4 months ago ::
Feb 01, 2013 - 10:14AM
Nov 19, 2012
My aforementioned buddy is DMing our Next campaign. We're starting from scratch and he asked me to rework the damage dice for the rogue. I decided I would modify the rogue talents to more accurately reflect play balance and style, while removing the rogue's ability to deal consistent damage and increasing their peak damage. This is a work in progress, but reflects what I think is the best direction for the class.
Rogue Schemes Dice
As the Rogue increases in level, it receives scheme dice that increase its unique abilities in combat. These dice are applied to the rogue's chosen talent.
When a creature makes a ranged attack, you can roll your scheme dice and add the highest number to a reflex save to dodge the attack. This skill can also be used against magic that targets you indirectly, such as a nearby exploding fireball. Magic that targets you directly and melee attacks cannot be avoided with this skill.
When you make a melee or ranged attack against a creature that is not aware of your presence and within your range of movement, you can try to assassinate that target provided you do not have disadvantage and give up your advantage on the target.
The assassination is successful if your scheme dice roll plus your choice of strength or dexterity modifier is equal to or greater than three times the target's encounter level. On a successful hit, the target takes three times the damage roll after modifiers. On a critical hit, the target takes three times the total critical damage.
When attempting an assassination, you make yourself visible to all enemies within 30 feet provided there is enough light for them to see you. After a successful assassination attempt, you will be unable to hide on your next turn.
Bob and Weave
When an attacker misses with a melee attack, you can use a reaction to roll your scheme dice and deal damage to targets within reach of you and the attacker. Only one die can be applied to each target.
After applying poison to your weapon, you deal additional damage equal to your highest scheme dice roll plus your wisdom or dexterity modifier. The poison must be reapplied after each use and takes a full turn to apply carefully.
To apply poison hastily in one standard action, you must make a DC15 dexterity save. Failing this save deals damage to the rogue equal to their highest scheme dice roll.
When a creature makes a melee, grapple, or touch attack against you, you can roll your scheme dice and add the highest number to a reflex save to dodge the attack. This can only be done once per round.
When you have advantage on your target and do not receive disadvantage from other enemies, you can roll your scheme dice and add your highest roll plus either your strength or dexterity modifier to the attack's damage.
4 months ago ::
Feb 01, 2013 - 11:43AM
Feb 26, 2010
I never have a problem with engaging in discussions regarding ideas for new rules =). I have a few questions for you, if you'll indulge me.
With regards to Sneak Attack and Poisoner, how can a rogue, at higher levels, who chose an ability intended to only do additional damage, feel like they are meaningfully contributing to the combat when they are doing under a third, or even a fourth, of the damage of the other martial classes, and only under specific conditions? It doesn't have to be damage rogues do, but perhaps consider adding in other effects? Like letting Sneak Attack apply a penalty to the target for a number of rounds (like, whatever dice you don't give up to roll for the damage, you can use to increase the effect)? Or letting Poisoner let the rogue apply a poison quickly, whereas normally they would have to take an action to apply it - the limitation being that they are using a limited resource (Poison) to increase their damage?
I like the change to Artful Dodger, but how does that affect abilities such as Uncanny Dodge and Evasion, which specifically mention Dexterity saving throws against effects (including spells like fireball)?
Bob and Weave is interesting. Kinda like a whirlwind attack. Would you be able to apply bonuses to it, such as from an ability modifier?
Assassinate seems a bit odd. I'm not sure why they would immediately be noticed. If a rogue is stealthy enough then they should be able to do it and not be noticed. However, you could easily put in the qualifier that they have to roll a Dexterity check (on which they can use the Stealth skill) as part of the attack to determine if anyone noticed, and that they cannot use Assassinate again for a number of rounds.
Like others have said, I don't believe they will do away with it. That's not to say I don't disagree with some aspects of MDD - the damage can get a little out-of-hand across all martial classes, and refreshing every turn feels wrong to me, but that's only my opinion.
I don't think they've lost sight of how to make RPGs either, I think they have just shifted how they view them. It's also an entirely new generation of people playing these games, and Wizards, as a business, probably has to appeal to MMO markets in order to stay competitive (that's my guess, anyway). 4e is a good example of that shift, which included nothing but Combats and Skill Challenges (i.e. pure mechanics). Though, I did like some of the things they did as a system, and my DMs were good enough to dial back the "rollplay" of it.
I just think it's important to remember that things are going to change, and while I have played MMO's, I do not expect to be "uber" at level 1. I expect to be awful, barely competent, and struggling. But it's that struggle that makes the "uberness" (=P) of later levels all the sweeter, when I can feel like a hero.
Still, not everyone is going to have the same views on it. As is, Wizards should release the system that will get them the largest consumer base, but at the same time offer the ability to homebrew your own mechanics or rules for greater flexibility.
If these are the rules you want to use for your game, I say go for it. Just remember too that this is a playtest, and they need us to also test the rules they have set forth to know what changes need to be made. If I may make a humble suggestion: play a few sessions at various level ranges with the RAW, and then play a few sessions at the same level ranges with the rules you've come up with here. That kind of feedback will be far more valuable, I think. I would also be interested to see how it went =).