Dungeons and Dragons 4th Edition Catch All

Quintin_Stone wrote:

I scanned through the PHB today. No detailed reading, just skimming. It was interesting to see that the class chapter includes spells, so just the chapter on classes is over 100 pages. And that doesn't include rituals. Spells also go up to level 29, because there's none of that "you're 5th level, now you can cast 3rd level spells!" weirdness. :)

So what's happened to the level 10 spell cap? (or am i getting confused between D&D and Forgotten Realms?)

Duoae wrote:

So what's happened to the level 10 spell cap? (or am i getting confused between D&D and Forgotten Realms?)

Spells don't have levels anymore. Every class has 'Powers' now (At-Will powers, Encounter Powers, Daily Powers, and Utility Powers). For Wizards, these powers often take the form of spells. The level of the power is the class level at which it becomes available. Definitely makes it much easier to understand, but it seems to me like the spellcasting classes may have just become a lot less versatile for the sake of simplicity. Not that it's a bad thing. I haven't read the Wizard class yet, though.

Duoae wrote:

So what's happened to the level 10 spell cap? (or am i getting confused between D&D and Forgotten Realms?)

I'm not sure what you're confusing... remember that Forgotten Realms is just one setting for the D&D game system.

Jolly Bill wrote:

Spells don't have levels anymore. Every class has 'Powers' now (At-Will powers, Encounter Powers, Daily Powers, and Utility Powers). For Wizards, these powers often take the form of spells. The level of the power is the class level at which it becomes available. Definitely makes it much easier to understand, but it seems to me like the spellcasting classes may have just become a lot less versatile for the sake of simplicity. Not that it's a bad thing. I haven't read the Wizard class yet, though.

There seems to be a LOT fewer spells (and they are more spread out across the levels), though the spell list in the Wizard chapter does not include rituals. Maybe someone who has the books will be able to give more specific statistics on comparing 4e to previous versions.

Quintin_Stone wrote:

There seems to be a LOT fewer spells (and they are more spread out across the levels), though the spell list in the Wizard chapter does not include rituals. Maybe someone who has the books will be able to give more specific statistics on comparing 4e to previous versions.

I haven't gotten to rituals yet, but you're right about the spells. And an interesting side note, a power is a one use sort of thing (once per encounter/once per day), so there is no way to prepare a single spell more than once per day, unless you have some other ability that specifically allows you to prepare/re-use a power twice. I think I like this, but I'll have to see how it works.

Jolly Bill wrote:
Quintin_Stone wrote:

There seems to be a LOT fewer spells (and they are more spread out across the levels), though the spell list in the Wizard chapter does not include rituals. Maybe someone who has the books will be able to give more specific statistics on comparing 4e to previous versions.

I haven't gotten to rituals yet, but you're right about the spells. And an interesting side note, a power is a one use sort of thing (once per encounter/once per day), so there is no way to prepare a single spell more than once per day, unless you have some other ability that specifically allows you to prepare/re-use a power twice. I think I like this, but I'll have to see how it works.

I'm not sure I have a handle on this yet. The prefab characters for Shadowfell weren't always clear on what was which, so I felt like some of the PCs might have been fudging things. Then again, 4e seems to be all about ringing the death knell of the standard attack. I'm going to have to go through it more carefully and figure it all out.

Because of this thread I went and dug out my old basic set manuals (the red covered ones and the oldschool blue one). I loved DnD when I was a kid, but because I lived in rural Manitoba I didn't have anyone to play with. Instead I would buy modules and read them like a book, making up the adventure in my head. Now that I'm re-reading the old rule books and modules I really regret not being able to play. I'd love to join up with y'all for an online session but my evenings seem pretty full this summer

My initial impression is that keeping track of modifiers that span a round will be a bitch (keeping track of who is marked, quarry, cursed, who has combat advantage, who is weakened/stunned/shaken). I'll have to see how this works in action. A friend of mine played already and said it worked pretty well, but I'm still skeptical.

What I love is that many of the powers I've read through involved moving yourself after the attack, or pushing an enemy around. Many encounter powers give you a one shot burst where any enemy next to you gets pushed back. I think this will make combat a lot more entertaining, since manuevering will be a much bigger part of the battle. Tactics will actually be a large component of battle strategy. What I was afraid of was that the new 'combat role' system (leader/defender/striker) was that you'd just end up with simple strategies, but the variety possible in here is interesting.

I'm not sure i like the sound of a lot less spells and spell configurations on a character (as a result)... It wasn't good in oblivion either. It makes it sound like there's less choice...

Quintin_Stone wrote:
Duoae wrote:

So what's happened to the level 10 spell cap? (or am i getting confused between D&D and Forgotten Realms?)

