D&D 5E What (if anything) do you find "wrong" with 5E?


Many many of the things already listed are high on my list but a few I've not see are:
  • The removal of body slots. Attunement was a neat idea but it would be kind to say that attunement use/no is random at best leaving me as the GM to finish that and keep reminding players "no you can't use the +N weapon/armor or whatever from the DMG because yours is attune required". Body slots allowed me as a GM to provide more depth to magic items
    • Kind of a corollary but the removal of bonus types means that I can't limit the power of an item by using a bonus type easily obtained elsewhere like the +1/+2/+3 armor/shield/doodad of protection that all stack with only one actually needing attunement even though most if not all of them in the past were an enhancement bonus that limited their impact.
  • The removal of Flat DR/flat resist & SR. These three collectively allowed monsters to survive more than an eyeblink against a big group. I could add flat DR & maybe even flat resist but I would need to rework every spell & ability to decide which were SR:Yes & which SR:No to add SR back. bolting on SR is not something that I can do without basically rewriting the entire game.
  • The removal of (Sp) (Ex) & (Su) tags on abilities that covered how they interacted with things like antimagic & were subject to AoOs (or not). Someone at WotC removed them in the name of simplicity but it didn't take Wotc long to give players racial/class options that did things like grant advantasge on saves against magic effects & similar that would be covered by them.
  • the dual competing long rest class/short rest class desires coupled with an unreasonable 6-8 encounter expectation thrown at the gm to simple solve is rage educing.
  • I hate the virtual removal of tactical grid combat & having variant/optional DMG rules for it that seem to be written more to thwart making tactical grid combat a meaningful factor as anything but free buffs

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Eyes of Nine

Everything's Fine
Whooo, great stuff here. Stuff I hadn't even realized were bugging me.

The whole skill system bugs me.

The whole feat system bugs me. And now thanks to this thread, I have realized that since it's ASI OR Feat (when allowed), only "best" feats will be used.

Encounter creation bugs me.

Scroll rules are hard to find and bug me.


The 25 wasted pages in the DMG about planes. It’s both uselessly vague, and needlessly specific. And so much space about stuff that’s unclear how to employ…I mean if it informed using the MM monsters from those planes, but it doesn’t significantly enough..

The fecundity of player abilities and the futility of trying to track them all on the standard character sheet.

The lack of a couple pages in the PHB on maintaining a character sheet…I‘m floored they thought it was obvious.

Monsters in WotC monster books. Not a 5e rules problem. Nice pictures, nice flavor, not enough “one weird trick”. And no paragraph about how they fight. Like, for low level baddies, Goblins are nigh on perfect Monster design, kudos. Nimble Escape gives them so much to work with tactically, but how would an inexperienced DM know what to do with that at a glance? I get they don’t want to constrain creativity, but a couple sentences to give people a start is needed. I don’t think the ”bag of hit points” problem is as bad as people make it out to be, but at first glance it is. The monsters know what they’re doing guy for example has done a lot of heavy lifting for WoTC, made their boring interesting, but shouldn’t take third party to make MM guys interesting.

Weapon diversity and variety.

Passive Perception. I know I’m kind of alone on this Cause every time I mention People kinda blank stare me. But in published adventures the main use of it is for static stuff Like traps and doors. Which is design example for making your own adventures. For static stuff it’s open to meta gaming, hit 15 and notice much more, hit 20 and see virtually everything. And whether I prep prepared adventures or make my own I know in advance my party’s highest PP. So assigning a DC 15 to see the trap is pointless if I know Velvet Firecrow has a 16 PP. I get she may be distracted, and I get she may be trailing behind but those edge cases are rare. For the most part I know in advance what she can and can’t see...so DC aside, DM chooses the DC or approves it knowing the outcome. I don’t know in advance iif anyone in the party will be buffed, but DC and innate PP aside, if party made the effort to boost point persons PP high, rule of cool says I reward with they notice. Now it has value when baddies are trying to sneak by. Except that’s a contested role, i role the baddies stealth against their PP w/o their knowledge. Which is a game the DM plays alone, the other players at the table don’t even know it’s happening. And while that rewards party members for buffing their PP the game aspect of it is hidden from them so the drama is mine alone. Which is pointless For table fun. I don’t have any idea how to do it better, I just don’t think it really does all people think it does Very well.
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Don’t get me wrong Passive Perception is great for monsters…cause there’s drama in the sneak…10 + 2..eek, maybe? We’ll you’re lucky, he just got a Ninja Burger delivery 5 minutes ago and is scarfing down so was -5, you make it by. I just struggle with it for players.


