Techniques to offset perceived inequities among player characters derived from differences in capability.

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59
votes
11answers
6k views

Is there a limit to Rule 0?

Rule Zero: All other rules can be changed by the GM. I appreciate that there is a massive amount of work that goes into be a GM and the last thing that any GM wants or deserves is to have his ...
39
votes
7answers
3k views

What makes a character/creature/power/ability/etc. over-powered?

In generic terms, what makes something, regardless of what game it's being used in, over powered? I hear the term a lot, and while I can recognize it when I see it in-play (often due to someone ...
33
votes
12answers
4k views

What to do when your character is just too good?

I'm playing in the Paizo Pathfinder Jade Regent adventure path and we're having a good time so far (campaign blog and session summaries). However, as my character has gone up in power I'm now ...
30
votes
3answers
15k views

Is the old “Linear Fighters Quadratic Wizards” problem still around in 5e Basic?

(This question is a comparison to 3.x, though things might have been different in 4e) In 3.5e there is a large power and capability gap between fighters and wizards that fighters couldn't hope to ...
11
votes
11answers
1k views

Balancing players' rolls, not characters

I have been the worst dice-roller in my party as far as I can remember. Be it D&D 3.5, 4th Edition, or any other dice based system, the goddess of luck has always been mean to me. To give you an ...
26
votes
7answers
2k views

How to encourage a player's creativity without breaking the game?

I've just started a new D&D 4e campaign with a new group of players. One of my players came straight from 2nd edition, and has never played 4e before. She doesn't seem to grasp the layer of ...
11
votes
2answers
370 views

What's the easiest way to adjust a module intended for 5 players so that it can accommodate 6 players?

I'm playing with a 6 character group in the H series of modules, Keep on the Shadowfell and Thunderspire labyrinth, which are both intended for 5 players. Frankly the combats are usually too easy, ...
11
votes
6answers
3k views

How much can/should a single owned item be worth at most?

How much can any single possession take up a character's wealth? For this question, I'd like answers that operate under the presumption that wealth-by-level isn't a minimum but instead a target. I've ...
24
votes
11answers
5k views

What can I do to prevent a player from breaking the game?

Several of my friends are starting a game pretty soon, and one of the players is a great guy, and fun to play with EXCEPT, he plays with the objective of optimization, while everyone else plays much ...
20
votes
7answers
24k views

Is two-weapon fighting only as a full-round action balanced versus fighting with a two-handed weapon?

One of the players in a Pathfinder game in which I am playing is arguing that characters should be able to get the additional attack for fighting with two weapons when attacking as a standard action, ...
7
votes
1answer
1k views

Are There Weaker Alternatives to Cleric, Wizard, or Druid? [closed]

Clerics, Wizards, and Druids are widely regarded as having so many more and more powerful options than non-spellcasters, like Fighters, that trying to play a game involving both of them will leave the ...
13
votes
2answers
2k views

My players almost die in my encounters every time. Does this mean my encounters are too hard?

I'm running my first campaign with three friends. This is the first time any of us have done any table-top role-playing. I'm working the party through the H1: Keep on the Shadowfell campaign using ...
8
votes
3answers
3k views

What about “Save-or-Die” spells makes them so powerful? Are they balanced as is, or require tweaking?

On reading guides on classes, most notably caster classes, near every guide recommends that the player take the "Save-or-Die" or "Save-or-Suck" spells. Usually, these end up being status effects. I ...
7
votes
4answers
4k views

Is heat metal too powerful? [closed]

Heat metal is a 2nd level spell that lasts 1 minute (concentration), deals 2d8 damage per round, and has no save. If a Druid casts Heat metal from hiding at 60' on a knight and dashes away, then the ...
31
votes
12answers
7k views

How to balance a very-low magic campaign

Recently, my players and I got kind of bored with the fact that Pathfinder relies heavily on magic items than martial prowess for fighting classes. I realize and accept the fact that spellcasters are ...
12
votes
7answers
4k views

Balancing a mixed game in nWoD

Jadasc raised a great point here. There are few problems that can challenge a mage that won't completely outclass a vampire, unless the vampires are extraordinarily experienced or well connected ...
5
votes
1answer
2k views

Would the Ranger be overpowered if their Animal Companion kept attacking once ordered?

