D&D Next Q&A: Two-Weapon Fighting, Distinctive Maneuvers & At-Will Spells

In this week's D&D Next Q&A, Rodney talks about two-weapon fighting, fleshing out maneuvers for the fighter and rogue, and the at-will spell changes for the wizard.

Trevor Kidd Community Manager

So it would seem that the current playtest packet is only one snapshot, where they have specific testing goals and isn't intended to exactly replicate a final intended design.

Fancy that.
D&D Next = D&D: Quantum Edition
So it would seem that the current playtest packet is only one snapshot, where they have specific testing goals and isn't intended to exactly replicate a final intended design.

Fancy that.



You'd think that some of us would've pointed that out by now.....oh, wait...
So it would seem that the current playtest packet is only one snapshot, where they have specific testing goals and isn't intended to exactly replicate a final intended design.

Fancy that.



My God!  It's almost as if........almost as if........we're in a playtest!
Oh playtest.
I thought it said playfest.

Orzel, Halfelven son of Zel, Mystic Ranger, Bane to Dragons, Death to Undeath, Killer of Abyssals, King of the Wilds. Constitution Based Class for Next!

So it would seem that the current playtest packet is only one snapshot, where they have specific testing goals and isn't intended to exactly replicate a final intended design.

Fancy that.



Trully the best possible playtesting experience!

As I said to my friend Bob Goizueta, the only way to judge the success of a new product development is each element in isolation. That's the ticket!

The snowballing enthusiasm, the rosy forums... it's all coming up aces!
Q&A Haiku Time!  Sux edition...

Two-weapon use sux!
Presenting untrained use first
Specialties later.

Rogues as fighters sux!
Testing the maneuvers first;
Separate later. 

Level 0 spells sux!
Simplified spell system first;
Complicate later.
Hey...  You answered the most common complaints on the boards.  

We can't complain about WoTC not hearing us anymore. 

Ah, well, i'm sure we'll find more things to fight over soon.   

guides
List of no-action attacks.
Dynamic vs Static Bonuses
Phalanx tactics and builds
Crivens! A Pictsies Guide Good
Power
s to intentionally miss with
Mr. Cellophane: How to be unnoticed
Way's to fire around corners
Crits: what their really worth
Retroactive bonus vs Static bonus.
Runepriest handbook & discussion thread
Holy Symbols to hang around your neck
Ways to Gain or Downgrade Actions
List of bonuses to saving throws
The Ghost with the Most (revenant handbook)
my builds
F-111 Interdictor Long (200+ squares) distance ally teleporter. With some warlord stuff. Broken in a plot way, not a power way.

Thought Switch Higher level build that grants upto 14 attacks on turn 1. If your allies play along, it's broken.

Elven Critters Crit op with crit generation. 5 of these will end anything. Broken.

King Fisher Optimized net user.  Moderate.

Boominator Fun catch-22 booming blade build with either strong or completely broken damage depending on your reading.

Very Distracting Warlock Lot's of dazing and major penalties to hit. Overpowered.

Pocket Protector Pixie Stealth Knight. Maximizing the defender's aura by being in an ally's/enemy's square.

Yakuza NinjIntimiAdin: Perma-stealth Striker that offers a little protection for ally's, and can intimidate bloodied enemies. Very Strong.

Chargeburgler with cheese Ranged attacks at the end of a charge along with perma-stealth. Solid, could be overpowered if tweaked.

Void Defender Defends giving a penalty to hit anyone but him, then removing himself from play. Can get somewhat broken in epic.

Scry and Die Attacking from around corners, while staying hidden. Moderate to broken, depending on the situation.

Skimisher Fly in, attack, and fly away. Also prevents enemies from coming close. Moderate to Broken depending on the enemy, but shouldn't make the game un-fun, as the rest of your team is at risk, and you have enough weaknesses.

Indestructible Simply won't die, even if you sleep though combat.  One of THE most abusive character in 4e.

Sir Robin (Bravely Charge Away) He automatically slows and pushes an enemy (5 squares), while charging away. Hard to rate it's power level, since it's terrain dependent.

Death's Gatekeeper A fun twist on a healic, making your party "unkillable". Overpowered to Broken, but shouldn't actually make the game un-fun, just TPK proof.

Death's Gatekeeper mk2, (Stealth Edition) Make your party "unkillable", and you hidden, while doing solid damage. Stronger then the above, but also easier for a DM to shut down. Broken, until your DM get's enough of it.

Domination and Death Dominate everything then kill them quickly. Only works @ 30, but is broken multiple ways.

Battlemind Mc Prone-Daze Protecting your allies by keeping enemies away. Quite powerful.

The Retaliator Getting hit deals more damage to the enemy then you receive yourself, and you can take plenty of hits. Heavy item dependency, Broken.

