A Monster for Every Season: Summer 2
You can get A Monster for Every Season: Summer 2 now at Gumroad
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 30 of 42
  1. - Top - End - #1
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Specter's Avatar

    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Brazil

    Default A comprehensive list of use of skills in 5e

    So I've been hearing many complaints about 5E's skill system, mainly about the skills being too vague. So I thought we could come together and find as many uses for the skills as we can. You can copy the list below and add more to it or just give ideas and wait for me to (eventually edit this list. So...

    ACROBATICS
    - Freeing yourself from grapples and the like
    - Squeezing through tight spaces without losing movement
    - Balancing on thin/fragile surfaces without falling
    - Landing on your feet after a fall
    - Ignoring minor falling damage, such as falling from a cart
    -Tumbling

    ARCANA
    - Recall lore about magic items and spells
    - Recognizing the functions of magic accessories, such as a wizard's spellbook or a warlock's tome
    - Identifying a spell in a scroll/book
    - Controlling a wild magic item/effect, such as a Sphere of Annihilation
    - Disarming magic traps
    - Understanding properties of spells cast by others (like knowing that a Banishment spell can be undone by attacking its caster)
    - Identifying spells being cast (in my campaigns I use Nature for druid/ranger spells and Religion for cleric/paladin spells, but that's just me)

    ATHLETICS
    - Shoving creatures
    - Grappling creatures
    - Going through rough terrain, such as stairs, without losing movement
    - Jumping a certain height/distance
    - Swimming in rough currents/in heavy armor
    - Acting in mid-air

    DECEPTION
    - Lying (duh)
    - Fake crying
    - Disguise emotions (such as pretending to like seeing a man tortured)
    - Playing dead
    - Passing yourself for someone else
    - 'Being cool' if seen while following someone

    HISTORY
    - Recalling lore about families, events, places and heraldry
    - Remembering anniversaries of important happenings
    - Telling when/where a certain item was made
    - Noticing a person's origins based on their looks or customs

    INSIGHT
    - Identifying whether someone is being deceitful or evasive in answering
    - Noticing what a person plans by what they're doing
    - Telling if someone is following you rather than just going in the same direction
    - Perceiving if someone is being mentally dominated
    - Getting the meaning of underlying messages

    INTIMIDATION
    - Intimidating (duh) someone into doing what you want
    - Torturing someone
    Taunting someone into violence

    INVESTIGATION
    - Searching someone (dead or alive) or an area (unlike Perception, this is made for clues or deductions that mere sight fail)
    - Seeing through illusions
    - Finding more about rumors
    - Locating someone in an urban environment
    - Searching for specific information in books/libraries

    MEDICINE
    - Stabilizing someone
    - Noticing a certain disease in someome
    - Providing long-term treatment
    - Knowing the body's limits related to a certain physical activity
    - Knowing the dosages and uses for natural healing items
    - Dissecting a body, or removing something from it

    NATURE
    - Recalling lore about beasts, plants, terrain, types of vegetation and weather
    - Knowing what plants are needed to make certain compounds/potions
    - Identifying poisonous/dangerous food
    - Harvesting poisons from plants/beasts
    - Detecting strange weather changes

    PERCEPTION
    - Spotting/hearing hidden threats
    - Recognizing someone who's far away
    - Finding minute details
    - Identifying a noise's source

    PERFORMANCE
    - Singing
    - Dancing
    - Telling stories
    - Delivering a good speech

    PERSUASION
    - Convincing someone to do what you want
    - Debating
    - Knowing how to behave in a given social setting
    - Flattering someone
    - Seducing someone

    RELIGION
    - Recalling lore about deities, temples and rituals
    - Performing a ritual according to specification
    - Knowing what would be offensive to a certain faith

    SLEIGHT OF HAND
    - Stealing from people without being noticed
    - Juggling
    - Putting something on someone without being noticed
    - Picking a weapon from the air (such as from a disarmed foe)
    - Concealing belongings in yourself
    - Performing gestures or messages without being noticed (perhaps even somatic components, according to the DM)

    STEALTH
    - Hiding
    - Moving without being heard
    - Mingling in a crowd
    - Following someone

    SURVIVAL
    - Tracking
    - Foraging food
    - Hunting wild game
    - Protecting yourself from weather/terrain hazards such as sunburn and mosquitoes
    - Finding water
    - Knowing which way is north
    - Avoid getting lost
    - Making a decent campsite in extreme conditions

    ----
    This is obviously not finished, please add more.
    Last edited by Specter; 2017-03-11 at 09:21 AM.

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Grod_The_Giant's Avatar

    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: A comprehensive list of use of skills in 5e

    Quote Originally Posted by Specter View Post
    So I've been hearing many complaints about 5E's skill system, mainly about the skills being too vague. So I thought we could come together and find as many uses for the skills as we can. You can copy the list below and add more to it or just give ideas and wait for me to (eventually edit this list. So...
    This is not, I believe, what people mean by "vague." It's less a question of "what does Acrobatics mean?" and more "what can I do with a DC 20 Athletics check?"
    Hill Giant Games
    I make indie gaming books for you!
    Spoiler
    Show

    STaRS: A non-narrativeist, generic rules-light system.
    Grod's Guide to Greatness, 2e: A big book of player options for 5e.
    Grod's Grimoire of the Grotesque: An even bigger book of variant and expanded rules for 5e.
    Giants and Graveyards: My collected 3.5 class fixes and more.

