5E The New Tiers Ranked

FrogReaver

Adventurer
[MENTION=6716779]Zardnaar[/MENTION]

I think you are placing some paper thing margins between tiers based on slight power differences in subclasses. What's the difference between a tier 2 divination wizard and any other tier 2 wizard? Basically 2 divination dice? Is that really all it takes to go from tier 2 to tier 1? Or consider a tempest cleric vs a light cleric. Is there really a tier worth of difference there?

Also, it seems you are rating the combat pillar more like 50% and the other 2 pillars more like 25% each. That's my general impression anyways.
 

Mort

Community Supporter
[MENTION=6716779]
Also, it seems you are rating the combat pillar more like 50% and the other 2 pillars more like 25% each. That's my general impression anyways.
That does seem accurate.

And in which case I don't see how Tempest cleric isn't also Tier one in the heroic (1-4) levels.

No other class can drop a 24 damage AoE at range at 3rd level- sure it's once a long rest, but that's major. [Edit: as was pointed out down thread, it's a short rest recharge. Making the ability useful more often and therefore that much better.]

Add to that an ability that does an automatic 2d8 damage as a reaction, by 1st level, likely 3 times every long rest.

And if that's not enough, heavy armor and martial weapons.
 
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FrogReaver

Adventurer
That does seem accurate.

And in which case I don't see how Tempest cleric isn't also Tier one in the heroic (1-4) levels.

No other class can drop a 24 damage AoE at range at 3rd level- sure it's once a long rest, but that's major.

Add to that an ability that does an automatic 2d8 damage as a reaction, by 1st level, likely 3 times every long rest.

And if that's not enough, heavy armor and martial weapons.
Yea tier 1 tempest vs light is a very close comparison. Throwing out 2 shatters per day for 24 total area damage each is very nice. (Channel divinity is short rest recharge)

That said a light cleric laying down a spiritual weapon and using radiance of dawn on turn 1 is pretty spectacular as well.

I actually rate the tempest level 1 ability higher as by RAW you can't use the light cleric level 1 ability after the attack is rolled (that's not how disadvantage works) and so you can't use it to turn hits into misses, only to try to lower an enemies chance to hit you in the first place (which is pretty low anyways). If the light clerics level 1 disadvantage ability can be used after the first attack is rolled then I'd rate light cleric above tempest. But without that being the case I consider tempest a little better. (in tier 1)
 

Zardnaar

Hero
Reason I put the light cleric higher is radiant dawn is in addition to spells and a massive AoE. Tempest cleric can nova sure but is still gonna run out of spells fast.
 

FrogReaver

Adventurer
Reason I put the light cleric higher is radiant dawn is in addition to spells and a massive AoE. Tempest cleric can nova sure but is still gonna run out of spells fast.
The difference is that 1 max damage shatter is an encounter ender in heroic tier against all but solo enemies. Radiant Dawn is only an encounter ender on tons of small enemies.

Going back to my truism... damage now > damage later and tempest throws around a lot more damage now than light does in tier 1.

I think you are weighting potential to run out of resources much higher than I am. I don't care if Tempest runs out of resources faster as long as he can strike twice as hard when needed (typically turn 1). Besides, Tempest arguably won't run out faster, he will just refrain from using resources until really needed.

I also think you underestimate the value of a reaction that does 2d8 save for half in tier 1 especially compared with the not so good disadvantage granting ability (at least going by the way a number of us play it).

Keep in mind the argument isn't that tempest is necessarily better than light, just that the margin between them is so thin that the different tier rankings make little sense.
 

guachi

Villager
I think your ratings are more like 50/25/25 Combat/Social/Exploration. Frankly, I think it's better than 40/30/30.

It's not just that combat takes up, generally, more of the game and the rules, it's that player choice and not abilities matter more in the Social and Exploration pillars. At least they do in my game.

I generally agree with your ratings. I haven't seen every class/subclass combination in play but you are accurate in your assessment of the Battle Master at levels 3 & 4 in the Heroic tier. If you get your two short rests they are absurdly good in combat.

At level 1 and 2 you are just a fighter, but you are really good in the brief time you are at level 1 (one or two sessions?). A fighting style and Second Wind are great. You get a fighting bonus before the other martial classes and Second Wind is free self-healing and saves precious spell slots from casters.
 

FrogReaver

Adventurer
One fascinating thing is that if you change up the encounter pacing just a little in 5e. Say 4 hard encounters with 1 short rest. Then the tiers would likely totally change
 

Zardnaar

Hero
One fascinating thing is that if you change up the encounter pacing just a little in 5e. Say 4 hard encounters with 1 short rest. Then the tiers would likely totally change
It's not to different to my 6ish encounters I put in the OP. Tiers wouldn't change to much light and tempest might swap places warlocks still decent with 1 short rest, a lot of classes have nova abilities.
 

FrogReaver

Adventurer
I think your ratings are more like 50/25/25 Combat/Social/Exploration. Frankly, I think it's better than 40/30/30.

It's not just that combat takes up, generally, more of the game and the rules, it's that player choice and not abilities matter more in the Social and Exploration pillars. At least they do in my game.

I generally agree with your ratings. I haven't seen every class/subclass combination in play but you are accurate in your assessment of the Battle Master at levels 3 & 4 in the Heroic tier. If you get your two short rests they are absurdly good in combat.

At level 1 and 2 you are just a fighter, but you are really good in the brief time you are at level 1 (one or two sessions?). A fighting style and Second Wind are great. You get a fighting bonus before the other martial classes and Second Wind is free self-healing and saves precious spell slots from casters.
You know, thinking about it that way I think I agree.

