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  1. - Top - End - #61
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    Default Re: Abilities that martials (ONLY) should have out of combat? [suggestions wanted]

    Quote Originally Posted by GreatWyrmGold View Post
    I can see that argument, and I find it stronger than most, but I don't find it very compelling. First off, me talking with friends isn't the same as convincing a bunch of ogres to lay down their arms and surrender. Second, it doesn't address the gameplay issues I have with social encounters so much as it tries to sidestep them. "Eh, I guess those issues are there, but we're already talking so we don't need to support it."
    I guess part of the problem is that I don't find "I hit you! No you didn't!" to be that much worse than "I make a convincing argument! No you didn't!"
    Specifically, I don't need support in social things. Because social occasions are so open-ended that any structure just feels artificial and confining. Unlike combat, where hit/not-hit has a clear answer, persuasive vs non-persuasive is much more mushy in my mind. The amount of active DM intervention needed is huge, so making it almost entirely DM intervention (until the final check if there's uncertainty) isn't that much of a change.

    But to each their own.

    I treat rules as part of the social contract. Specifically, the players agree in advance to use <rule> to handle specific cases, starting from a baseline of freeform. This means that removing rules is harder than adding rules, because rules form expectations, and those expectations are not necessarily valid. And people have a lot more expectations about things they understand than about those they don't understand.

    And anything that restricts people from playing characters unlike themselves is anathema to me. I play with teenagers in a school environment, and one of my core goals is to help people branch out. So that the socially-maladapt kid can play the face, or the "dumb kid" can play a super-brain, the weak kid can play a burly barbarian, etc. So the "just roleplay it and don't roll at all" side doesn't work. Since the time is limited and the kids are more interested (often) in doing things (as opposed to talking about them), complex social systems are also right out.

    Add in the fact that I haven't seen a social system that had any kind of verisimilitude (they're often combat, just worse or with different names) and I'd rather do without one. Doing it myself is much better than working around a bad set of rules.
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  2. - Top - End - #62
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    Default Re: Abilities that martials (ONLY) should have out of combat? [suggestions wanted]

    Quote Originally Posted by GreatWyrmGold View Post
    That definition is so vague as to be useless, especially from a "what mechanics do we design" point of view. And that's not getting into what "significant impact" means.
    Ah but that's the crux of the definition. It's entirely subjective.

    As this very topic proves, people will perpetually disagree and compromise or debate are prone to happen. I don't know many DMs who use the rules as they are without any sort of modifications or house rules, even just to curb the broken use of certain overpowered effects. I also don't know any who use the exact same modifications because they all disagree with which are necessary. Even if they don't describe their changes in advance, they apply the DM fiat to all things according to their personal opinion.

    So it's up to you to determine what significant impact means. Your own definition may even vary by circumstance and prove inconsistent purely for subjective reasons held only by you. We're playing a game that millions of people play in different ways. There is no box big enough to contain it so thinking outside of one is recommended.

  3. - Top - End - #63
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    Default Re: Abilities that martials (ONLY) should have out of combat? [suggestions wanted]

    Quote Originally Posted by PhoenixPhyre View Post
    Specifically, I don't need support in social things. Because social occasions are so open-ended that any structure just feels artificial and confining. Unlike combat, where hit/not-hit has a clear answer, persuasive vs non-persuasive is much more mushy in my mind. The amount of active DM intervention needed is huge, so making it almost entirely DM intervention (until the final check if there's uncertainty) isn't that much of a change.

    But to each their own.

    I treat rules as part of the social contract. Specifically, the players agree in advance to use <rule> to handle specific cases, starting from a baseline of freeform. This means that removing rules is harder than adding rules, because rules form expectations, and those expectations are not necessarily valid. And people have a lot more expectations about things they understand than about those they don't understand.

    And anything that restricts people from playing characters unlike themselves is anathema to me. I play with teenagers in a school environment, and one of my core goals is to help people branch out. So that the socially-maladapt kid can play the face, or the "dumb kid" can play a super-brain, the weak kid can play a burly barbarian, etc. So the "just roleplay it and don't roll at all" side doesn't work. Since the time is limited and the kids are more interested (often) in doing things (as opposed to talking about them), complex social systems are also right out.