    Quote Originally Posted by Grod_The_Giant View Post
    Grod's Law: You cannot and should not balance bad mechanics by making them annoying to use

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Bugbear in the Playground
    Join Date
    Apr 2016

    Default Re: A comprehensive list of use of skills in 5e

    Anyone else think that it's telling that the OP completely forgot about the Medicine skill?

  4. - Top - End - #4
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Imp

    Join Date
    Jan 2015
    Location
    Canada

    Default Re: A comprehensive list of use of skills in 5e

    Arcana or Religion should also give information on magical creatures.

  5. - Top - End - #5
    Ogre in the Playground
    Join Date
    Nov 2013

    Default Re: A comprehensive list of use of skills in 5e

    Quote Originally Posted by Specter View Post
    ACROBATICS
    - Freeing yourself from grapples, ropes and the like
    - Landing on your feet after a fall
    - Ignoring minor falling damage, such as falling from a cart
    3/6 of your first skill seem incorrect which does not inspire confidence.
    Escaping from ropes is specifically a standard dexterity check that acrobatics does not apply to: "Wriggle free of bonds" -PHB 177
    The other 2 do not seem to be listed in the things that acrobatics can do in the PHB:

    Acrobatics. Your Dexterity (Acrobatics) check covers your attempt to stay on your feet in a tricky situation, such as when you're trying to run across a sheet of ice, balance on a tightrope, or stay upright on a rocking ship's deck. The DM might also call for a Dexterity (Acrobatics) check to see if you can perform acrobatic stunts, including dives, rolls, somersaults, and flips.
    The goal of this list seems nice, but from what I can see many items are not RAW.

  6. - Top - End - #6
    Ogre in the Playground
    Join Date
    Mar 2006

    Default Re: A comprehensive list of use of skills in 5e

    I don't think there's any "RAW" set of criteria for an exhaustive list of what a skill can and can't do, just a general notion of the sorts of things a skill covers and some examples, and I believe that's intentional, so they don't have to make 500 skills or continually revise what it is each skill does. For the most part, I think the names of the skills handle adequately their function. You know if you're trying to deceive someone what skill you're probably rolling, for example.

  7. - Top - End - #7
    Troll in the Playground
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Below sea level
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: A comprehensive list of use of skills in 5e

    I'd like to add myths and legends under a successful history check, as well as old-wives tales, children's stories etc.
    Warlock Poetry?
    Or ways to use me in game?
    Better grab a drink...

    Currently ruining Strahd's day - Avatar by the Outstanding Smuchsmuch

    First Ordained Jr. Tormlet by LoyalPaladin

  8. - Top - End - #8
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Regitnui's Avatar

    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: A comprehensive list of use of skills in 5e

    Quote Originally Posted by Kryx View Post
    The goal of this list seems nice, but from what I can see many items are not RAW.
    RAW can't list every possible application of a skill; was Harry Houdini using Acrobatics when he got himself out of a straitjacket underwater, using a general Dexterity check, or would he have drowned because it can't be done by RAW?

    Spoiler: Not kosher
    Show
    After phoning a customer who ordered books of a "certain nature", I can file a lot of them under Acrobatics, if not Dexterity (Athletics).


    Current Affairs likely belongs under History, since as the History channel justifying more and more reality television says; "History is made every day". Geography as a whole, like that which a person would identify areas on a map and plan routes, goes under Nature. Legal affairs are probably Arcana, with History aiding.
    Last edited by Regitnui; 2016-06-26 at 05:38 AM.

  9. - Top - End - #9
    Ogre in the Playground
    Join Date
    Nov 2013

    Default Re: A comprehensive list of use of skills in 5e

    Quote Originally Posted by Regitnui View Post
    RAW can't list every possible application of a skill; was Harry Houdini using Acrobatics when he got himself out of a straitjacket underwater, using a general Dexterity check, or would he have drowned because it can't be done by RAW?
    To wriggle free of binding is specifically called out as not being part of acrobatics. If you, as a GM, want to change that then that's your choice.

    But if the OP wants to make a list of things that skills can do he should not list things that he as a GM has changed.
    Last edited by Kryx; 2016-06-26 at 05:53 AM.

  10. - Top - End - #10
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Ninja_Prawn's Avatar

    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    UK

    Default Re: A comprehensive list of use of skills in 5e

    Quote Originally Posted by Specter View Post
    find as many uses for the skills as we can.
    That's an insane idea. The list is endless, varies by DM, and doesn't even consider the interaction between ability and skill (e.g. Strength (Intimidation), Dexterity (Performance)). And as Grod pointed out, bounded accuracy and where to set DCs is a bigger problem than not having enough options. I've heard more complaints that there aren't enough 'levels' of skill (by RAW: not proficient, jack-of-all-trades, proficient and expert) than complaints about there not being enough uses for skills.
    Lydia Seaspray by Oneris!

