Weapon and Armor categories and training in them. Do we still need them?

Horwath

Hero
I appreciate the attempt to balance the weapons and armours logically. The official ones are a bit of a mess. With armours particularly there are just a lot of utterly pointless choices.

But I don't understand or approve the idea of getting rid of proficiencies. Having proficiencies allows us to have some weapons and armour that are better, the cost just is that you need a proficiency to use them. Also, the armour and weapon proficiencies are in the purview of the martial classes, so just giving their stuff to everyone for free seems really unfair. Martials really don't have too much unique stuff!
I agree that martials get fewer "unique" stuff, but weapons and armor proficiency are not that special.

And how is martials niche will be affected if wizard has a greatsword proficiency?

Let's take 5th level wizard and 5th level barbarian.
And give wizard highly unlikely 14 STR.
Barbarian will have 18 STR as expected.
VS. AC15 target. Barbarian uses rage and reckless attack(as they do 99% of the time)

greatsword(2d6);

wizard: DPR; 4,5
barbarian: DPR; 21,84

I dont see barbarian losing too much sleep over wizard that is doing 1/5th the damage with the same weapon.
wizard will do DPR; 6,6 with firebolt.
 

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delericho

Legend
I'm also in the camp of wanting to keep simple/martial weapon and light/medium/heavy armour proficiencies.

There are two changes I would make: I would get rid of classes with specific weapons being listed - if a class is proficient with any martial weapon, I'd just give them proficiency with all martial weapons; but I'd also drop some of the existing proficiencies. In particular, if proficiency represents those things a character is especially good at, I wouldn't give Wizards or Sorcerers any weapon proficiencies.
 

Minigiant

Legend
Supporter
If anything we need MORE ARMOR and WEAPON categories.

WEAPON: basic, simple, martial, superior, exotic

ARMOR: light medium heavy superheavy

My barbarian, GORE! and his/her 1d14 doomaxe and beasthide armor appreciates it.
 

Hussar

Legend
I could get behind more categories. 2e’s weapon grouping rules worked well. And I could see having more impact for different weapon types. But it’s hard to do that without getting fiddly.
 

Minigiant

Legend
Supporter
I could get behind more categories. 2e’s weapon grouping rules worked well. And I could see having more impact for different weapon types. But it’s hard to do that without getting fiddly.
I could see shifting many can't fail weapons like daggers and clubs to a Simple category for wizards and commoners as well as creation of some "wackier" and niche weapons like scythes, spiked chains, war-staffs, and double weapons to a Superior or Exotic categry that only fighters start with access to.
 

Hussar

Legend
Personally, I'd LOVE to see a rules module where your weapon damage is based on your class and level. Similar to how cantrips work for casters. A wizard using a longsword still only deals d4 damage while that high level fighter deals 4d8. Just do away with weapon proficiencies entirely and scrap extra attacks while we're at it.
 

...longswords. that's. that's longswords. two-handed finesse weapon. that's literally just a longsword.
Eh. The entire reason to put both hands on a weapon is to improve the force and leverage you can exert on it. However force and leverage are functions of Strength, and by definition don't do anything for finesse weapons, which apparently are dependent upon the grace and balance of their user, not force and leverage.

All else being equal, the stronger you are, the better you can use a longsword. You have more control over the blade in terms of changing its direction, your cuts are faster and shorter, giving your opponent less time to react, and you can control your opponent's weapon more effectively. Dexterity is useful, but more for defence, which is already covered in the mechanics.

but yeah i didn't even look at the strength requirements for the armors those are ridiculous lmao. 14 strength to wear a hauberk? i'd be surprised if someone with 12 strength couldn't wear plate without...halving their speed. sheesh.
Yep. I don't think that that level of restriction is necessary to martial-type characters. The current 5e requirements aren't very realistic either, but may be worth keeping for balance's sake. Pushing a secondary ability score above 14 is fairly rare in my experience and does have a cost associated with it, so requiring much higher is unnecessary in my book. There is an argument for requiring a Constitution requirement instead/as well in terms of realism, but probably not worth implementing.

those are put there for balance.

To give STR value over DEX.

So that for AC, you either invest in DEX or STR.

Also, falchion was just an example.
Yep. I understand the intent. I just don't think that I could reasonably tell a player that their reasonably-strong character can't effectively use that plate harness when most of them have seen me wear/worn one themselves.
Likewise most of them know that a falchion is a chopping blade used in one hand rather than a two-handed weapon.
I'd end up with a table full of LARFers and hysterical re-enactors.

But like I said, these are just nitpicks. I could just rename the armours, squashing down the real ones and introducing some fantastical types that would actually require massive strength to wear for that table if I was going to use it and thought that a strength that high was required for balance.