    Add in the fact that I haven't seen a social system that had any kind of verisimilitude (they're often combat, just worse or with different names) and I'd rather do without one. Doing it myself is much better than working around a bad set of rules.
    Hmm...

    You could do something like having any relevant checks be done at the time that a decision has to be made, or after all roleplaying is done.

    So after many minutes of roleplaying and debate, the Lord they're talking with has to make a decision. This is the time that the DM tells each person how many dice they rolled, to reflect how much influence they had in the discussion or RP event. Even if someone rolled 4 dice, he still only keeps 1. This is to reward those who do most of the legwork, without completely overshadowing someone who doesn't participate much.

    Tally them up, and the final result determines how the Lord makes his decision. It'd average based off of people's scores, but they might sway things above their normal average depending on how good of an argument they made. A combination of both worlds, that doesn't inhibit the roleplaying aspect of the game.
    Last edited by Man_Over_Game; 2019-05-17 at 01:25 PM.
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  4. - Top - End - #64
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    Default Re: Abilities that martials (ONLY) should have out of combat? [suggestions wanted]

    Quote Originally Posted by Man_Over_Game View Post
    Hmm...

    You could do something like having any relevant checks be done at the time that a decision has to be made, or after all roleplaying is done.

    So after many minutes of roleplaying and debate, the Lord they're talking with has to make a decision. This is the time that the DM tells each person how many dice they rolled, to reflect how much influence they had in the discussion or RP event. Even if someone rolled 4 dice, he still only keeps 1. This is to reward those who do most of the legwork, without completely overshadowing someone who doesn't participate much.

    Tally them up, and the final result determines how the Lord makes his decision. It'd average based off of people's scores, but they might sway things above their normal average depending on how good of an argument they made. A combination of both worlds, that doesn't inhibit the roleplaying aspect of the game.
    I do it much more simply. Nothing mechanical happens until you ask someone to do something they don't want to do (which is at the end of the conversation one way or another). Then they make an appropriate CHA check. If their arguments were persuasive, they get advantage. If their arguments/method were particularly ill-suited for the target, they get one or both of disadvantage or a harder DC. And the person to make the check is the one that fits the situation best, not necessarily the one with the best modifier. I do run languages as a thing, so often there's only one person who speaks the target language. Everyone else can contribute, but it's (in fiction) being filtered through the translator. Also, if you've got lots of people chiming in, I may call for a group CHA check. NPCs will target people to talk to (based on personality), and I make sure a bunch exist who will talk to each different person and ignore others.

    Frequently, they use their knowledge of the setting and the people to make arguments that result in no uncertainty, so no check is needed. That, or they've built up enough favors through their actions as to be able to call them in and get what they want.
    Last edited by PhoenixPhyre; 2019-05-17 at 01:34 PM.
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  5. - Top - End - #65
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    Default Re: Abilities that martials (ONLY) should have out of combat? [suggestions wanted]

    Quote Originally Posted by Man_Over_Game View Post
    Hmm...

    You could do something like having any relevant checks be done at the time that a decision has to be made, or after all roleplaying is done.

    So after many minutes of roleplaying and debate, the Lord they're talking with has to make a decision. This is the time that the DM tells each person how many dice they rolled, to reflect how much influence they had in the discussion or RP event. Even if someone rolled 4 dice, he still only keeps 1. This is to reward those who do most of the legwork, without completely overshadowing someone who doesn't participate much.

    Tally them up, and the final result determines how the Lord makes his decision. It'd average based off of people's scores, but they might sway things above their normal average depending on how good of an argument they made. A combination of both worlds, that doesn't inhibit the roleplaying aspect of the game.
    Pure genius. I can already see it similar to awarding players Inspiration dice for excellent roleplay. You made an excellent point in a conversation, have another d20! It rewards players for thinking and roleplaying rather than merely acting or showing no concern. It also allows the other players to potentially beat the lazy face character if they spam enough dice. It makes everyone a potential contributor to the dice pool and encourages the quiet ones to actually engage in the event. I cannot find a downside to this. Even if it makes social encounters easier to succeed I can just up the DC requirements.

