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5E UA interviews: The possible future for Pet Subclasses in 5e.

Parmandur

Legend
Yes, it is really tiresome to hear WotC stooges parrot "but they're making money; so that means we don't get to ask for better products" as if "but somebody likes it" is a relevant argument against criticizing the design.

Most people like it, and they are working to provide options for the minority. So they are literally working to make a "better product." However, the only measure for if a product is better, is satisfaction among the players. There is nothing else.
 

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Parmandur

Legend
Until the revised Beastmaster is further polished and officially published, all it serves is allowing apologists like you to claim they're done when they're clearly not.

If you think my language is harsh, it's only because you say things like "Knock it the hell off. Grow up."

Let me assure you I am grown up. I know what I am talking about. The only thing that is false here is you claiming they have accomplished the goal of a balanced pet that doesn’t die frequently. You don't get to tell me when I should be satisfied.

They have accomplished diddly squat. The closest thing we have in actual, officially published fact, is Crawford's insulting belittling tweet about "buy a guard dog or something".

Read the post I just wrote about how wonderful it would be to see official support for a WoW-style Hunter, and then think before you write that I should be satisfied. You and I are done.

The Battle Smith is going to be in a book in just over a month, but you can look at the latest draft, or the one in the OP, at any time to see where they are headed with pets.
 

Parmandur

Legend
I think it is worth keeping in mind that WotC doesn't have any realistic expectation that every option should make everyone happy. But if every option makes 70% of people happy, then they will get a good coverage of the player base. Hence, their fix is to provide new options aimed at the those not yet satisfied, which is "making a better game."
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
Until the revised Beastmaster is further polished and officially published, all it serves is allowing apologists like you to claim they're done when they're clearly not.

If you think my language is harsh, it's only because you say things like "Knock it the hell off. Grow up."

Let me assure you I am grown up. I know what I am talking about. The only thing that is false here is you claiming they have accomplished the goal of a balanced pet that doesn’t die frequently. You don't get to tell me when I should be satisfied.

They have accomplished diddly squat. The closest thing we have in actual, officially published fact, is Crawford's insulting belittling tweet about "buy a guard dog or something".

Read the post I just wrote about how wonderful it would be to see official support for a WoW-style Hunter, and then think before you write that I should be satisfied. You and I are done.

This is melodrama. “Apologists”!? 😂 What the hell are you talking about?

You consistently misrepresent other people’s statements. I said that they have shown that it is possible. You keep trying to twist that into some other claim.
I didn’t speak on what they have “accomplished” in some official capacity, I refuted your erroneous claim that a balanced pet that doesn’t make the total package overpowered is impossible by pointing out that they’ve designed exactly that, in the past. They are clearly, observably, capable of it.

You keep yelling about it not being official so that you can avoid just admitting that you’re wrong about that point.

The fact that you keep ranting about this as if WoTC has done something morally wrong, and accusing people of being “stooges” and “apologists”, absolutely warrants being told to grow up. It’s a tantrum.
 

Blue

Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
Just a point of order about if players are "satisfied" with the PHB Beastmaster.

From the DnDBeyond subclass breakdown, Beastmaster is picked about 1/6th of the time, with Hunter picked just under 1/3rd and Gloom Stalker picked 1/4th.

(Note: comparing the % to other classes with more subclasses isn't an apples to apples comparison because they will have more spread because of more choices.)

I'm sure that some will read this as it's pretty low comparatively, while others will point at that it's in the top 3.

 

Parmandur

Legend
Just a point of order about if players are "satisfied" with the PHB Beastmaster.

From the DnDBeyond subclass breakdown, Beastmaster is picked about 1/6th of the time, with Hunter picked just under 1/3rd and Gloom Stalker picked 1/4th.

(Note: comparing the % to other classes with more subclasses isn't an apples to apples comparison because they will have more spread because of more choices.)

I'm sure that some will read this as it's pretty low comparatively, while others will point at that it's in the top 3.


