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  1. - Top - End - #1
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    Default The meatshields lament.

    I don my armor, take sword to hand.
    I pray to Crom I see dusk again.
    Atop my steed I charge to battle,
    Lo, before me the field stretch on a mile.
    When there I see my fate before me,
    The wizard saying, "Now to discuss my fee."

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    just dropped from a group in the first few pages of game because as the Meatshield, I was not given a place to be a character other than a what would have become, official baggage holder.

    I am in a sorrowful mood indeed.

    And the only thing trying to help me was the cohort of another player who was one of the mages that made feel stupid for being Meatshield to begin with.
    Last edited by Lentrax; 2013-11-02 at 03:50 PM.

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  2. - Top - End - #2
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    Default Re: The meatshields lament.

    My condolences. Too many sitting atop that high pedestal called full spellcasting fall to pride before they do humility.

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    Default Re: The meatshields lament.

    You could try E6 campaigns, or low-magic/no-magic campaigns, or D&D 4E. The meatshields/tanks/non-casters have more luck in those games. But I feel your pain. As a 3.5 loyalist, I sometimes feel like my favorite classes are little more than talking pack mules.
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    Default Re: The meatshields lament.

    I'm gonna go ahead and suggest Exalted 3e, once it comes out. Previous experience indicates that while a sorcerer can indeed toss a nuclear explosion at an army, he can still be choke-slammed like anyone else.
    It is inevitable, of course, that persons of epicurean refinement will in the course of eternity engage in dealings with those of... unsavory character. Record well any transactions made, and repay all favors promptly.. (Thanks to Gnomish Wanderer for the Toreador avatar! )

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    Default Re: The meatshields lament.

    "No matter how subtle the wizard, a knife between his shoulder blades will seriously cramp his style."
    --Vlad Taltos

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    Default Re: The meatshields lament.

    + 1 for E6!
    In my most recent session, the caster was the one being the pack mule - "Quick, hold the light!" say the fighters, and get into the fray.

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    Default Re: The meatshields lament.

    Quote Originally Posted by Altair_the_Vexed View Post
    + 1 for E6!
    In my most recent session, the caster was the one being the pack mule - "Quick, hold the light!" say the fighters, and get into the fray.
    That's not the caster's job.
    That's a job for a bard.
    But seriously, never refer yourself as a meat shield.
    It's demeaning to a time honoured and well respected profession that goes back millennia.
    You, my good sir and/or madam, are ablative armour.
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    Default Re: The meatshields lament.

    At third level, there were few forces more feared than an 18 strength, power attacking fighter armed with a masterwork greatsword making an unimpeded charge- especially against a target as squishy as Thamior, who, despite his title, seemed to be a wizard.
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    Default Re: The meatshields lament.


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    Default Re: The meatshields lament.

    You could always just let them through :)

    That usually shuts up a caster.

    Or play a crusader and get so far out of position that the caster feels worthless. That's what I'm doing right now, it's so much damned fun!
    "... people like things that are good."

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    Default Re: The meatshields lament.

    Quote Originally Posted by Frenth Alunril View Post
    You could always just let them through :)

    That usually shuts up a caster.

    Or play a crusader and get so far out of position that the caster feels worthless. That's what I'm doing right now, it's so much damned fun!
    At high levels, if the caster is good at their job, if they get hurt it's pretty much entirely their fault.

    At high levels your job as the fighter is to put out consistent damage, because your wizard likely doesn't deal much damage if any. They can make someone worthless, then you make them dead.
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    Default Re: The meatshields lament.

    Quote Originally Posted by Frenth Alunril View Post
    You could always just let them through :)

    That usually shuts up a caster.
    When the casters wanted me to stay out of their way and told me to "[not] get into melee with the enemy," that's exactly what I did. I put my sword away and just stood there as the enemies charged past me, (hey, no attack of opportunity when you have no weapon equipped.) They were a bit upset at me for that.
    Iop brain.

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    Quote Originally Posted by The Fury View Post
    When the casters wanted me to stay out of their way and told me to "[not] get into melee with the enemy," that's exactly what I did. I put my sword away and just stood there as the enemies charged past me, (hey, no attack of opportunity when you have no weapon equipped.) They were a bit upset at me for that.
    What we have here is a failure to communicate. The caster needs to be more specific, like saying "I am going to fire something over there that I can't control who it hits when it goes off. Wait until after before you charge in."
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    Default Re: The meatshields lament.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ravens_cry View Post
    What we have here is a failure to communicate. The caster needs to be more specific, like saying "I am going to fire something over there that I can't control who it hits when it goes off. Wait until after before you charge in."
    The caster actually did mean for me to stay out of the way. Crowd-control melee-stuff was supposed to be the Cleric's job, with the Rogue as flanking/backup. Maybe I was supposed to pick off stragglers but I'm still unclear what I was supposed to do, even after the resultant scolding I got.