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  6. - Top - End - #66
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    Default Re: Abilities that martials (ONLY) should have out of combat? [suggestions wanted]

    Quote Originally Posted by PhoenixPhyre View Post
    Specifically, I don't need support in social things. Because social occasions are so open-ended that any structure just feels artificial and confining. Unlike combat, where hit/not-hit has a clear answer, persuasive vs non-persuasive is much more mushy in my mind.
    A persuasive argument isn't parallel to an attack that hits, but a damaging attack. Some attacks are more or less damaging, some arguments are more or less persuasive. Deciding which argument is the one that finally convinces the NPC is like deciding which attack finally incapacitates the other NPC, in that it depends on the arguments, the target, and a ton of other factors.
    They are different, don't get me wrong, but the differences between them don't seem related to factors which would make it better or worse to codify them in rules. The only difference is how the game treats them, which makes sense; if social encounters aren't important, don't devote a whole chapter and a rules subsystem to them. That would be like if Risk included a subsystem for resolving fights between individual officers. But at the same time, if your rulebook doesn't treat different kinds of encounters with the same level of care, it's disingenuous to claim that they're equally-important.

    But to each their own.
    I guess, but I like trying to understand other people's own (and make sure both I and they understand our respective owns, and ideally let the other people understand my own).
    "Own" feels like a weird word to pluralize.

    ...Since the time is limited and the kids are more interested (often) in doing things (as opposed to talking about them), complex social systems are also right out.
    Implicit assumption: Players are uninterested in social encounters for reasons unrelated to whether or not they have mechanics.
    Okay, that might be true for "kids," but it won't be true for everyone, and I'd argue that the problems that crop up from not having rules make social encounters less appealing. As I've said, when success or failure boils down to little more than DM fiat, player agency is decreased; it doesn't matter if they have infinite choices if they have barely any idea what the effects of those choices will be, beyond the crudest (e.g, "insults aren't going to get us anywhere" or "maybe they're bribable"). The only thing more boring than that is a single pass/fail roll.

    Add in the fact that I haven't seen a social system that had any kind of verisimilitude (they're often combat, just worse or with different names) and I'd rather do without one. Doing it myself is much better than working around a bad set of rules.
    Implicit assumption: Social systems cannot be done well. I really, really hope I don't have to explain why this is a stupid assumption, especially when I've linked to a game with a social system distinct from combat in all but the most meaningless ways. (Of course it has numbers and discrete actions, that's what it means to be a system.)
    Especially especially when someone else thought of a very simple social system which has decent potential, in a forum-post-worthy timeframe; I hope you wouldn't reject it out of hand without even explaining what you dislike about that particular system. Wait, you did, basically just saying "Nah, I like my way better". You're not helping your case by dismissing social systems out of hand.


    Quote Originally Posted by Kyutaru View Post
    Ah but that's the crux of the definition. It's entirely subjective. -snip-
    Thank you for rephrasing my argument about why your original statement is all but meaningless. Guidelines which are entirely reliant on subjective interpretation are only helpful if they point out a factor most people wouldn't consider in the first place, and this isn't one of those cases. "Rolls should be used to resolve opposition," "opposition means when success or failure has a significant impact," and "significant is whatever you think is important" adds up to "Rolls should be used to resolve whatever you think is important," except without the clarity. How helpful.
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    Ah, thank you very much GreatWyrmGold, you obviously live up to that name with your intelligence and wisdom with that post.
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  7. - Top - End - #67
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    Default Re: Abilities that martials (ONLY) should have out of combat? [suggestions wanted]

    I really didn't mean for this thread to turn into "Martials vs casters and DM philosophy debate: Act #682", lol.

    I'm not trying to chide the participants in this thread; the conversation is articulate and everyone's being suitably polite, so if you want to keep pursuing the current line of discussion then, please, by all means go ahead.

    But I am still working on that homebrew. So I do want to remind anyone checking out this thread that if you happen to have any ideas for cool unique abilities that "so-called 'martials'" could have, then, please post them in this thread because I'm still hungry for them

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    Default Re: Abilities that martials (ONLY) should have out of combat? [suggestions wanted]

    Quote Originally Posted by Zigludo View Post
    You can consider this a corollary to Man_Over_Game's thread.

    I'm working on some ideas for adding a couple of new features to my own campaign, but, this thread isn't about those rules. This thread is just for me taking to the GitP forums to try and plunder inspiration.

