Discussion:Does DR stack?
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 Does DR stack?
Say a character has the following types of damage reduction: 5/- (barbarian), 5/silver (vampire bloodline), and 15/+3 (armor property). How do you determine the total amount of DR, and which type takes precedence? Also, what if the character gets hit with, say, a +2 silver weapon?
|“||If a creature has damage reduction from more than one source, the two forms of damage reduction do not stack. Instead, the creature gets the benefit of the best damage reduction in a given situation.||”|
Or in other words, if you had all three of those, you would negate the first 15 points of damage dealt to yourself, unless you got hit with a +3 weapon, then that DR would be bypassed, and it would fall down to the next best DR you have (the 5/- one), and if this one could be bypassed, then if it was, then it would fall to the next best one you have. Also, another note, if you happened to have DR 5/lawful and DR 5/evil, then the first DR would be bypassed by a lawful weapon, but if it wasn't evil, the second would catch it, and vice-versa.
 TK-Squared 21:05, 3 March 2009 (MST)
It should also be noted that DR x/+y for magic weapon properties is a 3.0 mechanic and has been updated to DR x/Magic in 3.5, I believe.
It really should stack, and doesn't break anything if it does (in fact it's probably helpful to make some class features less worthless), but by the default rules it does not :(
I am glad that it does not stack, as a DM if the DR stacked then people would easily become near invincible.
Lets say that a character, named character 1, has the above combination of 5/-, 5/silver, and 15/magic, that would total to 25 DR and for the type lets go with the most common magic.
Now if another character, character 2, comes along and attacks said character with a non-magical greatsword and has a 20 strength, character 2 would deal damage from 9-19 damage, character 2 would deal no damage at all to character 1 unless they scored a critical which would deal 18-38 damage.
That would mean that character 2 would deal no damage about 33% of the time, with a critical which only happens about 10% of the time, which would mean that the character would only deal damage about 07% of the time. That in my opinion is not fair.
Now lets say that character ones damage reduction was silver and an old red dragon comes along and attacks with a bite and its 35/+12 strength. That would deal 4d6+12 damage, 16-36 damage, now an old red dragon is a CR 20 and it would only deal damage about 50% of the time and it would only be from 1-11 damage, which for a character at 20th level this is nothing and this is supposed to be a challenge for four characters of that level.
I don't know if you are a DM or just a player but that is a very game breaking thing to me. I'm sorry but I actually like to play and not be of supreme power and untouchable, if you just want to kill things play a game that is not ROLE PLAYING and more along the lines of HACK & SLASH.
 TK-Squared 00:43, 4 March 2009 (MST)
Because, as any Venn Diagram would show, roleplaying and "hack and slash do not overlap at all! They never speak! Ever! I don't know what you're playing, but I'm playing DnD, a game that offers Hack 'n' Slash, Roleplaying, Optimization and any mixture therein.
Even if you ignore your hideously stupid strawman about "hack and slash", you never even bothered to mention exactly how you'd go about getting that sort of DR at any level in the game, something that's necessary to do if you want to make a point about how DR stacking should be considered "supreme power" and "near invincible"
OK, so with 65080 gp, which an 11th level character should have on average, I can get DR 44/(?). Heres how:
- Natural Lycanthrope: Wererat, LA 3 + RHD 1 + 7 LVLs Barbarian = ECL 11
- Wererat: DR 10/silver
- 7th Level Barbarian: DR 1/-
- Dwarven Plate: DR 3/-, 16500 gp
- Invulnerability: DR 5/magic, 16000 gp
- Ectoplasmic: DR 10/psionics, 10800 gp
- Permanency Iron Body: DR 15/adamantine, 21780 gp
That is an 11th level character with DR 44/(silver, -, magic, psionics, or adamantine). Even my CR 20 dragon above would only be able to do damage with its bite with a critical which only happens about 5% of the time and then it would only deal 1-28 damage about 39% of the time of that, for a total of 02% doing any damage at all.
First of all, Iron Body cannot be made permanent. So there goes 15 points of your DR right there.