Dead Kobold Transit Teleports 98 squares a turn, and can bring someone along for the ride. Not fully built, so i can't judge the power.

Psilent Guardian Protect your allies, while being invisible. Overpowered, possibly broken.

Rune of Vengance Do lot's of damage while boosting your teams. Strong to slightly overpowered.

Charedent BarrageA charging ardent. Fine in a normal team, overpowered if there are 2 together, and easily broken in teams of 5.

Super Knight A tough, sticky, high damage knight. Strong.

Super Duper Knight Basically the same as super knight with items, making it far more broken.

Mora, the unkillable avenger Solid damage, while being neigh indestuctable. Overpowered, but not broken.

Swordburst Maximus At-Will Close Burst 3 that slide and prones. Protects allies with off actions. Strong, possibly over powered with the right party.

Q&A Haiku Time!  Sux edition...

Two-weapon use sux!
Presenting untrained use first
Specialties later.

Rogues as fighters sux!
Testing the maneuvers first;
Separate later. 

Level 0 spells sux!
Simplified spell system first;
Complicate later.

They made it easy for you this time.

guides
List of no-action attacks.
Dynamic vs Static Bonuses
Phalanx tactics and builds
Crivens! A Pictsies Guide Good
Power
s to intentionally miss with
Mr. Cellophane: How to be unnoticed
Way's to fire around corners
Crits: what their really worth
Retroactive bonus vs Static bonus.
Runepriest handbook & discussion thread
Holy Symbols to hang around your neck
Ways to Gain or Downgrade Actions
List of bonuses to saving throws
The Ghost with the Most (revenant handbook)
my builds
F-111 Interdictor Long (200+ squares) distance ally teleporter. With some warlord stuff. Broken in a plot way, not a power way.

Thought Switch Higher level build that grants upto 14 attacks on turn 1. If your allies play along, it's broken.

Elven Critters Crit op with crit generation. 5 of these will end anything. Broken.

King Fisher Optimized net user.  Moderate.

Boominator Fun catch-22 booming blade build with either strong or completely broken damage depending on your reading.

Very Distracting Warlock Lot's of dazing and major penalties to hit. Overpowered.

Pocket Protector Pixie Stealth Knight. Maximizing the defender's aura by being in an ally's/enemy's square.

Yakuza NinjIntimiAdin: Perma-stealth Striker that offers a little protection for ally's, and can intimidate bloodied enemies. Very Strong.

Chargeburgler with cheese Ranged attacks at the end of a charge along with perma-stealth. Solid, could be overpowered if tweaked.

Void Defender Defends giving a penalty to hit anyone but him, then removing himself from play. Can get somewhat broken in epic.

Scry and Die Attacking from around corners, while staying hidden. Moderate to broken, depending on the situation.

Skimisher Fly in, attack, and fly away. Also prevents enemies from coming close. Moderate to Broken depending on the enemy, but shouldn't make the game un-fun, as the rest of your team is at risk, and you have enough weaknesses.

Indestructible Simply won't die, even if you sleep though combat.  One of THE most abusive character in 4e.

Sir Robin (Bravely Charge Away) He automatically slows and pushes an enemy (5 squares), while charging away. Hard to rate it's power level, since it's terrain dependent.

Death's Gatekeeper A fun twist on a healic, making your party "unkillable". Overpowered to Broken, but shouldn't actually make the game un-fun, just TPK proof.

Death's Gatekeeper mk2, (Stealth Edition) Make your party "unkillable", and you hidden, while doing solid damage. Stronger then the above, but also easier for a DM to shut down. Broken, until your DM get's enough of it.

Domination and Death Dominate everything then kill them quickly. Only works @ 30, but is broken multiple ways.

Battlemind Mc Prone-Daze Protecting your allies by keeping enemies away. Quite powerful.

The Retaliator Getting hit deals more damage to the enemy then you receive yourself, and you can take plenty of hits. Heavy item dependency, Broken.

Dead Kobold Transit Teleports 98 squares a turn, and can bring someone along for the ride. Not fully built, so i can't judge the power.

Psilent Guardian Protect your allies, while being invisible. Overpowered, possibly broken.

Rune of Vengance Do lot's of damage while boosting your teams. Strong to slightly overpowered.

Charedent BarrageA charging ardent. Fine in a normal team, overpowered if there are 2 together, and easily broken in teams of 5.

Super Knight A tough, sticky, high damage knight. Strong.

Super Duper Knight Basically the same as super knight with items, making it far more broken.

Mora, the unkillable avenger Solid damage, while being neigh indestuctable. Overpowered, but not broken.

Swordburst Maximus At-Will Close Burst 3 that slide and prones. Protects allies with off actions. Strong, possibly over powered with the right party.

Hey...  You answered the most common complaints on the boards.  

We can't complain about WoTC not hearing us anymore.  




