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  1. - Top - End - #151
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    Chimera

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    Default Re: Missing Character Archetypes

    Quote Originally Posted by ProsecutorGodot View Post
    Divine Third Caster interests me though. Would it be a Rogue or Fighter subclass? Barbarian and Monk aren't really open to the idea of having spellcasting straight up, they're usually very limited in that regard.
    The 4-Elements Monk was strangely different from the EK and AT as a 1/3 caster for no specific reason. One could easily have a 1/3-divine based monk. It would appeal to people who got into monks during the 2e AD&D era, if no one else.

    Quote Originally Posted by Max_Killjoy View Post
    In this case it seems more like the combination of fixations on "emulating archetypes" and "Adventuring uber alles" has lead to some gatekeeping as to what is and is not an "appropriate archetype".

    In a system that purports to be about exploration and uncovering lost secrets and delving into ruins and solving puzzles and traps... it seems very odd to say that characters are only defined by how they hurt stuff and break things, and how their "main stat" connects to that ability -- and that characters who are based on their wits, intellect, knowledge, etc, have no place.
    There is some leftover thought that puzzles should be solved by players, not characters making rolls (much like the whole 'should diplomacy be a skill?' sideline), which pervades some of D&D. That has conspired to keep skills from being as significant as they are in other games (RQ, GURPS, etc.). However, there is no reason why a wits, intellect, knowledge, non-spellcasting D&D character shouldn't exist. Particularly if everything doesn't have to be a "main stat." Back in the TSR days, having a fighter with a 14 Int or Thief with a 13 Wis was not absurd, particularly since putting that in Str or Con didn't change combat/defensive prowess. I wonder if the WotC era stat bonus table and saves (which are a lot more stat-dependent than before) have had unintended consequences.

    Setting aside my bewilderment at the appeal of "emulating an archetype" or using an existing character as the core of your own character, I could easily see basing a non-casting or minimally-casting character for that sort of campaign on the version of Sherlock from the series Elementary, a character remarkably adept at putting seemingly unrelated facts together, picking up tiny clues and signs, solving puzzles, understanding the significance of "trivial" things, etc. But, the game system as it is clearly doesn't support that sort of INT-driven character, even adapted to the setting/"genre", despite it being IMO pretty damn appropriate for the things you're saying the game is focused on.

    Going back to the Indiana Jones example... either his intelligence and knowledge are core to the adventuring he does on-screen (and never mind the lead-up to it that occurs off-screen, where he's learning all this stuff and planning his expeditions)... or you have to somehow define "adventuring" to mean "hitting stuff and breaking it" and claim that things like solving puzzles and overcoming traps aren't "adventuring" in order to reduce his character to a bog-standard DEX-Rogue with the INT and Skills as a sideline.
    Indy is an Int-rogue unless the gaming group considers player knowledge/decision-making more important than character knowledge/decision-making. He's also a Dex/Str rogue in that he runs and climbs and leaps about a lot (although, as I'm sure someone would point out if I did not, 5e actually states that a lot of that doesn't require a Athletics or Acrobatics roll at all).

    Quote Originally Posted by QuickLyRaiNbow View Post
    There's a precedent for using Wis and Cha for non-casting mechanics, and in previous editions there was plenty of support for using Int in the same way. There's even some support for it in 5E; it just happens to be attached to a casting class.
    I think a lot of experiments with using 'non-spell game-mechanic widgits' did not move over to 5e. In 3e there were factotums, ToB, people using the Knowledge Devotion feat to emulate the Guy Ritchie Sherlock Holmes, Snowflake Wardance, and a bunch of stuff which in 5e became the expertise class feature and Shillelagh/Hexblade class feature.
    Last edited by Willie the Duck; 2019-05-31 at 11:58 AM.

  2. - Top - End - #152
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    Default Re: Missing Character Archetypes

    Quote Originally Posted by Willie the Duck View Post

    I think a lot of experiments with using 'non-spell game-mechanic widgits' did not move over to 5e. In 3e there were factotums, ToB, people using the Knowledge Devotion feat to emulate the Guy Ritchie Sherlock Holmes, Snowflake Wardance, and a bunch of stuff which in 5e became the expertise class feature and Shillelagh/Hexblade class feature.
    Undeniably true - though there's also the bladesinger Int-to-AC class feature, which was attached to a number of 'mundane' classes in 3E.

