D&D 5E What is +1 Strength worth?

I think maybe you're misunderstanding the math here. (Or I'm misunderstanding your point.) The 20% is average. On any given turn you can't "count" on anything.

No. I perfectly understand the math. You do miss the point. Mechanically the best choice is correct, but since we are playing a roleplaying game, there are feats like actor which might be a lot more impactful. A +1 bonus here or there makes no (big) difference for the overall outcome of a single battle. It might increase your chance of survival over the course of an adventure, as it might turn miss into a hit at the perfect time, or you might survive with 1 hp or you could keep up concentration if you had +1 more con bonus. The +1 will save or perception check might also help.

And if you had the choice in point buy to have either 15 Str and 8 wis or 13 Str and 13 wis, you would trade a +1 bonus for a +2 bonus. So may be, the opportunity cost to get that mechanically best extra +1 modifier might be too high.
 

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Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
Yup. The +1 STR is small so you don't feel it.

However due to the lower smaller number stacking and reliance on multiple attacks, then +1 STR adds up to a lot.

It's like when you watch a game and it looks close. But when you watch the post-game show and see the stats and realize it was lopsided
Except that the math doesn't bear that out. Even with two attacks, it still takes 2.5 to 5 combats on average to see a single extra hit, and the increase in damage per fight is in the low single digits in points. It gets a bit better at 11th level and 3 attacks, but the vast majority of PCs never get to that level.
 

Minigiant

Legend
Supporter
Except that the math doesn't bear that out. Even with two attacks, it still takes 2.5 to 5 combats on average to see a single extra hit, and the increase in damage per fight is in the low single digits in points. It gets a bit better at 11th level and 3 attacks, but the vast majority of PCs never get to that level.
The point is long term. Not asingleday but fromthe time you take the +1 until the time you can get +1 to something again.

In 5e it's 4 levels at first or 2 level after. +1 STR is bigger deal over multiple levels of play than +1 to most other scores for a STR fighter.

Especially for some scores because your fighter might many combats with the +1 STR does something between you squeak by on a CHA or INT check or saving throw by 1.

My ranger is 9th level in one game and I know I haven't rolled 20 Charisma checks/rolls yet and I've blown up the INT checks I made.
 

Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
The point is long term. Not asingleday but fromthe time you take the +1 until the time you can get +1 to something again.
Long term isn't a thing that happens with it. You don't get to save up the miniscule amounts of damage over the long term and then use them to destroy something. It's just nothing burger after nothing burger until the campaign ends. Sure you may do 1000 extra damage over the campaign, but it's to 500 different creatures that the few points just didn't matter with.
In 5e it's 4 levels at first or 2 level after. +1 STR is bigger deal over multiple levels of play than +1 to most other scores for a STR fighter.

Especially for some scores because your fighter might many combats with the +1 STR does something between you squeak by on a CHA or INT check or saving throw by 1.

My ranger is 9th level in one game and I know I haven't rolled 20 Charisma checks/rolls yet and I've blown up the INT checks I made.
And feats are better yet. More noticeable effects and usually help in more ways.
 

No. I perfectly understand the math. You do miss the point. Mechanically the best choice is correct, but since we are playing a roleplaying game, there are feats like actor which might be a lot more impactful. A +1 bonus here or there makes no (big) difference for the overall outcome of a single battle. It might increase your chance of survival over the course of an adventure, as it might turn miss into a hit at the perfect time, or you might survive with 1 hp or you could keep up concentration if you had +1 more con bonus. The +1 will save or perception check might also help.

And if you had the choice in point buy to have either 15 Str and 8 wis or 13 Str and 13 wis, you would trade a +1 bonus for a +2 bonus. So may be, the opportunity cost to get that mechanically best extra +1 modifier might be too high.

Sure, and maybe if you put that bonus into Int you’ll just happen to fight an NPC using Mind Sliver, and the +1 on the saving throw might just save the day.

But you gotta ask, what attribute do you use the most often? Which one is most likely to benefit you?

And don’t forget that for each Wisdom save or Charisma check, Strength also has non-attack benefits: every time you get Shoved or Grappled, or have to climb/swim/jump, for example. Every stat has those uses AND your primary stat is used for countless attack/damage rolls.

There’s nothing wrong with making the non-optimal choice because that’s what you want to do, of course. But the thread is about probability, and let’s not kid ourselves that (in the absence of campaign-specific information) any attribute is likely to be anywhere near as impactful as the primary.
 

Sure, and maybe if you put that bonus into Int you’ll just happen to fight an NPC using Mind Sliver, and the +1 on the saving throw might just save the day.

But you gotta ask, what attribute do you use the most often? Which one is most likely to benefit you?

And don’t forget that for each Wisdom save or Charisma check, Strength also has non-attack benefits: every time you get Shoved or Grappled, or have to climb/swim/jump, for example. Every stat has those uses AND your primary stat is used for countless attack/damage rolls.

There’s nothing wrong with making the non-optimal choice because that’s what you want to do, of course. But the thread is about probability, and let’s not kid ourselves that (in the absence of campaign-specific information) any attribute is likely to be anywhere near as impactful as the primary.
In the context of that conversation, being able to do one thing very well (in this case, the Actor feat) can head off the requirement for combat where you need to actually start rolling and relying on the vagaries of the d20.

And if neither is your primary ability score, it can be worth trading off a higher total bonus.

This is where different stats have different weightings. For example, if you aren't a Str-based character, you may never need to make a Str-based check. The only ability scores which you are guaranteed to need to roll against are your primary attribute, and Dexterity.
 

