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D&D 4E Inquiry: How do 4E fans feel about 4E Essentials?

Garthanos

Arcadian Knight
Hmmm...Just a couple of points on Fighters, roles and dailies.

It wouldn't be too hard within the original 4e paradigm to have the Fighter be capable of fulfilling multiple roles and having no dailies without it creating a rest scheduling headache.
You just utilise the mechanics of stances. Instead of Dailies the Fighter gets stances. These function pretty much like Barbarian Rages, or the Daily stances Fighters already get, but they're not dailies, they're encounter long effects that the Fighter chooses when rolling initiative.
or with a feat switch stance in the middle of the fight etc.
Bloodied also sounds like a good trigger for changing role.
This is basically the same as using a single encounter long daily every fight (which is pretty much the sweetspot for 4e I think, and something that was increasingly encouraged as the edition went on).

You then bake the role features into the stances. You have leader stances, which give healings as part of their function, Defender stances which include marking or auras, and striking stances which add extra additional damage.

You then add a little flexibility in, by giving Fighters some kind of extra damage function (like the barbarian rage strike) they can access by spending a healing surge (or perhaps 2*) and you also give them the ability to change their stance once during a combat by spending healing surges.

The berserker shows that it doesn't necessarily break the game to switch between roles, and it would allow for some flexbility the game lacked. You could start in a Ranged Striker stance to fire upon enemies who are some distance away, and when they get close enough draw your sword and shield and move forward to start defending.


*Which is a nice way to even things out. In a long combat day, the Figher has an incentive to conserve healing surges, but in a one combat day, when everyone else is burning all their dailies, they might as well make some use of those extra healing surges.
I had considered the idea of using stances to swap between roles myself (decided 5e needed it more than 4e)
I do not know about it being a swap out for dailies unless you basically can supercharge the stance 1 time per 4 encounters to 1 per encounter in end game or something.
 

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I wouldn’t make changing stances cost anything but action economy, and I’d make the extra damage mechanic work in a way where it is good whether your rushing in to pummel things or punishing enemies for attacking your allies.

If it’s limited, give it a per encounter limit, and allow minor healing with it as an alt option to damage.
It doesn't necessarily have to cost anything so long as you can't do it all the time. Being able to switch from round to round would probably be so much verstality it would be too powerful.

The point about having extra damage cost healing surges it that it takes the place of other classes burning multiple dailies like the Barbarian's rage strike. It's a power up that needs to consume a daily resource. (Else you can't balance against daily classes across a range of combats per day).

I would do the extra damage like Power Strike, just bigger, so you could use it to punish as well - just add it on to any attack you are already doing.

I had considered the idea of using stances to swap between roles myself (decided 5e needed it more than 4e)
I do not know about it being a swap out for dailies unless you basically can supercharge the stance 1 time per 4 encounters to 1 per encounter in end game or something.
I think it would work, but they have to be beefy. Think of them like a Barbarian Rage or a Warden's Form, rather than an Essentials Stance.
 

Garthanos

Arcadian Knight
It doesn't necessarily have to cost anything so long as you can't do it all the time. Being able to switch from round to round would probably be so much verstality it would be too powerful.
Not sure about that in 5e that versatility would serve the role of saying hey the fighter/hero or whatever you want to call it... is really best at "fightin"

An interesting bit the word Hero in the original greek basically meant defender.

The point about having extra damage cost healing surges it that it takes the place of other classes burning multiple dailies like the Barbarian's rage strike. It's a power up that needs to consume a daily resource.
if you can balance it right, probably you are giving a different daily but one with many things tapping into it, that idea I like but also feel it has a fine needle to thread
 

EzekielRaiden

Follower of the Way
I'd also be a little reluctant to make Stances a Martial-only thing, simply because it's really, really useful for a ton of other stuff. Anything that's a persistent modifier to future actions. E.g. Avenger, Monk, and Swordmage all depend pretty heavily on stances, at least at early levels, and most classes get some kind of stance.

But perhaps there's something that could be worked out that's in-between. I dunno exactly what shape that would take. Perhaps you could have a special category of stances, called "Styles," which are Martial-only and have specific effects as a result?
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
It doesn't necessarily have to cost anything so long as you can't do it all the time. Being able to switch from round to round would probably be so much verstality it would be too powerful.

The point about having extra damage cost healing surges it that it takes the place of other classes burning multiple dailies like the Barbarian's rage strike. It's a power up that needs to consume a daily resource. (Else you can't balance against daily classes across a range of combats per day).

I would do the extra damage like Power Strike, just bigger, so you could use it to punish as well - just add it on to any attack you are already doing.
Okay, I see where you’re coming from, in that case, I’d give the Fighter a few extra healing surges, and then that should be fine.
 


MwaO

Adventurer
So, for example, leather armor adds +3 to AC instead of +2, and long swords have a +4 proficiency bonus instead of +3?
No, so at level 11, you get a +2 feat/item bonus to attack, similar to how Versatile Expertise gives you +2 feat bonus to hit. Your NAD defenses would go up by +2 as well, so no need for Improved Defenses to get that bonus.

That then makes Superior Will into +1/1/1 bonus to Will+make save vs daze/stunned at start of turn instead of +2/3/4 feat bonus to Will+make save.
 



Monster Vault and MV: Threats to the Nentir Vale are the best D&D monster books ever made for any edition as monster books that you use in a game rather that just interesting fluff. (Although Nentir Vale has plenty of fluff.) These books show off the way to design 4e monsters right, drawing on lessons learned over the lifespan of the game. Sadly, they came at what we now know was the tale end of that game's lifespan, when its death warrant had already been signed by Mearls & Co.

Rules Compendium is a nice glossary to gather together all the rules, although you mostly didn't need it if you had been playing 4e for that long.

Everything else about Essentials was pretty dire. The (deliberately?) incoherent marketing, the pointless pandering to presumed grognard tastes -- as soon as I saw the change to Magic Missile, I knew we were doomed and I knew Mearls was killing 4e.
 

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