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D&D 5E Unearthed Arcana: Gothic Lineages & New Race/Culture Distinction

The latest Unearthed Arcana contains the Dhampir, Reborn, and Hexblood races. The Dhampir is a half-vampire; the Hexblood is a character which has made a pact with a hag; and the Reborn is somebody brought back to life.

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Perhaps the bigger news is this declaration on how race is to be handled in future D&D books as it joins other games by stating that:

"...the race options in this article and in future D&D books lack the Ability Score Increase trait, the Language trait, the Alignment trait, and any other trait that is purely cultural. Racial traits henceforth reflect only the physical or magical realities of being a player character who’s a member of a particular lineage. Such traits include things like darkvision, a breath weapon (as in the dragonborn), or innate magical ability (as in the forest gnome). Such traits don’t include cultural characteristics, like language or training with a weapon or a tool, and the traits also don’t include an alignment suggestion, since alignment is a choice for each individual, not a characteristic shared by a lineage."
 
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Russ Morrissey

Russ Morrissey

DMG vs. Volo's:
Goblin: +2 Dex on both

DMG has -2 str, Volos has +1 Con. Volo's also has Fury of the Small, which is not in the DMG.

Kenku: +2 Dex on both

DMG has no further bonuses, Volos has +1 Wisdom. DMG has Ambusher trait, Volo's has Expert Forger and Kenku Training.

Kobold: +2 Dex on both, both also have a Str penalty (-4 in DMG, -2 in Volo's)

There is a sizable difference between -2 and -4. And Volo's was errata'd to not have the -2 Strength. Also, Volo's added Grovel, Cower and Beg


Orc: +2 Str, -2 Int on both (Volo's just gives them +1 Con as well)

And then was errata'd to not have the -2. And on top of Volo's giving them the +1 Con they also got Menacing and Powerful Build.

Also, if you look at the version on DnD beyond, they changed Menacing to Primal Intuition, so even Volo's is out of date for them at this point.

It is true that the hobgoblin and lizardfolk are completely different, however. (Though the DMG hobgoblin has no adjustments at all, so they might have just been concerned about leaving them at a disadvantage with other PC races. Balance issues over "accuracy", again.)

Nevertheless, I don't think you can say "nothing" matches, there are points of correspondence. And it's still consistent with a rethink on the baseline ASIs, rather than a suggestion ASIs were never meant to be a baseline trait for the species. (But I do grant that a shift to "PCs are special" could be indicated by Volo's as well.)

Yeah, I think seeing how different they are really tells us that at a minimum, five years ago they changed everything. Not recently. Not with Tasha's. Five years ago.
 

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JEB

Adventurer
"If you wanted" is the key phrase though, isn't it? That is what tells us that, well, if you want them to use it, then you can reference those stats. But, since it requires a desire to apply, then it is not the default state of those NPCs.

Yes, if you want to apply racial features, you can, but it is optional.
Sure, it's optional. If you want to reflect the character's race. By default, you are not. Without racial traits applied, the NPCs are just completely generic statblocks. They can represent anyone because they represent no one.

I never said "zero correspondence"

But, let's start with the back end. If Volo's was when they "changed their mind" because nothing in the Volo's matches the DMG. Then that was back in 2016. So, five years ago. So, no matter what we want to say about anything else, do we agree that 5 years ago represents a change in the game?
A change in how they viewed those particular character races? Sure, that's obvious. A change in how they viewed ASIs for PCs vs. NPCs, in general? Not necessarily. It could as likely be them reexamining those races for balance and flavor purposes, now that they were becoming PC options. You'd have to ask the designers to be sure. (Though I suspect they would be rather coy with the answer at this point, knowing the scrutiny they're under.)

And, no I'm not saying that the DMG chart alone shows that NPCs don't use the ASIs. But add in the MM showing us that we don't need to change them, the DMG no longer being accurate to pretty much anything. It really starts showing that the NPCs are treated differently.
NPCs are treated differently in general, but in the core rules, PCs and NPCs have the same, or at least extremely similar, ASIs.

Yes, but "If you want to do this, here is how" is vastly different than "Every NPC of this race must have these traits."
Of course, because you can customize statblocks however you want. But they only offered one approach to having a NPC reflect racial traits in the Monster Manual and DMG, and that was applying racial traits - either as they appeared in the PHB (with ASIs) or as they appeared in the DMG (also with ASIs).

Disingenuous really?

