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View Full Version : D&D 5e/Next Thri-Kreen - how to do four arms?



Nightgaun7
2019-04-08, 01:52 PM
I'm going to play a Thri-kreen in an upcoming game. I've got the rest of the racial stats set, I just need some help on how to do their four arms so that they don't break anything. Anything other than game balance - being a bit OP is tolerable. I'm more concerned with accurately representing Thri-Kreen. This rule has to be compatible with them using a longbow and a battleaxe, or a gythka and two chatkchas. Because I have minis of them doing this.

My WIP rule:
Thri-Kreen Arms
You have an additional pair of arms. These lower arms are not as strong and tough as your upper arms. They allow you to take an additional bonus action per turn.
You may hold use one of your lower arms to hold a light weapon, or both to wield a one-handed weapon. If you use your lower arms to wield weapons, you may make an additional attack with a bonus action. Any such attack does not get a damage bonus from Strength.

JNAProductions
2019-04-08, 02:33 PM
So, I have an extra pair of arms. This means I can Dash three times, instead of twice, if I'm a Rogue 2. The bonus action part is a combination of too good, in certain builds, and nonsensical.

sandmote
2019-04-08, 02:50 PM
I don't think the rules as written are clear, but I think the idea is that you can only use the extra bonus action to attack using the extra arms.

I would maybe change it to the following:


Four Armed You have a pair of extra arms, which are weaker than your main pair. Together they can hold a one handed weapon, or each can hold a light weapon. Once per turn, you can attack with these weapons (no action required). You don't add your ability modifier to the damage of the bonus attack, unless that modifier is negative.

I don't think I've seen anything on how the Thri-Kreen view magic, but I'd rule the arms can also hold a focus and be used for somatic components

Bjarkmundur
2019-04-08, 03:07 PM
Multiple arms: The thri-kreen can take an additional object interaction per turn, such as draw or sheathe a weapon, or retrieve or store an item.

Natural Jumper: A thri-kreen is always considered to have a running start when jumping.

Torpor: Rather than sleep, thri-kreen enter a torpid state. In this state, they remain aware of their surroundings and only require 4 hours of torpor (rather than 7 hours of sleep) to gain the benefit of a long rest.

Thri-Kreen Claws: The claws are natural weapons with the finesse property that deal 1d8 piercing damage. Once per short rest, As an action on your turn, you can make three claw attacks.

Converted directly from 4e. Originally the claws took a bonus action, but that felt kinda much. You can make it a bonus action, and lower the damage to 1d4, or 1d4 no modifier.

Nightgaun7
2019-04-08, 03:42 PM
So, I have an extra pair of arms. This means I can Dash three times, instead of twice, if I'm a Rogue 2. The bonus action part is a combination of too good, in certain builds, and nonsensical.

What? Dash is a full action, not a bonus action/object interaction/free action/whatever.




Four Armed You have a pair of extra arms, which are weaker than your main pair. Together they can hold a one handed weapon, or each can hold a light weapon. Once per turn, you can attack with these weapons (no action required). You don't add your ability modifier to the damage of the bonus attack, unless that modifier is negative.

I don't think I've seen anything on how the Thri-Kreen view magic, but I'd rule the arms can also hold a focus and be used for somatic components

Yeah that is actually pretty close to what I had originally drawn up regarding the ability modifier. And I don't think having extra hands free for somatic components would be that much of an issue, but I may be wrong. No group I've ever played with has ever really track that, and if you're a casting class you're not going to be good enough at whacking stuff to make that an issue either IMO.

MoleMage
2019-04-08, 03:51 PM
You might take the Starfinder method for more than two limbs. In short, the only benefit is that you can hold more things at a time or have hands free when other races wouldn't (for example, you could hold two two-handed weapons, preventing you from needing to Use an Item to change your weapon). It explicitly does not allow for more attacks or actions than normal. This means your Thri-Kreen will be able to spellcast while wielding a weapon and shield, or grapple while wielding a two-handed weapon.

I suppose it also would mean you can two-hand plus shield, which nothing else can do (I don't remember shields in Starfinder so I'm not sure how that worked for their four-armed race). I don't think this by itself would break the race but it is a fairly strong feature so if you have other good features already you might want to exclude that possibility.

Man_Over_Game
2019-04-08, 03:56 PM
You might take the Starfinder method for more than two limbs. In short, the only benefit is that you can hold more things at a time or have hands free when other races wouldn't (for example, you could hold two two-handed weapons, preventing you from needing to Use an Item to change your weapon). It explicitly does not allow for more attacks or actions than normal. This means your Thri-Kreen will be able to spellcast while wielding a weapon and shield, or grapple while wielding a two-handed weapon.

I suppose it also would mean you can two-hand plus shield, which nothing else can do (I don't remember shields in Starfinder so I'm not sure how that worked for their four-armed race). I don't think this by itself would break the race but it is a fairly strong feature so if you have other good features already you might want to exclude that possibility.

