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5E Making Sneak Attack allow more weapons

TrueBagelMan

Explorer
Should Rogues be allowed to use weapons that are not limited to fineness or ranged? If so how would it be worded so nothing breaks?
Sneak Attack
When you use Sneak Attack the damage die of the weapon is replaced with a d6. The weapon can’t be wielded in two hands or have the two handed property unless they are a ranged weapon.
 
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dnd4vr

The Smurfiest Wizard Ever!
Really, you could allow them to sneak attack with any weapon and it won't "break" anything IMO.

FWIW, we changed the restriction from finesse weapons to light weapons as our table likes the weapon selection better for flavor purposes (although some people might miss the whip, we haven't yet).

Another option that I love is to bump up sneak attack by 1d6 and have it replace weapon damage instead of augment it, and allow the rogue to sneak attack with any weapon (even unarmed if you want!).

That's my take, anyway. :)
 

auburn2

Explorer
I think light weapons would be ok but I would be against doing it with others. GWM+sneak attack would break things pretty quickly. You could sneak attack with reach and +10 damage and then move away without needing to disengage. Even not counting the +10, with a greatsword you are also getting double the weapon damage of most finesse weapons. You are sneak attacking as rogue 2 levels higher ... but better yet you can get that extra d6 even when you don't have advantage or other sneak attack conditions.

You could even sneak attack with reach then dash as a bonus and be completely out of range for whoever you are fighting so the guy you are fighting can't retaliate. I know you can do that with swashbuckler already with a normal weapon, or an rogue with a whip, but is only 1d4 and precludes dual wield. Or you need to take swashbuckler to do with any other weapon and give up the bonuses and benefits you get with mastermind, assassin or thief. Doing it with a reach weapon getting massive damage would make swashbuckler more or less a useless kit.

I think to do it for all weapons without breaking things it would need to be a feat and I would still consider making it only work within 5 feet for non-finesse weapons.

Watch at about 3:00 into this video (warning language):

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TrueBagelMan

Explorer
I think light weapons would be ok but I would be against doing it with others. GWM+sneak attack would break things pretty quickly. You could sneak attack with reach and +10 damage and then move away without needing to disenge. Even not counting the +10, with a greatsword you are also getting double the weapon damage of most finesse weapons. You are sneak attacking as rogue 2 levels higher ... but better yet you can get that extra d6 even when you don't have advantage or other sneak attack conditions.

You could even sneak attack with reach then dash as a bonus and be completely out of range for whoever you are fighting so the guy you are fighting can't retaliate. I know you can do that with swashbuckler already with a normal weapon, but you need to take swashbuckler to do that, giving up the bonuses and benefits you get with mastermind, assassin or thief. Doing it with a reach weapon getting massive damage would make swashbuckler more or less a useless kit.

I think to do it for all weapons without breaking things it would need to be a feat and I would consider making it only work within 5 feet.
I can see the damage boost, but can’t you already do that with the Whip?
 

dnd4vr

The Smurfiest Wizard Ever!
Sneak Attack
When you use Sneak Attack the damage die of the weapon is replaced with a d6. The weapon can’t be wielded in two hands or have the two handed property.
Looks good to me as it is basically the last option I suggested. ;)

But you want to be careful about the two-handed thing since bows are two-handed. You are better off denying weapons with the heavy property I think, then you would only be denying great weapons (except greatclub), pole-arms, the heavy crossbow, and the long bow. None of these are weapons rogues are proficient in by default anyway.
 

TrueBagelMan

Explorer
Looks good to me as it is basically the last option I suggested. ;)

But you want to be careful about the two-handed thing since bows are two-handed. You are better off denying weapons with the heavy property I think, then you would only be denying great weapons (except greatclub), pole-arms, the heavy crossbow, and the long bow. None of these are weapons rogues are proficient in by default anyway.
So I changed the wording so bows can still be used. I put the two weapon property there since if you get a 1 level dip in fighter now you have Great Weapon Fighting where you can now reroll Sneak Attack Dice if it’s a one or a two.
 

dnd4vr

The Smurfiest Wizard Ever!
So I changed the wording so bows can still be used. I put the two weapon property there since if you get a 1 level dip in fighter now you have Great Weapon Fighting where you can now reroll Sneak Attack Dice if it’s a one or a two.
As long as you're happy with it and your players find it fun, that's all the matters. :)
 

