No, this is not normal.
By the book, critical failures only (kind of) happen on death saving throws.
Even for DMs that use crit fails on attack rolls, they are usually only on the attack roll (the d20), not the damage roll (the d4 in your example).
Having a 25% chance of a crit fail on a dagger attack is completely ridiculous!
It is cantrips that can not keep up, if you get Extra Attack
Weapon attacks alone are not competitive, a 14th level Wizard does more damage with a cantrip than with a dagger1. Class features like Fighting Style and Extra Attack make weapon attacks superior.
First I will measure the Wizard against the Fighter, and later show how other classes compare. For ...
In short: Don't do this.
I would suggest that starting your game with a challenge or scenario that has the potential to immediately kill one or more characters is setting a poor tone for the game.
I'm not saying "go easy on your players"; but I am saying that you need to have a non-fatal outcome planned for what happens when the dice just decide they'd ...
I've forgotten the formal proof for this, but hopefully this is correct:
Consider a D6 (for the sake of concrete language).
When you roll a 1, you reroll the die and keep the result. This produces an average value of 3.5, and happens 1/6 of the time.
When you roll a 2, you reroll the die and keep the result (even if it's lower). This produces an average ...
Flip back to pages 54 and 55 of the Starter 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 ...
I'm not sure this is a problem if you're actually reading and applying the rules for poisons in 5e.
Poison is bought in single doses. How much were they allowed to buy? And how much did they buy them for? Wyvern poison is supposed to cost 1200gp for a single dose. It's only 50gp a pop if you extract and make it yourself which takes a whole bunch of time, ...
Unarmed attacks can crit, but do not do double damage
Can an unarmed strike crit? - Yes
If you roll a 20 on an unarmed strike, it is considered a critical hit.
This means that it will automatically hit regardless of the opponent's AC and has the potential to cause 2 failed death saving throws from a creature at 0 HP.
However, a critical hit does not get ...
Let's break this down a little bit using the Basic Rules you have available.
To make an attack
roll, roll a d20 and add the appropriate modifiers. If the
total of the roll plus modifiers equals or exceeds the
target’s Armor Class (AC), the attack hits.
Pretty straight forward. You roll a D20 and add modifiers, in your ...
These rules have two entirely separate triggers, and if a single attack satisfies both, then so be it.
The attack reduced the creature to 0 hit points, and it was a melee attack. So you can choose to knock the creature out; it's now unconscious and stable.
However, there was leftover damage from the attack equaling or exceeding the creature's maximum ...
It is correct to say the 3.5e rule no longer appears in 5e. Another tweet (god I wish we had that back in the 90s) clarifies that the minimum is indeed 0.
There is not a damage minimum of 1, so it is possible to deal 0 damage with an attack.
@JeremyECrawford Do attacks do ...
It has the property:
While you're wearing it, any critical hit against you becomes a normal
hit. (DMG 150)
It is only classified as uncommon, but it is still a magic item. Depending on how the DM handles that, the difficulty of acquiring one may change. You also need to be proficient in at least medium armor to properly use one.
This is correct, but note how much of his available resources this character is using up for each of these attacks. If there's another battle before he gets a long rest, he's not going to be nearly as impressive.
The rule is “half damage”, not “half the damage dice” or “half the damage die size”. All the dice are rolled and then the total is halved (rounded down, per PHB page 7).
So in the case of fireball, all 8d6 are rolled and summed, then anyone who succeeded on the saving throw takes half that result.
Yes, Massive Damage can kill you at 0 HP
Damage at 0 Hit Points. If you take any damage while you have 0 hit points, you suffer a death saving throw failure. If the damage is from a critical hit, you suffer two failures instead. If the damage equals or exceeds your hit point maximum, you suffer instant death.
—Death Saving Throws, Player's Handbook, ...
According to 5e designer and official rules expert Jeremy Crawford, "When temporary hit points absorb damage for you, you're still taking damage, just not to your real hit points."
On 25 August 2014, Crawford was asked about a similar situation over twitter by @Mathew_Reuther:
@JeremyECrawford If my Temporary Hit Points are 10 and I take ...
