Unearthed Arcana Latest Unearthed Arcana Introduces Rogue & Ranger Archetypes



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I think the Scout subclass of Rogue shows that the Scout subclass of Fighter, is about as obsolete as the Artificer subclass of Wizard.

In terms of Wardens, the Primeval Guardian Ranger certainly is the tree-type of Warden, but I remember there being bestial Wardens and more elemental ones. The Elemental one is sort of covered by that Barbarian subclass the Storm Herald.

That odd 4e class the Seeker, isn't really covered by anything yet beyond that attempt at the Arcane Archer which certainly needs tweaking.
 

Isn't a spell-less ranger just a scout?

Doesen't have to be. not having spells does not have to mean not having spell slots.
you can for example play a spell-less Paladin who doesen't do that whole spell casting thing and just uses all spell slots for smites.
Ofcourse rules wise he could still cast spells.

In the same way you could make a ranger subclass that gets abilities powerd by spell slots, and could chose to fully depend on these abilities and not use spellcasting.
 

I think the Scout subclass of Rogue shows that the Scout subclass of Fighter, is about as obsolete as the Artificer subclass of Wizard.

Given that we have nature-themed subclasses for the barbarian, cleric, and paladin, I don't see why they wouldn't have nature subclasses for both the fighter and a rogue. Of course, which one is called the scout is a matter of opinion.....
Personally, I prefer the rogue one, but I seem to recall the fighter being popular (on the forums which might or might not mean anything on the surveys) in its day.
 

phantomK9

Explorer
I find myself really liking the Horizon Walker. But there could be some improvements.

I think pretty much everyone has hit on the majority of the problems, namely that the Planar Warrior ability eats up the bonus action every turn.

My main quibble with the Horizon Walker is with the spell selection.
With the description I would expect the Horizon Walker to have access to spells like misty step and blink.
Not that the spell selection is bad per se (alter self how did you get in there), but it is kind of hodge podge and not tightly thematic. Also if they simply got access to the blink spell, then there really wouldn't be much need for the Ethereal Step or Distance Strike abilities other than not using up your spell slots of course.


For Primeval Guardian, my biggest question is how is this not a thing for Druids? But pretty much love it aside from that.

Scout is very meh. Others have already given detailed break downs of what I dislike about it.
 


DaviMMS

First Post
For me, it depends very much on what the monster's motivation is for conflicting with the party. Zombies tear you apart and eat you. Gnolls IMC love destruction, and for them the payoff isn't when you fall to zero HP, it's when your corpse disintegrates--unless they are very desperate (about to be TPKed), they will always pause long enough to mutilate a dead body. A ghoul might just want to snag a meal, and as soon as it's got a dead body it tries to drag it away while the other ghouls keep fighting.

Except for organized, militaristic humanoids (who will have zero trouble dealing with a Guardian Aura after they realize what's going on), most monsters shouldn't be trying to "win" the combat or "challenge" the PCs. They have goals of their own, and those goals will dictate how they respond to a downed PC.

Agree with all that. Not what many groups do, but what all groups should. Many or even most DMs just make everyone battle till one side loses. Battle till death should be rare. Most enemies should try to escape or surrender if things look bad or they achieved their objective.

All true. But it won't stop certain monsters from trying--it's not like they know what the PC's Acrobatics score is. They just know they're trying to score an easy meal; or in a dragon's case, it just knows it's trying to pick off the weakest-looking PCs one at a time. It doesn't know that the spindly-looking wizard is actually a high-Dex Bladesinger with Acrobatics +9 who can just Dimension Door away even if he is caught.

That doesn't make Guardian Aura more powerful though. In fact it just indicates why it's still unexciting: it only covers a single threat vector.
It actually does make the ability more powerful. If an obvious strategy to counter it does not works well, it leads to the enemies wasting actions, something that is always good.


The difficult terrain thing is indeed a nice synergy. Spike Growth is pretty nice too for locking down movement.

Note that it's unclear when/whether difficult terrain impedes jumping movement. In some cases, some DMs may allow a monster like that toad-thing from Volo's to hop away with a PC in its gullet, ignoring 15' or so of the difficult terrain.

BTW, I am not arguing here that DMs should metagame against Guardian's Aura. I'm just arguing that Guardian's Aura isn't all that great against various things that a DM is probably already doing anyway. (At least, I am.)

