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Deepbluediver
2012-03-14, 12:02 PM
I bet you all thought I was dead, but no, you're not that lucky :smallamused:
This is the next part of my ongoing project to rejigger the 11 core classes so that they are a little more balanced in terms of both power and versatility. In addition to changing each character class, I've also reworked the functionality of magic and am currently in the process of redoing individual spells, which would be going quicker if I didn't keep getting distracted by other things that also need fixing, like the combat styles.
My goal is to aim for about tier 3, while also not losing the the flavor and fun and individuality of the seperate classes; I'm not certain exactly where I'll end up. Some well-played characters might still feel like low tier 2, and a other poorly built classes might drop to tier 4, but hopefully the difference will be less.

Extended Rant (further explanations can also be found in the spoilered text)
After my last fix, the rogue, where I basically mushed 3 classes together (rogue, ninja, and swashbuckler) I was kind of feeling guilty about doing the same thing to the ranger and the scout, whose similarity has been mentioned once or twice noted occasionaly widely documented.

But then I had an epiphany. One of the biggest issues with melee classes is that they are only good at combat, and sometimes even just one kind of combat. Apparently the core rules considered it fair that it takes the same level of skill to master one particular fighting style as it does to learn every concievable kind of arcane magic. This is like if WotC designed a wizard who could only cast abjuration spells and another wizard who could only cast divination spells and called them two seperate classes. This is the kind of thinking that gives us both the Duskblade, a shadowy-themed melee/magic hybrid, and the Hexblade, a shadowy-themed melee/magic hybrid; anyone who would like to explain the thematic difference to me and why those two shouldn't ALSO be eligible for a mashup can have a cookie.

Because this game is supposed to be, above all else, FUN, I do not plan on restricting wizards to a single school of spells, but that means I also need to find more for some melee classes to do. So I plan to continue happily combining similar melee classes to get the best of both, and hopefully leave behind most of the dross.


Ranger
Stats
A rangerís primary stats are either Strength or Dexterity, depending on what combat style she favors, and Constitution. A ranger also benefits heavily from wisdom, which makes it easier for her to cast spells, as well as increasing the bonus for her favored enemy class feature.
Alignment
Any.

Hit Points at each level
5+1d5

Class Skills
The rangerís class skills (and the key ability for each skill) are Climb (Str), Concentration (Con), Craft (Int), Handle Animal (Cha), Heal (Wis), Hide (Dex), Jump (Str), Knowledge (dungeoneering) (Int), Knowledge (geography) (Int), Knowledge (nature) (Int), Listen (Wis), Move Silently (Dex), Profession (Wis), Ride (Dex), Search (Int), Spot (Wis), Survival (Wis), Swim (Str), and Use Rope (Dex).

Skill Points at 1st Level
(6 + Int modifier) ◊4

Skill Points at Each Additional Level
6 + Int modifier

Table: Ranger & Spells Per Day
{table=head]Level|Base Attack Bonus|Fort|Reflex|Will|Special|1st|2nd|3rd|4th|5th

1st|
+1|+2|+2|+0|Skirmish (1d6, +1AC), Weapon Style Feat, Track|1|-|-|-|-

2nd|
+2|+3|+3|+0|1st Favored Enemy, Wild Empathy, Trapfinding|2|-|-|-|-

3rd|
+3|+3|+3|+1|Weapon Style Feat, Trackless Step, Fast Movement|2|-|-|-|-

4th|
+4|+4|+4|+1|Skirmish (2d6, +2AC), Animal Companion|3|-|-|-|-

5th|
+5|+4|+4|+1|2nd Favored Enemy, Spring Attack, |3|1|-|-|-

6th|
+6/+1|+5|+5|+2|Weapon Style Feat, Flawless Stride|3|2|-|-|-

7th|
+7/+2|+5|+5|+2|Skirmish (3d6, +3AC), Swift Tracker|4|2|-|-|-

8th|
+8/+3|+6|+6|+2|Camouflage, Battle Fortitude +1|4|3|-|-|-

9th|
+9/+4|+6|+6|+3|Weapon Style Feat, Blindsense 50 ft.|4|3|1|-|-

10th|
+10/+5|+7|+7|+3|Skirmish (4d6, +4AC), 3rd Favored Enemy|4|3|2|-|-

11th|
+11/+6/+6|+7|+7|+3|Battle Fortitude +2|5|4|2|-|-

12th|
+12/+7/+7|+8|+8|+4|Weapon Style Feat, Acrobatic Charge|5|4|3|-|-

13th|
+13/+8/+8|+8|+8|+4|Skirmish (5d6, +5AC)|5|4|3|1|-

14th|
+14/+9/+9|+9|+9|+4|Hide in Plain Sight, Battle Fortitude +3|5|4|3|2|-

15th|
+15/+10/+10|+9|+9|+5|4th Favored Enemy, Weapon Style Feat|5|5|4|2|-

16th|
+16/+11/+11/+11|+10|+10|+5|Skirmish (6d6, +6AC)|5|5|4|3|-

17th|
+17/+12/+12/+12|+10|+10|+5|Free Movement, Battle Fortitude +4|5|5|4|3|1

18th|
+18/+13/+13/+13|+11|+11|+6|Weapon Style Feat|5|5|4|3|2

19th|
+19/+14/+14/+14|+11|+11|+6|Skirmish (7d6, +7AC), Blindsight 90 ft.|5|5|5|4|2

20th|
+20/+15/+15/+15|+12|+12|+6|5th Favored Enemy, Battle Fortitude +5, Master Hunter|5|5|5|4|3 [/table]

Class Features

Weapon and Armor Proficiency
A ranger is proficient with all simple weapons, as well as any 5 martial weapons of her choice.
A ranger is proficient with light armor, but not with shields.

Skirmish (Ex)
A ranger relies on mobility to deal extra damage and improve her defense. She deals an extra 1d6 points of damage on all attacks she makes during any round in which she moves at least 10 feet. The extra damage applies only to attacks taken during the rangerís turn. This extra damage increase by 1d6 for every three levels gained above 1st.

Rangers can apply this extra damage to ranged attacks made while skirmishing, but only If the target is within one-half of their weaponís first range increment.

