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14 months ago, an Unearthed Arcana supplement was published that discussed how the ranger described in the Player's Handbook was under powered. These rules reimagined the ranger's abilities, and suggested that an official version would be released later.

Finally, we come to implementation. If this iteration of the ranger, or a future revision of it, grades high enough, our plan is to present it as a revised ranger in a future D&D sourcebook.

Does that Sourcebook exist yet? If not, have the devs given an update or told us their intentions?

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    \$\begingroup\$ As of mid-2018, Crawford made it clear what their current thinking on the UA revised ranger was. You might want to review my answer and then consider whether those clarifications make it worth accepting as the most up-to-date answer. \$\endgroup\$ – V2Blast Feb 10 at 7:23
  • \$\begingroup\$ I've updated my answer to account for the November 2019 Class Feature Variants UA. \$\endgroup\$ – V2Blast Dec 1 at 8:55
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Jeremy Crawford actually addressed this in a podcast on 2017-11-27. I'll link it here (start at 35:44), but here are the main points:

  • It wasn't in Xanathar's, but they announced in advance that it wouldn't be in it
  • They are still working on revised Ranger. It's not like it's fate was sunk by low satisfaction or something.
  • Putting out a "redo" on a core class is something they haven't done before, and it has some complications

Complications

  • Discerning between the PHB Ranger and the UA Ranger was causing confusion
  • Most people still play the PHB Ranger
  • Many people love the PHB Ranger
  • Looking carefully at the Revised Ranger feedback, the dissatisfaction with Ranger was mostly with Beastmaster. They are considering whether they want to "mess around with things around the broken thing" rather than "fixing the broken thing".

One quote at the end of the segment (41:52) sums up the status of Revised Ranger:

We're still looking at how to proceed. It's most likely with the Ranger going to be a much more targeted revision, and it will be optional. Like basically "here's a swap-out, like you take this Beastmaster thing and use this other thing in its place".

So, basically, they're still looking at it, something is definitely coming, but it might be a while as they're still figuring out how to proceed. He also says that whatever comes next will have further playtesting with UAs and multiple ways of gathering feedback. With that in mind, I'm expecting it will be a while. I'd highly recommend listening to at least that segment of the podcast. It really gives you some good insight into the status of Revised Ranger, and the reasoning behind their decisions.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Another reference was the Mike Mearls Reddit AMA, where he claimed they hope to have it out sometime early 2018 (which is likely march-may). \$\endgroup\$ – Baergren Jan 2 '18 at 17:32
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Baergren do you have a link for that? I'd be very interested to read more. \$\endgroup\$ – Dacromir Jan 3 '18 at 10:03
  • \$\begingroup\$ Can't actually get a link as the sites blocked where I am currently. It was in r/dndnext around 14days ago. There was some conflicting responses on timing of release but they hope Revised Ranger and Artificer will be out within the first half of the year. \$\endgroup\$ – Baergren Jan 3 '18 at 14:19
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    \$\begingroup\$ A link to that response in the AMA (though the info's outdated now). This answer may need to be updated to address the latest status of the revised ranger: dead, other than maybe as alternative class features. \$\endgroup\$ – V2Blast Feb 9 at 19:55
  • \$\begingroup\$ It might be worth noting that another UA with alternate Ranger features has been released. \$\endgroup\$ – nick012000 Dec 1 at 4:34
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It won't be released as a fully revised class, only maybe as a set of alternative class features

Rules designer Jeremy Crawford originally indicated in an August 2017 tweet that the UA revised ranger would require revisions before being published:

Before the revised ranger becomes official, it needs further refinement. After that, we'll get it into your hands!

Crawford later clarified in an unofficial Twitter exchange in October 2017:

In the end, there will be 1 ranger: the PH ranger. It will get alternative features. The official game won't have 2 versions of a class

Twitter user: So a published version of the UA Ranger will be published as an 'alternate rule' for the Ranger?

You'll be able to take feature X in place of feature Y. It won't be a whole different class.

However, Jeremy Crawford did eventually make it clear in this July 2018 Twitter exchange that any work on the UA revised ranger as a wholesale revision of the class was no longer occurring, and that at best it was a "possibility" that some alternative class features for the ranger would be released:

Regarding the revised ranger, I mentioned back in 2017 that we have no plans to release an alternative version of a class. That plan hasn’t changed. There is one ranger: the one in the Player’s Handbook.

