D&D 5E A Compilation of all the Race Changes in Monsters of the Multiverse

Over on Reddit, user KingJackel went through the video leak which came out a few days ago and manually compiled a list of all the changes to races in the book. The changes are quite extensive, with only the fairy and harengon remaining unchanged. The book contains 33 races in total, compiled and updated from previous Dungeons & Dragons books.

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Russ Morrissey

Russ Morrissey

ART!

Legend
Also Powerful Build is really just one function. It's carrying capacity - Strength over time, and something an awful lot of games don't even worry about. It doesn't even have an effect on making a Strength roll to move a boulder or overturn a wagon. (It's not a character defining trait, it's a "here's an extra thing.")
Yeah, I really dislike racial features that make you pretty darn good at...this one thing that actually might never come up.
 

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Dausuul

Legend
Depends. You may be tired of people grumbling about players going off archetype. But there are some of us also tired of the HORRIBLE SPECTER of playing a character whose main stat bonus is 1 point lower than it could have been or the claim that a class-race combo is non-viable because the ASI is in the “wrong” place for it.
Well, you won't be hearing about that any more, will you? So what's the problem?
 

Jer

Legend
Supporter
I actually agree that some of the ASIs are pretty arbitrary. Also, humans getting +1 to everything or two +1s kinda makes having at least +1 the expected baseline, so anything less feels like a penalty. I think ASIs should have been rarer. It might have been a mistake to try to design the races symmetrically, instead of just giving them what actually is needed to represent them. Some races make perfect sense with just traits, some make more sense with some ASIs. ASIs are already equated with feats, and traits are basically just bespoke feats or half feats.
I actually think that ASIs stopped being necessary once you get rid of rolling stats as the default mechanic. Which means they actually became unnecessary sometime during 3e's lifecycle, though I will admit I didn't realize it until sometime after 5e came around.

3e introduced ability score adjustments to replace the idea of ability score minimum/maximums to nudge people into playing archetypes because that mechanic was widely disliked, frequently ignored, and newer mechanics had come around that were considered more fun. The max/min mechanic is an example of preventing or punishing people from deviating from an archetype while the bonuses were a way to reward people who played into the archetype instead. A cookie instead of a brick to the head.

But once you assign scores by array or point buy instead of random roll, the bonuses become a kind of punishing mechanic instead of a reward mechanic - punishing people who want to play against archetype instead of rewarding people who want play to the archetype because its no longer adjustments to a random distribution of scores but instead adjustments to a choice you're making. What's more they aren't really needed - a player who is playing to the archetype will arrange their scores to play to the archetype and the player base has shifted since the 90s to the point where rewarding people via bonuses to their rolls for playing to an archetype is maybe not actually important anymore anyway.
 

vincegetorix

Jewel of the North
This is true, but if you have Strength then it really ought to have some relationship to damage at least. (Even if only by allowing you to use oversized weapons or something).

It would be possible to have Accuracy independent of Strength (although putting it in Dex is also an Issue - although that could be resolved in some way).

With D&D being the kind of game that it is, being exceptionally big and strong in the fiction really needs to have some kind of concrete affect on the way that you fight. It doesn't have to make the character the best, there can be multiple ways of approaching the issue that are equally effective, but it at least needs to be somewhat distinct. This may be hard to do without extensive real and genuine playtesting, but the game needs to at least be honest about the kind of characters it can do with the priorities it has and the resources it's willing to invest in them.

Also Powerful Build is really just one function. It's carrying capacity - Strength over time, and something an awful lot of games don't even worry about. It doesn't even have an effect on making a Strength roll to move a boulder or overturn a wagon. (It's not a character defining trait, it's a "here's an extra thing.")

''Push, Drag, or Lift. You can push, drag, or lift a weight in pounds up to twice your carrying capacity (or 30 times your Strength score). While pushing or dragging weight in excess of your carrying capacity, your speed drops to 5 feet'' (bolded part mine).

I guess it could be argued that Power Build affects also push/drag/lift since they are based on carrying capacity.

So a gnome with 20 STR could carry 300 lbs and lift a gate or push a cart weighting 600 lbs.

An orc with Powerful Build would be considered Large for carrying capacity, hence carrying 600 lbs (which, like you say, rarely matters) BUT he's also able to drag or lift a boulder weighing 1200 lbs. As a base. No check required.
 


