D&D (2024) Doesn't Eldritch Knight's new War Magic seem to grant overpowered at-will damage?

I'm not closely following the playtest, since I'll likely be adopting relatively little of the revisions.* However, I do want to look at some things to see if I can import them.

I've been curious as to what they were going to do with the Eldritch Knight's War Magic ever since they revised the Bladesinger to let them use a cantrip in place of an attack. And it seems, from the playtest packet 7, that that is exactly what they are planning to do with the fighter.

Well the problem with that is that cantrips scale in a way that a weapon attack doesn't, and this is especially an issue with green-flame blade.

Green-flame blade adds up to 3d8 damage to the target you hit, and 3d8+Int mod to an adjacent target. This is at-will, every turn that you take the Attack action, adding a potential 13.5 extra damage on one of your attacks, and if there is an adjacent target (and you will be trying to make that so if you can!) adding probably at least another 15.5 damage to that secondary target also, which will bring you to around (or above, depending on Intelligence) 30 extra damage on those rounds. Yes, that's at 17th+ level, but you can see the issue even earlier.

Am I missing something that is supposed to balance this? Are there hidden features that Battle Master and Champion get that raise their damage to a similar range? Is it just acknowledged that Eldritch Knight is the king of fighter damage, and the other subclasses have something else to balance it with?


* 2014 core books are probably as close as official D&D will ever get to my vision for it, and I'm just not happy with the mechanical changes over the past few years. Because of this--unlike the D&D Next Playtests that I was heavily involved in giving feedback on--I'm not going to be engaging with official feedback. I just feel like I'd only be telling them what I don't like about changes, and not adding anything productive, since the new edition isn't for me. So if anything I bring up is an issue that those of you who intend to adopt the 2024 changes want addressed, you'll need to provide your own feedback on it.
 

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mellored

Legend
Given that they where missing from the Arcane spell list, I kind of feel like Green Flame Blade and Booming Blade might get a rewrite.

Like if they became a Bladesinger feature.

I mean, any rogue getting those spells is an easy boost too.

Battlemaster's can turn a miss into a hit, or riposte for 2d6+1d8+Str (16.5 damage). Plus all their other maneuvers.

Brawler can use a bonus action to grapple and have advantage on the rest of their attacks. Not exactly sure how improvised weapons are supposed to work with it though...

Champions get a minor damage boost, but get +1AC (defensive style) and just don't die after level 18.

That said. Eldritch Knight 7 / Warlock 2 can use Cha for attacks and Eldritch Blast. Scales to 6 attacks per action. Throw in Hex and that's probably king of damage. But some build needs to be.
 



Horwath

Legend
They should have had at-will weapon maneuvers on par with weapon cantrips, and let all fighters make a maneuver and a basic attack at 5th level. It would give more oomph to the fighter who otherwise is making the same number of attacks as the spellcasters.
I believe that what are masteries are for.
Now if only they are not linked to specific weapon it would be great.
 

I believe that what are masteries are for.
Now if only they are not linked to specific weapon it would be great.
EK's, paladins, etc get masteries too. There really needs to be martial equivalents of booming blade, GFB etc for parity. Particularly with bladelocks getting 3 attacks at 11th.

Off the cuff, something like
Skirmishing Strike - Attack a number of targets equal to your proficiency mod, if your attack hits your movement does not provoke opportunity attacks from the target.
 
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mellored

Legend
EK's, paladins, etc get masteries too. There really needs to be martial equivalents of booming blade, GFB etc for parity.
Isn't EK a martial?

Topple is equivalent to booming blade, in so far as you do more damage (via accuracy) and helps keep the enemy in the same spot.

And Cleave is similar to booming blade, as you deal extra damage to nearby target.

Particularly with bladelocks getting 3 attacks at 11th.
That's OP and should be kept at 2.
They can scale Lifedrinker instead.
Off the cuff, something like
Skirmishing Strike - Attack a number of targets equal to your proficiency mod, if your attack hits your movement does not provoke opportunity attacks from the target.
Push: if your attack hits (and they are not next to a wall), you don't provoke an opportunity attack.

Proficiency mod attacks would too much rolling each turn, IMO.
 

Clint_L

Hero
The new EK attack pattern is the appropriate balance point. The other fighter subclasses simply need more buffs.
Fighters are already at the top of the damage curve, though, so that would mean buffing every class...though that said weapon masteries already do that for most martial classes (RIP monks), so I would like to see how this extra damage stacks up against mastery damage.
 

Thanks! So it sounds like there is an assumption that the other fighter subclasses will be buffed to similar numbers to balance it out. That at least makes sense out of it.
 

Thanks! So it sounds like there is an assumption that the other fighter subclasses will be buffed to similar numbers to balance it out. That at least makes sense out of it.
Not really. It will still be ahead as EK's also get masteries.

Champions will continue to be mediocre because WOTC designed them assuming anyone who picks them either doesn't care that they're weaker or won't notice.
 

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