Minotaur as a Playable Race

Once the next playtest packet comes out (supposedly October with rules and options for play up to level 10), my group is probably going to continue a campaign that was dropped a while ago. The plan is to convert to the DnD Next playtest rules. It should be a very easy conversion overall, except that one of the PCs is a Minotaur.

So here is my first draft of a playable Minotaur for the DnD Next Playtest. Please offer feedback.

 

Minotaur


Traits
Size: Medium

Speed: 30 feet

Scent: You have advantage on checks made to notice, spot or search for hidden creatures.


Location Sense: You have advantage on checks made to navigate through mazes, caverns or dense forests.


Minotaur Weapon Training: When you attack with an axe or a hammer with which you are proficient, the damage die for that weapon increases by one steop: from d4 to d6, d6 to d8, d8 to d10, d10 to d12 and d12 to 2d6


Subrace: Choose a subrace. Two subraces are described here: tauren and baphometian minotaur



Tauren


Ability Score Adjustment: Your starting Wisdom increases by 1.

Connection With Nature: You gain training in Natural Lore or Survival.



Baphometian


Ablilty Score Adjustment: Your starting Strength increases by 1.


Low-Light Vision: If there is no light within 20 feet of you, you treat shadows in that radius as normal light, and you treat darkness in that radius as shadows.

Conflicted, on the one hand it's right in line with the races and mechanically sound by the definitions of the playtest we've seen so far.

On the other hand the standards set by the races from the playtest are unbelievable crap.

Here's hoping the race building rules get dramatically improved before you feel the need to use this.

Basically it's perfect for the system, good work. I just hope you never get to use it because the current system reeks.
Eh, it seems pretty lacking to me. If I may point out a couple of possible problems:

1) I can already tell that advantage is going to become an overused mechanic, and that's a problem because advantage doesn't stack. Features like Scent and Location Sense that grant advantage are going to become more and more useless at higher levels when there are more and more ways to gain advantage on anything and everything. It's possible that this will not at all be a problem in your game considering the limited nature of the playtest, but I wouldn't go for something like this when the full game comes out.

2) Minotaur Weapon Training... I get that right now it's "necessary" to keep the Minotaur on par with the other existing race design features, so maybe I shouldn't be so harsh on it, but I just have to call out the racial weapon training features every chance I get. I think that it's absolutely horrid design, and it sucks that it is practically necessary for this Minotaur to include it.

3) Connection With Nature, while probably fine for your playtest game because I assume you will be using backgrounds and skills, is not something that would appear as an actual racial feature when the game comes out, because skills are a modular mechanic. In other words, races won't be getting skills boosts because not all games will be using skills.

I guess tl;dr, it's fine for your purposes of playtesting, but this wouldn't do will as a final product of Next.

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!
I'd probably go with something a bit more 'bullish'.

Like rather than just copy the dwarves weapon training, I'd try something like:  When you charge, your damage die is one die larger.   It breaks the pattern of the other races, but it might be worth testing.

In things like Keen Senses and Scent - I see the non-stacking of advantage as a feature, not a bug.  The fact that there is one big but non-stacking bonus and multiple ways of getting it is a good thing, not a flaw.

It means that you are very good at something - as good as one can expect to be.  And although there are other ways of gaining an advantage with those things - there is still a limit to how good one can be.

In fact, I'd say it is a significant part of bounded accuracy - the idea that you can get so good at something and no better (at least not easily).

That said - they are trying to go with fewer similar but different abilities.  I'd be tempted to just give them Keen Senses rather than create an entirely new, but similar, ability.

CC:  Why do you see weapon training as such horrible design?  I think it bears careful scrutiny and in some cases (alll hammers and axes) has the potential for future problems if the equipment lists are expanded.  But I don't see it as the serious problem you seem to see it as.   

