Three days ago I asked Is this homebrew gunslinger class balanced? and got a some good answers. Thank you to everyone who took the time to read my post and especially thank you to the person who provided an in depth analysis of every feature. Also sorry for the formatting problems. Thank you to the person who fixed my formatting and writing, it was a welcome surprise.

I took into account the suggestions from last time and have edited the class quite a lot. I would be very grateful if people would help me refine it to be as good as possible. Thank you in advance.

I present to you: Gunslinger V2


Level Proficiency
Features Skill Shot
1 +2 Gunsmithing
2 +2 Shooting Style
3 +2 Skill Shots 3
4 +2 Ability Score Increase 4
5 +3 Steady hand, Gunsmithing(2) 5
6 +3 Regenerating Skill 6
7 +3 Extra Attack 7
8 +3 Ability Score Increase 8
9 +4 Skill Shot(2) 9
10 +4 Bullet Time, Gunsmithing(3), Shooting Style(2) 10
11 +4 Steady hand(2) 11
12 +4 Ability Score Increase 12
13 +5 Extra Attack(2) 13
14 +5 Regenerating Skill(2) 14
15 +5 Steady Hand (3) 15
16 +5 Ability Score Increase 16
17 +6 Skill Shot(3) 17
18 +6 Regenerating Skill(3) 18
19 +6 Ability Score Increase 19
20 +6 Bullet Time(2) 20

Class Features

As a Gunslinger, you gain the following class features

Hit Points

Hit Dice: 1d8 per Gunslinger level
Hit Points at 1st Level: 8 + Constitution modifier
Hit Points at Higher Levels: 5 (1d8) + Constitution modifier


Armor: Light Armour
Weapons: Simple weapons, Firearms
Tools: Gunsmith's Tools
Saving Throws: Dexterity, Wisdom
Skills: Choose three from Acrobatics, Athletics, Perception, Sleight of Hand, Stealth and Survival.


You start with the following equipment, in addition to the equipment granted by your background:

  • (a) a revolver, (b) a rifle, (c) a blunderbuss or (d) two pistols
  • A hand pistol
  • 30 rounds of ammunition
  • A set of gunsmith's tools



You can craft firearms. To craft a firearm, you must first have the schematics for it. Every 2 levels: 1, 3, 5, 7, ect, you can learn a new firearm schematic. Pick any basic firearm and add to it (if you wish) a number of modifiers equal to your proficiency bonus. To craft the firearm, it takes a number of days equal to the base firearm's crafting time plus extra time for each modifier you apply. You must have access to raw materials worth at least half of the firearm's cost, which are expended in this process, as well as the extra price added by each modifier, and access to the facilities needed to craft the firearm. You can also add modifiers to existing firearms up to a total of your proficiency bonus. Once you reach 5th level you can make +1 firearms, at 10th level you can make +2 firearms and at 15th level you can make +3 firearms.

Shooting Styles

At 2nd level, you develop a particular style of shooting and using firearms. Choose one of the styles below. You can't choose a Shooting Style again, even when you later get to choose again at level 10.

Dual-Wielding: When you engage in two-weapon fighting, you can add your ability modifier to the damage of the second attack so long as the attack is made by a firearm.

Explosive: When you use an explosive, grenade, or a weapon with the Explosive property, you can reroll 1s and 2s on the damage die, though you must take the new rolls even if they are 1s and 2s.

Heavy Calibre: Attacks you make with two-handed firearms deal +2 bonus damage.

Marksman: You have a +2 bonus to attack rolls made with firearms.

All-Rounder: You deal +1 bonus damage with all firearms.

Skill Shots

Your way of live has caused you to develop a particular hardiness to your person called grit. This is represented by the number of Skill Shot points you have, which can be seen on the Gunslinger class table. You can expend Skill Shot Points to perform abilities called Skill Shots, with you regaining all expended Skill Shot points at the end of a short or long rest. At 3rd level you know 2 Skill Shots, and you learn 2 more at 9th, and 17th levels. Some Skill Shots may call for an enemy to make a saving throw, if that is the case, the following is the DC for the saving throw called. Additionally, only one Skill Shot may be performed per turn.

