T O P

"Thats 8 bites and 8 claw attacks at advantage for pack tactics plz"

"Thats 8 bites and 8 claw attacks at advantage for pack tactics plz"

xmagusx

Quick story/vent along similar lines: I had a DM spout off for hours about the superiority of 2E over 5E endlessly, as it was more "hardcore", etc. He decided to run something set in Chult, warned us that it was crazy lethal, that 2E leveling was slower, and on and on. Splat books were fair game, so I built a Necromancer. After a few sessions of us getting our asses handed to us by rats farting (in the 'old school' tradition), he eventually threw a flock of pteranodons at us. While we were still level one. We were on a boat full of sailor NPCs, so through action economy, we were able to down one. What the AD&D-all-the-way DM hadn't actually ever read was the spell Animate Dead Animals. So after the first one went down, I raised it as a zombie. Then I used the zombie pteranodon to kill another one. And raised that one. Those two were about to take out a third when this flock which the DM had been crowing were going to be harrying us all the way upriver decided to fly off. Next session, the DM announced that the spell had to be recast if control was going to be maintained. Evidently he could not figure out any way to handle what was obviously about to happen to his campaign without bringing in a 5E mechanic. My suggestion that we just play standard 5E if he couldn't handle pure AD&D instead of his new hybrid homebrew was not appreciated.


AlphaOhmega

This person sounds obnoxious. I wouldn't want to play with a DM purposefully being a jerk about this kind of stuff.


AppropriateTouching

2e was usually dm vs players. Also thaco. Not a great system.


AlphaOhmega

Sounds like it, I get that if you were doing that system to make it an all out slugfest, but then when the players get the upper hand to quit and revert is still just uncool. Either play it and accept losing or play 5e and have fun. I really like 5e, definitely could be improvements, but overall pretty simple yet expansive.


AppropriateTouching

Been playing since 2e and I agree 5e is a great system. So much easier for new players to understand and tons of room to be comprehensive and complex for those who want that out of it.


awesome357

>2e was usually dm vs players Sounds like it's perfect for that dm based on what we know so far.


nightwing2024

THACO? From TV?


eccitaze

To Hit Armor Class Zero. Basically, AD&D had a weird armor system where instead of the "to-hit" target being determined by the defender's armor class (i.e. if you attack someone with an AC of 14 you need to roll 14 or better to hit), the to-hit target was determined *by your character's THAC0* (i.e. if your THAC0 is 15 you need to roll 15 or better to hit). In this system, instead of armor setting the to-hit target, armor instead armor modified the attacker's roll, with crappy armor having a modifier or 2 or 3 (i.e. the person with THAC0 15 only needs to roll a 13 or 12 to hit you) and good armor having a modifier of -1 or -2 (i.e. that THAC0 15 attacker needs to roll a 16 or 17 to hit).


nightwing2024

It was reference to The Adventure Zone


atrocissus

Iunderstoodthatreference.jpg


AttendeDomine

Yeah, massive red flag. This is person who is living a power fantasy through his players. He's using them for that purpose. That isn't cool.


SteelCode

I’m not familiar with 2E - can you elaborate on the specifics a bit? I’m assuming you would keep killing dinosaurs until you had a massive zombie horde to overrun the land?


Dagordae

Yep. That's the sticking point with 2e animate dead: There is no time or number limit. The only thing stopping the player from animating everything they come across is a lack of spell slots. To compare: 3e has a hard HD cap you can control and 5e requires you to recast the spell daily, effectively sacrificing a spell slot per creature.


SteelCode

Thanks, I figured that was the case: I recall the HD limitation from 3.5, couldn’t remember if 2E had any sort of restrictions.


xmagusx

Yup. [Also, when they are turned into zombies, their hit die improves by one, but their AC is reduced by three.](https://vodabois.fi/2eSpells/) It is a level one spell, just like "Light".


Dark_clone

Nah it eats up a spellb slot so you can only cast a few a day also they don’t heal and can’t fly after being damaged enough there are no hoards of anything in D&d that dm was just shit, you don’t change rules mid campaign


Awesomejelo

I'm still not sure how a game in dungeon and dragons can be inherently harder. Using 5e, I can open the monster manual, pick out... say a beholder, and put it against my level 4 party. Sure, I can kill them. I can do it easily. No one is going to like it, though. There's a few potential things having a "hard" campaign tells me is that your players are either innovative enough to handle hard encounters, build their characters to withstand bigger dice numbers, or you're good at balancing encounters to the point of consistently threatening the party.


Nirift

Accept 5e has a limited ac range so a b holder can be hit on things other than a natural 20, in older editions if you face a monster above your level you usually can't hit on a lower than 20 roll Also some classes level at different rates than other classes in older editions


Awesomejelo

My point here is that as DM, you decide what happens in the world. You can design encounters impossible to beat, and do so easily. Because of that fact, the idea of running the game harder looses its edge to it


CobaltCam

Right. To your point I could drop Tiamat in front of my level 5 party. I never would (unless the intention was for them to run, that was made obvious and there was plenty of room to do so. Maybe an attack on a city by Tiamat where they aren't the focus). I could though, and they would just die. No one has fun.


