Response to the Mike Mearls interview

Yes, we 100% plan to include multiclassing. Some specialties give you a light touch of another class, but the full system allows you to integrate multiple classes. I see this as simply another area where players can choose how deep they want to go into a class or archetype.



1e and 2e had multiclassing. It was rare because it was fairly hard to actually pull off, barring a few places where it was essential- like 1e PHB bards and PHB Appendix psionics. 4e had similar multiclassing, but it was either Feat-based or you had a Hybrid Class character.

3.x and Star Wars, on the other hand, had stupidly beneficial multiclassing. There was no real benefit to taking a single class character (barring Prestige Classes, some of which can arguably be considered just a specialization of a basic class). And that's not touching some of the beardy cheese that CharOp would sometimes vomit forth. For example, a monk build that can choke out any spellcaster within a one-mile radius, in one round.

Now, because multiclassing was so stupidly beneficial, it also made character development and leveling really confusing. One mistake and your character would go from useful to useless. Some of this was because of math holes and tax feats; having to take an accuracy feat to still be able to hit monsters on less than a 17, for example. You also had the problem of Attack Bonus calculations because you had 1, 3/4, and 1/2- AB classes. Again, taking a level in the wrong class would totally destroy a combat build.

So with all that in mind, why does WotC keep trying to force multiclassing on us? I just don't see it being beneficial to 5e at all, compared to the damage it can inflict on game balance and design.
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So with all that in mind, why does WotC keep trying to force multiclassing on us? I just don't see it being beneficial to 5e at all, compared to the damage it can inflict on game balance and design.



You could use the optional module where the players do not use the multi-classing rules?

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I just hope they keep favorite classes. Ill take a full port of 3e multiclassing.
You also had the problem of Attack Bonus calculations because you had 1, 3/4, and 1/2- AB classes. Again, taking a level in the wrong class would totally destroy a combat build.


This does not appear to be an issue with 5e.
Yes, we 100% plan to include multiclassing. Some specialties give you a light touch of another class, but the full system allows you to integrate multiple classes. I see this as simply another area where players can choose how deep they want to go into a class or archetype.



1e and 2e had multiclassing. It was rare because it was fairly hard to actually pull off, barring a few places where it was essential- like 1e PHB bards and PHB Appendix psionics. 4e had similar multiclassing, but it was either Feat-based or you had a Hybrid Class character.

3.x and Star Wars, on the other hand, had stupidly beneficial multiclassing. There was no real benefit to taking a single class character (barring Prestige Classes, some of which can arguably be considered just a specialization of a basic class). And that's not touching some of the beardy cheese that CharOp would sometimes vomit forth. For example, a monk build that can choke out any spellcaster within a one-mile radius, in one round.

Now, because multiclassing was so stupidly beneficial, it also made character development and leveling really confusing. One mistake and your character would go from useful to useless. Some of this was because of math holes and tax feats; having to take an accuracy feat to still be able to hit monsters on less than a 17, for example. You also had the problem of Attack Bonus calculations because you had 1, 3/4, and 1/2- AB classes. Again, taking a level in the wrong class would totally destroy a combat build.

So with all that in mind, why does WotC keep trying to force multiclassing on us? I just don't see it being beneficial to 5e at all, compared to the damage it can inflict on game balance and design.


Because some people would like the option of doing it. Why completely not make a rule when you can more easily just ignore it? If you leave it out, no one gets to multiclass, if you include it some people do and some people don't. I don't see the upside to leaving it out.
My two copper.
If the game gets so complicated at the higher levels that everyone has to multiclass I will still require my players not to multiclass. I have had too many games with power gamers who ruined the experience because their Bard/Wizard/Paladins could take out entire armies before the other players even touched the enemy.
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Personally, I think more options is always a good thing - but multiclassing is an option that should be discouraged, if not mechanically then by text explaining why it's usually a bad idea added along with the multiclass rules.
If the game gets so complicated at the higher levels that everyone has to multiclass I will still require my players not to multiclass. I have had too many games with power gamers who ruined the experience because their Bard/Wizard/Paladins could take out entire armies before the other players even touched the enemy.


What? How could Bard/Wizard/Paladin possibly be more powerful than just straight wizard? I realize it's a bit off topic, but I'm very curious as to what the build was.
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If they do multiclassing I hope they do it using the 4E Hybrid rules or something along those lines. They should cap the number of classes you can take to 2 classes and 1 prestige class. If they did that it might be workable. It would be even better if they broke each class down into packages and you picked packages from each. Like the Wizard would be broken down into 4 packages of 1 spell slot each (So one 1st level slot, one 2nd level slot, one 3rd level slot, one 4th level slot, one 5th level slot, etc...etc...). So a Fighter/Wizard could take armor proficiency package and a number of spell slot packages and end up with:

With 1 spell slot package:

level   spell slots (2 spell slot packages)
          1st     2nd     3rd
1          1
2          1
3          1       1
4          1       1
5          1       1        1

With 2 spell slot packages:

level   spell slots (2 spell slot packages)
          1st     2nd     3rd
1          2
2          2
3          2       2
4          2       2
5          2       2        2

With 3 spell slot packages:

level   spell slots
          1st     2nd     3rd
1          3
2          3
3          3       2
4          3       3
5          3       3        2