Really? Because I didn't see anything addressing the general power level of maneuvers or how boring having half your levels gain nothing but HP is. Or how the Rogue is seriously weak compared to anything else, or how the skill system sucks for anyone who doesn't want to play magic tea party, or... well any concerns that I actually have.
Hey...  You answered the most common complaints on the boards.  

We can't complain about WoTC not hearing us anymore.  




Really? Because I didn't see anything addressing the general power level of maneuvers or how boring having half your levels gain nothing but HP is. Or how the Rogue is seriously weak compared to anything else, or how the skill system sucks for anyone who doesn't want to play magic tea party, or... well any concerns that I actually have.

Aww... Sorry, we are out of time for questions this round folks.

But stay tuned for next time, when we play "WHEEL OF FISH"!. err,, "Q AND A".

guides
List of no-action attacks.
Dynamic vs Static Bonuses
Phalanx tactics and builds
Crivens! A Pictsies Guide Good
Power
s to intentionally miss with
Mr. Cellophane: How to be unnoticed
Way's to fire around corners
Crits: what their really worth
Retroactive bonus vs Static bonus.
Runepriest handbook & discussion thread
Holy Symbols to hang around your neck
Ways to Gain or Downgrade Actions
List of bonuses to saving throws
The Ghost with the Most (revenant handbook)
my builds
F-111 Interdictor Long (200+ squares) distance ally teleporter. With some warlord stuff. Broken in a plot way, not a power way.

Thought Switch Higher level build that grants upto 14 attacks on turn 1. If your allies play along, it's broken.

Elven Critters Crit op with crit generation. 5 of these will end anything. Broken.

King Fisher Optimized net user.  Moderate.

Boominator Fun catch-22 booming blade build with either strong or completely broken damage depending on your reading.

Very Distracting Warlock Lot's of dazing and major penalties to hit. Overpowered.

Pocket Protector Pixie Stealth Knight. Maximizing the defender's aura by being in an ally's/enemy's square.

Yakuza NinjIntimiAdin: Perma-stealth Striker that offers a little protection for ally's, and can intimidate bloodied enemies. Very Strong.

Chargeburgler with cheese Ranged attacks at the end of a charge along with perma-stealth. Solid, could be overpowered if tweaked.

Void Defender Defends giving a penalty to hit anyone but him, then removing himself from play. Can get somewhat broken in epic.

Scry and Die Attacking from around corners, while staying hidden. Moderate to broken, depending on the situation.

Skimisher Fly in, attack, and fly away. Also prevents enemies from coming close. Moderate to Broken depending on the enemy, but shouldn't make the game un-fun, as the rest of your team is at risk, and you have enough weaknesses.

Indestructible Simply won't die, even if you sleep though combat.  One of THE most abusive character in 4e.

Sir Robin (Bravely Charge Away) He automatically slows and pushes an enemy (5 squares), while charging away. Hard to rate it's power level, since it's terrain dependent.

Death's Gatekeeper A fun twist on a healic, making your party "unkillable". Overpowered to Broken, but shouldn't actually make the game un-fun, just TPK proof.

Death's Gatekeeper mk2, (Stealth Edition) Make your party "unkillable", and you hidden, while doing solid damage. Stronger then the above, but also easier for a DM to shut down. Broken, until your DM get's enough of it.

Domination and Death Dominate everything then kill them quickly. Only works @ 30, but is broken multiple ways.

Battlemind Mc Prone-Daze Protecting your allies by keeping enemies away. Quite powerful.

The Retaliator Getting hit deals more damage to the enemy then you receive yourself, and you can take plenty of hits. Heavy item dependency, Broken.

Dead Kobold Transit Teleports 98 squares a turn, and can bring someone along for the ride. Not fully built, so i can't judge the power.

Psilent Guardian Protect your allies, while being invisible. Overpowered, possibly broken.

Rune of Vengance Do lot's of damage while boosting your teams. Strong to slightly overpowered.

Charedent BarrageA charging ardent. Fine in a normal team, overpowered if there are 2 together, and easily broken in teams of 5.

Super Knight A tough, sticky, high damage knight. Strong.

Super Duper Knight Basically the same as super knight with items, making it far more broken.

Mora, the unkillable avenger Solid damage, while being neigh indestuctable. Overpowered, but not broken.

Swordburst Maximus At-Will Close Burst 3 that slide and prones. Protects allies with off actions. Strong, possibly over powered with the right party.

Hey...  You answered the most common complaints on the boards.  

We can't complain about WoTC not hearing us anymore.  




Really? Because I didn't see anything addressing the general power level of maneuvers or how boring having half your levels gain nothing but HP is. Or how the Rogue is seriously weak compared to anything else, or how the skill system sucks for anyone who doesn't want to play magic tea party, or... well any concerns that I actually have.



It's not called the rule of 16.  Patience.
Ah, well, i'm sure we'll find more things to fight over soon.   