  3. - Top - End - #153
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    Default Re: Missing Character Archetypes

    Quote Originally Posted by QuickLyRaiNbow View Post
    Undeniably true - though there's also the bladesinger Int-to-AC class feature, which was attached to a number of 'mundane' classes in 3E.
    I'm sure, depending on how much we stretch the criteria, we could find as many examples as we care to. Regardless, as much as these things can be fluffed as the character using their guile and caginess to win the day, it also can feed into the not using the Intelligence stat as Intelligence, so much as a arbitrary combat effectiveness stat that people have been going back and forth on.

  4. - Top - End - #154
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    Default Re: Missing Character Archetypes

    Quote Originally Posted by The Jack View Post
    But not a (good) mechanical one.

    I want a class that could win battles through others entirely. They could be wheelchair-bound and still turning the tides of combat through tactics and oratory abilities.


    Sure, full casters can do a good deal of this, conquest paladins make a great leader; but a class of pure-social strength would be an exercise in magnificence
    There's a few problems with a concept like this:
    • Each creature has resources that need to be utilized (Action, Bonus Action, Reaction, Movement).
    • Allowing things to be done remotely, with few resources, results in stagnant strategies (Example: Mastermind Rogue).


    Even to a caster, things like movement and AC matter, and while a caster might rely on a few specific spells, they're always constantly burning through resources. They always have to gauge the situation and create the best solution for the job. There are always gears turning.

    But something akin to a Mastermind spending his Action and Bonus Action and Reaction to Help a ranged target? ARE gears really turning there? Does positioning really matter? Not that much.

    Additionally, certain resources are made better by certain builds. Granting an out-of-turn attack might not mean much to a Warlock, but what about to a Rogue or a Barbarian?



    For something like a "Leadership" character, we need to make sure that:

    • Speed (the mechanical term) matters.
    • It's incentivized to create a new strategy, every round.
    • It's more than just a buff-bot to abuse synergies for specific characters.



    They solved those problems in the Mastermind and Battle Master by making those builds still rely on the core class concepts (Commander's Strike is expensive, limited, and the Fighter can always attack really efficiently. The Mastermind will almost always do more damage by making the attack himself rather than spending his Action to grant Advantage).

    We don't want another scenario similar to ranged attacking, where all you do is stand far away and press a single button. At least ranged attacks have to worry about Cover (which, as a friendly PSA, allies count against you as 1/2 cover), which means that positioning matters.

    I could kinda see it as a short range (15 feet) Command Radius, within which you have a lot of options that all tax your turn resources.

    For example:

    • Action + Bonus Action: Grant an ally within your Command Radius to make an attack, or cast an attack cantrip, with their Reaction against a target within your Command Radius
    • Action: Grant someone within your Command Radius Temporary HP equal to your Charisma + Level. It lasts until the start of your next turn.
    • Action: An ally within your Command Radius that was Dying gains 1 HP.
    • Bonus Action: Designate a weakness in a target within your Command Radius. The next attack against the target deals extra damage equal to your Charisma.
    • Bonus Action: Scan a target within your Command Radius for a weakness. You learn a vulnerability and a resistance of the enemy (if any).
    • Bonus Action + Reaction: Make an ally within your Command Radius aware of an incoming threat if there is no enemy within 15 feet of the ally. Whenever an enemy moves within 15 feet or closer to the Ally, both you and the ally may spend their Reactions for the ally to cast a cantrip or make an attack with the enemy as the target. If the attack hits, the enemy's movement is reduced to 0.
    • Reaction: Help an ally within your Command Radius.
    • Reaction: An ally within your Command Radius gains Advantage on an effect that you can see that causes a Saving Throw.
    • Reaction: An attack, that you can see, against an ally, that is within your Command Radius, is made with Disadvantage.


    This ensures that you have lots of decisions to make, while constantly being limited by wanting to do all of them, as well as requiring positioning and availability to play a major part.
    Last edited by Man_Over_Game; 2019-05-31 at 11:02 AM.
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  5. - Top - End - #155
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    Default Re: Missing Character Archetypes

    Quote Originally Posted by Willie the Duck View Post
    There is some leftover thought that puzzles should be solved by players, not characters making rolls (much like the whole 'should diplomacy be a skill?' sideline), which pervades some of D&D. That has conspired to keep skills from being as significant as they are in other games (RQ, GURPS, etc.). However, there is no reason why a wits, intellect, knowledge, non-spellcasting D&D character should exist. Particularly if everything doesn't have to be a "main stat." Back in the TSR days, having a fighter with a 14 Int or Thief with a 13 Wis was not absurd, particularly since putting that in Str or Con didn't change combat/defensive prowess. I wonder if the WotC era stat bonus table and saves (which are a lot more stat-dependent than before) have had unintended consequences.
    At the spot I bolded -- did you mean "should" or "shouldn't"? "Should" seems to contradict the rest of your point, but maybe I'm reading your post incorrectly.