Faolyn

(she/her)
Individuals vary, even with ASIs. Still a weak goliath is stronger than a weak halfling, average goliath is stronger than an average halfling, and a strong goliath is stronger than a strong halfling. You can still make a weak goliath, it just mean they're weak compared to other goliaths, and not necessarily weak compared to halflings. This is not weird, not a difficult concept. A weak bear is still probably rather strong compared to humans. I fully agree that the current (or PHB, really) system has flaws and weirdnesses, but the basic concept is reasonable. If for game balance reasons one doesn't like this, or just feel the system is too bugged otherwise to be fixed, I get that. But acting like the concept itself is somehow incoherent is just weird.
And if you're the DM, then there is absolutely nothing stopping you, in your game, from making sure that every goliath is stronger than every halfling.

But why should that be a rule that every DM has to follow?
 

Cadence

Legend
Supporter
And if you're the DM, then there is absolutely nothing stopping you, in your game, from making sure that every goliath is stronger than every halfling.

But why should that be a rule that every DM has to follow?

And if you're the DM, then there is absolutely nothing stopping you, in your game, from making sure that any halfling could be as strong or stronger than every goliath.

But why should that be a rule that every DM has to follow?

Oh wait, even if it was in the book that way no one would have to follow it, it would just set the tone for things.
 

Faolyn

(she/her)
And if you're the DM, then there is absolutely nothing stopping you, in your game, from making sure that any halfling could be as strong or stronger than every goliath.

But why should that be a rule that every DM has to follow?

Oh wait, even if it was in the book that way no one would have to follow it, it would just set the tone for things.
First off, in the base game, any halfling can already be as strong as any goliath, because both races are limited to a 20 Strength. So your argument doesn't work. The literal only difference is that goliaths would get there first... if the halfling isn't playing a fighter, since fighters get extra an extra ASI at level 6. If the halfling is playing a fighter, though, and the goliath isn't, then they will even out at level 8.

Secondly, with a floating +2, this has no effect on any NPC. Why do y'all never remember that? This rule will only affect PCs--and even then, it will only affect those PCs who want to play a super-strong halfling. Which is unlikely because (A) of the 13 classes, only one relies on brute strength (barbarian), with three others that honestly can use either Strength or Dex (fighter, paladin, ranger) equally , meaning that the majority of halfling PCs will be of a class that doesn't need Strength and therefore won't max it out; and (B) unless MotM has changed it, Small races still can't wield Heavy weapons without disad, which means that they will still be cut off from the most damaging weapons.

Thirdly, if you want the tone of your setting to be that halflings rely on Dex and goliaths rely on Strength, then show it. Write up a document that describes halfling and goliath fighting styles. Have the PCs meet nimble halflings and big strong goliaths. Have the PCs go to a halfling or goliath village and then have the villagers show of their skills of agility or muscle, either in games of skill or because of monsters, raiders, or an invading army. The game only has as much tone as you actually show. A +2 Strength is boring, flavorless, and meaningless. I don't know about you, but I frequently look at my character's racial traits and think about what they mean, since they're all nicely laid out and named, but once the +2 gets put in the stat, it's gone. Did you get that +2 because of your race or because you hit 4th level? Who knows, who cares. Does anyone really care about what, exactly, caused a stat to be an 18? So if your games "tone" is set by where that +2 is, then there is no tone--unless you, as the DM, make an effort to show things.
 

Cadence

Legend
Supporter
Thirdly, if you want the tone of your setting to be that halflings rely on Dex and goliaths rely on Strength, then show it. Write up a document that describes halfling and goliath fighting styles. Have the PCs meet nimble halflings and big strong goliaths. Have the PCs go to a halfling or goliath village and then have the villagers show of their skills of agility or muscle, either in games of skill or because of monsters, raiders, or an invading army. The game only has as much tone as you actually show. A +2 Strength is boring, flavorless, and meaningless. I don't know about you, but I frequently look at my character's racial traits and think about what they mean, since they're all nicely laid out and named, but once the +2 gets put in the stat, it's gone. Did you get that +2 because of your race or because you hit 4th level? Who knows, who cares. Does anyone really care about what, exactly, caused a stat to be an 18? So if your games "tone" is set by where that +2 is, then there is no tone--unless you, as the DM, make an effort to show things.
As I've said before, I'd be happy if the 5e art showed that Goliath and Halfling have nothing really to do with strengthiness. Show a halfling beating an Goliath arm wrestling, a half-orc beating an elf at chess, a dwarf beating an elf at gymnastics, a half-orc winning a talent show over an elf. (And the number of these involving elf and half-orc might show why having had such art is important).

[I'd also be happy with species caps on physical skills, but not happy enough with it to be worth pissing off those who are unhappy with it.]
 
