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Fighter Maneuvers
Mike Mearls

T he humble fighter stands out as one of the simplest classes in the Dungeons & Dragons game, but it's also consistently the most popular character class in the game. The fighter encompasses the classic archetype of the adventuring hero—the tough warrior who battles monsters and saves the day.

The fighter remained one of the simplest classes for many years. Personally, I think that's because the fighter was the baseline from which many classes deviated. A rogue lacks a fighter's armor and hit points, but makes up for it through cunning and skills. A monk is basically a fighter who trades in weapons and armor for mystical combat abilities. A ranger is a wilderness fighter who dabbles in magic, while a paladin is a fighter with a holy cause.

When you're relegated to serving as the baseline, it's hard to acquire a distinct flavor. 4th Edition was the first version of D&D to give the fighter a truly unique mechanic. Before that, combat feats in 3e created lots of options for the fighter but were available to other classes as well. Weapon specialization was an optional rule in 2nd Edition, but it did a great job of making it clear that fighters were the best warriors. Even better, it was a fairly simple rule to understand.

Playtest feedback for D&D Next has consistently painted the fighter as one of the most satisfying and powerful classes in the game. We also know that though a simple fighter is great for many players, others want more options for the class.

In the final version of the fighter, you can opt for the Battle Master martial archetype. The Battle Master is a student of warfare—someone for whom combat is a field worthy of deep study, endless practice, and focused mastery. As a Battle Master, you gain maneuvers and superiority dice, which start as d8s. You expend your superiority dice to use maneuvers, and regain them by taking a short or long rest. Most of your maneuvers apply the die as a bonus to another die roll, and some include special offensive and defensive effects.

Maneuvers allow you to expend a superiority die to take a special action, granting benefits like the following:

  • Grant a bonus attack to an ally in place of one of your own attacks
  • Disarm an enemy
  • Grant an ally advantage on an attack roll against a target
  • Make a counterattack as a reaction
  • Sweep your weapon through an area, damaging several foes with one attack
  • Parry an attack
  • Force an enemy to move
  • Allow an ally to move

Maneuvers bring a tactical element to the game similar to what 4th Edition added to the fighter. We've managed to cover many of the concepts that were popular fighter powers, giving Battle Masters sixteen maneuvers to choose from (as of this writing; as we continue to polish the game, that number might change).

Best of all, maneuvers allow the game to model a variety of classic fighter archetypes without cluttering the system with too many new paths. You can build a swashbuckling fighter with a high Dexterity, finesse weapons, and the Parry, Riposte, and Spring Away maneuvers. A warlord-style fighter can take Commander's Strike, Maneuvering Attack, and Rally to serve as an effective combat leader.

Our approach to maneuvers also reflects an important aspect of our overall class design philosophy in D&D Next. Whenever possible, we've tried to make sure that the basic functionality needed to make your character work takes up few, if any, of your choices. Right from 1st level, a swashbuckler can fight as well in light armor and with a rapier as another fighter in chainmail wielding a longsword, all without needing to take feats or special abilities. Since it's important for characters to function at 1st and 2nd level, before the fighter class's customization options kick in, we've made sure those customization options build on features that are already part of the core system.

Because they can be regained after a short rest, superiority dice and maneuvers are also part of a larger trend. With the feedback from the playtest, our work on polishing class balance has let us introduce more abilities that are regained with a short rest. (If you read the warlock article, you know that we have a spellcasting class that works along those lines.) Balancing abilities that return on a short rest is tricky. Make them too easy to regain, and battles and encounters become predictable. Make them too hard to regain, and they feel no different than abilities regained with a long rest. Thanks to the playtest, we were able to establish a baseline on which we could build more encounter-based abilities into the core game.

Finally, here's a little treat from Neverwinter.

Mike Mearls
Mike Mearls is the senior manager for the D&D research and design team. He led the design for 5th Edition D&D. His other credits include the Castle Ravenloft board game, Monster Manual 3 for 4th Edition, and Player’s Handbook 2 for 3rd Edition.
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I guess I disagree with the base principle, that a fighter should be a baseline class.