I'm not sure what you're confusing... remember that Forgotten Realms is just one setting for the D&D game system.

I was wondering if i was confused because i only have the D&D 3.5 ruleset and not the Forgotten Realms setting ruleset (which is based on D&D) and apparently when they got rid of the higher level spells (i think in 2nd ed) FR changed their backstory to include the Time of Troubles which were partly chronicled in the Baldur's Gate series and as a result the destruction of Mystra was the reason given for the inability to make or learn spells higher than level 9 or 10 (i forget which).

Jolly Bill wrote:

My initial impression is that keeping track of modifiers that span a round will be a bitch (keeping track of who is marked, quarry, cursed, who has combat advantage, who is weakened/stunned/shaken). I'll have to see how this works in action. A friend of mine played already and said it worked pretty well, but I'm still skeptical.

I didn't have too much trouble as DM keeping track of this along with mob HP on my scratch sheet.

Add me as someone interested. I need to see how painful modules are to program in FGII before I'd commit to running but I'd certainly love to play.

Jolly Bill wrote:

My initial impression is that keeping track of modifiers that span a round will be a bitch (keeping track of who is marked, quarry, cursed, who has combat advantage, who is weakened/stunned/shaken). I'll have to see how this works in action. A friend of mine played already and said it worked pretty well, but I'm still skeptical.

I ran A couple of game day sessions (same module two times). At one point there were the 5 characters on the map and 7 monsters. To make this sane I used some encounter cards with info about each monster on it, mixed in the PCs in their initiative order. I'll be a little more detailed on the cards next time (I used the sample in the DMG) but it worked well. At least until I dropped the cards, now I mark them with what round I'm in

Jolly Bill wrote:

What I love is that many of the powers I've read through involved moving yourself after the attack, or pushing an enemy around. Many encounter powers give you a one shot burst where any enemy next to you gets pushed back. I think this will make combat a lot more entertaining, since manuevering will be a much bigger part of the battle. Tactics will actually be a large component of battle strategy. What I was afraid of was that the new 'combat role' system (leader/defender/striker) was that you'd just end up with simple strategies, but the variety possible in here is interesting.

It does add a lot of strategy to the game, just getting in front of something and beating on it is going to get you dead. I feel that when folks have the combat down it would flow better and possibly be faster. Of course, that means there will be more monsters on the table...

Stephen

wordsmythe wrote:

I haven't gotten to rituals yet, but you're right about the spells. And an interesting side note, a power is a one use sort of thing (once per encounter/once per day), so there is no way to prepare a single spell more than once per day, unless you have some other ability that specifically allows you to prepare/re-use a power twice. I think I like this, but I'll have to see how it works.

Encounter powers are recharged after a short rest at the end of an encounter. This is also when you use the healing surges you have left to heal up to as high as you want in hit points.

Daily powers come back after an extended rest which would calc out to 7.5 hours with people keeping watch.

wordsmythe wrote:

I'm not sure I have a handle on this yet. The prefab characters for Shadowfell weren't always clear on what was which, so I felt like some of the PCs might have been fudging things. Then again, 4e seems to be all about ringing the death knell of the standard attack. I'm going to have to go through it more carefully and figure it all out.

They've done horrible examples. For one, there are things missing off a lot of characters. Secondly they calculated everything out for you. That sounds good because it lets you get running quickly but the bad thing is you don't know how they got the number. What I have been doing is taking the sample characters and going over how they got the numbers, that's helping quite a bit.

Would it help if I slapped up scans of sample characters?

Stephen

wizard_in_motley wrote:

Would it help if I slapped up scans of sample characters?

That does sound useful. Frankly, I think going through the character prefabs myself would do me a lot of good. I wasn't terribly prepared for the run I did on Sunday.

There are 3 "Death Save" checkboxes on the character sheet. If you fail 3 death saves, you die.

IMAGE(http://rps.net/QS/Images/Smilies/emot-raise.gif)

Quintin_Stone wrote:

There are 3 "Death Save" checkboxes on the character sheet. If you fail 3 death saves, you die.

IMAGE(http://rps.net/QS/Images/Smilies/emot-raise.gif)

to be fair in all previous editions it was one failed "Death Save" checkbox and you were toast.

Quintin_Stone wrote:

There are 3 "Death Save" checkboxes on the character sheet. If you fail 3 death saves, you die.

IMAGE(http://rps.net/QS/Images/Smilies/emot-raise.gif)

Page 295 of the PHB:

death saving throw: When you are dying, you need to make a saving throw at the end of your turn each round. The results of your saving throw determines how close you are to death.

lower than 10 you slip one step closer to death. If you you get this result 3 times before you take rest you die.

