5th edition monks

Morlaf

Villager
{...this is especially for those transitioning from 3, 3.5 to 5.}
Dex has always been an important stat. Apart from class-specific stats (e.g. cha for sorcerers) dex is the most over-used stat.
Now I have been playing and running 5th edition for a while and I detest how str has become a dump stat for monks.
i.e. they need str as much as a sorcerer needs it. This is silliness.
Your chance to hit with melee weapons is determined by str because the stronger you are the faster you can move your axe to hit.
Dex determines how accurate you can be to hit specific vitals points. At least that is how the game tries to SIMULATE combat. Fine.
So in 3/3.5 you can take the finesse feat. This obliged you to be careful with selecting feats and it allowed for high-str build monks.
And still damage is determined by str.
Some future source books (unofficial or not?) offered feats to further make dex play a part in damage with finesse weapons. This seems balanced and realistic.
A degree of realism is not a bad thing....

is 5th edition balanced? yeah it probably is. But I have huge beef with 5th edition for doing this.
I take the opportunity to bitch and moan about it all the time and I am in the process of house-ruling certain stuff regarding monks.
I have also made my own Monastic Traditions that offer AS AN OPTION increased combat prowess bast on str.

Any old-skool playaz here (or indeed newbies) that feel the same?
 

NotAYakk

Adventurer
If you want Monks to not be weaklings (reasonable), you could add a feature to monks.

Perfect the Body, then the Mind (Alternative class feature to Ability Score Improvement)

When you reach 4th level, and again at 8th, 12th, 16th, and 19th level, you can increase your Str, Dex and Con ability scores by 1 point. You can also increase either two ability scores by 1 more point, or a mental ability score (int, wis or cha) by 2 points. As normal, you cannot increase a score over 20 in this manner. If one of your Str, Dex or Con scores is already 20, you can include Wisdom instead of Str Dex and Con (but you cannot increase Wisdom by 3).

Using the optional feats rule, you can instead take a feat then increase Str, Dex and Con by 1 (substituting Wisdom if any of them are already 20).

Going futher, you could change:

Martial Arts

* You can use Dexterity instead of Strength for the attack rolls of your Unarmed attacks and monk weapons. If you do so, you can add 1/2 of your Dexterity and Wisdom bonuses to the damage roll.

12 str/14 wis/18 dex deals +1+6/2 = +4 damage, same as before.

That'll give you (a) monks who become closer and closer to physically perfect as they gain levels, and (b) ensures that strength determines damage more than dex/wis.

I doubt it would break the game either. Sure, you'd have some 20/20/20 physical stat monks (this grants +5 to Dex/Str/Con by level 20, with up to 1 stat overflowing into Wisdom). But that is thematically appropriate in my opinion.

A 20 str/dex/wis monk will deal +10 damage on a blow, which will bring them up a damage tier at epic tiers. Their lack of access to the "power attack" feats should prevent them from being ridiculously out of gamut.
 

Morlaf

Villager
This will just make Monks triple multi bility dependent rather than double multi ability dependent as they are now. Monks are ASI starved as is, having to max Dex and Wis while maintaining respectable Con. Throwing Str into the mix will just break them.
"...will break them."?? they are already broken..... that is my point..... they have paid too much attention to "multi-stat-dependency"..... when there was a system in place already that was perfectly fine while more adaptable and customizable....
 

Morlaf

Villager
not sure i would go as far as to say all stats equally important to all classes....
my main 2 issues are:
a) dex is (to use an overused phrase) OP and
b) monks (as I envisage them) should need high str.
 

Morlaf

Villager
You should treat 5e as its own game.

Viewing it from the framework of 3e is just going to give you endless headaches.

The philosophy of 5e is entirely different.
I am respecting its individuality perfectly.... which is why I only complained about monks. Everything else works fine. I am usually the one laughing at ppl who say things like Ranger Beastmasters are under-powered. I don't mind possible imbalance issues. The entire "philosophy" of monks that do not need strength is for me silly.....
 

Xeviat

Explorer
The entire "philosophy" of monks that do not need strength is for me silly.....
I think there would be room tweak the monk, possibly with an alternate 1st level class feature. We all know examples of martial artists in the real world. They're definitely "stronger" than the typical person, but they're also not a weight lifting olympian. There's something about their speed strength over their applied strength.

But, if you wanted to model them with Strength or Dex, you could make a 1st level option that lets them choose between 10+Dex+Wis for AC and instead pick 13+Wis AC. This could represent a more blocking style.

I'd rather model a strength unarmed martial artist on the Fighter, though. Just looking to genres, there are those martial artists who go unarmored and then there are those warriors who wear armor.
 