There are no Subraces for:

Dragonborn
Half-Elf
Half-Orc
Leonin
Satyr
Aarckrokra
Goliath
Bugbear
Goblin
Hobgoblin
Firbolg
Kenku
Kobold
Lizardfolk
Orc
Tabaxi
Triton
Yuan-Ti
Tortle
Changeling
Kalashatar
Warforged
Centaur
Loxodon
Simic Hybrid
Minotaur
Vedalken

And, in past editions, there were subraces for these types of creatures. So, would it really be disingenuous to treat them without a subrace, when the majority of races in the game don't have subraces?
Actually, dragonborn do in fact have subraces, if you count each dragon color. They just all share the same base ASIs. And half-elf subraces were included in Sword Coast Adventurer's Guide (though most folks seem to forget about that book).

In any case, I meant that it would be disingenuous for Wizards to claim that they didn't provide default ASIs for a race on the premise that they had subraces. They were perfectly capable of doing so before. Also, that excuse wouldn't give them cover to avoid providing a default suggested ASI for the base race.
 

JEB

Adventurer
Yeah, I think seeing how different they are really tells us that at a minimum, five years ago they changed everything. Not recently. Not with Tasha's. Five years ago.
Or, seeing how similar most of them still are indicates it was just design evolution, while their fundamental thinking remained the same. Maybe it was a shift in their whole philosophy, maybe not. But the first time they explicitly stated that ASIs for PCs did not match the race in general was last year, ahead of Tasha's.

Short of a statement about their intentions between 5E's launch and what they said last year, we can ultimately only speculate. You are perfectly allowed to assume that Volo's was the turning point on ASIs; but I'll need more evidence than that, when there are other explanations.
 



This entire thread still boils down to players wanting to start with a 16 in their primary attribute.

The whole debate on WotC intent is an origin story. And if the origin story is debunked, then the fear is the house of cards crumbles (even though it doesn't). The point of racial feats and traits can't be overstated, as they are the only difference now between the races. But, that too is a house of cards.

It is all - I want that extra +1. Some may a variety of reasons, but it still boils down to that single mechanic. The great part is, you have your +1. The bad part is, what's next in line that will make the game easier?
 


JEB

Adventurer
This entire thread still boils down to players wanting to start with a 16 in their primary attribute.
I don't think that's quite fair. For some folks, floating ASI is about the numbers, sure. But others believe that fixed ASI held players back, that it limited their options in the game; they see its removal as freeing. And even for those folks who are about the numbers, it's perfectly understandable to want your character to be good at what they do.

It's not right to cast aspersions on folks who want floating ASI, just as it's not right for those folks to make bad-faith accusations when others want character races to have defaults.

But ultimately, there's no reason both stances can't coexist in official D&D. And I hope Wizards keeps that in mind.
 

I don't think that's quite fair. For some folks, floating ASI is about the numbers, sure.
Agree.
But others believe that fixed ASI held players back, that it limited their options in the game; they see its removal as freeing.
Agree. But the question remains, what is holding these players back? If it is not +1, then what is it? With point buy using racial ASIs they can accomplish everything any other race can accomplish outside of that extra +1. So I understand the ideology behind it being freeing, but if you cut through the rhetoric, it still boils down to starting with that extra +. Because with point buy, and player can assign any attribute points, the difference is with some races, they couldn't reach that extra +1. Every other combination is possible to achieve using point buy and racial ASIs.
And even for those folks who are about the numbers, it's perfectly understandable to want your character to be good at what they do.
100% agree. They should be good at what they do. And if for the table, that means they must have that extra 5%, then this is a good thing. But, others view this with a big picture lens.
It's not right to cast aspersions on folks who want floating ASI, just as it's not right for those folks to make bad-faith accusations when others want character races to have defaults.
Agree. I never have. I simply want both sides to see that turning this knob up turns another knob down. Basically, there is no such thing as all knobs at 11. ;)
But ultimately, there's no reason both stances can't coexist in official D&D. And I hope Wizards keeps that in mind.
Truer words could not be said. I am with you.
 

Faolyn

Hero
Okay, then remove all the fluff from the game. 🤷‍♂️
I wasn't aware that fluff and ASIs were the same thing.

This entire thread still boils down to players wanting to start with a 16 in their primary attribute.
And this proves you haven't been paying attention in the slightest. Or that you have your strawman stuck in your head and are refusing to let anything dislodge it. You are basically stating "your fun is wrong" here.