    Spoiler: Acclaim
    Show
    Winner of Spellbrew Contest I & Subclass Contest II
    Quote Originally Posted by JNAProductions View Post
    That is the perfect ending. Thread done, Ninja_Prawn won.
    Quote Originally Posted by KorvinStarmast View Post
    We love our ninja prawn.
    Quote Originally Posted by Professor Gnoll View Post
    NinjaPrawn, you are my favourite.
    Quote Originally Posted by Sir cryosin View Post
    Ninja you're like the forum's fairy godmother.
    Quote Originally Posted by ThinkMinty View Post
    This is why you're the best, Ninja Prawn.

    A Faerie Affair

    Homebrew: Sig, MHP

  11. - Top - End - #11
    Orc in the Playground
     
    X3r4ph's Avatar

    Join Date
    Aug 2015

    Default Re: A comprehensive list of use of skills in 5e

    What about goading and taunting? Obviously charisma based, but which skill?

  12. - Top - End - #12
    Ogre in the Playground
    Join Date
    Mar 2006

    Default Re: A comprehensive list of use of skills in 5e

    Performance, deception, or intimidation, depending on how you accomplish it and your goal

  13. - Top - End - #13
    Ettin in the Playground
    Join Date
    Feb 2012

    Default Re: A comprehensive list of use of skills in 5e

    I'm just going straight by RAW here: Arcana can be used to cast from scrolls with spells too high level to cast from spell slots. It can also be used to disarm magical traps.
    Last edited by hymer; 2016-06-26 at 08:53 AM.
    My D&D 5th ed. Druid Handbook

  14. - Top - End - #14
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Specter's Avatar

    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Brazil

    Default Re: A comprehensive list of use of skills in 5e

    To reply to who it may concern, it was not my intention to put anything here that contradicts the book, even if I'd houserule it otherwise. As for the suggestions, they'll be added.

    Totally forgot Medicine! Haha, it's telling really, since that skill blows.

  15. - Top - End - #15
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    PirateWench

    Join Date
    Oct 2015

    Default Re: A comprehensive list of use of skills in 5e

    I would put economics knowledge under History as well. History would cover the past trade of the kingdom, its successes and failures, how different ventures have failed, essentially everything that economic projections are based off of!

    Don't forget intersections of skill as well. While finding a cure for a disease would normally seem to be a Medicine check, but it would more realistically be Nature (knowing how a body functions to dissect/vivisect it), Investigation (finding anomalies), then Medicine (figuring out what to do with the knowledge you have; Nature is great for knowing about creatures, but Medicine covers applying that knowledge). Of course, I am a fan of using multiple skill checks to accomplish a task.

    Some examples we used in actual play were Nature to create a pungent liquid to track a werewolf pack, Survival to create the trap that would release the liquid, then Stealth to ensure it was hidden by Mold Earth (coupled with Investigstion to find any flaws in its cover). Earlier, we combined Nature and Survival to find ingredients for a sleeping potion (magic NyQuil), then Arcana to figure out how to brew it. Probably could have sidestepped all that work if our Druid remembered that he had herbalism proficiency...
    Quote Originally Posted by krugaan
    All it takes is once:

    "Grandpa, tells us that story about the Ricalison the Great again!"

    Hours later...

    "... and that, kids, is how he conquered the world with dancing lights."

  16. - Top - End - #16
    Ogre in the Playground
    Join Date
    Mar 2006

    Default Re: A comprehensive list of use of skills in 5e

    Knowledge of anatomy for one of the demi-human races for dissection is definitely medicine and not nature. I'd let nature be used to find herbs or natural remedies, but only after someone used medicine to diagnose the ailment (or the ailment was particularly obvious)

  17. - Top - End - #17
    Troll in the Playground
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Below sea level
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: A comprehensive list of use of skills in 5e

    Quote Originally Posted by Specter View Post
    To reply to who it may concern, it was not my intention to put anything here that contradicts the book, even if I'd houserule it otherwise. As for the suggestions, they'll be added.

    Totally forgot Medicine! Haha, it's telling really, since that skill blows.
    just you wait until your medkit runs out of uses and you have a partymate rolling death saves.

    suddenly rollin g15 on that medicine check beats any other skilluse.
    Warlock Poetry?
    Or ways to use me in game?
    Better grab a drink...

    Currently ruining Strahd's day - Avatar by the Outstanding Smuchsmuch

    First Ordained Jr. Tormlet by LoyalPaladin

  18. - Top - End - #18
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Specter's Avatar

    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Brazil

    Default Re: A comprehensive list of use of skills in 5e

    Quote Originally Posted by Socratov View Post
    just you wait until your medkit runs out of uses and you have a partymate rolling death saves.

    suddenly rollin g15 on that medicine check beats any other skilluse.
    That's assuming all the other medkits in the party are out, since we all carry our own (not like it's expensive). Oh, and also assuming no one has any healing spell available. And assuming we want to take a chance at failure, which we don't.

