What is the aim of my suggestion?
I do not like the ranger from the PHB and find it problematic that the UA revised ranger does not work with subclasses other than the ones from the UA. This has led me to the decision to remove the ranger as class option for my next campaign. My players like Favored enemy however, and they love initiative bonuses. These features are not the reason to remove the ranger and I'm all for personalization options like favored enemy. Therefore, I'm thinking about packaging these features and offering them as a feat.
My idea of the feat would be the following (synthesized from the relevant features of the UA ranger):
Choose a type of favored enemy: beasts, fey, humanoids, monstrosities, undead, aberrations, celestials, constructs, dragons, elementals, fiends, or giants.
You get a bonus of +2 on damage rolls for attacks against the favored enemy. This bonus increases to +4 at level 6. You have advantage on knowledge and tracking checks pertaining to your favored enemy.
You learn a language of your choice and gain advantage on initiative checks.
This is mostly the combined favored enemy and greater favored enemy from the UA ranger with a few changes:
- One type of enemy from the whole set of options rather than one lesser and one greater.
- Only one language instead of two.
- The greater favored enemy bonus on saving throws was removed.
- The limit of damage bonus on only weapon attacks was removed.
- The advantage on initiative was added.
Is this balanced?
There is no problem of taking something away from a class because I already remove the ranger. I was also thinking of offering to kinds of enemies (any two, or a minor and greater like the original). This did seem a bit much however. Of course the value of favored enemy depends on how often the enemy appears. I assume my typical campaign where many of the monster classes (such humanoids, monstrosities, undead or elementals) appear regularly but in changing quantities.
Is this feat balanced compared to other feats?