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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Segev's Avatar

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    Default How are 5e player races balanced? And can Sprites be playable?

    It’s clear that CR and playability are loosely related, at best. So the fact that goblins are CR 1/4 and playable more or less exactly as written in the Monster Manual doesn’t mean that all CR 1/4 creatures can be balanced the same way.

    I don’t know that I’d have opportunity nor that it would fit any particular game, but sprites look like they’d be fun to play as some sort of caster (Likely a bard or illusionist, as I like illusionists in 5e.) The tiny flying fey is an amusing concept.

    They can be obtained as familiars by chain pact warlocks - well, a fiend, fey, or celestial can fake being one (and oddly, I lie other chain pact familiar options, there’s nothing about them volunteering to be familiars if the DM wants them to in the monster manual entry) - but that’s not the same as playing one.

    If translated directly, they’d have a size entry that says they’re Tiny, and likely a +2 to dex, +1 to int, -4 or even -7 to Strength, and a move of 10 and 40 flight. They may or may not have the at-will invisibility, possibly at 3rd level. And they likely would not have the poison arrows (or maybe they’d get a price for ingredients on a per-dose basis and some clause that it takes their fey magic to activate so they can’t share it).

    Considering that Aaracockra have only an unarmed weapon and flight as their racial features, I’m inclined to say that flight plus invisibility and maybe poison, even with a huge penalty to strength and the disadvantages of Tiny size, is probably too much.

    But then, I also thought half-elves looked incredibly weak compared to elves or variant humans, and people seem to think (strongly) otherwise.


    While on this subject, Spriggan gnomes from earlier editions did not make it into 5e, it seems, with “Spriggans” in 5e being some sort of plant fey with no similarities to Spriggan from earlier editions. How valuable is the ability to go from small to Large, and how does limiting its duration and/or uses change that value compared to it being “at will” (but costing an action)?

    Consider the gnome traits; would that be a thing you could just tack on as the sole power of a sub race, or would it need to also trade out more of the gnomes traits (e.g. the advantage on mental saves vs magic)?

    Come to think of it, could Sprite (or the ablilty to turn into one) be a gnome sub race? Could Spriggan growth and shrinking into a Sprite-like flying form be (separate) feats?


    Again, this is very much in the theory crafting stage. No specific games or DMs to ask anything of at this point.



    Edit to add: is it a typo that Mountain Dwarves get +2 Strength and not just +1?
    Last edited by Segev; 2020-03-15 at 10:05 AM.

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Halfling in the Playground
     
    WolfInSheepsClothing

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    Default Re: How are 5e player races balanced? And can Sprites be playable?

    As far as mountain dwarves it isnt a typo.

    as for the sprite as a race it really would need some sort of play testing to figure out what you would need to change to make it balanced

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    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    RedWizardGuy

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    Default Re: How are 5e player races balanced? And can Sprites be playable?

    Would a sprite warlock have the option for a human familiar?

  4. - Top - End - #4
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Segev's Avatar

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    Default Re: How are 5e player races balanced? And can Sprites be playable?

    Quote Originally Posted by Cyclops08 View Post
    Would a sprite warlock have the option for a human familiar?
    I mean, you could potentially play a Chainpact Warlock and get a Sprite familiar and then play the familiar as your PC and the Warlock as a follower or minion, but that requires starting at 3rd level.

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    Ettin in the Playground
     
    BlueKnightGuy

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    Default Re: How are 5e player races balanced? And can Sprites be playable?

    Quote Originally Posted by Segev View Post
    I mean, you could potentially play a Chainpact Warlock and get a Sprite familiar and then play the familiar as your PC and the Warlock as a follower or minion, but that requires starting at 3rd level.
    Not quite. Someone gave the idea of playing a Warforged with a fairy inside. The fairy was too injured to leave the vessel until she was able to enhance her vessel's capabilities, which happened at level 3.
    Quote Originally Posted by KOLE View Post
    MOG, design a darn RPG system. Seriously, the amount of ideas I’ve gleaned from your posts has been valuable. You’re a gem of the community here.
    Quote Originally Posted by Man_Over_Game View Post

    5th Edition Homebrewery

    Prestige Options, changing primary attributes to open a world of new multiclassing.
    Adrenaline Surge, fitting Short Rests into combat to fix bosses/Short Rest Classes.
    Pain, using Exhaustion to make tactical martial combatants.
    Fate Sorcery, lucky winner of the 5e D&D Subclass Contest VII!