Secondly: In exchange for being 3 levels behind on everything and blow all your cash on it, you can have some pretty good DR. That's cool, and then every time you ever have to make a save versus death (of any sort; charm, dominate, slay living) you fail it because you're 3 levels behind and have blown all your cash on DR improving equipment. So...where's the problem? You can reduce damage pretty well (even if you ignore how the CR 20 dragon bypasses the magic part of the DR as well, so that's 20 points removed from your DR) -- but the first time you ever have to make a save, you die. Which means that you're now actually weaker than you were before, because at level 11 making saves is more important than being able to take damage and you just spent all your resources on being able to take damage instead (there is a big opportunity cost). Not seeing the problem here.
The differnece between a 7th level barbarian and a 10th level barbarian in saves in Fort +2, Ref +1, and Will +1, as a lycan you gain a +2 to wisdom which offsets that 1 difference from the levels and as a were rat you gain a +2 to Fort and Ref from the HD of the rat, that offsets the deference.
- 11th level Barbarian: Fort +7, Ref +3, Will +3
- Wererat, 7th level Barbarian: Fort +7, Ref +4, Will +2, and the +1 from having a higher Wisdom, for a total of +3.
Therefore your saves are higher as a wererat than before you were. Your argument has so many holes in it. Before you state something do the research. As for the DR I know about the bypass, but that is assuming that the damage reduction would become magic and that Iron Body can become permanent, the spell does not state that those on the list are the only ones, just the common ones. It is up to the DM.
You're missing the bit about "opportunity cost" -- you'd be better off spending your money on a Cloak/Vestments of Resistance (which has the benefit of being cheap) and an item to help boost constitution than items to increase your damage reduction, because at level 11 it's the saves that actually matter and not your ability to soak damage. You also obviously wouldn't take Barbarian to 10 (levels 8, 9, and 10 are pretty damn useless) but instead multiclass out into something like Frenzied Berserker so your saves don't suck like they would if you were a single-class character. Not really seeing the holes in my argument here.
the spell does not state that those on the list are the only ones
Um, yes it does. "This spell makes certain other spells permanent" and then goes on to list these certain other spells.
First, thank everyone who responded. I appreciate the feedback. By the way, why wouldn't you take a barbarian to 10 or higher? I did (24th level) and kicks s lot of A**!
You are welcome. By the way the spell does not state that they are the only spells it just says:
- This spell makes certain other spells permanent.
- This spell makes the spells on this list permanent.
Saying that it only can do what the spell has writen in the description would be like saying that Baleful Polymorph can only turn you into a dog, lizard, monkey, or toad because the rules state:
- You change the subject into a Small or smaller animal of no more than 1 HD (such as a dog, lizard, monkey, or toad).
It is left open for the DM to decide. If the DM states that the spell can be made permanent then it can be made permanent, just as if the DM stated that you can turn them into a fish then you can, if he says no you can not then you can't.
And by the way, Wizards has released other books with additional spells that can be made permanent, that are not on that list. Thus confirming that those on the list are not the only ones.
I was wondering what you mean about this whole needing high saves to prevent death. Are you talking about death from massive damage or from spells. Because if you are talking about massive damage you would have to take the damage first. And if you had Iron Body you would become immune to:
- blindness, critical hits, ability score damage, deafness, disease, drowning, electricity, poison, stunning, and all spells or attacks that affect your physiology or respiration, because you have no physiology or respiration while this spell is in effect. You take only half damage from acid and fire of all kinds.
And besides that you could take feats that improve your low saves.
P.S. Even if you ruled that it could not be made permanent then you would still have DR 29 and would save a bit of money to spend elsewhere.
 Lord Dhazriel 15:24, 5 March 2009 (MST)
I think the spell is pretty clear... permanency only the effect listed can be made permanent without DM Fiat.
|“||You are welcome. Don't take what Surgo says to serious, he doesn't seem to know what he is talking about half the time. (I wonder if he even knows the rules of D&D or if he just likes to pretend he knows the rules)||”|
|—Sarrow, 12:58, 4 March 2009 (MST)|
Please assume good faith, users are here to help. Such comments can cause flames wars, so it would be nice if you apologize to Surgo. I share Surgo's opinion on how DR should stack. In fact I think it would make DR much more useful, the money you spend getting a good DR could be use in as potent item (such as a Cloak of Resistance, a suit of armor or ironically a weapon allowing to bypass DR).
I am sorry Surgo, I have been having a bad week and was a little frustrated. Lets just agree to disagree. I really don't know why I felt that I needed to argue anyways.