A ranger also gains a +1 competence bonus to AC during any round in which she moves at least 10 ft. The bonus applies as soon as the ranger has moved 10 feet and lasts until the start of her next turn. This bonus also increases by 1 for every three levels gained above 1st.
A ranger loses this ability when wearing heavy armor or when carrying a medium or heavy load. If the ranger gains the skirmish ability from another class, the levels from both classes stack to determine her total bonus.

Weapon Style Feat
At first level, a ranger chooses a bonus feat from any of the following lists; she must still meet the prerequisites for any feat.

Two-Weapons (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showpost.php?p=12788526&postcount=2) Style
Two-Weapon Fighting
Two-Weapon Defense
Two-Weapon Rend
Improved Two-Weapon Fighting
Greater Two-Weapon Fighting
Two-Weapon Mastery

Projectile Weapons (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showpost.php?p=12895205&postcount=2) Style
Precise Shot
Manyshot
Rapid Shot
Point Blank Shot
Far Shot
Master Marksman

Two-Handed Weapon Style
WIP

Reach Weapon Style
WIP

Weapon Focus (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showpost.php?p=12530739&postcount=2) Feats
Weapon Focus
Greater Weapon Focus
Weapon Specialialization
Greater Weapon Specialization


The ranger may select an additional feat for which she meets the prerequisites at 3rd level and every 3 levels after that (6th, 9th, 12th, etc).

I'm working on improving and differentiating the various weapon styles along the following lines: Two-Handed Fighting (pure damage), Sword Ďn Board (defense, obviously), Two-weapon fighting (damage/defense hybrid), Reach (control), and Ranged (damage/defense hybrid, by virtue of being out of melee range).
Iím planning on giving various martial classes options for different styles, with the fighter and possibly the barbarian just getting enough feats to master several of the styles at once.

If none of this works for you, I suggest discussing with your players/DM about replacing these weapons styles with stuff from the Tome of Battle.
Track
The ranger gains Track as a bonus feat at first level.

Spells
Beginning at 1st level, a ranger gains the ability to cast a small number of elemental spells, which are drawn from the ranger spell list. A ranger does not need to prepare spells ahead of time, and may cast any spell she knows spontaneously, like a sorcerer.

Like other spellcasters, a ranger can cast only a certain number of spells of each spell level per day, and gains bonus spells per day if she has a high Intellect score.
What's an "elemental" spell? No, it's not a typo, it's part of my magic fix. One piece is that the natury-types (druids, etc) get a type of magic called elemental, rather than divine. More importantly, every spell now requires a roll in order to cast, and that a caster's Wisdom score adds to that (much like attack rolls and Strength). Given the ranger's low Base Spellcraft Bonus, a decent wisdom score will be a requirement.
Another thing is that half-casters, such as rangers and paladins are getting a 5th level of spells. I've added a list at the end of this post which includes suggestions for 5th level spells and others to add. Most of them are either utility based or thematicaly appropriate.

The ranger would gain bonus spells from intellect, but with both the limited list and the increased number of base spells, I suspect most players won't feel that it's worth the MAD.

Also, due to the limited spell list, rangers can now cast spontaneously. I can picture a druid sitting and meditating to prepare spells for the day, but somehow that just doesn't seem to fit the flavor of a ranger. Plus, again with the limited list and magic nerf, I don't think this will be OP.
Favored Enemy (Ex)
A ranger specializes in hunting down and defeating certain kinds of enemies.
At 2nd level, a ranger may select a type of creature from among those given on Table: Ranger Favored Enemies (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/classes/ranger.htm#favoredEnemy). The ranger gains a bonus on Bluff, Intimidate, Knowledge, Listen, Sense Motive, Spot, and Survival checks when using these skills against creatures of this type. Likewise, she gets also gains bonus on attack and spellcraft rolls against such creatures, as well as a bonus to her AC.

This bonus is equal to the rangerís wisdom modifier, but is capped at a value equal to her number of ranger levels+1.

At 5th level and every five levels thereafter (10th, 15th, and 20th level), the ranger may select an additional favored enemy from those given on the table, and the limit on the wisdom bonus increases by 1. If the ranger chooses humanoids or outsiders as a favored enemy, he must also choose an associated subtype, as indicated on the table. If a specific creature falls into more than one category of favored enemy, the rangerís bonuses do not stack.
I wanted to make Wisdom more important the ranger, and since this is a key ability, it seemed like the perfect place to do it. I realize the limit on the bonus is kind of odd, but mostly I just wanted to prevent casters (who will all have high Wisdom) from dipping ranger and gaining a huge bonus.
Anyone who is pure or mostly ranger should rapidly outlevel the cap.
Wild Empathy (Ex)
Beginning at 2nd level, A ranger can improve the attitude of an animal. This ability functions just like a Diplomacy check as described in the Playerís Handbook. The ranger rolls 1d20 and adds her ranger level and her Charisma modifier to determine the wild empathy check result.

The typical domestic animal has a starting attitude of indifferent, while wild animals are usually unfriendly or hostile.

To use wild empathy, the ranger and the animal must be able to study each other, which means that they must be within 30 feet of one another under normal conditions. Generally, influencing an animal in this way takes 1 minute but, as with influencing people, it might take more or less time.
A ranger can also use this ability to influence a magical beast with an Intelligence score of 1 or 2, but she takes a -4 penalty on the check.
I think the Diplomacy rules as written are not gamebreaking when only use on animals, and with a little DM control it can be useful. For use against humanoid and other NPCs, I recomend The Giant's fix.
Trapfinding (Ex)
Starting at 2nd level, The ranger gets a bonus to her Search and Disable Device skill checks when using them to locate and disarm traps. This bonus starts at +1, and increases by 1 for every 5 ranger levels beyond the first. (+2 at 6th, +3 at 11th, +4 at 16th, etc).
If a character gains Trapfinding from two or more classes, the levels from the classes that grant Trapfinding stack to determine the characterís bonus.
Finding a non-magical trap has a DC of at least 20, or higher if it is well hidden. Finding a magic trap has a DC of 25 + the level of the spell used to create it.

A ranger who beats a trapís DC by 10 or more with a Disable Device check can study a trap, figure out how it works, and bypass it (with her party) without disarming it.
I've written up a little skill fix, similar to Pathfinder's in that getting cross-class skills is now actually viable, so anyone who wants should be able to locate and disarm traps with enough devoted effort, thereby eliminating the "need" to have a rogue in every group. Trapfinding now just provides rogues, rangers, and maybe barbarians a little bonus.
Trackless Step (Ex)
Beginning at 3rd level, a ranger cannot be tracked unless she wishes to leave a trail.