    Quote Originally Posted by Willie the Duck View Post
    Indy is an Int-rogue unless the gaming group considers player knowledge/decision-making more important than character knowledge/decision-making. He's also a Dex/Str rogue in that he runs and climbs and leaps about a lot (although, as I'm sure someone would point out if I did not, 5e actually states that a lot of that doesn't require a Athletics or Acrobatics roll at all).
    Something to consider there. Gamers seem to have no problem with someone playing a character who is stronger, tougher, faster, than them, who has fantastic abilities that they could never hope to have from impossible reflexes to outright spellcasting. But for some gamers, the idea of someone playing a character who is significantly smarter than the player is a giant red flag.

    I'm of the opinion that there should be a way for a player to have a character smarter or more charming or more knowledgeable than they are, and be able to fall back on a combination of dice and the GM to help them do so. It's not that the player should never try to solve the puzzle or say the right thing or learn important things about the setting -- it's that the character shouldn't be limited by the player in those regards any more than physical differences.
    It is one thing to suspend your disbelief. It is another thing entirely to hang it by the neck until dead.

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  6. - Top - End - #156
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    Default Re: Missing Character Archetypes

    There are a few archetypes missing. I'll put them in my favorite order:

    1) Beastmaster : the guy who trains a bunch of animals to do his bidding. Rhinoceros to trample the opponent. Weasel to steal the bracelet. Scorpions to poison. Should be able to have a dozen different animals at all times.

    2) Malconvoker: (From 3.5) Tricky bastard who summons and lies to demons and make them do his bidding.

    3) Necromancer: The real version with permanent undead

    4) Summoner: (pathfinder) who contribute by summoning mostly.

    Yes, there is a minionmaster theme about my list.

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    Default Re: Missing Character Archetypes

    Quote Originally Posted by monkey3 View Post
    There are a few archetypes missing. I'll put them in my favorite order:

    1) Beastmaster : the guy who trains a bunch of animals to do his bidding. Rhinoceros to trample the opponent. Weasel to steal the bracelet. Scorpions to poison. Should be able to have a dozen different animals at all times.

    2) Malconvoker: (From 3.5) Tricky bastard who summons and lies to demons and make them do his bidding.

    3) Necromancer: The real version with permanent undead

    4) Summoner: (pathfinder) who contribute by summoning mostly.

    Yes, there is a minionmaster theme about my list.
    What would be the optimal way of adding a summon-focused concept that doesn't slow down the game?
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    MOG, design a darn RPG system. Seriously, the amount of ideas I’ve gleaned from your posts has been valuable. You’re a gem of the community here.
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    5th Edition Homebrewery

    Prestige Options, changing primary attributes while maintaining balance with default options.
    Adrenaline Surge, fitting Short Rests into combat to fix bosses/Short Rest Classes.
    Pain, using Exhaustion to make tactical martial combatants.
    Fate Sorcery, lucky winner of the 5e D&D Subclass Contest VII!

  8. - Top - End - #158
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    Quote Originally Posted by Max_Killjoy View Post
    At the spot I bolded -- did you mean "should" or "shouldn't"? "Should" seems to contradict the rest of your point, but maybe I'm reading your post incorrectly.
    Nope, you read it right but it had a typo/omission in it. I read these threads and type this stuff up in notepad in between meetings and the like and sometimes it gets garbled. I know it's putting a burden on those reading my posts, but people have been very accommodating, which I appreciate.

