V-shaped races for everyone! (PEACH}

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With the new PHB3, all four of the races featured in that book are what is called "v-shaped" -- which is to say that their stats are like like changelings', with one 'primary' stat you have to take and two 'secondary' stats you can choose between. Minotaurs are Str and then either Con or Wis. Githzerai are Dex and then either Int or Wis -- and so on and so forth. At first I was a little hesitant towards this new radical design, feeling like it took away from the changelings' schtick, but after overcoming my initial hesitation I've embraced the idea in full force, and I think that not only are v-shaped races a good idea, they're such a good idea on all fronts that the game as a whole would benefit if all prior PC races had this design imposed on them as well. Not trusting WotC to implement such a sweeping errata, it was only obvious that in order for that become a reality I had to houserule it.

Consider these points when thinking about v-shaped races:

- First, v-shaped races are very flavorful and offer fertile ground from which to differentiate similar races. The addition of a third optional stat to a race is like adding a third dimension to their character, and defining one of the three stats as the race's primary stat (the one you have to take) adds even more depth. Used properly this system can really tell the players a lot more about a race and create a proper flavor for them than the two-stat system does. For example, warforged, minotaur, goliaths and orcs are all Str/Con under the current system and are mechanically very similar, but under a v-shaped system the minotaur adds Wis to his repertoire, representing his capacity to be a gentle giant or noble savage and also highlighting his connection to the primal and divine, the goliath (under my interpretation) adds Dex as their tertiary to highlight their ability as athletes and masters of all things physical and competitive and to enable them as lightning bruiser archetype characters, and the warforged splits off even further, taking Con as their primary instead of Str and having Int as their tertiary stat to accurately describe the mysterious and new psi-forged produced very briefly at the end of the last war. (Orcs are not featured in this write-up as they're still an NPC race with no official player write-up. There's really no need to split the NPC race stats as with 26 of the current PC races split into the v-shape system there will be 52 different stat combinations available and I see no reason why any more races need to be added for completeness sake when, lacking feats and full flavor, the various NPC races just cannot compete with the PC races. That and I don't want to debate with myself which of the two stats best describe bullywugs and which tertiary should be added to them. Eugh, bullywugs.)

- Second, the v-shaped race system adds huge mechanical depth to the system. With two stats per race there are 15 possible stat combinations. With three stats, one of which is designated primary, there are 120. No more constant duplication between similar races. Say goodbye to the glut of Dex/Wis races that all compete for the same classes and all seem so utterly similar. Additionally, it really fans the races out to better cover the various stat combinations. As I said above, as of the writing of this post we've got access to 26 two-stat races plus humans, so with this houseruled system there are 52 distinct combinations available to spread out between the 15 base stat combos, and it covers the bases pretty well. There's still a couple combinations that are a little shallow, but all of them have at least 2 races available, which is a hell of a lot better than the current system where some combos have only 1 race, one combo doesn't have any races, and yet another combo has 5 races.

- Third, this system really opens the game up to practical optimization. Something that has become plainly obvious over the past two years is that playing a race that does not get a bonus to your class's primary stat is painfully sub-optimal. However, in many cases the number of races that have access to your primary stat can be counted on one hand -- leaving you with a list of acceptable races that is far, far too short. So you have the option between playing a character that feels tread upon or overused or playing a character that is distinctly underpowered. By opening up the stat combinations with this system it doubles (or more) the amount of races with access to your primary stat. Instead of picking between 8-10 races you're now picking between 16-20 -- and you have that much more room to choose a race that not only fits your class mechanically but also gives you room to grow your character's persona in unique and interesting ways that don't feel nearly as overused.

- Fourth, a lot of races in the 4e system really don't make sense without having access to a third stat to complete them. It's not to say that they're incomplete as it is, it's just to say that for some races there is a third stat that is so obvious you have to ask why it wasn't one of their first two. Examples are the Cha-less eladrin feylords, the Dex-less gnomish rogues, the Int-less kalashtar psions, the Con-less pact making tieflings, and the Con-less genasi elementalists. You just have to wonder why those stats weren't included within their original race, and ultimately this system delivers.



Enough prattle. Time for the races!

Dragonborn - Str + Int/Cha
This choice took a lot of deliberation to decide. Dragonborns are honestly equal parts Str and Cha -- deciding which stat to choose as a primary ultimately came down to which second combination I wanted to highlight for the race. The third stat, however, was obvious from the get go -- while some dragons are brutish thugs, yes, other dragons (and therefore dragonborn) are some of the greatest scholars of the arcane in the D&D universe and as a result no third stat fits this race nearly as well as Int does. After deciding that, the question came, did Str/Int or Cha/Int fit the race better as a whole, and my choice was undoubtedly Str/Int. Dragonborn are an archetypal proud warrior race, and Cha/Int is just too weak for that kind of a character.

Dwarf - Con + Int/Wis
Ultimately, this decision was made for three reasons -- one, to get Dwarves out of the way of their upcoming progeny, the Muls, who are confirmed Con + Wis/Str, two, to avoid having unbelievably powerful and nigh-invincible dwarven fighters and barbarians, and three, to try and branch the dwarven race out of the role of melee combatant. While yes, there is very little actual precedence for dwarves being an Int race, it certainly fits better than Cha and Dex do (and we just established that it really can't afford to be Str), and I think there is real potential for dwarves to grow to accept a slightly bookish archetype -- after all, they live for hundreds of years, they're said to keep perfect records of the past, and they're a very inward looking race. I can easily see a small but elite cadre of dwarven arcane or psionic casters fitting right into most settings.

Eladrin - Dex + Int/Cha
An even harder decision than dragonborn and for all the same reasons, I eventually settled on the above for the eladrin. Like the dragonborn, it is painfully obvious what the third stat should be -- as preeminent lords of the fey, eladrin almost don't even make sense without access to Cha as a racial stat. However, it was not obvious which of the two original stats should be it's primary. In the end I decided on the above combination both to keep them from stepping on the tiny toes of the gnomes, to open up direct comparisons of eladrin to drow (given that they are sister races, after all), to better fit the archetypal eladrin feylord as being both graceful and charismatic, and finally because I felt like eladrin society, while undoubtedly intelligent, placed a slightly higher emphasis on grace than it did knowledge.

Elf - Dex + Str/Wis
The elf was thankfully not a particularly difficult decision. The only real question was whether or not the elven tertiary stat should be Str or Int, but with both the precedence of aggressive and barbaric wild elves and the emphasis of separation between the almost too similar elves and eladrin that question more or less answered itself.

Half-Elf - Cha + Str/Con
The half-elves were the first race I came across with a real want of a tertiary stat. Cha was obviously their primary, but I could easily justify Wis, Str, and even Dex as their tertiary. All of them seemed to fit the race, but none were the clear choice. Ultimately I decided to make a decision based off style -- I'm tired of the goody two-shoes half-elf who is always neutral good and always does the right thing and overcomes his troubled past. It's too cliche. Sometimes children raised in difficult situations stuck between two worlds grating against each other survive by externalizing their pain upon other children -- in other words, they become bullies. And that's what a Str/Cha half-elf is -- a bully, using both his uniquely social mind and his immaculately honed hybrid body to force his will upon others and get what he wants.

Halfling - Dex + Wis/Cha
The halflings were easy -- base them off their original race, the hobbits. Down to earth folk, the hobbits never cared much for public appearances or fancy speeches, but they're a good calm people with a solid head on their collective shoulders. Wis was a perfect fit for such a character.

Tiefling - Cha + Con/Int
Like the hobbits -- err, halflings -- the tieflings were painfully obvious in their stat spread. Cha was undoubtedly their primary stat, being the silver tongued devils they are, and Con was easily their tertiary what with their infernal heritage and all.

Deva - Wis + Int/Cha
Again, this was a very easy combination to determine. It's quite interesting how well the deva, kalashtar, and shardmind all share these three stats with different combinations and yet I don't feel like any of the three really sacrificed anything (except that the shardmind should've had Con as a tertiary, but I guess it's too late for that).

Gnome - Int + Dex/Cha
The gnomes were not too difficult. Dex was definitely their tertiary stat, given their small short stealthy stature, but I wondered a moment whether Int or Cha should be their primary. In the end I concluded that while most gnomes were generally charismatic, some were not (particularly sverfneblin and whisper gnomes), but all gnomes approach problems from the structured problem solving perspective needed to survive the savage world with their inherent size disadvantage.

Goliath - Str + Con/Dex
Consummate athletes, there was never any doubt in my mind what stats the goliaths should have. Goliaths intentionally go against the grain of the bulky behemoth race archetype, and I feel like Dex is a great addition to their repertoire. No race fits the lightning bruiser archetype better than goliaths do.

Half-Orc - Str + Dex/Wis
The archetypal noble savage, I feel like the half-orc has come a long way from the ghetto of 3.5e. I never cared for what they did to this poor race in 3.5e, turning them into dumb brutes little better than monsters, but I'm glad those days are over. While Con was a tempting proposition for a tertiary, I felt like it didn't offer the half-orc anything that Str doesn't already give them, whereas Wis is a very understandable stat for them and opens up a lot of unorthodox combinations and the ability to play a noble savage who has crawled above the brutality of his race and past. It's a common half-orc character, so we should support it.

Longtooth - Wis + Str/Con
The two shifter races posed an interesting conundrum. What makes a shifter tick? What makes it a unique race worth playing? Is it the animal-like features, is it their lycanthropic history, or what about their innate tie to the primal spirits? Ultimately I decided to emphasize the last -- as interesting as a race of animal men are, it feels very two dimensional to play them as just that. And so I decided that Wis should be the primary stat for the two shifter races with their secondaries representing the unique and varied breeds within the shifter stock. The longtooths, being the more physically fit, get access to Str and Con for their secondary, allowing them to serve as the soldiers and brutes within shifter tribes.

Razorclaw - Wis + Dex/Cha
For the razorclaws it was a little harder, even after determining the longtooths. At first I thought to give them Str as their tertiary stat, but the more I thought about it the less I liked it because it just seemed so similar to the longtooths. After a little while, though, I remembered a little nugget from the old 3.5e book Races of Eberron -- the moontouched, a rare breed of shifters with an extremely innate connection to the moon and all things primal. These shifters would inevitably be ushered into the castes of priests, druids, and other spellcasters, leaving the menial tasks of day to day life to other shifters with less precious gifts. And from there it was obvious which tertiary the razorclaw shifters should have. Trained from birth to be powerful spellcasters and leaders of their villages, the moontouched would most definitely have a Cha bonus to aid them in their divine spellcasting (and occasionally arcane spellcasting through inherent sorcerous power or a pact with a feylord) and in their roles as leaders of the shifters.

Bladeling - Dex + Con/Wis
The bladelings are kind of a bland race with not a lot of support to them and very little flavor. Still, they're soldiers made by Bane himself to fight in his armies waging their campaigns of eternal war on Chernoggar. A physical stat is an obvious fit given their role as soldiers, and with their metallic theme I feel like Con is a great choice. I honestly wonder why they even have Wis as a stat. It just doesn't seem to fit them at all.

Drow - Cha + Str/Dex
The utter face of evil, drow are the archetypal bullies of D&D. Unlike their elven brothers and eladrin sisters, I feel like their second stat actually eclipses the typical fey grace prescribed to the three races. Their unbelievably forceful and sinister personas just outweigh their innate fey grace, making Cha their primary stat and Dex their secondary. In fact, some drow don't even try at all to cultivate that grace any longer -- their culture just doesn't value it as anything more than a tool, and who needs one tool when you could have another? I feel Str/Cha is a great combination for drow, both flavorfully and mechanically, making him a masterful warlord or soldier to march forth and fulfill the will of an increasingly tyrannical Priestesshood of Lolth. It's a great combination for a male drow, whose only hope of achieving any status at all is on the battlefield fighting for his city, his state, and his insane god.

Genasi - Int + Str/Con
As elemental beings with an inextricable link to the arcane, genasi were not difficult to determine at all. Int was easily their best stat, aiding genasi on all their classly endeavors, and Con fit the race like a glove for the more internally minded genasi who chose to manifest their racial fortitude from within instead of without.

Gnoll - Con + Str/Dex
The beasts of butchery were similarly easy to stat out. While some gnolls choose to approach the world with a more subtle and tricky method, others drink freely from the abyssal fountainhead their sire Yeenoghu provides them with. Such gnolls are terrifying worldly representations of demonic might and strength, and Str/Con is the perfect stat combo for them.

Kalashtar - Cha + Int/Wis
The archetypal race of empaths, kalashtar are undoubtedly Cha primary as a race, and being one of the most established psionic races in the game Int just slides right into their array seamlessly and with no questions asked.

