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D&D 4E Martial classes

HammerMan

Adventurer
in another thread someone said the best part of 4e (or at least one of them) is that with 4 martial 2 divine 2 arcane classes in the PHB it set the stage for Martial Heroes to take the for front...

Now through out the edition we got avenger, invoker, swordmage, bard and as such the arcane and divine got up to 4, and even primal, and psionic (and shadow) power sources. so Martial didn't stay the biggest amount of classes, and they never got a true controller (a role i feel needed more thought anyway). However I did always through out the edition feel Martial heroes (Beuwolf to batman) got the best coverage and had the most representation in 4e over any other edition of D&D.

How do you feel?
 

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Jacob Lewis

Ye Olde GM
Only martial power got a second source book during the pre-Essentials run...
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Martial wins.
 

FitzTheRuke

Legend
Sadly, I think a martial controller (a Gladiator with a net or an Indiana Jones type with a whip - lots of dragging monsters around, knocking them prone, disarming, and locking them down) would have been awesome.

But they didn't want to be too obvious about "ticking all the boxes" in spite of doing exactly that everywhere else (and with less inspiration in many cases).
 

Vaalingrade

Legend
Its was so nice being able to play the character type I want with the level of mechanical interest I enjoy. I hate that martials have historically and ongoingly been shackled and brainboxed to the 'simple' classes where you're a damage dump or a tank and that's that. And the Battlemaster seems to be there just to mock the very idea like tinker gnomes to technology in Fantasy.
 

Lord Shark

Explorer
One of the things I liked most about 4E is that, through feats and powers, they made weapon choice actually matter. Instead of just "this one does d4 piercing, this one does d8 bashing," different weapon types had different applications -- spears and polearms were better for tripping and pushing, axes got to reroll damage, swords were better for opportunity attacks, hammers could daze or stun, etc. As you built up your character, you were essentially building an unique fighting style, instead of just spamming one trick every round.

I played a tempest fighter with two scourges who scooted around the battlefield tripping and pulling enemies all over the place, a greataxe fighter who would plant himself in place and shrug off hits, and a brawler fighter whose specialty was latching onto an opponent with one hand and beating their face in with the other.

(This, incidentally, is why I'm always amazed when people say 4E classes were "samey." Those characters were all built on the same class, and they all felt very different to me in play. And that's not even getting into non-fighter weapon wielders, like wardens, warlords, and monks...)
 
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FitzTheRuke

Legend
One of the things I liked most about 4E is that, through feats and powers, they made weapon choice actually matter. Instead of just "this one does d4 piercing, this one does d8 bashing," different weapon types had different applications -- spears and polearms were better for tripping and pushing, axes got better crits, swords were better for opportunity attacks, hammers could daze or stun, etc. As you built up your character, you were essentially building an unique fighting style, instead of just spamming one trick every round.

I played a tempest fighter with two scourges who scooted around the battlefield tripping and pulling enemies all over the place, a greataxe fighter who would plant himself in place and shrug off hits, and a brawler fighter whose specialty was latching onto an opponent with one hand and beating their face in with the other.

(This, incidentally, is why I'm always amazed when people say 4E classes were "samey." Those characters were all built on the same class, and they all felt very different to me in play. And that's not even getting into non-fighter weapon wielders, like wardens, warlords, and monks...)

That's because what they meant by "samey" is that the martials and casters both had the same economy. They only "valid" part of that criticism, in my mind, is that nearly every class had a power that did the same thing (say a close blast that did x damage and push) while the only thing different was the fluff. I mean, I get it, but it didn't bother me much.

Cool characters, BTW.
 

Garthanos

Arcadian Knight
in another thread someone said the best part of 4e (or at least one of them) is that with 4 martial 2 divine 2 arcane classes in the PHB it set the stage for Martial Heroes to take the for front...

Now through out the edition we got avenger, invoker, swordmage, bard and as such the arcane and divine got up to 4, and even primal, and psionic (and shadow) power sources. so Martial didn't stay the biggest amount of classes, and they never got a true controller (a role i feel needed more thought anyway). However I did always through out the edition feel Martial heroes (Beuwolf to batman) got the best coverage and had the most representation in 4e over any other edition of D&D.

How do you feel?

We did get a Martial Power 2 but no arcane power 2 nor a divine power 2.

The monk could have made a great martial controller and really is only a minor distance from it in my opinion and they could have made it multi-class well with a mystic to handle things like the fire benders and dragon ball z ranged chi blast elements and the like.

There is an on-going argument that the defender is really just a style of short ranged controller
 

HammerMan

Adventurer
One of the things I liked most about 4E is that, through feats and powers, they made weapon choice actually matter. Instead of just "this one does d4 piercing, this one does d8 bashing," different weapon types had different applications -- spears and polearms were better for tripping and pushing, axes got better crits, swords were better for opportunity attacks, hammers could daze or stun, etc. As you built up your character, you were essentially building an unique fighting style, instead of just spamming one trick every round.
I agree and even though I know the Damage on a miss stuff got a bad wrap here, I loved the one that let my dwarf fighter deal his con mod damage when he missed with an attack
 

Vaalingrade

Legend
I agree and even though I know the Damage on a miss stuff got a bad wrap here, I loved the one that let my dwarf fighter deal his con mod damage when he missed with an attack
Ugh. There were so many great mechanics and concepts that got slandered due to dumb semantics. Like how very few thing were straight immune to effect because there were fluff alternative, like 'tripping' an ooze by scrambling it.
 

