Let us talk about status effects. How best should they be utilized within a given system?

Let us talk about status effects.

How best should they be utilized within a given system? Is it the case they are often game-breakinging powerful and easily abusable in a meta sense or are they too cumbersome and specific to really see much use aside from very specific and probably forced situations?

Should only specific roles/classes be capable of using them or having access to them or should it be something anyone can do where it fits thematically and sensibly? (I.e. a "non magic" class being able to apply a status effect without resorting to something outside of what their class and general game mechanics gives them?).

Finally, how specific should they be? Should there be a difference between being paralyzed with a poison versus being paralyzed by being shocked by lightning/electricity?

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  1. 3 weeks ago

    I'll give a DnD 5e answer and let others give a HYTNPDND answer.
    >first q
    I think with a light touch, in terms of usage by the DM. Use it to break up the monotony of combat without it turning into "watch me beat your characters to death". I know it's a wishy washy answer, but based off my experience with DnD, that's what I've seen. I've had a DM just stun everyone and kick our ass for 10 minutes, and others throw an occasional condition to force us to try a new approach to the fight.
    >Second q
    Sure why not? Are you saying a fighter would never knock someone down? If they do paralyze someone through some magic enchantment, that is still fine, it's all within the game. I'm not too sure what this is asking. Maybe you were thinking of only magical conditions and thus thats why you were wondering if non magic users should be able to inflict status conditions?
    >third q
    I like this question. Pretty good role play question. I think its up to the table, but if I was DMing, then yeah, if someone is paralyzed through electric means, I'd describe a taser like effect vs a poison pumping through their veins like tetanus. Now mechanic wise, that starts to be crunchy, but still not impossible as you can just say "to get through this effect roll X against DC Y". So that way if the same condition works through different stats, you can make it reflective in the mechanics. Though I imagine there would be a lot of overlap, so it may not manifest as often in DnD. Alternatively, depending on the source of the condition you could resolve it differently. Drink an antidote vs stop the player from touching the electric fence.

    • 3 weeks ago

      For the second question it is about being able to apply a status effect without some kind of magical effect.

      I.e. a fighter uses some kind of strong, blunt attack like flipping their sword around to brain someone with the pommel or bashing someone with their shield to inflict stun or something of the sort.

      I suppose you could say that you stick your weapon in the poison monster's blood then go to town with that but the ability to inflict a status effect should be a natural part of the character's mechanics and not something you have to especially build into via feats or anything like that.

      • 3 weeks ago

        Hmmm I still don't quite understand the question, but I'll try, and tell me if I am still misunderstanding. If I keep to the DnD 5e perspective, should a fighter be able to slam a person in the head and stun them, I'd say:
        >role play
        Sure I could see it as a role play option even if it isn't explicitly stated as a real ability a fighter has.
        Unless that is a specific ability in the fighter's toolkit, I wouldn't grant it (unless it was homebrewed in) because stun has real ramifications/strict definition for combat.

      • 3 weeks ago

        >the ability to inflict a status effect should be a natural part of the character's mechanics and not something you have to especially build into via feats or anything like that.
        It is a waste of everyone's time to have a DnD-esque laundry list of mostly useless combat maneuvers that only the combat classes will use, when you can instead have none and let the combat classes get actually useful abilities that don't require a flowchart to use.

  2. 3 weeks ago

    I get a sense of dread whenever I see threads about actual mechanics, because the last number of times I engaged them, not only were my posts completely ignored, but I noticed a lot of other posts were ignored too.
    The OPs of those threads didn't care about the topic, nor did they care about their threads.
    Now, in good faith, I don't think you're any of the same people/the same person who made those threads. It's possible you could actually care about your topic.
    It's possible you could actually engage with the people who post in this thread about your topic.
    It's possible that I could effortpost again, engaging every question you asked, in concise detail, and even provide examples of things I've done, and have my investment of time properly reciprocated.

    But it's also possible that it will all be a massive waste of time, in which case I can just screencap this post, and just repost it whenever threads like this pop up, so I'm not putting in any more effort than the bot(s) and/or content-farmer(s) and/or dependency-disordered invalid(s) making these threads.

    So what's it gonna be, OP?

