OneDnD So, has anyone actually PLAYED the Expert classes?

Remathilis

Legend
I've seen a lot of white-room analysis of the three expert classes and the supplemental feats, but I'm wondering if anyone actually statted up a ranger, rogue, or bard and run them through an adventure? Does the changes to Sneak Attack really make them weak? Is the bard playable as both a caster and a healer? Is the ranger actually good at anything? Does the changes to feats work?

I'm curious at this point if anyone has given the classes a go and what was the experience.
 

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cbwjm

Legend
I would have liked to, but unfortunately it is hard to get people together. I also kind of want at least one more class packet to put together a group. Of course, that means that the survey for the experts will likely be done by the time we trial stuff.
 

FitzTheRuke

Legend
I have a player playing the bard in one of my IRL games (and I'm working on a playtest PBP here, but we haven't gotten far.)

The bard feels pretty similar to the 5e one, aside from the reaction use of Bardic Inspiration, which I quite like.
 

Lycurgon

Adventurer
No, but I have had feedback from friends that have played with them. I have not had a full report from them on everything yet but talked to the player that played one of the 2 bards in the party. The player normally likes bards and support characters but said it was terrible and would never play a Bard with these rules.

They played at 3rd level and found the bard was bad at doing Bard stuff. They found there were too many things to use Bardic Inspiration on and not enough uses of it. With only 2 uses per long rest, and having to spread them between Boosting allies Rolls, Healing and Cutting Words, it was too few uses.

They took Hex, but finding there were too few Bard spells to use it with they they played a Tiefling to have Firebolt to combo with Hex.

They also found the spell list to be weird. They said that there were few Buff spells on the list, so rather than being the traditional support bards they had to be debuff focused Bards.

The other Bard player hated having their Lore Bard bonus skills being forced to have the set Knowledge skills. Being Int is not a primary or secondary priority for most bards, they weren't impressed with being forced to take thinks they were not going to be good at.

The other Bard player took Magic Initiate to get Druid spells and took Guidance and Shillelagh. They found was the Guidance spell was okay, but of course of limited use, but found it was almost completely useless for more than 1 person to have it, because it was used by the bard player who was quick to react and the other then couldn't use it on that person. The less on-to-it player (the Ranger) had wasted a cantrip choice.

The other feedback, unrelated to the classes, was about the Inspiration mechanic, testing the gain on a 1 as per the newer playtest. They had some humans and one of the bards took the Musician feat so they all started the day with it (The inspiration the Tiefling Bard Musician handed out to a human PC was given back to the Bard so they all had it). They found it felt very gamey getting an Inspiration when rolling a 1, it didn't add flavour to the game it just felt like an unnecessary game mechanic. Our friends groups don't normally use the the Inspiration rules, so the players are not use to using it in the current 5e rules.

TLDR: A Bard fan hates the new version of the bard and would never play one again under these new rules.
 


I'm currently running a playtest mini-campaign whenever the regular two DMs can't run. We've got a bard, rogue, and ranger, along with a barbarian. The barbarian is enjoying being a half orc/gnome, using the orc mechanics and being a huge gnome, and is looking forward to the warrior package.

The bard plays differently, because they're weaker as a healer (or at least feels weaker). Bardic Inspiration is much stronger, since you can use it when you know you failed, but less uses have to be rationed carefully, as normally she'd have 4 uses (18 Cha) instead of 2 uses (level 4). The limited spell selection hasn't bothered her at all.

The ranger seemed a bit stronger, not that needed much, and the rogue seemed about the same. I haven't had the opportunity to go over the difference with the players yet.
 



TerraDave

5ever, or until 2024

The other Bard player hated having their Lore Bard bonus skills being forced to have the set Knowledge skills. Being Int is not a primary or secondary priority for most bards, they weren't impressed with being forced to take thinks they were not going to be good at..
Seriously? The low int lore bard?

I guess the polite response is that this may not be the right subclass for them.
 

Lycurgon

Adventurer
Seriously? The low int lore bard?

I guess the polite response is that this may not be the right subclass for them.
Well most bards I have seen go for Cha as the first priority and Dex is second priority. Many want Con to be significant too. Int doesn't usually make it higher than 3rd priority. They played a Lore Bards because THAT IS THE ONLY CHOICE! We don't have any others to play test yet!

Currently nothing in the Lore bard that uses Int. With the playtest version there is nothing that needs Int except the knowledge skills you are forced to take. So, unless you want to be good at knowledge skills Int does very little for you. And for most bards, they will find a Wizard is better at those skills unless the bard invests their Expertise into them.
 

TerraDave

5ever, or until 2024
Well most bards I have seen go for Cha as the first priority and Dex is second priority. Many want Con to be significant too. Int doesn't usually make it higher than 3rd priority. They played a Lore Bards because THAT IS THE ONLY CHOICE! We don't have any others to play test yet!

Currently nothing in the Lore bard that uses Int. With the playtest version there is nothing that needs Int except the knowledge skills you are forced to take. So, unless you want to be good at knowledge skills Int does very little for you. And for most bards, they will find a Wizard is better at those skills unless the bard invests their Expertise into them.

Lore is a synonym for knowledge. Cutting words and cunning inspiration also imply intelligence, maybe there should also be an explicit link.
 

Tales and Chronicles

Jewel of the North, formerly know as vincegetorix
By the way, the playtest clearly stats how to use other archetypes with the new class chassis:

''When playtesting the new version of a Class,
you can use a Subclass from an older source,
such as the 2014 Player’s Handbook or Tasha’s
Cauldron of Everything. If the older Subclass
offers features at levels that are different from
the Subclass levels in the Class, follow the older
Subclass’s level progression after the Class lets
you gain the Subclass.''