Use 3 shields. Claim you have 3/4 cover, then use Spell Sniper to shoot enemies through your fortified bunker of WTFness.

Nightgaun7
2019-04-08, 03:56 PM
You might take the Starfinder method for more than two limbs. In short, the only benefit is that you can hold more things at a time or have hands free when other races wouldn't (for example, you could hold two two-handed weapons, preventing you from needing to Use an Item to change your weapon). It explicitly does not allow for more attacks or actions than normal. This means your Thri-Kreen will be able to spellcast while wielding a weapon and shield, or grapple while wielding a two-handed weapon.

I suppose it also would mean you can two-hand plus shield, which nothing else can do (I don't remember shields in Starfinder so I'm not sure how that worked for their four-armed race). I don't think this by itself would break the race but it is a fairly strong feature so if you have other good features already you might want to exclude that possibility.

The other features are, deliberately, pretty tame. Not nearly the full glory our arthropod overlords deserve!

Mark Hall
2019-04-08, 06:22 PM
What? Dash is a full action, not a bonus action/object interaction/free action/whatever.


Rogue 2. The Cunning Action ability allows you to take it as a bonus action.

As for thri-kreen, I would say that, as a bonus action, they can make up to 3 additional attacks, either with weapons or claws (assuming they still have claws) Heck, make it 4, since they used to have a bite attack.

Crisis21
2019-04-08, 10:53 PM
How about the obvious?

Extra Arms: You have extra arms with which you can use to hold and manipulate objects. While using two of your arms normally, you may also use your extra arms to hold items, bear a shield, or grapple an additional opponent.

Nightgaun7
2019-04-09, 02:47 AM
Rogue 2. The Cunning Action ability allows you to take it as a bonus action.

Ah I wasn't reading that as the Rogue class level.


How about the obvious?

Extra Arms: You have extra arms with which you can use to hold and manipulate objects. While using two of your arms normally, you may also use your extra arms to hold items, bear a shield, or grapple an additional opponent.

I was tempted to put down "Four arms: You have two more arms" and take it from there.

Fnissalot
2019-04-09, 05:19 AM
I would do it like this. This gives you options for multiple types of builds and it don't break stuff to much that I can see.

Extra Arms: You have two additional arms. The arms are limited in their strength and dexterity and can therefore not use shields or most weapons. You may interact with an additional object or feature of the environment for free during your turn. In addition, they can be used in the following ways:

to perform somatic components of spells.
count as the second hand for weapons with the versatile property.
loading one-handed ranged weapons with the ammunition property.
after attacking with a thrown weapon, may draw another weapon for free


Edit: removed this: hold a weapon with the light property. When you take the Attack action and attack with a weapon that youíre holding in one of your normal hands, you can use a bonus action to attack with a light weapon that youíre holding in a hand of these arms. You donít add your ability modifier to the damage of the bonus attack, unless that modifier is negative.

Crisis21
2019-04-09, 09:11 AM
I would do it like this. This gives you options for multiple types of builds and it don't break stuff to much that I can see.

Extra Arms: You have two additional arms. The arms are limited in their strength and dexterity and can therefore not use shields or most weapons. You may interact with an additional object or feature of the environment for free during your turn. In addition, they can be used in the following ways:

to perform somatic components of spells.
count as the second hand for weapons with the versatile property.
loading one-handed ranged weapons with the ammunition property.
after attacking with a thrown weapon, may draw another weapon as a free action


Edit: removed this: hold a weapon with the light property. When you take the Attack action and attack with a weapon that youíre holding in one of your normal hands, you can use a bonus action to attack with a light weapon that youíre holding in a hand of these arms. You donít add your ability modifier to the damage of the bonus attack, unless that modifier is negative.
ftfy

Also, don't forget:

grasping or holding an item
grappling an additional creature

Man_Over_Game
2019-04-09, 11:39 AM
ftfy

Also, don't forget:

grasping or holding an item
grappling an additional creature


There's no such thing as a "free action" in 5e. There was in PFer, but not in 5th edition. The way Fnissalot wrote it was mostly accurate, except it could be interpreted to allow an infinite number of weapons to be drawn "for free".

I'd just have it say that "after attacking with a thrown weapon, may draw a replacement weapon for free", as this means that you can only draw a new weapon for each weapon you have thrown.

Crisis21
2019-04-09, 01:27 PM
There's no such thing as a "free action" in 5e. There was in PFer, but not in 5th edition. The way Fnissalot wrote it was mostly accurate, except it could be interpreted to allow an infinite number of weapons to be drawn "for free".

I'd just have it say that "after attacking with a thrown weapon, may draw a replacement weapon for free", as this means that you can only draw a new weapon for each weapon you have thrown.

Talking is a free action. Unless they changed that.

