D&D 5E New D&D Next Playtest package is up (19/9/2013) [merged threads]

pemerton

Legend
When spells DC and ST didn't scale, the only difference was in stat bonuses: the Wizard could still target the Barbarian with a Feeblemind, but the difference was determined only by the Barbarian's Wisdom score, which is limited to a certain amount (and occasionally, she might run into a wise barbarian).

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If I were in the design team, I would consider eliminating implements completely.

<snip>

If wanting to keep implements in the game, maybe they could grant proficiency bonus only to a certain school of spells, or only to DC which target one specific ST.
I like implements (I'm a 4e player!) but would decouple them from the proficiency rules. Instead, set all saves as STAT vs STAT (like you said in your post, this was how at least some earlier packages did it) and choose an approriate base number (I'm attracted to 8+STAT, so a caster has to choose to target weaker stats to gain an edge). Then say that a caster without an appropriate implement reduces that base number by 2 (say from 8 to 6) or even 4 (say from 8 to 4).

For a 20 stat caster, the DCs for my most brutal proposal are 13/9. For a character with no stat or other bonus, that is 40%/60% chance to save, which looks OK to me for the hors-de-combat effects. If they're worried that this would make damage spells too weak, just adjust the dice of damage upwards - that's easily done. We don't want to fetishise particular dice expressions for those spells and then set DCs so high that the save-or-suck spells become overpowered.

We also have to see it both from PC's and NPC's point of view, i.e. in this case it is both the Wizard PC not able to blight the Barbarian NPC, and the Barbarian PC being able not to be blighted by the Wizard NPC.
I had that in mind, because I am assuming that Next will be closer to AD&D and 3E, than to 4e, in its assumption about using player builds for building NPCs too.
 

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Kobold Stew

Last Guy in the Airlock
Supporter
Uhm... but then if you dip into 1 level of Rogue, you get the bonus background. To prevent that, we would need an ad-hoc rule in the multiclassing rules specifically mentioning this case. It's easier to just have a general rule that e.g. "you only gain one skill" (or "you gain no skills") when taking a level in a new class.

Another solution would be to grant the second background at level 2 or 3, if it is felt that an extra background is too much of a goodie for a one-level dip. This problem, at least, is solvable, and it preserves the one-skill-per-class idea across the board.

Also, it doesn't feel very appropriate to me narratively to have two backgrounds.

I disagree: it is expressly tied to narrative, rather than just an arbitrarily expanded skill list. It sets a limit on what the extra skills are, without artificially expanding it.

Plus, it could be limited: In the very first test pack, there was a choice between Guild Thief or Thug. That was a fun choice when coupled with another background, because the rogue could be a Thug Noble, or a Guild Thief Priest. I would suggest adding commoner and soldier and perhaps charlatan as well: a Bounty Hunter or Spy can be any class; a Soldier Bounty Hunter or a Commoner Spy or a Charlatan Noble are, by definition, rogues. All of a sudden each Rogue archetype becomes much more flexible, the expanded skill list explains itself.

And it has a story.
 

Vyvyan Basterd

Adventurer
Another solution could be to untie the proficiencies a class give you from 1st level. Make them Base Features that only a starting PC gets. If you multiclass into a class you get their 1st level class abilities, but not their base features. You have the opportunity to cover proficiencies you want the class to have through your background (again, assuming that the backgrounds expand to offer weapon and armor proficiencies).
 

NewJeffCT

First Post
Another solution could be to untie the proficiencies a class give you from 1st level. Make them Base Features that only a starting PC gets. If you multiclass into a class you get their 1st level class abilities, but not their base features. You have the opportunity to cover proficiencies you want the class to have through your background (again, assuming that the backgrounds expand to offer weapon and armor proficiencies).

I like that idea - I've never been a big fan of dipping into different classes just for one level.
 

Mistwell

Crusty Old Meatwad (he/him)
It occurs to me that changing the word proficiency to skill would maybe help it all feel more intuitive.

so ...weapon skills, tool skills, armour skills...in additions to stuff like Climbing, Swimming, sneaking skills etc Save skill sounds a bit clunky but I think overall is better than the word proficiency which is a mouthful and introduces another layer of naming which is unhelpful.

Now you sound like Napoleon Dynamite.
 

Greg K

Legend
Another solution could be to untie the proficiencies a class give you from 1st level. Make them Base Features that only a starting PC gets. If you multiclass into a class you get their 1st level class abilities, but not their base features.
This is how I wanted the designers to handle it. It is also my longtime rule for when I run 3e in which, after first level, you take the appropriate feats if you want new save bonuses or additional armor or weapon proficiencies.
 

Jeff Carlsen

Adventurer
This is how I wanted the designers to handle it. It is also my longtime rule for when I run 3e in which, after first level, you take the appropriate feats if you want new save bonuses or additional armor or weapon proficiencies.

I wouldn't prefer that. If dipping one level of a new class is regularly better than taking the next level in an existing class, then first level is granting too much.

In this case, we're mostly worried about proficiencies. I suggest that they should simply be spread out over the first two levels.
 

Greg K

Legend
I wouldn't prefer that. If dipping one level of a new class is regularly better than taking the next level in an existing class, then first level is granting too much.

In this case, we're mostly worried about proficiencies. I suggest that they should simply be spread out over the first two levels.

And, I would not mind that if they truly treated the first two as apprentice levels including giving the main spellcasters cantrips/orisons, but not first level spells, gave bards, paladins, and rangers a level with cantrips/orisons, before giving them first level spells.
 
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Mistwell

Crusty Old Meatwad (he/him)
Eh? Is that an insult? Don't really mind just don't follow the connection :)

No, not an insult at all. I love that movie. I was referring to this scene:
[video=youtube_share;F_fRWDaipJ4]http://youtu.be/F_fRWDaipJ4[/video]
 
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