D&D 5E Getting Rid of Variable Weapon Damage- An Immodest Proposal


I put up this idea elsewhere but.

Armament: you can have one Armament active at a time, this represents your armor and weapons. If you have more than one, you can choose which to equip durring a short rest. Describe them as you want.

Wizard: 15 AC, 1d4 melee, 1d4 ranged, +1 to spell DCs.

Fighter: chose 2 armaments.
Archer: 16 AC, 1d4 melee, 1d10 range.
Protector: 20 AC, 1d8 melee, 1d6 range, adjacent allies have +2 AC.
Slayer: 17 AC, 1d12 melee, 1d8 range.
Skirmisher: 18 AC, 1d8 melee, 1d8 range, enemies have disadvantage when you provoke an opportunity attacks.


Magic armor and weapons work as normal, giving a +1 or other bonus.

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A. Do you prefer variable weapon damage or static weapon damage?
Variable for sure.
B. Would we be so uncaring about cutting trees down if they could scream? Maybe, if they screamed all the time, and for no good reason?
Certain kinds of lettuce appears to have been screaming when it got the chop. Just saying..
C. Would you like a system that made variable weapon damage dependent on the wielder, and not the weapon?
If it models the same thing, The model needs to be easy to use and remember as the model it is replacing.



A suffusion of yellow
I would like to see damage, for melee weapons at least be somewhat standardized and made with some common sense for balance.
5E weapon table is out of whack.
Just a mess of trying new numbers and holding some legacy damage dice.

so lets have a go at standard damage.
It will have different dice, but with some rules.

All are proficient with all weapons. think of it at simple weapon base.

melee weapons:

base damage: 1D8

damage die categories: 1<->1d3<->1d4<->1d6<->1d8<->1d10<->1d12<->2d6<->2d8

light(L): reduce damage die by 1 step
finesse(F): reduce damage die by 1 step
thrown(T)(40/120): reduce damage die by 1 step
reach(R): reduce damage die by 1 step

two-handed(2H); increase damage die by 2 steps
heavy(H): increase damage die by 1 step

properties interactions:
light cannot be reach,
light cannot be twohanded,
light cannot be heavy, DOH!
finesse cannot be heavy,
heavy must be two handed,
thrown cannot be two handed.
versatile(V) is free property for all 1Handed weapons without finesse, light or thrown property

this is some rules to cut down on possible number of combinations of weapon properties.

Now we are left with:

1d3: L,F,T
1d4: L,F
1d4: L,T
1d4: F,T
1d4: F,R
1d4: R,T
1d6: L
1d6: F
1d6: R, V(1d8)
1d6: T
1d8: V(1d10)

1d8: 2H, F, R
1d10: 2H, F
1d10: 2H, R
1d12: 2H
1d12: 2H, H, R
2d6: 2H, H

this now leaves us with basic 17 melee weapons.

Now you can decide on concept of your character and their weapons, and pick one damage type B/P/S and properties that most match visual of your weapon and character concept.

ranged weapons:
lets also keep it simple:

shortbow: 1d4: 2H, reload free
longbow: 1d6: 2H, H, reaload free

light crossbow: 1d8: 2H, reload Action(bonus action with crossbow expert)
heavy crossbow: 1d10: 2H, H, reload Action(bonus action with crossbow expert)
hand crossbow: 1d4: reload Bonus action(free with crossbow expert)

This is base damage or simple training damage.

Martial characters raise their damage die by 1 additional step with above mentioned scale:
damage die categories: 1<->1d3<->1d4<->1d6<->1d8<->1d10<->1d12<->2d6<->2d8

All classes with Extra attack feature gain martial training at 1st level(damage die increase).
But, we might push this to 2nd level to prevent some cheeses.

Now for special cases and racials:

Rogues gain martial training in 1Handed finesse weapons and ranged weapons.
Elves gain martial training in all finesse weapons and all bows.
Dwarves gain martial training in all axes and hammers.
halflings gain martial training in all thrown weapons.
and any subclass that gains proficiency in all martial weapons gain martial training.

since looking over 4e Weapon groups and weapon properties, Ive been thinking about something like this. Everyone starts with a basic 1d6 weapon (club), they then get expertise in a weapon group (by class) and can add properties to customise their own weapons and fighting manouveres, some propeeties will modify the d6. Eg a fighter decides they want a Glaive so Heavy blade expertise and Polearm (Reach) which raises their weapon damage to 2d6.

A rogue might decide they want a to take 1d4 in return for a manouvere like precision attack (needs work)
Horwath captures the idea better…

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