Monk Class Sketch

Not a bad write up.

I think it is a good example of how to use a spell point mechanic for martials.  You have pool of points and a point cost for a power.

There are more class features in this monk when compared to the other playtest classes.  Not sure if that is good or bad, tho.

"The Apollo moon landing is off topic for this thread and this forum. Let's get back on topic." Crazy Monkey

Yeah, there is a pretty broad breadth of class features, but to be honest, the Monk has always been pretty front loaded by necessity.

Many of the features are relatively minor besides, or form the general foundation for the class, like the Tumble or Ki Strike.
Here was me honestly thinking it would be a concept sketch you did >.<

This looks to be a very well done class, kudos for its design but the flurry of blows power looks like it will become OP even with the -4. Maybe -2 with no ability modifier to the damage rolls?
Here was me honestly thinking it would be a concept sketch you did >.<

This looks to be a very well done class, kudos for its design but the flurry of blows power looks like it will become OP even with the -4. Maybe -2 with no ability modifier to the damage rolls?



Was thinking of potentially increasing the penalty to -5.

Thanks for the feedback! 
"You lose this feature while most of your class levels are non-monk." needs to die in a fire, then that fire needs to die in a flood, then that flood needs to die in an asteroid collision, then that asteroid collision needs to die in a supernova, then that supernova needs to die in a black hole.
"erdana; color:#000000; font-weight:normal; font-style:normal; font-variant:normal; text-decoration:none">You lose this feature while most of your class levels are non-monk." needs to die in a fire, then that fire needs to die in a flood, then that flood needs to die in an asteroid collision, then that asteroid collision needs to die in a supernova, then that supernova needs to die in a black hole.



Completely disagree.

The alternative is I have to scale/level index the necessarily frontloaded fundamental elements of the class. I'd rather not have to do that, and force those who intend to make a substantive investment in it to suffer so that twinks can't load up on strong features and then abscond to their next dip class.

In the hopeful event WotC adopts the design but sees fit to do away with the restriction, fine, so be it, but I refuse to cater to or facilitate twink dippers.
In the hopeful event WotC adopts the design but sees fit to do away with the restriction, fine, so be it, but I refuse to cater to or facilitate twink dippers and dipping.

So... because you dislike cherry-picking, everyone else must be compelled to hate it also, huh?

Wouldn't it be much more considerate of the rest of us to just say "No multiclassing at my table, guys!"?  No, you want to dictate it to everybody's table.
So... because you dislike cherry-picking, everyone else must be compelled to hate it also, huh?



Yeah, pretty much. I consider myself a staunch optimizer, but the super twink cherry picker exploitive dip composites that span 4+ classes with far less than 25% of its total levels invested in the majority makes my stomach turn with their nigh unjustifiable silliness. 

WotC can do what they like with the restriction, but I'm not changing it. I think it's absolutely ridiculous and unfair that someone is able to dip a couple of levels and cherry pick some of the most powerful elements without any kind of substantive investment.
WotC can do what they like with the restriction, but I'm not changing it. I think it's absolutely ridiculous and unfair that someone is able to dip a couple of levels and cherry pick some of the most powerful elements without any kind of substantive investment.

And that is why frontloading is always a bad idea.

And that is why frontloading is always a bad idea.



I wish I could not front load powerful stuff like Ki Strike, and Flurry of Blows, but these elements are iconic and fundamental to the class and therefore demand it.
Mind if I take another look and try to work out a less-screwjobby multiclass hoser?
Sure. Like I said, the only alternative I can really see at this point to hose dippers is nerfing the fundamentals/iconics to scale with class levels (which I feel is flawed as it castrates those who intend to genuinely invest in the class early on). If you can find something better, by all means, go for it.
Part of the problem is way too much swag squished into five levels.
I've folded Tumble and Improved Tumble into a Monk Technique, and removed the additional Technique granted at level 2.
Flurry should move into a technique as well, with "Falcon Punch!" being another option.
Flurry should move into a technique as well, with "Falcon Punch!" being another option.



Falcon Punch would be the Dragon Punch Ki Discipline, lol.

As for Flurry, I can't bring myself to make it an optional technique. It's far too iconic and central to the class, and what allows it to be competitive offensively with the likes of the Fighter/Warlock. 
As for Flurry, I can't bring myself to make it an optional technique. It's far too iconic and central to the class, and what allows it to be competitive offensively with the likes of the Fighter/Warlock. 

And "Falcon Punch" wouldn't be?
www.youtube.com/watch?v=C7zmSavFgwY

Well the bottom line is that it needs a central, at-will, core damage dealing ability. I wouldn't be averse to the idea of allowing the Monk to choose between multiple less accurate attacks as per FoB, and one powerful, more accurate 'Falcon Punch' style attack, but either way, the Monk must have one.

I do lean towards the FoB due to its long and featured history as a core and foundational element of the Monk class.
I do lean towards the FoB due to its long and featured history as a core and foundational element of the Monk class.

Except, there is no "long and featured" history.

1E and OA Monks accumulated extra attacks very very slowly (extra attacks finally appear at 4th level), and the class was missing from 2E (with approximations only existing in two non-monk splatbooks).

I'd consider 3E-4E to be pretty long and featured. In popular media, the concept/trope of a martial artist throwing blows faster than the eye can follow is also quite prolific.
My thoughts as I'm reading this:

Whoah, what the heck?  Why is the Monk as good with weapons as a Fighter?  No other class gets that weapon attack bonus progression.  The Monk has never been that good with weapons.  I think using the Rogue weapon bonus progression makes way more sense.  Or even just go the way of the Dragon Sorcerer and give an unscaling +3.

Er, wait, what?  Two crazy problems just in the chart?  Why in the world does the Monk get a better Save DC progression than the Wizard/Warlock?  Why should Monks get an extra +1 to their DCs?

