16
votes
6answers
2k views

Tools for tracking NPC/PC relationships and attitudes [closed]

I have always had difficulty keeping track of NPCs, their attitudes and their relationships with each other and the PCs. I find relationship webs/diagrams are helpful, but find them difficult to keep ...
12
votes
4answers
7k views

Character build for Gandalf in D&D3.5?

In my groups next campaign I am hoping to be a PC instead of the DM and I want to play a character who is like Gandalf from The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit. I began looking at options; he would ...
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 ...
32
votes
3answers
56k views

How does wizard & cleric spell preparation and casting work? [closed]

In 3.X wizards had spellbooks, while clerics had their entire spell list, but they both memorized/prepared spells every day from those lists, and had a certain number of slots for preparing spells in. ...
25
votes
5answers
4k views

Specific items in a group social contract?

Some gaming groups actually do a formal social contract, wherein they explicitly set some of the expectations and rules for the gaming group. What items should a group considering doing a social ...
23
votes
2answers
8k views

What are the “rules of hidden club” for D&D 5th edition?

A persistent problem in D&D is the implementation and understanding of stealth mechanics. 5e provides for hiding when creatures "can't see" you. How do the obscured rules work with hiding, ...
22
votes
8answers
4k views

How can I encourage my D&D Encounters group to do more role playing?

I'm a new player to D&D 4e. I've been participating in D&D Encounters since Season 1 and have even run a couple of sessions in Season 3 when the regular DM couldn't attend. I don't play in ...
16
votes
10answers
17k views

Vow of Poverty, overpowered or underpowered?

I have read plenty of things about the Vow of Poverty in forums, and i have seen both opinions expressed. If i understand it correctly, it does work on the assumption of a linear magic item ...
16
votes
3answers
2k views

What updates should be done to older monsters to bring them in line with MM3 era monsters?

I know that to better balance paragon and epic level players against similar level monsters, WotC changed the math used for monsters for MM3, and I believe that they changed some of the types of ...
12
votes
3answers
934 views

Adapting literary works into RPG adventures

Beowulf is a classic tale which has been translated many times and has had many film adaptations. Seamus Heaney's new translation and Frederick Rebsame's translation are good starts if you have not ...
34
votes
11answers
9k views

Can I be a follower of an evil god and not be evil?

I'm playing a warlock, a follower of the old god Cthulhu (chaotic evil). My character is chaotic neutral, and has been doing some not-so-neutral things (in my opinion). My patron god is a big part of ...
32
votes
13answers
37k views

Is it better to take the array and be Joe Average, or to roll for the odds of getting on average better scores?

I am new to D&D. I was looking at character creation for D&D 5th edition. There were a few ways one could generate ability scores. I assumed the optional method of taking the numbers 15,14,13,...
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 ...
23
votes
6answers
60k views

D&D 5e Passive Perception confusion

So, I'm trying to figure out how to run the scene from the beginning of Lost Mine of Phandelver (5e starter set) where the party is ambushed by goblins and I'm really confused as to how Passive Wisdom ...
18
votes
9answers
813 views

Dealing with a changing set of players in a continuous campaign

I have a group of players who have all been integrated into the game. However we all live in different counties and at any one time only a subset of the players can play at any one time. I try to ...
15
votes
5answers
687 views

As a GM, what aids could I use to create adventure scenes on the spot?

As a GM, many a time I run into a situation that I know nothing of, am not prepared about, and need something, NOW! Maybe it is a freeform adventure and plot was not prepared, maybe I prepared some ...
12
votes
5answers
3k views

Is there a system for modeling insanity in d20 3.5?

I'm running a Dungeons and Dragons 3.5 (not Pathfinder) game, and I want to create a system by which players can use certain abilities, but at the cost of sanity and self-control. Is there a system ...
10
votes
4answers
5k views

How does a PC make a permanent extradimensional space?