And, finesse weapons cannot be Heavy, so you are losing possibly 2 damage steps with 2Handed weapon.
d12 finesse 2Handed weapon vs. d8 finesse 1Handed weapon, seems about right.
It was a conceptual issue; I wasn't criticising your maths or judgement of balance. ;)

It's not like the monk's fists are bigger or sharper than anyone else's, they just use them better. HP, Armor, Damage, etc are all abstractions anyways.
I agree with the overall point, but monks are magical: That is how they can bypass some physical restrictions. Getting more magical could explain their increased martial arts damage die.
 

And so the unending tide of reductionism marches on...

Edit: To be clear, no, I don't like these ideas. I think this is just another instantiation of the obsession with brevity and the belief that if less is more then none is everything.

These things still have value. Devaluing them further is not the answer.
 

Minigiant

Legend
Supporter
Personally, I'd LOVE to see a rules module where your weapon damage is based on your class and level. Similar to how cantrips work for casters. A wizard using a longsword still only deals d4 damage while that high level fighter deals 4d8. Just do away with weapon proficiencies entirely and scrap extra attacks while we're at it.
I think this should be a fighter and barbarian class feature.

Power strike: When you take the attack action, you can give up your addition attacks from Extra Atracks to add additional damage dice.


Fighter: Roll your weapon dice 2 times for each extra attack.

Barbarian: Roll 1d12 for each extra attack.
 

W'rkncacnter

Adventurer
Eh. The entire reason to put both hands on a weapon is to improve the force and leverage you can exert on it. However force and leverage are functions of Strength, and by definition don't do anything for finesse weapons, which apparently are dependent upon the grace and balance of their user, not force and leverage.

All else being equal, the stronger you are, the better you can use a longsword. You have more control over the blade in terms of changing its direction, your cuts are faster and shorter, giving your opponent less time to react, and you can control your opponent's weapon more effectively. Dexterity is useful, but more for defence, which is already covered in the mechanics.
ok, counterpoint - rapiers exist. the average weight of a rapier is about 1 kg - the average weight of a longsword is about 1.1-1.8 kg, but we'll settle at the median of 1.5 (well, it's actually 1.45, but i'm choosing to round up, you'll see why in a second). it's estimated that having a second hand on a melee weapon increases your effective strength with that weapon by about 50% (this is why 3e let you add half your strength again to attacks made with a weapon you were wielding with two hands). 50% of 1 kg is 0.5 kg, and 1 kg plus 0.5 kg is...exactly 1.5 kg. coincidentally, this also works almost identically with dnd's weapon table - rapiers are 2 lb, longswords are 3, you can do math. it'd be reasonable then, i'd say, to consider two-handing a longsword (or, at least, the kind of longsword dnd seeks to represent and lighter ones) to be approximately equal to using a rapier in terms of finesse.

or, in other words - yes, two-handing a weapon is meant to give you leverage. for at least longswords, that leverage significantly lessens the need to be strong in order to fight effectively with it. hence, two-handed finesse weapon.
 

DND_Reborn

Legend
I'll chime in on the longsword finesse issue:

Our house-rule (and in our Mod) is that any versatile weapon when used with two hands can either:
1. gain the increased damage die size OR
2. gain the finesse property.

Ya can't do both, however. :)
 

I think this should be a fighter and barbarian class feature.

Power strike: When you take the attack action, you can give up your addition attacks from Extra Atracks to add additional damage dice.


Fighter: Roll your weapon dice 2 times for each extra attack.

Barbarian: Roll 1d12 for each extra attack.
This would be rather worse than having the extra attacks.

ok, counterpoint - rapiers exist. the average weight of a rapier is about 1 kg - the average weight of a longsword is about 1.1-1.8 kg, but we'll settle at the median of 1.5 (well, it's actually 1.45, but i'm choosing to round up, you'll see why in a second). it's estimated that having a second hand on a melee weapon increases your effective strength with that weapon by about 50% (this is why 3e let you add half your strength again to attacks made with a weapon you were wielding with two hands). 50% of 1 kg is 0.5 kg, and 1 kg plus 0.5 kg is...exactly 1.5 kg. coincidentally, this also works almost identically with dnd's weapon table - rapiers are 2 lb, longswords are 3, you can do math. it'd be reasonable then, i'd say, to consider two-handing a longsword (or, at least, the kind of longsword dnd seeks to represent and lighter ones) to be approximately equal to using a rapier in terms of finesse.

or, in other words - yes, two-handing a weapon is meant to give you leverage. for at least longswords, that leverage significantly lessens the need to be strong in order to fight effectively with it. hence, two-handed finesse weapon.
I got the impression that then the designers thought "Rapier", they had the image of a smallsword: the sort of thing that you see used in The Princess Bride or Pirates of the Caribbean rather than the historical rapier. (In the same way that the D&D longsword doesn't completely match up the the historical longsword.) You're perfectly correct in that an actual rapier requires more strength than a longsword.
Finesse has a somewhat . . . fuzzy existence, but I view it as being required to allow characters that fit in with some popular media tropes to be optimised.
My personal determination as to whether I think of a weapon as Finesse is the Bruce/Bilbo test: - Assuming that Bruce Lee and Bilbo Baggins have the same skill, and high dexterity, but Bruce has a strength score almost as high, whereas Bilbo's Str is relatively low. If you would imagine the weapon being more effective in Bruce Lee's hands, then power and athleticism have a role to play in its use, and it is probably not finesse.
 