Unarmed strikes are equivalent to two-handed finesse weapons?  Huh?  I'd be perfectly fine with 1d6--and even letting the damage scale a little bit with more Monk levels--but it's silly to me that the monk's hands begin as better weapons than actual weapons.  

Ki Agility--there are no Reflex saves.  Do you mean Dexterity saves?  The actual AC granted looks fine, but the calculation is really awkward.  I think I'd prefer just a flat AC bonus that scales with level--and I don't necessarily even think it needs to be limited by Wisdom.  It just needs to keep pace with Light Armor.  That would also solve the problem of Monks being the class to be if you have a really high point buy or rolled really well or something such that you have a really high Dex and Wis.

Flurry of Blows--First, why does it need to be with Finesse weapons?  Why even give the monk basic weapon proficiency if that's the case?  I'm not saying one should be able to flurry with greataxes or anything, just questioning the decision to give monks a proficiency they might as well never use.

I also really dislike the -4 to hit thing.  That's totally against the design of Next.  There are no penalties (or bonuses) like that floating around anymore.  Advantage/Disadvantage is the name of the game.  Flurry of blows ought to be making two attacks, each with Disadvantage to fit in.

I also think you'd be better off just saying, "monks can't multi-class" somewhere in the beginning, rather than specifying with each specific ability that it doesn't work if you multi-class more than you find desirable.

Ki Pool/Disciplines: Aah!  Did you even try to balance this?  I'm starting to think that you didn't, thanks to the as good as fighter attack progression, better than weapons punches, better than wizard's save progression, and now, this more (and scaling ever higher!) encounter powers than the Warlock thing.

The Warlock gets only two favors between short rests and this never increases.  Literally, each fight, they can do two special things that aren't Eldritch blasting.   Why does the Monk get to do 3 things each fight to start, never mind the fact that he can eventually do 4?

There's no such thing as a "free action" in Next.  The proper verbiage is now something like, "you can, as part of your action, do X."

While it may seem obvious, you really ought to define the various entries in your Discipline listing such as "trigger."

Burst of Speed: the actual movement and OA thing are irrelevant to me.  I'm concerned, however, that three times per fight, you can just declare that you have advantage on an attack and deal extra damage with it?  Granted, it's not as much extra damage as say, combat superiority which is always on, but advantage nearly assures a hit.  That's especially deadly when connected to Flurry of Blows (your version or mine, really).  And besides, where did this "monks are accurate," thing come from?  In my mind, monks are the super innacurate guys that make up for it with lots and lots and lots of attacks, not these precision killers you're turning them into.

Prescient Dodge: this ability, attainable at level 1 and usable 3+ times per encounter, not only duplicates, but actually improves upon, a boon ability that the Warlock gets at level 2.  The difference?  The warlock must spend a reaction to trigger it, it only works on attacks, not saves, too, and the Warlock only ever has two boons to use on powers like this.

Mind Over Body: Ok, seriously?  3+ times per fight, the Monk can now also do what the Rogue can only do twice per day?  Really?  Are you really going to make the argument that Rogues being able to get advantage on non physical checks somehow balances this vast gap in frequency?

Inner Eye: are you kidding me?  Am I being trolled?  Is this write up serious, or is it just a strange love letter to the concept of the Monk class?

Fade to Black: The Warlock can become Ethereal twice per encounter, so this is approaching fair.  However, doing so for the Warlock takes an action, rather than being essentially free from the action economy as this more powerful than Ethereal ability is for the Monk.  So, yeah, ultimately, still no good.

Stunning Fist--I'm not sure you really read the Paralyzed condition in the packet.  "The creature cannot move physically, control its limbs, or speak. It drops whatever it’s holding and falls prone. The creature’s mental faculties are not affected."  You really imagine the Monk punching someone and turning their body into floppy jelly for a turn?  Why didn't you just go for the Stunned condition instead?  I mean, it's even called "Stunning Fist," so it's in the name.

Blurred Fist--Separating this out from the fact that I dislike the general way Flurry of Blows and these ki powers work (and how such things do not even fit into the way Next is designed), this isn't really bad.  It's the first one!

Dragon Fist--No other knockback power deals damage.  Why does this one?  Why did you not just follow precedent?

Diamond Fist and Swift Reaction are fine, again, given the caveats for Blurred Fist above.

Ki Blast--The calculation for how much Ki you can spend is again awkward, and the power is not structured the way spells are in Next.  First, they removed stat mods from spell damage--it should instead be 2d8+4 or 3d8 or something.  Additionally, this power, which can be used every encounter at level 1 and twice per encounter at level 4, deals more average damage than Burning Hands, deals two types of damage instead of just one, and has the additional effect of knocking them prone and pushing them back.

Monk Techniques--There's more!?  This class gets more over the course of 5 levels than every other class combined.

First, "hitting by X or more" is not a thing in D&D Next, nor is it a thing in any previous edition.  Hitting is binary and always has been: hit or miss (ok, trinary--hit, miss, or crit--but still, you get my point).  Further, since your version of the Monk is a paragon of accuracy, these abilities are silly unfair.

Swift Disarm is annoying to me because it does not handle Disarm in any way close to how I'd do it.  I mean, why does AC even have anything to do with it?  What armor I'm wearing is the most significant aspect of determining whether or not you can kick my sword out of my hands?  How strong a grip I have, how many hands I have on this sword, and my own skill in fighting are irrelevant?  Just my armor and ability to dodge matters?

Circle Kick--so, you may not have intended it this way, but this ability allows me to Flurry of Blows and turn one of my two attacks into an attack at -4  against every enemy in reach.  Your wording does not stack the penalties.  If that is not intentional, please re-evaluate this technique.  If it is intentional, what are you thinking?  As I said before, -4 isn't common practice, it should be disadvantage, and it shouldn't combine with Flurry, nor should it knock prone, too.

