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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Dwarf in the Playground
    Join Date
    Mar 2019

    Default House Rules v1.9 Feedback

    Thanks for all of the feedback in the past! I've further streamlined my house rules to 4 character creation rules (abilities, free weak feat(s), tier 3 weak martial bonus, & green dragon sorcerer bonus) and 2 spell rules (leveled single target damage spell as a cantrip & one summon limit). Any further feedback is appreciated.

    • Roll one set of 4d6s, then may instead choose [17, 15, 13, 12, 10, 8], finally apply Customizing Your Origin modifiers1
    • At level 1 gain one free background feat (without ASI portion if applicable), or 2 feats if Dragonborn (with at least one being Dragonborn only) chosen from: Magic Initiate Sorcerer (Dragonborn only), Dragon Hide (Dragonborn only), Lightly Armored, Heavily Armored, Weapon Master, Medium Armor Master, Athlete, Charger, Martial Adept, Savage Attacker, Durable, Keen Mind, Linguist, or Skilled2
    • At level 14 single classed Barbarians, Monks, Rangers, & Rogues gain an extra subclass power(s) chosen from one of the following classes (can be any single level set of powers from a PHB/XGE subclass that makes sense): Barbarian, Fighter, Monk, Ranger, Rogue, or class from Magic Initiate (if the feat is taken); Rangers may also choose from Cleric & Druid; Arcane Tricksters may also choose from Wizard3
    • Draconic Bloodline Sorcerers may pick variant ancestry damage spells instead of normal acid/cold/fire/lighting damage spells (of levels 0-5); at level 6 all ancestry damage spells treat immunity as resistance (but even with Elemental Adept/Poisoner, immune creatures still take half damage)4
    • May cast the following single target damage spell attacks as cantrips (casting time: 1 action, no duration/follow up damage) when prepared (or known) as a leveled spell: chaos bolt d8 (loses leap, but can choose damage type from any of the d8s rolled), chromatic orb d8, flame blade d10, guiding bolt d8, inflict wounds d10, melf’s acid arrow d10 (loses half miss/delayed damage), mordenkainen’s sword d10, vampiric touch d6, witch bolt d125
    • May only animate/create/summon/control one "summoned creature" at a time (not counting familiars or class features)6


    Discussion:
    1. This gives a wider variety of player starting abilities and makes feats more accessible (less need for ASIs with higher stats).

    2. This gives the weakest/least chosen feats a place in the world by giving them to players for free at level 1 and serves as a minor boost to Dragonborn.

    3. This benefit is lost if you later choose to multiclass. Any thematically and mechanically appropriate power could be chosen (e.g. only a Barbarian could choose rage based powers, only a Monk could choose ki powers, and only a Rogue could choose powers depending on Sneak Attack). This is to add more utility to the weakest single classed martials and to make them more competitive with casters, Paladins, sorcadins, and highly optimized multiclassed characters. Example choices (amongst the many) include: Barbarian - Divine Fury/Warrior of the Gods, Barbarian with Magic Initiate Sorcerer - Dragon Wings, or Ranger - Light Domain Spells/Bonus Cantrip/Warding Flare.

    4. E.g. Green Dragon Sorcerer could take both green-flame blade (poison) and green-flame blade as two cantrips. These changes are required to make Green Dragon Sorcerer a viable option. The benefit stops after level 5 spells so that there is still a benefit to going Red Dragon Sorcerer (compared to a less resisted/immune element).

    5. E.g. a level 17 vampiric touch cantrip would do 4d6 damage when cast and not require concentration, whereas a level 11 flame blade would do 3d10 damage when cast and not require a bonus action or concentration (as long as they were prepared as leveled spells). This keeps these damage spells relevant at high level when a firebolt does 4d10 damage (which is usually more damage than a 1st or 2nd level spell slot). It also increases the variety of attack spells used (so everything isn't just firebolt or eldritch blast) at the expense of using one of your prepared spell slots. The general cantrip attack roll hierarchy is as follows:
    • d12: Witch Bolt (30', electric, sorcerer/warlock/wizard only)
    • d10: Eldritch Blast (120', agonizing blast), Fire Bolt (120'), Flame Blade (melee), Inflict Wounds (melee), Melf's Acid Arrow (90'), Mordenkainen's Sword (60' melee, bard/wizard only, level 13 minimum), Primal Savagery (melee)
    • d8: Chaos Bolt (120', chance at force or psychic increases at higher level), Chill Touch (120', no healing), Chromatic Orb (90', can change damage type), Guiding Bolt (120', advantage on next attack), Produce Flame (30', utility power), Ray of Frost (60', lose 10' speed), Shocking Grasp (melee, advantage if metal, no reactions)
    • d6: Thorn Whip (melee, physical damage type, pull 10'), Vampiric Touch (melee, half healing)


