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UA Unearthed Arcana August: Races of Ravnica

I don't know modern MtG or Ravnica other then what we have been talking about on here and at D&D the last few weeks...but quick look I like this.


Vedalken sound like I could totally play the blue elves like 'mystic elf' and 'magician of black chaos' from yugioh. I think I really like the race even if I never heard of it before.
 
Huh. Well, color me surprised. I was like 99% certain that they would have a new revision of the artificer this month. I'm also surprised they're doing these this close to the release of Ravnica.

Unfortunately, a couple of weeks ago either Mearls or Crawford tweeted that the Articifer UA was pushed back from this month. But since the Aritficer is planned to be part of Eberron and not Ravnica, I am not surprised.

But I like that we get the chance to give feedback on these races before they go to print.

Also, this shows us that they have a narrower window than many of us thought between playtests and print. Here we are in mid-August and they still have time to adjust parts of a book due to be on sale within three months in November.
 

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gyor

Legend
I don't think Loxodons seem too powerful. Free Mage Armor is nice, but most characters will outclass it. Remember, it doesn't stack with anything except a shield. Advantage on fear saves is pretty meh. Advantage on scent based skill checks is going to be really hit and miss to the extent that it's as powerful as the DM decides it will be. Truly, the only thing the race really does well is Druid.

Simic Hybrid is interesting, although I agree with others that it'd be nice to have a few more selections. Grappling Appendages is weird, though. How many attacks do you get?

Viashino's Lashing Tail, on the other hand, seem amazing to me. Sure, it only deals non-magical dagger damage, but so what? A raging Barbarian certainly isn't going to care, and you'll get to deal bonus Rage damage with it and still have resistance. If you're a Rogue, it's a way to deal Sneak Attack damage an extra time each round!

Vedalken seem good. They're at least as good at being a Wizard as a Gnome.

I'd say Loxodons make good rangers and Dex based clerics.

Actually they make good casters in general, free mage armour and the con boost helps give extra HP and is good for concentration checks.

The Loxodon, Hybrids, and Viashino are the easiest to transfer to other D&D settings. In FR the Loxodons are simply Loxo, which are basically the same, but have two trunks, Viashino resemble are race of humanoid reptile folk with stingers in FR, I forgot their names, and many wizards are known for creating magical experimental hybrid creatures.

Vedalken are tougher, if they had Dark Vision I'd suggest Deep Imaskari, but they don't. I'll have to think on it.

I'm surprised at seeing no Dryads or Vampires or reverant (Zombies) in this UA.

Still love these races, they seem a lot of fun.
 

I laughed and cringed at this passage from the Viashino:

"They’re also easily distracted, jumping from one idea to another in an instant. Likewise, they’re easily bored, and if nothing captures their attention,
they’ll do something interesting."

My first thought was reptile Kender. lol
 

gyor

Legend
The list of Ravnica Races so far:

Centaurs
Minotaurs
Viashino
Simic Hybrids
Loxodons
Vedalkyn (surprising that they don't gain their own language).

They just need Dryads and an evil race like Vampires or self aware Zombies to complete things.
 

Parmandur

Legend
Unfortunately, a couple of weeks ago either Mearls or Crawford tweeted that the Articifer UA was pushed back from this month. But since the Aritficer is planned to be part of Eberron and not Ravnica, I am not surprised.

But I like that we get the chance to give feedback on these races before they go to print.

Also, this shows us that they have a narrower window than many of us thought between playtests and print. Here we are in mid-August and they still have time to adjust parts of a book due to be on sale within three months in November.

It wasn't pushed back, as such: Mearls hinted it is coming soon, but Crawford said point blank it wouldn't be August when asked.

The fast turnaround is because Has to publishes in the US rather than China (which contributes to the book cost).
 
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Parmandur

Legend
The list of Ravnica Races so far:

Centaurs
Minotaurs
Viashino
Simic Hybrids
Loxodons
Vedalkyn (surprising that they don't gain their own language).

They just need Dryads and an evil race like Vampires or self aware Zombies to complete things.

Races that have been represented in Planeshift might have not been deemed to need further public feedback, just private playtesting.
 

gyor

Legend
I don't think Loxodons seem too powerful. Free Mage Armor is nice, but most characters will outclass it. Remember, it doesn't stack with anything except a shield. Advantage on fear saves is pretty meh. Advantage on scent based skill checks is going to be really hit and miss to the extent that it's as powerful as the DM decides it will be. Truly, the only thing the race really does well is Druid.

Simic Hybrid is interesting, although I agree with others that it'd be nice to have a few more selections. Grappling Appendages is weird, though. How many attacks do you get?

Viashino's Lashing Tail, on the other hand, seem amazing to me. Sure, it only deals non-magical dagger damage, but so what? A raging Barbarian certainly isn't going to care, and you'll get to deal bonus Rage damage with it and still have resistance. If you're a Rogue, it's a way to deal Sneak Attack damage an extra time each round!

