Ramzour's Six Ability Save System

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I love most things about 5e, but I was really disappointed to see that the saving throws are still not distributed very well (at least in the spells). Therefore, I am bringing back a houserule that I implemented to great success during the playtest. This house rule makes the six Ability Saves make more distinct.

 

If you read through "Using Each Ability" (Basic Rules, Chap 7, pg 59), you'll see definitions for each of the six ability scores. By directly following these definitions, we can easily extrapolate which kinds of effects belong under which ability score. The following are my new definitions for saving throws.

 

(Note: If a spell is listed in bold, it means the saving throw for the spell changed to reflect my new definitions.)

 

 

Ramzour's Six Ability Save System

 

Strength: to resist any effect that forcefully moves, restrains, or paralyzes you.
  • Spells: Hold PersonImprisonmentLevitate (against an unwilling creature); Thunderwave; Web
  • Monsters with effects that cause physical paralysis (Carrion Crawler, Ghoul, etc.)
  • Note: Strong creatures are hard to physically control! You don't cast Hold Person on an Ogre because it's probably too strong to be held by your magic. The invisible magical restraints of the spell are easily overcome by the Ogre's brute strength. If, however, you want to take advantage of an Ogre's weaknesses, then you should target their poor mental saves by casting Illusion, Fear, or Charm spells!!!!!!! 
  • Potential Issue: Failing your STR save vs Hold Person gives you the Paralyzed Condition, which means you automatically fail STR and DEX saving throws. Now, the Hold Person spell also says that you can attempt a new saving throw at the end of each of your turns. This has the unfortunate side effect that means you can never re-save to end the spell early because you would automatically fail your Strength Save. This problem doesn't exist in the RAW because the spell calls for a WIS save, not my proposed STR save. How do we solve this? Solution: The most simple solution is to say that you can attempt to make a new STR save to end the spell effect early, but this STR save does not automatically fail from your Paralyzed Condition. This is a perfect example of Specific Beats General. I know it seems like a clunky fix, but that's what happens when you try to modify an existing system. You might want to use this same "fix" when an effect would give you the Stunned Condition as well.

 

Dexterity: to avoid area effects; to dodge projectiles or rays; to maintain your balance.
  • avoiding ball bearings, caltrops, hunting trap
  • Remain on mount when an effect forces the mount to move against its will
  • Spells: Blade Barrier; Burning Hands; Chain Lightning; Delayed Blast Fireball; Disintegrate; Earthquake (maintain balance and avoid holes); Faerie Fire; Fireball; Firestorm; Flame Strike; Flaming Sphere; Guardian of Faith; Light; Lightning Bolt; Meteor Swarm; Sacred Flame; Wall of Stone

 

Constitution: to resist effects that target your Health or Body; to resist Cold effects; to maintain your Concentration.
  • Poison, Disease, Necrotic or Radiant damage, Energy Drain
  • Forced March
  • Resist starvation or thirst
  • Recuperate during Downtime
  • Maintain your Concentration on a spell when you take damage
  • Spells: Cone of Cold; Finger of Death; Harm; Holy Aura; Ice StormSpirit Guardian; Sunburst; 

 

Intelligence: to see through illusions; to avoid being tricked or confused.
  • Spells: Power Word Stun; all Illusion spells now require making an Intelligence Saving Throw instead of making an Intelligence (Investigation) check to disbelieve.

 

Wisdom: to resist Fear effects; to resist Psychic damage; 
  • Turn Undead
  • Spells: Dream; Sanctuary; Fear

 

Charisma: to resist Charms, Enchantments, and Compulsions. Also to stay connected to your Plane.
  • Spells: Charm PersonCommandDominate MonsterDominate PersonMass SuggestionOtto's Irresistible Dance; Suggestion

 

 

Implications of these changes to saving throws:

  • The saving throws are now more spread out over the six ability scores
  • Effects that call for a saving throw now better follow the definitions of each ability score
  • Wisdom isn't the generic catch-all for "mental things"
  • Strength and Constitution are finally differentiated
  • There are no "bad saving throws" anymore!!!! Each type of Saving Throw has a unique niche in the game mechanics.
  • CHARISMA IS NO LONGER A LEGITIMATE DUMP SCORE!!! EVEN FOR COMBAT!!!! VICTORY!!!!
  • Clerics are good at resisting Fear and Charm effects (but not necessarily Illusions)
  • Fighters are actually good at resisting Stuns, Restraints, Paralysis, Poison, Energy Drain, Cold, and other endurance targetting effects. This makes a Fighter HARD to CC with physical effects...just like it should be!
  • Rogues are good at dodging things and hard to be tricked by illusions! Makes perfect sense to me.
  • Wizards are good at resisting tricks, Illusions, and Fear (but not necessarily charms)

 

Hope you like my changes!

Please introduce yourself to the new D&D 5e forums in this very friendly thread started by Pukunui!

 

My improvements to the Ranger: A Better Beast Master Ranger.

 

Make 5e Saving Throws better using Ramzour's Six Ability Save System!

