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Episode 83 — Skeleton Mass

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Dag, Houg, Lyra, and Winter stumble upon the skeletons in the middle of a weird church service complete with chanting and staring at a rainbow colored altar. Will they distract them and move along or will they catch their attention and fight? Tune in to find out!

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I feel like even the players are getting tired of the fucking skeletons and lack of plot. Unrelated: they should consider switching to 5th edition. It looks pretty cool and seems like it'd be an easy conversion.

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Magic missiles don't miss.

I've been listening long enough to know that apparently they do.


Somebody else posted that it's best to think of all the inconsistencies in play as "house rules." That works for me. Also best to shut up, laugh like hell, and enjoy the ride! While I miss the quality of gameplay brought by Sark, this new format is VERY heavy on the comedy. In the end, I'm listening to be entertained by funny people, and Nerd Poker is right on the mark in that regard.


Last episode, when the baby had to explain that he needed a diaper on his head in order to come, I laughed so hard I was unable to walk. Can't remember the last time that's happened. Thanks, Brian Posehn and friends!

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First of all, I hope Blaine’s hernia surgery goes off without a hitch. We’re pulling for you!


Somebody else posted that it's best to think of all the inconsistencies in play as "house rules." That works for me.


House rules are great. It's all good and fun. Just for my own curiosity, here’s how I understand how 2nd ed D&D works for spell-casting and initiative; if someone else knows better please correct me.



There are lots of ways to do initiative, but it gets done every round. The players decide what they’re going to do, the DM decides for the monsters and then you roll for initiative (1d10) to see the order of events, lowest number goes first.


You can do a roll for the party and a roll for the monsters, or you can roll individually for PC’s, NPC’s and groups of monsters.


If you decide to use casting times and weapon speeds, you add that number to the roll. So if Winter casts Magic Missile, the casting time is 1. If Winter rolls a 5 on a d10, so his initiative would be a “6”. If Lyra, swinging a short sword (weapon speed 3) also rolls a 5, her initiative would be “8”. Dag, with a battle axe (speed 7) rolls a 4 for an initiative of “11”. Houg wants to hide behind a bush and rolls a 2. The skeletons are using their claws, (natural weapon, medium creature, weapons speed 3) and roll a 6 for an initiative of “9”. These numbers could be modified further is the DM wants


So the order of events would be:


Houg hides

Winter casts magic missile

Lyra strikes at a skeleton with her short sword

The skeletons attack

Dag swings his axe


Next round the PC’s decide what they’re going to do and roll to see who gets their action first.




I don’t think you need to roll to attack with spells. You either cast them or you don’t. They don’t “miss” because of the spellcaster missing a roll. Priests have a chance of spell failure if their wisdom is below 13 and both wizards and priests can be interrupted if they get hit while they’re casting a spell in which case the spell doesn't get cast and is lost. Once the spell is cast, it’s up to the targets to try to resist the spell with either a saving throw or whatever defense they might have. Magic missile has no save and can’t miss so it’s always going to do something.


The exceptions are “touch” spells like shocking grasp, where the spell just “charges-up” the PC’s hand or weapon. That’s the effect of the spell. Houg still needs to land an attack (touch) on the opponent the next round to deliver the shock. If he misses, he stays charged for as long as the spell allows.


At least that’s how I understand it. Of course, Blaine should be able to do anything he wants; it’s his game. I think Sarah was getting a bit frustrated with having to roll for an attack using the ring, when it shouldn't really have been necessary.

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If you think about it, there's a reason why spells don't require To Hit rolls - a fighter can attack each and every round (sometimes multiple times per round), as long as he or she has a weapon (or just his or her fists), while a magic user only can use the spell once, and then has to relearn it. It seems a bit mean to add the chance of a miss to using a spell, and would make it really unappealing to play as a magic user.


What I'm basically saying is that the rules generally aren't there just for their own inherent 'rulesiness', they are there to create a balanced game.


Which doesn't mean that anyone isn't free to scrap or amend any rule as they see fit, but I do get the feeling that some of what are seen as Nerd Poker 'house rules' just seem to be the group misremembering rules, and vaguely clawing at them.. ;)

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