Things 4E got right

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Re: Things 4E got right

Postby BotWizo » Tue Jun 03, 2014 9:26 pm

shesheyan wrote:
The minion rule were greatest additions to the game IMHO.



That is true, this was truly revolutionary. I wish i had thought of it in our heyday of 1e it would have worked well for some of our campaigns.

I liked that you could up monsters to the level of players so you could have a high level goblin king.

I really enjoyed the class balance, so no matter the level or fight all characters had things to do.
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Re: Things 4E got right

Postby Bouv » Mon Jun 09, 2014 2:34 pm

One thing that might get overlooked - skill challenges. I enjoy the idea of it and it's easily usable by any system with skills (or "non-weapon proficiencies"). I actually might use one in my BECMI game to speed up some searching.
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Re: Things 4E got right

Postby Ashtagon » Mon Jun 09, 2014 2:44 pm

Personally, the minion rules felt weird to me. For a fantasy game, it didn't really seem in-genre. However, had 4e been marketed as a superheroes game, then they would have worked perfectly for me.
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Re: Things 4E got right

Postby Bouv » Mon Dec 01, 2014 4:58 pm

I haven't full-on tried it yet, but, for me, it's both good and bad. The new way to dole out treasure. Instead of listing what was found, pre-published stuff said, "Hey, use this level of treasure" which gives a DM a lot of control of what gets dished out. Often times, we have a module and we tend to keep what's in there for treasure, even if it's a bit much or overpowered.
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Re: Things 4E got right

Postby Bonetti » Tue Dec 09, 2014 11:11 pm

The one place that doling out treasure failed was not the game, it was me DMing it. I did not have the time to really work it out, so I halfway cheesed it by asking my players for a "wish list" and periodically rewarded them from their lists. I occasionally gave them something else, but most of the magic items came from their lists.

In hindsight, I think that cheapened the rewards a bit, and if I were running a game now I wouldn't do the same thing.
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Re: Things 4E got right

Postby Bouv » Wed Dec 10, 2014 4:37 pm

Bonetti wrote:The one place that doling out treasure failed was not the game, it was me DMing it. I did not have the time to really work it out, so I halfway cheesed it by asking my players for a "wish list" and periodically rewarded them from their lists. I occasionally gave them something else, but most of the magic items came from their lists.

In hindsight, I think that cheapened the rewards a bit, and if I were running a game now I wouldn't do the same thing.


I have noticed that because now you have to figure out what items will compliment what players beyond a "sword or quarterstaff +1".
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Re: Things 4E got right

Postby Bonetti » Wed Dec 10, 2014 11:05 pm

Bouv wrote:I have noticed that because now you have to figure out what items will compliment what players beyond a "sword or quarterstaff +1".

That's why I off-loaded the work :-)

I still really appreciate that they had some solid guidelines on what they expected and when, and overall I have warm feelings for the system.
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Re: Things 4E got right

Postby Bouv » Fri Mar 27, 2015 9:24 pm

While it wasn't a huge amount, 4E saw the return of some boxed sets - Madness at Grabmore Abbey, The Shadowfell, and a I think a couple others. They can with a couple books, an card accessory, and monster tokens.
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Re: Things 4E got right

Postby Havard » Sat Mar 28, 2015 9:45 am

Bouv wrote:While it wasn't a huge amount, 4E saw the return of some boxed sets - Madness at Grabmore Abbey, The Shadowfell, and a I think a couple others. They can with a couple books, an card accessory, and monster tokens.


Yeah, gotta love boxed sets :)

Looking back at it now, 4E was also the last edition so far to actually support settings....

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Re: Things 4E got right

Postby Silverblade-T-E » Mon Oct 05, 2015 2:09 am

shesheyan wrote:
Bouv wrote:3. Variety of "standard" monsters. Instead of just getting a goblin, goblin chieftan and goblin shaman, we get a lot of different types of goblins to challenge the players. This helped mix things up and challenge those players that like to"memorize" the monster manual.