Carl
CC:  Why do you see weapon training as such horrible design?  I think it bears careful scrutiny and in some cases (alll hammers and axes) has the potential for future problems if the equipment lists are expanded.  But I don't see it as the serious problem you seem to see it as.

It's not a question of balance. It's a question of design quality. Weapon training is bad design because it does two things:

1) It dictates a purely cultural feature as a necessary part of a character's mechanics, which cause problem when a player wants to play a character not part of their race's stereotypical cultures and when a DM wants to create a world where a race's stereotypical culture is different than the stereotypical culture dictated by the mechanics. Simply put, it limits creativity.

2) It pigeon-holes pretty darn hard by providing a direct, amazing benefit to character of some kinds of classes and roles but simultaneously being completely useless to other characters. Long story short, it's the psychological effect of knowing that you're playing a mechanically-enforced under-supported character because you have features that you cannot use. (Your suggestion of the charging mechanic has pretty much this same problem, by the way.)

These problems are not worth what the features supposedly adds. You don't need culturally-specific, pigeon-holing features like this in order to create an appropriately thematically evocative set of racial traits.

I see the non-stacking of advantage as a feature, not a bug.

Well I think that it's a pretty crappy feature, at least in this context, though I suppose that's more open to debate than my criticisms against mandatory racial weapon training features. One of the problems with races historically is that they matter less and less the higher level a character is. We don't need to make that problem any worse by giving races features that will clearly become more and more redundant with higher levels.

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!


Minotaur




Traits
Size: Medium

Speed: 30 feet

Charge!: Your base speed increases by 10 feet when you charge and, if you hit, you may knock the target prone. 


Location Sense: You have advantage on checks made to navigate through mazes, caverns or dense forests.


Minotaur's Gore: Minotaurs can use their horns as a weapon. Minotaur horns are considered simple weapons that deal 1d8 damage.

CC and CarlT: I do kind of agree with the criticisms over weapon training (I believe it stifles weapon variety and creativity within races as well). I mainly included it since it's in line with all the other races presented so far. And I wasn't too happy with the blatant copy of Dwarven Weapon Training (though, the overlap does mostly ring true). 

On Scent: I considered just using keen senses, but I wanted to differentiate between the elf. Elves historically have had the ablity to detect hidden passages. I didn't really associate this with minotaurs and wanted to separate the two. On hindsight, though, Location Sense is similar to that anyway. So, would removing the two and replacing with Keen senses be a better option? 

On connection with nature, I largely agree. I was just having trouble coming up with a trait for the other minotaur subrace. That is very open to being changed. 

EE: I wanted to give a Gore and a bonus to charge. There aren't really clear charging rules yet, though, so I decided to avoid the charge. I do like the Gore, though. Simpler than what I was thinking. I might add that in to my next revision. I might down the damage to 1d6 bludgeoning and piercing damage.
 
It's not a question of balance. It's a question of design quality. Weapon training is bad design because it does two things:

1) It dictates a purely cultural feature as a necessary part of a character's mechanics, which cause problem when a player wants to play a character not part of their race's stereotypical cultures and when a DM wants to create a world where a race's stereotypical culture is different than the stereotypical culture dictated by the mechanics. Simply put, it limits creativity.





I disagree. 

First, it doesn't force anything.    It's only a +1 to damage (or less, in some cases).  This hardly forces the players to choose that weapon.  Granted - most players will choose to use that weapon.  But they are hardly forced to do so.

Second, the charge of limiting creativity is only valid if it is not a trivial matter to just change one set of weapons for any other set of weapons.  Since this is a trivial matter - it only limits creativity if you think the DM is not allowed and encouraged to make any changes necessary to customize their own world.



2) It pigeon-holes pretty darn hard by providing a direct, amazing benefit to character of some kinds of classes and roles but simultaneously being completely useless to other characters. Long story short, it's the psychological effect of knowing that you're playing a mechanically-enforced under-supported character because you have features that you cannot use. (Your suggestion of the charging mechanic has pretty much this same problem, by the way.)



