98

This is a delicate thing to pull off as a GM, because it involves finessing the subtle aspects of a player's agency vs the rest of the imagined world. The usual model of player agency is that the player has agency as far as their character and character actions are concerned, while the GM has agency for everything else in the world. It's a good model and ...


63

From the description of Charisma in the Basic Rules: Charisma measures your ability to interact effectively with others. It includes such factors as confidence and eloquence, and it can represent a charming or commanding personality. You can say the sweetest laced words in the world, but if you say them condescendingly or without the presence to gain ...


52

Ability scores can decrease. See, for instance, the shadow and its strength drain ability. Even with score-generation methods that floor scores at 8, it'd only take two drains to threaten a PC with a strength below 3. (Other answers point out feeblemind, wild shapes that could have a stat below 3, and monstrous races with negative racial modifiers found ...


41

All I could find that might work was one specific weapon from Waterdeep There is a weapon in the Waterdeep: Dragon Heist module (p. 201) whose description includes (Spoiler Alert!): Presumably this unique longbow would have its remaining stats be the same as other longbows: heavy, and two-handed, and has the ammunition property. Whether this longbow lets ...


40

Monsters can have lower ability scores than player characters, and the same table can be used for their attribute modifiers. You can see several examples in Appendix D of the PHB. A few selecions: Both bats and rats have a Strength of 2 and an Intelligence of 2. A frog has Strength 1, Intelligence 1 and Charisma 3. The Monsters Manual has many more ...


39

I went ahead and implemented this in R. You can see the code here: https://gist.github.com/DarwinAwardWinner/34dd19f302bd1ef24310f6098dc3218d This code enumerates every possible roll of "4d6 drop lowest, reroll 7 or lower" in order to determine the exact probabilities of rolling each stat from 8 to 18. Then it uses these to compute the exact probability of ...


37

Lots of things going against you...why not Monk? As a Battlemaster Fighter, you will find lots of hurdles to get past. Its not just having few weapon options, few maneuvers to choose from, or severe lack of armor choices; there is literally nothing that having Wisdom for a Battlemaster will benefit (beyond skills) However, as a Monk, your AC is increased, ...


37

This is an opportunity, not a problem I can understand why you are concerned. I thought much the same in my early gaming days, but with experience I came to realise that it's much less of an issue than you would think. Roles matter more than stats For combat balance it is more important that you have balanced combat roles than diverse ability scores. A ...


36

I know this is old but I think the current answers are close but slightly inadequate. I think the formula itself (rather than comments/descriptions) needs to account for rounding somehow, so here is an actual formula (in Google Sheets or Microsoft Excel syntax) that does work, and I feel is human-readable: =(ROUNDDOWN(A1/2) - 5) Where A1 is the ability ...


34

Add the modifier (+2) As you say, agonizing blast allows one to "add your Charisma modifier to the damage [*eldritch blast] deals on a hit." (PHB p.110, emphasis mine) Your Charisma modifier is +2, as you can see from PHB p.13. (Or many of us end up memorizing the mathematical rule: "subtract ten, divide by two, round down" to get from score to modifier.) ...


32

The following anydice program will show you what the statistical distribution of ability score results for the Colville method looks like. function: roll ROLL:n min MIN:n{ if ROLL < MIN { result: d{} } result: ROLL } function: colville ARRAY:s INDEX:n { if (ARRAY >= 15) < 2 { result: d{} } result: INDEX@ARRAY } ROLL: [highest 3 of 4d6] ...


31

There are multiple reasons why a player may use an ability score below 3. Player Character Creation It is possible (but not advisable) to create a player character with a score of 1 on an ability score. You must choose to play either an Orc or a Kobold. Both these playable races were published in Volo's Guide to Monsters. Orcs have a -2 to intelligence, ...


30

PCs are exceptional regardless of their ability scores Answering your actual question rather than the math one first: Your hang-up is that you place too much emphasis on ability scores. A fighter is already exceptional just for being a fighter, just as a wizard, cleric or druid are already exceptional for belonging to these classes. Ability scores influence ...


28

In gaming, nothing is "wrong" if the group agrees on it. Having said that, I would venture to say this approach is somewhat against custom and wouldn't be received well in the average table. If I had a player show up who just started to declare "I roll X", I'd respond, regardless of the result, "You fail. I call for rolls at this table." There are many ...


28

The DM shouldn't do this RAW seems to allow your interpretation. However, this is not how it's intended to work ASIs are class features, same as a Rogue's Sneak Attack or a Barbarian's Rage. There is no precedent for spells or abilities that are able to permanently deprive a player of a class feature. It would have a huge impact and would definitely ...


