OneDnD People That Have Actually Read the DMG: What Optional Rule(s) Do You Want To Get Expanded In One D&D?

Levistus's_Leviathan

5e Freelancer
As we all know, no one reads the D&D 5e Dungeon Master's Guide. However, for the few people on this site that have, what optional parts of it do you think should be expanded upon in the One D&D playtest?

By "expanded", I mean given heavy revisions the same way that Inspiration and Exhaustion have been revised in the current playtest documents.

There are 3 optional rules in the DMG that currently come to mind:
  1. The Loyalty Score: Found in Chapter 4 of the DMG, the Loyalty Score is a way for the DM to keep track of how loyal party-member NPCs are to the party. Currently, it's pretty bare-bones and has only been used in one official adventure before (Out of the Abyss), so I think revising it and making the rules more important could help in future official adventures.
  2. Proficiency Dice: I like the idea of Proficiency Dice. I've never used it, because I don't think my players would like it, but I like the idea of it. However, revising Proficiency Dice to apply only in certain situations could help make it be used more frequently.
  3. Flanking: Currently, flanking gives people that attack a flanked target advantage on the attack roll, which is probably too effective. If revised to be a bonus to hit (maybe a d4 or +1 per flanking creature), then it might be used more, adding more strategy to D&D 5e combat.
What about you? What other optional rules do you think can/should be revised and/or expanded? Do you have any thoughts on the optional rules I listed and possible revisions/expansions for them?
 

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doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
Flanking could give an extra weapon die, or rather an extra roll of your weapon’s damage dice. This would make it a beefier bonus for strength PCs with bigger weapons.

I want a lot more special actions. Trip, Overrun, etc, very cool. Expand on it, and put it in the PHB.

Minor Traits (for magic items). Things like “Temperate: you ignore extreme weather” are very fun and good. Each effect should be a common magic item.

Pie in the sky: use the damage by spell level chart to make a system for sorcerers to make thier own combat spells on the fly. Make the table more in depth.
 

Flanking is the big one because that is the one that most tables I've played at either use or would use if the rules were better. Basically most people I've played with seem to feel like there should be some sort of flanking bonus, and those who don't use the DMG advantage from flanking system avoid it because it's bad (trivializing advantage, which is plugged into too many other features), not because they would not like to have a flanking system of some sort. Personally I add a d4. It seems simple enough, is not nearly as good as advantage, but stacks with advantage.

However I think an improved flanking rule should not be in the ghetto of DMG optional systems, it should just be part of the base game because I think most people would want to play with it. I think the basic nature of DMG optional rules is "ideas we liked but couldn't nail down well enough to be satisfied with and decided the base game could work without", and I'm okay with that when it happens, but rules ending up there is a sign of failure. If they come up with something that works well and isn't overly complicated it should be in the base game.
 

Raith5

Adventurer
I am happy with flanking only applying to Rogues.

In a similar vein would like to see marking and some other tactics expanded as maneuvers or stances for Fighters and Paladins.
 

tetrasodium

Legend
Supporter
As we all know, no one reads the D&D 5e Dungeon Master's Guide. However, for the few people on this site that have, what optional parts of it do you think should be expanded upon in the One D&D playtest?

By "expanded", I mean given heavy revisions the same way that Inspiration and Exhaustion have been revised in the current playtest documents.

There are 3 optional rules in the DMG that currently come to mind:
  1. The Loyalty Score: Found in Chapter 4 of the DMG, the Loyalty Score is a way for the DM to keep track of how loyal party-member NPCs are to the party. Currently, it's pretty bare-bones and has only been used in one official adventure before (Out of the Abyss), so I think revising it and making the rules more important could help in future official adventures.
  2. Proficiency Dice: I like the idea of Proficiency Dice. I've never used it, because I don't think my players would like it, but I like the idea of it. However, revising Proficiency Dice to apply only in certain situations could help make it be used more frequently.
  3. Flanking: Currently, flanking gives people that attack a flanked target advantage on the attack roll, which is probably too effective. If revised to be a bonus to hit (maybe a d4 or +1 per flanking creature), then it might be used more, adding more strategy to D&D 5e combat.
What about you? What other optional rules do you think can/should be revised and/or expanded? Do you have any thoughts on the optional rules I listed and possible revisions/expansions for them?
I used proficiency dice for a couple campaigns & they worked well after the initial breaking in period & allowed some neat stuff like magic items that make say 1=2 or 1 & 2=3 on the proficiency die for a thing to raise the average without raising the ceiling. I wouldn't mind them being default or a PHB variant to lower the bar for a gm wanting to use a rather innocuous rule. Most of the resistance was one or two players who got fussy because it was hard to use them in ddb even though they really wanted to use ddb instead of physical stuff.

