Large size characters
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  1. #1
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    Grandmaster of Flowers (Lvl 18)



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    Large size characters

    Large size characters. I was planning to do the following mechanic for a particular race. But now I think I will make it normal for everyone. The idea is, characters must invest in high Constitution to balance out benefits of size.



    Constitution score: size
    1 to 4: Tiny
    5 to 8: Small
    9 to 12: Medium
    13 to 16: Medium (Powerful Build)
    17 to 20: Large
    21 to 24: Huge
    25 to 28: Gargantuan



    Powerful Build 5e merely allows someone to carry more - when few pay attention to weight limits anyway. So I consider it flavor that is possibly interesting for DM narrative adjudication.

    Certain size issues are no problem - dwarf stoutness, quadruped, large wingspan.

    Grappling is an issue but investment in Constitution cant go to Str or Dex.

    The main issue is Large oversize weapons double the weapon damage dice.

    My concern is balance. As far as I can tell this seems ok.
    Last edited by Yaarel; Wednesday, 8th May, 2019 at 02:31 PM.

  2. #2
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    A 1e title so awesome it's not in the book (Lvl 21)



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    Do you intend to modify weapon damage for Tiny or Large+ creatures? Because that's a huge change with gargantuan balance implications.

    If you're just changing the space the character takes up in combat, then this seems totally fine. Larger sizes are generally disadvantageous in this regard, although if they get reach it can compensate. Sometimes a monster will have a grapple or push effect that only won't work on larger creatures, but it doesn't come up that often. Maybe the drawbacks of larger sizes is a feature, to cancel out the benefits of high hit points.
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  3. #3
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    The Great Druid (Lvl 17)



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    Ass 77 mentions, their is a ton more implied by creature size than just the number of spaces they take up. What all benefits and disadvantages are you also considering for size adjustments? Are you looking at some from 3E stuff like to hit and AC modification? Carrying capacity? weapon damage?

    Personally, I'm very weary of size adjustments, didn't like most of them in other editions, don't like the idea of them in 5E.

  4. #4
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    I took a stab at a feat that would enable a character who should be Large to actually be Large. This hasn't been tested, but it seems like a good start to me, roughly similar in net buff potential to the better racial feats.

    BIG

    Prerequisite: Strength 14 of higher, Constitution 12 or higher, and a racial trait (such as Powerful Build) that counts you as one size larger for determining your carrying capacity and the weight you can push, drag, or lift.
    Your size is Large, and you count as Large for all purposes. Your size provides you with the following benefits and challenges:
    • You can use a Medium two-handed melee weapon in one hand, and when you use a Medium versatile weapon in one hand it does damage as if wielded with two hands. You can use most Medium two-handed melee weapons with two hands (as if they were versatile,) and when you do you add 1d4 to the weaponís damage.
    • A spell or other effect centered on you can be centered on any of the four squares you occupy. You can change which square an effect upon which you are concentrating is centered on as part of your turn or when you take a reaction.
    • Your maximum strength and constitution scores are both 22. If another trait or feature raises your maximum strength or constitution above 20, your maximum score is two higher than that trait or feature provides.
    • Your maximum dexterity score is 18. If another trait or feature lowers your maximum dexterity below 18, your maximum score is two lower than that trait or feature provides.
    • You require 4 times as much food and water per day as a Medium size character.
    • Armor made for Medium humanoids will not fit you unless it is magical. Armor made for Large humanoids or Large giants costs four times the equivalent armor made for Medium humanoids, and it weighs twice as much. Armor made for a Large centaur (which consists of most of a Large humanoid suit and most of a suit of barding) costs six times the equivalent armor made for Medium humanoids, and weighs three times as much.
    • You can wriggle into some spaces large enough for a Small creature. While wriggling through a Small space, you are Restrained, but you can use your action on your turn to make a DC 10 dexterity (Acrobatics) check to move 5 feet. You must doff any bulky armor before wriggling into a Small space.


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  5. #5
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    Just let them be large without any additional cost. It works just fine. I have typically found most players start to dislike being large once they find out they can't go into 75% of dungeons, and 95% of places inside of a dungeon. Or buildings. Or that really tight crevice that is the only exit from the cave. Or ya know, being an obvious monster race.

    Taurs ignore the weapon size issue, so there's less mechanical trouble being a Centuar or a Drider than say, being a large minotaur, loxodon(ravnica elephant people) but realistically outside of the most accepting and metropolitan settings these races all have trouble operating in normal society. Crafted items cost substantially more, getting ahold of weapons sized for you is very difficult.

    For murderhobos? Large races are HIGHLY abusable. But I mean, you know if you've got murderhobos or not.

    I've allowed large races in 3E, 4E, and 5E. Just by saying "ok you're large now".

