log in or register to remove this ad

 

Whirling Frenzy from UA: Is it balanced?

EditorBFG

First Post
Is this UA variant balanced?
Rage Variant: Whirling Frenzy

A barbarian with this variant form of rage doesn't gain the normal bonuses when he enters a rage. Instead, when a barbarian with whirling frenzy enters a rage, he temporarily gains a +4 bonus to Strength and a +2 dodge bonus to Armor Class and on Reflex saves. While in a whirling frenzy, the barbarian may make one extra attack in a round at his highest base attack bonus, but this attack takes a -2 penalty, as does each other attack made that round. This penalty applies for 1 round, so it also affects attacks of opportunity the barbarian might make before his next action.

Whirling frenzy is otherwise identical to the standard barbarian rage in all other ways. At 11th level (when a standard barbarian gains greater rage), the Strength bonus increases to +6, and the dodge bonus to Armor Class and on Reflex saves increases to +3. At 20th level (when a standard barbarian gains mighty rage), the Strength bonus increases to +8, and the dodge bonus to Armor Class and on Reflex saves increases to +4.

A barbarian using this variant doesn't gain indomitable will at 14th level. Instead, he gains evasion, but only while in a whirling frenzy.

A character can't use whirling frenzy at the same time that he uses any other form of rage (or similar ability).
The reason I ask is, I played a 1st-level Barbarian with this variant ability today, and it was a lot of fun. But one of the other players thought it was fishy that while normal Rage grants a -2 to AC, the Whirling Franzy grants no penalty at all.

I argued that the lack of a CON bonus, which keeps the Rage somewhat shorter, was the balancing factor, but I don't think he was convinced.

What do you think?
 

log in or register to remove this ad


Arkhandus

First Post
Whirling Frenzy isn't the least bit balanced. It's capital-B Broken. It replaces the marginally-useful Constitution bonus of Rage (being slightly tougher only during the Rage and then losing an equal amount of HP afterward? Weak!) with instead the primary benefits of an equal Dexterity bonus (excepting only the Initiative, ranged attack, and skill bonuses, which aren't quite as relevant anyway for a raging barbarian). It also removes the Will save bonus.

But it also takes away the usual AC penalty of Rage (I suppose to make up for the fact that it doesn't grant quite all the benefits a Dex bonus would, even though Dex is a more useful ability score than Con? -_-). And on top of that, it adds another attack per round at a minor penalty (as if the Strength bonus won't already make up for that penalty!). If not for that last point, it just might be roughly balanced, but still a little stronger than Rage.

Another attack per round is huge for a raging/'whirling frenzied' barbarian!
 


phindar

First Post
I'm currently playing a Fighter/Barbarian, and my GM let me switch it out for standard rage, and the conclusion I came too was similar to the other posters, it's a little too rich for my blood. I think the AC and Reflex bonuses balance well against the CON and Will save of regular Rage, but then the free attack comes out of nowhere. Its kind of like buying a toaster and getting as a free gift, a speedboat. My two coppers.
 

Darklone

Registered User
The whirling frenzy barbarian lacks a +2 to Fort and Will saves but gets the bonus to Refl saves. IMX Whirling Frenzy was better than normal Rage in many cases but only horribly broken if the DM allowed the additional attack not only in full attack actions.
 

Jeff Wilder

First Post
While I think Whirling Frenzy is slightly too strong, I disagree with the above posters as to how strong. I think they discount too much the value of the +4 to Constitution (adds HP, enhances Fort saves, and prolongs the rage by two rounds over Frenzy), and the bonus to Will saves (Will saves being the weakness of a barbarian).

I don't think the extra attack is too much ... instead, I think either the +2 to AC or (probably) the +4 to Strength pushes it over the edge. Keep in mind, the extra attack becomes proportionately less valuable as the character gains iterative attacks.
 


Thanee

First Post
A little on the good side, but not too much. The lower duration is a crucial disadvantage, unless you have outrageous stats.

Basically, it's probably fair with average stats and too good with high-powered stats.

Bye
Thanee
 

humble minion

Adventurer
There's a scout PC in my group who's taking a one-level dip into Whirling Frenzy barbarian for the extra skirmish-enhanced attack it grants while moving. I'm a little wary, but we'll see how we go...
 

Thanee

First Post
The extra attack requires a full attack action and does, therefore, not normally work with skirmish.

Bye
Thanee
 

Thurbane

First Post
Thanee said:
The extra attack requires a full attack action and does, therefore, not normally work with skirmish.

Bye
Thanee
Note that while basic common sense, the actual wording of Frenzy (as above) does NOT stipulate that you need to take a full attack action to gain the extra attack...
 



brehobit

Explorer
I had a PC with this, and the general feeling is that it was too powerful, especially at lower levels (where the extra attack _really_ helps.) The shorter duration can hurt badly, but generally doesn't. Above 6th level it is somewhat less powerful as you are hurting your other attacks too. *

I'd certainly not allow the extra attack with anything other than a full attack option. That would be way too much.

My house rule, if I allowed this at all, would be that all attacks in the full-round action must go against different targets. That would work out quite nicely and fit my idea of what the frenzy is. And with cleave could be pretty scary really (I'd let cleave attacks be unrestricted probably).


===============
*Say you need an 11 to hit normally (including raging) and you have a +6 BAB. You have a choice of needing 11, 16 or 13, 13, 18. In the first case you average .75 hits. In the second you get .95 hits. It's better, but not hugely. (If you only need a 2 to hit, then it is MUCH better).
 

Thanee

First Post
Thurbane said:
Note that while basic common sense, the actual wording of Frenzy (as above) does NOT stipulate that you need to take a full attack action to gain the extra attack...
While this is correct, it is also irrelevant, since it doesn't have to. There's a general rule about multiple attacks in the PHB already.

If you get more than one attack per round because your base attack bonus is high enough, because you fight with two weapons or a double weapon or for some special reason you must use a full-round action to get your additional attacks.
Bye
Thanee
 



Darklone

Registered User
Thurbane said:
Note that while basic common sense, the actual wording of Frenzy (as above) does NOT stipulate that you need to take a full attack action to gain the extra attack...
Not the feat itself, but the relevant combat section about several attacks per round says pretty clearly that you only get them during full attack actions, e.g. no moving and additional attack.

Bbn2/scouts are bad enough without Whirling Frenzy.

Edit: Darn, see Thanees post above.
 

Drowbane

First Post
No, probably not. That extra attack is *huge*... and as far as I can tell it stacks with Haste.

Is whirling frenzy "fun"? Hell yea!
 

NOW LIVE! 5 Plug-In Settlements for your 5E Game

Advertisement2

Advertisement4

Top