For an Animal Companion to attack, the Ranger has to use his action to command it. I am looking to see some math on just why this restriction is in place. Is the ranger way over-powered if the animal ...
13
votes
10answers
3k views

Should I allow a Wondrous Item on level 1 character creation?

I'm starting a new 3.5 campaign, using only the 3 core books for character creation, and starting all my players off at level 1. One of my players has written a (rather good) backstory for his ...
22
votes
4answers
3k views

Balancing Spellcasters; Spontaneous Casters versus Prepared Casters

So ask any optimizer and they'll almost always tell you the same thing: in 3.5 classes that prepare spells are better than spontaneous spellcasters. It's generally not thought of as even a contest. ...
17
votes
9answers
720 views

How can I encourage my group to become more well rounded?

My gaming group tends to each go in their own direction for character creation. Sometimes this leads to great games where folks are strongly opposed on dramatic elements and character interaction is ...
12
votes
3answers
3k views

How would one create a balanced dragon PC?

I'm running a DnD 5e campaign and had a dragon-born sorcerer with Draconic Bloodline as a sorcerous origin that used the level 9 Wish spell to wish to become a "true dragon." Are there any rules ...
18
votes
4answers
2k views

Are psionics overpowered or especially exploitable?

My DM is very picky about what materials we're allowed to use, pretty much PHB only, and we can't multiclass until level 6. I really like psionics, and would especially like to play a psionic warrior ...
12
votes
3answers
2k views

Is a spell with an attack roll “an attack” for the purpose of Sneak Attack?

Sneak Attack says: When you attack a creature and hit, you can deal extra damage to that target if you have advantage against it or if another enemy of the target is within 5 feet of it and that ...
11
votes
2answers
457 views

Dealing with defense in BESM

In BESM, it seems to be a lot easier to build a character capable of dealing massive amounts of damage than a character capable of taking massive amounts of damage. As a DM, I don't want to build ...
10
votes
7answers
641 views

Differing Starting Points Levels

The GM of a GURPS game I'm playing in has set the game's point level at 150. However, he has also made the option available to take 250 or 75 points at the beginning, with the understanding that the ...
10
votes
4answers
3k views

Power levels of RIFTS classes

Someone posted this link to a set of "tiers" for D&D 3.5 classes, and it got me thinking. I haven't played RIFTS in forever, and one of the reasons is the wide disparity in class power and ...
8
votes
2answers
1k views

Would being able to wild-shape into aberrations/monstrosities be unbalanced?

I am making a Circle of the Moon druid, and when I flipped through the monster manual to see what I could transform into I was struck by how much cooler Aberrations and Monstrosities are than Beasts. ...
7
votes
3answers
850 views

Dex-to-damage houserule to make monk more viable?

I recently started running a Pathfinder campaign with some friends. Two of the players are pretty experienced, two are brand new, and this is my first time DM'ing. One of the new players is playing a ...
3
votes
4answers
620 views

How to balance my encounters for a party with lots of burst damage

I'm having trouble balancing my combat encounters because my party is able to ditch too much damage in a round. It's a party of 5 lvl 9 but anything with less than a 100hp and high AC doesn't live ...
3
votes
2answers
214 views

How can I design a balanced hybrid race as the offspring of a gnome and halfling?

Assuming a gnome and a halfling could interbreed, what race would the child be? If a half-gnome/half-halfling instead of just one or the other, what traits would the child have? Are there any ...
2
votes
1answer
201 views

How many levels should I remove from a 14th level Witch if I want to add 5 Mythic Tiers to her? [closed]

Let's say I have a 14th level witch planned as the the BBEG for a campaign, but decide I need Augmented Mythic Deep Slumber (multi-year duration, only dispelled by mythic effects) for plot reasons so ...