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  1. - Top - End - #481
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    Default Re: We all know about polymorph issues. . . but solutions?

    Quote Originally Posted by Forum Explorer View Post
    Or is completely incapable of defeating them if the party has bought horses. Yeah, Sleep is a really good spell at level 1. But it drops off hard as the game goes on. (Particularly on Pixies who can't amp it up more), and it drops off even more depending on the party composition, or what they've got with them (you buy a lot of animals for cheap, and I tend to aim at getting a horse or a guard dog really quickly when I play.)
    Dogs would be better than horses for protection against Sleep at first level. Spreading out helps a lot too. Sleep also doesn't work against elves, half-elves, or when cast by Pixies, it doesn't work on anybody protected by Protection From Good and Evil. Interestingly, one thing that is not immune to sleep, is pixies. This is significant because, IME, a large percentage of 1st level bards, sorcerers, and wizards know that spell, and they don't have to see the target for it to work.

    A 1st level character with 16 Wisdom and proficiency in Perception has a passive perception of 15. A single pixie has only a 65% chance of beating that. With two pixies it goes down to just over 42%. Four pixies - which is a deadly encounter at first level, have less than 18% chance of getting surprise.

    An ambush by 2 pixies that have prepared ahead of time can still be a very hard challenge for a 1st level party, mainly because at that level anything can be. However, the same number of pixies encountered randomly, when the PCs know that pixies live in the area and have taken some sensible precautions, is no real challenge at all.

  2. - Top - End - #482
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    Default Re: We all know about polymorph issues. . . but solutions?

    Quote Originally Posted by SharkForce View Post
    1) i would rule that falling asleep doesn't inherently make you fall off a horse. it could. but plenty of people have done it and not fallen off the horse as well. perhaps if you had your character down as being particularly incompetent at horseback riding. even then, you're not really falling close to 10 feet. a horse is tall, but the horse's back (which is where you'll be falling from unless you make a habit of riding on the head or hovering a few feet above the saddle or something odd like that) is not 10 feet up, even on a large horse. more like 5-6 on a typical riding horse. maybe more on a warhorse, but unless they're substantially larger than draft horses i would guess not *that* much more. it's about equivalent to falling out of a bunk bed, i'd say... another thing which plenty of people have managed to sleep through *without* being magically compelled into sleep (though to be fair, i'm sure there are also plenty of people who woke up from that... but again, magically compelled to sleep. it takes ~6 seconds worth of slapping to wake them up, it's a pretty deep sleep).

    2) there should not be specific absolute requirements for you to be able to form an adventuring party. a lot of effort went into making it so that you can play D&D even if nobody wants to play a trap-disarming rogue or a healing cleric. why on earth would it be a good idea to encourage an absolute need for a 14+ HP target to be at full HP at all times (because remember, if your party are all down 3-4 HP, that just makes them even more vulnerable to sleep, and you don't know for sure that a 13 HP target will fall after the horses since it would be a tie, so you need to keep that person at full).

    3) if the sleep spells from what is likely to be ambush (ie surprise round) do not do the job, the pixies still have plenty of single-target disabling spells. some of them are likely to be extremely effective against the sort of target that has 14+ HP at level 1. of course, that requires the pixie to at least become theoretically visible, although still potentially hiding in really good cover, and at least at that point you managed to survive the surprise round. perhaps you'll manage to actually get a chance to act before losing. depressingly enough, that is an actual improvement over the typical way the encounter plays out.

    a pair of CR 1/4 creatures should not be a tiny chance of avoiding defeat for a level 1 party. they're supposed to be moderately challenging, the sort of thing you could go through several times a day (with short rests in between some of the time) and come out on top.

    1. I know my players would argue that they would fall off their horses. And they would certainly argue that either falling from a horse should do at least 1 point of damage, or be a big enough 'shake' to wake them up. And I'd be inclined to agree with them. It doesn't take 6 seconds worth of slapping, that's what the entire turn takes. If your initiative is higher then your comrades and you wake them up, they still get to act normally. Alternatively, you can duel wield your fists and punch two people awake.

    2. What are you going on about? High HP is a good thing, players will naturally aim to have it. Keeping your HP high is a good thing, players will naturally aim to do so. If they succeed in doing so, sleep simply won't work. And again, Pixie's don't show up randomly. If you are having them show up at the end of the adventuring day when the PCs are battered and wounded, that's on you.

