OneD&D Character Origins summary

Remathilis

Legend
So what is WoTC's excuse for nerfing the Dragonborn's Breath Weapon back to the PHB version? curious
It's not quite.

PHB: When you use your breath weapon, each creature in the area of the exhalation must make a saving throw, the type of which is determined by your draconic ancestry. The DC for this saving throw equals 8 + your Constitution modifier + your proficiency bonus. A creature takes 2d6 damage on a failed save, and half as much damage on a successful one. The damage increases to 3d6 at 6th level, 4d6 at 11th level, and 5d6 at 16th level.

Fizban: When you take the Attack action on your turn, you can replace one of your attacks with an exhalation of magical energy in a 30-foot line that is 5 feet wide. Each creature in that area must make a Dexterity saving throw (DC = 8 + your Constitution modifier + your proficiency bonus). On a failed save, the creature takes 1d10 damage of the type associated with your Chromatic Ancestry. On a successful save, it takes half as much damage. This damage increases by 1d10 when you reach 5th level (2d10), 11th level (3d10), and 17th level (4d10).

UA: As an Action, you exhaledestructive energy in a 15-foot cone. Each creature in that area must make a Dexterity saving throw against a DC equal to 8 + your Constitution modifier + your Proficiency Bonus. On a failed save, a creature takes 1d10 + yourcharacter level in damage of the type determined by your Draconic Ancestry trait. On a successful save, a creature takes half as much damage.

Assuming averages, at first level, a dragonborn does 7 points (PH), 5.5 points (Fizban), or 6.5 points (UA). At 5th, this increases to 10.5 (PH), 11 (Fiz), and 10.5 (UA). At 11th, 14 (PH), 16.5 (Fiz), and 16.5 (UA) and at 17th, 17.5 (PH), 22 (Fiz), and 22.5 (UA).

Of course, averages only say so much. If you go by Max, Fizban looks better at 17th: 30 (PH), 40 (Fiz), 27 (UA) but a far more interesting thing is happening: minimum damage. Again at 17th: 5 (PH), 4 (Fiz), 18 (UA). The floor is significantly higher due to the static level bonus.

Another thing to look at: UA's breath weapon improves with every level, not just the checkpoint levels. Compare a 16th level dragonborn who is still doing 14 or 16.5 to a UA who is doing 21.5 and you'll see UA pulls ahead for a while before the other db's get a chance to catch-up.

The only net loss is replacing an attack with a breath, which does lower DPS overall. But you trade that for more reliable floor damage at a slight loss of top end.

EDIT: the shape also matters. PH breath shape is determined by type, Fizban is a 30' line (good for stacks or avoiding allies, but rarely hits multiple targets) while UA is a 15' cone, which is easier to aim at multiple adjacent foes at the cost of friendly fire. That being said, it's easier to hit multiple targets with burning hands than with lightning bolt, so that is something else to consider.

You also get darkvision (something they always should have had) and free draconic language to make up for the lost chromatic/metallic/gem traits. Not great, but far better than 2014.

So I don't think the dragonborn is as bad as it appears. Maybe even a little better?
 
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Corinnguard

Adventurer
It's not quite.

PHB: When you use your breath weapon, each creature in the area of the exhalation must make a saving throw, the type of which is determined by your draconic ancestry. The DC for this saving throw equals 8 + your Constitution modifier + your proficiency bonus. A creature takes 2d6 damage on a failed save, and half as much damage on a successful one. The damage increases to 3d6 at 6th level, 4d6 at 11th level, and 5d6 at 16th level.

Fizban: When you take the Attack action on your turn, you can replace one of your attacks with an exhalation of magical energy in a 30-foot line that is 5 feet wide. Each creature in that area must make a Dexterity saving throw (DC = 8 + your Constitution modifier + your proficiency bonus). On a failed save, the creature takes 1d10 damage of the type associated with your Chromatic Ancestry. On a successful save, it takes half as much damage. This damage increases by 1d10 when you reach 5th level (2d10), 11th level (3d10), and 17th level (4d10).

UA: As an Action, you exhaledestructive energy in a 15-foot cone. Each creature in that area must make a Dexterity saving throw against a DC equal to 8 + your Constitution modifier + your Proficiency Bonus. On a failed save, a creature takes 1d10 + yourcharacter level in damage of the type determined by your Draconic Ancestry trait. On a successful save, a creature takes half as much damage.