Skill Shot Save DC = 8 + your proficiency bonus + your Dexterity modifier

Ability Score Increase

When you reach 4th level, and again at 6th, 8th, 12th, 14th, 16th and 19th level, you can increase one ability score of your choice by 2, or two ability scores of your choice by 1. As normal, you can't increase an ability score above 20 using this feature.

Steady Hand

Beginning at 5th level, if you are prone and make no movement on your turn, you get a +1 to hit with firearms. At level 11 if you make no movement you get a +1 and if you are prone and make no movement you get a +2. At level 15 being prone and making no movement gets you a +3 to hit, making no movement gets you a +2 and moving half your speed or less gives you a +1.

Regenerating Skill

Beginning at 6th level, if you roll initiative with less than half of your skill shot points remaining, you regain 2. At level 14 this number increases to 4 and at level 18 it increases to 6.

Extra Attack

Beginning at 7th level, you can attack twice, instead of once, when you take the Attack action on your turn. The number of attacks increases to three when you reach 13th level in this class.

Bullet Time

Starting at 10th level, your senses become so honed that you can momentarily perceive time slower. Once per long rest, you can use your bonus action to enter Bullet Time. This lasts until the beginning of your next turn. During this period, you have advantage on Dexterity saving throws and Perception checks, and attacks made against you have disadvantage. You also have +2 AC. Once you reach level 20 you can use your reaction to make a number of attacks equal to your Dexterity modifier.

Extra context to help with reviewing

Gunsmith's tools

A set of Tinker's tools
A notebook with schematics
A small pouch of gunpowder


In my setting, guns do not exist and were invented by this player. All guns deal piercing damage. I have not added costs or crafting time because I have not yet solidified what they will be, but it will on average take a week to craft a gun at level 1, and the guns prices will be roughly in line with the normal dnd weapons in terms of battle effectiveness to cost.

Gun Capacity Damage die Range Loading and Other
Revolver 6 1d6 mid range loading takes an action and a bonus action
Rifle 2 1d10 mid/long range loading takes an action
Blunderbuss 1 1d12 short range loading takes an action and a bons action
Pistol 1 1d8 mid/short range loading takes a bonus action
Hand Pistol 1 1d4 short range loading takes an action, concealable
Sniper Rifle 1 2d8 Very long range loading takes 2 actions
Mini Cannon 1 variable ammo: 3d12 to one target or 1d12 to every enemy within a cone Short range loading takes 3 actions but can be reloaded by multiple people at once, heavy.
Shotgun 2 1d6 in a cone short range loading takes an action
Repeating Pistol 9 1d4 but 3 attacks per turn short range loading takes an action and a bonus action
Cannon 1 variable ammo: 8d12 to one target or 2d12 to every enemy within a cone Medium/long range loading takes 6 actions but can be reloaded by multiple people at once, unliftable.
Semi Automatic Rifle 10 1d8 up to 4 attacks per turn mid range loading takes an action and a bonus action

Skill shots

Near the bottom of this link are the skill shots, credit to PlatinumSketch for making them, as well as this is the class I based this off.


