5.5E New Classes for 5e. Is anything missing?

Is there a good case for additional class for the base experience of 5th edition D&D

  • Yes. Bring on the new classes!

    Votes: 26 18.7%
  • Yes. There are maybe few classes missing in the shared experience of D&D in this edition

    Votes: 40 28.8%
  • Yes, but it's really only one class that is really missing

    Votes: 9 6.5%
  • Depends. Multiclass/Feats/Alternates covers most of it. But new classes needed if banned

    Votes: 3 2.2%
  • Depends. It depends on the mechanical importance at the table

    Votes: 3 2.2%
  • No, but new classes might be needed for specific settings or genres

    Votes: 11 7.9%
  • No, but a few more subclasses might be needed to cover the holes

    Votes: 13 9.4%
  • No, 5th edition covers all of the base experience with its roster of classes.

    Votes: 9 6.5%
  • No. And with some minor adjustments, a few classes could be combined.

    Votes: 23 16.5%
  • Other

    Votes: 2 1.4%


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look I liked that one weird playtest sorcerer, it was good.

The weird playtest sorcerer displayed the difference between the clsses better.

Too bad the D&D community hated new ideas
The playtest sorcerer was excellent, and when the designers got scared off by initial feedback...yeah that pretty much told me all I needed to know about what 5e was going to become.

Seriously though the whole "born with two souls" and "constant internal struggle for dominance" thing was rad as hell and a clear archetypal difference between Warlock and Sorcerer for those that want one (not that I even remotely buy the idea that Faust and old-school Merlin, back when he was a cambion, are remotely the same character archetype).
 

Minigiant

Legend
Supporter
Oh, please.
It's true.

During the playtest, anytime WOTC offered a new idea it got downvoted. With the sorcerer it was

WOTC: Here's a cool new idea for the sorcerer.
Community: Ew. That's too different. Can't you like just make a variant of the wizard?
WOTC: If that's what you want

(Spongebob 2 years later)

Some of the Community: Does anyone else think the sorcerer is boring? It is just a wizard variant. It shoulda been a wizard subclass.
Others of the Community: Well then you guys shouldn't have downvoted the playtest sorcerer andd asked for the 3e sorcerer if you thought 3e sorcerer is boring!
 

Oh, please.
If you have a better explanation for why the two most-flavorful and honestly best-constructed playtest classes apparently got such negative feedback that the designers felt they had to completely abandon them and start over, never to be seen again until official release, I'm listening.
 

Minigiant

Legend
Supporter
Judging by premodern military history, four classes:

• Knight (heavy infantry)
• Skirmisher (light infantry)
• Rogue (covert)
• Archer (artillery)

There is also a fifth category, cavalry, but it is odd.
That's more or less what 4e did.

  1. Fighter (heavy infantry)
  2. Ranger (light infantry)
  3. Rogue (covert and irregulars)
  4. Hunter (missile)
  5. Warlord (command)
  6. Skald (flagbearer and horns)
  7. Berserker (shock infantry)
 

Yaarel

Mind Mage
Regarding gaming archetypes.

I feel the 5e Forgotten Realms concept of the "Weave" is adequate.

The multiverse is inherently capable of magical phenomena, and this capacity is called the "Weave".



There are different methods to manipulate the Weave.

• Arcane manipulates the Weave by means of magical properties inherent in natural objects.
• Divine manipulates the Weave by means of archetypal symbols, language, and meaning.
• Psionic manipulates the Weave directly by means of the mind: intentions, thoughts and emotions, as well as ethereal souls and force.
• Primal is a kind of psionic, but focuses less on human souls and more on the inherent personality of elements: earth, air, fire, water, and plants.
• Healing might deserve to be its own power source, focusing on anatomy and shapeshifting.



The Wizard is clearly arcane, wielding magic inherent in material objects, whether special ingredients or a special tool.

The Sorcerer pilots a magically modified body, transformed according to a bloodline. This more like arcane, but ones own body is a kind of magic item that has inherent magical properties. (Probably, the Sorcerer should lack material components, at least when thematically appropriate according the bloodline.)