No. This is about giving players the ability to put their floating ASI wherever they want, rather than in some attribute that the racial write-ups demand even if it makes no sense to their character.

Edit: Since you still insist on it being able to start with a 16, consider that there are people who may want to turn the 12 or 13 into a 14 or 15--especially people who are playing a MAD class--or who want to turn the 8 into a 10--especially people who don't imagine their character being that much below average. Stop assuming it's always going to be starting out with a single maxed out stat.

The whole debate on WotC intent is an origin story. And if the origin story is debunked, then the fear is the house of cards crumbles (even though it doesn't). The point of racial feats and traits can't be overstated, as they are the only difference now between the races. But, that too is a house of cards.
This is a really poorly thought-out slippery slope here. If anything, multiple editions of D&D have shown that racial traits have become more important over the editions. For instance, take the half-orc.

In both 1e and 2e (using The Complete Book of Humanoids for 2e), half-orcs got +1 Strength, +1 Constitution, -2 Charisma (but only with humans and demi-humans; they use their full Charisma bonus with other half-orcs), and 60-foot infravision. In 1e, they could apparently be assassins to unlimited levels, while they were limited to being 10th-level fighters. In 2e, they could be 10th-level fighters but 11th-level thieves, as there was no assassin class in that edition. Interesting how they weren't supposed to be powerful fighters, but instead were supposed to be stealthy fighters.

I'll also point out, as an unrelated aside, that in 2e, full orcs didn't get the Constitution bonus (instead getting a dwarf-like ability to detect new construction and sloping corridors), so the weird bit where 5e half-orcs are stronger than full orcs isn't new to 5e. Possibly because PC half-orcs are, as 1e put it, are assumed to be one of the "superior 10% of half-orcs" that could "pass for human." (Yikes.)

In 3e, they got +2 Strength, -2 Intelligence, -2 Charisma, and 60-foot darkvision. Their only trait is Orc Blood, which treats them as full orcs for the purposes of spells, magic items, etc. Those poor orcs. A definitely sub-par race.

In 4e, they got... well, I have no idea how 4e did attributes bonuses, but according to this wiki, when introduced in PH2, they had Dexterity and either Strength or Constitution. They also got Furious Assault, Half-Orc Resilience, and Swift Charge, low-light vision, and skill bonuses to Endurance and Intimidation. This is very similar to how they're portrayed in 5e, although curiously it suggests that they are not all physically strong powerhouses, but they are all quite dexterous. A callback to them being the assassin class in AD&D?

And now look at them in 5e, where they get Strength +2, Con +1, Darkvision, Menacing, Relentless Endurance, and Savage Attacks.

In 1e and 2e, if you take away their ASIs, half-orcs get infravision. In order to be distinguished from the other races, AD&D half-orcs need their ASIs.

In 3e, if you take away their ASIs, half-orcs get darkvision and can use or be affected by certain items, spells, and other things that had the Orc tag. In order to be distinguished from the other races, D&D3.x half-orcs need their ASIs.

In 4e and 5e, if you take away their ASIs, half-orcs get to inflict extra damage, can shrug off death, can move charge their enemies, are very intimidating, and can see in the dark. They are quite distinguished from other races even without their ASIs.

So tell me, what on earth makes you think that they're going to remove any traits, or at least, remove any traits and not replace them with something else, in this edition or in the next? Because right now, you're just clutching at pearls and saying "won't someone think of the children!?"
 
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Sure, it's optional. If you want to reflect the character's race. By default, you are not. Without racial traits applied, the NPCs are just completely generic statblocks. They can represent anyone because they represent no one.

And how is that not exactly what I've been saying?

These statblocks represent NPCs. NPCs do not need Racial traits applied. Therefore NPCs and PCs having different sets of traits is supported by the game.

A change in how they viewed those particular character races? Sure, that's obvious. A change in how they viewed ASIs for PCs vs. NPCs, in general? Not necessarily. It could as likely be them reexamining those races for balance and flavor purposes, now that they were becoming PC options. You'd have to ask the designers to be sure. (Though I suspect they would be rather coy with the answer at this point, knowing the scrutiny they're under.)

NPCs are treated differently in general, but in the core rules, PCs and NPCs have the same, or at least extremely similar, ASIs.

However, if they still thought that NPCs and PCs should have identical ASIs, why have they never released an Errata for the DMG chart?

If they simply redesigned their idea of the monsters, then why not release an Errata to reflect that, if they intended for PCs and NPCs to be treated the same? Why not add the new monster abilities to the new versions of the monsters in Volos?