xmagusx

It can help to think of it like cars and how hard they are to drive. It isn't just referring to encounter difficulty, since a DM can always drop rocks and kill a party. 5e is a modern car, with options like lane keep, adaptive cruise control, automatic transmission, etc. Yes, you can buy it with a manual and turn off those options, but *by default*, things are made easier, because most people are more interested in the journey than the gearbox. 3.5e might be like an old muscle car. It got tuned up so much over the years that it can still keep pace with modern vehicles, but they also take more knowledge to keep running well. They can be automatics, but the people who still enjoy playing it tend to prefer the manual. 1e, 2e, ad&d, etc are like a Model T. They are incredibly important from a historical perspective, but literally the only reason to run them is because you specifically enjoy the experience of a crankshaft, no possibility of an automatic transmission, hand signals (instead of blinkers), nothing electrical, etc. 4e doesn't invite any flattering comparisons to me for this analogy, so I shan't try. So AD&D is harder to play, harder to tune, harder to keep going, but there can be a sense of accomplishment whenever you can get from point A to point B without anything exploding. But that's mainly because of how rare that is to actually experience.


beta-pi

This is a very good analogy. Good job. If I had a gun to my head and had to put 4e in there, I would probably call it a car that tried to re-invent the wheel. It didn't improve on old features, devise new complimentary features, or streamline the design. Instead it tried to make the car work in a fundamentally different way, but wouldn't commit to being a plane or a boat to be completely unique either.


Awesomejelo

That is a pretty god analogy. I still think in general difficulty isn't a good metric for a game being enjoyable, but I can see the appeal between games now.


ArtooFeva

If your campaign is ruined by the players being smart and using the game’s rules and resources to their advantage then your game deserves to die. Just like a player can’t Charisma their way through every problem, a DM can’t just change the rules to nerf a player’s abilities for no reason.


moskonia

Some 2e spells were just crazy. IIRC, charm person lasted like a month. Just too weird.


beta-pi

AD&D was absolutely pivotal in shaping the game into am actual game with proper form, and providing a framework for modern DnD to be built on; it was wildly popular for the time, and for good reason since it offered something that was completely unique for it's time. There were no Pathfinders or delta greens or 40k or gurps yet, and AD&D made those happen But it was also primitive by modern standards; it hadn't learned all the lessons that modern TTRPG's benefit from when it was designed, and that leads to clunky mechanics, contrived systems, and a lot of outdated ideas. If it realeased today, with all the much more refined modern systems to compete with, it would be widely disliked except by a niche audience. AD&D was one of the fathers of modern TTRPGs, but that *doesn't mean it was better*. It's something worth playing a good DM once or twice, but there are *better* ways now because we've had the benefit of time to refine the medium to a higher peak so unless your group has a particular reason to play it, that system is better used an occasional pilgrimage.


Luckily_Cursed

Like many have pointed out, RAW DM gets to pick the creatures, and it's a good idea to go with thematic animals seeing as its fae creatures taking on the forms of animals. Because then it leads to situations where you watch a camp of lizardfolk horrifically be devoured by a swarm of giant frogs. It was only meant to be a distraction, but those poor bastards never stood a chance.


Brodimere

By definition, its RAI, since it was stated by Crawford, this was their intention for the spell, to work by player suggesting animal and DM deciding if it fits. RAW it says nothing about who choses. Otherwise totally agrees.


Luckily_Cursed

Agreed, RAW is one thing, RAI is another, so it can swing anyway.


hanno000

Could you please explain what both RAW and RAI mean?


Skane_in_a_boot

RAW= Rules as written RAI= Rules as intended


Hates_escalators

Raw means uncooked and Rai is the Japanese word for thunder :P


CryoPhantomX

I thought kaminari was thunder? EDIT: Rai is the on-yomi reading and Kaminari (amongst others) is the kun-Yomi reading for the kanji 雷 meaning thunder


Dornith

I always read it as, "read as written", and, "read as intended". As in, read the literal words on the page and nothing else.


Grover_dies

RAW it does mention the DM choosing. But it doesn't matter, summoning 8 things breaks the action economy in half and hits the monster you are fighting against with it


ndstumme

>RAW it does mention the DM choosing. Where? I don't see it in the text of the spell. We're talking about Conjure Animals, right?


cantadmittoposting

It says 'the GM has the creature's statistics' but it's ambiguous whether the player actually chooses the creature since it gives a sample list.


SquirrelDragon

“The GM has the creatures’ statistics” sounds more like a roundabout way of saying “it’s in the monster manual/sourcebook” than saying the GM gets to make the decision on what the player gets to summon


cantadmittoposting

Yeah, there's a comment somewhere upthread that suggests that the player nominate a creature and the DM has veto/adapt authority on it. Would tend to agree on that.


vini_damiani

Yeah, imo that makes the most sense, like summing velociraptors would make 100% sense in ToA, but in Curse of Strahd, not so much... I'd defnetly reward players for creativity, like, they visited a museum, saw the velociraptor skelletons and had the idea to summon it? I wouldn't mind. Same for polymorph, if you know about the creature and its overall shape and features, you can do it


Athan_Untapped

The important distinction here is that the player is expected NOT to have a Monster Manuel. The DM is entirely 100% in charge of monsters and their stats, if they so chose they could be not using the Monster Manuel at all and be using their own homebrewed version. You literally do not have access to the monsters and therefore the DM is in control if what ultimately gets summoned in these cases.


SquirrelDragon

That’s a big stretch to interpret “the GM has the monster’s statistics” as “you the player aren’t supposed to have them at all and therefore have no agency over the decision”


Tersuvian

It doesn't mention it explicitly, but it is implied strongly enough to be as though it was written. "Choose one of the following options for what appears: One beast of challenge rating 2 or lower, two beasts of challenge rating 1 or lower..." The player only gets to choose between those options as written, and when something is not chosen by the player, it must be chosen by the DM.


ndstumme

I'm not saying it shouldn't be the DM- it absolutely should. I'm just saying, that's not what's written, thus not RAW. These rules had to be interpreted.


