dwarf as a class


It would be interesting to see the return of the racial classes, but I am not totally convinced they would go that route or its a good one to take. When they introduce new races in 5ed ( like my beloved Vryloka) will they have to create a separate Vryloka class for simple choices or just regulate all later races to advanced opitions? Hmmm, now that I begun thinking about it, a BECMI style Vryloka class would be kinda cool.

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First Post
I believe it is actually 4e that provides us a way to make this work. If dwarf is to fighter, as knight is to weaponmaster, then this approach has already been experimented with. They can co-exist as we've seen, borrow from their base entity, and use the same support. It can actually be done better than 4e, because going into the design they know where they want to take it. But there is of course room for error, say if the dwarf class doesn't get access to base fighter support, that can lead to some clunky issues.


Exactly. What are the "basic" Fighter, Cleric, Wizard, Thief, Dwarf, Elf, and Halfling? Based upon what the Head of the Class article seemed to indicate, they are the following:

Human Fighter (damage emphasis)
Human Cleric
Human Wizard
Human Thief
Dwarf Fighter (defense emphasis)
Elf Fighter/Wizard multiclass
Halfling Thief

...as if you actually used the "Races & Classes" module to build them, but just gave all the numbers out as unchangable or unmodifiable. The basic classes have been "pre-generated" for you.

And this is how you can put these Basic ones right next to "advanced" ones (ie ones that have been created using the Races & Classes module). They are all built with the same numbers and same mechanics, and thus are all balanced against each other and all playable with each other.

And in fact... two separate players could probably play a Dwarf (basic version) and a Dwarf Fighter (advanced version) and them be perfectly balanced with each other and look virtually the same after all was said and done depending on how the advanced one was built.

Yeah. This is what see.

Basically there will be "Basic" classes and "Advanced" classes (and possibly a third "Expert class"). The Elf, Dwarf and Halfling class would be "basic" classes. The "Basic" classes will be just "Advanced" classes with all the choices made and none of the bonus "powers" and features.

So we could see something like (pure speculation):

The Basic Dwarf Fighter is a character with lots of HP, high AC and Fortitude, lower speed, and resistance to poison and spells. This dwarf gets a bonus to opening locks and detecting traps and deals huge bonus damage with axes, hammers, and crossbows.

The Basic Human Fighter has high HP and AC but not as high as the Basic Dwarf Fighter but be faster. This human gets a minor bonus to all noncombat acts and a bonus to all attack rolls.

The Advanced Fighter would have access to stances, encounter exploits, and feats allowing for customization. The Advanced Fighter will have to take Toughness as all his feats to get the same HP as a Basic Dwarf or Human but still miss out of the Basic classes other bonuses.


I'd possibly classify myself as an old school BECMI gamer in a way - I enjoy the simplicity - but I think having Races as Classes will play havoc with the supposed modularity of the system. Wouldn't 4X4 simply be easier to build on, at a minimal level of complexity added?

If the main facet of character generation for most players is the Races & Classes module... then it probably wouldn't be 4x4... it'd be like 6 and 8 (or whatever numbers they decided on). You'd have that module and it'd give you the ability to build whatever race/class combo you'd want from however many choices they offered. Then in addition to this... they also gave you seven "starting packages" of pre-built race/class combos- the human fighter, human cleric, human wizard, human thief, dwarf fighter, elf fighter/wizard multiclass, and halfling rogue... as your "basic" classes. So then you as a player can choose whether to just use those basic starting packages, or actually build your character using the race/class module.

This isn't exactly that outrageous a concept, seeing as how 3E itself also gave you "pre-generated" race/class combos within each class description that any player could have used (not that I think many if any actually did.) It just happens to be that these "pre-gens" would match the seven 'classes' you could select from BECMI.

I kinda hope they go for it. I have some doubts, but I would find it cool. If only because it highlights how much you can "dial" the game's complexity.

You can just have a "Dwarf" and it defines everything to him. You put it out of the box, and 20 minutes later (including 5 minutes marveling the weird dice the starter set contains) you are killing your first Goblin.
Or you can go home and use the weekend to plan out your Dwarf Wizard/Loremaster/Archmage specializing in Evocations and Transmutations that multiclassed with Rogue.
And you can take both and have them fight the same encounters and the game will just work fine.

If they can pull this off...


First Post
To define your character in 4e, without involving actual mechanical choices (abilities, feats, powers, gear, etc), we have:

paragon path
epic destiny

Now, let's rename these choices as "list #1", "list #2", etc...

Even if you consider only heroic, that's already 5 lists of choices. One could argue that, once you made these choices, the mechanics would already be written for you, which, in BECMI would roughly similar to defining you "class" (which is just a fancy term for "type" or "concept" for your character).

IMO that's a good thing for beginners. Regular players can probably change a couple of choices here and there, as they get to know the system better, while advanced players can build from the ground up.

I really don't see why can't we have dwarf as a class (wheter that means having 3 or 4 choices made for you), as long as we have ways to distill it into basic components ("lists").


I always liked race as class and if they can give you both options (race as class and race with different classes) then it would be awesome. :cool:

The only question for me is what will they do with the more unusual races (with no big Archetype).


IMO, this would be a mistake.

Firstly, moving from BECMI D&D to 2nd Edition, the race/class split was one of the changes that was obvious and long-overdue. That genuinely was an improvement.

Secondly, the race/class split is nice and obvious, and really isn't hard to grasp. This is one area where any difference in complexity is marginal.

Finally, if the core conflates race and class, this means that when people move on, it isn't just a matter of adding new options - they have to unpick their characters to make sense under the new paradigm. To gain a tiny benefit in complexity at the outset, you're adding a significant amount of complexity later.

Really not a fan.

(Now, if instead they're offering a fairly generic bunch of powers, and your 'class' is nothing more than selecting this bunch of powers instead of 'that' bunch of powers, then a pre-gen 'Dwarf' class makes sense - it's just one of many builds. But that essentially makes D&D classless, which seems like such a major departure as to be almost unthinkable.)

Charwoman Gene

Firstly, moving from BECMI D&D to 2nd Edition, the race/class split was one of the changes that was obvious and long-overdue.

While I prefer a race/class split too, it weakens your credibility when you get the history wrong.

The Race/Class split Originated in AD&D* I believe, in 1978. BECMI was an early-mid 80's release, like 1984-1986ish. BECMI preserved the monoclass races. D&D 3rd Edition killed BECMI and took its stuff (and name.)

*Truer grognards with dice older than me may remember something in supplements or B/X D&D**

** B/X is not BECMI.

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