log in or register to remove this ad

 

5E Paladin/Hexblade+Options

Zardnaar

Legend
I have a new player who started this week. Themed game of happy pirates. He's pushing hard to be a Triton along with Hexblade/Paladin.

I've said no to Tritons as a lot of their racial stuff seems OP or useless and I have a plan for them later with an underwater adventure planned.

I'm not a fan of the hexblade I think it's cheesy even by my standards. I don't mind a bit of responsible powergaming but yeah Triton Hexblade combo has done issues later on.

I've made an effort to have a starting area and reason for the PHB races, Yuan Ti and Warforged. Added an area where artificers exist and allow some options from the Midgard Heroes Handbook.

Said player is alright guy but wants things like a forge cleric of an aquatic deity. Forge domain exists along with several forge gods as more than one pantheon exists.

It's almost worship anything you like from the PHB or Dawn Pantheon.

But yeah I don't want any aquatic or flying races used due to previous campaigns.

Not a fan of hexblade MC abuse either.

So being to unreasonable or fair enough?
 
Last edited:

log in or register to remove this ad


Zardnaar

Legend
I'm not quite sure what you are doing here - asking for suggestions/help, or... offering your opinion?

Point I added a bit more.

Just interested in feedback. A Triton Hexblade/Paladin would be really annoying later on.

Said player missed session 0 and the early world building.

I'm not a fan of the 2 level hexblade dip, bit cheesy even for me.
 

Dragonsbane777

Explorer
You are the DM. Disallow what you want, including dips. Require 5 levels in an y did and to go up evenly (really reduced PGing in my games).
Perhaps:
  • restrict domains for RP / setting reasons
  • restrict races for RP / setting reasons
  • disallow "stacking" - certain race/class bonus combos don't stack (sowwy)

The guy didn't show up for session Zero, I think that speaks for itself. Did he give you an email or just not show?

TBH after DMing since the 80's, I have little patience for no show/no call peeps, and even less for PGers who won't at least allow a DM to suggest a different class or race. I have a ton of house rules to slow down PGing, including the no dip rule, only 1 or 2 hp/level after 9th level, and so on.

Additionally, when I start a game, I usually give the players some rules just for the game, here is my last one:

Children of the Fey
Campaign Theme: Elves / Fey / Dragons
Location: Green Elven lands
Suggested Races: Green Elves / other elves / halflings (these are the races that live on that continent)
Allowed Races (only one for the group, roll-off if more than one want these races): Humans / dwarves / gnomes (these races will have issues ie not as welcome in towns, etc). other races not allowed
Suggested Classes: ranger, druid, cleric, wizard, rogue
Allowed Classes: any (any non-PHB subclass needs DM approval)
Levels: 3rd to 8th levels
Disallowed Alignment - CN, any evil
Game type: Sandbox within 50 miles of the main locations, includes 3 "dungeons" and much outdoor activity

Each of my games has different themes, so playing just anything doesn't work. I long ago got sick of the "circus party", ie the group of bizarre races and strange class combos, none of that is allowed.

My players seem to really like my campaigns and almost always come back for more. There are TONS of players on Roll20, no reason to not find the ones that fit.
 

Zardnaar

Legend
You are the DM. Disallow what you want, including dips. Require 5 levels in an y did and to go up evenly (really reduced PGing in my games).
Perhaps:
  • restrict domains for RP / setting reasons
  • restrict races for RP / setting reasons
  • disallow "stacking" - certain race/class bonus combos don't stack (sowwy)

The guy didn't show up for session Zero, I think that speaks for itself. Did he give you an email or just not show?

TBH after DMing since the 80's, I have little patience for no show/no call peeps, and even less for PGers who won't at least allow a DM to suggest a different class or race. I have a ton of house rules to slow down PGing, including the no dip rule, only 1 or 2 hp/level after 9th level, and so on.

