D&D (2024) Maybe this is a bit late, but let's talk about Rogue's Niche, and What Rogue Should Be.

bloodtide

Legend
It's more that
I still see the big problem that the Rogue is Not a Striker.

Because the focus of D&D has moved towards a combat only game, the Rogue was made a Striker. But that is not a rogues niche.

A Rogue avoids combat. They only get into combat if there is no other choice, and most often in just self deference. A rogue would never stand next to the fighter and be ready to slay monsters and foes. That is not a Rogue.

And it seems obvious when you run down the famous rogues of fiction:

Farfied and Gray Mouser, Tasselhoff Burburfoot, and Regis the Halfling,. James Bond is a Rogue(in older movies at least) though he does have levels in fighter and artificer. Danny Ocean is not a fighter at all. Ethan Hunt is a rogue..though with the levels of fighter and artificer too.

Most of the cast of Firefly are Rogues, though Mal, Zoe and Jayne are fighters too. Han Solo sure is no fighter, and sure is not a front line striker.

You don't see "rogues" fighting foes and slaying dragons.

I dispute this assumption, in TSR days, magic weapons practically rained from the sky and they had to since eventually you'd run into something that simply couldn't be hurt without weapons of +X quality. I ran my friends through a few modules a couple years ago and after 3 of them, they had so many extra magical weapons that they traded them in for something else.
Sure a module or two might be over loaded...but most were not.

Also to loose a magic weapon in 1/2E was very common. There were lots of monsters, hazards, traps, spells, and magical effects that could get rid of or destroy weapons. In most games characters would loose and gain magic weapons all the time..

And some magic weapons...like drow weapons...became useless in the hands of the PCs.
 

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Minigiant

Legend
Supporter
I still see the big problem that the Rogue is Not a Striker.

Because the focus of D&D has moved towards a combat only game, the Rogue was made a Striker. But that is not a rogues niche.

A Rogue avoids combat. They only get into combat if there is no other choice, and most often in just self deference. A rogue would never stand next to the fighter and be ready to slay monsters and foes. That is not a Rogue.

And it seems obvious when you run down the famous rogues of fiction:

Farfied and Gray Mouser, Tasselhoff Burburfoot, and Regis the Halfling,. James Bond is a Rogue(in older movies at least) though he does have levels in fighter and artificer. Danny Ocean is not a fighter at all. Ethan Hunt is a rogue..though with the levels of fighter and artificer too.

Most of the cast of Firefly are Rogues, though Mal, Zoe and Jayne are fighters too. Han Solo sure is no fighter, and sure is not a front line striker.

You don't see "rogues" fighting foes and slaying dragons.

Exactly.

The Rogue isn't a Martial.
Look at the rogue subclasses. Thieves, Assassins, and Tricksters might kill. But they don't fight.
People are coming to trying to play light warriors as Rogues and being disappointed.

When D&D gets to 6e, they really should pull Assassin out of Rogue and make it the Martial Melee Burst Striker many want.
 

Chaosmancer

Legend
I still see the big problem that the Rogue is Not a Striker.

Because the focus of D&D has moved towards a combat only game, the Rogue was made a Striker. But that is not a rogues niche.

A Rogue avoids combat. They only get into combat if there is no other choice, and most often in just self deference. A rogue would never stand next to the fighter and be ready to slay monsters and foes. That is not a Rogue.

You are never going to make it so that rogues, clerics, Druids, wizards, sorcerers bards and warlocks all suck in a combat scenario and are better served running away and leaving the fighting to the five remaining classes. That sort of silo'd "you can only participate in this pillar of the game" design is toxic for the game.

Yes, DnD is a team game and everyone should have their specialities, but also everyone should be able to participate. The greatest hurdle facing Barbarians and Fighters have been their lack of capability in the other pillars of play. Making their problem more universal is never going to fly.

And it seems obvious when you run down the famous rogues of fiction:

Farfied and Gray Mouser, Tasselhoff Burburfoot, and Regis the Halfling,. James Bond is a Rogue(in older movies at least) though he does have levels in fighter and artificer. Danny Ocean is not a fighter at all. Ethan Hunt is a rogue..though with the levels of fighter and artificer too.

Most of the cast of Firefly are Rogues, though Mal, Zoe and Jayne are fighters too. Han Solo sure is no fighter, and sure is not a front line striker.

