Home » Ancient Posts » Wizards Ruin Encounters in D&D!    
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That’s one of the things I play for! The opportunity to turn even or bad odds into quick victory. Without that, I might as well be reading a book instead.

I used to complain that TSR D&D was too combat-focused. That’s another one of those areas where Wizards D&D renewed my appreciation for TSR D&D.

I agree with Talysman that “encounter” in Wizards D&D seems to mean “combat encounter” more than in TSR D&D. (Although there are certainly groups that run counter that in both ways.) Even encounters that devolve into combat seem to end with it less often in the classic D&D games I play in.

Another piece to this focus on the combat encounter is that some Wizards D&D DM’s spend a lot of prep time on combat encounters. So, if PC action short-circuits a combat encounter, the DM may be left less prepared to continue the session. (Which then gets into the DM prep-time differences between editions.)

That said, we’ve short-circuited a number of combat encounters in the 3.5e game I’m currently playing in, and the DM is one to roll with such things. But our group is pretty “old school” in approach even though we sometimes play systems that aren’t.


I think that *is* probably why WotC players complain about about wizards ending combat (and complain about wizards in general.) And there's a related factor: in TSR D&D, you get XP for treasure; in WotC D&D, you only get XP for combat. So, in older editions, the goal is to avoid combat where possible and focus on getting the treasure, while in newer editions, the focus is on combat.