Additionally, when I start a game, I usually give the players some rules just for the game, here is my last one:

Children of the Fey
Campaign Theme: Elves / Fey / Dragons
Location: Green Elven lands
Suggested Races: Green Elves / other elves / halflings (these are the races that live on that continent)
Allowed Races (only one for the group, roll-off if more than one want these races): Humans / dwarves / gnomes (these races will have issues ie not as welcome in towns, etc). other races not allowed
Suggested Classes: ranger, druid, cleric, wizard, rogue
Allowed Classes: any (any non-PHB subclass needs DM approval)
Levels: 3rd to 8th levels
Disallowed Alignment - CN, any evil
Game type: Sandbox within 50 miles of the main locations, includes 3 "dungeons" and much outdoor activity

Each of my games has different themes, so playing just anything doesn't work. I long ago got sick of the "circus party", ie the group of bizarre races and strange class combos, none of that is allowed.

My players seem to really like my campaigns and almost always come back for more. There are TONS of players on Roll20, no reason to not find the ones that fit.

A lot of players don't get themes. Advertise a Darksun game and you'll get a wannabe Triton player.
 

Tell him that he can't use warlock slots for paladin devine smite. Tok bad I don't find the latest quote from Jeremy crawford about that. But he referenced the multiclass rules about interchangability between slots from pact magic and spellcasting. In the text subsection it is only explicitely allowed to cast spells with the other one. Nothing there states, that you can fuel special abilities.
If you are concerned about antithematic dips, that seem the way to go. That reading easily prevents most multiclassing abuses with pact magic and the paladin as well as the sorcerer.

(You can tell him that he is free to use one of the various smite spells with pact magic slots, but that limits the use of the hex spell in combination with that... Although the peak damage might be higher as it is possible to use both a smite spell and divine smite on the same hit).

Edit: I advise nit to disallow level dips. Level dips in 5e are a good way to represent archetypes of old. Usually as you level up, you end up with something between 1/19 and 9/11 and every level is a hard choice.
 
Last edited:

dnd4vr

The Smurfiest Wizard Ever!
I've said no to Tritons as a lot of their racial stuff seems OP or useless and I have a plan for them later with an underwater adventure planned.
I'm confused. How can their racial stuff seem OP or useless at the same time? You sort of have to be one or the other IMO. Since you later have an underwater adventure, I guess you mean they seem OP due to the circumstance of the adventure? In which case, it happens. A lot of races are better suited to underground adventures, but does that make them OP? I don't really think so.

Given the pirate theme, a Triton seems very appropriate. Sure, their abilities will prove helpful, but it shouldn't really ruin anything, should it?

Not a fan of hexblade MC abuse either.
It is a powerful combo, sure, but again nothing that ruins the game IMO. This type of PC is great in combat under certain circumstances, but you can easily get around that IME.

So being to unreasonable or fair enough?
Personally, I don't like DM veto power when it comes to things that are by the book--even if a bit strong. Unless it goes against something story-wise, why ruin the player's fun because you feel it is too strong or don't like it personally? It sounds like you've done a lot to be inclusive of other things (Yuan-Ti, Artificers, etc.) so I find it a bit odd you want to remove other things. IMO a Warforged Artificer is more "broken" than a Triton Paladin/Warlock would be... I mean, a Warforged doesn't breath at all, so could adventure underwater without issue really.

A better thing would be to not allow MCing. It is a variant option, so if you don't want the powerful combos it can create, just tell the players MCing doesn't make sense for the game to you. My suggestion, otherwise, for MCing would be to require you to keep it even, so this PC would end up at 10/10, not 18/2 or something, sort of the idea you MCed "from the beginning" and picked up all the core training for both classes as part of your backstory.

Ultimately, you are the DM, so the final choice is yours. As a player, I wouldn't be happy about a ruling that I can't play something because you find it too powerful or useful, but I would bow to your authority and try to enjoy the game anyway. 🤷‍♂️
 

Interestingly, I just saw that there is a new Oath on D&D Beyond - Oath of the Open Seas. I like the abilities - create sea fog to obscure the group, get pushback on attacks... my favorite is eventually having their aura make them and those in the radius immune to Grappled and Restrained.

My question would be: Have you had problems with this player trying to break games? Have you had experience with players over-optimizing, or the Hexblade specifically? I'm totally for disallowing things, especially in Session Zero. Maybe at your table you made a write-up of things allowed and not allowed?