I would probably laugh if the DM tried to bunny his way out of the difficult terrain area. Especially while grappling someone. And it actually does not work all that well. A long jump needs a 10 feet start and can go up to the Strengh score away. So long jumping out of the difficult terrain area leads to using 20 or 40 feet of movement (Depending it grappling makes him waste extra movement or not). That’s already enough to make it hard for most normal enemies to flee from your area without using dash (What is good as they are wasting an action that could be used for damage or worst). Standing jumps can go up to half your Strength Modifier distance, so up to 15 feet, and for most enemies that much lower.

If you’re using a grid, most enemies will only jump up to 10 feet away. I would rule that the square you’re getting out of would still be considered difficult terrain, so 10 or 20 feet to just get out of his spot. And most enemies will only ignore 1 square of difficult terrain with bunny strategy. Also, if they still are on difficult terrain area by the end of the jump, they must make a DC 10 Acrobatics Check to not fall prone. As most enemies do not have high scores in both strength and dexterity, and they will probably need a high strength to grapple as it is quite likely that they won’t have Athletics proficiency, there is a pretty good chance they will fail this check. They will still pass most times, but most of them will fail between 30-50% of the time.

So, jumping through difficult terrain is a good strategy if you’re out of it. If you´re already inside, it will still hinder your movement a lot, especially if you’re trying to grapple someone.

Depends on what happens after that. Remember that the point of grappling isn't just to remove an enemy from healing, it's to remove it from healing and party support. A dragon or a vampire will grapple and kidnap a PC in order to turn a 4:1 fight into a 1:1 fight. The fact that it shuts down Guardian Aura is just one more example of how 1:1 fights are harder.

You will need a lot of rounds or some kind of special movement and/or obstacle to grapple a single player far enough for the party to not be able to help. Otherwise it will just lead to a chase. Some players may fall behind, but others would even be able to attack the enemy while he tries to escape (For example, rogues, revised rangers and monks, who can dash as a bonus action, or anyone with a mobility buff).

Not saying that some kind of obstacle would be hard to come by. Even just a couple of mooks could do the trick.

I'd call "investing 15 levels in Ranger" a pre-requisite, wouldn't you? And you still only get healing up to half health. I agree that it's questionable design from the point of view of Champion invalidation, but with my powergamer hat on, it's hard to think of a campaign where I would want a 15th level ranger in the party even with this ability.

By pre-requisite I was trying to say some kind of action can’t reliably do every round. But I was unclear.

I'm not sure what this last sentence means. IME, the only reason why Aura of Vitality doesn't get cast more is because the party doesn't tend to take thousands of HP of damage. By level 15, a Paladorc (say Paladin 9/Sorcerer 6) with Extended Aura of Vitality would have, what, 8 castings of Aura of Vitality available to him? That's 1120 HP of healing per long rest, and he's not even a full-time healer.

I remembered Aura of Vitality differently. In my mind, it lasted 10 minutes, so I will remake my statement. A normal use of Aura of Vitality will only heal an average of 70 Hit Points, not enough to result in overhealing in many cases. That’s about the same of an up-cast Prayer of Healing on a party of 4 (3d8+4 from Wisdom leads to 17,5 per person x 4 = 70). Aura of Vitality is still better because it is faster and can be focused where it is needed. But Prayer of Healing can be upcasted effectively.

And if you are using 8 slots (On a spell that does not have upcasting. That’s all your highest-level spell slots.) and 8 sorcery points (What would lead to using at least one more slot because you only have 6 points by default) for healing, you’re clearly being more than a occasional healer. That’s a lot of resources. But I see you’re only showing a maximum healing capability, not a real example. Also, you are considering that the sorcerer used one of their 2 metamagic choices on one of the worst options just to double the amount of healing.

Death monks don't have to kill "hostile creatures". They can kill 2cp chickens in grotesque ways and still gain 10-25 temp HP from it. (And indeed, this is very much in character for them.)

While that is RAW, it is clearly not RAI. Many DMs would not allow it clearly appears as a try to game the system. And even if he does allow, chickens are living beings. They won’t just wait in a box till you need to kill them. Where the player is carrying them? How is he keeping them alive? These and many other questions could come up if a player try to do something like that. And how many chickens can he actually carry around?