 

Lost Mine of Phandelver: || Problems and Ideas with the adventure ||  Finding the Ghost of Neverwinter Wood ||

Giving classes iconic abilities that don't break the game: Ramzour's Class Defining Ability system.

Rules for a simple non-XP based leveling up system, using the Proficiency Bonus

 

Looks good to me!

Very similar to what I've done, although I didn't map things out the same way.  I did the same thing you did with Strength saves.  Because illusions fool the senses, I have Wisdom (as perception/insight) more associated with discerning illusions (though Int can still play a role in this) and recognizing deception (Charm Person and Suggestion).  I have Charisma (as force of will) resisting fear; I don't really see Wisdom doing that.  Other than that, along the same lines.

 

The way the classes work out in your break-down does make sense though.  I may have to reconsider my own work in this light.

"I want 'punch magic in the face' to be a maneuver." -- wrecan

Yeah, this should have been like this... Oh well, at least we can still hope as for the PHB for other spells, right?

All dragonborn psions, unite!

Pretty much what I assumed they would have been, and how I will houserule it personally.

The dry cake is a silent killer - Mike Mearls

You do come up with some very useful houserules, Ramzour.  This is something I'll probably adapt myself for my games.

 

I almost wish we didn't disagree on so much, so often.

I really like this.

Disclaimer: Wizards of the Coast is not responsible for the consequences of splitting up the party, sticking appendages in the mouth of a leering green devil face, accepting a dinner invitation from bugbears, storming the feast hall of a hill giant steading, angering a dragon of any variety, or saying yes when the DM asks, "Are you really sure?"

 

IMAGE(http://www.nodiatis.com/pub/13.jpg)

This is much closer to what I was hoping to see, and I will likely use your work as a guideline in determining saves in my game.  Thanks Ramzour.

I will be using this. Quick question though: would hold person count as forceful paralysis? It isn't an evocation spell or transmutation spell. It doesn't summon energy that binds a person or turn the air around them into something solid. It is an enchantment spell (like Charm). As such, shouldn't it be resisted by Charisma in your schematic? 

 
 

When they first talked about 6 saves in the playtest i wonderd for a while if they should use saves more like they curently did adn do.

 

For example if a creature wants to ush you out ofthe way.

it is a oposed strength check in the curent rules.

But I could imagine a system where the defending side of that oposed roll would use a strength save instead of just a strengt check i prevent being pushed.

 

 

+1 - Excellent work, Ramzour. Thanks for taking the time to share!

  For me the main problem with the save system is the all or nothing aspect of it.  You see this with CC and SoD effects and it causes a lot of problems on both the PC and NPC side.

 

  I'd rather the save system left alone or be made simpler, rather than more complicated, unless being made more complicated adresses the all-or-nothing problem.

 

  For simpler you could break it into 2 saves, mental and physical, using the median value of the 3 mental and 3 physical stats.  Leave it to DM option or specific effect to target a specific attribute.

 

  With your system there can be a lot of overlap for instance.  Is an illusion of a dragon in the distance a fear effect or an illusion?  Is a paralyzing poison a poison or a paralyze effect?  Is a spell that summons ropes a dodge or a restrain?  How is your mind being pummeled by psychic damage different than it being forcibly changed with charm and compulsion?  How are neurons being shoved around for compulsion different than a raw fear effect that also directly shoves neurons around?

 

  3E picked REF, CON and WILL to break things down for dodging, withstanding and... stuff in your head.  Maybe picking a single stat to represent them wasn't the best, but overall the system did okay to represent the various things that could be inflicted on a PC.

@mikemearls don't quite understand the difference

I don't make the rules, I just think them up and write them down. - Eric Cartman

Enough chitchat!  Time is candy! - Pinky Pie

This is a good idea, and they should have done it.

 

I'll take the lazy DM way out, however...Just re-institute a fort/ref/will system like 4e. Then, I don't have to think too much about spells, more PHB spells, splat book spells, and all the non-PC wierd monster abilities we'll be seeing in the MM(s).

 

Now if I can mitigate all the encounter/daily caster damage on a miss easily, I'll be happy.

I don't want to be an edition warrior. I think there was something good and something bad in all the editions I played. I do, however, believe that the game has gotten better over the years (and decades). I hope this holds true into the future.

Peace.

 

IMAGE(http://www.nodiatis.com/pub/21.jpg)

Rays are inconsistent in the Basic D&D spell list. Disintegrate is a dex save but Ray of Frost is a ranged spell attack. Disintegrate should be a ranged spell attack and a Consitution save if it hits.

 

Hold Person seems more like a mental paralysis than something restricting your movements physically.

 

I agree with the connection between Wisdom and psychic damage. I feel like Wisdom should be used when the psyche/soul is attacked too. With that in mind I would make a case for most things causing radiant damage to use Wisdom, since it "overloads the spirit with power". For example, spells such as Guardian of Faith and Sacred Flame.

 

Seems a bit inconsistent that spells that cause cold damage only would target Constitution. Why not lightning also? If the damage done by one area of effect spell that does straight energy damage (fire, lightning) can be lessened by dodging out of the way, why couldn't it help with another (cold).

