Originally Posted by Kurald Galain
I think it does: good game design is to ensure that characters aren't utterly reliant on their equipment; not to decry any and all DMs that use equipment loss as a plot device.
Think about it: in fiction, are there a lot of characters in fiction that require their Axe Of Coolness, Armor Of Toughitude, Boots Of Running Really Fast, Belt Of Whatever, and Helmet Of The Helmet Lords to function normally? Or are there more characters that rely on nothing but their wits and whatever lies nearby; or on one key artifact; or on a few gizmos that are one-shot items? If you separate James Bond from his trusty gun, or Lancelot from his blade, do you think he'll go sit in the corner and cry?
I dislike the reliance on equipment that's developed in D&D. Looking at Tolkien, you see some generic equipment, maybe a few masterwork weapons here and there, and then a couple of legendary artifacts that are mostly like children's toys next to the standard equipment of a 3.X adventurer. Think of MacGyver, using a Swiss Army knife, a paperclip, and whatever else is around. The Doctor, just using whatever is around (or in other incarnations, the sonic screwdriver). (I haven't had enough high fantasy lately, I guess.)