10-19: no change

20 or higher: Spend a healing surge. When you do so you are considered to be at 0 hitpoints, and then your healing surge restores hit points as normal.

As for the powers. The powers come in a few varieties. At will powers, encounter powers, daily powers, and utility. The encounter, daily, and utility powers are once per, but the at will are as often as you want. They represent easy swings or simple magical affects.

The wizard's spells will say wether it is an at will, daily or encounter power. I.e. the wizard class has ghost sound, light, mage hand, and prestidigitation as at will powers right off the bat. Then you have to pick 2 at will, 1 encounter, and 1 daily power at 1st level. So for example I could choose to have magice missile, and ray of frost for me 2 at will powers. Then ray of enfeeblement for my encounter power, and sleep as my daily power.

Some of the interesting changes are the level tiers 1-10 are heroic, 11-20 are paragon, and 21-30 are epic. At 11 you pick a paragon path for example a fighter might become a swordmaster. Then at 21 you pick an epic destiny like say demigod. The path of godhood.

There are no negative racial adjustments, or level adjustments. You gain fixed hps each level only adding con bonus at 1st level. Wizards get 10+con bonus at 1st, then 4hp every level there after. Only 2 armor types light, and heavy. With light you either add dex, or int to your ac whichever is better. With heavy you do not add either you just get the ac bonus from it. Your saves have 2 stats tied to them and you add the better stat bonus to get your saving throw plus a few other things.

Grapple is no longer a huge die rolling fest. You roll to grab, you succeed the target is immobilized till it escapes. Sustaining a grab is a minor action. Escaping a grab is an athletic check vs reflex, or athletics vs fortitude. You win you escape which is a move action.

Taking away level adjustment really affected the playable monster races. Drow only have +2 dex, +2 char, and you get 2 encounter powers cloud of darkness, and darkfire. Like a minotaur now only has +2 str, and +2 con and is a medium creature that can use weapons one size category larger. You also get goring charge. Not a huge deal in a roleplaying sense, but statwise kinda disapointing.

I think what threw me was that the prefab characters sometimes listed actions as at will/encounter/daily as well as free/minor/move/attack, but not always both. In the absence of clarification, I almost thought that "at will" might also have meant "free action," but I think I caught it.

Just ordered the PHB from Amazon. Always wanted to get into D&D but the lack of not having any friends who played, kept me away. Hopefully with all the online tools I'll be able to actually get into a group. Or I do now live in Portland so maybe we could get a group together.

Ok, just to make things a little easier... This should be a list of everyone in this thread who expressly displayed interest in joining a GWJ online group. If you said it and I missed you, I'm sorry, I'm not very good at the innuendo. So I'm just gonna stick this in here and see what happens.

Mordiceius
rabbit
stupidhaiku
Farscry
Jolly Bill
ShadeRaven
Tkyl
LockAndLoad
4dSwissCheese
Fyedaddy
WiredAsylum
BlackSheep
Nosferatu
Dramatic Marlin
Gameraotaku
KingMob
wizard_in_motley

Edit: I'll try to keep this list up to date. Once we get closer maybe we'll start our own thread.

It sounds like Farscry is organizing a night to play during the week, and stupidhaiku is doing fantasygrounds research (with rabbit being the resident pro). I'm down with paying the money for it, I experimented with the demo and it looked pretty good.

So I got my copy of shadow fell at an hour or two ago from Amazon. I have to say just based on the module I'm pretty impressed. The inclusion of battle maps is both nice and a final admission that the game is to vault back into miniatures calm at the way it was in the beginning with chain-mail.

Amazon also has says they're shipping my copy of the box set as we speak. That's cool because that's about five days ahead of when they said they were going to ship it when I ordered it. Now I just have to wrestle up a posse of players who can run it with the pregens and we can try this puppy out.

On the issue of spell variety: the reality is most people either played sorcerers so they only had a handful of spells anyway, or they played wizards with some sort of house rule that kept them from having to memorize their three spells out of the 50 they might actually have in their spell books. Either way what ended up happening is wizards tended to have only handful of spells they can actually use in any given situation.

That tended to be the way we used wizards as well. I never played in a tabletop game where the DM made us worry about the spell components either, unless it was something fairly expensive like diamond dust or some such.

rabbit wrote:

Amazon also has says they're shipping my copy of the box set as we speak. That's cool because that's about five days ahead of when they said they were going to ship it when I ordered it.

Ditto. They shipped mine yesterday (should be here tomorrow thanks to a trial Prime I forgot to cancel) and weren't supposed to do so until the 16th.

Woo hoo! Amazon says they're shipping the copy The Missus ordered me for Christmas!

