Do you miss the martial adepts from "Tome of Battle: The Book of Nine Swords"?

LuisCarlos17f

Adventurer
The Tome of Battle: The Book of Nine Swords is a sourcebook from 3.5 what introduce a new game mechanic, the martial maneuvers, special powers in the middle step between at-will and once-encounter, with a style close to the asian wuxian genre and three new classes, the swordsage, the warblade and the crusader. Dreamscarred Press published its own version for Pathfinder, the Path of War, with its own schools of martial disciplines. It is an interesting concept, but ordinary nPCs with martial maneuvers add too complexity to the game, and usually only "bosses" can ba martial adept nPCs.

What is your opinion about this, and how should it come back to the 5th Ed? Would you get any idea by Dreamscarred Press? What changes would you add?

I imagine samurai, sohei and ninjas from D&D as martial adept classes, and the warlord as a fighter with maneuvers of the school of the white raven, and the shadow assassin like a rogue with the maneuvers of the shadow hand. (That is the reason I don't want samurai and ninja as only subclasses). Sometimes I imagine the hexblade class like a hybrid between arcane spellcaster and martial adept.

Should WotC hires Dreamscarred Press to publish the new edition of the martial adepts?

(I know there is a homebrews version for 5th Ed).
 

akr71

Explorer
Why would WotC have to hire Dreamscarred Press? If Dreamscarred Press thought it was a worthwhile project they could undertake it themselves, however, browsing their website, supporting 5e doesn't seem to be their thing.
 

Fanaelialae

Adventurer
I liked the ideas in Bo9S. I think I played both a Crusader and a Swordsage and had fun with them back in the day. I wouldn't mind them making a reappearance in some form as long as it's done well, but I doubt it's a significant priority for WotC right now. Maybe if they fall under the OGL, someone could make a version for DM's Guild.
 
From what I've read it's the only part of 3.0/3.5/PF that I'm actually interested in. They seem like they're really fun to play.
 

Gladius Legis

Adventurer
Tome of Battle was great. It also addressed a problem that was uniquely 3.5. It illustrated what it took to make viable martial classes in a system that inherently put martials at the most insurmountable disadvantage they've ever faced compared to full casters.

5e doesn't have that problem to anywhere near that extent, so ToB or something like it isn't really necessary. I'd just rather see some more maneuvers for the Battle Master.
 
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Stalker0

Adventurer
I would more like to see iron heroes make a return! One of mike mearls Indy projects before he joined wotc...it had an innovative token system that rewarded fighters for doing what they do best
 

Stalker0

Adventurer
The main thing I miss from nine swords were stances. The idea of giving fighters a few at will “powers” that they could switch between freely was a simple and wonderful concept. And you can tailor it from the most non-magical “pure martial” abilities to “effectively giving them them a magic power” or everywhere in between
 
ToB makes sense in the context of 3.5 and PF, but wouldn't make sense in 4th and makes no sense in 5th. If you look at the Martial Archetypes you can basically play a character that's similar to the classes in ToB, however they aren't as cool because they aren't an outcome of the scope creep that occurred in 3.5. WoTC should avoid what you're saying regardless, let the companies interested in creating such things to start a Kickstarter or put up their own funds and make it available, but I don't think it makes sense to be part of base 5e or WoTC cannon. I hear what your saying (Classes > Subclasses and Archetypes), but that isn't 5th Edition and is contrary to the design philosophy.
 

Xaelvaen

Explorer
I loved the Tome of Battle, the Swordsage specifically. It made 3.5 feel alive. 4E seems like it was somehow built off of the backbone of Tome of Battle, and while 4e lacked many things I enjoy in an RPG, it's 'encounter power' mechanic was very fun. To this day I find it hard to play pathfinder because they have nothing similar to the Swordsage, even remotely (except, see below):

As far as 5E conversion, I find the Monk a very workable class akin to the Swordsage. With their Ki, you can easily invent some 'encounter' powers because of the short rest mechanic, and otherwise they play very similarly.

Getting an authoritative take on it, like a Monk Subclass, would be interesting though. Not sure they could ever make it feel perfect to the glory of it's original incarnation.

As far as the other two classes in Tome of Battle... I ... never played them.
 
Tome of Battle was great. It also addressed a problem that was uniquely 3.5. It illustrated what it took to make viable martial classes in a system that inherently put martials at the most insurmountable disadvantage they've ever faced compared to full casters.
I don't think that's quite fair. I mean, yes, casters were generally Tier 1 & 2, and non-casters 4 & 5. But it was hardly new nor unique to 3e, worse than ever, perhaps, but only a /little/ worse than an ever that had always been pretty darn bad prior to 3e, and isn't exactly a whole lot better, now, with 5e.

