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D&D General Things That Bug You

Oofta

Title? I don't need no stinkin' title.
My 5e paladin goes from 19 in plate + shield to 9 in his skivvies. That's "good enough to make the dm's job harder" to "all combat is suicidal."
Meanwhile dex based characters effectively never face this penalty. Because apparently having metal armor is somehow unbearable to sleep in but armor made from leather that's been hardened by boiling or having metal plates sewn riveted between layers of leather (aka studded leather) is perfectly fine. Or even if they don't sleep with armor, their AC drops the tiniest fraction.

Personally? I blame the simplification of calculating bonuses. If the bonus to AC from dex was cut in half it wouldn't be so bad; but as it stands now plate armor gives you a whopping +1 to AC over someone with a high dex and studded leather armor.

Ah well. It's why I don't penalize people for wearing any type of armor in my game and never set up situations where people aren't in armor if they would normally have it.
 

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billd91

Hobbit on Quest
Personally? I blame the simplification of calculating bonuses. If the bonus to AC from dex was cut in half it wouldn't be so bad; but as it stands now plate armor gives you a whopping +1 to AC over someone with a high dex and studded leather armor.
That's part of it. Another part is the demand that large numbers of players have that unarmored character concepts be viable in combat - and that means giving lighter armored/non-armored characters paths to have good ACs. In many ways, that sort of demand scrambles D&D's rules and makes balancing the stats harder, leading to King Dex.

At least there are ways to make heavier armor pay of with some benefit over lighter armor. The Heavy Armor Master feat offers 3 points of damage reduction from every hit from a non-magical weapon. It's constantly coming up with the dwarf fireplug in the game I'm running. He basically has 3 points of bonus hit points for every hit he takes. If I hit him 10 times a session, that's 30 free hit points he doesn't have to worry about healing.
 

Which I've done. But it doesn't solve the issue with the predominance of dex is to make everyone dex based.

Yeah, I hate the "DEX as god stat" thing, but it has little to do with unarmored AC and a lot to do with the tradeoffs being tiny in terms of armored AC and weapon damage. The only thing a rapier-using sword-and-board Fighter loses is a point of AC and the effective use of hand axes, while gaining on a lot of other fronts. IMO the rapier shouldn't exist.
 

loverdrive

Makin' cool stuff
Yeah, I hate the "DEX as god stat" thing, but it has little to do with unarmored AC and a lot to do with the tradeoffs being tiny in terms of armored AC and weapon damage. The only thing a rapier-using sword-and-board Fighter loses is a point of AC and the effective use of hand axes, while gaining on a lot of other fronts. IMO the rapier shouldn't exist.
Nah, rapier is kinda suboptimal choice for a fighter. Hand crossbow, on the other hand....
 

Yeah, I hate the "DEX as god stat" thing, but it has little to do with unarmored AC and a lot to do with the tradeoffs being tiny in terms of armored AC and weapon damage.
This is closer to my feeling: you can build decent, non-dex-based characters (ie a paladin who dumps dex), but the tradeoffs are pretty big: small benefits for potentially major drawbacks. Like, I don't mind not having ranged options. But being super-weak to night attacks feels more punishing than fun, for some reason. Also a lot of dm's like to impose swimming penalties for heavy armor, but that creates it's own issues.
 

Oofta

Title? I don't need no stinkin' title.
Nah, rapier is kinda suboptimal choice for a fighter. Hand crossbow, on the other hand....
How so? A two-handed weapon only adds a small bonus to damage while dropping your AC significantly, particularly since +1 shields are uncommon.

Whether GWM adds much is debatable and depends on a lot of factors. On the other hand I don't want to get into yet another white-room analysis of how +1.25 extra damage per attack when you're fighting monsters that have triple digit HP is a game changer while also ignoring the 10-20% increased chance of getting hit.
 

Minigiant

Legend
Supporter
It could be - again, to echo Jackdaw, there really isn't anything mechanical behind it -it's all narrative. Ultimately, that's OK with me, but I can see coming up with a group of spells that involve a bit more corruption in their use. Something like a blood magic mechanic that burns another resource like hit points or maybe hit dice to access even while adventuring.

Maybe it's just me but I never expected anything mechanical. The dark twisted horrible part was the research and rituals. Adventuring wizards and clerics don't do those. Things like blood magic, lichdom, and mind warping as mechanic were purposely done.

I never saw it as the very act of being a spellcaster twisted you. That feels like a Warhammer thing. Not a D&D thing. In D&D, you can shoot death magic at an orc and never fear your hand turning to bones. Now inventing that spell might and that was the rub.

The second you finish that arcane laboratory and decide to stay in the tower, you book your ticket to the Horror Express. Lab wizards = Freaks.
 

loverdrive

Makin' cool stuff
How so? A two-handed weapon only adds a small bonus to damage while dropping your AC significantly, particularly since +1 shields are uncommon.

Whether GWM adds much is debatable and depends on a lot of factors. On the other hand I don't want to get into yet another white-room analysis of how +1.25 extra damage per attack when you're fighting monsters that have triple digit HP is a game changer while also ignoring the 10-20% increased chance of getting hit.
Sharpshooter + Crossbow Expert = 3 attacks per round at Tier 2, ~18 damage each and you can stay away from thick of combat. GWM is good, but it's worse than hand crossbow :)

If I was going sword-n-board, I'd say Str-builds are better. Yeah, Dex is a useful stat, but being able to shove and grapple effectively is better than +2 iniative.
 

