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5E Combat styles and multi-classing

Quartz

Explorer
Or, have I been doing it wrong? I'm looking at 'You can't take a Fighting Style option more than once, even if you later get to choose again.' (PHB p.91)

Fighting classes often give combat styles early on. Are they cumulative, or do they replace previous styles? If they are cumulative, what if they weren't? Combat styles are very powerful and getting a second combat style is one of the defining features of the higher-level Champion Fighter.
 
Or, have I been doing it wrong? I'm looking at 'You can't take a Fighting Style option more than once, even if you later get to choose again.' (PHB p.91)

Fighting classes often give combat styles early on. Are they cumulative, or do they replace previous styles? If they are cumulative, what if they weren't? Combat styles are very powerful and getting a second combat style is one of the defining features of the higher-level Champion Fighter.
You can't take a single style more than once, so no picking dueling twice for +4 damage to all one handed attacks.
 

Li Shenron

Adventurer
Or, have I been doing it wrong? I'm looking at 'You can't take a Fighting Style option more than once, even if you later get to choose again.' (PHB p.91)

Fighting classes often give combat styles early on. Are they cumulative, or do they replace previous styles? If they are cumulative, what if they weren't? Combat styles are very powerful and getting a second combat style is one of the defining features of the higher-level Champion Fighter.
They are cumulative, as long as you choose a different style each time you earn one.
 

Revaros

Villager
"Even if you get to choose it again" is written for multi-classing where you would otherwise seemingly get the option to choose the same style again.
 

Fanaelialae

Adventurer
You can have multiple fighting styles as long as you don't take the same one more than once.

It's potent, but you need to consider the opportunity cost of multi classing in order to do so. You're delaying access to high level abilities (such as Extra Attack) or potentially cutting off access entirely.

Additionally, fighting styles aren't complimentary. You can't benefit from Archery and Duelist at the same time, though it's certainly nice to have options. You can benefit for the +2 to damage and +1 to AC at the same time, but they're not contributing to the same efficacy (unless you're considering overall combat effectiveness).

I would say they're fine as is. You can't take the same fighting style more than once, but having multiple different styles is not a problem IME.
 

dnd4vr

Explorer
Or, have I been doing it wrong? I'm looking at 'You can't take a Fighting Style option more than once, even if you later get to choose again.' (PHB p.91)

Fighting classes often give combat styles early on. Are they cumulative, or do they replace previous styles? If they are cumulative, what if they weren't? Combat styles are very powerful and getting a second combat style is one of the defining features of the higher-level Champion Fighter.
As others have said, you can take different styles when multiclass or 11th-level champion. However, our group disagrees about them being "very powerful" so we house-ruled extra features:

Archery
You gain a +2 bonus to attack rolls you make with ranged weapons. If you have made an attack with a ranged weapon, you can use your bonus action to make another ranged weapon attack of the same type (missile or thrown) . You cannot use this feature with a weapon with the Loading property.

Defense
While you are wearing armor, you gain a +1 bonus to your armor class. You can use your reaction to half the damage from one attack. You can use this feature after the attack is rolled, but before damage is determined.

Dueling
When you are wielding a melee weapon in one hand and no other weapons, you gain a +2 bonus to damage rolls with that weapon and any attempts to disarm your weapon are with disadvantage. After you have made an attack with your melee weapon, you can use your bonus action to make a second attack with the same weapon.

Great Weapon Fighting
You gain a +1 to damage when wielding a weapon with both hands. When you roll a 1 or 2 on a damage die for an attack you make with a melee weapon that you are wielding with two hands, you can reroll the die and must use the new roll, even if the new roll is a 1 or a 2. The weapon must have the heavy or versatile property for you to gain this benefit. You can use your bonus action to grant yourself a +1 bonus to your AC until the start of your next turn.

Protection
While wielding a shield, you gain a +1 bonus to your AC. When a creature you can see attacks a target that is within 5 feet of you, you can use your reaction to impose disadvantage on the attack roll.

