Better still, drow appear in the PHB for all those Drizzt wannabees.
Posted on 2008-04-18 at 17:26:08.
Bromern Sal A Shadow RDI Staff Karma: 145/11 4046 Posts
Oh, you just opened the floodgates, Olan, my friend!
First, let me clarify that I was introduced to RPGing through D&D, and until I actually started writing and creating art for the industry, I'd never really been able to figure out what bothered me about the system. I've played White Wolf's system as well as RTal's Interlock and FUZION (Serenity's system now as well), and while each system had some intriguing aspects about them, as individual practices they are all lacking. So, over the past few years I've integrated portions of each into my hybrid system, and I am actually enjoying gaming again. As for D&D...
- Hit points. Retarded, and for the reasons you've already posted.
- Armor class. Armor protects you when you get hit, in part. It doesn't make it more difficult to hit you.
- The lack of realistic combat systems that turn each battle into a mathmetician's glory, not a strategic, heroic battle. This was already touched on previously, but in my system I've made an individuals survival based on their skills. If they can't block, they sure as snot better be able to dodge or they're dead.
- Experience points. You have a character kill a few monsters, raid their treasure, and suddenly all, or the majority of all, their skills increase? Get real. I only allow my players to increase skills that they use except in rare study instances. There aren't any levels, so every merit is awarded to skills.
- Character classes. Too limiting. Your character is a wizard, an adventurer, a caravan guard, an advisor to the king--he's whatever is bringing in the coin at the moment, not some preset definition of a career mold.
- Statistics that grow to unbelievable heights. Wait a second. Did you just tell me that your halfling has a strength of 22? Yeah, right.
- A lack of maintenance cost on equipment. Sure, there's the suggestion that X amount of gold should go towards monthly living expenses, but how many character's ever actually have a sword break, a horse throw a shoe, etc.?
- Number of attacks based on class. You mean to tell me that my rogue with a Dexterity of 18 doesn't get as many attacks per round as your meaty fighter wearing full plate with a Dexterity of 14? In my system your actions per phase are determined by a mixture of your ability to remain cool under pressure, your dexterity, and your reflexes augmented by the weight and type of gear you're carrying, and the armor you are wearing. More often than not, a nimble, sure-footed individual who has the reflexes of a cat and the cool head of a hero is better of than the slow, well-protected knight when it comes to getting in more attacks, but they are also quicker to die without the steel armor between them and their enemy's blade.
- The lack of balance in character classes. Sure, a wizard is of little use at low levels, but at high levels? Send in the fodder to weaken him because your twentieth level fighter AND his army are toast if they face a high level Mage.
- Arcane magic more powerful than divine? I'm with Pekka on this. These are Gods--the creators of everything.
- Resurrection. Takes the fear of dying out of combat.
- the availability of magic items in most game worlds. In mine, having a magic item is cool and all, but it is expensive. I've put a tax on my campaign's magic items. There's also an expiration date. Don't get me wrong; they can pay to have a specialist extend its magic, but that ain't cheap.
Oh, there's more, but I'm tired, and I'm slower on this iPhone than I'd like to be.
I agree with Brianna with the spell system. A mage casts a fireball, and suddenly doesn't know how to do it? Come on!
I made up a spell-point system for casters, both mage and cleric and given both the ability to use these points in ways other than just casting spells from the book. Mages can invest a few points in a warding circle for example. They sleep better because they are woken up when something crosses that circle. Clerics have a healing/curing ritual they can use outside of combat to heal a greater degree of damage than strict book spells allow.
Brom, you quite possibly nailed down all of the major ones. I like your take on things with that. The HP one is a huge irritant. Another one I have to add on: Ridiculous base attack bonus at high levels. Yes, you can fight. Yes, lots of attacks. With a swing that could hit somebody on the other side of a stone wall with your accuracy? Whatever.
Another one of mine: Monk. Every time the monk appears, its by far the most overpowered thing the entire way through. Punch harder than a giant can stomp you? BS. Resist disintegration so easily? No chance. Slip through a keyhole? I think I've had enough here..
Hit points have never been a problem for me. At low levels no one ever has any, and death is close for most of the party all the time. Higher levels, yes more hit points but 2 claws, 1 bite, 1 wing, and 1 tail from a dragon makes those go away quick. Also, at higher levels the chance that a single blow will trigger a massive damage death goes up dramatically.
One of the quotes that floats around my gaming group is from the epic game we run, "I still made the fort save, but I rolled a 1. What's that mean?" "It means you're dead."
The things that bothers me is how unwieldy the grappling rules are. The system evolved from a simulator for war games, lots of guys fighting lots of other guys with weapons. The scope shrank and now it's individuals fighting, but still with weapons (or spells). Take away the weapon and it all goes to crap. The D&D system takes too long to get the upper hand (standard to grapple and another standard to pin) but Spycraft rules just hand you the patrolling guards on a silver platter if you've got enough athletics. I hope to one day find a happy medium.
Actually, my first exposure to D&D was 4e, but it's too much like [insert popular MMO here] in my opinion. If I want to play [insert popular MMO here], I'll fire up the laptop, but if I fire up the laptop...I'll probably end up at the Inn anyway.
Regardless, most folks I know that are D&D-ers play 4e. don't get me wrong, there are things I like about it, but as an overall product, I'm just kinda meh.
Edit: Another gripe of mine is the Essentials line, which I think should've been released first. Just my $0.02
Posted on 2011-02-07 at 16:34:36.
Edited on 2011-02-07 at 16:36:20 by Fletch