Flanking & facing rules are almost written as if the author of those rules wanted to make sure nobody tried to use badwrongfun grid combat rather than ToTM, they could use massive improvements

I'd like to see body slots+explained slot affinities & bonus types become an optional rule for use alongside attunement slots.
 


I used proficiency dice for a couple campaigns & they worked well after the initial breaking in period & allowed some neat stuff like magic items that make say 1=2 or 1 & 2=3 on the proficiency die for a thing to raise the average without raising the ceiling. I wouldn't mind them being default or a PHB variant to lower the bar for a gm wanting to use a rather innocuous rule. Most of the resistance was one or two players who got fussy because it was hard to use them in ddb even though they really wanted to use ddb instead of physical stuff.
Given that everything in 5.5 will probably be some variation of "give a number of allies equal to your proficiency bonus a bonus equal to your proficiency bonus proficiency bonus times per day", it will probably feel like a pretty weird system to use proficiency dice in. The only thing you won't be using your proficiency bonus for is actual proficiency.
 





Round by round initiative.
Massive damage.
Cleave
Healing/Rest options.

I always want to use the round by round initiative for the forst turn of combat. With the new surprise rules, that now seems actually as if it could work.

I already use massive damage vs mooks. If an attack deals 10+ damage and more than half hp, I make con saves for my enemies. Makes combat a bit more fun.
Same for one hit melee kills that can cleave. Makes melee with big weapons more attractive I use a slightly modified version, that allows to cleave if you deal max target damage in one hit. They don't have to have full hp (as it is stated i the rules).

Healing/Rest options should be right in the PHB.
 
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Guidance on Plot Points
Tried it once and one of the players tried to push the boundaries with it much to the rest of the table's dislike.
After that I nixed the idea.
 
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Gorck

Prince of Dorkness
I used to love playing Rogues in 3.x, so when I first started playing 5e I used the optional Flanking and Tumble rules. But I quickly realized they weren't necessary. With the 5e Sneak Attack rules, Rogues no longer needed to be flanking. And with 5e's movement rules, I no longer needed to tumble into flanking position.

But 2 optional rules that I do like using are the Hitting Cover and Cleave rules on page 272. Hitting Cover leads to iconic hostage situations where you have to decide whether you want to lay down your weapons or try to snipe the person holding the hostage without damaging the hostage. Cleave just replaces the old 3.x feat and makes my Greataxe wielding Barbarian that much cooler. It also makes battles with many low-level minions go much quicker.
 

delericho

Legend
The sections on Madness and the Sanity Score probably require revision.

Other than that, I don't have a specific list, except to note that I'd rather they have fewer, but better detailed, options than the current large set of fairly vague options. That is, pick any few, but expand those.

(Of course, even better would be to expand all the options. But given likely page counts, that's probably impractical.)
 

Amrûnril

Adventurer
I'd like to see an improved version of lingering wounds. For tables that want to explore this, there should be the possibility of a middle ground between injuries that are instantly cured by basic healing magic and injuries that cause permanent disability.
 

I honestly think most of the optional rules in 5E should just be outright deleted or re-written from the ground-up, rather than "expanded upon", but maybe re-written counts? Like, let's go through the DMG:

1) Proficiency Dice - delete. Waste of everyone's time that makes the game work less well.

Before this gets argued, let me just lay something out: I think the DMG should set a good example to DMs about optional rules and house rules.

That means the DMG should not include rules that are just "for the lolz", which don't make the game better, nor change it to some other distinct playstyle, that just mess with the mechanics "just becuz". And Proficiency Dice are 100% "just becuz". There's no good mechanical case for them in 5E.