It would work out very well...
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The 4E play style is a high action cinematic style of play where characters worry less about being killed in one hit and more about strategy and what their next move is and the one after it. The players talk back and forth about planning a battle and who can do what to influence the outcome. 4E play is filled with cinematic over the top action. An Eladrin teleports out of the grip of the Ogre. The Fighter slams the dragons foot with his hammer causing it to rear up and stagger back in pain. The Cleric creates a holy zone where their allies weapons are guided to their targets and whenever an enemy dies the Clerics allies are healed. 4E is about knowing when to lauch your nova attack, whether its a huge arcane spell that causes enemies to whirl around in a chaotic storm, or if its a trained adrenaline surge that causes you to attack many many times with two weapons on a single target, or a surge of adrenaline that keeps you going though you should already be dead. Its about tactics and the inability to carry around a bag of potions or a few wands and never have to worry about healing. Its about the guy that can barely role play having the same chance to convince the king to aid the group as the guy that takes improv acting classes and regularly stars as an extra on movies.
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The Stormwind Fallacy, aka the Roleplayer vs Rollplayer Fallacy Just because one optimizes his characters mechanically does not mean that they cannot also roleplay, and vice versa. Corollary: Doing one in a game does not preclude, nor infringe upon, the ability to do the other in the same game. Generalization 1: One is not automatically a worse role player if he optimizes, and vice versa. Generalization 2: A non-optimized character is not automatically role played better than an optimized one, and vice versa. ...[aside]... Proof: These two elements rely on different aspects of a player's game play. Optimization factors in to how well one understands the rules and handles synergies to produce a very effective end result. Role playing deals with how well a player can act in character and behave as if he was someone else. A person can act while understanding the rules, and can build something powerful while still handling an effective character. There is nothing in the game -- mechanical or otherwise -- restricting one if you participate in the other. Claiming that an optimizer cannot role play (or is participating in a play style that isn't supportive of role playing) because he is an optimizer, or vice versa, is committing the Stormwind Fallacy.
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What? How could Bard/Wizard/Paladin possibly be more powerful than just straight wizard? I realize it's a bit off topic, but I'm very curious as to what the build was.


A DM who is incredibly liberal on what she allows Diplomacy to accomplish?
If they do multiclassing I hope they do it using the 4E Hybrid rules or something along those lines. They should cap the number of classes you can take to 2 classes and 1 prestige class.





 

Why have a hard cap when its already discouraged in 3e with xp penalties and the incentive to reach high lvls in a single class?


If they do multiclassing I hope they do it using the 4E Hybrid rules or something along those lines. They should cap the number of classes you can take to 2 classes and 1 prestige class.





 

Why have a hard cap when its already discouraged in 3e with xp penalties and the incentive to reach high lvls in a single class?




While this is 100% true, there were those few exeptions that made multiclassing crazy good. I mean cmon, splashing 1 level of fighter alone was pretty sweet. Instant Armor Profs, Weapon Profs, d10 hit die, and a feat to boot. All you needed was 1.

But yes, I don't think multiclass as a whole was too good in 3.5, I just think those specific little combos were too good >.> But this is something you are never going to be able to avoid with the legion of powergamers out there  
My two copper.
When complaining about 3e style multiclassing, there is no point in complaining about actual 3e class features.  Look at 5e class features and extrapolate what 3e style multiclassing would look like with them.
I like multiclassing. I never enforced Favored Class penalties since I didn't like penalizing my players for creativity. 
I actually liked the idea of the 2nd edition multiple classes at creation multiclassing (not dual classing).
Now there is nothing that says that Next multiclassing will be like 3rd edition or 4e hybridization. 
Let's wait and see what they present before breaking out the pitchforks and torches and scream about how they ruined everything. 
Personally I like multi-classing in theory, but I've never pursued it in practice. It seemed impractical and I usually was better off just sticking with my original class.

Add it or not, I probably won't use it.


While this is 100% true, there were those few exeptions that made multiclassing crazy good. I mean cmon, splashing 1 level of fighter alone was pretty sweet. Instant Armor Profs, Weapon Profs, d10 hit die, and a feat to boot. All you needed was 1.




Or take a lvl in Barbairan and get Barbarian rage, or Paladin for aura of courage or rogue for a load of base skills. Learning the basics of a second class was sensible strategy that created diverse, practical characters.  I even made them realistic with the way I required players to call their next class before advancement and pay for training if they couldn't find a proper instructor. It was also balanced since doing the same with a third class forced you to include your race's fave class in one of the three, and level up a 2e styled utility character.

The only thing broken about 3e's multiclassing was that it created huge complex stat blocks and certain class combo's had stacking issues with feats based on ability scores.

While this is 100% true, there were those few exeptions that made multiclassing crazy good. I mean cmon, splashing 1 level of fighter alone was pretty sweet. Instant Armor Profs, Weapon Profs, d10 hit die, and a feat to boot. All you needed was 1. 



Agreed.  The designers should have gone the Star Wars: Saga route in which Armor Profs  and Weapon Profs are listed under the class as various feats.  A starting first level gains all of those feats to reflect their trainig leading up to the start of play.  In contrast, a multiclass character must choose between an armor proficiency feat, a weapon feat, or another class feat (which would include the the fighter bonus feat) and can gain others through additional feat choices as they level (including class bonus feats if on the class feat list).



1e and 2e had multiclassing. It was rare because it was fairly hard to actually pull off...





It was actually very easy to follow the rules for multiclassing in AD&D. Multiclassing into a 2e bard wasn't hard but it was arduous. you level really slowly in AD&D so making even the quickest bard took twelve levels or something. 