    • 3 weeks ago

      All your questions can be answered with "It depends on how the individual game works." At least your pic wasn't coomer shit...

      >It's possible you could actually engage with the people who post in this thread about your topic.
      Don't hold your breath.

      • 3 weeks ago

        >Don't hold your breath.
        Of course, I just wanted to have a little faith, but now I'm glad I didn't waste time and effort on the response I wanted to make.

        • 3 weeks ago

          Are you suppose to be someone important whose input is desired?

          • 3 weeks ago

            Allegedly, OP wanted input from as many people as possible, so amongst the collective my input is desired.
            His lack of any sort of engagement with the thread demonstrates he has no actual interest, however, so nobody's input seems to be desired.
            It sucks how you think a perceived self-importance has anything to do with the point, when the very idea of prompting a board to discuss something inherently gives equal importance to those who would engage with it.
            Deflect harder.

            • 3 weeks ago

              You could have jus said your peace and called it a day. Are you expecting some kind of intellectual back and forth?

              Most people go "Here is my 3 cents of autism", page dump and respond when it gets responded to. Your initial post makes it sound like its suppose to be something special.

              • 3 weeks ago

                Damn, you are socially inept dude. Go talk to a wall if you want to give me your piece since it will be the same for you and I won't be in this thread anymore.

              • 3 weeks ago

                >Your initial post makes it sound like its suppose to be something special
                Look who missed the point.
                It's really simple:
                >OP seems to want mechanical discussion
                >I like mechanical discussion
                >the last handful of threads, presenting to want mechanical discussion, didn't actually have any discussion and I wasted my time and effort posting in them
                >When a thread presents itself as a discussion thread but isn't one, it's annoying
                >when I waste my time and effort (especially on something that's falsely presenting as something I want), it's annoying
                >I challenged OP to state his intentions, because I don't want to post something if it's going to be a waste of time and effort

                It's not that I think what I have to offer is special, it's that I don't want to waste my time with a post that isn't going to be discussed in a thread that presented itself as a discussion thread.
                If OP just wants people to shout things into a void instead of having a discussion about status effects, he should just say "post your status effect ideas here".

                "Let's talk about [X]" implies there will be a back-and-forth, because that's what talking is. I don't care if it is intellectual or how intellectual other people think ot is, there was the implication that a subject I'm interested in was going to be discussed, and I wanted to know if there was actually going to be a discussion about it, or if it was just going to be a massive waste of time like all the other times it's happened.
                That's all there is to it.

  3. 3 weeks ago

    My memory is a bit fuzzy, but one good thing I remember about D&D 4E did was make it so that most debilitating status effects take at least 1 round before they take full effect, and during that time the target suffers a weaker intermediary effect that is an obvious inconvenience, but is no way a fight ender. This gives the target a chance to try to prepare themself, call for help, or use an item or ability to resist or cancel the effect. Also, the weaker effect occurs even on a successful save, so even if the bigger effect doesn't occur, it's still something.
    An example is the Sleep spell, which slows the target for 1 round, after which they make a save and either fall asleep or shake off the spell.

  4. 3 weeks ago

    Don't care for status effects. Makes it feel like a video game.

    • 3 weeks ago

      Yeah, I fricking hate it when I get food poisoning or a fever, because it's just like those damn video games.
      Video games are the work of Satan.

  5. 3 weeks ago

    There's a running joke in my group that "The best status effect is dead". A lot of the time they're just not worth it

  6. 3 weeks ago

    >How best should they be utilized within a given system?
    Take what 5e does with them, and do the complete opposite.

  7. 3 weeks ago

    Just fricking read Mutants&Masterminds and adapt it to whatever you are using.

    Three stages to conditions with growing severity (from comparatively minor inconvenience to debilitating), ability to make custom condition tracks through powers to mix and match them to your needs/flavor and hero points or powers allowing you to shrug off conditions on following rounds.
    M&M has a lot of problems with power curve and point costs but the core of it is very solid and could be easily plundered for ideas and implementations.

    It also naturally assumes that there are always would be opponents that cannot be beaten physically. You can make a guy who tank tactical nukes or is outright immortal out of the gates. So conditions that allow you to disable or contain an opponent are a must.

  8. 3 weeks ago


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