Level Up (A5E) Alternative pointbuy system

tetrasodium

Legend
Supporter
I’ve been thinking a good bit about the attribute array/pointbuy system in 5e & levelup thanks to thehow has df&d changed thread’s discussion on it & settled on some things that I miss about the older more generous & limited options. At the end of the day the difference between a specialist & the guy with a dumpstat just isn’t much until late in the game when the specialist has made significant investment. All of that creates problems in a few different areas depending on which side of the GM screen & style of attribute choices a playe makes



From a PC development standpoint that squeezes the generalist out from relevance & strongly pushes players to maxing out their primary stat before making other investments like feats. While the generalist might be able to hold their own alongside most specialists with magic items & do reasonably ok in a pinch compared to the PCs specialized away from a given area they no longer need that equipment& a +/-1 isn’t even meaningful alongside the d20 roll. The specialist by extension starts out not all that different in their niche & never really feels any pain for their “weak” area with a whole -1 on it so any gear that shoes up their weakness at all is only worthy of consideration if there is zero cost



From the GM’s side of things nobody has any weaknesses that are meaningful enough to feel so every magic item needs to be objectively better at someone’s specifically siloed niche or it’s a trash item never to be considered for any reason beyond what It will sell for. Without sidegrades as a meaningful option to dole out the inevitable overload & breakdown of the system happens faster. Worse yet the GM can’t get too creative with magic items early on because nobody has chosen any feats & hasn’t decided too strongly on their niche



I decided to fix that with a new pointbuy system with new point allocations. Firstly, I extended the buy options down to three and up to eighteen to widen the gap between specialist generalist and sacrificial dump stats to make them feel more meaningful

ScoreCost
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Secondly I changed the point pool so all options have a larger pool than standard 25 & 27 point buy so just presenting an option doesn’t start with justifying a nerf. The names for each of them try to evoke things about how the various options shape parts of the campaign for both player & GM. I might not have always succeeded but the effort is there & can be shored up with some descriptive text

high power (48 point buy)

This will generate extremely powerful characters with few if any weaknesses. Characters should expect few if any magic items or a short campaign like a higher-level one-shot game started without magic items. Example stat arrays generated with this method are unlikely to have any weaknesses & be great in most areas.



Elite Characters (45 point buy)

Not only are these characters well above the average person, they are likely to be elites among elites. These characters don’t need magic items to excel & may not encounter many over the campaign.



Low Magic Campaign(42 point buy)

These characters are among the elite of the populace & fit well into a campaign with a wide range of semi-accessible magic items available in the world. Magic marts may not be a thing but it’s hard to not find magic gewgaws as you advance.



“Typical” 39 point buy

Characters are well above average in their field but may have some weaknesses. Magic items are relatively common and the time needed to engage in magic item crafting during a campaign is likely to be significant.

Low Power Campaign(36 point buy)

Characters are well above average but are likely to have weak areas. The campaign is likely to be one with magic marts & readily available directions to magic item crafting components. Alternately survival is certain to be a big factor in a campaign where characters need to bring their A game & work together
 

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lichmaster

Adventurer
I'm not sure if I understand this point buy system correctly

Apparently with the "high power option" (48 points), you're only able to make a character with all 10 (6x8 points) in its attributes.
Or if one wants to go crazy can make a character with a single 14 (18 points) and then all the other stats are at 8 (5x6 points)... Doesn't seem high power at all to me. The other options after even weaker, to the point that they are probably barely playable and definitely not fun unless all monsters are nerfed and DCs are lowered by like 5 points (which would totally defeat the purpose of having modifiers in the first place)

Also, I'm not sure I understand the goal. This system seems designed to incentivate some very extreme forms of min maxing
 

tetrasodium

Legend
Supporter
I'm not sure if I understand this point buy system correctly

Apparently with the "high power option" (48 points), you're only able to make a character with all 10 (6x8 points) in its attributes.
Or if one wants to go crazy can make a character with a single 14 (18 points) and then all the other stats are at 8 (5x6 points)... Doesn't seem high power at all to me. The other options after even weaker, to the point that they are probably barely playable and definitely not fun unless all monsters are nerfed and DCs are lowered by like 5 points (which would totally defeat the purpose of having modifiers in the first place)

Also, I'm not sure I understand the goal. This system seems designed to incentivate some very extreme forms of min maxing
I'm not sure that I understand your confusion. Very few characters are going to have any interest in a ten in all six stats. They might however decide some stats are undeserving of more than an 8 6 or even a 3 & spend those extra points saved elsewhere in one or more attributes that they want to excel at. Even a MAD jack of all trades character is going to have some ability scores that they simply don't need to consider & are unlikely to ever use much. The 15/14/13/12/10/8 standard array is non minmaxed in anything because it's just maxed across the board in everything a particular PC will need & even the areas it fails to max are hardly low enough to call "min" for the basically allmax array that qualifies for four different 13stat gated multiclass options.