(note that these are only for Legendary Bundle owners)

That's a similar ratio to Devotion Paladin or the Eldritch Knight, and doesn't really speak to "satisfaction in general" so much as "chosen by Power Users." WotC has much mo targeted market data than this, which shows that most people are satisfied, but WotC is not fully satisfied with the satisfaction rate. We know they aim for 70% satisfaction, so this suggests somewhere between 51-69% satisfaction currently. Which puts them in an awkward position, because they don't need to fix anything for somewhere between half and two-thirds of users. Hence, new Subclasses as the preferred solution to give the dissatisfied a new outlet.
 

When I was a child my first contact with D&D was the game-books "Endless Quest". It was almost in the same time of the "D&D" cartoon show, maybe one of the icons of the 80's. Then RPGs were totally unknown in Spain. One of the things I loved of the stories were the animal sidekicks.

It is a concept too good for potential merchandising. A beast master not only could become a base class, but also a own spin-off of D&D, a new line as Pokemon or Digimon, or Mattel's Enchantimals, or al least a new D&D world as a remake of "Kaijudo: Rise of Duel Masters".

Who would be so crazy to allow a monster battle arena? Easy, the sorcerer-kings in Athars. And some gladiators would be cursed with mutations to become creatures as fomorian giants as punishment for their crimes. And some civilizations of Spelljammer with great love for bets. And in any places fights with lethal damage between sentient creatures wouldn't be allowed.

Loyal Animal Companion - TV Tropes

I remember the occultist class, created by a 3rd Party publisher, Radiance House, for a Pathfinder sourcebook about vestige pact magic had got a special class feature, the vestigial companion.

* What if a player wants a monster tamer and a monster character? It would be using two PCs, and with the right distribution of XPs reward to avoid a leveling up too up. But we could find 3rd party publishing sourcebooks about monster classes (for example dragons) to be used with a "monster tamer". Maybe we would see anything like the remake of "Council of Wyrms" where dragons ask help to "dracolytes", their loyal "squirrels".

* A 3rd party could create a class as monster-tamer, but not only an animal companion, but a little squad of minions or even a swarm, playing like a warlord in a RTS.
 

Leatherhead

Possibly a Idiot.
Some might think it callous to have a benefit that makes it less painful when a beast dies.
But I think you could totally have a level 7 subclass ability that grants a beast only Revivify, extends the lifespan of the beast, and grants the beast magical damage.

The rest of the survivabilty can be addressed by letting the Ranger use spell slots to heal/cure the beast, and including defensive features in the stat block of the beasts themselves.
 

I mean, they've accepted and acknowledged that won't work.

The PHB Beastmaster is working as designed. It isn't what you want, or a good number of other people, but WotC has found most people are satisfied with it. Enough are dissatisfied to create a conundrum. In a similar situation, with the Monk of the Four Elements, they found that introducing the Soul Sun made enough the folks displeased with the Four Elements get what they wanted that the "problem" was fixed, straight up. They will not "fix" the Beastmaster, certainly not by making the Subclass imbalanced. But introducing a new Subclass similar to the Battle Smith or this Druid will probably do the trick of channeling enough of those dissatisfied into an option they would prefer.

YMMV.

This discussion has become a bit heated, so I want to clarify first that I’m just poking my head in to bring up a specific point rather than really engaging with the debate.

The point that occurs to me, is that we don’t know which group of players are satisfied versus dissatisfied (do we?)

In my estimation there are three relevant divisions of players when it comes to product satisfaction in an RPG.

1) Those who are particularly invested in the specific concept (ranger pet fans, in this case)
2) Those who aren’t really fans of the concept
3) People without strong preferences, including many casual players

The majority of people fall into 3. So WotC can make most iconic designs hit 70% fairly easily if they try, because group 3 is easy to please. Group 2 is hard to please, because they already start out dissatisfied and you have to win them over. Group 1 is where your target needs to be, even though it is a minority. If you can make group 1 happy, it’s easy to make 3 happy, and then all you need to worry about is balance, and fitting well with the rest of the game. Making group 2 happy is bonus points (and I think a worthy goal) but it’s least important.