90% of the characters in my pile of personal PCs from those by gone years are multiclassed. The real problem was that at least until the unearthed arcana came out the restrictions on what levels you could achieve were very low.

A dwarf for instsnce needed a really high wisdom score if he ever wanted to see 8th level as a cleric, or 9th level as a fighter with an 18 strength.

An elf could never be more than an 11th level magic user and he needed an 18 intelligence score to do it.

Many players didn't multiclass, but it was because there wasn't much point in doing it, not because it was hard.  Then again simple division and adding percentages to the result might be concidered too hard for some players. I know I've suffered through them at the table often enough.

Others didn't like being a couple of levels behind the rest of the party, although in game it meant at worst one spell level , but usually only a spell or os less than a straight caster and being ten percent behind the fighter for attacks never really mattered with armor classes staying within a range where even the wizard to hit for most of the game.

I actually loath 3e multiclassing. I have hated it for so many reasons since I first tried to convert AD&D multiclassed characters over to 3e.

1e and 2e had multiclassing. It was rare because it was fairly hard to actually pull off...





It was actually very easy to follow the rules for multiclassing in AD&D. Multiclassing into a 2e bard wasn't hard but it was arduous. you level really slowly in AD&D so making even the quickest bard took twelve levels or something. 

90% of the characters in my pile of personal PCs from those by gone years are multiclassed. The real problem was that at least until the unearthed arcana came out the restrictions on what levels you could achieve were very low.
.



I assumed he was actually referring to dual-classing which was hard to qualify for.   Multiclassing in AD&D was, as you indicated, as easy as just saying "I'm a multiclass character".

Carl
If the game gets so complicated at the higher levels that everyone has to multiclass I will still require my players not to multiclass. I have had too many games with power gamers who ruined the experience because their Bard/Wizard/Paladins could take out entire armies before the other players even touched the enemy.




I have seen this happen 

personaly i say keep multiclassing but make it harder to do. 3.Xe multiclassing kinda broke the book. But if you take that and mix it with Prereqs or something to make it harder to do. Then maybe.


Truthfully a fighter who has never tried to learn about magic should not beable to become a wizard and vice versa.  Multiclassing takes time, lots of time, you basicly have to learn everything anew.  
Most broken combination? Get this. 10 Wizard+10 Wizard. Full Spell progression, familiar progress, and Bonus Feats. Beat that power gamers! lol
My two copper.
I cant speak for 1e. Played it but dont remember the rules. Multiclassing in 2e was a horrible. Dual classing was far more OP than anything in 3e and the other form of multiclassing was underpowered, lacked individuality, and restricted to non-humans. I would take 2e's unequal xp tables.

Multiclassing from 3E was one of the worse features of the game from my perspective, even if you do not consider prestige classes. Too many classes were front loaded with abilities. At least with 1E multiclassing or even dual classing the progresson was slower. In 5E everyone will take rogue for skill mastery, caster levels for spells with HP thresholds, auto damage, rituals, etc.
 
I admit it will offer a wide variety of choices in 5E, but I thought the core rules were supposed to be as simple as possible.
Multiclassing from 3E was one of the worse features of the game from my perspective, even if you do not consider prestige classes. Too many classes were front loaded with abilities. At least with 1E multiclassing or even dual classing the progresson was slower. In 5E everyone will take rogue for skill mastery, caster levels for spells with HP thresholds, auto damage, rituals, etc.
 
I admit it will offer a wide variety of choices in 5E, but I thought the core rules were supposed to be as simple as possible.



Do you know how the favorite class and xp penalties worked in 3e? If you tried to dabble in more than one class that wasnt your race's favorite your progression would be slower than 2e's multiclassing. Dual classing was nothing more than an exploit. Take 8 lvls in fighter then switch to mage with an 8th lvl party your mage lvls are going to develop at rapid pace while you sit back and throw darts. Pick Cleric and its even faster. Those types of combinations were far more powerful than any type of build. Its the most unblanced rule D&D has ever produced. 

Do you know how the favorite class and xp penalties worked in 3e? If you tried to dabble in more than one class that wasnt your race's favorite your progression would be slower than 2e's multiclassing. Dual classing was nothing more than an exploit. Take 8 lvls in fighter then switch to mage with an 8th lvl party your mage lvls are going to develop at rapid pace while you sit back and throw darts. Pick Cleric and its even faster. Those types of combinations were far more powerful than any type of build. Its the most unblanced rule D&D has ever produced. 




This is all well and good on paper but it has come to our attention that a whole lot of DM's house ruled experience points out of their games. A goodly number of them ignore class, level, prerequisite, and/or favored class in their games. 

Many of these people are no doubt the same people complaining that 3e multiclassing is broken. I wonder why. 

I personally don't like it since it doesn't produce the same type of character AD&D multiclassing does.  
The need for multiclass should be lessened as we get more and more specialties that emulate other classes. You don't necessarily need to be a Fighter/Wizard if all you want is a touch of magic. Be a Fighter with a magic-themed specialty.

I would prefer it if the PHB presented 0 options for multiclassing. Put the basic rules in the DMG and allow DM's to decide if they want it in their game.
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This is all well and good on paper but it has come to our attention that a whole lot of DM's house ruled experience points out of their games. A goodly number of them ignore class, level, prerequisite, and/or favored class in their games. 

Many of these people are no doubt the same people complaining that 3e multiclassing is broken. I wonder why. 