Meteor Toss--"You can choose to deal no damage with this attack in order to deal massively more damage than you'd normally be capable of against two creatures at once while simultaneously forcing a hell of a lot of movement and knocking someone prone."  Are you familiar with the playtest packets that have been released?  Do you have no concept of the power levels present in them?

Counterstrike, Deflect Projectiles--I don't even have the energy to tell you all the things wrong with the power level of these abilities.

Practised (sic) Dodge--This is fine, but again, that calculation is awkward.

Darting Strike--This is effectively identical to the Fighter maneuver Shift...except that the Monk can do it on every attack forever at no cost while the Fighter needs to spend an Expertise die.

Tumble--So, basically, the monk ignores all Opportunity Attacks all the time forever?  <_<

Preternatural Evasion--you ignore all miss effects and get both (the Next versions of) Evasion and Mettle?  Just, automatically at level 2?  No, just no.

Ki Speed--This is fine, speed is nearly irrelevant anyway.

Ultimate Verdict: No!  Please re-read the packet that has already been released and rewrite this class into something that at least pretends to be balanced.  As is, the monk fights better than a fighter, has more encounter powers than the warlock, blasts and inflicts conditions better than any spell caster, and has dozens of moves that do not fit the design style of Next at all.

First off, while there's a lot of good critique Storyteller, much of the criticism seems to concern itself with comparing similar elements/effects without  taking into account an overall view.

The fact that this is a rough sketch/outline should also be kept in mind. It is not a 'finished product'. I have not formally gone over the math and made detailed cross comparisons as of yet, but I will when I find more time. That said, I am left to wonder at your thoroughly caustic and snippish tone.

This is what I've had the time to address so far. I'll get around to the rest later.


Monk Attack Bonus: I've always seen the monk as a highly skilled and disciplined combatant. Why shouldn't he be as talented with the subset of weapon's he's practised in, including his fists, as the Fighter? 3.5 precedence is a terrible example, where the Monk was an absolute joke.

Ki DC Progression: It's better because it's keyed to a secondary stat rather than a primary which will likely debut at a +2.

Ki Agility: Yes, Dexterity saves were meant obviously. I don't mind the idea of AC that scales simply with level rather than Wis, though I dislike it being less dynamic.

Flurry of Blows: I'd considered Disadvantage; it was actually featured in my first draft of the feature, but the idea of making 4-6 d20 rolls pretty much every round at a minimum to attack makes me cringe. 

On Unarmed Strikes at 1d8 damage:

DPR, Fighter vs Monk vs Warlock vs Rogue.  

Assumptions: 13 AC target, the Fighter uses a 1d8 weapon with level appropriate Expertise dice, the Monk uses Flurry of Blows. Everyone has an +4 ability mod, and the same attack bonus +3/+4: 

Fighter (One handed 1d8 weapon + Expertise):

Level 1: (4.5+3.5+4)*.70+(8+6+4)*.05 = 9.3 damage
Level 3: (4.5+4.5+4)*.70+(8+8+4)*.05 = 10.1 damage 
Level 5: (4.5+9+4)*.75+(8+16+4)*.05 = 14.525 damage 

Monk (Unarmed Strike + Flurry of Blows):

Level 1: ((4.5+4)*.50+(8+4)*.05)*2+.5^2*((4.5+4)*.50+(8+4)*.05)  = 10.9125 damage 
Level 3: ((4.5+4)*.50+(8+4)*.05)*2+.5^2*((4.5+4)*.50+(8+4)*.05)= 10.9125 damage 
Level 5: ((4.5+4)*.55+(8+4)*.05)*2+.5^2*((4.5+4)*.55+(8+4)*.05) = 11.86875 damage 

Warlock (Eldritch Blast + ability modifier; yes, some argue that ability mods don't apply. I balanced on the assumption that they did given the RAW):

Level 1: (3.5*3+4)*.70+(18+4)*.05  = 11.25 damage 
Level 3: (3.5*4+4)*.70+(24+4)*.05= 14 damage 
Level 5: (3.5*4+4)*.75+(24+4)*.05 = 14.9 damage 

Rogue (Katana/Long Bow + Sneak Attack assumed without advantage via Thug; you can use a weaker weapon and it wont matter too much.):
Level 1: (4.5 + 3.5*2+4)*.65+(8 + 12 +4)*.05  = 11.275 damage 
Level 3: (4.5 + 3.5*4+4)*.65+(8 + 24 +4)*.05= 16.425 damage 
Level 5: (4.5 + 3.5*6+4)*.70+(8 + 36 +4)*.05 = 23.05 damage 

Don't see the 1d8 being a huge problem.

Ki Discipline: Fair enough on most.

Burst of Speed: It's less about being accurate, more about surprise at/inability to defend against some guy bum rushing at you at incredible speeds. I don't mind dropping the bonus damage.

Dragon Fist: Why should a knockback power not deal damage? So far as precedent goes there's Thunderwave (a mediocre spell btw)?  

Ki Blast: By the RAW, they did not remove spell modifiers; the class is in part balanced around this assumption. Burning Hands as an underpowered L1 is a bad comparison, but assuming a +4 mod applies to it, a saving throw bonus of +0, an AC of 13, and accounting for the partial miss damage, it deals 3.15 more damage on average:

Burning Hands (14*.65+9*.35) - Ki Blast (13*.7) + (20 * .05)= 2.15

That said, vis a vis the likes of Eldritch Blast's at-will 3d6-4d6+4, I don't see a huge problem, but I will consider fixes/nerfs.


