View Full Version : Alternative Combat Feats [Feats] [PEACH]

2007-06-18, 09:43 AM
Please examine, and comment!

There are 5 Wielding Styles:
Two-weapon fighting
Two-handed fighting
One-weapon fighting
Weapon-and-Shield fighting
Double-ended weapon fighting
Unarmed fighting

When I refer to "Style" below, I refer to one of the above, or a specific weapon wielded in any way.

Style Focus [Feat]
Style Specialization [Feat]
Gr. Style Focus [Feat]
Gr. Style Specialization [Feat]

As the Weapon version, but refers to a Style instead of a Weapon. The bonus does not stack with the Weapon versions of the feat.

Two-Weapon Strike [Feat]
Requires: Dex 15+
This feat only works when you are not using the normal extra attacks granted from an offhand weapon. One's penalty to hit when you have a weapon in one's offhand is reduced just as with Two-Weapon fighting.

Whenever one connects with one's main-hand weapon, gain a bonus attack with one's offhand weapon with the same strike-based damage bonus/to hit penalty that your mainhand did (power attack, iterative attack penalty, etc). This offhand attack cannot grant any further bonus attacks, regardless of what other abilities or feats say. These bonus attacks can take place during AoOs, Charges or any situation where your mainhand connected.

Two-Weapon strike does not work if you are using a two-handed weapon.

Two-Weapon Strike may be used in place of Two-Weapon Fighting as a prerequisite for other Feats.
Two-Weapon Strike may be selected as a Fighter Bonus Feat.
Two-Weapon Strike may be taken by a Ranger instead of any other Ranger Combat Style feat, either in place of or delaying a standard Ranger Combat Style feat.

Improved Cleave [Feat]
Str 13, Cleave, Power Attack, base attack bonus +4.
Whenever you melee hit a target, you can take an immediate bonus melee attack against a target you have not yet attacked this round with the same weapon, at an additional -5 penalty. You cannot take a 5' step before making this attack. If the target was dropped (as in Cleave), one may take the cleave attack instead (ie, eliminate the -5 penalty), but not in addition to this bonus attack. You may use this ability, or the Cleave ability, once per round. These immediate bonus attacks are called "Cleave attacks".

Cleave attacks may not trigger any bonus attacks.

Great Improved Cleave [Feat]
Str 14, Improved Cleave, Cleave, Power Attack, base attack bonus +8.
You may use the Improved Cleave, or Improved Great Cleave, ability as many times as you have strength bonus per round. In addition, your Cleave attacks can trigger off of Cleave attacks. Note that the -5 penalty on chained cleaves continues to grow.

Mastery of Cleavage [Feat]
Str 15, Great Improved Cleave, Improved Cleave, Cleave, Power Attack, base attack bonus +12.
The -5 penalty from Improved Cleave is removed -- now whenever you hit any target in melee, your cleave attack is at the same BaB penalty. Note that you still cannot cleave attack any target you have already attacked this round.

Cleavage of Doom [Feat]
Str 16, Mastery of Cleavage, Great Improved Cleave, Improved Cleave, Cleave, Power Attack, base attack bonus +16.
You may take a 5' step between Cleave attacks, up to your base movement per turn, in exchange for a -5 to hit on the bonus Cleave attack.

Effects of these Feats:
Melee characters don't have to have custom-made weapons to be effective.

Two-weapon strike provides a stacking benefit to fighting with two-weapons that doesn't require a huge feat investment. It also allows two-weapon fighters to fight while mobile.

The Cleave feat chain provides a cleave feat chain that doesn't suck: higher level mooks tend not to drop from a single attack.

2007-06-18, 12:18 PM
Here are some attempts to remove the "attack upteen times in a round" mechanic of D&D with high BaB.

Instead of doing more attacks, you do more damage when you do a full-attack. There are a few attempts below:

Mastery of Weapons [Alternative Mechanic]
On a full-attack action, one no longer gains iterative attacks. Instead, one hits harder.