Its like 4e's rituals. Its one of those things that some people just missed, or didnt try before freaking out. Its understandable when many of the NPCs in the books had wild class combos with gods freeing them of xp penalties. As a DM I knew that the vast majority of players would not take xp penalties so the combinations would be easy to justify. As a player I knew that unbalanced combinations with high lvls in one class and low in others would make for more realistic combinations.
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I personally don't like it since it doesn't produce the same type of character AD&D multiclassing does.  



What?? Compare the two

2e multiclassing
restricted to nonhumans
racial restrictions
racial lvl limits
advancement at half or one third speed
underpowered at high lvls
All classes have to be within one lvl of eachother

3e multiclassing
Too complex to bullet point. A common multiclass build is a lot like 2e multiclassing except that its not as underpowered at high lvls or restricted. Im talking about when you have two classes that arent your favorite. To avoid penalties you have to multiclass like a 2e character with the lvls within one of themselves until maybe you earn a Prestigue class. How is that not 2e's multiclassing without the eventual suck?

The other common build was the favorite class dabble. Your multiclass lvls didnt have to be within one lvl of the other if one was your favorite class. If you tried to dabble in a third class it pretty much shut down your advancement. The further away you were the greater the xp penalty. I dont understand why the 1st lvl benefits are a concern since it only happened with one class and that was already in 2e. So now for the first time in D&D history we had Elves. Real elves. Elves typically dont split their classes evenly neither do halflings, dwarvs, humans etc.
The need for multiclass should be lessened as we get more and more specialties that emulate other classes. You don't necessarily need to be a Fighter/Wizard if all you want is a touch of magic. Be a Fighter with a magic-themed specialty.


I would prefer it if the PHB presented 0 options for multiclassing. Put the basic rules in the DMG and allow DM's to decide if they want it in their game.



Too restricitve. I picture Link from Zelda when someone mentions a fighters with a magic theme.
Back in the olden days of 1e and 2e, I multi-classed like a freak. I also allowed (and even encouraged) my players to do the same in my own campaigns.

But that was before class-dabbling mechanics were introduced in later editions, with feats, skills, etc., that allowed characters to cross-pollinate mechanically.

At this point, I see multi-classing pretty much as the same thing as saying, "how can we introduce an awkward, game-breaking mechanic without actually breaking the game just so people can have more than one class?" 

I think 5e should be above this tactic. Especially since it is on on the right track with backgrounds, specialties, schemes, themes, feats/skills, etc. 
 
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.


Its like 4e's rituals. Its one of those things that some people just missed, or didnt try before freaking out. Its understandable when many of the NPCs in the books had wild class combos with gods freeing them of xp penalties. As a DM I knew that the vast majority of players would not take xp penalties so the combinations would be easy to justify. As a player I knew that unbalanced combinations with high lvls in one class and low in others would make for more realistic combinations.

What?? Compare the two

2e multiclassing
restricted to nonhumans
racial restrictions
racial lvl limits
advancement at half or one third speed
underpowered at high lvls
All classes have to be within one lvl of eachother

3e multiclassing
Too complex to bullet point. A common multiclass build is a lot like 2e multiclassing except that its not as underpowered at high lvls or restricted. Im talking about when you have two classes that arent your favorite. To avoid penalties you have to multiclass like a 2e character with the lvls within one of themselves until maybe you earn a Prestigue class. How is that not 2e's multiclassing without the eventual suck?

The other common build was the favorite class dabble. Your multiclass lvls didnt have to be within one lvl of the other if one was your favorite class. If you tried to dabble in a third class it pretty much shut down your advancement. The further away you were the greater the xp penalty. I dont understand why the 1st lvl benefits are a concern since it only happened with one class and that was already in 2e. So now for the first time in D&D history we had Elves. Real elves. Elves typically dont split their classes evenly neither do halflings, dwarvs, humans etc.



Look, the point of multiclassing was to allow people who wanted to play a non human character for more than six or eight levels. 
A  three classed character was exactly two levels behind his single classed counterpart. Believe me the extra power you got with the extra classes helped but in the long run your elf was still going to be an 11th level wizard and a 9 th level fighter and what ever level thief you got to before you were forced to retire the character. 

Humans didn't have to worry about level limits everyone else did. Two classing a character seemed onerous because you had to start at 1st level when you switched, but you earned experience so fast that after three or four adventures you were almost ready to start using your old class abilities.

Multiclassing the 3e way was merely card blanc for players to build obscene monstrocities. There really isn't any reason to multiclass in 3e or 4e since the reason it existed went away when they stopped treating non humans like second class citizens. 

I actually liked having the full spectrum of class abilities from all of my classes when I multiclassed. This idea that you have one level of this and two levels of that and a couple of levels from some overpowered prestige class, but you actually used the combined total of levels as your actual level which made for some pretty weak and ineffective characters unless you combined classes that complemented each other, and then you were as God.
 
I'll take the slower progression and have all of the spells a mage has and be as effetive as the fighter of my level and maybe have all the skills of a rogue (although right now the rogue is a wasted opportunity since everyone else can do pretty much what they do as well for the price of a background). 

Level dipping is one of the worst things 3e brought to the game and 3e brought a whole lot of garbage to D&D. It is supposed to take years of training to learn the skills of an adventurer. The starting ages fro the wizard and cleric in AD&D put them near middle age, how can anyone just gain a level's worth of xp and suddenly without the slightest bit of training become an entirely nother class and still continue on with their first one. It gets even more insane when they add even more classes to the ones they have. The only place it makes sense is in game terms as a set of rules. I want to play a role playing game that thinks it's real life with some fanasy stuff and some science stuff and a whole lot of make believe in it.