The Warlock has an identity crisis − sometimes like Wizard who must study magic and sometimes like Sorcerer being transformed by the patron. The Warlock pretty much never has the patron doing the magical effects directly.

The Cleric is clearly divine, wielding symbols, belonging to an ideological community, and emphasizing ethical affinity.

The Paladin is clearly divine, where the language of oaths and ethics have inherent power.

The Druid is mainly Primal − forming relationships with plants and elemental creatures. But animals relate to the emotions and instincts of humans, thus kinda sorta psionic.

And so on.
 

Irlo

Adventurer
If you have a better explanation for why the two most-flavorful and honestly best-constructed playtest classes apparently got such negative feedback that the designers felt they had to completely abandon them and start over, never to be seen again until official release, I'm listening.
Okay, you’re right.
 

Okay, you’re right. The community hated new ideas. Otherwise, everyone would have shared your opinions.
Your sarcasm is not productive. I was genuinely hoping you had an answer besides "you're dumb for thinking that people voted against something because it was new." Because yeah, that sort of thing happened a lot during the playtest. It wasn't just confined to things I liked, e.g. Mearls tried very hard to get the community to go for proficiency dice instead of proficiency bonus but eventually relented. (AIUI, he loves rolling fistfuls of dice, so he overruled the normal response to anything that wasn't polling supermajority positive, but it stayed unpopular over time.) Nor to things I had any real feelings about at all, as that's what killed Specialties (and thus the Warlord-style Fighter, which had originally had explicit support...but then was turned into a Specialty, and when Specialties got dropped it had nowhere else to manifest so they quietly stopped talking about it.)
 

Yaarel

Mind Mage
That's more or less what 4e did.

  1. Fighter (heavy infantry)
  2. Ranger (light infantry)
  3. Rogue (covert and irregulars)
  4. Hunter (missile)
  5. Warlord (command)
  6. Skald (flagbearer and horns)
  7. Berserker (shock infantry)
1 to 5 are great.

Heh, as a Norwegian, I object to 6 and 7.

Horns? It seems the Viking Period lacks musical instruments. They know about the Saami shamanic drums, but dont use these themselves. Mostly, the Norse of this time sing vocally. In England, York has musical instruments, but that is Roman town.

The skald is a recent import from the Celtic tradition of the bard, under Christian influence, and functions similarly as court historians and legal experts. Unlike the Celts whose bards speak in verse, the skald probably sing musically.

Berserkar are a kind of shamanic warrior, with a reputation for being crazy, animalistic, and antisocial. They can function as bodyguards, but to employ them is somewhat scandalous.
 
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Irlo

Adventurer
Your sarcasm is not productive. I was genuinely hoping you had an answer besides "you're dumb for thinking that people voted against something because it was new." Because yeah, that sort of thing happened a lot during the playtest. It wasn't just confined to things I liked, e.g. Mearls tried very hard to get the community to go for proficiency dice instead of proficiency bonus but eventually relented. (AIUI, he loves rolling fistfuls of dice, so he overruled the normal response to anything that wasn't polling supermajority positive, but it stayed unpopular over time.) Nor to things I had any real feelings about at all, as that's what killed Specialties (and thus the Warlord-style Fighter, which had originally had explicit support...but then was turned into a Specialty, and when Specialties got dropped it had nowhere else to manifest so they quietly stopped talking about it.)
I retracted my statement.
 

Aldarc

Legend
I have to admit, taking the fighter and maybe splitting it up a bit isn’t a bad idea. Or maybe fighter and rogue combine to make three base classes.
So tell me if you heard this before: There was this game that essentially did this. It took a look at the magicless martial warrior archetypes, and it split them up into four base classes defined by their fighting style: the defender/bruiser (the Fighter), the archer (the Ranger), the skirmisher (the Rogue), and the commander (the Warlord). Hmmmm... I wonder if the Warlord may have gotten more leverage if it was renamed as "the Knight."

