Some suggested new rules

Suggested New Rules (or House Rules) based on things that came up during play...

1) Option to use Dexterity for Climb rolls if in light armour and unencumbered

2) Option to have spellcasting in 5 feet of an active enemy to require a Wisdom roll to Concentrate or don't cast spell or use slot

3) Option to have bows and crossbows in 5 feet of an active enemy require a Wisdom roll to Concentrate or don't manage to get a shot off

4) Option to give Disadvantage if shooting through friend or enemies

5) Option for a combatant to give themselves disadvantage ( only if they don't already have it ) in order to enter a "stance" where they get Opportunity Attacks from any enemy movement within their melee range, not just from movement away. Alternatively to be able to Ready an attack with disadvantage, triggered by attempted enemy movement that prevents movement if it hits.

I think you hit on a couple of important points here....

Casting or using a ranged weapon when adjacent to a foe should incur some sort of penalty. What really affects this is the initiative order of battle. If you roll high and go first then you should be able to get your spell or shot off, but incur some sort of penalty on any attacks against you later in the round. While the actions/turns go off in order, if we're envisioning a 6 second block of time then everything is happening more or less at the same time. 

Sure, stand there next to the Troll and cast 'Silence' on the enemy Wizard 20 feet away but the troll is going to either attack with advantage or you're going to be considered to have a much lower AC (flat footed from another system).

If the opponent goes before you in initiative order, and attacks you - the spell or shot is disrupted and you miss your turn... This would mean that anyone who's trying to shoot or cast a spell while 'engaged' by an enemy (within 5 feet and can attack - not unconscious or paralyzed etc) must announce that they're shooting or casting so that actions within the round take that into account. (I'd even like this to apply to other actions like help or hinder or dodge... rather than have them carry through to the next round, just have everyone announce what they're doing in a given round and then evaluate the results in initiative order. That way if two people are attacking the same target, and the first player's attack drops the foe the second player can't just switch to another target.)


The second point is shooting through occupied squares or into melee. When I DM, I always tell the player "Fine, go ahead, but if you roll 5 or less then you're at risk of hitting the other PC" - either in the intervening space or involved in the melee. Again - I don't see the round as each player character/opponent frozen in place while the other players/opponents take their turn. Everyone is moving at the same time, it's just that one PC moves a instant quicker....

Imagine the classic 'Old West' gunfight... It didn't go...
Person one draws and fires their weapon... roll to hit... 
Person two draws and fires their weapon... roll to hit...

It was more like Person one and two are both drawing and firing their weapons - roll initiative - person two wins - evaluate their shot first... can person one still fire? At a penalty because they were wounded? Ok roll.      
Suggested New Rules (or House Rules) based on things that came up during play...
1) Option to use Dexterity for Climb rolls if in light armour and unencumbered

Originally, they've said any task can be done with any Ability Score the DM chooses, but the last two packets have leaned against that (not saying you can't, but not saying you can either). As a DM, I would use Str or Dex depending on the type of climb.

2) Option to have spellcasting in 5 feet of an active enemy to require a Wisdom roll to Concentrate or don't cast spell or use slot


I agree there should be something to limit spellcasting in melee. I could see a roll of some kind to cast a spell in combat. If you fail the roll, you don't cast the spell or spend the slot, just lose your action.

3) Option to have bows and crossbows in 5 feet of an active enemy require a Wisdom roll to Concentrate or don't manage to get a shot off


I just like Disadvantage. It's simple and effective.

4) Option to give Disadvantage if shooting through friend or enemies


See rules for Cover. Allies can count as cover if the DM chooses.

5) Option for a combatant to give themselves disadvantage ( only if they don't already have it ) in order to enter a "stance" where they get Opportunity Attacks from any enemy movement within their melee range, not just from movement away. Alternatively to be able to Ready an attack with disadvantage, triggered by attempted enemy movement that prevents movement if it hits.


I would rather see this done as Class Features or Feats.
Why don't you just have spellcasting in melee trigger OAs, and if it hits the caster has to make a concentration save to avoid wasting their action? Then you could specify certain spells like Thunderwave and Cone of Cold are exempt from that rule (like how close blasts don't provoke in 4e).

I like the disadvantage on ranged weapons in melee thing, though.
1) Option to use Dexterity for Climb rolls if in light armour and unencumbered

The DM is always free to make this call.


2) Option to have spellcasting in 5 feet of an active enemy to require a Wisdom roll to Concentrate or don't cast spell or use slot

3) Option to have bows and crossbows in 5 feet of an active enemy require a Wisdom roll to Concentrate or don't manage to get a shot
Given that it requires an action to disengage from an adjacent enemy, these options are extremely punitive. All an enemy has to do is engage ranged attackers in order to effectively neutralize them. You're forced to suffer the consequence of taking an offensive action, or disengage, at which point the enemy just re-engages you next round.

