If you don’t want to suck in older edition D&D and don’t want to up the beginning level at which you start playing the game, then according to some you’re probably out of luck.
Is that really the case? Is that the only solution? Is that the best solution?
Maybe that’s what’s wrong with RPGs. Or maybe that’s what’s wrong with how RPGs are run by GMs these days. Apparently levels 1-4 are so universally equated to “suck” (or at least near suck) that they represent the dregs of adventure, those terrible beginning levels that necessarily must suck because the power level of the characters is so low in comparison with the “rest of the multiverse”.
Like a simple level 1 character can’t possibly be cool and do something amazing until level 5 because the game rules, convention, and the all mighty gaming gods forbid it!
It’s like you’re all saying, “C’mon Kevin, just up the level to 5 and ignore the suckage that is the first 4.”
Are you telling me it’s not possible (or at least not easy) to run D&D in the low levels and NOT see the characters as just above suck? Or is that just the easy way out, that it’s simpler to agree this is the case and not tax yourself as a GM?
“Sure,” you say, “it’s possible. But the cool that supersedes the suck doesn’t show up until level 5.”
Like it’s some sort of fact we all just have to agree to.
Color me a healthy shade of skeptical. I disagree.
Now let’s be clear that I’m not trying to tell you how to play.
But I will challenge you that every level of D&D should be cool. Heck, in a way, every stage of every game should be cool in some form or fashion. If it isn’t, then as the GM you’re not doing your job well. That’s right, my opinion is that it’s your job as the GM to facilitate the cool regardless of the power scope of the actors.
Now you may claim your players don’t want cool at every level, but I find that hard to believe.
Your players want cool and it’s your role to provide it.
And that’s the real fact that seems to be ignored here.