D&D 4th Edition Ranger Design Goals


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    Ranger Design Goals (June 7)

    I'm of mixed opinion on this, for a variety of reasons.

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    Strangely, that link doesn't let me see a blog, only gives me a mandatory 'Profile Setup' page.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Plane Sailing View Post
    Strangely, that link doesn't let me see a blog, only gives me a mandatory 'Profile Setup' page.

    Have they turned off anonymous browse or something?
    I wouldn't know, sorry...

    Anyone else having problems with the link?

    In regards to the mixed feelings, well... let me enumerate in no particular order:

    1) I'm not sure how I feel about the "pick-your-fighting-style" thing rangers have had since 3E. I get why its there, but the shall-not-be-named icon for it originally acquired his TWF via his racial heritage, not his choice of class. Still, dual-wielders are a really cool archetype and should be supported somewhere. With rangers? Perhaps. As I said -- mixed feelings.

    2) Ranger as protector of nature feels to me like it is stepping on the druid's narrative toes. A tracker? Certainly. Protective of land he views as his? Sure. But not as the D&D equivalent of Snow White with the birds and the deer and ...

    I cling more to the Ranger as rugged scout who traipses through the wilderness (and loves it, certainly), but whose ultimate priority is the community he's protecting from what lives beyond the deep woods.
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    In summary, the article says:

    1. The ranger is a wilderness hunter and tracker. (stealthy, alert, good at taking down a quarry)

    2. The ranger is a warrior. (light armour, tough, choose a combat style via theme)

    3. The ranger is a protector. (revere/protect nature or people in the wilderness)

    4. Rangers are friends with wild creatures. (good with natural beasts, can form deeper bonds)
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    I quite like all this except for the combat style (unnecessary IMO) and the revere nature bit (will they have spells? can't tell from this excerpt, but might be in because of this bit).

    I like the sound of
    stealthy, alert, light armour, tough, protector in particular.

    I'd hope they might be fast moving too (I'd have given them the 40ft move in 3e rather than the barbarian - so they could, y'know, 'range'.
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    Hmm. The general thrust of the article is okay, but I strongly dislike the "rangers are protectors" bit. I agree that this is a role the ranger should be able to play, but it should not be mandated. The ranger by its nature has an offensive focus: Tracking, stealth, light armor, ranged attacks and/or dual weapons, all predispose the ranger to attack. Forcing the ranger into a protective role is massively counterintuitive.

    Besides, what about evil rangers? The bounty hunter, the wilderness assassin, or (since Snow White was brought up) the wicked queen's chief huntsman? The ranger class should be able to encompass those characters as well as Aragorn and Drizzt.
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    I agree. First and foremost, a ranger is a tracker and hunter. Tracking is essential. As for hunting, I prefer to have some sort of bonuses with dealing with their quarries. Not all damage. Bonuses to perception, stealth, and social interaction as well

    The ranger is a warrior. Agree. Only cannot hunt if one cannot fight. I love removing combat style from the base ranger. The ranger chooses how he will fight.

    The ranger is a protector? Bwhuh? Sounds like fluff. What does this mean? Rangers don't protect. They run or kill. Rangers are not the protectors of nature. They avenge it... if they feel like it. Getting along with nature is priority number one.

    Rangers are friends with wild creatures.Don't forget. There are more than just animals out there in the D&D wilderness. Magical beasts, fey, and monstrous humanoids are out there too. Now the ranger might not have fey and monstrous humanoid servants but he should have a leg up on making their allies.
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    If a ranger's combat style is determined by theme instead of class, does there remain enough "unique feel" to justify a full class? IE, is "Tough rogue who tracks and befriends woodland critters" enough to set it apart?

    I'm certain they can make it work, but to me it feels like they need a little something more.

    I find it interesting that the article makes no mention of spellcasting.
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    1. I too am glad there's no mention of spellcasting. That should be left for multiclassing.

    2. I also don't like fighting styles. IMHO fighting styles should be reserved for feats and whatever Prestige Class/Paragon Path equivalent 5E has. That way I can not only have a spear and shield boar-hunter type of ranger, I might also have something more interesting than a static plus to accuracy or damage.

    3. Sure a ranger can protect an area (the Dunedain did so for the North) but that shouldn't be necessary.

    4. This makes me wonder what multiclass rules will be like, as many other non-Aragorn and Drizzt Ranger archetypes seem to me to be multilclass combinations such as Robin Hood (Ranger/Rogue), Little John (Ranger/Fighter w. Staff Specialization), Ashitaka from Princess Mononoke (Ranger/Cavlier) etc. The Ranger part was always the wilderness skills and tracking, not specifically archery, TWF, or animal companions.

    5. I hope to also see options for herbalism, trap-making, and enhanced movement through rugged areas.
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