Two-Weapon Fighting
When you engage in two-weapon fighting, you add your Strength ability modifier to the damage of both weapons. Fighting with two weapons does not cost your bonus action.

So all the new features require either a bonus action or reaction, except TWF which removes the need for a bonus action.
 

Dausuul

Legend
Or, have I been doing it wrong? I'm looking at 'You can't take a Fighting Style option more than once, even if you later get to choose again.' (PHB p.91)
The way I read it, what that means is you can't take the same combat style twice.

You can take multiple styles if you get them from multiple sources, but basically what that means is you get a choice of "+1 to AC" or "use a reaction to impose disadvantage when someone attacks your ally." The powerhouse combat styles (Great Weapon, Archery, Dueling, and Two-Weapon) can't be stacked because they require mutually exclusive weapon loadouts. +1 AC is a nice perk to martial multiclassing, but it's far from broken.
 

Quartz

Explorer
Okay, thanks. So suppose that Fighting Styles were not cumulative - that is, unless you are a high-level Champion Fighter you can only ever have one Fighting Style - how would that affect multiclassing and the game?
 

FrogReaver

Explorer
Okay, thanks. So suppose that Fighting Styles were not cumulative - that is, unless you are a high-level Champion Fighter you can only ever have one Fighting Style - how would that affect multiclassing and the game?
None

or to be more exact so arguments don’t ensue. The effect would be so minimal that it’s effect on multiclassing would be so minimal that it might as well be non existent.

Maybe 1 out of 1 million players would multiclass differently if this were the case
 

Dausuul

Legend
Okay, thanks. So suppose that Fighting Styles were not cumulative - that is, unless you are a high-level Champion Fighter you can only ever have one Fighting Style - how would that affect multiclassing and the game?
It's effectively a -1 penalty to AC for anyone multiclassing two martial classes. So, you're nerfing martial multiclass builds. Do you think that they need it?
 

FrogReaver

Explorer
It's effectively a -1 penalty to AC for anyone multiclassing two martial classes. So, you're nerfing martial multiclass builds. Do you think that they need it?
Rogues, Barbarians and Monks none get a fighting style. It's only if you are multiclassing fighter, paladin or ranger. I don't think any of those classes will miss the -1 AC (or +1.3 damage if you are a Great weapon user)
 

dnd4vr

Explorer
Okay, thanks. So suppose that Fighting Styles were not cumulative - that is, unless you are a high-level Champion Fighter you can only ever have one Fighting Style - how would that affect multiclassing and the game?
Even if you can't take the same style twice, they are a big reason for taking a couple levels of ranger or paladin or single level of fighter. I would certainly keep them if someone multiclassed and got the feature.

There's no reason really to limit them as written. Either they are offensive and exclusive (you can't utilize duelist and great-weapon or twf) or one is offensive and the other defensive, it which case they are complementary possibly (such as defensive and twf or protection and duelist). Only the two defensive work in unison, but one helps the PC and the other allows the PC to help others.

It's effectively a -1 penalty to AC for anyone multiclassing two martial classes. So, you're nerfing martial multiclass builds. Do you think that they need it?
Exactly. Most martials need more, not less, compared to the spellcasters, et al.

None

or to be more exact so arguments don’t ensue. The effect would be so minimal that it’s effect on multiclassing would be so minimal that it might as well be non existent.

Maybe 1 out of 1 million players would multiclass differently if this were the case
Rogues, Barbarians and Monks none get a fighting style. It's only if you are multiclassing fighter, paladin or ranger. I don't think any of those classes will miss the -1 AC (or +1.3 damage if you are a Great weapon user)
Guess I am the one in a million LOL! It would make certain multiclassing options less attractive for certain. And I think any one would miss a +1 bonus to AC if you took it away, for whatever reason. Or if you took away a bonus to their damage.

Considering how useful the fighting styles are, I wouldn't limit them further.
 