In exhange for giving up all iterative attacks:

BaB | BaB penalty | Weapon Damage Dice | Bonus Damage Dice | Damage Bonus | Two-weapon fighting*
+6 | -2 | x2 | x2 | x2 | Improved
+11 | -4 | x4 | x3 | x3 | Greater
+16 | -6 | x6 | x4 | x4 | Advanced

So a Character with +11 BaB, +16 total to-hit, 1d8+10 damage with 1d6 fire damage, changes to:
+12 total to-hit, 4d8+30 damage, +3d6 fire damage

A L 11 rogue with +8 BaB, +14 total to hit, using a 1d6 damage weapon with +3 damage and +1d6 frost damage:
+12 total to-hit, 2d6+6 damage +12d6 sneak attack +2d6 frost damage

This boost in damage only applies to the full-attack attack: any attacks occur at the standard to-hit and damage of a standard attack.

One may use this for one's offhand attacks: each teir requires a higher rank of the two-weapon fighting feat chain to use.

These damage multipliers multiply with critical attack multipliers.

* Note: if one is using Two-weapon strike instead of Two-weapon fighting, one does not need the extra feats to do the extra damage. One just needs to connect with the main hand.

Full-attack chart:

1/1 3/4 1/2
Level BaB Dam BaB Dam BaB Dam
1 +1 1x +0 1x +0 1x
2 +2 1x +1 1x +1 1x
3 +3 1x +2 1x +1 1x
4 +4 1x +3 1x +2 1x
5 +5 1x +3 1x +2 1x
6 +4 2x +4 1x +3 1x
7 +5 2x +5 1x +3 1x
8 +6 2x +4 2x +4 1x
9 +7 2x +4 2x +4 1x
10 +8 2x +5 2x +5 1x
11 +7 3x, 4xW +6 2x +5 1x
12 +8 3x, 4xW +7 2x +4 2x
13 +9 3x, 4xW +7 2x +4 2x
14 +10 3x, 4xW +8 2x +5 2x
15 +11 3x, 4xW +7 3x, 4xW +5 2x
16 +10 4x, 6xW +8 3x, 4xW +6 2x
17 +11 4x, 6xW +8 3x, 4xW +6 2x
18 +12 4x, 6xW +9 3x, 4xW +7 2x
19 +13 4x, 6xW +10 3x, 4xW +7 2x
20 +14 4x, 6xW +11 3x, 4xW +8 2x

Notice that the to-hit gap between the classes is smaller than under the standard system. The extra attacks are aliased into higher damage per attack.

I made weapon-damage scale faster than standard damage because the weapon-damage normally fades to insignificance at higher levels -- by having it scale up faster, the differences between are increased, which I think makes the game more interesting.

As an optional rule, you could allow someone to make a non-full-attack with damage multipliers 1 teir lower (and to-hit penalties 1 teir lower). This starts boosting pure-melee at L 11 and hybird (3/4) melee at L 15.

An alternative table, same idea:

Single Full
Combat Attack Dam Dam
+0 +0 1x1xW 1x1xW
+1 +1 1x1xW 1x1xW
+2 +2 1x1xW 1x1xW
+3 +3 1x1xW 1x1xW
+4 +4 1x1xW 1x1xW
+5 +4 1x1xW 1x2xW
+6 +4 1x2xW 2x3xW
+7 +5 1x2xW 2x3xW
+8 +6 1x2xW 2x3xW
+9 +7 1x2xW 2x3xW
+10 +7 1x2xW 2x4xW
+11 +7 2x2xW 3x4xW
+12 +8 2x2xW 3x4xW
+13 +9 2x2xW 3x4xW
+14 +10 2x2xW 3x4xW
+15 +10 2x3xW 3x5xW
+16 +10 2x4xW 4x6xW
+17 +11 2x4xW 4x6xW
+18 +12 2x4xW 4x6xW
+19 +13 2x4xW 4x6xW
+20 +13 2x5xW 4x8xW

Here the "Combat" column is your BaB. It gets converted into an Attack bonus and damage multipliers.