You don't see "rogues" fighting foes and slaying dragons.

Heraldin is a front-line rogue
Ezio Auditore is a front-line rogue
Keith Winterscar is probably a front-line rogue, could be an Artificer, but it is a strange setting
Falst could easily be a rogue, though he is also the party tank

And you might say "well, because this people can fight on the front-lines, they are not rogues" but... well, doesn't that start to be a selection bias? Rogues don't fight on the front-lines because anyone who fights on the front-lines is not a rogue? You've just made a circle.

Now, I will admit, it can get tricky. Turns out most fiction doesn't pigeon-hole people into a single skill set like DnD does. But, you also have to recognize that the archetype is flexible and not static.
 

Minigiant

Legend
Supporter
You are never going to make it so that rogues, clerics, Druids, wizards, sorcerers bards and warlocks all suck in a combat scenario and are better served running away and leaving the fighting to the five remaining classes. That sort of silo'd "you can only participate in this pillar of the game" design is toxic for the game.

Yes, DnD is a team game and everyone should have their specialities, but also everyone should be able to participate. The greatest hurdle facing Barbarians and Fighters have been their lack of capability in the other pillars of play. Making their problem more universal is never going to fly.
Rogues do not suck at combat.
Rogue just aren't better at any aspect of combat than any other class.

A rogue isn't a combat slouch. They do add meaningful power to a fight. Other classes do combat better.
That's A LOT better than other classes in the other pillars.

A fighter or barbarian in 2014 are noncombat slouches.
 

bloodtide

Legend
Exactly.

The Rogue isn't a Martial.
Look at the rogue subclasses. Thieves, Assassins, and Tricksters might kill. But they don't fight.
People are coming to trying to play light warriors as Rogues and being disappointed.

When D&D gets to 6e, they really should pull Assassin out of Rogue and make it the Martial Melee Burst Striker many want.
agreed.
You are never going to make it so that rogues, clerics, Druids, wizards, sorcerers bards and warlocks all suck in a combat scenario and are better served running away and leaving the fighting to the five remaining classes. That sort of silo'd "you can only participate in this pillar of the game" design is toxic for the game.
I would say making every single character a front line combatant is not great either. The D&D 3-5E idea that the whole game focus is combat is not the best direction.
Heraldin is a front-line rogue
Ezio Auditore is a front-line rogue
Keith Winterscar is probably a front-line rogue, could be an Artificer, but it is a strange setting
Falst could easily be a rogue, though he is also the party tank
Have no idea who the random names are.

And you might say "well, because this people can fight on the front-lines, they are not rogues" but... well, doesn't that start to be a selection bias? Rogues don't fight on the front-lines because anyone who fights on the front-lines is not a rogue? You've just made a circle.
Well, the other side is saying everyone is a front line fighter?

Now, I will admit, it can get tricky. Turns out most fiction doesn't pigeon-hole people into a single skill set like DnD does. But, you also have to recognize that the archetype is flexible and not static.
Well, it fits in D&D ish with multiclassing. James Bond is a Rouge/Fighter for example...and he uses gadgets/magic items to cover for his lack of "high level rouge skills".
 

Chaosmancer

Legend
Rogues do not suck at combat.
Rogue just aren't better at any aspect of combat than any other class.

A rogue isn't a combat slouch. They do add meaningful power to a fight. Other classes do combat better.
That's A LOT better than other classes in the other pillars.

A fighter or barbarian in 2014 are noncombat slouches.

You clearly did not follow Bloodtide's previous post. You are arguing for exactly the same position I am in this post.

Their position is that the way to fix the rogue is to make them slouches in combat, along with any other class that is not a designed front-liner. THat should have been at least somewhat clear by my saying that you cannot make those classes slouches in combat.
 

bloodtide

Legend
You clearly did not follow Bloodtide's previous post. You are arguing for exactly the same position I am in this post.

Their position is that the way to fix the rogue is to make them slouches in combat, along with any other class that is not a designed front-liner. THat should have been at least somewhat clear by my saying that you cannot make those classes slouches in combat.
Though if they put combat back down to just part of the game rather then the whole focus. And make it so combat is not nearly every round of game play.

Back in 2E plenty of players were fine playing non combat classes like The Thief. These players not only wanted to have fun doing things other then combat, but they really did not find combat all that fun.

