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5E Best Name For A “Leader” Class?

Best name?

  • Herald

    Votes: 7 7.1%
  • Banneret

    Votes: 3 3.0%
  • Captain

    Votes: 17 17.2%
  • Warlord

    Votes: 25 25.3%
  • Marshal

    Votes: 37 37.4%
  • Mark

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Other - let us know!

    Votes: 12 12.1%
  • Commander

    Votes: 18 18.2%
  • Warden

    Votes: 8 8.1%
  • Sentinel

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters
    99

ccooke

Adventurer
There's some people outside by names of Kirk, Picard and Janeway who would like a word.

I'll hold your beer.
I think the point there is that Captain is a low rank in military hierarchies. Consider that of the three people you mention, the only one who was not frequently having to deal with the mess made by higher-ranking officers was due to being beyond their ability to conveniently convey those orders to her...

In some rank systems, Captain is even a role - that is, there is no rank called Captain, but the officer in charge of a vessel is referred to as the Captain. Which is interesting, in the context of this thread :)
 

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Wiseblood

Adventurer
I think the point there is that Captain is a low rank in military hierarchies. Consider that of the three people you mention, the only one who was not frequently having to deal with the mess made by higher-ranking officers was due to being beyond their ability to conveniently convey those orders to her...

In some rank systems, Captain is even a role - that is, there is no rank called Captain, but the officer in charge of a vessel is referred to as the Captain. Which is interesting, in the context of this thread :)
In charge, would imply, someone of authority.
 

Hurin88

Explorer
Warlord is fine with me. As other posters have noted, Thief, Rogue, Sorcerer and Warlock (I would probably add Barbarian too!) also have negative connotations, but for some reason those names don't get criticized as much.

Marshal is alright, but has feudal connotations (it arose as one of the household officers of a king), which don't work for every setting.

Captain is pretty good too, but as others have noted, it can be confused with naval captains, and seems to imply rank rather than role. Note though that captain in the medieval sense of the term did not imply a low-level officer; it implied a general. This is the sense for example in which Tolkien used it: Glorfindel is one of King Turgon's 'captains', meaning one of his generals.

I never liked the term 'Leader' as applied to the 4e role, because 'Healer' seemed to fit better -- all the 'Leaders' had healing as a defining feature. Healing was the one integral feature of the role, even if the Warlord also did other things.
 
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Benjamin Olson

Adventurer
There's some people outside by names of Kirk, Picard and Janeway who would like a word.

I'll hold your beer.
As the quoted sentence concluded: "... (outside of a naval context)." I consider Starfleet the Federation's navy, but perhaps we need to be explicit that the statement did not apply to a ship's captain whatever type of ship it may be.
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
As the quoted sentence concluded: "... (outside of a naval context)." I consider Starfleet the Federation's navy, but perhaps we need to be explicit that the statement did not apply to a ship's captain whatever type of ship it may be.
Also the sentence said “often”, which precludes any relevance of a “XYZ would like a word” reply.
 

Lanefan

Victoria Rules
Also the sentence said “often”, which precludes any relevance of a “XYZ would like a word” reply.
Both of you are either forgetting or intentionally ignoring that most people's interaction with the concept of what a Captain is comes either from things naval - everything from Hornblower to the Love Boat to actual boating/naval experience - or sci fi (mostly Trek).

Why is this relevant? Because in both of those very commonly-known situations, while the Captain may be taking orders from someone else, that someone else is almost always somewhere else: the Captain is in complete command of everything and everyone in his-her immediate vicinity.

In context of a D&D party, calling someone a Captain would thus very strongly suggest that person's in charge of the party in the field; and somehow I don't think that's gonna fly.
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
Both of you are either forgetting or intentionally ignoring that most people's interaction with the concept of what a Captain is comes either from things naval - everything from Hornblower to the Love Boat to actual boating/naval experience - or sci fi (mostly Trek).

Why is this relevant? Because in both of those very commonly-known situations, while the Captain may be taking orders from someone else, that someone else is almost always somewhere else: the Captain is in complete command of everything and everyone in his-her immediate vicinity.