So I’m in group 2 on warlord. I’d prefer they not do anything on that front. My opinion should be least important. The only thing that is related to my opinion that can reasonably be expected to be involved is whether the class feels like it fits in with the rest of 5e crunch and fluff. Now, if they make 1 and 3 happy and make it balanced, they absolutely should listen to the concerns of people in my camp about how to refine it to fit for us (since I’m very invested in things fitting), but that’s absolutely not where they should or devote the majority of their attention to.

So the question becomes which group is satisfied with the PHB beast master ranger?
 

Parmandur

Legend
This discussion has become a bit heated, so I want to clarify first that I’m just poking my head in to bring up a specific point rather than really engaging with the debate.

The point that occurs to me, is that we don’t know which group of players are satisfied versus dissatisfied (do we?)

In my estimation there are three relevant divisions of players when it comes to product satisfaction in an RPG.

1) Those who are particularly invested in the specific concept (ranger pet fans, in this case)
2) Those who aren’t really fans of the concept
3) People without strong preferences, including many casual players

The majority of people fall into 3. So WotC can make most iconic designs hit 70% fairly easily if they try, because group 3 is easy to please. Group 2 is hard to please, because they already start out dissatisfied and you have to win them over. Group 1 is where your target needs to be, even though it is a minority. If you can make group 1 happy, it’s easy to make 3 happy, and then all you need to worry about is balance, and fitting well with the rest of the game. Making group 2 happy is bonus points (and I think a worthy goal) but it’s least important.

So I’m in group 2 on warlord. I’d prefer they not do anything on that front. My opinion should be least important. The only thing that is related to my opinion that can reasonably be expected to be involved is whether the class feels like it fits in with the rest of 5e crunch and fluff. Now, if they make 1 and 3 happy and make it balanced, they absolutely should listen to the concerns of people in my camp about how to refine it to fit for us (since I’m very invested in things fitting), but that’s absolutely not where they should or devote the majority of their attention to.

So the question becomes which group is satisfied with the PHB beast master ranger?

We don't know, but WotC does.
 

cmad1977

Hero
This discussion has become a bit heated, so I want to clarify first that I’m just poking my head in to bring up a specific point rather than really engaging with the debate.

The point that occurs to me, is that we don’t know which group of players are satisfied versus dissatisfied (do we?)

In my estimation there are three relevant divisions of players when it comes to product satisfaction in an RPG.

1) Those who are particularly invested in the specific concept (ranger pet fans, in this case)
2) Those who aren’t really fans of the concept
3) People without strong preferences, including many casual players

The majority of people fall into 3. So WotC can make most iconic designs hit 70% fairly easily if they try, because group 3 is easy to please. Group 2 is hard to please, because they already start out dissatisfied and you have to win them over. Group 1 is where your target needs to be, even though it is a minority. If you can make group 1 happy, it’s easy to make 3 happy, and then all you need to worry about is balance, and fitting well with the rest of the game. Making group 2 happy is bonus points (and I think a worthy goal) but it’s least important.

So I’m in group 2 on warlord. I’d prefer they not do anything on that front. My opinion should be least important. The only thing that is related to my opinion that can reasonably be expected to be involved is whether the class feels like it fits in with the rest of 5e crunch and fluff. Now, if they make 1 and 3 happy and make it balanced, they absolutely should listen to the concerns of people in my camp about how to refine it to fit for us (since I’m very invested in things fitting), but that’s absolutely not where they should or devote the majority of their attention to.

So the question becomes which group is satisfied with the PHB beast master ranger?

The problem is that usually group 1 can’t figure out what they really want. So pleasing them is largely impossible.
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
The problem is that usually group 1 can’t figure out what they really want. So pleasing them is largely impossible.
That isn’t true at all. Group 1, like any group, won’t be homogenous, because it’s a collection of individuals. However, it will agree enough on enough points to satisfy them.
 



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