FrogReaver

Explorer
Even if you can't take the same style twice, they are a big reason for taking a couple levels of ranger or paladin or single level of fighter. I would certainly keep them if someone multiclassed and got the feature.

There's no reason really to limit them as written. Either they are offensive and exclusive (you can't utilize duelist and great-weapon or twf) or one is offensive and the other defensive, it which case they are complementary possibly (such as defensive and twf or protection and duelist). Only the two defensive work in unison, but one helps the PC and the other allows the PC to help others.



Exactly. Most martials need more, not less, compared to the spellcasters, et al.





Guess I am the one in a million LOL! It would make certain multiclassing options less attractive for certain. And I think any one would miss a +1 bonus to AC if you took it away, for whatever reason. Or if you took away a bonus to their damage.

Considering how useful the fighting styles are, I wouldn't limit them further.
If a class with a fighting style mutliclasses with fighter the payoff is for action surge and possibly a subclass feature
If a class with a fighting style multiclasses with paladin, the payoff is divine smite and spellcasting
If a class with a fighting style multiclasses with ranger, the payoff is hunter's mark and the subclass level 3 ability

+1 AC is such a small part of the reason to multiclass amongst those classes to begin with IMO. The payoff for the features listed above is just so large. IMO

My preference as well is don't limit it. But the impact of removing it is sufficiently small that it won't really matter one way or the other. IMO
 

dnd4vr

Explorer
If a class with a fighting style mutliclasses with fighter the payoff is for action surge and possibly a subclass feature
If a class with a fighting style multiclasses with paladin, the payoff is divine smite and spellcasting
If a class with a fighting style multiclasses with ranger, the payoff is hunter's mark and the subclass level 3 ability

+1 AC is such a small part of the reason to multiclass amongst those classes to begin with IMO. The payoff for the features listed above is just so large. IMO

My preference as well is don't limit it. But the impact of removing it is sufficiently small that it won't really matter one way or the other. IMO
Of course there are other pay offs and significant ones, but that doesn't mean the fighting styles, which are unlimited in uses (such as +1 AC, +2 damage, etc.) and apply all the time, aren't just as important or more so depending on your point of view.

We have a Fighter/Barbarian in our group and the +2 dueling style bonus helps him much more than his occasional use of action surge or second wind.

But certainly individuals will value different features differently depending on the character build, usefulness, etc. I just don't think they are as small a feature as you do. At least both of our preferences would be to not limit them. :)
 

FrogReaver

Explorer
Of course there are other pay offs and significant ones, but that doesn't mean the fighting styles, which are unlimited in uses (such as +1 AC, +2 damage, etc.) and apply all the time, aren't just as important or more so depending on your point of view.

We have a Fighter/Barbarian in our group and the +2 dueling style bonus helps him much more than his occasional use of action surge or second wind.

But certainly individuals will value different features differently depending on the character build, usefulness, etc. I just don't think they are as small a feature as you do. At least both of our preferences would be to not limit them. :)
Proposed change doesn’t impact barbarian fighter

why even bring him up
 

dnd4vr

Explorer
Proposed change doesn’t impact barbarian fighter

why even bring him up
Sigh... because he is gaining +2 damage with every melee attack he makes and the player loves that feature. The case would be the same if the character was a Fighter/Paladin. Taking Defensive as a fighter and Dueling as a Paladin, that character would certainly miss the +2 to damage all the time if you weren't allowed to take more than one fighting style.

The point is they are more valuable that you give them credit for IMO and why I thought they shouldn't be restricted. You seem to believe them inconsequential compared to the other features as were I argue they can certainly be more important over the long term. Of course, to each their own.
 
Sigh... because he is gaining +2 damage with every melee attack he makes and the player loves that feature. The case would be the same if the character was a Fighter/Paladin. Taking Defensive as a fighter and Dueling as a Paladin, that character would certainly miss the +2 to damage all the time if you weren't allowed to take more than one fighting style.