W'rkncacnter

Adventurer
I got the impression that then the designers thought "Rapier", they had the image of a smallsword: the sort of thing that you see used in The Princess Bride or Pirates of the Caribbean rather than the historical rapier. (In the same way that the D&D longsword doesn't completely match up the the historical longsword.) You're perfectly correct in that an actual rapier requires more strength than a longsword.
i mean, maybe, but i also have the impression that if you corrected the designers they wouldn't exactly care. at this point, we're really getting into speculation.
Finesse has a somewhat . . . fuzzy existence, but I view it as being required to allow characters that fit in with some popular media tropes to be optimised.
My personal determination as to whether I think of a weapon as Finesse is the Bruce/Bilbo test: - Assuming that Bruce Lee and Bilbo Baggins have the same skill, and high dexterity, but Bruce has a strength score almost as high, whereas Bilbo's Str is relatively low. If you would imagine the weapon being more effective in Bruce Lee's hands, then power and athleticism have a role to play in its use, and it is probably not finesse.
i mean, by that logic the finesse property shouldn't exist, because i'd imagine bruce lee's athleticism makes him better with any melee weapon then bilbo (which, perhaps, lends itself to your assertion that the finesse property is fuzzy). i don't really think we're going to come to an agreement here, which is fine, but it seems to be a distraction for the thread at large.

I'll chime in on the longsword finesse issue:

Our house-rule (and in our Mod) is that any versatile weapon when used with two hands can either:
1. gain the increased damage die size OR
2. gain the finesse property.

Ya can't do both, however. :)
based...?
 



Reynard

Legend
I don't have an opinion on the mechanics presented in the OP, but I do think the entire subject of the threat underscores the question "What is D&D for?" Is it to tell rollicking adventure stories? Is it to immerse oneself in a fantasy world? Is it to test one's tactical and strategic gameplay skills? Is it to provide a loose framework around which we can bs with our friends over beers and pizza?

Of course it is all of these things to some degree or another, depending on the needs and the desires of the participants. But I think WotC kind of needs to decide what it is, and build it to suit that, because right now it is quite confused. There are "simulation" elements lingering in a system that is mostly built around abstract light gameplay, but then also some relatively granular tactical aspects thrown in.

If they really want a game that does all the things well, they need to deliver the modularity they promised, so one table can play their medieval fantasy simulator while another table plays their Tory generator engine and a third engages in detailed turn based tactics.
 

Hussar

Legend
Heh. A Tory generator engine. Just so many jokes. :)

But I do agree with your point. WotC is trying thread a needle and apparently trying to do it in a windstorm while the tread is on fire. No easy task and one I certainly do not envy.
 

Did they outlived their purpose? And can we just get rid of them?
No & No. Except you can at your table anytime you want and you don't need our permission.

That said, I think this thread (along with the obvious success of 5E) shows that the designers got it right, or close to right. When you stand in the middle, and you have people arguing for more and others for less, then it pretty much means you got in the middle. And if you want a commercial success, aiming for the middle is usually the right choice.
 

OK. Back to discussing the OP:
Now, as for armor:

We already have good tool for armor to lose proficiency categories.
Min STR. Just expand on it and make it work for all armor.

Also return variable max dex for all armors. That way, more armors will be a desirable goal, depending on users dexterity.

ARMORMIN STRACMAX DEXPENALTY
padded8116
leather10126
studded leather12135
hide14144
chainshirt14153stealth
chain mail16162stealth
half plate18171stealth
full plate20180stealth
Buckler/light shield10+15
shield14+23
heavy shield/tower18+31stealth, acrobatics, -5ft speed
If I'm reading this right, there is no longer an AC benefit for going Str-based rather than Dex-based.
This table keeps the max AC through armour at 18, but lets a Dex-based character hit the same AC without needing to invest in Strength or get disadvantage on stealth.

What was the reasoning for this change from the current system?
 

Horwath

Hero
OK. Back to discussing the OP:

If I'm reading this right, there is no longer an AC benefit for going Str-based rather than Dex-based.
This table keeps the max AC through armour at 18, but lets a Dex-based character hit the same AC without needing to invest in Strength or get disadvantage on stealth.

What was the reasoning for this change from the current system?
Well, the armor table can be worked on to make more balance between STR and DEX, maybe full can be at 18 STR with 19 AC and max dex of 0.
Or raise also min STR form lightest armor to 10.

And the change was, to stop fiddling with armor proficiency categories with classes and subclasses.

Also it punishes dumping STR as you are more limited in armor selection, and with min DEX for all armors it also punishes dumping DEX.
 

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