    6. This is to speed up combat and help balance martial vs caster at tier 3-4. A single planar binding or simulacrum counts as your one creature and summons cannot have summons. A level 14 or higher Necromancy Wizard could have one summon, plus one additional skeleton/zombie (class feature), and a commanded undead (class feature).
    Last edited by dmhelp; 2021-03-01 at 09:37 PM.

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Orc in the Playground
     
    PirateCaptain

    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    NC
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: House Rules v1.9 Feedback

    Always a big fan of the Rolling or keep the array so that's cool.

    I like the interesting Cantrip options. Those are neat.

    Digging the Feats at level 1. Always a fan.

    I'd be happy to play some of those.
    I am BoutsofInsanity and my name isn't a metaphor.


  3. - Top - End - #3
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    GnomeWizardGuy

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    Apr 2020
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    MN, US
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    Default Re: House Rules v1.9 Feedback

    Initial half-feats: Is "Moderately Armored" intentionally missing from the list? (Reasonable if so--it's a house on Warlocks and light-armor-race Wizards/Sorcerers, but it might be enough to nudge me to play v.human instead of something interesting, for example.)

    Single-classed martial buff:
    I assume Paladin is assumed to be "strong enough" without the additional feature; same for single-classed Fighter?
    Can you borrow from an in-class subclass? (For example, taking Kensei 3 on a Shadow Monk 14 or vice versa?)

    IMO, the "single creature" limitation is too much of a nerf; I think the more-widely-suggested 1/2/3/4 scaling to replace 1/2/4/8 scaling is less punishing but still leads to significantly faster combat and less overshadowing of martials. (Not sure how to best scale down animate dead, except maybe to make it 1 extra creature per spell level instead of 2 extra per level RAW and use LudicSavant's suggested "no carryover" rule, where you can't reassert at bedtime to control them for all of tomorrow.)

    After all that other discussion, nothing about simulacrum?
    Last edited by x3n0n; 2021-03-01 at 05:00 PM.

  4. - Top - End - #4
    Dwarf in the Playground
    Join Date
    Mar 2019

    Default Re: House Rules v1.9 Feedback

    Quote Originally Posted by x3n0n View Post
    Initial half-feats: Is "Moderately Armored" intentionally missing from the list? (Reasonable if so--it's a house on Warlocks and light-armor-race Wizards/Sorcerers, but it might be enough to nudge me to play v.human instead of something interesting, for example.)

    Single-classed martial buff:
    I assume Paladin is assumed to be "strong enough" without the additional feature; same for single-classed Fighter?
    Can you borrow from an in-class subclass? (For example, taking Kensei 3 on a Shadow Monk 14 or vice versa?)

    IMO, the "single creature" limitation is too much of a nerf; I think the more-widely-suggested 1/2/3/4 scaling to replace 1/2/4/8 scaling is less punishing but still leads to significantly faster combat and less overshadowing of martials. (Not sure how to best scale down animate dead, except maybe to make it 1 extra creature per spell level instead of 2 extra per level RAW and use LudicSavant's suggested "no carryover" rule, where you can't reassert at bedtime to control them for all of tomorrow.)

    After all that other discussion, nothing about simulacrum?
    Thanks for the feedback!

    In surveys Moderately Armored is rated significantly better than Lightly (essentially for Monks or people that can already cast mage armor) or Heavily Armored (only 1 ac unless you had less than a +2 dex) since it (Moderately) gives 3 ac (if you had a 14 or less dex) and 2 more ac from shields on a lower dex character.

    I counted Paladin as strong enough. I had originally let people choose Fighter but I got feedback that Fighters were good enough in the setting of the summons nerf.