  19. - Top - End - #19
    Pixie in the Playground
     
    Kobold

    Join Date
    Feb 2017

    Default Re: A comprehensive list of use of skills in 5e

    Medicine is mainly a knowledge based skill (like history, religion, nature) with certain applications (mainly stabilizing people). Most of the applications of medicine in the real world just won't carry over- because, lets face it: One remaining point of Laying on of Hands from a level 1 paladin is superior to 20 points of the medicine skill, when it comes to keeping someone alive. For that reason I'm in favor of changing what the medicine skill does to become more useful, since right now it seems to be the least useful skill in the game. Most of theses ideas will fall under house rules, though I think that most DMs would be likely to allow at least some of them, especially those which fall under roll playing, as opposed to combat. For instance, I prefer to allow players to pick which skill to use in a situation as long as they can reasonably justify how they want to use it.

    BTW, while the definition says that medicine may be used to detect disease, dis - ease classically refers to any condition which causes a person to be unwell or "not at ease" from a medical perspective. Thus, most sources include poison in their definitions of what constitutes a disease.


    Medicine as information: The skill and knowledge of Medicine has limited crossovers into Insight/Investigation and Nature skills. For instance, a good healer wouldn't just realize that a person is poisoned- they would be able to make a guess at what poisoned them from the person's symptoms (ingestion, venom, parasites, etc). Also, while they wouldn't be able to tell if the problem was caused by a spirit, a divine curse or by malevolent magic, they could be reasonably certain as to whether the wound or aliment is natural in origin or not, if their medicine skill is high enough to recognize natural verses unnatural causes. Certainly a character could read clues as to how long ago a person died, and what injury or poison they died from. Again, the higher the skill, the more knowledge and experience a character would possess, which means that a higher medical skill is equivalent to, say, 20 years as a doctor, and a character with that skill level could glean much more information of this sort from situations. This makes the Medicine skill more useful the higher it is.

    There are also certain crossovers into the Survival skill, like the possibly to detect poison or other contaminants in food. This could be manifested by a roll with a certain DC level, which the player could do to allow them to see that the meat has spoiled, or that the potions they just got smell strongly like an herb which (he knows) can be used in small amounts to cure a wound, yet in large amounts will kill someone.

    Medicine could give a bonus to information rolls on monsters- relating to the monster's abilities to cause harm: "I once treated a man with ghoul-paralysis," or "My trainer said that giant spiders usually have fast acting venom." This is a good roll-playing benefit to knowledge checks, as someone who's been trained as a doctor or healer would certainly have treated patients who've been attacked by monsters in the past, and so they have a reason to "remember" these monster attributes. Again, more knowledge can be "remembered" for a higher level skill or higher level roll.

    Healers and apothecaries should have a knowledge of herbs and medicines. Note that this doesn't help them to find plants in the wild, just use them, which lets them use their environment in between dungeon crawls.


    Some possible house rules to give medicine additional applications could include:

    Decreasing the effects of status aliments, or keeping a wound from becoming infected (this could be a viable point if you can't heal the party to full health after a battle).

    Some people suggested giving a person with medicine some kind of bonus when using med kits. For instance, increasing the number of points healed based on the user's medicine skill, or by allowing the healer to roll 2 dice and use the larger number.

    One person suggested that players should be limited to only spending one hit die to recover health during a short rest, unless someone in the group makes a medicine skill check with a DC of 10. If they make a DC of 15 then they can use 2 dice, and at 20 the characters may spend as many as they can. This DC roll could be limited to characters who have a proficiency in medicine- thus encouraging all players to at least learn the basic treatment needed to staunch wounds. This could add to good roll playing, as it's unrealistic that people who decide to make their living by fighting monsters for gold, vengeance, glory, etc, will risk life and limb on a regular basis without even a basic knowledge of how to heal themselves when (not if) they get into trouble.

    Note that none of these are useful during combat.


    Other uses for medicine could result from completely rethinking the definition of what constitutes medicine. Western medicine is founded on certain tenants which have endured almost unchanged since the Hippocratic oath was recorded around 300 BC. This includes concepts like, "Do no harm," doctor patient confidentiality, don't use poison, don't perform abortions, don't assist a person's suicide, and pass on all beneficial knowledge, but don't give medical knowledge to people who are likely to abuse it. This is generally consistent with what would be expected from a doctor, or a good cleric/healer. That being said, Western medicine is not the only school of medicine, and a neutral or evil character could find additional uses for it. All of a sudden more roll playing possibilities or creative ways to incapacitate someone open up, when a N or E character has points in the medicine skill.

    A person with medical knowledge might arguably have advantage to rolls to subdue or incapacitate someone, due to their knowledge of the human body, herbs and medicine, or from experience with people with temporary mental issues such as delirium from a fever. Also, it's entirely reasonable for a doctor to carry a vial of ether on them... and not beyond the realm of possibility for him to throw it at an attacker during an emergency.

    A character with the requisite know-how could use slight of hand to drug an opponent's water skin and then return after the opponent is unconscious as an alternative to violence. In fact, someone could argue that a medicine skill is needed to accurately drug someone enough without a risk of killing them with an overdose.