Fast Movement (Ex)
Beginning at 3rd level, a ranger gains a +5 ft enhancement bonus to her base land speed. This bonus increases by 5 feet every 3 levels (+10 at 6th, +15 at 9th, +30 at 18th, etc).
A ranger loses this ability when wearing heavy armor or when carrying a medium or heavy load.

Animal Companion
At 4th level, a ranger gains an animal companion selected from the following list: badger, camel, dire rat, dog, riding dog, eagle, hawk, horse (light or heavy), owl, pony, snake (Small or Medium viper), or wolf. If the campaign takes place wholly or partly in an aquatic environment, the following creatures may be added to the rangerís list of options: manta ray, porpoise, Medium shark, and squid. This animal is a loyal companion that accompanies the ranger on her adventures as appropriate for its kind.
For a full description of this feature, look here (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/classes/druid.htm#theDruidsAnimalCompanion).
A ranger of a high enough level may select from the alternative lists of animal companions, adjusting her effective level as described.
In my druid fix I removed the animal companion because frankly, the druid didn't need it. Even though it only starts at level 4, this is intended to be the full strength version, so that technically a ranger could pick from the first list of alternate companions right when she gets this ability.
Spring Attack (Ex)
Beginning at 5th level, when using the attack action you can move both before and after the attack, provided that your total distance moved is not greater than your speed. Moving in this way does not provoke an attack of opportunity from the defender you attack, though it might provoke attacks of opportunity from other creatures, if appropriate. You canít use this feat if you are wearing heavy armor.
You are treated as if you had the Spring Attack feat for the purpose of meeting prerequisites.
Another poster helped me understand the benefits of Spring Attack better when commenting on my Rogue fix-thread, and Skirmish works so well with Spring Attack that I really couldn't imagine anyone NOT picking this feat chain. So basically I decided to just give it to the Ranger as a class feature and let players spend their first few feats however they want. You still need to take Dodge and Mobility seperately if you are worried about getting smacked as you hop around the battlefield.
Flawless Stride (Ex)
Starting at 6th level, a ranger can move through any sort of terrain that slows movement (such as undergrowth, rubble, and similar terrain) at her normal speed and without taking damage or suffering any other impairment.
This ability does not let her move more quickly through terrain that requires a Climb or Swim Check to navigate.

In areas that have been magically manipulated to impeded motion, a ranger gets a bonus to any check made to move through the area, including skill and ability checks, equal to one-half her ranger level.
A ranger loses this ability when wearing heavy armor or when carrying a medium or heavy load.

Swift Tracker (Ex)
Beginning at 7th level, a ranger can move at her normal speed while following tracks without taking the normal -5 penalty. She takes only a -10 penalty (instead of the normal -20) when moving at up to twice normal speed while tracking.

Camouflage (Ex)
A ranger of 8th level or higher can use the Hide skill in any sort of natural terrain, even if the terrain doesnít grant cover or concealment.

Battle Fortitude (Ex)
Starting at 8th level, a ranger gains a +1 competence bonus on all Saves and Initiative checks. This bonus increases by 1 for every three levels above 8th.

A ranger loses this ability when wearing heavy armor or when carrying a medium or heavy load.

Blindsense (Ex)
At 9th level, a ranger gains the blindsense (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/specialAbilities.htm) ability out to 50 ft. This ability functions as described on page 306 of the Monster Manual or on the SRD.

Acrobatic Charge (Ex)
A ranger of 12th level or higher can charge in situations where others cannot. She may charge over difficult terrain that normally slows movement, or past allies blocking her path. This ability enables her to run down steep slopes, vault over ledges and small cliffs, and tumble past debris to get to her target. Depending on the circumstances, she may still need to make appropriate skill checks (particularly jump or tumble checks) to successfully move over the terrain.

Hide in Plain Sight (Ex)
A ranger of 14th level or higher can use the Hide skill even while being observed.

Free Movement (Ex)
At 17th level and higher, a ranger can slip out of bonds, grapples, and even confining spells easily. This ability duplicates the effects of a freedom of movement spell, except it is always active.

Blindsight (Ex)
At 19th level a ranger gains the blindsight (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/specialAbilities.htm) ability out to 60 ft. Her senses become so acute that she can maneuver and fight flawlessly even in total darkness. Invisibility, darkness, and most kinds of concealment are irrelevant, though a ranger must have line of effect to a creature or object to discern it.

Master Hunter (Ex)
At 20th level, a ranger is so legendary a hunter that she gains the Frightful Presence ability. Whenever the ranger charges or attacks, any creature within 30 feet that can see or hear her and shares a type with one of her Favored Enemies must make a saving throw (DC 10+her wisdom modifier) or be shaken for 1 minute. Unlike other Frightful Presence abilities, the ranger affects any Favored Enemy, regardless of whether its HD is higher than hers.
Additionally, a ranger receives DR X/- against attacks made ad spells cast by her Favored Enemies, where X is equal to her wisdom modifier.


Spell List Additions
1st
Cure Minor Wounds, Detect Magic, Know Direction, Light

2nd
Animal Trance, Bane, Blur, Bull's Strength, Faerie Fire, Sleep

3rd
Arcane Sight, Locate Object, Keen Edge

4th
Haste, Heal Animal Companion (like Heal Mount but slightly different, obviously), Nondetection, Slow

5th
Confusion, Cure Critical Wounds, Summon Nature's Ally V, Find the Path, Ironwood, Locate Creature, Legend Lore, True Seeing


Conclusion
I realize that the new abilities run dry a bit past level 10, but frankly I think I'm still doing better than WotC and their 5 dead levels. If anyone can come up with any good suggestions I'd take them under consideration.

Deepbluediver
2012-03-14, 12:06 PM
Ranged Combat
Special thanks goes out to NeoSeraphi who reviewed my initial changes to ranged combat, as well as provided his own ranger fix for easy copy-pasta. :smallbiggrin:

Projectile Weapons
Crossbows, slings, shortbows, and longbows are projectile weapons. Most projectile weapons require two hands to use (see specific weapon descriptions).
A character gets no Strength bonus or penalty on damage rolls with crossbows; a character gets his full Strength bonus or penalty on damage rolls with regular and recurve bows, as well as slings and thrown weapons.