I don't want to have to justify how my 1st level wizard spent six or ten years learning to be a mage while the party fighter just made second level and took a level of wizard without having to go to the wizard academy for the better part of a decade.

Right now next has found a way to shrug off the cumbersome combat rules associated with WotC's version of D&D, but what it's replacing much of the other stuff with isn't working as planned.

Each version of the spells I've seen use mechanics that severly limit the caster's abiblity to function, or come with so much damage that it's over kill.

The rogue can sleep walk through any skill check he's trained in.

1st level characters that need to roll a 10 to hit ac 17 my god who's idea is that? Defensive maneuvers that totally negate monster damage, that's if the poor saps can even hit you, the list goes on and is constantly growing.

There's a lot of things that need to be rethought before this one is ready for prime time.

Its like 4e's rituals. Its one of those things that some people just missed, or didnt try before freaking out. Its understandable when many of the NPCs in the books had wild class combos with gods freeing them of xp penalties. As a DM I knew that the vast majority of players would not take xp penalties so the combinations would be easy to justify. As a player I knew that unbalanced combinations with high lvls in one class and low in others would make for more realistic combinations.

What?? Compare the two

2e multiclassing
restricted to nonhumans
racial restrictions
racial lvl limits
advancement at half or one third speed
underpowered at high lvls
All classes have to be within one lvl of eachother

3e multiclassing
Too complex to bullet point. A common multiclass build is a lot like 2e multiclassing except that its not as underpowered at high lvls or restricted. Im talking about when you have two classes that arent your favorite. To avoid penalties you have to multiclass like a 2e character with the lvls within one of themselves until maybe you earn a Prestigue class. How is that not 2e's multiclassing without the eventual suck?

The other common build was the favorite class dabble. Your multiclass lvls didnt have to be within one lvl of the other if one was your favorite class. If you tried to dabble in a third class it pretty much shut down your advancement. The further away you were the greater the xp penalty. I dont understand why the 1st lvl benefits are a concern since it only happened with one class and that was already in 2e. So now for the first time in D&D history we had Elves. Real elves. Elves typically dont split their classes evenly neither do halflings, dwarvs, humans etc.



Look, the point of multiclassing was to allow people who wanted to play a non human character for more than six or eight levels. 
A  three classed character was exactly two levels behind his single classed counterpart. Believe me the extra power you got with the extra classes helped but in the long run your elf was still going to be an 11th level wizard and a 9 th level fighter and what ever level thief you got to before you were forced to retire the character. 

Humans didn't have to worry about level limits everyone else did. Two classing a character seemed onerous because you had to start at 1st level when you switched, but you earned experience so fast that after three or four adventures you were almost ready to start using your old class abilities.

Multiclassing the 3e way was merely card blanc for players to build obscene monstrocities. There really isn't any reason to multiclass in 3e or 4e since the reason it existed went away when they stopped treating non humans like second class citizens. 

I actually liked having the full spectrum of class abilities from all of my classes when I multiclassed. This idea that you have one level of this and two levels of that and a couple of levels from some overpowered prestige class, but you actually used the combined total of levels as your actual level which made for some pretty weak and ineffective characters unless you combined classes that complemented each other, and then you were as God.
 
I'll take the slower progression and have all of the spells a mage has and be as effetive as the fighter of my level and maybe have all the skills of a rogue (although right now the rogue is a wasted opportunity since everyone else can do pretty much what they do as well for the price of a background). 

Level dipping is one of the worst things 3e brought to the game and 3e brought a whole lot of garbage to D&D. It is supposed to take years of training to learn the skills of an adventurer. The starting ages fro the wizard and cleric in AD&D put them near middle age, how can anyone just gain a level's worth of xp and suddenly without the slightest bit of training become an entirely nother class and still continue on with their first one. It gets even more insane when they add even more classes to the ones they have. The only place it makes sense is in game terms as a set of rules. I want to play a role playing game that thinks it's real life with some fanasy stuff and some science stuff and a whole lot of make believe in it.

I don't want to have to justify how my 1st level wizard spent six or ten years learning to be a mage while the party fighter just made second level and took a level of wizard without having to go to the wizard academy for the better part of a decade.

Right now next has found a way to shrug off the cumbersome combat rules associated with WotC's version of D&D, but what it's replacing much of the other stuff with isn't working as planned.

Each version of the spells I've seen use mechanics that severly limit the caster's abiblity to function, or come with so much damage that it's over kill.

The rogue can sleep walk through any skill check he's trained in.

1st level characters that need to roll a 10 to hit ac 17 my god who's idea is that? Defensive maneuvers that totally negate monster damage, that's if the poor saps can even hit you, the list goes on and is constantly growing.

There's a lot of things that need to be rethought before this one is ready for prime time.



This is why I suggested a system based on 4E's hybrid system.

