Why two attacks at half damage?

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Both specialties Archer and Dual Wielder have this as one of the benefits.  I feel that this in particular does not make it worth while to use.  Twice the chance to miss for half the damage is a wash in most cases, poisoned weapons being an exception I can think of, or perhaps expertise dice for a fighter.

This may be fixed later on with the ranger when it gets reintroduced, but in the mean time I would rather see something like the die drop by 1 so from d6 to d4 and so on.  
Or perhaps grant the foe disadvantage the first time you strike at a it with 2 weapons as it says it is "dual wielders keep their enemies unbalanced by striking from two directions at once"

As for archer I would rather see the archer get the ability to try and trip someone with an arrow for level one than shoot 2 arrows at once.

If there is a reason that this makes sense please enlighten me on what I am not seeing.  I have a ranger in my group and he looked at this and just laughed and said no way.
Because they would dual wielding has always had troubles with its implementation and im sure they would rather have it start to weak and improve on it, then if they made it too powerful and cut it down

because then you would have the people moaning about how "they nerfed a feature, now my dual wielding kickeverythingtillitsdead whateverclass doesnt work as good anymore"
instead of "they made it better, it looks like something i might consider using now"
Feats do not increase damage in Next.  The only way for two attacks to not increase your damage is if they deal half as much damage.  It's pretty simple.

Two Attacks still is a power increase, though, as you get double the chance to inflict riders on your enemy (for example, the Fighter's Knockdown), and you can split your attacks to hit two different enemies (which can easily double your kill rate against weaker foes). 
Good points. I was not thinking of how powerful even 3 points of damage is at 1st level.
Remember that two weapon fighting and its half damage, is a 1st level feat. we will probably get something like two weapon fighting mastery at higher levels that make them do full damage.
Remember that two weapon fighting and its half damage, is a 1st level feat. we will probably get something like two weapon fighting mastery at higher levels that make them do full damage.


Not to mention the level 3 feat basically gives you a free shield
My two copper.
Because it's not meant to be a damage increase.

"But wouldn't it be a better feat if it were a damage increase?"

Yes, yes it would.  But it's not supposed to, so it doesn't.
D&D Next = D&D: Quantum Edition
I suspect this is included because of two design ideas.

The first is that the Ranger with two weapons tended to dramatically outdamage almost everything else in the last edition, both due to a higher effective accuracy, and the potential for multiple hits.

The second is that, while the damage is low, the potential for 'rider' benefits is high. Not only, as pointed out above, can the fighter use an expertise die (given the right build) to knock the opponent prone, extra damage like Sneak Attack or Deadly blow damage is added to the attack (I would assume that it is still halved, as the rule does say "all the damage from the attack"). Still, even with halved bonus damage, the added reliability may well be worth it for the character.

Since it's an option for the character, rather than their standard form of attack, they can swap between full-damage attacks (for easy to hit foes) and half-damage attacks against difficult to hit foes. (Of course, picking one specialty locks out your choices for choosing another, but it's not as if the dual-wielding character has spent a great deal of feats to get this second option (one, it appears). 

In addition, if your DM is flexible, and allows you to be creative (rather than just limiting you to Attack/Damage rolls), the Archer or Dual-Wielder might also be a little more capable of doing some of those fun stunts (like severing ropes, smashing potions, etc.) since they, effectively, get two tries!
My personal idea on the subject, is that, at the moment, different fighting styles=different combat role. In 4e terms:

Two handed style: max damage, striker role.

One handed and shield style: max protection, defender role.

Two weapon (or archery) style: max riders and minion clearing , controller role.

Just my two cents. 
My personal idea on the subject, is that, at the moment, different fighting styles=different combat role. In 4e terms:

Two handed style: max damage, striker role.

One handed and shield style: max protection, defender role.

Two weapon (or archery) style: max riders and minion clearing , controller role.

Just my two cents. 




That makes a lot of sense to me. So, the archer can make either fire full damage shots at big enemies or fire 2 shots at weaker enemies.

I think we will start out rolling damage, halving it and then adding anything additional to that. 
Yup, its all about flexibility.

If you have multiple weaker enemies, or you have one weakened enemy and another untouched enemy, then doing full damage would be overkill, wasted potential.  If you know you're going to do 6 points of damage, and your target only has 3 hp left, why would you want to waste 6 points on it when you could spread it out?  And if you roll low on damage, you can still just decide to use your second shot on the original target again.

Also, as was already said, its great against the really hard to hit opponents.  If you know you're going to need a 19 or a 20 to hit something, then I would far rather have two chances at half damage than full damage with one, at least then I would be twice as likely to do something as opposed to a totally wasted round.

This one will change by next play test packet. Either that or we'll get a better explination of what TWF is meant to do.



Right now it is half the damage of two handed weapon fighting since we're limited to a finess weapon in the main hand. It even ends up being less damage than a sword and board fighter. Since all damage from the attack is halved, that means that sneak attack and combat superiority become half as effective for the two weapon fighter.

It also goes against the idea of combat being faster by adding more rolls and more math to a players turn.

I'd prefer for them to make something like a 'follow through' ability while having a finess weapon in the second hand instead of a shield. If the Duel Wielder specialty gave the player a chance to do damage on a miss then it becomes worth it.  

