D&D 5E Is Tasha's Broken?

Zardnaar

Legend
You can't make a bad 5e character. Almost all of a PC's effectiveness is built into class and subclass, and even the "worst" of them is more than sufficient to be playable and enjoyable. As @Crimson Longinus said, the bar is set pretty low in 5e. Race isn't really relevant to that, except to maybe get a slight boost if you pick a race with a boost to your prime stat. The other racial abilities are just a bit of gravy.

I'd house rule that in a heartbeat. There is just too much already for me to worry about to want to track that. I'd probably just assign a flat percent chance, like 10% or 20% of a wild surge happening whenever you cast a spell other than a cantrip and it would refresh when a surge happens.

I've seen some bad characters in 5E. Newbsputting ability scores in the wrong places or multiclassing for concept vs something effective. 1d8+2 damage by level 9.

Added a rule along the lines of don't deliberately make a terrible character. Mostly because you're letting the rest of the group down. You don't need to powergamer either I prefer PCs not going for either extreme.
 

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jimtillman

Explorer
Tasha's cauldron has a lot of OP to broken stuff in it from the custom race, variant class, race and archetype rules and several spells and feats are also up there.

Twilight cleric is also a big one peace is also great and the other subclasses are often better than the phb as well.

The more I see it in play the less I like this book. Didn't get that from Xanathars.

So after seeing it used there's multiple things I don't want used.

Anyway that's just me. Your thoughts?

there's nothing broken in it..well twilight is the closest but its still not gonna break the game
 

Yeah. Individual DMs will vary, but typically I've found it to be the case that the exploration and social pillars are far more important to the campaign than combat rolls. Quality over quantity.
I agree. Don’t lament the fact that there are fewer Exploration and Social challenges, teach DMs how to use them properly and include tons of examples. When they publish DMG2 (or when they reissue DMG1) include tons more traps, particularly traps that require several checks to disarm and alternative approaches. More magical traps and haunts. More skill challenges.

How to run social challenges so they don’t revert to Bard casts Persuasion +11.
 
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James Gasik

We don't talk about Pun-Pun
I agree. Don’t lament the fact that there are fewer Exploration and Social challenges, teach DMs how to use them properly and include tons of examples. When they publish DMG2 (or when they reissue DMG1) include tons more traps, particularly traps that require several checks to disarm and alternative approaches. More magical traps and haunts. More skill challenges.

How to run social challenges so they don’t revert to Bard casts Persuasion +11.
I think a proper system for "degrees of success" is needed here as well, especially for characters with Expertise options like the Rogue. Too often, skill checks are "you roll high, things proceed without incident/you roll low, bad things happen".

It was funny, just earlier tonight, I went downstairs and my roommate was watching Critical Role. I don't watch the show, but he paused and was like, "hey, let me show you something".

For years now, whenever we play together, and we take watches for the night, I've noticed this trend. The DM asks you to roll Perception. If you roll high, nothing happens. If you roll low, there's an encounter of some kind (it's a rare day when you roll high and can react to enemies by noticing them first).

So he's showing me this bit where the various characters are roleplaying out their watches, and Matt Mercer is like "roll Perception checks". Two characters roll a 17 and Matt says "It's very cold outside". My roommate said he laughed when he saw that, because he immediately was reminded of my usual gripe.

(Although he then went on to say that in a previous session, someone rolled a 1 on their Perception check and there wasn't an encounter either, so no indictment against Mr. Mercer, it was just an amusing moment.)

At some point, after noticing this trend, I started making sure my characters were good at Perception, and my roommate followed suit (eventually followed by the rest of our playgroup). We haven't had a nighttime encounter since.
 

Clint_L

Legend
there's nothing broken in it..well twilight is the closest but its still not gonna break the game
I just ran a Twilight Cleric for the first time. We were doing Rime of the Frost Maiden and party needed a Cleric, and it seemed thematically on point. I knew it was good, but, combined with our Barbarian tank, we walked through the low level encounters like they didn't exist. As in, at level 3 we easily defeated the Frost Giant Skeleton encounter without needing the NPCs help.

I felt embarrassed by how broken Twilight Cleric felt; I'm not normally a power gamer.
 

James Gasik

We don't talk about Pun-Pun
I don't feel the Twilight Cleric is "broken". Game breaking is usually when one character takes up too much of the spotlight, like dealing the most damage or making other characters feel irrelevant.

The Twilight Cleric is strong, but in the right way- they make their allies stronger, as opposed to, say, a 3.5 Clericzilla, using Divinely Persisted buffs to make themselves more powerful in melee combat than the Fighter or Barbarian, while still able to cast magical spells if they choose.

If enemies focus fire, a lot of those temporary hit points being handed out to other party members don't matter as much either. Again, not discounting the fact that a Twilight Cleric makes encounters much easier, but at the end of the day, it's basically just preventing damage.

It's not making fights quicker or letting a Rogue routinely one-shot your major enemies.

As Snarf Zagyg and others pointed out in the "5e, Heal Thyself" thread, healing options out of combat are really good in 5e, and I've seen groups rarely even touch their Hit Dice, so I don't think the end result (the party recovers most of their hit points between combats) really changes much. A case can be made for not having to use as many resources to heal, but those seem to be in ample supply.

What happens is there's a perception that you're not actually being challenged because you rarely hit desperately low hit point levels in combat. But that's only one way to challenge a party (albeit a common way). A Twilight Cleric isn't going to help you against spellcasting enemies with things like Hold Person or monsters with ways to threaten you other than just damage.

That Twilight and Peace are the strongest subclasses of Cleric is probably not up for debate, but this isn't Cocaine Warlock levels of insanity.
 

