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D&D 5E messy's 5e newbie questions thread

TakeoBR

Explorer
2. why do we get stats for the underdark elf (drow) but not the underdark dwarf (duergar) or the underdark gnome (svirfneblin)?
The drow are featured in the PHB while the others are not probably beacuse it's more popular. You can find those options for free in the elemental evil player companion, along with genasi and goliath player races.
3. why isn't there a skill for constitution? it could be called stamina.
The way 5e works RAW is that there are no skill checks, only ability checks that can (but don't need to) benefit from skills. So you still can roll "stamina" ability checks with CON, and there are character abilities that can even let you add your proficiency bonus to it, even without an associated skill. You might prefer the variant rule that decouples skills from particular ability scores, allowing you to roll a Constitution (athletics) check.
4. i see there's different damage rolled when using a versatile weapon two-handed. does this mean the 1.5 strength bonus is no longer added to damage? as i recall, in 4e the damage bonus was a flat +1.
Yes, using a weapon with both hands doesn't change your ability modifier to damage.
5. what happened to the paladin's divine grace?
Not sure what that ability was, or what edition you're talking about, but if you don't find it in the base class it might have become a spell or subclass feature.
6. why do characters get an ability score improvement at level 19 rather than 20? is this an attempt to avoid dead levels?
Hard to tell what exactly the intent was, but your guess seems perfectly reasonable.
7. why do fighters get 2 extra ability score improvements (at levels 6 and 14) and rogues get 1 extra (at level 10)?
Presumably this was regarded as a simple way to boost those classes without adding too many abilities to classes that are often expected be noob friendly.
8. why are the sections on preparing and casting spells so complex? suddenly, i'm longing for the good old days of simple, vancian casting.
I think you'd need to be more specific on your problem with those. In my experience they are not regarded as more complex than previous editions spellcasting rules.
9. why are there so many different ability-use systems (at will, regain after short rest, regain after short rest or long rest, point pool use, superiority dice, etc.)?
I assume because a big complaint with 4e was how classes felt the same with the at will, encounter and daily Powers the designers went the other direction and introduced a bigger varienty in player ability recharge.
10. can finesse weapons be used two-handed? would there be any benefit?
There are no two-handed finesse weapons in the PHB, but no rule prevents that from happening as more equipment gets published. If I recall correctly there's a two-handed weapon that becomes finesse with a feat for Eberron. There's no benefit from using two hands with a one handed weapon though.
11. i'm a little confused about short rest healing. let's say bob the 8th level fighter takes a short rest. he can roll 8d10 healing during this rest, and these dice are replenished after a long rest. is that correct?
Almost. He can roll all 8 dice during a short rest, but he can only regain up to half his total, which means only 4, during a long rest.
12. what's the math behind advantage/disadvantage? does it correspond to a simple +2/-2? or is it way more complicated than that?
It's way more complicated than that. Basically, it's most effective whenever you need between an 8 to a 14 on the D20 and less effective otherwise. Here's a table that shows the approximate equivalent modifier for advantage and disadvantage depending on your target number:
1610295951474.png

13. why don't fear effects target charisma saves? one aspect of charisma is confidence, after all.
The game was designed so that Dex, Con and Wis were the most important saves. That way each character was expected to be proficient in one common and uncommon save. Fear effects are quite common, so it makes sense to group then with the most common save for mental effects.
14. do critical hits need to be confirmed? i see no mention of this, so i really hope it was dropped...
No need for confirming critical hits. Enjoy your 20s lol
15. what's with all the omitted spells? no prismatic sphere?
Look for them in D&D Beyond, some might be published in other books.
16. i've heard there is a pdf of revised classes available for download somewhere. where can this be found?
There are many homebrew versions of all classes floating in the internet, so it's hard to tell what you're refering to. No official revised classes, although Tasha's Cauldron of Everything has variants for core class features.
many thanks for all replies! :cool:
Hope I could help.
 

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delph

Explorer
85. what contest is bargaining? In one campaign we are still something buying or selling with trying get better prize (because this GM has different prize list as usually, so we buy by 125% but sell loot by 25% if nothing try). So on our side it's Persuation, but Storekeepers? Wisdom save, Charisma save, just ability check or his Persuation, Insight?

And what magic can help - guidance before stepping inside, hex from distant?
 