Revenant - Con + Dex/Wis
The revenants are fairly odd birds, as far as birds go, but despite their strange flavor I would firmly state that Con represents their primary stat. Their undeathly fortitude is easily the biggest aspect of their collective character. For their tertiary stat I had to think a bit, but I feel like their divine connection to the Raven Queen and their morbid past-life experiences make Wis a shoe in to the race. After all, if you've already died once, you're going to be more cautious about repeating that mistake.

Shadar-kai - Dex + Con/Int
The shadar-kai were like the dragonborn and eladrin -- they had a definite tertiary stat, but no definite primary. Neither Int nor Dex really jumped out to me in their flavor and backstory. While both stats definitely describe them, neither ultimately established preference over the other. In the end I chose Dex merely for gamist purposes. I wanted to provide a Dex/Con race that is a clean flavorful fit for the assassin build that use those stats -- the other three Dex/Con races were all kind of messy (Bladeling, Revenants, Gnolls) whereas shadar-kai are an absolutely *perfect* flavor fit for assassins.

Warforged - Con + Str/Int
At first, warforged seemed difficult. Given their mass produced factory standard creation, it seemed almost impossible for a warforged to have any other stat combination beyond Str/Con. And then I remembered the psi-forged, and all was good. I would definitely state that Con is a better primary than Str given their construct-like endurance, and a psi-forged would undoubtedly have Int as their secondary stat. And so it was settled.


Strength primary
Dragonborn - Str + Int/Cha
Goliath - Str + Con/Dex
Minotaur - Str + Con/Wis
Half-Orc - Str + Dex/Wis

Con primary
Dwarf - Con + Int/Wis
Gnoll - Con + Str/Dex
Revenant - Con + Dex/Wis
Warforged - Con + Str/Int

Dex primary
Eladrin - Dex + Int/Cha
Elf - Dex + Str/Wis
Halfling - Dex + Wis/Cha
Bladeling - Dex + Con/Wis
Githzerai - Dex + Int/Wis
Shadar-kai - Dex + Con/Int

Int primary
Gnome - Int + Dex/Cha
Genasi - Int + Str/Con
Shardmind - Int + Wis/Cha

Wis primary
Deva - Wis + Int/Cha
Longtooth - Wis + Str/Con
Razorclaw - Wis + Dex/Cha
Wilden - Wis + Con/Dex

Cha primary
Half-Elf - Cha + Str/Con
Tiefling - Cha + Con/Int
Drow - Cha + Str/Dex
Changeling - Cha + Dex/Int
Kalashtar - Cha + Int/Wis


Str/Con - 4 - Warforged, Minotaur, Goliath, Gnoll
Str/Dex - 3 - Half-Orc, Elf, Goliath
Str/Int - 2 - Genasi, Dragonborn
Str/Wis - 3 - Longtooth, Minotaur, Half-Orc
Str/Cha - 3 - Dragonborn, Half-Elf, Drow
Con/Dex - 4 - Gnoll, Revenant, Bladeling, Shadar-kai
Con/Int - 3 - Dwarf, Warforged, Genasi
Con/Wis - 4 - Dwarf, Wilden, Longtooth, Revenant
Con/Cha - 2 - Half-Elf, Tiefling
Dex/Int - 4 - Eladrin, Shadar-kai, Githzerai, Gnome
Dex/Wis - 6 - Elf, Razorclaw, Githzerai, Wilden, Bladeling, Halfling
Dex/Cha - 4 - Drow, Halfling, Changeling, Eladrin
Int/Wis - 2 - Deva, Shardmind
Int/Cha - 5 - Changeling, Tiefling, Gnome, Shardmind, Deva
Wis/Cha - 3 - Kalashtar, Deva, Razorclaw

Total number of races available with each stat (including humans) compared to without the houserule:
Str - 16 / 8
Con - 18 / 9
Dex - 22 / 13
Int - 17 / 9
Wis - 18 / 12
Cha -  18 / 9



Anyways, to make a long post short, what is everyone's thoughts on this houserule? Too much? Too powerful? Not worth the time it took to make? Anything you would add, or any detail you disagree with?

Thanks for reading, and please examine and critique honestly!
"One skilled at battle takes a stand in the ground of no defeat And so does not lose the enemy's defeat. Therefore, the victorious military is first victorious and after that does battle. The defeated military first does battle and after that seeks victory." -- the Art of War
I like your idea, and the combinations you've made do make sense.  I wouldn't doubt that, with the new design, wizards actually puts out a DDI article with just such a thing.
I've been doing much the same this past afternoon, though my choices in ability scores are different.

However, reading your arrays made me thing a bit about some choices I made, and I think better of a couple now.  However, I must vastly disagree with you on some of them.

Since this is a House Rules thread, however, I'll spare arguing and make my own thread. 

I don't know what feedback I can give back though, besides the comparison to my arrays.

Before posting, why not ask yourself, What Would Wrecan Say?

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A great man once said "If WotC put out boxes full of free money there'd still be people complaining about how it's folded." – Boraxe

I would love to hear your thoughts on the stat combos. Some of them were intentionally out there, and some of them were made for some slightly gamist reasons (dwarves, for example). And in a lot of cases I tried have the third stat describe a small sub-race or race within a race -- for example, while most warforged are not particularly intelligent, the sub-race of psi-forged are very intelligent, leading the warforged's tertiary to be Int. On another example, most razorclaw shifters are decidedly uncharismatic, but the mystical moontouched sub-race that act as the shifter's de-facto leaders and spellcasters would be, so Cha is their tertiary to describe that sub-race.
"One skilled at battle takes a stand in the ground of no defeat And so does not lose the enemy's defeat. Therefore, the victorious military is first victorious and after that does battle. The defeated military first does battle and after that seeks victory." -- the Art of War
Your lists improve on RAW, but I like giving players even more options than that: my rule is Ask and Ye Shall Receive, with only occasional provisos.
My take on them is here.  I included some differences noted between mine and yours.

Before posting, why not ask yourself, What Would Wrecan Say?

IMAGE(http://images.onesite.com/community.wizards.com/user/marandahir/thumb/9ac5d970f3a59330212c73baffe4c556.png?v=90000)

A great man once said "If WotC put out boxes full of free money there'd still be people complaining about how it's folded." – Boraxe

EDIT: Sorry if any of this comes off a bit jerk-ey.  It wasn't my intent.  It's just been a long day, and I probably should have held off on posting until tomorrow.  But meh, too late now.  This thing is too long to re-type.

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I really don't think we needed two threads for this.  Exact.  Concept.  Is there an unwritten rule that I may have missed, wherein one does not say "I don't like your approach, here's how I'd do it differently" within the original thread? 

I've started a response a few times today, and each time hit a "I'm really not being that helpful - let's just scratch the whole thing" wall, and deleted it.  This time, I'll try to push through.

To start out with, these are exactly the kind of justifications that I loathe:
Some of them were intentionally out there, and some of them were made for some slightly gamist reasons (dwarves, for example). And in a lot of cases I tried have the third stat describe a small sub-race or race within a race


"X should have +Y, because I want it to be good at Z" just... rubs me the wrong way.  In addition, rolling disparate racial concepts (even if they were subraces) into existing races doesn't really "fit" the existing race - it feels like reaching, and slapping on a third ability score just to do it.

And that's kind of where my general criticism of this idea rests, at the moment.  I don't feel that the extra ability options fit some existing races - there's just no real reason for some of them to have a bonus to a different stat.  I'm all for the bonuses having a good "fit", if you will - avoiding adding things just to fill gaps or make certain races better at certain classes.

So, on to the actual race lists I guess...
This is longer than I thought it would be...


Dragonborn: I think Str + Con/Cha would fit their fluff better, but I think it would possibly synergize too well with their racial features.  I think Wis fits a "proud warrior race" better than Int.  I don't think Int fits Dragonborn well at all, as presented, and I don't like them taking over TacLords in addition to InspLords.  Dragonborn is one of the races that I would leave as-is.

Dwarf: I don't think there's any support for +Int, at all.  I think +Str would be better, but as you point out, I wouldn't want them being uber-fighters either.  I don't see a reason not to give them +Cha, beyond it being penalized last edition.  Dwarf is one of the races that I would leave as-is.

Eladrin: I'm fine with Dex + Int/Cha, though I would personally prefer Dex + Int/Wis (they're described as being "perceptive").  I don't find them to be any more prone to Charisma than Dwarves.

Elf: I... Hm.  I would tolerate Dex + Str/Wis, but I feel like it doesn't really fit Elves as presented.  There's not really a better fit, though.  Maybe Dex + Con/Wis.  Actually, that would make them "mesh" better with Half-Elves, which I like.  I'd go with Dex + Con/Wis over Dex + Str/Wis.

Half-Elf: My first impression would be to go with Cha + Con/Dex.  A "gut" thing.  Really though I don't see any reason why they would have +Dex - I'd lean more toward Cha + Con/Int.  Again, just a "gut" thing.

Halfling: I'm fine with Dex + Wis/Cha.  I think it's an obvious choice.

Tiefling: I'd actually go with Int + Con/Cha.  More of the Tiefling descriptors emphasize their cunning and slyness than emphasize their actual charisma.

Deva: I'm fine with Wis + Int/Cha.  I think it's an obvious choice.

Gnome: I'm fine with Int + Dex/Cha.  While I think Int + Con/Cha is another option (and I really don't care if races overlap), based on prior edition considerations, Dex seems to fit the new gnomes better.

Goliath: I'd go Str + Con/Wis.  I don't think there's any real support for Dex (their athleticism is all described as being very strength-ey), and I think "driven and reliable" lend themselves better toward Wis.  I'd even consider Con + Str/Wis, but I think their size alone warrants the Str primary.

Half-Orc: I think Str + Dex/Wis may be the best fit, but I don't think it's a good one.  Their descriptors ("brash, short-tempered, impulsive, uninhibited") don't scream "Wise" to me - quite the opposite, really.  Str + Con/Dex is an option, I think.

Shifter(Longtooth): {Not Familiar Enough to Comment / Don't Care for the Race}

Shifter(Razorclaw): {Not Familiar Enough to Comment / Don't Care for the Race}

Bladeling(?): {Not Familiar Enough to Comment / Don't Care for the Race} [Isn't this a monster race?  I didn't know it had any support in MotP.]

Drow: I... really disagree on this one.  I'm not sure where you're getting Cha + Str/Dex, at all.  I'm okay with picking Cha as the primary, but if you did that, I'd go Cha + Dex/Wis.  I think Wis is a fairly good fit for a "pragmatic" race (or maybe Int would be better).

Genasi: I'd go with Str primary, as their physical strength is far more emphasized than their mental faculties.  Beyond that, I have no idea.  Con seems fine, but really anything other than Wisdom would seem to do - they're not really described in a way that emphasizes any other abilities.  If I had to pick one, I might go Str + Dex/Int.  However, Genasi is one of the races that I would leave as-is.

Gnoll: {Not Familiar Enough to Comment / Don't Care for the Race}

Kalashtar: I'd add Dex to their options, because of "Graceful."  That means I would go with Cha + Dex/Wis.

Revenant: {Not Familiar Enough to Comment / Don't Care for the Race}

Shadar-Kai: {Not Familiar Enough to Comment / Don't Care for the Race}

Warforged: This is another that I just... I understand your decision, but I strongly disagree with it.  The Warforged, as they are presented, really have nothing to do with the Psiforged (if anything, I think it would be presented through feat options, much like Dusk Elves).  Int is just not supported, at all.  Cha I think we can eliminate.  That leaves Dex and Wis.  While I'd personally pull for Dex (I feel it would fit with their "made as weapons" schtick to be all physical stats), I think their descriptions actually support Wis - "Alert, Curious, Practical", along with the descriptions of some of the Warforged approaches to religion and philosophy.  I would choose Str as the primary, because their other racial features and powers adequately reflect their "toughness".  So, in the end, I'd prefer Str + Con/Wis.  However, Warforged is one of the races that I would leave as-is.


Anyways, those are my 2 (hundred!) cents.
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Yes, I am expressing my opinions (even complaints - le gasp!) about the current iteration of the play-test that we actually have in front of us. No, I'm not going to wait for you to tell me when it's okay to start expressing my concerns (unless you are WotC). (And no, my comments on this forum are not of the same tone or quality as my actual survey feedback.)
A Psion for Next (Playable Draft) A Barbarian for Next (Brainstorming Still)
"X should have +Y, because I want it to be good at Z" just... rubs me the wrong way.