Assuming averages, at first level, a dragonborn does 7 points (PH), 5.5 points (Fizban), or 6.5 points (UA). At 5th, this increases to 10.5 (PH), 11 (Fiz), and 10.5 (UA). At 11th, 14 (PH), 16.5 (Fiz), and 16.5 (UA) and at 17th, 17.5 (PH), 22 (Fiz), and 22.5 (UA).

Of course, averages only say so much. If you go by Max, Fizban looks better at 17th: 30 (PH), 40 (Fiz), 27 (UA) but a far more interesting thing is happening: minimum damage. Again at 17th: 5 (PH), 4 (Fiz), 18 (UA). The floor is significantly higher due to the static level bonus.

Another thing to look at: UA's breath weapon improves with every level, not just the checkpoint levels. Compare a 16th level dragonborn who is still doing 14 or 16.5 to a UA who is doing 21.5 and you'll see UA pulls ahead for a while before the other db's get a chance to catch-up.

The only net loss is replacing an attack with a breath, which does lower DPS overall. But you trade that for more reliable floor damage at a slight loss of top end.

EDIT: the shape also matters. PH breath shape is determined by type, Fizban is a 30' line (good for stacks or avoiding allies, but rarely hits multiple targets) while UA is a 15' cone, which is easier to aim at multiple adjacent foes at the cost of friendly fire. That being said, it's easier to hit multiple targets with burning hands than with lightning bolt, so that is something else to consider.

You also get darkvision (something they always should have had) and free draconic language to make up for the lost chromatic/metallic/gem traits. Not great, but far better than 2014.

So I don't think the dragonborn is as bad as it appears. Maybe even a little better?
I am not sure. One thing that I liked about the UA version and the Fizban version was how WoTC tied the number of times a Dragonborn could use their breath weapon to their proficiency. Something I should have considered when I made my first Dragonborn character using the PHB version. I had to go looking around for a racial feat to get more uses out of my character's breath weapon attack. Both the UA and Fizban version would have meant my character got an ASI instead of a feat.

That said, I think it would be neat if a person playing a Dragonborn could switch between a line area-of-effect or a cone area-of-effect when the need arises.
 

Remathilis

Legend
I am not sure. One thing that I liked about the UA version and the Fizban version was how WoTC tied the number of times a Dragonborn could use their breath weapon to their proficiency. Something I should have considered when I made my first Dragonborn character using the PHB version. I had to go looking around for a racial feat to get more uses out of my character's breath weapon attack. Both the UA and Fizban version would have meant my character got an ASI instead of a feat.

That said, I think it would be neat if a person playing a Dragonborn could switch between a line area-of-effect or a cone area-of-effect when the need arises.
I didn't get into short rests vs prof/day as that only concerns the 2014 version (already the weakest) and isn't relevant to a single combat unless you're going Nova in one battle. Both Fizban and UA use prof/day.

But yes, the newer db have more uses per day as it grows in strength.
 


There is nothing WotC can do to stop an irritating DM. Annoying DMs and going to annoy regardless of the rules. WotC cannot make all their design decisions around trying to stop those people.
Totally true! But lots of DMs stick with the rules as written even when those rules are sometimes annoying. Especially the ones in AL who have less of a choice in the matter.
 



You also get darkvision (something they always should have had) and free draconic language to make up for the lost chromatic/metallic/gem traits. Not great, but far better than 2014.
...dragonborn have always had free draconic. Fizban's options just gave you the ability to choose some language other than draconic if you wanted it.

So literally this new thing is a nerf relative to the dragon breath of Fizban's or UA (by your own admission), a nerf relative to all the other new traits in either source, and either no difference or a nerf relative to languages. The one and only improvement is getting darkvision.

This is not acceptable.
 

Remathilis

Legend
...dragonborn have always had free draconic. Fizban's options just gave you the ability to choose some language other than draconic if you wanted it.

So literally this new thing is a nerf relative to the dragon breath of Fizban's or UA (by your own admission), a nerf relative to all the other new traits in either source, and either no difference or a nerf relative to languages. The one and only improvement is getting darkvision.

This is not acceptable.