The monsters don't need to be "nerfed" because the players now have more need & room to acquire magic items so zombies skeletons & kobolds can do that without needing to use much higher CR fiends & such. The default array & default pointbuy that powers it is so good that the room for equipment is squeezed out. Having lower starting attributes and/or a wider gap between one's good/great stats & poor/dump stats creates room to fill with equipment & takes far less math manipulation tha forcing the gm to manually add a few points to ac saves DC & tohit of every monster. Take this quote from page 501 of monstrous menagerie as an example of how much room there already is "You can raise or lower the monster’s Armor Class by one or two points without altering it in any other way. If you change its AC by 3 or more points, you should reduce or raise its hit points or damage per round by 5% per point of AC you varied from the base AC." The GM already has a lot of plates to keep spinning while running the game & every customized monster adds to that.
 

lichmaster

Adventurer
I'm not sure that I understand your confusion. Very few characters are going to have any interest in a ten in all six stats. They might however decide some stats are undeserving of more than an 8 6 or even a 3 & spend those extra points saved elsewhere in one or more attributes that they want to excel at.
Ok, let's try this way: how do you create a "high power" character with 48 points and the costs you wrote?
As soon as you try to put an 18 in a single stat (which would kind of be the definition for being high power), you barely have enough points to put in the other stats, even if you try to be even just below the average for humanoid npcs. If you put even just a 14 in another stat (so you have an 18 and a 14), then you have no points left and all your other scores are stuck to 3. How is this high power (or even playable)?
Even a MAD jack of all trades character is going to have some ability scores that they simply don't need to consider & are unlikely to ever use much. The 15/14/13/12/10/8 standard array is non minmaxed in anything because it's just maxed across the board in everything a particular PC will need & even the areas it fails to max are hardly low enough to call "min" for the basically allmax array that qualifies for four different 13stat gated multiclass options.
Maxed with an 8 is very hard to sell, IMO. Surely the standard array doesn't limit character creation in any way, but it's also not maxed by definition, as you don't have all 18s... BTW, with this system and the "high power" setting, you can't even make the standard array, so you'll have to revise all your costs or the points you give (drastically, I'd add)
The monsters don't need to be "nerfed" because the players now have more need & room to acquire magic items so zombies skeletons & kobolds can do that without needing to use much higher CR fiends & such. The default array & default pointbuy that powers it is so good that the room for equipment is squeezed out. Having lower starting attributes and/or a wider gap between one's good/great stats & poor/dump stats creates room to fill with equipment & takes far less math manipulation tha forcing the gm to manually add a few points to ac saves DC & tohit of every monster.
Ok, but then you're just pushing the problem from character creation to magic item boosting. Which is setting dependent, and doesn't feel like an achievement, but more of a DM hand down.
Also, if one wants a multiclass character (for which two 13s are needed), he needs to burn 30 of his 48 points (which is the "high power" tier), with only 18 points left for 4 stats (two 8s and 2 4s I guess?)
This system doesn't really allow to build multiclassed characters unless they're so weak in all other aspects to be barely functioning even as npcs...
Take this quote from page 501 of monstrous menagerie as an example of how much room there already is "You can raise or lower the monster’s Armor Class by one or two points without altering it in any other way. If you change its AC by 3 or more points, you should reduce or raise its hit points or damage per round by 5% per point of AC you varied from the base AC." The GM already has a lot of plates to keep spinning while running the game & every customized monster adds to that.
Yes, but this system is an incredible nerf and it's basically incompatible with the assumed pc stats.
You can't even make the standard array at all with this system, so the other design tweaks are not gonna be enough to balance it.
 