Tersuvian

When there is only one interpretation, it by default becomes RAW. It is written that the player is limited to exactly 4 choices.


Renvex_

>When there is only one interpretation The fact we are here means there isn't only one interpretation.


ndstumme

Wild shape doesn't specify that the player gets to choose. Just says they turn into a beast. Should I tell my players they don't get to pick their shape anymore? How would you interpret a spell that doesn't give a category choice? For example if it just says: *You summon a beast of CR1 or lower.* Does the DM pick in that case too? The reason this discussion is even happening is because the written text is *not* clear.


Tersuvian

Are you saying that druids picking their own wildshapes is RAI then? I'm saying when there is only one reasonable interpretation, it is RAW. You are arguing in bad faith and I don't appreciate it.


ndstumme

I'm saying player choice is implied in plenty of other places in the rules, such as wild shape. The fact that the spell makes one choice explicit does NOT mean there aren't other choices implied. In this case, they don't get to choose, but that doesn't mean other interpretations are invalid. It means we needed further explanation of what was intended. Hence, this is RAI, not RAW.


louiscool

Yeah, and it's pretty unfun for the other players to watch 1 person take 9 turns. We gentleperson agreed to limit it to 1-2 animals so you could still use pack tactics, etc. without grinding the game to a halt.


FrozenCoconutPie

Nah, just separate your 20 flying snakes into 2-4 squads


LedudeMax

There's not much you can do with the 8 summoned ,just choose a target and roll a lot of dice really quickly ,if the guy is taking his time deciding what to do as each raptor then give him 10 seconds to decide for each raptor. Don't be cunts guys,just because a druid can fuck the action economy doesn't mean we need to halt the whole game cus you can't plan your attacks beforehand


MohKohn

Swarms of pixies are so much worse and so much more complicated. I've had a player use it exactly once, then we decided it wrecked the game for the other PCs.


LedudeMax

Ohh god ,next session I'm switching to a druid and my DM doesn't know what pixies can do XD ,I doubt he'll expect a full party with flying


abobtosis

I'd just run the 8 raptors at the same time. Move them all at once at the same initiative order, and roll all the attacks at once with 16 d20s, in 8 color pairs. 4 hit? Ok then here's all the 4 d6s, add 8. It's 22 damage. Takes 30 seconds to a minute. If you prep ahead of time and know what you're doing it doesn't slow down combat. If you're fumbling around and unsure what you're going to do until your turn that's what takes forever. I've played war games before so maybe I'm just more efficient than the average player though.


Grover_dies

It is the DM who controls the animals, the follow the commands of the summoner as best as they can


Rannger

Lizardfolks got Konosuba'd


TheBlackNight456

2nd time I used the spell I got under dark cows from the randon table, you can bet your ass they still gored the shit outta that troll.


Darkfire359

My table does random creatures, which leads to hilarious situations where Sahuagin are being hit by a flood of slowly drowning cows.


SteelCode

I just want to remind some folks of the glory that is the 3.5 Eberron Elf Druid… * In Eberron, one of the Elf cultures revered the dead and used Baboons as grave guardians. * In 3.5, Druids could get an animal companion. * Eberron’s supplement specifically allowed an Elf Druid to select a *Baboon* as their companion. * This was allowed at level 1. * You now had a multi attacking beast at level1 that could basically oneshot just about anything your low-level party would encounter and only got more ridiculous from there. While it didn’t scale great at high levels, as animal companions usually do fall behind player power - it was absolutely bonkers as a Lvl1. https://dndtools.org/feats/races-of-eberron--10/aerenal-beastmaster--41/


SibbD

Sage advice already covers the issue of DM vs Player choice for summoning type spells. Ver 2.6, page 16. ***When you cast a spell like conjure woodland beings, does the spellcaster or the DM choose the creatures that are conjured?*** A number of spells in the game let you summon creatures. Conjure animals, conjure celestial, conjure minor elementals, and conjure woodland beings are just a few examples. Some spells of this sort specify that the spellcaster chooses the creature conjured. For example, find familiar gives the caster a list of animals to choose from. Other spells of this sort let the spellcaster choose from among several broad options. For example, conjure minor elementals offers four options. Here are the first two: • One elemental of challenge rating 2 or lower • Two elementals of challenge rating 1 or lower The design intent for options like these is that the spellcaster chooses one of them, and then the DM decides what creatures appear that fit the chosen option. For example, if you pick the second option, the DM chooses the two elementals that have a challenge rating of 1 or lower. A spellcaster can certainly express a preference for what creatures shows up, but it’s up to the DM to determine if they do. The DM will often choose creatures that are appropriate for the campaign and that will be fun to introduce in a scene.


JCraze26

I don't know about that last part. It doesn't specify anywhere that the elementals have to be chosen by the DM, and if the player has the Monster's Manual to choose elementals from (and not to look up encounters to try and cheese them) then I feel like it's perfectly fine to allow the player to choose their own summons. If they want the DM to do it for them, then they can specify that, but they probably won't, and they definitely don't have to because, again, it isn't stated in the book that the DM has to choose. Now, of course, different DMs will have different rules. Some DMs will rule that they choose the summons, and that's perfectly fine, but I feel like that can get into a horror story territory pretty quickly. It does say "of challenge rating 2 or lower", so if the DM follows the "DM vs player" mentality, they could always choose the lowest CR elemental and obliterate their party in an encounter that could have been even the slightest bit more fair if the player had gotten to choose their own elemental.


