5E What is "broken" in 5e? - Page 14
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  1. #131
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    Quote Originally Posted by knasser View Post
    Cover and range are ways that a DM limits the effectivenes of ranged attacks. The first and least objectionable ways, I would say.
    Yes, I'm aware of what these things are. What I mean is that they are two very specific limitations, and remedying them is entirely consistent with what I expect from feats. It's also consistent with the base concept that as PCs improve, they start being able to overcome limitations. At low level, an orc with a short bow across a 10' pit is a significant limitation towards non-ranged combat. A few levels later, a better jump stat or a fly spell and that limitation is overcome. That's the name of the game, and completely normal in my book.

    For Sharpshooter, I find the way that the -5/+10 warps the damage curve is what makes this (and GWM) the feats that become "always take"s.

  2. #132
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    Quote Originally Posted by knasser View Post
    I figured it was optional because it added complexity...
    This is kind of the root of your issue in my view. You know you aren't that experienced, and yet you figure that you know why a rule was not included as part of the default game well enough to decide to use it.

    It no more says "this rule won't affect game balance" than it says "this will unbalance your game if you don't know how to stop it from doing that", so why is it that you feel the assumption of one of those things is more reasonable to make than the assumption of the other?

    Quote Originally Posted by knasser View Post
    No I am not. I'm complaining that the rules are very unbalancing without any warning of that.
    There was a warning. You misread it.

    I won't say that's entirely your fault since "Optional" isn't the clearest possible warning - but it is a warning.

    Just like when a restaurant puts a little image of a chili next to the name of a menu item, someone assuming incorrectly that it means "has some spice to it" rather than "has enough spice that it will hurt to eat if you aren't used to spicy food" isn't actually something the restaurant is responsible for. And yes, I realize that the chili warning likely seems more clear to you than the optional label warning does... but you've had the later trick you, and I've had the former cause me great disappointment (though in the reverse, since I look for that chili because I love spicy food, and sometimes the supposedly spicy food is not worthy of even being called spicy, let alone being accompanied by a warning that it might be too spicy for some customers), so they seem fairly similar to me.

  3. #133
    Quote Originally Posted by Willie the Duck View Post
    This confuses me. I can take or leave an argument that the damage bonus is too great, but I don't see how it eliminates DM tools. The only thing it eliminates is A) range penalties, and B) 1/2 and 3/4 cover. Full cover, wind wall, actual walls, darkness, stealth... all the things I would think of as actual DM tools to limit ranged attacks are untouched.
    How does Stealth limit ranged attacks beyond the opening round? Not to mention Stealth helps set up ranged attacks because dex-based PCs are much better at Stealth than the vast majority of monsters and PC groups usually have a far better scout with higher Perception skills. So no, Stealth is not good at limiting ranged attacks and is far more effective for PCs.

    Is there a generic wind wall spell in 5E? Warding Winds from elemental evil expansion can be taken down quickly, requires concentration limiting what else a caster monster or NPC can do, and isn't as easy to use as previous editions.

    Actual walls help ranged attacker PCs more because they move back and forth behind them hammering with much more effectiveness than NPC monsters with usually higher Dex. Not to mention if both groups are behind full cover, how exactly does battle happen?

    Darkness? How does that limit ranged attacks except magical darkness? It's very easy to come by Darkvision with a PC race. And PCs usually have casters that can get rid of darkness.

    The most reliable DM tools for dealing with archers is cover which increases AC by +2 to +5 for opponent creatures. Boosting AC is a much better means to limit ranged attacks than either Disadvantage.

    It's hard for me to believe you would list what you listed, since every one of those can be more effectively and more often used by PCs than monsters or NPCs.
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  4. #134
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    Quote Originally Posted by Celtavian View Post
    How does Stealth limit ranged attacks beyond the opening round? Not to mention Stealth helps set up ranged attacks because dex-based PCs are much better at Stealth than the vast majority of monsters and PC groups usually have a far better scout with higher Perception skills. So no, Stealth is not good at limiting ranged attacks and is far more effective for PCs.
    Every DM seems to use stealth skill differently, so the overall effectiveness will vary. However, how it would be used ought to be clear. Whether someone who is good at stealth might naturally be good at ranged combat is farther along this bunny trail than I have followed.