2x4xW means "4 times the base weapon damage, plus 2 times any bonuses on it".

Weapon multipliers grow faster than the bonus multipliers in order to prevent the weapon base damage from not mattering, like it does under the current system.

Notice that there is a capstone at both +15 and +20. Under this system, there is no "attack bonus inversion". It also mitigates some of the problems with full-attacks and simple-attacks diverging so much at higher levels.

For two-weapon fighting combat, the offhand weapon would need later feats in order to pass the damage multipliers:
Normal: 1x2xW cap
Improved: 2x4xW cap
Greater: 3x6xW cap
Superior: 4x8xW cap

Note that this second alternative gives higher-level melee more damage dealing ability, both in full-attack and in single-attacks.

It also reduces the +to hit gap between classes, which I think is a good thing. A L 20 Rogue now has a +10 attack, while a L 20 Fighter has a +13 attack. The Fighter will be doing 4x8xW damage on a full attack, while the Rogue will be doing 3x5xW -- maintaining the Fighter's raw-damage edge.

2007-06-18, 03:51 PM
cleavage of doom?


2007-06-18, 06:54 PM
cleavage of doom?



The name was more appropriate when it didn't have the -5 penalty.

Barbarian steps up in front of army. Barbarian pulls out two swords.

Blur occurs.

Barbarian standing on other side of army, with most of the army twitching on the ground.

(+20 BaB +22(!) to-hit and full-TWF gives you (+40/+35/+30/+25)x2 attacks. All hit on everything except a 1, so they produce an average of 20 swings each and 19 hits. That's 4*2*19=152 hits on average.

The offhand sword does 1d6+13 damage, more than enough to kill any grunt it hits.

You can actually do better -- do trip attacks. The trip attack can trigger a cleave, and the bonus attack from the successful trip attack can trigger a cleave (note that a cleave-trip attack cannot trigger a bonus from the trip -- but a base-attack trip can trigger both a cleave and a trip bonus attack). That brings you over 200 hits in a single round, moving about 1000 feet over the single round of combat...


As you can see, the -5 penalty for taking a 5' step is important... (: )

2007-06-21, 08:24 PM
All very (A)D&D, Yakk. I don't know whether this does that much for the Fighter, though.

2007-06-21, 08:37 PM
The first post makes cleave not-suck.

It also provides a feat-light, mobile, two-weapon fighting style.

And it deals with the "weapon specialization requires you to custom-tailor weapons to the character" problem.

No, it doesn't fix the fighter class. But it does solve some "bugs" in D&D.


The second post is aimed at reducing the difference between "mobile" and "immobile" combat. At high levels, the full attack becomes qualitatively different than the simple attack, while at low levels they are nearly identical.

Scaling of weapon damage does come from D&D 1.0 and AD&D. It wasn't a bad idea then, and I don't think it is a bad idea now.

The texture of "different weapons are different" is neat -- but in D&D 3.5 the difference between weapons gets a bit washed out at the high end.

2007-06-21, 08:55 PM
See, the main criticism I have of this sytem is that it's so complicated, Yakk, which is a trend I see in many of your revised rules. I mean, looking at this, I have a hard time understanding it. Surely there are simpler ways to approach these problems, without the seeming need to create tables and formula?

There are too many styles

Cleave doesn't suck; it's a perfectly good Feat. Great Cleave doesn't really suck either, it's just no good for facing single/HP high enemies. Five Cleave Feats just seems too intensive.

Two Weapon Strike seems like an okay idea, but I have to admit that I have a hard time penetrating the exact meaning of your prose (what's all this 'one's' business?)

Mastery of weapons is needlessly complicated. Just trade in your Iterative Attacks for X extra Damage. Keep things simple.