I agree. It's completely terrible reasoning.
For example, Tiefling shouldn't have CON just because you want them to be good at being Infernal Warlocks. They should have CON because they're flavored as being hardier and tougher than other races. If they're not flavored as being hardier and tougher than other races, then they shouldn't get a CON bonus. From what I've read of Tiefling, STR or DEX make just as much sense for Tieflings as CON does.
Likewise, Kalashtar shouldn't have INT just because you want them to be good at being Psions. They should have INT because they're flavored as being smarter and branier than other races. If they're not flavored as being smarter and branier than other races, then they shouldn't get an INT bonus. Kalashtar are flavored as being graceful, so give them DEX. Incidentally, this makes them good Monks, which is great, but again, that's incidental.

Why, yes, as a matter of fact I am the Unfailing Arbiter of All That Is Good Design (Even More So Than The Actual Developers) TM Speaking of things that were badly designed, please check out this thread for my Minotaur fix. What have the critics said, you ask? "If any of my players ask to play a Minotaur, I'm definitely offering this as an alternative to the official version." - EmpactWB "If I ever feel like playing a Minotaur I'll know where to look!" - Undrave "WoTC if you are reading this - please take this guy's advice." - Ferol_Debtor_of_Torm "Really full of win. A minotaur that is actually attractive for more than just melee classes." - Cpt_Micha Also, check out my recent GENASI variant! If you've ever wished that your Fire Genasi could actually set stuff on fire, your Water Genasi could actually swim, or your Wind Genasi could at least glide, then look no further. Finally, check out my OPTIONS FOR EVERYONE article, an effort to give unique support to the races that WotC keeps forgetting about. Includes new racial feature options for the Changeling, Deva, Githzerai, Gnoll, Gnome, Goliath, Half-Orc, Kalashtar, Minotaur, Shadar-Kai, Thri-Kreen, Warforged and more!
posted in both threads (Marandahir's and Khift's)
// comperison of both lists, and which I prefer

Dragonborn: I prefer Dragonborn - Str + Int/Cha
- Marandahir is correct when he reads that 'Player's Handbook Races: Dragonborn' says intelligence isn't their stick. however, that is because the book is written for RAW dragonborns. Take the "sometimes even delve into the profane studies of the Warlock". Thats only because their stats synergize for it. No flavor attached.
- Mechanically, RAW dragonborn wizard is the prime example that not all classes get good stuff from their race
- Mechanically, RAW dragonborn already has a good synergy with CON
- In the good old days, you coudn't outsmart a dragon.
that's why Int gets my preference over con

Eladrin: I prefer charisma over strength
I mean we're talking about high elves here. strength? strength???? high elves as strong as minotaurs or dragonborn, seriously?

Gnoll. I prefere Con + Str/Dex over +2 Dexterity, +2 Strength or Constitution
Gnolls are humanoid Hyena's, who are known to eat carrion. gnolls without con seem like dragons without strength

Goliath: prefering Str + Con/Dex
I indeed see them as athletic

Tiefling: I prefer Cha + Con/Int
When thinking of demons and devils, charisma (maybe not beauty, but persuasiveness) comes more to mind then intelligence

Genasi, Shifter: don't realy know - I never played them, nor have a a feel about them
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I'm hereby declaring this the One True Thread, because it's just silly to have two of them, and this one was first.

but you did still make other mistakes stemming from the same reason, the Tiefling potentially being one of them, and I say "potentially" because from what I know, CON is exactly as justifyable for them as STR or DEX or WIS, so the choice isn't necessarily wrong , but the reasoning behind it definitely is.


Tieflings are really weak on any description that doesn't fit Int/Cha.  If I had to give them a third stat (see my issues with the whole concept in my first post), I'd lean toward Con because of the descriptions given for "normal" Tiefling life - they're described as "survivors", growing up in the roughest parts of town and leaning to make a place for themselves.  It's a weak argument for Con (because they survive using their wits and wiles), but really it's just as good as an argument for any other third score for them.
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A Psion for Next (Playable Draft) A Barbarian for Next (Brainstorming Still)
I'd lean toward Con because of the descriptions given for "normal" Tiefling life - they're described as "survivors", growing up in the roughest parts of town and leaning to make a place for themselves.  It's a weak argument for Con (because they survive using their wits and wiles), but really it's just as good as an argument for any other third score for them.

And you know what? I totally accept that. That sounds like perfectly reasonable reasoning. What isn't reasonable reasoning is "I want them to have CON because they should make rad Warlocks!" That's exactly on par was saying that "I want them to have STR because they should make rad Warlords!" or "I want them to have DEX because they should make rad Rogues!"

There are other issues up there, in both threads, but the Tiefling issue is just the easiest one to point out beacause people are always so quick to say CON for a completely ridiculous reason. You know, there's a reason that they didn't get CON to begin with. It's because ability score boosts should be based on how the race itself is flavored, not on what classes are typical for it. Tieflings get INT and CHA because they're flavored as being intelligent and charismatic above being flavored as being tough, not because they wanted to screw over your Infernal Warlock.

Why, yes, as a matter of fact I am the Unfailing Arbiter of All That Is Good Design (Even More So Than The Actual Developers) TM Speaking of things that were badly designed, please check out this thread for my Minotaur fix. What have the critics said, you ask? "If any of my players ask to play a Minotaur, I'm definitely offering this as an alternative to the official version." - EmpactWB "If I ever feel like playing a Minotaur I'll know where to look!" - Undrave "WoTC if you are reading this - please take this guy's advice." - Ferol_Debtor_of_Torm "Really full of win. A minotaur that is actually attractive for more than just melee classes." - Cpt_Micha Also, check out my recent GENASI variant! If you've ever wished that your Fire Genasi could actually set stuff on fire, your Water Genasi could actually swim, or your Wind Genasi could at least glide, then look no further. Finally, check out my OPTIONS FOR EVERYONE article, an effort to give unique support to the races that WotC keeps forgetting about. Includes new racial feature options for the Changeling, Deva, Githzerai, Gnoll, Gnome, Goliath, Half-Orc, Kalashtar, Minotaur, Shadar-Kai, Thri-Kreen, Warforged and more!
And you know what? I totally accept that. That sounds like perfectly reasonable reasoning.


Reasonable, yeah, but really weak.  And while I'm totally on the same page as you with your post, I think the "really weak justifications" are the next step that bothers me.

A lot of the races just don't fit with a third ability score, as written.  Some have a leaning in their material (as is, I think, the case with Halflings, for example), but for most the best one has to work with is a few abilities that don't work.  Many of these wind up like the Tiefling, where really you're just scrambling to justify the ability choice you already wanted (unless it's precluded by the text) - or even to justify the race getting a bonus to a third ability score at all.
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Yes, I am expressing my opinions (even complaints - le gasp!) about the current iteration of the play-test that we actually have in front of us. No, I'm not going to wait for you to tell me when it's okay to start expressing my concerns (unless you are WotC). (And no, my comments on this forum are not of the same tone or quality as my actual survey feedback.)
A Psion for Next (Playable Draft) A Barbarian for Next (Brainstorming Still)
Oh, I definitely agree. That bothers me too. =/

I just meant that weak reasoning was better than ridiculous reasoning. That weak reasoning needs to be brought up a lot of the time is another problem entirely, but yes, it's definitely a problem.

Why, yes, as a matter of fact I am the Unfailing Arbiter of All That Is Good Design (Even More So Than The Actual Developers) TM Speaking of things that were badly designed, please check out this thread for my Minotaur fix. What have the critics said, you ask? "If any of my players ask to play a Minotaur, I'm definitely offering this as an alternative to the official version." - EmpactWB "If I ever feel like playing a Minotaur I'll know where to look!" - Undrave "WoTC if you are reading this - please take this guy's advice." - Ferol_Debtor_of_Torm "Really full of win. A minotaur that is actually attractive for more than just melee classes." - Cpt_Micha Also, check out my recent GENASI variant! If you've ever wished that your Fire Genasi could actually set stuff on fire, your Water Genasi could actually swim, or your Wind Genasi could at least glide, then look no further. Finally, check out my OPTIONS FOR EVERYONE article, an effort to give unique support to the races that WotC keeps forgetting about. Includes new racial feature options for the Changeling, Deva, Githzerai, Gnoll, Gnome, Goliath, Half-Orc, Kalashtar, Minotaur, Shadar-Kai, Thri-Kreen, Warforged and more!

To OP: If it aint broke; don't fix it. Some of these races don't need variations that make up half the race. So the only other conclusion I can see is that which Crimson and Greatfrito seem to have reached: gamist reasons. 

Rather than making EVERY race have a V-shape, only those which have thematically applicable variations should have such things. That would bring life to a setting, and add variations that the players might could use to make a kickbutt example of his class, but regardless they should expect the those stat bonuses to be a reflection of that race's character. and more importantly not to be based on anything other than a character-related reason.

A good example of a missing variation, is the elf; where's the wild elf?
One should be wis/dex, and the other should be str/dex. That makes perfect sense for the need to differentiate between two variations of elf.

However, having a dwarf that is con/int dwarf....it begs the question..why?? Best not to use something like this unless you plan to introduce a race of Dworks (dork dwarfs), that are hardy yet studious. Undecided meh..nm that idea sucks...

Locke: [after mugging a merchant for his clothes] It's a little tight, but the price was right.
With the new PHB3, [snip] I had to houserule it.

Consider these points when thinking about v-shaped races:

- First, v-shaped races are very flavorful and offer fertile ground from which to differentiate similar races. [snip]

- Second, the v-shaped race system adds huge mechanical depth to the system. [snip]

- Third, this system really opens the game up to practical optimization. [snip]

- Fourth, a lot of races in the 4e system really don't make sense without having access to a third stat to complete them. [snip]

Enough prattle. Time for the races!

[snip]

Anyways, to make a long post short, what is everyone's thoughts on this houserule? Too much? Too powerful? Not worth the time it took to make? Anything you would add, or any detail you disagree with?

Thanks for reading, and please examine and critique honestly!

Loved this thread, but i'd make a few different choices for the optional stats as follows:

Dragonborn - Str + Int/Cha (no change)

Dwarf - Con + Int/Wis (no change)

Eladrin - Dex + Int/Cha (no change)

Elf - Dex + Wis/Cha
The elf should have slightly improved access to the feypact warlock line-up by having an optional Charisma bonus.

Half-Elf - Cha + Con/Dex
The half-elves should be able to access their elven heritage better by having an optional Dex bonus.

Halfling - Dex + Wis/Cha (no change)

Tiefling - Con + Int/Cha
The tieflings choosing an infernal warlock build, a wizard of defense or summoning... those seem better optional choices than others. I'd say that the silver tongue doesn't need to be a racial stereotype as much as the intellect ought to be. Even so, I placed the Con as a solid bonus to offer better confirmation of the race as an infernalock master race.

Deva - Wis + Int/Con
While I'm not certain I'd actually want to offer a shifting stat to Deva, I'd offer the added inner fortitude before an added inner will power. My first consideration here is to offer access to vestige pact warlocks. Another key offering i think this would create is better access to deva fighters or battleminds. But offering a Wis/Cha + Int/Con could create Devas with a wide variety of background mythology.

Gnome - Int + Dex/Cha (no change)

Goliath - Str + Con/Dex (no change)

Half-Orc - Str + Dex/Con 
Similar to my comment regarding half-elves having access to their elven heritage in Dex option, I think that the half-orc deserves access to their orc heritage through a Con bonus option. Though the Str + Con would essentially make them full orc with a slightly altered racial ability. Personally, I'm not certain where they pick up the Dex bonus and would just as quickly make them a Str + Con race as orcs are.

Longtooth - Str + Wis/Con
The two shifter races are better defined not by their inherent wisdom connecting them to an animist world view. (This could depend on background fluff of the racial creation myths.) To me they are defined by their physical characteristics, then the mental characteristics. I'd offer this as a way of recognizing that some are simply not any wiser for their animal closeness, but just a beefier and stronger race by some mix of humanoid and animal traits.

Razorclaw - Dex + Wis/Con
As above.

Bladeling - Dex + Con/Wis (no change)

Drow - Dex + Cha/Int
*The utter face of evil*
I truly hate the fluff of drow and refuse to give it full dignity; how could a culture such as theirs survive more than a small number of generations? It is ludricrous! Regardless, with the elven bloodline, I felt that Dex is a necessary bonus; however the shifting stat is harder as I'd like to give them fantastic access to the dark warlock pact, deception or wand wizard, assassin, paladin, avenger, and psion. In fact there are others that I'd also like to give them better access to as well. For me, quite possibly the hardest to reimagine is the drow.

Genasi - Int + Str/Con (no change)
I can imagine this in other ways as well, but chose to not derail from your idea. I think a viable option may also include Con + Int/Wis.