    So here's the question: According to your own understanding of the fantasy of each class, and your own desires, what are some things outside of combat that you think a martial should be able to do, that other classes (for instance, spellcasters) shouldn't be able to do, despite the fact that the abilities aren't clearly spelled out by the book?

    By "martials" here, I'm referring to Barbarians, Fighters, Monks and Rogues, although you don't need to limit your comments to those classes. As an example, you could say "High level Barbarians should be able to rip down wooden gates with their own hands," or maybe "High level monks should be able to levitate at will", or what have you. These examples are not all-inclusive; your answer doesn't have to refer to high level play, or be very specific at all. As long as I hear some of your original ideas which I haven't heard before, I'll be very happy.



    And remember - outside of combat!
    The system just isn't very robust outside of combat, and so "abilities" tied to certain martial classes would be entirely in the realm of roleplay as the system exists today. A system with a more interesting and tactical diplomacy system might give a barbarian the ability to flaunt certain norms of civilized behavior with reduced consequence because he's explicitly a barbarian and can get away with doing something like calling out a King for having a terrible plan. A system with a more complex warfare system might give fighters abilities related to leading armies and the logistics of warfare. But in D&D little outside of combat is more complex than a simple pass/fail skill check.

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    Default Re: Abilities that martials (ONLY) should have out of combat? [suggestions wanted]

    Quote Originally Posted by Kyutaru View Post
    Pure genius. I can already see it similar to awarding players Inspiration dice for excellent roleplay. You made an excellent point in a conversation, have another d20! It rewards players for thinking and roleplaying rather than merely acting or showing no concern. It also allows the other players to potentially beat the lazy face character if they spam enough dice. It makes everyone a potential contributor to the dice pool and encourages the quiet ones to actually engage in the event. I cannot find a downside to this. Even if it makes social encounters easier to succeed I can just up the DC requirements.

    Kudos. Stealing this.
    Be very careful with this. The probability curve of rolling multiple dice and picking the maximum scale up way faster than you'd expect -- you have a ~50% chance of rolling a 17 or higher picking the max of 3d20 -- so this system is likely to overshadow any of the relatively small skill modifiers in 5e.

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    Default Re: Abilities that martials (ONLY) should have out of combat? [suggestions wanted]

    Quote Originally Posted by pragma View Post
    Be very careful with this. The probability curve of rolling multiple dice and picking the maximum scale up way faster than you'd expect -- you have a ~50% chance of rolling a 17 or higher picking the max of 3d20 -- so this system is likely to overshadow any of the relatively small skill modifiers in 5e.
    Right. It's advantage on steroids. It's basically auto success for anything above 2 dice.
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    Default Re: Abilities that martials (ONLY) should have out of combat? [suggestions wanted]

    Quote Originally Posted by Damon_Tor View Post
    The system just isn't very robust outside of combat, and so "abilities" tied to certain martial classes would be entirely in the realm of roleplay as the system exists today.
    Poppycock. About a third of the Warlock's Eldritch Invocation options have got nothing or almost nothing to do with ability checks or combat. Why not so for martials?

    In the Player's Handbook alone you've got hard rules for languages, living expenses, sight, movement, carrying and lifting/dragging, travel time, suffocation, food and water, resting, recuperating... The Dungeon Master's guide and Xanathar's Guide add rules for even more aspects of adventuring that are not, strictly speaking, limited to combat, and not always resolved with an ability check. You could add any kind of feature that interacts with these rules and satisfy the criteria of the thread question.

    Or you could have a feature that just adds an entirely new rule. Perfect examples of what I'm talking about: the Keen Mind and Observant feats. If you take Keen Mind, you simply know which way is north and the number of hours until sunrise. If you have the Observant feat, you don't need to roll to read someone's lips - you just can. No magic involved. No ability check involved.

    On top of that, there are also features that explicitly add new abilities that utilize the existing skill check system - for instance the feats Actor and Linguist, or illusion spells that require an Investigation check to see through.