GlyndwrTheKnight

I'm kind of amazed that Conjure Animals is only 3rd level. It could easily be 4th or even 5th. My players that use it intentionally go with fewer beasts just to keep the game running along. They're too nice to me... mostly.


perp00

Animate Dead is much more potent and is also a 3rd LVL spell....


Dsx-Kalista

When I was playing Pathfinder, I had a halfling Druid with a Velociraptor animal companion. My raptor was so OP that it warped combat balance for the DM. It was awesome.


Slavasonic

PF1 is the Wild West of character builds.


Dsx-Kalista

Yeah. Mathfinder is a blast.


Slavasonic

My group has transitioned to 2e (which I really enjoy) but our last PF1 campaign was wrath of the rightious mythic adventure path. That was wild


trainzebra

We did that one. We were fighting tooth and nail to survive until the 2nd mythic level and then won every encounter in a round. My favorite part was when our rogue ran up a 100ft cliff and killed one of the bbegs in one round when we weren't even supposed to engage him. PF1 mythic is something else alright :p


Slavasonic

Haha yeah. I like how they literally said they didn’t even try to balance it.


[deleted]

[удалено]


GreedFoxSin

A complicated mess


Machinimix

I did the same thing with a gnome Druid in 3.5 and their badger animal companion! Scruffy has the highest kill count in the party.


Dsx-Kalista

It was even better when we saw that you can give animal companions magical gear. Being able to give him acid damage, let him take a full movement and full attack on his turn, and giving him the ability to climb walls and use Web once a day was scary.


johnbrownmarchingon

I want to make a Goliath druid with an allosaurus animal companion, but know that almost no maps will be big enough to allow my bullshit.


Vane1923

Steins Gate template? Yes please


DarkLion499

I am mad scientist


Xanthic-Chimera

[aren't I nice](http://imgur.com/gallery/XGtDvG4)


mini_garth_b

Gel banana?


Tramnack

Who *are* you! I just watched that episode!


Gingerstrahd454

What’s the anime!?!?


Tramnack

Steins;Gate 0 (It's on Netflix, but watch Steins;Gate first.)


ElDiabloNINER

This, 0 is essentially a sequel so it won’t make sense if you see it first.


OtterBadgerSnake

For someone who isn't interested in the show nor cares about spoilers, what's up with the banana that's got the dude freaked out?


Tramnack

Time travel testing gone wrong. But he's not freaking out about the bananas themselves.


3m0n

God the absolute fucking terror in his eyes in this scene. 0 is fucking haunting. First he was mad scientist. Now he is sad scientist. Is so sad, sunnofabitch.


Kronzypantz

I kind of hate that spell. If the player chooses the animals, they can basically solo an adult dragon. If the DM chooses the animals (which is apparently the rule) they have to micro manage what beasts show up, and decide whether to make them laughably puny, let the player have their superman moment, or juggle math to see what wouldn't be too powerful, or set up special rules to balance it, etc. A fun spell on the surface turns into a headache.


i_boop_cat_noses

my two summoned animals were incinerated by the adult dragons aoe lightning attack, the lasted one turn. i dont like this spell


perp00

I mean, yeah, but no. Animate Dead is still the no. 1 conjure (animate) spell in game. About the dragon part. Have you ever encountered a dragon that was run accordingly to it's intelligence? I don't think so. A dragon never lands, or let's itself be cornered to be forced to land. Breath, grapple and pick up a target (ranged ones first), attack and kill it mid-air, preferably far avaw, or behind cover to don't get shot, then come back for another round. Dragons are ferocious and highly intelligent creatures. I hate when they get run like a direwolf who just stands there and take the hits with his 3 INT score. Dragons have a high challange rating for a reason, but most DM's either hold them back or can't run them. Raptors can't fly, they have no chance against a dragon. Not even 80 of them. They just gonna melt. A dragon can wait. They live for thousand of years, so waiting for 30-36 seconds in combat to have their breath again is not a big deal.


Kronzypantz

Oh yeah, RAI with the DM choosing the creatures against a properly played dragon, the spell should be useless. But let the player choose 8 axebeaks and it wrecks action economy. They’ll never be gathered up for a breath attack, and while they are weak 8 attacks per turn will still do damage (16 attacks per turn if they surround the dragon for opportunity attacks). And every attack the dragon spends on them saves the party resources.


perp00

Axebeaks are flightless birds tho and they also melt by dragon breath, so I guess a dragon won't waste a lot of time on them.


Limebeer_24

..... My party is at level 15...This has never Come up... THEY MUST NEVER KNOW OF THIS!!!


nightwing2024

Want to make your DM hate you? Like, not as a joke or meme but legitimately? Be a summoner. It's already hard enough to manage everything in combat. Enemies, NPCs, environment, spell effects, lair actions...most usually need to help remind players of everything they can do as well. And then you wanna add 8 more creatures? Just *fuuuuuuck youuuuuuu* (I'm okay with it in one shots, but in a long running campaign? Oof.)


Doctor_Amazo

5th level Druid: I would like to summon 8 velociraptors thanx! DM: what are those? Druids: raptors... you know like the dinosaurs. DM: there are no dinosaurs alive in this plane, your druid has never seen one. How would you know to summon a thing you've never seen and do know exists? I do however have these wolves you can use.