 

I don't know if any spell that has some influence over someone's actions should be Charisma. Maybe just spells that force someone to perform an action, like Command and Dominate spells. Charm/Suggestion spells seem a better fit with Wisdom, since they do allow you to make your own decisions, even if they are directed in some way.

 

Otherwise all the OP's suggestions make sense to me.

darius wrote:

Rays are inconsistent in the Basic D&D spell list. Disintegrate is a dex save but Ray of Frost is a ranged spell attack. Disintegrate should be a ranged spell attack and a Consitution save if it hits.

Disintegrate is a save instead of an attack roll so that such a huge pool of damage dice is not able to double on a critical hit.

 

Also, if it were an attack there absolutely shouldn't be a save to follow after because that - at best - reduces the chance the spell will work by half. (i.e. 1 roll at 50% chance is 50%, 2 rolls at 50% chance each is 25% - and suddenly not at all worth even trying in comparison to other options).

ATTENTION:  If while reading my post you find yourself thinking "Either this guy is being sarcastic, or he is an idiot," do please assume that I am an idiot. It makes reading your replies more entertaining. If, however, you find yourself hoping that I am not being even remotely serious then you are very likely correct as I find irreverence and being ridiculous to be relaxing.

If we're having a saving throw system instead of defenses, i'd rather just go with a combo of 3e and 4e:

 

3 Saves: Reflex (Dex or Int), Fortitude (Con or Str), Willpower (Wis or Cha)

 

Simpler, less people with a +0 save for their whole career and super easy to adapt to all existing spells and attacks.

To me, your system is clearly superior to the system in the starter set. Thanks for that, Ramzour.

 

"What is the sort of thing that I do care about is a failure to seriously evaluate what does and doesn't work in favor of a sort of cargo cult posturing. And yes, it's painful to read design notes columns that are all just "So D&D 3.5 sort of had these problems. We know people have some issues with them. What a puzzler! But we think we have a solution in the form of X", where X is sort of a half-baked version of an idea that 4e executed perfectly well and which worked fine." - Lesp

Thanks everyone for your support! I really want to play 5e as close to RAW as possible but the saving throws are one aspect that really feel like a let down to me. I guess the nice thing is that the system is fairly easy to house rule. Once you understand the defintions for the different saves, it's pretty simple to modify the RAW saves to these new ones. 

 

Like I said in my OP, I tried this method out during the playtest and it worked fantastically. Here's hoping the devs are listening....

Please introduce yourself to the new D&D 5e forums in this very friendly thread started by Pukunui!

 

My improvements to the Ranger: A Better Beast Master Ranger.

 

Make 5e Saving Throws better using Ramzour's Six Ability Save System!

 

Lost Mine of Phandelver: || Problems and Ideas with the adventure ||  Finding the Ghost of Neverwinter Wood ||

Giving classes iconic abilities that don't break the game: Ramzour's Class Defining Ability system.

Rules for a simple non-XP based leveling up system, using the Proficiency Bonus

 

souldoubt wrote:

Very similar to what I've done, although I didn't map things out the same way.  I did the same thing you did with Strength saves.  Because illusions fool the senses, I have Wisdom (as perception/insight) more associated with discerning illusions (though Int can still play a role in this) and recognizing deception (Charm Person and Suggestion).  I have Charisma (as force of will) resisting fear; I don't really see Wisdom doing that.  Other than that, along the same lines.

 

The way the classes work out in your break-down does make sense though.  I may have to reconsider my own work in this light.

 

Well, you're right. You could easily map the mental saves how you did. To me, it wasn't so much as which way is the right way but more about just picking a direction and sticking with it. For instance, I saw Charisma as your force of self and any effect that attempts to hijack that (e.g. Charm Person) is a Charisma Battle. Likewise, clever creatures (high Int) are probably more likely to not be fooled by illusions. Wisdom is your mental toughness, which is why it resists Fear effects.

 

But if you can justify them in another way that makes sense (and I think your definitions could do that), then that's fine. As long as you're consistent, I don't think it matters.

Please introduce yourself to the new D&D 5e forums in this very friendly thread started by Pukunui!

 

My improvements to the Ranger: A Better Beast Master Ranger.

 

Make 5e Saving Throws better using Ramzour's Six Ability Save System!

 

Lost Mine of Phandelver: || Problems and Ideas with the adventure ||  Finding the Ghost of Neverwinter Wood ||

Giving classes iconic abilities that don't break the game: Ramzour's Class Defining Ability system.

Rules for a simple non-XP based leveling up system, using the Proficiency Bonus

 

LupusRegalis wrote:

You do come up with some very useful houserules, Ramzour.  This is something I'll probably adapt myself for my games.

 

I almost wish we didn't disagree on so much, so often.

Thanks! And, maybe we don't have to disagree so much...or at least maybe we could disagree in a nicer way, lol.

Please introduce yourself to the new D&D 5e forums in this very friendly thread started by Pukunui!