Alternatively, Monte Cook's Arcana Evolved combined and then split the Fighter and Rogue. Instead AE had the heavily-armored fighter (the Warmain) and the lightly-armored fighter (the Unfettered). The skill/proficiency-monkey was the mystical Akashic who tapped into the akashic memory for their abilities.

Also instead of making the Monk based on ki and orientalist tropes, Monte Cook took inspiration from the Haruchai of The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant and designed the Oathsworn, who gain their powers from swearing oaths against using weapons and armor, eating, breathing, sleeping, riding horses/mounts, aging, etc.
 
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I miss the martial adepts from "Tome of Battle: Book of the Nine Swords". But the martial maneuvers were too complicated to be used with nPCs.

Warlord could appear in the future return of Birthright, at least this as a strategy videogame. I imagine it like a class to play mass battles or skirmishes and that needs a lot of special playtesting.

You can't say there is enough classes, it is like saying Barbie has got enough clothes. Always there is a player who wants something different to feel her character is special.

If WotC doesn't publish new classes then these will be created by the 3PPs.

The vestige pact binder was an interesting idea, but maybe too complex.

I don't miss the incarnum soulmelder classes, but the totemist shaman.
 

Hussar

Legend
So tell me if you heard this before: There was this game that essentially did this. It took a look at the magicless martial warrior archetypes, and it split them up into four base classes defined by their fighting style: the defender/bruiser (the Fighter), the archer (the Ranger), the skirmisher (the Rogue), and the commander (the Warlord). Hmmmm... I wonder if the Warlord may have gotten more leverage if it was renamed as "the Knight."

Alternatively, Monte Cook's Arcana Evolved combined and then split the Fighter and Rogue. Instead AE had the heavily-armored fighter (the Warmain) and the lightly-armored fighter (the Unfettered). The skill/proficiency-monkey was the mystical Akashic who tapped into the akashic memory for their abilities.

Also instead of making the Monk based on ki and orientalist tropes, Monte Cook took inspiration from the Haruchai of The Chronicles of Thomas Covenant and designed the Oathbound, who gain their powers from swearing oaths against using weapons and armor, eating, breathing, sleeping, riding horses/mounts, aging, etc.
Yeah, heh. Funny enough, I'm just starting a reread of Thomas Covenant and I'm so looking forward to seeing the Cords again. :D

But, yeah, I'm not quite sure what the three classes of "fighty types" I had in mind. Just sort of spit balling. Melee, ranged and other? Something like that. So your infantry, cavalry, heavy types go into the melee category for subclasses, your skirmishers, high mobility, lightly (or at least lighter) armored fighty types go ranged with subclasses, and the Other covers anything that got missed - gish, warlord/controller type, that sort of thing. Not that you couldn't have overlap between them as well.

But, I do think there is enough legs on the idea to split fighter up a bit. I know that the Dev's have talked about how the fighter is just too broad and it makes it hard to design around. It's trying to do too many things at once so, it becomes hard to make it more focused.
 

I'd also take that to then go "Sorcerers don't care about the meaning of spells and could twist magic in Strange Ways based upon their bloodline", like draconic ones being able to get wings or other elements of their bloodline, celestial ones getting angelic features, and so on.
Yes, they should have a feature that let's them get always-on magical effects and features that represent their bloodline. You could call them invocations...
 

Rogerd1

Explorer
You could do away with certain spells requiring components, and make it so that spells can be a cast a number of ways.

Gestures / Somatic: I would make this like The Magicians tv series

Incantation: I would make these into weird phrases, kind of like you see in comics sometimes where the caster speaks but the language is composed of strange symbols.

Mental / Psychic: You could make this akin to partial ascension from Stargate.
 

Tallifer

Hero
I still want a Friar like in Dark Age of Camelot. I have tried unsuccessfully to use feats and multiclasses to recreate the feel in every edition.