Gnoll - Con + Str/Dex (no change)

Kalashtar - Cha + Int/Wis (no change)
Here again I think this could be reimagined to allow for battlemind to be among the strongest class choices. Perhaps what I'd most want to see is Con/Cha + Int/Wis giving access points to three psionic archetypes that feel most appropriate.

Revenant - Con + Dex/Wis (no change)

Shadar-kai - Dex + Con/Int (no change)

Warforged - Con + Str/Int (no change)
It is possible that a Con +Str/Int/Wis could offer those looking to reimagine these as some sort of primal manifestation rather than an arcane or as you mentioned, the psi-forged. But, that is fairly well taken in the Wilden and that is the largest reason that I didn't place that as a change.

Well, I didn't go thinking through lots of changes, but a few stood out for me differently.

Just as a thought regarding Half-Elves and Half-Orcs. They are mixed from a race that currently has stated bonuses supposedly with a race that can choose a +2 to any stat. What if the Half-Elf were given Cha + +2 to any stat and Half-Orc were given Str + +2 to any stat in order to amply reflect the mythology and lore behind the mixed bloodlines or whatnot?
"X should have +Y, because I want it to be good at Z" just... rubs me the wrong way.

I agree. It's completely terrible reasoning.
For example, Tiefling shouldn't have CON just because you want them to be good at being Infernal Warlocks. They should have CON because they're flavored as being hardier and tougher than other races. If they're not flavored as being hardier and tougher than other races, then they shouldn't get a CON bonus. From what I've read of Tiefling, STR or DEX make just as much sense for Tieflings as CON does.
Likewise, Kalashtar shouldn't have INT just because you want them to be good at being Psions. They should have INT because they're flavored as being smarter and branier than other races. If they're not flavored as being smarter and branier than other races, then they shouldn't get an INT bonus. Kalashtar are flavored as being graceful, so give them DEX. Incidentally, this makes them good Monks, which is great, but again, that's incidental.


I think this brings up an interesting concept--do you alter mechanics to reflect the fluff, or do you write the fluff to reflect mechanics?

in the case of the tieflings and infernalock, I'll just as quickly change the mechanics of the race to fit the fluff as infernalocks. I'd similarly alter kalashtar's mechanics to give them a good fit for psion as a reflection of fluff.

however, in the case of goliaths with an optional dex bonus, I'd opt to alter the fluff to reflect the dexterity by making reference to the unmatched agility in mountain climbing as well as superior strength in mountain climbing. (honestly, show me how agility doesn't assist climbers?) Though mechanically that could improve their skill in theivery and stealth, which don't follow the fluff of the race very closely. Similarly, the fluff seems to speak of wisdom, but that doesn't have to be the focus of the mechanics.

Good point to make, but I disagree. In some cases, the fluff can be adjusted to reflect a change in mechanics. In other cases the fluff can be best reflected as is with a change in mechanics.
Your lists improve on RAW, but I like giving players even more options than that: my rule is Ask and Ye Shall Receive, with only occasional provisos.


Always a fan of DM-decision. Like^

Locke: [after mugging a merchant for his clothes] It's a little tight, but the price was right.
To start out with, these are exactly the kind of justifications that I loathe:
Some of them were intentionally out there, and some of them were made for some slightly gamist reasons (dwarves, for example). And in a lot of cases I tried have the third stat describe a small sub-race or race within a race


"X should have +Y, because I want it to be good at Z" just... rubs me the wrong way.  In addition, rolling disparate racial concepts (even if they were subraces) into existing races doesn't really "fit" the existing race - it feels like reaching, and slapping on a third ability score just to do it.

For the first part, I completely agree, and I really, really tried to avoid making such decisions while making this thread. Still, there were two scenarios where I did fall back to gamist reasons -- the first and most obvious being the dwarves, where the actual fear of overpowering them make me hesitate on giving them Str, and the second being races that just did not have an explicit tertiary stat -- if I couldn't find an obvious one within the race's own fluff, I sought out a class or build that I felt fit the race well but was poor for them mechanically. For the most part I really tried to avoid choosing stats for a race mechanically if there was an obvious flavor reason to have a different stat.

For the second part, though, I vehemently disagree. Call it personal preference, but I adore sub-races and am rather sad at 4e's complete abandonment of them. While I agree that 3.5e went way over the line with them and that a sub-race does not deserve a full racial writeup of it's own I would love a mechanical distinction for some of the more common sub-races and I see this system as just that. We can agree to disagree on the subject because it's obviously a preference -- I like sub-races, you don't -- but it's definitely something that was a key motivator for making this houserule.

And that's kind of where my general criticism of this idea rests, at the moment.  I don't feel that the extra ability options fit some existing races - there's just no real reason for some of them to have a bonus to a different stat.  I'm all for the bonuses having a good "fit", if you will - avoiding adding things just to fill gaps or make certain races better at certain classes.

At the same time though, who says a race can't grow to hold a new stat? Fluff is mutable is it not? I'm not advocating this being handed down by WotC on the March errata, you know, I'm making this for my home use. One of my design goals was to update every previous race to the v-shaped system, and yeah in a couple circumstances none of the 4 stats left really fit, but instead of seeing that as a reason to stop I see it as a perfect opportunity to go further and add another layer to the race. To define it further, and give it a little more interest. I suppose it's another matter of preference -- I see it as improving the work, you see it as unnecessary tinkering.

Dragonborn:
I think Str + Con/Cha would fit their fluff better, but I think it would possibly synergize too well with their racial features.  I think Wis fits a "proud warrior race" better than Int.  I don't think Int fits Dragonborn well at all, as presented, and I don't like them taking over TacLords in addition to InspLords.  Dragonborn is one of the races that I would leave as-is.
Marandihr pointed out on the other thread that the Dragonborn book really emphasized Con as their third racial stat, and I could definitely see that (although I admittedly haven't read that book yet). Int, I think, fits dragons themselves great as a stat, but maybe not necessarily the dragonborn. That said, what would you feel about Cha + Str/Con as a stat spread? I just get the feeling that Cha/Con fits them better than Str/Con does -- all things aside, they're still dragons, and dragons should still be fearsome as hell.

Dwarf:
I don't think there's any support for +Int, at all.  I think +Str would be better, but as you point out, I wouldn't want them being uber-fighters either.  I don't see a reason not to give them +Cha, beyond it being penalized last edition.  Dwarf is one of the races that I would leave as-is.
Well, there isn't any heavy support for int. I mean, there's a little bit, but it all comes from class descriptions and not racial descriptions. (For some reason, dwarves are one of the most common arcane spellcasters pictured in D&D books.) That said, the real question here is, should balance even enter the picture here? Access to Str would absolutely super-charge the race in many spots, but is that necessarily a bad thing? Maybe it isn't. I don't know, I'd have to think about it some more.

Eladrin:
I'm fine with Dex + Int/Cha, though I would personally prefer Dex + Int/Wis (they're described as being "perceptive").  I don't find them to be any more prone to Charisma than Dwarves.
The real argument for eladrin and Cha is that the eladrin are the archetypal Lords of the Fey, and the Lords of the Fey are said to be extremely charismatic. That the eladrin didn't have Cha as one of their first two stats is a huge disconnect for me between their fluff and their mechanics.

Elf:
I... Hm.  I would tolerate Dex + Str/Wis, but I feel like it doesn't really fit Elves as presented.  There's not really a better fit, though.  Maybe Dex + Con/Wis.  Actually, that would make them "mesh" better with Half-Elves, which I like.  I'd go with Dex + Con/Wis over Dex + Str/Wis.
This one is sub-race thing. I like wild elves, and Str/Dex is perfect for them. It also fits Valenar elves perfectly, and I love them to death.

Half-Elf:
My first impression would be to go with Cha + Con/Dex.  A "gut" thing.  Really though I don't see any reason why they would have +Dex - I'd lean more toward Cha + Con/Int.  Again, just a "gut" thing.
I can definitely see Dex, and in all honesty you're probably right. They are still elves, and that does push them towards Dex significantly. I don't see how Int would be any less of an ass-pull than Str was, though.

Gnome:
I'm fine with Int + Dex/Cha.  While I think Int + Con/Cha is another option (and I really don't care if races overlap), based on prior edition considerations, Dex seems to fit the new gnomes better.
Con was definitely a consideration, and in the past it would've been an easy fit, but the modern gnome is just so very Dex it couldn't be passed up.

Goliath:
I'd go Str + Con/Wis.  I don't think there's any real support for Dex (their athleticism is all described as being very strength-ey), and I think "driven and reliable" lend themselves better toward Wis.  I'd even consider Con + Str/Wis, but I think their size alone warrants the Str primary.
The big issue I have with giving goliaths Wis is that it puts them right in line with far too many other races out there. I can definitely see it as viable, but there's just too many Str/Wis races that only get that label because they're tribal and stuff. Dex, on the other hand, I feel can definitely be justified within their pursuit of physical perfection, and allows them to break the mold of the gentle giant character and become a race that is not only BIG, but FAST. That's something that this edition really lacks. All our fast races are small, and all our big races are slow. But here, instead of making the goliath into yet-another-tribal-Str/Con/Wis race were move them into a completely untouched archetype not represented at all that nonetheless fits their fluff quite well.

Half-Orc:
I think Str + Dex/Wis may be the best fit, but I don't think it's a good one.  Their descriptors ("brash, short-tempered, impulsive, uninhibited") don't scream "Wise" to me - quite the opposite, really.  Str + Con/Dex is an option, I think.
Str + Con/Dex is definitely an option and is a perfectly viable interpretation of the half-orc, yeah. However, there's a lot to be said about shamanistic 'noble savage' orcs and half-orcs, not only within D&D (see Eberron, the setting I play in) but within popular culture at large. While I hate to invoke WoW, this is one situation where it's worth bringing up. It's a trope that is gaining tread fast in gamer culture, and I don't see why it shouldn't be entertained.

Bladeling(?):
{Not Familiar Enough to Comment / Don't Care for the Race} [Isn't this a monster race?  I didn't know it had any support in MotP.]
They've got, like, a feat. Given that monsters can't take feats, that means they're a player race in my eyes. Not that anyone in my group will ever even think about playing one, and with good reason.

Drow:
I... really disagree on this one.  I'm not sure where you're getting Cha + Str/Dex, at all.  I'm okay with picking Cha as the primary, but if you did that, I'd go Cha + Dex/Wis.  I think Wis is a fairly good fit for a "pragmatic" race (or maybe Int would be better).
Brutality. One of the key aspects of drow and their culture is how utterly brutal they are. Between the tyranny they endure at home, the constant slave capturing and trading, and their semi-militant culture I couldn't disagree more. Str is just a perfect fit for a disenfranchised and militant drow male. Additionally, there's practically more pictures of drow in heavy armor than there is light. Every other drow supplement has all kinds of fighters, warlords, paladins, etc. walking around with sword, shield, and heavy armor. It's about time for those characters to stop sucking.

Genasi:
I'd go with Str primary, as their physical strength is far more emphasized than their mental faculties.  Beyond that, I have no idea.  Con seems fine, but really anything other than Wisdom would seem to do - they're not really described in a way that emphasizes any other abilities.  If I had to pick one, I might go Str + Dex/Int.  However, Genasi is one of the races that I would leave as-is.
I admit, I don't really know what to do with genasi either. I would say that Con feels right for them, though.

Kalashtar:
I'd add Dex to their options, because of "Graceful."  That means I would go with Cha + Dex/Wis.
I could definitely see that. I might go with that, too.
"One skilled at battle takes a stand in the ground of no defeat And so does not lose the enemy's defeat. Therefore, the victorious military is first victorious and after that does battle. The defeated military first does battle and after that seeks victory." -- the Art of War
Tieflings are really weak on any description that doesn't fit Int/Cha.  If I had to give them a third stat (see my issues with the whole concept in my first post), I'd lean toward Con because of the descriptions given for "normal" Tiefling life - they're described as "survivors", growing up in the roughest parts of town and leaning to make a place for themselves.  It's a weak argument for Con (because they survive using their wits and wiles), but really it's just as good as an argument for any other third score for them.

I don't see it that way at all. Tieflings are the progeny of devils; devils have immense fortitude; therefore, tieflings should have a bonus to Con. You don't have to go any further than that. They're tough because their infernal heritage makes them tough.


I'd lean toward Con because of the descriptions given for "normal" Tiefling life - they're described as "survivors", growing up in the roughest parts of town and leaning to make a place for themselves.  It's a weak argument for Con (because they survive using their wits and wiles), but really it's just as good as an argument for any other third score for them.