That was what it turned into, what it evolved into, that doesn't make it any good.

To me it seems like you could go two different directions:

Option 1)

Do something like 4e (or 3.5 with all of it's extended options) and simply choose to make difference classes with different mechanics and flavors.

Instead of saying ... "A ranger is a wilderness fighter who dabbles in magic"... you can say:

"A range is nothing like a fighter, despite also fighting with weapons"


Option 2)

Make fighter truly a baseline class and every variation is simply a configuration of a fighter... A ranger is in fact just a fighter who likes trees and takes a bit of magic.

Now I can understand the merits of 2, the mechanical engineering of it is compelling, an interesting puzzle to solve... ... (see all)
Posted By: MattLangley (4/15/2014 4:53:18 PM)


Btw. since the fighter has access to the Archery fighting style (like ranger and paladin), what about an actual and distinctive Archer subclass for the fighter, to get some potential out of this style as well? This one could also be filled with some nice features/maneuvers (pinning shots, staggering shots, whatever...)
Posted By: the_move (4/13/2014 2:20:44 AM)


Well, I do not see a problem with this, but I hope this won't be stretched out too far. A lot about NEXT has been, that it was a quite simple, easy-to-learn game. So, I hope the Warrior subclass will remain for those, who want it less sophisticated, yet effective. And definately I hope that there are more than 2 subclasses available, since this would already make the fighter a non-baseline class.
Posted By: the_move (4/13/2014 1:15:12 AM)


Sigh...the more I read about DnD 5e or Next, the more I don't like it. Let's see how things evolve further. Either WoTC will get more of my business or they will not, I guess this is the same mentality for many millions of old-school gamers like me which I believe is one of the reasons they are trying with this version, move the old-timers away from 1e or 2e or 3e or PF(WoTC cannot make money from these gamers) into their camp.
Posted By: mouselim (4/6/2014 3:34:21 PM)


This is not enough. I hope you are planning on having more than 2 Fighter subclasses, and simple-to-play Barbarians and Rogues. The only way names like "Battlemaster" make sense is if you are shifting more of the weight of character concept onto Background.

I don't think that's the way you're going but it would be a good idea because, as Backgrounds are optional, you could move non-class-related concepts like the Swashbuckler out of the core. That would give Artisans, Gladiators, Traders and so forth level-dependent benefits in their chosen career, while keeping the core streamlined for players who wish to keep combat uncomplicated, and use a more improvisational approach in their roleplaying.

Who writes your stuff, Mearls? "The humble fighter??" No fighter player's character I've ever known was modest.
Posted By: RadperT (4/6/2014 2:07:58 PM)


Speaking of Power refreshment rate... I don't understand why they don't do it like they do for monsters, roll a d6 at start of their turn and if it comes up on such n such #, then the power refreshes and is available for use again. Simple and easy; adds some excitement to it as well.

Also, please o please o please, I hope they don't ruin fighters too much. I greatly preferred the ones in the final playtest that had the static bonuses to critical hits over the ones with the maneuvers as we were consistently rolling high enough to crit and thusly deadding fools. The maneuvers were consistently rolling low on the superiority die so that it was only adding like 1 or 2 damage. blah!

but I am looking forward to the finished product to see what they went with.
Posted By: awogaman (4/4/2014 9:53:59 PM)


Happily for me, these maneuvers sound simple and distinctive. My play XP with 3e's Book of 9 Swords and 4e was that many maneuvers took a lot of text to explain and several were very similar (or in fact just more powerful versions of each other), which was rather bothersome. I'm also happy you are allowing a simple and clean, more free-form fighter choice as well, and look forward to trying both in the future.
Posted By: Dreamstryder (4/4/2014 2:08:15 PM)


