D&D 5E What I want from 5e

Greg K

For myself, starting with 3e as a base, here are many of things that I am going to want from a 5e to pull me away from Savage Worlds, True20 and other games. I will add more later

1. General:
a. Fewer Absolutes as per Sean Reynolds web articles (The basic idea was in my pre-3e questionaire and feedback to TSR's Pickens)
b. Remove Level Drain
c. Remove 3e XP costs.
d. Balance between classes
e. ditch x/day
f. Leave "Back to the Dungeon" behind. It is (or can be) a big world ripe for exploration and adventure. The dungeon should be one possibility or something never seen depending upon the campaign.
g. The number of fights varies between groups and/or specific adventures. People mention that they may go a session or multiple sessions without combat.
h. Anything like 4e milestones should reflect f and g above.
i. OGL!

2. Ability Scores
a. Do not go with 4e's choose from multiple ability scores for Defense bonuses. All stats should matter to all characters. Dump stats should be felt!

b. No using Int, Wisdom or Charisma to hit by default for martial melee or ranged attacks bonuses to hit. I would look at Savage Worlds Tricks and Tests of Wills.

c. No using Con to hit or for damage from martial attacks.

3. Races:
a. Non Biological abilities: I like 4e stripping out most of the non-biological abilities. This is something that I wanted in 3e. Non-biological abilities should be campaign/culture/background specific depending upon the setting. What if the elf or dwarf was raised by humans? What if dwarves in a campaign have lived in a swamp rather than underground for generations?

b. Keep the 3e default races in the PHB. Save Dragonborn and Tiefling for their own supplements.

c. I do like the Eladrin, Elf , Drow split. I think this works better than all of the pre 4e subtypes.

d. keep strength size penalties for the short races. I don't care if it is a lift/carry penalty.

4. Hit Points: Make them less abstract and not increase with level.
a. luck or divine intervention can be handled with action points/hero points
b. skill can be handled with full defense, combat expertise, and some kind of bonus from BAB.

5.Action Points: I would go with something along the lines of True20 Conviction/M&M Hero Points

6. Classes (General)
a. Class Armor and Weapon Proficiency is not gained via multiclassing. After first level, these proficiencies are gained via feats (including class bonus feats)*
b. Class Defense/Save Bonuses are not gained via multiclassing. After first level, take an appropriate feat*
c. Classes: Fighting, Adept (cleric, priests, shamans, psychics, sorcerers, wizards), Skill Monkey, hybrid of Fighting and Skill monkey, hybrid of hybrid and spell casting, hybrid of spellcaster and skill monkey,
d. Regardless of class, everyone should get a decent amount of skills.

e. less prescription. I don't want Mearls or anyone ele telling me that a cleric of deity x casts resurrection or even that the cleric hsas to heal. That should be based upon the DM,the deities in their campaign, and whom the cleric/priest worships.

* A and B help ensure that the initial class matters

7. Classes: Powers: Lose the hundreds of spells/powers:
a. For Magic and Psionics, I would look to Savage Worlds, Hero and M&M 2e. I would not add all the modifiers of the latter, but I prefer their breakdown- I would probably go with a more Savage Worlds approach- e..g, generic bolt, blast, and burst and throw in some rules fto differentiate between arcane casting, alchemy, and divine casting. Then, I would throw 4e keywords on top of that based upon trappings.

b. For Martial maneuvers and Powers: I would ditch 4e martial powers. I would make 4e's page 42 look more like the Book of Iron Might maneuver system which was written by Mearls and published under Monte Cook's Malhavoc. I would also look at Savage Worlds Tricks and Tests of Wills.

8. Backgrounds, Themes, Builds
a. I like the idea of builds and themes to represent cultural backgrounds,
b. Builds: Whether 3e class variations from the Unearthed Arcana and the spelless variants of the Paladin and Ranger from Complete Champion or 4e clas s builds, I think customization examples should be included to show how classes can be tailored to meet archetypes.

9. Multiclassing
a. Require training by default.
b. Does not grant the new class's armor and weapon proficiencies
c. Does not grant the new class's defense/save bonuses
d. Some classes should require feat prequisites to enter:

9. 3e Prestige Clases/ 4e Paragon Paths/4e Epic Destinies are optional as in 3e and not mandatory for "tiers"

10. Skills:
a. Take the 3e skills system, combine Hide and Move Silent into Stealth, Listen and Spot into Perception or break down some the 4e skills to be less broad.
b. No automatic increases based upon level except as an option

11. Feats: Lose the hundreds of feats: I would look to Edges from Savage Worlds for a better implementation.

12. Equipment:
a. Save the tanglefoot bags, thunderstones, spiked chains, halfling riding dogs, etc. for supplements

13. Add 4e disease track or Star Wars Saga condition track

13. Combat
a. add the Death and Dying save, but have them work more like 3e Unearthed Arcana
b. Use the disease track to represent long term injuries
c. add something like Savage Worlds Tricks and Tests of Wills
d. P.42 for combat should work more like Malhavoc's Book of Iron Might. Show us how to build maneuvers on the fly including "riders" (e.g., push, pull, blind, daze, etc.)

14. Saving Throws
a. a single progression shared by all classes. Give each class a modifier or modifiers based on their initial class. Any other bonuses come from the appropriate ability score, magic items, or temporary bonuses.

15. Magic Items
a. Should not be required
b. Magic Item Creation should work similar to Artificer's Handbook (Mystic Eye Games)

14. Planes: I like the Feywild.

15. Deities: Greyhawk deities should be those presented by Gygax in Dragon magazine. Forgotten Realms deities should be those from 1e and 2e. Other settings should have their own unique deities not a mishmash of various settings.

16. Setting
Don't build setting info into the the core rules/generic supplements. Keep feats and spell names generic, (no naming feats after specific deities or monsters). For core books, place the setting info (including default deities) into an appendix as an example that can be used rather than forcing that info on to those of us that don't want to deal with it.

17. Packaging:
a. Class supplements should be focused on individual classes.
b. Each new race should be introduced in its own supplement. Let each race fall or succeed on their own merit. I don't want to have to pay for Wilden, Shardminds, etc just to get other info. Similarly, if their is a race that I like, I don't want to have to pay for the other stuff that I do not want. I would like to get more indepth information on what interests me.
c. New classes: see races above.

d. Planes: each plane product should be is its own supplement. The Abyss book should contain all of the Demon Princes (Demogorgon, Orcus, etc.) and all the major and minor demons. Similarly, the Hell book should include the rulers of each level, the consorts and the greater and lesser demons from past editions. 4e's parceling of these things through various products was a disappointment.

18. Other things that I would prefer, but probably won't happen
a. Level and XP only being used as when you gain new things (no immunity to certain spells)
b. Hit Die does not grant immunity to spells or special attacks
c. Spell effects (e.g, sleep) determined by how much you fail for the "Save and Suck" spells.
b. Skills for Melee Armed Melee, Unarmed Melee, Missile, Throwing, Spell targeting
a. Ditch Hit Poiints for a True 20 Damage save
b. Armor absorbs damage

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