Garthanos

Arcadian Knight
4e actually kept up the One Man Army role for the fighter. In 1e the fighter at 20th level could manage 20 attacks against a bunch of mooks in a round... it was a nod to the "one man army" which was mentioned in flavor text of Chainmail for the high "level" superhero. In 4e that element was dependent on selection of powers but there are ones that really do let one become a minion mower.

edit: for example "Rain of Steel", level 5 right in the player's handbook definitely captures some of that feel.
 
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Undrave

Hero
One of the things I liked most about 4E is that, through feats and powers, they made weapon choice actually matter. Instead of just "this one does d4 piercing, this one does d8 bashing," different weapon types had different applications -- spears and polearms were better for tripping and pushing, axes got better crits, swords were better for opportunity attacks, hammers could daze or stun, etc. As you built up your character, you were essentially building an unique fighting style, instead of just spamming one trick every round.
Heck, they didn't even bother with damage type. I agree that weapons were way more fun in 4e. It's like there was no room in 5e for making weapons interesting... The damage type barely EVER matter. Only a handful of monsters have resistances and even less have a weakness.
 

FitzTheRuke

Legend
Love the flavors of that sometimes as the "I never miss" precision and others as perhaps so aggressive the enemy always has to exert somehow to get out of really hurting.
Yeah you can see it as "You may have blocked that blow, but it rattled up your shield arm" or "you may have ducked, but you had to do it so aggressively to not lose your head, that you twisted unnaturally". I could go on. In fact, there are so many ways to fluff it that I have to assume that anyone who thinks it's "unrealistic" just lacks imagination.
 

Garthanos

Arcadian Knight
Yeah you can see it as "You may have blocked that blow, but it rattled up your shield arm" or "you may have ducked, but you had to do it so aggressively to not lose your head, that you twisted unnaturally". I could go on. In fact, there are so many ways to fluff it that I have to assume that anyone who thinks it's "unrealistic" just lacks imagination.
There was a heritage I felt in 3e where people expected the game to nail it all down its related to the "a rule for everything" ... Picturing game action the way you wanted is a D&D heritage back to 1e though, 4e gave me both game significant choices and by making it flexible, empowers my visualization.
 

Vaalingrade

Legend
Yeah you can see it as "You may have blocked that blow, but it rattled up your shield arm" or "you may have ducked, but you had to do it so aggressively to not lose your head, that you twisted unnaturally". I could go on. In fact, there are so many ways to fluff it that I have to assume that anyone who thinks it's "unrealistic" just lacks imagination.
My favorite was leaning into the Fantasy aspect and accepting that luck is an actual thing in the world and for certain characters, that's all their HP was. Damage on a miss was having such a close call that your luck literally almost ran out.

We also had the Bond rule where certain characters' HP was represented by clothing damage and healing was 'freshing up'.
 

Garthanos

Arcadian Knight
My favorite was leaning into the Fantasy aspect and accepting that luck is an actual thing in the world and for certain characters, that's all their HP was. Damage on a miss was having such a close call that your luck literally almost ran out of luck.
My gameworld had characters who were regenerative and they had monster style hit points for them losing hit points were very real wounds in part because they were not instinctively cautious no matter how good their training. However healing those wounds was not only quick but drew on deep energy sources by way of a connection they had with something called the unicorn force both a talent and only controlled emotionally. It didnt require one reflavor a longtooth shifter, just describing things that way worked fine.
 

My favorite was leaning into the Fantasy aspect and accepting that luck is an actual thing in the world and for certain characters, that's all their HP was. Damage on a miss was having such a close call that your luck literally almost ran out.

We also had the Bond rule where certain characters' HP was represented by clothing damage and healing was 'freshing up'.
The damage on a miss argument was stupid from the beginning.
Damage on a miss was always present in DnD with regard to spells.
Also fully clad warriors could always be hit without damaging the Armor in any way. So what is it if not a hit on the armor that you "noticed" or exhaustion from barely escaping deadly blows.

In Warhammer and in Rolemaster HP were merley exhaustions. In Warhammer you start getting wound once you are below 0 hp. In Rolemaster if you are hit with critical hits. HP are easily recovered.

So a fighter is so skiled that every attack wears you down at least a bit, that does not sound terribly metagamey or discconnected, but rather awesome. A fighter just knows what they are doing.
 


FitzTheRuke

Legend
My favorite was leaning into the Fantasy aspect and accepting that luck is an actual thing in the world and for certain characters, that's all their HP was. Damage on a miss was having such a close call that your luck literally almost ran out.

We also had the Bond rule where certain characters' HP was represented by clothing damage and healing was 'freshing up'.
That's right, more creative examples!
So a fighter is so skilled that every attack wears you down at least a bit, that does not sound terribly metagamey or discconnected, but rather awesome. A fighter just knows what they are doing.
And it's really as simple as that.
 

GMforPowergamers

Adventurer
4e is my favorite edition, and the caster/martial balance is a big reason.

Having said that I really want a 'next' evolution of the game that follows more 4e path. weapon spesfic powers and feats mixed with skill powers and later PHB class modifications all seem like such good ideas.

in 2e we had house ruled ways to multi/not multi into casters called dablers so martial classes could cast, in 5e they did it with subclass, but 4e i saw the most martial classes stand on there own.
 

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