With a ranged weapon, your attack bonus is:
Base attack bonus + Dexterity modifier + size modifier + range penalty

{table=head]Projectile Weapons|Price|Small|Medium|Critical|Range Increment|Wieght

Simple

Sling|5sp|1d3|1d4|x2|
40 ft.|1/4 lb.

Crossbow, Light|15gp|1d6|1d8|19-20/x2|
80 ft.|4 lb.

Crossbow, Heavy|35gp|1d8|1d10|19-20/x2|
100 ft.|8 lb.

Crossbow, Hand|100gp|1d3|1d4|19-20/x2|
20 ft.|2 lb.

Martial

Shortbow|15gp|1d4|1d6|x3|
80 ft.| 2 lb.

Crossbow, Siege|50 gp|2d6|2d8|19-20/x2|
120 ft.|14 lb.

Repeating Crossbow, Light|250gp|1d6|1d8|19-20/x2|
60 ft.| 5 lb.

Repeating Crossbow, Heavy|400gp|1d8|1d10|19-20/x2|
80 ft.| 10 lb.

Exotic
Longbow|30gp|1d8|1d10|x3|
100 ft.| 3 lb.
[/table]
Ok, a few notes on the changes here. One of the major things I wanted to do was bump up the damage slightly, so that it was more in line for 2-handed weapons. Also, the whole mess about "Strength/No-Strength to damage rolls unless its a composite bow or has the Mighty property but some bows have a strength rating" seemed to be just complexity for the sake of fluff. It was one of the first things to go.

I rearranged the rest of the table a bit to fit what I felt was a better representation of these weapons intended purpose. One of the major advantages of the crossbow (in real-world terms) was that it put the killing power of a longbow in the hands of the common man. Everything I've read about longbows says that mastering one takes years of effort, which is why they are listed as exotic weapons.
Crossbows have a shorter range increment because bolts are lighter than arrows, and drop off more quickly over any kind of distance.

The "recurve" type is what I'm convinved WotC actually meant oringally. I went and looked up what the differences where in regular, recurve, composite, and compound bows, and this was what seemed to fit the best. A composite bow is just made of different materials; it would be like listing a longsword and a mithril longsword as two different weapons. And yes, I checked; you can make both a regular or a recurved bow out of either a single piece of wood or with composite materials, so I've got history on my side here.
One of the major advantages to a recurve bow was that it put the power of a longbow in a more convenient and managable size. I didn't find any historical examples of a recurved longbow (not that I looked very hard) but I suspect such a thing would be nearly impossible to use due to the necessary draw strength. It scoots in here under the heading of fantastic-realism.

Also, the price for recurve bows reflects that they are always Masterwork quality. WotC did it poorly with katanas, but at least they set precedent.

Edit Updates: I've removed the version of recurved/composite bows entirely; just assume that any bow is made using the best available materials and design.

Range Increment
Any attack at less than this distance is not penalized for range. However, each full range increment imposes a cumulative -2 penalty on the attack rolls. A thrown weapon has a maximum range of three range increments. A projectile weapon can shoot out to five range increments.

Flanking
If your target is engaged in melee combat and within 1 range increment, the ranged attacker can gain a flanking bonus if the normal rules of flanking would qualify them for one (opposite sides/corners; an imaginary line drawn from your square to your friendís square passes through some part of your targetís square). Only the ranged attacker gains a flanking bonus in this situation.

Firing while in melee range
Using a ranged weapon while being threatened by an enemy frequently provokes attacks of opportunity. For a bow, the AoO are provoked by shooting but not reloading, while for crossbows it is reversed.
Basically, for bows you are standing with your arms stretched, drawing/releasing a string, without covering up yourself, footwork, dodging, etc. (thanks Spiryt)
I didn't want a bow to be perfectly equal to a barbarian's greataxe in melee, since attacking from range can be a significant advantage. This disadvantage is reduced and eventually removed it through feats (which WotC did, but not until epic levels).
Firing into melee
There is no penalty for firing into melee.

Firing through occupied squares
You can fire through a space occupied by another creature (friendly or hostile) to hit a target beyond it. However, there is a 20% chance you will hit the creature in the interposing square instead. The 20% chance is rolled separately for each additional creature between you and your target (the first one hit stops the projectile, of course), though it is only rolled once for a creature large enough to occupy more than one square.

Ammunition
Projectile weapons use ammunition: arrows (for bows), bolts (for crossbows), or sling bullets (for slings). Generally speaking, ammunition that hits its target has a high chance of being destroyed or rendered useless (either from the impact or from the target thrashing about because it now has an arrow in it's side); ammunition that misses itís target does not break under normal circumstances. After the conclusion of a battle, you may search the area to recover any fired ammunition.

Attacking and Reloading
Firing a bow (or crossbow) is a standard action, just like a melee attack. Reloading between shots requires different amounts of time depending on the weapon and how well trained (proficient) you are.

Weapon Descriptions
Shortbows and Longbows
Aiming and shooting a bow always requires two hands; shooting a bow while being threatened by an enemy provokes attacks of opportunity. Drawing an arrow from your quiver and preparing to shoot is a free action; if you are not proficient with the bow, reloading is a move action that provokes attacks of opportunity.

Crossbow, Hand
You can draw a hand crossbow back by hand. Loading a hand crossbow is a swift action that provokes attacks of opportunity.
You can shoot, but not load, a hand crossbow with one hand at no penalty. You can shoot a hand crossbow with each hand, but you take a penalty on attack rolls as if attacking with two light weapons.

Crossbow, Light
You draw a light crossbow back by pulling a lever. Loading a light crossbow is a swift action that provokes attacks of opportunity.
Normally, operating a light crossbow requires two hands. However, you can shoot, but not load, a light crossbow with one hand at a -2 penalty on attack rolls. You can shoot a light crossbow with each hand, but you take a penalty on attack rolls as if attacking with one-handed weapons. This penalty is cumulative with the penalty for one-handed firing.

