D&D (2024) diving into feats & expert classes for what they are as a whole rather than what they aren't

MoonSong

Rules-lawyering drama queen but not a munchkin
I like the spirit there, but as far as I can see the closest thing to a main, guiding principle for what they are trying to achieve with OneD&D is trying to impose lots of top-level order and hierarchies. There are now three spell lists; a taxonomic system of four catagories of classes, each with three classes; unified spellcasting rules; spells prepared equaling spell slots for no particular reason other than having a big dumb rule for all occasions; standardized class progression; and everywhere, always the unrelenting merciless proficiency bonus as the only number you ever need. Somehow I feel like me, or even a thousand mes telling them that the only coherent goal they seem to be pursuing is a fool's errand won't dissuade them from abandoning the only principle they seem to be designing around, which is big orderly systems wherever they can squeeze one in, everything else be damned.
They have turned back on things before. Remember they've had high approval thresholds in the past. If enough voices tell them to stop or change course, they will adapt and make changes. They don't want to kill the cash cow. If you feel so discouraged that you won't even try, then you have already self-defeated.
 

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DEFCON 1

Legend
Supporter
Really. I'm not saying no Bard would ever do it, I'm saying it doesn't feel core enough to the class to become the signature 1st level Bard spell for low level play they way it almost certainly will, given how vastly more efficient a use of a 1st level spell slot it is than almost anything else, and given that anytime it's casted it's likely to be moved around through multiple bonus actions. There goes that Bard, Hexing again the way Bards always do. No I don't think that should be the future of the class. A matter of particular taste perhaps.
So it seems that your argument is that because Hex is one of the best spells at 1st level, most Bards will use it and it will turn into the default Bard option even though you don't think it is Bard-like?

Seems to me the issue then isn't the spell... it's all the other Bard players out there that you have a problem with-- Bard players that care more about absolute spell power than they do with being "Bard-like". Unfortunately, you're just crap out of luck on that one. Even if WotC was to remove Hex from the Bard list... that's not going to turn all these Bard players into suddenly forsaking powerful magics and playing more towards theme. You're trying to treat the symptom, not the disease.

Other people play this game differently than you (or me, or any of us). And trying to get WotC to change rules for no better argument that you personally don't like it is not an argument that I think holds much weight. Either from WotC, or more importantly from other people for whom you are trying to convince so that you ALL can put down your findings in the survey and get those precious percentages closer to what you need for WotC to make a decision to change.
 

So it seems that your argument is that because Hex is one of the best spells at 1st level, most Bards will use it and it will turn into the default Bard option even though you don't think it is Bard-like?

Seems to me the issue then isn't the spell... it's all the other Bard players out there that you have a problem with-- Bard players that care more about absolute spell power than they do with being "Bard-like". Unfortunately, you're just crap out of luck on that one. Even if WotC was to remove Hex from the Bard list... that's not going to turn all these Bard players into suddenly forsaking powerful magics and playing more towards theme. You're trying to treat the symptom, not the disease.

Other people play this game differently than you (or me, or any of us). And trying to get WotC to change rules for no better argument that you personally don't like it is not an argument that I think holds much weight. Either from WotC, or more importantly from other people for whom you are trying to convince so that you ALL can put down your findings in the survey and get those precious percentages closer to what you need for WotC to make a decision to change.

Play how you want. I'm really not super prescriptive of how other people play the game in general, but I think it's the place of game designers, in a class-based game, to put restrictions on the classes so that they play to particular class themes, so that they play in a distinctive way, so that no one character can do everything, and so that playing one class you don't feel like you've played them all or a whole swath of them.

As much as we should respect the principle that people are entitled to play the game they way they want, it is, and always has been, the place of game designers to save people from themselves by putting rules in place to ensure a long term satisfying experience over just being able to do what you want to do whenever you want to do it.

I personally will 100% make a 5.5 Bard with Hex at some point, because the mechanical optimizing urge is hard to resist. And having had my Hexy fun with a Bard, I am a little less likely to ever bother playing a Warlock, because it is now less unique and gives me less I haven't already gotten out of a Bard, Sorcerer, etc. Generally in a system with four different full casters using the same spell list (Arcane) I'm going to be less inclined to want to roll up quite so many different characters of those classes. It undermines the class distinctiveness of all four classes.

I suspect 5.5 will be a lot of short term fun, but I have doubts about its ability to keep people coming back.
 

And then, hex is not even that great of a spell if you don't dual wield and can keep concentration up... so often, you are better served with spells that actually help your party. Although, bard took some hits in the party buff and enemy debuff department.
 

Pauln6

Hero
So if the Shieldmaster feat allows a shield bash as part of your action, presumably you can also use it as an improvised weapon to inflict damage at the same time if you have a light weapon in your other hand? A bit of feat investment required to create Captain America still. It does open up the possibility of a mechanical use for a light shield that is +1 AC though.
 
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Dausuul

Legend
Hex for a bard is a niche spell at best. It's a powerhouse for warlocks because so many warlocks rely on EB spam. But bards are full casters, and full casters rarely make attack rolls; which means you get little to no bonus damage from hex.

The main value of hex for a bard would be as a debuff to enemy skill checks. It's not going to be a mainstay in combat.
 

Micah Sweet

Level Up & OSR Enthusiast
Hex for a bard is a niche spell at best. It's a powerhouse for warlocks because so many warlocks rely on EB spam. But bards are full casters, and full casters rarely make attack rolls; which means you get little to no bonus damage from hex.

The main value of hex for a bard would be as a debuff to enemy skill checks. It's not going to be a mainstay in combat.
I think bards are the exception. They are  so versatile that I can easily see a bard that makes regular attack rolls interspersed with spells and inspiration thrown out when the opportunity arises. This is my issue with bards. Even with the support elements, the bard can do so many things they don't even really need a party.
 

Dausuul

Legend
I think bards are the exception. They are  so versatile that I can easily see a bard that makes regular attack rolls interspersed with spells and inspiration thrown out when the opportunity arises. This is my issue with bards. Even with the support elements, the bard can do so many things they don't even really need a party.
Maybe if you're playing College of Valor/Swords, you make enough attacks to justify spending your concentration on hex. Even then, I'm skeptical, since that means you're not using it for hold person, suggestion, hypnotic pattern, fear, polymorph, animate objects, or any of the other incredibly potent concentration spells available to bards.

Any other bard is going to use hex purely as a way to mess with somebody's Wisdom-based skill checks.
 

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