Reiterating: I agree that the ability should be revised to be more idiomatic for 5E and to not eclipse the Champion. (And actually, in its current state it actually makes some of the 1/long rest Paladin capstones look exactly as lame as they in fact are.) But from a powergaming perspective, it doesn't matter if the ability is nerfed or not, because AFAICT it doesn't push the boundaries of what is already possible. The single most exciting thing it does is make melee parties more attractive/durable/fun; which is entirely a good thing BTW. But that is only a playstyle change, not a balance change. You could have killed the exact same monsters anyway, with a different party composition.

IMO, an ability is not overpowered because it will make the game too easy. It is overpowered if it is much more powerful than other similar abilities. There is only one similar ability (Champion Survivor), and Guardian Aura outclasses it by far.
 

cbwjm

Legend
Given that we have nature-themed subclasses for the barbarian, cleric, and paladin, I don't see why they wouldn't have nature subclasses for both the fighter and a rogue. Of course, which one is called the scout is a matter of opinion.....
Personally, I prefer the rogue one, but I seem to recall the fighter being popular (on the forums which might or might not mean anything on the surveys) in its day.
Why not both? I know 2e had a number kits that had the same name across classes. I don't see it as a problem for subclasses in 5e doing the same. Their approach may be different, but they're both scouts.
 

And if you are using 8 slots (On a spell that does not have upcasting. That’s all your highest-level spell slots.) and 8 sorcery points (What would lead to using at least one more slot because you only have 6 points by default) for healing, you’re clearly being more than a occasional healer. That’s a lot of resources. But I see you’re only showing a maximum healing capability, not a real example. Also, you are considering that the sorcerer used one of their 2 metamagic choices on one of the worst options just to double the amount of healing.

It's very close to a real example. In real life, that would be a Paladin of Devotion 9/Chtulock Warlock 2/Wild Sorcerer 4 named Cranduin the Lesser, using DMG spell points. I just left off the warlock part because I didn't want to derail discussion into the merits and evils of warlock dips on paladins. My core point was that, as mentioned, Cranduin does not actually ever heal thousands of HP per session because the party doesn't lose thousands of HP.

(And he is in fact the backup healer, not the primary healer. The primary healer is a bardlock. The main difference between them is that the bardlock can heal more types of problems including petrification and intellect devouring; the bardlock heals fewer HP per spell point expended, but he has more total spell points so in that sense it's a wash.)

RE: chickens, your DM will probably love it if you buy a flock of chickens and put them on a long multi-leash or in cages, and cart them around with you to sacrifice in your grotesque Death Monk voodoo rituals. He will have so much fun with those chickens. You're right that those questions do occur, but they get resolved in play and it's a blast. In fact, I highly recommend trying out a chicken-flock at least once, for any player, whether or not their PCs have weird life-draining powers.
 

Azurewraith

Explorer
Why not both? I know 2e had a number kits that had the same name across classes. I don't see it as a problem for subclasses in 5e doing the same. Their approach may be different, but they're both scouts.
Not a major issue but it means when your throwing ideas around you can't just go I want to be a scout.
 

cbwjm

Legend
Not a major issue but it means when your throwing ideas around you can't just go I want to be a scout.

True, but even when the fighter subclass was introduced, if someone said that they want to be a scout it could still lead to playing a class/subclass completely different from the fighter scout. Both of them are an option for playing scout, however, players could end up running with neither class and choosing something else with a specific background and skills to model their scout.

I've read scout so often that now I'm thinking of the boy scouts. Can you imagine a dwarf or elf dressed up as a scout leader?
 

Blue

Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
The Horizon Walker and Forest Guardian don't fit the style of campaigns that I run so they will never get used in my campaigns. As for the Scout, it reminds me of why I dislike several classes not receiving their subclasses at first level.

I hear you, but I'm torn. Part of my thinks that levels 1-4 are "apprentice" levels, but playing a "spell-less ranger" but not getting required skills for 2 levels is bunk.

On the other hand, I do like that the rules don't give a large dump of power at first level that would be easily cherry-picked with multiclassing.

There is a rule in the background section that if you get a skill from a second place just pick any other skill. So you could play a scout with survival & nature from first (assuming you can get them), and then at 3rd you'll simply get two other skills (by that rule) and those skills will improve to expertise.
 