2) Skill Variants - Expand.

I know what I just said, but if there was one area to expand on, and make some mini-rules sets with examples for, this would be it. This section suffers badly from a lack of examples.

3) Hero Points - Fold into Inspiration or just delete.

4) Honor - For god's sake delete, this is borderline racist, esp. with the orientalist art.

5) Sanity - This is literally a terrible mechanic which achieves almost exactly the opposite of the stated goal and a great example of how rushed the DMG was and it's kind of not great conceptually ("seeing weird stuff makes you nuts" leads to a lot of problematic tropes). Replace with some kind of Stress mechanic or something.

6) Fear/Horror - Expand or delete. Pick one.

7) Healing options - ALL the healing options through the DMG and so on need to be unified in a single place, and both re-written and expanded and on top of that, they need to be explained in a lot more detail re: consequences etc. Essentially Expand but you need to re-write first! The "healing surges" they have here are an insult to the concept - I wrote a version that made way more sense and worked more like the concept in like 20 minute a few months back (can dig up if wanted).

8) Rest variants - Unify with healing options, they shouldn't be separated. Also completely re-write both. And/or add in two "middle ground" options.

9) Firearms - Delete. I know some will disagree. I don't care. Guns that aren't the most very basic arquebuses and the like work really badly in 5E, and cause all sort of "hmmmmm" situations unless they're solely for a "gunslinger"-type class.

10) Explosives - Expand. Perverse? Me? But I genuinely think explosives, as well as Greek Fire and Acid can work really well in D&D, as consumables rather than regularly-used weapons. I'd like to see this done a lot better, and Greek Fire/Acid made into something that scales, potentially.

11) Alien Tech - Delete. Leave it for a sourcebook/adventure. Save the space.

12) Plot Points - Expand and formalize. But don't use use the existing waffle, which is barely "rules" at all.

13) Initiative variants - Fine except delete Speed Factor. That's a huge amount of text for an optional rule I've never even HEARD of being used, even from you guys who LOVE the most obscure option rules possible. Ditch it. There's a limited page count people.

14) Climb onto a bigger creature - EXPAAAAAAND!!! Come on! We could have something awesome here. DO IT! Either that or delete it from the DMG and do it as proper optional rules in a later book.

15) Disarm - Should not be an optional rule, and should not be terrible.

16) Mark - I'm a 4E fan but delete this. It's just clumsy and falls totally between two stools. A sad, pointless relic of a modular 5E that never materialized and that 1D&D won't be.

17) Overrun/Shove Aside/Tumble - De-optionalize this stuff. Put it in the PHB. It doesn't significantly complicate combat and does add options.

18) Hitting cover - It's fine.

19) Cleaving - It's fine but tempted to say de-optionalize or delete so it can become a class Feature or even a Warrior Feature.

20) Injuries - Hmmm, like delete and re-write with something that is both expanded and much more compatible with D&D's rules. It's trash. I know people who use injury rules in their game. Literally none of them use these rules nor variants of them.

21) Massive damage - De-optionalize.

22) Morale - Replace with the approach that World Without Number takes, which works on a much broader variety of creatures, and actually work into the system. So Expand, I guess?

That's the main optional rules section so enough for now.

More that I think should be expanded than I remembered, I have to admit. A lot of these are so bad I'd forgotten them entirely - but the basic concept needs rules. It just doesn't need these terrible rules.
 

Li Shenron

Legend
This isn't the thread to complain about OneD&D inspiration. If you don't like it, please take it to another thread
No no, I complain specifically about making anything more mandatory than it currently is, because the "expanding" of those two examples you brought up meant exactly to hook them into fundamental parts of the game (races, basic d20 rolls, rests) in a way that makes it a lot more difficult for a DM to ignore or control.

I am happy too if the "expand" for example the flanking rules, or (to make a proposal of my own) the chase rules.

I am not happy if by doing so, they make both of them more mandatory, even if I actually already use them.