The Hobgoblin Iron Shadow doesn't have the Save Face racial trait, yet they were released in the same book. Also, for a race known for Con and Int, sure does have a lot strength, dex and Wisdom.
The Nilbog doesn't have the Fury of the Small
The Kobold Inventor doesn't have Grovel, Cower and Beg.

You mentioned that the original orcs had that +2 str, +1 con, -2 Int, right? Here are some fun statblocks to explain then

The Orc Blade of Ilneval has a 10 Int, it is still their lowest stat, with dex at an 11, but I find it interesting.

The Claws of Luthic have 14 str... but also 15 dex, 15 wisdom, and 10 Int.

Orc Hand of Yutrus has a 12 str... but also an 11 Int, 14 Wis, and their lowest stat is actually Cha

The Red fangs have the lowest of the specialty orcs in terms of intelligence with a 9 (the nurtured ones are lower, but they are really more of a side show for the Hands) but an 11 strength but 16 dex. In fact, with a +5 stealth and a 16 dex, they are sneakier and more dexterous than the Drow, Drow Mage and Drow Priesstess of Lolth in the MM.

These orcs definitely all have good Con scores, but two of them have higher dex than their strength, most of them are of average intelligence.

In fact, if you go to the DMG as well, the common orc has a low int (7 lower than any of the volo's orcs except the nurtured one), but the War Chief and Orog have 11 and 12 respectively. Eye of Gruumsh has a 9.

So, 9 printed versions of Orcs, 5 of them have an average or above average Intelligence, two have a 9, which is only a -1, and two have a 7. Does this really look like a race that shoudl absolutely have a -2 Int penalty? The vast majority of their statblocks have at worst a -1 and actually in general are above the average of 10.

I just can't find any support for this idea that we were supposed to have all of these ASIs applying to all of these NPCs. When they don't even apply to all of the monsters.

Of course, because you can customize statblocks however you want. But they only offered one approach to having a NPC reflect racial traits in the Monster Manual and DMG, and that was applying racial traits - either as they appeared in the PHB (with ASIs) or as they appeared in the DMG (also with ASIs).

So... they only designed one way to apply a set of traits for customizing, therefore we are supposed to assume that all NPCs have these traits because that is the only way presented to homebrew them?

Dead wrong actually. You could use the rules from 'Modifying a Monster" on 273. With the Chart of traits on 280 you could then apply many monstrous abilities to whatever statblocks you wanted.

I guess if you want to argue that they only offered one way to add these specific traits that existed in only one form in one place... well, duh? How many other elven abilities would they have tried to give people when elves only had one write-up and it was in the PHB?

Do note though, that when the Eladrin option came out in the Mordenkainen's, the Eladrin monster statblocks are impossible to make with just the Eladrin PC options.

Actually, dragonborn do in fact have subraces, if you count each dragon color. They just all share the same base ASIs. And half-elf subraces were included in Sword Coast Adventurer's Guide (though most folks seem to forget about that book).

In any case, I meant that it would be disingenuous for Wizards to claim that they didn't provide default ASIs for a race on the premise that they had subraces. They were perfectly capable of doing so before. Also, that excuse wouldn't give them cover to avoid providing a default suggested ASI for the base race.

Counting each Dragonborn color as a subrace, when they are not labeled as such, is disingenuous. It also proves my point. Because if you think Dragonborn have multiple subraces under a single statblock, then making a race with a single statblock to represent multiple subraces has been done and is perfectly fine with you.

Or, seeing how similar most of them still are indicates it was just design evolution, while their fundamental thinking remained the same. Maybe it was a shift in their whole philosophy, maybe not. But the first time they explicitly stated that ASIs for PCs did not match the race in general was last year, ahead of Tasha's.

Short of a statement about their intentions between 5E's launch and what they said last year, we can ultimately only speculate. You are perfectly allowed to assume that Volo's was the turning point on ASIs; but I'll need more evidence than that, when there are other explanations.

I think there is ample evidence. Your side is the one lacking evidence. There are few "commoner" "noble" or "guard" statblocks for these races printed. Most of them that are point to my argument. The tables are innacurate, there are multiple routes made available, not just one. Monster Statblocks pretty much never match their PC counterparts in any book.

You can keep believing what you want, but you have no solid evidence that your way was the intended way. We both know it is no changed, and you can't deny a change happened 5 years ago. Whether or not you think that is all of the changes, or they made another exact same change in the exact same way a few years later. Then again here recently... well, I guess that is on you.
 