These are found in the gunsmithing section of my post, follow this link and scroll to the bottom for the modifiers. Thanks to Zone for making them, they were designed (I think) for DMs but they work equally well for players.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Please link the previous iteration, and highlight what and how you have fixed since then. Also, don't signal edits etc. rpg.meta.stackexchange.com/q/3454/10642 \$\endgroup\$
    – Mołot
    Jul 13, 2022 at 21:13
  • \$\begingroup\$ I took liberty to add a link and remove unnecessary explanation from the intro of your question. Q&A format works best if you limit content that's not really part of your question to minimum, and thanks are best expressed by upvotes and maybe in comments :) \$\endgroup\$
    – Mołot
    Jul 13, 2022 at 21:20
  • \$\begingroup\$ I tabulated the weapons to (hopefully) make them easier to parse. Do note that your class feature refers to the weapons' crafting time and cost which is currently missing. \$\endgroup\$
    – Someone_Evil
    Jul 13, 2022 at 22:36
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Also, there are already firearm weapons listed in the DMG, which differ from these. Is this on purpose? I would have expected the hombrew stuff to complement, not replace the exisitng material (i.e. your revolver deals 1d6, the official on deals 2d8 piercing). \$\endgroup\$ Jul 14, 2022 at 8:36
  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ How common are firearms in your setting? Usually in D&D, firearms are extremely rare to non-existent, and therefore priceless or at least extremely valuable. This class gets a lot of them for free at level 1 and then can craft more, which is potentially unbalanced depending on gp value of the weapons \$\endgroup\$ Jul 14, 2022 at 9:59

3 Answers 3


Still broken in the sense of being under-defined, this time probably underpowered

It's gonna be hard to give a full analysis of the things in the class. In part because at some point you just have to playtest and see, but also because there here are overshadowing issues elsewhere. There's gonna be an element of just going through explaining the things which have problems or don't work.


And I don't think we're off to a good start. This is a crafting feature, which is maybe a natural way to model person-who-makes-weapons, but it has some severe problems. Very simply, this probably does nothing at first level. Possibly never. Crafting is a downtime activity, and the availability of downtime is dependent on the campaign. Some might be laden with it, in others you might never have any. That's not a good thing for your sole first level feature to be dependent on. A similar note applies to the gold cost, though expecting a character to get gold over the course of a campaign is a lot more reasonable.

Recommendation: assuming you're going for is customizable, bespoke weapons crafted by the Gunslinger, do something modelled off the Artificer's infusions. Whether to make it as fiddly as the modifiers currently incorporated by reference is up to you.

Base weapons

If we accept that we basically don't have a first level feature (or only depending on the campaign), at early levels you basically have a vanilla Ranger (and I hope you're familiar with the class's reputation). Except you have a smaller hit die, and the weapons you get are probably worse. The probably is in part because ranges are poorly defined, but that's not gonna matter too much.

The rifle and pistol are probably the easiest comparisons. While the rifle has a d10 instead of d8 damage die, you only get 2 attacks per 3 actions (and that rate gets worse once you get Extra Attack). The pistol is par on damage, except it eats up your bonus actions, and that's gonna start mattering later (also later you get Extra Attack, which pistols work poorly with).

In general though, the design with N capacity and whole actions to load is gonna be difficult to design around. You're gonna have a hard time making sustained damage be level with other classes, and otherwise you might well get more 1/encounter powers (and reload between combats/as part of a short rest) but if they are that you should design them to be that and match up to other classes variants thereof, and I think the current design falls short on both fronts. I'm not going to offer specifics on the guns that aren't starting equipment, because how and when they are acquirable isn't well enough defined for them to be evaluated, but I think there are some effects which could quickly be very problematic.

Shooting styles

Similar to Rangers you get Fighting Shooting styles at 2nd level. Of note, Rangers also get spellcasting at that level, so now you're definitely into worse than Rangers territory. While as a general design these are fine (unsurprising as they are, wisely, modelled off fighting styles), but show some issues from the under defined nature of some of the material. In order:

  • Dual-Wielding is generally fine, except none of the weapons have the light property, meaning two-weapon fighting isn't actually possible out of the box.
  • Explosive doesn't have any weapons which it works with, as none of your weapons are explosives, grenades (which would probably fall under explosives, no?), or have the Explosive property.
  • Heavy Calibre: None of the weapons are two-handed. That's a specific weapon property. The closest you get is the mini cannon being heavy, but that puts small characters at a disadvantage, which is not the same.
  • Marksman and All-rounder are probably fine, if a bit generic. But I think the complaint mainly comes from the others being non-function at the moment.

