First Thoughts - Playtest characters

Fighter

He looks okay numerically, my main issue is that he's boring. No special abilities. No stances. No powers. Just basic attack. That's all you do.

Cleric

The cleric seems ridiculously good. The buff battle cleric of 3E that outfights fighters is back, only now it's possible to make him at level 1. Shield of faith gives all attackers disadvantage for the combat. Searing light tosses out 4d6 + wis damage at 1st level (even more against undead), and spiritual hammer is giving you a free extra attack for the rest of combat. This guy just seems to have "nova" written all over him, because that's what he seems to be good at. Blow all your spells in one combat and become a god, then just take a full rest and get all your spells back to repeat it the next day.

The cleric needs to have way less of an emphasis on buff spells. Already they're too good, and I haven't gotten past 1st level spells yet. I am really not looking forward to this edition if it brings back the buff-based cleric who outfights a fighter.

Rogue

This class I'm still uncertain of balance wise. At level 1 he looks like he'd be rather weak, because the new sneak attack is much closer to backstab at least earlier on. However once you get spells later on to grant him advantage, like invisibility or simiar, this class could be insanely powerful as his sneak attack seems to scale at +1d6 per level (twice the rate of 3E).

I will say I love the concept of the Night Vision he gets at 2nd level. This is something D&D rogues have needed for a very long time. Monsters have darkvision, if the rogue can't see without a torch, he is useless. Very nice addition.

Wizard

The wizard is awful. His spells are just ridiculously bad. The wizard's damage output is worse than the cleric's and he can't even put an orc to sleep. To make matters worse he has that awful spell disruption mechanic that pretty much means you've got a good shot of botching the spell on the next turn (and that the cleric oddly doesn't even have for some reason). I could understand the disruption mechanic if we were talking about something similar to the 2E or 3E wizard, but we're not. This class isn't even remotely good and definitely feels like it needs some help.



I have to say I agree, except the figher.

the "fighter" we have a sample of is not really a member of a class. class implys some ability or mechanic that makes him unique or different from everyone else. this figher just does a basic attack....then another....then another, why have a figher class if that is it? I can just be a lv1 dwarf and do that.

I also dont understand the scaleing for the rogue, 1d6 per level seams insane with the damage scaling they are going for. would a level 10 rogue roll 10d6 with advantage? (and I hope they dont count on advantage being hard to get, because a way WILL be found to get it relibly)
Insulting someones grammar on a forum is like losing to someone in a drag race and saying they were cheating by having racing stripes. Not only do the two things not relate to each other (the logic behind the person's position, and their grammar) but you sound like an idiot for saying it (and you should, because its really stupid )
I agree with most your critques.

Fighter, statistically, seems strong. But, yeah, he looks also boring. I though were gone the days of "I attack him... I hit for 6 damage. I attack him, I miss. I attack him, hit for 8 damage. I attack...". Mechanically, you're not even motivated to do a nice description of your attacks because it's stated you usually don't gain an advantage for colorfull attack or save descriptions, it's abilities and spells who does.

I also think the Cleric looks a bit OP. I read in a colomn that cleric spells were all about subtle indirect magic : buff, healing, wards, that kind of stuff. Yet I read the spell description and they get the most powerfull damage dealing spells : Searing light, Radiant Lance, Spiritual Hammer, Sunburst. Searing Light is insane : 4d6 + ability mod with a ranged attack (and d12 vs undead) for a 1ST LVL SPELL VS Burning Hands that does 2d4 + ability mod with a Dex save half damage (though can affect multiple targets in a short arc). The next best thing for Wizard is Arc Lightning, also 4d6 + ability mod (miss half damage) and 2d6 to a second target but is 2ND LVL... while the cleric at 2nd gets Sunburst that does 2d8 on first round + blinded, 2d8 on second round, no attack check, save half and no blind and is a 10 ft-radius sphere. That's 4d8 + blind to MULTIPLE TARGETS. Since when clerics are casting "fireballs" (and at 2nd lvl) ?

I'm okay with clerics having a few not too powerfull occasional damage dealing spells, especially against undeads, demons and the likes, but I would like to see most of those spells nerfed if not totally gone.