I'm thinking:
----------------
Duel Wielder Specialty
Level 1 feat: Two-Weapon fighting
When wielding a pair of lightweight weapons it becomes harder for you enemies to defend against you.

Benefit:
If you miss with your first weapon attack while you are wielding a finess weapon in each hand (and have proficiency with each weapon) you can make a second attack roll. If the second attack hits you roll only the weapon damage without any magic or ability bonus. You can not add any bonus damage dice or 'on hit' effects on the second attack. 
---------------------

It would bring TWF in line with two handed weapon fighting as far as damage goes without making it the 'must have' specialty for those who want to maximize 'on hit' effects.

There is also another thing i believe is not noted here, it takes the minimum damage from 1 to 2.
unless you take 1 damage and divide it in half, (0.5) and then rounding it down to 0, since the rules say to round down then it would be a disadvantage taking minimum damage from 1 to 0.
I'm thinking:
----------------
Duel Wielder Specialty
Level 1 feat: Two-Weapon fighting
When wielding a pair of lightweight weapons it becomes harder for you enemies to defend against you.

Benefit:
If you miss with your first weapon attack while you are wielding a finess weapon in each hand (and have proficiency with each weapon) you can make a second attack roll. If the second attack hits you roll only the weapon damage without any magic or ability bonus. You can not add any bonus damage dice or 'on hit' effects on the second attack. 

Hmmm...seems like a pretty solid idea...at first. Until you realize it's basically giving dual-wielders Advantage on every attack.

D&D Next - Basic and Expert Editions

I firmly believe that there should be two editions of the game; the core rules released as a "Basic" set and a more complicated expanded rules edition released as an "Expert" set. These two editions would provide separate entry points to the game; one for new players or players that want a more classic D&D game and another entry point for experienced gamers that want more options and all the other things they have come to expect from previous editions.

Also, they must release several rules modules covering the main elements of the game (i.e., classes, races, combat, magic, monsters, etc.) upon launch to further expand the game for those that still need more complexity in a particular element of the game.


Here's a mockup of the Basic Set I created.



(CLICK HERE TO VIEW LARGER IMAGE)
  

Basic Set

This boxed set contains a simple, "bare bones" edition of the game; the core rules. It's for those that want a rules-light edition of the game that is extremely modifiable or for new players that get intimidated easily by too many rules and/or options. The Basic Set contains everything needed to play with all the "classic" D&D races (i.e., Human, Dwarf, Elf, and Halfling) and classes (i.e., Cleric, Fighter, Rogue, Wizard) all the way up to maximum level (i.e., 20th Level).

The Basic boxed set contains:

Quick Start Rules
A "choose your own way" adventure intended as an intro to RPGs and basic D&D terms.

Player's Handbook
(Softcover, 125 pages)
Features rules for playing the classic D&D races and classes all the way up to 20th level.

Dungeon Master's Guide

(Softcover, 125 pages)
Includes the basic rules for dungeon masters.

Monster Manual
(Softcover, 100 pages)
Includes all the classic iconic monsters from D&D. 

Introductory Adventure
(Keep on the Borderlands)
An introductory adventure for beginning players and DMs.

Also includes: 

Character Sheets
Reference Sheets
Set of Dice


Expert Set

A set of hardbound rules that contains the core rules plus expanded races and classes, more spells and a large selection of optional rules modules — that is, pretty much everything that experienced players have come to expect. Each expert edition manual may be purchased separately, or in a boxed set. The Expert set includes:

Expert PHB (Hardcover, 225 pages. $35 Includes core rules plus 10 playable races, 10 character classes, expanded selection of spells and rules modules for players.)
Expert DMG (Hardcover, 250 pages. $35 Includes core rules plus expanded rules modules for DMs.)
Expert MM (Hardcover, 225 pages. $35 Includes an expanded list of monsters and creatures to challenge characters)


Expansions

These expansion rules modules can be used with both the Basic and Expert sets. Each expansion covers one specific aspect of the game, such as character creation, combat, spells, monsters, etc.) 

Hall of Heroes (Hardcover, 225 pages. $35 Includes a vast selection of playable character races and classes, new and old all in one book)
Combat and Tactics (Hardcover, 225 pages. $35 Includes dozens of new and old optional rules for combat all in one book)
Creature Compendium (Hardcover, 350 pages.$35 Includes hundreds of monsters, new and old all in one book)
The Grimoire (Hardcover, 225 pages. $35 Includes hundreds of new and old spells all in one book)





A Million Hit Points of Light: Shedding Light on Damage

A Million Hit Points of Light: Shedding Light on Damage and Hit Points

In my personal campaigns, I use the following system for damage and dying. It's a slight modification of the long-standing principles etsablished by the D&D game, only with a new definition of what 0 or less hit points means. I've been using it for years because it works really well. However, I've made some adjustments to take advantage of the D&D Next rules. I've decided to present the first part in a Q&A format for better clarity. So let's begin...