5mwd

In memory of wrecan and his Unearthed Wrecana.

Q&A Haiku Time!  Sux edition...

Two-weapon use sux!
Presenting untrained use first
Specialties later.

Rogues as fighters sux!
Testing the maneuvers first;
Separate later. 

Level 0 spells sux!
Simplified spell system first;
Complicate later.

They made it easy for you this time.


Nah.  I just make it look easy!  
Okay.

Seriously, I think two weapon fighting should be a maneuver and specialties just give you the maneuver with a 1d3 or 1d4 expertise die if you don't have any.

I'd like to have dual wielders without specialties. Same with Volley and Precise Shot for archers.

Treat specialties as a bonus, not a requirement to play a style.

Orzel, Halfelven son of Zel, Mystic Ranger, Bane to Dragons, Death to Undeath, Killer of Abyssals, King of the Wilds. Constitution Based Class for Next!

Not a bad legend and lore and they provided some answers. A good selection of questions if nothing else and they do deal with 3 complained about things.

 Next week lets bug them about dead levels huh?

 Fear is the Mind Killer

 

My God!  It's almost as if........almost as if........we're in a playtest!



No! Say it isn't so! I've been so confused this entire time! My entire life is now a shambles - a mockery, if you will, of what could have been a full and enriching experience! I'm going to go crawl in a bottle now!  /melodrama  /sarcasm

Smile

For those confused on how DDN's modular rules might work, this may provide some insight: http://www.tor.com/blogs/2012/11/the-world-of-darkness-shines-when-it-abandons-canon

@mikemearls: Uhhh... do you really not see all the 3e/4e that's basically the entire core system?

 

It is entirely unnecessary to denigrate someone else's approach to gaming in order to validate your own.

Okay. Seriously, I think two weapon fighting should be a maneuver and specialties just give you the maneuver with a 1d3 or 1d4 expertise die if you don't have any. I'd like to have dual wielders without specialties. Same with Volley and Precise Shot for archers. Treat specialties as a bonus, not a requirement to play a style.



So any ole Tom, Dick, or spellcaster should just be able to pick up two weapons and be viable at melee combat?  It takes very specialized training to be competent with two weapons.  You can't just pick up two and go.
Q&A Haiku Time!  Sux edition...

Two-weapon use sux!
Presenting untrained use first
Specialties later.

Rogues as fighters sux!
Testing the maneuvers first;
Separate later. 

Level 0 spells sux!
Simplified spell system first;
Complicate later.



I'm a little delayed this time, my apologies Wrecan.

Are you ready to get your limerick on?!




1 The math seems to indicate that two-weapon fighting is, overall, a poor option compared to attacking with a single weapon; what other ways have the designers considered balancing two-weapon fighting?

We are working on two-weapon feats
This packet it's in the backseat
Please do not panic
We'll revise mechanics
Wait to two-weapon fight in the streets




2 With both the fighter and the rogue now having access to maneuvers, the line between the two classes seems to be getting blurred; is there enough of a distinction between the two classes?

The line between rogue and fighter
Will now be made even brighter
To make this all work
And be more than a quirk
We may playtest an overnighter




3 Why were the wizard's at-will spells limited by tradition?

At wills are picked by tradition
In this playtest edition
Give old at-will spells
A hearty farewell
So we're all not the same magician


Do you have an opinion on what campaign settings should be printed in D&D Next? If so, please cast your votes in this poll! Poll: What campaign settings do you want to see printed in D&D Next?
The wizard and cleric won't be all that competent without the class based accuracy bonus and expertise dice stuck at 1d3.

A wizard with weapon attack between -1 and +3 and a 1d3 expertise dice won't be that powerful.

Orzel, Halfelven son of Zel, Mystic Ranger, Bane to Dragons, Death to Undeath, Killer of Abyssals, King of the Wilds. Constitution Based Class for Next!

The wizard and cleric won't be all that competent without the class based accuracy bonus and expertise dice stuck at 1d3. A wizard with weapon attack between -1 and +3 and a 1d3 expertise dice won't be that powerful.



I just don't see every single class being at least competent with two weapons simply by virtue of picking them up.
Are you ready to get your limerick on?!


No they'd won't be competent just by picking the weapons up. They'd have to take the feat or multiclass into fighter or ranger.

Orzel, Halfelven son of Zel, Mystic Ranger, Bane to Dragons, Death to Undeath, Killer of Abyssals, King of the Wilds. Constitution Based Class for Next!

Another reason why class-based accuracy bonuses suck, however.
D&D Next = D&D: Quantum Edition
Hey...  You answered the most common complaints on the boards.  

We can't complain about WoTC not hearing us anymore.  




Really? Because I didn't see anything addressing the general power level of maneuvers or how boring having half your levels gain nothing but HP is. Or how the Rogue is seriously weak compared to anything else, or how the skill system sucks for anyone who doesn't want to play magic tea party, or... well any concerns that I actually have.


