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Finesse rebalance

doctorbadwolf

Adventurer
Only thing I don't like is that wizards rather use daggers than a staff and goblins don't use spears anymore.

I don't have a solution though.
Maybe adding abilities like martial arts to all classes that allow the use of finesse weapons with dexterity seems appropriate.
I think a few simple weapons should be finesse, like staff, spear, and handaxe.

For one thing, those are never the best options, so it’s not gonna break anything. For another, they aren’t heavy slow weapons, so why not?

Or, all weapons are finesse, damage is strength except for monks, rangers, and rogues, who each have a feature that changes things.
 

Flamestrike

Explorer
During 3E and PF we whinged about the difficulty of obtaining +Dex to damage.

5E gives us +Dex to damage, and we whinge about it existing.

Never change people. Never change.
 

dnd4vr

Adventurer
I think a few simple weapons should be finesse, like staff, spear, and handaxe.

For one thing, those are never the best options, so it’s not gonna break anything. For another, they aren’t heavy slow weapons, so why not?

Or, all weapons are finesse, damage is strength except for monks, rangers, and rogues, who each have a feature that changes things.
Our house-rule for versatile weapons is they have the finesse property or the heavy property (player's choice) if you use both hands. Finesse does DEX mod to attack, but still STR mod to damage (like others); and heavy does STR mod x1.5 (round down) to damage.
 

Charlaquin

Goblin Queen
During 3E and PF we whinged about the difficulty of obtaining +Dex to damage.

5E gives us +Dex to damage, and we whinge about it existing.

Never change people. Never change.
To be fair, it’s been like 20 years. During 3e I was a player and a minmaxer and I wanted Dex to damage so I could dump strength. Now I mostly DM and I want Str to damage so players have a reason to want it.
 

Fenris-77

Explorer
As a general rule of thumb I'd say that 6-7 foot long chunks of polished oak don't fit into my mental image of finesse weaponry, despite the sheer bulk of Robin Hood Movies I've seen. Lighter weapons, mainly piercing and some slashing - that's where I see that (if it needs to be a thing at all, which I am not convinced of).
 

Charlaquin

Goblin Queen
As a general rule of thumb I'd say that 6-7 foot long chunks of polished oak don't fit into my mental image of finesse weaponry, despite the sheer bulk of Robin Hood Movies I've seen. Lighter weapons, mainly piercing and some slashing - that's where I see that (if it needs to be a thing at all, which I am not convinced of).
The funny thing is, strength is much less important for using polearms effectively than it is to using swords effectively, and much, MUCH less important than it is for rapiers. Turns out, most two-handed weapons don’t require that much strength to use, and polearms in particular are much more about precision, because the length means very small movements at the back end cause the tip to move very far, very quickly. And yeah, that includes quaterstaves, which despite how they’re used in Robin Hood movies, were historically used more or less like spears without tips.
 

Cap'n Kobold

Explorer
As a general design thing, I really wish both Dex and Str were somehow used in all attacks. Not only is it logical that a character with 16 Str and 16 Dex should always be more dangerous than somebody with 16 in one and 10 in the other, but it would encourage more variety in point distributions.
I'm fine with not requiring Dex for attacks, but I'd like to see it used for AC calculations rather than being able to dump it if you're wearing heavy armour.
I'm unsure of the best way to do that, keep all armour meaningful, and not break bounded accuracy however.

I think a few simple weapons should be finesse, like staff, spear, and handaxe.

For one thing, those are never the best options, so it’s not gonna break anything. For another, they aren’t heavy slow weapons, so why not?
Conceptually for me at least, there is a distinction between "not a heavy, slow weapon" and "the wielder's athleticism and power are irrelevant to this weapon's use". The classic two handed sword(longsword) for example does not require a high strength to use (represented by low minimum Str requirement if 5e used that mechanic). However a higher 5e Str always improves your capability with it - allowing faster strikes, more control, and greater force.

The funny thing is, strength is much less important for using polearms effectively than it is to using swords effectively, and much, MUCH less important than it is for rapiers. Turns out, most two-handed weapons don’t require that much strength to use, and polearms in particular are much more about precision, because the length means very small movements at the back end cause the tip to move very far, very quickly. And yeah, that includes quaterstaves, which despite how they’re used in Robin Hood movies, were historically used more or less like spears without tips.
There are some thrusting techniques in western quarterstaff fighting, but they are most certainly not the majority. Precision is useful, but even for spears, which require the least amount of athletic capability, you can't do away with requiring the traits the represent Strength in 5e. Without sufficient force to exert, you can't make those small movements at the back with sufficient speed and control - unless you reduce the size and weight of the weapon with the concomitant loss of advantage in reach etc.
When you actually start taking into account your opponent's weapon, and that they may have armour or be larger/tougher than a human, the power than you can exert to control and maneuver your weapon becomes even more important.
 

Charlaquin

Goblin Queen
Conceptually for me at least, there is a distinction between "not a heavy, slow weapon" and "the wielder's athleticism and power are irrelevant to this weapon's use". The classic two handed sword(longsword) for example does not require a high strength to use (represented by low minimum Str requirement if 5e used that mechanic). However a higher 5e Str always improves your capability with it - allowing faster strikes, more control, and greater force. There are some thrusting techniques in western quarterstaff fighting, but they are most certainly not the majority. Precision is useful, but even for spears, which require the least amount of athletic capability, you can't do away with requiring the traits the represent Strength in 5e. Without sufficient force to exert, you can't make those small movements at the back with sufficient speed and control - unless you reduce the size and weight of the weapon with the concomitant loss of advantage in reach etc.When you actually start taking into account your opponent's weapon, and that they may have armour or be larger/tougher than a human, the power than you can exert to control and maneuver your weapon becomes even more important.
Oh, for sure. With any weapon, a stronger person with equal skill will be able to use it more effectively. This is why conceptually I like the idea of all weapons using Str for damage. Similarly though, proprioception and fine motor control are more important than raw muscle when it comes to winning the bind with pretty much any melee weapon. So conceptually, I think most if not all weapons should use Dex to hit.
 

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