You level at the same pace as everyone else, but you get some features from each class which you choose. You can pick a couple Wizard spell slots and grab the fighters weapons, or you can grab 1 spell slot and the fighters weapons and armor or you can pick one spell slot and the fighters weapons and CS mechanic, or .... you get the idea you build the character you want, but you can't get more than two classes going and you can't just grab a class at any time you have to do it from the start...
"Unite the [fan] base? Hardly. As of right now, I doubt their ability to unite a slightly unruly teabag with a cup of water."--anjelika
1-4E play style
The 4E play style is a high action cinematic style of play where characters worry less about being killed in one hit and more about strategy and what their next move is and the one after it. The players talk back and forth about planning a battle and who can do what to influence the outcome. 4E play is filled with cinematic over the top action. An Eladrin teleports out of the grip of the Ogre. The Fighter slams the dragons foot with his hammer causing it to rear up and stagger back in pain. The Cleric creates a holy zone where their allies weapons are guided to their targets and whenever an enemy dies the Clerics allies are healed. 4E is about knowing when to lauch your nova attack, whether its a huge arcane spell that causes enemies to whirl around in a chaotic storm, or if its a trained adrenaline surge that causes you to attack many many times with two weapons on a single target, or a surge of adrenaline that keeps you going though you should already be dead. Its about tactics and the inability to carry around a bag of potions or a few wands and never have to worry about healing. Its about the guy that can barely role play having the same chance to convince the king to aid the group as the guy that takes improv acting classes and regularly stars as an extra on movies.
Stormwind Fallacy
The Stormwind Fallacy, aka the Roleplayer vs Rollplayer Fallacy Just because one optimizes his characters mechanically does not mean that they cannot also roleplay, and vice versa. Corollary: Doing one in a game does not preclude, nor infringe upon, the ability to do the other in the same game. Generalization 1: One is not automatically a worse role player if he optimizes, and vice versa. Generalization 2: A non-optimized character is not automatically role played better than an optimized one, and vice versa. ...[aside]... Proof: These two elements rely on different aspects of a player's game play. Optimization factors in to how well one understands the rules and handles synergies to produce a very effective end result. Role playing deals with how well a player can act in character and behave as if he was someone else. A person can act while understanding the rules, and can build something powerful while still handling an effective character. There is nothing in the game -- mechanical or otherwise -- restricting one if you participate in the other. Claiming that an optimizer cannot role play (or is participating in a play style that isn't supportive of role playing) because he is an optimizer, or vice versa, is committing the Stormwind Fallacy.
The spells we should getLook here to Check out my adventures and ideas. I've started a blog, about video games, table top role playing games, programming, and many other things its called Kel and Lok Games. My 4E Fantasy Grounds game is currently full.


Look, the point of multiclassing was to allow people who wanted to play a non human character for more than six or eight levels. 
A  three classed character was exactly two levels behind his single classed counterpart. Believe me the extra power you got with the extra classes helped but in the long run your elf was still going to be an 11th level wizard and a 9 th level fighter and what ever level thief you got to before you were forced to retire the character. 



This spoiled the Gold Box games. A racially diverse party in Pool or Radiance would never make it through Pools of Darkness. Im not a freak when it comes to balance but thats pretty broken.



Humans didn't have to worry about level limits everyone else did. Two classing a character seemed onerous because you had to start at 1st level when you switched, but you earned experience so fast that after three or four adventures you were almost ready to start using your old class abilities.



I know how it worked. It was like you took the worse flaw in 3e's multiclassing and turned it into an overpowered exploit.




Multiclassing the 3e way was merely card blanc for players to build obscene monstrocities. There really isn't any reason to multiclass in 3e or 4e since the reason it existed went away when they stopped treating non humans like second class citizens. 



How were they monstrosities when the great majority of the builds were either two classes alternating lvls or a dabble with one class and the race's signature class? I can understand why you wouldn't appreciate the facets of multiclassing when you accepted such an inane reason for it in 2e...."window.parent.tinyMCE.get('post_content').onLoad.dispatch();" contenteditable="true" />


I actually liked having the full spectrum of class abilities from all of my classes when I multiclassed. This idea that you have one level of this and two levels of that and a couple of levels from some overpowered prestige class, but you actually used the combined total of levels as your actual level which made for some pretty weak and ineffective characters unless you combined classes that complemented each other, and then you were as God.
 
I'll take the slower progression and have all of the spells a mage has and be as effetive as the fighter of my level and maybe have all the skills of a rogue (although right now the rogue is a wasted opportunity since everyone else can do pretty much what they do as well for the price of a background). 



If thats what you wanted you had the option to do it in 3e and you were pretty much required to lvl that way if one of the classes werent your favorite. Also your character didnt become obsolete. It was somewhat underpowered most of the time but thats the nature of a utility combo. You have less overall power but you might compliment a party that lacks diversity. We should expect people to want to roleplay unbalanced combinations. Those are real character types in literature. The elf that knows just enough magic to enchant arrows or put goblins to sleep, the monk that takes a lvl in fighter to mix his martial arts, the wizard that takes a lvl in fighter when his body guard dies or a few lvls in rogue to avoid combat. Rogue fighter combos are the norm for halfings, Clerics will often dabble in the class of their domain.



Level dipping is one of the worst things 3e brought to the game and 3e brought a whole lot of garbage to D&D. It is supposed to take years of training to learn the skills of an adventurer.



Not for every class. One lvl in fighter is like bootcamp or a karate class. Sorcerer's and Wild Fire mages dont have to work for the first spark.  A lvl in Cleric could just be a divine reward or a calling. Other classes are harder to justify so I homebrewed it. You had the same problem in 2e but worse. It was dual classing. In 2e you could take a lvl in wizard without calling it or paying for training. Just out of the blue you could be a wizard. A wizard with amnesia that forgot forgot everything about their previous class except how to roll with punches, since your hp stayed the same. You could quickly and easily develop a character that was more godly than anything from 3e.