...I may have a tendency to nitpick.

Fnissalot
2019-04-09, 03:26 PM
There's no such thing as a "free action" in 5e. There was in PFer, but not in 5th edition. The way Fnissalot wrote it was mostly accurate, except it could be interpreted to allow an infinite number of weapons to be drawn "for free".

I'd just have it say that "after attacking with a thrown weapon, may draw a replacement weapon for free", as this means that you can only draw a new weapon for each weapon you have thrown.

I guess this would be even more exact?
After doing a ranged attack with a weapon with the thrown property, may draw another weapon for as part of that attack.

Cynthaer
2019-04-09, 03:40 PM
I would do it like this. This gives you options for multiple types of builds and it don't break stuff to much that I can see.

Extra Arms: You have two additional arms. The arms are limited in their strength and dexterity and can therefore not use shields or most weapons. You may interact with an additional object or feature of the environment for free during your turn. In addition, they can be used in the following ways:

to perform somatic components of spells.
count as the second hand for weapons with the versatile property.
loading one-handed ranged weapons with the ammunition property.
after attacking with a thrown weapon, may draw another weapon for free

Not bad. It lets you use a shield and a 2-handed longsword at the same time, while still being able to cast at will. Useful, but not overpowered.

Regarding the OP, I'll refer to this post of mine from an earlier thread:


The problem is that there isn't "an amount of power" that you can estimate for a second bonus action.

Or, to put it another way, the power level of a second bonus action is wildly unpredictable and context-dependent.

That's because bonus actions are a generic complexity-limiting mechanism. A thing happens as a bonus action not because of how powerful that specific thing is, but because it's intended to be "an extra thing" that happens in the same turn as an action.

Now, that doesn't mean you can't possibly allow two bonus actions without completely breaking the game. But I'd argue that it's opening a can of worms that doesn't really need to be opened, because it's such a mechanically "gamey" thing to do that there's probably a better way to get the flavor of a specific item or race.

So I would approach the question from the other direction: Given a specific item or race, is "two bonus actions" really the most appropriate feature to put on it?

Cynthaer
2019-04-09, 04:39 PM
There's no such thing as a "free action" in 5e. There was in PFer, but not in 5th edition. The way Fnissalot wrote it was mostly accurate, except it could be interpreted to allow an infinite number of weapons to be drawn "for free".

I'd just have it say that "after attacking with a thrown weapon, may draw a replacement weapon for free", as this means that you can only draw a new weapon for each weapon you have thrown.
Is it actually worth specifying? I mean, they've got four arms; I'd be fine with them being able to draw any number of weapons.

The text of Dual Wielder is "You can draw or stow two one-handed weapons when you would normally be able to draw or stow only one."

Why not "You can draw or stow up to four one-handed weapons when you would normally be able to draw or stow only one."?

Fnissalot
2019-04-09, 11:52 PM
Is it actually worth specifying? I mean, they've got four arms; I'd be fine with them being able to draw any number of weapons.

The text of Dual Wielder is "You can draw or stow two one-handed weapons when you would normally be able to draw or stow only one."

Why not "You can draw or stow up to four one-handed weapons when you would normally be able to draw or stow only one."?
That is even better!

Yunru
2019-04-10, 02:09 PM
Just having four arms doesn't break anything.
It's going to be the equivalent of +2 AC most of the time, which is strong, but as long as it's a major feature also fine.
I could also see a Dual Wielder using Longswords two-handed, which is the equivalent of +2 damage.

The only real problem I see with it is the race as a whole would rather heavily favour martial classes, but it's not like the more recent races haven't abandoned trying to have at least some use in any role.

Fnissalot
2019-04-10, 03:34 PM
If you think it is to weak for spellcasters, add something like:
When a creature casts Counterspell to interrupt a spell you cast that has a somatic component, the DC to interrupt it is increased by 1 if you have atleast three hands free to do the somatic component.

Crisis21
2019-04-11, 12:50 AM
If you think it is to weak for spellcasters, add something like:
When a creature casts Counterspell to interrupt a spell you cast that has a somatic component, the DC to interrupt it is increased by 1 if you have atleast three hands free to do the somatic component.

Er... that has a few too many moving parts to it for my tastes. I know I wouldn't want to be keeping track of a bonus that situational either as a DM or a player.

Mark Hall
2019-04-11, 09:52 AM
Four Arms:

Thrikreen have four arms. The lower set is less developed than the upper, but still dexterous. A thri-kreen may
*As a bonus action, ready 2 additional weapons or objects.
*When using a bonus action to attack with a second weapon, a thri-kreen may also make attacks with weapons in their lower hands, as well (allowing 3 additional attacks). These attacks must be with light weapons, and do not receive attribute bonuses to hit or damage.
*Perform the somatic and manipulate material components of spells while still holding objects in their upper arms.