 

My improvements to the Ranger: A Better Beast Master Ranger.

 

Make 5e Saving Throws better using Ramzour's Six Ability Save System!

 

Lost Mine of Phandelver: || Problems and Ideas with the adventure ||  Finding the Ghost of Neverwinter Wood ||

Giving classes iconic abilities that don't break the game: Ramzour's Class Defining Ability system.

Rules for a simple non-XP based leveling up system, using the Proficiency Bonus

 

Cyber-Dave wrote:
I will be using this. Quick question though: would hold person count as forceful paralysis? It isn't an evocation spell or transmutation spell. It doesn't summon energy that binds a person or turn the air around them into something solid. It is an enchantment spell (like Charm). As such, shouldn't it be resisted by Charisma in your schematic? 

You're right, you could swing it that way if you wanted to. For the system I designed, though, I wanted to break up the saves into somewhat equal groups, if possible. Charisma was already a little heavy due to Charms/Enchantments, so I thought I could justify Strength as resisting paralysis. Here is my reasoning:

 

The Hold Person spell summons forceful magical restraints around the creature. It's a physical effect, not a mental one. As such, a creature suffering under its effects can resist the magical restraints with their Strength. Using the example I gave in the OP, the Ogre is strong as hell and should be hard to physically stop, even with magic. The idea that a Hold Person spell is a mental paralysis sounds like cheating to me. "Oh, yeah, I physically stop him because I trick his brain into not being able to move his limbs....yeah, that's what happens." I just don't buy it.

 

But it's very easy to flavor the Hold Person spell as magical restraints. Heck, they can even be visible! Just imagine how it would be done in the movies! The monster charges the Wizard with a hungry and terrible look in its eyes. Thinking quickly, the Wizard casts Hold Person on the monster. Bands on black, snake-like smoke slither out from the Wizard's staff and wrap themselves around the target. The creature struggles against them, battling its physical strength against the Wizard's magic (i.e. Spell Casting Ability). The monster manages to get one arm free and tries to hack away at the magical restraints with its sword, but his sword is ineffective against it! Alas, the Wizard's control over his magic is too powerful for the creature and it succumbs to the effect. The black bands of magic encircle him like a giant constrictor snake and squeeze him tight. The creature is immobile. That was all story and flavor. Mechanically? He failed his Strength save. 

 

Try that trick against an Ogre though? Not gonna happen. The Wizard's magic are no match for the raw, physical power of the Ogre. The bands of magic attempt to restrain the Ogre but it flexes its arms and legs, shattering the magic's effect. Mechanically? The Ogre made his Strength save.

 

Now, the consequence of that is Hold Person makes less sense as an Enchantment spell. I suppose you could think of Enchantment in the more general sense, like in the way that swords are enchanted. That is, Enchantments really just alter the state of being of the target and it doesn't necessarily have to be a charm-like effect. I wanted to make this system as easily adaptable as possible so I didn't even get into messing with schools of magic and focused ONLY on the saving throws.

Please introduce yourself to the new D&D 5e forums in this very friendly thread started by Pukunui!

 

My improvements to the Ranger: A Better Beast Master Ranger.

 

Make 5e Saving Throws better using Ramzour's Six Ability Save System!

 

Lost Mine of Phandelver: || Problems and Ideas with the adventure ||  Finding the Ghost of Neverwinter Wood ||

Giving classes iconic abilities that don't break the game: Ramzour's Class Defining Ability system.

Rules for a simple non-XP based leveling up system, using the Proficiency Bonus

 

edwin_su wrote:
When they first talked about 6 saves in the playtest i wonderd for a while if they should use saves more like they curently did adn do.

 

For example if a creature wants to ush you out ofthe way.

it is a oposed strength check in the curent rules.

But I could imagine a system where the defending side of that oposed roll would use a strength save instead of just a strengt check i prevent being pushed.

Yes, exactly!

 

When they announced that 5e would embrace the six Ability Scores into the core of the system, that's what I thought too. Not everything has to be a mental effect anymore. Expand the definitions and flavor of spells to accommodate the entire spectrum of abilites! 

 

It doesn't make much sense that if you want to restrain a creature with a grapple you make a Strength contest......but if you use Magic instead, suddenly the creature can resist it with Wisdom. I don't buy that reasoning. Plus, the consequence is EXACTLY the sad saving throw system we have now....where everything is basically Will saves / Wisdom saves.

Please introduce yourself to the new D&D 5e forums in this very friendly thread started by Pukunui!

 

My improvements to the Ranger: A Better Beast Master Ranger.

 

Make 5e Saving Throws better using Ramzour's Six Ability Save System!

 

Lost Mine of Phandelver: || Problems and Ideas with the adventure ||  Finding the Ghost of Neverwinter Wood ||

Giving classes iconic abilities that don't break the game: Ramzour's Class Defining Ability system.

Rules for a simple non-XP based leveling up system, using the Proficiency Bonus

 

FFSAA wrote:

  For me the main problem with the save system is the all or nothing aspect of it.  You see this with CC and SoD effects and it causes a lot of problems on both the PC and NPC side.