    You seem to be mixing your arguments (and, may I say, very prematurely deciding that we're having an argument). Whether PCs will be better at something than the monsters will be is a separate issue from whether X helps mitigate ranged combat or not.

    Is there a generic wind wall spell in 5E? Warding Winds from elemental evil expansion can be taken down quickly, requires concentration limiting what else a caster monster or NPC can do, and isn't as easy to use as previous editions.
    Yes there is.

    Actual walls help ranged attacker PCs more because they move back and forth behind them hammering with much more effectiveness than NPC monsters with usually higher Dex. Not to mention if both groups are behind full cover, how exactly does battle happen?
    Again, you're mixing your arguments. Are the PCs moving back and forth hammering the monsters, or is combat not possible? To answer in case it is really the first case, if the PCs have a consistent higher ranged combat stat, then yes the monsters should either rush them or get behind total cover. That's true with or without partial cover being effective. If the second is the true case, usually monsters are just fine with battle not happening. It is usually the PCs that are trying to obtain some objective that is instigating the combat.

    Darkness? How does that limit ranged attacks except magical darkness? It's very easy to come by Darkvision with a PC race. And PCs usually have casters that can get rid of darkness.
    You don't see how darkness might mitigate the utility of ranged combat? Same as with stealth (and, although I didn't mention this one before, invisibility)--if you don't know where to attack, elimination of to-hit penalties and/or disadvantage is irrelevant. Darkvision only goes out to 60' (120' for some rare races). If everything after 60' is irrelevant, than so is the mitigation of range penalties that the SS feat gives. Light-type spells do help... if you know where to place them (and note that putting those spells up is rounds that the casters aren't casting anything else).

    The most reliable DM tools for dealing with archers is cover which increases AC by +2 to +5 for opponent creatures. Boosting AC is a much better means to limit ranged attacks than either Disadvantage.
    and...? All this tells me is that you think that the cover mitigation is a bigger deal for the Sharpshooter feat than the elimination of disadvantage for long ranges. It is interesting information, but I do not see the relevance.

    It's hard for me to believe you would list what you listed, since every one of those can be more effectively and more often used by PCs than monsters or NPCs.
    I really could not care less whether the PCs or the monster or the NPCs benefit more or less. I stated that all of these are additional tools for mitigating ranged combat that the Sharpshooter feat did not eliminate. As far as I'm concerned, you have not shown that any of them are untrue. I'm unclear on your goals, so I don't know if you've succeeded. However, I am confident in both the coherence of my argument and the appropriateness of my responses.
    Last edited by Willie the Duck; Wednesday, 18th January, 2017 at 10:16 PM. Reason: fixing quote blocks
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  5. #135
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    Quote Originally Posted by AaronOfBarbaria View Post
    This is kind of the root of your issue in my view. You know you aren't that experienced, and yet you figure that you know why a rule was not included as part of the default game well enough to decide to use it.

    It no more says "this rule won't affect game balance" than it says "this will unbalance your game if you don't know how to stop it from doing that", so why is it that you feel the assumption of one of those things is more reasonable to make than the assumption of the other?
    Oh, I can answer that very simply. My expectations of the job the game designers did were higher than the reality. Clearly they had made an attempt at balancing it because you exchange attribute points for feats in this system. How was I to know that this wasn't a balanced exchange? Your contention is that it is reasonable to expect a reader to know what takes advanced knowledge and experience of the game just because something is listed as optional. I disagree. If the designers knew that something unbalanced the game and introduced problems they should put a clear warning on it - plainly "Optional" is not a clear warning. And if the designers didn't know that it had this consequence then they haven't done their job well. Either way, there's a problem there that the designers should have addressed.

    Quote Originally Posted by AaronOfBarbaria View Post
    Just like when a restaurant puts a little image of a chili next to the name of a menu item, someone assuming incorrectly that it means "has some spice to it" rather than "has enough spice that it will hurt to eat if you aren't used to spicy food" isn't actually something the restaurant is responsible for. And yes, I realize that the chili warning likely seems more clear to you than the optional label warning does...
    You don't need to use analogies. I doubt there's anyone who doesn't understand what you've said. But an analogy doesn't say anything useful about a specific instance - in this case that making a rule optional is a get-out clause that puts any problems with it on the GM's shoulders. We clearly have very different standards for games we buy.
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  6. #136
    Quote Originally Posted by Willie the Duck View Post
    Every DM seems to use stealth skill differently, so the overall effectiveness will vary. However, how it would be used ought to be clear. Whether someone who is good at stealth might naturally be good at ranged combat is farther along this bunny trail than I have followed.

