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D&D 5E Variant Monk that uses Strength instead of Wisdom?

Charlaquin

Goblin Queen
I know a lot of people do that, but every time I've started a character at any level other than 1, forever after feel like that character isn't really legitimate, and I just don't get as invested in them or as attached to them.
Yeah. On paper the idea that levels 1 and 2 are tutorial levels and that you can just start at level three made sense. In practice though, it just doesn’t feel right. Of course, it doesn’t help that some classes get their subclasses at level 1 or 2.
 

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pming

Hero
Hiya!
I don’t see why it would need any more justification than “I want to use the Monk’s abilities on a big, dumb bruiser character.”
...in which case just call it a "Brute Monk", sub in "STR" anytime it says "WIS", and rename the abilities. Done.

Ki = "Power"
Patient Defense = "Come At me Bro!"
Step of the Wind= "SURPRISE [MF]...!"
Deflect Missiles = "Iron Skin"
Slow Fall = "Didn't Hurt"
...etc...etc...etc

My question is this: Why are so many people fixated on "new powrz...pew pew pew!!!!"? A couple ranames, a subbed out skill or ability score for something (or all), and some creative fluff. That's ALL you need. If you want to make it really distinctive...then take out two or so of the Classes original abilities and just create two or so new ones. For example, replace the Monks "Evasion" with "Take it Like a Man!" where in stead of 'dodging' out of the way with being able to make a Dex save to avoid it, make it any time you need to make a Con save to avoid or take half. Or something more exotic.

shrug

I played a "Zangief" style monk back in 1e. He was a helluva lot of fun! How? Pretty much just did the monk thing, but reworked the fluff and I (with DM approval) came up with a suitable backstory/world-fluff (keep reading...). Don't think there really was any mechanical changes, to be honest. Wait. I think I was Chaotic in stead of Lawful. ( --> ) I think he got to... level 5 or so? He was a "Practitioner of Kordean Kombat" (Kord is a Greyhawk deity of Strength, fyi; he's CG). Just think huge, muscular Celt with a kilt and a penchant for drinking faaar too much and picking fights with those willing to wager. :)

^_^

Paul L. Ming
 


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Guest 6801328

Guest
My question is this: Why are so many people fixated on "new powrz...pew pew pew!!!!"?

I don't think your phrasing will accomplish much, because anybody thinking that way will be insulted and therefore unreceptive to the message.

At the same time, it is worth observing that when people talk about a "concept" it can seem like it is driven less by the narrative picture and more by "I want both Power A and Power B, and currently there's no way to get them at the same time."

EDIT: And, really, I think what is often going on is not just Power A and Power B, but a whole list. Some players want, effectively, a la carte character design, where they get everything on their wish list, without having to give anything up.

In another thread I proposed a Str-Wis monk subclass. The unappealing part of it is, of course, that you either have to invest in three ability scores, or simply accept the trade-offs and decide what's most important to you. I see the idea proposed in this thread (simply swapping in Str for Wis) as an attempt to get all the goodies without having to make trade-offs. But games are all about making trade-offs.
 
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Warpiglet-7

Adventurer
I messed with the idea.

one level of barbarian then monk. Con and dex vs wis and dex.

i was thinking half orc....

but then I remembered I don’t like monks. I was going for a hulk rager with big fists
 

G

Guest 6801328

Guest
I messed with the idea.

one level of barbarian then monk. Con and dex vs wis and dex.

i was thinking half orc....

but then I remembered I don’t like monks. I was going for a hulk rager with big fists

I would like to see an open-hand barbarian subclass. Maybe I'll try to brew one up....
 

Dausuul

Legend
EDIT: And, really, I think what is often going on is not just Power A and Power B, but a whole list. Some players want, effectively, a la carte character design, where they get everything on their wish list, without having to give anything up.
I won't say that doesn't happen, but there is also an issue where your image of the character you want to play ("big muscular master of fisticuffs"), and the game mechanics you want to use for that concept (monk), are arbitrarily prevented from working together because the monk mechanics are shackled to specific ability scores.

It isn't like swapping Wisdom for Strength gives you a more powerful character. Strength saves are not nearly as common or important as Wisdom saves. Strength controls one skill, Athletics, and much of what it can do for you is already covered by monk class features; Wisdom controls five skills, and one of them is Perception, the single most important skill in the game. What else do you get? Greater carrying capacity? That's less than exciting for a class that doesn't wear armor.

Ability scores are a pox upon D&D. They add needless complexity to chargen, and hamstring concepts, like this one, which would otherwise be perfectly valid. We're stuck with them, because they have been in D&D since the beginning and are thus the sacredest of sacred cows, but I applaud any effort to reduce their importance. (I'm a huge fan of Tasha's move to floating racial bonuses, despite the hacky implementation, and I hope a more polished version becomes the baseline in 6E.)
 

G

Guest 6801328

Guest
I won't say that doesn't happen, but there is also an issue where your image of the character you want to play ("big muscular master of fisticuffs"), and the game mechanics you want to use for that concept (monk), are arbitrarily prevented from working together because the monk mechanics are shackled to specific ability scores.

I don't disagree with that. I'm not saying that the "big muscular master of fisticuffs" shouldn't have Strength, just that Dexterity is unnecessary to the concept.

It's true that Wisdom is also unnecessary, but without Wisdom it doesn't feel monk-like, and including Dexterity makes it feel like...well, trying to get the best of all worlds. The monk is a combination of the physical and the mental. Switching it to physical-physical kind of defeats that.

Ability scores can have different meanings. "Wisdom" score doesn't have to mean deeply reflective and full of clever Buddhist aphorisms. It could simply mean solid, unflappable, unafraid. In that sense it's very appropriate to the concept.

And, really, if you also wanted to shed the idea of self-control, then I do would think you'd want a Barbarian subclass.
 

jgsugden

Legend
I didn't mean to offend by asking about the fluff surrounding the mechanics - I was just curious how you envisioned a character and why they were a monk as opposed to a barbarian with the brawler feat. What role in this role playing game is being filled.

I have seen a homebrew monk (I think on these boards) subclass that was actually 3 subclasses. As the monk depends upon two stats, they tend to turn out similarly state wise in most (though not all) games. This subclass, I believe inspired by Matt Mercer's Cobalt Soul Monks, allowed the Monk to branch out and have a focus on a third attribute. When the monk attained 3rd level, they picked a focus (Strength, Intelligence or Charisma). From there on, whenver they gained a level of monk and the Wisdom was higher than that attribute, that Attribute increased by one. They added that attribute bonus to their damage with their first attack each round, as well. They also gained a proficiency which had to be used for a skill based on that ability score. I don't recall what they had at higher subclass offering levels specifically, but it was tied to their choice of ability scores. I took it offline and tweaked a version for my game, but scrapped it when I had another campaign specific idea to address the ASI challenges of the monk.
 





Ancalagon

Dusty Dragon
I know a lot of people do that, but every time I've started a character at any level other than 1, forever after feel like that character isn't really legitimate, and I just don't get as invested in them or as attached to them.
I can see the point, but I think you can "earn" your level 3 by explaining the early adventures that brought you there (ie your backstory).
 

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