Oofta

Title? I don't need no stinkin' title.
Yeah, I hate the "DEX as god stat" thing, but it has little to do with unarmored AC and a lot to do with the tradeoffs being tiny in terms of armored AC and weapon damage.
I don't have a problem with dex based characters being effective per se. But when dex based is effectively equal or superior 90% of the time, it's a problem.

I get you can take a feat to get DR. You can have a +1 to AC (with comparable magic). Whether heavy weapons counter the dex based advantages I think is debatable (and of course you lose any AC bonus).

But better saves for the most common saving throw, better initiative, vastly superior ranged attack options, no AC penalty when resting, decent if not good at stealth, just as capable at getting out of grapples? Versus better at climbing that a lot of DMs allow acrobatics for anyway and being better at grappling which most people find pointless? Depending on build a +1 to AC?

Anyway, it bugs me. Raging at the wind doesn't help though.
 

Oofta

Title? I don't need no stinkin' title.
Sharpshooter + Crossbow Expert = 3 attacks per round at Tier 2, ~18 damage each and you can stay away from thick of combat. GWM is good, but it's worse than hand crossbow :)

If I was going sword-n-board, I'd say Str-builds are better. Yeah, Dex is a useful stat, but being able to shove and grapple effectively is better than +2 iniative.
I'm well aware of sharpshooter cheese, it's one of the other things that bug me but I just put it under dex being too good.

As far as shoving and grappling, if you allow a shove with shield master before the attack it does help. However, the "official" rule is that the shove has to happen after all attacks and I think the feat is practically pointless. As far as grappling, I don't think I've seen it used by a PC in 5E.
 

loverdrive

Makin' cool stuff
As far as shoving and grappling, if you allow a shove with shield master before the attack it does help. However, the "official" rule is that the shove has to happen after all attacks and I think the feat is practically pointless. As far as grappling, I don't think I've seen it used by a PC in 5E.
Hm, I'm kinda surprised, honestly. Shove someone and then grapple'em to prevent them from standing up is a thing I see fairly often.
 

TwoSix

Unserious gamer
Supporter
Which I've done. But it doesn't solve the issue with the predominance of dex is to make everyone dex based.
I have a house rule that you can use Str in place of Dex for AC calculations whenever you're using a shield or if you have a light weapon in your offhand. It's worked to make Str more feasible for classes with medium armor.
 

I don't have a problem with dex based characters being effective per se. But when dex based is effectively equal or superior 90% of the time, it's a problem.

I agree. My go-to positive example is the Rogue. He's what I consider a fairly good DEX-based character design. His skills & saves are badass. But he's pretty squishy, a fair bit easier to hit, somewhat limited in his choice of targets, crumples if he gets multiattacked, and his offensive damage is, in real games, on the lower side of the martial tier, doing 10%-15% less damage than a warrior class with a good weapon.

I think that, in general, should be the model. A DEX Fighter should be sacrificing damage for skills & saves. Not a huge chunk, more like 10%. Currently, it's 0%. I definitely don't think that having the option of heavy weapon fighting makes up for it. I mean, it's nice to have that option, but a STR-based Duelist or Two-Weapon fighter is not going to be using greatswords much, if at all.
 


Oofta

Title? I don't need no stinkin' title.
Hm, I'm kinda surprised, honestly. Shove someone and then grapple'em to prevent them from standing up is a thing I see fairly often.

Well, different people have different theories of best tactics. But by-and-large I don't see giving up two attacks (which may both fail) in order to make an opponent prone is particularly worthwhile. Both the attacker and target are now prone, so attacks between those two are normal while anyone attacking from more than 5 ft away is at disadvantage. Oh, and the person doing the grapple has to have a free hand to make the grapple. I would also rule that you need to continue using that hand in order to maintain the grapple (although it's not clear).

I guess you could rule that the grappler isn't prone, can still use both hands and so on, but that's not how I read the rules.

Might be useful to stop someone from running away I suppose but it doesn't come up often.
 

loverdrive

Makin' cool stuff
I guess you could rule that the grappler isn't prone, can still use both hands and so on, but that's not how I read the rules.
Well, RAW you need to have one hand free to grapple, but there's nothing in the rules that says both you and the target are prone. There was something like "both are restrained" in 3E, but I'm not sure.

It becomes useless when there are only one melee-oriented character in the party, though.
 

Oofta

Title? I don't need no stinkin' title.
Well, RAW you need to have one hand free to grapple, but there's nothing in the rules that says both you and the target are prone. There was something like "both are restrained" in 3E, but I'm not sure.

It becomes useless when there are only one melee-oriented character in the party, though.

I agree the rules are vague. When we don't have clear rules I fall back on visuals and what "looks" right. If I'm grappling with someone, holding them down, I have to be holding them down somehow. It doesn't just happen by magic. Watch any video of a person trying to hold someone else down: you can't do it while standing with both your hands free.

But I'm not going to argue about it. It's never come up in any of my games, how I would rule doesn't affect your games. Different strokes for different folks and all.
 



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