Monk Techniques: Loving the snipish exaggeration. That said, bonuses/penalties for succeeding/failing by some increment has been around in both 4e and 3.5, and it's an element I personally like. No reason it can't debut in Next.

Swift Disarm: Agreed. This was kind of sketchy and I wasn't satisfied with it. Revised it to set a Strength/Dexterity DC = to the attack roll.

Circle Kick: Clarified that the penalties that apply to the triggering attack also apply to the circle kick attacks.

Meteor Toss: What on earth are you talking about? You deal 1d6, maybe 2d6 damage with this + prone if you plan to just flat out throw the target on the ground, or into an adjacent wall. At most, it'll be 3d6. Post hit rate modifiers, you're better off using a Flurry of Blows to deal damage.


Deflect Projectiles: Assuming the attacker has a +2 attack bonus (averaged roll of 13), and you have a +4 bonus to your Dexterity saving throw, you have about a 60% chance of success, and a 35% chance of deflecting. That's pretty powerful admittedly. This is easy enough to balance with a penalty to the saving throw/bonus to the DC however.

Darting Strike--Fair enough; I'll look into a better solution for this one.

Counterstrike: 65% chance of triggering assuming a +2 attack bonus vs an AC of 16.

(((4.5+4)*0.8125+(8+4)*0.0975)*2)*.65 = +10.49 counterstrike damage / turn. Yeah, pretty steep. Again, easily fixable by adjusting the thresholds. I'll tinker around with the math later.

Tumble: Not entirely sure what to do with this. Kicking around some ideas, but I'd like to keep rolling to a minimum.

Preternatural Evasion: In practice how powerful is this? The answer is not much at all. I don't see it being a problem.


Lastly, so far as utterly broken things go, this Monk still has nothing on encounter breaking Cause Fear/Web spamming Sorcs; just saying.
So... because you dislike cherry-picking, everyone else must be compelled to hate it also, huh?



Yeah, pretty much. I consider myself a staunch optimizer, but the super twink cherry picker exploitive dip composites that span 4+ classes with far less than 25% of its total levels invested in the majority makes my stomach turn with their nigh unjustifiable silliness. 

WotC can do what they like with the restriction, but I'm not changing it. I think it's absolutely ridiculous and unfair that someone is able to dip a couple of levels and cherry pick some of the most powerful elements without any kind of substantive investment.



How does fairness come into it?

And any multiclass build is potentially a single concept being put together with parts from multiple classes, rather than a mix of concepts, so what possible "justification" could be needed?

Here was me honestly thinking it would be a concept sketch you did >.<

This looks to be a very well done class, kudos for its design but the flurry of blows power looks like it will become OP even with the -4. Maybe -2 with no ability modifier to the damage rolls?



Was thinking of potentially increasing the penalty to -5.

Thanks for the feedback! 



Other concerns aside, -2 with decreased damage is a better option. Make the penalty -5, and it's a trap option.


Anyway, most of the level one benefits don't need to be level one. Flurry of blows needs to do part of what's listed at level one. Make it comperable to TWF, at best, and improve over levels. Maybe have it do weapon damage only. That would put them on par with warlocks, I think.

unarmed working like finesse weapons for the monk is powerful enough that it, and a reduced flurry of blows, are a great lvl one character.

As long as the monk gets most of that within the first 5 levels, and is effective with simple weapons or unarmed from level one, the monk is working correctly.

Maybe keep ki disciplines and ki pool, so long as you only get one or two at first level.

High dex will mean good defense at level one, but agility shouldn't wait any longer than level 3.


I think that would put the monk roughly on par with the warlock. (assuming fixed math, not getting more "powers" per combat that are just as useful as the warlock, etc)

"Orders" could be a scheme like feature, which give different benefits to flurry as the monk levels, etc.


by the way, even if you take the anti dipper stance on mc rules, you've gone way overboard with the number of features that simply don't function is the monk isn't a character's primary class. If a character is halving levels between monk and something else, it will have it's monk abilities only half of the time. At that point, just ban multiclassing at your table, or make a rule that monks can't multiclass, or somesuch, but what you've got there is just... unusably extreme.


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Flurry of Blows needs to change. The -4 mechanic won't work. Decrease the damage die of the unarmed attack by 1 step (d6->d4) while doing flurry. Or half like Two Weapon Fighting. Somehow you can't modify accuracy, but you have to modify the damage.
How does fairness come into it?

And any multiclass build is potentially a single concept being put together with parts from multiple classes, rather than a mix of concepts, so what possible "justification" could be needed?



The notion of 'fairness' is obviously a subjective one to some extent, but do you really think it's right that a player can swap between countless different classes, managing to poach some of the best features of each class that are necessarily frontloaded? I sure as hell don't. It's not going to happen.

And I've heard your second argument before; I don't buy it at all. When someone cherrypicks and makes a dip composite character, it's not about a unified concept. In reality, the narrative/concept usually follows the build, and is shoehorned to fit it, not vice versa.
 
Other concerns aside, -2 with decreased damage is a better option. Make the penalty -5, and it's a trap option.

Anyway, most of the level one benefits don't need to be level one. Flurry of blows needs to do part of what's listed at level one. Make it comperable to TWF, at best, and improve over levels. Maybe have it do weapon damage only. That would put them on par with warlocks, I think. 

unarmed working like finesse weapons for the monk is powerful enough that it, and a reduced flurry of blows, are a great lvl one character.



DPR calcs disagree. They struggle to be at parity with Warlocks even with the current form of FoB, and it's pure melee besides.

Mathematically there is no reason to worsen FoB.

As long as the monk gets most of that within the first 5 levels, and is effective with simple weapons or unarmed from level one, the monk is working correctly.

 

If the Monk gets most of an inferior DPR, and nothing else then he is outshined.