In dnd 3.5/pathfinder, how can a PC make a permanent extra dimensional space? Nothing as fancy nor temporary as a Mordenkainen's Magnificent Mansion but with more legroom than a 20 cubic feet. The ...
38
votes
13answers
6k views

Playing 4th Ed D&D for the first time, what should I read to avoid holding everyone back?

I've been invited to join a new game of D&D 4th edition this weekend, but haven't played proper D&D before. Are there any resources I ought to read or get before I turn up, so that I'm not a ...
29
votes
3answers
3k views

A fellow player is uncooperative with the group and gets GM favoritism. How do I handle this?

I actually have two situations but they are interconnected. Our group is currently playing a Dresden game. The GM and one of the players are married. Along with that, he is a new member to the group. ...
27
votes
9answers
2k views

How can I create within-party intrigue without destroying group cohesion?

I am a novice GM playing with several more experienced D&D players (who happen to be good friends). I wanted to spice up the game for them and take advantage of their own intelligence/experience ...
24
votes
5answers
1k views

How do I encourage new players to be more descriptive in their actions and intents?

I have a party of new players, who are enjoying a sporadic session of Fate Accelerated. I'm learning a significant amount from the experience, and I hope they are too. In addition to some problems I'...
23
votes
6answers
642 views

Techniques for communicating setting and campaign information to the PCs?

In the past, I've almost always had at least one NPC that would travel with the characters as a type of "lore master" to expand on the story. I've tried to make the character witty and, once the ...
17
votes
3answers
2k views

How many dice does the GM roll when challenging the players?

I'd like to run a game of Roll for Shoes, but I'm not sure how many dice I roll when the characters face various challenges. I'm under the impression that it's supposed to be the same number of dice ...
15
votes
5answers
4k views

How do I calculate my probability of success in Vampire the Masquerade?

How can I calculate my chance of success given my ability + skill vs a difficulty? How is this complicated when the difficulty is rolled as well?
41
votes
9answers
4k views

How To Divide Up Loot?

I've been GMing a very successful (Pathfinder) campaign for quite a few months now, but we've developed a bit of a problem I'm not sure how to resolve: loot distribution. None of my players are ...
33
votes
6answers
6k views

How do I Raise the Dead and Look Good Doing it?

I am a LE cleric (No god, but in a order of LG/LN cleric, faking to praying to their god) and we are in a mass combat campaign (Darn you Drow), and I want to raise an elite troop of undead to protect ...
30
votes
11answers
5k views

Can I roll for a PC in secret?

As a GM, can I roll in secret so my players don't even know I rolled? For example, a PC walks past a secret door; if I ask the player to roll perception he may suspect there is something. Can I roll ...
27
votes
8answers
6k views

How do I use Passive Perception to have some characters notice parts of the environment?

I'm new to DM'ing and have an issue I'm not sure how to deal with. The situation is this: It's pitch black outside and the PC is walking, with a lantern in hand, toward a building. A bird is ...
26
votes
7answers
1k views

Am I designing my campaign setting to be too specific?

I'm a first time DM (3.5e), and, being a passionate writer, I decided to create the entire campaign and campaign setting myself. It's been good fun, and I have about 12 pages of (elaborated upon) ...
24
votes
4answers
30k views

How does one craft Potions of Healing?

The Basic Rules/PHB say that an Herbalism Kit is required to create potions of healing. However, the crafting rules only allow you to make nonmagical items, and the description under Potion of Healing ...
18
votes
5answers
4k views

Is it common for D&D characters be moved to or reused in different DMs' campaigns?

When you've played a character for a while and have invested a lot of time building this character up, seeing the campaign end, losing your group by moving to a different city, or otherwise leaving ...
17
votes
5answers
3k views

How much experience should a PC be worth?

Long story short, I'm about to betray my party (by trying to kill them). I'm playing this betrayer on behalf of the GM. Assuming they defeat me, how much experience should they get? I am a level 14 ...
16
votes
3answers
3k views

How do I deal with a bored or distracted player bringing down the group?