 

  I'd rather the save system left alone or be made simpler, rather than more complicated, unless being made more complicated adresses the all-or-nothing problem.

 

  For simpler you could break it into 2 saves, mental and physical, using the median value of the 3 mental and 3 physical stats.  Leave it to DM option or specific effect to target a specific attribute.

 

  With your system there can be a lot of overlap for instance.  Is an illusion of a dragon in the distance a fear effect or an illusion?  Is a paralyzing poison a poison or a paralyze effect?  Is a spell that summons ropes a dodge or a restrain?  How is your mind being pummeled by psychic damage different than it being forcibly changed with charm and compulsion?  How are neurons being shoved around for compulsion different than a raw fear effect that also directly shoves neurons around?

 

  3E picked REF, CON and WILL to break things down for dodging, withstanding and... stuff in your head.  Maybe picking a single stat to represent them wasn't the best, but overall the system did okay to represent the various things that could be inflicted on a PC.

You are right, you could break the saves up into Physical or Mental. And that would probably be a good way of doing things. However, that's not the design of the system. 5e uses the six Ability Score for any task, whether it's an attack, a check, or a save. The system I suggest in the OP doesn't change the intended design of the system....in fact, it embraces it EVEN FURTHER.

 

In your example, the illusion of a Dragon would be vs Intelligence because a clever creature can tell that the dragon isn't real. If they fail that saving throw and think the dragon is real, they might be frightened as a result, but that's their choice. Cause Fear, however, directly taps into the mental fortitude of the creature, triggering their flight response, and therefore targets Wisdom.

 

Poison is a good question. If the effect is a paralyzing poison, then you use Constitution. Being strong doesn't help you if your body fundamentally breaks down on the inside. 

 

Ropes....think about the Web spell. We assume that the Wizard summons the ropes/webs around the creature and it doesn't really get a chance to "dodge". However, fighting through the rope/web requires your Strength as you try and force your way through the restraining effect.

 

Your other questions aren't a problem with the saving throw system but rather the muddled definitions of Intelligence, Wisdom, and Charisma. You could argue one is the other all you want but it doesn't do any good. Instead, pick a definition and stick with it. Intelligence is your mental dexterity and makes you "quick" minded. Wisdom is your mental constitution and makes you "tough" minded. Charisma is your mental strength and makes you "strong" minded.

Please introduce yourself to the new D&D 5e forums in this very friendly thread started by Pukunui!

 

My improvements to the Ranger: A Better Beast Master Ranger.

 

Make 5e Saving Throws better using Ramzour's Six Ability Save System!

 

Lost Mine of Phandelver: || Problems and Ideas with the adventure ||  Finding the Ghost of Neverwinter Wood ||

Giving classes iconic abilities that don't break the game: Ramzour's Class Defining Ability system.

Rules for a simple non-XP based leveling up system, using the Proficiency Bonus

 

seti wrote:

This is a good idea, and they should have done it.

 

I'll take the lazy DM way out, however...Just re-institute a fort/ref/will system like 4e. Then, I don't have to think too much about spells, more PHB spells, splat book spells, and all the non-PC wierd monster abilities we'll be seeing in the MM(s).

 

Now if I can mitigate all the encounter/daily caster damage on a miss easily, I'll be happy.

That is definitely one option! Each class gets a prof bonus to either Fort, Ref, or Will. However, you still run into the problems that Fighters suck at Hold Person spells and Wizards and Clerics are somehow good at resisting all forms of mental magic. 

 

I probably would have prefered 5e to go in that direction, for simplicity if nothing else, but they didn't. Actually, I like the concept of the six saving throws! But I feel like you have to fully embrace it to make it work. And the spell saving throws we've seen so far? Yeah, not embracing it. Hence the motivation behind my OP.

 

 

Please introduce yourself to the new D&D 5e forums in this very friendly thread started by Pukunui!

 

My improvements to the Ranger: A Better Beast Master Ranger.

 

Make 5e Saving Throws better using Ramzour's Six Ability Save System!

 

Lost Mine of Phandelver: || Problems and Ideas with the adventure ||  Finding the Ghost of Neverwinter Wood ||

Giving classes iconic abilities that don't break the game: Ramzour's Class Defining Ability system.

Rules for a simple non-XP based leveling up system, using the Proficiency Bonus

 

Very nice - sets out what i was planning to do in a very clear way.  However, I was toying with the notion that influencing behaviour using charms should be wisdom because it's subtle and you have to notice the influence, while riding roughshod over someone's will like domination or suggestion should be charIsma but I think your system is pretty good as is.

darius wrote:
Rays are inconsistent in the Basic D&D spell list. Disintegrate is a dex save but Ray of Frost is a ranged spell attack. Disintegrate should be a ranged spell attack and a Consitution save if it hits.

I agree that difference between an attack roll or a Dex save is kind of arbitrary. I don't have a good answer for you. I will say, however, that calling for both a ranged spell attack AND a save would make the spell much weaker, not to mention it's too complex mechanically.

 

darius wrote:
Hold Person seems more like a mental paralysis than something restricting your movements physically.

I explain this in detail in a previous post.

 

darius wrote:
I agree with the connection between Wisdom and psychic damage. I feel like Wisdom should be used when the psyche/soul is attacked too. With that in mind I would make a case for most things causing radiant damage to use Wisdom, since it "overloads the spirit with power". For example, spells such as Guardian of Faith and Sacred Flame.

Good point about Radiant damage. I thought about that originally, but it introduced some inconsistencies (e.g. Flame Strike). I ultimately decided to go in a direction and stick with it.

 

darius wrote:
Seems a bit inconsistent that spells that cause cold damage only would target Constitution. Why not lightning also? If the damage done by one area of effect spell that does straight energy damage (fire, lightning) can be lessened by dodging out of the way, why couldn't it help with another (cold).

Another one of those "go with a direction and stick with it" decisions. I decided that you weren't dodging the ice, but rather it was already all around you and you were resisting its effects on your body. Admittedly, Ice Storm is annoying because it's a mixture of bludgeoning and cold damage, but having two different saving throws makes even less sense. Flame Strike is the same way (Fire + Radiant....do you dodge or resist it?)

 

darius wrote:
I don't know if any spell that has some influence over someone's actions should be Charisma. Maybe just spells that force someone to perform an action, like Command and Dominate spells. Charm/Suggestion spells seem a better fit with Wisdom, since they do allow you to make your own decisions, even if they are directed in some way.

 

Otherwise all the OP's suggestions make sense to me.

Charisma is your sense of self. You are in control of yourself and your own actions. When something attempts to take that away, it attacks your Charisma.  Now granted, you could spin that any way you want, but I picked a definition and tried to remain consistent.

Please introduce yourself to the new D&D 5e forums in this very friendly thread started by Pukunui!

 

My improvements to the Ranger: A Better Beast Master Ranger.

 

Make 5e Saving Throws better using Ramzour's Six Ability Save System!

 

Lost Mine of Phandelver: || Problems and Ideas with the adventure ||  Finding the Ghost of Neverwinter Wood ||

Giving classes iconic abilities that don't break the game: Ramzour's Class Defining Ability system.

Rules for a simple non-XP based leveling up system, using the Proficiency Bonus

 

pauln6 wrote:

Very nice - sets out what i was planning to do in a very clear way.  However, I was toying with the notion that influencing behaviour using charms should be wisdom because it's subtle and you have to notice the influence, while riding roughshod over someone's will like domination or suggestion should be charIsma but I think your system is pretty good as is.

Yup, it's a tricky distinction! The physical scores (STR, DEX, CON) are more obvious. Muscles, Dodging, Health. You can easily see what does what.

 

The mental saves (INT, WIS, CHA) are a bit more vague. You could argue them in any direction. So, the only reasonable solution is to define the boundaries of each ability score and go from there. 

INT = trickery

WIS = mental fortitude

CHA = control over your "self".

 

Using those definitions and staying true to them removes most of the ambiguity.

Please introduce yourself to the new D&D 5e forums in this very friendly thread started by Pukunui!

 

My improvements to the Ranger: A Better Beast Master Ranger.

 

Make 5e Saving Throws better using Ramzour's Six Ability Save System!

 

Lost Mine of Phandelver: || Problems and Ideas with the adventure ||  Finding the Ghost of Neverwinter Wood ||

Giving classes iconic abilities that don't break the game: Ramzour's Class Defining Ability system.

Rules for a simple non-XP based leveling up system, using the Proficiency Bonus

 

Hurin88 wrote:
To me, your system is clearly superior to the system in the starter set. Thanks for that, Ramzour.

Much appreciated!

Please introduce yourself to the new D&D 5e forums in this very friendly thread started by Pukunui!

 

My improvements to the Ranger: A Better Beast Master Ranger.

 

Make 5e Saving Throws better using Ramzour's Six Ability Save System!

 

Lost Mine of Phandelver: || Problems and Ideas with the adventure ||  Finding the Ghost of Neverwinter Wood ||

Giving classes iconic abilities that don't break the game: Ramzour's Class Defining Ability system.

Rules for a simple non-XP based leveling up system, using the Proficiency Bonus

 

Ramzour wrote:

 

pauln6 wrote:

Very nice - sets out what i was planning to do in a very clear way.  However, I was toying with the notion that influencing behaviour using charms should be wisdom because it's subtle and you have to notice the influence, while riding roughshod over someone's will like domination or suggestion should be charIsma but I think your system is pretty good as is.

 

Yup, it's a tricky distinction! The physical scores (STR, DEX, CON) are more obvious. Muscles, Dodging, Health. You can easily see what does what.

 

The mental saves (INT, WIS, CHA) are a bit more vague. You could argue them in any direction. So, the only reasonable solution is to define the boundaries of each ability score and go from there. 

INT = trickery

WIS = mental fortitude

CHA = control over your "self".

 

Using those definitions and staying true to them removes most of the ambiguity.

 

This system has the added bonus of beefing the mechanical use of charisma beyond interaction (and possibly attunement) which is good.  I can live with the sensible broad brush definitions.

I love how modifying 5e is this simple, straightforward, transparent and clean.

 

Also, it would be nice if someone could explain why saving throws are not like this already. There must be some kind of a concept behind the way it is in the RAW.

pauln6 wrote:
Ramzour wrote:
pauln6 wrote:

Very nice - sets out what i was planning to do in a very clear way.  However, I was toying with the notion that influencing behaviour using charms should be wisdom because it's subtle and you have to notice the influence, while riding roughshod over someone's will like domination or suggestion should be charIsma but I think your system is pretty good as is.

Yup, it's a tricky distinction! The physical scores (STR, DEX, CON) are more obvious. Muscles, Dodging, Health. You can easily see what does what.

 

The mental saves (INT, WIS, CHA) are a bit more vague. You could argue them in any direction. So, the only reasonable solution is to define the boundaries of each ability score and go from there. 

INT = trickery

WIS = mental fortitude

CHA = control over your "self".

 

Using those definitions and staying true to them removes most of the ambiguity.

This system has the added bonus of beefing the mechanical use of charisma beyond interaction (and possibly attunement) which is good.  I can live with the sensible broad brush definitions.

Abso-freaking-lutely! Making Charisma a more desirable score is a fantastic move. 

Please introduce yourself to the new D&D 5e forums in this very friendly thread started by Pukunui!

 

My improvements to the Ranger: A Better Beast Master Ranger.

 

Make 5e Saving Throws better using Ramzour's Six Ability Save System!

 

Lost Mine of Phandelver: || Problems and Ideas with the adventure ||  Finding the Ghost of Neverwinter Wood ||

Giving classes iconic abilities that don't break the game: Ramzour's Class Defining Ability system.

Rules for a simple non-XP based leveling up system, using the Proficiency Bonus

 

Siphersh wrote:
I love how modifying 5e is this simple, straightforward, transparent and clean.

 

Also, it would be nice if someone could explain why saving throws are not like this already. There must be some kind of a concept behind the way it is in the RAW.

I would also love a good explanation!!! I've been thinking about this for a while (even during the playtest) and honestly, the only reason I can think of is that it violates tradition too much to make it this way. Now, I think that's a pretty lame reason, personally, and hope that's not the real answer.

 

Anyone want to tweet MMearls about this? I don't have much luck of him responded to me tweets. 

Please introduce yourself to the new D&D 5e forums in this very friendly thread started by Pukunui!

 

My improvements to the Ranger: A Better Beast Master Ranger.

 

Make 5e Saving Throws better using Ramzour's Six Ability Save System!

 

Lost Mine of Phandelver: || Problems and Ideas with the adventure ||  Finding the Ghost of Neverwinter Wood ||

Giving classes iconic abilities that don't break the game: Ramzour's Class Defining Ability system.

Rules for a simple non-XP based leveling up system, using the Proficiency Bonus

 

Ramzour wrote:

 

Siphersh wrote:
I love how modifying 5e is this simple, straightforward, transparent and clean.

 

Also, it would be nice if someone could explain why saving throws are not like this already. There must be some kind of a concept behind the way it is in the RAW.

I would also love a good explanation!!! I've been thinking about this for a while (even during the playtest) and honestly, the only reason I can think of is that it violates tradition too much to make it this way. Now, I think that's a pretty lame reason, personally, and hope that's not the real answer.

 

Anyone want to tweet MMearls about this? I don't have much luck of him responded to me tweets. 

 

I'd really like to know too.

 

 

Ramzour wrote:

Ropes....think about the Web spell. We assume that the Wizard summons the ropes/webs around the creature and it doesn't really get a chance to "dodge". However, fighting through the rope/web requires your Strength as you try and force your way through the restraining effect.

 

  Web spell is a dex save.  Also questionable that you would get a dex save vs. a lightning bolt or being surrounded by a storm of fire, but then not get one vs. ropes.

@mikemearls don't quite understand the difference

I don't make the rules, I just think them up and write them down. - Eric Cartman

Enough chitchat!  Time is candy! - Pinky Pie

Ramzour, you always come through with something awesome to add.

 

I just said something and you just read it. Sorry about that.

FFSAA wrote:
Ramzour wrote:

Ropes....think about the Web spell. We assume that the Wizard summons the ropes/webs around the creature and it doesn't really get a chance to "dodge". However, fighting through the rope/web requires your Strength as you try and force your way through the restraining effect.

Web spell is a dex save.  Also questionable that you would get a dex save vs. a lightning bolt or being surrounded by a storm of fire, but then not get one vs. ropes.

The fact that Web currently requires a Dex save is irrelevant to the discussion. Having ropes or webs touch you doesn't automatically mean you are restrained. You would only be restrained by these effects if you were unable to force your way out of them, hence the Strength save. However, getting hit (even just barely) by Lightning or Fire would mean you probably take damage. These are two different concepts.

Please introduce yourself to the new D&D 5e forums in this very friendly thread started by Pukunui!