The point is they are more valuable that you give them credit for IMO and why I thought they shouldn't be restricted. You seem to believe them inconsequential compared to the other features as were I argue they can certainly be more important over the long term. Of course, to each their own.
I don't think he's arguing that the features are inconsequential. I think he's saying that they are not the reason that someone is choosing to multiclass in the first place. If a fighter wants to become a paladin, it's very unlikely that they are choosing to do it for the extra fighting style. It's more likely other class features or the theme that is driving there decision. So limiting the fighting styles most likely wouldn't change a lot of players' minds about their decision to multiclass.
 

Quartz

Explorer
If a fighter wants to become a paladin, it's very unlikely that they are choosing to do it for the extra fighting style.

The reverse, however, does hold: a Paladin gets a lot for one or two levels of fighter. Fighting Style, Second Wind, and Action Surge are all very good. Compare a Paladin 12 / Ftr 2 that has the TWF Fighting Style with a Paladin 14.
 

FrogReaver

Explorer
The reverse, however, does hold: a Paladin gets a lot for one or two levels of fighter. Fighting Style, Second Wind, and Action Surge are all very good. Compare a Paladin 12 / Ftr 2 that has the TWF Fighting Style with a Paladin 14.
My paladins use their bonus action to much to take much advantage of TWF.
 

Dausuul

Legend
The reverse, however, does hold: a Paladin gets a lot for one or two levels of fighter. Fighting Style, Second Wind, and Action Surge are all very good. Compare a Paladin 12 / Ftr 2 that has the TWF Fighting Style with a Paladin 14.
Sure, it looks nice at 14th level. But let's look at the whole level range.

The multiclasser brings +1 AC, Action Surge, and the ability to get TWF which isn't among the style options for paladins. The last is notable at 4th level because TWF is busted at low level, and at levels 13+ because it synergizes nicely with Improved Divine Smite. The multiclasser also gets Second Wind, but this will rarely see use above low levels since it is competing for bonus actions with TWF and it only ever heals 1d10+2.

What does the straight paladin get to compensate?

At 4th level: Channel Divinity and an ASI.
At 5th level: An ASI, Extra Attack, and 2nd-level spells.
At 6th level: Extra Attack, 2nd-level spells, and Aura of Protection.
At 7th level: Aura of Protection, and that aura gets a major boost like "immune to charm" or "resistance to spell damage."
At 8th level: Boosted Aura of Protection and an ASI.
At 9th level: An ASI and 3rd-level spells.
At 10th level: 3rd-level spells and another aura boost, granting immunity to fear.
At 11th level: The immunity to fear boost and 1d8 bonus damage with each attack.
At 12th level: 1d8 bonus damage with each attack and an ASI.
At 13th level: An ASI and 4th-level spells.
At 14th level: 4th-level spells and the ability to remove hostile magic.
At 15th level: The ability to remove hostile magic, and a super-powerful defensive ability (e.g., regenerate ~10 hp/round whenever you're at half hit points or less, or permanent disadvantage to hit you for most of the high-level monsters in the game).
At 16th level: The super-powerful defensive ability and an ASI.
At 17th level: An ASI and 5th-level spells.
At 18th level: 5th-level spells and a 30-foot aura.
At 19th level: A 30-foot aura and an ASI.
At 20th level: An ASI and 1/day god mode.

At levels 5, 6, 11, 12, 18, and 19, the straight paladin is better. Extra Attack, Improved Divine Smite, and Aura Improvement are killer features for the paladin that trump everything fighter 2 brings to the table.
At levels 4, 9, 10, 13, 14, and 17, the multiclasser is better.
At the other levels, it's debatable.

All in all, it lines up pretty well. And note also that much of the multiclasser's advantage at 13/14/17 depends on exploiting the benefits of TWF with Improved Divine Smite. If feats are in play, the straight paladin could pick up Polearm Master for a bonus action attack, and most of that advantage would disappear.
 

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