Draconic is in addition to the free language you get AND your background language. So, while many races get three languages, dragonborn get four.

As for rest, I wager you didn't actually read how while top end damage (as in, all rolls maxed) is slower, your low end damage (all rolls min) is way better. Seriously, which is better 1d10+15 or 3d10? I think I like my odds of rolling 25 over my odds of rolling 30...
 

Draconic is in addition to the free language you get AND your background language. So, while many races get three languages, dragonborn get four.

As for rest, I wager you didn't actually read how while top end damage (as in, all rolls maxed) is slower, your low end damage (all rolls min) is way better. Seriously, which is better 1d10+15 or 3d10? I think I like my odds of rolling 25 over my odds of rolling 30...
Where are you getting this fourth language...? I don't see it. Everyone gets Common. Dragonborn get Draconic. Background gives a language. That's three. Where is the fourth?

Edit: Somehow I thought "UA" meant the pre-Fizban, not the current playtest, so that's why I was confused. Yes, the breath is slightly better for average output. But you cannot tell me a few points of average damage are better than, y'know, having actual racial features and not just garbage.
 


Remathilis

Legend
Where are you getting this fourth language...? I don't see it. Everyone gets Common. Dragonborn get Draconic. Background gives a language. That's three. Where is the fourth?

Edit: Somehow I thought "UA" meant the pre-Fizban, not the current playtest, so that's why I was confused. Yes, the breath is slightly better for average output. But you cannot tell me a few points of average damage are better than, y'know, having actual racial features and not just garbage.

After choosing a Race and a Background, you choose a language that your character knows, in addition to the Common tongue and whatever
language you gained from the Background you chose. (pg 2)

Draconic Language. You instinctively know the language of dragons. You can therefore speak, read, and write Draconic. (Pg 3)

So a Dragonborn knows Common (default) + 1 free choice + 1 background + Draconic as a racial trait. Four languages.

So yes, they traded out darkvision and draconic language for the three racial traits that chromatic/gem/metallic get. I guess its have a generic dragonborn alongside the "heavier influenced" options in Fizban. Both are straight upgrade over the PHB one, that's for certain.
 

Raith5

Adventurer
Not sure. I kinda like that spells can't crit as that makes martial weapon users more competitive as damage dealers.
Surely there are more interesting ways to do that - especially via feats or maneuvers. I think taking away crits of attack spells takes away the fun of crits for casters.

I also think it is weird that martial PCs are the only people in a game world that get critical hits - I am not sure that it makes sense - at the very least it seems to be a really big change compared to the past history of D&D.
 

Aldarc

Legend
Surely there are more interesting ways to do that - especially via feats or maneuvers. I think taking away crits of attack spells takes away the fun of crits for casters.

I also think it is weird that martial PCs are the only people in a game world that get critical hits - I am not sure that it makes sense - at the very least it seems to be a really big change compared to the past history of D&D.
In this world that you are imagining that "makes sense," does it make sense that spells with saves (e.g., Fireball) can't crit either?
 

Raith5

Adventurer
In this world that you are imagining that "makes sense," does it make sense that spells with saves (e.g., Fireball) can't crit either?

I guess by make sense I mean just having a consistent system where if you roll to attack and roll a 20 then extra damage is applied because you have hit the target in a weak spot. An arrow or a fire bolt in the eye should do extra damage. I still think you can and should have class, racial, monster abilities that can do extra. I should note that I do have problems with doubling smite and sneak damage dice - I have seen this to be very swingy. (Personally I would like all spells to roll to hit - but that is a change that does not seem to have a lot of support!).
 

FireLance

Legend
So what is WoTC's excuse for nerfing the Dragonborn's Breath Weapon back to the PHB version? curious
It makes me wonder whether WotC is going to re-word Extra Attack to be something like: you gain one (or two, or three) extra Action(s) per turn that can only be used to take the Attack action. On the one hand, it makes it more flexible for part casters like paladins, rangers and eldritch knights to cast a spell and make one attack in the same round. On the other hand, it reduces the value of Action Surge, unless it is also re-worded to: when you take the Attack action, you can make a number of additional attacks equal to half your proficiency bonus.
 