    3. Like I've said before, while you can play Pixie's as an unstoppable death squad, you can do the same thing with most creatures. How a monster theoretically could be played, and how it's actually played is completely different. And with Pixie's you have to make a conscious choice to play them as powerfully as you can because basically nothing they do is calculated randomly.
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  3. - Top - End - #483
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    Default Re: We all know about polymorph issues. . . but solutions?

    1) they can argue whatever they want. falling asleep doesn't automatically knock you out of the saddle. it might. it probably isn't going to for a typical adventurer. especially not the kind that is likely to put the effort into obtaining a riding horse at level 1 when that is a major investment. ultimately, unless your players are going to vote that knocking them prone while standing on a short ledge is going to deal damage as well, you should probably ignore their sudden desire to be damaged for the minimum possible amount when it benefits them, and instead ask yourself what makes more sense.

    2) high HP is good. getting over 13 HP at level 1? still unlikely unless you're a barbarian, no matter how good it is. making more HP better is good. making it a requirement to have a specific class with the highest possible HP and have a riding horse for every member of the party is not good if that's the checklist for you to not get instantly crushed in what is supposed to be a fight of throwaway difficulty.

    3) the point is that a CR 1/4 creature should not require that sort of consideration. if you send a wolf as the final battle in the day, you typically don't have to worry about the entire party getting dropped without even being aware that a fight was starting. even if you send a stealthy enemy, they still don't generally drop the entire party (most won't even drop 1) before the party is at least aware of the fight. with pixies, you do have to worry about that. that's the problem with them being CR 1/4.

  4. - Top - End - #484
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    Default Re: We all know about polymorph issues. . . but solutions?

    Quote Originally Posted by SharkForce View Post
    1) they can argue whatever they want. falling asleep doesn't automatically knock you out of the saddle. it might. it probably isn't going to for a typical adventurer. especially not the kind that is likely to put the effort into obtaining a riding horse at level 1 when that is a major investment. ultimately, unless your players are going to vote that knocking them prone while standing on a short ledge is going to deal damage as well, you should probably ignore their sudden desire to be damaged for the minimum possible amount when it benefits them, and instead ask yourself what makes more sense.

    2) high HP is good. getting over 13 HP at level 1? still unlikely unless you're a barbarian, no matter how good it is. making more HP better is good. making it a requirement to have a specific class with the highest possible HP and have a riding horse for every member of the party is not good if that's the checklist for you to not get instantly crushed in what is supposed to be a fight of throwaway difficulty.

    3) the point is that a CR 1/4 creature should not require that sort of consideration. if you send a wolf as the final battle in the day, you typically don't have to worry about the entire party getting dropped without even being aware that a fight was starting. even if you send a stealthy enemy, they still don't generally drop the entire party (most won't even drop 1) before the party is at least aware of the fight. with pixies, you do have to worry about that. that's the problem with them being CR 1/4.
    1) Here's what they'd likely argue; Sure it means you are automatically knocked from your horse, after all, when you are sent unconscious you become prone according to the rules, and when you are prone you are lying on the ground do to throwing yourself down or being knocked down. Therefore, falling unconscious while on a horse means you should be rendered prone, and that means falling off the horse. They would say that the majority of people fall off their horses when they fall asleep, unless they tie themselves in the saddle. Sure, some people can fall asleep and stay in the saddle, but some people can sleep walk, climb up buildings, and even have sex while sleeping.

    As for damage, well, my mother fell of a horse last year and broke her wrist. And she was fully aware at the time. Someone who is sleeping (and thus can't take a controlled fall) should be more vulnerable to taking damage. I'd rule that for the purposes of falling, I'd round up to 10 feet for an unconscious person falling, and have them take 1d6 damage.

    2) Or a Fighter, Ranger, Paladin. Or a Hill Dwarf. Though I would say that you only need to match the HP of the horse for the horse to get affected first. I don't tell them HP scores of their enemies, and thus when they cast sleep, in the case of a tie I choose. Therefore when an opponent is casting sleep, they should get to choose in case of a tie. It's only fair.

    Riding Horses are pretty expensive for a level 1 character though. They might have to use mules instead, which are actually much better for this specific scenario.