Rogues : not bad but even if Night Vision is a cool addition...  how the heck lore-wise does someone gain night vision as part of a rogue training? I mean, yeah, IRL I have a good night vision but I have big irises, that's nothing anyone can train to acquire. That said, I'm okay with a bit of abstraction for a fantasy game, as long as you provide me with with at least a "not very good" explanation for it. :P

The wizard would seem okay to me if you make abstraction of the cleric's spells.
as for the darkvision thing, I would say that through intence training and useing some drugs to help they have learned to open and close their iris' by thought alone, what would take most people a half hour of adjustment takes them a few seconds. that combind with knowing what to look for.

BS of course but close enough
Insulting someones grammar on a forum is like losing to someone in a drag race and saying they were cheating by having racing stripes. Not only do the two things not relate to each other (the logic behind the person's position, and their grammar) but you sound like an idiot for saying it (and you should, because its really stupid )

Wizard

The wizard is awful. His spells are just ridiculously bad. The wizard's damage output is worse than the cleric's and he can't even put an orc to sleep. To make matters worse he has that awful spell disruption mechanic that pretty much means you've got a good shot of botching the spell on the next turn (and that the cleric oddly doesn't even have for some reason). I could understand the disruption mechanic if we were talking about something similar to the 2E or 3E wizard, but we're not. This class isn't even remotely good and definitely feels like it needs some help.






An orc has 11 hp.  So no you can't put him to sleep unless he is injured.     Perhaps they should increase the hp requirement to 15.    Then again considering it effects every creature in a 20 radius  I'm not so sure about that.   How many creatures can you affect with a 20'  radius anyway?       I think the old school version of sleep had a limit to the number of creatures you could affect with it, this one doesn't.      the automatic half speed effect is also rather usefull.    Cast it on the group of orcs and then just pelt them with ranged attacks from 100 feet away.      I'll have to think about this a bit more, but it looks like this version of sleep is a little more versatile and a bit more powerfull than even the 2e version.      You can also use this version of sleep any any creature with 10 or less HP.   


Dwarven Cleric of Moradin:

Assassins must absolutely *Hate* Dwarves.

Can we at least get a Mundane on their poison immunity or a Resistance instead of Immune?

Low-Light Vision technically functions even in the Underdark, without a light source for fifty miles, at the bottom of a stone-covered covered pit without entrance or exit.

Arguing from absurdity, sure, but how about something like "If there is a light source within 100 feet"?

Dwarves technically also don't get lost in the most horrid, confusing and indistinguishable maze, so long as it's "underground".

How about "as long as there are distinguishing features to follow"?

From the sounds of it, Clerics prepare all? their spells and cast them spontaneously. Makes sense.


The Cleric of Pelor seems to have better stats. Rolled? An unknown benefit of "Human"?

The Healing Kit seems to allow dying characters to be automatically stabilized, using "an action". So technically, you can stabilize a dying character, *And* attack an enemy. Bwuh?

Maybe make it a full-turn action. Maybe even throw a roll in there?

One more Orison than the Cleric of Moradin. Human feature?

The Healing feature allows automatic max dice on some healing rolls. Not to get into edition wars, but the effect of a 3e "Maximize Spell" all the time seems...Rather powerful. OTOH, I haven't playtested it, or seen the rest of it.


Dwarven Fighter:

What's the difference between a "Mountain Dwarf" and a "Hill Dwarf"? Ability scores?

Endurance? The character gets three skills instead of four for this? I suppose it allows more loot back, but I'm not really feeling heroic by being the parties' mule.

Sorry, can't think of an easy solution. Maybe extra HP or a bonus on Hit Dice rolls? Maybe something for recovering from dying? (No, not all of those at once).

The Fighter seems simple; some people will like that, some people won't. As long as options come, it's good.


Halfling Rogue:

Halflings get a couple of 1d20 re-rolls a day. They can also hide behind creatures that are larger than them. The first one is good; the second is awesome and totally makes up for the Halfling only getting two abilities. "I hide behind the Half-Orc and stab him until he dies!" "Great, he notices you and, turning, slices you in..." "Nope, sorry, I'm hiding!" "Where?!" "Behind the Half-Orc." *Facepalm* Or at least, that's how I imagine it would go with a munchkin - Or a dedicated playtester. Combine this with Lurker...

How about hiding behind "Allies and unaware creatures"? And two abilities seems kinda poor, although I haven't playtested yet.