What are hit points?
The premise is very simple, but often misunderstood; hit points are an abstraction that represent the character's ability to avoid serious damage, not necessarily their ability to take serious damage. This is a very important distinction. They represent a combination of skillful maneuvering, toughness, stamina and luck. Some targets have more hit points because they are physically tougher and are harder to injure...others have more because they are experienced combatants and have learned how to turn near fatal blows into mere scratches by skillful maneuvering...and then others are just plain lucky. Once a character runs out of hit points they become vulnerable to serious life-threatening injuries.

So what exactly does it mean to "hit" with a successful attack roll, then?
It means that through your own skill and ability you may have wounded your target if the target lacks the hit points to avoid the full brunt of the attack. That's an important thing to keep in mind; a successful "hit" does not necessarily mean you physically damaged your target. It just means that your attack was well placed and forced the target to exert themselves in such a way as to leave them vulnerable to further attacks. For example, instead of severing the target's arm, the attack merely grazes them leaving a minor cut.

But the attack did 25 points of damage! Why did it only "graze" the target?
Because the target has more than 25 hit points. Your attack forced them to exert a lot of energy to avoid the attack, but because of their combat skill, toughness, stamina and luck, they managed to avoid being seriously injured. However, because of this attack, they may not have the reserves to avoid your next attack. Perhaps you knocked them off balance or the attack left them so fatigued they lack the stamina to evade another attack. It's the DM's call on how they want to narrate the exact reason the blow didn't kill or wound the target.

Yeah, but what about "touch" attacks that rely on physical contact?
Making physical contact with a target is a lot different than striking them, so these types of attacks are the exception. If a touch attack succeeds, the attacker manages to make contact with their target.

If hit points and weapon damage don't always represent actual damage to the target, then what does it represent?
Think of the damage from an attack as more like a "threat level" rather than actual physical damage that transfers directly to the target's body. That is, the more damage an attack does, the harder it is to avoid serious injury. For example, an attack that causes 14 points of damage is more likely to wound the target than 3 points of damage (depending on how many hit points the target has left). The higher the damage, the greater the chance is that the target will become seriously injured. So, an attack that does 34 points of damage could be thought of as a "threat level of 34." If the target doesn't have the hit points to negate that threat, they become seriously injured.

Ok, but shouldn't armor reduce the amount of damage delivered from an attack?
It does reduce damage; by making it harder for an attack to cause serious injury. A successful hit against an armored target suggests that the attack may have circumvented the target's armor by striking in a vulnerable area.

What about poison and other types of non-combat damage?
Hit point loss from non-physical forms of damage represents the character spitting the poison out just in time before it takes full strength or perhaps the poison just wasn't strong enough to affect them drastically, but still weakens them. Again, it's the DMs call on how to narrate the reasons why the character avoids serious harm from the damage.

If hit points don't don't represent actual damage then how does that make sense with spells like Cure Serious Wounds and other forms of healing like healer kits with bandages?
Hit points do represent some physical damage, just not serious physical damage. Healing magic and other forms of healing still affect these minor wounds just as well as more serious wounds. For example, bandaging up minor cuts and abrasions helps the character rejuvenate and relieve the pain and/or fatigue of hit point loss. The key thing to remember is that it's an abstraction that allows the DM freedom to interpret and narrate it as they see fit.

What if my attack reduces the target to 0 or less hit points?
If a player is reduced to 0 or less hit points they are wounded. If a monster or NPC is reduce to 0 or less hit points they are killed.

Why are monsters killed immediately and not players?
Because unless the monsters are crucial to the story, it makes combat resolution much faster. It is assumed that players immediately execute a coup de grace on wounded monsters as a finishing move.

What if a character is wounded by poison or other types of non-physical damage?
If a character becomes wounded from non-combat damage they still receive the effects of being wounded, regardless if they show any physical signs of injury (i.e., internal injuries are still considered injuries).

Ok. I get it...but what happens once a character is wounded?
See below.
 

Damage and Dying

Once a character is reduced to 0 or less hit points, they start taking real damage. In other words, their reserves have run out and they can no longer avoid taking serious damage.

  1. Characters are fully operational as long as they have 1 hit point or more. They may have minor cuts, bruises, and superficial wounds, but they are are not impaired significantly. 
  2. Once they reach 0 or less hit points, they become Wounded (see below).That is, they have sustained a wound that impairs their ability to perform actions.
  3. If they reach a negative amount of hit points equal or greater than their Constitution score, they are Incapacitated. This means they are in critical condition and could possibly die.
  4. Characters will die if their hit points reach a negative amount greater than their Constitution score, plus their current level.

Unharmed: 1 hp or more
Wounded: 0 hp or less
Incapacitated: -(Constitution) to -(Constitution+Level)
Dead: Less than -(Constitution +Level)

Wounded
When the character reaches 0 or less hit points they become wounded. Wounded characters receive disadvantage on all attacks and saving throws until they heal back up to 1 hit point or more. This allows for a transitory stage between healthy and dying, without having to mess around with impairment rules while the character still has hit points left.

Incapacitated
Characters begin dying when they reach a negative amount of hit points equal to their Constitution score. At which point, they must make a DC 10 Constitution saving throw on each of their following turns (the disadvantage from being wounded does not apply for these saving throws).

If successful, the character remains dying, but their condition does not worsen.