tetrasodium

Legend
Supporter
Ok, let's try this way: how do you create a "high power" character with 48 points and the costs you wrote?
As soon as you try to put an 18 in a single stat (which would kind of be the definition for being high power), you barely have enough points to put in the other stats, even if you try to be even just below the average for humanoid npcs. If you put even just a 14 in another stat (so you have an 18 and a 14), then you have no points left and all your other scores are stuck to 3. How is this high power (or even playable)?
The default point buy stops at 15, it should be no surprise that going above that results in severe tradeoffs. Characters get +1/+1 from their background, an 18 would turn into a 19 while a 17 jumps to an 18. Why would you expect to put in an 18 without making serious tradeoffs? The default math still pretty much assumes that magic items are optional compared to the past where they were required. Room for them to be required is created through the lower stats and narrowed areas a character can exhibit enough competence to consider playing the odds on a d20 alongside an expert who might be specialized in the thing being sone... Rolling a "I'll try too" with a +0 or -1 isn't that big of a risk, but when the penalty starts ticking up it incentivizes finding another way instead of "I'll try that too". Those other ways could be magic items followers downtime activities teamwork in a new direction or any number of other options.

Tajen another way, I know computers because IT & unix admin is my field, I have no idea how to fix a car when it's not working & would be stupid to grab some tools to tinker if my car breaks. I have mechanic friends who are the other way around. Under the default array every PC is both.
Maxed with an 8 is very hard to sell, IMO. Surely the standard array doesn't limit character creation in any way, but it's also not maxed by definition, as you don't have all 18s... BTW, with this system and the "high power" setting, you can't even make the standard array, so you'll have to revise all your costs (drastically, I'd add)
When a commoner is 10/10/10/10/10/10 that 8 is hardly a deficit alongside the rest of the 18/14/13/12/10/8.
Ok, but then you're just pushing the problem from character creation to magic item boosting. Which is setting dependent, and doesn't feel like an achievement, but more of a DM hand down.

Also, if one wants a multiclass character (for which two 13s are needed), he needs to burn 30 of his 48 points (which is the "high power" tier), with only 18 points left for 4 stats (two 8s and 2 4s I guess?)

This system doesn't really allow to build multiclassed characters unless they're so weak in all other aspects to be barely functioning even as npcs...

A multiclass character only needs one 13 if the classes use or allow the same stat. If the optional rule isn't used they don't even need that one.
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Yes, but this system is an incredible nerf and it's basically incompatible with the assumed pc stats.

You can't even make the standard array at all with this system, so the other design tweaks are not gonna be enough to balance it.
The costs allow a player to build a character who starts with an 18 & some extreme tradeoffs outside their one area of dominance, but the tradeoffs will be felt viscerally compared to a more well rounded but still focused character who starts like 15+1/13+1/10/6/3/3 who still has some weaknesses and is not that far behind the laser focused idiot savant who started with a 16+ in one stat. Those both can be compared to an even more well rounded character who starts with something like 13+1/13+1/10/8/6/3.

The various point allocations assume an average number of points per attribute, spending less in one or more frees up points to spend elsewhere. For example48/6=8, 45/6=7.5 42/6=7 39/6=6.5 36/6=6. the deeper or more frequent the cuts the wider or more elevated the bonuses are.
 

FitzTheRuke

Legend
I have to agree with @lichmaster. Something does not make sense. With your current chart, it would cost 80 points to make the "Standard Array".

Are you adding the cost of straight 10's (48 points by your chart) to your "High Power 48" (making it 96), etc? I think you must be, but you don't mention it.
 

tetrasodium

Legend
Supporter
I have to agree with @lichmaster. Something does not make sense. With your current chart, it would cost 84 points to make the "Standard Array".

Are you adding the cost of straight 10's (60 points by your chart) to your "High Power 48" (making it 108), etc? I think you must be, but you don't mention it.
The standard array is far too generous
 


FitzTheRuke

Legend
Let's put it another way: Using your chart, what are the abilities of some typical characters you'd expect to see?

(Because I don't think it's a "High Powered" 10/10/10/10/10/10 at its most jack-of-all or a "typical" 18/5/4/4/4/3 at its most master-of-one.) Please correct me if I'm wrong!
 

Kinematics

Adventurer
Yeah, the words you're saying do not match the math you're showing. This is clearly designed for extremely low stats, and calling even the highest point buy "extremely powerful" is very disingenuous.