  6. - Top - End - #6
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Segev's Avatar

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    Default Re: How are 5e player races balanced? And can Sprites be playable?

    Quote Originally Posted by Man_Over_Game View Post
    Not quite. Someone gave the idea of playing a Warforged with a fairy inside. The fairy was too injured to leave the vessel until she was able to enhance her vessel's capabilities, which happened at level 3.
    Okay, that's clever. "It's not a warforged. It's my mecha."

    Obviously, it gained remote controlled capability once she repaired/upgraded it.

    Which Patron did she use to represent this?

  7. - Top - End - #7
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    BlueKnightGuy

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    Default Re: How are 5e player races balanced? And can Sprites be playable?

    Quote Originally Posted by Segev View Post
    Okay, that's clever. "It's not a warforged. It's my mecha."

    Obviously, it gained remote controlled capability once she repaired/upgraded it.

    Which Patron did she use to represent this?
    Any of them but Fiend works rather well, since the "mecha" is a robot and the driver is a fairy.

    Hexblade? Anti-Hostile Targeting System.
    Archfey? Fey Energy Pulse System.
    Undying? High-efficiency life support system.

    etc.
    Quote Originally Posted by KOLE View Post
    MOG, design a darn RPG system. Seriously, the amount of ideas I’ve gleaned from your posts has been valuable. You’re a gem of the community here.
    Quote Originally Posted by Man_Over_Game View Post

    5th Edition Homebrewery

    Prestige Options, changing primary attributes to open a world of new multiclassing.
    Adrenaline Surge, fitting Short Rests into combat to fix bosses/Short Rest Classes.
    Pain, using Exhaustion to make tactical martial combatants.
    Fate Sorcery, lucky winner of the 5e D&D Subclass Contest VII!

  8. - Top - End - #8
    Pixie in the Playground
     
    MindFlayer

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    Default Re: How are 5e player races balanced? And can Sprites be playable?

    Quote Originally Posted by Cyclops08 View Post
    Would a sprite warlock have the option for a human familiar?
    Now I want this

    On the main topic, 5e races are all small and medium sized. So a tiny one, by fact of being so small and therefore hard to hit, has balance issues to iron out. Also flight at level 1 is really powerful, so any magic like things it would get should be a few levels in, when flight as an option is more available to other players.
    Quote Originally Posted by Man_Over_Game View Post
    Not quite. Someone gave the idea of playing a Warforged with a fairy inside. The fairy was too injured to leave the vessel until she was able to enhance her vessel's capabilities, which happened at level 3.
    I built something similar to this for a 3.5 game. It was a swordsage and the fey inside had to be in the warforged to be of any use in combat. The campaign never happened so I didn't get to play it, but its still an idea I've had lingering.

  9. - Top - End - #9
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Segev's Avatar

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    Default Re: How are 5e player races balanced? And can Sprites be playable?

    One quibble: Nothing in 5e ties AC to size.

  10. - Top - End - #10
    Halfling in the Playground
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    Default Re: How are 5e player races balanced? And can Sprites be playable?

    I think using a teifling might make the easiest template. Make them tiny, give them a hover-speed of 30ft. (not quite flight) Fairy-legacy: Give them Dancing Lights Cantrip at level 1, and one use of Levitate at level 2, and one use of Fly at level 5. (Similar to the Infernal Legacy ability) +1 Charisma, +2 Dexterity.

    The elephant in the room is: What do we do about their weapons. I would probably limit them to only light weapons just for flavor. I think armor is fine since they can only hover, and their armor would basically be tin-foil anyway.

    I wouldn't change the rules for AC or give them negatives to strength. Once you overcomplicate you tend to overcompensate.
    They lack strength, but would do fine at everything else. Dex paladins or fighters, easily any spellcaster.

    I hope this helps.

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