    You seem to be mixing your arguments (and, may I say, very prematurely deciding that we're having an argument). Whether PCs will be better at something than the monsters will be is a separate issue from whether X helps mitigate ranged combat or not.
    No, it isn't a separate issue. Sharpshooter's individual effectiveness is irrelevant. It is how it synergizes with the overall mechanics of the game, especially the overall capacity of the PCs to use it to their advantage to overcome game challenges.

    So it is not separate, just as no rule is separate. Broken abilities are all based on how they synergize with the overall game system to make it too easy to achieve victory.



    Again, you're mixing your arguments. Are the PCs moving back and forth hammering the monsters, or is combat not possible? To answer in case it is really the first case, if the PCs have a consistent higher ranged combat stat, then yes the monsters should either rush them or get behind total cover. That's true with or without partial cover being effective. If the second is the true case, usually monsters are just fine with battle not happening. It is usually the PCs that are trying to obtain some objective that is instigating the combat.
    If you don't know how PCs use walls to take advantage of ranged superiority, then you lack the experience to make any assertions based on the use of walls. I shouldn't have to explain how a PC group can use walls to great advantage against monsters with more limited capabilities.

    It is not mixing arguments. It is stating something that an experience player and DM would know very well.


    You don't see how darkness might mitigate the utility of ranged combat? Same as with stealth (and, although I didn't mention this one before, invisibility)--if you don't know where to attack, elimination of to-hit penalties and/or disadvantage is irrelevant. Darkvision only goes out to 60' (120' for some rare races). If everything after 60' is irrelevant, than so is the mitigation of range penalties that the SS feat gives. Light-type spells do help... if you know where to place them (and note that putting those spells up is rounds that the casters aren't casting anything else).
    I know well how it works, just not how it works well against PCs. PCs more often have access to abilities that take advantage of darkness and invisibility. Thus the statement the "vast majority of combats." And once again they take concentration and a specific set up for them to work. So not something you can use very often at all for NPCs/Monsters.


    and...? All this tells me is that you think that the cover mitigation is a bigger deal for the Sharpshooter feat than the elimination of disadvantage for long ranges. It is interesting information, but I do not see the relevance.
    How can you not see the relevance given non-magic using monsters like giants, orcs, or gnolls best option is to build cover behind walls, murder holes or parapets, and the like, basically build fortifications and use cover to protect given their lack of heavy magical capability. Sharpshooter generally eliminates the major methods low magic humanoids utilize to protect themselves from assault from outside forces.


    I really could not care less whether the PCs or the monster or the NPCs benefit more or less.
    Well, I care a great deal as I DM more often than not. The Sharpshooter feat causes major problems for encounter design by allowing an archer to take a single feat that eliminates ranged and cover penalties as well doubling their damage, all useful abilities that PCs can take great advantage of to assault monsters at range while mitigating damage creating force majeure situations that make the game too easy.

    I stated that all of these are additional tools for mitigating ranged combat that the Sharpshooter feat did not eliminate. As far as I'm concerned, you have not shown that any of them are untrue. I'm unclear on your goals, so I don't know if you've succeeded. However, I am confident in both the coherence of my argument and the appropriateness of my responses.
    In a thread where the debate is "abilities that are broken", it is inferred that an ability that gives the PCs a major advantage in combat over DM-generated enemies and that PCs can use more effectively is an example of a "broken" feat. If all the factors you list for mitigating ranged attacks are more effectively used by PCs to overcome NPC enemies, then you are not in anyway proving wrong my assertion (or goal as you put it) to show the Sharpshooter feat is overpowered and broken due not only to its capacity to double the damage output of the user, but to mitigate penalties that help low magic NPCs resist ranged attacks.

    Though I do have a method for countering sharpshooter known as "beat the holy living hell out of the bow user". The bow user PCs don't enjoy it, but it accomplishes my goal of challenging the PC rather than letting a PC act as ranged artillery without risk. If the designers will not take some time to redesign this feat, I'll simply limit it using the narrow, but effective, choices available to me that often lead to them getting severely hammered by the ranged or mobile attackers I make up specifically to counter the extreme disparity in ranged attacking power.

