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Playtest (A5E) Level Up Playtest Document #2: Fighter

Welcome to the second Level Up playtest document. This playtest contains a candidate for the first 10 levels of game’s fighter class, and our new combat maneuvers system.

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This playtest document begins to address three issues which you said were important in the survey we posted last month:
  • Meaningful character choices at each advancement level
  • A fully fleshed out exploration pillar*
  • A range of martial maneuvers to give non-spellcasters more options in combat
*Exploration knacks, as introduced in this playtest document, only form part of the exploration pillar.

Download the playtest document

What this is
This is a playtest document. We’d love you to try out the rules presented here, and then answer the follow-up survey in a few days.

What this is not
This is NOT the final game. It’s OK if you don’t like elements of these rules; that’s the purpose of a playtest document. Be sure to participate in the follow-up survey in a few days. All data, positive or negative is useful.

What we use this for
Your survey responses help form the direction of the game as it goes through the development process.

Don’t forget!
Sign up for the mailing list for notifications of playtests, surveys, and news, and to make sure you get notified on Kickstarter when the project launches in 2021.

Continue reading...
 
Last edited:
Russ Morrissey

Russ Morrissey

Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
Looking at the features and abilities, this is very mich not backwards compatible with core 5e. It would be like saying the 3e fighter is backwards compatible with a B/X fighter.

As a designer myself, I get it. It’s hard to capture everything you want to do and keep power creep down, especially if you’re required to keep it balanced with an existing system. But look at that thread with sample fighters. Or just look at the playtest doc. The Levelup fighter easily has twice as many abilities as the core one, and is better at those things as well.
Levelup might be exactly what people are wanting, but right now, it’s not backwards compatible without significant balance issues.
It’s completely compatible with core 5E. As for balance, that’s precisely what we’re playtesting. Maneuvers and knacks swapped for a feat, ASI, action surge, and second wind.
 

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Stalker0

Legend
It’s completely compatible with core 5E. As for balance, that’s precisely what we’re playtesting. Maneuvers and knacks swapped for a feat, ASI, action surge, and second wind.

It looks like the levelup fighter trades in one feat, but I don't see any loss of ASI compared to the base fighter.
 

Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
It looks like the levelup fighter trades in one feat, but I don't see any loss of ASI compared to the base fighter.
Sorry. The feat is the ASI. Plus action surge and second wind. We do encourage you to playtest it — maybe alongside some core classes.
 

Stacie GmrGrl

Adventurer
My opinion is make this what Advanced D&D was to the Original D&D.

So make Level Up a real Advanced 5th Edition and let Original 5e be its basic 5e thing.

Both are D&D, but like all other versions of D&D, it's another flavor of D&D.

Let it Become what it seems to be.

You could even title it Advanced 5th Edition Fantasy.
 

Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
My opinion is make this what Advanced D&D was to the Original D&D.

So make Level Up a real Advanced 5th Edition and let Original 5e be its basic 5e thing.

Both are D&D, but like all other versions of D&D, it's another flavor of D&D.

Let it Become what it seems to be.

You could even title it Advanced 5th Edition Fantasy.
That’s pretty much literally the mission statement. :)
 

Minigiant

Legend
Supporter
Balance aside I still think the combat disciplines should have simple names and have clear leaning to the fighting styles.

D&D has always been about having generic names for nonspell stuff and clear focus on weapon styles.

Adamant Mountain to Earth Style
Focus on Heavy Weapons, Knockdowns, and Shoves

Biting Zephyr to Wind Style
Focus on Ranged

Mirror's Glint to Water Style
Focus on Reach Weapons and Counterattacks

Mist and Shade to Mist Style
Focus on Feints

Rapid Current to Lightning Style
Focus on Charging and Rapid attacks

Razor's Edge to Steel Style
Focus on Critical Hits

Sanguine Knot to Blood Style
Focuses on Teamwork

Tempered Iron to Fire Style
Focused on Reckless attacks

Tooth and Claw to Beast Style
Focus on leaping and unarmed attacks

Unyielding Wheel to Wood Style
Focus on Defense and Shields

I would like to see a tradition based on light weapons, one based on simple weapons, and one based on thrown weapons or a second ranged one.

