From the previous thread:
Originally Posted by Thanatos 51-50
It's unreasonable that an epic-level Rogue needs to roll against a monstrous DC to pick the lock on the tavern door, whereas a Heroic-tier Rogue has to roll a much lower DC to pick the same lock.
Some people took "scale you DCs on skill checks" to mean just that, not that the super-duper amazing locked door that epic rogues generally run across have harder to pick locks and that a Heroic rogue wouldn't have a chance of picking one.
I think this sounds like a problem with the "fluff" (which 4e certainly had its issues with), but mechanically it works as intended; players never fall behind and get useless at tasks (a la 3.5e), while numbers still go up. I think most 4e GMs (myself included) understand that a locked door at level 1 is not the same obstacle to a PC as a locked door at level 11; the difference becomes in how you handle a PC trying to "move" through that lock.
If there's not plausible reason for that lock to not be a run-of-the-mill generic lock, then the level 11 PC should more or less auto-succeed, assuming he/she has either Thievery training or a good dex score (and page 42 would confirm this; easy tasks are generally 5 + 1/2 level, so even if you're using level 11 "numbers" the player should still auto-succeed). And if you wanted to be even more purist, that "level 1" lock should have such a low DC (~11?) that even the clumsy fighter with his mere +4 to Thevery checks should have a decent chance of opening.
If instead the party encounters a lock installed by a group of giants (who are around level 11), then it shouldn't be a stretch to suggest that THIS lock is an appropriate challenge for the party rogue. maybe it's of giant design, or the locking mechanics are heavier/larger that common lockpicks are hard to use with it. Whatever.
Again, I'm not saying that the 4e DMG communicated this well (in fact, the DMG communicated a lot of things poorly), but as a system for improvising challenges for players, it works as intended (and I would argue, it works well).
Like the advice to not stat up every NPC, and to only give stats to NPCs that were supposed to engage in combat was taken to mean that NPCs don't matter unless the PCs are killing them.
I think this is another misinterpretation at best, and at worst, ignoring VERY good advice. Not every NPC needs a character sheet! Encouraging the DM to be constantly referencing some stats so he can accurately tell the PCs that THIS guy has a +12 to his Nature check only slows the game down. Instead, the DMG is (rightfully!) encouraging you to not make NPCs the focus of your game.
And it's not like you can't
create NPCs with full stats (either PC generated, or monster generated); you absolutely can! But I would question the wisdom in doing so unless (as the advice says) you were planning on using them in some sort of combat. If the NPC is important enough, write out four or five traits/quirks about him/her, and guesstimate their skills/stats if the need should arise. As much as the DM advice given in 4e had problems, it also encouraged the DMs to work "smarter" (not "harder") to deliver their game. And despite its problems, page 42 is a brilliant tool that 3.5 sorely lacked, and that I hope 5e gets.