Crossbow, Heavy
You draw a heavy crossbow back by bracing the frame and pulling on the cord with a special hook, usually made of bone, horn, or metal. Loading a heavy crossbow is a move action that provokes attacks of opportunity.
Normally, operating a heavy crossbow requires two hands. However, you can shoot, but not load, a heavy crossbow with one hand at a -4 penalty on attack rolls. You can shoot a heavy crossbow with each hand, but you take a penalty on attack rolls as if attacking with two one-handed weapons. This penalty is cumulative with the penalty for one-handed firing.

Crossbow, Siege
Despite it's name, a siege crossbow is not technically a siege weapon; a crossbow large enough to damage fortifications is called a ballista. The siege crossbow is useful for attacking or defending fortified positions, but it's large size and long reload time make it cumbersome and difficult to use in direct combat.
It is impossible to fire a siege crossbow one-handed.
Reloading a siege crossbow takes both hands, and requires a special ratchet and crank mechanism that (when in use) provokes one attack of opportunity every round from each enemy that threatens you.
[I honestly don't expect PC's to use this a lot; it's just in here to represent the full range of possible quasi-realistic fantasy weaponry. If you are worried about players finding ways to take advantage of this, I would consider it perfectly viable to roleplay a fix, such as banning the weapons by law (which has plenty of real-world precedent), or limiting access to knowledge of their construction.]

Crossbow, Repeating
The repeating crossbow (whether heavy or light) holds 5 crossbow bolts. As long as it holds bolts, you can reload it by pulling the reloading lever which is a free action that does not provoke attacks of opportunity. Loading a new case of 5 bolts is a move action that provokes attacks of opportunity.
You can fire a repeating crossbow with one hand or fire a repeating crossbow in each hand in the same manner as you would a normal crossbow of the same size. However, you must fire the weapon with two hands in order to use the reloading lever, and you must use two hands to load a new case of bolts, which is a Standard Action.

Sling
Unlike a bow or crossbow, you fire a sling single-handed. Loading a sling by drawing a bullet or stone from your ammo pouch is a free action that requires two hands. You can load a sling one-handed as a standard action that provokes attacks of opportunity. If you are not proficient with a sling, reloading is a swift action that does not provoke attacks of opportunity.
You can use a sling in each hand under the same rules as Hand Crossbows.

{table]Reloading Projectile Weapons|Proficient|Not Proficient

Shortbow|Free|Move

Longbow|Free|Move

Hand Crossbow|Swift|Move

Light Crossbow|Swift|Standard

Heavy Crossbow|Move|Full Round

Siege Crossbow|5 Rounds|1 Minute

Repeating Crossbow (light)|Free|Swift

Repeating Crossbow (heavy)|Free|Swift

Sling|Free|Swift[/table]

Feats
Precise Shot [General, Fighter]
Benefit: You can shoot or throw ranged weapons with which you are proficient through occupied squares at targets beyond them without any chance to hit the interposing creature(s).
Your ranged attacks also ignore the AC bonus granted to targets by anything less than total cover, and the miss chance granted to targets by anything less than total concealment. Total cover and total concealment provide their normal benefits against your ranged attacks.
In addition, when you shoot or throw ranged weapons at a grappling opponent, you automatically strike at the opponent you have chosen.
Normal: Any projectile your fire through an occupied space has a 20% chance to hit the creature in that space instead.
Special: A fighter may select Precise Shot as one of his fighter bonus feats.

Point Blank Shot [General, Fighter]
Prerequisite: Dex 13 or BAB+3
Benefit: You get a +1 bonus on attack rolls at any distance equal to half their range increment or less. This bonus increases by an additional +1 for every 5 points of your base attack bonus. (+2 at +5, +3 at +10, etc.)
In addition, you deal extra damage for every 6 points of your BAB to targets within one-half of a range increment.
{table]Weapon|Damage per 5 BAB
Sling, H. Crossbow|1d4
Shortbow, L. Crossbow|1d6
Longbow, H. Crossbow|1d8
Siege Crossbow|1d10[/table]
Special: A fighter may select Point Blank Shot as one of his fighter bonus feats.

Far Shot [General, Fighter]
Prerequisite: Dex 13 or BAB+3
Benefit: When you use a projectile weapon or thrown weapons, such as a bow or javelin, its range increment increases by 50% (multiply by 1.5).
In addition, the range penalty for is reduced to -1 for each additional range increment beyond the first.
Special: A fighter may select Far Shot as one of his fighter bonus feats.

Manyshot [General, Fighter]
Prerequisites: Precise Shot, Dex 15 or BAB +6
Benefit: As a standard action, you may load and fire two arrows or bullets (from a sling) at once at a single opponent within one range increment. Both projectiles use the same attack roll to determine success and deal damage normally, however you take a -2 penalty to attack rolls when firing this way.
For every five points of base attack bonus you have above +6, you may add one additional arrow or bullet to this attack, to a maximum of four arrows at a base attack bonus of +16.
Damage reduction and other resistances apply separately against each arrow fired.
Special: Regardless of the number of arrows you fire, you apply precision-based damage only once. If you score a critical hit, roll separately to confirm the critical with each arrow.
A fighter may select Manyshot as one of his fighter bonus feats.

Master Marksman [General, Fighter]
Prerequisites: Precise Shot, Manyshot, Dex 17 or BAB +9
Benefit: When you use the Manyshot feat, you can fire each arrow at a different target instead of firing all of them at the same target. You make a separate attack roll for each arrow using your highest base attack bonus (the normal -2 penalty from Manyshot is removed), regardless of whether you fire them at separate targets or the same target. Your precision-based damage applies to each arrow fired, and, if you score a critical hit with more than one of the arrows, each critical hit deals critical damage.
If you have the Far Shot feat, the range increment of weapons is doubled (multiply by 2 instead of 1.5).
If you have the Point Blank Shot feat, you no longer provoke attacks of opportunity for using a ranged weapon while in melee range of an enemy.
Special: A fighter may select Master Marksman as one of his fighter bonus feats.

Spiryt
2012-03-14, 12:39 PM
Ok, some quick notes:

- 'recurve' just means that tips of the bow are moving away from the archer when bow is unstrung - thus when the bow is strung, initial tension in the bow is greater, angles between string and tip is different, etc.

You can easily find 'longbows' with recurves, both historical and modern ones.

Since for 'classic' bow recurves are usually beneficial shape, for simple game purposes they can indeed serve as all kinds of 'superior' bows.


