View Full Version : D&D 5e/Next Help balancing Ghostrider?

2017-08-07, 09:59 AM

So I have a player that wants to play a revenent human who can turn into a flaming skullhead. Could be fun. I said I would allow him to use a chain as a whip, with the caveat he cannot use it for sneak attacks. This item would be a cursed item that allows him to upon activation melt his skin off and gain fire damage. I have played around with it, but am not too sure how to balance this thing out. Any Ideas? What I have as tentative ideas are:
+1 Hellfire Chain - 1d6 damage, reach, finesse, +1d4 fire damage

When in GR form
Immunity to Fire
Resistance to Fear
Adv. vs. grappling +1d4 damage to enemy when grappled
Emit dim light in 15-foot radius
Double Prof. Intimidate and Insight checks
Weakness to Radiant dmg
Take 1d6 dmg per round and flesh melts
Disadvantage on Char. checks on anyone who saw the transformation (DM discretion) even after dropping
Disadvantage on Stealth

It still feels overpowered, or is that just me?

2017-08-08, 02:34 AM
What are you balancing it against? I assumed at first that you wanted the benefits and drawbacks to equal out to a net zero effect, but now I see that the chain is a +1 weapon even when not activated. So I guess it's a magic weapon that's meant to be a power boost. So the question is, what do the other characters get to keep up?

The +1 part aside, I definitely don't think that making it a net zero is going to work. The damage over time is pretty harsh at early levels, but given that it can be turned on and off at-will, I don't think that makes up for the benefits. The simple fact of having additional options is going to put this character ahead of his allies to a certain degree, even if using those options comes at a cost.

So to allow something like this and maintain balance, you need to level the playing field by giving the other players something roughly equal. What you've described strikes me as a 'rare' magic weapon, assuming that the fire damage on the chain only works while in Ghost Rider form. If that part always works, then it's probably 'very rare'. Which is a lot of power to give out at the start of a game, but if the other players get something of equal rarity, it should be fine.

If you want to lower the rarity to lessen the power creep, remove the +1 enchantment and make it clear that the +1d4 fire damage is only in Ghost Rider form. With those changes, I would call it an 'uncommon' item, equivalent to a +1 weapon.

2017-08-09, 07:12 AM
Few things I'm not clear on that could make a difference, such as, what is the activation method for GR form? How many times a day can it be activated? I'm assuming unlimited but worth clarification. You said the weapon is cursed, does it impose any other restrictions or limitations besides those you mentioned? You said it's a finesse weapon so I'm assuming it's a one hander?

2017-08-10, 02:11 PM
An easy way to make it not overpowered, especially at lower levels, is by allowing it to only transform him a limited number of times and for a limited number of rounds, per day. For example, only using the transformation powers only once/day at level 1, increasing at odd levels, and only for 2 rounds/day, increasing by an additional round each even level


| 1/day _||_ 2 rounds
| 1/day _||_ 3 rounds
| 2/day _||_ 3 rounds
| 2/day _||_ 4 rounds
| 3/day _||_ 4 rounds
| 3/day _||_ 5 rounds

And so on. That allows it to be an interesting choice of whether to use the ability at lower levels, while being always available at higher levels.