    3) The problem is the Sleep spell, not Pixies. Any caster with that spell that gets to ambush the PCs after a day of adventuring has a high chance of knocking them all out. I mean you could take the Acolyte and turn it into an Apprentice by switching it's Int and Wis, making it's spellcasting off Int, changing it's cantrips, and giving it sleep, shield, and Detect Magic, and it would be just as dangerous in that situation. Sleep is a really good spell at level 1, but it falls off incredibly fast, and is countered by silly things like buying a cart full of chickens (which I would totally do if I was heading into Pixie territory)

    The CR system does not take that spell into account, at least according to the DMG, because it doesn't deal damage, or give the monster a better chance to hit/worse chance to be hit, or give the monster more HP.
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  5. - Top - End - #485
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    Default Re: We all know about polymorph issues. . . but solutions?

    1) depending on your saddle, you may be somewhat tied in (war saddles are sometimes designed to hold you in the saddle instead of being knocked out of it). being dropped prone does not require that you cease to be on whatever you were on before. you're not going to stay in the saddle if the horse starts jumping fences or anything, but if the horse is traveling at a reasonable pace without making any sharp turns etc, i could easily see you staying in the saddle. not being conscious is actually likely to help with falling. going limp is not as good as rolling with the fall, but it's basically the next best thing.

    2) fighter, ranger, paladin, all most likely have 14 con. good enough for 12. at full HP. not good enough for 13, especially if they have a couple of points of damage. hill dwarf, unless also one of those classes (or of course barbarian) is also not likely to have 13. there's too much to be gained from a 16 in your primary stat to generally place your one 16 you get with point buy into your secondary stat(s). mules help somewhat, but you still shouldn't *have* to have mules (and keep yourself near full HP) to avoid the ambush.

    3) sleep is part of the problem. some other parts are that the pixies have unusually high AC (not even accounting for cover against ranged attacks, which they can quite possibly have), are naturally invisible, have good stealth, fly, don't need to make any noise to cast spells, and have a good initiative modifier. the problem is not just that the pixies can win with sleep. it's that they have so many ways to make it near impossible to do anything to stop them from getting a sleep spell off, if you even know that you're about to get ambushed in the first place.

  6. - Top - End - #486
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    Default Re: We all know about polymorph issues. . . but solutions?

    Quote Originally Posted by SharkForce View Post
    13) sleep is part of the problem. some other parts are that the pixies have unusually high AC (not even accounting for cover against ranged attacks, which they can quite possibly have), are naturally invisible, have good stealth, fly, don't need to make any noise to cast spells, and have a good initiative modifier. the problem is not just that the pixies can win with sleep. it's that they have so many ways to make it near impossible to do anything to stop them from getting a sleep spell off, if you even know that you're about to get ambushed in the first place.
    Pixies are not naturally invisible; they have to concentrate to maintain their invisibility. That means the only spells they can use while invisible are Druidcraft, Dispel Magic, and Sleep. Their stealth is pretty good, but certainly not unbeatable by first level characters. And even while invisible, pixies can be located with Detect Evil or Good.

  7. - Top - End - #487
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    Default Re: We all know about polymorph issues. . . but solutions?

    Quote Originally Posted by SharkForce View Post
    1) depending on your saddle, you may be somewhat tied in (war saddles are sometimes designed to hold you in the saddle instead of being knocked out of it). being dropped prone does not require that you cease to be on whatever you were on before. you're not going to stay in the saddle if the horse starts jumping fences or anything, but if the horse is traveling at a reasonable pace without making any sharp turns etc, i could easily see you staying in the saddle. not being conscious is actually likely to help with falling. going limp is not as good as rolling with the fall, but it's basically the next best thing.

    2) fighter, ranger, paladin, all most likely have 14 con. good enough for 12. at full HP. not good enough for 13, especially if they have a couple of points of damage. hill dwarf, unless also one of those classes (or of course barbarian) is also not likely to have 13. there's too much to be gained from a 16 in your primary stat to generally place your one 16 you get with point buy into your secondary stat(s). mules help somewhat, but you still shouldn't *have* to have mules (and keep yourself near full HP) to avoid the ambush.

