D&D General What is a Ranger? A miserable pile of secrets! (+)

What is a Ranger? (pick up to 3)

  • Archery! Rangers and Bows. They just make sense.

    Votes: 48 40.0%
  • Dual wielding! Just like Drizzt taught me!

    Votes: 8 6.7%
  • Nature! But none of that magic crap, more like, "hey, that's poison oak, don't touch that"

    Votes: 67 55.8%
  • Magic! Like a mini-druid. Maybe poultices. Plants and animals are friends! With magic!

    Votes: 27 22.5%
  • Animal companions! Just like Drizzt taught me!

    Votes: 21 17.5%
  • DPS! Damage on damage on damage. Doesn't matter how, just keep magic out of it! They're martial!

    Votes: 10 8.3%
  • Favored foes! The "X killed my family" trope is due for a comeback! You'll see! You'll all see!

    Votes: 13 10.8%
  • Stealth! Stalking through the woods, unseen, unheard, unsmelt. This is the way.

    Votes: 58 48.3%
  • Aragorn! Just being Aragorn. That's all it ever was.

    Votes: 39 32.5%
  • Rogues! Just replace buildings with trees

    Votes: 8 6.7%
  • Monster Hunting! Toss a coin to your Drizzt!

    Votes: 29 24.2%
  • Environmental Adaptation! A Drizzt of all seasons!

    Votes: 10 8.3%
  • Magical Weapons Combat! Look I don't even know at this point

    Votes: 1 0.8%
  • Katniss! Dump Strider in the past! The future is catching fire and mocking jays!

    Votes: 2 1.7%

Medic

Neutral Evil
I...don't know about that. I mean, I like the "Slayer of Beasts" role of the Ranger, but saying that no one else can do it? Dr. Rudolph van Richten has faced many monsters in his day, and he was a Rogue (well, Thief in the original setting).

There's no reason a Dex-based Fighter can't be stealthy with the right background. And Druids have plenty of divination and elemental powers already, and they despise aberrations.
I think this is selling the idea a bit short. Fighters are generalists that are deadly all around, but one of the few consistent themes that has managed to stick throughout the editions is that the Ranger is a specialist that can take down a specific type of creature better than anyone else. There has been an effort to diminish this for reasons that everyone here can infer, however.
 

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Minigiant

Legend
Supporter
Why not? There is no division between arcane and divine magic in 5e, and the druid has plenty of spells for tracking and killing stuff.
Druids would have the civilization magic needed to effectively track anything. Druids tend to not be willing to corrupt or strangle nature to do their job nor utilize civilized, mechanical, or man-like magics.

Why not? A Dex fighter can do this stuff just fine.
Fine is not good. The ranger can track who leaves no tracks, hide from who sees all tracks, and withstand all the danger of nature.

How many resists do fighters have access too?

Okay, it's quite hard to build a tough rogue in 5e, but that doesn't stop them being deadly, and hunting stuff.

Bottom line: fluff is meaningless. A class can do whatever the mechanics allow. If I want to make a ranger who is an incompetent Stryxhaven wizard who can fight quite well I can do that.

5e Ranger is an eldritch knight with slightly more eldritch and a little less knight.
A rogue can't be made to be tough and have hunting and survival features.
A fighter can't be built to get stealth, hunting, and survival features.

What makes the ranger is that it picks parts of the 4 core class archetypes that cater to its job. It's essentially a "4 Way Multiclass"

That's why ranger types are the best solos in MMOs. They have parts of a whole party in the single class.
 

Druids tend to not be willing to corrupt or strangle nature to do their job nor utilize civilized, mechanical, or man-like magics.
Druids can do whatever their spell list says they can do. I created a circle of stars druid who is a city-dwelling professional astrologer. He is fine with nature, so long as he doesn't get any on his boots.

But if you are taking fluff literally, I haven't met any rangers who would be willing to corrupt or strangle nature. If Rangers - as they are actually played - have anything in common, its they all love nature.
 

Mecheon

Sacabambaspis
My recommendation? Stop trying to make them a class feature.
Outside of D&D, the big ranger Thing is being able to tame creatures. People come into the game expecting to have them.

D&D's been unable to stuck a landing on how it does rangers, so other fictions are what people draw from and the animal companion is a big part of those.

Why not? A Dex fighter can do this stuff just fine.
Frankly, dex fighters probably shouldn't be able to do it fine and split fighter to allow other stuff to thrive more.
 

Minigiant

Legend
Supporter
Druids can do whatever their spell list says they can do. I created a circle of stars druid who is a city-dwelling professional astrologer.

But if you are taking fluff literally, I haven't met any rangers who would be willing to corrupt or strange nature. If Rangers - as they are actually played - have anything in common, its they all love nature.
How people play is how they play.

But the option to be indifferent to, dislike, or even hate nature is an option rangers have that druids don't.

You coud go apathetic to nature and full on War-Crime-Goblin-Slayer with a ranger.

The original 0e and 1e rangers protected civilization from nature and very Pro-Human. They shot dead or beheaded anything hostile that came out the wilderness: orcs, goblins, giants, beasts, cultists, fey, druids.
 



Mecheon

Sacabambaspis
My view is if it doesn't need to be a separate class, then it shouldn't be a separate class. Ranger should be a fighter subclass (as it was in 1st edition).
But then you're losing individual flavours and genericifying everything to include stuff it just doesn't need. These have enough weight to them to survive as their own thing and they're vastly different in play. You're just either losing individual flavour points, or turning the Fighter into a 'build your own class' toolkit with no individual flavour of its own

If people want to play a druid and turn into a bear, then they want to be a Druid, they don't want to be a Nature Cleric with specific talents, and they do not care that's how it was done back in 1E back in the day. They don't want to play 1E, they want to play like stories or heroes they've heard of.
If people want to shoot bows and tame animals, they want to be a Ranger, or a Beastmaster. They don't want to be a Fighter, and 90% of what a fighter offers that concept is useless to them. They want to be the person who tames creatures and has their wolf buddy, all that Fighter stuff is pointless to them so why even include it?
 

Minigiant

Legend
Supporter
A druid can hate nature as much as they like. It has no mechanical effect.

But I'm pretty sure any character in our group who hated nature would be very unpopular, irrespective of class.
A druid hating nature makes no sense since nature is were it gets its powers.

That's like a barbarian who never gets mad.
 



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