D&D 5E [D&D Next] Second Packet - initial impressions


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variant

Adventurer
My first impression was that I don't like the vertical progression of the attacks and save DCs. I guess a +6 to attack for a Fighter and a Wizard's Magic Attack isn't too bad, but I am worried that it will be bad when you include other bonuses from abilities like Combat Superiority, feats, spells, and magical items.
 
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pemerton

Legend
Why on earth do we still need to hear about "Ignoring the dice"? And on top of that they've added boxed text about not picking a DC until the player has rolled a result. For me personally, that's just terrible advice when presented that way.
I agree with you about the post-hoc setting of the DC.

The "ignoring the dice" advice has a bad heading. What they seem to be talking about is "saying yes" - which means you don't ignore the dice, but rather don't roll them in the first place!
 

NMcCoy

First Post
Loving the "two attacks at half damage" thing. Only thing I'm wondering is if it cuts sneak attack in half; hoping two-weapon rogues are viable rather than terrible.

I'm also hoping that multiclassing will be enough to get at least the +2 "proficiency bonus" on magic attacks. It's not awesome enough for a 5e feat...

Also, a potential bug: The disengage action moves you 10 feet (without mentioning speed), and immobilization effects reduce your speed to 0... so when you're immobilized, just disengage your way to freedom? Clearly not RAI, but they might want to look at this.
 

Minigiant

Legend
Supporter
I like a lot about the playtest packet. The races, the class, BGs and Specs. At first glance Armor seems fixed.


Still no Intelligence saving throws and Charisma saving throws
And no rules for outdrinking dwarves.
 

Cadfan

First Post
I react so negatively to rolling for ability scores (and hit dice for the same reason) that its hard to even summarize.

Its like people who drive 45 miles per hour on a 65 mile per hour interstate, for no reason except that they feel like it. Their decisions affect other people in a small but negative way. They, for trivial reasons, have chosen to make other people's lives just a tiny bit worse. The sheer banality of it makes it a moral issue.

WOTC is choosing to make the lives of children worse for almost no reason. Adults who have been gaming for a while will know to choose the ability score generation system that they like the most. But having rolling for ability scores be the "core" method makes people say the game "feels like D&D," so rolling is listed as the primary method.

That means it will be the method used by new, younger players. They'll roll ability scores, invariably some characters will be way better than others due to these die rolls, and someone's first character, the one with a ridiculous name and corny abilities that they believe to be TOTALLY AWESOME because that's what you're like at age 12... will be an utter bust. Because of this. A child life will be, in a small but noticeable way, worse. Thanks.
 

IronWolf

blank
My initial thoughts were fro my 7 year old, who played a PF Basic Box Wizard and hated that he was just a crossbowman, and not a good one at that! Now you can still contribute, like 4E, once your dailies are gone or you do not wish to use them.

I don't want to go too far off-topic, but I don't think the wizard in my PF BB games ever used a crossbow. Depending on the school they chose at character creation there were several options. And even Ray of Frost as a ranged touch attack for 1d3 worked in a pinch.

I am sure everyone had different play experiences, but not sure that single play experience characterizes the whole game.
 

Chris_Nightwing

First Post
I react so negatively to rolling for ability scores (and hit dice for the same reason) that its hard to even summarize.

Its like people who drive 45 miles per hour on a 65 mile per hour interstate, for no reason except that they feel like it. Their decisions affect other people in a small but negative way. They, for trivial reasons, have chosen to make other people's lives just a tiny bit worse. The sheer banality of it makes it a moral issue.

WOTC is choosing to make the lives of children worse for almost no reason. Adults who have been gaming for a while will know to choose the ability score generation system that they like the most. But having rolling for ability scores be the "core" method makes people say the game "feels like D&D," so rolling is listed as the primary method.

That means it will be the method used by new, younger players. They'll roll ability scores, invariably some characters will be way better than others due to these die rolls, and someone's first character, the one with a ridiculous name and corny abilities that they believe to be TOTALLY AWESOME because that's what you're like at age 12... will be an utter bust. Because of this. A child life will be, in a small but noticeable way, worse. Thanks.

Wow, over-exaggerate some? Do you go round telling children that their characters suck because they're not optimised? I don't remember my life being any the worse for randomly rolling stats and I think my first character was a cleric with 15 wisdom. Should that one kid in that famous tract have been given all 18s to stop Blackleaf dying?
 

Li Shenron

Legend
Just because you mentioned it: I love the lower HP numbers. I like that the numbers all-around are a lot smaller. It feels very cool and dangerous and old-school.