Hidden pockets? Awesome. Customizeable mundane gear? I hope so.

Commoner gets three skills (Commerce is probably very useful, so that's probably ok) and a commoner trade. If you can upgrade that to "Epic Blacksmith" or something? Awesome.

"My shins are covered! I'm hidden!" I'm guessing you probably mean you can crouch/go prone/contort such that you're hidden behind something a quarter your size, but if that's what you mean, you should probably say that.


High Elf Wizard:

Immune to charmed condition and sleep spells. I, personally both like and dislike immunities. They are flavourful, but they shut down mechanics, which can gimp/nerf characters.

So, I'd say Resistances; or, simple, why not just always have Advantage versus Charmed and Sleep?

Same problem as Dwarf on Low-Light Vision.

Could also split Low-Light Vision from Darkvision.

Just knowing where you can find knowledge? What, do you have "Scry: The Title of Every Book, Everywhere"? On second thought, I want that. Except my brain would explode. Anyway.

How about having Advantage on research?

Familiars - Oh vey. Your familiar now really is irrelevant unless summoned and has no real free will.

This is the stupidest fanon interpretation of familiar rules, made canon. Away with it.


Casters memorize spells at 1 minute per spell level per spell? Exponential spell memorization time is bad.


Yes, a lot of those are easily house-ruled or interpretable. However, I, as GM, shouldn't have to break the rules to use the rules.


GM's Advice:

A strength check to stop drowning?

If you're moving to the surface, include movement in the rules.


The rest later.

Thought for the day: Solid rules support solid gameplay and roleplay.
Um can someone explain the rogue's tools of the trade ability?

I mean they get the ability to perform tasks with tools that are normally impossible without tools?

Am I reading that right?

Seems like a non ability.
On the fighter- the version here is very, very simple.  You pretty much hit it with your weapon, and then hit it with your weapon, and once you are level 2 you can hit it with your weapon twice a couple of times per day.

HOWEVER, keep in mind we have only seen three levels of fighter, and he seems to add a new ability at each level.  Fighter's surge and cleave both seem pretty cool.  If things keep going at that rate, and if there is an extensive list to choose from, by the time you are 6th or 8th level I bet you have a significant number of specials you call pull out, other than just "swing sword."

Also, keep in mind that there are people out there who play 1st edition retro clones, and they are trying to bring those folks back to the table.  Some people want dirt simple get-it-on-one-index-card characters.  I am not one of them, but they are out there.  This edition is supposed to be modular/tool box oriented, and we still haven't seen the majority of the tools.  I feel confident that there will be plenty of love for the figher coming as more material comes one.

On a side note, I want to play the cleric of pelor.  Now.  Someone come over to my house with Caves of Chaos and lest get to it. 
keep in mind we have only seen three levels of fighter, and he seems to add a new ability at each level.  Fighter's surge and cleave both seem pretty cool.



Cleave is not a fighter ability. Is a Feat/Theme benefit. 

[<()>]Proud Brazilian. Typos are free bonuses. 

keep in mind we have only seen three levels of fighter, and he seems to add a new ability at each level.  Fighter's surge and cleave both seem pretty cool.



Cleave is not a fighter ability. Is a Feat/Theme benefit. 




Yep. Wizards can take the Slayer Theme feats.
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This edition is supposed to be modular/tool box oriented, and we still haven't seen the majority of the tools.  I feel confident that there will be plenty of love for the figher coming as more material comes one.
 



I sure hope so. The current fighter is rather depressing. Tome of Battle was my favorite 3E book published, and I loved how 4E actually gave martial characters real options. And that's one big thing I found lacking in the playtest materials.

I think that WOTC should make two fighter classes


  • Fighter is a boring BECMI guy with no AEDU feats

  • "Spell blade" or "mystic guy" is a 4ed AEDU fighter


Make room for both. Don't introduce AEDU powers without offering magic fluff to explain it. Add more actions to the combat rules, to inspire players to do something interesting that isn't covered by a feat,

Those were my wishes, but it looks like I am in minority... 