Blue

Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
8th level Guardian Ranger (for easy math), gets fireballed in an ambush. You run up, change:

You heal 16 hp, your max increases by 16, and at the start of every turn you gain 4 temp hp.

Enemy breaks, you drop form to follow. Next turn go Guardian again, you heal another 16 hp.


If a DM allows the transformation outside of combat (which I'm inclined to do so they can take advantage of Large size), they can just pop it on and off to heal x2 their level until they are back to full health. Which is not the intent.

They edited the PDF to allow this ability only once per rest.
 

Blue

Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
RE: chickens, your DM will probably love it if you buy a flock of chickens and put them on a long multi-leash or in cages, and cart them around with you to sacrifice in your grotesque Death Monk voodoo rituals. He will have so much fun with those chickens. You're right that those questions do occur, but they get resolved in play and it's a blast. In fact, I highly recommend trying out a chicken-flock at least once, for any player, whether or not their PCs have weird life-draining powers.

In a 4e game one of the other players bought a crate of chickens. And used them to set off the several sets of explosive runes that we knew were at our destination.

And just imaging their uses when combined with the legendary 10' pole.
 

They edited the PDF to allow this ability only once per rest.

I'm not seeing it. The page (http://dnd.wizards.com/articles/unearthed-arcana/ranger-and-rogue) still links to this PDF (http://media.wizards.com/2016/dnd/downloads/2017_01_UA_RangerRogue_0117JCMM.pdf) with this text:

Guardian Soul
Starting at 3rd level, you gain the ability to
temporarily grow and take on the appearance of
a treelike person, covered with leaves and bark.
As a bonus action, you assume this guardian
form, which lasts until you end it as a bonus
action or until you are incapacitated.
You undergo the following changes while in
your guardian form:
• Your size becomes Large, unless you were
larger.
• Any speed you have becomes 5 feet, unless the
speed was lower.
• Your reach increases by 5 feet.
• You gain a number of temporary hit points at
the start of each of your turns. The number
equals half your ranger level. When the form
ends, you lose any temporary hit points you
have from it.

*snip*

Guardian Aura
Starting at 15th level, your guardian form
emanates a magical aura that fortifies your
injured allies. When any ally starts their turn
within 30 feet of your guardian form, that ally
regains a number of hit points equal to half your
ranger level. This aura has no effect on a
creature that has half or more of its hit points,
and it has no effect on undead and constructs.

No mention there that I can see of per-rest. Am I just blind, or is there some other version of the PDF?
 

Chaosmancer

Legend
They edited the PDF to allow this ability only once per rest.

I heard that on a different forum, but no matter what I do the improved version does not appear for me.

Is it long rest or short rest?

Do we think this ability is still worthwhile once per rest? Is 14 hp a short rest a good 7th level ability?

I agree it needed the limit, I just want to know if people think that takes it into the territory of being a bad ability to gain.
 


Blue

Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
I'm not seeing it. The page (http://dnd.wizards.com/articles/unearthed-arcana/ranger-and-rogue) still links to this PDF (http://media.wizards.com/2016/dnd/downloads/2017_01_UA_RangerRogue_0117JCMM.pdf) with this text:



No mention there that I can see of per-rest. Am I just blind, or is there some other version of the PDF?

The power the person I was responding to was Ancient Fortitude, and they were talking about entering and leaving guardian form to heal 2*level HPs each time. That's been changed to once per rest (short or long).
 

Blue

Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
I heard that on a different forum, but no matter what I do the improved version does not appear for me.

Is it long rest or short rest?

Do we think this ability is still worthwhile once per rest? Is 14 hp a short rest a good 7th level ability?

I agree it needed the limit, I just want to know if people think that takes it into the territory of being a bad ability to gain.

Per short or long rest.
 

Blue

Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
Even at once per rest it's better than Second Wind, and I have yet to hear anyone say Second Wind isn't worth it.

It is significantly restrained compared to Second Wind because of when you can trigger it. You can only trigger it when you enter guardian form. So if you enter guardian form to battle, then take damage, you need to use the bonus action on one round to leave (which will also lose all the temp HPs you just got), and a bonus action on a later round to go back in and use this.
 

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