I never minded dangerous and old-school, but if you use these HP numbers (which are the same as in 3ed) with the current damage output of the spells, combat superiority and sneak attack (which are bigger than in 3ed) you have a problem when the PCs fight against NPCs, unless you purposefully design the latter using the same rules as the monsters.
 

Li Shenron

Legend
That means it will be the method used by new, younger players. They'll roll ability scores, invariably some characters will be way better than others due to these die rolls, and someone's first character, the one with a ridiculous name and corny abilities that they believe to be TOTALLY AWESOME because that's what you're like at age 12... will be an utter bust. Because of this. A child life will be, in a small but noticeable way, worse. Thanks.

Why not turning this around and pretend that they will be better persons because they will learn "you can't always get what you want"?

It's just a game...
 

Cadfan

First Post
Should that one kid in that famous tract have been given all 18s to stop Blackleaf dying?
Leaving aside the other issues in your post: The overall power level of the game is a separate concern from inter-character balance. The former is a matter of what power level makes for a fun game, the latter is a matter of what fairness makes for a fun game.
 

gyor

Legend
I like a lot about the playtest packet. The races, the class, BGs and Specs. At first glance Armor seems fixed.


Still no Intelligence saving throws and Charisma saving throws
And no rules for outdrinking dwarves.

I already have an idea for a build.

I call it the Graverobber:

Race: High Elf

Class: Rogue

Scheme: Thug

Background: Sage

Speciality: Necromancer

Until they produce a Necromantic attack spell the first ability would be week, but Animate Servant at level three, plus Thug scheme makes getting sneak attack every turn easy and as a High Elf one qualifies for necromancer because of the free minor spell. For now I'm thinking Ray of Frost fits the character concept.
 

I don't want to go too far off-topic, but I don't think the wizard in my PF BB games ever used a crossbow. Depending on the school they chose at character creation there were several options. And even Ray of Frost as a ranged touch attack for 1d3 worked in a pinch.

Indeed. The PF Beginner Box has wizard cantrips for a good reason.

I never minded dangerous and old-school, but if you use these HP numbers (which are the same as in 3ed) with the current damage output of the spells, combat superiority and sneak attack (which are bigger than in 3ed) you have a problem when the PCs fight against NPCs, unless you purposefully design the latter using the same rules as the monsters.

This is a problem? As far as I'm aware "NPCs must be designed by PCs rules" was a 3.X thing - and 3.X had hit point inflation as against previous editions. Also fights involving NPC wizards were always pretty brutal.
 

billd91

Not your screen monkey (he/him)
Agreed. I thought the starting hp from the last playtest packet were right where they should be. Fortunately, I expect them to change it back as soon as they hear all of the screams of "my character died in one hit!"

Yes, I have to say that the denizens of the Caves of Chaos proved quite adept at damaging the party quickly - what with charging orc bonuses and kobold advantage in numbers. The high hit points of the 1st packet's PCs didn't seem out of place.
 


Chris_Nightwing

First Post
Leaving aside the other issues in your post: The overall power level of the game is a separate concern from inter-character balance. The former is a matter of what power level makes for a fun game, the latter is a matter of what fairness makes for a fun game.

In my experience of playing D&D, being the DM's best friend makes for a far less fair game than the dice you rolled for your character.. especially when you're a kid. As an adult, I think it's a matter of taste as to whether you are completely balanced against your companions. As a kid, I think it's not that big a deal, and hey, you used to be able to learn from the experience. Roll the right prerequisites for a Paladin and everyone will clamour for you to play one, and with great power comes great responsibility..
 

Cor Azer

First Post
I don't have my packet with me, but one thing I noticed that I haven't seen mentioned - in the character advancement bit, where it talks about +1 to two attributes, there was a mention of a max 20. Had that been known before?
 

Connorsrpg

Adventurer
I have read through most of the player side of things and I must say I am liking what I read.

(Without derailing the whole thread (as it did for our 5 Session Playtest Thread), I still can't believe they are sticking with Magic Missile being an 'always hit, all the time, no matter the circumstances' thing. But that is cool - we will simply House Rule. Such a minor thing really, so I guess I am REALLY liking what I see so far).
 

pemerton

Legend
Why not turning this around and pretend that they will be better persons because they will learn "you can't always get what you want"?

It's just a game...
If I've understood [MENTION=40961]Cadfan[/MENTION] right, he's envisaging a kid wanting to play the game in "heroic" style - your PC is your avatar in an exploration of a heroic fantasy world - being stuck with a "Gygaxian" stat generation method: PCs are essentially disposable, and you go through a stable of them until you get one that survives (perhaps because it got lucky on stat rolls).

That's not about learning the virtues of adversity (and I question whether games are even the place to learn this). It's about the game not being suited to deliver what the kid expects from it.
 

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