    The understanding of what ails or poisons a person could be used to cause instead of cure. An understanding or medicine and herbs would help a lot in that regard, especially considering that most substances used for medicine do become toxic in high enough quantities.

    Knowledge of medicine is also knowledge of anatomy, and a thief making sneak attacks or attacks on an immobilized (surprised or restrained) person would likely benefit in some way from an understanding of anatomy. A slight damage increase or the ability to add light bleeding damage or the ability to cause a status ailment like silence could be a house rule option that could take place on a successful melee sneak attack (it could function like divine smite). State the intent and then roll high enough vs. the DC, failure results in reduced damage or a penalty. Maybe add a daily limit to the number of times it may be applied.

    Of course, even though some would concede that these options are entirely plausible, some of them may not be playable due to a character's alignment or philosophy. I wanted to include them because it gives people more options in role playing, by using this skill in ways they may not have before considered.

    I know that some people will take exception to these ideas, but I hope that this list will be helpful to others who want to get more out of their characters by expanding the possibilities of a (currently) very limited skill.
    Last edited by prismfalcon; 2017-02-23 at 11:34 AM.

  20. - Top - End - #20
    Bugbear in the Playground
    Join Date
    Nov 2014

    Default Re: A comprehensive list of use of skills in 5e

    The skill system written as it is, is purposely vague enough so if a DM believe that in a given situation Acrobatics should be applied to wiggle free of ropes, or that the character could apply Strenght to its Intimidation check. Same goes for skill DC. As it's up to the DM to decide if a character in a given situation should or not roll for a skill check, there's no need for clearly defined check DCs. But I do understand that players used to 3.P and 4e, it can feel like they lost control over their character capabilities.

  21. - Top - End - #21
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    Imp

    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    England
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: A comprehensive list of use of skills in 5e

    Spoiler
    Show
    Quote Originally Posted by prismfalcon View Post
    Medicine is mainly a knowledge based skill (like history, religion, nature) with certain applications (mainly stabilizing people). Most of the applications of medicine in the real world just won't carry over- because, lets face it: One remaining point of Laying on of Hands from a level 1 paladin is superior to 20 points of the medicine skill, when it comes to keeping someone alive. For that reason I'm in favor of changing what the medicine skill does to become more useful, since right now it seems to be the least useful skill in the game. Most of theses ideas will fall under house rules, though I think that most DMs would be likely to allow at least some of them, especially those which fall under roll playing, as opposed to combat. For instance, I prefer to allow players to pick which skill to use in a situation as long as they can reasonably justify how they want to use it.

    BTW, while the definition says that medicine may be used to detect disease, dis - ease classically refers to any condition which causes a person to be unwell or "not at ease" from a medical perspective. Thus, most sources include poison in their definitions of what constitutes a disease.


    Medicine as information: The skill and knowledge of Medicine has limited crossovers into Insight/Investigation and Nature skills. For instance, a good healer wouldn't just realize that a person is poisoned- they would be able to make a guess at what poisoned them from the person's symptoms (ingestion, venom, parasites, etc). Also, while they wouldn't be able to tell if the problem was caused by a spirit, a divine curse or by malevolent magic, they could be reasonably certain as to whether the wound or aliment is natural in origin or not, if their medicine skill is high enough to recognize natural verses unnatural causes. Certainly a character could read clues as to how long ago a person died, and what injury or poison they died from. Again, the higher the skill, the more knowledge and experience a character would possess, which means that a higher medical skill is equivalent to, say, 20 years as a doctor, and a character with that skill level could glean much more information of this sort from situations. This makes the Medicine skill more useful the higher it is.

    There are also certain crossovers into the Survival skill, like the possibly to detect poison or other contaminants in food. This could be manifested by a roll with a certain DC level, which the player could do to allow them to see that the meat has spoiled, or that the potions they just got smell strongly like an herb which (he knows) can be used in small amounts to cure a wound, yet in large amounts will kill someone.

    Medicine could give a bonus to information rolls on monsters- relating to the monster's abilities to cause harm: "I once treated a man with ghoul-paralysis," or "My trainer said that giant spiders usually have fast acting venom." This is a good roll-playing benefit to knowledge checks, as someone who's been trained as a doctor or healer would certainly have treated patients who've been attacked by monsters in the past, and so they have a reason to "remember" these monster attributes. Again, more knowledge can be "remembered" for a higher level skill or higher level roll.

    Healers and apothecaries should have a knowledge of herbs and medicines. Note that this doesn't help them to find plants in the wild, just use them, which lets them use their environment in between dungeon crawls.


    Some possible house rules to give medicine additional applications could include:

    Decreasing the effects of status aliments, or keeping a wound from becoming infected (this could be a viable point if you can't heal the party to full health after a battle).

    Some people suggested giving a person with medicine some kind of bonus when using med kits. For instance, increasing the number of points healed based on the user's medicine skill, or by allowing the healer to roll 2 dice and use the larger number.

