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I'd like to know how DMs out there are going to be handling professions and crafts now that they are no longer part of the rules. How are you going to be determining skill level? Are you going to allow characters to make money during down time? Will they be able to make their own equipment?

Also, for players and DMs alike, I'm curious about character backgrounds. Since all classes are defined by their power source and their role in combat, are there characters out there who took on the their class for any reason other than combat? If wizard and cleric abilities are primarily centered on combat, then does your campaign have still ivory-tower wizards and town priest clerics?

Also, feel free to post backgrounds for any characters (including villains) you have in the works. I'd love to see them.

There are rituals that ivory-tower wizards would use, as well as town-priest clerics. Other than that, as it is fluff, it doesn't need to have a pure, exact mechanical representation. It's just nice when it does to deal with rules-lawyers.

I'll likely allow my pcs to take a single profession/craft as a background which will have a rank=1/2 level + appropriate mod in which they can have training and maybe one other in which they don't have training, but can still make 1/2 level checks. I imagine WoC will come up with some rules before long, but that seems relatively unobtrusive.

I'll just do what page 42 of the DMG says (Best page in the damn book), make a skill check for it and give bonuses depending on the characters background.

I've seen a lot of people who say that Profession and Craft were rarely used and therefore aren't going to be missed, but what about us? What about the Dwarf who's forced to pound away at the forge to make armor for the Orcs who've imprisoned the rest of his clan and threaten to kill them off if he doesn't work fast enough? What about the young wizard apprentice that's having to keep his mentor's journal and record his progress to work off not being able to pay for normal tutoring in the arcane ways?

I felt that Profession and Craft were really good skills in that not only do they factor into the mechanics and numbers of rollplaying, but also into the feeling of accomplishment and satisfaction that you get from having them because your character's complete and fun to roleplay.

Now I'll have to tell the player whose fighter is Axe based because he was a Lumberjack up until Trolls invaded from their nearby cave and kidnapped his wife (slaughtered the rest of the family, including his dog) and he was forced to fight to survive with what was on hand (axes) that he's actually statistically no better at it than the Cleric with an equal Str/Dex (whichever I'll houserule to be the determining factor in that particular skill) who'd spent his life in a monastery.

Wait... how did Profession and Craft skills help the dwarf fighter to be better than the cleric in terms of mechanisms on Axe fighting?

The amount of money you could get from profession/craft were so miniscule that past 1st or 2nd level, there's almost no point. And you can use flavor or background to justify that the dwarf is much better at forging weapons than others...because that's in his background. You shouldn't need to give up mechanical prowess for what is essentially a roleplaying bonus. Conversely, roleplaying penalties shouldn't convert into mechanical bonuses.

A more direct argument

Personally i agree, the only uses for craft and profession skills were during 'roleplay' situations. Foolhardy was the dwarf who decided to weave a basket during battle.

To reference your situation before with the woodsman and the cleric, who did you say had more experience with the skill? Then as the DM doesn't it sound right that the of the two who are competing in this test of skill, the lumberjack should win? Unless the cleric prays to the gods and decides to use his magical powers to chop the wood. But at that point the competition has become something else entirely.

As another example, your dwarf who is forced to make armor to save his clan. That seems like a good reason for a skill check. If you really want to give him a +2 or +3 proficiency bonus, or perhaps even a +5 if he was formally trained in the skill. But shouldn't the adventure be focused more on him finding a way to help his friends out? If he is so concerned about them he would toil tirelessly to appease the orcs, but he would also devote a lot of time to figuring out how to help his friends. And if he decides just to follow orders, he doesn't sound very heroic and the guy should make a new character.


I think 4th Ed. tries to focus on skills and abilities that would actually affect your characters story in a major way. By this I mean that when you read about the character, sure it could be important that the guy is extremely proficient in crafting baskets. But from the story you would probably remember that he and his companions had to find a way to sneak into the goblin barrens and assassinate their leader to throw the armies into chaos, and then escape with their lives. And thus 'fluffy suff' stays fluffy and not restricted by rules.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SocraticCoaster View Post
I'd like to know how DMs out there are going to be handling professions and crafts now that they are no longer part of the rules. How are you going to be determining skill level? Are you going to allow characters to make money during down time? Will they be able to make their own equipment?

Also, for players and DMs alike, I'm curious about character backgrounds. Since all classes are defined by their power source and their role in combat, are there characters out there who took on the their class for any reason other than combat? If wizard and cleric abilities are primarily centered on combat, then does your campaign have still ivory-tower wizards and town priest clerics?

Also, feel free to post backgrounds for any characters (including villains) you have in the works. I'd love to see them.
Actually, if you use alot of the pre-made stuff from the core books, it tells you already approximately how much and what loot and/or money currency they should expect to find off of each encounter. That would be the easiest way to determine it. As far as professions go, it shouldn't be that big of a blow that they took it out, since most people didn't use it anyway.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SunStride
As far as professions go, it shouldn't be that big of a blow that they took it out, since most people didn't use it anyway.
The reason I asked about it in the first place was that my main group does use it a lot.

I have a few groups of people I play DnD with. Some of them are hack and slash (which I guess is what others are calling a "normal" DnD game), others spend as much time focused on downtime and non-combat aspects of the characters as they do on combat, if not more. In my main group, the later is the case. 3.5 was decent for this. My biggest complaint about 4th ed is that the classes are now completely defined by what they do in combat, but I'm giving the system a chance and seeing how it would work for a group like my own. We'll probably still play it as a minis game or for our occasional hack-and-slash moods, but I'm trying to see if it will work for any of our regular games.




 

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