D&D 5E Split the Assassin from the Rogue back into its own class

Should the Assassin be made into its own class again?

  • Yes, the Assassin should split from the Rogue and be its own class

    Votes: 15 15.2%
  • Yes, the Assassin should split from the Rogue and take the Thief with it

    Votes: 2 2.0%
  • Yes (Other)

    Votes: 3 3.0%
  • No, the Assassin should stay where it is

    Votes: 65 65.7%
  • No, the Assassin should stay where it is. Someother subclass should split from the Rogue

    Votes: 3 3.0%
  • No, just make more killy Rogue subclasses

    Votes: 5 5.1%
  • No (other)

    Votes: 8 8.1%
  • A THIEF is a THIEF! An ASSASSIN is an ASSASSIN! No Rogues.

    Votes: 5 5.1%
  • I'm about to be Sneak Attacked

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • (Currently hiding)

    Votes: 3 3.0%

  • Poll closed .

jgsugden

Legend
When I want to play a sneaky PC, my usual route is 5 (or more) levels of Gloomstalker to start. They're a far better rogue than a rogue.

Who do you want sneaking into an enemy complex and murdering a guard? An assassin, or a Gloomstalker. Play it out.
 

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DEFCON 1

Legend
Supporter
The tropes of what an Assassin is supposed to do and how they are meant to interact with their targets runs counter to how D&D was designed as a group combat game.

A Master Assassin is a solo killer who does their work in secret and then vanishes before anyone realizes the mark has been killed. D&D has everyone grouped up like a small combat unit and goes out guns a-blazing taking on groups of enemies or large monsters. The exact opposite of what the Assassin is supposed to be doing. So really, the Assassin as a concept should really probably be removed from the game entirely because you can never build the game such that it can do its one schtick (kill someone in one shot) while maintaining combat balance for the entire party.
 

I voted "No, the Assassin should stay where it is".

Assasssins use most rogue skills. Stealth is obvious, but also lockpicking (targets could hide behind closed doors), perception (because doors, guards and traps might be hidden), disguise ("I'm just a servant"), climbing (getting into places you aren't allow in) and so forth. Assassins probably don't need to pick pockets, so just don't take that skill. (My last Pathfinder 1e character was a rogue who did not take Sleight of Hand, since he wasn't a thief.)

I could play a ninja just by taking the rogue class. About the only thing missing is martial arts (I'm not sure how much real-life ninja focused on that, possibly only a little).

  1. Chameleon (Disguise Based)
  2. Poisoner (Poison Based)
  3. Shade (Stealth Based)
  4. Executioner (Fighty Assassin Assassin's version of Swashbuckler)
  5. Shadow Stalker (Magic Assassin, Assassin's Caster subclass)
  6. Holy Slayer (Get some Cleric in your killer. Heal up after everyone is dead)
What do you think?

These look like decent subclass abilities.
 



Minigiant

Legend
Supporter
The tropes of what an Assassin is supposed to do and how they are meant to interact with their targets runs counter to how D&D was designed as a group combat game.

A Master Assassin is a solo killer who does their work in secret and then vanishes before anyone realizes the mark has been killed. D&D has everyone grouped up like a small combat unit and goes out guns a-blazing taking on groups of enemies or large monsters. The exact opposite of what the Assassin is supposed to be doing. So really, the Assassin as a concept should really probably be removed from the game entirely because you can never build the game such that it can do its one schtick (kill someone in one shot) while maintaining combat balance for the entire party.
Same tropes with the rogue and ranger.

Again the D&D classes can bring the solo skills to the

An Assassin's custom poison, fake identities, and deadly dagger skills don't disappear because he has 3 friends nearby.

Conservation of Ninjutsu does not need to be maintained.
 

Oh, and since this is a 5e forum: you'd need to find a way to make poison useful if you want to build a class around it. For example, all undead are immune to poison, which significantly limits its utility.
 

Dausuul

Legend
The tropes of what an Assassin is supposed to do and how they are meant to interact with their targets runs counter to how D&D was designed as a group combat game.

A Master Assassin is a solo killer who does their work in secret and then vanishes before anyone realizes the mark has been killed. D&D has everyone grouped up like a small combat unit and goes out guns a-blazing taking on groups of enemies or large monsters. The exact opposite of what the Assassin is supposed to be doing. So really, the Assassin as a concept should really probably be removed from the game entirely because you can never build the game such that it can do its one schtick (kill someone in one shot) while maintaining combat balance for the entire party.
You're not wrong about the design of D&D conflicting with the concept of the assassin--and, in fact, with the rogue generally. Sneaky McSneakerson ranging ahead of the party is always a bit of a headache for the DM.

But the assassin archetype is popular enough that they almost have to support it somehow. So the solution was to create a subclass that could deliver a big blast of damage on the first round if they could arrange to strike with surprise, enough to have a noticeable impact but not enough to shut down a whole encounter. I think it's a reasonable way to handle it, even if this particular implementation suffers from a couple of issues.
 

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