Of course, even the justifications you give for lowering attribute values don't make sense, since now characters are even more desperate for that next magical upgrade, and sidegrades seem even less useful.
 

tetrasodium

Legend
Supporter
Sure, if you like, but with your chart I can't make a "typical" character with a 14 without the other 5 stats looking something like 14/9/9/9/3/3 (39 points). I feel like we're missing some information.
You can get one or two points to a stat from your stronghold, weapons & armor come in +0/+1/+2/+3 versions & more. Ioun stones & tomes can add +2. Levelup has an extensive crafting system & some guidelines on t&t351 about crafting entirely new things where a player could hypothetically make things like the old body slot restricted +1/+2/+4/+6 stat gear.

Let's put it another way: Using your chart, what are the abilities of some typical characters you'd expect to see?
Here's a few.
  • 48point:
    • 15+1/13+1/10/6/3/3
    • 13+1/11+1/10/8/7/7
    • 15+1/13+1/10/3/3/3
    • 13+1/13+1/10/8/6/3
  • 45 point
    • 16+1/11+1/10/6/3/3
    • 13+1/11+1/10/8/7/4
    • 15+1/13+1/10/3/3/3
    • 13+1/12/11+1/10/3/3
  • 42 point
    • 16+1/11+1/9/4/3/3
    • 13+1/10/10/8/7+1/3
    • 13+1/13+1/12/3/3/3
    • 13+1/12+1/11*/9*/3/3 with the * choice of +1
  • 39 point
    • 16+1/11+1/6/4/3/3
    • 13+1/11+1/10/7/4/3
    • 13+1/13*/11*/3*/3/3 with the * choice of +1
    • 13+1/12/9/7/3/3 with the remaining +1 anywhere
  • 36 point
    • You can't say that I wasn't up front about this one. O5e may lack the actual point buy used for the vgtm survivors but 3.5 did with the 15 point buy low Powered Campaign" on dmg170 that allows similar

(Because I don't think it's a "High Powered" 10/10/10/10/10/10 at its most jack-of-all or a "typical" 18/5/4/4/4/3 at its most master-of-one.) Please correct me if I'm wrong!
There are basically zero PCs that need 6x10 or need to be perfectly average in all six stats. Even SAD characters tend to have one prime ability & one or two lesser but still mildly important abilities alongside some dump stats while MAD ones will obviously needsome dump stats

Yeah, the words you're saying do not match the math you're showing.
The words are in the context of the standard array being too generous
This is clearly designed for extremely low stats,
Yes. I as the gm can do things like raise the AC of every monster 2-3 points & continue doing so with hiugher numbers as magic items are handed out or I can save the headache & just start everyone with lower stats.
Of course, even the justifications you give for lowering attribute values don't make sense, since now characters are even more desperate for that next magical upgrade, and sidegrades seem even less useful.
Presentation matters. Take this hgypothetical of the GM wanting to start everyone with lower stats using this kind of thing.

 


FitzTheRuke

Legend
Oh, so you are serious about most of your characters having 3's in their lowest stat(s)? I had not expected that. In my mind, there is a wide margin between "point buy is too high" (which I don't disagree with) and "most characters should have half their abilities below 6" which you are doing here.

I mean, you do what you like by all means!
 

tetrasodium

Legend
Supporter
Why not just use the regular point buy system, but with more or fewer points available?
There's a few reasons to not like the default pointbuy.

  • Compare it to the 3.5 one (link appears to match dmg close enough) With plus 2 & minus 2 from race an 8 would frequently drop to a six & the 18 could theoretically be taken with severe sacrifices elsewhere. In the default pointbuy a player can't go below the zero point cost 8 or above the nine point 15+1 so the guy specialized in one area is going to be 4 points off from the guy who treats it as a dump stat & frankly both of them are probably going to have +1 +2 or+3 on most things from stat alone. A generalist could exist in the default but the difference between the two extremes is so minor that it's not really notable.
  • Some of that last point could be fixed by extending the pointbuy options up with more expensive options & down with negative point cost options below 8 that give points, but then you still have the default 27 point buy being too generous & you just wind up with things like 18/14/13/12/10/3 or whatever you set the ceiling/floor to allow
  • Fixing the too generous 27 point buy down to a lower value is doable, but the triviality is faced with all of the "it won't fit standard array" "why are you nerfing me" & similar making it an uphill battle for the gm to even suggest what will look like an outright nerf. The comopletely reworked system allows a more cordial conversation where there is give & take to be discussed not present with "all I need to do is hold my ground ignore everything said & flatly refuse everything


Oh, so you are serious about most of your characters having 3's in their lowest stat(s)? I had not expected that. In my mind, there is a wide margin between "point buy is too high" (which I don't disagree with) and "most characters should have half their abilities below 6" which you are doing here.

