor.)  As a matter of fact I'm going to have the pleasure of DMing BeyondTheBreach in a new C&C campaign real soon! :twisted:


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Post Posted: Wed Jan 24, 2007 8:10 pm 
 

simrion wrote:I've kind of soured on 3.x having played and DM'd it the past few years.  Things I like?  Some of the Feats from OGL sources like "Unarmored Defensive Proficiency" which allows Characters to have a better AC without armor


And this is an example of the things I don't like about 3rd edition.

It seems to me there is no logical reason for a better AC without armor, aside from the standard elements of the rules, such as dexterity and magic.  These are already accounted for in the rules.

Why is one PC harder to hit even though he's not wearing armor?

Fencing ability?  (Hint:  What if your opponent doesn't fence with you?  What if he just whallops you?  You're fencing with that giant...or dragon?  You foiled his attack with your...foil?)

Because dodging works so well?  (Hint:  Why was armor invented?)

"Because my character is...uh...really...good at...uh...not being hit?  I mean, he seriously practices not getting hit!  I mean he practices really hard!"  (Hint:  And other people practice...what?)

Unfortunately, this sort of nonsense rule (designed to sell extra books to players) is a problem with 2nd edition books as well as 3rd edition.

Example:  "Your thief gets a bonus of 5% if he uses this tool to pick locks"

(Hint:  Ummm....what are "thieves picks and tools?"  How is this tool different from those tools?  Are the thieves who don't use this new tool somehow dumber than the other thieves?  OR, does this new tool exist only to motivate thief PC players to buy the book?)


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Post Posted: Wed Jan 24, 2007 10:12 pm 
 

Gotta admit that it does replicate some of the original pulp/low fantasy of characters like Conan.  You hardly ever see him (in the cover art works) wearing more than just a hide loin cloth for armor.  So how is he just harder to hit?  Bad die rolls, gobs more HPs?  Damn hard to justify in the older rules sets as an 18 Dex... 8O   Don't get me wrong, I am NOT a 3.x defender by any stretch....though the 3.x defenders say it is not "video game like" I beg to differ and have pissed some off due my opinon in that manner...


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Post Posted: Wed Jan 24, 2007 10:21 pm 
 

simrion wrote:Gotta admit that it does replicate some of the original pulp/low fantasy of characters like Conan.  You hardly ever see him (in the cover art works) wearing more than just a hide loin cloth for armor.  So how is he just harder to hit?  Bad die rolls, gobs more HPs?  Damn hard to justify in the older rules sets as an 18 Dex... 8O   Don't get me wrong, I am NOT a 3.x defender by any stretch....though the 3.x defenders say it is not "video game like" I beg to differ and have pissed some off due my opinon in that manner...


Yes.  It does replicate the Conan comic books (not the actual stories).

The issue is game balance.  Classes that cannot wear armor for various reasons should have to live with that limitation.


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Post Posted: Wed Jan 24, 2007 11:30 pm 
 

MShipley88 wrote:Why is one PC harder to hit even though he's not wearing armor?

Displacer beast gene.  Somewhere waaay up in the family tree...  :lol:

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Post Posted: Thu Jan 25, 2007 2:04 pm 
 

deimos3428 wrote:Displacer beast gene.  Somewhere waaay up in the family tree...  :lol:


:lol:

  
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