Probably the most disappointing class update so far. Giving fighters a jillion options and extra dice to throw around each turn - on top of extra attacks and everything else - just made them burdensome and too long to play. Sorry to see that trend is where we're headed.
Posted By: nukunuku (4/4/2014 9:25:32 AM)


To be fair, Fighters DON'T HAVE TO USE MANEUVERS! If you don't like the dice pool mechanic and want to play a 2e style "Hit stuff" fighter, that's also an option. There is two subclasses (possibly more) of fighters, and one of them is the Battlemaster, which does this maneuver stuff. The other one doesn't, using static bonuses in such. So, everyone wins. You want complex: play a battlemaster. You want simple? Don't play a battlemaster. There is no reason to remove this option for players who desire a more complex fighter. Basically, everyone can be happy with this solution.
Posted By: Claymore65 (4/4/2014 1:16:43 AM)


Honestly, if people hate seeing the game evolve and fighters getting to do stuff, why don't they just keep playing 1E and 2E instead of ruining newer editions for everyone by complaining until Wizards takes stuff away from us? I mean, no one can take 1E or 2E away from you, play them to your heart's content.
Posted By: Fuzzypaws (4/3/2014 11:44:40 AM)


Speaking just for myself, that's just what I plan on doing. I'll get Next. I'll play it. If I don't like a lot of it, I'll play something else. If I like most of it, I'll change what I don't.

That said, there is something to gained from ongoing support for rules you like, however. - John
Posted By: Seanchai (4/3/2014 11:56:06 AM)


Fighters getting more stuff to do is great! The ideas are great ... Its the implementation of those ideas that is in question. I would like to see guidelines to use in place of things like adv/disadv. Leave it up to the dm as to which way his game should work. I can can easily ignore gritty details should i choose to, but i cant easily include them if their not there. So, no i dont want things excluded. I would just want more options.
Posted By: stormkhan (4/3/2014 12:21:30 PM)


Because I'd like to be able to play a game that's supported....

1st and 2nd were by no means perfect. The glory days WERE awesome, but I also recall wanting a lot MORE. It's just my preference to play something similar in complexity with modern design. I just have no desire to take things to the complexity above. All things being said, if I don't care for Next, it's Swords and Wizardry for me.

No criticisms for the article above, just asking if they are still planning on the more basic system, or is this the basic system? Seemed to me that this is the way it works, period.

I liked what I saw in the beta. The basic system looked like a tuned up 2nd edition style to me with new options, but that stopped short of 3rd or 4th. That's the sweet spot I'm looking for!
Posted By: Sanford (4/3/2014 12:36:59 PM)


actually..I seem to recall a time where Wizards once offered PDF's of early core rules and then DID take them away...
Posted By: Baph0met (4/3/2014 10:41:13 PM)


Thing is, everyone can be happy with this system. Fighter players who like maneuvers will play the Battle master fighter. Players who want a simpler 2e style fighter will play a different subclass, which uses static bonuses to criticals and such instead of maneuvers. Everyone wins...
Posted By: Claymore65 (4/4/2014 1:18:46 AM)


THAT's what I was asking, Claymore!

I'm happy then, thank you.
Posted By: Sanford (4/4/2014 8:25:21 AM)


Oh, please don't let my last comment imply I'm an edition warrior. To each his own. My interest in the game lies closer to the older core.

You people who prefer newer editions? ROCK ON!
Posted By: Sanford (4/3/2014 10:59:05 AM)


Help me out guys, I haven't been around much.......

It's my understanding that Next will have a basic system that let's me play a Fighter in a similar fashion to 2nd, right? Maybe a kit to give it flavor, but basically something that feels familiar to 2nd.....

