D&D 5E What I Don't Like About Subclasses, and Potential Solutions.

Reynard

Legend
Supporter
Why? The sorcerer and warlock are distinct in both mechanics and fiction. If we're cleaning out the redundant spellcasters then the wizard should be a sorcerer subclass. It doesn't really have distinctive mechanics other than its spell book (which is a fine foundation for a sorcerer subclass) and doesn't really have distinctive fiction other than "guy who casts spells out of book" which is sorcerer with the "out of book" subclass.

Nope. And certainly not a wizard; they'd be a sorcerer if anything.
It is the sorcerer and the wizard that are redundant. The sorcerer is just a wizard with a cool twist. Not worth a class. And if the bard is a full caster, it is just a flavored wizard. If it isn't, then it is a flavored rogue.
 

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It doesn't really have distinctive mechanics other than its spell book (which is a fine foundation for a sorcerer subclass) and doesn't really have distinctive fiction other than "guy who casts spells out of book" which is sorcerer with the "out of book" subclass.
Yeah, the 5e wizard definitely needs something more than spells to define it. Are there any really good Wizard brews out there to replace the official one?
 

It is the sorcerer and the wizard that are redundant. The sorcerer is just a wizard with a cool twist. Not worth a class. And if the bard is a full caster, it is just a flavored wizard. If it isn't, then it is a flavored rogue.
The wizard is a sorcerer with a cool twist, that of the spellbook. Meanwhile different sorcerers have different twists; a Divine Soul sorcerer is a different twist to spellbook, as is the Shadow Sorcerer.

And the bard is not a flavoured wizard in the slightest; the wizard's twists beyond being an arcane caster are Int-based (the bard is clearly charisma based) and the spellbook (again not something the bard gets).
 

I'd turn the Wizard into more of a sage and keep all 13 current classes + add Psion. That would be the perfect PHB for me. Then each class would be designed differently; some classes have multiple decision points, some only have one, some have subclasses, some have menus of features, but the math is consistent through the tiers so as to balance it.

I too believe that class should be distinct in both mechanics and fiction, hence this thought process. I also prefer asymmetrical design that can work together due to similarities in the DNA of said design.
 

I believe in really good onboarding material. i came in with the 1983 Basic set, which has still never been equaled for getting 10 year olds capable of playing and GMing in short order. 2014 5E has some good starter stuff, and one assumes that will continue in 2024 5E.

But the actual game should be written for general users, neither beginners nor masters. Filling rule books and adventures with handholding content makes those books less useful even after a very short period of time. Trust people to be able to figure it out. they will.
Accessibility isn't just "handholding content". You need T1 to be easy, T2 (i.e. the vast majority of the game) to be accessible. And a lot of people already struggle with the number of spells the average seventh level cleric has to juggle.
 

Reynard

Legend
Supporter
The wizard is a sorcerer with a cool twist, that of the spellbook. Meanwhile different sorcerers have different twists; a Divine Soul sorcerer is a different twist to spellbook, as is the Shadow Sorcerer.

And the bard is not a flavoured wizard in the slightest; the wizard's twists beyond being an arcane caster are Int-based (the bard is clearly charisma based) and the spellbook (again not something the bard gets).
Just to be clear, these are the way I see these classes. I am not making any statement about 5E's actual design, just what I would do.
 

Reynard

Legend
Supporter
And a lot of people already struggle with the number of spells the average seventh level cleric has to juggle.
A lot of people can't be bothered to learn how their characters work or buy their own dice. I don't think the game should cater to them, either.
 

Just to be clear, these are the way I see these classes. I am not making any statement about 5E's actual design, just what I would do.
And the way I see them, especially re: the sorcerer and the wizard is that the subclasses need to be cool in their own right. And this is where to me the wizard fails spectacularly. An evocation specialist is just someone who studies books and spends more time studying evocation spells. The wizard is cool, their subclasses either aren't (the schools) or don't flow from the class (the bladesinger could easily be a bard).

Other than the wizard the other class I find redundant is the cleric. Again domains are dull. And the cleric is squeezed; heavy armour and melee? Paladin. "White robe" caster? Divine Soul Sorcerer. Personal relationship as agent of god? Warlock. Man of the wilds and old faith? Druid.

Druid on the other hand has some great subclasses. Druid of the Moon and Wildfire Druid are very different
 

Reynard

Legend
Supporter
And the way I see them, especially re: the sorcerer and the wizard is that the subclasses need to be cool in their own right. And this is where to me the wizard fails spectacularly. An evocation specialist is just someone who studies books and spends more time studying evocation spells. The wizard is cool, their subclasses either aren't (the schools) or don't flow from the class (the bladesinger could easily be a bard).

Other than the wizard the other class I find redundant is the cleric. Again domains are dull. And the cleric is squeezed; heavy armour and melee? Paladin. "White robe" caster? Divine Soul Sorcerer. Personal relationship as agent of god? Warlock. Man of the wilds and old faith? Druid.

Druid on the other hand has some great subclasses. Druid of the Moon and Wildfire Druid are very different
I mean, my whole thesis of the thread is that subclasses are bad and we should not use them at all.
 


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