Some like to know how 'swingy' an edition of D&D can be. That is to say, how encounters can swing back and forth in terms of who has the edge do to aspects of variability.
Last session our party of five 3rd level characters absolutely destroyed a group of four apparently normal orcs. We played it well, gained surprise, never lost tempo, and took them apart with hardly a scratch to the party.
Later that game night, we encountered a pair of hobgoblins. We misread the terrain, lost potential surprise, got ourselves tangled up in a narrow passage and one of the fighters nearly went to zero hit points before we put down the hobs.
I would rate it as satisfyingly 'swingy'. I know that is not very objective, but I like the fact that good play has significant results and of course the reverse.
Funny moment after the hobgoblin battle: one of the fighters removes a bar from a door and opens it. The resulting roar from the room has the fighter scurrying away from the door across the room to prepare for combat. The rest of the players stare open mouthed at the fighter's player until someone finally says, "Why didn't you just close the door?"
The dice never lie.