And you know what? I totally accept that. That sounds like perfectly reasonable reasoning. What isn't reasonable reasoning is "I want them to have CON because they should make rad Warlocks!" That's exactly on par was saying that "I want them to have STR because they should make rad Warlords!" or "I want them to have DEX because they should make rad Rogues!"

There are other issues up there, in both threads, but the Tiefling issue is just the easiest one to point out beacause people are always so quick to say CON for a completely ridiculous reason. You know, there's a reason that they didn't get CON to begin with. It's because ability score boosts should be based on how the race itself is flavored, not on what classes are typical for it. Tieflings get INT and CHA because they're flavored as being intelligent and charismatic above being flavored as being tough, not because they wanted to screw over your Infernal Warlock.

And I feel like you're jumping at perceived slights. There's perfectly valid flavor reasons for tieflings to have Con bonus. There was enough of flavor to justify a Con bonus in 2e, so there's certainly enough to justify one now. While I admit a small handful of my decisions were made for gamist reasons, tieflings emphatically were NOT one of those decisions.

To OP: If it aint broke; don't fix it.

The problem is that it IS broke! Playing a race in 4e that doesn't get a boost to your primary stat is completely suboptimal. Because of that fact the range of "characters I can play that don't suck" is extremely restricted and results in a feeling of being constrained with regards to character creation. This houserule, if I implement it, will be to directly combat that problem -- which is the biggest reason why I'm making it.
"One skilled at battle takes a stand in the ground of no defeat And so does not lose the enemy's defeat. Therefore, the victorious military is first victorious and after that does battle. The defeated military first does battle and after that seeks victory." -- the Art of War
Tieflings are the progeny of devils; devils have immense fortitude; therefore, tieflings should have a bonus to Con. You don't have to go any further than that. They're tough because their infernal heritage makes them tough.

Tieflings are the progeny of devils; devils have immense strength; therefore, tieflings should have a bonus to STR. You don't have to go any further than that. They're strong because their infernal heritage makes them strong.
Seriously, look it up. Most Devils have a higher score in their STR than in their CON. I could make similar comparative arguments for DEX, as many Devils have high DEX scores, to show it as comparably valid to CON. STR still beats both of them, though. And don't even get me started on the average Devil INT and CHA, because if you wanted to look at the Devil for what ability scores to give the Tiefling, chances are you wouldn't end up with INT or CHA, as it turns out that most Devils have INT and CHA as their two lowest scores, even below WIS.

There's perfectly valid flavor reasons for tieflings to have Con bonus.

I'm not saying that there isn't. I'm just saying that there are also perfectly valid reasons to give them other bonuses and that CON isn't the first thing that somebody should immediately jump to just because they want for Tieflings to make good Infernal Warlocks.

There was enough of flavor to justify a Con bonus in 2e, so there's certainly enough to justify one now.

4E Tieflings are not the same as 2E Tieflings. The race is drastically different. It might as well just be a new race with the same name, so you can't point to the Tieflings of previous editions to justify anything.

While I admit a small handful of my decisions were made for gamist reasons, tieflings emphatically were NOT one of those decisions

At the risk of sounding like a ****, I think that they were and that you just don't realize it. The brain does crazy things when it wants something to make itself think that it's justified in wanting it. That's fine. But let's just admit that you were probably more than a bit psychologically influenced by the myriad cries of "I wish Tieflings got +CON!" that have continued to resonate ever since the 4E PHB came out. If you'd actually gone through any deeper thought process to arrive at CON, you probably would have given the decision more than two lines in your first post, or you know, actually explained it somewhere in those two lines.

Why, yes, as a matter of fact I am the Unfailing Arbiter of All That Is Good Design (Even More So Than The Actual Developers) TM Speaking of things that were badly designed, please check out this thread for my Minotaur fix. What have the critics said, you ask? "If any of my players ask to play a Minotaur, I'm definitely offering this as an alternative to the official version." - EmpactWB "If I ever feel like playing a Minotaur I'll know where to look!" - Undrave "WoTC if you are reading this - please take this guy's advice." - Ferol_Debtor_of_Torm "Really full of win. A minotaur that is actually attractive for more than just melee classes." - Cpt_Micha Also, check out my recent GENASI variant! If you've ever wished that your Fire Genasi could actually set stuff on fire, your Water Genasi could actually swim, or your Wind Genasi could at least glide, then look no further. Finally, check out my OPTIONS FOR EVERYONE article, an effort to give unique support to the races that WotC keeps forgetting about. Includes new racial feature options for the Changeling, Deva, Githzerai, Gnoll, Gnome, Goliath, Half-Orc, Kalashtar, Minotaur, Shadar-Kai, Thri-Kreen, Warforged and more!

To OP: If it aint broke; don't fix it.

The problem is that it IS broke! Playing a race in 4e that doesn't get a boost to your primary stat is completely suboptimal. Because of that fact the range of "characters I can play that don't suck" is extremely restricted and results in a feeling of being constrained with regards to character creation. This houserule, if I implement it, will be to directly combat that problem -- which is the biggest reason why I'm making it.


Well, sir I guess that is preference. I would be happy to play a character that is "suboptimal" if its the interesting character I envision.

Ex: a by-the-book halfling artificer. "quick and resourceful wanderers. small in stature but great in courage." combined with "I see the secret patterns of magic, and through the items I carry, I can use that magic to protect you, heal you.... or make you explode." sounds more interesting to me than another race Artificer that happens to have an optimal build quality. Just spend less points on those attributes that are already 12s naturally, and more on the ones I need for my class.

Again: preference. I like dealing with drawbacks and building character instead of always going for the kickbutt build.

EDIT: Weirdness with copy pasting.. 
Locke: [after mugging a merchant for his clothes] It's a little tight, but the price was right.
There's a very, very thick line between 'suboptimal' and 'unplayable'.  A 16 in your primary stat is perfectly workable, I've done it more than once.
Another day, another three or four entries to my Ignore List.
As some folks are declaring this the "One TRUE THREAD," I think I'll go and merge my thread into this one, if that is okay with Khift.

Before posting, why not ask yourself, What Would Wrecan Say?

IMAGE(http://images.onesite.com/community.wizards.com/user/marandahir/thumb/9ac5d970f3a59330212c73baffe4c556.png?v=90000)

A great man once said "If WotC put out boxes full of free money there'd still be people complaining about how it's folded." – Boraxe

Why not just let players pick either one of their bonus stats, or both of their bonus stats (if their race gets two) regardless of race? If the intention is to allow players to min / max as they already could without making race a forgone conclusion, why not just go all the way? When you start trying to add third choices people are going to disagree anyway because it's highly unlikely that third stats will suggest themselves naturally and strongly, and not everyone will agree. Both of the posters here for example think Str for elves is an obvious one, but it makes me cringe. Just open up the choices all the way and there's no disagreement or need for lists. You don't even have to associate the bonuses with race at all if you don't want to, just call them a feature of being first level and give everyone but humans a racial feature that lets them pick twice instead of once.

There's a very, very thick line between 'suboptimal' and 'unplayable'.  A 16 in your primary stat is perfectly workable, I've done it more than once.



But why would you want to force people to play "suboptimal"?  If you want to start with a 16 in your prime attack stat that's one thing, but it seems somewhat unfair to make someone do it because they're character concept has green skin instead of scales.
Tieflings are the progeny of devils; devils have immense fortitude; therefore, tieflings should have a bonus to Con. You don't have to go any further than that. They're tough because their infernal heritage makes them tough.

 Tieflings are the progeny of devils; devils have immense strength; therefore, tieflings should have a bonus to STR. You don't have to go any further than that. They're strong because their infernal heritage makes them strong.
Seriously, look it up. Most Devils have a higher score in their STR than in their CON. I could make similar comparative arguments for DEX, as many Devils have high DEX scores, to show it as comparably valid to CON. STR still beats both of them, though. And don't even get me started on the average Devil INT and CHA, because if you wanted to look at the Devil for what ability scores to give the Tiefling, chances are you wouldn't end up with INT or CHA, as it turns out that most Devils have INT and CHA as their two lowest scores, even below WIS.

There's perfectly valid flavor reasons for tieflings to have Con bonus.

I'm not saying that there isn't. I'm just saying that there are also perfectly valid reasons to give them other bonuses and that CON isn't the first thing that somebody should immediately jump to just because they want for Tieflings to make good Infernal Warlocks.

There was enough of flavor to justify a Con bonus in 2e, so there's certainly enough to justify one now.

4E Tieflings are not the same as 2E Tieflings. The race is drastically different. It might as well just be a new race with the same name, so you can't point to the Tieflings of previous editions to justify anything.

While I admit a small handful of my decisions were made for gamist reasons, tieflings emphatically were NOT one of those decisions

At the risk of sounding like a ****, I think that they were and that you just don't realize it. The brain does crazy things when it wants something to make itself think that it's justified in wanting it. That's fine. But let's just admit that you were probably more than a bit psychologically influenced by the myriad cries of "I wish Tieflings got +CON!" that have continued to resonate ever since the 4E PHB came out. If you'd actually gone through any deeper thought process to arrive at CON, you probably would have given the decision more than two lines in your first post, or you know, actually explained it somewhere in those two lines.

Yes, you are sounding like a dick, and you are being completely condescending. Con is a stat the fits the tiefling so well that, when the PHB1 came before, before I even realized that certain warlocks even use the stat, I was utterly amazed that tieflings didn't get Con as a racial bonus. Con has fit every single incarnation of tieflings, including this one, and I find your forceful attempt to revise that and call it gamist to be arrogant, condescending and decidedly dickish. 

Go read some fluff on tieflings in 2e and 3.5e and get back to me on this. And that's all I'm going to say on the subject.



There's a very, very thick line between 'suboptimal' and 'unplayable'.  A 16 in your primary stat is perfectly workable, I've done it more than once.

It's certainly workable, but is it fun? You get to spend the next year and a half (average campaign length) missing more often than the rest of the party, doing less damage on a hit, and having smaller rider effects. If that's not a punishment for roleplaying, I don't know what is.

As some folks are declaring this the "One TRUE THREAD," I think I'll go and merge my thread into this one, if that is okay with Khift.

Oh yeah that's absolutely fine. I expected some people to post some massive lists here disagreeing with me. It is a very subjective topic, in the end.
"One skilled at battle takes a stand in the ground of no defeat And so does not lose the enemy's defeat. Therefore, the victorious military is first victorious and after that does battle. The defeated military first does battle and after that seeks victory." -- the Art of War
And this is what's so silly about assigning any given stat boost to any given race: anything can be justified with minimal fuss in a game like D&D. Take tieflings for example:

+2 Str: I'm supernaturally strong!
+2 Con: I'm supernaturally tough!
+2 Dex: I'm descended from sly backstabbing buggers, what did you expect?
+2 Int: Asmodeus my daddy, duh!
+2 Wis: I'm supernaturally puissant, and I will dominate the world!
+2 Cha: Asmodeus my daddy, biatch!


Why not just let players pick either one of their bonus stats, or both of their bonus stats (if their race gets two) regardless of race? If the intention is to allow players to min / max as they already could without making race a forgone conclusion, why not just go all the way? When you start trying to add third choices people are going to disagree anyway because it's highly unlikely that third stats will suggest themselves naturally and strongly, and not everyone will agree. Both of the posters here for example think Str for elves is an obvious one, but it makes me cringe. Just open up the choices all the way and there's no disagreement or need for lists. You don't even have to associate the bonuses with race at all if you don't want to, just call them a feature of being first level and give everyone but humans a racial feature that lets them pick twice instead of once.



Check this out: community.wizards.com/go/thread/view/758...
Yes, you are sounding like a dick, and you are being completely condescending.

"Dick" is actually better than what I typed, as evidenced by my word getting censored, so all things considered, I suppose that you could have taken it worse. Honestly, I'm not trying to be condescending (I typed "at the risk of sounding like a ****" exactly because that wasn't my intent), and I'm sorry if you took it that way, but when you ask people to offer their thoughts on what you've done and to critique it honestly, you might get some criticism that you don't like. That doesn't mean that I hate you, just that I have some criticisms for you to think about and consider. I promise that I'm not out to get you, so you don't need to be so defensive.

Con is a stat the fits the tiefling so well that, when the PHB1 came before, before I even realized that certain warlocks even use the stat, I was utterly amazed that tieflings didn't get Con as a racial bonus.

Listen, all I know is that before the 4E PHB came out, there were numerous threads speculating on what the racial ability score bonuses would be, and not a single one of them speculated CON for the Tiefling. People speculated CHA, people speculated DEX, and people speculated INT, in different combinations, and the reasons that they were speculating DEX was relatively gamist ("They're supposed to be good Rogues!") but had precedent in that the 3E version did have a DEX bonus. But I don't recall seeing a single person speculate CON. It was only after the PHB came out and people discovered that Infernal Warlocks required CON that they said that they should have a CON bonus.

