View Full Version : D&D 5e/Next Free Racial Spells: Good Idea/Bad Idea?

2014-11-19, 12:18 PM
In the DMG previews, the Eladrin get the Fey Step ability (Misty Step 1/day) as a racial bonus.

I was thinking about giving all the core races an ability like this on top of their bonuses to further differentiate them a bit. I know they took away a few things from Eladrin to balance the ability, but if everyone had a 1/rest racial spell I figure it would be balanced enough, and perhaps give mundanes of those races another little trick. Only cast-able on yourself of course.

Somthing like:

Elves: Misty Step
Gnomes: Blur
Half-Orcs: Enhance Ability


I don't have enough experience with 5e to determine if this would have a great effect on the game. What do you think?

2014-11-20, 12:49 PM
Though I have not run a 5e game, I have been reluctant in providing races with innate magical abilities like that. I find it pulls too much away from casters, and perhaps even contradicts some of the lore within the setting. However, if the party would like to be in such a world where humans and dwarves are as magically gifted at birth as the average drow, then I don't see any problem with it as long as races currently with innate spells gain something to balance out.

2014-11-20, 04:00 PM
Yeah it's a fair point, though I'm not worried about taking things away from already powerful casters. Plus if you're a caster, you still get a free extra ability. I should have mentioned it's a homebrew setting, I don't care much about Forgotten Realms lore. I also guess spell was the wrong word, as they'd be fluffed as natural abilities of the race.

Honestly part of the setting is that humans aren't as good as the other races (they're relatively new), and they would probably not get an ability, but be the standard variant human. I hate having parties that are 4/5ths human characters, so I want to make the other races a bit more special. I think it will take a lot to break the 'always be human' mindset, but I don't want to go crazy. As long as the races are sort of balanced I'm ok with it, I just don't want to unbalance the game as a whole.

2014-11-20, 04:14 PM
All in all, it could be quite fun and interesting. I have not had the trouble of too many humans in my party, but there are few optimized builds as well. I often question the 'why' and 'how' of the reason for things like natural abilities, but that's me. I would recommend that the abilities not be greater than lvl0 spells (in proportion).