If the saving throw fails, another DC 10 Constitution saving throw must be made. If that one fails, the character succumbs to their wounds and dies. If successful, the character stabilizes and is no longer dying.

Finally, if a dying character receives first aid or healing at any point, they immediately stabilize.

Dead
Characters will die if they reach a negative amount of hit points equal to their Constitution, plus their current level. Thus, if an 8th level character with a Constitution score of 12 is down to 4 hit points then takes 24 points of damage (reducing their hit points to -20) the attack kills them outright.

I kind of like the simplicity and overall fairness of the rule.   It makes using the ability a strategic choice, not just an ability that is always "on".    If you suspect the foes are weaker, or they are quite injured, you might use it.   If you want to make sure you hit a creature, you might use two attacks on that one creature.   The situational aspect of the rule is actually a positive in my mind.

Also, like many have noted already, at higher levels we'll start to see changes to the way it can be used.   Perhaps there will be bonus damage included at higher levels.  At the very least, at higher levels, a fighter will be able to throw in more of his or her expertise dice, and the damage (although it will be halved) will grow.     

A Brave Knight of WTF

It's also to balance out the damage output. WotC didn't want a two-weapons PC to out-damage a single-weapon PC. If PCA deals 1d8 damage with a single weapon, then they want PCB to deal 1d8/2+1d8/2 damage with two weapons. It's not exactly the same average damage, but it's within the same range. They could both potentially deliver a max 8 pts of damage rather than one at 8 and the other at 16.

In memory of wrecan and his Unearthed Wrecana.

5e should strongly stay away from "I don't like it, so you can't have it either."

I completely agree. We did not like at all that trait. Maybe makes perfect sense in the game context, but if you have that trait you will not normally use it. 

Suggestions:

1/  Back to 4th ed, where the ranger had the possibility of making two attacks with no ability bonus to damage.

2/  Halve your attack bonus. It would not be a good trait but it would be better than now


Personally I think the second one is better 
I completely agree. We did not like at all that trait. Maybe makes perfect sense in the game context, but if you have that trait you will not normally use it. 

Suggestions:

1/  Back to 4th ed, where the ranger had the possibility of making two attacks with no ability bonus to damage.

2/  Halve your attack bonus. It would not be a good trait but it would be better than now


Personally I think the second one is better 



So you suggest I make 2 attacks at +2 instead of one attack at +4? how is that not totally overpowered?

I completely agree. We did not like at all that trait. Maybe makes perfect sense in the game context, but if you have that trait you will not normally use it. 

Suggestions:

1/  Back to 4th ed, where the ranger had the possibility of making two attacks with no ability bonus to damage.

2/  Halve your attack bonus. It would not be a good trait but it would be better than now


Personally I think the second one is better 



So you suggest I make 2 attacks at +2 instead of one attack at +4? how is that not totally overpowered?



Maybe 2 attacks with disadvantage?
Maybe 2 attacks with disadvantage?

Heavens, no. Then no one would ever take it. If someone hasn't seen the chart in this thread, take a look. Maybe Disad for the second weapon.

In memory of wrecan and his Unearthed Wrecana.

5e should strongly stay away from "I don't like it, so you can't have it either."

Halve your attack bonus maybe is only overpowered for lower levels, if you attack with +12 is a big problem seeing it reduced to +6.

For lower levels maybe you are right, there is not so much difference between attacks made with +2 or with +1 and you could double the damage, but having other examples like two minor spells for free or give disadvantage against an attack to an ally is not much worst and that two traits will continue being useful across many levels
Yeah, hopefully this gets changed in the next packet. As it stands, this (without the lame finesse limitation) would be great as the default rule for TWF for characters without a specialized feat. However, any benefit from the current rules is far too situational to require a feat. This is like being required to have a feat to perform a disarm, trip, charge or other combat maneuver that all characters should have access to sans feat.

Azzy’s Trivial Trivia, A Blog

 

The answer really does lie in more options, not in confining and segregating certain options.

—MechaPilot

Why two attacks at half damage?

Because in Next, two weapons are not better than one.

Because of all the whining for absolute balance the devs have decided that in the name of balance all attacks are going to result in roughly the same damage output. 

I'm also guessing that since in recent iterations of the game two weapon fighting and bow specialization was the bailywick of the ranger, the uneashed masses are never going to be as good using these weapons or styles better than the ranger does. 

I'd say if you want to fight with two weapons and not suck, then play a ranger. 

It also goes against the idea of combat being faster by adding more rolls and more math to a players turn.




That's also what is bothering me with these new rules.

Why not decreasing the weapon damage dices of the two attacks, then add only once the ability modifier to the damage?

Ex:

Two hits with a short sword would deal 2d4 + DEX mod. 
One hit with a short sword would  deal 1d4 + DEX mod.

Why not just preventing the use of the feat when you attempt to sneak attack? (Making the sneak attack only works with standard melee and ranged attacks)
Well the one thing as a DM i aupplaud Next for is getting away from the idea "Bigger numbers = MOAR FUN" bloat that was one of the huge problems (especially iin high level play) of previous editions that led to people level dipping to increase output, making all those +1 feats neccesary and generally causing me a great deal of headaches in what was tantamount to an Arms Race between the players and GM (and then getting blamed for being a killer GM because the only thing that could hit thier 70AC could basically one shot them)
Why not decreasing the weapon damage dices of the two attacks, then add only once the ability modifier to the damage?