Having a discussion with some players this evening and I wanted to ask the general community here:

What do you find "wrong" with 5E?

Now, "nothing" is a perfectly acceptable response if you are completely happy with 5E as it is. ;)

But, if there is something (a class, features, mechanics, or whatever) that bothers you or you feel was not handled correctly, and you feel like sharing, please do. :)

Proficiency bonus for combat increases at the same rate for Warriors as it does for Wizards and Rogues.

Some subclasses just don't seem to match the class they are matched to.

No Bastard Swords. What used to be the longsword is a rapier, what used to be a Bastard Sword is a Long sword.

Limitations on DEX to AC.

That said...DEX is overpowered...shouldn't have it as an optional usage for bonus to hit and damage in combat.

Not all saves are even. Everyone has a weak save instead of being able to eventually be good at all saves (even if took a LONG time).

Where are my wild elves?

Primarily it's the armor & weapons being terrible. Having a magic item on the standard equipment list bugs the crap out of me too.

I'm not a huge fan of 3E multiclassing, and most of the feats are garbage (GWM & PAM power level should be the norm). Since they're optional rules, they bother me less than the equipment.


People already mentioned a decent number of things that I find annoy me (six saves, option to get primary ability to 20 way too soon, etc.), but what I primarily don't like is that the rulebooks are not readable. I used to read my 2e rulebooks all the time, and this continued to 3e as well. The fourth edition brought a stop to that, it was just like reading a technical manual, and while the look of the things changed with 5e, the feel didn't. This goes doubly so for the monster descriptions. AD&D 2e MM monster entries werebfantastic, IMO. All later-edition versions, not so much.


Limit Break Dancing
It's not perfect--far from it--yet it's maybe the best edition I've played. I mean, don't get me started on the upside-down math of BECM, or the endless grind of 3.5E, or the (oft-repeated problems) with (older edition). There are things I would like to do differently in 5E, and style choices I don't agree with, but I can't think of anything truly wrong with it.


In terms of what's in the books, probably most of it. In terms of what is actually used, very little.

What I mean by that is that the core of the game (combat in the first two tiers) got hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of hours of playtesting, and it really shows. And since that's the majority of what I need the game to support me with, most of the time it plays like a dream. And that's enough to make it the best version of the game I've played.

(Oh, and the rulebook in the Essentials Set is outstanding. I've found that the game actually plays better if you treat that as "the rules" and the core books as the first set of mega-expansions.)

But everything else is half-assed. Some of the niche character classes (notably Ranger and Monk) don't seem to work, the game as a whole starts to creak by 10th level and from there the support available plummets rapidly. The character sheet is just barely enough for people to use, but poor enough that a multitude of amateurs on here have done better. And the PHB index is remarkable in its awfulness - an auto-generated index would have been better, meaning that someone went in and carefully made it worse.

Support for the exploration and interaction pillars is spotty at best. Which is a description that applies to almost all of the DMG as a whole - it covers all the topics that a DMG 'should' cover (except one), but covers all of them in a very cursory way. There's basically nothing for an experienced DM here. And there's nothing for a new DM either - the one topic the DMG deliberately doesn't cover is how to learn to DM.

The game also seems to make loads of nods towards styles of play, only to fiercely undercut them - the Ranger and the Outlander have features that mean that players who want to interface with the "foraging for supplies" bit of exploration are instead handed an auto-win. Encumbrance is both too fiddly and too generous (and bags of holding too common) meaning that any idea of running a game of limited resources quickly disappears. And likewise the light cantrip and the ubiquity of darkvision means that any DM who wants light levels to be a realistic level of challenge gets to watch as their players trivially sidestep it.

The monster design is frequently uninspired and uninteresting - big bags of hit points that exist basically to allow the PCs to show off all their cool moves. I guess that's fine, since it generally means the players have fun, but it really could be better.