This entire thread still boils down to players wanting to start with a 16 in their primary attribute.

The whole debate on WotC intent is an origin story. And if the origin story is debunked, then the fear is the house of cards crumbles (even though it doesn't). The point of racial feats and traits can't be overstated, as they are the only difference now between the races. But, that too is a house of cards.

It is all - I want that extra +1. Some may a variety of reasons, but it still boils down to that single mechanic. The great part is, you have your +1. The bad part is, what's next in line that will make the game easier?

I find it amusing that you portray my side of the debate as "a house of cards".

I'm constantly quoting the core books.
I'm constantly pulling up the statblocks
I'm constantly outlining the differences between those books and those statblocks

And you... are constantly accusing us of only wanting the 16, fixating on how impossible it is to make racial feats that aren't class specific and warning us of the slippery slope of the game devolving into child's play easy mode as we erode any semblance of challenge or choice from the game.

One side with evidence, one side with accusations and fear mongering.
 


I find it amusing that you portray my side of the debate as "a house of cards".
I didn't. I even stated:
The whole debate on WotC intent is an origin story. And if the origin story is debunked, then the fear is the house of cards crumbles (even though it doesn't).
I specifically said it is being debated as though your platform were viewed by you as a house of cards. Meaning it is defended so adamantly, that it's as though it is a house of cards. And notice at the end there - where I say it isn't a house of cards. It is a perfectly fine vantage point, and the argument doesn't fall apart either way.
This is another way of saying both sides are correct.
And this proves you haven't been paying attention in the slightest. Or that you have your strawman stuck in your head and are refusing to let anything dislodge it. You are basically stating "your fun is wrong" here.

No. This is about giving players the ability to put their floating ASI wherever they want, rather than in some attribute that the racial write-ups demand even if it makes no sense to their character.

Edit: Since you still insist on it being able to start with a 16, consider that there are people who may want to turn the 12 or 13 into a 14 or 15--especially people who are playing a MAD class--or who want to turn the 8 into a 10--especially people who don't imagine their character being that much below average. Stop assuming it's always going to be starting out with a single maxed out stat.
I have payed attention. And have pointed out numerous examples.
Do this for me, please.
Tell me a character to make. Any character. Any class. Any race. Tell me what you want in the attributes.
I will use racial ASI and point buy to create it. Any vision you have within the ruleset can be created - except for a 16 in the primary attribute.

So I am by no means creating a strawman. I am pointing out that it is about that extra +1.
  • You say it is about player freedom.
  • I point out that you have all the freedom except for an extra +1.
  • You say it is about letting players create a character they want, not a racial trope.
  • I say, the only trope with point buy is in your imagination, except for that extra +.
  • You say people are against you and your way.
  • I say no one is against you. You want to start with 16, go ahead. Cool.

The point is: stop blaming other people. No one here says the optional floating ASI rule shouldn't be used at your table. Stop blaming the need for floating ASI as player creativity and freedom. It's not. It is, in the end, to get an extra +. Why? Because you can build anything you desire using point buy and racial ASIs - except that 16 strength halfling, or the 16 intelligence half-orc or the 16 constitution elf or the 16 dexterity dwarf. Everything else CAN be built.

So my premise is no strawman. It is the actual fulcrum of the argument.

And again, I have stated so many times: let's walk down the road of racial feats or racial traits together and see what we can come up with that will make the races feel unique if we're going to remove racial ASIs. But, my guess is everyone feels the races are unique enough with things like Darkvision, Menacing, Relentless Endurance, and Savage Attacks. To me, those just don't reach the level of uniqueness I want, but I guess I am in the minority there.
 
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So tell me, what on earth makes you think that they're going to remove any traits, or at least, remove any traits and not replace them with something else, in this edition or in the next? Because right now, you're just clutching at pearls and saying "won't someone think of the children!?"
For the record, I never said they are removing any traits. If I have a fear, it is that they make them like ASIs, floating. I prefer the other direction when it comes to racial traits, make more.
 

Faolyn

Hero
For the record, I never said they are removing any traits. If I have a fear, it is that they make them like ASIs, floating. I prefer the other direction when it comes to racial traits, make more.
I love how you ignored everything else I wrote just to address this one little thing that they have in no way indicated any plans to do, and in fact are only adding more and more traits. I guess you're going to continue to state that us floating ASI'ers are only in it for the maxed-out stat.