Ex:

Two hits with a short sword would deal 2d4 + DEX mod. 
One hit with a short sword would  deal 1d4 + DEX mod.

What do you do if the two weapons don't use the same size damage dice?
"The world does not work the way you have been taught it does. We are not real as such; we exist within The Story. Unfortunately for you, you have inherited a condition from your mother known as Primary Protagonist Syndrome, which means The Story is interested in you. It will find you, and if you are not ready for the narrative strands it will throw at you..." - from Footloose
Why not decreasing the weapon damage dices of the two attacks, then add only once the ability modifier to the damage?

Ex:

Two hits with a short sword would deal 2d4 + DEX mod. 
One hit with a short sword would  deal 1d4 + DEX mod.

What do you do if the two weapons don't use the same size damage dice?



I believe it is so the two weapon style won't extremely outdamage the one weapon wielding character, something i believe the designers are avoiding extremely.
I was excited when they announced two-weapon fighting as a theme-specialty that anyone could take. So, the two-at-half stat disappoints me. I would never take it. And too bad. Otherwise I would make one of my characters explore the option.

Anyone familiar with char-op knows how stupid-powerful extra attacks are because each adds all the damage bonuses. First, the current stat doesnt in anyway solve that problem. Each blade could have a different poison, doing stacking damage, not to mention other kinds of damage bonuses and effects.



What if two-weapon fighting works like this? If your first attack hits, then roll to see if a second hit lets you can add Dexterity bonus damage only. This way, I feel better taking it, just to add a bit more Dex damage. It is just that one blade helps set up the other one to deal better damage by overwhelming the target with assaults.
What about half damage for "regular" dual wielder and for those who get the ambidextrous feat full damage on one hand and half damage on the other. With the option of using one hand for parrying/blocking maybe ? What do you people think ?
At least in 4e, the reason two attacks are broken (eventually reaching many-hundred points of damage) is because *each* hit gets damage bonuses and effects. Thus “multiplying” damage. (Same problem with minor-action attacks.) The only way to make two-weapon damage balance is to somehow treat it as if it is only a single attack mechanically. Specifically, all damage bonuses and effects can only be applied once, regardless of whether one or both attacks hit.

You could say just add weapon damage from the second hit, with no other effects. This works for mundane weapons, but it doesnt work for magical or scifi weapons, like wands or laser pistols, whose hit may inherently deal massive damage.
At least in 4e, the reason two attacks are broken (eventually reaching many-hundred points of damage) is because *each* hit gets damage bonuses and effects. Thus “multiplying” damage. (Same problem with minor-action attacks.) The only way to make two-weapon damage balance is to somehow treat it as if it is only a single attack mechanically. Specifically, all damage bonuses and effects can only be applied once, regardless of whether one or both attacks hit.

You could say just add weapon damage from the second hit, with no other effects. This works for mundane weapons, but it doesnt work for magical or scifi weapons, like wands or laser pistols, whose hit may inherently deal massive damage.


I agree with the basic idea but the specifics are tricky. It's not so bad if you assume that both hits will be on one enemy... unfortunately that's a really really bad assumption.

You also want to make sure that two hits, with one damage die high and the other low, are still better than only one hit with a high damage roll. Which is a weakness of "add the damage dice and divide by two" approaches. In fact, with (1d6+1d4)/2 it is actually not possible to get a result higher (after rounding) than the high die roll - and you get a lower result on 15 of the 24 possible rolls.
"The world does not work the way you have been taught it does. We are not real as such; we exist within The Story. Unfortunately for you, you have inherited a condition from your mother known as Primary Protagonist Syndrome, which means The Story is interested in you. It will find you, and if you are not ready for the narrative strands it will throw at you..." - from Footloose
I'm ok with the idea that damage is halved, but the need for finesse weapons annoys me.   This actually means that damage is reduced for a fighter because all the finesse weapons besides the two-handed katana do less damage than a longsword.  I know Musashi didn't use two wakisashis in his fighting style.  And every other iteration of Dual Weilding let characters use a one-handed weapon in one hand and a light weapon in the other.    Also, you can't do something like weild two axes. Which has almost become a trope.  It's too restrictive.  Two bastard swords halved still equals one bastard sword not halved. 
 
I kinda feel like it makes sense for dual wielders to do less damage at first level than everyone else.  Assuming I'm not that skilled, it should be easier for me to wield one weapon, or one and a shield, than wield two weapons at once and not kill myself.

Assuming they scale at higher levels, this method of implementation makes a lot of sense to me. 
I'm thinking:
----------------
Duel Wielder Specialty
Level 1 feat: Two-Weapon fighting
When wielding a pair of lightweight weapons it becomes harder for you enemies to defend against you.

Benefit:
If you miss with your first weapon attack while you are wielding a finess weapon in each hand (and have proficiency with each weapon) you can make a second attack roll. If the second attack hits you roll only the weapon damage without any magic or ability bonus. You can not add any bonus damage dice or 'on hit' effects on the second attack. 