Vedalken seem good. They're at least as good at being a Wizard as a Gnome.

Some of these races have some neat lore behind them, but mechanically, only the Viashino and Simic Hybrid feel inspired (and the viashino loosely).

There aren't any ability a Loxodon gets that's really unique to it. I can name a race for every trait it has (except keen smell, to which I'd point you at the mastiff)
The Hybrid's build-a-race approach is strange, but in a way gives it a sense of being a mishmash of parts, which matches the lore.
Vedalken? Their abilities are strong, but kinda boring. Like, it's advantage on half your saving throws, and +1d4 on one skill. They're mechanically sound, but there's nothing that really makes you feel, "I could only do this because I'm Vedalken
Viashino have a cool tail lash ability, though it feels a like it could use more. Playtesting required.

Viashino also get a bite, and either acrobatics or stealth Prof free. The tail lash is really good so combined it's enough. Good stats too, especially for a fighter or monk.

The Vedalkyn also gets a two free profs, one skill and one tool Prof, which makes them inheriant skill monkeys. I do agree they should get something a bit more, but it's better then the previous version of Vedalkyn. Maybe a couple of bonus languages.
 

gyor

Legend
I don't think Loxodons seem too powerful. Free Mage Armor is nice, but most characters will outclass it. Remember, it doesn't stack with anything except a shield. Advantage on fear saves is pretty meh. Advantage on scent based skill checks is going to be really hit and miss to the extent that it's as powerful as the DM decides it will be. Truly, the only thing the race really does well is Druid.

Simic Hybrid is interesting, although I agree with others that it'd be nice to have a few more selections. Grappling Appendages is weird, though. How many attacks do you get?

Viashino's Lashing Tail, on the other hand, seem amazing to me. Sure, it only deals non-magical dagger damage, but so what? A raging Barbarian certainly isn't going to care, and you'll get to deal bonus Rage damage with it and still have resistance. If you're a Rogue, it's a way to deal Sneak Attack damage an extra time each round!

Vedalken seem good. They're at least as good at being a Wizard as a Gnome.

Races that have been represented in Planeshift might have not been deemed to need further public feedback, just private playtesting.

Vedalkyn which featured in one of the Planeshift articles, but they we're offered less then this version so perhaps it wasn't popular enough as is. Which Planeshift article had Dryads?

You could be right about one of the Planeshift Vampires being well received enough that no further changes we're deemed needed, they seemed okay.
 

QuietBrowser

First Post
The sad thing is, I am no longer disappointed by Unearthed Arcana anymore, and I can't tell if it's because I'm that used to Unearthed Arcana being dubious quality, or if I've grown numb to just how rubbish races seem to be in 5th edition compared to 4th.

I'm just hoping that these four aren't giving away all of their tricks yet - so the Simic Hybrid will have more cool mutations in the book proper - and that they won't be the only races in the book proper.

Also, anyone else notice that the fluff in the UA is literally lifted straight from the more emotional, extroverted vedalken in Plane Shift: Kaladesh, when Ravnican vedalken are supposed to be Vulcan-style emotionally stunted hyper-logical? Heck, the crunch even reflects that fluff with their protection against mind-whammying effects being titled "Vedalken Dispassion".
 

Also, anyone else notice that the fluff in the UA is literally lifted straight from the more emotional, extroverted vedalken in Plane Shift: Kaladesh, when Ravnican vedalken are supposed to be Vulcan-style emotionally stunted hyper-logical? Heck, the crunch even reflects that fluff with their protection against mind-whammying effects being titled "Vedalken Dispassion".

Considering all the Planeshift articles and the Ravnica book were written by the same person, James Wyatt, what is your beef? It is his vision of what they are supposed to be, not some other person stealing his words. And it also could have easily been a simple cut and paste mistake when putting together this UA, where they grabbed the wrong quote to use.
 

Parmandur

Legend
Vedalkyn which featured in one of the Planeshift articles, but they we're offered less then this version so perhaps it wasn't popular enough as is. Which Planeshift article had Dryads?

You could be right about one of the Planeshift Vampires being well received enough that no further changes we're deemed needed, they seemed okay.

Dryads weren't, it seems, but we did get Vampires, which are iconic to NtG in their particular form: not D&D vanpires, as with Minotaurs and Centaurs.
 

flametitan

Explorer
Viashino also get a bite, and either acrobatics or stealth Prof free. The tail lash is really good so combined it's enough. Good stats too, especially for a fighter or monk.

The Vedalkyn also gets a two free profs, one skill and one tool Prof, which makes them inheriant skill monkeys. I do agree they should get something a bit more, but it's better then the previous version of Vedalkyn. Maybe a couple of bonus languages.

I was going to mention the bite, but ultimately didn't. However, here's my quick take on it:

yawn.

