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Author Topic: Monster/Party Modifications in 4e  (Read 821 times)
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« on: January 22, 2013, 09:45:44 AM »

So, I have been running a 4e campaign for about 4 months now. Having fun, but combats are dragging bad, and at least 1 player is extremely bored by combats.

It doesn't help that the party consists of a large crowd (6) of fairly new players. Several of them haven't bothered reading the combat rules text or made combat cards (although I suggested it repeatedly), let alone accumulated knowledge of how to make characters effective. Also, they have no party level tactics yet. The defender is the first to break, the ranged striker occasionally tries to melee, the rogue rarely has CA, ect. They have been drubbed twice by hard encounters, and struggle with average encounters.

Anyhow, I have decided to change things up in the following ways:

1: Get rid of expertise and focus feats. Replace them with a +1/2/3 to hit and a +1/2 level to all damage rolls.

2: Alter monsters for higher damage output and lower HP, slightly further than MM3's formula (See below)

Any thoughts on the proposed changes?

Monster Manual 1/DMG1
HP: 8+Con+level*8
AC: 14+level
Attack bonus: 5+level
Average Damage: 8+level/2

Monster Manual 3
HP: 24+level*8
AC: 12+level
Attack bonus: 5+level
Average Damage: 8+level

My Plan - Health gain is half of MM3, Damage is 1.5x
HP: 25+level*4
AC: 12+level
Attack bonus: 5+level
Average Damage: 8+level*1.5
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« Reply #1 on: January 30, 2013, 09:51:49 PM »

It's very hard on everyone when no one is preparing, doing what their roles dictate (unless fully in character), etc.  Not sure how to improve the combat experience so your ideas seem decent. 
Revenant Sorrow
Not the Mama
Posts: 1671

Wingtip aspires to greatness

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« Reply #2 on: January 31, 2013, 02:16:05 AM »

New players can be tricky when it comes to D&D. I had one of my brothers quit my home game because he was bored by combat. He was playing a wizard and just had the bad luck of always rolling poorly so 9/10 he would just stand as far away from everything as he could and "plink" magic missile every turn.

For my first group for 4e as a DM I hand made everyone's power cards. It takes a long time to do that for 4 PC's i couldn't imagine 6. My party now that is more experienced and has about a dozen games under there belt still struggle with how tactics works. My striker should be the tank because he always wants to be up in the front lines. My tank never remembers to mark anything and even when he does he doesn't use his abilities unless I ask him 5 times if he would like to stop me from doing something with the monster.

The best thing you can do is just be patient and let a PC or 2 die. Make them create a new character with the restrictions that it can't be the same Race/Class as the previous one. I never condone killing a PC just to teach someone a lesson but if the player made a bunch of foolish moves and get's killed because if it then there should be some blow back for the player.

One of the longest fight's my PC's have encounter yet was the very first encounter we did. 4PC's took on 25 LV 1 Kobold Minions. The fight took 2 hours because there were so man pieces to move but all in all the players still talk about it to this day as the best fight they've ever had. They keep asking for another one and someday I may do it again.

Last but no least talk to the players that seem to be getting bored with combat. When I talked to my brother he was upset that his Wizard wasn't able to deal out damage like the Barbarian could. I had to explain to him the difference between the roles of the characters and what his job was in combat as a controller. Once he understood he didn't care as much that he couldn't dish out 3d12 damage like the barbarian.

I home some of this helped. I know sometimes with bored players even when you ask them for input you'll still get nothing so hopefully you'll be able to fix some of what's going on in your game.


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