DND_Reborn

The High Aldwin
I don't feel the Twilight Cleric is "broken". Game breaking is usually when one character takes up too much of the spotlight, like dealing the most damage or making other characters feel irrelevant.
Part of the problem, what does being "broken" mean?

As DM, broken is when the features of a class make encounters too easy, which is precisely what @Clint_L describes. It is especially obvious when certain synergies between classes and features regarding two or more PCs allow them to really steamroll over challenges.

Twilight Cleric isn't broken so much in what it can do, it is broken in how strongly and often it can do it. Other class features (like the Bear Totem Barbarian having resistance to all but psychic damage) are broken in a similar way as well and should be nerfed IMO.

So, for me, broken isn't about stealing the spotlight from other players, it is about ruining the challenge of the game.
 

Minigiant

Legend
Supporter
So, for me, broken isn't about stealing the spotlight from other players, it is about ruining the challenge of the game.

It's both.

Broken is both. It is when the game breaks and stops being the game intended. When an element makes tthe game play differently, changes challlenge dramatically, or shifts which elements are important, it is broken.
 

Horwath

Legend
I just ran a Twilight Cleric for the first time. We were doing Rime of the Frost Maiden and party needed a Cleric, and it seemed thematically on point. I knew it was good, but, combined with our Barbarian tank, we walked through the low level encounters like they didn't exist. As in, at level 3 we easily defeated the Frost Giant Skeleton encounter without needing the NPCs help.

I felt embarrassed by how broken Twilight Cleric felt; I'm not normally a power gamer.
I just need to look at Inspiring leader feat and then to twilight cleric, and it's enough to see it's completely broken.

1 Action vs. 10 mins activation
6 targets vs. how much you can fit into 30ft radius
1 instance of temp HP per vs up to 10 instances(yes, I know that in most fights it wont be 10 instances, but even 3 or 4 rounds with 1 or max 2 characters utilizing it puts the inspiring leader feat to shame)
One usage per short rest vs. multiple at later levels and/or items
 

James Gasik

We don't talk about Pun-Pun
I just need to look at Inspiring leader feat and then to twilight cleric, and it's enough to see it's completely broken.

1 Action vs. 10 mins activation
6 targets vs. how much you can fit into 30ft radius
1 instance of temp HP per vs up to 10 instances(yes, I know that in most fights it wont be 10 instances, but even 3 or 4 rounds with 1 or max 2 characters utilizing it puts the inspiring leader feat to shame)
One usage per short rest vs. multiple at later levels and/or items
Well there's two things to consider. 1- Inspiring Leader was made 8ish years ago. The current development team may consider it too conservative by today's standards.

2- even though Feats have been compared to "class-agnostic class features" by Mr. Crawford, there's no reason to believe the class feature of a class that has healing/buffing/protection as it's hat can't be miles better than a Feat. Or worse (I'm looking at the final power of the Tiger Totem Barbarian here).

Because, let's face it. The design standards for 5e have changed. Because of their desire to keep the PHB "evergreen", it has not changed with the times. This is why, as of Xanathar's, we see subclasses have gotten considerably better for some classes- Ranger and Sorcerer still have problems as classes, but it's easy to see that their newer subclasses have been buffed significantly.

The difference in power level between Tasha's and the Sword Coast Adventurer's Guide is obvious. Most of the things that were in SCAG have been redesigned and given back to us in a better format.

While some things have not been consistent (we've seen Unearthed Arcana subclasses be published in weaker/stronger forms, and some ideas never materialized at all, like the original Ranger fix, or a Beastmaster that works), overall, the new direction is pushing design space and power level as compared to the original.

We know that they are going to make significant changes to the core books in 2 years, we've already had a preview of the new design in Mordenkainen's Monsters of the Multiverse.

There are several ideas that could be pushing the game in this new direction that we can only guess at.

The first, and the most cynical, is that Hasbro wants D&D to make MtG money. This will mean a more books, with a faster development cycle and aping MtG's "FIRE" design (Fun, Inviting, Replayable, Exciting). While many Magic diehards gripe at the 'power creep' of the past few years, the product is selling like never before.

The second is that they feel they were too conservative in their original design philosophy. We can point to a few indications of this, such as Crawford's desire to make Backgrounds stronger game elements than "2 proficiencies and a frequently ignored Feature". They want players, and new players, to feel excited about their characters and their abilities, and to encourage people to express themselves creatively (new race paradigm).

The third is that the difficulty of the game may be shifting as well to make it more accessible and easier for the game to be run. We know monsters are going to be slimmed down, especially spellcasting monsters. We can see that short rest mechanics are likely going to be eliminated (which will make short rest mechanics theoretically worse, including Inspiring Leader). This could very well be in response to feedback that many tables aren't running 6-8 encounters per day, but instead are using fewer, more powerful encounters. We don't know, but if the encounters per diem model is changing, then the power of characters has to be adjusted in some way. It could be that Twilight Cleric is a harbinger of things to come.

This could mean that, in the future, that encounters will become more difficult. Monsters may become leaner and meaner. It's hard to say, but the game is evolving. We don't know what it's evolving into, but it's changing.

What seems 'broken' and 'overpowered' now may become the new standard tomorrow. And the power level we are used to, could become obsolete.

It's either that or Twilight and Peace are just massive mistakes made by the makers of the most popular TTRGP in the world, and they will totally admit that and issue power level errata at some point.

I feel however, that we are standing at a crossroads, and some groups are going to have to deal with the fact that future products could very well be pushing the game's boundaries in a direction they aren't comfortable with.
 

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