There is no need for symmetry. Not every tradition needs to get the same layout of technique, stance, bonus action, and reaction. Especially if fighters can mix and match. In fact if you add more traditions, you could narrow the techniques per tradition down and really intensify the flavor.
 

Stacie GmrGrl

Adventurer
Balance aside I still think the combat disciplines should have simple names and have clear leaning to the fighting styles.

D&D has always been about having generic names for nonspell stuff and clear focus on weapon styles.

Adamant Mountain to Earth Style
Focus on Heavy Weapons, Knockdowns, and Shoves

Biting Zephyr to Wind Style
Focus on Ranged

Mirror's Glint to Water Style
Focus on Reach Weapons and Counterattacks

Mist and Shade to Mist Style
Focus on Feints

Rapid Current to Lightning Style
Focus on Charging and Rapid attacks

Razor's Edge to Steel Style
Focus on Critical Hits

Sanguine Knot to Blood Style
Focuses on Teamwork

Tempered Iron to Fire Style
Focused on Reckless attacks

Tooth and Claw to Beast Style
Focus on leaping and unarmed attacks

Unyielding Wheel to Wood Style
Focus on Defense and Shields

I would like to see a tradition based on light weapons, one based on simple weapons, and one based on thrown weapons or a second ranged one.

There is no need for symmetry. Not every tradition needs to get the same layout of technique, stance, bonus action, and reaction. Especially if fighters can mix and match. In fact if you add more traditions, you could narrow the techniques per tradition down and really intensify the flavor.

Too specifically elemental while being too generic. Plus takes away the flavor of what they seem like they are meant to represent.

It's also possible that the Monk is more likely to have these more elemental focused styles.
 

BlivetWidget

Explorer
We plan to playtest all the classes. No particular order though.

My emotional reaction is to say, "Wizard next pls!" because that's the one I care about. Logically though, I probably want wizards to come last so there's more time to refine it and learn from developing the other classes. And realistically, it'll happen when it happens.

So, you know, just keep those gears turning. We'll be here when it's ready.
 

Minigiant

Legend
Supporter
Too specifically elemental while being too generic. Plus takes away the flavor of what they seem like they are meant to represent.

It's also possible that the Monk is more likely to have these more elemental focused styles.

What about animals? Lion, Tiger, Jaguar, Horse, Griffin, Dragon, Manticore, etc...
 


aco175

Hero
I would like to see some of the base fighter options get back in somewhere. 2nd wind could become a maneuver or knack. Not sure how many of my group would play a fighter without a couple of the base options to choose from.
 






Minigiant

Legend
Supporter
I like the evocative names......don't make them all "western, generic", please.
If we did that I'd rather have flavorful names like Bonetti, Thibult or Capo Ferro.

I just prefer the names of the Traditions to be generic so that it hints to no direct flavor. Each setting could then easily suggest local names for each tradition and everyone understand the connections..

Earth Tradition could be Adamant Mountain in one setting, Dwarf Fencing in another, The Gray Way in another, Stomping Ox Style in another, and Burhart's Zweihander in another.
 



Lord Mhoram

Adventurer
I just prefer the names of the Traditions to be generic so that it hints to no direct flavor. Each setting could then easily suggest local names for each tradition and everyone understand the connections..

Earth Tradition could be Adamant Mountain in one setting, Dwarf Fencing in another, The Gray Way in another, Stomping Ox Style in another, and Burhart's Zweihander in another.

Yeah, but if D&D went that route back in the 70s we would not have Nystul, Mordekainen, Otiluke, Otto, Tasha and those - there were non generic names that were put into game mechanics to help flavor. I can see that some of the fighter traditions used were "extreme" with flavor, but a generic title just sits there. Give it some flavor.
 

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