Corinnguard

Adventurer
It makes me wonder whether WotC is going to re-word Extra Attack to be something like: you gain one (or two, or three) extra Action(s) per turn that can only be used to take the Attack action. On the one hand, it makes it more flexible for part casters like paladins, rangers and eldritch knights to cast a spell and make one attack in the same round. On the other hand, it reduces the value of Action Surge, unless it is also re-worded to: when you take the Attack action, you can make a number of additional attacks equal to half your proficiency bonus.
It could be worse. They could borrow Pathfinder 2nd edition 3 Action Economy. ;)
 

Let's not gloss over the changes to grapple either!
1) A target being grappled now has disadvantage to hit any target other than the one grappling them.
2) The grappler is Slowed, which means other creatures have advantage to hit THEM.
3) Grapple is now an Unarmed Attack roll with a static DC that creatures can roll against at the end of each of their turns (as a Str or Dex SAVE). It is also no longer an opposed roll but is now against AC!

Point 3 by itself has a number of implications:
A) Abilities/spells/feats that boost Athletics or Acrobatics will no long effect grapple (goodbye Rogue/Bard expertise grapplers)
B) Feats like Resilient and (arguably) Shield Master will now help against being Grappled or to Grapple someone, assuming they make the cut. Same with spells like Bless or Superiority Dice.
C) Some martial classes like Paladin are going to be worse at grappling or avoiding being grappled due to it now being a STR/DEX save due to not having proficiency in either of those two saves.

Big implications here.
 

Cheah18

Villager
I understand your reasoning here but I fundamentally disagree and I'm going to use the T-word. Trap Feat. Sorry. That's what it is - "Are you too simple for mathematics? Do you not understand planning a character? Are you terrible at assessing the real game value of stuff? Do you want slightly complicate your character for a gain so small it's hard to even measure? If so here's a Feat for you!"

It's so bad that it's a goddamn Trap Feat.

And it's up against feats like a BETTER version of Magic Initiate, Lucky, Alert, Skilled. Those are also first-level Feats. All but Magic Initiate make sense for the same kinds of PC as Savage Attacker. It's awful. Even Toughness would be a better use of your L1 Feat.

Like, if we score L1 Feats from 1-5 as you suggest, it is absolutely not a 3.5/5 Feat, because that means pretty much every single other L1 Feat has to be a 4, 4.5 or 5 lol.

I believe everyone knows the reasons listed by the person to whom you are replying, but are really missing a big factor here. I know all the maths about it and I understand it is not a powerful feat.

The thing is, this is level-1 cha-gen. So much goes into building a character with a life and personality and feel and vibe that you want. This is being forgotten when comparing SA to these other Level 1 feat options. These feats are clearly, like in other TTRPG games, filling the role of interesting, nuancing tricks and 'thangs' that define a character and impact the RP as well as adding effects.

SA was/is bad mathematically, but for its RP purposes its an okay idea. A character who every turn is so 'savage' that they have the possibility of inflicting more damage than someone else might, or that they flat out are stronger, or however the player wants to frame it, is pretty damn kewl. But, when put alongside other damage feats as mentioned, or an ASI, and given that the sparse opportunities for feats was so precious, it felt PRETTY DAMN BAD. The little RP 'thang' was just an absolute fiasco of a purchase for that value.

Now, every character is getting a level one feat. None of these feats are intended to be super powerful, and they are formulated with the character expression in mind. They aren't meant to be precious purchases, but a natural component of the cha-gen - how your character is and came to be, as well as what their output is.

I agree that the other feats are clearly better, but look: I am making a strongman gladiator with an anger problem who has had some fights in the arena, and has been bought by a nobleman and is now on a quest given to him. I want the brutality of his attacks to shine through, and to be above the other level-1s. What should I take - Healer? Magic Initiate? Hell no. Tough, arguably, but that's defensive, and maybe that's not what I'm going for. You comparing them to SA isn't appropriate here. On the contrary, me coming to the table hearing the 'what do you look like?', and telling my party about my roman gladiator muscles and helmet, all the while knowing I'm gonna be re-rolling an attack every turn forever? For simply selecting an option during part of the innate gen process from some other cool options? I'm PRETTY DAMN HAPPY with that.
It's not right to compare it to the other options given that the context and investment to acquire them has been reframed so much. The only trap I see is thinking the word 'feat' means the same thing as it used to.
 

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