My group have been playing various D&D style games for a few years, I have one player however that often will drift off and start playing on his phone and several times has actually fallen ...
16
votes
3answers
3k views

How do I help my players get more engaged in the story?

I play in a group where we routinely switch out GMs. When I GM I tend to prefer story-based games with lots of character building and descriptive role play. We tend to run Paizo's Adventure Paths ...
15
votes
14answers
11k views

How to mitigate glass cannon syndrome in Pathfinder?

This is the more gamey part of my other question, What to do when your character is just too good? In D&D 3.5e and Pathfinder, damage output grows very, very quickly. Much more quickly than hit ...
14
votes
2answers
2k views

What happens if you don't sleep?

The description of a long rest says: A long rest is a period of extended downtime, at least 8 hours long, during which a character sleeps or performs light activity: reading, talking, eating, or ...
14
votes
4answers
8k views

Can I use a spell with a casting time of “Bonus Action” as my action?

I get that some spells are "especially swift" to cast and thus have a casting time of "Bonus Action". But is there any reason I couldn't cast such a spell as my Action? Does it make a difference if ...
12
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 ...
12
votes
3answers
8k views

How can I get the most synergy out of this Paladin/Warlock multi-class combination?

I'm planning on playing a Paladin/Warlock in an upcoming game and I've picked the Oath of Vengeance, and Great Old One Patron/Pact of Tome. I've made my backstory (island home sunk when invaded by ...
9
votes
2answers
1k views

Burrowing, Large Creatures, Opportunity Attacks, Drowning, and Z-Axis Movement [closed]

In our D&D 4th Edition campaign, the players have recently encounter Bulettes, monsters with the Burrow movement mode, and we had a few issues dealing with ...
34
votes
7answers
5k views

Can you choose to fail a saving throw?

(Yet another) follow-up from this question: As someone mentioned in the question above, some 'friendly' spells (Calm Emotion, IIRC) specify that one can choose to fail the saving throw. In this case,...
26
votes
6answers
15k views

Should one buy the Pathfinder book when the content is available for free on d20pfsrd.com?

Does the Pathfinder core rulebook contain any information that is not included already on www.d20pfsrd.com that would make it worth it to buy the PDF version of the manual? Or does it only have extra ...
23
votes
4answers
9k views

Can the arcane/druidic focus staff double as quarterstaff?

Does the staff version of an arcane or druidic focus also work as a quarterstaff? At least at character creation can you say that for example your druids quarterstaff and druid focus staff is one and ...
23
votes
4answers
12k views

How much damage does Great Weapon Fighting add on average?

The Great Weapon Fighting Fighting style states the following: When you roll a 1 or 2 on a damage die for an attack you make with a melee weapon that you are wielding with two hands, you can ...
19
votes
8answers
1k views

How valid is lying to players about the rolls they are making in The Dresden Files?

In last weeks Dresden Files game, the players followed the bad guy using a tracking spell, and found him in the projects at an apartment that they knew little about. Seeing his car, they decided to ...
19
votes
1answer
3k views

Can I True Polymorph a goblin into adamantine (and then forge him into a sword?)

Is it possible to make crafting materials, like adamantine, out of a goblin or such using the True Polymorph spell for the full duration of the spell? On a side note, while adamantine is mentioned in ...
16
votes
6answers
3k views

How do you rule halfling tossing as a combat action?

The party I am GMing has three characters over 6' tall with 20+ strength as well as a halfling and a kobold, both small and about 3' tall. A couple of times, they have wanted the big characters to ...
15
votes
3answers
2k views

Would a caster's AoE spell hit the caster?

Our warlock was being assaulted by a few stirges, surrounding her. She cast Shatter around herself to defeat all of them. Does she get hit by her own spell?
15
votes
3answers
4k views

What happens when Detect Magic is used upon something that is magically invisible?

Does a simple casting of Detect Magic reveal the presence of magical invisibility?

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