I started to get headaches reading about maneuver dice, and feats, and stuff that sounds more like 4th edition to me. Oh my!
Posted By: Sanford (4/3/2014 10:48:09 AM)


Trying to reply to Noirsoft. I absolutely agree. Modifying die rolls with other die rolls is not a great mechanic. Advantage/disadv creates the same problems. Combined its even worse. I know many like these but please at least provide options to exclude them if so desired. I am to the point now where i will have to totally revamp core mechanics to get the game i want.
Posted By: stormkhan (4/3/2014 10:20:56 AM)


I don't mind Advantage/Disadvantage as much, but would definitely prefer if it were the only mechanic for situational modifiers (i.e. not something fixed on the character sheet) As it is, we have fixed situational modifiers (cover, some spell effects), advantage/disadvantage. and dice pools. That is way too many different systems and will break very easily.
Posted By: Noirsoft (4/3/2014 7:22:01 PM)


Why was this article pulled from the main page?
Posted By: ZaranBlack (4/3/2014 9:56:12 AM)


Uhm, "to give the fighter a truly unique mechanic"

They gave him a truly unique repair person? I'm confused. I think the term you're looking for is a "truly unique mechanism."
Posted By: Stexe (4/3/2014 7:53:25 AM)


Yes, it is sloppy English to take the term "mechanics" (or "Game mechanics" in this specific sense) as a plural and make a singular "mechanic" word to describe a single element of the collective mechanics of the game, but "mechanism" does not fit the bill either.
Posted By: Noirsoft (4/3/2014 7:28:12 PM)


I just can't accept dice pools in a D&D game, whether it's "skill dice" or bard's inspiration or this inferiority (er, I mean superiority) dice pool.. It simply changes the fundamental math of the game and undoes everything that 3e and 4e did to streamline the mechanics to "d20" + modifiers. A system with unneeded complexity of d20 + optional dice pools can NEVER be balanced. I don't care how overconfident the game designers are that they can do it. It won't work. You can't make it an "optional" rule since all the monsters & encounters will expect that someone will have these pools, and difficulties will be set inconsistently across all products. Seriously, this is a bad bad bad bad bad idea. You still have time to fix it. It won't work and you WILL have to undo it in the next edition of the game.
Posted By: Noirsoft (4/3/2014 4:51:21 AM)


For this whole optional debate though, in this circumstance it is the best solution. We have some fighter players who want to play a simple fighter who only does basic attacks, but does them better than everyone. We have other people who play fighters that want to have a lot more choice every turn, and feel like it's boring to only do basic attacks all the time. For me, I personally have no desire to play a "simple" fighter, and I want DnD Next to have non-simple fighters. However, if they only did the "complex" fighter, those desiring a simple fighter feel cheated. So in this case, Wizards did the best solution possible: allow them both to exist simultaneously. If this is anything like the packet, both fighters, the "battlemaster" and the "simple" fighter will be two subclasses of fighter. Neither will be mechanically stronger or weaker, it's just up to the player to choose which type of fighter he'd prefer to play. This allows both types to coe... (see all)
Posted By: Claymore65 (4/2/2014 7:52:31 PM)


RC-0775 wrote "...when they can easily toss it out without losing anything..."

That's part of the point, however. When players assume it's part of the game, plan their characters around it, etc., it's not easy to "toss it out without losing anything." It certainly isn't terribly onerous, but nor can you do it thoughtlessly. Simply labeling things as "optional" doesn't fix any problems if what's being labeled in problematic. (I'm not saying that's the necessary case here, just speaking in general.)

RC-0775 wrote "It's ridiculous to take an option away from another group simply because it doesn't fit a certain group's vision of game."

How many people wanted some other system other than Vancing casting? If I recall correctly, the polls here at the community split about dead even between those who insisted there are to be Vancian casting and those who insisted the default had to be some other option. WotC selected a ... (see all)
Posted By: Seanchai (4/2/2014 6:30:54 PM)


Stoopid thing is supposed to a reply to a statement below, not a stand alone comment. It didn't pass validation the first time - I wonder if that has something to do with it. - John
Posted By: Seanchai (4/2/2014 6:31:46 PM)


It seems random when it allows you to reply and when it doesn't.

I certainly agree that there is value in discussing which options you like better than others.