Hmmm...seems like a pretty solid idea...at first. Until you realize it's basically giving dual-wielders Advantage on every attack.




I was thinking it was more like the Fighter Glancing Blow ability, except it would take an attack roll to turn a miss into a hit. Since you could not add sneak attack or combat superiority in my proposal, it would just give you a chance to do 1d4 or 1d6 damage (depending on the finess weapon) without any bonuses or 'on hit' effects. The second weapon attack after the main hand miss could have the extra text that Glancing Blow has to make it more clear:

The damage is of the same type as the attack, but the glancing blow has none of the attack’s other effects and is not considered to have hit.

A warrior with a two handed weapon may have a 50% chance to hit for 1d12+str bonus+weapon bonus +any combat superiority dice on a regular hit.

With my idea, the same warrior with two weapon fighting would have a 50% chance to hit for 1d6 +dex or str bonus+weapon bonus +any combat superiority dice on a regular hit. If he missed he then has a 50% chance to do 1d6 damage (if he had a short sword in his off hand) with no bonus damage.

It seems like a nice chance to turn a miss into a bit of damage, but the main hit still does less weapon damage than the two handed weapon fighter. That would be good for the Fighter who wanted to be a duelist. I think that would let the two weapon fighter be better at taking down weak mobs with more accuracy, but do less damage on high hit point monsters.

If the fighter did have advantage on the attack then they would be better off with the two handed weapon to do more damage since they have less of a chance to miss.  
  

I would like to point out that the damage you get from the off hand weapon is not a given.  sometimes you may hit with just the off hand doing a smaller die of damage and sometimes you may wiff with both.  Then there is the jackpot when you hit with both.  In my playtest sessions I asked one of the players to try a two weapon fighter because we were curious how they stacked up.  When things got dirty and something needed killing he went to attacking with one weapon to get more damage

In these playtest rules shields are only a +1 to AC no matter the size of the shield.   That may change and the bonus damage may be at the cost of a lower AC.  Possibly losing the two weapon defense feat to make it so as you dont have a shield when you in fact dont have a shield 

As written, there is virtually no benefit to taking the Dual Wielder specialty:


Your chance to hit is not improved.


Your damage range is not improved.


Your average damage is not improved.


For a fighter, damage is reduced since you are limited to finesse weapons, plus you lose the benefit of a shield (until 3rd level).


The ability to strike two opponents for half damage is of limited use against opponents above 1st level.


I have found that taking this specialty instead of another, more useful specialty is simply not worth it.


A better version of the Two Weapon Fighting would look like this:


 Level 1: Two-Weapon Fighting


When wielding a pair of one-handed weapons, you can strike twice.


Benefit: While you are wielding a one-handed weapon in each hand and have proficiency with each weapon, you can make two attacks as an action, one with each weapon. All the weapon damage of the off-hand attack is halved. Off-hand attacks do not apply any bonus damage.


With the above version of the feat, a fighter wielding a longsword in each hand would have a damage range of 1-12, the same as a fighter using a greatsword.  The benefit to the fighter using two weapons is that they can divide their attacks among two opponents, which becomes more useful since the damage is increased. The greatsword fighter cannot divide their attacks, but they have the benefit of taking another specialty for other bonuses.


Removing the finesse weapon restriction gives fighters more of a reason to take this feat. Rogues and other high-Dex characters will naturally use finesse weapons since it benefits their highest stat.


I think Rapid shot, and two-weapon fighting are balanced as level one feats.

Couple of points:

1. Looking at the other lvl 1 feats, it doesn't look like many of them are meant to be an 'every turn' ability, they all seem situational. Why should one scheme be pretty much a default every turn benefit?

2. A one attack fighter has to waste a whole attack to do away with that 3 HP remaining villain, dual fighter can split attacks.

3. Dual attacks means a fighter is twice as likely to be able to deliver a deadly strike. My understanding of deadly strike is that it can only be added to one of the attacks. As the fighter progresses, expertise damage will become the primary damage source, and difficult opponents will be in much greater danger from a dual fighter then a one attack fighter. (2x chances to hit). A better way to look at this is that the dual fighter can choose to gain advantage in every turn of combat at the subtraction of 2-5 dmg (but better because he has the chance succeeding with both, and sufferning no loss). 

4. Obvious crowd control benefit.

5. I don't agree with any idea for two-weapon fighting that generates more damage than is available to other fighters unless it has a correspoding weakness. getting two attempts (instead of one) is a substantial reduction in risk of attack failure, and a situational benefit that can be exploited.  

!. But... I agree that there is no reason why it should have to be two finesse weapons, there are existing traditions of 2-sword fighting. I think this is the only real flaw with dual weapon fighting. It weirdly makes Hafling dual Short sword fighters nearly the best fighter that exists.

My mind is a deal-breaker.

I think Rapid shot, and two-weapon fighting are balanced as level one feats.

Couple of points:

1. Looking at the other lvl 1 feats, it doesn't look like many of them are meant to be an 'every turn' ability, they all seem situational. Why should one scheme be pretty much a default every turn benefit?

2. A one attack fighter has to waste a whole attack to do away with that 3 HP remaining villain, dual fighter can split attacks.