I mean, you do what you like by all means!
They don't need a 3 to achieve it if they lower a prime or secondary stat or two. If it would have been an 8 before that was a player's dump stat only to be tested when forced & hopefully some other player specializes in it as their primary/secondary score. Dropping a score from 15+1 to 13+1 can free up 6 points while a 13 to 11 is another 5. I did example arrays that leaned high & often used a 3 for dump stat(s)because in my experience players will say "I need x but not y" & peg them as high & low as they can manage while the odd man out player who is going to crunch the numbers to see dropping a +1 or two can get quite a bit more elsewhere are going to hem & haw a bit to optimize their benefits & minimize the tradeoffs even if it takes a dump stat to make it work.

With all the zomg players need them points I chose to make example arrays that show how players can start with a couple high stats. Remember that strongholds can grant +1 or +2 to a stat ioun stones are craftable tomes are craftable & gobs of other stuff is too now that there are rules for doing that. The numbers & costs are set with the assumption that magic items would generally be as available if not moreso but that rather than forcing the gm to tweak all of the monsters on the fly over a campaign players would have lots of magic items they collect & churn through.
 


tetrasodium

Legend
Supporter
Okay, I get what you're going for now. I can't say I would want abilities quite that low myself, but I follow your reasoning.
it's easier for a system to provide room for the GM to appear benevolent & trade a little extra beyond what they were initially going to allow in exchange for something like players working with them to shape their backgrounds to better fit the world* than it is to leave the gm with no room to do anything but engage in blatant nerfing like "just use the regular point buy system, but with more or fewer points available?".

*or whatever a gm & player could negotiate over
 

Faolyn

(she/her)
There's a few reasons to not like the default pointbuy.

  • Compare it to the 3.5 one (link appears to match dmg close enough) With plus 2 & minus 2 from race an 8 would frequently drop to a six & the 18 could theoretically be taken with severe sacrifices elsewhere. In the default pointbuy a player can't go below the zero point cost 8 or above the nine point 15+1 so the guy specialized in one area is going to be 4 points off from the guy who treats it as a dump stat & frankly both of them are probably going to have +1 +2 or+3 on most things from stat alone. A generalist could exist in the default but the difference between the two extremes is so minor that it's not really notable.
  • Some of that last point could be fixed by extending the pointbuy options up with more expensive options & down with negative point cost options below 8 that give points, but then you still have the default 27 point buy being too generous & you just wind up with things like 18/14/13/12/10/3 or whatever you set the ceiling/floor to allow
  • Fixing the too generous 27 point buy down to a lower value is doable, but the triviality is faced with all of the "it won't fit standard array" "why are you nerfing me" & similar making it an uphill battle for the gm to even suggest what will look like an outright nerf. The comopletely reworked system allows a more cordial conversation where there is give & take to be discussed not present with "all I need to do is hold my ground ignore everything said & flatly refuse everything
I don't see 27 points as "too generous," and I doubt most people are going to be happy with having -5s and -4s to their rolls. But whatever.
 

ECMO3

Hero
From a PC development standpoint that squeezes the generalist out from relevance & strongly pushes players to maxing out their primary stat before making other investments like feats. While the generalist might be able to hold their own alongside most specialists with magic items & do reasonably ok in a pinch compared to the PCs specialized away from a given area they no longer need that equipment& a +/-1 isn’t even meaningful alongside the d20 roll. The specialist by extension starts out not all that different in their niche & never really feels any pain for their “weak” area with a whole -1 on it so any gear that shoes up their weakness at all is only worthy of consideration if there is zero cost

I am not sure I agree with this hypothesis for a couple reasons.

First any character can be a generalist by investing in proficiency with a dump stat. For example my 8 strength, 7th level Ranger has proficiency in Athletics for +2 and he has a +3 in Acrobatics due to his 16 Dexterity. So he is a generalist and he is good enough at those two skills that he uses them both frequently, to include using shove in combat occasionally. If he invested in proficiency in acrobatics instead I would argoe that he would be more of a specialist and while he would be almost unstoppable in acrobatics he would not be very good in athletics.