Maybe keep ki disciplines and ki pool, so long as you only get one or two at first level.

High dex will mean good defense at level one, but agility shouldn't wait any longer than level 3.

I think that would put the monk roughly on par with the warlock. (assuming fixed math, not getting more "powers" per combat that are just as useful as the warlock, etc)



Ki Disciplines are limited to two presently at first level.

I don't like the idea of moving Ki Agility; moving it to 3 doesn't deter dippers much, and causes early monks to suffer subpar AC vis a vis other Dex classes, given the lack of armour.

While I'm looking at ways to improve the Ki Pool concept, it as Boons 2.0 is something to be avoided. Homogenity is boring.

by the way, even if you take the anti dipper stance on mc rules, you've gone way overboard with the number of features that simply don't function is the monk isn't a character's primary class. If a character is halving levels between monk and something else, it will have it's monk abilities only half of the time. At that point, just ban multiclassing at your table, or make a rule that monks can't multiclass, or somesuch, but what you've got there is just... unusably extreme.



Granted, half and halfers can get punished if they're oscillating between two classes. I could loosen it to something like say 40% rounded down and/or reduce the number of features affected, but I probably won't go beyond that.


Again, concerning FoB + 1d8 Unarmed Strike being 'OP':

DPR, Fighter vs Monk vs Warlock vs Rogue. 

Assumptions: 13 AC target, the Fighter uses a 1d8 weapon with level appropriate Expertise dice, the Monk uses Flurry of Blows. Everyone has an +4 ability mod, and the same attack bonus +3/+4: 

Fighter (One handed 1d8 weapon + Expertise): 

Level 1: (4.5+3.5+4)*.70+(8+6+4)*.05 = 9.3 damage 
Level 3: (4.5+4.5+4)*.70+(8+8+4)*.05 = 10.1 damage 
Level 5: (4.5+9+4)*.75+(8+16+4)*.05 = 14.525 damage 

Monk (1d8 Unarmed Strike + Flurry of Blows @ -4 to hit, and 3rd attack on 2 successful ones):

Level 1: ((4.5+4)*.50+(8+4)*.05)*2+.5^2*((4.5+4)*.50+(8+4)*.05)  = 10.9125 damage 
Level 3: ((4.5+4)*.50+(8+4)*.05)*2+.5^2*((4.5+4)*.50+(8+4)*.05)= 10.9125 damage 
Level 5: ((4.5+4)*.55+(8+4)*.05)*2+.5^2*((4.5+4)*.55+(8+4)*.05) = 11.86875 damage 

Warlock (Eldritch Blast + ability modifier; yes, some argue that ability mods don't apply. I balanced on the assumption that they did given the RAW):

Level 1: (3.5*3+4)*.70+(18+4)*.05  = 11.25 damage 
Level 3: (3.5*4+4)*.70+(24+4)*.05= 14 damage 
Level 5: (3.5*4+4)*.75+(24+4)*.05 = 14.9 damage 

Rogue (Katana/Long Bow + Sneak Attack assumed without advantage via Thug; you can use a weaker weapon and it wont matter too much.):
Level 1: (4.5 + 3.5*2+4)*.65+(8 + 12 +4)*.05  = 11.275 damage 
Level 3: (4.5 + 3.5*4+4)*.65+(8 + 24 +4)*.05= 16.425 damage 
Level 5: (4.5 + 3.5*6+4)*.70+(8 + 36 +4)*.05 = 23.05 damage 
The fact that this is a rough sketch/outline should also be kept in mind. It is not a 'finished product'. I have not formally gone over the math and made detailed cross comparisons as of yet, but I will when I find more time. That said, I am left to wonder at your thoroughly caustic and snippish tone.

That's just my way ;)

Monk Attack Bonus: I've always seen the monk as a highly skilled and disciplined combatant. Why shouldn't he be as talented with the subset of weapon's he's practised in, including his fists, as the Fighter? 3.5 precedence is a terrible example, where the Monk was an absolute joke.

The Monk was a joke due to MAD, not attack bonuses.  Flurry of Blows worked quite well on its own.  Further, Fighters absolutely should be the best fighters in the game.  I am really very opposed to the idea of any class being as good without being at least some sort of hybrid Fighter (like a Ranger or Paladin).  

Ki DC Progression: It's better because it's keyed to a secondary stat rather than a primary which will likely debut at a +2.

I am pretty sure that the fact that its tied to a secondary stat should mean the DCs are lower, not higher or even the same.

Flurry of Blows: I'd considered Disadvantage; it was actually featured in my first draft of the feature, but the idea of making 4-6 d20 rolls pretty much every round at a minimum to attack makes me cringe.

I don't think a -4 fits the design goals of Next, though--you should probably come up with some other way for Flurry of Blows to work.

Assumptions: 13 AC target, the Fighter uses a 1d8 weapon with level appropriate Expertise dice, the Monk uses Flurry of Blows. Everyone has an +4 ability mod, and the same attack bonus +3/+4:

I'm not concerned about DPR calculations, especially becuase I don't believe the Monk should be even close to the Fighter or Rogue in DPR.  I'm concerned about the simple fact that a level 1 monk's hands are better weapons than any other one-handed finesse weapon.

Warlock (Eldritch Blast + ability modifier; yes, some argue that ability mods don't apply. I balanced on the assumption that they did given the RAW):

It is absolutely not RAW.  Unquestionably, spells do not add ability mods to damage anymore--it was a deliberate and obvious change between packet 1 and 2.  The fact that they failed to update a single section of the How To Play document should not be taken to mean all the changes they made to spells are now moot.

Dragon Fist: Why should a knockback power not deal damage? So far as precedent goes there's Thunderwave (a mediocre spell btw)?

