log in or register to remove this ad

 

5E "Fixing" 5e's Least Well Performing Classes

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
So, a lot of energy has been spent due to the obnoxious hyperbole of saying that a given class "sucks" because it doesn't do a thing one wants it to do, or is 5% under a "baseline" that isn't actually anything like a reasonable "baseline".

/snark

Why don't we, instead, talk about what would "fix" those classes for the people who have a bad experience with them?

Monk:

Runs out of ki too much? Give them +Wis mod ki at level 2, and let them regain wis mod ki once per day as an action or maybe regain wis+prof by spending 10 minutes in meditation.

Doesn't have enough "boom"? Let's workshop some extra things to do with ki, and some level 11 upgrades to Patient Defense and Flurry of Blows, to go with the level 9 upgrade to Unarmored Movement.

Patient Defense, at level 11, could upgrade to allowing a reaction attack when missed by a melee attack, or allow you to move as a reaction when you get hit while benefiting from Patient Defense?

Flurry of Blows, at level 11, could upgrade to add your proficiency bonus to all damage rolls with your Flurry of Blows.

Name Pending something something Thousand Stars, you spend a bonus action to add your proficiency bonus in damage to damage with thrown weapons, and double their range. You can make a single attack with a thrown weapon as part of using the ability. Also add to Martial Arts the ability to draw a weapon as part of every attack, regardless of number of attacks. At level 11, the benefits last until the end of your next turn.

Bond of The Earth, as a bonus action you enter a deeper state of balance within yourself. You add your Wisdom modifier to saves against charm or fear, and gain THP equal to your martial arts die +wisdom mod.

Senses of The Hunter, bonus action, you gain advantage on perception checks? Later you get darkvision or improve your darkvision? Maybe just "no disadvantage in dim light"?

Ranger:
The spells known are just too damn low, you guys. Give them known spells equal to half their ranger level rounded down plus their wisdom mod, and then add extra spells to Hunter and Beastmaster.

Not enough? Take all the replacements from the Class Feature Variants UA and make them Enhancements.

Sorcerer:
Give them +Cha Sorcery points at level 3. Give them their Sorcery points at level 1. Give them spells known equal to half sorc level + cha. Let them replenish Cha mod sorcery points during a short rest. Give them an extra metamagic at each tier.
Also they should get signature spells that they cast for cheap or without a slot x/day, or something.

Warlock:
Give spells known equal to half level plus cha. Give third spell slot at level 5, 4th at 11, etc. Fold some of the invocation taxes into pact boons and into eachother. (eg, blade pact lets you get extra attack) Make the patron spells auto-known.
 

log in or register to remove this ad

Sacrosanct

Legend
I don't have issues with any of the more common classes usually mentioned as being bad, except one. And it's a minor complaint really.

Way of the 4 elements monk. With the expansion books and increased spells, the choices the monk can invoke should be expanded to reflect that. And I think they should be able to choose one elemental cantrip. And another at level 6, 12, and 18 (or somewhere around there) to have a total four cantrips, one for each element.
 

Eltab

Hero
Monk:
Flurry of Blows gives you (proficiency) attacks, not the flat 2.
No change at low levels but gets more effective as you level up. At top tier, throwing around 4d10 without needing a weapon will put a dent in any monster's day. (And a Sun Soul monk will in effect have a never-be-disarmed revolver.)
 

cbwjm

I can add a custom title.
I don't have issues with any of the more common classes usually mentioned as being bad, except one. And it's a minor complaint really.

Way of the 4 elements monk. With the expansion books and increased spells, the choices the monk can invoke should be expanded to reflect that. And I think they should be able to choose one elemental cantrip. And another at level 6, 12, and 18 (or somewhere around there) to have a total four cantrips, one for each element.
They already come with a cantrip that affects all four elements, just expand it to include all of the effects of the 4 elemental cantrips at level 3 and you're covered. Maybe it already does, are the bullet points in those cantrips the extent or just suggestions on what they can do?
 

