Simulate/Emulate 4th Edition Invoker in 5th Edition

Per advice from doppelgreener, the OP has massively changed this question – do the question they meant to ask, no doubt, but existing meta opinion suggests that the OP should have asked a new question, since the change was significant and undercuts an existing, well-received answer.

Should the OP have made a new question rather than make that edit? Now that they have made that edit, should the edit be rolled back and the OP asked to make a new question?

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    \$\begingroup\$ I'd like to apologize for that. Yours is an excellent answer and good advice, even if it didn't actually answer my question. \$\endgroup\$
    – Wrathchild
    Commented Jan 19, 2015 at 14:51

3 Answers 3


No, I don't think they should have created a second question. Hence my not suggesting that they do so.

They asked a question about dragging their group "kicking and screaming" into 5e, and wanted to know how to make an invoker. You challenged the frame, telling them not to do either. At the time, this was an excellent thing to do. The usual risk with a frame-challenge response like this is that they often don't answer the question (as in this case, "don't" isn't an answer, whilst others are answering how to make an invoker).

The other risk is that when the problem a frame-challenge addresses is undermined, the frame-challenge is also undermined. In this case, that problem you were addressing got undermined completely. Worth noting the comments:

"If your group is happy with 4e" That's the thing; they're not particularly happy with it. "Kicking and screaming" was just a bit of hyperbole. I'm not looking for a direct translation, but more just a way to have the same sort of flavor. I'll see if I can add some clarity to my question. – Wrathchild 14 hours ago

@Wrathchild Even that being the case, you are far better off finishing the campaign, retiring the characters, and starting over with fresh characters. – KRyan 14 hours ago

Possibly. Probably, even, if this was most people think of as a campaign. But it really rather isn't. It's barely a sandbox/adventure-of-the-week kind o' deal. – Wrathchild 11 hours ago

In revision 4, the author undermined the original "kicking and screaming" issue totally, asserting the exact opposite: their group is actually cheering and fist-pumping for the new edition.

At that point it's pretty clear they're providing hyperbole one way or another, and are uninterested in being straightforward with us on that point. They want the invoker one way or another and will mislead us (deliberately or accidentally) to whatever ends has us just give them an invoker conversion. If they're willing to provide unreliable background information like this, we're better off scrapping it and just dealing with the question they're trying to get answered, so I suggested removing the unreliable background info altogether.

(For the record, although it's possible, I am not attributing this to manipulativeness or malintent, so much as some less than careful use of language for which the impact was not foreseen.)

As for the impact of actually requesting them to ask a second question, the result would be that they created this...

  • How do I make a 4e invoker in 5e?

... followed shortly by ...

  • How do I make a 4e invoker in 5e, pt 2: No seriously, how do I make an invoker in 5e?

Experience tells me this would be met by the second being closed as a duplicate, followed by the community investing very critical inspection into the handling of the first question. "How did we mishandle it such that they had to ask two questions to get the first one answered?" would be a pertinent question. (My guess is this would be followed by handling of the question and answers to get them collectively focused just on the invoker conversion.)

The original version of the question introduced unhelpful hyperbole which is wasting a bunch of time on behalf of several people that never would have been wasted were it not included. It has been cleansed. The nonexistent problem which never should have been invented has been removed. The person didn't need convincing otherwise. This has been very disruptive and the question started off entirely derailed from the moment of its inception, and is now hobbling its way back onto the rails.

I hope it doesn't need to be said, but in case it does: this was nothing personal targeted at you in any way. We are just in the position of dealing with the wrong end of a mess that could've been avoided.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Well, it's unrealistic to deny the community's opinion, but I think it is a really bad thing for it to be acceptable to edit questions out from under answers. \$\endgroup\$
    – KRyan
    Commented Jan 21, 2015 at 17:59
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    \$\begingroup\$ @KRyan In general I agree with you. That happens regularly as part of clarification though: an answer comes along that makes the asker realise they miscommunicated, question gets edited, answer needs revision. Like someone asking how to do X, then a house rule suggestion comes along, and the asker realises they need to specify they only want RAW (because they have to prove it to a GM or something) and house rules are unhelpful. In your case, you're especially affected because you challenged the frame and voluntarily didn't answer the core of the question. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jan 21, 2015 at 21:27
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    \$\begingroup\$ Yeah, and assuming the original question was good and valid, I think it should remain. It's not like there's likely to be a problem of too many questions, and users are not limited in how many they create. Questions are cheap; answers are not. \$\endgroup\$
    – KRyan
    Commented Jan 21, 2015 at 21:29
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    \$\begingroup\$ @KRyan That's the general principle, though this is one of the cases where it doesn't work out so well in practice. I think the reason this situation stands out is because (a) the bit that got removed wasn't the core of their question anyway, just tangential background information, plus (b) the truthfulness of the original got undermined, so the original wasn't valid. If it was true they dragged their group kicking and screaming, I would never have suggested removing it, but it wasn't necessarily so we weren't helping them. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jan 23, 2015 at 9:57

As the "OP" in question, perhaps I should chime in.

All I was originally trying to do was include a little levity in my question. My group just wants to get together for a few hours of escapism every couple of weeks. They probably don't care if we stay with 4th, move to 5th, or if I break out my old 2nd Edition AD&D books.

In fact, my player with the Invoker isn't actually clamoring to keep her. If I say there's no such thing in the new edition, she'll probably just shrug and ask what else she could play.

I had no idea that that throwaway bit of deprecation would be latched on to and used to frame an answer.

And, honestly, while that answer is well-written and has obviously been well-received, it's not actually answering my question. It's admonishing me for trying to change systems in the middle of a campaign.

(By the way, an answer along the lines of "No, I don't think so. The underlying rules are too different. Don't try." would have been acceptable.)

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    \$\begingroup\$ Yeah, be careful with embellishing events like that - when you suggest you're doing something that sounds like bad behaviour to someone, someone's gonna latch onto it and call you out for doing it. (Often this is a good thing and the behaviour is real and harmful. Often someone has been in that exact situation and they're telling you not to do to others what was done to them or someone they know.) It's a learning experience for us in this case. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jan 19, 2015 at 14:44
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    \$\begingroup\$ Yes, I'm getting that. And I feel bad that I didn't have time to fix things before they got so far along. (I'm active on other Stack Exchange sites with a different account and I've had to deal with the XY problem more than my fair share.) \$\endgroup\$
    – Wrathchild
    Commented Jan 19, 2015 at 14:49
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    \$\begingroup\$ To clarify, it was not that one line that gave me that impression. My answer would have been the same if you had simply suggested that you were trying to transition an ongoing campaign and characters, even with interest from players -- in my experience that works poorly. I only harped on that line because it was a strong example of what I see the problem as. \$\endgroup\$
    – KRyan
    Commented Jan 19, 2015 at 15:15


Obviously, this is in part because I want to keep a good answer that I wrote. I admit my bias. However, I do not think it useful to the site as a whole to have questions changed significantly out from under answers. It is important to note that the original question was:

  1. Itself a valid question

  2. Not unclear

  3. Had not garnered a single close vote

If the question itself had been a problem, then an edit would be fine; there’d be no value in keeping the question, and likewise not in any answers to it. But in a case like this, the community has in the past pushed users to ask new questions and leave the old one as-is, and I think that is what should have happened in this case.

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    \$\begingroup\$ If your answer is good but the question has changed why not copy your answer to a new self-asked question and delete the old answer? \$\endgroup\$
    – user4075
    Commented Jan 27, 2015 at 9:28

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