Thunderwave, Baleful Utterance, and the Fighter Knockback power.  Knockback doesn't deal damage in Next because for whatever reason, the devs decided it doesn't.  I'm not saying that no GM is going to have it deal damage, I'm just saying it probably shouldn't be codified. 

Ki Blast: By the RAW, they did not remove spell modifiers; the class is in part balanced around this assumption.

That explains a lot about the excessive power of some of these things.  However, they absolutely did remove stat modifiers to spell damage, so, yeah, fix that.

Burning Hands as an underpowered L1 is a bad comparison

Ok, again, the +4 damage does not apply, but Burning Hands is absolutely not underpowered.  It is nearly guaranteed to kill every level 1 or 2 (non-elite) enemy in the bestiary, and is capable of killing more than half of the total enemies in the packet (not to mention every level 1 PC and most level 2 PCs--at least the ones that don't take Survivor).  

That said, bonuses/penalties for succeeding/failing by some increment has been around in both 4e and 3.5, and it's an element I personally like. No reason it can't debut in Next.

Now I'm interested--where was this in 3rd and 4e?  Because I certainly don't remember it.

Circle Kick: Clarified that the penalties that apply to the triggering attack also apply to the circle kick attacks.

I still find this overpowered--the ability to attack everyone adjacent is something the Fighter can't do yet, and he should be the best combatant.

Meteor Toss: What on earth are you talking about? You deal 1d6, maybe 2d6 damage with this + prone if you plan to just flat out throw the target on the ground, or into an adjacent wall. At most, it'll be 3d6. Post hit rate modifiers, you're better off using a Flurry of Blows to deal damage.

Hmm...I recall it reading "by every 2" not "every 5" last night when I read this.  Objection withdrawn.

Preternatural Evasion: In practice how powerful is this? The answer is not much at all. I don't see it being a problem.

Given that the Monk has a bonus to Dex saves and that just about every spell has a miss effect, it's kind of a big deal.

Lastly, so far as utterly broken things go, this Monk still has nothing on encounter breaking Cause Fear/Web spamming Sorcs; just saying.

I have had arguments before with people about the supposed brokenness of Cause Fear--it's not really that amazing.  You are right about Web being unfair, for sure, but the thing is, you should not be trying to build this class to balance against the most broken and unfair thing in the packet.

Monk As a Joke: MAD was a big problem yes, but its class features weren't especially great either, nor was its support, or damage capabilities, even if you had all the ability scores you needed.


Fighter Melee Supremacy: Disagree. While the Fighter should be the best in some melee capacities, but the Monk should be able to surpass it in others.


Ki DC Progression: It should be higher to compensate for the lower bonus. The DC is intended to be on par with Wizards and Warlocks that get to apply their primary ability mod to the DC.


DPR: I completely disagree. The monk should be competitive with the Fighter's damage, or only somewhat less powerful. What's the point of the Monk if it can't have DPR even half way competitive with other front liners? Even with the existing DPR calcs, the Fighter has an advantage early on if it uses a two-hander. Further even if we assume ability mods don't apply to Eldritch Blast, Warlock DPR comes to surpass the Monk's.

I could only get behind markedly inferior DPR if the Monk's other options somehow make up for it. Even then I despise the notion of it as an impotent damage dealer.


On Ability Mod Damage Not Applying: It is RAW. It may not be RAI, but it's RAW. I didn't see the first playtest packet so I can't judge 'intent' based on prior content.


Burning Hands: It's an underpowered spell; mediocre at best. What's better? Grease, Cause Fear, Shield, Thunderwave (especially with prep; Ball Bearings/Caltrops/Hunting Traps put in place. If the forced move is interpretted as provoking then it's broken). To be fair though, L1 spells are either worthless or overpowered as a rule.


Exceptional Success/Failure: Off the top of my head, just check out 4e Athletics/Acrobatics. Or trap disarming in 3.5 and 4e. When you fail by some spectacular amount, bad things happen. Many rituals in 4e tended to reward the higher you rolled.


Circle Kick: I've seen Monk as the AoE meleer/ultimate multiattacker as per 4e and (kind of sort of) 3.5. Low accuracy multiattacks are his niche IMO.


Preternatural Evasion: The fact that partial effects are neither especially common, or powerful really tempers the practical power of this. I've never been impressed with these 'miss mitigators' for that reason.


Cause Fear and the Sorc: How is Cause Fear _not_ broken for an L1 spell? It effectively removes combatants from battle en masse and allows you to pick them off piecemeal. Even if your opponents are 'smart' enough to attack their allies to end the effect, they burn an action to have simply have a chance of doing so, dealing damage to them on a success in a lose/lose situation.

On several occasions, a cast or two of CF effectively won the encounter. It puts every other L1 spell to shame.

Granted, you shouldn't balance around obviously broken stuff, but Sorcerer makes my Monk look like nothing. 
I would rather see a combination of styles (specializations) that bring out the flavor of kung-fu, karate, etc. and the core monk would focus on what is common accross all martials arts, like kicking, punching, dodging and throwing. A good start would be to look at the AD&D Oriental Adventures martial art style table. Monk muti-attack would just follow the 5E system, versus needing flurry of blows.
Where are the options to do my bar room brawler, wrestler, and boxer? This is very eastern monk flavored, the quick agile unarmed/unarmored fighter and not enough mechanics fit other styles of unarmed/unarmored fighting, something I think needs to happen.




That is a good question, as what makes the monk different from the unarmed fighter, barbarian, etc. But I expect a variant can be included, as you have savate, greco-roman wrestling, to add to the type of martial art systems. The GURPS martial arts book would be another good reference. The challenge is not the make the monk, fighter, babarian, or other martialscharacters just exist exclusively in the realm of realism, and to add some of the more fantastic abilties to list of tools available to each class.
WotC can do what they like with the restriction, but I'm not changing it. I think it's absolutely ridiculous and unfair that someone is able to dip a couple of levels and cherry pick some of the most powerful elements without any kind of substantive investment.

