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63

AngryDM Says Something About This Once your characters are obviously going to win, end the encounter/fight. That's tough, but I'm going to sum up what he said. (You should still read it, though) You need to figure out what the main question the encounter is trying to answer, and when the answer becomes obvious, end the encounter! Yes, I know AngryDM's ...


58

I suspect you're underestimating the effects of the wargaming roots, both on D&D specifically and on role-playing games in general, which, in those early days, were all but synonymous. The cover of the original edition of D&D, published in 1974, described it as "Rules for Fantastic Medieval Wargames". Although it included various non-wargaming ...


35

The key does lie in not sweating the details, but the trick is that which is the least intuitive one: positioning! Follow three principles and theatre of the mind becomes much easier: Use descriptive detail When describing a fight scene, say in general terms where everything is relative to each other. You're not used to giving this detail verbally when ...


31

You can have several tricks to get around this, I've used similar methods with fantasy and cyberpunk games. Security Weapons are keycoded, or Palmprinting - this stops anyone but a certain person using it. Yes you can bypass it, but it's either difficult or very pricey. Limited uses Yes, you've got a melta gun - but getting ammo/powerpacks for it is ...


31

Scenario 1, a bag of holding into a portable hole: No. When the bag of holding is placed into the portable hole, a gate is opened and the two items are sucked into it and forever lost. Essentially, they consume each other. There is no mention of anything else getting sucked into the gate or if the gate allows other creatures and objects travel to the astral ...


21

It's been a while since I dealt with 3.5, but couldn't enemies armed with missile weapons just ready actions to "shoot them when they come into range"? That's certainly not a "screw you" approach. As a way to mix things up, you could also introduce terrain that makes this strategy less viable (much reduced line of sight, for example.) or NPCs who are ...


21

Think in terms of how you—as a player, not a DM—might tackle an opponent doing what your players are. There are several things I can think of. Spellcasters with Protection from Arrows and Slow or Grease are good start points. Protection from Arrows removes their attacking options while Slow and Grease, among other spells, are excellent for taking away ...


20

The biggest key to creating interesting boss fights (in my experience) is to introduce an element of surprise or guess work. Fights are boring if they're just constant dice rolls back and forth where everything goes as expected. But you can make mechanics which keep the players guessing and on their toes, which force them to constantly be thinking about ...


20

Take a hint from the big computer rpg boss fights - even if you don't play them, you could find inspiration on youtube videos of them. First - a commonly used concept in boss fights there is 'stages' where you make a memorable fight longer but not repetitive by splitting it in sub-fights with different styles, i.e., after 'defeating' the initial phase HP, ...


20

The problem, basically, is that PC defenses and to-hit values increase every other level, and monster to-hit and defenses increase every level. So if you're L8 party (on average) hits 60% of the time, and gets hit 40% of the time. If you face a L15 minion, your party's going to be hit 75% of the time, and is only going to hit 25% of the time. Your PCs will ...


18

Swift actions, like Free actions, take place during your turn, and cannot be taken outside your turn. Immediate actions take place outside your turn, and use up your next turn’s Swift action. So no, you must activate that bonus on your turn in order to have it for the round, you cannot try to activate it just when you need to.


18

Your DM is WRONG. Iterative attacks in 3.5 are purely a function of increasing attack bonus. For every 5 points, you gain another attack. Thus, when you reach a BAB of +6, you can, with a full attack action, make two attacks at +6/+1. At +11, you can make three attacks, at +11/+6/+1. With regard to stacking, the D20 SRD is quite clear: A base attack ...


18

It matters for some characters If you have, for example, Two-Weapon Fighting, Flurry of Blows, Rapid Shot, or haste, you may have more than one attack even though you have low BAB. You would need a Full-Attack to use those. Even with only one attack, some characters (e.g. a 3rd-level Swordlord Fighter) can get other benefits from making a Full Attack, and ...


18

A flaming or flaming burst weapon can deal 1d6 fire damage on a hit, if that feature has been activated. Fire damage by-passes a troll’s Regeneration, dealing lethal damage and eliminating the healing for a turn. Setting it on fire is not necessary to damage a troll. On the other hand, fire damage does not automatically start a fire; for the most ...


17

First off, since the question is tagged rogue-trader, I'll reiterate that the PCs are already able to get their hands on the best gear out there anyhow. "You're the owners and command staff of a 5km warpship with access to resources in excess of some worlds' annual gross planetary production" will get you pretty far. As in, if you want to buy a melta gun, ...