I don't really see the current system as Vancian anymore, despite what they're calling it. The last playtest packet allowed Wizards more flexibility than they've had in the past and my players loved it. It's still a bit flawed, but so far I like it better than point systems, which are messier and feel harder to balance to me.

I think our difference of opinion seems to lie in how we imagine a player creating a character. Your comments seem to suggest that a player gets the book, goes home rightfully excited about it, and then creates a character according to the rules which they expect to play. In this scenario, I absolutely see your points.

Perhaps my opinion is colored by my own experience in recent years where we have decided to set the campaign or story up first, and then create cha... (see all)
Posted By: RC-0775 (4/3/2014 9:49:54 AM)


RC-0775 wrote "Case in point from this article, if you don't like the idea of the Battle Master Build with its Superiority Dice, then don't use it, but don't call for it to be stricken from the game..."

Because...? People aren't allowed express their opinions about options? You said, "I certainly agree that there is value in discussing which options you like better than others," but you don't seem to actually believe that, at least if said opinion includes a call to action.

But you seemed to have skipped two of my points.

The first being that WotC has *already* cut mechanics out of the game, mechanics that had strong support, so why not do so again?

Second, WotC has finite resources. Everything they include means something else gets cut. That being the case, why shouldn't people argue for or against something appearing the book?

That aside, you seem to be fixating on my group again. Or how specific individua... (see all)
Posted By: Seanchai (4/3/2014 11:53:48 AM)


@ Seanchai-John

Please accept my apology. I did not mean to insinuate what your group or groups are like. Allow me to rephrase it as

If a group gets hung up on rules and it is getting in the way of fun, then that group should have open communication about what they expect from the game.

I disagree with you that labeling a rule as optional has no use. RnD are trying to craft a game that can be molded into a fun experience by as many players as possible and the only way to do that is to present options.

How a group chooses to allow or disallow those options is up to them. My original rant was for people who assume that an optional rule is ruining the game, when they can easily toss it out without losing anything, but the group who likes the rule gets to use it.

It's ridiculous to take an option away from another group simply because it doesn't fit a certain group's vision of game.
Posted By: RC-0775 (4/2/2014 4:31:27 PM)


I can't say as I appreciate your commentary on what my group must be like because you don't like something I've said. Allow me to redress something you apparently missed: "I've been doing this forever, with a number of different diverse groups..." In other words, I'm not taking my experience with one group, especially my current group, but rather observations based on 32 years of running games for a wide variety of groups and players.

As for your not understanding the point, I don't know what to tell you. I'll try putting it differently: Even in the caste of rules labeled as "optional," players generally assume those optional rules will be available to them.

For example, the new default seem to be selecting an equipment package at character creation. Purchasing individual pieces of equipment is optional. Most players won't assume they've to got ask the DM if they can purchase individual items - they plan on using that option. Most of them wil... (see all)
Posted By: Seanchai (4/2/2014 2:17:45 PM)


These maneuvers sound pretty fun. I like the sound of them, for the most part. I'd love to see if there are any crazier maneuvers, though the Warlord one's sound pretty fun. I still wish the Warlord was it's own full class (in 4th they were so much fun to play), but it sounds like you build a good pseudo-warlord this way as well. My only concern is that if advanced combat techniques like disarming are included in a later module (mimicking the rules from 3.5/Pathfinder), will you add maneuvers to compensate? Or will those maneuvers be used to give you a bonus to those actions? I'm just curious.

However, is it possible to include Book of the Nine Swords style content in the future? This doesn't have to actually wrap into the Fighter class (though I'd like that). Instead, it could be it's own class, like the Warblade was. That way, I can get that exact class I'd want.
Posted By: Claymore65 (4/2/2014 10:47:31 AM)


Sounds good... let's play!
Posted By: SirCorin (4/2/2014 10:30:32 AM)


I like all of this.

On the note of Short Rests, my group and I allow whatever feels right. No set minimal time. If it seems like we've had time to bandage wounds or for a caster to prepare a spell (1 minute/spell level to prep), so be it.