    You can take in class subclasses (see the example of a Barbarian picking up Zealot 1), although Kensei 3 requires Kensei Weapons... I would probably make an exception and let you get Kensei Weapons/Sharpen the Blade skipping Agile Parry/Kensei's Shot/Way of the Brush as I don't think it would be overpowered to make the substitution.

    Simulacrum counts as your one summons and cannot have summons itself. I read a lot of old arguments on simulacrum and decided that wish (simulacrum) was perhaps in the realm of true polymorph into a CR20 dragon. The "balancing" factor is the half hp that cannot be healed.

    So leaving simulacrum and not having a series of adjustments for different summoning spells (animate, conjure) was a casualty of simplicity. I just wanted one simple rule that was a nerf. I'm not adverse to giving out magic items that improve animate dead for example (if the party is even ok with it). And encounter balance can be adjusted based on how often people are burning wish to use simulacrum.

  5. - Top - End - #5
    Orc in the Playground
    Join Date
    Apr 2019

    Default Re: House Rules v1.9 Feedback

    Single classed Warlocks are worse than all of the single classes you listed in your houserule.

  6. - Top - End - #6
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    GnomeWizardGuy

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    MN, US
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    Default Re: House Rules v1.9 Feedback

    Quote Originally Posted by dmhelp View Post
    You can take in class subclasses (see the example of a Barbarian picking up Zealot 1), although Kensei 3 requires Kensei Weapons... I would probably make an exception and let you get Kensei Weapons/Sharpen the Blade skipping Agile Parry/Kensei's Shot/Way of the Brush as I don't think it would be overpowered to make the substitution.
    I see; I had missed the non-Zealot Barb picking up a Zealot feature (which should have been obvious).

    I also see that I was being unclear. :) When I said Kensei 3, I meant "the Kensei features acquired at Monk level 3", not "the 3rd batch in sequence within Kensei features".

    Presumably, at level 14, they can't choose to acquire a subclass feature that is normally given at level 15 or higher? (There are some spicy ones up there, and getting them as much as 4 levels early sounds like a bit much.)

  7. - Top - End - #7
    Dwarf in the Playground
    Join Date
    Mar 2019

    Default Re: House Rules v1.9 Feedback

    Thanks for the feedback!

    Quote Originally Posted by DarknessEternal View Post
    Single classed Warlocks are worse than all of the single classes you listed in your houserule.
    I actually felt like Warlocks should get something too. I asked about them in the caster martial domination thread and some people seemed to rank them like paladins, but that was with summons involved and there was some emphasis on hexblades.

    How about Warlocks can pick a subclass power from Sorcerer, Warlock, or Wizard? So if you had a pact with an evil fey you could perhaps take a fiend power. Or if you pacted with Uk'otoa you could add a GOO power to your hexblade. Or a GOO could add diviner Portent. Or if you pacted with an ice fiend you could take Dragon Ancestor white/Draconic Resilience/variant cold spells.

    I previously had a clause where with DM permission you could alter the leveling pattern to get the second subclass power earlier and delay your other subclass powers. Readding that would make sense for a pact with an ice fiend, so you could change your progression to (expanded spell list/dark one's blessing @1, dragon ancestor white/draconic resilience/variant cold spells @6, dark one's own luck @10, & fiendish resilience/hurl through hell @ 14).

    Quote Originally Posted by x3n0n View Post
    Presumably, at level 14, they can't choose to acquire a subclass feature that is normally given at level 15 or higher? (There are some spicy ones up there, and getting them as much as 4 levels early sounds like a bit much.)
    Yeah, I thought it would be weird if you could get a power before you normally are allowed to get it (why does the Kensei get Quivering Palm before the Open Hand?).

  8. - Top - End - #8
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Lizardfolk

    Join Date
    May 2019
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    Huarahi

    Default Re: House Rules v1.9 Feedback

    Quote Originally Posted by dmhelp View Post
    [*]May only animate/create/summon/control one "summoned creature" at a time (not counting familiars or class features)6[/LIST]

