D&D 5E Helping melee combat to be more competitive to ranged.

Lhynn

First Post
So hand crossbows... Amirite


Im implementing new rules at my table. No attribute to damage in attacks at distances longer than 15 feet (or the equivalent if we adjust by size). No more dex to damage unless using martial arts.

Thoughts?
 

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5ekyu

Hero
I would love to have your players. No, no sarcasm, Flamestrike. I really am convinced this is the easiest and therefore best option.

It's just that my players would never not work to avoid this. They always have a point man, ideally an expendable one.

The end result is that the monsters almost never get that close before Initiative is rolled.

It doesn't help that D&D starts off by giving player characters better skill scores than almost all monsters. Once your Passive Perception is well past 15, non-supernatural monsters simply can't compete any longer.

Then add how D&D is chock full of goodies on top, and the deal is sealed. (Just a single example: my party has the perfect scout - it flies, it's invisible and it's expendable: a Warlock Imp familiar)

So a band of goblins would probably be smart and alert enough to shoot down the Imp, but their ambush would still be ruined.

A pack of wolves would probably not understand the Imp's noises, and would probably never become aware of the party until they're all Fireballed.

This doesn't mean I'm not on your side Flamestrike. The only difference is that I acknowledge the way the rules absolutely prevent any mystique or fog of war. Sure you can add that, but then you need to selectively ignore some rules and hope for non-optimal behavior from the group.

And by non-optimal, I mean in a deal-the-most-damage-while-taking-as-little-damage-ourselves way. In a "maximize the immersiveness and fun" way, your way definitely wins out.

For newbies and carebears the game probably works alright. It's just that to make the game fun and immersive in the hands of minmaxers and hardened murderhobos, the rules need to be made way less generous.

First, the rules establish now that as little as patchy fog or light foliage is enough to get disadvantaged perception rolls, thus -5 to passive. So the spotting distances should be pretty moderate even outside.

Now, of course, with a point man things change. It is spotting from there. That puts the point man at varying degrees of risk and you can address that with whatever encounters are appropriate. it should once in a great while be an issue.

Also, one key thing to remember is in terms of a predator fauna issue (or perhaps flora) the party may well be being tracked.

But let me boil this down to a "what is the issue here?" To me it seems your arty is doing just fine.

For that party i would definitely not be throwing "starts at 30'" without some sort of play-into-that happening. i agree with you there.

But this would be a case where, as GM, i simply think "good for you" and expect most of those kinds of encounters to be favoring them. Like you said IMP spoils ambush in the open. ("It's what i do! My middle name is Spoil in fact!" ) Seems fine. i do not, as i imagine you do not, need to concoct various kinds of narrative filler to start them at closer range in that case or to make kind of routine wilderness encounter somehow be thwarting to that... cuz its smart and should be rewarded.

Obviously challenging encounters for them that flow from the story will likely be in settings or situations which provide a lot more difficulties and constraints on a number of those things - because they are meant to be challenging and important.

And no doubt your party will be working those as well, which is fine.

And of course, the same "spot from a distance" and "invisible scouts" and so on applies to others. - against them - etc and makes sometimes them accomplishing their objectives difficult as well.

To me, as i bet it is for you, a well played party is not a problem but an opportunity to stretch my GM legs and have some fun, detailed and challenging give and take.

parties for 2x2 formation 10x10 corridors are, no offense, a dime a dozen.

"I would love to have your players." Right back at you, except that for all i know you might have been describing my gang.
 

Ilbranteloth

Explorer
So hand crossbows... Amirite


Im implementing new rules at my table. No attribute to damage in attacks at distances longer than 15 feet (or the equivalent if we adjust by size). No more dex to damage unless using martial arts.

Thoughts?

I just stick with damage bonus is Strength only. Melee or thrown weapons. No need to introduce an arbitrary distance to gain it.

Bows can have a damage bonus due to construction with a minimum STR required to use. Light crossbows have no damage bonus, heavy crossbows do, but take an action to load.
 

5ekyu

Hero
I just stick with damage bonus is Strength only. Melee or thrown weapons. No need to introduce an arbitrary distance to gain it.

Bows can have a damage bonus due to construction with a minimum STR required to use. Light crossbows have no damage bonus, heavy crossbows do, but take an action to load.
Definite knock to rogues there esp melee ones, with the need for muscle. Any problems with that you have seen so far balancewise?

Sent from my VS995 using EN World mobile app
 

smbakeresq

Explorer
First, the rules establish now that as little as patchy fog or light foliage is enough to get disadvantaged perception rolls, thus -5 to passive. So the spotting distances should be pretty moderate even outside.

Now, of course, with a point man things change. It is spotting from there. That puts the point man at varying degrees of risk and you can address that with whatever encounters are appropriate. it should once in a great while be an issue.

Also, one key thing to remember is in terms of a predator fauna issue (or perhaps flora) the party may well be being tracked.

But let me boil this down to a "what is the issue here?" To me it seems your arty is doing just fine.

For that party i would definitely not be throwing "starts at 30'" without some sort of play-into-that happening. i agree with you there.

But this would be a case where, as GM, i simply think "good for you" and expect most of those kinds of encounters to be favoring them. Like you said IMP spoils ambush in the open. ("It's what i do! My middle name is Spoil in fact!" ) Seems fine. i do not, as i imagine you do not, need to concoct various kinds of narrative filler to start them at closer range in that case or to make kind of routine wilderness encounter somehow be thwarting to that... cuz its smart and should be rewarded.

Obviously challenging encounters for them that flow from the story will likely be in settings or situations which provide a lot more difficulties and constraints on a number of those things - because they are meant to be challenging and important.

And no doubt your party will be working those as well, which is fine.

And of course, the same "spot from a distance" and "invisible scouts" and so on applies to others. - against them - etc and makes sometimes them accomplishing their objectives difficult as well.

To me, as i bet it is for you, a well played party is not a problem but an opportunity to stretch my GM legs and have some fun, detailed and challenging give and take.

parties for 2x2 formation 10x10 corridors are, no offense, a dime a dozen.

"I would love to have your players." Right back at you, except that for all i know you might have been describing my gang.



I see the problem as above but the evil warlock servitor has the same IMP that scouts the players, and the Mind Flayer BBEG has already used all of his tools to figure out the standard group actions. The minions would allow themselves to get spotted, and then draw the players into a trap. The player IMP would also be fooled by the Illusory Terrain spell just like anyone else, and if the player doesn't say it is interacting with the environment as opposed to just flying above and not touching anything I wouldn't allow a saving throw for the IMP to disbelieve.

Want to try something fun? Drop a Fog Cloud on a group and say "you are encased in dense fog that makes vision impossible beyond 5', roll for initiative, stand up, turn your backs to the table and lets go."
 

5ekyu

Hero
I see the problem as above but the evil warlock servitor has the same IMP that scouts the players, and the Mind Flayer BBEG has already used all of his tools to figure out the standard group actions. The minions would allow themselves to get spotted, and then draw the players into a trap. The player IMP would also be fooled by the Illusory Terrain spell just like anyone else, and if the player doesn't say it is interacting with the environment as opposed to just flying above and not touching anything I wouldn't allow a saving throw for the IMP to disbelieve.

Want to try something fun? Drop a Fog Cloud on a group and say "you are encased in dense fog that makes vision impossible beyond 5', roll for initiative, stand up, turn your backs to the table and lets go."
Absolutely but i think the focus was to some degree hinged on more casual overland encounters.

We are both in agreement on tactical play cutting both ways.

And, frankly, i am called a pet name by my players in no small part due to my use of Fog Cloud, Wall of Fog, various darkness illusions etc as marvelous appkecart overturners in my games, as player and gm.

Had just such a case a few weeks ago.

Meanwhile, i would not do the turn around. I would have hearing rolls needed for "direction" control, so on a bad roll you have no clue which way is which. That often leads to wait/hide or dash/yell - in my experience if they dont have a counter.

Sent from my VS995 using EN World mobile app
 

John Brebeuf

First Post
No more dex to damage

I was doing it like that without ever realizing it wasn't the 5e way. I just recently started DMing 5e and simply assumed that the Dex bonus applied only to the attack roll as in Basic and AD&D, which is all I ever played previously. Not reading the rules too closely has its benefits.
 

The Old Crow

Explorer
I was doing it like that without ever realizing it wasn't the 5e way. I just recently started DMing 5e and simply assumed that the Dex bonus applied only to the attack roll as in Basic and AD&D, which is all I ever played previously. Not reading the rules too closely has its benefits.

I would prefer it to be that way. But I assume ranged combat is balanced against ranged cantrips, so nerfing the DEX bonus would balance it with mellee but make it too weak versus magic. Ranged cantrip advantages include being able to use uncommon damage types, counting as a magical attack to beat resistances, and needing no ammo.
 

Horwath

Legend
I just stick with damage bonus is Strength only. Melee or thrown weapons. No need to introduce an arbitrary distance to gain it.

Bows can have a damage bonus due to construction with a minimum STR required to use. Light crossbows have no damage bonus, heavy crossbows do, but take an action to load.

Well, that is one of the options.

But I like to see dex to damage as your ability to aim the shot where it would do more damage.

As attack roll is usually 0 or 1.

And it prevents a great archer(dex 20) to do 1 damage per shot. That is kind of pathetic.
 

Lhynn

First Post
Dex already gives AC, iniciative and réflex, attack to the best ranged weapons and any light weapon. and is keyed to a ton of great skills. If an archer wants to do damage he should get sharpshooter. It can survive not giving damage and still remain useful and desirable for any class.
 

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