Edit: The Tasha's Make-Your-Own-PC block is clearly for people who don't want a standard race. It's not designed to replace all races, nor is there any hint that they're planning on making that the only option.

It's entirely possible that, in the next edition, races are going to be "if you want to play an elf, pick X number of the following elf traits" out of a list of, say, 6 or 10 traits that are currently divided into "wood," "high," "dark," "eladrin," whatever subraces. Or "if you want to play a half-elf, pick Y number of elf traits and Y number of traits from another species." But there's no indication, not even a hint, that anything like that is going to happen in this edition.
 
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doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
I’d guess most of us who would prefer to continue to have the lineage writeup tell us things about NPCs as well as about PCs view that as a bad decision.

I wasn't aware that fluff and ASIs were the same thing.

So's your claim that we should toss out fluff when we're talking about rules for nameless NPCs.
Look back at the actual exchange, and it’s quite obvious that you’re responding to me as though both of us have said completely different things from what you are claiming.

I’ve said nothing disingenuous. If the writeup in the phb doesn’t tell us anything about NPCs of a given lineage, then it isn’t useful. If you are going to dismiss that with a nonsensical “reminder” that fluff can be made up by the DM, then there is no reason to keep any fluff in the game.
 

Faolyn

Hero
I’ve said nothing disingenuous. If the writeup in the phb doesn’t tell us anything about NPCs of a given lineage, then it isn’t useful. If you are going to dismiss that with a nonsensical “reminder” that fluff can be made up by the DM, then there is no reason to keep any fluff in the game.
It's very useful. A standard, PH elf is graceful; otherworldly; beautiful; ancient and wise;, have low affect; prefer to solve problems with diplomacy or by outlasting the problem but can be violent if the need arises; typically live in natural surroundings; are very artistic; are even more magical; prefer staying away from outsiders but are sometimes prone to wanderlust; and dislike it when things change to quickly. This, of course, is a very brief synopsis of their description in the PH and doesn't include any of the info from Mordenkainen's, or that was written about them in earlier editions. And obviously, if there was a setting or group of elves that are sufficiently different from that--for instance, the typical evilevilevil Drow, or the elves of Dark Sun--then the fluff would be necessary to differentiate them.

That tells me a lot of what I need to know to run an NPC elf. The elf's job and purpose in the adventure will tell me the rest--including where to put their stats, if I actually need to stat the elf out. That's the part I, the DM, make up.
 

I love how you ignored everything else I wrote just to address this one little thing that they have in no way indicated any plans to do, and in fact are only adding more and more traits.
I address those things. Sorry if you missed it (it was directly after a reply first to Chaos which might be the reason), here is what I said directly after quoting you:
I have payed attention. And have pointed out numerous examples.
Do this for me, please.
Tell me a character to make. Any character. Any class. Any race. Tell me what you want in the attributes.
I will use racial ASI and point buy to create it. Any vision you have within the ruleset can be created - except for a 16 in the primary attribute.

So I am by no means creating a strawman. I am pointing out that it is about that extra +1.
  • You say it is about player freedom.
  • I point out that you have all the freedom except for an extra +1.
  • You say it is about letting players create a character they want, not a racial trope.
  • I say, the only trope with point buy is in your imagination, except for that extra +.
  • You say people are against you and your way.
  • I say no one is against you. You want to start with 16, go ahead. Cool.

The point is: stop blaming other people. No one here says the optional floating ASI rule shouldn't be used at your table. Stop blaming the need for floating ASI as player creativity and freedom. It's not. It is, in the end, to get an extra +. Why? Because you can build anything you desire using point buy and racial ASIs - except that 16 strength halfling, or the 16 intelligence half-orc or the 16 constitution elf or the 16 dexterity dwarf. Everything else CAN be built.

So my premise is no strawman. It is the actual fulcrum of the argument.

And again, I have stated so many times: let's walk down the road of racial feats or racial traits together and see what we can come up with that will make the races feel unique if we're going to remove racial ASIs. But, my guess is everyone feels the races are unique enough with things like Darkvision, Menacing, Relentless Endurance, and Savage Attacks. To me, those just don't reach the level of uniqueness I want, but I guess I am in the minority there.
I really would like to conduct this character creation experiment. Who Knows, maybe I am wrong? But I would like you to give me a race/class combo (outside of the magical 16) that can't be created through racial ASIs and point buy.
 

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