    One person suggested that players should be limited to only spending one hit die to recover health during a short rest, unless someone in the group makes a medicine skill check with a DC of 10. If they make a DC of 15 then they can use 2 dice, and at 20 the characters may spend as many as they can. This DC roll could be limited to characters who have a proficiency in medicine- thus encouraging all players to at least learn the basic treatment needed to staunch wounds. This could add to good roll playing, as it's unrealistic that people who decide to make their living by fighting monsters for gold, vengeance, glory, etc, will risk life and limb on a regular basis without even a basic knowledge of how to heal themselves when (not if) they get into trouble.

    Note that none of these are useful during combat.


    Other uses for medicine could result from completely rethinking the definition of what constitutes medicine. Western medicine is founded on certain tenants which have endured almost unchanged since the Hippocratic oath was recorded around 300 BC. This includes concepts like, "Do no harm," doctor patient confidentiality, don't use poison, don't perform abortions, don't assist a person's suicide, and pass on all beneficial knowledge, but don't give medical knowledge to people who are likely to abuse it. This is generally consistent with what would be expected from a doctor, or a good cleric/healer. That being said, Western medicine is not the only school of medicine, and a neutral or evil character could find additional uses for it. All of a sudden more roll playing possibilities or creative ways to incapacitate someone open up, when a N or E character has points in the medicine skill.

    A person with medical knowledge might arguably have advantage to rolls to subdue or incapacitate someone, due to their knowledge of the human body, herbs and medicine, or from experience with people with temporary mental issues such as delirium from a fever. Also, it's entirely reasonable for a doctor to carry a vial of ether on them... and not beyond the realm of possibility for him to throw it at an attacker during an emergency.

    A character with the requisite know-how could use slight of hand to drug an opponent's water skin and then return after the opponent is unconscious as an alternative to violence. In fact, someone could argue that a medicine skill is needed to accurately drug someone enough without a risk of killing them with an overdose.

    The understanding of what ails or poisons a person could be used to cause instead of cure. An understanding or medicine and herbs would help a lot in that regard, especially considering that most substances used for medicine do become toxic in high enough quantities.

    Knowledge of medicine is also knowledge of anatomy, and a thief making sneak attacks or attacks on an immobilized (surprised or restrained) person would likely benefit in some way from an understanding of anatomy. A slight damage increase or the ability to add light bleeding damage or the ability to cause a status ailment like silence could be a house rule option that could take place on a successful melee sneak attack (it could function like divine smite). State the intent and then roll high enough vs. the DC, failure results in reduced damage or a penalty. Maybe add a daily limit to the number of times it may be applied.

    Of course, even though some would concede that these options are entirely plausible, some of them may not be playable due to a character's alignment or philosophy. I wanted to include them because it gives people more options in role playing, by using this skill in ways they may not have before considered.

    I know that some people will take exception to these ideas, but I hope that this list will be helpful to others who want to get more out of their characters by expanding the possibilities of a (currently) very limited skill.


    When talking about medicine, it isn't just healing, it is the science of the body as a whole.

    - The Nature skill might identify a plant or substance as poisonous. The Medicine skill will identify the correct dose and/or preparation technique to use that same substance as a stimulant, narcotic or hallucinogen (recreational or otherwise!), or even as food.

    - Massage/raiki; for sexy times advantage on a Persuasion check, perhaps...or Intimidation...

    - Knowledge of Chi flows/acupuncture (help a Monk re/gain Ki points, maybe?)

    - The effects of poor diet
    *At the clinic*
    Peasant: "Doc! Doc! We're all suffering from a pestilence! Call the Cleric!"
    Doctor: "Calm down, son, you just need to eat something other than just porridge"
    OR
    Noble: "I have a recurring malaise that the most expensive magic cannot permanently cure. Help me and be richly rewarded."
    Doctor: "Eat less red meat and more vegetables, drink less wine and take this distillation of garlic essence daily with this cleansing tea and it should clear up in a few weeks."

    - A character with Medicine will know the limits of the body and how far you can push those limits before it will start to buckle...or break. Good for physical training, forced marching, extended alertness (see point on stimulants) and other such physical activities involving endurance or fatigue. The knowledge alone might help in judging how soon an army might arrive and in what state, for example, but physiotherapy may also help recover levels of exhaustion faster.
    Last edited by JellyPooga; 2017-02-23 at 01:12 PM.
    I apologise if I come across daft. I'm a bit like that. I also like a good argument, so please don't take offence if I'm somewhat...forthright.

    Please be aware; when it comes to 5ed D&D, I own Core (1st printing) and SCAG only. All my opinions and rulings are based solely on those, unless otherwise stated. I reserve the right of ignorance of errata or any other source.

  22. - Top - End - #22
    Firbolg in the Playground
     
    EvilClericGuy

    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Somewhere
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: A comprehensive list of use of skills in 5e

    I've recently used Medicine skill as means to identify certain drugs (the drug in question was magic psionic variant of opium used as painkiller)
    It's Eberron, not ebberon.
    It's not high magic, it's wide magic.
    And it's definitely not steampunk. The only time steam gets involved is when the fire and water elementals get loose.