Do you deny that these three topics have been active areas of questions lately?

Or do you really think that only your concerns are worth answering?
D&D Next = D&D: Quantum Edition
Another reason why class-based accuracy bonuses suck, however.

So the player might choose a weapon [A weapon/SOME weapons/a weapons GROUP] for his "proficiencies" in the class rather than getting them all in a lump at 1st level? That would certainly make PCs more distinct and help cut down on the frontloading issue. Also, Specialities or Backgrounds could include proficiencies for players wanting a quick PC or for players wanting to make custom BGs or SPs for their games.

In memory of wrecan and his Unearthed Wrecana.

I don't understand why these particular tidbits of information couldn't have been provided earlier, maybe even as part of the playtest package.

Sounds like they had some decent reasons for many of these changes they made, like removing the Two-Weapon speciality because it wasn't ready, but they didn't tell us this, so anyone looking at the playtest and thinking about wanting to playtest the two-weapon fighting rules were unsure about what to do.

I can understand their reasons behind minor spells and why they don't want them all to be automatically at-will and it makes sense, but, again, why not share that information in the playtest package?
I don't understand why these particular tidbits of information couldn't have been provided earlier, maybe even as part of the playtest package.

Sounds like they had some decent reasons for many of these changes they made, like removing the Two-Weapon speciality because it wasn't ready, but they didn't tell us this, so anyone looking at the playtest and thinking about wanting to playtest the two-weapon fighting rules were unsure about what to do.

I can understand their reasons behind minor spells and why they don't want them all to be automatically at-will and it makes sense, but, again, why not share that information in the playtest package?

It might calm things down a bit if they put some playtest intent into the packets.

guides
List of no-action attacks.
Dynamic vs Static Bonuses
Phalanx tactics and builds
Crivens! A Pictsies Guide Good
Power
s to intentionally miss with
Mr. Cellophane: How to be unnoticed
Way's to fire around corners
Crits: what their really worth
Retroactive bonus vs Static bonus.
Runepriest handbook & discussion thread
Holy Symbols to hang around your neck
Ways to Gain or Downgrade Actions
List of bonuses to saving throws
The Ghost with the Most (revenant handbook)
my builds
F-111 Interdictor Long (200+ squares) distance ally teleporter. With some warlord stuff. Broken in a plot way, not a power way.

Thought Switch Higher level build that grants upto 14 attacks on turn 1. If your allies play along, it's broken.

Elven Critters Crit op with crit generation. 5 of these will end anything. Broken.

King Fisher Optimized net user.  Moderate.

Boominator Fun catch-22 booming blade build with either strong or completely broken damage depending on your reading.

Very Distracting Warlock Lot's of dazing and major penalties to hit. Overpowered.

Pocket Protector Pixie Stealth Knight. Maximizing the defender's aura by being in an ally's/enemy's square.

Yakuza NinjIntimiAdin: Perma-stealth Striker that offers a little protection for ally's, and can intimidate bloodied enemies. Very Strong.

Chargeburgler with cheese Ranged attacks at the end of a charge along with perma-stealth. Solid, could be overpowered if tweaked.

Void Defender Defends giving a penalty to hit anyone but him, then removing himself from play. Can get somewhat broken in epic.

Scry and Die Attacking from around corners, while staying hidden. Moderate to broken, depending on the situation.

Skimisher Fly in, attack, and fly away. Also prevents enemies from coming close. Moderate to Broken depending on the enemy, but shouldn't make the game un-fun, as the rest of your team is at risk, and you have enough weaknesses.

Indestructible Simply won't die, even if you sleep though combat.  One of THE most abusive character in 4e.

Sir Robin (Bravely Charge Away) He automatically slows and pushes an enemy (5 squares), while charging away. Hard to rate it's power level, since it's terrain dependent.

Death's Gatekeeper A fun twist on a healic, making your party "unkillable". Overpowered to Broken, but shouldn't actually make the game un-fun, just TPK proof.

Death's Gatekeeper mk2, (Stealth Edition) Make your party "unkillable", and you hidden, while doing solid damage. Stronger then the above, but also easier for a DM to shut down. Broken, until your DM get's enough of it.

Domination and Death Dominate everything then kill them quickly. Only works @ 30, but is broken multiple ways.

Battlemind Mc Prone-Daze Protecting your allies by keeping enemies away. Quite powerful.

The Retaliator Getting hit deals more damage to the enemy then you receive yourself, and you can take plenty of hits. Heavy item dependency, Broken.

Dead Kobold Transit Teleports 98 squares a turn, and can bring someone along for the ride. Not fully built, so i can't judge the power.

Psilent Guardian Protect your allies, while being invisible. Overpowered, possibly broken.

Rune of Vengance Do lot's of damage while boosting your teams. Strong to slightly overpowered.

