View Full Version : D&D 5e/Next Alternate Skill System for greater granularity

2015-06-01, 11:52 AM
So I've seen a few threads about skills and how there's so much less variety or options in how a player gains or uses skills. So to deal with that a bit, here's a suggestion:

Break Down the Proficiency Bonus, multiply it by the number of Skills the class gets plus background skills, and apply it as skill points.

For example, a Rogue gains automatic Thief's tools proficiency. Tools cannot be altered. At level 1 it's a +2 bonus increasing with proficiency. However she also gets to choose 4 skills, base, and if she's a criminal she gets two additional skills in Deception and Stealth, but skills are interchangeable especially when there is overlap (taking stealth as a rogue skill means you can spend the background stealth proficiency on a different skill).

So, instead, you'd have 6 (skill choices) times 2 (proficiency bonus) skill points, or 12. With a max of 2 skill points spent on any given skill. However you could put one point in Deception and a point in Performance or some other breakdown that you normally can't get in 5e.

As you hit new proficiency tiers (5, 9, 13, 17) you get another pool of skill points (6 for the example Rogue). If you're using the Feat system and choose the Skilled feat, just add 3 to the skill point pools at later levels and 6 at the start.

Projected effects on gameplay: Minimal. Many players will focus on their "Core" skills in order to be the best at them, but those who spread out more will be adept at a wider range of tasks and feel more comprehensive. Expect a 5% to 20% disparity on average skill check results.

2015-06-01, 12:12 PM
As a fan of the RAW skill system, I don't feel competent to critique this, except to ask:

How does it interact with Jack of All Trades?

2015-06-01, 01:38 PM
Same as normal: Half of the Proficiency Bonus of your level to skills you're not 'proficient' in.

Expertise would add your full proficiency bonus to skills you're an expert with. So a rogue with a +3 prof bonus who only put 2 points in Sleight of Hand could have a +5 (+dex) instead of the usual +6, if they really wanted to.

And for the record I, too, am a fan of the RAW.

2015-06-01, 04:29 PM
The skills were a bit of a shock to me at first-- but it doesn't bother me now.

If I were to tweak things to make things more comfortable for 3.5/PF players, i'd probably give them these two options.

1) You may forgoe one of your skill proficiencies granted from any source, and turn another of your proficiencies into an "expertise", i.e. get double proficiency bonus on it.

2) At the cost of lowering one proficiency to "half-proficiency", you may gain another half-proficiency skill. Your bonus is half, rounded down.