    3) sleep is part of the problem. some other parts are that the pixies have unusually high AC (not even accounting for cover against ranged attacks, which they can quite possibly have), are naturally invisible, have good stealth, fly, don't need to make any noise to cast spells, and have a good initiative modifier. the problem is not just that the pixies can win with sleep. it's that they have so many ways to make it near impossible to do anything to stop them from getting a sleep spell off, if you even know that you're about to get ambushed in the first place.
    1) War saddle not riding saddle. By it's literal definition, yes being prone requires you to knocked to the ground. Because it means to be lying on the ground. It's certainly something a player would call me out on if I insisted they stayed on the horse. They would likely be upset if I ruled against them on this matter, cause it would smack of railroading and stacking the encounter unfavorably towards the pixies.

    Kinda, but not really. Going fully limp means you are going to hit your head hard when you fall off a horse. I'd certainly say it hurts more then a punch to the face.

    2) Why would they not put a 15 in Con and their other primary skill? Actually where are you even getting 16 from? From the PBP, I see three variants a standard array (NOT point buy), roll for it, and point buy which puts the max a stat can be at 15, but you can have three stats at 15 (at the cost of having 3 stats at 8). What I typically see, is spending a 15 on whatever their primary stat is, another 15 on Con because it's just that needed, and then something like 12, 10, 10, 9 for the rest, though that has the most variance. Rolling goes highest in primary, second highest in Con, unless they were unlucky, that puts both at 15+. And I've never used the standard array.

    Then they simply choose a race that gives a boost to Con, most of which are quite good on the melee classes (any dwarf, human, half-orc. Rock gnome and Stoutheart Halfing, aren't so good, but do give a bonus to Con so I see them used for melee classes occasionally)

    You don't *have* to have mules. But they are useful to get around encumbrance. Also if your DM is being the sort of jerk to throw multiple sleep casting opponents at you from ambush, then you certainly want them. (Or stop playing because your DM is a jerk)

    3. A high AC is set off by the fact that literally any attack that lands on them will kill them. Anything! Invisibility helps, but the pixie dust is described as glittering tail of a shooting star. So they should be pretty easy to spot after casting a spell, even if you have disadvantage on your attacks (cause of invisibility). They also have no other attacks then their spells. The apprentice can at least go around knifing you afterwards.

    Again, if you know you are going into Pixie territory, and you are liable to be ambushed, you spend a few silvers on buying chickens. Or maybe spend an afternoon catching mice and squirrels. Once you catch/buy 20 of them you are almost immune to the sleep spell because it will always effect them first, and statistically, 20 HP is the average roll for sleep. And there is really nothing Pixie's can do to stop that strategy.
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    Default Re: We all know about polymorph issues. . . but solutions?

    I feel like this forum needs a button do delete a thread from your personal view forever. This thread is an ongoing trainwreck that keeps pulling me back in and forcing me to watch the horrors unfold.
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    Default Re: We all know about polymorph issues. . . but solutions?

    Quote Originally Posted by pwykersotz View Post
    I feel like this forum needs a button do delete a thread from your personal view forever. This thread is an ongoing trainwreck that keeps pulling me back in and forcing me to watch the horrors unfold.
    Unsubscribe. Then just... do your best to skip such threads.

    It's never worked for me mind you, stupid morbid curiosity.
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    Default Re: We all know about polymorph issues. . . but solutions?

    1) i can lie prone on a bed just fine. i can lie prone in a reclining chair just fine. i can lie prone on many things. many of those things are not the ground. prone does not mean on the ground.

    2) 12 HP is not enough for the riding horses you mentioned. it is enough for mules, but again, if you're somewhat injured, mules will also not work. the solution to the problem should not be metagamey in the first place... you shouldn't HAVE to do ridiculous out-of-character shenanigans to protect yourself from a CR-appropriate creature. you should be able to face it *without* the ridiculous crap.