I can see the objection to the fact that it only benefits some kinds of classes.  The solution is probably to create an equivalent benefit that affects those other classes.  Perhaps Elves advantage should be extended to Rapiers (for the finesse weapon users) and Enchantments.    Perhaps Dwarves should have an advantage with Alteration magic. 

In short - the fact that the weapon training is only of use to some is, perhaps, an indictment of the current race designs and worthy of considered debate.  But that doesn't mean weapon training itself is the problem - it is that some classes do not benefit from it.  However - as long as this is equally true for all races I'm not convinced this is a problem. 

Take the same rules - and rewrite them so that Weapon Training is a class feature of rogues and fighters (and dragon sorcerers), reading:  You have advanced training based upon your race.  When you use one of the favored weapons of your race (see the following table) you roll the next larger size damage die.

Is this still a problem with the races (from a strict parity issue - not an issue of whether or not you like codified racial cultural distinctions)?  Or is this now something that can be seen as what it is - part of the balancing of the classes, not part of the balancing of the races.  (With the added advantage of writing the way they did that characters who do not normally use weapons can, in fact, benefit from it on those rare occasions when they do want to use weapons).



These problems are not worth what the features supposedly adds. You don't need culturally-specific, pigeon-holing features like this in order to create an appropriately thematically evocative set of racial traits.




You don't need them.  But ultimately this falls down to a philosophical question of game design:

Assuming that the races have cultural commonalities (dwarves use axes, elves use bows, halfling use slings) - should the PCs be expected to conform to these cultural trends or not?

If the PCs are expected to conform to the NPC patterns - then it is appropriate to reward them for doing so.  If the PCs are expected to be outliers who ignore the NPC patterns - then it is not appropriate.  Because in either case - the one thing you can count on is that the majority of PCs will choose the option that gives them the most benefits (even if they aren't forced to do so).

Carl
Truly horrid EE.

Neo's build at least allowed for minotaurs as something more than bull-headed chargers. These guys can barely pass for rogues, much less mages.


I find the racial weapon abilities problematic because they are often the most potent or one of the most potent abilities a race has. 4e races had powerful features that influenced a character through their entire career, dragonborn breath weapons, eladrin education, and the teifling's blood hunt all had potent effects on the game even at level 30, even with little or no investment, furthermore you could invest in your race a teifling fighter played differently from a deva fighter, even if they favored the same weapon and fighter talents. The 5e races are light on features that provide that kind of influence and that leaves the weapon abilities as one of the most prominent features of the race.

This is especially problematic when compared to races that aren't burdened with a weapon ability for their big ticket item. A human's special abilities (essentially +1 to all stats) helps every character type possible. So a human wizard is getitng just as much miliage out of his racial features as the human fighter, or the human rogue. While any non-human gives up a big advantage in any class that doesn't use weapons. 

Humans are completely unbalanced of course, but they're unbalanced for every class while the other races are bland warriors and underpowered at everything else.
To be honest - what I see as more forcing is the ability score bonus.  I think that -as with the classes in the latest packet - the races should have a choice of which of two or three abilities they can increase.  This will still give them some consistency (dwarves might be wise, healthy and strong) while making players more likely to take them for something other than the single optimal class that is more common as it stands.


Carl
there's that too, but with the racial boosts only providing a +1, and the class granting an equal bonus, that one tends to slip the radar

of course now that I think about it the +1 to stats aren't my favorite thing in the world either but without the odd numbered penalties theyaren't as much of a problem as they would have been in 3e, still, it's kind of sloppy
Ok, first revision
I decided to remove the two traits and replace them with keen senses. It's a little neater and easier to keep track of. I added to gore to make them a little more "bullish." As a built in natural weapon that does two damage types, I kept it at a conservitive 1d6. I haven't changed the weapon training yet. The increased damage die on a charge is a neat idea, though. Are there actual charging rules yet?

