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D&D 4E My plans for a 4E revamp

Minigiant

Legend
The decayed form of class collapse would be classes based on sources.
Hero (Martial) - Wizard(Arcanist) - Druid (Animist) - Priest (Channeler)
Except I think class and power source should serve different masters.

"A champion in plate armor, wielding a seord and shield, standing between her allies and the foe" is a class to me. That class could be powered by divine, martial, psionic or other power source. What more, I could see a game where your power sources are limited in capacity, and part of adventuring is seeking out more (or upgrading yours).

Classes should be archtypes, roles should be patterns that subclasses use, power sourcrd should be in-world things to hang mechanics off of.

I see power sources as just a grouping of "powers" that vaguely has a theme. They had a vague theme in PHB1 but once Primal came in it got muddled until it a bit. Ideally, you would create great pools of powers by powersource and let the classes pick fleeing but be swayed by their subclass.

So the Fighter would be a pure Martial class, whereas the Barbarian would be Martial/Primal. Then subclass would nudge you to which powers you take.

  • Fighter- Martial Class
    • Gladiator- Striker (Arena Strike)
    • Hero- (Hero Challenge}
    • Knight- Defender (Knightly Challenge}
    • Marksman -Striker (Sniper's Strike)
    • Slayer- Striker (Power Strike)
    • Warlord- Leader (Inspiring Word)
    • Weaponmaster- Defender (Combat Challenge)
  • Cleric- Divine Class
    • Knowledge Leader (Inventive Word)
    • Life- Leader (Word of Life)
    • Light -Striker (Radiant Strike)
    • Nature Domain- Leader (Nature's Word)
    • Protection Domain- Defender (Protector's Challenge)
    • Tempest- Striker (Thunderous Strike)
    • Trickery Domain- Striker (Tricker's Strike)
    • War Domain- Defender (Warpriest's Challenge)
  • Ranger- Martial/Skill/Primal Class (At will Exploits, Encounter Tricks, Daily Spells)
    • Bearlord- Defender (Bear Challenge)
    • Beastmaster- Defender (Beastmaster's Challenge)
    • Falconer- Striker (Raptor Strike)
    • Gloomstalker- Striker (Gloom Strike)
    • Horizon Walker- Striker (Planar Strike)
    • Houndmaster- Striker (Wolf Strike)
    • Hunter -Striker (Hunter's Strike)

I still think controllers and strikers should be split into 2 roles. Ranged strikers are Snipers. AOE controllers are blasters.
 

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NotAYakk

Legend
Ya, no, Rogue strikers shouldn't get the Martial power "Come and Get It", while Fighters defenders should.

Role (subclass), Archtype and Power Source should all matter in what you can do.
 

Garthanos

Arcadian Knight
Since we are discussing collapsing roles. The original Hero of Chainmail included the Fighter/Warlord/Ranger all under one mantle (yes the Hero of chainmail who increased the HD of those around him was a Warlord why do we doubt and at somewhat higher levels induced fear in enemies) and AD&D added Paladin and Barbarians as additional subtypes of fighter. AD&D gimped the Hero by particularly his status as One man army and Warlord though it did nod at both, ( so I think it wasn't on purpose). The one-man army element could be seen in his gets as many attacks as he has levels against low level foes; This is not actually comparable to being equivalent of 80 soldiers at level 4 and 160 at level 8. But it sort of tried. They removed the two sided morale impact of the Hero fighters presence which is very Warlord like too. Martial types very much seem to have oaths as some of their major vehicles of power sometimes explicitly like monks (oath of independence) and paladins (oath of service really). Barbarian has a similar element though less seen as an oath and rangers too.
 
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Garthanos

Arcadian Knight
Ya, no, Rogue strikers shouldn't get the Martial power "Come and Get It", while Fighters defenders should.
Picture a come and get it that is the maneuver that Zorro does where the enemy fall all over themselves and are knocked prone instead of the rogue getting a bunch of attacks to mark them with.

Now write the exploit so the effect depends on the role of its user.
 
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Minigiant

Legend
Ya, no, Rogue strikers shouldn't get the Martial power "Come and Get It", while Fighters defenders should.