    Something to consider there. Gamers seem to have no problem with someone playing a character who is stronger, tougher, faster, than them, who has fantastic abilities that they could never hope to have from impossible reflexes to outright spellcasting. But for some gamers, the idea of someone playing a character who is significantly smarter than the player is a giant red flag.
    Smarter and/or more convincing. Both Knowledge-type rolls and Diplomacy/Charisma checks tend to get this treatment. You're definitely not wrong. The thing is, I don't know what to do with this fact. I mean, it is a play preference issue. For some people (many of whom are just a little older than me and played the game in the first decade it existed), going into the dungeon and thinking your way around problems (with the occasional spell or extremely risky acts of violence -- which should be avoided if you know what is good for you) is the fun of the game, and reducing that down to 'my guy has a 35% in their 'circumvent complex puzzle' is directly antithetical to the fun of the game. It's been a long time since that was the dominant playstyle (and it was almost immediately contradicted with certain physical puzzles with the introduction of the thief class in supplement I), but the playstyle persists in being popular with some of the player base. D&D, particularly the more recent editions, have put some serious effort in putting some mechanics behind facilitating /accommodating those who prefer their characters to be able to be smarter or more social than they are, with non-weapon proficiencies/skills, but those have always been secondary or optional systems (or simply not seen as much support as the combat or 'use spells to solve this' subsections). But they are there (one just has to be proactive in making them important). While I have preferences on how I would do it (that do not align perfectly with any editions specific system), I recognize the challenge the designers have in pleasing all of their fanbases, and I don't think I could do a specifically better job.

    I'm of the opinion that there should be a way for a player to have a character smarter or more charming or more knowledgeable than they are, and be able to fall back on a combination of dice and the GM to help them do so. It's not that the player should never try to solve the puzzle or say the right thing or learn important things about the setting -- it's that the character shouldn't be limited by the player in those regards any more than physical differences.
    That's certainly a valid preference (a redundant statement, I know). Given that 5e already has ability checks and knowledge-type skills, what is it that you feel that game doesn't have (even as optional material)? Do you want a character Archetype that is 'uses knowledge to defeat surroundings' and, if so, what would the have that a high int rogue or lore bard does not have?
    Last edited by Willie the Duck; 2019-05-31 at 12:52 PM.

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    Default Re: Missing Character Archetypes

    Quote Originally Posted by Man_Over_Game View Post
    What would be the optimal way of adding a summon-focused concept that doesn't slow down the game?
    It would slow down the game. Frankly I think most of my group slows down the game by being indecisive more than I would slow it down with 3 minions, but your point is well taken.

    It is up to the player to have stat cards made for his minions, and act like he and his class is on probation and will be axed if he takes too long.

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    Default Re: Missing Character Archetypes

    Quote Originally Posted by Willie the Duck View Post
    Nope, you read it right but it had a typo/omission in it. I read these threads and type this stuff up in notepad in between meetings and the like and sometimes it gets garbled. I know it's putting a burden on those reading my posts, but people have been very accommodating, which I appreciate.


    Smarter and/or more convincing. Both Knowledge-type rolls and Diplomacy/Charisma checks tend to get this treatment. You're definitely not wrong. The thing is, I don't know what to do with this fact. I mean, it is a play preference issue. For some people (many of whom are just a little older than me and played the game in the first decade it existed), going into the dungeon and thinking your way around problems (with the occasional spell or extremely risky acts of violence -- which should be avoided if you know what is good for you) is the fun of the game, and reducing that down to 'my guy has a 35% in their 'circumvent complex puzzle' is directly antithetical to the fun of the game. It's been a long time since that was the dominant playstyle (and it was almost immediately contradicted with certain physical puzzles with the introduction of the thief class in supplement I), but the playstyle persists in being popular with some of the player base. D&D, particularly the more recent editions, have put some serious effort in putting some mechanics behind facilitating /accommodating those who prefer their characters to be able to be smarter or more social than they are, with non-weapon proficiencies/skills, but those have always been secondary or optional systems (or simply not seen as much support as the combat or 'use spells to solve this' subsections). But they are there (one just has to be proactive in making them important). While I have preferences on how I would do it (that do not align perfectly with any editions specific system), I recognize the challenge the designers have in pleasing all of their fanbases, and I don't think I could do a specifically better job.


    That's certainly a valid preference (a redundant statement, I know). Given that 5e already has ability checks and knowledge-type skills, what is it that you feel that game doesn't have (even as optional material)? Do you want a character Archetype that is 'uses knowledge to defeat surroundings' and, if so, what would they have that a high int rogue or lore bard does not have?
    On the first question:

    It's less that the game lacks those, and more the way they're presented both in the books and in these forums... Access to Skills is spotty and broad access is pretty much locked behind the Rogue and Bard (see also, Expertise and Jack of All Trades) while those classes aren't really about "smart". The details on what Skills can and can't do is almost non-existent. And then there's the ongoing insistence from certain corners that in 5e the Skills are laser-focused on "Adventuring" and "Field Work" and can't really be used to "model" anything beyond that -- and that often they shouldn't even be rolled and aren't even needed.