    Anything along any of those lines is valid fodder for this thread.
    Last edited by Zigludo; 2019-05-19 at 04:55 AM. Reason: clarity

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    Default Re: Abilities that martials (ONLY) should have out of combat? [suggestions wanted]

    I currently use DiBastet's Ribbons (I think it's DMGuild?). I've added some from one of Kryx's houserule iteration, when he split a bunch of stuff into half feats. And some things, like Keen Mind, also became ribbons. Like:

    * It Cures What Ails Ya: a drink of booze to cure poisoning, disease and one other condition which I can't remember.
    * Babble: allow you to roll persuasion at disadvantage when an ally fails
    * Demon Hunter: advantage on knowledge checks on demons
    * Initiate / Apprentice: get a cantrip that has no attack roll or saving throw
    * One Eye Open: suffer only a - 5 penalty to perception for sleeping

    I have players get a ribbon at level 1. At level 10 they may get another but that one will be related to how they've played their character thus far.

    The difference of course is that this is all my players, not martiales only.
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    Default Re: Abilities that martials (ONLY) should have out of combat? [suggestions wanted]

    Quote Originally Posted by Zigludo View Post
    On top of that, there are also features that explicitly add new abilities that utilize the existing skill check system - for instance the feats Actor and Linguist, or illusion spells that require an Investigation check to see through.
    I would argue that Actor and Linguist are actually a perfect example of what this system does wrong in working against itself. By making a feat that allows you to create a cipher, you implicitly deny any character the ability to create a cipher without that feat. This is completely contradictory to what its proponents argue is the justification and strength of the vague and mushy skill system - that anyone can try anything and you don't have to have an explicit button on your sheet in order to attempt something interesting.

    Instead, Linguist should say something like "when making Intelligence checks related to codes and ciphers, you add your proficiency bonus, including when attempting to decrypt another person's cipher or setting the DC for your own." Now it's clear that anyone can try to make a cipher, you're just especially good at it (and the concept of "roll a relevant ability check to try anything you can think of" is subtly reinforced).

    I would tend to say that that's where we want to be looking for martial "invocations" as well - providing action economy augmentation or auto-success on things you can already try regardless (much the way backgrounds do). Rogues and maybe rangers can learn enough of a language to communicate basic ideas politely with just an hour of observation of fluent speakers, while anyone else can make a Wisdom check to make coherent gestures. Barbarians and fighters can just win drinking contests or run for days or hold their breath for hours while everyone else makes Constitution checks. Stuff like that.

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    Default Re: Abilities that martials (ONLY) should have out of combat? [suggestions wanted]

    Quote Originally Posted by Sindeloke View Post
    I would argue that Actor and Linguist are actually a perfect example of what this system does wrong in working against itself. By making a feat that allows you to create a cipher, you implicitly deny any character the ability to create a cipher without that feat. This is completely contradictory to what its proponents argue is the justification and strength of the vague and mushy skill system - that anyone can try anything and you don't have to have an explicit button on your sheet in order to attempt something interesting.

    Instead, Linguist should say something like "when making Intelligence checks related to codes and ciphers, you add your proficiency bonus, including when attempting to decrypt another person's cipher or setting the DC for your own." Now it's clear that anyone can try to make a cipher, you're just especially good at it (and the concept of "roll a relevant ability check to try anything you can think of" is subtly reinforced).
    That's what it does, though: Linguist doesn't prevent someone from inventing their own cipher, but it makes someone who takes the feat so good they don't need to roll anything to do so.

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    Default Re: Abilities that martials (ONLY) should have out of combat? [suggestions wanted]

    Quote Originally Posted by Sindeloke View Post
    I would argue that Actor and Linguist are actually a perfect example of what this system does wrong in working against itself. By making a feat that allows you to create a cipher, you implicitly deny any character the ability to create a cipher without that feat. This is completely contradictory to what its proponents argue is the justification and strength of the vague and mushy skill system - that anyone can try anything and you don't have to have an explicit button on your sheet in order to attempt something interesting.

    Instead, Linguist should say something like "when making Intelligence checks related to codes and ciphers, you add your proficiency bonus, including when attempting to decrypt another person's cipher or setting the DC for your own." Now it's clear that anyone can try to make a cipher, you're just especially good at it (and the concept of "roll a relevant ability check to try anything you can think of" is subtly reinforced).