    3) when you have to go through multiple layers of defense to hit them (be aware of them, win initiative, and actually succeed on the attack roll), it is still hard to kill them. unless the PCs have an infallible pixie-sensing radar that allows them to lock on with homing projectiles, pixies are not nearly as easy to kill as the 1 HP would suggest. which makes sense, because they have the defenses of a CR 1 creature.

    there is no need for the pixie to move after casting a spell if you're not disabled. they were in hiding when they cast the spell. they have cover. there is no trail to spot. they furthermore are very good at hiding, whether invisible or not, which suggests they know how to account for their trail of pixie dust even if they do move.


    a CR appropriate creature does not force you to use weird metagame crap to protect you from it. if a wolf shows up at the end of the day, it doesn't nearly auto-win the fight. if a goblin shows up at the end of the day, it doesn't nearly auto-win the fight. if pixies are supposed to be CR 1/4, they should damn well be about as challenging as a CR 1/4 creature, which don't generally auto-win roughly 15 times out of 16 against a level 1 party.

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    Default Re: We all know about polymorph issues. . . but solutions?

    Quote Originally Posted by SharkForce View Post

    3) when you have to go through multiple layers of defense to hit them (be aware of them, win initiative, and actually succeed on the attack roll), it is still hard to kill them. unless the PCs have an infallible pixie-sensing radar that allows them to lock on with homing projectiles, pixies are not nearly as easy to kill as the 1 HP would suggest. which makes sense, because they have the defenses of a CR 1 creature.
    Quibble: Magic Missile is in fact a set of homing projectiles that instantly kill pixies if they're ever seen.
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  12. - Top - End - #492
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    Default Re: We all know about polymorph issues. . . but solutions?

    Quote Originally Posted by SharkForce View Post
    1) i can lie prone on a bed just fine. i can lie prone in a reclining chair just fine. i can lie prone on many things. many of those things are not the ground. prone does not mean on the ground.

    2) 12 HP is not enough for the riding horses you mentioned. it is enough for mules, but again, if you're somewhat injured, mules will also not work. the solution to the problem should not be metagamey in the first place... you shouldn't HAVE to do ridiculous out-of-character shenanigans to protect yourself from a CR-appropriate creature. you should be able to face it *without* the ridiculous crap.

    3) when you have to go through multiple layers of defense to hit them (be aware of them, win initiative, and actually succeed on the attack roll), it is still hard to kill them. unless the PCs have an infallible pixie-sensing radar that allows them to lock on with homing projectiles, pixies are not nearly as easy to kill as the 1 HP would suggest. which makes sense, because they have the defenses of a CR 1 creature.

    there is no need for the pixie to move after casting a spell if you're not disabled. they were in hiding when they cast the spell. they have cover. there is no trail to spot. they furthermore are very good at hiding, whether invisible or not, which suggests they know how to account for their trail of pixie dust even if they do move.


    a CR appropriate creature does not force you to use weird metagame crap to protect you from it. if a wolf shows up at the end of the day, it doesn't nearly auto-win the fight. if a goblin shows up at the end of the day, it doesn't nearly auto-win the fight. if pixies are supposed to be CR 1/4, they should damn well be about as challenging as a CR 1/4 creature, which don't generally auto-win roughly 15 times out of 16 against a level 1 party.
    1. But you are flat. You cannot lie flat on a horse without severe difficulty and preparation. You certainly can't do it if you've been magically sent asleep.

    2. Er, 16 gives you a +3. 10+3 = 13. So if you have a 15 and then one of the many races that increase your Con, you're good to go.

    Generally you want mounts because of other reasons. The fact that they render sleep useless is just a bonus.

    3. Not really. You can end up in that situation, but unless your DM is a jerk, being defeated by Pixie's will be an inconvenience. (but we've already covered my views on that).

    As for Pixies, well their one thing is sleep. As soon as you can account for that (via tricks like mounts or chickens, or simply being high enough level that it won't hit everyone), they drop to doing zero damage, and having almost no ability to affect the party at all.
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  13. - Top - End - #493
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    Default Re: We all know about polymorph issues. . . but solutions?

    a party with a bunch of mounts is going to be awfully disappointed by what happens when the pixies decide to throw confusion instead. oh, sure, the pixies will be theoretically visible (if you can beat their +7 stealth check).

    and prone doesn't mean perfectly flat or level. you can drop prone on even terrain, and you can drop prone on a slope. 13 HP is still only a 2 HP buffer before the mules do nothing. are you seriously saying it is reasonable to require them to remain at absolute maximum HP after every fight in order to keep pixies from being an instantly lost fight? at level 1, when they only have 1 hit dice to try and pull that off? seriously, this is getting silly. no other CR 1/4 creatures present this high of a chance of defeating your party.