Rune

Once A Fool
85. what contest is bargaining? In one campaign we are still something buying or selling with trying get better prize (because this GM has different prize list as usually, so we buy by 125% but sell loot by 25% if nothing try). So on our side it's Persuation, but Storekeepers? Wisdom save, Charisma save, just ability check or his Persuation, Insight?

And what magic can help - guidance before stepping inside, hex from distant?
For the opposed check, I would think Charsma (Persuasion or intimidation, depending on the PC’s tactics) vs. Wisdom (Intuition). Although, if the NPC is making counter-offers, you probably shouldn’t have them attempt similar checks.

The thing in question (and therefore requiring a roll) is whether or not the shopkeep will accept a specific offer. That will never be an issue with the counter-offer, because the players will always know whether or not they want to accept.

As for magic, anything that imparts the charmed condition will get you advantage on the ability checks. So can the Friends cantrip, if you’re okay with the target becoming hostile a minute later.

The suggestion spell is also a great shortcut, but has to sound reasonable. Something like: “Look, I’m kind if in a hurry, here. Normally, I’d be happy to haggle back and forth, but why don’t we just skip to the part where you sell this to me for as low a price as you were willing to go?”

[Edited to correct “Persuasion (Intuition)” to “Wisdom (Intuition)”]
 
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delph

Explorer
86. Hold person on shapechanging enemies. How work this spell on enemies which can be humanoid and something else (werewolf, moon druid,...) it work on them when they are humanoid, but not when they are changed? or never, or ever?
 

86. Hold person on shapechanging enemies. How work this spell on enemies which can be humanoid and something else (werewolf, moon druid,...) it work on them when they are humanoid, but not when they are changed? or never, or ever?
The new UA answers this, although as UA, it is subject to change.

Having More Than One Type. Some creatures are of more than one creature type. If an effect works on at least one of a creature’s types, that effect can work on that creature. For example, if you are both a Humanoid and an Undead, cure wounds works on you, since the spell works on a Humanoid.
So, if they have the "humanoid" as one of their types, Hold Person works on them. Being shifted doesn't change creature type, so it works the same in whatever form.
 
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embee

Lawyer by day. Rules lawyer by night.
It's way more complicated than that. Basically, it's most effective whenever you need between an 8 to a 14 on the D20 and less effective otherwise. Here's a table that shows the approximate equivalent modifier for advantage and disadvantage depending on your target number:View attachment 131110
A zillion thank yous for the table. This is why I grant +2 on flanking only if directly in line with another attacker (with +1 for the squares adjoining).

Behind
+1 +2 +1
+1 D +1
0 X 0
Front


Using Advantage in the Optional rule is OP from my experience. As to any complaint that this may be too hard to remember, it's a phone keypad. 2 gets +2.
 

messy

Explorer
Found the answer to 22: the battle master’s feinting attack. Odd that it’s not a rogue option.

87. Martial arts seems to allow adding dexterity to attacks and damage with a quarterstaff, which is not normally allowed. Is this true?

88. Unless noted otherwise, is it safe to assume that spells castable by a racial ability or a feat use the standard rules (need for components, option to cast as ritual, etc.)?

89. Does action surge make casting two (non-cantrip) spells in a round possible?

90. Do eldritch knights and arcane tricksters require spellbooks for their wizardly spellcasting?

91. The phb artwork seems to range from iconic to progressive to strange. Was there a general goal or theme to the art?
 

Rune

Once A Fool
Found the answer to 22: the battle master’s feinting attack. Odd that it’s not a rogue option.

87. Martial arts seems to allow adding dexterity to attacks and damage with a quarterstaff, which is not normally allowed. Is this true?
True.
88. Unless noted otherwise, is it safe to assume that spells castable by a racial ability or a feat use the standard rules (need for components, option to cast as ritual, etc.)?
Correct.
89. Does action surge make casting two (non-cantrip) spells in a round possible?
Yes, IF no spell (of any kind) has been cast or will be cast in the turn as a bonus action. Note that you could also cast a spell as a reaction. Most people don’t realize that the actual limitation in the rules is predicated on casting a bonus-action spell.

“A spell cast with a bonus action is especially swift. You must use a bonus action on your turn to cast the spell, provided that you haven't already taken a bonus action this turn. You can't cast another spell during the same turn, except for a cantrip with a casting time of 1 action.”

