D&D General Should ranger get a companion as its 'signature' feature?

payn

I don't believe in the no-win scenario
Yes, I have a 'pet class' in my own little world, and I see no reason really why it wouldnt/couldnt/shouldnt, replace the Ranger.

I'm not hating on the Ranger, but it's identity seems lost...in the wilderness.

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Minigiant

Legend
Supporter
At some point, people have to just get that since the Ranger's shtick is hunting Monsters and defending people from monsters


...and there are a lot of different types of monsters in D&D.

Therefore there could never really be a unifying one ability that covers every type of ranger. Each type of Ranger with tilt in a different direction in order to hunt their prey better.
 

DragonLancer

Adventurer
I like Ranger but I've never cared for the animal companion aspect of the class. To me, the archetype of the Ranger is a hunter, wilderness guide and ranged (archer) combatant. I don't see it as a class that should always have an animal companion.
 


For my money, making the companion a spirit is about the only option that is really functional without distorting the rules to vastly improve the survivability of an actual animal pet that is otherwise grossly overpowered as characters level up.
I used to think this way, but changed after playing with a group that had a 2hd dog at level one. We often went out of our way to protect it. This was especially true as we got to higher levels. Buffs that gave temporary hit points were a must, as well as the DM allowing death saves. There were times we kept it at our base (a brewery/space to live) when we thought it was too dangerous. And there were times we made it invisible (our ranger had trained it to sit and stay quiet in dangerous situations). Our DM sometimes made the dog make a con save to sit and stay quiet. Also, that dog was healed more by our cleric than our fighter was. ;)

For our group, it drained resources. But we cared about that dog, so we didn't mind the resource drain.
 

billd91

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I used to think this way, but changed after playing with a group that had a 2hd dog at level one. We often went out of our way to protect it. This was especially true as we got to higher levels. Buffs that gave temporary hit points were a must, as well as the DM allowing death saves. There were times we kept it at our base (a brewery/space to live) when we thought it was too dangerous. And there were times we made it invisible (our ranger had trained it to sit and stay quiet in dangerous situations). Our DM sometimes made the dog make a con save to sit and stay quiet. Also, that dog was healed more by our cleric than our fighter was. ;)

For our group, it drained resources. But we cared about that dog, so we didn't mind the resource drain.
You can do pretty much all of that with a mundane pet you buy and for any class. But relying on it as a class feature that should figure into a ranger class's (or sub class's) power and effectiveness balance seems like a bad design.
 

You can do pretty much all of that with a mundane pet you buy and for any class. But relying on it as a class feature that should figure into a ranger class's (or sub class's) power and effectiveness balance seems like a bad design.
Oh, I agree with that. It shouldn't be a core identity of a class, but it should be listed as a perk for the ranger or druid if they want it.
 

Xeviat

Hero
Yes! Ranger's core feature should be an animal Companion. The nature of the companion would allow the ranger to have damage (feline) and defense (bear) options, as well as mobility (mount) or support (bird). Then, the rangers archetype can take the place of favored Enemy; bounty hunters and horde breakers for humanoids, giant slayers, dragon slayers, gloom stalkers...
 

Vael

Legend
My desire for a pet class is more the pokemon trainer or such, so I don't think the Ranger should have an animal companion by default. I like that the Beastmaster exists, and I want other classes to have access to summonable allies, but for me, I do think that a Summoner class is missing from 5e.
 


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