26

No You must use the same ability modifier for damage and attack. Basic Rules, Damage and Healing When attacking with a weapon, you add your ability modifier--the same modifier used for the attack roll--to the damage. Impact of House-ruling this It makes certain multiclasses more powerful and makes the already-powerful DEX ability score even more ...


26

There is no such official rule. Chapter 1 of the PHB/basic rules, titled "Step-by-Step Characters", lists how to determine ability scores in step 3 (italics added for emphasis): You generate your character’s six ability scores randomly. Roll four 6-sided dice and record the total of the highest three dice on a piece of scratch paper. Do this five more ...


26

By RAW, yes, as the rules for Wish don't say anything about magic not being able to end the reduction You've already quoted in your question the relevant portion of Greater Restoration, which says that it can end any reduction in Ability Scores. In 5e, Specific beats General, and there are no hidden rules. Because Wish doesn't say anything about the ...


26

The modifier is directly linked to the stat, so a STR of 19 has a modifier of +4. That just happens automatically. STR based attacks will therefore benefit from the higher modifier. Skill checks will improve if they use the STR modifier as it has improved. Basically, the modifier instantly increases to match the new total of the stat then that flows over ...


24

Resolve it the same way for all player/character disparity. What's written on the character sheet takes precedence Players don't have to be strong or dexterous to play characters with high STR and DEX. They don't have to know how to skin an animal or track game to play a character with Survival proficiency. Most obviously - they don't have to be able to do ...


24

As long as you meet the prerequisite, pick any class These are separate things. As you note, the requirement is just "Intelligence or Wisdom 13 or higher". This means you need either "Intelligence 13 or higher" or "Wisdom 13 or higher". If you have an Intelligence of 1 but 13 Wisdom you still qualify for the feat. Once you qualify for the feat, the choice ...


24

It's up to the DM to decide based on the task you're attempting to accomplish. From the Player's Handbook, page 154, the introduction of the Tools section: Tool use is not tied to a single ability, since proficiency with a tool represents broader knowledge of its use. For example, the DM might ask you to make a Dexterity check to carve a fine detail with ...


24

No, you could still apply a -3 modifier This is an understandable question, because the table of armors in the PHB (p. 145) states that you add your Dexerity Modifier "max 2" to your medium armor AC. This is a tad ambiguous, and could be read several ways. However, the rules on medium armor spell out the rules on modifiers a bit more explicitly than the ...


24

There is no longer a trade-off of defense vs offense By allowing rage/barb features to work with Dex then the Barbarian becomes much less MAD when having to decide point attribution for Offense vs Defense. In the official scenario, you have to decide between CON/DEX for higher AC/HP or STR for better attacks. If you can lump them all together, then the ...


23

I'm going to frame-challenge a little bit and say: Who cares if you run into issues at later levels? You may run into issues later, but that's part of the character. This character may end up with a shorter "life-span" than other characters you've played, but not every character should live forever. Maybe he'll go out sacrificing himself in some way to ...


23

You should be able to play this It is in no way optimal, but it's certainly possible to play this kind of character, and it will provide you with great roleplaying opportunities. A crippled fighter who uses what little Druidic magic he knows to get by where his physical form can no longer help is a great concept. As you've already determined, having a low ...


23

Dexterity Every Firearm in the DMG (p. 268) is a Ranged weapon. And the rules state (PHB, p. 194) the ability modifier used for a ranged weapon attack is Dexterity. If the creature using the firearm is proficient with them (up to the DM to determine), then they would also add their proficiency bonus to the roll to hit (but not the roll to damage, which ...


22

You're right: only the Hexblade can benefit from their own Hex Warrior feature It's simply stated in the text you quoted - when you attack with the affected weapon, you can use your charisma bonus. The Hex Warrior feature doesn't say anything about what happens when someone else uses a Hexblade's weapon, so the normal rules must apply and they would use ...


21

The Dexterity score could be used to make Dexterity checks. The description of Bigby's Hand includes this sentence in the first paragraph: The hand lasts for the spell's duration, and it moves at your command, mimicking the movements of your own hand. Everything the follows in the spell description can be read as exceptions to this. That is, in addition ...


21

Each spellcasting class will have a section in the class description where it describes what ability score is used for spell attacks and for spell save DCs. For a Druid, it's Wisdom (page 66 of the Player's Handbook): Spellcasting Ability Wisdom is your spellcasting ability for your druid spells, since your magic draws upon your devotion and ...


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