    Overall, it strongly gives the sense that Skills in 5e are at best a sidelight, just to be used as they to dungeon delving and hex clearing -- that Skills are there but kinda... whatever. And that INT-based, Skill-and-Tool-based, characters aren't really something the game or its advocates are interested in.


    On the second question:

    Often it's less a question of what they'd have that those Classes don't, and more a question of what those Classes have that such a character would not. Particularly with the Bard... CHA-based abilities, Inspiration, Bard-focused spells, etc.
    It is one thing to suspend your disbelief. It is another thing entirely to hang it by the neck until dead.

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  11. - Top - End - #161
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    Default Re: Missing Character Archetypes

    A full arcane Gish.

    Sure, there's gish type classes in 5e but there's no class built around the blending of magic and martial prowess. I'm looking at something like the Magus from Pathfinder or the Duskblade from 3.5.

    The closest they come is the Eldritch Knight archetype but even that is too martial for what I'm talking about. I'm talking a full on blending of a martial and Eldritch character.

    I have my own ideas for this character... and actually I may even go build it!
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    Default Re: Missing Character Archetypes

    My favorite class in 3.5 was the Dragon shaman. Support melee class using auras to aid their party and with that awesome dragon theme vibe, eventually becoming a half-dragon.

    I have tried to homebrew one through the paladin class (as they have some auras and is a charisma class as the Dragon Shaman was too)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Man_Over_Game View Post
    What would be the optimal way of adding a summon-focused concept that doesn't slow down the game?
    Easy. Your character summons a swarm that grows more powerful. You can only have one swarm summoned at a time. Creatures separated from the swarm die immediately. You can use your action to command the swarm to attack, or you can cast a spell or summat.
    78% of DM's started their first campaign in a tavern. If you're one of the 22% that didn't, copy and paste this into your signature.

    Where did you start yours?

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    MY STATS OFF THE ELITE ARRAY:
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    Quote Originally Posted by GreyBlack View Post
    Easy. Your character summons a swarm that grows more powerful. You can only have one swarm summoned at a time. Creatures separated from the swarm die immediately. You can use your action to command the swarm to attack, or you can cast a spell or summat.
    What differentiates this from a single pet based subclass if the swarm of summoned creatures is effectively acting as one creature? Doesn't seem like a good way to fulfill that fantasy for players.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ProsecutorGodot View Post
    What differentiates this from a single pet based subclass if the swarm of summoned creatures is effectively acting as one creature? Doesn't seem like a good way to fulfill that fantasy for players.
    Swarms operate differently than single creatures, for example by conferring certain immunities and resistances. They can also move through player squares differently, can change in shape, etc.

    That said... all of the minionmancy character archetypes tend to be more villainous archetypes than heroic archetypes. Specifically, I'm looking at the Necromancer and devil/demon summoner. Given that... I would be perfectly comfortable (personally, not saying for everyone) saying that either the PC's do not have access to that magic or have to discover it for themselves. At that point, the PC's get to invent the spells for themselves and design their own class flavor.
    78% of DM's started their first campaign in a tavern. If you're one of the 22% that didn't, copy and paste this into your signature.

    Where did you start yours?

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    Default Re: Missing Character Archetypes

    Quote Originally Posted by GreyBlack View Post
    Swarms operate differently than single creatures, for example by conferring certain immunities and resistances. They can also move through player squares differently, can change in shape, etc.

    That said... all of the minionmancy character archetypes tend to be more villainous archetypes than heroic archetypes. Specifically, I'm looking at the Necromancer and devil/demon summoner. Given that... I would be perfectly comfortable (personally, not saying for everyone) saying that either the PC's do not have access to that magic or have to discover it for themselves. At that point, the PC's get to invent the spells for themselves and design their own class flavor.
    I don't think it has to be inherently evil. A Summoner could just as well be something that creates a Homunculus from their own blood, or something akin to that.

    I'm not sure a full class would be needed, though. I'd expect something like this from a Warlock option, like a level 5 Pact of the Chain Invocation that let you summon a more powerful familiar once a day.

    It's fine to slow down the game a little bit, the trick is to not add so many options. Animate Dead is a bit excessive, but Find Familiar is not (because a Familiar can only do 1-2 things in combat).
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    5th Edition Homebrewery

    Prestige Options, changing primary attributes while maintaining balance with default options.
    Adrenaline Surge, fitting Short Rests into combat to fix bosses/Short Rest Classes.
    Pain, using Exhaustion to make tactical martial combatants.
    Fate Sorcery, lucky winner of the 5e D&D Subclass Contest VII!

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