 

My improvements to the Ranger: A Better Beast Master Ranger.

 

Make 5e Saving Throws better using Ramzour's Six Ability Save System!

 

Lost Mine of Phandelver: || Problems and Ideas with the adventure ||  Finding the Ghost of Neverwinter Wood ||

Giving classes iconic abilities that don't break the game: Ramzour's Class Defining Ability system.

Rules for a simple non-XP based leveling up system, using the Proficiency Bonus

 

kill_the_wiz_first wrote:
Ramzour, you always come through with something awesome to add.

Thanks! Much appreciated!

Please introduce yourself to the new D&D 5e forums in this very friendly thread started by Pukunui!

 

My improvements to the Ranger: A Better Beast Master Ranger.

 

Make 5e Saving Throws better using Ramzour's Six Ability Save System!

 

Lost Mine of Phandelver: || Problems and Ideas with the adventure ||  Finding the Ghost of Neverwinter Wood ||

Giving classes iconic abilities that don't break the game: Ramzour's Class Defining Ability system.

Rules for a simple non-XP based leveling up system, using the Proficiency Bonus

 

I quite like it, it reminds me a bit of 2nd eds battery of saving throws each character had, expect there aren't any horrifying ones like "save vs death."

tehsquirrely wrote:
I quite like it, it reminds me a bit of 2nd eds battery of saving throws each character had, expect there aren't any horrifying ones like "save vs death."

Thanks! Yeah, those Save vs XYZ saves back in the day were....not very ideal. You always had really weird situations where a monster ability made you save vs. breath weapon even though it wasn't a breath weapon. So many conceptual problems!

 

But by tying the saves to the 6 ability scores, and really embracing what each ability score represents, I think you get a much better saving throw system.

Please introduce yourself to the new D&D 5e forums in this very friendly thread started by Pukunui!

 

My improvements to the Ranger: A Better Beast Master Ranger.

 

Make 5e Saving Throws better using Ramzour's Six Ability Save System!

 

Lost Mine of Phandelver: || Problems and Ideas with the adventure ||  Finding the Ghost of Neverwinter Wood ||

Giving classes iconic abilities that don't break the game: Ramzour's Class Defining Ability system.

Rules for a simple non-XP based leveling up system, using the Proficiency Bonus

 

I was wondering if i could get some feedback on a defensive houserule a friend and I came up with. We had both agreed that armor should reduce damage, not let you dodge attacks. The arguement was that characters with unarmored defense were superior to characters with heavy armor until they could save 5000 gold for plate armor. We decided to try and change this by implementing what we dub the AC modifier. Basically you calculate your AC mod the same way you do  your other stat mods (score - 10)/2 and the add a bonus of 0-3 based on your armor (0 for unarmored, 1 for light armor, 2 for medium armor, and 3 for heavy armor). Basically you use your AC mod in the same way as the Heavy Armor Master feat, and reduce any bludgeoning, piercing, or slashing damage by your AC mod (feel free to disallow use of the heavy armor master feat when implementing these rules). For instance a monk with 20 AC via unarmored defense would get an AC mod of 5 [{(20-10)/2}+0], and a fighter with 18 AC and heavy armor would have an AC mod of 7 [{(18-10)/2}+3]. We felt that this was a good representation of the way actual armor works, by blocking damage instead of letting you dodge attacks.

 

It should be noted that when we use these rules we also use the rule that attacks that normally target AC target DEX instead. (We believe that the ability to dodge a dodgable attack should be based on your Reflex/Agility, and that since characters with heavier armor are less likely to be high in this stat it was a fair trade off for reducing more damage than lower AC characters)

 

Feedback would be greatly appreciated, and I hope that some of you guys find these rules at least good enough to try.

Nice suggestion Ramzour. It truck me as realy odd that a spell like Maze didn't use Int Saves instead of Int Checks!

 

While I really like the conceptual idea of using al the ability saves, one problem I see is that it makes it even easier for an enemy spellcaster to target your weakest save.

 

I kind of liked the idea seen in trying to resist Grappling or Shoving : it allows you to use either Str (Athletics) or Dex(Acrobatics). What do you think of using the skill proficiencies directly instead of the save proficiencies?

 

So the upshot would be someting like this:

 

Effects that physically manipulate you: Str(Athletics) or Dex(acrobatics)

Dodgeable effects : Dex(Acrobatics)

Poisons, disease, cold, fatigue, death : Con (Fortitude) i.e. Con Save becomes a skill. Could also be called endurance

Maze spell : Int(Investigate). Kind of unique in this respect.

Illusions: Int(Investigate) or Wis(Perception)

Charms and Confusion: Wis(Insight) to tell you that said charm is maybe not in your best interest

Compulsions and Fear: Wis(Insight) or Cha(Intimidate) - show that influence trying to take over your brain that you are scarier than it!

 

These could even be combined. So Cone of Cold, for example, could allow you to make a Acrobatics or a Fortitude save.

 

The one downside here is that it might take some time to figure out what the relevant bonuses are, especially for monsters.

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