Mindful_Bison

We've got a moon druid in our party who does exactly this. It slows combat to a crawl every single time. Once he swapped out the velociraptors for crocodiles and was able to grapple-lock two hydras for an easy win at level 6. Yaaaay


monapan

Boa constrictor are also fun. Ah yes, 8 grapples on the BBEG, each one a turn to get out of. Dude eventually centered an AOE on himself to get rid of them, but my DM rolled max damage on that and the BBEG didn't survive the Barbarians next turn.


perp00

I mean, necromancers can have a standing army of 8-12 skeletons at LVL 5.


Xanthic-Chimera

But is that more than 16 attacks at advantage?


perp00

Well, yes. Those 16 attacks have to be at melee, first of all, so there might be placement issues. Raportors only last for a few combat encounters at best, meanwhile skeletons are there for you 24/7. So if you manage to get an ideal adventuring day as the DM's guide suggests, with 7 encounters you gonna get waay more our of 2 Animate Deads than 2 Conjure Animals. Not mentioning that raptors can't do mundane tasks, carry weight all day, use items (yeah, you can give them all wands of fireballs), have tactics (other than pack) or operate sieges weapons.


Xanthic-Chimera

"Just like my camp counselor, skeletons are there for you 24/7. Mainly because one IS my camp counselor... Or was..."


perp00

Hey, that's so good about skeletons, they are ment to be recycled. If he once was a skeleton, he can be again!


Xanthic-Chimera

Pretty sure the wording of reanimate dead means it doesn't have to be a full skeleton either like you only have a few spare ribs and a skull you can make yourself a terrifying spider thing with a skull head


perp00

Yeah, it was confirmed as RAI but by RAW it doesn't state it. I prefer them to have arms tho, so they can shoot arrows.


ffsjustanything

RAW you can’t choose which animals appear, so that decision falls to your dm


Hydramy

RAW do not specify who chooses. As a DM, I'm not gonna bother micromanaging which animals the druid gets.


usernameorwhateves

Everything I've seen says beasts of your choice tho


ffsjustanything

You can choose a bracket basically. One cr2, two cr1, four cr1/2 etc.


usernameorwhateves

Are u talking the faith summoner ability or the spell conjure animals? Cause the ability specifies u choose them


ffsjustanything

I was talking about the spell due to it specifically saying level 5 Druids, which is when they get access to conjure animals.


usernameorwhateves

Ah okay I'm not to familiar with the class or sub class so when I looked it up all i saw was the ability. Tho as a dm I'd prob let them pick if they cast the spell anyway. It just seems weird for me to pick sometimes and them to pick other times lol I appreciate it tho


notLogix

> Tho as a dm I'd prob let them pick if they cast the spell anyway Important to note that the fey version of this spell, conjure woodland beings, can be used to summon 8 fairies that can cast both polymorph and fly. So your druid can then cast this spell, have 4 of the fairies polymorph your party into T-rex's and the other 4 can cast fly on those T-rex's. The DM choosing what gets summoned is the balancing factor to a fundamentally game breaking spell. You're essentially Tarzan yelling out into the wild and whatever can hear you is what shows up.


ffsjustanything

Yeah sure. Just means that the Druid can do the shenanigans shown in the meme.


usernameorwhateves

True u just gotta toughen up the things parties fight. Makes it seem more epic anyway


FrickenPerson

Until you get a single character you allow to become much stronger than the rest of your party. Then it just becomes them and their sidekicks vs the bad guys instead of a party of adventurers.


xmagusx

[You summon fey spirits that take the form of beasts and appear in unoccupied spaces that you can see within range. Choose one of the following options for what appears:](https://www.dndbeyond.com/spells/conjure-animals) * One beast of challenge rating 2 or lower * Two beasts of challenge rating 1 or lower * Four beasts of challenge rating 1/2 or lower * Eight beasts of challenge rating 1/4 or lower That is the end of the player's agency as to what appears. If the DM is feeling sadistic, she can rule that the CR2 beast that appears is a [Hunter Shark](https://www.dndbeyond.com/monsters/hunter-shark), that promptly starts thrashing around in the air, can't move, and slowly dies. Edit: Or that the 8 CR1/4 creatures are just [big old bats](https://www.dndbeyond.com/monsters/giant-bat).


usernameorwhateves

Yea I was talking about the 14th level ability


xmagusx

Oh yeah, level 14 abilities are insanely good. Warlocks are Hurling Through Hell and such by then. It's just nothing a level 5 druid can pull off.


usernameorwhateves

Yea that's why I was confused


WoodwardHoffmannRule

Where?


Guy_Lowbrow

"The DM has the creatures' statistics" DM puts out whatever statblock he wants, based off the CR you choose.


NJ_Legion_Iced_Tea

Technically that line just means "Your DM is prepared with a variety of creature stats." The real meat of the issue here is the bullet points in the spell. The player picks what bullet point size summon they want and it's implied the DM would choose a creature appropriate to the location.


Doughnut_Panda

I’m DM muself and I can tell you, we have wnough on our plate. We ain’t gonna keep choosing critters for your spells just so you’re less effective in combat. Nor make you roll. This druid subclass is seriously weak sauce when they can’t choose the tools in their tool box.


MangoMoosetracks

what subclass is it?


Doughnut_Panda

The Circle of the Shepherd. It’s a summoning powerhouse for the druid, but if you can’t pick what you summon, you’ll end up getting what you don’t want or need.


Antishill_Artillery

>you’ll end up getting what you don’t want or need. Hamster swarm?


Doughnut_Panda

That’s always needed


ffsjustanything

Unless I’m mistaken, this is just a standard conjure animals spell. And if you let the player decide what animals he gets, you’re giving the spell a massive buff. You’re free to do so of course if that’s what you want.


Doughnut_Panda

Shepherd druids give the buff juice to their summons and this subclass is built around summoning. Forcing someone to play slots just so they can do what their class is supposed to is dumb. Players shouldn’t be forced into RNG just to be useful.


ffsjustanything

Conjure animals is a good spell even when the dm chooses the animals, if you get to decide, then that means you can always have a horde of little velociraptors absolutely destroying encounters. And that’s not a subclass specific spell.


Doughnut_Panda

If a 5th level encounter is undone just by velociraptors it wasn’t well designed. And again SHEPHERD DRUID IS DESIGNED AS A SUMMONER CLASS. Conjure animals isn’t good always. If you need damage to hold down an enemy and 8 camels appear, I don’t think they’re being held for very long. Plus, if the worst problem you have is a shepherd druid wasting their spell slots, it’s a pretty good game. (Considering how many sorcerer multi classes can vomit damage like no tomorrow)


[deleted]

> If a 5th level encounter is undone just by velociraptors it wasn’t well designed. Oh yeah, 8 creatures with multiattack and advantage on every attack isn't encounter warping at all. It's totally reasonable to expect every encounter to work both with and without them (in case the druid chooses not to cast it, or wastes their spell slots earlier in the session).


Doughnut_Panda

As I’ve said before, if it was undone like that, it was a throw away encounter with no bearing on the campaign or adventure. Rhey have low AC and low Hp, they’re glass cannons meant to stall an enemy. A good aoe damage spell disintegrates them. A good challenge to the party won’t flinch at the sught of them. Not every encounter is a boss battle. For the most part, most parties bulldoze enemies they come accross (critical role, a popular source for dnd examples is like this. The party rarely encounters enemies that threaten their lives. Most enemies last 2-3 rounds.) And not taking the PC summoner into consideration when designing your encounter is bad Dming. Build encounters for the party. Don’t build the party for your encounters.


MangoMoosetracks

ah, thanks!


Doughnut_Panda

Np


Bobbytheman666

If I ever get that kind of player at my table... maybe I would roll the effectiveness of the creatures instead of deciding all by myself. Rolling a d20, having like 4 ranks from useless to perfect to the situation.


usernameorwhateves

Thats sorta seems unfair to the player I mean I can't think of any other class where the dm has a say in how effect they are.


Bobbytheman666

The spell RAW doesnt say who chooses the animals. Only the number and the CR. Which is why leaving the effectiveness to chance rather than choosing said effectiveness sounds more fair. You dont always give everything to the players no matter how well they roll.


Doughnut_Panda

Don’t do that. You’ll be making the usefulness of his/her subclass entirely up to chance. A Paladin doesn’t roll for to see of their Smite works, do they? Don’t force someone to play an RNG class. It’s not fun.


WoodwardHoffmannRule

That’s how the spell works. Sorry you don’t like it I guess?


Doughnut_Panda

?? I’m saying to not make a class entirely reliant on rng just to be useful. In the same way that wvery rule that is dumb people hand-wave. But go off on how much you play RaW. I’ll encourage people to pick up fun rules instead


WoodwardHoffmannRule

There’s a big difference between “not being allowed your optimized preference” and “being useless due to RNG”. There are dozens of viable options for 8 CR 1/4 beasts that are just as useful as velociraptors.


Doughnut_Panda

Like camels? There are a ton that are flat out useless too. If it was only useful animals then yes, I’d have no problem with rolling, but WotC filled it with useless ones too.


Bobbytheman666

A paladin cannot smite without first hitting the target. And most spells are attack spells or saving throw spells. Theres almost always a chance factor. Even sleep which garantee to maybe snooze someone could give a shit ammount of dice. So, what creatures to choose then ? The perfectly adapted to the situation ? The least ? The ones in the middle ? How about when they are loosing ? Or when they are crushing your game, is that a factor ? Remember, the player chooses the CR and when to cast it, not the creature itself. Will you always choose the perfect creature ? Why ? Why make this already good spell that OP ? Why not leave part of it to chance, like 95 % of all the spells ? Leaving it to chance is better than favoring an extreme, or breaking the spell rule and letting the player choose everything. Because almost everything has a random part in it. A sword hit, a spell effectiveness, slot management, class effectiveness. I would conclude that it might overpowering it not to have chance in it. But heh, you do you. This is my 2 cents. Theres no right way to do it, unless you can actually logically and coldly point to something and say : this is an objective proof that this ruling is the best. Because its not in the spell description.


Doughnut_Panda

No, you misunderstood. I said they don’t need to roll for their smites to work. They don’t roll for which smite they use. Taking major features out of the players hands isn’t fun. It doesn’t feel like you won or lost because you were tactically better, or that you were ingenious, you won or lost because the RNG said so. And while, yes we’re playing a dice game, not everyone wants 100% rng. Nor is it fun to give the main feature your class revolves around entirely to the DM to decide what to do with. And every DM knows CR does not measure how good a creature is. 8 velociraptors are exponentially better than 8 camels. The Druid still has to roll to hit with those creatures too, so it’s not like it’s guaranteed damage unlike a smite, or many aoe spells.


Bobbytheman666

I played a necromancer. If I want a skeleton, I need the DM to give me a skeleton by finding one in the games. If you choose as a player to play something that the main spell has RNG in it, be sure to ask your DM how hes gonna rule it.cthen, choose from the answer to play it or not. I would still leave it to chance if asked. Free for him to accept or play one of the 150 other subclasses of classes available.


Doughnut_Panda

No you don’t. The Dm hands you skeletons as enemies, although their skin is still attached. You can visit a graveyard, there are many ways. You don’t habe to roll for what undead you raise do you? You don’t have the DM decide ‘yeah this is a zombie, not a skeleton’. It’s not them choosing the Rng, WotC slipped the Rng in. And that’s a shitty way to run your table. “No I won’t change a simple part of a spell to make your subclass more viable, play something else” Yeah no wonder you seem to have little DM experience.


Doughnut_Panda

Literally blocked me so I couldn’t respond. I don’t understand.


DreamOfDays

Eh. But then you’d get the same effect as the wild magic sorcerer and have a subclass who is entirely dependent on the DM monitoring your character to make them effective


ffsjustanything

You’re free to change how the spell works of course, but that does give it a massive buff.


DreamOfDays

Yes. Because you should let your players have strong abilities by specializing in them and spending resources (spell slots) should have a reliable benefit. Imagine if you had to roll a D10 to see if your fireball did it’s normal damage or did 2d6 damage if you rolled a 2, even though you still spent a 3rd level slot to cast it. Same idea with this. It could just summon a bunch of turtles or useless ducks or whatever. But it would just be better if the DM just had the player ask if summoning 8 velociraptors is okay and if he says no then the player and DM can work on a quick list of things to summon to save time in-session. Too many times in this sub I see people treat DMs and Players as if they’re separated by stone walls from each other every moment they’re not actively in a session.


WoodwardHoffmannRule

The spell doesn’t summon random creatures, ducks aren’t an option. It summons, in this example, 8 CR 1/4 beasts. That’s a lot of action economy regardless of what beasts are summoned. There’s no particular reason the DM should let the player have any specific creature.


Brodimere

1/4 or lower, is the wording of the groups, so if DM wants it could be eight seahorses. Most dms wouldnt do that, since kinda dick move. But is possible.


ABloodyCoatHanger

And considering that most of what I'm hearing around here is "choose the animals to need the spell," some of these DMs would certainly do something similar. Now if you wanted to make the rule that "all creatures summoned by this spell must be reasonably expected to be found in the area you cast the spell," that's a tad more fair, makes sense, and probably still needs the spell. That said, I typically used it to drop 8 cows on people's heads from 80+ ft in the air bc my druid was an aracokra. No 3rd lvl spell should be doing 64d6 of damage, but RAW that's absolutely doable no matter what fucking creature the DM picks for you since you choose a spot within 30 ft for the creature to appear.


DreamOfDays

I mean, maybe the reason to let the player have agency is that it’s his spell and if the DM has any issues then they can talk WITH the players about it instead of doing their best to constantly make the spell as useless as possible


WoodwardHoffmannRule

There’s a big fucking difference between “the DM picks the creatures” and “the DM does their best to make the spell useless”. Sounds like you’ve played with some really shitty DMs. They break your trust? Did they hurt you? Poor baby can’t trust any DM anymore, must be a sad way to live your life.


DreamOfDays

Told like a DM who doesn’t want to work with their players and wants to talk at their players while controlling as much as they can about the PCs involvement in the DMs story


IdEgoSuperMe

I'm a Moon Druid that summons and then Wildshapes. My DM and I both went "Oh, no... that's WAY too much work for the DM" and just made a list of "seen" creatures, and I can hire people to bring me creatures or use downtime to find them myself. Kept it from being too OP while still giving me control of my spell AND less work for the DM. (It also makes it super fun to Summon a Giant Eagle that I ride on!)


GradientForce

Only problem with that analogy is that fireball goes off once and then its over. Conjure animals lats for up to an hour, if your player summons 8 velociraptors every single time thats an average of 72 damage per round for up to 600 rounds. That is of course assuming every attack hits which isn't very feasible at higher levels, but with pack tactics giving advantage to every attack, there's a fairly decent chance they land enough to outdamage your average fireball in a round or two. And thats not even limiting it to single target, you can have up to 4 while maintaining pack tactics without even utilizing the rest of the party! I fully agree with your second point though, the only time it becomes a problem is when the DM and the player don't communicate. Its important to talk with eachother and adjust to ensure both partys are having fun


DreamOfDays

Yeah. That’s also assuming the enemies don’t instantly one-shot the lower CR creatures and %75 of the raptors’ attacks miss because their to-hit bonus is shit even with pack tactics. That’s not even mentioning if the enemies have casters with AoE effects/spells that can just wipe out your entire raptor army in one go.


GradientForce

Pack tactics is nothing to sneeze at, it functions statistically as a +5 to hit, and while the enemies may decide to wipe them out quickly that gives the spell a second function of damage mitigation, cause if the enemies are attacking the summons they aren't attacking your allies. I do see where you're coming from though


Firemorfox

Or cast polymorph using the pixies (in summon woodland creatures) for your party, essentially giving a free extra health pool.


BlueIdoru

This makes me want to play the Steins;Gate Visual Novel.


realpawel

Show me where it says player decides what animal is conjured.


phegs

You're right, it doesn't. Zeebashew did two videos on it recently. One where he was complaining about how OP the spell was, then a retraction video after he saw it was the DM, not the player, who decides on the animal called. There's also the chance that a really aggressive DM could select a crap animal if you choose a higher CR animal. It says 1 CR 2 or lower


SammyTwoTooth

https://the-azure-triskele.obsidianportal.com/wikis/conjure-animals-table Is what we use at our table. I want summoning to work for players but found it just too unwieldy so we went with this so its a gamble if they get to completely 1 side an encounter. We had 2 druids at one point and one was a shepherd and I didn't want him to feel he wasted his subclass, so I let them choose which cr 1 or 2 animals got summoned, but any more was a gamble.