    I would tend to say that that's where we want to be looking for martial "invocations" as well - providing action economy augmentation or auto-success on things you can already try regardless (much the way backgrounds do). Rogues and maybe rangers can learn enough of a language to communicate basic ideas politely with just an hour of observation of fluent speakers, while anyone else can make a Wisdom check to make coherent gestures. Barbarians and fighters can just win drinking contests or run for days or hold their breath for hours while everyone else makes Constitution checks. Stuff like that.
    But then you run into another problem. Investigation or History could already be used to decipher cyphers, theoretically, and there's already a way to add your proficiency bonus when using those skills. If you were to add your proficiency bonus again, then that still steps on the toes of Expertise, because you can only apply your Proficiency bonus to something from two sources: One from being "proficient", and one from any other source.

    You run into a problem where the Rogue, with Investigation Expertise, is the worst person to grab a feat that fits with their character concept. Or they just don't use their Rogue Expertise to improve their most important skill.

    I don't disagree with your premise - adding content shouldn't come at the cost of removing some - but I think that the solution has to come from something that's not Proficiency.
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    Default Re: Abilities that martials (ONLY) should have out of combat? [suggestions wanted]

    The reason people want rules for social interaction is the same as the reason people want rules for climbing a wall: their characters have different abilities than they do. The Navy Seal who plays the scrawny nerdling shouldn't be claiming his nerdling can climb that wall with no difficulty because the Navy Seal can demonstrate his prowess on the walls of the building in which the game's taking place. The silver-tongued prom queen playing the amazon barbarian shouldn't be able to claim her character elucidates the finer points of a sticky dipomatic issue as eloquently as she demonstrates she can jsut by saying "my barbarian says what I say on the subject."

    Conversely, the 90-lb scrawny 13-year-old playing the burly special forces soldier shouldn't have to demonstrate how to climb that wall in order to say his soldier PC can do so, and the socially awkward bluntly-speaking frat boy shouldn't have to speak in eloquent and courtler terms to spell out precisely how his fop persuades the royal court to side with him over the amazonian ruffian.

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    Default Re: Abilities that martials (ONLY) should have out of combat? [suggestions wanted]

    Quote Originally Posted by Segev View Post
    The reason people want rules for social interaction is the same as the reason people want rules for climbing a wall: their characters have different abilities than they do. The Navy Seal who plays the scrawny nerdling shouldn't be claiming his nerdling can climb that wall with no difficulty because the Navy Seal can demonstrate his prowess on the walls of the building in which the game's taking place. The silver-tongued prom queen playing the amazon barbarian shouldn't be able to claim her character elucidates the finer points of a sticky dipomatic issue as eloquently as she demonstrates she can jsut by saying "my barbarian says what I say on the subject."

    Conversely, the 90-lb scrawny 13-year-old playing the burly special forces soldier shouldn't have to demonstrate how to climb that wall in order to say his soldier PC can do so, and the socially awkward bluntly-speaking frat boy shouldn't have to speak in eloquent and courtler terms to spell out precisely how his fop persuades the royal court to side with him over the amazonian ruffian.
    I agree.

    The problem I see most people mention (and I kinda agree) is that a climbing check has a set goal and a well-defined path to success.

    However, a conversation isn't always that way. They're fluid and changing. Adding rules to determine your success and failures after, or in the middle of, making a social check can occasionally cause things to seem...broken and off.



    I mentioned earlier about a social system where you rolled after all the roleplaying was done, but the problem comes in is determining when that is? It also doesn't accurately portray how successful your individual attempts are.

    So...what if we did it in reverse?

    You make your Social Check first, and THEN you roleplay? That way, you know exactly what your character should be sounding like during your roleplay moments. It also means you're allowed to make stupid mistakes (like antagonizing the noble, rather than appealing to him), when you know that your roll (role?) will end in a mishap anyway.
    Quote Originally Posted by KOLE View Post
    MOG, design a darn RPG system. Seriously, the amount of ideas Iíve gleaned from your posts has been valuable. Youíre a gem of the community here.
    Quote Originally Posted by Man_Over_Game View Post

    5th Edition Homebrewery

    Prestige Options, changing primary attributes while maintaining balance with default options.
    Adrenaline Surge, fitting Short Rests into combat to fix bosses/Short Rest Classes.
    Pain, using Exhaustion to make tactical martial combatants.
    Fate Sorcery, lucky winner of the 5e D&D Subclass Contest VII!

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