D&D 5E Challenge: Invent a PHB Class List with 6 Classes

MoonSong

Rules-lawyering drama queen but not a munchkin
Cleric/Fighter
Cleric/Wizard
Cleric/Thief
Fighter/Wizard
Fighter/Thief
Wizard/Thief

:)
Cool, let's give them names in order

Cleric/Fighter->Paladin Edit: Ok saw your answer to the other answer, so Crusader!
Cleric/Wizard->Sorcerer or divine soul! (favored soul?)
Cleric/Thief->Warlock
Fighter/Wizard->Ranger or eldritch Knight
Fighter/Thief->Swashbuckler
Wizard/Thief->Bard!
 
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CreamCloud0

Explorer
Interesting choices. I personally prefer to go for less "grab bag" and more "do one thing and do it well" options,
yeah i was picking them more by looking at each 'species' as a solid but flexible conceptual core then using the subraces to give a bundle of specific race's iconic traits, rather than choosing only six species, because while orcs, dragonborn and dwarves are all very iconic in DnD and have their specific traits i'd say that at the same time they all fit a similar niche of 'tough and physically hardy'
 
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I have a new answer. Not for the increasingly generic, cover all bases, four-subclasses-of-kitchen-sink D&D designed to appeal to all audiences, but with a flavor meant to evoke a kind of setting:

Knight
Witch
Hunter
Outlaw
Minstrel
Priest

Maybe a new thread should be “Guess the setting/genre of the poster above you, then name six classes of your own.”
 

Tinker-TDC

Explorer
Warrior-simple tough fighter types: knight, berzerker, paladin
Archer-simple nimble fighter types: rogue, sniper, guerilla
Tactician-tactical fighter types: battlemaster, martial artist, ranger, warlord
Mage-spellcaster: fills all current spellcasting niches
Summoner-conjures allied creatures to fight for you
Shifter-transforms their body to fight

Limiting it to six I think for the subclasses to be balanced between the parts of the base-class Summoner and Shifter must be their own thing. Three definitively magical classes and three that can be either magical or nonmagical depending on how the player wants to run them.
Spellcasting classes are basically the same except for warlock, so it seems reasonable to group them all into one class and then give separate spell lists to each subclass. Possibly have a "basic magic" list that all mages can take from and then make subclasses that give options of other spells known like divine archetypes but ten per level instead of two per level.

The big implementation I'd like to make is to have a subclass and an archetype choice. Subclasses you choose at level 2 from a list of options from your class and gain them in certain levels of your class but it only affects your fighting style. Archetype should be a level 1 choice that you gain at the same level in each class (therefore having cross-class compatibility) that affects your social and exploration abilities and gives your class a theme.
Then with the mix and match system you could play with what the difference between a "Holy" (archetype) person who is a mage, shifter, or archer and how a "Master of Shadows" (archetype) "Berzerker" (subclass) Warrior differs from a "Master of Shadows" (archetype) "Juggernaut" (subclass) Warrior.
 


Taking a variant stab at it. Most times, we come to this either with the Traditionalist archetypes, those handed down to us by Gygax and Arneson. Or we come at it from a mechanistic perspective, what mechanical function does it serve. Let's instead take a Monsterhearts style approach, distinct Cool Fantasy Themes.

The Everyman: Common person rising to uncommon greatness.
The Soul-Touched: One born, or made, at least a little preternatural.
The Faustian: One who trades promises or fealty for power from beyond.
The Wyrd-Beast: The monster that becomes human, and the human that becomes a monster.
The Enlightened: Deep Secrets, True Understanding, Hidden Knowledge...the keys to power.
The Dedicated: Conviction alone shall be their shield, and truth their naked sword.

These chop up and redistribute thematic elements of the existing classes. E.g. a Wizard might be The Faustian or The Enlightened, and a Monk might be The Enlightened or The Dedicated, and a Paladin might be The Soul-Touched or The Dedicated. Some Clerics, even those of "good" beings, might be The Faustian rather than The Dedicated, and while a Druid make sense as The Wyrd-Beast, it also works as The Enlightened. Fighters make sense as The Everyman or The Dedicated. Etc.

A perk of this method is that "magic" is no longer anyone's province. Nothing prevents The Everyman from knowing some magical things, they just aren't going to learn the Deep Secrets beneath, because that's what The Enlightened does. Someone might be The Soul-Touched, The Enlightened, or The Dedicated (and thus preternatural/supernatural) without really using magic.
 



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