Sure, and maybe if you put that bonus into Int you’ll just happen to fight an NPC using Mind Sliver, and the +1 on the saving throw might just save the day.

But you gotta ask, what attribute do you use the most often? Which one is most likely to benefit you?

And don’t forget that for each Wisdom save or Charisma check, Strength also has non-attack benefits: every time you get Shoved or Grappled, or have to climb/swim/jump, for example. Every stat has those uses AND your primary stat is used for countless attack/damage rolls.

There’s nothing wrong with making the non-optimal choice because that’s what you want to do, of course. But the thread is about probability, and let’s not kid ourselves that (in the absence of campaign-specific information) any attribute is likely to be anywhere near as impactful as the primary.

I know that and you know I do. And you know that +3 or 4 or 5 vs being fine with +2 or 3 costs more than +1 to an off stat.
And all that does not matter, because the exact numbers are unimportant.
Hiw often have I seen people in MMorPGs or Diablo grinding for days and weeks to get an extra 0.1% increase in damage...
Or completely misjudging the power of a build because all they do is looking at pure damage numbers, when in reality there are many factors that play a much more imoortant role.
 


In baseball +1 pass you from average .250, to elite .300
+2 .350 makes you a super stat,
+3 .400 makes you a legend.

The DnD proficiency bonus combine with ability makes a not so bad model.
At first level a PCs usually have +5, and +11 at level 20, what is quite enough to qualify as legendary skill.
 
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I know that and you know I do. And you know that +3 or 4 or 5 vs being fine with +2 or 3 costs more than +1 to an off stat.

It has been a while since I started this thread, but now I’m remembering that it was because I wanted to analyze the impact of the +1 on attacks, by itself, and not go down the rabbit hole of “what if” games, comparing the value of that to occasionally persuading guards.


And all that does not matter, because the exact numbers are unimportant.
Hiw often have I seen people in MMorPGs or Diablo grinding for days and weeks to get an extra 0.1% increase in damage...
Or completely misjudging the power of a build because all they do is looking at pure damage numbers, when in reality there are many factors that play a much more imoortant role.

Sure. But here we are talking about a straight 20-25% gain, from one decision.

I find the whole “you won’t even notice it” argument pretty ridiculous. I could carefully track all my attack and damage rolls to prove it to myself, but I don’t need to. I trust the math. 20-25%.

I don’t notice the planets moving against the background of stars, either, and yet I know they do.
 

Not sure if this was mentioned, but +1 STR also means being better at athletics checks for knocking the opponent prone, shoving off of cliffs, and etc.

In my highly simplified model, all the stats have secondary benefits like this, that are really hard to model, so I assume/pretend they are roughly equal and cancel out.

AND your primary stat has a unique that massively outweighs those other ones.

The argument I find completely bizarre is when the same posters combine “+1 is tiny” with “maybe in Cha or Wis it will help you save the day.” Well, is it tiny or isn’t it? What’s more likely to help, a tiny edge every now and then, or a tiny edge on every single attack and damage roll?
 

I know that and you know I do. And you know that +3 or 4 or 5 vs being fine with +2 or 3 costs more than +1 to an off stat.
And all that does not matter, because the exact numbers are unimportant.
Hiw often have I seen people in MMorPGs or Diablo grinding for days and weeks to get an extra 0.1% increase in damage...
Or completely misjudging the power of a build because all they do is looking at pure damage numbers, when in reality there are many factors that play a much more imoortant role.

Actually, another response here: sure, there’s some chance posts like this will be interpreted by new players as “I MUST start with a 16.” But…yeah in general I don’t believe that the masses can’t handle truth and need to be protected from it.
 

FrogReaver

As long as i get to be the frog
a single +1 on a single character means very little.

A party of 4 characters each with a +1 will cause extra hits quite a bit more often than a single character with the same and a small +1 damage bonus on 4 pcs will add up damage quite quickly.

Focusing on a single pc instead of the party is the biggest flaw in theory.
 

a single +1 on a single character means very little.

A party of 4 characters each with a +1 will cause extra hits quite a bit more often than a single character with the same and a small +1 damage bonus on 4 pcs will add up damage quite quickly.

Focusing on a single pc instead of the party is the biggest flaw in theory.
I do agree here. But then, the players seem to be on the same page....
 
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Actually, another response here: sure, there’s some chance posts like this will be interpreted by new players as “I MUST start with a 16.” But…yeah in general I don’t believe that the masses can’t handle truth and need to be protected from it.
The problem is, as alway, how you frame the truth.
You are cherry picking a single (albeit important) part of the game.

You conveniently either forget to mention the cost or that 16 over a 14, or you pretent that the the cost for +1 extra strength is only +1 to a less important attribute.
I admit, that with tasha´s optional rules or MotM races, the opportunity cost was lowered.

From the PHB perspective: Mountain dwarf is probably the best race for 16 Str in the beginning, and with darkvision and some extra features on top.
I now make the assertion, that My Rock gnome fighter will still be competitive. (It is hard to find a race that does not have a dexterity bonus... so I go with rock gnome...)
You lose: +1 con, +2 Str. You gain +2 int and advantage vs mind affecting spells, which is not a +1 bonus but equals a +4 or 5 bonus.

If a single player makes that choice, there is no harm done to the group... if everyone make such a choice, as frog reaver says, the group of 5 people is only as strong as a group of 4 people in combat. This is significant, but at that point, the whole group signed to that playstyle and maybe they will seek for solutions other than combat.
 

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