And that is why frontloading is always a bad idea.




Yeah, I consider that more of a mechanical design flaw than anything else.
After reading through the posts on here I decided to try making a few changes to Surrealistik's original document (which are in red) and submit it below, if I missed any please let me know. The main changes I made, were changing the Flurry of Blows ability so there was no negative "to hit" and the Monk simply did not add his strength modifier to damage, and to change some of the Ki Disciplines into attacks that could be chained to the end of Flurry of Blows attacks.

docs.google.com/document/pub?id=1r7p8wCl...
NO!

No other class has this many abilities at level one. This class has more than all the other classes combined for the first five levels, you would need to add spells to get the count near what this class has. The goal of next is to present a stripped down version of each class and get to the basic of what makes each class unique. That can't happen when you add this much to a class. You are trying to make every type of martial artist and the different fighting styles included as seperate abilities and then give them all to the class at level one. You need to remove huge parts of the ability section and stip it down from the design that you took.

For example using the current design style that next is using this is much closer to what they are doing... 

There should be three distinct fighting styles one using wisdom, one for dexterity, and another for strength. At level one you would pick your fightng style and gain one to two manuvers that fit into that style.

Level one all monks do 1d6 damage unarmed and this goes up one die size at 3. You gain your wisdom number of Ki points. You gain back one Ki on a short rest.
 
crane style at level one you gain Ki strike and can spend one Ki to add 1d6 to your damage roll as you channel your Ki into the blow. You can use Ki blast and make a ranged Ki attack for 2d6 damage for 2 Ki.

Tiger style at level one you gain penetrating strikes and can spend Ki to gain advantage on your attack. you also can use eagle claw which adds 2d6 damage to your attack for 2 Ki.

Serpent style at level one your unarmed attacks are made as finess weapons. at level one you also gain flury of blows and can make one additional attack by spending one Ki. you also gain Prescient Dodge at level one and by spending two Ki you give one attacker disadvantage on one attack roll.

This is much closer to how Next is dealing with the classes. It is about the simplicity and difference of each class. Now I have not looked over how power full or under powered this is I am only showing that each class is much smaller than your design was.
@ Drycanth:

Most of the level 1 abilities are basically necessary as foundational elements for the rest of the class meant to make the Monk competitive and functional at a basic level. It can't use armour without losing its class features for example, so it gets Ki Agility; Ki Agility is an armour substitute. It relies primarily on its fists so it gets Ki Strike. These shouldn't be considered as true 'abilities'.

Besides, the Rogue, Warlock and Wizard all get about as many, and they're are all salient, and not meant to compensate. 

Further, the Monk at level 1 only gets access to a small portion of his final ability set. He doesn't even get his first combat technique until level 2.


However, I will agree that having the monk choose between different 'styles' is consistent with other classes and might constitute an improvement in design.
at level 1 a cleric has

Channel Divinity (1d8), Divine



Magic, Domain, Orisons, Religion



at level 1 a wizard has 

Arcane Magic, Arcane Knowledge, Cantrips, Spellbook




at level 1 a rogue has

rogue Scheme, Skill Mastery, Sneak Attack, Thieves’ Cant



at level 1 a fighter has


Combat Superiority, Fighting Style



 


the suggestion is for monks to have at level 1


Flurry of Blows, Ki Agility, Ki Disciplines, Ki Pool, Ki Strike

Ki disciplines consists of 11 different abilites with another 9 at level two so in two level the class has more than 24 different abilities with statistics and specific functions.


compared to a mages spell book that has at most with every spell in it 11 spells at first level, which you do not start with. at level one you start with 5 spells. How is it that a class that uses various physical attacks has more seperate mechanics than a spell caster with the diversity of spells available? 

The entire design is flawed. It uses multiple different mechanical devices to accomplish variations of the same thing. Circle kick in its most basic form is just another form of multi attack like flurry of blows. You are forcing eacy different single attack into it own unique ability and function. That is not what Next is trying to do. Next is a much more stream lined and basic form of the game. This entire design does not fit.



  



 
I don't think you're interpreting things correctly. You only get access to two (2) Ki Disciplines of your choice at 1st level, and another 1 every two class levels thereafter. Also, to clarify, these Disciplines are 'set in stone' once chosen; you don't get to swap them out, or 'prepare' them.

So far as Circle Kick goes, it is substantially different from FoB. Two attacks + a possible third combo strike vs 1 attack against everything adjacent is a marked and substantive difference. It can also be combined with FoB. Further, I'm not sure what your problem is with attack mutators exactly. They're not especially complex, and  they're less complex in most cases than spells.

Other concerns aside, -2 with decreased damage is a better option. Make the penalty -5, and it's a trap option.

Anyway, most of the level one benefits don't need to be level one. Flurry of blows needs to do part of what's listed at level one. Make it comperable to TWF, at best, and improve over levels. Maybe have it do weapon damage only. That would put them on par with warlocks, I think. 

unarmed working like finesse weapons for the monk is powerful enough that it, and a reduced flurry of blows, are a great lvl one character.



DPR calcs disagree. They struggle to be at parity with Warlocks even with the current form of FoB, and it's pure melee besides.

Mathematically there is no reason to worsen FoB.

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Bull. FoB needs to do less at level one. It currently allows more than two attacks with finesse weapon equivilents, at level one. That is very powerful. Agillity could go either way. There's nothing actually wrong with the monk being slightly behind in defense at level one, so long as it doesn't take long to catch up, but if the main things gained at level one are FoB and Agillity, then it's fine.