I wonder what it would do for monk if Flurry of Blows only gave you one extra attack but didn't require your bonus action. That way you could use it with your extra martial arts attack and it would function normally, or stack it with the other Ki options that do require bonus actions. Probably too expensive, but it was a thought.
 

Monk:
Flurry of Blows gives you (proficiency) attacks, not the flat 2.
No change at low levels but gets more effective as you level up. At top tier, throwing around 4d10 without needing a weapon will put a dent in any monster's day. (And a Sun Soul monk will in effect have a never-be-disarmed revolver.)
So basically they do 5 unarmed attacks once they are at +6 prof?
 

Campbell

Relaxed Intensity
A big problem for monks is spending resources just to keep up with what other classes get to do for free.

I honestly see no reason why Flurry of Blows needs to cost ki. A monk who flurries every round is not doing out sized damage compared to other martial characters. Spending a ki point and a bonus action on Step of Wind when other classes and sub-classes only need to spend a bonus action for similar features feels bad.
 

There is a fundamental assumption here: all players optimise their characters.

This is, of course, not true. It is quite possible for a player to create a character with a "strong class" but still make non-optimised choices which make them weaker than a "weak class".

Then there are characters with rolled ability scores and hp...

So, it's much better to think about balancing weak CHARACTERS rather than weak classes. And 5e gives DMs the ideal tool to do this - magic items. Since 5e baseline is "no magic items" dropping in a magic item appropriate to the struggling character should automatically raise them above that.

NB, this is why I dislike the crafting rules and assumed availability of gold and magic in 3rd edition/Pathfinder. They take away one of the DM's key game balancing tools.
 

CapnZapp

Legend
As I explained over in the other thread, the problem is that no class sucks as a whole. So you can't fix the problems (and yes there are problems) by boosting entire classes - that would make the builds that doesn't suck better for no good reason.

What you need to do is fix individual subclasses and in some cases individual abilities. Yes, that's much harder.
 

Dr Magister

Villager
To copy and paste my response from another thread:

My personal fix for the ranger is simply to let them add their proficiency bonus to weapon damage vs favoured enemies. It's not a huge boost, especially at higher levels, but it makes the feature feel relevant in combat.

For beastmasters, I've just said they can command their companion as a bonus action rather than a full action. However, in one of the modules that WoTC put out for free during the lockdown, there was a Rat King subclass who got rat swarms as companions, and they could command them using their reaction. Given this was an official module, possibly this is the direction they're thinking of going?
 

dnd4vr

The Smurfiest Wizard Ever!
I agree no class really is bad, but some have weak designs and seem lackluster compared to others. Many time subclasses make up for this, but sometimes not.

While I like a lot of the suggestions many people are writing here (and in the other threads as well), but I would caution against some of them because they make single level MC dips even more attractive. I feel this is the reason certain features were delay until level 2 or 3 (e.g. Action Surge, Metamagic, Eldritch Invocations, Ki, etc.).

I've toyed with the idea of moving such features lower, because of the appeal of getting them sooner, but since most are 2nd or 3rd levels, it really doesn't take long to get there and earn those features.

I do think one of the best things is to grant bonus points for things such as Ki, Sorcery points, Known spells, etc. equal to the ability score modifier. One of the other bumps I like is making Favored Enemy grant +2 damage and increased to +4 damage later on.
 

Asisreo

Archdevil's Advocate
So, a lot of energy has been spent due to the obnoxious hyperbole of saying that a given class "sucks" because it doesn't do a thing one wants it to do, or is 5% under a "baseline" that isn't actually anything like a reasonable "baseline".

/snark

Why don't we, instead, talk about what would "fix" those classes for the people who have a bad experience with them?

Monk:

Runs out of ki too much? Give them +Wis mod ki at level 2, and let them regain wis mod ki once per day as an action or maybe regain wis+prof by spending 10 minutes in meditation.

Doesn't have enough "boom"? Let's workshop some extra things to do with ki, and some level 11 upgrades to Patient Defense and Flurry of Blows, to go with the level 9 upgrade to Unarmored Movement.

