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D&D 5E Can you share your experience with a featless/multiclassless game?

Charger's something I'd expect to differ on a campaign by campaign basis. If you're in a dungeon 30 feet is a long way and you'll very seldom use it. If you're in the wilderness it's a lot more useful, especially with the object interaction rules or if you're sword & board making it hard to throw two javelins in a turn.
I have never been in a campaign that took place entirely in a dungeon. Even so, sometimes there are large rooms.

As a melee fighter, I wanted to get in close, not throw javelins. The attack bonus and damage would be a lot lower.
 

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As a melee fighter, I wanted to get in close, not throw javelins. The attack bonus and damage would be a lot lower.
The attack bonus is likely to be the same and the damage about a dice lower if you're fighting two handed, or a dice step lower sword and board. On the other hand some of the melee feats are really good so you give up a lot for the charge feat.

Like I said it's situational and DM dependent.
 

vincegetorix

Jewel of the North
(Note: It actually gets better if it's -(prof)/+(2*prof), so don't do that.)
Well, since you only get +5 prof. bonus at 13th level and at that point its only on par with the feat as presented in the PHB, I dont think its too bad. And to make make it better (aka +12 damage), you need to take a higher penalty anyway (-6 to-hit) and only at 17th level.

by that time you have a spellcaster dropping meteors on the planet once every day if they want to.
 

GlassJaw

Hero
Well, since you only get +5 prof. bonus at 13th level and at that point its only on par with the feat as presented in the PHB, I dont think its too bad. And to make make it better (aka +12 damage), you need to take a higher penalty anyway (-6 to-hit) and only at 17th level.

by that time you have a spellcaster dropping meteors on the planet once every day if they want to.
It's better across the lifetime of the character because you are getting extra damage with a reduced penalty. I will agree it's less spikey but it is more definitely better than -5/+10.

Search the interwebs. The math doesn't lie.
 

Ath-kethin

Elder Thing
I think I'm the middle of what you're looking for, gameplay-wise.

I absolutely loathe the WotC-era Multiclassing; it never feels like a proper combination of classes to me. I also dislike ASIs.

So in my games there is no multiclassing and feats only, no ASIs. I've run something like 7 or 8 different groups that way, and we've really liked how it plays out. Feats are just more interesting choices to make than an ability bonus, and it's cool to see how different people apply them to their characters.
 
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fba827

Adventurer
I don’t use feats when I have dmed home games. Works totally fine and simpler. Yes there is a player who wants to say how he can’t build his character concept without feats but when I ask him to explain the concept really is just ‘cool dpr “

Multi class I let people do but I can’t think of more than one instance that someone even opted to do it

I will toss out there that I’m very particular about how I say it... I express that I’m “not using the optional feat rule’ as opposed to saying ‘I’m banning feats’ as one implies that players are owed it while the other keeps in terminology of the game that it isn’t I in fact it core and instead an optional rule choice
 

pming

Legend
Hiya!
So wait a second here. Two fighters are more same-y when one's a great weapon master who can make mighty blows at low accuracy and the other's a polearm master who fights with both ends of the weapon than when they each have a +1 to rolls based on a different stat?

I just don't get it.
Think of it this way. You go compete in a 500m bicycle race...and everyone there is given a choice of what bike to ride. There is the Standard Bike (which is coloured any colour other than blue, red or black,) which everyone is allowed to use by default. Or, if you want, you can choose from three pro-level hyper-engineered racing bikes (which are blue, red or black). You look around the field and see...? Yeah...you see that EVERYONE is using a blue, red or black bike. Because anyone who is using a silver bike is at a disadvantage.

So the "same-y'ness" changes from multiple colours of bikes in the field...to one of three choices; blue, red or black. Not a silver, gold, white, yellow, green, or purple bike to be seen. That's what I was getting at.