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This may be very crude, but perhaps the best way to deal with the hypothetical 20 Str halfling is just through advantage/disadvantage? This allows it to be context-dependent. I think a small creature could preform str-related tasks like climbing and swimming as well as a larger creature, all things being even. But I think a smaller creature might have more difficulty wrestling a larger creature to the ground, for example. So they get disadvantage on that check.

In terms of weapon damage, I think it would come down to the skill of the fighter, rather than raw strength.
 

''Push, Drag, or Lift. You can push, drag, or lift a weight in pounds up to twice your carrying capacity (or 30 times your Strength score). While pushing or dragging weight in excess of your carrying capacity, your speed drops to 5 feet'' (bolded part mine).

I guess it could be argued that Power Build affects also push/drag/lift since they are based on carrying capacity.

So a gnome with 20 STR could carry 300 lbs and lift a gate or push a cart weighting 600 lbs.

An orc with Powerful Build would be considered Large for carrying capacity, hence carrying 600 lbs (which, like you say, rarely matters) BUT he's also able to drag or lift a boulder weighing 1200 lbs. As a base. No check required.
Perhaps. But I think in most cases where Strength is going to matter outside of combat you're going to be rolling dice.
 


I still hope *Hippo Strength" from the Spelljammer UA becomes the new update to Powerful Build.
It is indeed a lot more significant. (And more straightforward - it doesn't involve trying to guess the weight of things - let alone conversions between Imperial or Metric).

The Damage Dealer feature is poor though (It overlaps with with Great Weapon Style, and slows the down the resolution of damage rolls pointlessly.)
 

It is indeed a lot more significant. (And more straightforward - it doesn't involve trying to guess the weight of things - let alone conversions between Imperial or Metric).

The Damage Dealer feature is poor though (It overlaps with with Great Weapon Style, and slows the down the resolution of damage rolls pointlessly.)
Eh it's an additional point of damage on top of what ya roll. Doesn't seem too bad to calculate.
 

Eh it's an additional point of damage on top of what ya roll. Doesn't seem too bad to calculate.
"
  • Damage Dealer. Like a hippopotamus in a crystal wareshop, you are naturally adept at damaging things. When you roll a 1 on a damage die for a melee attack, you can reroll the die and use the new roll. You can do so no more than once per turn.
It's not additive. You reroll. The actualy effect on your damage is pretty insignificant (less than 1), it's an illusory feature that slows the game down. It's worse than Great Weapon Style (which is already not very good), because you only reroll 1 die.
 
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"
  • Damage Dealer. Like a hippopotamus in a crystal wareshop, you are naturally adept at damaging things. When you roll a 1 on a damage die for a melee attack, you can reroll the die and use the new roll. You can do so no more than once per turn.
It's not additive. You reroll. The actualy effect on your damage is pretty insignificant (less than 1), it's an illusory feature that slows the game down. It's worse than Great Weapon Style (which is already not very good), because you only reroll 1 die.
Ah that's my bad. I can't believe I misread it.
 

Hussar

Legend
This may be very crude, but perhaps the best way to deal with the hypothetical 20 Str halfling is just through advantage/disadvantage? This allows it to be context-dependent. I think a small creature could preform str-related tasks like climbing and swimming as well as a larger creature, all things being even. But I think a smaller creature might have more difficulty wrestling a larger creature to the ground, for example. So they get disadvantage on that check.

In terms of weapon damage, I think it would come down to the skill of the fighter, rather than raw strength.
Well, they don't get disadvantage, but, the larger creature does gain advantage on contested strength checks like grappling.

Which means that the halfling will likely lose an arm wrestling contest to the goliath, even if the halfling is stronger, simply because the goliath has advantage due to size.
 

Well, they don't get disadvantage, but, the larger creature does gain advantage on contested strength checks like grappling.

Which means that the halfling will likely lose an arm wrestling contest to the goliath, even if the halfling is stronger, simply because the goliath has advantage due to size.
Oh, right. And wait, they can't use heavy weapons without a penalty anyway right? Hmm, it seems like the base rules do a fine job of accounting for size variability even with equal str.
 


"
  • Damage Dealer. Like a hippopotamus in a crystal wareshop, you are naturally adept at damaging things. When you roll a 1 on a damage die for a melee attack, you can reroll the die and use the new roll. You can do so no more than once per turn.
It's not additive. You reroll. The actualy effect on your damage is pretty insignificant (less than 1), it's an illusory feature that slows the game down. It's worse than Great Weapon Style (which is already not very good), because you only reroll 1 die.
Best case it's worth +0.46 on a D12 weapon.
 

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