Don't really like that crossbow are left as inferior weapons, but that's easily fixeable, I guess. Martial character dropping dudes with deadly crossbow is pretty common archetype from Wilhelm Tell to Van Helsing on the other side. :smallwink:


Crossbows have a shorter range increment because bolts are lighter than arrows, and drop off more quickly over any kind of distance.

For head ups, that doesn't make that much sense, and bolts for heavy crossbows were usually pretty damn heavy, compared to arrows.


I can't really think of a good rational for this as compared to using a melee weapon

You are standing with your arms stretched, drawing/releasing a string, without covering up yourself, footwork, dodging... It's makes absolutely perfect sense that shooting a bow limits your defense indeed.


Ranger looks pretty interesting, although leaving at least Endurance would probably make sense, even if Evasion may be too much, due to all other abilities.

I'm not sure about adding "no medium armor/load" really, with simple D&D encumbrance system it doesn't really make sense, and screw players who would from whatever reason would like to make mailed 'Battle Ranger" but that's easily homebrewed further, I guess.

NeoSeraphi
2012-03-14, 12:50 PM
The spell list makes absolutely no sense. Spell lists tend to follow at least some kind of logical or themed progression, but here you have cure minor wounds as a 1st level spell, and then no other Conjuration (Healing) spells afterwards except heal mount. Clearly the ranger has some grasp of healing, why does this not improve as her spells get better? Meanwhile, you have summon nature's ally v come out of nowhere without even summon nature's ally I to start it off. You have two enchantment spells (sleep and confusion) but no explanation for why these are ranger spells, nor any other spells that would fit with them.

It's...just weird, and it's small. I suggest you expand it and try to get some logical progression that creates a feeling of synergy and improvement throughout all five levels.

Spiryt
2012-03-14, 12:57 PM
*ekhm*

Spell List ADDITIONS

*ekhm*

NeoSeraphi
2012-03-14, 12:58 PM
*ekhm*

Spell List ADDITIONS

*ekhm*

Oooooh. :smallredface: Totally missed that. Looks fine, then, DBD. Carry on.

Deepbluediver
2012-03-14, 02:32 PM
- 'recurve' just means that tips of the bow are moving away from the archer when bow is unstrung - thus when the bow is strung, initial tension in the bow is greater, angles between string and tip is different, etc.

You can easily find 'longbows' with recurves, both historical and modern ones.

Since for 'classic' bow recurves are usually beneficial shape, for simple game purposes they can indeed serve as all kinds of 'superior' bows.
I can call them whatever you want, and frankly I'm considering dropping the differentiation altogether. I left it in for now, because it's more similar to the RAW, but if I ever get around to revamping the entire weapon set-up I'd likely just have one kind of shortbow and longbow and let people picture it however they want.


Don't really like that crossbow are left as inferior weapons, but that's easily fixeable, I guess. Martial character dropping dudes with deadly crossbow is pretty common archetype from Wilhelm Tell to Van Helsing on the other side. :smallwink:
I feel that the lack of strength modifier for a crossbow is balanced at low levels by virture of being a simple weapon, and therefor available to a wider range of characters.

Yes, they don't scale well, but that was intentional. I think it would be hard to establish enough differences between bows and crossbows to justify having a whole seperate progression for them.

It's partly a matter of what level of technology you want your world to run at; I would design guns much the same way. Unless they're MAGIC guns, in which case they might not be very much like guns at all, and you can do whatever you want.


For head ups, that doesn't make that much sense, and bolts for heavy crossbows were usually pretty damn heavy, compared to arrows.
The equipment table on the SRD disagrees with you, putting bolts at 10 to a pound, and arrows at 20 to 3 pounds, or about 3/4 of an oz. heavier, each, if I've done my math right. It's not just about weight though; bolts tend to be shorter and have smaller fletching, making them less aerodynamic and less stable over long distances.

Also, I read this webpage (http://www.thebeckoning.com/medieval/crossbow/cross_l_v_c.html) and watched this video (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xVxA1KP_k90) before reaching my decision. Both would seem to support my conclusion.


You are standing with your arms stretched, drawing/releasing a string, without covering up yourself, footwork, dodging... It's makes absolutely perfect sense that shooting a bow limits your defense indeed.
I was honestly more concerned that people would be arguing from the other side (that I needed to get rid of it). Theoretically, I could make similar arguments about attacking some one with a melee weapon while you are flanked, but for now it stays, so that's fine.


Ranger looks pretty interesting, although leaving at least Endurance would probably make sense, even if Evasion may be too much, due to all other abilities.
It was once pointed out to me that feats should be primarily used for customizing your character. A feat like Track makes sense as a bonus, because that feels like something that a ranger would get as part of his basic training. I can't really justify Endurance except for the ranger being physically active, which I could say much the same for fighter, druid, cleric, etc. Any character is viable for extraordinary endurance, and with everything else the ranger gets, I don't think he'll miss it.


I'm not sure about adding "no medium armor/load" really, with simple D&D encumbrance system it doesn't really make sense, and screw players who would from whatever reason would like to make mailed 'Battle Ranger" but that's easily homebrewed further, I guess.
The ranger only loses access to some of his abilities in heavy armor; you can wear medium armor just fine...provided you take the feat for it.

I think the weapon and armor proficiency feats are some of the least-utilized feats ever written, mostly because every single class seems to get the exact maximum amount of armor and weapons that they would want to use. I'd like it if players would at least consider these feats are part of their character customization so I'm cutting back on the level most classes get as part of their first-level package.

Most of the abilities I attached the heavy armor or medium/heavy load caveat to deal in some way with movement, and if you don't think that jumping/running/dodging/fighting with a 100+ lb. backpack will slow you down and limit your dexterity, then I suggest you try it. Actually, no, I don't suggest you try it because that's a good way to get hurt, badly.

If your character REALLY feels it necessary to carry an entire troupe of circus-gnomes around with him wherever he goes, talk to your DM about homebrewing some kind of quick-release system so that you can dump the entire load as a swift action as soon as combat starts. Either that or just offload it onto your animal companion. :smallwink:

Coidzor
2012-03-14, 03:13 PM
If you want to give them cure minor, why not just give them orisons?

Spiryt
2012-03-14, 03:31 PM
Most of the abilities I attached the heavy armor or medium/heavy load caveat to deal in some way with movement, and if you don't think that jumping/running/dodging/fighting with a 100+ lb. backpack will slow you down and limit your dexterity, then I suggest you try it. Actually, no, I don't suggest you try it because that's a good way to get hurt, badly.