My thinking has come around. It used to be that a player over-optimizing was a 'problem'; now, I feel the problem player is the one who's just chitchatting or playing with their phone. The optimizer is at least invested in the game enough to care where/how his character goes somewhere. I do agree about maybe making MCing take an even split, or you can't multiclass until you're five levels into your base. YMMV. Just food for thought
 

Another question for followup: You wrote "Said player is alright guy but wants things like a forge cleric of an aquatic deity."

Does that mean wanting to be a forge cleric isn't acceptable? Does that mean aquatic deities don't have forge clerics? Consider that Poseidon himself is the god of seas AND HORSES AND EARTHQUAKES, I don't see an aquatic god having forge clerics as a dealbreaker. Someone has to arm their paladins and faithful.

The biggest issue I ran into with a forge cleric and his player was taking all the useless arms after a combat, and using his power to turn them into 100gp blocks of material for easier carrying.
 

dnd4vr

The Smurfiest Wizard Ever!
My thinking has come around. It used to be that a player over-optimizing was a 'problem'; now, I feel the problem player is the one who's just chitchatting or playing with their phone. The optimizer is at least invested in the game enough to care where/how his character goes somewhere. I do agree about maybe making MCing take an even split, or you can't multiclass until you're five levels into your base. YMMV. Just food for thought
This. So much this. (Emphasis mine.)

Power-gamers focus on combat typically and that is easy enough to compensate for IMO. So, yes, my larger issue is players who not paying attention or on their phones, etc. They hardly seem invested in the game and it annoys me to no end.
 

This. So much this. (Emphasis mine.)

Power-gamers focus on combat typically and that is easy enough to compensate for IMO. So, yes, my larger issue is players who not paying attention or on their phones, etc. They hardly seem invested in the game and it annoys me to no end.
Sadly IMO they're often the same player. When someone focuses on combat powergaming, they tend to not enjoy or pay attention to the social and exploration pillars.
 

dnd4vr

The Smurfiest Wizard Ever!
Sadly IMO they're often the same player. When someone focuses on combat powergaming, they tend to not enjoy or pay attention to the social and exploration pillars.
YMMV, but IME powergamers tend to at least be somewhat involved in the game, if nothing more than looking/hoping for a time to shine. It is the other players (who certainly can be powergamers) that you have to tell them what is going on when their turn comes because they weren't paying attention that are more of a problem. shrug
 


Ancalagon

Dusty Dragon
A Triton Hexblade/Paladin would be really annoying later on.

Just to be sure I understand you, what would be annoying about this? I think if you outline the problems, then we can discuss it better. I'm particularly curious about why the triton doesn't work for you? Do you want everyone on the sea to be a terrestrial race?
 


Zardnaar

Legend
Just to be sure I understand you, what would be annoying about this? I think if you outline the problems, then we can discuss it better. I'm particularly curious about why the triton doesn't work for you? Do you want everyone on the sea to be a terrestrial race?

In it's because I have some underwater adventures planned where Truth be are the antagonists and wizards packing dispel magic for surface breathers.

Another reason is I have set up various interactions between the races and the major ones are phb, yuan ti and Warforged so I don't really want random races beyond the campaigns focus on the decay of the Elves and corruption of the yuan ti.

I've only played with him once but he was trying to get people to fluff about trying to knock people prone to make himself better while undermining the ranged attackers.

Player type seems to be try hard power gamer. Wants powerful stuff but lacks the ability to put it togather.
 

Benjamin Olson

Adventurer
While I think it's certainly fine to ban character races not represented in your world, if there are Tritons in the setting then it seems unfair to put a blanket ban on players playing them.

What I would suggest instead is telling the player that Tritons have a particular place in your setting and that they will have to work with you to craft a logical backstory for their Triton. Even if no Triton would normally hang with these other races, PCs are exceptional people. Presumably he can be a Triton who washed ashore as an orphaned infant and was raised by gnomes, or whatever. There is a good chance having to cooperate at all on backstory will make the player realize they aren't all that committed to playing a Triton anyway.