    Not sure why you hopped into the discussion if you weren't looking to debate. I don't argue if by that you mean either of us becoming irritated or unhappy. Your argument, regardless of your assumptions concerning it, do not change my experience as a DM trying to deal with Sharpshooter in a fashion that is fair and fun. In fact, it is becoming no fun to deal with Sharpshooter because of how heavy-handed I have to be when dealing with it.
    Last edited by Celtavian; Thursday, 19th January, 2017 at 02:21 AM.

  7. #137
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    Quote Originally Posted by Celtavian View Post
    Though I do have a method for countering sharpshooter known as "beat the holy living hell out of the bow user". The bow user PCs don't enjoy it, but it accomplishes my goal of challenging the PC rather than letting a PC act as ranged artillery without risk. If the designers will not take some time to redesign this feat, I'll simply limit it using the narrow, but effective, choices available to me that often lead to them getting severely hammered by the ranged or mobile attackers I make up specifically to counter the extreme disparity in ranged attacking power.
    In a game I was running recently, the PCs decided to go to the astral plane in pursuit of some major magic items. The astral monsters I used were 80% psychic damage monsters.
    As you can imagine, two PCs were very unhappy with this turn of events.

  8. #138
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    Quote Originally Posted by Celtavian View Post
    Not sure why you hopped into the discussion if you weren't looking to debate. I don't argue if by that you mean either of us becoming irritated or unhappy. Your argument, regardless of your assumptions concerning it, do not change my experience as a DM trying to deal with Sharpshooter in a fashion that is fair and fun. In fact, it is becoming no fun to deal with Sharpshooter because of how heavy-handed I have to be when dealing with it.
    Please go back to your original comments on my original post and try to see if you can see why I read your comments as a decidedly hostile how-dare-you-have-an-opinion-I-disagree-with?-style tirade. If that is not how it was supposed to be interpreted, then more's the loss.

  9. #139
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    I've always found two features of monks... troublesome.

    1. Shadow Step. At will, 60-foot teleport as a bonus action, with advantage on the first attack roll afterwards. Shouldn't this at least be a ki power?

    2. Stunning Blow. A hold monster spell that can be cast [monk level] times every short rest, can be cast up to 4 times per round, and can be cast as a reaction.

    I'm a bit curious as to design thinking behind these two.

    Cheers, Al'kelhar
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  10. #140
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    Quote Originally Posted by Al'Kelhar View Post
    I've always found two features of monks... troublesome.

    1. Shadow Step. At will, 60-foot teleport as a bonus action, with advantage on the first attack roll afterwards. Shouldn't this at least be a ki power?

    2. Stunning Blow. A hold monster spell that can be cast [monk level] times every short rest, can be cast up to 4 times per round, and can be cast as a reaction.

    I'm a bit curious as to design thinking behind these two.

    Cheers, Al'kelhar
    I'm not a designer, but I am a person that sees no issue with those two features as written, so maybe I can provide some insight?

    1. Shadow Step. It's not as "at will" as you've phrased it because it requires you to be in dim light or darkness, and to be able to see an unoccupied area you actually want to teleport to that is also in dim light or darkness. Bright light shuts it down, and isn't all that hard to come by, plus it takes your bonus action so you are typically losing out on extra damage from an attack, or some other noteworthy benefit, to get advantage on a single attack assuming the power is fully utilized - which is typically not going to be a significant change in how fast you take down an opponent.

    2. Stunning Strike. It isn't as good as you make it out to be, since it requires both a successful attack roll and a failed saving throw, doesn't apply as deadly of condition, and also has a specific finite duration rather than being potentially multiple rounds of lost actions from a single resource expenditure.

    To put the more important trait there, the needing of both a successful attack roll and a failed save to work, into perspective; let's imagine that the monk has a 70% chance to hit the target's AC, and the target has a 70% chance to fail the save. That means there is actually a 49% chance that the target is stunned while the chance for a successful hold monster against the same target is typically going to be much higher.

    And even your statement that it can be cast up to 4 times per round isn't completely accurate because it accompanies your other statement that it can be cast monk level times per short rest - you can't actually make 4 attacks in a round without spending ki, so if you do one of these things you can't do the other.
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