Skill shots

It's hard to give a full evaluation with modular options like this, but it seems fine. It's also hard to evaluate power when the class has so little else, which makes some strong effects here be fine, just so the class has something. Some of these might step a bit on the toes of other classes, such as the Fighter's Second Wind and Monk's Stunning Strike. Might be something to be aware of.

I will note that Skill shots known is absolutely worth a column in your class table, it's written very much like a subclass right now. You might also want to smooth out the progression, so it's closer to one more every 4 levels, rather than 2 more every 8.

Steady Hand

While this might be slightly weird, not moving on your turn for a small bonus to attack is fine. I might have expected this to be the bonus-to-attack Shooting style, as the biggest problem here is that those stack, which is starting to be a problem for bounded accuracy. Having multiple bonuses to attack roll is generally outside the design of 5e.

Of note, being prone gives disadvantage on attack rolls, and having +2 does not enough to mitigate that. And mitigating advantage sounds dangerous, but maybe something you could look at.

Regenerating skill

This feature probably generates way too much resources, though it's hard to tell. I'd want to keep an eye on this during play tests, it would be quite possible for a gunsmith to always have skill points available, which is particularly concerning considering the self healing available through them.

Extra Attack

Then we too late come to extra attack. I'm sure you're aware that other martial classes (that get it) get it at 5th level, and that's with good reason. In short, 5th level is the step up to tier 2. That means Extra Attack, cantrip scaling, and more powerful enemies. And your character is lagging behind that. Getting the 3rd attack at 13th level is probably fine, as there's a lot more flex to tier 3 progression (though generally non-Fighters don't get the third attack, you needn't be beholden to that).

Bullet Time

Very few notes. I'm not sure how strong it is, but it's hard to say as things stand. I will note regarding the 20th level upgrade that reactions generally need some kind of trigger (and arguably need them?) so it's fairly loosely defined, though making 5 attacks (assuming you have the loaded bullets for it) at reaction speed is very powerful.

Other notes

I have a couple of other notes which don't necessarily relate to balance, but more for clarity :

  • Gunsmithing schematics known should be its own column in the table (along with skill shots known), it would just be much clearer.
  • Speaking of the class table, rather than purely using a numerical improvement on features (eg. "Gunsmithing(2)") you should give a super simple reminder of what the improvement is at that level (eg. "Gunsmithing (+1)), or just say "Improvement" if it's not easily numerized. For the example of Gunsmithing, reading the table I'd assumed you get two uses, or now have two smithed guns, which is very different from what the feature improvement is.
  • Laying Gunsmith's tools as Tinker's tools is fairly strange. You could just define something to be gunsmith's tools, or you could have the class use tinker's tools. Right now you technically define the class to get proficiency with a book (and a bottle of gunpowder) which is just kinda weird.

A final suggestion

You seem to have certain specific things you're looking for, but wanting to largely use preexisiting systems (ie. other homebrew) and I absolutely get that, I think it's a good idea. You may be better served by taking that homebrew and adding your own features replacing, or going by the thing you've linked and adding it as an option in its exisiting modularity. Though the applicability of this is gonna depend on which things you're actually looking for.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Thanks for taking the time to read and review my question. I'm going to take into account all these suggestions. Firstly, I'm going to make gunsmithing not be a downtime ability. I'm going to make it available during a long rest. I'm aware it doesn't make sense and isn't really a resting activity but it fits the idea I had, of setting up camp and tinkering with a gun. I'll also up the damage die for the guns. The shooting styles only look useless because I haven't fully put in all the info for guns. I moved back the extra attack because someone on my previous post said it was too early. \$\endgroup\$ Jul 14, 2022 at 14:41
  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ @Dragonmaster3575 I don't see either of the two answers saying that Extra Attack at 5th is too early. Both are saying 13th is two levels late (which I don't quite agree with, but do see their argument). As for the details of the guns: you'd need to set those details before they can be evaluated. I'd highly recommend making things like that complete, so that you get less responses like that (especially if repeated it's gonna be a waste of time). \$\endgroup\$
    – Someone_Evil
    Jul 14, 2022 at 15:08

Just play an Artificer or Fighter.