Morlaf

Villager
I think there would be room tweak the monk, possibly with an alternate 1st level class feature. We all know examples of martial artists in the real world. They're definitely "stronger" than the typical person, but they're also not a weight lifting olympian. There's something about their speed strength over their applied strength.

But, if you wanted to model them with Strength or Dex, you could make a 1st level option that lets them choose between 10+Dex+Wis for AC and instead pick 13+Wis AC. This could represent a more blocking style.

I'd rather model a strength unarmed martial artist on the Fighter, though. Just looking to genres, there are those martial artists who go unarmored and then there are those warriors who wear armor.
this "speed strength" you mention is what DnD calls (paraphrasing) "your chance to hit with melee comes off str because the stronger you are the faster your weapon moves"
with 3.5 rules i made a fat monk with a dex of 8. high str, high con, high wis focusing on grapple/sleeper-choker. but that is an extreme.
I loved my evil, 1/2-orc, monk with a dex of 12 and a str of 14. so his AC wasn't the best but he was nasty in a fight. a more middle-of-the road char, forgoing wpn finesse and focusing on Toughness, power attack etc. now you have none of those options.

As for modeling a high-str monk on fighters that would work..... just take a single level of monk?
 

Xeviat

Explorer
As for modeling a high-str monk on fighters that would work..... just take a single level of monk?
It would take a variant Fighting Style and then a whole subclass, I'd think. I'd want to encourage light armor, up unarmed damage to 1d6 at some point, utilize TWFing well, and give it a slightly stunted ki progression.

In some of my class analysis, I've considered Monk Ki with it's short rest recovery to be very similar to a half-caster's Spell Points/3. If the Monk is the half-caster with 1 ki/level, then the Fighter could have a 1/3rd progression with 2/3 ki per level (I'm working on a full short rest recovery redesign for all the classes). This would end up close to the Battle Master, but less ki than superiority dice in the beginning but more at the end and different scaling.

Grappling monks do want Str for Athletics, though. It helps with jumping. But the more and more I think about it, I think the monk could have been designed as a Str or Dex class like the Fighter if you change the default assumption of the class (most of the monks I saw in 3E were weapon finessers).
 

Morlaf

Villager
I would disagree with your premise that Strength makes you hit things faster. Strength is power, not speed. Dexterity determines quickness. Look at the ability descriptions.
I agree.... so why is str needed at all..... for melee.... that is the whole premise of the simulator....
 

Xeviat

Explorer
I would disagree with your premise that Strength makes you hit things faster. Strength is power, not speed. Dexterity determines quickness. Look at the ability descriptions.
This is where there is some issue with D&D ability scores. One of a few places. Dexterity is both hand-eye coordination and agility, but it's not associated with movement speed at all.

Moving your body quickly requires strength. You need a minimum amount of strength to move your own mass, and since that strength comes with added mass of it's own, it will top out eventually. A marksman with a gun is probably not as strong as a sword fighter. Weight lifters are "strong" but are certainly not fast. But martial artists do lift weights to get stronger in order to get faster.
 

Morlaf

Villager
This is where there is some issue with D&D ability scores. One of a few places. Dexterity is both hand-eye coordination and agility, but it's not associated with movement speed at all.

Moving your body quickly requires strength. You need a minimum amount of strength to move your own mass, and since that strength comes with added mass of it's own, it will top out eventually. A marksman with a gun is probably not as strong as a sword fighter. Weight lifters are "strong" but are certainly not fast. But martial artists do lift weights to get stronger in order to get faster.
agreed..... all of which is quite nicely address in 3/3.5 by having str=melee and dex=ac with the options of SOME feats allowing you SOME customization......
 

Sacrosanct

Legend
I agree.... so why is str needed at all..... for melee.... that is the whole premise of the simulator....
It’s true that strength is power, not speed. But it’s also true power matters. It’s the difference in getting hit by a toddler and getting hit by an NFL lineman.
 

Xeviat

Explorer
It’s true that strength is power, not speed. But it’s also true power matters. It’s the difference in getting hit by a toddler and getting hit by an NFL lineman.
But toddlers aren't "fast" either. They're clumsy and wobbly and uncoordinated.

Speed is based on the force applied and the mass of what you're moving. You need to be strong to move the mass. You need to be strong to move your fist quickly. There's a difference between burst strength and applied strength (you can be slow and just squeeze something, like a hydraulic press).
 

Morlaf

Villager
i would say Usain Bolt is much stronger than he is dexterous.... but the exact definition of what is dexterity and strength is unnecessary..... DnD adopts its own (imperfect) version and I am happy with that. Monk with str as a dump stat? silly................
 

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