3. Dual attacks means a fighter is twice as likely to be able to deliver a deadly strike. My understanding of deadly strike is that it can only be added to one of the attacks. As the fighter progresses, expertise damage will become the primary damage source, and difficult opponents will be in much greater danger from a dual fighter then a one attack fighter. (2x chances to hit). A better way to look at this is that the dual fighter can choose to gain advantage in every turn of combat at the subtraction of 2-5 dmg (but better because he has the chance succeeding with both, and sufferning no loss). 

4. Obvious crowd control benefit.

5. I don't agree with any idea for two-weapon fighting that generates more damage than is available to other fighters unless it has a correspoding weakness. getting two attempts (instead of one) is a substantial reduction in risk of attack failure, and a situational benefit that can be exploited.  


!. But... I agree that there is no reason why it should have to be two finesse weapons, there are existing traditions of 2-sword fighting. I think this is the only real flaw with dual weapon fighting. It weirdly makes Hafling dual Short sword fighters nearly the best fighter that exists.



2. Correct, but this advantage gives diminishing returns as the character levels, since low hp enemies will become scarce.


3. Incorrect: Deadly strike can be applied to only one attack, and dual-weilding does not increase your chance to hit. Attacking twice does not give you an increased hit chance - the odds are exactly the same as one attack. Attacking twice is not the same as having Advantage (i.e. rolling twice and taking the higher of the rolls).


4. See my response to #2, above.


5. In my example, a dual wielding fighter does not generate more damage than is available to other fighters (i.e. greatsword, greatxe, etc.). Dual weilding, either as it exists and in my example, does not have any reduction in attack failure - the odds of hitting with two attacks and the odds of hitting with one for the same character are the same. A character who chooses not to take dual wielding has the advantage of taking another specialty/feat, such as the greatsword fighter with Survivor that I'm currently playing (since dual wielding fighters are broken). She is a juggernaught, doing the most damage in the party and having extra hit points.

I think Rapid shot, and two-weapon fighting are balanced as level one feats.

Couple of points:

1. Looking at the other lvl 1 feats, it doesn't look like many of them are meant to be an 'every turn' ability, they all seem situational. Why should one scheme be pretty much a default every turn benefit?

2. A one attack fighter has to waste a whole attack to do away with that 3 HP remaining villain, dual fighter can split attacks.

3. Dual attacks means a fighter is twice as likely to be able to deliver a deadly strike. My understanding of deadly strike is that it can only be added to one of the attacks. As the fighter progresses, expertise damage will become the primary damage source, and difficult opponents will be in much greater danger from a dual fighter then a one attack fighter. (2x chances to hit). A better way to look at this is that the dual fighter can choose to gain advantage in every turn of combat at the subtraction of 2-5 dmg (but better because he has the chance succeeding with both, and sufferning no loss). 

4. Obvious crowd control benefit.

5. I don't agree with any idea for two-weapon fighting that generates more damage than is available to other fighters unless it has a correspoding weakness. getting two attempts (instead of one) is a substantial reduction in risk of attack failure, and a situational benefit that can be exploited.  


!. But... I agree that there is no reason why it should have to be two finesse weapons, there are existing traditions of 2-sword fighting. I think this is the only real flaw with dual weapon fighting. It weirdly makes Hafling dual Short sword fighters nearly the best fighter that exists.



2. Correct, but this advantage gives diminishing returns as the character levels, since low hp enemies will become scarce.


3. Incorrect: Deadly strike can be applied to only one attack, and dual-weilding does not increase your chance to hit. Attacking twice does not give you an increased hit chance - the odds are exactly the same as one attack. Attacking twice is not the same as having Advantage (i.e. rolling twice and taking the higher of the rolls).


4. See my response to #2, above.


5. In my example, a dual wielding fighter does not generate more damage than is available to other fighters (i.e. greatsword, greatxe, etc.). Dual weilding, either as it exists and in my example, does not have any reduction in attack failure - the odds of hitting with two attacks and the odds of hitting with one for the same character are the same. A character who chooses not to take dual wielding has the advantage of taking another specialty/feat, such as the greatsword fighter with Survivor that I'm currently playing (since dual wielding fighters are broken). She is a juggernaught, doing the most damage in the party and having extra hit points.




2. Yes, and no. Low HP enemies might diminish, but all creatures become low HP, during the course of combat. Thus, this becomes a situational benefit, that ones almost dead, so why waste both attacks?

3. Dual weiding does increase your chance to hit. It does not increase the likelyhood of an individual roll being successful, yes. But the probability increases the more rolls you do. There is a 50% chance I will roll above 11+ on a D20, a 75% chance to roll 11+ on one dice when rolling 2 D20's, 87.5% on 3 dice. This why the Adv/disadv. System is so good. Dual weiding and Deadly strike work exactly the same. If a warrior with dual-weiding hits on a roll of 11+, then he has a 75% chance of hitting with one attack, 50% chance of hitting with 2 attacks, and 25% chance of failing both. A normal fighter has only ever a 50% chance to hit. More over a normal fighter has a 5% chance to critical with one attack, a dual fighter has 9.75% chance of getting a critical (1/20 + (19/20*1/20)), and maximising his expertise die. You choose to add expertise after the roll. 