Con has fit every single incarnation of tieflings, including this one

I haven't suggested otherwise.

Go read some fluff on tieflings in 2e and 3.5e and get back to me on this. And that's all I'm going to say on the subject.

But, as I already pointed out, the 4E Tiefling is very different from the 3E Tiefling and the 2E Tiefling, so different that they might as well just be a different race that they gave the same name (I believe that the old Tiefling is actually called a Cambion now? And their CON isn't anything special.). That being said, the 3E Tiefling never had any sort of CON bonus either, and I read over their fluff in both the Monster Manual and Races of Destiny again and found no evidence of anything suggesting they are any physically tougher than anybody else. I don't know anything about the 2E Tiefling, but it's exactly as relevant as the 3E Tiefling, so I'm really not sure as to why it matters.

Why, yes, as a matter of fact I am the Unfailing Arbiter of All That Is Good Design (Even More So Than The Actual Developers) TM Speaking of things that were badly designed, please check out this thread for my Minotaur fix. What have the critics said, you ask? "If any of my players ask to play a Minotaur, I'm definitely offering this as an alternative to the official version." - EmpactWB "If I ever feel like playing a Minotaur I'll know where to look!" - Undrave "WoTC if you are reading this - please take this guy's advice." - Ferol_Debtor_of_Torm "Really full of win. A minotaur that is actually attractive for more than just melee classes." - Cpt_Micha Also, check out my recent GENASI variant! If you've ever wished that your Fire Genasi could actually set stuff on fire, your Water Genasi could actually swim, or your Wind Genasi could at least glide, then look no further. Finally, check out my OPTIONS FOR EVERYONE article, an effort to give unique support to the races that WotC keeps forgetting about. Includes new racial feature options for the Changeling, Deva, Githzerai, Gnoll, Gnome, Goliath, Half-Orc, Kalashtar, Minotaur, Shadar-Kai, Thri-Kreen, Warforged and more!
Con has fit every single incarnation of tieflings, including this one, and I find your forceful attempt to revise that and call it gamist to be arrogant, condescending and decidedly dickish. 

Go read some fluff on tieflings in 2e and 3.5e and get back to me on this. And that's all I'm going to say on the subject.


Rather than looking at fluff, I pulled up the 3.5 SRD. 

Tiefling? +2 Dex, +2 Int, -2 Cha.

Heck, let's broaden the search.

Half-Fiend?  +4 Str, +2 Con, +4 Dex, +4 Int, +2 Cha.


I'm unfamiliar with 2e (I wouldn't even know where to look), but it's pretty clear that Con didn't fit Tieflings in the prior edition.  Deffinitely no more than Dex.

Good thing 4e Tieflings have essentially nothing to do with 3.X and prior Tieflings.
Feedback Disclaimer
Yes, I am expressing my opinions (even complaints - le gasp!) about the current iteration of the play-test that we actually have in front of us. No, I'm not going to wait for you to tell me when it's okay to start expressing my concerns (unless you are WotC). (And no, my comments on this forum are not of the same tone or quality as my actual survey feedback.)
A Psion for Next (Playable Draft) A Barbarian for Next (Brainstorming Still)
Listen, all I know is that before the 4E PHB came out, there were numerous threads speculating on what the racial ability score bonuses would be, and not a single one of them speculated CON for the Tiefling. People speculated CHA, people speculated DEX, and people speculated INT, in different combinations, and the reasons that they were speculating DEX was relatively gamist ("They're supposed to be good Rogues!") but had precedent in that the 3E version did have a DEX bonus. But I don't recall seeing a single person speculate CON. It was only after the PHB came out and people discovered that Infernal Warlocks required CON that they said that they should have a CON bonus.

And that could definitely have been. I didn't post on the forums back then too much. All I know was I surprised that it was not included in their racial stats, given their predisposed emphasis on it in 2e.

Con has fit every single incarnation of tieflings, including this one

I haven't suggested otherwise.

So why are you complaining? I mean honestly, bringing up a possible other tertiary is great, and I agree looking at it now that Dex could fit the race as well. But if you don't disagree that Con fits the tieflings decently well, why are you raising a stink about it?

But, as I already pointed out, the 4E Tiefling is very different from the 3E Tiefling and the 2E Tiefling, so different that they might as well just be a different race that they gave the same name (I believe that the old Tiefling is actually called a Cambion now? And their CON isn't anything special.). That being said, the 3E Tiefling never had any sort of CON bonus either, and I read over their fluff in both the Monster Manual and Races of Destiny again and found no evidence of anything suggesting they are any physically tougher than anybody else. I don't know anything about the 2E Tiefling, but it's exactly as relevant as the 3E Tiefling, so I'm really not sure as to why it matters.

This is a horrible, horrible argument. Past influences, whether older D&D editions or text outside of D&D itself are still relevant. They can't go against the current D&D edition -- if the current D&D edition says race Y is X while a past source said that race Y is definitely not good at X then we have to accept the current -- but in the lack of any other defining factor they are perfectly acceptable sources. If you don't accept that, then yeah, half of this entire thread is moot. Huge chunks of the flavor I'm basing these decisions off of come from previous editions -- I'm explicitly trying to highlight some of the 'dropped' aspects of races that over time they've shed. If that's not acceptable and only current 4e sources can be used to justify choices then, well, I don't know what to say to that beyond 'you're in the wrong thread'.

Basically, if the available 4e sources obviously pushed towards one tertiary stat for tieflings, I wouldn't and couldn't side with the 2e push towards Con or the 3e push towards Dex. But the 4e sources don't seem to push towards any particular tertiary stat, so it's fair game to bring older editions in. Maybe you don't think they're relevant, but to me they're the same race with the same origin and the same backstory as always. They've been somewhat redefined and their writers have intentionally emphasized Int and Cha in a particularly anvilicious way to try and wash out the fact that other stats also would fit the race perfectly well, but at heart they're still a race of half devils with horns and tails that came about with dallying with the wrong side of the planar cosmos.
"One skilled at battle takes a stand in the ground of no defeat And so does not lose the enemy's defeat. Therefore, the victorious military is first victorious and after that does battle. The defeated military first does battle and after that seeks victory." -- the Art of War
Testing the waters here: What would people think about dwarves that are Wis + Str/Con? It still gets them out of the way of their upcoming progeny, it probably wouldn't be as hardcore overpowered as Con + Str/Wis would be, and it gives access to what is their definitely clearest tertiary stat. I'm still not certain I buy it, because it still feels like a bit of an asspull, and I don't see how a battlerager dwarf would be more Wis-ful than he would Con-ful, but it does feel a little better than Con/Int.
"One skilled at battle takes a stand in the ground of no defeat And so does not lose the enemy's defeat. Therefore, the victorious military is first victorious and after that does battle. The defeated military first does battle and after that seeks victory." -- the Art of War
Stupid PEACHers… it's not like I want you to read my thread, or anything…


That said, some my ideas are right on target with Khifts, and I agree with some of his reasonings.  My solutions are as follows:

Changeling – +2 Charisma, +2 Dexterity or Intelligence
This is the original, the basis for the others.  Nothing to talk about here.

Deva – +2 Wisdom, +2 Intelligence or Charisma
I thought I'd give Deva's back Charisma to get some of the holy warrior angelic nature of the Aasimar reflected more in the race.  This makes them better as members of established religion as well as the less known sects (Invokers and Avengers), and also grants them access into more interesting Arcane and Psionic options.  The Prescient Bard seems very thematic here, as does the Enlightened Ardent.  I chose Wisdom as the primary because Devas are primarily religious beings, and thus fit best into classes that can be religious, rather than into the more cloistered Arcane classes.  As an added bonus, Wisdom is a rider for at least one build of every Psionic classes, so it makes Devas pretty good at each of those.

Dragonborn – +2 Strength, +2 Constitution or Charisma
This one I have to differ significantly from Khift.  Intelligence is not the Dragonborn's schtick, and that's made clear in Player's Handbook Races: Dragonborn.  Dragonborn, when they lean towards Arcane classes, deal in the more raw, artistic classes of Bard and Sorcerer, and sometimes even delve into the profane studies of the Warlock.  That said, they have a strong Martial tradition, and also have much reason to boost their Constitution.  Fighters, Ranger, and particularly active Warlords (such as Bravura Warlords and some Tactical Warlords) love Constitution.  It also grants them more entry into the Primal, since Constitution is a rider for all but one of the Primal classes (Seeker).  While Thaneborn Barbarian works with their ability scores and the idea of Dragons inspiring Fear, Thunderborn Barbarian works extremely thematically with the Dragon's Roar.  In addition, Storm Warden works well with the tempestuous nature of many Dragons, especially Blue, Bronze, and Adamantine. I wanted more of a primal feel to Dragonborn than they gave us in the Racial book, more like the art for many a Barbarian and Warden.  I can see this leading us that way. 

Drow – +2 Charisma, +2 Strength or Dexterity
This starts the thematic triangle of the Elven races.  When choosing the ability scores, which to be the static and which to be the versatile, and which to be the ability traded in for the versatile score, I had to think about what united and defined the Elven races.  It came upon me that the mental stats that they get bonuses to are what define the races, and the Dexterity is what unites them.  So I didn't want to lose the Mental stat, but I wanted to keep Dexterity as a reoccuring ability.  The idea dawned on me: Dex as versatile with Strength as well.  Strength harkens to the wild elves of earlier editions, and gives each of the elven races much needed love within their chosen areas.  For Drow, this means Paladins, Battle Clerics, Thaneborn Barbarians, more varieties of Sorcerer to choose from (making them the best at any Sorcerous build), and most of all, Bravura, Inspiring, Insightful, and Resourceful Warlords.  Warlord is a uniting trend here with the Elven races, each with a different branch of builds for them. The divine theme renders true, and the idea of a Drow Barbarian fits very well, especially with Eberron fluff of the Jungle people of Xen'drik. 

Dwarf – +2 Constitution, +2 Intelligence or Wisdom
Much like Khift, I felt Dwarves could use a bit of Intelligence to replace Wisdom in some builds.  The idea of an optimal Dwarf Artificer is very compelling.  It also makes Dwarves better at one of their attacking stat classes – Warlock, and I can see them delving into the past, searching for Vestiges.  The idea of a Dwarf Wizard is not unknown, and Summoner/Conjuror/Staff Wizards have been seen in Arcane Power to include dwarves amongst their numbers.  It was easy to choose Constitution as the primary.  This gives them another aside to the already diverse Dwarven culture that fuses divine worship with primal reverence, and gives them back their technology that seems to have landed with schooling in the arcane arts in 4e.

Eladrin – +2 Intelligence, +2 Strength or Dexterity
As I explained above, each of the Elven races would keep their "mental" ability static and have Strength or Dexterity as the versatile option.  This makes Eladrin amazing Assault Swordmages, as well as making them excellent Tactical, Resourceful, and Skirmishing Warlords, which is something they wanted to be from the start with their high Intellect and their cultural leanings as so.  Strength, which replacing Dexterity, does allow for easier building of an Eladrin Two-Blade Ranger, which is a thematic concept that's been supported in feats.  They'll still have to buy Dex, and Int isn't useful for Rangers, but it's more important to have the +2 in the primary that's going to be an 18 at first level than in one of the secondaries.  This also makes them, interestingly, better Fighters, Paladins, Wardens and Barbarians, and while Barbarian isn't really a thematic choice, Fighter fits well in with their martial traditions (I've always compared it as Samurai-esque), Paladins of Corellon should be more common, and Wardens could see their Forms that draw on the raw elements of nature as deriving from the courts of the fey, such as the Winter and Summer Courts, the Sea Kings, etc. 

Elf – +2 Wisdom, +2 Strength or Dexterity
Same as above; Elves want to keep their Wisdom while getting Strength and Dexterity.  The Wild Elf idea resonates best with Elves, Elf Wardens and Barbarians should be more common with this array, fitting greatly into the Primal theme of the Elven race.  Skirmishing and Insightful Warlords are benefited as well.  Ardent Paladins and Battle Clerics of Sehanine or Melora should be easier to make with this array. 