Charedent BarrageA charging ardent. Fine in a normal team, overpowered if there are 2 together, and easily broken in teams of 5.

Super Knight A tough, sticky, high damage knight. Strong.

Super Duper Knight Basically the same as super knight with items, making it far more broken.

Mora, the unkillable avenger Solid damage, while being neigh indestuctable. Overpowered, but not broken.

Swordburst Maximus At-Will Close Burst 3 that slide and prones. Protects allies with off actions. Strong, possibly over powered with the right party.

Another reason why class-based accuracy bonuses suck, however.

So the player might choose a weapon [A weapon/SOME weapons/a weapons GROUP] for his "proficiencies" in the class rather than getting them all in a lump at 1st level? That would certainly make PCs more distinct and help cut down on the frontloading issue. Also, Specialities or Backgrounds could include proficiencies for players wanting a quick PC or for players wanting to make custom BGs or SPs for their games.


The proficiency bonus isn't mathematically necessary.  It exists only to provide general thematic differences among classes.  A Fighter knows how to use a greatsword, but a Wizard doesn't (not without some character-specific training, at least). 

The removal of the proficiency bonus from the items and their categorized groupings in the class proficiency list and the addition of that bonus into the general class removes this function, doesn't do anything positive for the system math, and actively discourages against-type character creation.

If I pick a Fighter, get a high Int score, choose maneuvers that have nothing to do with weapons, pick up the Arcane Dabbler feat and get Shocking Grasp, I end up with a sucky character for no reason other than the Fighter's lack of a class accuracy bonus to magic attacks.  Literally nothing else in the class in any way is affected by my choice of using Shocking Grasp over a weapon.  Why?  Why deny this concept?  Particularly when the whole point of the Arcane Dabbler feat is to allow for people who aren't wizards to use arcane magic.
D&D Next = D&D: Quantum Edition
I don't understand why these particular tidbits of information couldn't have been provided earlier, maybe even as part of the playtest package.

Sounds like they had some decent reasons for many of these changes they made, like removing the Two-Weapon speciality because it wasn't ready, but they didn't tell us this, so anyone looking at the playtest and thinking about wanting to playtest the two-weapon fighting rules were unsure about what to do.

I can understand their reasons behind minor spells and why they don't want them all to be automatically at-will and it makes sense, but, again, why not share that information in the playtest package?

It might calm things down a bit if they put some playtest intent into the packets.

I agree. After reading the post, it gave me a lot more information on how to run the playtest session for this packet. If WotC is looking for feedback on specific things, letting us know in the packet would help us give them more directed feedback. Now my players will be able to make good choices to find the weak spots on those points.

In memory of wrecan and his Unearthed Wrecana.

I don't understand why these particular tidbits of information couldn't have been provided earlier, maybe even as part of the playtest package.

Sounds like they had some decent reasons for many of these changes they made, like removing the Two-Weapon speciality because it wasn't ready, but they didn't tell us this, so anyone looking at the playtest and thinking about wanting to playtest the two-weapon fighting rules were unsure about what to do.

I can understand their reasons behind minor spells and why they don't want them all to be automatically at-will and it makes sense, but, again, why not share that information in the playtest package?


It would be useful on our end, but the issue is more that they have limited time.  I can't fault them for it, particularly because there are those of us who read through this packet and recognized all of these points and didn't go Chicken Little on everything.
D&D Next = D&D: Quantum Edition
The proficiency bonus isn't mathematically necessary.  It exists only to provide general thematic differences among classes.  A Fighter knows how to use a greatsword, but a Wizard doesn't (not without some character-specific training, at least). 

The removal of the proficiency bonus from the items and their categorized groupings in the class proficiency list and the addition of that bonus into the general class removes this function, doesn't do anything positive for the system math, and actively discourages against-type character creation.

If I pick a Fighter, get a high Int score, choose maneuvers that have nothing to do with weapons, pick up the Arcane Dabbler feat and get Shocking Grasp, I end up with a sucky character for no reason other than the Fighter's lack of a class accuracy bonus to magic attacks.  Literally nothing else in the class in any way is affected by my choice of using Shocking Grasp over a weapon.  Why?  Why deny this concept?  Particularly when the whole point of the Arcane Dabbler feat is to allow for people who aren't wizards to use arcane magic.

I'm terrible with math, so I can't evaluate the math behind it all. Do you have a suggestion on how to fix the accuracy bonus? I'd love to give it a try.

In memory of wrecan and his Unearthed Wrecana.

... why not share that information in the playtest package?

It would be useful on our end, but the issue is more that they have limited time.  I can't fault them for it, particularly because there are those of us who read through this packet and recognized all of these points and didn't go Chicken Little on everything.