It does damage equal to a dagger without finesse. Most of the classes want a higher damage weapon, a weapon with a specific property, or just for the hit to land. In the case of the monk, starting unarmed strike is already 1d4. The only real thing you get is piercing, and from what I can tell, most creatures, if they call out one of blugeoning, piercing, and slashing damage, and not all three, it's usually in favour of bludgeoning anyway. More often than not, I consider the extra damage on unarmed strikes a ribbon ability.

Vedalken being a skill monkey class is also not that interesting. We already have the half elf, and they're even more versatile at it. Again, it's giving up, "being interesting and unique," to be "Good at things others can do."
 

gyor

Legend
I don't think Loxodons seem too powerful. Free Mage Armor is nice, but most characters will outclass it. Remember, it doesn't stack with anything except a shield. Advantage on fear saves is pretty meh. Advantage on scent based skill checks is going to be really hit and miss to the extent that it's as powerful as the DM decides it will be. Truly, the only thing the race really does well is Druid.

Simic Hybrid is interesting, although I agree with others that it'd be nice to have a few more selections. Grappling Appendages is weird, though. How many attacks do you get?

Viashino's Lashing Tail, on the other hand, seem amazing to me. Sure, it only deals non-magical dagger damage, but so what? A raging Barbarian certainly isn't going to care, and you'll get to deal bonus Rage damage with it and still have resistance. If you're a Rogue, it's a way to deal Sneak Attack damage an extra time each round!

Vedalken seem good. They're at least as good at being a Wizard as a Gnome.

I was going to mention the bite, but ultimately didn't. However, here's my quick take on it:

yawn.

It does damage equal to a dagger without finesse. Most of the classes want a higher damage weapon, a weapon with a specific property, or just for the hit to land. In the case of the monk, starting unarmed strike is already 1d4. The only real thing you get is piercing, and from what I can tell, most creatures, if they call out one of blugeoning, piercing, and slashing damage, and not all three, it's usually in favour of bludgeoning anyway. More often than not, I consider the extra damage on unarmed strikes a ribbon ability.

Vedalken being a skill monkey class is also not that interesting. We already have the half elf, and they're even more versatile at it. Again, it's giving up, "being interesting and unique," to be "Good at things others can do."

The Tail Lash is the key trait for the Vaishino, the rest just fills out the race. A Viashino Monk's Tail Lash will gain a lot of benefit from being a monk, same with a Valshino Paladin eventually, thanks to Divine Smite and Improved Divine Smite. A Viashino battle master could be interesting as well, using manvuevers with the Tail Lash could be very interesting, perhaps even knocking an enemy back before it can complete the attack that triggered the Tail Lash.

Veladkyn can choose Thieves Tools and say Slight of Hand with a d4 bonus to take on a very roguish ability, even as say a Wizard. Still honestly I'd add back the Aether (or setting equivilant) feature to the race on top of this, not instead of.

I'm pretty happy with these races, they provide interest play opportunies, but I think they need a side bar on how to use them in none Ravnica D&D settings.
 

Parmandur

Legend
The Tail Lash is the key trait for the Vaishino, the rest just fills out the race. A Viashino Monk's Tail Lash will gain a lot of benefit from being a monk, same with a Valshino Paladin eventually, thanks to Divine Smite and Improved Divine Smite. A Viashino battle master could be interesting as well, using manvuevers with the Tail Lash could be very interesting, perhaps even knocking an enemy back before it can complete the attack that triggered the Tail Lash.

Veladkyn can choose Thieves Tools and say Slight of Hand with a d4 bonus to take on a very roguish ability, even as say a Wizard. Still honestly I'd add back the Aether (or setting equivilant) feature to the race on top of this, not instead of.

I'm pretty happy with these races, they provide interest play opportunies, but I think they need a side bar on how to use them in none Ravnica D&D settings.

I've no doubt that the book will have some sort of "using this material in other D&D settings," very much WotC modus operandi.
 

It wasn't pushed back, as such: Mearls hinted it is coming soon, but Crawford said point blank it wouldn't be August when asked.

The fast turnaround is because Hasbro publishes in the US rather than China (which contributes to the book cost).

One of the authors working on the Eberron stuff was the first to leak on Twitter that Artificer would be this month, then Mike added fuel to the fire before it had to be shut down.

And I am glad that the books are printed in the US. We save all that time wasted in the ship transit time and, with all the new tariffs between the US and China, the books could actually have been more expensive than they are now, or the same price but with lower page counts.
 

Parmandur

Legend
One of the authors working on the Eberron stuff was the first to leak on Twitter that Artificer would be this month, then Mike added fuel to the fire before it had to be shut down.

And I am glad that the books are printed in the US. We save all that time wasted in the ship transit time and, with all the new tariffs between the US and China, the books could actually have been more expensive than they are now, or the same price but with lower page counts.

Nobody gave any hard dates until Crawford's clarification cut to the chase. Fully expect that we will see it soon. If anything delayed it, I'd actually suspect Mearls epiphany on summoning mechanics, and maybe we'll see those introduced for testing alongside the full class details.
 





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