Genasi – +2 Strength, +2 Intelligence or Charisma
I thought long and hard about this one.  Genasi are a difficult species to deal with.  On one hand, I want them to be amazing Chaos Sorcerers.  On the other hand, the idea of controlled natural power, put under restraint by their Intelligence is a key aspect of their psychology and physiology.  They're people, of a chaotic, elemental origin, bound into an orderly form.  In addition, the different emotions and personalities of their different forms, and the ability to switch between these, is a tell-tale sign of charisma.  So I gave them Charisma as their third ability, and compromised with Strength as the Static.  This doesn't make them the best as Chaos Sorcerers as I'd like – rather, it makes them lean towards Cosmic and Dragon Sorcerer, which is not quite the direction that is liked (since Storm is also thematic for certain Genasi).  However, having that primary stat of Charisma is a good start, and since Strength and Dexterity occupy different NADs, it's not too much of a problem to have 1 extra Fort as the cost of a bit of Dexterity that might have been.  This way maintains their position as some of the best Tactical Warlords and Assault Swordmages, while letting them branch out into Sorcerer, Bard, Warlock (if an Efreet/Djinn Pact Warlock ever comes to pass… well, even with Sorcerer-King Warlock it's good), as well as interesting dilemmas of whether to serve the gods or not as Paladins and Clerics.  The Thaneborn Barbarian might be an interesting direction to take a Genasi. 

Githzerai – +2 Wisdom, +2 Dexterity or Intelligence
This one's confirmed in the PH3.  Let's move on.  By the way, it makes them good Psions, something they wouldn't have been able to be awesome at before, and alleviates a bit for the lack of Githyanki.

Gnoll – +2 Dexterity, +2 Strength or Constitution
I wanted another Str/Dex race, and Gnoll fits the build.  Gnoll screams melee Barbarian, Fighter, Monk, Ranger, and Rogue, and yet without a Strength boost, they were better off doing Archer Ranger, which doesn't take advantage of their natural talents.  Since the two Constitution primary classes neither use Dex nor Str, there was no point in attempting to get Con as the static for Battleminds and Warlocks; Gnolls are still good at those though.  I really like the idea of a Gnoll Stone Fist Monk, as well as finally having Melee Rangers, Whirling Barbarians, and various Fighter builds at their disposal.  The Brawling Fighter especially is liked here: numerous unarmed attacks makes the Gnoll's claw damage useful.

Gnome – +2 Intelligence, +2 Dexterity or Charisma
I was basically thinking the same thing as Khift here.  Gnomes were always stealthy, and the difficulty was seeing if they were better off as Sorcerers or as Rogues.  While the experimental natural of Sorcerers is tempting, the lure of the Tinker Gnome and Martial Power 2's numerous examples of Gnome Shadowy Rogues led me to the Intelligence primary. 

Goliath – +2 Constitution, +2 Strength or Wisdom
This one was tough.  I'm still unsure, mostly because of Muls down there.  Muls have the same ability score set, and with the overlap of being able to choose to know Dwarven, and being Half-races (Half-Giant and Half-Dwarf respectively), Goliaths seem a bit similar to the labouring Muls.  But I had to think about what makes a Goliath best at what it does.  The best thing that clued me to a Constitution static was the lines in their PH2 fluff about "daring that borders on follhardiness" and "driven by a fierce love of competition."  This seems in line with the fluff for Battleminds in their debut article and Design & Development: "As wanderers, mercenaries, and adventurers, battleminds are carefree warriors who seek only to test their skill against the mightiest and most dangerous opponents;" "Battleminds tend to be bold and sometimes arrogant, an attitude earned through bringing ruin to enemies over the course of many conflicts."  This seemed to fit excellently with the established Goliath fluff, and I wanted to make them the best Battleminds possible.  This also fit well with the idea of Half-Giants being naturally Psionic.  So Con/Wis was important, and the Strength because substituted for Wisdom as the versatile.  What was also benefited through this was Druids and Shamans, something Wardens were particularly good at before, and now are excellent with this array.  The important thing to stress is how Goliaths approach their ability scores differently from the Arena-fighting and City-labouring Muls.

Half-elf – +2 Charisma, +2 Strength or Constitution
Looks like Khift and I have agreed again.  Strength seemed like a perfect fit, and Charisma easily took the main role.  Half-elves are natural diplomats, and thus leaning towards Charismatic Warlords, Clerics, and Paladins meant that they eagerly wanted Strength as well.  This also makes them excellent Cosmic and Dragon Sorcerers and Thaneborn Barbarians, really solidifying them as the warrior-faces they have gotten their name in as.  Also, there's a lot of Half-elf Ranger art, and yet, such a build wasn't even advantaged.  Strength supports that archetype.  It must have derived from people wanting to play the Aragon, who's trickles of elven blood fit well with the Half-elf (never mind the fact that Aragorn would be a Warlord in 4e, maybe with MC Ranger… but definitely a Warlord). 

Half-orc – +2 Strength, +2 Dexterity or Wisdom
I was originally going with Con or Dex here to reflect their Orcish heritage.  But I've been wanting more of the contemplative Shamanistic Orcs for a while now, and while Stone Fist Monk is a good start, I wanted Wardens, Druids, Seekers, and Shamans.  While Druids and Shamans aren't optimal, they would now be advantaged, sitting in along side the optimal Wardens and Seekers and the already optimal Whirling Barbarians.  Half-orcs got more of their rough and tough Martial side when they first debuted into 4e, now they should get back their shamanistic side.  I know that D&D Orcs tend to be more on the Tolkienesque type of Orc – the Always Chaotic Evil, rather than the Warcraftesque type that was more Shamanistic.  But not so in Eberron, and the Shamanistic Half-orc is a trope that should be playable in D&D, and not at great costs. So I rescind my earlier idea of Constitution, since it would only grant them more Fighter and Barbarian options and Warden and possibly Paladin.  It would open the way to Battlemind, but Half-orcs aren't necessarily so egotistical (though they are proud and defencive).  Universal Primal suits them better than situational classes.

Halfling – +2 Dexterity, +2 Wisdom or Charisma
Again, I changed my original Constitution or Charisma ideas based on Khift's reasonings.  Dex/Con doesn't really give Haflings any new thematic options, considering that it's only awesome with Assassin these days.  It would make them good at all Warlocks, and at Battleminds, but are Halflings that egotistical?  They are quick, that's for sure, but I don't know about the rest.  The Wisdom brings back the down-to-earth, Yavanna-worshipping Haflings that were in Contradiction in the last edition.  Last edition, they were the ultimate thieves and scoundrels, and yet some of the most conservative and Lawful Good people of al the races.  They seemed to be a race in dichotomy between Lawful Good and Chaotic Neutral, and 4e decided to run with the free-spiritedness for the race, giving them a new deity of freedom and change, Avandra.  Which isn't a bad thing, but the old Halfling tropes are still worth maintaining to a certain extant.  In the real world on the Bayou, there's an inherent contradiction of traditional, conservative values and the wild world of Jazz of New Orleans and the heritage of Voodoo traditions leaking into the culture of the northern coast of the Gulf of Mexico.  Halflings are supposed to embody that in 4e standard setting, and fit well in that contradiction in this way.  In other settings, such contradiction could be expressed in different ways.  The Wisdom supports divine builds, as well as, interestingly, Primal builds that could bridge the gap between the settled normalcy and the wild adventuring side of the race.

Human – +2 Any
Changing them might completely upset the system.   I personally think that the best way to "fix" their versatility is to give them +2 Any, +2 Any, then +1 to 1 NAD, giving at leas the possibility of covering the missing NAD if you had your ability score bonuses in different defence categories.  But I'll leave that to a different discussion, and will assume Humans unchanged.

Kalashtar – +2 Wisdom, +2 Dexterity or Charisma
This one was a hard one, and I'll have to differ with Khift and others on it.  Intelligence should not be, and should never be, a Kalashtar ability score.  As Psionic as they feel, they are not Psions; Ardent fits them perfectly as channeling through their emotions rather than their raw intelligence.  Kalashtar are, however, described as being organised into monasteries, and the first Kalashtar that took the renegade Quori in were Monks.  This means that the Dexterity the best choice here: makes excellent Monks and Divine Monks Avengers.  Out of this, they also become interestingly good choices in certain primal classes – Druid, Seeker, and Shaman.  I'll have to look into how they might fit into those, but hey, Githzerai do, and they're traditional Psionic.  The Divine flavour also rings true with Wisdom as the static – Avengers, Clerics, Invokers, and Paladins all love it.  The Path of Light!  Oh, maybe Sunburst (Druid evocation) might give a link in with this?

Minotaur – +2 Strength, +2 Constitution or Wisdom
No time to spend here; they're in the PH3 like this.  Too bad about the remaining Charging attack though; it still pushes them to melee combat.

Mul – +2 Constitution, +2 Strength or Wisdom
Confirmed to be in this array in Dark Sun.  I was worried about overlap with Goliaths, but this guy's established by WotC this way.  We'll see him in more detail in a couple months.

Revenant – +2 Constitution, +2 Dexterity or Wisdom
Actually a very tough choice.  Revenants were obviously Constitution static, what with various feats about their survivability due to being already dead, but the other versatile score was the tough point.  What would they be good at?  Maledicition Invoker provided an answer.  Quite thematic.  This also provided some interesting Primal Options, as well as Battlemind, something that really stuck with me.  The Revenant's body is already changed, beyond her own will, and that she might seek to change it according to her own decision is a liberating idea in my mind, and could open up some interesting stories.

Shadar-kai – +2 Dexterity, +2 Constitution or Intelligence
While I came to the same conclusion as Khift, I had no doubt about this one.  Constitution was obvious, due to their survivability and focus on making themselves feel extreme pain and pleasure to ward off the gloom of the Shadowfell.  In the end, Dexterity seemed like the dominant skill, because more so than Intellectual extremism, Shadar-kai would be physically extreme, doing outrageous acts of daring.  Dexterity-Constitution makes them some of the best Bleak Disciple Assassins, and also sets them as excellent Hunter Rangers, something that really resonated with their art, much more so than the Archer Ranger.

Shardmind – +2 Intelligence, +2 Wisdom or Charisma
Like this in PH3.  Looking forward to it!

Shifter – +2 Wisdom, +2 Strength or Dexterity
Unlike Khift, I don't split Shifters.  WotC treats Shifters as one race, and so will I.  There are feats that say Shifter, and there's only one Racial PPath for them.  They're already versatile.  I hope that the major errata will add more racial features to Shifters though; right now they're weak in comparison, even with extra-strong racial encounter powers.

Thri-kreen – +2 Dexterity, +2 Strength or Wisdom
This one will be in Dark Sun, and I've no doubt they'll give us versatile ability scores for it like with the Mul.  However, that doesn't mean I can't implement them now, considering that we have the race, at least for the most part, derived from the XP character.  I gave them Strength as the third because of the numerous Two-handed builds that rely on Strength and Dexterity, and fit very thematically with the 'Kreen.

Tiefling – +2 Intelligence, +2 Constitution or Charisma
Here I must vastly disagree with Khift.  The whole point of this for Tieflings would be for Infernal Pact being good, and Con/Cha suggests Star Pact, not Infernal Pact.  That doesn't -fix- the Tiefling.  Tieflings are extremely cunning, and while many are beguilling, I'd say that other's are as bloody and brutal.  It's a mix.  This layout allows for Tiefling Tinkerer Artificers, Infernal Warlocks, Shielding and Ensnaring Swordmages, and Summoner/Staff/Conjuror Wizards, making them some of the best Arcanists.  They still remain pretty good as Ardents, but not the best, while they're really good as Telepathic Psions, Resourceful Warlords, and Illusionist Wizards/Cunning Bards. This can only help them fill their niche.

Warforged – +2 Constitution, +2 Strength or Intelligence
Again like Khift, I gave Con/ Str or Int to Warforged.  I wanted the Psi-forged, but even more so, I wanted Warforged Artificers.  It seemed to make so much sense.  In addition, with the connection between learning/science/technology and Arcane, there seems like there should be a direct relationship between the two.

Wilden – +2 Wisdom, +2 Constitution or Dexterity
This is in PH3.  Hopefully it's still a mini-Treant, not another Cat.  Maybe different Forms take different appearances?  That's off-topic though.  They made a lot of sense with this one.