Second it entirely depends on the party size. The aforementioned Ranger is in a party that includes only 2 other players - a Druid and a Warlock. So he is also the "generalist" front liner and frankly below average at that. The Druid is the actual tank but it is quite often my Ranger is in melee sporting a shilaleagh. I could have built a Barbarian or Fighter or taken heavy Armor or medium armor master at 4th level instead of the Dragonfear feat and I could have a 14 Con and 12 Charisma instead of the other way around and if I did that he would be a much, much better tank, althoug still a "generalist". Of course he would not be the "specialist" face he currently is (sporting +8 Intimidation and Persuasion) or the generalist "Gish" he is now if I did that and throwing fear like it is going out of style.

Which would be better for the party overall? I would argue in that 3-person party having a lights out face with a bit of spell control and a bit of melee is better than having a great tank with no control and relying on our Warlock as the face. I would also argue that having a 2nd character who is "ok" in athletics and one who is ok in acrobatics is better than having one 1 character that is "ok" in athletics (the druid) and one that is good in acrobatics.
 

ECMO3

Hero
From a PC development standpoint that squeezes the generalist out from relevance & strongly pushes players to maxing out their primary stat before making other investments like feats. While the generalist might be able to hold their own alongside most specialists with magic items & do reasonably ok in a pinch compared to the PCs specialized away from a given area they no longer need that equipment& a +/-1 isn’t even meaningful alongside the d20 roll. The specialist by extension starts out not all that different in their niche & never really feels any pain for their “weak” area with a whole -1 on it so any gear that shoes up their weakness at all is only worthy of consideration if there is zero cost

I am not sure I agree with this hypothesis for a couple reasons.

First any character can be a generalist by investing in proficiency with a dump stat. For example my 8 strength, 7th level Ranger has proficiency in Athletics for +2 and he has a +3 in Acrobatics due to his 16 Dexterity. So he is a generalist and he is good enough at those two skills that he uses them both frequently, to include using shove in combat occasionally. If he invested in proficiency in acrobatics instead I would argue that he would be more of a specialist and while he would be great in acrobatics he would not be very good in athletics.

Second it entirely depends on the party size. The aforementioned Ranger is in a party that includes only 2 other players - a Druid and a Warlock. So he is also the "generalist" front liner and frankly below average at that. The Druid is the actual tank but it is quite often my Ranger is in melee sporting a shilaleagh. I could have built a Barbarian or Fighter or taken heavy Armor or medium armor master at 4th level instead of the Dragonfear feat and I could have a 14 Con and 12 Charisma instead of the other way around and if I did that he would be a much, much better tank, althoug still a "generalist". Of course he would not be the "specialist" face he currently is (sporting +8 Intimidation and Persuasion) or the generalist "Gish" he is now if I did that and throwing fear like it is going out of style.

Which would be better for the party overall? I would argue in that 3-person party having a lights out face with a bit of spell control and a bit of melee is better than having a great tank with no control and relying on our Warlock as the face. I would also argue that having a 2nd character who is "ok" in athletics and one who is ok in acrobatics is better than having one 1 character that is "ok" in athletics (the druid) and one that is good in acrobatics.

Finally in terms of feats vs ASIs I certainly take feats more often. Easily 3-to-1, although most are half feats and a lot of them come at 1st or 4th level in a "planned" upgrade that boosts an odd stat. In the least 7 characters I have played (14th level, 14th level, 7th level, 7th level, 7th level, 8th level, 5th level), I took 2 ASIs and 10 feats, not including 1st level feats.

The feats I took were: Fey touched (3 times), Shadow Touched (2 times), Telepathic (2 times), Tavern Brawler, magic initiate, dragonfear.
 

lichmaster

Adventurer
I mean, it's your game, you can do whatever you want with it.

For me, the costs and overall number of points you gave don't make any sense at all in the general context of D&D settings and npcs: most humanoids will have an average score of 9-11 in all stats. Of course there can be the horribly disfigured, the exceptionally weak and the incredibly stupid, but those are serious exceptions. With this system, you're pushing character creation to be absolutely mediocre, otherwise most characters will be savant in one stat and absolutely horrible in everything else. Not fun, IMO.

For the same reason I also never liked the swinginess of dice rolling stats and the crazy 3-18 spread of stats. It can be interesting to play a character with a particular weakness, but it'd rather do it in a different way (addictions, other kinds of flaws etc) than a dump stat.

Stats play a modest part in the overall LU and o5e maths: proeficiency (or lack thereof) immediately imparts a +2 difference (and it gets wider with higher levels), and expertise dice can boost the outcomes even more. The distinction between a specialist and a generalist comes from where you put your proeficiencies and expertise, not from your stats.
 

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