Minotaur


Traits
Size: Medium

Speed: 30 feet

Keen Senses: You have advantage on checks made to listen to, search for, or notice something.


Minotaur Weapon Training: When you attack with an axe or a hammer with which you are proficient, the damage die for that weapon increases by one steop: from d4 to d6, d6 to d8, d8 to d10, d10 to d12 and d12 to 2d6

Gore: You gain a Gore attack. This counts as a simple weapon that you are proficient in that deals 1d6 bludgeoning and piercing damage. 


Subrace: Choose a subrace. Two subraces are described here: tauren and baphometian minotaur



Tauren


Ability Score Adjustment: Your starting Wisdom increases by 1.

Connection With Nature: You gain training in Natural Lore or Survival.



Baphometian


Ablilty Score Adjustment: Your starting Strength increases by 1.


Low-Light Vision: If there is no light within 30 feet of you, you treat shadows in that radius as normal light, and you treat darkness in that radius as shadows.


 
ok major step backwards neo

especially since you're wasting design space on both a weapon ability and a natural weapon that doesn't benefit from said weapon ability 
First, it doesn't force anything.

Yes, it most certainly does. If I am playing a Minotaur character with the stereotypical "raised by another race" background, then it makes absolutely no sense for my Minotaur character to be better trained with weapons that are not part of its actual cultural upbringing, but the game still forces that weapon training into the character's mechanics. If racial weapon training features were all optional, then that would be a different story, but they are currently mandatory.

Second, the charge of limiting creativity is only valid if it is not a trivial matter to just change one set of weapons for any other set of weapons.

That is what's called a house rule. I can house rule absolutely anything that I wantm, but relying on house rules to make a mechanic work well is fallacious, I believe Oberoni Fallacy. If it's so little a deal, then it shouldn't need to be house ruled. Why don't we accept house ruling as a reasonable answer to anything and everything? To paraphrase Mistique in the second X-men movie, "Because we shoudn't have to".

In short - the fact that the weapon training is only of use to some is, perhaps, an indictment of the current race designs and worthy of considered debate.  But that doesn't mean weapon training itself is the problem - it is that some classes do not benefit from it.

Ridiculously easy solution:
These features aren't mandatory. People can select them if that's their thing, but not everybody is forced to. Everybody wins. Here's an example (not for balance, just for flavor and design):

Minotaur Ferocity: Select one of the following features at character creation:
Axe Training: Damage with axes goes up by a die.
Seeing Red: You do +1d6 damage (scaling with level) with your attacks and spells against enemies that deal damage to you while you are below half HP.
Savage Heart: The first time during an encounter that you fall below 0 HP, you remain conscious until the end of your next turn.

Bam, now you can use Axes as stereotypically dictated if you want to, but I don't miss out at all for not using them because I can just take another feature completely, one that's more broad and probably fits my character a lot better.

Assuming that the races have cultural commonalities (dwarves use axes, elves use bows, halfling use slings) - should the PCs be expected to conform to these cultural trends or not?

To begin with, that is a very bad assumption, and either way, the answer to your question is unquestionably no.

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!
What is the design space you are trying to fill with the two subraces?  What really sets them apart?


What about giving the gore weapon to one of the subraces and coming up with something that would benefit non-fighters for the other one?


Carl
My rationale for not having it benefit from the weapon ability was the fact that it's a natural weapon. I didn't think of it as alternative to wielding a great axe, but more as a natural instinct to use when the great axe isn't handy. 

Maybe more of an emphasis on natural abilities rather than weapon training would be better?
What about giving the gore weapon to one of the subraces and coming up with something that would benefit non-fighters for the other one?

I think that's a reasonable solution. Give the weapon training and maybe gore to one subrace, to represent their savagery and ferocity, and then give the other subrace some more general features more reflective of their superior senses and intelligence or something.