    DISCLAIMER: I never played 4ed, so I may misunderstand some of the rules.
    I'm not seeing the issue with rogues and the lack of a super easy way to get advantage...  Based on what I am seeing on the charater sheet for the next couple of levels the extra damage for a sneak attack continually goes up a die, making it fairly nasty, and if it were as simple as setting up a flank attack the damage he'd be doing would soon outstripe most other characters. 

    Also, the fighter is supposed to represent a certain style of play.  They've already made mention of this.  There will be more complex fighter options, but this is the simple beatdown fighter without fancy tricks.

    I'm seeing a lot of negative overreaction...  I hope it doesn't affect the end result as I'm seeing plenty of good within these concepts.
    There's a design space for the basic-spammer fighter.  I know people who want to do that.  They don't want a variety of powers.  They don't play D&D for the combat.  They just want to be effective in combat without having to overthink it.

    For people who want a more tactical fighter, there should be that option.  A weaponmaster or duelist class would be a great addition for those people.

    Similarly, there are peopel who don't want a complicated spellcaster.  They just want to blast things.  I think the warlock or sorcerer can fit that design space just fine.
    Not enough necromancers! Other than that the play test characters seem alright thus far.
    I used the point-buy system for 3.5 to determine the attribute point cost of each of the characters.

    Elven Wizard: 28 points
    Halfling Rogue: 30 points
    Dwarven Fighter: 28 points
    Dwarven Cleric: 29 points
    Human Cleric: 39 points

    It seems like point-buy is geared in the 30-point range for non-humans, and 40 points for humans. Personally I'd prefer extra trained skills and an extra Theme or Theme ability, but starting with 10 more points is good too.

    I can't see anyone playing this game without point-buy. Attributes are KING in this game, they define pretty much everything about your character. Rolling them randomly would create potentially HUGE gaps between party members.

    I'm also mildly upset about attributes being the only thing that really defines your character's skill checks. No skill points means that your character can't advance their skills as they adventure. What if my booking Mage learns about the value of magical items, and wants ranks in the Appraise skill? Nope, can't do it. This system is even more limiting than the 3.5 system, and it's WAY behind Pathfinder.
    Um can someone explain the rogue's tools of the trade ability?

    I mean they get the ability to perform tasks with tools that are normally impossible without tools?

    Am I reading that right?

    Seems like a non ability.



    Seems like a way of saying rogues start with theifs tools without purchasing them, but since its a prebuilt character its hard to say.  
    Um can someone explain the rogue's tools of the trade ability?

    I mean they get the ability to perform tasks with tools that are normally impossible without tools?

    Am I reading that right?

    Seems like a non ability.



    Seems like a way of saying rogues start with theifs tools without purchasing them, but since its a prebuilt character its hard to say.  



    It means that only Rogues can use theives' tools to disarm traps and pick locks (from what I gather).

    Kind of a **** move, in my opinion. Why can't my priest of Olidamarra pick locks? It shouldn't be a class feature. 
    I had to read it a few times to see the relevance of the "Tools of the Trade" ability, but I figured it out:

    1. Normally a character CANNOT pick a lock, disarm a trap, or (in certain cases) detect a trap WITHOUT appropriate Thieve's Tools.  i.e. Without appropriate tools, these tasks are usually IMPOSSIBLE.

    2. A character CANNOT use Thieve's Tools WITHOUT appropriate training.

    3. The "Tools of the Trade" ability gives rogues the appropriate training.

    In other words, a character CANNOT pick a lock, disarm a trap, or (in certain cases) detect a trap WITHOUT "Tools of the Trade" or some equivalent special ability.

    Or, to put it another way, usually a rogue is the only character permitted to do these things.
    Add more actions to the combat rules, to inspire players to do something interesting that isn't covered by a feat,

    Those were my wishes, but it looks like I am in minority...

    Well, if I ignore that first part, I think this is really what all players are looking for in a "martial" class.  I want to be able to do something that isn't just "stab."  I never understood that disconnect: Merlin can manipulate arcane energy in thousands of different ways, but Arthur only knows one way to swing a sword?  Why is a heroic swordfighter the guy with the least interesting options (and the fewest) in combat?

    Kind of a **** move, in my opinion. Why can't my priest of Olidamarra pick locks? It shouldn't be a class feature. 


    All we know is that it IS a class feature.  I'm fairly confident that it will not be exclusively a class feature.  It's ripe for background/theme, or even a deity feature of some sort.
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