Little Sparrow the Friar.jpg
 


Li Shenron

Legend
Almost every suggestion so far has been quite narrow. They don't fit, at all, the philosophy of 5e with classes being broad archetypes that fit a spectrum of characters from the inspirational literature (stories, books, films, games, comics, etc). Some are so narrow that there's only been a single character outside of the game that's fit.
Yep. That is why I voted "only for specific settings". My Rokugan examples give three different ways why a new class may be better than fitting a core class:

Samurai: every fighter in the setting is already supposed to belong to a narrower archetype than in vanilla settings, so you make that narrow archetype into its own class, and then expand it back via new subclasses, feats and backgrounds in order to guarantee a large character variety on the long term

Shugenja: a spellcaster with a little bit of many existing classes, again every caster in the setting is supposed to be a Shugenja, so instead of forcing a ridiculous multiclass combo you combine what you need from various casters into a new class

Courtier: a character largely focused on non-combat scenarios, especially the social pillar, to avoid getting the combat baggage of essentially every core class it's best to make a class from scratch

Keep in mind that Rokugan is a very special settings where many core classes just don't exist (Wizard, Cleric, Paladin, Warlock, Bard, Druid). Essentially everyone is either a Samurai, Shugenja, Courtier or Monk. Other classes can be allowed for multiclassing but are treated as mechanical additions without narrative implications (Ranger, Fighter, Barbarian, Rogue), and Sorcerer can be used for NPCs.
 

CreamCloud0

Explorer
Something I'd personally like to see is a proper Swordmage class, Not the Bladelock's 'Caster with a magical weapon' or the Eldrich Knight's 'Fighter with some magic on the side' but a class that actually focuses on them using their melee weapon as their mechanism for channeling spells and using weapon strikes in place of a spell's regular to-hit conditions.

They'd be capable of enchanting their weapon strikes to deal their chosen types of any of the 6 elemental damage types as standard (so their mace would be doing 1D6+STR damage that is both of the bludgeoning and say, acid type) or imbuing a spell for the rest of their turn/the round/start of next turn? (casting/imbuing Ray of Sickness and every attack made until it ran out would functionally be like casting RoS on the target every time they made a weapon attack instead of regular weapon damage) but in exchange would functionally remove all their ranged casting capacity (not that they couldn't learn ranged spells just that as they'd be inflicted through weapon strike the range factor would be a moot point), They'd also get to pick a handfull of techniques similar to the Sorcerer's Metamagic or the Fighter's Maneuvers but with more magical effects.

I'd probably put them around a D10 Half-caster with Medium Armour, Simple Weapons plus Rapiers, Scimitars and Shortswords, Then have double pronged subclasss options a-la the Warlock's Pacts and Patrons:
One subclass choice would determine their Mental Ability Score for their casting each with expanded subclass spell lists specialising in different areas, The INT subclass might focus on the more damaginge spells, WIS gets illusions and debuffs whereas CHA might get more charm spells perhaps, The variable casting stat might not be essential but I think it'd be good for keeping open the potential character concepts/builds.
The other subclass would decide the melee side of their capabilities, A Mageknight that gets Heavy Armour and full Martial Weapon proficiencies, An Arcane Archer that can imbue spells into thrown and ranged weapons getting the Martial Ranged Weapon proficiencies and a third subclass that instead focuses more on their version of Metamagic/Maneuvers or like the Hunter-Ranger's battle techniques to hit more foes with their spell-empowered blade.

Unrelated but this is my first time posting here, Hello to everyone!
 
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I don't really have strong feeling on classes. It is not like they are as core to the game as alignment. ;-)

But I think I would like to have class building to be more a collection of feats and traits that that you can use to build your concept, with a the core, traditional classes provided as examples and for people that just want to get up an running quickly. They don't even have to rip out the current classes. Just put new optional character build rules in the DMG that have been play tested and balanced, which if used, would not make the traditional classes and subclasses completely obsolete.
I think the class structure is actually what makes DnD special. I don't like chose your own abilities games. I do think multiclassing does fill that gap in the 5e rules. I could also see subclasses that can be taken by every class, or I could see bringing back DnDnext "Themes" which were reverted back to feats. I was very fond of this particular playtest.
 

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