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!
Looking back at the minotaur from 2E (Tales of the Lance boxed set from DragonLance and Skills & Powers from the Player's Options book):

Size: 7' tall
Age: up to 150 years
Horns: 1d12+12 inches in length (up to 2' long)

Natural AC: 7 (13 by today's standards)

Beginning Stats: +2 to STR and CON (penchant for combat), -2 to CHA and WIS (arrogance) 

Fearlessness: +3 to saving throws against fear and fear-like effects. 

Immunity to maze spells. 

Because of their penchant for combat, any minotaur who belongs to one of the warrior classes can benefit from the Fighter's weapon specialization rules.

Head-butt (not sure why they didn't call it gore) for 2d4 damage.

Running charge head-butt for double head-butt damage.

Infravision, 60'

+2 to surprise rolls 

Can track (as the ranger ability) by scent with 50% accuracy     

Not sure if any of this can be ported into DDN aside from the fluff aspects of age and horn length, and possibly the tracking ability and infravision. The head-butt attack would need serious tweaking.

          
I do like the lack of int penalties. It never made much sense to me that a race so skilled and obssessed with complex puzzles had an int penalty. Unless it's like a whole race of idiot savants.

The horns/headbutt thing could be turned into an encounter power. Once per encounter you may make a melee attack as an additional action on your turn if it hits you deal xdy + modifier damage and push the target back 1 square.

Ok, next revision


I tried to differentiate the subraces more. The Baphometian subrace is more geared towards physical combat. The weapon training went there, as well as an improved gore attack (I felt that both needed to have the gore. They are minotaurs, and they have horns afterall) and a charge. I gave the more sagacious tauren subrace more traits that reflect their connection with their spiritual heritage. While also fierce fighters (reflected with through their cunning and calling on their spirits to boost strength) they confer with the spirits of their ancestors to gain benefits. I'm afraid that the totems may be too strong, especially given the number of smaller benefits the subrace gets.


 


Minotaur
 


Traits
Size: Medium

Speed: 30 feet

Low-Light Vision: If there is no light within 30 feet of you, you treat shadows in that radius as normal light, and you treat darkness in that radius as shadows.


Subrace: Choose a subrace. Two subraces are described here: tauren and baphometian minotaur
 


Tauren


Ability Score Adjustment: Your starting Wisdom increases by 1.

Gore: You gain a Gore attack. This counts as a simple weapon that you are proficient in that deals 1d6 bludgeoning and piercing damage. 

Minotaur's Cunning: You get a +1 bonus to initiative checks, and you cannot be surprised.

Keen Senses: You have advantage on checks made to listen to, search for, or notice something.


Minotaur Totems: You can confer with the spirits of your ancestors twice a day. You can gain of the the following benefits:


Bull's Strength: Add 1d6 to a strength check or weapon damage roll


Ancestral Magic: When you cast a spell the spirits of your ancestors strengthen the spell and protect you. You can either increase the magical attack for this spell by 1 or you can increase a spell's save DC by 1. In addition enemy attacks have disadvantage against you until the start of your next turn.


Blessing of the Spirits: Automatically succeed on one saving throw.
 


Baphometian


Ablilty Score Adjustment: Your starting Strength increases by 1.

Gore: You gain a Gore attack. This counts as a simple weapon that you are proficient in that deals 1d8 bludgeoning and piercing damage. 

Minotaur Weapon Training: When you attack with an axe or a hammer with which you are proficient, the damage die for that weapon increases by one steop: from d4 to d6, d6 to d8, d8 to d10, d10 to d12 and d12 to 2d6 

Reckless Charge: You gain the Reckless Charge attack. As an action you can move your speed and make a gore attack at the end of this move. On a hit the attack does 1d10 bludgeoning and piercing damage, and the target is knocked prone. You grant advantage to your enemies until the start of your next turn.


