It's my turn to DM, and the previous DM wants to play a Simic Hybrid, but they want to use three of the animal enhancements available, instead of two. Specifically, they want Underwater Adaptation, Grappling Appendages, and Acid Spit.

I want to give them this, but I don't know if it's balanced. Would it be?

  • 6
    \$\begingroup\$ As it currently stands, your question is unanswerable because "what should I do?" is opinion based. You might be able to reformat the question into an "is it unbalanced to have three animal adaptations?" \$\endgroup\$
    – Theik
    Dec 3, 2019 at 12:52
  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ Info: What level will their PC be starting at? Two of the adaptations you've listed are only available from 5th level. \$\endgroup\$
    – Tiggerous
    Dec 3, 2019 at 13:40

1 Answer 1


You should probably homebrew them a feat

The immediate problem I think you've encountered is that simply letting them choose three gives them more features from their race than is published, and is thus unfair to the other players. A reasonable approach to solve this is by giving them that feature (here adapation) through some different character option. The most general such option you can hand out is a feat (which is taken instead of an ability score improvement).

When you look at the simic hybrid race option their notable features are darkvision and the animal enhancements. Comparing with the variant human option, which gets proficiency in one skill and one feat (of their choice) we can very roughly say that the animal enhancement feature is equivalent to a feat in terms of 'power'.1 Roughly is the key word here, so now starts the process of making a balanced, reasonable feat.

Since you only need the feat to give one more adaption, you might want to make it a 'half-feat', though the adaption might be powerful enough on its own. Rough suggestion of wording: 2

Simic Adaptation

  • Increase one of your ability scores by 1, up to a maximum of 20.
  • Choose one of the Animal Enhancements from the simic hybrid's options. You can't choose an option you already have.

Once you have honed the feat to where it is at least play-testable (and clear this status with your player) you can allow them to take it, and you should open it up to the other players as well, and be permissive to do similar things for them. Otherwise you risk showing favouritism, which can rightfully makes people upset.

1: Notable things this is skipping over; the flexibility of choosing from a list, the fact that the variant human only get a net +2 to ability scores outside of the feat (which might not include one), etc.

2: If you thing this is reasonable, it might be worth passing through a homebrew review on the site, making sure that question adheres to our homebrew review policy. If you so, please link to this question and be a good sport and give any due credit.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Given the history, it may be helpful to link to the recommendations on our homebrew request process. You may also want to bring up the issue if balance is actually a goal in their game. \$\endgroup\$
    – NautArch
    Dec 3, 2019 at 14:51
  • \$\begingroup\$ @NautArch Adressed your first point, but the second feels like a frame challenge I don't feel qualified to make \$\endgroup\$
    – Someone_Evil
    Dec 3, 2019 at 15:12
  • \$\begingroup\$ No worries. It was something that Sevensideddie has answered in some of OP's questions and it seems potentially relevant. \$\endgroup\$
    – NautArch
    Dec 3, 2019 at 15:13
  • \$\begingroup\$ Thanks for that, I'll test it out to see how it works. \$\endgroup\$ Dec 3, 2019 at 19:08

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