That and the minion rule were greatest additions to the game IMHO.


also Disease Track that was inspired idea :)

and

at will, encounter, per rest powers for EVERYONE
I love playing wizards or psionicists, but it's not right that fighters etc should be reduced to boring "whack a rat stand there and smack smack"....BORING!
so 4th ed giving fighters like everyone else, dynamic useful abilities was superb

and
Dynamic combat
real fights are all about MOVEMENT, this simply wasn't much in the rules until 3rd and even then it was a pain and not really part of NORMAL combat, only grapples/bullrushes
in 4th ed, many melee or archer powers caused opponents to fall, be moved etc


AND
making large numbers of opponents, or ships/vehicles and complex things like swarms, into simpler single stat block "creatures"
that was a huge improvement just like minions were
you can turn a spelljammer ship into one "creature" with multiple attacks, low AC but a TON of hit points
some of the attacks can be magic (from crew memebers)

AND
the simple notation and system for RECHARGE OF POWERS!
just using six sided dice as the symbol on page and way to see if a power has "recharged" for an NPC each round is brilliant
tracking spell kists/uses/times is a pain for a DM, a simple dice roll helps hugely


over all I thought 4th ed was the best "mechanic" advance ever for D&D
it just lacked variety, fluff and "Ooomph!"
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Re: Things 4E got right

Postby Bouv » Mon Oct 19, 2015 4:52 pm

Rituals! While the execution may not have worked (not really too sure, again, haven't played it enough), I like that some spells require more time, energy, and resources to cast.
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Re: Things 4E got right

Postby rabindranath72 » Mon Nov 16, 2015 4:18 pm

Bouv wrote:Rituals! While the execution may not have worked (not really too sure, again, haven't played it enough), I like that some spells require more time, energy, and resources to cast.

Ah yes, that's a very cool part of the game.
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Re: Things 4E got right

Postby willpell » Mon Nov 16, 2015 6:00 pm

My biggest rave with 4E (having not actually played it or even seen the rulebook, this is all based on hearsay and a single attempt at character creation on a PBP site) is the idea of explicitly separating the Hero and Paragon tiers. Paragon Paths and Epic Destinies sound like a neat way of reframing the idea expressed in 3E by Prestige Classes; I kind of like the latter because of the puzzle element they add to character-building, but they are a lot of work and a potential trap, so replacing them with something more organic was probably wise. I also like the expanded selection of base classes - the "mix and match" of roles and powersources created great new ideas like Avenger and Warden, and moving in the Marshal to become a base class was a really wise decision IMO, although renaming it "Warlord" was not (this is the opposite of the direction we should be moving; 3E had the right idea replacing Thief with Rogue, and this was a backslide into unnecessary pigeonholing).

My biggest gripes are the over-emphasis on tactical positioning, all but mandating the use (and strongly nudging the purchase) of miniatures, along with the whole "all classes work the same now" bit, to whatever extent it's true. In particular, I actually like having the Fighter be a "boring" class who just rolls basic attacks, at least at low levels; I think that's an important "entry point" for players who aren't up to the mental effort of playing someone who has complex, expendable block-of-text abilities, even if they aren't called
"spells". I'm glad that the Tome of Battle was printed close to the end of the 3E line, but I don't want every damn Fighter to be replaced with a fancy-pants Warblade, whose maneuvers all have corny names and who isn't allowed to swing his sword the same way twice (to borrow a line from Order of the Stick's rip of 4E's - and 3E's - general silliness). Conversely, I don't think every wizard should be capable of just standing around and frying everything with lightning; playing a wizard to best effect ought to require that you lug a lot of books around and have memorized the cross-references necessary to find exactly what you need every time, because that's pretty much what the character is doing, so the game rules are reinforcing the immersiveness of play. 3E offered Reserve Feats as a way to give wizards more reliability and staying power, but they were an option you had to choose, just like taking Martial Study feats and getting access to a few Maneuvers was a Fighter option. Making these the default instead goes against the grain just a bit more than I was comfortable with; I think it was a well-intentioned idea, but one that didn't turn out quite as it should have.
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Re: Things 4E got right

Postby Big Mac » Thu Jan 05, 2017 2:37 am

I think that Points of Light was an interesting idea. I think it is an idea that should have been turned into a unique selling point for a 4th Edition campaign setting and not turned into a core component of D&D.