  23. - Top - End - #23
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Specter's Avatar

    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Brazil

    Default Re: A comprehensive list of use of skills in 5e

    I just realized this thread is the first thing that shows up when you google 'dnd 5e skills'. Woohoo!

    Added some stuff.

  24. - Top - End - #24
    Halfling in the Playground
     
    Chimera

    Join Date
    May 2013

    Default Re: A comprehensive list of use of skills in 5e

    Quote Originally Posted by Specter View Post
    I just realized this thread is the first thing that shows up when you google 'dnd 5e skills'. Woohoo!

    Added some stuff.
    You do know google searches are diffrent for every user?

  25. - Top - End - #25
    Ettin in the Playground
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Massachusetts

    Default Re: A comprehensive list of use of skills in 5e

    Quote Originally Posted by Specter View Post
    I just realized this thread is the first thing that shows up when you google 'dnd 5e skills'. Woohoo!

    Added some stuff.
    It's like the list. It's very good.

    I let players use skills in combat for an action. Like investigation to see if someone is hiding. Performance by the barbarian doing some sword kata conan style... while the rogue slips into the shadows.

    Why not?

  26. - Top - End - #26
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Beholder

    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    Saint Louis

    Default Re: A comprehensive list of use of skills in 5e

    Quote Originally Posted by DanyBallon View Post
    The skill system written as it is, is purposely vague enough so if a DM believe that in a given situation Acrobatics should be applied to wiggle free of ropes, or that the character could apply Strenght to its Intimidation check. Same goes for skill DC. As it's up to the DM to decide if a character in a given situation should or not roll for a skill check, there's no need for clearly defined check DCs. But I do understand that players used to 3.P and 4e, it can feel like they lost control over their character capabilities.
    Sadly, the 5e Dev team had a mix up. They said they wanted a vague system but then bogged it down.

    Then they broke it by adding expertise.

    If you are gonna make a vague system then make it vague.

    Something I've been looking into is a game called 13th Age, it really seems like a 5e before 5e game in spirit as two of the devs worked on 3e and/or 4e.

    Quote Originally Posted by From 13th Age... Though this is condensed

    Backgrounds & Skill Checks
    Backgrounds represent pieces of your characterís history that contributes to your characterís history as well as their ability to succeed with non-combat skills.

    Each character has a number of points to allocate to a set of backgrounds. These are broad categories of experience (cat burglar, for example) rather than specific implementations of that experience (climbing and hiding).

    Backgrounds donít sync to a specific ability score, though some backgrounds obviously may get used more often with certain ability scores than others.

    Making Skill Checks
    When you roll a skill check to find out if you succeed at a task or trick, the GM tells you which ability score is being tested. Then you choose the background you think is relevant to gain the points you have in that background as a bonus to the skill check.

    Most skill checks require you to equal or beat a Difficulty Class (DC), set by the environment you are operating in, to succeed.

    Background/Skill Advancement
    All your skill checks increase by 1 when you level up. If you want even better skill checks, take the Further Backgrounding feat.

    If you just want to move around the bonuses you already have to show how your character is changing, you can move one background point around among your current backgrounds each time you gain a level, or swap the point into an entirely new background, with the GMís permission.
    So if you are trying to balance on a narrow beam, you would roll (note that 13th age isn't bounded accuracy) 1d20 + Dex + Skill Points if you have a relevant background.

    Now translating that to 5e...

    One of my background is cat burglar, I get proficiency anytime I do Cat Burglar Things (TM).

    Figuring out the price of a diamond? Int + Prof
    Balancing? Dex + Prof
    Thieves tools? Dex + Prof
    Trying to negate a creature's grab? Dex + Prof
    Trying to figure out which rune to trigger in order to not have the trap activate? Int + Prof
    Trying to sell a shoddy necklace at a higher price? Cha + Prof.

    There is no "arcana check" there is only ability checks and if your ability check relates to your background, you may add proficiency.Which is similar to what we have now but way more flexible and a lot simpler. The player doesn't have to micromanage their character.

    So it would go...

    GM: The baron walks in to the meeting room, you see a grim look upon his face as he twists and fiddles with his ring.

    Player 1: What sort of ring is it, how expensive does it look?

    GM: That would be an Int check, proficiency for anyone with a background related to gems, jewelry, or something similar.

    Player 1: I was a surgeon, I have a decent Int but I don't really know much about that stuff.

    Player 2: I was a cat burglar, I know my way around shiny things...

    GM: You may both roll, but only player 2 has proficiency.

    ===

    No skill system is going to be perfect, but if you are going vague, you should fully commit to it.

    Also, expertise should just be advantage or something other than double proficiency... Unless you limit expertise to non-combat related skill checks.

  27. - Top - End - #27
    Firbolg in the Playground
     
    Pex's Avatar

    Join Date
    Nov 2013

    Default Re: A comprehensive list of use of skills in 5e

    Quote Originally Posted by Grod_The_Giant View Post
    This is not, I believe, what people mean by "vague." It's less a question of "what does Acrobatics mean?" and more "what can I do with a DC 20 Athletics check?"
    Bingo was his name-o
    Quote Originally Posted by OgresAreCute View Post
    "Welcome to Dungeons and Dragons fifth edition, where the DCs are made up and the rules don't matter."

