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Posts Tagged ‘group mechanics’

So, you’ve got a group short of four? Not sure what your party should be composed of? Here’s the DMGs take on party roles and what can happen to you if you’re short. I don’t necessarily agree with all of it. I’m of the Strikers over Controllers school, for certain. But this is just a little more to think on as your group comes together…

What don’t we have?

We don’t have a Defender!

Without a defender, the party’s controller is particularly vulnerable, and the strikers might have to sacrifice some mobility. The leader can take on some of the defender’s role. Enemy soldiers are more successful at controlling the battlefield, and enemy brutes become very dangerous for the characters.

We don’t have a Leader!

When a party doesn’t have a leader, it’s less effective overall, and healing during combat is both more difficult and less effective. A paladin can help cover the leader’s absence, providing both limited healing and boosts to the rest of the party. Healing potions can give the characters more access to their healing surges during combat. Enemy leaders and controllers have more influence on the battle.

We don’t have a Striker!

The absence of a striker is perhaps the easiest to cover. The defender and controller might need to find ways to increase their damage output to bring down monsters faster. Enemy brutes, with their high hit points, and artillery positioned in hard-to-reach places, become a greater threat to the characters.

We don’t have a Controller!

Not having a controller can free the defender up to move around more, since at that point the defender lacks a soft ally to protect. However, as with a striker, a missing controller means that monsters last longer. Large groups of monsters, and minions in particular, survive much longer in the absence of a controller who can damage multiple creatures with a single attack.

So that’s the DMG’s take on things. But my advice, as always, is to let meta-game thinking take a backseat to role-playing.

Do what’s fun!

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