In context of a D&D party, calling someone a Captain would thus very strongly suggest that person's in charge of the party in the field; and somehow I don't think that's gonna fly.
Nope. Only people who way overthink this stuff would infer that the Captain is supposed to be the boss of everyone else.
 

Lanefan

Victoria Rules
Nope. Only people who way overthink this stuff would infer that the Captain is supposed to be the boss of everyone else.
Overthink?

Maybe it's something to do with my background but when someone says "Captain" my first thought is of someone in command of a ship and its crew...the operative word there being command.
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
Overthink?

Maybe it's something to do with my background but when someone says "Captain" my first thought is of someone in command of a ship and its crew...the operative word there being command.
If you’re jumping from that to “that means this class is supposed to be the boss of my character”, that’s probably overthinking.
 

Lanefan

Victoria Rules
If you’re jumping from that to “that means this class is supposed to be the boss of my character”, that’s probably overthinking.
Actually I'm jumping one step further; straight through that to "this is a really stupid name for a class in a game where except the DM no player is the boss of another".

It's the same issue as the "Leader" role name had, only worse in that role names can be safely ignored while class names not so much.

EDIT TO ADD: Now if you want to design and put in a class that really is up-front intended to be an actual party leader (as in, its role revolves around telling other party members what to do), that's a whole different discussion; and the names Leader, Captain, and so forth suddenly fit.
 

Wiseblood

Adventurer
If you’re jumping from that to “that means this class is supposed to be the boss of my character”, that’s probably overthinking.
I disagree. Captain has the same sort of baggage as the word butler. If I meet someone claiming to be a (or introduced as) captain I wonder “captain of what?” Unless I make a guess based on garments.

One version of captain (that occurred to me because of a documentary I watched yesterday) is a team captain in sports. Usually a title that carries responsibilities such as acting as go between for the team and staff.
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
Actually I'm jumping one step further; straight through that to "this is a really stupid name for a class in a game where except the DM no player is the boss of another".

It's the same issue as the "Leader" role name had, only worse in that role names can be safely ignored while class names not so much.

EDIT TO ADD: Now if you want to design and put in a class that really is up-front intended to be an actual party leader (as in, its role revolves around telling other party members what to do), that's a whole different discussion; and the names Leader, Captain, and so forth suddenly fit.
Eh, I've run rather a lot of games using the name Captain, and no one understood it in any sort of "inappropriate to the assumptions of the game" manner. I've also logged thousands of hours on Lord of The Rings Online in guilds and fellowships focused on RP, and no one had any such issue with the Captain class in that game, outside of occasional jokes.

I've also never seen or heard of anyone being confused when Captain America isn't the leader of the Avengers but is still a member.
 



Benjamin Olson

Adventurer
In context of a D&D party, calling someone a Captain would thus very strongly suggest that person's in charge of the party in the field; and somehow I don't think that's gonna fly.
That's a valid issue. All terms for "leader" are going to do that though. I thought that "Captain" at least had the benefit of being more ambiguous towards the relative social position of the person vs. alternatives like "Commander" and "Warlord", and does at least sometimes apply to someone who is leading only nominally and by consent. But it does seem firmly entrenched in some people's minds as a ship's captain, and I can hardly complain about this when my own issue with "Marshal" is that it immediately makes me think of a military rank above general (well, that and an old west lawman).

Perhaps "Banneret" is the best of the lot in that the actual meaning is not terribly firmly entrenched in most people's imaginations but it has a nice Medievalish ring to it and banners do evoke some sort of combat morale-boosting and rallying.
 

Lanefan

Victoria Rules
Perhaps "Banneret" is the best of the lot in that the actual meaning is not terribly firmly entrenched in most people's imaginations but it has a nice Medievalish ring to it and banners do evoke some sort of combat morale-boosting and rallying.
Someone upthread suggested Tactician, which is about the best one I've seen yet; though Banneret isn't bad.

But then, the tactician side of the class would be far more of interest to me than the morale-boosting, which IMO is Bard territory anyway.
 


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