As for this Hexblade dip business, I would advise a similar compromise position of "okay, but we need to start you a Paladin and actually work that artifact weapon into the game, not just say you met it and give you a pile of mechanical benefits." This makes for it being less likely to be pure, cheesy powergamery, makes it fit into your actual game, and again makes sure the player actually cares enough to make it worth your distaste.
 

humble minion

Adventurer
Hexblade paladin absolutely screams character optimiser to me. Which is not necessarily a bad thing depending on how you and your group prefer to game, of course. I wouldn't allow it at my table without a GOOD and in-character reason, but to be honest I'd more likely have a sit down with the player and have an honest talk about expectations and who he wants the character to be - in terms of personality, traits, history and ideals, rather than mechanical build. Remember the PC will have to be either a level 1 paladin or level 1 hexblade starting out, but (in my head at least) both paladin and warlock are classes that you need to go out of your way to enter. It's not like, i dunno, fighter, where you can just start training harder with a sword. If he starts out paladin, what's the plan for having him make his hexblade pact in-character, so he can take that 1st warlock level? How will he contact his patron, and seal the deal? If he's planning to start at level 1 hexblade, then the opposite applies - is there a process for becoming a paladin? Will he have to take a vow, or undergo a ceremony or something at a temple? Especially if he's a traditional LG devotion paladin, his church/superiors/whatever may have issues with his sworn pact to some sort of unpleasant creepy extraplanar sentient weapon. But it seems a bit weird to me just having a random paladin (for instance) suddenly wake up one morning and make a warlock pact before starting his breakfast porridge.
 

Zardnaar

Legend
Hexblade paladin absolutely screams character optimiser to me. Which is not necessarily a bad thing depending on how you and your group prefer to game, of course. I wouldn't allow it at my table without a GOOD and in-character reason, but to be honest I'd more likely have a sit down with the player and have an honest talk about expectations and who he wants the character to be - in terms of personality, traits, history and ideals, rather than mechanical build. Remember the PC will have to be either a level 1 paladin or level 1 hexblade starting out, but (in my head at least) both paladin and warlock are classes that you need to go out of your way to enter. It's not like, i dunno, fighter, where you can just start training harder with a sword. If he starts out paladin, what's the plan for having him make his hexblade pact in-character, so he can take that 1st warlock level? How will he contact his patron, and seal the deal? If he's planning to start at level 1 hexblade, then the opposite applies - is there a process for becoming a paladin? Will he have to take a vow, or undergo a ceremony or something at a temple? Especially if he's a traditional LG devotion paladin, his church/superiors/whatever may have issues with his sworn pact to some sort of unpleasant creepy extraplanar sentient weapon. But it seems a bit weird to me just having a random paladin (for instance) suddenly wake up one morning and make a warlock pact before starting his breakfast porridge.

I don't mind a bit of power gaming, he kind of knows enough that this is a good combo but doesn't know how to really make it sing.

I was an earlier adopter of warlock abuse in 5E, spotted the cheese back in 2014 a few weeks after the phb dropped.
 

Zardnaar

Legend
While I think it's certainly fine to ban character races not represented in your world, if there are Tritons in the setting then it seems unfair to put a blanket ban on players playing them.

What I would suggest instead is telling the player that Tritons have a particular place in your setting and that they will have to work with you to craft a logical backstory for their Triton. Even if no Triton would normally hang with these other races, PCs are exceptional people. Presumably he can be a Triton who washed ashore as an orphaned infant and was raised by gnomes, or whatever. There is a good chance having to cooperate at all on backstory will make the player realize they aren't all that committed to playing a Triton anyway.

As for this Hexblade dip business, I would advise a similar compromise position of "okay, but we need to start you a Paladin and actually work that artifact weapon into the game, not just say you met it and give you a pile of mechanical benefits." This makes for it being less likely to be pure, cheesy powergamery, makes it fit into your actual game, and again makes sure the player actually cares enough to make it worth your distaste.

I don't personally buy into just because it exists player get to play it.

I normally allow around 20 odd races into the game and vary them by campaign.
 

Halloween Horror For 5E

Advertisement2

Advertisement4

Top