Not that it matters much, since the boxes will be wrapped for half a year, but we're going away in a few weeks and we didn't want it sitting on our doorstep because the post office forgot to hold our mail like we requested.

I got the 3.5 books (player's guide, monster manual and DM guide) from the local library. Complicated, but it looked fun. According to Rabbit on this week's podcast, the books easier to read than 3.5, which sounds good. Even if I never find a group to play with, they still ought to be fun reads.

doubtingthomas396 wrote:

Woo hoo! Amazon says they're shipping the copy The Missus ordered me for Christmas!

Not that it matters much, since the boxes will be wrapped for half a year, but we're going away in a few weeks and we didn't want it sitting on our doorstep because the post office forgot to hold our mail like we requested.

I got the 3.5 books (player's guide, monster manual and DM guide) from the local library. Complicated, but it looked fun. According to Rabbit on this week's podcast, the books easier to read than 3.5, which sounds good. Even if I never find a group to play with, they still ought to be fun reads.

http://www.meetup.com/ is going to be your friend. Also, check with a local hobby store and see if you can get a group going. I think with the new edition it will be a lot easier to get groups going.

Today, I picked up the three books from Barns and Noble. I will read them tonight.

Ulairi wrote:

http://www.meetup.com/ is going to be your friend. Also, check with a local hobby store and see if you can get a group going. I think with the new edition it will be a lot easier to get groups going.

Today, I picked up the three books from Barns and Noble. I will read them tonight.

I don't know why I didn't think of this sooner. My books have been accruing dust for over a year now, and i've been sad for months that I haven't had a chance to run some of the 3.5 games I had. I guess I really should take a look at MeetUp and try the local hobby store. Although, to be honest, I just don't have the cash to splash on 4th Ed. I already spent a metric ton on 3 & 3.5, and various OGL. Maybe after the summer. I'd be up for a GWJ game by then, assuming I can get my PC to stop hating Skype.

Curious as to whether or not 4th Edition is going to be such a departure from what people expect that the "one copy of the PHB to pass around" method just won't work anymore. I remember getting by with just having a couple of us with owning the various PHBs over the years and everyone sharing. I suppose playing on-line without the 4E PHB isn't going to be an easy feat.

Otherwise, I'd suggest that those without could still get into on-line games with other Goodjers as long as they had the interface tools.

Here's hoping my boxed set arrives soon! All the talk of spell changes, special abilities, and powers has me itching to read about them in detail.

ShadeRaven wrote:

Curious as to whether or not 4th Edition is going to be such a departure from what people expect that the "one copy of the PHB to pass around" method just won't work anymore. I remember getting by with just having a couple of us with owning the various PHBs over the years and everyone sharing. I suppose playing on-line without the 4E PHB isn't going to be an easy feat.

Otherwise, I'd suggest that those without could still get into on-line games with other Goodjers as long as they had the interface tools.

Here's hoping my boxed set arrives soon! All the talk of spell changes, special abilities, and powers has me itching to read about them in detail.

I think 4E is going to be better for the one-copy rule than 3E. But, I don't know yet. Also, I'm a gamer from way back you can never touch my dice and my books. I don't want your bad muju.

Ulairi wrote:

I think 4E is going to be better for the one-copy rule than 3E. But, I don't know yet. Also, I'm a gamer from way back you can never touch my dice and my books. I don't want your bad muju.

I full appreciate the sacred nature of dice, but books are to be shared, read, and worn with use.

It would be nice if the fourth edition did bring with it enough natural flow to play & combat that books were there only for brief reminders.

rabbit wrote:

So I got my copy of shadow fell at an hour or two ago from Amazon. I have to say just based on the module I'm pretty impressed. The inclusion of battle maps is both nice and a final admission that the game is to vault back into miniatures calm at the way it was in the beginning with chain-mail.

I think we were all expecting them to vault back into miniatures calm.

I just finished the PHB (well, without reading the higher level powers), and I think it lends itself very easily to sharing the books, at least at lower levels. Just have your powers written down, and everything else is pretty much on your character sheet. Combat itself seems more streamlined, but the DM is going to have to track a couple modifiers from turn to turn, as was mentioned.

Also, having finally read the ritual section, I take back what I was saying about the variety of spells. Not only do the rituals add back what I thought was missing from the powers as far as spells go, they make a LOT more sense in terms of logistics. Many spells have changed from what you're used to (Silence creates a shield against eavesdropping, NOT removing all sound within the area), but it all makes a lot of sense. You can do rituals as often as you want in a day, as long as you don't mind spending the cost/taking the time (10 min to a couple hrs, depending)/carting around the materials necessary.

Now I'm really itching to play. Created a Ranger tonight for fun, and now I need a chance to try him out.