Then there are the adventures. "Lost Mine of Phandelver" is outstanding, and "Curse of Strahd" is very good (albeit deeply flawed). But the rest range from mediocre to abysmal (and not in a good way). Worse, very often the climax is also pitched at way too high a level for the actual PCs, which means they've had to build in a 'cheat' - Tiamat is weakened by passing the portal, the demon lords have beaten the tar out of each other first, the PCs have extremely powerful giant allies... Again, I guess the players have fun, but it's a great way to undercut their achievement.

I've said enough, so I'll stop before I get to the fairly dire rules supplements or Ravenloft...

It's incredibly frustrating - as I said, the core experience is probably the best of any edition so far. I've had great fun running it, and really wouldn't trade it for any of the other editions. But the flaws...


Class being most everything. Race and background being tangental. Would like the character be more three input driven.
I would very much like to see backgound being more important at the start of the game but then rapidly falling by the wayside (as the characters move away from where they've been).

I would like race to be a bit more relevant for longer (giving all races some abilities that they gain, or improve, over time - as with drow and dragonborn). That said, I strongly suspect recent events will make race much less important over time, not moreso.

But I do think that class is rightly the biggest choice in the game.

John Lloyd1

I would say the framework for creating adventures and NPCs should be more like Sly Flourish's. I just don't find it useful. Okay for adventure hooks but it needs more. And 10 sentences on an NPC is more than I can keep in you immediately after I've created them, let alone during play.


I'm not that happy with short and long rests

Yes. Think how much better Warlocks and Arcane Archers would work with encounter powers. It's been a decade since 4e, so we could put that back in without everyone freaking out.

EDIT: If the purists will still scream over wording saying "you can use this ability once per encounter," just say you can use it every ten or fifteen minutes. Still a better system than short rests, which a party can either always get or never get, depending on the DM.
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Magic in the game is just...wrong...in SO many ways. (spammable cantrips, concentration for everything, saves every round to end effects).
Character death is pretty much off the table.
Related to above, healing ALL hit points lost after a single night of rest.
So many "goofy" races (tabaxi, tortles, dragonborn, etc.) makes it feel like an Anime game.

Honestly, I could keep typing for hours...

Sadly, 5E is still the "best" version of D&D made by WotC. I really miss TSR D&D. :(

Most major offenders (for me) have already been mentioned here (layout/content structure, skill system, too many player abilities to keep track of). In addition:
  • advantage is both too coarse-grained and overused (it's one of the main examples, where the design of 5e is not bad, but rather weak - there was a good analysis with more examples of weak design in 5e a while back, by, I think, @Ruin Explorer, but unfortunately I can't find it right now)
  • in a similar spirit: classes working on the same spell list (reducing distinction between classes)
  • the main character development decision is made at level 3, and that's it (whereas e.g. Shadow of the Demonlord has 4 decision points and even something lightweight like Warlock! has 2)
  • No updated version of the FRCS (this has been discussed in the lore thread - basically a 320 page book summarizing major developments and status quo would do)
There's more stuff that bothers me personally (e.g. I prefer spell-less rangers, no Tieflings and Dragonborn as player races), but I wouldn't consider them bad/weak design and they bug me less than the stuff mentioned above.
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I agree with many of the issues noted above. Namely I would like to see more interesting and challenging monsters, more opportunities for customizing my PC abilities and gear (I want to spend gold!) and better rules for social and exploration.

For for me high level play needs a lot more thought. More interesting monsters would help here, as would 'stretching' out the CR of monsters (like making giants higher level), and I am not convinced that the math works great after 12th level.

I have played a lot of 5e and like it a lot but I am finding the limitations more and more apparent,


I've been playing 5e D&D for well over a year now (my party is currently in Hell. :p Baldur's Gate: Descent into Avernus). My current issues with 5e are:

1) Having to decide between an ASI and a Feat. It's an either/or thing. I liked how 3e allowed you to have both.

2) Two-Weapon Fighting and the Fighter class. There are no official Fighter subclass that addresses the number of attacks you can make with your primary hand and your offhand. Once you are past 5th level, the number of attacks you can make with either hand becomes rather lopsided. And it gets worse if you decide to make an additional attack with Action Surge. Kudos to Level Up: A5e for fixing this problem.
On a related note, why aren't there any subclasses that are based off of a particular Fighting style?

3) No Double Weapons.

I agree with everyone else's comments here. I also like to think Level Up: A5e has fixed some of these issues.

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