If one can spend an Action to regain a single point/die for such maneuvers and abilities, then only a few rounds is necessary between encounters to constitute a short rest.
Posted By: Timmee (4/2/2014 8:52:10 AM)


Why do so many people willfully ignore the word OPTION in these articles?


I think RnD are following through on their original promise of scaling complexity and I like it.
Posted By: RC-0775 (4/2/2014 7:50:17 AM)


Because they're no such thing as an optional rule.

I've been going this forever, with a number of different diverse groups, and here's how it works:

1. Most people assume that anything in print is probably going to be accepted into a given game, whether it appears in an official product or not. They also assume they'll have to ask the DM just to be sure, but generally feel that the okay being given is basically a forgone conclusion.

2. A smaller subset of people, but still a majority assume that anything in print in an official product will be given the okay after the supposed vetting by the DM.

(Of course, sometimes the DM says no, but...)

3. Only a minority of folks - usually those who have had DMs take a hard line in the past - have actually internalized and believe that the DM approves or selects options first, then they, the players, build their characters around those selections.

In other words, people assume... (see all)
Posted By: Seanchai (4/2/2014 10:24:58 AM)


@ Seanchai-John (system won't let me directly reply)

I don't understand what you mean by saying there are no optional rules. Every rule is optional at your own table. I think I see your point in some sort of formal setting, like at an event, but that just means the event sets the options. It has nothing to do with how you and your friends want to play the game.

Our group functions well because we jointly choose what kind of game we want to play and it varies from campaign to campaign. I don't need to take a hard line with my players because I trust them and they trust me to craft a game that's fun for all of us.

If your group gets hung up on rules and what is and isn't allowed, you need more open communication about who wants what out of the game.
Posted By: RC-0775 (4/2/2014 11:18:24 AM)


If an optional rule changes the balance of the class, then future adventures, products, etc need to be designed either with it in mind or without it. You can't say "well, this monster has 80 HP and AC 14 ... unless you're using the fighter manuever subsystem in which case it has 72 HP and AC 15 because they have lots of at-will debuffs so we needed to up the AC to make the monster have the same impact".
Posted By: Blue23 (4/3/2014 11:44:19 AM)


Question!! Does the Rally maneuver mentioned in the article provide Hit Dice dependent healing? Awesome if so, terrible if not. If the faux-Warlord build of the Fighter doesn't have healing, I have zero interest.
Posted By: NealMac (4/2/2014 7:18:00 AM)


That was the very best sales pitch I've seen for Pathfinder yet. All of the reasons I didn't touch 4th edition are now part of 5th edition's core.
Posted By: Gatt (4/1/2014 11:25:17 PM)


It seems a little extreme that you are tossing out the whole system over an optional archetype for fighter. "In the final version of the fighter, you can opt for the Battle Master martial archetype. "
Posted By: diebry (4/2/2014 7:01:52 AM)


Posted By: RC-0775 (4/2/2014 7:45:04 AM)


Rolling Warlord Command abilities into Fighter class options is pure genius and I'm quite happy with the idea.

Allowing the Fighter to also function as a Leader gives the option for players who don't want to play the meat shield archetype and gives a great opportunity for background. It makes sense that if the Fighter were a professional soldier, he'd know the most about tactics and it's great to see that reflected in a Class option.
Posted By: RC-0775 (4/1/2014 9:04:42 PM)


This isn't an acceptable implementation of what the community has been asking for concerning Martial Maneuvers. Again and again you see threads asking for mechanics more on par with those presented in the Tome of Battle: Book of the Nine Swords, or like those presented in 4E but without the obvious magical nature.