EvilBox

Balance!


CheeseCarbsAndSass

I’ve been running a shepherd Druid for almost 3 years and raptors are my favourite. It’s not super hard to run them once you get a system. I label them on paper A-H and have colour coded D20s, D8, and D6 so I can roll them all together and with advantage. I also usually split them into two packs (Alpha and Echo) to make targeting easy.


CamrenLea

I bought a set of raptor figures for my druid tiefling to turn into and for my tiefling sorcerer (spell backfired and sent them into the past and they came across a clutch of raptor eggs and took them back to her time and hand reared them. Still new to D&D so who knows if it will even fly with my dm


DarkLion499

Loved the SG template


Lycaon125

Oh no, I seen that video. That DM is going to kill their friend for breaking the game


TheJadeBlacksmith

Nice archers you have there, shame if I were to create a meat shield wall


RobertoBigDaddy

Can someone explain how I can make this happen?


Xanthic-Chimera

Level 5 druid, cast conjure animals, hope your DM is nice and let's you pick the animals. There's so much argument over the rules in the other comments though


Melkor_II

Rangers at 9th level get to do the same trick while firing three hand crossbow bolts at -5/+10 a turn, nothing to sneeze at. 16 attacks with velociraptors is incredible. Stack with a Twilight cleric's CD so they are tough as bricks, and you have an army of martials at your command.


1DnDpls

I'm guessing your dm doesn't realize they are in control of what gets summoned. Guess that's their fault for not reading the spell.*shrug*


longshotist

IME the issues that arise from situations like this aren't so much because the spell overcomes an otherwise tough challenge so quickly and easily. It comes more from the emergent playstyle of less encounters and resource management. For many, many groups they face a couple of encounters of any variety, use their best stuff and then rest up. Considering this specific situation, a 5th level druid has two 3rd level slots. Using one for this takes care of a situation quickly. They last an hour so any surviving conjured animals stick around and perhaps engage in another encounter. (This is all assuming the druid maintains concentration for the entire hour.) If there's little or no other challenging encounters before everyone rests up to full on a consistent basis then yes, this is a frustrating situation to deal with repeatedly. But more and more I come to the conclusion it's unfair to fault the game system for playstyles that only use portions of it. Not saying there's a wrong way to play, but there absolutely is nuance to how groups play and it's important for everyone to be on the same page.


HeroOfThings

Have they seen dinosaurs?


Highlander-Senpai

"Oh no please don't tell me you're broken. Myushii even took extra special good care of you..."


JojoFag420

8 Velociraptors aren't that scary, they're tiny soo they're basically just angry chickens with claws.


Xanthic-Chimera

Sure but they get a d6 and d4 attack each at advantage while there's still more than one of them. If you've got 8 that's breaking your action economy. 16 attacks at advantage is nothing to shake a stick at...


JojoFag420

Oh of course, in a game perspective any conjure animals is scary, in a realistic view if I saw those animals I wouldn't be that scary from them in the wild.


Xanthic-Chimera

I mean 8 of them is a lot and given their relative size, think you could also fight off say 8 rabid labradors hybridized with cat claws


DreamOfDays

What the fuck is the source material for this.


Xanthic-Chimera

The spell is conjure animals PHB 3rd level druid and ranger spell You can summon 1 CR2 BEAST 2 CR1 BEAST 4 CR1/2 BEAST 8 CR1/4 BEAST A velociraptor is CR 1/4 from volos guide to monsters with 2 attacks claws and bite and they get pack tactics. A 9th level upcast you can summon 4x as many 32 raptors 64 attacks at advantage 128D20 total If you meant the picture it's steins gate


DreamOfDays

No I mean the anime with the slime pickle not the spell.


Xanthic-Chimera

It's a time travelled banana and the source is steins gate


DreamOfDays

Thank you.


Oatmeal_Johnson

The scene in question is actually pretty tense and emotional to the point you forget he's holding a slimy banana lol


Sparglewood

What, you've never seen a man holding a green jelly banana before?


Mister_Grins

Good thing the DM decides what creatures come form a group summoning spell.


KnightBreeze

You know, this is why fireball exists. It's not just for players, people.


smellyfishie

Holy crap...I had this my Druid do this in our one shot last night. A mass of raptors took down my laser powered trex in 2 turns...


darkangelx

When did you see or hear about a velociraptor?


xSevilx

That... That's a penis!


TBSdota

Such a broken spell, needs revision imho.


Fyre777

If someone comes to my table trying to summon 8 of anything, I will give them 8 frogs. Managing initiative, attacks, and balance with a warped action economy is too much work and bogs down combat. Either summon stronger but less numerous creatures, use Tasha's summons, or take a hike.


xmagusx

[The CR 1/4 frogs are fun to throw at any parties (or enemies) that have goblins or gnomes in them.](https://www.dndbeyond.com/monsters/giant-frog)


Brodimere

Thats seem a bit harsh, since it is only a single initiative more(they all get the same). Tho i made with my similiar rules with my dm, for using it in combat. So not to outshine my party or break the action economy. Only 2 or less creatures, when using it for fighting.


Fyre777

I am perfectly okay with 2 or even 4 creatures being summoned hell I would even let the player choose which beasts but 8 is where it gets to be too much. It's especially egregious when it's 8 wolves who all roll with advantage and inevitably drown the encounter in endless dice rolling and bookkeeping with health and damage.