In my opinion, this alone is benefit enough (not including #2). 


5. I agree that there is imbalance, but its largely a result of the limitation imposed by dmg of finesse weapons. Each fighter type gets a general boost, there is also some loss due to teh rounding down system. i.e. a +3 dmg bonus becomes 2 seperate +1s. These two things should be fixed. Allowing the fighter to distribute uneven damage without loss, or alowing only one attack to get the atrribute bonus would be ideal. Instead of halving damage they should halve die type D6 becomes d3, D8 becoems D4 etc. Right now I don't see a way to get a D10 so I don't see a problem with that. 

However you can easily create a high damage dealing hafling, that should outdo Greatsword using fighter. Here's how:

Lvl 1 Hafling: Dex 14 dual weiding Shortswords
Avg Dmg attack 1: 1(attr.) + 2 (1/2 D* Short sword) + 3(expertise die) = 6 dmg
Avg Dmg attack 2: 1(attr.) + 2 (1/2 D* Short sword) = 3 dmg

Lvl 1 Human fighter
Avg DMG Attack : 2(attr.) + 6 (greataxe) + 3(expertise die) = 11 dmg


Over 4 turns both hitting on rolls of 11+ (i.e. 50%)
Human fighter averages: 22 dmg 
(11 * .5[hit rate]) = 5.5dmg/turn 

Hafling Dual weider averages: 24 dmg 
(.25 * 0[hit rate]) + (.5[2 hits rate] * 9) + (.25[1 hit rate] * 6) = 6 average dmg/turn

How to calculate:
25% chance for missing both attacks = 0 dmg
50% chance for hitting both (like you mentioned) = 9 dmg
25% chance of hitting one = 6 dmg

I obviously minimized the potential negatives here, this math doesn't show the incremental negative of rounding-down and his attribute bonus is evenly divided. It's important to note no other race and weapon combination will beat the greataxe. Thus the reason why finesse weapons should be changed, and or something to mitigate the reduction. But it also doesn't factor the nearly double likely hood of crit, or potential other benefits, like crowd control. 

So once again I agree, but it needs a nudge not a bump. 




My mind is a deal-breaker.


As written, there is virtually no benefit to taking the Dual Wielder specialty:


Your chance to hit is not improved.


Your damage range is not improved.


Your average damage is not improved.


For a fighter, damage is reduced since you are limited to finesse weapons, plus you lose the benefit of a shield (until 3rd level).


The ability to strike two opponents for half damage is of limited use against opponents above 1st level.


I have found that taking this specialty instead of another, more useful specialty is simply not worth it.


A better version of the Two Weapon Fighting would look like this:


 Level 1: Two-Weapon Fighting


When wielding a pair of one-handed weapons, you can strike twice.


Benefit: While you are wielding a one-handed weapon in each hand and have proficiency with each weapon, you can make two attacks as an action, one with each weapon. All the weapon damage of the off-hand attack is halved. Off-hand attacks do not apply any bonus damage.


With the above version of the feat, a fighter wielding a longsword in each hand would have a damage range of 1-12, the same as a fighter using a greatsword.  The benefit to the fighter using two weapons is that they can divide their attacks among two opponents, which becomes more useful since the damage is increased. The greatsword fighter cannot divide their attacks, but they have the benefit of taking another specialty for other bonuses.


Removing the finesse weapon restriction gives fighters more of a reason to take this feat. Rogues and other high-Dex characters will naturally use finesse weapons since it benefits their highest stat.





I don't see how you can say your chance to hit is not improved with dual-weilding. With 2 attacks instead of 1 you have 2 chances to hit, and if you miss with 1 you can still hit with the other. Each individual hit has the same percentage of hitting sure, but if a single weapon fighter misses, they miss, dual weilders can miss, then try again.

What are you seeing that I'm missing here?


I don't see how you can say your chance to hit is not improved with dual-weilding. With 2 attacks instead of 1 you have 2 chances to hit, and if you miss with 1 you can still hit with the other. Each individual hit has the same percentage of hitting sure, but if a single weapon fighter misses, they miss, dual weilders can miss, then try again.




What are you seeing that I'm missing here?



Let's say you have a character with a +3 attack bonus tryint to hit an enemy with an AC of 14: he needs an 11+ on a D20 to hit, so his odds of hitting (or missing) are 50%.


Now, the same character with Advantage needs to roll 11+ on one of 2 D20, choosing the higher of the two. His odds to roll 11+ on one of 2D20 are approxamately 73%, giving him a 73% chance to hit (or a 27% chance to miss).


Now, the same character Dual Wielding has a 50% chance to hit with his first attack (50% chance to miss) and a 50% chance to hit with his 2nd attack (50% chance to miss). He would have a 50% chance to hit with one attack and a 50% chance to hit with both attacks: the probability to hit is in no way cumulative - they are separate rolls. 


Think of it this way: on a coin toss, what are the odds that the coin will come up heads? 50% Now, flip the coin again. What are the odds the coin will come up heads a second time? Still 50%, because even though they are a series of events, they are still separate events.


The issue is that you are thinking of a Dual Wielder's attacks as the same event, as is the case with Advantage, but the two attacks of a dual wielding character are separate events, so the probability is not changed.