Question about starting HPs

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So my Bard died and I am making a new character! But my group and I are pretty new to DnD and kind of learning as we go. It has been a lot of fun so far.

One thing I have noticed in a lot of the guides for various characters in the CharOP thread use a different stat other than CON to calculate their HP - such as this one http://community.wizards.com/go/thread/view/75882/25766477/Stormbringer?pg=1 . He uses his str to determine his hp. I have looked for an explanation and went through as many pages of as many books I could thumb through and I have not seen any actual evidence that this is possible. I am assuming it is because I have seen several builds on there that do this.

If anyone could point me to an explanation of this and where in what book it says I can do this... because that would be freaking sweet. Our DM likes to make the fights challenging (which I love) and every advantage our group can get is a good one
This is due to the choice of background.  'Auspicious Birth' and 'Born Under A Bad Sign' both let you use your highest ability score, whatever it may be, in place of your CON to determine starting hit points.  Note, however, that your CON modifier is still used to determine how many healing surges you have.
Oh sweet thanks. We are only on our third session and we started with the simplified 2 page character sheet which does not include Background as well as other things. I think tomorrow might be a good day to talk to the DM about stepping it up a notch to the full character sheets. Thanks again!
Be aware, however, that Born Under a Bad Sign and Auspicious Birth are two backgrounds that commonly outlawed by DMs, since they are far and away more powerful than nearly any other background. I once saw a game where every single PC had one of those backgrounds, because there's no reason not to take it if it's allowed, and that makes it a boring option.
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Be aware, however, that Born Under a Bad Sign and Auspicious Birth are two backgrounds that commonly outlawed by DMs, since they are far and away more powerful than nearly any other background. I once saw a game where every single PC had one of those backgrounds, because there's no reason not to take it if it's allowed, and that makes it a boring option.

That is not true. Any of it.
I wouldn't say any of what he said is untrue, especially what he saw. YMMV i guess, from my personal experience with Organized Play or online gaming; i've observed that Born Under a Bad Sign and Auspicious Birth are the backgrounds a DM most often bans, they are the most often selected background on CharOp and LFR i can see. Their benefits are not overpowered and game breaking, but they are the best in the lot hands down.

Yan
Montréal, Canada
@Plaguescarred on twitter

Their benefits are rather overpowered at level 1, but rapidly fall off in potency as you level.
D&D Next = D&D: Quantum Edition

How is having CON mod equivalency HP bonus at level 1 overpowered ? I hardly see having an adidtional 1-5 HP overpowered at level 1. Its less benefical than the feat Toughness, which isn't overpowered...

Its certainly good, but not overpowered and game breaking in the slightest. 


EDIT  To Strikethrough 

Yan
Montréal, Canada
@Plaguescarred on twitter

How is having CON mod equivalency HP bonus at level 1 overpowered ? I hardly see having an adidtional 1-5 HP overpowered at level 1 and this mattter even less as levels and HPs increase. 


When we speak of "overpowered" backgrounds, remember that we are comparing them to a character option that most commonly provides a +2 bonus to one skill, or adds a skill to your class skill list. That is a very minor benefit, roughly half to two-thirds as useful as a feat. The two backgrounds in question do something more appropriate in power for a feat, rather than a background.
Ever feel like people on these forums can't possibly understand how wrong they are? Feeling trolled? Don't get mad. Report Post.
Well, not because something is best in its category that its overpowered necessarily, you have to compare it against the game overall.

For exemple, Howling Strike is the best Barbarian At-will Attack but that doesn't make it overpowered.

Yan
Montréal, Canada
@Plaguescarred on twitter


How is having CON mod equivalency HP bonus at level 1 overpowered ? I hardly see having an adidtional 1-5 HP overpowered at level 1. Its less benefical than the feat Toughness, which isn't overpowered...

Its certainly good, but not overpowered and game breaking in the slightest. 




It's not when it's 1-5, it's when it's 8-12 that it's overpowered.  Most classes can't afford a high Con, and the ones taking this are also likely to have a 20 starting primary stat.  If your primary is 20, and your Con is 11 at best and 8 at worst, then yeah, it makes a huge difference, particularly if you're a class with low hitpoints to begin with.

A Wizard with 18 hitpoints and a Wizard with 30 hitpoints are not at all in the same ballpark.
D&D Next = D&D: Quantum Edition

How is having CON mod equivalency HP bonus at level 1 overpowered ? I hardly see having an adidtional 1-5 HP overpowered at level 1. Its less benefical than the feat Toughness, which isn't overpowered...

Its certainly good, but not overpowered and game breaking in the slightest. 




It's not CON Mod, it's CON.  Classes get starting hit points equal to some modifier plus CON score.  A Wizard with 10 CON and 20 INT to start gets 20hp at level 1 (10+CON score).  A Wizard with 10 CON, 20 INT, and Auspicious Birth/Born Under a Bad Sign gets 30hp at level 1.  At level 11, the wizard without the background will have 61hp (10+11CON+4*10 levels), while a wizard with the background will have 73hp (10+23INT+4*10), or almost 20% more.  Not nearly as good as at level 1, but still pretty good.  And of course, healing surges values follow along with that; the initial wizard has values of 5/15 (at levels 1/11), the wizard with the background has values of 7/18.

 There are a few other powerful backgrounds, but those are mostly corner cases (Gritty Sergeant, for example, which seems to get thrown in mostly to let folks wield rapiers if they aren't already proficient).  Auspicious Birth/Born Under a Bad Sign are the only ones that are valuable on the vast majority of characters (i.e. all those which don't have CON as a primary or secondary ability score).
Yeah CON my bad. 


Yan
Montréal, Canada
@Plaguescarred on twitter