The only PC's that get real social and exploration abilities to me in tier 1 are the lore bard (exptertise + cutting words stacks exceptionally well + rituals like comprehend languages), druids (wildshape is great for exploration and pass without trace), warlocks (rituals or super familiar and ability to communicate with your mind) and wizards (rituals and dual purpose spells like levitate and suggestion), trickery clerics (pass without trace + advantage to an ally on stealth rolls), arcane trickster (expertise and can take a familiar), Eldritch Knight (find familiar).

I think that pretty much covers the tier 1 PC's with useful social/exploration abilities. I guess for alot of classes it really depends on how useful you find your familiar to be for exploration.

I guess the classes I would hold up as best of the best standout classes are lore bards, druids, trickery clerics, warlocks and wizards. I don't think rogues or fighters get enough tier 1 for exploration. I can't think of any other class I would highly rate in exploration for tier 1.

I don't know that any of those classes (except lore bard) are good enough at something to really score super high on the exploration or social pillars.
 

guachi

Villager
The Rogue is a standout in the exploration or social pillar in Heroic tier simply because you get your Expertise at level 1 and you have lots of skills. And at level 1 you get a resourceless +1d6 in combat.

It's just that the farther away from level 1 you get the less beneficial the Rogue's resourceless abilities are.

I'd vote Rogue as most powerful and versatile class at level 1. It just doesn't last very long.
 

Zardnaar

Hero
The Rogue is a standout in the exploration or social pillar in Heroic tier simply because you get your Expertise at level 1 and you have lots of skills. And at level 1 you get a resourceless +1d6 in combat.

It's just that the farther away from level 1 you get the less beneficial the Rogue's resourceless abilities are.

I'd vote Rogue as most powerful and versatile class at level 1. It just doesn't last very long.
It's not that much of a bonus martial two handed weapons come to mind. It's also inferior to Monks and a nature cleric using pole arm master and staff plus Shillagh.
 

FrogReaver

Adventurer
The Rogue is a standout in the exploration or social pillar in Heroic tier simply because you get your Expertise at level 1 and you have lots of skills. And at level 1 you get a resourceless +1d6 in combat.

It's just that the farther away from level 1 you get the less beneficial the Rogue's resourceless abilities are.

I'd vote Rogue as most powerful and versatile class at level 1. It just doesn't last very long.
Expertise at tier 1 is a +2 bump to a skill. Is it really that great? The same for the skill bonuses. They are just +2 bonuses. I'm not sure I'm convinced that 4 +2 bonuses to skills really makes for a notable enough ability in either the social or exploration tiers.
 

FrogReaver

Adventurer
It's not that much of a bonus martial two handed weapons come to mind. It's also inferior to Monks and a nature cleric using pole arm master and staff plus Shillagh.
A rogue can dual wield essentially getting 3d6+mod. He's one of the higher damage dealers in tier 1 (at least till feats are considered). Up that to 4d6+mod. And given how the rogue does damage he rarely flat out misses and does pretty solid damage on all of his hits.

Monks do comparable damage to the rogue, but more? I'm not seeing it.

Anything using polearm master does good tier 1 damage. But in your specific example, the rogue still is doing more than the nature cleric polearm master cleric.
 

Zardnaar

Hero
Expertise at tier 1 is a +2 bump to a skill. Is it really that great? The same for the skill bonuses. They are just +2 bonuses. I'm not sure I'm convinced that 4 +2 bonuses to skills really makes for a notable enough ability in either the social or exploration tiers.
Cleric spamming guidance is better at everything lol. It's why I put Rogues tier 3. They're decent at everything excel at nothing. They might peak level 3 relative to everything else.

Earlier tempest cleric discussion they are a bit more MAD while light and nature can focus on wisdom. Rolled stats can negate that though so the tiers are a bit situational as good dice roll, specific campaign, DM, party composition can definitely change the tiers. It's a guideline that under most circumstances i think will be decent. If I am wrong I hope its marginal. In the OP I also said I do not count nova damage and its fairly obvious what classes are better in situations where that's the norm. I also said that if you have multiple spellcasters you might be facing nova situations every combat. Traditional cleric and wizards not a big deal but if the rogue us replaced by a bard and fighter is replaced by hexblade or if you have a 5 or 6 person party then going nova will be more noticeable. Even then you can use my guide to figure out the better spellcasters options.

I'll tweak it tomorrow as in my head some of the classes are decent at social and exploration but I have not made it explicit in my descriptions. All the classes have a basic level of combat ability the only ones really meh at it are low level spellcasters.
 

Zardnaar

Hero
Added new tier and updated my OP going more in depth in my reasoning into rating the other pillars and put a bit more effort into talking up the out of combat options for the classes level 11-16.

The next tier up won't really see a drastic change in ranking (1 or 2 maybe) so I'll rate the capstone abilities. Further plans are to add in the non PHB archetypes, and expand the 1st 2 tiers. Basically if a class is good in two pillars it gets rated well.
 

Markh3rd

Explorer
I'm curious to see your take on Purple Dragon Knight. Looking forward to the final tier also. Thanks for the article.
 

Yaarel

Adventurer
So how do I rate the classes? Basically I am looking at the 3 pillars of 5E- Social, combat and exploration with a slight emphasis on combat (say 40% vs 30% for the other 2). Very few if any classes are good at all 3, most are good at two, some are only good at one.
Actually, I would find the rating more useful if you ranked classes into tiers FOR EACH PILLAR.

So, who is the top tier for Combat? Who is the top tier for Social? Who is the top tier for Exploration?

And so on down.
 

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