I'm again not impressed by the Developers ability to read and understand their Player-base. We asked for the same detail and attention that Spell write-ups, and the Magic System in general, receive. Instead we get a half hearted return of the Superiority Dice (which is a nice touch, but lacking overall).
Posted By: LupusRegalis (4/1/2014 9:01:26 PM)


The 4.5e fighter is now part of the core and all the mechanics that many people hated have returned to the game.
Posted By: dmgorgon (4/1/2014 8:58:21 PM)


Spoiler: You can't please everyone all the time. Especially in a 40-year old game where everyone wants something different.
Posted By: G_X (4/2/2014 1:08:21 AM)


Say it with me - "OPTIONAL". You have a significant amount of fans who WANT 4e style combat to at least be available in Next. This goes a long way towards giving them that, WITHOUT making it a core part of the rules. Don't like it? During character creation, ban that build. Done. Not seeing the problem.
Posted By: tavman (4/2/2014 11:37:25 AM)


Battle Master seems like it has a lot of interesting tactical options for anyone that was looking for this style of character, but I'm just a little worried that it may restrict options available to the basic fighter. Although maybe I only need some more details on how the superiority die will work. Specifically, does it just make it easier to do things that everyone can try?

For example, if you want to try to disarm an enemy or force them to move, I'd be inclined to let any character try an opposed ability check. Will maneuvers simply make it easier for Battle Masters to do these things that anyone can try, or restrict other characters from trying to do them at all? I hope that wouldn't be the case, as it would remove a lot of the fun and flexibility that I currently see in the basic fighter.
Posted By: BadMike (4/1/2014 8:50:22 PM)


Believe nothing posted on April 1. - John
Posted By: Seanchai (4/1/2014 7:48:41 PM)


"giving Battle Masters sixteen maneuvers to choose from (as of this writing; as we continue to polish the game, that number might change)."

Didn't they announce the books would release at Gencon this year? How can they possibly still be polishing the rules when the books are hitting the street in 4.5 months? That's not enough time to submit changes, update documents/formatting and release for print with time to ship from China or wherever. My guess is the game is in the can and sent to print already. Seems like it would have to be. Unless maybe he means in future errata but I surely hope they're not already planning errata before the books even release.
Posted By: mbeacom (4/1/2014 7:06:39 PM)


Two Teams: one has the task of design new rules, the other to correct and balance the existing ones.
Posted By: Silentwind6 (4/1/2014 7:16:08 PM)


They never said it would be out by GenCon. The Starter Set (as in a boxed set with very limited options) will be. The core books come out sometime later this year. If they have to push it into Fall to make it right, I'm all for waiting.
Posted By: Sword_of_Spirit (4/1/2014 9:58:06 PM)


I also hope the fighter thing isn't an april fools joke. The 4e fighter was the best fighter. Every PC has always had the 'I swing/shoot my _BLANK_ at the enemy' as an easy default option in an encounter. The fighter (aside from 4e) just always had that as their ONLY option.

The dragon video is funny. But I expect more from WotC today, honestly. Every other year I've been reading this site, you guys went all out.
Posted By: seti (4/1/2014 6:07:09 PM)


I'd suggest a just few maneuevers in the core rules, and a few more at a time in splat books.
Posted By: SirAntoine (4/1/2014 4:46:35 PM)


But what actually is the "Battle Master martial archetype"? An alternative Class Option, like the 3 type of Warlock's Packts (Blade, Tome and Chain Pacts)?
If the answer is yes, there is the possibility of building a Fighter WITHOUT Maneuvers?
And in this case, ehat are the other Fioghter's option?

Mearls has not explained the question well enough.
Posted By: Silentwind6 (4/1/2014 4:40:51 PM)


As of the last playtest packet, the other fighter option gets an increased crit range, effects on crit, and an extra fighting style (kind of like what would have been a feat in 3e).
Posted By: G_X (4/1/2014 5:26:36 PM)


Correct and agreed. The other option is a Fighter with static bonuses that you just add up with the new level and then don't worry about. It's the simple Fighter who wants to just swing his weapon and stand in harm's way and be good at it.
Posted By: RC-0775 (4/2/2014 7:54:08 AM)


Hope that Fighter path is not an April fool's joke (which the attached video indicates)....
Posted By: Cypher2009 (4/1/2014 4:09:03 PM)


I have to give Mr. Mearls credit for admitting that the Fighter has long been the 'base-line' class, defined mainly by what it can't do, and serving mainly as something for everyone else to be superior to in some way. And for admitting that 4e finally did something about that.