If your character REALLY feels it necessary to carry an entire troupe of circus-gnomes around with him wherever he goes, talk to your DM about homebrewing some kind of quick-release system so that you can dump the entire load as a swift action as soon as combat starts. Either that or just offload it onto your animal companion. :smallwink:

The thing is that there's no point in spending feat on armors in D&D, since those small bonuses that one get's from heavier armor (with less Dex bonus) are not worth Feat and complications with your abilities.

The comment about '100 Ibs' backpack is really unnecessary jab at 'realism' that won't really work in D&D anyway.

It can be very easily countered with"

"Actually don't try to ever fight/skirmish people with spears, trolls, dire wolves etc. without solid armor all over the body because that's a good way to get hurt badly."

For example, can't see how wearing mail would really impair flawless stride, since something that shields you from tearing thorns, hurting yourself against ruble etc.

As far as limiting speed in armor goes, it makes absolutely perfect sense, but then again, just stone set cap is weird idea from our good WotC - very fast dude will run slower in heavy armor, but still faster than slow dude in heavz armor.... Why limit stuff like that instead in more "percentage' way, considering how high levels/speeds etc. can super human characters get?

In short, I feel it's better to just don't throw to many obstacles at players, and let them built it as they won't -most won't make armored ranger anyway, because it's not their idea/too much trouble - but those who want to shouldn't be confined that much.


But again, it's easy to homebrew further anyway, so it's minor.

From other comments, I feel that Flawless Stride should actually work against magical obstacles, perhaps in limited way compared to 'normal' ones.

In the game where magic and controlling spells are severely unbalanced, 'melee' characters should have some counters to that. Makes sense as far as fluff goes too.



It's not just about weight though; bolts tend to be shorter and have smaller fletching, making them less aerodynamic and less stable over long distances.

Also, I read this webpage and watched this video before reaching my decision. Both would seem to support my conclusion.

That site is some extremely flawed data and video deals with just some types of bows that are technologically completely different than D&D stuff.

In reality, both shorter lenght and smaller fletching are beneficial as far as specifically long distances go!

Bolt being thicker and shorter will be much stiffer comparing to similar arrow, and would loose it's energy much slower - less vibrations mean less energy being used, better aerodynamics etc.

So your conclusion is mostly incorrect.

Crossbows tended to be less capable of effective shooting at large angles, due to trajectory etc. of shorter projectiles, but limiting their increments on such premises doesn't make sense either. But without steep angle, bolts would generally fly further with comparable points and velocities.

As far as power level goes, it's indeed matter of conception.

I considered making heavy ones martial weapon, that in fact competes with other martial weapons - while light ones would indeed stay handy shooty thing for untrained.

Deepbluediver
2012-03-14, 05:06 PM
If you want to give them cure minor, why not just give them orisons?

Because I like the idea of players managing resources, whether its HP or spells, and I don't want to give any class unlimited healing at first level, even if it would have to be mostly out of combat.
And because it fits the progression with the other healing spells.

Edit: Plus, most of the first-level ranger spells are actual first-and-second level spells for other classes, so unless I want rangers spamming things like Entangle, Resist Energy, and Summon Nature's Ally I, I would need to make a whole set of 0th level spells as well.


The thing is that there's no point in spending feat on armors in D&D, since those small bonuses that one get's from heavier armor (with less Dex bonus) are not worth Feat and complications with your abilities....

...But again, it's easy to homebrew further anyway, so it's minor.

I've homebrewed an armor buff, too; it increases AC, gives most armor DR/-, and increases the max Dex bonus, plus more options for better progression. There where other mechanical changes, like not having armor slow you down unless you lack proficiency or it puts you over your encumberence limit. It's not perfect, but I feel it's better than the RAW.
In fact, I would even go so far as to say heavy armor is good enough I need to put some kind of barrier in place, or anyone who doesn't get an arcane spell failure chance it gonna want to run around in plate.

Also, I'm working to make the melee classes less feat-starved, largely by providing them with all the combat-style feats they need. My goal is that you would find the advantages to both roleplay and roll-play good enough to at least consider the Medium Armor Proficiency feat.


You're right, of course, that the realism argument is a poor one to make. I don't like to ignore the encumberence rules entirely though, out of fear that it would lead to some annoying player-shenanigans. Like I mentioned earlier, getting around the load-rules seems like it should be pretty easy, but if you have a different design philosophy or a really picky DM, feel free to homebrew further.


For Flawless Stride, I also considered making it work against magic, but I held off for 2 reasons: in my magic fix, I reduced the range of spells so it should be easier for melee players to get within sword-and-spear range of a magic user, and I'm making it more difficult for control spells to lock things down via spell resistance and mechanics.
As a compromise, how about a bonus to checks made to move through magically affected areas? Something like half your ranger level.

Edit:Alternatively, what if I just had them cause you to lose your fast movement bonus?


That site is some extremely flawed data and video deals with just some types of bows that are technologically completely different than D&D stuff.

In reality, both shorter lenght and smaller fletching are beneficial as far as specifically long distances go!

Bolt being thicker and shorter will be much stiffer comparing to similar arrow, and would loose it's energy much slower - less vibrations mean less energy being used, better aerodynamics etc.

So your conclusion is mostly incorrect.
I'm neither an engineer, nor an expert in medieval weaponry, and the curator of the local museum has yet to return my e-mails, phone calls, messenger pigeons, smoke signals, and the brick I threw through his window, so I can only go by what my research tells me.

If you would like to provide a link to some counter evidence, I would be happy read it for my own elucidation. For now, I'll consider moving heavy crossbows up to the martial-weapon level (probably gonna sleep on it, and see if anyone else weighs in) and leave everything else where it is to preserve game balance.

Coidzor
2012-03-15, 01:25 AM
Because I like the idea of players managing resources, whether its HP or spells, and I don't want to give any class unlimited healing at first level, even if it would have to be mostly out of combat.
And because it fits the progression with the other healing spells.

Then don't give them cure minor at all and just do that stabilize thing if you're going with infinite orisons and don't feel comfortable with the idea of the party being able to keep on going until they're out of major resources before they can afford a wand of cure light.