But you said you meant "the same way" as those two examples, that's why it raised my alarm.
 

tetrasodium

Legend
Supporter
I honestly think most of the optional rules in 5E should just be outright deleted or re-written from the ground-up, rather than "expanded upon", but maybe re-written counts? Like, let's go through the DMG:

1) Proficiency Dice - delete. Waste of everyone's time that makes the game work less well.

Before this gets argued, let me just lay something out: I think the DMG should set a good example to DMs about optional rules and house rules.

That means the DMG should not include rules that are just "for the lolz", which don't make the game better, nor change it to some other distinct playstyle, that just mess with the mechanics "just becuz". And Proficiency Dice are 100% "just becuz". There's no good mechanical case for them in 5E.

2) Skill Variants - Expand.

I know what I just said, but if there was one area to expand on, and make some mini-rules sets with examples for, this would be it. This section suffers badly from a lack of examples.

3) Hero Points - Fold into Inspiration or just delete.

4) Honor - For god's sake delete, this is borderline racist, esp. with the orientalist art.

5) Sanity - This is literally a terrible mechanic which achieves almost exactly the opposite of the stated goal and a great example of how rushed the DMG was and it's kind of not great conceptually ("seeing weird stuff makes you nuts" leads to a lot of problematic tropes). Replace with some kind of Stress mechanic or something.

6) Fear/Horror - Expand or delete. Pick one.

7) Healing options - ALL the healing options through the DMG and so on need to be unified in a single place, and both re-written and expanded and on top of that, they need to be explained in a lot more detail re: consequences etc. Essentially Expand but you need to re-write first! The "healing surges" they have here are an insult to the concept - I wrote a version that made way more sense and worked more like the concept in like 20 minute a few months back (can dig up if wanted).

8) Rest variants - Unify with healing options, they shouldn't be separated. Also completely re-write both. And/or add in two "middle ground" options.

9) Firearms - Delete. I know some will disagree. I don't care. Guns that aren't the most very basic arquebuses and the like work really badly in 5E, and cause all sort of "hmmmmm" situations unless they're solely for a "gunslinger"-type class.

10) Explosives - Expand. Perverse? Me? But I genuinely think explosives, as well as Greek Fire and Acid can work really well in D&D, as consumables rather than regularly-used weapons. I'd like to see this done a lot better, and Greek Fire/Acid made into something that scales, potentially.

11) Alien Tech - Delete. Leave it for a sourcebook/adventure. Save the space.

12) Plot Points - Expand and formalize. But don't use use the existing waffle, which is barely "rules" at all.

13) Initiative variants - Fine except delete Speed Factor. That's a huge amount of text for an optional rule I've never even HEARD of being used, even from you guys who LOVE the most obscure option rules possible. Ditch it. There's a limited page count people.

14) Climb onto a bigger creature - EXPAAAAAAND!!! Come on! We could have something awesome here. DO IT! Either that or delete it from the DMG and do it as proper optional rules in a later book.

15) Disarm - Should not be an optional rule, and should not be terrible.

16) Mark - I'm a 4E fan but delete this. It's just clumsy and falls totally between two stools. A sad, pointless relic of a modular 5E that never materialized and that 1D&D won't be.

17) Overrun/Shove Aside/Tumble - De-optionalize this stuff. Put it in the PHB. It doesn't significantly complicate combat and does add options.

18) Hitting cover - It's fine.

19) Cleaving - It's fine but tempted to say de-optionalize or delete so it can become a class Feature or even a Warrior Feature.

20) Injuries - Hmmm, like delete and re-write with something that is both expanded and much more compatible with D&D's rules. It's trash. I know people who use injury rules in their game. Literally none of them use these rules nor variants of them.

21) Massive damage - De-optionalize.

22) Morale - Replace with the approach that World Without Number takes, which works on a much broader variety of creatures, and actually work into the system. So Expand, I guess?

That's the main optional rules section so enough for now.

More that I think should be expanded than I remembered, I have to admit. A lot of these are so bad I'd forgotten them entirely - but the basic concept needs rules. It just doesn't need these terrible rules.
Although I used the proficiency dice & liked the results I very much agree with the general thrust of this. At the table proficiency dice played out more like a code revision snuck past an editor to partially fix the way PCs destroy the math of bounded accuracy that the whole game is designed around rather than a variant style of gameplay.
 

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