Patient Defense, at level 11, could upgrade to allowing a reaction attack when missed by a melee attack, or allow you to move as a reaction when you get hit while benefiting from Patient Defense?

Flurry of Blows, at level 11, could upgrade to add your proficiency bonus to all damage rolls with your Flurry of Blows.

Name Pending something something Thousand Stars, you spend a bonus action to add your proficiency bonus in damage to damage with thrown weapons, and double their range. You can make a single attack with a thrown weapon as part of using the ability. Also add to Martial Arts the ability to draw a weapon as part of every attack, regardless of number of attacks. At level 11, the benefits last until the end of your next turn.

Bond of The Earth, as a bonus action you enter a deeper state of balance within yourself. You add your Wisdom modifier to saves against charm or fear, and gain THP equal to your martial arts die +wisdom mod.

Senses of The Hunter, bonus action, you gain advantage on perception checks? Later you get darkvision or improve your darkvision? Maybe just "no disadvantage in dim light"?

Ranger:
The spells known are just too damn low, you guys. Give them known spells equal to half their ranger level rounded down plus their wisdom mod, and then add extra spells to Hunter and Beastmaster.

Not enough? Take all the replacements from the Class Feature Variants UA and make them Enhancements.

Sorcerer:
Give them +Cha Sorcery points at level 3. Give them their Sorcery points at level 1. Give them spells known equal to half sorc level + cha. Let them replenish Cha mod sorcery points during a short rest. Give them an extra metamagic at each tier.
Also they should get signature spells that they cast for cheap or without a slot x/day, or something.

Warlock:
Give spells known equal to half level plus cha. Give third spell slot at level 5, 4th at 11, etc. Fold some of the invocation taxes into pact boons and into eachother. (eg, blade pact lets you get extra attack) Make the patron spells auto-known.
Notice how these "least favorite classes" are limited resource classes whose damage is actually fine compared to NOVA and at-will classes but because they don't have a big flashing sign that says "Hey, player! Maybe don't spend your resources attacking those goblins and use them on the goblin captain!" Maybe players will realize "oh, I'm not supposed to use my resources and blow them out in 5 minutes like some first-timer with his girlfriend."

The fix people need is to be told that resources are limited for these classes so don't waste them on stupid crap.

People also don't realize using up all your resources is a good thing since using all your resources meant you used 100% of your power rather than a wizard that has casted 4 spells out of an available 8 over the day and wasted 4 spell slots.
 

Yep, but there is a difference from spending all resource in one fight and not having enough resources for the day.
Some of these classes are litterally starving from beginning to the end, resource wise. Especialy if the DM do not allow them enough short rests because of narrative imperatives or situations.
 

Asisreo

Archdevil's Advocate
Yep, but there is a difference from spending all resource in one fight and not having enough resources for the day.
There's 2 things to this.

1. On the first day, right after session 0, it's understandable. You don't quite understand the DM's style and you aren't sure of your resting opportunities. Now, the thing is that at level 1, none of these characters (except for warlock) have their resources to waste anyways, so you can take the time at level 1 to adjust to your DM without worry.

2. The classes that need short rests tend to get short rests more often. We, on forums, tend to have semi-decent defenses on a class taking a short rest after every single resource spent even out-of-combat. Most DM's, though, don't quite know how to prevent a short-rest when the party barricades a room. Time-pressures are really lame and predictable and alot of DM's don't even use them.

In theory, they aren't all that good, but if you take any hour available to you to rest, you'll have more than just 2 short rests, even in a day with only 2 encounters.
 

vincegetorix

Jewel of the North
I let the monk use martial arts and flurry with any 1-handed weapon, sling or thrown weapon.
The UA stuff also increases the power of monks and allow them more than one play style.
The 4Emonk gain 2 elemental power instead of 1 at level up.

The ranger uses the UA variants, and its quite good.

I'm working on buffs for the storm herald barb, but I'm not there yet.
 

TheSword

Hero
I agree no class really is bad, but some have weak designs and seem lackluster compared to others. Many time subclasses make up for this, but sometimes not.