    Caster: "You had one job!"

    Me: "Yeah, and you told me not to do it."

    Moral of the story? Nobody likes a wise-a**.
    Last edited by The Fury; 2013-11-05 at 05:07 PM.
    Iop brain.

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    Quote Originally Posted by The Fury View Post
    The caster actually did mean for me to stay out of the way. Crowd-control melee-stuff was supposed to be the Cleric's job, with the Rogue as flanking/backup. Maybe I was supposed to pick off stragglers but I'm still unclear what I was supposed to do, even after the resultant scolding I got.

    Caster: "You had one job!"

    Me: "Yeah, and you told me not to do it."

    Moral of the story? Nobody likes a wise-a**.
    Eh, while I have some sympathies with the cleric, I think a little work-to-rule was almost appropriate here, though an out of character discussion on toe stepping would have been better.
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    Default Re: The meatshields lament.

    Yeah, I probably should have had an out of character discussion with the guy. Though this was a younger, angrier version of me that was already getting tired of being ignored by the other players.
    Was my desire to be included in a game I was playing in wrong? No, I don't think it was. Did that make how I acted to the other players OK? Good gods, no. I was pretty plainly just as much in the wrong as the party's casters were.
    Iop brain.

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    Default Re: The meatshields lament.

    Quote Originally Posted by The Fury View Post
    Yeah, I probably should have had an out of character discussion with the guy. Though this was a younger, angrier version of me that was already getting tired of being ignored by the other players.
    Was my desire to be included in a game I was playing in wrong? No, I don't think it was. Did that make how I acted to the other players OK? Good gods, no. I was pretty plainly just as much in the wrong as the party's casters were.
    The common realization of nearly everyone at some point: "You know, Past Me was kind of a jerk."
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    Default Re: The meatshields lament.

    Quote Originally Posted by TheOOB View Post
    At high levels, if the caster is good at their job, if they get hurt it's pretty much entirely their fault.
    Like, munch-clawinatoring the hapless foe while taking a hit because the Fighter's jobless?
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    Quote Originally Posted by TuggyNE View Post
    The common realization of nearly everyone at some point: "You know, Past Me was kind of a jerk."
    Absolutely. Past!The Fury was a bit small and petty, and personally I'd rather admit my past failings than try to justify them.

    Though whether I acted like a jerk or not, (which I did,) I think the issue that this thread alluded to was at work as well. Warrior-type classes, (AKA meatshields,) tend to be thought of as the folks that can't grasp anything more complex than "Hit thing over there." So players of casters tend to think the group's fighter can't contribute very meaningfully to planning. I remember in this group I did offer suggestions for solving problems or coming up with plans-- I got the "Grownups are talking" treatment for my trouble. It even got to the point where the DM told the other players out of session, "[The Fury] actually has some good ideas, maybe you should listen to some of them."
    Iop brain.

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    Default Re: The meatshields lament.

    D&D should really get over the conceit that a warrior's job is to stand and protect the squishier but more important party members.
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    Default Re: The meatshields lament.

    Quote Originally Posted by Morty View Post
    D&D should really get over the conceit that a warrior's job is to stand and protect the squishier but more important party members.
    And the idea that mundane characters are limited by what you could feasibly do in real life, while magic users are limited by nothing.

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    Default Re: The meatshields lament.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tengu_temp View Post
    And the idea that mundane characters are limited by what you could feasibly do in real life, while magic users are limited by nothing.
    That too, but I find that the 'meatshield' concept is clung to even when realism is thrown out of the window, sometimes.
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  23. - Top - End - #23
    Colossus in the Playground
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    Default Re: The meatshields lament.

    Hey, that Tome of Battle-book is kinda sweet.
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    Default Re: The meatshields lament.

    Quote Originally Posted by Morty View Post
    D&D should really get over the conceit that a warrior's job is to stand and protect the squishier but more important party members.
    I dunno, I think of that as a job that they can do, but it's not the only one.
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    Default Re: The meatshields lament.

    The problem with D&D, and most magic systems in fiction, is that magic has no downside.

    Imagine if in D&D there was a rule like. "Once a mage casts X levels of spells he dies and cannot be brought back."
    Last edited by Morithias; 2013-11-08 at 04:07 AM.