 


Right now next has found a way to shrug off the cumbersome combat rules associated with WotC's version of D&D, but what it's replacing much of the other stuff with isn't working as planned.

Each version of the spells I've seen use mechanics that severly limit the caster's abiblity to function, or come with so much damage that it's over kill.

The rogue can sleep walk through any skill check he's trained in.

1st level characters that need to roll a 10 to hit ac 17 my god who's idea is that? Defensive maneuvers that totally negate monster damage, that's if the poor saps can even hit you, the list goes on and is constantly growing.

There's a lot of things that need to be rethought before this one is ready for prime time.



True. Im starting to see how much of a WIP it is though a lot of my issues were around before Wotc.

Personally - I could easily do without 3.x style multi-classing.  I'd much rather see something more like Hybrid classes and multi-class feats from 4E than 3.x style multiclassing.  I consider that something that 4E got right - it avoided the straightjacket of AD&D whlie at the same time avoiding the problems of 3.x multiclassing.

 Combine this with specialities and you can still make your multiclass character.



But I don't think that we need to resurrect the 3.x approach. At the very least, I'd suggest that it be made an optional rule/ module. That way it's easier to ignore.

There are still ways to make it better, I'm sure (for example, in 4E I changed the effectiveness of the multiclass power-swap feats to allow swapping multiple powers - but they may not have an equivalent in 5N anyway).  But the hybrid approach is superior to the 'pick a class' approach of 3.x.    Especially if there are ways to choose themes or specialities (or PrCs) later in life - you can use that to demonstrate the major life change that some people seem to want to use multiclassing to show.



On the other hand - I think there was a comment somewhere by Mike (?) which implied that they were considering something more hybrid like.   Or at least that when you take a second class you don't necessarily get all the class features you would have gotten if you took that class as your primary class.  It was a weak inference and I'm not sure he meant it the way it sounded - but it at least gives me hope.  Not much hope - because I every other indication sounds more like they intend 3.x-style multiclassing.  But a small bit of hope.  Maybe I'll try to find it and listen to what he said again....

Carl
My 2 coppers:

I'm not a fan of free and unrestricted multiclassing, for one reason and one reason only: it encourages powerbuilds.

I've seen some shockingly ridiculous powerbuilds. People do things like take one level of Shadowdancer to get that Hide in Plain Sight ability, a few levels of Druid so that they can get a few of their abilities, one level of Fighter so that they can do it while wearing plate armour, one level of Bard because it's a pre-req to Red Dragon Disciple, and one level of Barbarian so that they can run really fast.

I know what you're all thinking: why should I have a problem with what other people do? Well, I have played games before where I felt like I was punished for trying to create a believable character - since I didn't powerbuild, min/max and combine classes that didn't logically go together, my ranger basically sucked compared to everyone else. I generally come across very few believable characters when playing 3rd edition.

That's why I'd want multiclassing to be harder than it was in 3rd, or restricted in some way - something more than "I take a single level of fighter. I am now skilled in all weapons and armour, and can do what my companion spent 20 years learning how to do!" (since a level 1 class is supposed to be what the character spent his life learning to do).
Everything expressed in this post is my opinion, and should be taken as such. I can not declare myself to be the supreme authority on all matters...even though I am right!
My 2 coppers:

I'm not a fan of free and unrestricted multiclassing, for one reason and one reason only: it encourages powerbuilds.

I've seen some shockingly ridiculous powerbuilds. People do things like take one level of Shadowdancer to get that Hide in Plain Sight ability, a few levels of Druid so that they can get a few of their abilities, one level of Fighter so that they can do it while wearing plate armour, one level of Bard because it's a pre-req to Red Dragon Disciple, and one level of Barbarian so that they can run really fast.



You present it as if its done with one character.
If you take one lvl of anything you are making a commitment that has to be weighed against several factors.  How about a real example that is ridiculous, powerful and also unrestricted by the rules and ability score prerecs.





I know what you're all thinking: why should I have a problem with what other people do? Well, I have played games before where I felt like I was punished for trying to create a believable character - since I didn't powerbuild, min/max and combine classes that didn't logically go together, my ranger basically sucked compared to everyone else. I generally come across very few believable characters when playing 3rd edition.

That's why I'd want multiclassing to be harder than it was in 3rd, or restricted in some way - something more than "I take a single level of fighter. I am now skilled in all weapons and armour, and can do what my companion spent 20 years learning how to do!" (since a level 1 class is supposed to be what the character spent his life learning to do).



A single level in fighter does not make you skilled in weapons. You simply arent penalized as someone who has never used them. A 1st lvl fighter could easily fall to the good strike of a commoner and would probably lose in a fist fight against a 5th lvl mage. 

The reason why your Ranger sucked isnt that you didnt take a lvl in another class. That would have made your Ranger even less effective unless party had needs for a utility character. With all of the melee builds I assume your Ranger was an archery build. Archery was less effective in 3e. Rate of Fire was removed. With Rof everyone that used a regular bow had two attacks per round at first lvl. Weapon Speed usually gave the archer an initiative advantage too. These were full attacks too not the weaker multi turn attacks you get later in 3e or the weaker rapid shot attacks that you had to spend a feat on. This didnt combine well with 3e's hp bloat.
Yes, we 100% plan to include multiclassing. Some specialties give you a light touch of another class, but the full system allows you to integrate multiple classes. I see this as simply another area where players can choose how deep they want to go into a class or archetype.