It's a no-win scenario that is far too easy to impose.
 

4) Option to give Disadvantage if shooting through friend or enemies

All creatures provide cover, so allies standing between you and your quarry provide cover.
 

5) Option for a combatant to give themselves disadvantage ( only if they don't already have it ) in order to enter a "stance" where they get Opportunity Attacks from any enemy movement within their melee range, not just from movement away. Alternatively to be able to Ready an attack with disadvantage, triggered by attempted enemy movement that prevents movement if it hits.

Sounds like a cool 'lock down' option.

Danny

1) Option to use Dexterity for Climb rolls if in light armour and unencumbered

The DM is always free to make this call.


2) Option to have spellcasting in 5 feet of an active enemy to require a Wisdom roll to Concentrate or don't cast spell or use slot

3) Option to have bows and crossbows in 5 feet of an active enemy require a Wisdom roll to Concentrate or don't manage to get a shot
Given that it requires an action to disengage from an adjacent enemy, these options are extremely punitive. All an enemy has to do is engage ranged attackers in order to effectively neutralize them. You're forced to suffer the consequence of taking an offensive action, or disengage, at which point the enemy just re-engages you next round.

It's a no-win scenario that is far too easy to impose.
 

4) Option to give Disadvantage if shooting through friend or enemies

All creatures provide cover, so allies standing between you and your quarry provide cover.
 

5) Option for a combatant to give themselves disadvantage ( only if they don't already have it ) in order to enter a "stance" where they get Opportunity Attacks from any enemy movement within their melee range, not just from movement away. Alternatively to be able to Ready an attack with disadvantage, triggered by attempted enemy movement that prevents movement if it hits.

Sounds like a cool 'lock down' option.

Not sure I agree with you about it being too punitive on Ranged specialists. It is exactly the same in reverse for melee specialists when monsters stay away from them. I just feel it is fairer on the melee guys that they will shine in melee and the ranged guys won't. 

I was hoping to offer some meaningful tactical options without getting as complex as 4e. 
Not sure I agree with you about it being too punitive on Ranged specialists. It is exactly the same in reverse for melee specialists when monsters stay away from them. I just feel it is fairer on the melee guys that they will shine in melee and the ranged guys won't. 

I was hoping to offer some meaningful tactical options without getting as complex as 4e. 

The key to screwing with ranged attackers is to stay in between them and their quarry. Since all creatures grant cover, you impose a negative penalty to their attacks whenever they're trying to target something on the opposite side of you—so stay in the way.

Since stowing a ranged weapon and moving within your reach can be combined with drawing a melee weapon and attacking, there's really no reason to add rules that impugn upon ranged attacks because they can just switch weapons and attack either way.

As someone who loves ranged weapons, I absolutely adore the rules as they stand. I always hated my concept being gimped by the incredibly simple act of the enemy moving adjacent to me.

I definitely think there's room for a fighter that disallows movement within their reach, though.

Danny


Suggested New Rules (or House Rules) based on things that came up during play...

1) Option to use Dexterity for Climb rolls if in light armour and unencumbered


Sounds good to me, but like said previously, DM could rule this.
 
 

2) Option to have spellcasting in 5 feet of an active enemy to require a Wisdom roll to Concentrate or don't cast spell or use slot



I like the current rule that casting (which is just a word and a gesture) is easy enough to do. (HtP 21, Spell Components). I think a magic user is sufficiently trained in battle casting to be able to say "expeliamus" or whatever and point. That's why we prepare spells ahead of time. This is also balanced by HtP 23, Concentration. 
 
 

3) Option to have bows and crossbows in 5 feet of an active enemy require a Wisdom roll to Concentrate or don't manage to get a shot off


I don't like this. Again, we are playing trained warriors. These rolls just slow down the game and make it less fun.
 
 

4) Option to give Disadvantage if shooting through friend or enemies


Already "covered", if you'll excuse the pun, by the Cover and Unseen target rules on HtP 15, and the Precise Shot feat on 11.

 

5) Option for a combatant to give themselves disadvantage ( only if they don't already have it ) in order to enter a "stance" where they get Opportunity Attacks from any enemy movement within their melee range, not just from movement away. Alternatively to be able to Ready an attack with disadvantage, triggered by attempted enemy movement that prevents movement if it hits.




You can just use the existing "Ready an Action" WITHOUT disadvantage if someone moves next to you--read HtP 14. It specifically says that movement can be a trigger and attacking as the action. You could also use knock down or grapple to stop their movement.
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