    @ georgie_leech: magic missile only works on targets you can see. with +7 stealth and at-will natural invisibility, good luck on that. by the time you can cast magic missile, they've already ruined your day.

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    Default Re: We all know about polymorph issues. . . but solutions?

    Quote Originally Posted by SharkForce View Post

    @ georgie_leech: magic missile only works on targets you can see. with +7 stealth and at-will natural invisibility, good luck on that. by the time you can cast magic missile, they've already ruined your day.
    If the DM rules that's how stealth works, sure. All I'll say is that the Stealth rules are extremely vague and what a creature is allowed to do while remaining hidden is hotly contested.
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    Dec 2014

    Default Re: We all know about polymorph issues. . . but solutions?

    Quote Originally Posted by georgie_leech View Post
    If the DM rules that's how stealth works, sure. All I'll say is that the Stealth rules are extremely vague and what a creature is allowed to do while remaining hidden is hotly contested.
    the arcane trickster has an ability that works only if you can cast spells while hidden. there is absolutely no question as to whether or not it can be done.

  16. - Top - End - #496
    Pixie in the Playground
    Join Date
    May 2019

    Default Re: We all know about polymorph issues. . . but solutions?

    Ok, some of you say polymorph is not an issue.
    Here's what my players did last week.

    A party of 3 PC (lev 8) vs 3 NPC (two minor demons and a Cambion).
    While two of them were taking care of the two demons, the Druid used polymorph on the Cambion at the very first round turning it into a worm. Next turn, the druid used Wild Shape to turn himself into a giant eagle, and started flying the worm-cambion up in the sky. The other two demons tried to take the eagle down, but they couldn't hit/break his concentration.
    The eagle can fly 80tf per turn. Meaning that the druid could get at 200ft in only 3 turns (approx).

    Then he dropped the worm, who fell 200ft and caused itself 20d6 damage! He rolled a 89..
    The worm died and the rest of the damage went to the cambion HP, which also died!!!

    Ok, it was a lucky 20d6, but he could have still severely damaged the cambion so, so easily...
    Polymorph is brutal and way too powerful. The errata should say that when casted on an unwilling creature the CR doesn't change.

    What do you think?

  17. - Top - End - #497
    Halfling in the Playground
    Join Date
    Jan 2019

    Default Re: We all know about polymorph issues. . . but solutions?

    Quote Originally Posted by phpsieluhr View Post
    Ok, some of you say polymorph is not an issue.
    Here's what my players did last week.

    A party of 3 PC (lev 8) vs 3 NPC (two minor demons and a Cambion).
    While two of them were taking care of the two demons, the Druid used polymorph on the Cambion at the very first round turning it into a worm. Next turn, the druid used Wild Shape to turn himself into a giant eagle, and started flying the worm-cambion up in the sky. The other two demons tried to take the eagle down, but they couldn't hit/break his concentration.
    The eagle can fly 80tf per turn. Meaning that the druid could get at 200ft in only 3 turns (approx).

    Then he dropped the worm, who fell 200ft and caused itself 20d6 damage! He rolled a 89..
    The worm died and the rest of the damage went to the cambion HP, which also died!!!

    Ok, it was a lucky 20d6, but he could have still severely damaged the cambion so, so easily...
    Polymorph is brutal and way too powerful. The errata should say that when casted on an unwilling creature the CR doesn't change.

    What do you think?
    If I was DM, I would not hold fast to the 20d6 fall damage against the worm. I know this is off the cuff and not RAW, but the 1d6 per 10' of fall damage is kind of written for humanoids. A small worm would not take the same damage. Not the same mass. Invertebrate. I would argue a worm might even survive that fall depending on what surface he's landing on. Now maybe there's a way to change the worm back into a demon mid-drop and then you have to play it accordingly and maybe the demon can break its fall or use wings or cast a spell as a reaction. But dropping a worm does not mean 89 damage to me that just rolls over onto a character.
    Last edited by deljzc; 2019-05-29 at 03:43 PM.

  18. - Top - End - #498
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    SwashbucklerGuy

    Join Date
    Jul 2016

    Default Re: We all know about polymorph issues. . . but solutions?

    Thread necro, ahoy!

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