The creature takes death saving throw failures on the initial hit
Unfortunately for the character in question, your first scenario is correct.
A stable creature is unconscious with 0 hp - the fact that they are currently exempt from having to make death saving throws (and that the number of successes/failures they have previously made has been reset) is ...
Yes, you must apply all the damage--but you can still leave your target alive.
Except in the case of instant death: "when damage reduces [one] to 0 hit points and there is damage remaining, [one dies] if the remaining damage equals or exceeds [one's] hit point maximum." (PHB p.197)
Monsters and Death
Most DMs have a monster die the instant it drops ...
From the Player's Handbook:
High Jump. When you make a high jump, you leap into the air a number
of feet equal to 3 + your Strength modifier if you move at least 10
feet on foot immediately before the jump. When you make a standing
high jump, you can jump only half that distance. Either way, each foot
you clear on the jump costs a foot of ...
Play as a Grave Cleric
The Grave Cleric domain from XGtE (p. 20) has the following ability at level 6:
As a reaction when you or a creature you can see within 30 feet of you suffers a critical hit, you can turn that hit into a normal hit.
This ability has a limited number of uses between long rests but unless you are getting critical hit too often, it ...
Sure, once per day, if they roll max on everything
This works. But there are some caveats:
They can only do this once per day at level 3, because they do not have enough spellslots to do the combo more than once.
They need to set up, because they can't apply poison strike and thundrous smite in the same round.
You are unlikely to roll the maximum on all ...
The target would need to make up to two saves.
The short answer:
Since Ice Knife deals damage twice, the target would indeed make up to two saves.
The long answer:
The rules for Concentration say (emphasis mine):
Whenever you take damage while you are concentrating on a spell, you must make a Constitution saving throw to maintain your Concentration. ...
Nope, this is no longer the case!
Spells (and all features etc) do only what they say they do. Cure wounds very specifically says:
This spell has no effect on undead or constructs
So in fact it does nothing to undead at all. Neither heal nor harm.
Specifically, there is no concept of healing "positive energy" and harmful "negative energy", and so no ...
1st Double the average.2nd Subtract the damage modifier.
"it includes the damage bonus twice." So subtract once.
Alternative to be more accurate.
This is only necessary for rolling odd number of dice. The average for odd number of dice will always have 0.5 which is rounded down for regular damage, so for 1d6, the average on a ...
For spellcasting, you use the listed spellcaster level as read on page 10 of the Monster's Manual:
The spellcasters level is also used for any cantrips included in the feature.
This means an archmage is treated as level 18 for the purposes of cantrips and Nezznar is treated as level 4 (despite his greater number of hit dice).
It's negative energy damage
The ability is talking about negative energy damage, which is the opposite of positive energy damage, and is simply another damage type like Fire, Cold, Electricity or Acid. Each of these damage types originates from one of the elemental planes.
However, for negative energy, it comes from the Negative Energy Plane and will hurt ...
The fighter can reroll (at most) once.
The Great Weapon Fighting style says the following (emphasis added by me):
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 reroll the die and must use the new roll, even if the new roll is a 1 or a 2. The weapon must have the two-handed ...
There are a few implications but most of them are just aggravating already existing factors.
1. Positioning will become even more relevant.
Positioning is already relevant but when a fall causes even more damage some risky places become deadly places. The fall from the top of a 40ft. rampart that caused 4d6 now causes 10d6 damage, what could hurt your ...
There are two mathematically equivalent ways to think about/remember the technique I am presenting here. Since this question seeks to find a method that makes a DM's work easier and it only works if the DM can remember and understand it I will outline both variations.
[Number of dice] × [Number of sides+1] + Modifier
The expected damage for any ...
I wrote a python script to calculate answers accurate to several decimal places. I created a Moonblade object, and added a specified number of runes just as the rules suggest (with the one alteration you made that you always re-roll non-stackable properties). It then calculates the expected damage from this moonblade taking into account all bonuses, bonus ...