  28. - Top - End - #28
    Bugbear in the Playground
    Join Date
    Nov 2014

    Default Re: A comprehensive list of use of skills in 5e

    Quote Originally Posted by Deleted View Post
    Sadly, the 5e Dev team had a mix up. They said they wanted a vague system but then bogged it down.

    Then they broke it by adding expertise.

    If you are gonna make a vague system then make it vague.

    Something I've been looking into is a game called 13th Age, it really seems like a 5e before 5e game in spirit as two of the devs worked on 3e and/or 4e.



    So if you are trying to balance on a narrow beam, you would roll (note that 13th age isn't bounded accuracy) 1d20 + Dex + Skill Points if you have a relevant background.

    Now translating that to 5e...

    One of my background is cat burglar, I get proficiency anytime I do Cat Burglar Things (TM).

    Figuring out the price of a diamond? Int + Prof
    Balancing? Dex + Prof
    Thieves tools? Dex + Prof
    Trying to negate a creature's grab? Dex + Prof
    Trying to figure out which rune to trigger in order to not have the trap activate? Int + Prof
    Trying to sell a shoddy necklace at a higher price? Cha + Prof.

    There is no "arcana check" there is only ability checks and if your ability check relates to your background, you may add proficiency.Which is similar to what we have now but way more flexible and a lot simpler. The player doesn't have to micromanage their character.

    So it would go...

    GM: The baron walks in to the meeting room, you see a grim look upon his face as he twists and fiddles with his ring.

    Player 1: What sort of ring is it, how expensive does it look?

    GM: That would be an Int check, proficiency for anyone with a background related to gems, jewelry, or something similar.

    Player 1: I was a surgeon, I have a decent Int but I don't really know much about that stuff.

    Player 2: I was a cat burglar, I know my way around shiny things...

    GM: You may both roll, but only player 2 has proficiency.

    ===

    No skill system is going to be perfect, but if you are going vague, you should fully commit to it.

    Also, expertise should just be advantage or something other than double proficiency... Unless you limit expertise to non-combat related skill checks.
    5e works somehow like this, yet differently.

    i.e.
    DM describe a situation where the characters needs to get by the guard.
    Player: I'd like to sweet talk the guard into letting me pass
    DM: ok, that would be a Charisma ability check, and if proficient in Persuasion, you may add your proficiency bonus as well.

    or

    DM describe the exact same situation
    Player: Grog is not to suave but would like to intimidate the guard convincing him that it would be in its best interest to let them pass.
    DM: ok, this would be a Charisma ability check...
    Player: If Grog take a menacing stance, showing off is muscle, would a Str check be appropriate?
    DM: Sure! you can add your proficiency bonus to your Strength check if you are proficient in Intimidation.

    In 5e, all skill checks are ability checks and when relevant, proficiency in a skill may let you add your proficiency bonus to the roll.

  29. - Top - End - #29
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Beholder

    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    Saint Louis

    Default Re: A comprehensive list of use of skills in 5e

    Quote Originally Posted by DanyBallon View Post
    5e works somehow like this, yet differently.

    i.e.
    DM describe a situation where the characters needs to get by the guard.
    Player: I'd like to sweet talk the guard into letting me pass
    DM: ok, that would be a Charisma ability check, and if proficient in Persuasion, you may add your proficiency bonus as well.

    or

    DM describe the exact same situation
    Player: Grog is not to suave but would like to intimidate the guard convincing him that it would be in its best interest to let them pass.
    DM: ok, this would be a Charisma ability check...
    Player: If Grog take a menacing stance, showing off is muscle, would a Str check be appropriate?
    DM: Sure! you can add your proficiency bonus to your Strength check if you are proficient in Intimidation.

    In 5e, all skill checks are ability checks and when relevant, proficiency in a skill may let you add your proficiency bonus to the roll.
    Yeah, 5e works similar but sadly the devs bogged it down with a layer of rules that goes against their "vague" skill system (simple, vague, rules-light, whatever).

    They seem to have done this a lot in 5e. They are going toward one ideology but try to have their cake and eat it too. Which causes 5e to want to be a rules-light game, but it isn't.

    The skill system would be the easiest way to make a part of the game truly rules light (vague, simple, etc..).

  30. - Top - End - #30
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Specter's Avatar

    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Brazil

    Default Re: A comprehensive list of use of skills in 5e

    Quote Originally Posted by Grod_The_Giant View Post
    This is not, I believe, what people mean by "vague." It's less a question of "what does Acrobatics mean?" and more "what can I do with a DC 20 Athletics check?"
    Quote Originally Posted by Pex View Post
    Bingo was his name-o
    That's another good concern (and they should at least put aUA out for that), but in 3.5 there were explicit directions for using one skill and not the other. In 5e's books, it's all out in the wind.
    Last edited by Specter; 2017-03-12 at 05:25 PM.

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •