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Level Up (A5E) Holywood Heroics: substituting for Dex

Quartz

Adventurer
Dex is pretty much the uber-stat at the moment. So how about reducing MAD and letting the fighting classes allow substitution? Thematically this is to fit the filmic travelling troupe of adventurers. They're not all Dex-machines. And see Your Highness for why you don't adventure in full plate.

Low level:
Fighter: may substitute Proficiency Bonus for Dex mod when calculating AC.
Paladin: may substitute Cha mod for Dex mod when calculating AC.
Ranger: may substitute Wis mod for Dex mod when calculating AC.

Medium level:
As above for Initiative.

High level:
Bring on the ideas!

This would mean that a lower-level PC would still benefit from full plate and medium armour, while a high-level PC gets an AC no better than plate (AC 12 armour + +6 PB) but still has some armour for when she's surprised. And a more experienced combatant is surprised less often. Dex still has all its other uses - in particular finesse weapons.
 

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Make Strength responsible for all Athletics-Acrobatics.

Delete Acrobatics. (Or rethink it as "finesse Athletics").

Strength is responsible for all running, jumping, falling, tumbling, climbing, balancing ability checks.

Strength is athletic agility, especially gymnastics.

Strength is grappling, and hand-to-hand.

Therefore Strength is the AC bonus! (Not Dexterity, which is manual dexterity only.)



Dexterity retains precise shot aim (bows, crossbows, guns, etcetera), and slow cautious Stealth, but looses all gymnastic-related concepts.
 

tetrasodium

Hero
Supporter
The big problem with the str/dex imbalance is similar to the int/cha one. Dex was always "better" but it came with costs like being hit by Armor Check Penalty more significantly (how often does a party use climb or jump vrs sneaky stuff), the need to invest in more skills, the need for investing in feats like weapon finesse, no/weaker shield access, & being limited to a smaller subset of weapons that excluded a lot of stuff with some combination of good to great damage dice, crit multiplier, & crit range. Meanwhile strength builds were kicked down to effectively the same weapons as dex with d8/d10 vrsd8/d10/d12/2d6 with the same crit multiplier crit threat & so on while no longer having an edge in skill investment or better shields. Taking all the hurdles that kept melee weapons better in many fights while extending ranges on ranged weapons to near drone warfare levels just exacerbates the whole mess.

I don't know what route A5e will take, but it seems that limited substitutions of "use strength instead of dex for $thing" type stuff alone is more just throwing our hands up & admitting it can't be steered back while just giving strength a blatant handicap. bringing back some of the weapon diversity of previous editions & rebuilding ranged weapons/combat are a couple keystone elements that really need to be part of the overall solution
 

Horwath

Hero
increase all non finesse weapons damage by one step.

1d4->1d6
1d6->1d8
1d8->1d10
1d10->2d6
1d12/2d6->2d8

add min str for all armor not just a few heavy ones
 

increase all non finesse weapons damage by one step.

1d4->1d6
1d6->1d8
1d8->1d10
1d10->2d6
1d12/2d6->2d8

add min str for all armor not just a few heavy ones
Or.

Allow Dex to keep the attack bonus for the d20 to hit.
But remove the damage bonus from Dex.
Only Strength gets a damage bonus.
 

Horwath

Hero
Or.

Allow Dex to keep the attack bonus for the d20 to hit.
But remove the damage bonus from Dex.
Only Strength gets a damage bonus.
Sure, but dex can to damage can also be described as more precise shot, rather than forceful. 200N to the throat is more damaging than 500N to the chest.
 

Sure, but dex can to damage can also be described as more precise shot, rather than forceful. 200N to the throat is more damaging than 500N to the chest.
But Strength can aim accurately with a sword too.

I am increasingly leaning toward there being no "finesse weapons". Weapons that are agile in the sense that grappling and punching is agile, would rely on Strength anyway.

Steady aim weapons, like bow and crossbow, still benefit from Dexterity in the sense of manual dexterity and small sensitive motion.
 

FXR

Explorer
Dex is pretty much the uber-stat at the moment. So how about reducing MAD and letting the fighting classes allow substitution? Thematically this is to fit the filmic travelling troupe of adventurers. They're not all Dex-machines. And see Your Highness for why you don't adventure in full plate.

Low level:
Fighter: may substitute Proficiency Bonus for Dex mod when calculating AC.
Paladin: may substitute Cha mod for Dex mod when calculating AC.
Ranger: may substitute Wis mod for Dex mod when calculating AC.

Medium level:
As above for Initiative.

High level:
Bring on the ideas!

This would mean that a lower-level PC would still benefit from full plate and medium armour, while a high-level PC gets an AC no better than plate (AC 12 armour + +6 PB) but still has some armour for when she's surprised. And a more experienced combatant is surprised less often. Dex still has all its other uses - in particular finesse weapons.
To be honest, I'm not a fan of your idea.

I don't really want the system to steer players toward having a single useful ability scores and the others be dump stats. I'm perhaps one of the few who genuinely like some sort of low-key MAD, as it forces players to make meaningful choices for their characters and not simply use their ASI for a single stat determined by their class. Unsurprisingly, I completely agree that Dexterity is too much of a über-stat.

I would keep Dex as the main defense stat. It makes at least some modicum of sense and using other stats seem very artificial.

I would however go with one or more the following:

- Option 1: use the lower of Dexterity and Wisdom for your initiative. You might have rapid-fire reflexes (high Dex) but if you are unable to read the battlefield, you won't be able to act in a meaningful way.

- Option 2: remove the goddam rapier. You want a finesse weapon? Go ahead, but it's going to do 1d6 damage at the maximum. Better, remove all finesse weapon as suggested by Haldrik.

- Option 3: Use Strength instead of Dexterity for damage with bow and other ranged weapons. I don't care how precise you are, if you can't pull the bow string, your arrow won't go far.

- Option 4: Put a Strength requirement for longbows. See the rationale for option 3.
 

Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
One thing we are discussing is using other ability scores for initiative based on the situation. Initiative isn't as powerful as it seems, though; once you've had your first go, it's just a cycle.
 

tetrasodium

Hero
Supporter
One thing we are discussing is using other ability scores for initiative based on the situation. Initiative isn't as powerful as it seems, though; once you've had your first go, it's just a cycle.
I ran a campaign using int for several months with initiative and agree, it sounds like it should be a big deal but didn't really make much difference most of the time & what little difference it made didn't really change much of anything.
 

One thing we are discussing is using other ability scores for initiative based on the situation. Initiative isn't as powerful as it seems, though; once you've had your first go, it's just a cycle.
I think for casters by mid level you could argue it’s the strongest stat their is. Laying down your controls before the enemy does can change fights.

ive Always wanted to see an in-depth look at what initiative really means
 

tetrasodium

Hero
Supporter
I think for casters by mid level you could argue it’s the strongest stat their is. Laying down your controls before the enemy does can change fights.

ive Always wanted to see an in-depth look at what initiative really means
You'd think that, but 5e really discourages and hamstrings thst kinda caster with nerfed debuffs/but control spells & massive overuse of concentration before you get into all the incentive it stacks on for casters to be a blaster. In part editions it might have been significant, but rolling low on a d20 plays a bigger role. It might help wizards specifically go sooner, but it winds up being more trouble because the baddies are likely all over and they don't have any meaningful tools to do anything regardless of if the bsf rogue & ranger goes first or not. A5 might give the tools back... but with precision pinpoint yargetingit probably only matters of your casting chain lightning & laying in bed arb I'd not be surprised if that included words like "of your choice" or similar
 

You'd think that, but 5e really discourages and hamstrings thst kinda caster with nerfed debuffs/but control spells & massive overuse of concentration before you get into all the incentive it stacks on for casters to be a blaster.
I mean, yes casters aren't what they used to but make no mistake, the control caster is still very much alive. The right wall of force, hypnotic pattern, banishment, resilent sphere....they can all end fights before they even begin.
 

Minigiant

Legend
I mean, yes casters aren't what they used to but make no mistake, the control caster is still very much alive. The right wall of force, hypnotic pattern, banishment, resilent sphere....they can all end fights before they even begin.
Yeah but casters don't usually have nearly a high enough Dex in most cases to matter much on Inititive. It's Dex based classes that really benefit from the Dex bonus to Init.
 

Quartz

Adventurer
I don't really want the system to steer players toward having a single useful ability scores and the others be dump stats.

I think you're extrapolating a little too far. I am in no wise suggesting that. The substitution is very limited: for instance all three classes still need Str and Con, and Dex when using finesse weapons.
 

One thing we are discussing is using other ability scores for initiative based on the situation. Initiative isn't as powerful as it seems, though; once you've had your first go, it's just a cycle.
It doesn't make a huge difference to the player's, but the ascendancy of DeX does mean that the players most often take their turns before the monsters, which means the DM gets less opportunity to show them off, which leads to shorter but less interesting combats.
 

Yeah but casters don't usually have nearly a high enough Dex in most cases to matter much on Inititive. It's Dex based classes that really benefit from the Dex bonus to Init.
I don't know. DeX directly affects AC, especially for a character with no armor. Combined with initiative and useful DeX-based skills (like Stealth) and I want my Dex to be decent if not good.
 

Quartz

Adventurer
I think as written the abilities are open to abuse by multiclassers, particularly Monks and Barbarians. It should not work with any sort of Unarmoured Defence. How would you phrase that?
 

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