Too bad he wasn't up to the challenge of emulating 4e and actually giving the fighter something meaningful. We've seen the weaponmaster's CS+manuevers before and they were wanting. That there are now purportedly 16 manuevers to fill in for the 400+ the fighter had in 4e instead of 6 is not a meaningful improvement - especially if they're meant to somehow cover the Warlord, as well.

And if 'Short' Rests stay an hour, they're hardly an encounter-based resource, either.

Posted By: Tony_Vargas (4/1/2014 3:32:29 PM)


not a fan of pure martial classes having short rest mechanics, but it is a subclass option and the people have spoken! I have been fairly impressed with everything else in Next so I reserve judgment. Wonder how they are going to Disarm?
Posted By: strider13x (4/1/2014 2:12:54 PM)


I like it. Maneuvers as a choice means DMs can allow or disallow certain choices based on group playstyle.

I hope there is consideration on shortening the short rest. 1 hour, for me, feels little different than a long rest. You're only likely to get one of those in the day. 30 minutes is a better option, but I'm sure there is feedback and balance they have that will hopefully get the right number. It sounds like it is part of consideration, so that's hopeful.
Posted By: Sword_of_Spirit (4/1/2014 1:58:49 PM)


I agree, our group has been using 15 minute short rests. Everyone feels that is a better option. Enough time to catch breath, readjust equipment, bandage self, etc. It helps keep game momentum.
Posted By: VanRicter (4/1/2014 2:18:49 PM)


I think 5 minutes is too short, but 1 hour is too long. I guess a good medium between the 2 would be it's mean of 32.5 minutes, or just 30 minutes.
Posted By: KoboldAvenger (4/1/2014 4:04:51 PM)


15-30 minutes has always struck me as reasonable for Short Rest. I think there should be a little wiggle room, depending on the resourcetoberegained/stateoftheparty/activity. Long Rest is probably best at 6-8 hours depending on race. If you divide watches into 3rds that means you can get a full party rest with a watch in 9-12 hours. If you do quarters, it drops to 8-10 hours. That seems fairly realistic. I'd like optional rules for % of Long Rest completed though as well. It would be useful for adjudicating interruptions like random encounters. Though, if I'm not mistaken, there's been some talk about limitations on resting in hostile terrain anyway right? I'm curious what other sub-classes there will be for Fighters if the manoeuvre-based one is absorbing a lot of them. How many manoeuvres do Battle-Masters get access to eventually? Finally, PLEASE tell us that the manoeuvre dice actually synergizes with other rolls or builds instead of just allowing any build to be equally good at e... (see all)
Posted By: OskarOisinson (4/2/2014 1:36:39 AM)


One last note: As the Fighter's manoeuvres seemed rather arbitrary, so did the Monk's. I think you guys would do well to examine the 'Tome Monk',_Tome_(3.5e_Class) which has what is essentially a manoeuvre system based on Swift Actions but which allows one to build a personal Martial Arts 'Style' by combining strings of different synergistic manoeuvre combinations. Similar to what you guys are doing, but suggests that certain builds might be better at some things rather than any build is good at everything equally. IDK what else to say until I see the final write-up.
Posted By: OskarOisinson (4/2/2014 1:41:54 AM)


As for the Fighter, all this sounds great to me! I can't wait to have the finished product!

As for the Dragons, oh man, that image of the dragon riding the horse was hilarious.
Posted By: Mr.Tromboneman (4/1/2014 1:52:37 PM)


Dragon Race...starting April 1st. APRIL 1st, CARL!
Posted By: Red_Wullf (4/1/2014 1:49:56 PM)



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