Nentir Vale was interesting, but I think it was underrated, watered down, held back and ultimately cast aside. Nentir Vale had the potential to follow on from Elsir Vale, create a long organised play plotline that lasted the entire length of 4e and then feed into some sort of epic "save the world" plotline that led into the 5th Edition era. People would have spoken about it for decades. Nentir Vale fans would have continued to play using 5th Edition rules and the Points of Light concepts could have simply been translated to 5e as Nentir Vale concepts.

The tiers of D&D helped divide things up a bit. I think that had the potential to take D&D back to the earlier BECMI concept. We could have had "Newbie D&D" products that were not a dead end. With a bit of reshuffling Essentials could have been the 4e answer to BECMI. We could have had lots of support for newbie players and rulebooks for newbies that excluded all the advanced rules that they didn't need to worry about.
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Re: Things 4E got right

Postby cavalier973 » Tue Feb 07, 2017 4:56 am

Big Mac wrote:The tiers of D&D helped divide things up a bit. I think that had the potential to take D&D back to the earlier BECMI concept. We could have had "Newbie D&D" products that were not a dead end. With a bit of reshuffling Essentials could have been the 4e answer to BECMI. We could have had lots of support for newbie players and rulebooks for newbies that excluded all the advanced rules that they didn't need to worry about.


I would like to have seen a "Red Box" that had player and dm rules for play through the heroic tier--including a dry-erase grid map, some tokens, and maybe miniatures to represent the heroes, along with dice and character sheets and a couple of beginning adventures (to take the players to level 3, perhaps).

The Blue Box would be paragon tier, and the gold box would be epic tier. The latter sets would include advanced player options, maybe a book of treasures appropriate for those levels, and monsters for the characters to fight.


With regard to the OP, I think the "Four Defenses" model was an excellent one, superior to saving throws.
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Re: Things 4E got right

Postby Zeromaru X » Tue Feb 07, 2017 5:52 am

I agree with the minion rule. If you want the players to feel their characters have become stronger through the campaign, the minions are your best friends. And they are easily portable to any edition with just minimal thinkering.

Big Mac wrote:Nentir Vale was interesting, but I think it was underrated, watered down, held back and ultimately cast aside. Nentir Vale had the potential to follow on from Elsir Vale, create a long organised play plotline that lasted the entire length of 4e and then feed into some sort of epic "save the world" plotline that led into the 5th Edition era. People would have spoken about it for decades. Nentir Vale fans would have continued to play using 5th Edition rules and the Points of Light concepts could have simply been translated to 5e as Nentir Vale concepts.


Well, due to the nature of the Points of Light stuff, Nentir Vale is easily portable to any edition, even earlier ones. Better yet, due to its simplicity you can easily port Nentir Vale to any setting (the Realms, Eberron, Mystara, your own homemade world) without much problem. Porting it to 5e is more easy because you don't have to houserule stuff like the dragonborn or the warlock's pacts (and someone added both the eladrin as a subrace, and all gods updated to 5e in the DMG). I can say Nentir Vale was one of the best concepts that came up from 4e because its portability.

cavalier973 wrote:
Big Mac wrote:The tiers of D&D helped divide things up a bit. I think that had the potential to take D&D back to the earlier BECMI concept. We could have had "Newbie D&D" products that were not a dead end. With a bit of reshuffling Essentials could have been the 4e answer to BECMI. We could have had lots of support for newbie players and rulebooks for newbies that excluded all the advanced rules that they didn't need to worry about.


I would like to have seen a "Red Box" that had player and dm rules for play through the heroic tier--including a dry-erase grid map, some tokens, and maybe miniatures to represent the heroes, along with dice and character sheets and a couple of beginning adventures (to take the players to level 3, perhaps).


Monster Vault: Threats to the Nentir Vale and the Neverwinter Campaign Setting kinda do that. They're focused mostly to the Heroic Tier and are sandbox books. 4e also had a lot of good adventures for the Heroic Tier (the better being Reavers of Harkenwold and Madness at Gardmore Abbey). I guess 4e just needed products that did the same with the Paragon and Epic tiers thought, but its supporto to the low levels of play was superb in the later years of the edition.
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