17

Abstractions Before you tweak the combat system, make sure you understand how its abstraction works. A single attack roll is not necessarily a single swipe of a character's sword. Rather, it represents your character trying hard to kill his opponent for the round. It could be a single slash, or it could be a lengthy clash of steel-on-steel coupled with ...


17

A Swift Action Can Be Taken During the Surprise Round The Surprise Round says... If some but not all of the combatants are aware of their opponents, a surprise round happens before regular rounds begin. In initiative order (highest to lowest), combatants who started the battle aware of their opponents each take a standard or move action during the ...


16

Yes, this is typical of low level D&D 3.5. It is usually called "swingy" for a reason - each d20 result has a high impact on the outcome of every battle. PCs rely on high d20 rolls to hit, and are often in deep trouble after as much as a single critical (or even normal!) hit from the enemies. However, the exact numbers you quote are on the low end of ...


16

From RAW When a creature’s hit points drop below 0, it becomes unconscious. When a creature’s hit points reach a negative total equal to its Constitution score, it dies. -- Core, page 12 under 'Hit points' 'Creature' would imply that the rules effect everyone. Although there are some exceptions, such as Undead and Constructs Not at risk of death ...


16

This answer is about the mechanics I would apply, and not about intended results or morals of the PC behaviour. First, use the Grapple rules, because they seem most appropriate for dragging a creature around: The tied-up goblin can be considered Helpless, thus all Grapple checks against it auto-succeed. The rules for grapple cover moving the ...


16

There are really only a few ways to speed up combat, and most of them really depend on what is bogging you down. Here is the advice I'd give if you really want to make sure you get through as fast as possible: Limit Turn Time. This is the biggie, and you're already doing it with the carrot method (providing a chip worth a +1 to any d20 roll). That's great. ...


16

That very much depends on what you mean by "in game." During a game? Certainly: PC: "I fall on my sword." DM: "Okay. You die." Using standard combat options? No. At least, not guaranteed at every table by a common understanding of the rules. Coup de grace requires that the target be helpless before it's an option, and whether you're helpless to ...


16

The first and third points aren’t really big deals; actually, the third point would be a disadvantage of save-or-dies. Would be, if the numbers were more reasonable. By the numbers: you can probably make someone fail a saving throw Ultimately, caster classes have every reason to pump their save DCs as much as they can. The ability score that sets the ...


15

Flip back to pages 54 and 55 of the Start Set's adventure booklet, at the beginning of Appendix B: Monsters. This section explains how to read the monster's stats. I want to bring your attention in particular to the text in the heading Actions (p. 55, bolded phrase my emphasis): Hit. Any damage or other effects that occur as a result of an attack hitting ...


14

The suggested mechanic uses similar maths that optimisers use to build combat-focussed characters. Also White Dwarf magazine presented an optional Monster Mark system of experience built around expected damage to a standardised fighter (I think this may even of made it into a TSR product, but I may be mis-remembering). In the unmodified game, there are lots ...


14

As written, I would say yes: you have made a charge, since there's no longer any such thing as a "partial charge" in 3.5. This is another reason why Pounce is awesome.


14

Yep, allies are hit too, otherwise it would say "each Enemy in the blast", as is the case on plenty of attacks (For example, Fire Shroud, contrast with Shock sphere).


13

In short, you are right and misinformed. The general rule is, when the situation fits the rule, and there is nothing in another rule to counter that, then you interpret the situation as in that rule. In your case, when your off-hand weapon is light, -2/-2 is applied with TWF, and -4/-8 without it. Nowhere in the rule calls for the kind of weapon in the main ...


13

Fate Worlds: Kriegszeppelin Valkyrie You might find what you want in Fate Worlds Vol.1, specifically "Kriegszeppelin Valkyrie" (KV). It is a mod/campaign where PCs are WWI pilots. Their planes are stationed on a giant flying aircraft carrier, the eponym Kriegszeppelin Valkyrie. Change "planes" to fighters and "flying aircraft carrier" to "capital ship", and ...


13

The first option In my opinion, the first option is the most likely interpretation of the rules as written, probably what the authors were going for, and the best way to run things at the table. Multiweapon Fighting does exactly the same thing as Two-Weapon Fighting, it just affects more weapons. So if you have more than two weapons, you use Multiweapon ...



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