You see a Fighter and look at the sheet; Great Weapon Mastery, Polearm Mastery or Sharpshooting. So in stead of seeing 100 fighters, all with different weapons, armour, shields, etc....you see 100 fighters, all using 2-Handed swords, Halberds, or Composite Longbows. Oh, you may find the odd Great Axe, Bardiche or Shortbow, but the result is the same; every single one of those Fighters is "better at fighting" than you are with the same weapon.

When simply looking at it between two or three characters, it looks diverse. But extrapolate that out to the NPC's and campaign world at large... and every fighter is using a 2h weapon, polearm or composite longbow.

YMMV.

^_^

Paul L. Ming
 

I'm actually talking about the latter. "Magic Initiate so I get a familiar" is ubiquitous. I'm running a Curse of Strahd campaign where THREE players in the same party did it (fighter and two rogues, and they all did it at level 4). I see this feat in every campaign.
To me that doesn't show what you're saying. You were talking about "amazing feats", and Magic Initiate isn't an "amazing Feat", really. It's decent but it's not wild, and people picking it at level 4 are not doing it for optimization reasons, they're doing for it for RP reasons - literally to get a familiar.

This has always been a classic issue in D&D. Some people really want that familiar. They will do whatever it takes to get that familiar. I've seen that since 2E. That is not specific to Feats.
 

Hiya!

Think of it this way. You go compete in a 500m bicycle race...and everyone there is given a choice of what bike to ride. There is the Standard Bike (which is coloured any colour other than blue, red or black,) which everyone is allowed to use by default. Or, if you want, you can choose from three pro-level hyper-engineered racing bikes (which are blue, red or black). You look around the field and see...? Yeah...you see that EVERYONE is using a blue, red or black bike. Because anyone who is using a silver bike is at a disadvantage.
Again I don't get it. The "standard bike" gives you all the choice of Henry Ford. You can have any colour you like as long as it's black. Having feats makes the difference between weapons much more meaningful - and there's enough of a spread of feats that anything that without feats is good enough to use has feats to support it.
So the "same-y'ness" changes from multiple colours of bikes in the field...to one of three choices; blue, red or black. Not a silver, gold, white, yellow, green, or purple bike to be seen. That's what I was getting at.

You see a Fighter and look at the sheet; Great Weapon Mastery, Polearm Mastery or Sharpshooting. So in stead of seeing 100 fighters, all with different weapons, armour, shields, etc....you see 100 fighters, all using 2-Handed swords, Halberds, or Composite Longbows. Oh, you may find the odd Great Axe, Bardiche or Shortbow, but the result is the same; every single one of those Fighters is "better at fighting" than you are with the same weapon.

When simply looking at it between two or three characters, it looks diverse. But extrapolate that out to the NPC's and campaign world at large... and every fighter is using a 2h weapon, polearm or composite longbow.
Or sword & board. Those are viable as well - and Sentinel + Sword and Board is an excellent feat and weapon combination. You might not have seen it but I certainly have and people really appreciate having shields.

Between 2 handed close quarters weapons, 2 handed polearms, 1 handed weapons with shield, and bows I'm curious what you think is missing? 1 handed weapons with no shield? Two Weapon Fighting? Crossbows? Because it isn't feats making any of those poor choices for a fighter. For example it's not Sharpshooter that makes the longbow better than the crossbow. It's that crossbows need to reload and so can't fire fast enough for fighters. It's not Sharpshooter that makes longbows better than shortbows, it's that the damage dice is higher.

If you accept that Sword & Board + Sentinel is a strong combination then I don't think that there's one single weapon in 5e that feats encourage fighters not to use any more than the basic properties of that weapon already do.

On the contrary if people go by the best weapons then due to there being few fighters on your average 5e battlefield the polearm would be a very niche weapon. But Polearm Master puts the halberd, the glaive, and even the staff into the top tier, meaning it's not all greatswords/mauls, longbows, and sword/axe & board. It's four groups rather than three.

As for why you never see bardiches in 5e the answer is simple. There are no bardiches on the weapons list - it's just halberds and glaives.
 

