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 Your favorite mechanics from each edition

Crinos

Next to me you're all number two!
Validated User
I don't know about templates for specific PC races, but I definitely know that sorcerous bloodlines were introduced in Pathfinder. I remember read those in the original Pathfinder beta and thinking that was the best idea ever. Like of course that's how that would work. And it definitely helps with the "Sorcerers are feared and mistrusted" thing when the sorcerer in question has demonic or draconic parts growing out of them, or any of the other weird stuff sorcerers get up to.
 

ezekiel

Follower of the Way
Validated User
I don't know about templates for specific PC races, but I definitely know that sorcerous bloodlines were introduced in Pathfinder.
Sort of depends on how you define "bloodline," doesn't it? I'm pretty sure 4e's Sorcerer predates PF's, and it differentiated Dragon and Chaos Sorcerers right off the bat (and added Storm, Cosmic, and Elemental versions later). PF is certainly more comprehensive, though I'm not sure its plethora of options contains even 50% "good" choices.

Ed: Looks like 4e PHB2 was published first (by about 5 months), but the PF playtests had to have begun earlier than that, so it's sort of a wash. Guess it was a general understanding that Sorcerers should be powered up in different ways based on who their ancestors got jiggy with!
 
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Stattick

Electronic Thing
Validated User
Sort of depends on how you define "bloodline," doesn't it? I'm pretty sure 4e's Sorcerer predates PF's, and it differentiated Dragon and Chaos Sorcerers right off the bat (and added Storm, Cosmic, and Elemental versions later). PF is certainly more comprehensive, though I'm not sure its plethora of options contains even 50% "good" choices.

Ed: Looks like 4e PHB2 was published first (by about 5 months), but the PF playtests had to have begun earlier than that, so it's sort of a wash. Guess it was a general understanding that Sorcerers should be powered up in different ways based on who their ancestors got jiggy with!
Well, you or your ancestors didn't necessarily have to get jiggy with something for it to have an effect on your bloodline.
 

Shade the Lost

Registered User
Validated User
If another D&D-adjacent title is allowed, the 13A Escalation Die sounds all kinds of awesome for helping out the PCs when the dice shit on them as well as giving them incentives to not nova first time every time.
 

Snoopy

can't quite believe all this.
Validated User
So many of the things already mentioned are things I could +1.

One thing I don't think has been mentioned is casting spells as rituals. I only know 5e from Critical Role (and am only up to episode 13 of the second season, and none of the first), but the ability to take extra time to cast a known spell "for free" is fantastic! To be honest, it's largely what I wanted rituals and martial practices in 4e to be, but the costs they almost all involved (IIRC) which took away from money we were planning to use for combat power meant we hardly ever used them. I'd be very tempted, in any future 4e game, to basically just remove costs from rituals and martial practices (except where to do so would lead to hugely abusive situations), maybe at the cost of extra time.
 

Stattick

Electronic Thing
Validated User
In 3.x, I really liked Traits and Flaws.
In 5th, I really like Backgrounds. *

* But I think that they fumbled the execution for the Traits, Ideals, Bonds, and Flaws associated with Backgrounds. I haven't seen a group that actually uses them. As a matter of fact, the last few characters that I've written for 5th, I've left that section blank on my character sheets, and haven't had a GM say anything about it. GM's aren't going to remember a collection of ~24 of these things for the PCs. The players tend not to look at them or if they do, not want to interrupt things to ask for an inspiration die. I think that a better execution might have been, everyone gets a Flaw and/or Bonds that the GM can tug on when they want. In return, when certain situations arise at the table, dependent on what Traits and Ideals the PC has, the PC can automatically get an inspiration die, but no more than one per scene, and not more than once per session for a given trait.
 

Knight of Ravens

Registered User
Validated User
4E's clear differentiation of interrupts vs. reactions and how they interact with other actions or attempted actions provides a great deal of clarity at the table. Likewise, discarding real-time measurements or round counting for spell/effect durations in favour of roughly five game-relevant durations (until the start of your next turn; until the end of your/their next turn; until the end of the encounter; for as long as you spend actions to sustain it; save ends) cuts down on effects bookkeeping, a lot of which is of minimal relevance anyway.
 

DMH

Master of Mutant Design
Validated User
Sort of depends on how you define "bloodline," doesn't it? I'm pretty sure 4e's Sorcerer predates PF's, and it differentiated Dragon and Chaos Sorcerers right off the bat (and added Storm, Cosmic, and Elemental versions later). PF is certainly more comprehensive, though I'm not sure its plethora of options contains even 50% "good" choices.
The idea of sorcerers with bloodlines other than dragons goes back to (at least) Dragon 280 and was partially developed in Dragons 311, 325 and 355. None are as complex as Pathfinder's version but they do exist. And then there is the d20 supplement Feared and Hated which introduced the bloodbound sorcerer which is more like the PF version but much more focused in themes. I love bloodbound sorcerers because the author added in spelltouched feats as "mutations" that give the class a hell of a lot of flavor.

And archetypes aren't an invention of Pathfinder either. The basics were first introduced in the 3.X version of Unearthed Arcana.

Monster templates go back to BECMI with the gargantua.

Prestige classes go back to 1e's bard and acrobat-thief (more the latter in execution).

And metamagic goes back to a few 1e spells (Extension I-III) and spell focus items in Dragon 111. I like the article in combination with The Laws of Spell Design in Dragon 242.
 

Stattick

Electronic Thing
Validated User
2nd Edition - Wild Magic!
5th - Better, reworked Wild Magic!

(I don't think there was wild magic in 3-4, but I could be wrong.)
 

Talisman

The Man of Talis
RPGnet Member
Validated User
If another D&D-adjacent title is allowed, the 13A Escalation Die sounds all kinds of awesome for helping out the PCs when the dice shit on them as well as giving them incentives to not nova first time every time.
Care to elaborate, for those of us not familiar with 13th Age?

2nd Edition - Wild Magic!
5th - Better, reworked Wild Magic!

(I don't think there was wild magic in 3-4, but I could be wrong.)
3e never had wild magic, though there were some 3rd party splatbooks with wildly unbalanced chaos magic rules.

4e had a chaos sorcerer as one of the options in the PHB.
 
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