Maybe that player would have been a better experience with a Valor or Sword bard instead of being forced into an archetypes he did not want to play.
 

Yaarel

Mind Mage
No, but I have had feedback from friends that have played with them. I have not had a full report from them on everything yet but talked to the player that played one of the 2 bards in the party. The player normally likes bards and support characters but said it was terrible and would never play a Bard with these rules.

They played at 3rd level and found the bard was bad at doing Bard stuff. They found there were too many things to use Bardic Inspiration on and not enough uses of it. With only 2 uses per long rest, and having to spread them between Boosting allies Rolls, Healing and Cutting Words, it was too few uses.

They took Hex, but finding there were too few Bard spells to use it with they they played a Tiefling to have Firebolt to combo with Hex.

They also found the spell list to be weird. They said that there were few Buff spells on the list, so rather than being the traditional support bards they had to be debuff focused Bards.

The other Bard player hated having their Lore Bard bonus skills being forced to have the set Knowledge skills. Being Int is not a primary or secondary priority for most bards, they weren't impressed with being forced to take thinks they were not going to be good at.

The other Bard player took Magic Initiate to get Druid spells and took Guidance and Shillelagh. They found was the Guidance spell was okay, but of course of limited use, but found it was almost completely useless for more than 1 person to have it, because it was used by the bard player who was quick to react and the other then couldn't use it on that person. The less on-to-it player (the Ranger) had wasted a cantrip choice.

The other feedback, unrelated to the classes, was about the Inspiration mechanic, testing the gain on a 1 as per the newer playtest. They had some humans and one of the bards took the Musician feat so they all started the day with it (The inspiration the Tiefling Bard Musician handed out to a human PC was given back to the Bard so they all had it). They found it felt very gamey getting an Inspiration when rolling a 1, it didn't add flavour to the game it just felt like an unnecessary game mechanic. Our friends groups don't normally use the the Inspiration rules, so the players are not use to using it in the current 5e rules.

TLDR: A Bard fan hates the new version of the bard and would never play one again under these new rules.
Regarding the class balance, the Bard is notably underpowered compared to the Ranger and Rogue. The Ranger is hugely frontedloaded with many features to get the class up and running. The Rogue is simpler but Sneak Attack by itself is a massive upgrade in power. By contrast, the Bard lacks comparable design space. I am playing the playtest Bard and it feels a bit lacking.

I am less a fan of the way the playtest defines each Arcane, Divine, and Primal "spell list".

It is better to update the Spell Schools to organize the magic spell themes more clearly. Then choose the Spell Schools to build each class concept. For example, the Bard and the Druid have much in common, including Divination and nature-magic Transmutation with Healing. But they differ because the Bard has Enchantment and Illusion unlike the Druid, and the Druid has elemental-magic Evocation unlike the Bard.

Having the Schools organize the magical themes discretely, makes it easy to distinguish and construct each class concept.
 

I've seen a lot of white-room analysis of the three expert classes and the supplemental feats, but I'm wondering if anyone actually statted up a ranger, rogue, or bard and run them through an adventure? Does the changes to Sneak Attack really make them weak? Is the bard playable as both a caster and a healer? Is the ranger actually good at anything? Does the changes to feats work?

I'm curious at this point if anyone has given the classes a go and what was the experience.
Does having DM'd for them count? In which case:
  • Rogue: I genuinely can't tell the difference
  • Ranger: The two weapon fighting now works. A ranger with Healing Word feels weird and I want less Healing Word rather than more as the DM.
 


Charlaquin

Goblin Queen (She/Her/Hers)
I would have liked to, but unfortunately it is hard to get people together. I also kind of want at least one more class packet to put together a group. Of course, that means that the survey for the experts will likely be done by the time we trial stuff.
I imagine there will be more than one draft. If they’re serious about this playtest going for 12 to 18 months with new packets once a month, and if they continue doing 3 classes to a packet, I think it’s likely we’ll see each class more than once throughout the process.
 


Minigiant

Legend
Supporter
I only DMed. Level 3 game oneshot.

Bard player and Ranger player both said classes are stronger but loss a ton of flavor, take more work to build, and have repetitive play.

Rogue player said opposite. Rogue got slightly more flavor and options for slightly less power.
 
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Bard player and Ranger player both said classes are stronger but loss a ton of flavor, take more work to build, and are have repetitive play.
That makes sense for Ranger (which does literally become more repetitive), but seems weird for Bard. I don't see any way or even argument in which an L3 1D&D Bard is "more repetitive" than an L3 5E Bard. In fact, I can only see arguments to the contrary. Likewise flavour. I could see the argument at higher levels, but L3? Nah.

Sounds kind of like the Ranger player had intelligent critiques and the Bard player just said "Yeah what he said!".
 

That makes sense for Ranger (which does literally become more repetitive), but seems weird for Bard. I don't see any way or even argument in which an L3 1D&D Bard is "more repetitive" than an L3 5E Bard. In fact, I can only see arguments to the contrary. Likewise flavour. I could see the argument at higher levels, but L3? Nah.

Sounds kind of like the Ranger player had intelligent critiques and the Bard player just said "Yeah what he said!".
Things have changed a bit - the Bard spell list is blander and Song of Rest has been replaced by more generic casting so all bards are now healers.
 

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