    Discussion:
    6. This is to speed up combat and help balance martial vs caster at tier 3-4. A single planar binding or simulacrum counts as your one creature and summons cannot have summons. A level 14 or higher Necromancy Wizard could have one summon, plus one additional skeleton/zombie (class feature), and a commanded undead (class feature).
    I feel like summons are already pretty balanced in 5e: most summons aren't all that powerful past Tier 2, particularly stuff like Zombies and the like (a single AoE can take them out). This also punishes Battle Smiths, as they innately get their Steel Defender, as well as can pick up a Humonculus and Tiny Servants. This also outlaws at best or heavily heavily nerfs at worst spells like Danse Macabre and Create Undead, as well as kills a great deal many of the higher level Druid spells and the entire Shepherd subclass.
    I'd amend the rule to requiring the player to pre-plan their turns: If you have more than 1 summon at any given time, your turn in combat is limited to 1.5 minutes before the initiative moves on to the next player. This helps keep things moving in combat. As for balancing martials vs casters, I've come to the opinion that they are balanced in their own way, but the community very very very highly prioritizes damage output in balancing over survivability and tankiness. Martials are almost always tankier than their casting counterparts, the only exception I can think of is Artificers, mostly due to their ability to stack their support abilities on themselves.
    "There are truly only 2 sources of conflict: Miscommunication, and Intolerance. Of the two, only one is acceptable."

  9. - Top - End - #9
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    RedWizardGuy

    Join Date
    Apr 2016
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    krynn
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    Default Re: House Rules v1.9 Feedback

    your last change, the one to summons gimps necromancers completely. mob combat is the best way to deal with large numbers of minions without gimping the many minions focus classes. necromancers become unplayable with the rule and it makes all of the minion subclasses extrodanarly weak, making most of them go from one of the best picks to one of the worst picks. mob combat fixes this without gimping a large number of subclasses.
    Have you accepted the Flying Spaghetti Monster as your Lord and Savior? If so, add this to your signature!
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  10. - Top - End - #10
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Yakk's Avatar

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    Nov 2006

    Default Re: House Rules v1.9 Feedback

    Hexblades in combat dominate other Warlocks, and Warlocks in general are better as multiclass dips than gaining levels in it.

    My attempt to fix both is roughly:

    1. I give away the +prof to damage. It now becomes a "Superior Hex" class feature that lets them boost damage on one Hex'd per day by your proficiency modifier.

    2. I replaced cha-to-attack on Hexblade with +cha/2 (round up) to attack and damage (attack bonus reduced to +1 if the weapon is already magical). This also ensures you aren't *only* swinging your weapon with your personality.

    3. I buffed the Pacts. Pact of the Blade can replace any ranged spell attack with a 5' range melee spell attack, getting a damage bonus equal to (str/2 round up) (or dex/2 round up if their pact weapon is finess) while wielding their pact weapon. Chain's familiar gets +prof to AC/ATK/DCs/damage on their familiar, and +3 HP/warlock level. Book gets all of the subclass spells as bonus spells known, and 1/day can cast any Warlock Spell as if they had used a slot equal to 1/2 of the Warlock class level (rounded up, max 9) by reading directly from the Tome.

    (So a 16 dex/20 cha level 17 warlock can do a melee-range EB for 4d10+28, and get any EB riders as well; a level 3 Infernal Blade Pact with 16 dex do melee-ranged Scorching Ray for 6d6+6 damage).

    4. I made EB deal scaling damage, like other cantrips. It no longer gets new beams. But see #6.

    5. Warlocks +cha to damage works on all cantrips, and starts at level 2 for free. Agonizing Blast is removed.

    (I think the combat boost from AB is too large to be optional)

    6. Warlock 5 gets the ability to "split" all damaging cantrips into 2 attacks (each dealing only 1d of damage). For attack cantrips, this can be the same target twice; for save damage cantrips, it must be on different targets. At 11 it becomes 3 targets, and 17 it becomes 4.

    (This means a single-classed warlock is unchanged with regards to EB spam, but can also firebolt spam if they prefer, or dip and do a mass toll the dead. A 2 level dip no longer gives you access to 4d10+cha*4 EB at level 17.)

    7. Warlock major arcana are cast as if they used a (warlock level /2, rounded up, max 9) spell slot. Basically they all use the highest spell slot you can cast a major arcana at. Their spell levels themselves are capped. This compensates warlocks for the lack of duplicate level 5/6 slots, and feels very warlocky.

    8. The Warlock capstone only requires an action, and is fluffed as the Warlock being able to power their own spellcasting now, and can be done once per short rest (not long).

    but this might be a bit much for your preferences.

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