    For 5E: Yes, they take up more spaces which allows them to control more area, but this issue is resolved with existing OA limitations. Yes they have larger weapons which allows to deal more damage, but it's not any more than a well-built barbarian (assuming they're that, it's like 3-4 points per hit). Yes they can carry more weight, but IME being the party mule is rarely their desire.

    End of the day advice: just be prepared to present them with situations where "being big" is a drawback.
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  6. #6
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    A 1e title so awesome it's not in the book (Lvl 21)



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    Quote Originally Posted by Yaarel View Post
    Large size characters. I was planning to do the following mechanic for a particular race. But now I think I will make it normal for everyone. The idea is, characters must invest in high Constitution to balance out benefits of size.



    Constitution score: size
    1 to 4: Tiny
    5 to 8: Small
    9 to 12: Medium
    13 to 16: Medium (Powerful Build)
    17 to 20: Large
    21 to 24: Huge
    25 to 28: Gargantuan

    My main concern is balance. As far as I can tell this seems ok.
    Why not simply set a minimum Con requirement for being large size+?
    Large = x min.
    Huge = y min.
    Gargantuan = z min.

    Because your chart seems wonky in relation to the normal character creation rules.
    Consider: I make a 1/2ling with an 18 con. Does that make me a Large creature? Or just the really hardy 1/2ling I envisioned playing?
    Likewise; if I make an 8 Con (or less!) human do I shrink? Do you really intend for Tiny humans to be a thing??

    What happens if a character gains Con through play (ASIs)? Loses Con somehow?

    Simply setting a min. Con score in order to make Large+ characters avoids all that weirdness & still allows for high Con characters of all sizes.
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Immortal Sun View Post
    Just let them be large without any additional cost. It works just fine. ...
    Thatís an appealing take on it, but I donít think Iím willing to hand out the free damage boost from Large weapons. I give everyone a starting feat, so the cost isnít high.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by epithet View Post
    Thatís an appealing take on it, but I donít think Iím willing to hand out the free damage boost from Large weapons. I give everyone a starting feat, so the cost isnít high.
    Well, the "cost" is requiring them to have a 14 strength and a 12 con and play a race with the "powerful build" trait. I'm not sure if you're adding more of those races or not, but there's a lot more costs there than just a feat. Your end result is still likely to be large size heavy hitters, so your concerns about damage will probably be magnified rather than minimized.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Immortal Sun View Post
    Well, the "cost" is requiring them to have a 14 strength and a 12 con and play a race with the "powerful build" trait. I'm not sure if you're adding more of those races or not, but there's a lot more costs there than just a feat. Your end result is still likely to be large size heavy hitters, so your concerns about damage will probably be magnified rather than minimized.
    This is a good point.

    There seems little need for the Strength and Constitution prereqs because the character the feat works best for is gonna pump up this ability scores anyway. The prereqs, then, are just a barrier to players who are interested in the feat for other reasons. It could be a neat way to strengthen a weaker character without actually pumping up Strength.
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by 77IM View Post
    Do you intend to modify weapon damage for Tiny or Large+ creatures? Because that's a huge change with gargantuan balance implications.
    It seems the main benefit of Large size is weapon damage. This doesnt bother me too much, because this kind of bonus to damage requires an opportunity cost, to invest in an unusually high Constitution score of 17+. Also, to invest in extra high Constitution relates to the opportunity cost of investing a feat.

    Also, the requirement to invest in Constitution is neutral to both Dexterity fighters and Strength fighters. 5e already seems to strongly favor Dexterity builds. So, I like if Constitution is neutral for either damage dealer build.

    So, as far as I can tell, player characters using Large weapons seems fine − with the opportunity cost.

    Regarding Tiny weapons. I have never had a player play a Tiny character, so I have never had to deal with it. But if it came up, I probably would enforce it. I dont want a Pixie wielding a greatsword. (I would rather see the Pixie using magic to make a greatsword dance.) Small weapons are already enforced in the sense of Small characters being unable to use ĎHeavyí weapons. Its an adequate mechanic.

    Quote Originally Posted by 77IM View Post
    If you're just changing the space the character takes up in combat, then this seems totally fine. Larger sizes are generally disadvantageous in this regard, although if they get reach it can compensate. Sometimes a monster will have a grapple or push effect that only won't work on larger creatures, but it doesn't come up that often. Maybe the drawbacks of larger sizes is a feature, to cancel out the benefits of high hit points.
    A Large player character occasionally have narrative disadvantages that can be fun and interesting. The benefit of not being Ďpushed aroundí, is narratively sensible.

    In my view, a narrative disadvantage can never balance a mechanical advantage. But a narrative disadvantage can make a story with quirky challenges.

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