One of these days, they may actually change the rule to the simpler one everybody actually thinks it is, but so far, no.
90. Do eldritch knights and arcane tricksters require spellbooks for their wizardly spellcasting?
Neither. They also don’t prepare spells and can’t cast rituals.
91. The phb artwork seems to range from iconic to progressive to strange. Was there a general goal or theme to the art?
Not sure. There clearly was some art direction, as evidenced by the uniformity of all of the halflings’ weird toddler-heads and tiny hands.
 

88. Unless noted otherwise, is it safe to assume that spells castable by a racial ability or a feat use the standard rules (need for components, option to cast as ritual, etc.)?

Yes. But note that ritual casting is not a general option. You have to be a class with ritual casting and know the spell with the ritual tag through that class, and have it memorized, prepared, or just in your spell book according to the ritual casting rules of that class, or else have the Ritual Caster feat and copy it to that book.

Basically this is just part of the fact that they opted to treat each classes spellcasting abilities as separate from each other and make the spellcasting rules subtly different for each class, which is cool in principle, but leads to lots of confusion when it comes to racial spells, feat spells, multiclassing, and people just assuming the big block of very similar text explaining spellcasting for X class is not substantially different the one they just read for Y class.
 

messy

Explorer
92. Does the opportunity attack granted by the war caster feat have to be a melee spell attack (like shocking grasp) or can it be a ranged spell attack (like fire bolt)?

93. Do any of the monk’s abilities require use with martial arts? Or, for example, can a monk use flurry of blows after making a (non-monk) weapon attack?

94. Polymorph and flesh to stone aren’t permanent (or even last until dispelled)? Am I reading this right?
 

92. The spell doesn’t have to be a melee spell, or even an attack spell. However, it looks to me like it should still occur right before the creature leaves your reach, which means a ranged attack roll would have disadvantage unless you have extra reach, and if you put a spell on your target that damages adjacent creatures it would damage you.

93. They don‘t have to abide by the restrictions of the Martial Arts feature unless they want the benefits of it. For instance, there is nothing stopping you from using Flurry of Blows with a maul or a glaive while wearing plate armor if you wish.

94. Flesh to Stone is permanent until dispelled if the target fails to break out of the spell (by succeeding on three saves) and the caster maintains concentration for the full minute. Polymorph isn’t permanent, but True Polymorph is a 9th level spell that is permanent if the target fails their save and the caster maintains concentration for the full hour.
 

92. Does the opportunity attack granted by the war caster feat have to be a melee spell attack (like shocking grasp) or can it be a ranged spell attack (like fire bolt)?/
No, any spell that targets only that creature is eligible. It could be melee, ranged, saving throw or automatic effect. If your target is at 5 ft. ranged attack spells will have disadvantage.
93. Do any of the monk’s abilities require use with martial arts? Or, for example, can a monk use flurry of blows after making a (non-monk) weapon attack?
Flurry of Blows doesn't, the text just says "take the attack action". You could shoot someone with a bow then kick someone if the head if you like.

Stunning Strike specifies "melee weapon attack", so any kind of melee weapon will do. Ki-Empowered strikes only works with your unarmed strikes though. I haven't been through every subclass ability, so I can't say for sure that there are none at all.
 

93. Do any of the monk’s abilities require use with martial arts? Or, for example, can a monk use flurry of blows after making a (non-monk) weapon attack?

Generally only the abilities within the Martial Arts feature are technically restricted by Martial Arts. These abilities are DEX based attacks, martial arts die, and the (single) unarmed strike bonus action. Just be cautious that other features may be optimized for the Dex-based attacks and martial arts die.

So, while a Monk with, say, a heavy crossbow could not follow up his heavy crossbow attack with a single unarmed strike bonus action attack, he could still use Flurry of Blows to make two bonus action unarmed strikes after attacking with such a weapon. Beware, however, that he no longer gets the benefits of his unarmed strikes being Dex-based or using a martial arts die, so without other class, racial, or feat features these two unarmed strikes will do the default unarmed 1+Strength Mod damage.

Similarly a Monk wearing armor, using a shield, or wielding a non-monk weapon can still deflect missiles, but if they choose to throw them back they don't gain the benefits of it being Dex-based or using the martial arts die, so a caught arrow would just be an improvised thrown weapon doing 1d4+Strength Mod damage.
 

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