1e and 2e had multiclassing. It was rare because it was fairly hard to actually pull off, barring a few places where it was essential- like 1e PHB bards and PHB Appendix psionics. 4e had similar multiclassing, but it was either Feat-based or you had a Hybrid Class character.

3.x and Star Wars, on the other hand, had stupidly beneficial multiclassing. There was no real benefit to taking a single class character (barring Prestige Classes, some of which can arguably be considered just a specialization of a basic class). And that's not touching some of the beardy cheese that CharOp would sometimes vomit forth. For example, a monk build that can choke out any spellcaster within a one-mile radius, in one round.

Now, because multiclassing was so stupidly beneficial, it also made character development and leveling really confusing. One mistake and your character would go from useful to useless. Some of this was because of math holes and tax feats; having to take an accuracy feat to still be able to hit monsters on less than a 17, for example. You also had the problem of Attack Bonus calculations because you had 1, 3/4, and 1/2- AB classes. Again, taking a level in the wrong class would totally destroy a combat build.

So with all that in mind, why does WotC keep trying to force multiclassing on us? I just don't see it being beneficial to 5e at all, compared to the damage it can inflict on game balance and design.


So... 3e failed at something mechanically so we should remove it from the game and not even try and make it work?

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My 2 coppers:

I'm not a fan of free and unrestricted multiclassing, for one reason and one reason only: it encourages powerbuilds.

I've seen some shockingly ridiculous powerbuilds. People do things like take one level of Shadowdancer to get that Hide in Plain Sight ability, a few levels of Druid so that they can get a few of their abilities, one level of Fighter so that they can do it while wearing plate armour, one level of Bard because it's a pre-req to Red Dragon Disciple, and one level of Barbarian so that they can run really fast.



You present it as if its done with one character.

Maybe because he's seen it done with one character.

I know I have, although I wouldn't guarantee that I've seen that exact combination.


That's why I'd want multiclassing to be harder than it was in 3rd, or restricted in some way - something more than "I take a single level of fighter. I am now skilled in all weapons and armour, and can do what my companion spent 20 years learning how to do!" (since a level 1 class is supposed to be what the character spent his life learning to do).


Something that starts with 4E-style multiclassing feats, perhaps. You get a SMALL taste of the target class.

But from there, 4E multiclassing gives you rather limited ability to grow into the class, and it's quite expensive. Definitely not good.

4E hybriding is better, but MUST begin at level-1 character creation. Which restricts what it can be used for.

"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
Compromise I can live with, at  least.  I'm sure others will differ.


3.x style multiclassing - but you are limited to no more than two classes.


(If they really want to make it complicated - allow that one multiclass event to be taking Hybrid as a class -  effectivey giving you a taste of three classes).


Carl
Just eliminate the rampant frontloading and dead levels, and the problems largely go away.

In 3E and SWSE, it was extra super beneficial to multiclass because level 1 of any given not-wizard class was piles of weapon/armor proficiencies, buckets of class-skills, and various early-level swag, while there were way too many times when all the next level (past about 5 or so) of [current class] offered was another hit die and +1 to some save (or in SWSE's case, getting away from a dwindling pool of useful talents in [current class], or just leveling an off-class for a feat).
Also, looking through the specialities, there are those that become redundant with free mutliclassing - why take Acolyte, for example, when you can just multiclass to Cleric, and get everything the Acolyte can do and more?

I'm in favour of requirements - something that indicates that you have some grounding in the workings of that class. For example, the Acolyte feats could be a pre-requisite to Cleric, since you start off as a novice/initiate/acolyte/whatever and eventually become a full cleric. Magic User could be a pre-req to wizard.

Fighter and Rogue should probably just require one or two skills (Rogue: stealth and maybe locks or traps; Fighter: military lore) - I think the requirements should vary based on what you actually get. If you're just being a bit better at fighting, it shouldn't require a great deal, but if you're going from "no magic potential whatsoever" to "full ability to cast magic", it should take a bit more.

Some classes you shouldn't be able to multiclass TO (sorcerer, barbarian), simply because it doesn't make sense from an RP perspective (Okay, so I suddenly find out that I have the innate power to do magic, that I never knew anything about until now! Yeah, that's believable...)

Maybe the requirements only need to be one skill:

Fighter: Military lore
Ranger: Survival
Rogue: Stealth
Cleric: Religious lore
Wizard: Arcane lore
etc....

I just think that a character should have to do more to get another class than to simply announce that he wants to dual-class, gain a shed-load of new stuff, and decide that he was, apparently, studying this during the one week that they spent travelling from the Mizulrak Mountains to the Valley of Vagnarok.
Everything expressed in this post is my opinion, and should be taken as such. I can not declare myself to be the supreme authority on all matters...even though I am right!
Also, looking through the specialities, there are those that become redundant with free mutliclassing - why take Acolyte, for example, when you can just multiclass to Cleric, and get everything the Acolyte can do and more?

Obviously, two more orisons.
The specialities allow for 4e-style pseudomulticlassing, more or less.  A feat to get some off-class swag is far less an investment than throwing a whole level into something, assuming a 3e-style MC model.


I know I have, although I wouldn't guarantee that I've seen that exact combination.





Give me an example. The combinations the good Ranger gave would make for such an ineffective character that no player would choose it. It would take forver to build up your prereqs for Shadowdancer, or lvls in Druid with xp penalties. The character would be so behind in advancement and so awash in base abilities that they would be of no use in a party of their Character Level.