"Granted, half and halfers can get punished if they're oscillating between two classes. I could loosen it to something like say 40% rounded down and/or reduce the number of features affected, but I probably won't go beyond that.?

Ok, this is a waste of time, then. Your irrational hatred of "dippers" is blinding you to the fact that you're giving the class far more than other classes get at level one, and then making multi-classing in general a pain in the ass for one class for no good reason.




Good day.
Skeptical_Clown wrote:
More sex and gender equality and racial equality shouldn't even be an argument--it should simply be an assumption for any RPG that wants to stay relevant in the 21st century.
104340961 wrote:
Pine trees didn't unanimously decide one day that leaves were gauche.
http://community.wizards.com/doctorbadwolf/blog/2012/01/10/how_we_can_help_make_dndnext_awesome
How does fairness come into it?

And any multiclass build is potentially a single concept being put together with parts from multiple classes, rather than a mix of concepts, so what possible "justification" could be needed?



The notion of 'fairness' is obviously a subjective one to some extent, but do you really think it's right that a player can swap between countless different classes, managing to poach some of the best features of each class that are necessarily frontloaded? I sure as hell don't. It's not going to happen.

And I've heard your second argument before; I don't buy it at all. When someone cherrypicks and makes a dip composite character, it's not about a unified concept. In reality, the narrative/concept usually follows the build, and is shoehorned to fit it, not vice versa.
 
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Honestly, I think the idea that the above has anything to do with fairness preposterous. It's either good or bad game design, but it's neither fair nor unfair. If open class design with talent trees somehow unfair? how about classless systems? Who is it unfair to? It can't be unfair unless it's unfair to someone, so who is the victim? It's not other players. They can do that same thing if they want, and most of the time a pure classed character, or nearly pure class with maybe one splash, or a roughly half and half character are going to be better than the 1-2 levels in four classes character, so it's not unfair to players that don't multi-splash.

And your experience with splash multiclassing is the opposite of mine. No matter, they've said that multiclassing will be like 3.5, and in that sort of system, making one class basically not have access to multiclassing is just absurd. The point of splash multiclassing is to gain access to a feature of that class which changes what the character does, without weighing your character down with a bunch of stuff you don't want.

And the monk isn't necessarily frontloaded.


Skeptical_Clown wrote:
More sex and gender equality and racial equality shouldn't even be an argument--it should simply be an assumption for any RPG that wants to stay relevant in the 21st century.
104340961 wrote:
Pine trees didn't unanimously decide one day that leaves were gauche.
http://community.wizards.com/doctorbadwolf/blog/2012/01/10/how_we_can_help_make_dndnext_awesome
@ DoctorBadWolf: Again the idea that Monk gets so much more than other L1 feature heavy classes is just not true. It gets 4 features in reality. Ki Agility is an armour substitute and doesn't really count.

As for your position on dippers, yes, trying to persuade me to loosen things anymore than I have is indeed a waste of time. I will not budge further than I've stated. Monks can multiclass in a limited way, but they will not be exploited as a dip stop for the ridiculous twink composite builds I've often seen polluting 3.5 op forums.

You say the Monk doesn't necessarily have to be frontloaded. Besides the fact that it is no more frontloaded than the Wizard, Rogue or Warlock as a practical matter, I likewise disagree. You need to have the bulk of the iconic (and powerful) elements within the first couple of levels so it can achieve its intended feel from the start. Foundational elements that allow a player to fully engage in a certain archetype and playstyle off the the bat, without having to wait 6+ levels to access the meat of it, and without being overpowering isn't 'bad design'. If anything, the poor design lies with the multiclass system (assuming it's 3.5 style) that allows for seamless poaching with minimal tradeoffs or consequences. Why should I punish the pure/main classer with delayed core class elements so the twink can't go wild? Or do you feel twink dipping/unbalanced multiclassing isn't a problem? If so I also disagree with that. I want core classing to be competitive with multiclassing and dipping.  The benefit derived from a class should be proportionate to your level investment whenever and as much as possible. Period. One of the things I absolutely loved about 4e was that singular classes were competitive with hybrids, and paragon multiclassers. There was parity there, as opposed to 3.5 where, with the exception of broken classes (and not even then really), optimizing was a case of go multiclass or go home. **** that.

As far as fairness goes, it's not 'fair' to those who want to make a legitimate commitment to a class if twink dippers can just poach some of the strongest elements with minimal investment and tradeoffs. As a player, I don't want someone who just dumped a level or three in the class I invested 10+ levels in taking half the stuff that makes it strong. I'll tell you what; if the multiclass system in 5e doesn't suck, I'll fully support removing or watering down those prohibitions.

So far as FoB goes, the DPR calcs don't lie. Two-hander Fighters are above parity, then decisively beat them later. One handed Fighters are competitive, then beat them out later. Warlocks are competitive (or better if you believe ability scores apply to its damage) then beat them out later.
Can some one show me where it shows how to multi/ dual class any whre in the test material? No. Thats because it does not exist yet. you are trying to build into a class features dependant on how multi classing works, when we don't even know if there will be such a thing in next at all. I would stop designing the class for "end level ideas" and wory about what the key minimum abilities needed are.

This is the basic design layout that Next has used on each class presented so far.. try to duplicate it. 

A) some kind of feature that provides them with an unarmed attack that can equate in some way to a weapon.

B)a defensive ability that is better than just dexterity alone, but not the equal to a fighter in plate.

C)basic list of weapons and armor they can use.

D)the core mechanic element of the class. like the fighter cs die, mage spells, cleric divinity etc...

E)the variations of the class, ie fighting styles similar to the fighter and thiefs.

F)one or two specific powers/ abilities that take use of the signature mechanic of the class.


If you follow this basic design you will have a class that fits the design of Next. The ones presented do not fit in with the play test material to date. They look like they belong to a different game.