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    Default Re: The meatshields lament.

    Quote Originally Posted by Morithias View Post
    The problem with D&D, and most magic systems in fiction, is that magic has no downside.

    Imagine if in D&D there was a rule like. "Once a mage casts X levels of spells he dies and cannot be brought back."
    Well, that's not the whole of D&D. Think back to AD&D 2e for instance (which already had magic made much easier than in the earlier editions): spells took long to cast and any disruption automatically causes the spell to fail. Many spells cost the caster intangible things and had dangerous side effects (system shock for Polymorph, aging for Haste, the called creature attacking you for Gate, etc.). Spell components were non-trivial to come by as were spells themselves; you did not learn new spells on level-up so you needed to find what you wanted to learn.

    But yeah, most of the difficulty and danger of magic was whisked away in 3e and derivatives. Still, if talking about D&D in general, I think holistically we can't consider Magic that easy.
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    Default Re: The meatshields lament.

    Imagine if you would, a DM who gets rid of the eschew materials feat and actually requires you to make checks to ensure you have the spell components needed to cast a spell.

    "I cast a fireball"
    "ok, when was the last time you went searching for sulphur and bat guano?"
    "umm... well..."

    I can imagine casters tunes changing when they run out of material components and have to enlist the help of a warrior to enter caves, crypts, and other such places.

    Unfortunately, its one of those micromanaging rules that often gets tossed by the wayside.

    Spell component pouches? how long does it take to find a dime in your pocket amidst all the change you're holding? About a full round would be my guess. Even if they're sectioned off it can be a hassle. I've never DMed a group that liked these rules, and I've never ran with a group that wanted to use them. That's why its commonly ignored instead of enforced.

    As a fellow mundane I feel the pain of being told what to do so the wizards can shine.
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    Default Re: The meatshields lament.

    I dunno, the way magic works is kind of what made me decide I liked warriors better.

    I think it may have been in the same group where the casters told me not to fight the enemy actually. Anyway, sometimes the party's casters would reflect on how their use of a spell was particularly clever when it occurred to me-- when a character can throw around level 6 spells they don't really need to be clever at all. By contrast, a warrior of some type needs to be creative and resourceful just to pull their own weight.

    I'm not sure why, but I kind of like needing to be fairly smart like that. I suppose the challenges feel more genuine that way or something.
    Last edited by The Fury; 2013-11-08 at 11:33 AM.
    Iop brain.

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    Default Re: The meatshields lament.

    Quote Originally Posted by The Fury View Post
    I dunno, the way magic works is kind of what made me decide I liked warriors better.

    I think it may have been in the same group where the casters told me not to fight the enemy actually. Anyway, sometimes the party's casters would reflect on how their use of a spell was particularly clever when it occurred to me-- when a character can throw around level 6 spells they don't really need to be clever at all. By contrast, a warrior of some type needs to be creative and resourceful just to pull their own weight.

    I'm not sure why, but I kind of like needing to be fairly smart like that. I suppose the challenges feel more genuine that way or something.
    I agree.

    Netbooking is not "clever" and let's face it. That's where 90% of the casters come from these days. Pull up google and steal other people's research, then laugh as you break the DM's game.

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    Default Re: The meatshields lament.

    Quote Originally Posted by The Fury View Post
    I dunno, the way magic works is kind of what made me decide I liked warriors better.

    I think it may have been in the same group where the casters told me not to fight the enemy actually. Anyway, sometimes the party's casters would reflect on how their use of a spell was particularly clever when it occurred to me-- when a character can throw around level 6 spells they don't really need to be clever at all. By contrast, a warrior of some type needs to be creative and resourceful just to pull their own weight.

    I'm not sure why, but I kind of like needing to be fairly smart like that. I suppose the challenges feel more genuine that way or something.
    I was using a 3rd Party Fighter/Monk mash-up called the Martial Artist. I used a feat to get Disguise and Forgery as a class skills for background, with cross-class DiploBluff.

    We were fighting a war, and we had an extremely minmaxed nova psion in our group. A 3.0 Psion, so not the venerable class we know and love. This guy never stopped showing off his ability to nuke a field.

    I will never forget the battle we won because my Martial Artist diplomacy'd, bluffed, and disguised his way into the enemy subcommander tents and replaced their marching orders for the next day with new ones that made them attack each other.

    I really like T2-4 classes, but I like them because they allow me (or my players) to be cool with a minimum of effort; escapism, basically. I like to save my cleverness for things which can't really be generalized to encounter strategies.
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