At the same time, it's a little over-generous: ToB hardly closed that gap. It took reining in casters dramatically, as well as expanding martial options beyond ToB, to bring D&D to something like parity between the two extremes.

5e, though, rebounded from that effort, and is back to something approximating the familiar 'sweet spot' and LFQW patterns. Something akin to Bo9S certainly wouldn't hurt, except by obviating the existing Fighter &c, of course.
 

Gladius Legis

Adventurer
I don't think that's quite fair. I mean, yes, casters were generally Tier 1 & 2, and non-casters 4 & 5. But it was hardly new nor unique to 3e, worse than ever, perhaps, but only a /little/ worse than an ever that had always been pretty darn bad prior to 3e, and isn't exactly a whole lot better, now, with 5e.
3e caster/martial imbalance was way more than just a "little" worse than AD&D. Sure, AD&D did it rather clumsily with different XP tables for all classes, but that did mitigate the caster/martial imbalance in a typical party at least a little bit. Also, unlike 3e's iterative attacks (which could only be done if you only moved 5 feet), AD&D's multple attacks actually worked all the time and all hit with the same Thac0. Another big point in favor of AD&D martials.

And I know it's a point you love to repeat ad nauseam as if it's the gospel truth in all these discussions, but I cannot for the life of me justify viewing 5e's caster/martial balance as anything even remotely as bad as 3e's. There's just no evidence I can see to justify that point you keep repeating.
 
3e caster/martial imbalance was way more than just a "little" worse than AD&D. Sure, AD&D did it rather clumsily with different XP tables for all classes, but that did mitigate the caster/martial imbalance in a typical party at least a little bit
Its not like 1e casters would lag multiple levels behind, the Fighter, their whole careers. All casters didnt even consistently level slower than all non-casters.
Also, unlike 3e's iterative attacks (which could only be done if you only moved 5 feet), AD&D's multple attacks actually worked all the time and all hit with the same Thac0. Another big point in favor of AD&D martials.
You just described LFQW. Yeah, a fighter hit things steadily more often, doing more damage, on average each round. An MU's magic missile did steadily more damage, too, and he got more of them, and more & more higher level spells with ever greater versatility and power.

The details changed: low level spell scaling capped, but save DCs were off the hook, you got more spells at 1st level, fewer at higher levels. But the basic pattern remained the same.

Really, as radically as DMs varied how they ran 1e back in the day, some players might've seen the Tier 1 godwizard as a step down from their spellpoint-using, magic-item-dripping 1e Archmage.



I cannot for the life of me justify viewing 5e's caster/martial balance as anything even remotely as bad as 3e's. .
5e is just option-poor compared to 3e, so there's less opportunity to really crank up system mastery. In that sense, sure, the gap between the most OP builds is less that that between a chaingun-tripper and a dragonwrought kobold loredrake, say.
 

Garthanos

Arcadian Knight
At the same time, it's a little over-generous: ToB hardly closed that gap. It took reining in casters dramatically, as well as expanding martial options beyond ToB, to bring D&D to something like parity between the two extremes.
So what options were leveraged in 4e to expand Martial further
(Martial Practices could be on that list but were not fully developed)
 

LuisCarlos17f

Adventurer
The crusader had got a random system to recover spent maneuvers, and this was too complicated to be used like nPCs by the DM, but maybe like a solo boss.

My opinion is the first step to reintroduce the martial maneuvers could be new subclasses, and later something like the pathfinder archetypes when some class features are replaced by others..(gladiator class from Dark Sun would be an example of D&D version of Pthf archetypes).

We need to differentiate between maneuvers with ki power source, or magic. Ki should be a power source like arcana, divina, primal magic, or psionic.

Martial adept classes can't be only fighters with martial maneuvers, but they also need their own mark of identity. That is the reason when I try to create a martial adept as character my mind thinks about samurai, monks, ninjas, sohei and other oriental classes.

Sometime I have imagined the reboot of the warden and seeker classes from 4th Ed like martial adepts with primal magic.

* The key is the martial maneuvers are neither at-will nor once-encounter powers, but a middle step between. PCs need a special action to reload maneuvers, like the psion who spends his focus and he want to regain it with a concentration check. The reload of martial maneuvers has to be a fast and easy system to can use martial adepts as nPC enemies (or fights will be slower).
 

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