View Full Version : D&D 5e/Next Grey Hawk Initiative small revamp

2017-07-25, 08:47 PM
So, apparently I was one of the few that found the UA's initiative system to be interesting and worthwhile. There were a few flaws with it, which I think I'd like to try and tweek now, that I think keep the simplicity of it while remaining true to the spirit of the system.


On your turn your initiative will be determined by the action you perform. Most actions will use a D6. There are two exceptions to this attack actions and magic actions. Taking an attack action will result in you rolling the weapons damage dice as your initiative. The magic action will be a D6+spell level (cantrip count as 0 level spells).

Additions to initiative:

In addition to the main activity of your turn, you can choose to add +1 to your initiative to do the following:
- Perform a bonus action
- Move
- (anything other non-action things you'd do during your turn, that I haven't thought of)

On the Fly:

If during your turn, you decide to change your something during your turn, you will roll then new action value (if you rolled a d6 to use your shortsword, but now you've been disarmed and can no longer use that weapon, you'd now roll whatever weapon you will now use assuming you can use another weapon).

If you choose to add an "Addition to the Initiative", then on your initiative count you must roll a D4 and use the result as your new initiative. This means adding in, bonus actions and move actions are always possible, but likely put you further down the initiative line.

Ok, so how does this play out.

Barbarian: Let's say he wants to bonus action rage, move, and attack with his great ax. He'd roll a 1d12 for his initiative and add 2 to the result.

Now, let's change it up a bit. Let's say that during the beginning of the round, he was surrounded by enemies, so he decided to just roll his attack (1d12) + rage. Unfortunately, now his turn has come up, and all the enemies have moved away from him. He can roll a 1d4 and add that to his initiative in order to move and go on that new count.

Wizard: the wizard decides that he's going to firebolt. he rolls 1d6 and keeps the result. Had he cast fireball, he'd roll 1d6+3.

Final thoughts:
Now for my thoughts on why I think this improves the system. First, I think saying that adding a 1d6 for a bonus action or move is messy. It's unecessarily adds to many dice to a simple initiative roll. Instead, making it a flat 1, gives it a cost, but not a huge cost. It also makes the math easy. So a higher level character will often want to roll their attack action dice + 2 to keep their full range of options open. Wizards spells start off quicker then heavy weapons, but quickly outpace them as their casting cost is a fixed +1 per level. This means a level 9 spell is going towards of the end of the round almost always, since it 1d6+9.

Now, I've tried to work out the kinks in my head, but that doesn't mean that this idea is without issues. I'm curious if I could get the forums help refining this to make it even better. My hope is that I can take what I thought was good idea in the UA and make it a great system that doesn't add substantial time to a game.