Role (subclass), Archtype and Power Source should all matter in what you can do.

I think Rogues should use a new power source. Skill power source with Tricks powers.

4e rogues aren't traditional rogue. They are more Dex fighters. If you want traditional D&D rogues, they would not be martial.
 

Garthanos

Arcadian Knight
If you want traditional D&D rogues, they would not be martial.
The thief had no battlefield role at all it was a failing not a feature

The thief might have been better designed as a controller.. sure they can do spikes of damage but hamstringing enemies while diving from the shadows. Blinding them with smoke bombs and blood in the eyes cuts and throwing down caltrops that there allies can exploit etc.

The dex fighter rogue aka scout, I am pretty certain is something we can point at 3e... 4e just followed suit.
 

Minigiant

Legend
The thief had no battlefield role at all it was a failing not a feature

The thief might have been better designed as a controller.. sure they can do spikes of damage but hamstringing enemies while diving from the shadows. Blinding them with smoke bombs and blood in the eyes cuts and throwing down caltrops that there allies can exploit etc.

The dex fighter rogue aka scout, I am pretty certain is something we can point at 3e... 4e just followed suit.

No, I mean the basic D&D rogue isn't a martial character outside of the fact it uses weapons. Rogues use skills and tools and trickery. Martial characters use fighting styles, weapon techniques, and combat tactics.

4e forced rogues to be swashbucklers and brutes.

Martial is not a catchall for all things nonmagical. Thieves, assassins, and spies aren't martial. Theyare something else.
 


Garthanos

Arcadian Knight
Heck many of the fighter moves are trickery... Come and Get it for instance is all about trickery

Pretending fighters wouldn't have and should not be skilled I consider an injustice in its own right.
 

Minigiant

Legend
I think martial is about using skills and trickery looks at the Warlord yup definitely.... so I disagree.

To me, the Warlord is still battlefield tactical skills, combat guile, and combat inspiration. The rogue is more use of raw trickery, underhandedness, and tool use.

Martial Arts learned from a sifu vs Low Blow learned from a master thief.

Pus rogue powers use more Ws since the weapons are stronger. You DO NOT want rangers access to rogue powers.
 

Garthanos

Arcadian Knight
I just looked at the d20 Rogue same beast sir same beast as the 4e one the real transition was when the thief of 1e and 2e became a rogue in 3e (there where basically no ways a thief could get round to round sneak attacks)
 

Garthanos

Arcadian Knight
To me, the Warlord is still battlefield tactical skills, combat guile, and combat inspiration. The rogue is more use of raw trickery, underhandedness, and tool use.
The warlord is a different flavor of trickery sure and its easily identified as being more about team based trickery which is the distinction, but I can look at many different fighter exploits and say yup this too is trickery

Pus rogue powers use more Ws since the weapons are stronger. You DO NOT want rangers access to rogue powers.
That is more about the details of making a power from a class specific one to a martial one. It was mentioned how come and get it needs some sort of adjustment if you give it to a rogue. It can be done but it takes a case by case adjustment you do not just blindly say you can do all of the things.
 

MoonSong

Rules-lawyering drama queen but not a munchkin
Sorcerer: I start to struggle with the arcane casters. I think the sorcerer's playstyle should be more power focused than spell focused, making the sorcerer more of a half-caster that gains other supernatural abilities tied to their bloodline. This way, the sorcerer's playstyle would be kind of playing like a monster.
An idea I had for sorcerer was to allow power spamming as a class feature. Under 4e each power is single use, maybe sorcerers could be unique in being able to use any encounter up to the number of encounters and any daily up to the number of dailies instead of each of them only once.
Also to expand in the idea of weapliment powers, to give them the ability of using daggers and spears (perhaps even clubs) as implements and powers to go with them.
You could still keep the supernatural/not spell abilities as a replacement for ritual casting, sorcerers and rituals don't mesh well together.
 

Garthanos

Arcadian Knight
Class as big tent is plausible in 4e. It even worked with retrofitting the Slayer.

