D&D 5E Druids and shape changing – I don't like it!!

heptat

Explorer
Druids and shape changing – I don't like it!!

Ok I'm going to be grumpy. What is with Druids and shape changing?? It's so lame, I hate it with a passion. It makes the Druid a non-playable/gm-able class for me. Where did it come from???

Rant over. Other than that I'm really enjoying this final playtest package for Next.
 

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Daern

Explorer
Agree! First level shape changing is over the top! Back in the old days it was a high level achievement.
Teleporting and shapechanging right out the gate was always jarring for me type4...
 

heptat

Explorer
Agree! First level shape changing is over the top! Back in the old days it was a high level achievement.
Teleporting and shapechanging right out the gate was always jarring for me type4...

What is "type4"?

I'll have to do some research when I get home and check out earlier versions, just to give myself a better context in which to make this whinge.
 

1of3

Explorer
Agree! First level shape changing is over the top! Back in the old days it was a high level achievement.

It's second level at the moment. Although that isn't high level either.

But it doesn't really matter either way. Write a Nature Domain for the Cleric and call it Druid.
 


Frostmarrow

First Post
Ok I'm going to be grumpy. What is with Druids and shape changing?? It's so lame, I hate it with a passion. It makes the Druid a non-playable/gm-able class for me. Where did it come from???

Rant over. Other than that I'm really enjoying this final playtest package for Next.

It's not like they were ever going to ask me about this but I agree with you. I hate shape changing druids with the intensity of a thousand suns. For sure, morph-druids won't ruin my experience of Next or anything but still... Shapechanging is supposed to be rare and awesome - not commonplace like a t-shirt with a wolf motif. Some D&D-isms are way too self-referential and stupid. My god cosplay druids are whack.
 

Dausuul

Legend
Shapechanging is supposed to be rare and awesome - not commonplace like a t-shirt with a wolf motif.

Says you. I see no reason why this needs to be the case. Shapechangers are a dime a dozen in myth and legend. As long as the balance issues are addressed--and 5E does a pretty good job with that--I think it's great that you can make a character whose core concept is "shapechanger" and not have to sit around twiddling your thumbs for several levels until you finally get to do what you made the character to do. I just wish it weren't shackled to druidic spellcasting.
 


Frostmarrow

First Post
Says you. I see no reason why this needs to be the case. Shapechangers are a dime a dozen in myth and legend. As long as the balance issues are addressed--and 5E does a pretty good job with that--I think it's great that you can make a character whose core concept is "shapechanger" and not have to sit around twiddling your thumbs for several levels until you finally get to do what you made the character to do. I just wish it weren't shackled to druidic spellcasting.

I certainly do! By your logic a djinni would be able to grant wishes left and right at first level. I don't care for such nonsense. Basically I disagree with you and I'm not afraid to let you know that.
 

Celebrim

Legend
Ok I'm going to be grumpy. What is with Druids and shape changing?? It's so lame, I hate it with a passion. It makes the Druid a non-playable/gm-able class for me. Where did it come from???

Rant over. Other than that I'm really enjoying this final playtest package for Next.

Most D&Disms have become self-referential. D&D has been so influential over consensus fantasy that incidental D&Disms have become archetypes unto themselves. Ranger may have started as a poor attempt at emulating Tolkien's Rangers, but everything from that implementation to the D&D cartoon have defined the D&D ranger as an archetype unto itself ubiquitous to fantasy as people experience it. D&D virtually created the modern consensus fantasy conception of a Wizard. The same is true with the Druid as shapeshifter. Everyone 'knows' druids are supposed to shapeshift. They expect it. They feel that the game is somehow incomplete without it.

Ultimately the origins of this trope are in a handful of Celtic/Norse legends about wizards being able to change into birds, deer, and similar animals. This found it's way into the reasonably well constructed 1e Druid, but became it's primary shtick because it was the one power which was very unique to the Druid.

Personally, I find it a bit over the top as a class ability especially sense they are already full casters. In my game, I've dropped the Druid entirely, replacing it with the Green Ronin Shaman, and 'Wildshape' has become a 4th level Shaman spell. This greatly tones down the power level of the 'druid', and brings it more in line with fighters, rogues, etc. while still letting you play a character that can shape change into animals if you want to do that.
 

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