If I may make an attempt…

MINOTAUR TRAITS
Size: Medium
Speed: 30 ft.
Beefy: When you roll for one of your hit dice, you can always roll twice and select either result.
Labyrinth Sense: You gain a +10 bonus on all checks made to navigate or avoid becoming lost.
Seeing Red: You gain a +2 bonus to attack rolls against creatures at half HP or below, and such creatures take a -2 penalty to saving throws that you impose.
Languages: You can speak, read, and write Common and Giant.
Sub-Race: Choose a sub-race. Three sub-races are described here: savage minotaur, taurus minotaur, and true-horn minotaur.

Savage Minotaur
Ability Score Adjustment: Your starting Strength score increases by 1.
Minotaur Weapon Training: When you attack with an axe with which you are proficient, the damage die for that weapon increases by one step.

Taurus Minotaur
Ability Score Adjustment: Your starting Wisdom score increases by 1.
Natural Cunning: Creatures do not gain advantage on attack rolls against you for being hidden from you or for your being blinded.

True-Horn Minotaur
Ability Score Adjustment: Your starting Strength score increases by 1.
Gore: You have a pair of horns that can be used as a weapon. They are treated as a war pick except that they require no free hand to wield and indeed cannot be wielded by hand.

Hmm... It looked better in my head, I guess. I must say I'm not 100% happy with it balance-wise, but I think that it should still be passable from a design perspective. Still debating low-light vision, both mechanically and thematically. Regardless, feel free to make use of whatever ideas you like.

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!
I think monster PC should have got weaker abilites scores and racial traits, like runt puppy of the litter.

Point 2: horns like natural weapons can be useful if it used againts bigger enemies (like dinosaurs or dragons), but if a big minotaur wish gore a gnome, hafling, kobold or goblin.... the head should bend down.  

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Book 13 Anaclet 23 Confucius said: "The Superior Man is in harmony but does not follow the crowd. The inferior man follows the crowd, but is not in harmony"

 

"In a country well governed, poverty is something to be ashamed of. In a country badly governed, wealth is something to be ashamed of." - Confucius 

I like Natural Cunning. I was trying to portray something to that effect through Scent. I still believe that all minotaurs should have a gore attack (since all minotaurs have horns, heh). It's a lot simpler than mine is (which is a good thing).
I still believe that all minotaurs should have a gore attack (since all minotaurs have horns, heh).

I separated the gore attack out into only one specific subrace for both mechanical and thematic reasons.

On the mechanical side, natural attacks pose a difficult problem when it comes to concerns of both balance and design. It is difficult if not nearly impossible to design a natural weapon that's good enough to actually not be useless compared to other weapons, and thus ending up a waste of design space, while also not being so good as to make normal weapons useless, and this ending up a pigeon-holing factor. Regardless, such a feature is so polarizing that for every character it will end up either a central focus of their build or entirely insignificant, with no in between. Such a swingy mechanic cannot be made a mandatory one.

On the thematic side, I simply don't buy that having horns must equate to being able to use them effectively. Bulls use their horns effectively because their body structure is specifically built for it and indeed allows them no other options. When you're looking at a minotaur, though, they have a humanoid body plan. Minotaurs' body structures aren't as properly built for weaponizing their horns, and the fact that they have (particularly strong!) humanoid arms and hands with opposable thumbs means that it should be relatively stupid for one to try such an awkward method of attack as weaponizing its horns rather than using an actual weapon. Such a discipline should be left to the minotaur equivalent of a monk. For the majority of civilized minotaurs, their horns should logically be seen and used as little more than decorative, like piercings or braids. Tauren in World of Warcraft, for example, are more likely to use their hooves to attack than their horns, and 4E's minotaurs also had no real natural attack save for their encounter power. Still, I can understand the desire for including a gore attack as a possibility of some breeds, disciplines, cultures, or whatever else might count as a sub-race of minotaurs, so that's why I included it how and where I did. I almost called the "True-Horn" sub-race "Great-Horn" instead, if you remember that variety of minotaur.

It's fine if you still disagree. I just want for you to know my reasoning.

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!
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