While I like a lot of the suggestions many people are writing here (and in the other threads as well), but I would caution against some of them because they make single level MC dips even more attractive. I feel this is the reason certain features were delay until level 2 or 3 (e.g. Action Surge, Metamagic, Eldritch Invocations, Ki, etc.).

I've toyed with the idea of moving such features lower, because of the appeal of getting them sooner, but since most are 2nd or 3rd levels, it really doesn't take long to get there and earn those features.

I do think one of the best things is to grant bonus points for things such as Ki, Sorcery points, Known spells, etc. equal to the ability score modifier. One of the other bumps I like is making Favored Enemy grant +2 damage and increased to +4 damage later on.
I agree in part, however tying too much to one stat means everyone ends up maxing out that stat because it’s crazy not too. At the moment you can play a sorcerer with Cha 16 even at mid tiers. Yes 18 is better but not much that it is a given.
 


dnd4vr

The Smurfiest Wizard Ever!
I agree in part, however tying too much to one stat means everyone ends up maxing out that stat because it’s crazy not too. At the moment you can play a sorcerer with Cha 16 even at mid tiers. Yes 18 is better but not much that it is a given.
Sure. How much that extra ki point or sorcery point matters depends on the player and where else they would put the ability score points otherwise. Is one extra sorcery point worth +1 hp/level or +1 AC, for instance? Different players will have different answers.
 

There's 2 things to this.

1. On the first day, right after session 0, it's understandable. You don't quite understand the DM's style and you aren't sure of your resting opportunities. Now, the thing is that at level 1, none of these characters (except for warlock) have their resources to waste anyways, so you can take the time at level 1 to adjust to your DM without worry.

2. The classes that need short rests tend to get short rests more often. We, on forums, tend to have semi-decent defenses on a class taking a short rest after every single resource spent even out-of-combat. Most DM's, though, don't quite know how to prevent a short-rest when the party barricades a room. Time-pressures are really lame and predictable and alot of DM's don't even use them.

In theory, they aren't all that good, but if you take any hour available to you to rest, you'll have more than just 2 short rests, even in a day with only 2 encounters.
Don't come to my games as I enforce the 6-8 encounters per day. Without 2 or 3 fights, players never knows, it will be random encounters. If you are barricaded, tough luck, these encounters might get reinforcement and on a side note, random encounters do not give experience or treasure. I have done this to prevent the "farming" of random encounters. But the players are allowed short rests (2 per day, 3 if the pace and the story justify it. That is the fights were hard for some reasons).

And even then, some classes get out of resource one out of two or three fights.
 

Asisreo

Archdevil's Advocate
Don't come to my games as I enforce the 6-8 encounters per day. Without 2 or 3 fights, players never knows, it will be random encounters. If you are barricaded, tough luck, these encounters might get reinforcement and on a side note, random encounters do not give experience or treasure. I have done this to prevent the "farming" of random encounters. But the players are allowed short rests (2 per day, 3 if the pace and the story justify it. That is the fights were hard for some reasons).

And even then, some classes get out of resource one out of two or three fights.
My DM also adhere's to the 6-8 encounters unless story dictates otherwise. I'm pretty good at pacing myself.

If you came out and said "hey, I don't really want you guys to short rest right now." I'd accept it, of course after notifying you that short rests aren't something that can be easily abused to begin with(everyone loses something in a fight even after a short rest).

If you were just trying to be like "Oh, this place is dangerous. The enemies are really smart and will bust down the barricades."

That's easily the best scenario for us. We have a barricaded defensive position and the enemies are moving towards us. Even if they all try to crowd around, we have the ability to seal off certain entrances with spells from the long resters to have them funnel in (with the tanks basically being near the door). Turning it into a sort-of meatgrinder.

Of course, assuming I think you did this for the sake of realism and not just to screw with us. An unlimited amount of enemies would be bothersome but we'd be able to stand our ground for the most part otherwise. I wouldn't be trying to "break your game" either. It's only natural to hold a defensive position and let the enemies funnel towards you.
 

Advertisement2

Advertisement4

Top