That's kind of a weak argument you're mounting there. :smallconfused:


Edit: Plus, most of the first-level ranger spells are actual first-and-second level spells for other classes, so unless I want rangers spamming things like Entangle, Resist Energy, and Summon Nature's Ally I, I would need to make a whole set of 0th level spells as well.


:smallconfused: It's damned easy, crib a few from druid and cleric and you're done. Bam.

As it stands, there's no reason to put cure minor on the ranger first level list unless you wanted them able to use wands or wanted to do something that was just plain silly and unfair like make cure light wounds a second level spell for them.

Spiryt
2012-03-15, 06:52 AM
For Flawless Stride, I also considered making it work against magic, but I held off for 2 reasons: in my magic fix, I reduced the range of spells so it should be easier for melee players to get within sword-and-spear range of a magic user, and I'm making it more difficult for control spells to lock things down via spell resistance and mechanics.
As a compromise, how about a bonus to checks made to move through magically affected areas? Something like half your ranger level.

Edit:Alternatively, what if I just had them cause you to lose your fast movement bonus?


Something in this vein would probably be good indeed, not straight out 'I don't even care about your goo, magi", because it would indeed kind of break stuff. But still healthy bonus.



I'm neither an engineer, nor an expert in medieval weaponry, and the curator of the local museum has yet to return my e-mails, phone calls, messenger pigeons, smoke signals, and the brick I threw through his window, so I can only go by what my research tells me.

If you would like to provide a link to some counter evidence, I would be happy read it for my own elucidation. For now, I'll consider moving heavy crossbows up to the martial-weapon level (probably gonna sleep on it, and see if anyone else weighs in) and leave everything else where it is to preserve game balance.

The problem here is that D&D terms are obviously very simple compared to reality - it's hard to provide any link per se, as combinations of possible crossbows, bolts etc. is huge.

Difference between some clunker crossbow with badly fitting bolt and some efficient one with bolt of proper weight, fit, stiffness for it could be huge, like literally 40% of difference in velocity, for example, same with bows, obviously.

And that's with 'bad' and 'good' before one goes into different sizes, profiles, materials. Some bow can not be very fast at all, but shoot heavy projectiles just fast enough, so it can't be said that it's 'bad' but won't be very rangy, for example.

Age (literally:smallwink:) old (http://www.crossbowbook.com/page_21.html) experiments show that crossbows range with battle arrows was comparable to bows, and possibly greater with really heavy draw crossbows.

Certain bows can generally send flight arrows at obnoxious distances (like 900 yards) etc. but those are cases of arrows made and shot with strictly and only range in mind, not 'practical' use.

Even with martial arrow, aiming and hitting something smaller than a 3 storey building with a bow from above 500 yards would be tricky, to say at least, even if one can reach it in the first place. That's obviously talking mundane stuff, before taking D&D high levels and magic in equation.

Deepbluediver
2012-03-15, 09:13 AM
Then don't give them cure minor at all and just do that stabilize thing if you're going with infinite orisons and don't feel comfortable with the idea of the party being able to keep on going until they're out of major resources before they can afford a wand of cure light.

That's kind of a weak argument you're mounting there. :smallconfused:

It's damned easy, crib a few from druid and cleric and you're done. Bam.

As it stands, there's no reason to put cure minor on the ranger first level list unless you wanted them able to use wands or wanted to do something that was just plain silly and unfair like make cure light wounds a second level spell for them.
Alright, I'm a little confused; why are we still discussing this? I added in the spell because it fit with the progression of all the other single target Cure Wounds spells, including Cure Critical which I gave rangers at 5th level.

Since rangers now cast spontaneously, they never have to worry about wasting a slot preparing it; if you feel it's useful then use it, otherwise just ignore it. As I stated, I wanted rangers to have 5 levels of spells (not 4 or 6 or any other number) and I prefered giving them more powerful stuff at the upper end than level 0 spells at the bottom.


Age (literally:smallwink:) old (http://www.crossbowbook.com/page_21.html) experiments show that crossbows range with battle arrows was comparable to bows, and possibly greater with really heavy draw crossbows.

Certain bows can generally send flight arrows at obnoxious distances (like 900 yards) etc. but those are cases of arrows made and shot with strictly and only range in mind, not 'practical' use.

Even with martial arrow, aiming and hitting something smaller than a 3 storey building with a bow from above 500 yards would be tricky, to say at least, even if one can reach it in the first place. That's obviously talking mundane stuff, before taking D&D high levels and magic in equation.
I'm still reading through this; it's got quite a lot of interesting material. It seems those "obnoxious distances" you mentioned where achieved with very light arrows that would be all but useless in combat.

Going by what the author wrote, the reasonable maximum range of a longbow is probably somewhat less than can be achieved at 10 range increments in D&D, though this is supposed to be fantasy and as you mentioned, limiting the game for "realism" isn't a good path to take.

Regarding the range and accuracy of the crossbow, the very best crossbows do outdistance longbows in his experiments, but going by the description, that was with a 15 lb. crossbow (twice the weight of the one given on the equipment chart) and that a little further on the author mentions that a good rate of fire for such a weapon was 1 bolt per minute.
So I would conclude that D&D is probably not using these almost-siege weapon type crossbows.

There is also, as I mentioned, differences in the dominance of bows vs. crossbows depending on what level of technology and weapons development is available. The author notes that bows tended to be superior up to about the 1100's, when steelmaking improved so that crossbows began to compete more regularly, to about the 1300's when they surpassed bows, except for when used by specially trained armies, to about the mid 1500's when everything fell out of use in favor of firearms.

I am willing to assume that in the D&D world, mundane crafting for both bows and crossbows is at it's height, so that the 2 are relatively comparable, with slightly different advantages (ease of use vs. better scaling).

In light of our discussions and my further research, I'm probably going to redo the weapons chart a bit by removing the different types of shortbows and longbows, and just assuming that any bow designed for combat is made with the best available materials and design.
And I can add in a third type of crossbow that probably wouldn't see much use amongst players, but would satisy our need for fantastically-accurate realism. :smallcool:


Edit: After reading another post about flight-time and the force a projectile loses over a long distance, I have reduced the maximum range for projectile weapons to 5 for fired weapons, and 3 for thrown. With a longbow or heavy crossbow, plus the Longsheat feat, you can still shoot an arrow a hefty distance, so I doubt it will change much for 99% of combat situations.