I absolutely loathe the WotC-era Multiclassing; it never feels like a proper combination of classes to me. I also dislike ASIs.
My problem with WotC-era multiclassing is that it should solve an RP problem but it doesn't.

When I have a character in a game that isn't level based they grow at least semi-organically; the areas I spend my XP in tend to be on the skills or effects my character has been focusing on because those are the rolls I've been making. Growth proceeds in slightly unexpected directions from play. But D&D classes, although it allows growth in odd directions are just too granular for this to feel natural.
 

Horwath

Hero
I feel that feats are good for the development of characters, however...

there is a problem in power level of feats, same pool for "combat" and "non-combat" feats and ASI's

All feats should go to "half-feat" power level. Easy thing to do with all current feats.
Then have separate ASI resource pool. let's say 6 times of +1, spread over 20 levels.
7 combat "half-feats" spread over 20 levels.
7 non-combat "half-feats" spread over 20 levels.

Then each class can have some(or none) bonus feats that are picker from more narrow pool.

I.E:
Level prof bonusbonus
12non-combat feat
22combat feat
32+1 ASI
42non-combat feat
53combat feat
63+1 ASI
73non-combat feat
83combat feat
94+1 ASI
104non-combat feat
114combat feat
124+1 ASI
135non-combat feat
145combat feat
155+1 ASI
165non-combat feat
176combat feat
186+1 ASI
196non-combat feat
206combat feat

As for multiclassing; with this switch of feats/ASIs from class to level features, I would only allow even split classes. That is, two classes MUST always be within 1 level of eachother.


If that feels too weak, maybe we could add extra class levels at certain levels.

I.E. you get levels in both classes(average HPs) at levels 5,11,17,20. That would make 5th level character(tier2) a 3/3 split, 11th level character(tier3) a 7/6 split, 17th level character(tier4) a 10/10 split, and 20th level character(capstone) a 12/12 split.
 


Arial Black

Adventurer
Played an entire 2.5 year campaign of Tomb of Annihilation with no feats, no multi-classing, and standard array ability scores. Was totally fun and enjoyable. Nobody felt like anything important was missing.

For the record, the DM stipulated no feats and standard array. Multi-classing was probably allowed, but nobody did it.
Did anyone play a human?
 


Arial Black

Adventurer
Hiya!

Think of it this way. You go compete in a 500m bicycle race...and everyone there is given a choice of what bike to ride. There is the Standard Bike (which is coloured any colour other than blue, red or black,) which everyone is allowed to use by default. Or, if you want, you can choose from three pro-level hyper-engineered racing bikes (which are blue, red or black). You look around the field and see...? Yeah...you see that EVERYONE is using a blue, red or black bike. Because anyone who is using a silver bike is at a disadvantage.

So the "same-y'ness" changes from multiple colours of bikes in the field...to one of three choices; blue, red or black. Not a silver, gold, white, yellow, green, or purple bike to be seen. That's what I was getting at.

You see a Cleric and look at the sheet; . So in stead of seeing 100 clerics, all with different spells....you see 100 fighters, all preparing cure wounds, spiritual weapon, spirit guardians, the usual list. Oh, you may find the odd create or destroy water, locate object, feign death, but the result is that every single one of those clerics is "worse at casting" than you are with the popular spells.

When simply looking at it between two or three characters, it looks diverse. But extrapolate that out to the NPC's and campaign world at large... and every cleric is using the same spells. The only fix is to ban spells and replace them with Wisdom bonuses.
FIFY.

When you see people picking the same feats as a reason to ban feats, it follows that people picking the same spells is a reason to ban spells.

Really, your solution to the 'problem' of 'same-y'ness'....is to force ALL fighters to increase Str/Dex/Con?
 


Burnside

Space Jam Confirmed
To me that doesn't show what you're saying. You were talking about "amazing feats", and Magic Initiate isn't an "amazing Feat", really. It's decent but it's not wild, and people picking it at level 4 are not doing it for optimization reasons, they're doing for it for RP reasons - literally to get a familiar.

