D&D 5E [+] Ways to fix the caster / non-caster gap

Raiztt

Adventurer
I agree that anyone can shove and grapple (with varying success), but I want more maneuvers that buff martials that casters have no access to at all, just like martials do not have cantrips / spells instead of being 80% as effective with them compared to casters
Can you give a concrete example?
 

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Tony Vargas

Legend
Right. When I think of top tier mundane, I think characters like Conan, Batman, Black Widow and James Bond. And I really don't see these as being more than around level ten, if that.
That's actually not entirely unreasonable. A DM could restrict his campaign, or even just specific classes, to a certain Tier or Tiers. So, like, the game reaches level 10, you look at the players of the fighter and thief and "have you picked a new character yet?"

Would be a perfect opportunity to add back Prestige Classes, too.
 



not really, a level 20 human is still a human, not a celestial or fiend / abomination
A human that has bathed in the blood of fey, fiends, dragons, demons, maybe even gods by level 20. Who has been exposed to all kinds of elemental energies and magical effects. Who has used and been wounded by a wide assortment of magical objects. A human who has consumed a wide array of magical potions or alchemical elixirs. Or who may have been killed and brought back to life or reincarnated. A human who may have ventured into Heaven and Hell.

Like this just isn't Bob the security guard whose only life experience is protecting a mall.
 

tetrasodium

Legend
Supporter
Epic
Given how WoW is these days, functionally a properly played spellcaster is effectively on this. Mana loss only comes up on ones who don't have it as their role needing to grab heals when doing a non-healing role. Used to be more of an issue but not nowerdays

The thing is in Warcraft your mage is limited to combat stuff and only very specific combat stuff, so nowhere near D&D's out of combat stuff, and martials in WoW are far more powerful. Sure, your Frost mage can throw out ice spells all day long, but it isn't going to help when you're at the mercy of my fury warrior about to pop Odyn's Fury on you after shattering your ice shield with Shattering Blow, because the crabs and wasp being thrown at me by your teams Beastmastery Hunter are doing little but making the two broadsword wielding dwarf angrier and serving just to refill my health, and your monk just got sapped by my team's rogue


As someone levelling Black Mage in FFXIV, that consists of using Ice spells (which don't cost mana) to build back your mana pool, and then burning it all with Fire spells to do the big damage. Keeping the cycle going between the ice and fire phases long enough also unlocks more powerful spells to drop on people

On the other ones, mana really only comes up as part of the "There is an emergency happening" buttons. I do White Mage as well, a healer class, and that pretty much doesn't run out of mana unless the party has messed up somehow and I am in panic mode stitching everyone back together (and harvesting their pain for the Blood Lily, as you do). Normal operation I can cast forever
Your really going to gloss over the need for weapon and a plethora of other gear? Mmos tend to make the most extreme of 3.x magic item churn rates look positively sedate. 5e of course tries to build a core system around the idea of starting gear being all you ever need despite good reasons in D&D's own history to the contrary, the 2e dmg had almost a whole page talking about the importance of striking a balance with treasure and magic items. If anything this is an example of a "contemporary" spellcaster that 5e's cantrips are not following when it comes to their powerful unlimited no cost automatic scaling innate rapid fire gauntlet style cantrip spam

The juggling of cold fire & mana you describe doesn't sound much like 5es unlimited no cost at will rapid fire cantrips either either, it sounds more like the momentum/velocity/etc type subsystems found in some other ttrpgs.
 
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CreamCloud0

One day, I hope to actually play DnD.
Not having seen a lot of the ideas in the thread, so apologies if this has been mentioned:

To address the issue of "why don't martials do these maneuvers all the time?"...make the resource for those maneuvers hit points.

Since hp represent more than just meat, and they are also a measure of the character's vitality overall, make them what gets spent when pulling off a maneuver.

So, the fighter can use, say, "Whirlwind Strike" which is an attack that targets all opponents within reach and it costs X hit points. When the fighter is weakened (low on hp), she has a hard time pulling off that move. When she's at capacity, no problem. Higher level maneuvers would cost more hp and have greater effects.

A system like this seems to reflect what we see in action movies, comics, etc. It has a natural scale-ability to it, and as a bonus makes in-combat healing more important beyond whack-a-mole.

Like different casters have different lists, different martials would have different lists of maneuvers; maybe rogues have more debilitating effects, and barbarians break armour and knock prone. As well, for people who prefer simple warriors...no problem. Don't use the maneuvers and keep your hit points.

Frankly, I wish this is how sorcerers worked as well.
given that martials already have issues with HP sustainability when they're the ones getting hit in melee range having the additional drain of that limited resource required to perform basic combat maneuvres is really going to be a kick in the teeth to them, i mean, if you want to have spellcasting deal damage to the mages when they cast too that'd probably be a fair compromise.
 

Cadence

Legend
Supporter
A human that has bathed in the blood of fey, fiends, dragons, demons, etc. Who has been exposed to all kinds of elemental.energies and magical. Who has used and been wounded by a wide assortment of magical objects. A human who has consumed a wide array of magical potions or alchemical elixirs. Or who may have been killed and brought back to life or reincarnated. A human who may have ventured into Heaven and Hell.

Like this just isn't Bob the security guard whose only life experience is protecting a mall.

I don't see radioactive spider or gamma rays on your list. ;-) How did being exposed to stuff work out for the original Mar-Vell?
 


Vaalingrade

Legend
That's actually not entirely unreasonable. A DM could restrict his campaign, or even just specific classes, to a certain Tier or Tiers. So, like, the game reaches level 10, you look at the players of the fighter and thief and "have you picked a new character yet?"

Would be a perfect opportunity to add back Prestige Classes, too.
I used to say it as a joke, but why do we even have Fighters at this point if people don't want them able to participate in the oh-so-important 3 pillars (that we can't have rules for one of them anyway because trying to RP a character with social capability above your own is bad and wrong), don't want them doing anything in battle more than attack reliably or repeatably, and don't want them narratively capable of fighting high level monsters by being more badass and powerful than just like... a guy.

It wouldn't be that hard to transfer all the 'violence guy' role over to the Barbarian who gets to be fun because they're really angry or something. Instead of thanking you're a bear, you just swing really big swords or knock people over because 'anghy'. I mean, the folks that won't let the fighter taunt will let the barbar see better because they're so blinded by rage, so we can sneak in all sorts of fantastic fighter tropes by tacking on 'because he is miffed'.
 

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