D&D (2024) Developer Video on Druid/Paladin/Expert Feedback



WotC has posted a video discussing initial feedback on the One D&D Druid/Paladin playtest, along with survey results from the Expert playtest. Some highlights for discussion:

Druid: The developers recognize that the template version of wild shape is contentious. If they retain this approach, they would plan to add flexibility to those templates. If they revert to monster stat blocks, they might allow Druids to choose a limited number of options, with a default selection provided.

Paladin: The new version of smite is still intended to work with critical hits. If ranged smite persists, its damage may be adjusted through the internal balance/playtesting process.

Ranger: The updated Ranger scored very well in the playtest. Some players did miss the choice of options in the Hunter subclass.

Bard: All of the Lore Bard's features scored welll, but the overall subclass rating was mediocre. They attribute this to the loss of Additional Magical Secrets, which many saw as the key attraction of this subclass.

Rogue: The change to limit sneak attack to the Rogue's own turn scored poorly. The developers generally like moving actions to a player's own turn to keep the game moving quickly, but in this case, the change doesn't seem to be worth the loss of tactical flexibility.

Feats: With the exception of epic boons, all the feats in the Expert packet scored well. The developers are still loking at written feedback for fine tuning.

Conspicuously not mentioned were the Arcane/Divine/Primal spell lists, which were the focus of a lot of discussion during the Bard playtest.
 
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Micah Sweet

Level Up & OSR Enthusiast
I disagree with this. Sure, the char is a cleric, but that does not mean they have to be distinct from clerics of other gods mechanically at first level. That simply does not follow


and I disagree with that too. If I want to play Aragorn, then I functionally want to be Aragorn, I do not care if the class is called Ranger or not
Well, that last point is certainly not universal.
 

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doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
I think the Drakewarden was what Beastmaster should have been relative to 5e. It just makes sense the way they structured it and you could easily extrapolate it for any kind of creature or beast you want.
Ugh no. Summoning a magical critter for a short time is not a beast master.
If DND as a lifestyle brand wants to be all things to all people then it needs to diversify into more than just the one game getting pulled in 900k different directions at once.
Not really. It’s doin be fine as it is.
If they don't drop the charade of backwards compatibility, I fully expect the game to sell well initially but end up being regarded far worse than 5e is.
It’s not a charade, it’s the same game.
5e itself isn't ever going to have its content fixed, and people are going to try and bash things from it into OneDND and it'll never work the way anyone wants it to, and people will hold that against the game.
Having run games using playtest options with PHB options, including on the same character, this is nonsense.
DMs already have it hard; imagine having to juggle 9 years of content thats never going to be reprinted with fixes that players are going to insist they have access to because WOTC said so.
This is hypothetical theory crafting with no basis in what we have actually seen.

Edit: cut out the inclusion argument, per Morrus’ request.
 

Remathilis

Legend
Well, that last point is certainly not universal.
To a degree. The same argument that says "I don't want to be a rogue, I want to be a nonmagical ranger" can also be wound to "I don't want to be a battlemaster, I want to be a Warlord" or "I don't want to be warlock or druid, I want to be a Witch". Which to me is perfectly fine: 12 classes isn't nearly enough to encompass all of the various character ideas in D&D. I'd love to see Warlord, Psionicist, Witch, Shaman, Spellsword, Bloodhunter, and other classes in D&D. That we went 10 years with only the artificer is insane.
 

Micah Sweet

Level Up & OSR Enthusiast
To a degree. The same argument that says "I don't want to be a rogue, I want to be a nonmagical ranger" can also be wound to "I don't want to be a battlemaster, I want to be a Warlord" or "I don't want to be warlock or druid, I want to be a Witch". Which to me is perfectly fine: 12 classes isn't nearly enough to encompass all of the various character ideas in D&D. I'd love to see Warlord, Psionicist, Witch, Shaman, Spellsword, Bloodhunter, and other classes in D&D. That we went 10 years with only the artificer is insane.
Yup. Its an indicator of just how conservative and safe WotC design is.
 


Ugh no. Summoning a magical critter for a short time is not a beast master.

I meant more in the sense that the Drake grows with you.

This is hypothetical theory crafting with no basis in what we have actually seen.

Either the 5E books are fair game in OneDND or they aren't. If One overall depowers the classes then having the 5e versions be fair game is going to cause problems of disparity.

Case in point, the Druid. Moon is still overpowered (in some places, obviously) and isn't being changed just because theres a new, separate version.
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
If they insist on making wildshape such a core element of the class, it would be nice to see it interact more with the spellcasting side of it, like being able to burn spell slots for effects more relevant to a beast form, or to allow for more powerful forms. This also lets them reign in the base power of wildshape and make it something that can be used freely and fluidly.

This opens up a whole host of crazy subclasses possibilities that could burn spell slots for unique effects.

Really that would be a fun and thematic mechanic for primal casters in general.
The easiest way to do this is to allow casting any Druid spell with a range of self, and moon Druids get to cast touch spells and spells where an area is focused on the caster, as well.

Let Druids cast dragonsbreath on themself while in bear form, and the class stops pulling in two directions.

And fully ditch the movement type restrictions. Having one class that can turn into a bird with 1hp isn’t a big deal, even at level 1.
 


mamba

Legend
Well, that last point is certainly not universal.
never said it was, but I care what something is, not what D&D calls it. If I can play Aragorn as a Fighter with Outlander but not a Ranger, then that is what I pick and move on, I do not lament that it is not under Ranger

Would I prefer a nonmagical Ranger, sure, I would prefer less magic in general, but that is a separate issue from finding a representation of Aragorn
 

Not all who want a non-magical Ranger are just looking to play as Aragorn, but to invoke the same tropes and not have to work against the games own presentation to do it. As said, synchronicity matters. May be not to everyone, but to many it does.

Also important to note its not like it costs us something to enable this. There's no zero-sum where having the Ranger be non-magical means something else has to have something taken away.

And its also not like the magical Ranger is so abhorrent an idea; many of the subclasses that lean into it are actually really great. It just shouldn't be core to the class, which can and should support doing both, with the choice of subclass defining whether or not magic use is part of the playstyle.

Assuming such a base class is done well, everyone is covered and nothing has to be sacrificed.
 

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