This has always been a classic issue in D&D. Some people really want that familiar. They will do whatever it takes to get that familiar. I've seen that since 2E. That is not specific to Feats.

Sort of ignoring the fact that familiars in 5E are, in fact, an amazing thing for any class to have. So a feat that gives you a familiar PLUS two wizard cantrips is, in fact, an amazing feat.

You are also assuming that this is the only feat that gets duplicated. It isn't. Multiple characters with Great Weapon Fighting in same party, seen it. Multiple character with Sentinel in same party, definitely seen it.

It's not the end of the world and like I said I do allow feats. I'm just bothered by the argument that "I need feats to create my unique custom build~!" when my experience as a DM - and I've DMed for hundreds of players over the past 4 years - is that most players' unique, distinctive custom feat build is one of the same 3-4 builds everyone else is making.
 

Undrave

Hero
Yes there is a player who wants to say how he can’t build his character concept without feats but when I ask him to explain the concept really is just ‘cool dpr “
So?
I will toss out there that I’m very particular about how I say it... I express that I’m “not using the optional feat rule’ as opposed to saying ‘I’m banning feats’ as one implies that players are owed it while the other keeps in terminology of the game that it isn’t I in fact it core and instead an optional rule choice
Unrelated to you, I feel like WotC WANTED feats to be a core feature but they got cold feat because people hated feat bloat. They're stuck in this awkward situation where they still print new feat for this 'optional' feature that is totally available in Adventure League.
When simply looking at it between two or three characters, it looks diverse. But extrapolate that out to the NPC's and campaign world at large... and every fighter is using a 2h weapon, polearm or composite longbow.
NPCs aren't built like PCs. If all the Fighter in the world all look like your PCs then it's an issue with the DM. Besides, more NPCs won't be able to afford the high end weapons. They'll be stuck with Shortbows and Spears. I don't get why you're annoyed... what kind of fighters do you want to see? There's really like 5 types of fighter :

-BIG weapon
-LONG weapon
-Weapon and Shield
-Two Weapons
-Long Range Weapon

You can try to go for a DEX build with a Rapier, and maybe you can TRY to make the clearly inferior thrown weapons work, but finesse is more of a rogue thing and thrown weapon is just a subset of two weapons. And using a Rapier doesn't preclude the use of a shield so it's just a subset of Weapon and Shield. If you don't carry a shield you might still have a bonus to your defence somehow that result in the same damn thing.

We even got feats based on damage style now so your Sword and Board can be Mace and Board or maybe your Big Weapon guy now uses a war pick for that piercing damage. If we ignore Long Range Weapon, that's 3 additional option for each of the other four: Slash, Pierce or Bludgeon, resulting in (3x4)+1= 13 'basic' builds for fighter. Without getting into subclass choices.

And that's not even considering the feats that don't ACTUALLY have anything to do with your weapon configuration choices: Heavy Armour Master, Medium Armour Master, Fey Touched, Shadow Touched, Magic Initiate, Ritual Caster, Artificer Initiate, Martial Adept, Inspiring Leader, Resilient, Skill Expert, Charger, War Caster.

And that's not considering Crossbow Experts or Tavern Brawler for the corner cases.

I could make a ton of fun customize builds with synergy and I wouldn't even need to stop thinking about the damage number. Like, I don't know how good any of these I mentioned are mathematically, I just know those combination would work together and feel like building my character's style.

It's not the end of the world and like I said I do allow feats. I'm just bothered by the argument that "I need feats to create my unique custom build~!" when my experience as a DM - and I've DMed for hundreds of players over the past 4 years - is that most players' unique, distinctive custom feat build is one of the same 3-4 builds everyone else is making.
They're fun builds, Burnt.

Also, as someone pointed out, it might be boring for you, but it might be the first time that specific player has use this build so cut them some slack. Now, if they ALWAYS bust out the same character you can start rolling your eyes.
 
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