Not everyone can recognise what the designers are looking for just by reading through the packet. When I set up a playtest for games I'm on the dev team for, I always include what we're testing for so the playtesters don't go off on tangents and miss the points I'm looking for. The only times I don't is when the specific dev is running the playtest, and can direct the play to hit the points he needs.

In memory of wrecan and his Unearthed Wrecana.

Er, well, remove it entirely.

The problem with doing that is that the monster packet is rather broken at the moment, so nothing really will work all that well, even if you change nothing.  I think it was last week's Q&A where they mentioned that, maybe two weeks ago.  The gist of it though is that the "baseline" for the class bonus appears to be +2.  That's what the sortof-hybrid melee-magic classes like the Cleric and Sorcerer got.  Whereas the Fighter and Wizard got +3.  If you really want to test it with the least disruption to the system, set that accuracy bonus for +2 to all attacks for all classes.  But to emphasize just how arbitrary that is, you could also remove the bonus entirely and just drop all monster ACs by 2.
D&D Next = D&D: Quantum Edition
Er, well, remove it entirely.

The problem with doing that is that the monster packet is rather broken at the moment, so nothing really will work all that well, even if you change nothing.  I think it was last week's Q&A where they mentioned that, maybe two weeks ago.  The gist of it though is that the "baseline" for the class bonus appears to be +2.  That's what the sortof-hybrid melee-magic classes like the Cleric and Sorcerer got.  Whereas the Fighter and Wizard got +3.  If you really want to test it with the least disruption to the system, set that accuracy bonus for +2 to all attacks for all classes.  But to emphasize just how arbitrary that is, you could also remove the bonus entirely and just drop all monster ACs by 2.

Not quite.

I mean, if a wizard want's to hit something with a mace, he should have a worse time then the fighter and the cleric.  Ergo, you need to add a bonus to the fighter and cleric.

+0 for untrained, +2 for proficent, and +3 for mastery seem right to me.

guides
List of no-action attacks.
Dynamic vs Static Bonuses
Phalanx tactics and builds
Crivens! A Pictsies Guide Good
Power
s to intentionally miss with
Mr. Cellophane: How to be unnoticed
Way's to fire around corners
Crits: what their really worth
Retroactive bonus vs Static bonus.
Runepriest handbook & discussion thread
Holy Symbols to hang around your neck
Ways to Gain or Downgrade Actions
List of bonuses to saving throws
The Ghost with the Most (revenant handbook)
my builds
F-111 Interdictor Long (200+ squares) distance ally teleporter. With some warlord stuff. Broken in a plot way, not a power way.

Thought Switch Higher level build that grants upto 14 attacks on turn 1. If your allies play along, it's broken.

Elven Critters Crit op with crit generation. 5 of these will end anything. Broken.

King Fisher Optimized net user.  Moderate.

Boominator Fun catch-22 booming blade build with either strong or completely broken damage depending on your reading.

Very Distracting Warlock Lot's of dazing and major penalties to hit. Overpowered.

Pocket Protector Pixie Stealth Knight. Maximizing the defender's aura by being in an ally's/enemy's square.

Yakuza NinjIntimiAdin: Perma-stealth Striker that offers a little protection for ally's, and can intimidate bloodied enemies. Very Strong.

Chargeburgler with cheese Ranged attacks at the end of a charge along with perma-stealth. Solid, could be overpowered if tweaked.

Void Defender Defends giving a penalty to hit anyone but him, then removing himself from play. Can get somewhat broken in epic.

Scry and Die Attacking from around corners, while staying hidden. Moderate to broken, depending on the situation.

Skimisher Fly in, attack, and fly away. Also prevents enemies from coming close. Moderate to Broken depending on the enemy, but shouldn't make the game un-fun, as the rest of your team is at risk, and you have enough weaknesses.

Indestructible Simply won't die, even if you sleep though combat.  One of THE most abusive character in 4e.

Sir Robin (Bravely Charge Away) He automatically slows and pushes an enemy (5 squares), while charging away. Hard to rate it's power level, since it's terrain dependent.

Death's Gatekeeper A fun twist on a healic, making your party "unkillable". Overpowered to Broken, but shouldn't actually make the game un-fun, just TPK proof.

Death's Gatekeeper mk2, (Stealth Edition) Make your party "unkillable", and you hidden, while doing solid damage. Stronger then the above, but also easier for a DM to shut down. Broken, until your DM get's enough of it.

Domination and Death Dominate everything then kill them quickly. Only works @ 30, but is broken multiple ways.

Battlemind Mc Prone-Daze Protecting your allies by keeping enemies away. Quite powerful.

The Retaliator Getting hit deals more damage to the enemy then you receive yourself, and you can take plenty of hits. Heavy item dependency, Broken.

Dead Kobold Transit Teleports 98 squares a turn, and can bring someone along for the ride. Not fully built, so i can't judge the power.

Psilent Guardian Protect your allies, while being invisible. Overpowered, possibly broken.