If the "Fighter" is a big-tent class, you will have subclasses that have the defender mechanics in them. And you'll have some powers that are defender subclass only.

What I see is wrong headed here is that, in practice, you'll be making a game for a few people to play, and not a game for millions to play.

Which means you don't need 18 powers to pick between at level X for a fighter. That character-building minigame isn't something you are going to deliver (it takes a LOT of work to make up that many powers and give them fun fluff and make them vaguely balanced -- I've tried) practically.

So don't deliver it. Deliver narrow, essentials style classes (well, vampire-essentials; with mostly pre-determined power picks). Have customization along the lines of "you can pick a power from another subclass at this level".

As part of the thing for big-tent classes, make the classes more distinct.

If you are going to have Str vs AC, 2[W]+Str+Slow powers on two classes, consider that your classes aren't distinct enough yet, in either theme or mechanics.

---

Imagine if the Fighter has a pile of power strikes powers you apply after you hit.

The Rogue has movement powers that produce riders on foes you move next to.

The Ranger has stances that it flows in between, dealing an effect when leaving a style and when entering one, and a passive off-turn benefit.

The Wizard has spells that take 2 rounds to cast, but hit hard.

The Sorcerer manifests their bloodline as they use their powers.

The Warlock's magic creates symbols over the battlefield, executing clauses of its contract.

The Paladin turns damage dealt and prevented into an aura.

etc.

All of these can fit in the 4e damage budget mechanics without having powers that are at all like each other.
Decided those deserved more than a like some nice ideas in there.
 

Minigiant

Legend
Class as big tent is plausible in 4e. It even worked with retrofitting the Slayer.

If the "Fighter" is a big-tent class, you will have subclasses that have the defender mechanics in them. And you'll have some powers that are defender subclass only.

What I see is wrong headed here is that, in practice, you'll be making a game for a few people to play, and not a game for millions to play.

Which means you don't need 18 powers to pick between at level X for a fighter. That character-building minigame isn't something you are going to deliver (it takes a LOT of work to make up that many powers and give them fun fluff and make them vaguely balanced -- I've tried) practically.

So don't deliver it. Deliver narrow, essentials style classes (well, vampire-essentials; with mostly pre-determined power picks). Have customization along the lines of "you can pick a power from another subclass at this level".

As part of the thing for big-tent classes, make the classes more distinct.

If you are going to have Str vs AC, 2[W]+Str+Slow powers on two classes, consider that your classes aren't distinct enough yet, in either theme or mechanics.

---

Imagine if the Fighter has a pile of power strikes powers you apply after you hit.

The Rogue has movement powers that produce riders on foes you move next to.

The Ranger has stances that it flows in between, dealing an effect when leaving a style and when entering one, and a passive off-turn benefit.

The Wizard has spells that take 2 rounds to cast, but hit hard.

The Sorcerer manifests their bloodline as they use their powers.

The Warlock's magic creates symbols over the battlefield, executing clauses of its contract.

The Paladin turns damage dealt and prevented into an aura.

etc.

All of these can fit in the 4e damage budget mechanics without having powers that are at all like each other.

I have to agree with a lot of this. I really only see 2 methods of real broad appeal for powers pooled by power source:

Narrow Essential Classes with Class Feature that determine your Primary Secondary and Tertiary Ability scores and Combat role
  • Martial
    • Knight STR/CON Defender
    • Duelist DEX/CON Defender
    • Slayer STR/DEX Striker
    • Hunter DEX/WIS Blaster
    • Marksman DEX/INT Sniper
    • Beastmaster WIS/STR Striker
    • Thief DEX/STR Striker
    • Scoundrel DEX/CHA Striker
    • Tactician STR/INT Leader
  • Divine
    • Warpriest -STR/WIS Leader
    • Templar- WIS/STR Leader
    • Invoker- CHA/WIS Blaster
    • Avenger,- WIS/INT Striker
    • Cavalier- STR/CHA Defender
    • Crusader- CHA)STR Defender
    • Blackguard- STR/CHA Striker
    • Runepriest- STR/CON Leader
Or Big Tent Wide Classes with subclass choices which give Major Class features that do the same thing....
 

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