So where does this leave us?  Let's do a tally:

Strength Static
Dragonborn – Con/Cha
Genasi – Int/Cha
Half-orc – Dex/Wis
Minotaur – Con/Wis

Constitution Static
Dwarf – Int/Wis
Goliath – Str/Wis
Mul – Str/Wis
Revenant – Dex/Wis
Warforged – Str/Int

Dexterity Static
Gnoll – Str/Con
Halfling – Wis/Cha
Shadar-kai – Con/Int
Thri-kreen – Str/Wis

Intelligence Static
Eladrin – Str/Dex
Gnome – Dex/Cha
Shardmind – Wis/Cha
Tiefling – Con/Cha

Wisdom Static
Deva – Int/Cha
Elf – Str/Dex
Githzerai – Dex/Int
Kalashtar – Dex/Cha
Shifter – Str/Dex
Wilden – Con/Dex

Charisma Static
Changeling – Dex/Int
Drow – Str/Dex
Half-elf – Str/Con


And now, for the combinations, since you can actually only choose a boost to two scores:

Str/Con 5 – Dragonborn, Goliath, Minotaur, Mul, Warforged
Str/Dex 2 – Gnoll, Half-orc
Str/Int 2 – Eladrin, Genasi
Str/Wis 4 – Elf, Half-orc, Minotaur, Shifter
Str/Cha 3 – Dragonborn, Drow, Half-elf
Con/Dex 3 – Gnoll, Revenant, Shadar-kai
Con/Int 3 – Dwarf, Tiefling, Warforged
Con/Wis 5 – Dwarf, Goliath, Mul, Revenant, Wilden
Con/Cha 1 – Half-elf
Dex/Int 3 – Eladrin, Gnome, Shadar-kai
Dex/Wis 6 – Elf, Githzerai, Halfling, Kalashtar, Shifter, Thri-kreen, Wilden
Dex/Cha 3 – Changeling, Drow, Halfling
Int/Wis 3 – Deva, Githzerai, Shardmind
Int/Cha 4 – Changeling, Gnome, Shardmind, Tiefling
Wis/Cha 2 – Deva, Kalashtar

Totals (including humans), before and after (including already set versatiles for PH3 and Muls, Thri-kreen before assumed Dex/Wis):

Strength – 9 / 18
Constitution – 10 / 18
Dexterity – 12 / 18
Intelligence – 10 / 15
Wisdom – 12 / 20
Charisma – 11 / 13

So let's see… Charisma and Intelligence got the shortest ends of the stick, and Con/Cha especially.  We need another Con/Cha race, at least.  But I like this set.  What do you think?

Before posting, why not ask yourself, What Would Wrecan Say?

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Pretty good lists so far. Here's what I'd do differently.

Drow: +2 Charisma, +2 Dexterity or Wisdom
Eladrin: +2 Intelligence, +2 Dexterity or Charisma

I do agree with having a STR alternate secondary for elves (in place of WIS), since it would tie into the "wood elves" of old editions. But it doesn't seem quite right for all the elf subraces. WIS fits better for Drow because their most iconic class in old editions was the cleric, and CHA seems ideal for Fey Warlock Eladrin.

Dwarf: +2 Wisdom, +2 Constitution or Strength

Was considering CON + WIS or INT at first, but it doesn't quite seem right, and CON + STR or WIS is going to the Mul already. Since the Runepriest seems tailor-made for the Dwarf fluff-wise, STR seemed like the best fit for them.

Half-Elf: +2 Charisma, +2 Constitution or Dexterity

DEX seems to fit better than STR to represent the half-elf's elven heritage. Since one of their big schticks is versatility (with a lot of their class features enhancing multiclass characters), it would make more sense to open up new optimal classes to the half-elf than enhance the ones they already have. Perhaps even give them +2 to CHA, +2 to any, but you'd then have to boost the human (perhaps +2 to two stats, which seems a tad excessive).

Just for a few examples here.
Maran, I think you might be putting too much stock into making it so that the existing races fill in a balanced role sheet for each attribute modifier and I really don't think that's necessary. Not every race in all of D&D has been given a proper stat block yet and, since we are talking Houserules anyway, its not like there aren't other races people can make or stat up that would fit better into some of these slots.

Omni is right about the Drow and Eladrin. The Drow are the smallest and weakest of the 3 Elf races so it really doesn't make sense for them to be favoring Strength as an attribute. Your little purple elf who is only a fraction taller than a Halfling is going to go toe-to-toe in a straight-up fist brawl with a Golliath, Orc, Dwarf, Bugbear or Warforged? No that just doesn't feel right. Even on Elf it feels like going out on a limb, but in respect for the Orc-Elf... err... "Wood" Elf of 3rd edition, which is in many ways the basis for the current "Elf" I can see it.

Eladrin is slightly less out there than the Drow, but Strength is not its forte. Furthermore, Dexterity is not their core attribute, their core attribute is Intelligence. Eladrin being 1,000 years older than everyone else in the party and having a library worth of knowledge crammed into their head is what makes them an Eladrin rather then a common Elf. So Intelligence is core and Strength shouldn't even be on the list. And as much as their holier-than-thou attitude may grate on party members, Eladrin are the consumate Nobles and Politicians so Charisma should DEFINATELY be one of their options. Again, Omni is totally right on this one.

Elf's core, however, is definately their Dexterity. Yes, they are aware of their surroundings, in-tune with nature and such... at least generally, however their main gig is sneaking through the forest, dodging about and shooting things with a bow. So Dexterity should be their main stat with Wisdom being one of the options. Besides, 3.5 edition Wood Elfs were Dex and Str, right? It would be weird to have an Elf who was Strength and Wisdom.

I'm not sure Intelligence is right for the Dwarfs. Unless you are working in a campaign world where Dwarfs have taken over the role for Tinker Gnomes, I really don't see anything Intelligence is used for in the system that Dwarfs use. Dwarven Wizards are sort of semi-taboo although they weren't the worst thing in the world in 3rd edition. Furthermore, Dwarfs like to guzzle as much alcohol as possible killing what few braincells they might have been born with. Besides being tough and wise, the next most common thing associated with Dwarfs is to hit stuff.... really hard. So I'm going to have to go with Omni's choices again here, Con for the main stat and either Str or Wis.

For Gnolls, Constitution should be their main thing. The reason why is because they are Hyenas, not Wolfs or Tigers. And what does one think of when they think of a Hyena? Well, unless you are being kind they tend to be considered filthy, scavanging creatures who lack hygene but remain healthy and perservere, who can eat anything without getting ill, who can get smacked about by one another or even a lion and yet continue on... Although Gnolls may not be bricks like Dwarfs or Golliaths, they should be a creature that you can smack around, stomp on and turn into a bloody mess and who will STILL come right after you twice as visciously. That's what makes them a primarily Constitution race. Now whether the individual player decides that theirs is going to be a swift, sneaky Gnoll or a powerful, menacing one (Dex or Str) is up to them.

For Gnome, I think it is best to get Dexterity off the table. They are the ONLY small race right now that doesn't have dexterity, and I don't see a reason to change that. So that they can be Rogues? You already have Halflings, Goblins and Kobolds for that! Instead if one wants to give someone a choice between the current Gnome and the classic Gnome a better way to do it would be to make their primary Intelligence and their alternative either Charisma or Constitution. The nice thing about this is that both those choices are good things to have for any class. As for how this is going to affect their sneakiness? They already have racial feats and powers to cover that-- no need to give them a Dexterity bonus to that end too.

Everything else, however, looks good or is a race I don't really know enough about to make a good judgement on.  Now, if one makes the changes I'm suggesting above then perhaps that whole "perfect balance of attributes" you are trying to go for would be thrown out of whack, but I really feel that laying them out like that is the wrong way to go about things. One must stick with what makes sense within the context of the race and what their established strengths are supposed to be or, if you must, what classes they should be favoring.

For dwarves: Dwarves are already very popular for fighters. grant them +2 Strength and you'll get an all-fighters-are-dwarves universe.
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And that could definitely have been. I didn't post on the forums back then too much. All I know was I surprised that it was not included in their racial stats, given their predisposed emphasis on it in 2e.

Did you play 3E at all? Because if so, then you should have already been over this. If you never bothered and thus knew nothing about the 3E Tiefling, then I could excuse this if somebody told me wtf was up with the 2E Tiefling. However, if you're going to go through the tactic of looking at what a race was like in previous editions, I should expect that you might look at more than one edition, especially if it's one you skipped, unless you make it a point to say that you know nothing about such and such editions. But I think that expecting us to know or care about the 2E Tiefling or think that it's particularly relevant was a mistake.

So why are you complaining? I mean honestly, bringing up a possible other tertiary is great, and I agree looking at it now that Dex could fit the race as well. But if you don't disagree that Con fits the tieflings decently well, why are you raising a stink about it?

Because a lot of people like to know WHY something was done. The throught process behind design decisions is interesting and significant and it helps us understand where you're going with something. That's why even if the final decision isn't bad, we're still going to criticize the final decision if it looks like the thought process behind it was flawed. Ending up with a wtf final decision but having a fantastically well thought out throught process and justification behind it is a lot better than having an okay final decision obtained through horribly flawed logic.

Past influences, whether older D&D editions or text outside of D&D itself are still relevant.

But if you're going to use them, then you have to be careful about how you go about it, because again, I can look at older editions too and reasonably end up with a completely different conclusion than you did, specifically towards DEX.

Basically, if the available 4e sources obviously pushed towards one tertiary stat for tieflings, I wouldn't and couldn't side with the 2e push towards Con or the 3e push towards Dex. But the 4e sources don't seem to push towards any particular tertiary stat, so it's fair game to bring older editions in.

I think that I could reasonably argue that it pushes slightly towards DEX, especially with their current racial Stealth bonus being a mechanical shadow of this. And if you really want to get at this from a Gamist perspective, the Tiefling fluff actually pushes them more towards Rogue than it does towards Warlock, contrary to popular belief.

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Pretty good lists so far. Here's what I'd do differently.

Drow: +2 Charisma, +2 Dexterity or Wisdom
Eladrin: +2 Intelligence, +2 Dexterity or Charisma

I do agree with having a STR alternate secondary for elves (in place of WIS), since it would tie into the "wood elves" of old editions. But it doesn't seem quite right for all the elf subraces. WIS fits better for Drow because their most iconic class in old editions was the cleric, and CHA seems ideal for Fey Warlock Eladrin.

Dwarf: +2 Wisdom, +2 Constitution or Strength

Was considering CON + WIS or INT at first, but it doesn't quite seem right, and CON + STR or WIS is going to the Mul already. Since the Runepriest seems tailor-made for the Dwarf fluff-wise, STR seemed like the best fit for them.

Half-Elf: +2 Charisma, +2 Constitution or Dexterity

DEX seems to fit better than STR to represent the half-elf's elven heritage. Since one of their big schticks is versatility (with a lot of their class features enhancing multiclass characters), it would make more sense to open up new optimal classes to the half-elf than enhance the ones they already have. Perhaps even give them +2 to CHA, +2 to any, but you'd then have to boost the human (perhaps +2 to two stats, which seems a tad excessive).

Just for a few examples here.



I'm in agreement with the Drow, Eladrin and the Elves.

Drow need that +2 Dex/ +2 Cha or Wis -> I mean when the majority of the power lies in the active clerics of the race.... why not some Wisdom?

The other two seem fine, though if the Eladrin get a +2 to Cha, then they get a +2 to Will Defense...

Now Dwarves... see; I've always seen dwarves as the default engineers and builders of any fantasy world, while gnomes are the mad scientist, Dwarves are the ones who build giant underground cities, rock citadels and like to work with the building aspect of mining, if not just for the efficiency. Dwarves build things and quite frankly the trope of dwarven smiths building the best weapons and armor are pretty prevalent. That's why I could see them being +2 Con/ +2 Int or Wis. Dwarves are always hardy and can quite frankly drink alot... but their either very wise in terms of stone or very smart in terms of building and making. I imagine an Artificer Dwarf...

Dunno much about Half-elves.


Stupid PEACHers… it's not like I want you to read my thread, or anything…


Welcome to the club! I didn't get a single response in my thread, and I don't know whether people just don't like free-floating boosts or my ideas just aren't debatable. (Okay, the second one is highly unlikely. ;))

Pretty good lists so far. Here's what I'd do differently.

Drow: +2 Charisma, +2 Dexterity or Wisdom


Won't somebody think of the poor Drizzt clones? How am I supposed to min/max a dual wielding drow with no Str boost?! Gaaah!
What I'm confused about is drow. How can Wis possibly be justified for drow from a flavor perspective? All I ever see is gamist reasons; people want drow to be good clerics.
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Actually, Khift, it's exactly from the flavor perspective why they want drow to be good clerics. Religion plays such a huge part in everyday drow life that, even if they might not have favored it as a race at the start of the world, they've surely focused their society to be more concentrated on being in-tune with their god these days. It makes sense to me, at least.

The original core books said that this was our game too. It doesn't feel like that anymore.

Actually, Khift, it's exactly from the flavor perspective why they want drow to be good clerics. Religion plays such a huge part in everyday drow life that, even if they might not have favored it as a race at the start of the world, they've surely focused their society to be more concentrated on being in-tune with their god these days. It makes sense to me, at least.



Wasn't the old lore that drow society was, in addition to matriarchal, a theocracy (aka female clerics ran the whole bloody thing)?  If I am remembering that right (I never found drow interesting and have almost never used them), then drow making good clerics makes perfect sense.
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