And sure, some players would play a Thief and be unhappy that their character was not a demigods first line striker that could do tons of damage. And it's this type of person writing the D&D rules today....

Sneaking around in the shadows does not really go with "I run forward to strike the dragon with my 100d100 damage!" so why not make strikers and rogues separate classes?
 

Chaosmancer

Legend
I would say making every single character a front line combatant is not great either. The D&D 3-5E idea that the whole game focus is combat is not the best direction.

Not everyone needs to be a frontliner. A rogue is a switch hitter, front line or back line. And the last three editions have not made the whole focus of the game combat, as I have had many sessions in 5e that are non-combat sessions. However, making all characters competent in all pillars seems better to me than turning to one or two party members and saying "okay, for the next twenty minutes, only you get to play the game"

Have no idea who the random names are.

And I only know Farfied and Gray Mouser because people mention them on these forums, I have literally never heard of them anywhere else, and no one else has ever mentioned them. I also have no idea who Regis, Danny Ocean, Ethan Hunt, Mal, Zoe or Jayn are. Though I have heard a little bit about Firefly from the grapevine.

However, my point at throwing my own list of names at you was to show that these archetypes are not limited, and some of your criteria is is haphazard at best. You mention Hon Solo doesn't fight on the frontline, as in, with a melee weapon... neither do the VAST VAST majority of Star Wars characters. Other than Jedi or Sith with lightsabers in the first 6 movies (haven't seen the newest ones) EVERYONE uses guns. Are we going to say that the Stormtroopers, literal soldiers of the empire are not fighters because they use guns?

You also have to consider the genre. A Rogue character in a movie about fighting monster bugs is going to have combat capabilities, because a conman with a silver tongue who can't fight doesn't make a good member of a team of fighters in a story about following that team fighting. That's why it seems silly to me that you are taking a Spy like Bond and saying he has Fighter and Artificer levels. Sure, he uses gadgets.. it is a high action spy movie, gadgets are part of the genre.

Well, the other side is saying everyone is a front line fighter?

No, there is no requirement to be on the front-lines. The requirement is to be capable of fighting. And rogues, as they are, can fight, and can fight fairly well.

Well, it fits in D&D ish with multiclassing. James Bond is a Rouge/Fighter for example...and he uses gadgets/magic items to cover for his lack of "high level rouge skills".

And yet, if you want to build a spy character... you'd go with a rogue. Even if it meant cutting the gadgets, because you aren't going to use the Fighter's heavy plate mail on a spy like Bond or Twilight.
 

Minigiant

Legend
Supporter
You clearly did not follow Bloodtide's previous post. You are arguing for exactly the same position I am in this post.

Their position is that the way to fix the rogue is to make them slouches in combat, along with any other class that is not a designed front-liner. THat should have been at least somewhat clear by my saying that you cannot make those classes slouches in combat.
I believe @bloodtide position is That the rogue isn't a warrior class. If you want to be a warrior , play a warrior class.

The rogue is a skill class. People play it as a warrior class and they get upset. In order to get the rogue to the correct amount of feeling and skills and they had to weaken his combat ability. Rogue was the highest rated class in the original playtest

The issue is 5E'S TWF.

People want to play as light armored dual wielders.

However fighter base dual wielding is weak.
Ranger base dual thing is better but requires magic which they don't want to use.
Rogue based to wielding is the best but it is under the damage threshold chosen by the community.

People want to be a light armor warrior with stealth abilities but the Fighters skills and the Rogue's combat are not up to par.

You could make a Fighter/Rogue mutliclass but it takes too many levels to turn on.

The obvious solution is to just make a class that is a mix of a fighter and a rogue without the magic.

Sounds like the Non-magical Ranger parts of the community crave. A mix of the 4e Ranger/Rogue..

  1. Expertise in one skill
  2. A damage bonus
  3. A speed bonus
  4. Light armor only
  5. No shields
  6. No magic in the bass chassis

Overall Rogue, Ranger, and Fighter are blatant displays of the differences between the people who were in the original 5th edition playtest and the people who play the game now 10 years later.
 

CreamCloud0

One day, I hope to actually play DnD.
combat should make somewhat of a shift back towards being treated more like a failure state rather than the main component of play and classes should be designed with that idea kept in mind, a rogue's sub-optimal damage should be treated as less of an inherent failing because with their high skill checks and other options they can avoid your group getting into combat in the first place.
 

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