Twitter user: Are you still considering alternate versions of some of the class and Beast Master features, like you mentioned in the 11/27/2017 Dragon Talk episode?

Alternate features for multiple classes are still a possibility, but we want to do more research before we invest time in them. We don’t want our design to chase phantoms but real desires held by a large number of players.

In short: the revised ranger won't be published as a whole separate class. At most, it'll be a set of alternate class features, allowing players to swap out a particular PHB ranger feature for an alternate one - but the designers plan to do more research before they actually decide to do that.


As of November 2019, this is being playtested in UA

On November 4, 2019, Wizards of the Coast released Unearthed Arcana: Class Feature Variants for playtesting. This UA includes variant class features for every class - including the ranger - that replace or enhance existing features.

As summarized on page 2 of the document, the ranger gains replacements or enhancements for nearly all of its base class features from 1st to 3rd level, as well as a replacement for its 10th-level feature, and an enhancement of one of the Beast Master ranger archetype's features:

  • The 1st-level Natural Explorer feature (gives benefits from chosen favored terrain), as well as its 6th- and 10th-level improvements (choose additional favored terrains), are replaced with the Deft Explorer feature, a series of 3 benefits that you can choose one of at each of those same 3 levels, in any order:

    • Canny: gain proficiency and expertise in a skill, and 2 language proficiencies
    • Roving: gain 5 feet to walking speed, and gain climbing and swimming speeds equal to walking speed
    • Tireless: give yourself (1d10 + Wis mod) temp HP a number of times equal to Wis mod, and reduce exhaustion by 1 on short rest
  • The 1st-level Favored Enemy feature, as well as its 6th- and 14th-level improvements (choose additional favored enemy types), are all replaced with the Favored Foe feature (learn hunter's mark without counting against your number of known spells, and cast it without expending a spell slot or requiring concentration, a number of times equal to Wis mod).

  • Rangers alone gain the 2nd-level Fighting Style option Druidic Warrior (learn 2 druid cantrips that count as ranger spells for you, and you can swap them on level-up), in addition to the new Fighting Style options added by the UA for all classes with the feature.

  • The UA adds a few spells to the ranger spell list (a few, like entangle and dominate beast, seem like they should already have been on it).

  • The 2nd-level Spellcasting feature gains 2 other enhancements. Spell Versatility (which several other "known" spellcasters get in the same UA) lets them swap one known spell for a new one of the same level on a long rest. Spellcasting Focus, obviously, lets them use a druidic focus in place of material components.

  • The 3rd-level Primeval Awareness feature (waste a spell slot to find out that an unknown number of a known type of creature is at an unknown location within 1 mile, or 6 miles in favored terrain) is replaced by Primal Awareness (learn 1-2 specified spells at 3rd, 5th, 9th, 14th, and 17th ranger level, and cast each of them once per long rest without expending a spell slot).

  • The 10th-level Hide in Plain Sight feature (spend a minute to camouflage yourself and then press yourself against a surface to get a +10 to Stealth checks until you move/take an action) is replaced by the much simpler Fade Away feature (use a bonus action to turn invisible until the start of your next turn, once per short or long rest).

  • Finally, the Beast Master ranger gains 2 additional options for their 3rd-level Ranger's Companion feature: "a primal beast known as a Beast of the Air or a Beast of the Earth". Their statblocks are too long to summarize here.

Feedback surveys have already gone out for this UA. It remains to be seen whether some or all of this content will end up being published (and how it will be changed if it is published), but this does seem to reflect what Crawford meant in earlier statements by "alternate class features".

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Not as of 2017.

Xanathar's Guide to Everything adds the Gloom Stalker archetype, which appeared in the most recent revised ranger article under the name Deep Stalker. It also publishes the Horizon Walker and Monster Slayer archetypes, which appeared in separate UA articles.

However, that book doesn't add the revised ranger class, nor is it announced to appear in any currently announced future book, as of 2017.

Mike Mearls, asked on Twitter, has not ruled out the possibility of a future backwards-compatible revised edition of the core rulebooks. Such a book would almost certainly include a revised edition of the ranger.

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