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D&D General What kind of class design do you prefer?

What type of class design do you prefer?

  • Few classes with a lots of build choices

    Votes: 53 62.4%
  • Lots of classes with narrow build choices

    Votes: 32 37.6%

  • Total voters
    85

Undrave

Hero
That's my general problem with broadly versatile casters; there's a broad demand to play themed casters (pyromancers, necromancers, enchanters, etc) that aren't nearly as versatile, but the class has to be balanced with the assumption that the character is the classic "answer for everything" wizard.
Exactly! I don't mind a Wizard class that can be built into different archetypes, but I oppose to the "answer for everything" Wizard as a design goal. The 'Themed Casters' and the 'Answer for Everything Wizard' can't coexist in the same class.
 

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Exactly! I don't mind a Wizard class that can be built into different archetypes, but I oppose to the "answer for everything" Wizard as a design goal. The 'Themed Casters' and the 'Answer for Everything Wizard' can't coexist in the same class.
I think they could, but not how it is done now. There could be more limited mage base class, then themed subclasses that get focused stuff, and a generalist subclass that gets a bit of everything. Now the base class gets a bit (or a lot) of everything and subclasses add a bit (a pitiful amount, really) specialisation on top of that.
 

Undrave

Hero
I think they could, but not how it is done now. There could be more limited mage base class, then themed subclasses that get focused stuff, and a generalist subclass that gets a bit of everything. Now the base class gets a bit (or a lot) of everything and subclasses add a bit (a pitiful amount, really) specialisation on top of that.

And the specialization is not enforced. A Diviner could simply prepare ZERO divination spell, or even not pick any at level up, and not suffer any penalty. Same for most of the Wizard subclasses (I don't know the features by heart, I know the Abjurer wants to use Abjuration spells to recharge their ability).
 

Scribe

Hero
And the specialization is not enforced. A Diviner could simply prepare ZERO divination spell, or even not pick any at level up, and not suffer any penalty. Same for most of the Wizard subclasses (I don't know the features by heart, I know the Abjurer wants to use Abjuration spells to recharge their ability).
Yeah, every time I look at Wizards/Subclass, I just think 'this cannot be a finished state'.

Feels about as far off as anything else I can think of, but the base class is so flexible that it masks the issues. (while itself being an issue)
 

Lanefan

Victoria Rules
I think they could, but not how it is done now. There could be more limited mage base class, then themed subclasses that get focused stuff, and a generalist subclass that gets a bit of everything. Now the base class gets a bit (or a lot) of everything and subclasses add a bit (a pitiful amount, really) specialisation on top of that.
The 3e approach, where you specialized in one type of spell at cost of being utterly unable to learn or cast one or two other types, seemed to work OK.

That way there's only one overall spell list rather than a bunch of subclasses each having its own; you just can't use all of it if you want to specialize.
 

Minigiant

Legend
Supporter
The Wizard displays another flaw with the "Few classes with a lots of build choices".

It's easier to give flavor by giving a character something than it is to give a character flavor by tilting it toward one of its many parts.

Because the Wizard has access to "every supernatural effect but healing and resurrection", it's hard to make build choices significant.

The most dramatically flavorful wizard subclass is the one that lets it use weapons effectively.
 

Undrave

Hero
The 3e approach, where you specialized in one type of spell at cost of being utterly unable to learn or cast one or two other types, seemed to work OK.

That way there's only one overall spell list rather than a bunch of subclasses each having its own; you just can't use all of it if you want to specialize.
I think that might be a little TOO restrictive.

I don't mind a little dabbling, but I don't like that the specialty doesn't have any mechanical weight beyond some cheaper copying. How about, instead of a unique spell list, the specialists just have a unique progression? Instead of automatically adding 2 Wizard spells to your spell book every time you gain a level, you only get 1 wild and the other has to be from your specialty, with a few levels where you can only pick 2 from your specialty? This would naturally skew your spell list towards your specialty, but still allow some flexibility to make interesting builds.

We also needed more class features like the Abjurer one where casting your specialty recharges their usage.

The Wizard displays another flaw with the "Few classes with a lots of build choices".

It's easier to give flavor by giving a character something than it is to give a character flavor by tilting it toward one of its many parts.

Because the Wizard has access to "every supernatural effect but healing and resurrection", it's hard to make build choices significant.

The most dramatically flavorful wizard subclass is the one that lets it use weapons effectively.
That's a good point!
 

Lanefan

Victoria Rules
I think that might be a little TOO restrictive.

I don't mind a little dabbling, but I don't like that the specialty doesn't have any mechanical weight beyond some cheaper copying. How about, instead of a unique spell list, the specialists just have a unique progression? Instead of automatically adding 2 Wizard spells to your spell book every time you gain a level, you only get 1 wild and the other has to be from your specialty, with a few levels where you can only pick 2 from your specialty? This would naturally skew your spell list towards your specialty, but still allow some flexibility to make interesting builds.
That still doesn't stop a Wizard from acquiring spells in other ways e.g. swapping with other casters, learning them from scrolls, etc., meaning that almost inevitable they'll still all end up with a fairly generalized list.

Unless you're saying that the only time Wizards would get new spells is at level-up, and that's way more restricting than what I had in mind. :)
 

cbwjm

Hero
With regard to wizard spell lists, I find leaving it up to the player is best when it comes to choosing their spells at level up. If someone is playing a diviner and wants to really lean into it, they will. You don't need a rule saying that 1 spell must be from the school chosen, which also doesn't account for the tradition that aren't based upon a school.

If you you do want to force it, I'd say the better way would be to have a list of spells gained as they gain spell levels. Just a single extra spell at spell levels 1 to 9 that ensures that some measure of school representation shows up in their spell books, then you could do the same for the other subclasses. Bladesinger might get spells useful in melee, warfare might get a mixture of abjuration and evocation spells.
 

Vaalingrade

Legend
What you need though is a variety of divination spells each level for the Diviner player to choose from instead of the sad one or two you get per school aside from the vaunted Enemies Explode school of high sorcery.
 

Undrave

Hero
That still doesn't stop a Wizard from acquiring spells in other ways e.g. swapping with other casters, learning them from scrolls, etc., meaning that almost inevitable they'll still all end up with a fairly generalized list.

Hmm... it would still mean they would have to actively pursue them. I'd probably make copying spells more expensive as a baseline and keep the cheaper copying from your specialty as it is.

With regard to wizard spell lists, I find leaving it up to the player is best when it comes to choosing their spells at level up.
Eh, you mean like how it is right now? I don't trust Wizard players and their UNQUENCHABLE THIRST FOR ABSOLUTE POWER!!!

Damn you, WIZARDS!
 

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