Oofta

Title? I don't need no stinkin' title.
We allow any weapon, it doesn't make much difference. As far as GWM, that wouldn't be a very good trade-off for most PCs if you run the numbers based on what people that pay attention to that stuff have said.
 


jgsugden

Legend
As rogues are underpowered and sneak attack grows incrementally with rogue levels, I don't think you'll break anything by allowing any weapon to be used for a sneak attack in the house rules. If you play a rogue in a game I run, you're likely to find a rapier that does +d6 elemental damage pretty early on....
 

aco175

Hero
I tend to have thieves with daggers which deal 1d4 and this rule would change it to 1d6, which is not really anything. I like the rule option mostly since I feel the rapier pushes the finesse thing. I'm not sure if I would be good with any weapon being finesse as well, but I like the idea for a strength rogue who may want a warhammer and then backstab for 1d6.

I do find that the rogue looks for opportunity to use backstab each round so I'm not sure how much the regular weapon damage would be used over the d6 when backstabing. For flavor this would be great. I once made a magical weapon give finesse property so the dwarf could use a hand ax with backstab.
 

the Jester

Legend
Are you trying to fix a problem that you perceive? What's the reasoning behind this change? Is this just a change for the sake of change? For what it's worth, I think the answer to "Is this a good idea" really depends on what the reason behind it is. Also, I think that the idea that rogues are underpowered is suspect, to say the least.
 

dnd4vr

The Smurfiest Wizard Ever!
Here is the "rogue" portion of the house-rules we use at our table in case you want some more ideas for rogues:

1593479600646.png
 

Gladius Legis

Adventurer
I'd at the very least expand the allowed weapons to light, to allow for Sneak Attacks with clubs and handaxes and such.

(Also to buff the Assassin specifically, I'd allow that subclass to Sneak Attack with any weapon, period, and give that subclass proficiency with all weapons, making for a throwback to the 1e Assassin and giving the 5e version a bit of a neat boost.)
 
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dnd4vr

The Smurfiest Wizard Ever!
I'd at the very least expand the allowed weapons to light, to allow for Sneak Attacks with clubs and handaxes and such.

(Also to buff the Assassin specifically, I'd allow that subclass to Sneak Attack with any weapon, period, and give that subclass proficiency with all weapons, making for a throwback to the 1e Assassin and giving the 5e version a bit of a neat boost.)
Oh, I like the Assassin getting martial weapons! I might have to add that to the house-rules. :)
 

Charlaquin

Goblin Queen
I think light weapons would be ok but I would be against doing it with others. GWM+sneak attack would break things pretty quickly. You could sneak attack with reach and +10 damage and then move away without needing to disengage.
Taking the -5 attack +10 damage is actually going to hurt your average damage output with sneak attack more often than not. And unless you also have Polearm Master for the bonus action attack, Sneak Attacking with a reach weapon is no better than doing it with a heavy crossbow. With PAM it’d be pretty strong. Probably a little better than crossbow master in terms of average damage, at the cost of 20 ft. of range. Seems pretty fair to me TBH.
 

Should Rogues be allowed to use weapons that are not limited to fineness or ranged? If so how would it be worded so nothing breaks?
Sneak Attack
When you use Sneak Attack the damage die of the weapon is replaced with a d6. The weapon can’t be wielded in two hands or have the two handed property unless they are a ranged weapon.
I removed the Finesse weapon restriction for Sneak Attack completely. Rogues can fight dirty with any weapon with which they are proficient.

It hasn't broken anything.
 

TrueBagelMan

Explorer
I removed the Finesse weapon restriction for Sneak Attack completely. Rogues can fight dirty with any weapon with which they are proficient.

It hasn't broken anything.
So no one has gone with Halberd, Pollarm Master, Great Weapon Master, with a dip into fighter for great weapon fighting? You now have two attacks -5 to hit +10 to damage and you reroll 1s and 2s for the sneak attack dice. Variant Human allows this at 5th level.
 

The main reason for the weapon restrictions is it is a holdover from 1st and 2nd edition, where sneak attack was multiplicative - X2, X3, X4 rather than additive, so the best sneak attack weapon would have been a 2H sword if the rules didn't expressly prevent it.

See Staff of Striking in Baldur's Gate.
 

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