Rune of Vengance Do lot's of damage while boosting your teams. Strong to slightly overpowered.

Charedent BarrageA charging ardent. Fine in a normal team, overpowered if there are 2 together, and easily broken in teams of 5.

Super Knight A tough, sticky, high damage knight. Strong.

Super Duper Knight Basically the same as super knight with items, making it far more broken.

Mora, the unkillable avenger Solid damage, while being neigh indestuctable. Overpowered, but not broken.

Swordburst Maximus At-Will Close Burst 3 that slide and prones. Protects allies with off actions. Strong, possibly over powered with the right party.

He should have a worse time.  Unless, of course, he spent a feat allowing him to be better at it.

Which is what Arcane Dabbler should do. 

That it doesn't is my exact concern, but I place the blame more on the class bonus structure than on the feat itself.
D&D Next = D&D: Quantum Edition
I don't understand why these particular tidbits of information couldn't have been provided earlier, maybe even as part of the playtest package.

Sounds like they had some decent reasons for many of these changes they made, like removing the Two-Weapon speciality because it wasn't ready, but they didn't tell us this, so anyone looking at the playtest and thinking about wanting to playtest the two-weapon fighting rules were unsure about what to do.

I can understand their reasons behind minor spells and why they don't want them all to be automatically at-will and it makes sense, but, again, why not share that information in the playtest package?




Why couldn't you easily figure it out on your own?  I certainly did.  Maybe its because I work in QA and understand how testing stuff actually works.  I didn't figure out the exact reasons for everything but I at least figured out okay this isn't completely covered yet, this is obviously an alpha test to see if these things work at all not to see if they are correctly executed in their entirety.  I just knew by looking at it that the maneuver lists would change and expand at a later date.  I knew some kind of dual wielding builds would be available either in classes or in specialties.  It would be a waste of the devs time to sit there and tell people where the system isn't yet finished, and what the future of that area looks like, because, holy crap, this is an unfinished alpha test.    They would have to do that for every single packet they release which would cost a ton of money and slow down the process as a whole.
It would be useful on our end, but the issue is more that they have limited time.  I can't fault them for it, particularly because there are those of us who read through this packet and recognized all of these points and didn't go Chicken Little on everything.


But it matters immensely for some things and the descriptions don't even need to be especially long. The removal of the Two-Weapon fighting speciality is an excellent case in point. How hard is it to write "removed because it was not ready for this playtest package"? The designers certainly found time to write an answer here and if they spent even a minute reading the threads that are dedicated to that issue or a minute reading comments people will probably make on the surveys over this issue, then they are ultimately wasting their own time by not indicating things like that.

I'm not looking for a two page description of why they abandonned the Rogue from playtest package 2 (although if they want to provide that, then sure, I'll read it), but a single sentence shouldn't be that hard.
Did you really have to edit out my ?

D&D Next = D&D: Quantum Edition
Another reason why class-based accuracy bonuses suck, however.

So the player might choose a weapon [A weapon/SOME weapons/a weapons GROUP] for his "proficiencies" in the class rather than getting them all in a lump at 1st level? That would certainly make PCs more distinct and help cut down on the frontloading issue. Also, Specialities or Backgrounds could include proficiencies for players wanting a quick PC or for players wanting to make custom BGs or SPs for their games.


The proficiency bonus isn't mathematically necessary.  It exists only to provide general thematic differences among classes.  A Fighter knows how to use a greatsword, but a Wizard doesn't (not without some character-specific training, at least). 

The removal of the proficiency bonus from the items and their categorized groupings in the class proficiency list and the addition of that bonus into the general class removes this function, doesn't do anything positive for the system math, and actively discourages against-type character creation.

If I pick a Fighter, get a high Int score, choose maneuvers that have nothing to do with weapons, pick up the Arcane Dabbler feat and get Shocking Grasp, I end up with a sucky character for no reason other than the Fighter's lack of a class accuracy bonus to magic attacks.  Literally nothing else in the class in any way is affected by my choice of using Shocking Grasp over a weapon.  Why?  Why deny this concept?  Particularly when the whole point of the Arcane Dabbler feat is to allow for people who aren't wizards to use arcane magic.




what is the concept you are going for with that build?  like what character are you trying to build?

While the arcane initiate feat, when used by a non wizard, is there to allow non-wizards to use magic it is not there for non-wizards to rely on magic.  Essentially the arcane dabbler is there to give you a utility not an attack. 
Gish, basically.  The same thing that the initial Sorcerer seemed trying to do, just with different mechanical structure.  Heavy armor, shielded defendery-type, but using magic instead of weapons.  The point was less to manifest a specific concept, but rather to explore around the edges of character design to find the rough spots.

And if Arcane Dabbler is there to give you utility, why could you use it to gain attacks?
D&D Next = D&D: Quantum Edition