Simply put, there's no need to invent a whole new class for "guy who fights with the guns he makes". There's already classes that are entirely capable of that: the Artificer (focusing more on the weapon creation) and the Fighter (focusing more on the fighting.

All you'd need to build guns is Proficiency in the appropriate tool (though I suspect that a "gunsmithing kit" would probably have more in common with a set of smith's tools than a set of tinker's tools - primitive firearms were built by bellmakers, since they used basically the same casting process). This Proficiency can be easily attained by selecting an appropriate Background.

All you need to fight with guns is either Proficiency with Martial weapons (like a Fighter) or with Firearms specifically (like an Artificer). Pulling off trick shots can be done by selecting the appropriate Manoeuvres as a Battlemaster Fighter (or taking the relevant Feat to gain some without taking that subclass), and making customisations to your guns can be done using Artificer Infusions.


You fail at the worldbuilding stage.

In my setting, guns do not exist and were invented by this player.

This alone is a huge problem as you propose some quite advanced guns there. Gun history is by now more than 900 years of constant development, and we only broke out from primitive firearms in the last 250 of them. As a result, you really should think about the worldbuilding implications.

In our world, gunpowder was developed around the mid 10th century, with "fire lances" (primitive gunpowder-flamethrowers) appearing till at latest 1132. The first cannon used is recorded for about 1260. Muzzleloading smoothbore guns using a match (arquebuse) came up around 1400 to 1425. 1515 the Wheellock came. Flintlocks only were invented in 16th century. Percussion caps only came in 1830. Colt only invented the Single Action Army in the 1870s.

To rephrase it more harshly: Without percussion caps (and modern chemistry) none of the following exists:

  • No revolvers at the standard of Colt Single Action Army or more modern. You might have a revolver with multiple locks or touchholes before, but due to the danger of hangfire or flashover, those are hyper rare.
  • Self-contained cartridges are a nogo without percussion caps. Even a pinfire cartridge contains a percussion cap. Not on a nipple but inside the cartridge itself.
  • Without a self-contained cartridge, automatic or semi-automatic weapons can't exist. In fact, even breechloading guns were super rare before the invention of the (partially) self-contained cartridge.

Restructuring the weapon table

From, a worldbuilding perspective, I would do a harsh cut and go back to the drawing board: Make firearms rare but not an invention of the player. Limit the technology to matchlocks or wheellocks, maybe allow the player to invent the flintlock. From a gun evolution standpoint, the weapons spreadsheet should, at the height of matchlocks all the way through to the invention of the cartridge only contain the following entries, and none others:

  • Musket/Rifle -> Musket, Rifled Musket, whatever. Depending on technology these are not rifled at all, then referred to as Musket. Needs to be loaded from the front.
  • Blunderbuss -> Technically nothing but a Musket loaded differently.
  • Pistol -> large caliber boarding or cavalry pistol
  • Hand Pistol -> "Derringer" or small caliber pistols
  • Mini Cannon -> This is a Fieldgun or Handgonne
  • Cannon -> Shoots at a flat angle
  • Mortar -> Cousin of the Cannon, but to launch exploding charges in a high angle rather than flat angle
  • Grenades & Bombs -> Pots of clay, glass, or even iron, filled with gunpowder and having a lit match sticking in through the side. Clay and glass grenades generally try to kill with shock and iron grenades with shrapnel. That's unless you are a redcoat in the 1850s in the Crimean war, then you stuff your water bottle with rusty nails and then powder, making a glass grenade with shrapnel.
  • \$\begingroup\$ Thanks, I'll take this into account! I was planning on adding grenades and mortars, and I was planning on having them be primitive, as a modern grenade does seem far fetched. In context though, with magic and dragons existing, I'm not that concerned with historical accuracy. Thank you for taking the time to read my post though, hope you have a nice day. \$\endgroup\$ Jul 15, 2022 at 20:21

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