Sunday, October 30, 2016

3.5e vs 5.0 Feats

5e SRD Series
D & D 5th Edition and a 5e x 5 SRD Project
The difficulty with 5e escalating HP and Damage.
5e- the fluidity of magic

I notice how 5e now has bundle of feature abilities compared to 3.5 and Pathfinder's single feature ability. In a sense, they almost turn features into a mini class, a race, occupation, or background.

Here is a 5e feat Alert example which you can compare to the Pathfinder Alertness feat. Feats in this version may be picked instead of raising two attribute scores by 1 every 4th level. Though some feats raise one attribute by 1.

5e AlertAlways on the lookout for danger, you gain the following benefits:
You gain a +5 bonus to initiative.
You can’t be surprised while you are conscious.
Other creatures don’t gain advantage on attack rolls against you as a result of being hidden from you

PF Alertness
You often notice things that others might miss.
Benefit: You get a +2 bonus on Perception and Sense Motive skill checks. If you have 10 or more ranks in one of these skills, the bonus increases to +4 for that skill.

To contrast what 5e does 3.5 SRD & PRD on the other hand only gives one ability per feat.

Thursday, October 27, 2016

3.5e vs 5e Monster Creation & Modification: Hit Die and Ability scores

5e SRD Series
D & D 5th Edition and a 5e x 5 SRD Project
The difficulty with 5e escalating HP and Damage.
5e- the fluidity of magic
3.5 vs 5.0 d20 - Large Spider comparison
Orc comparison: 5e x 5 to other d100 games.
3.5e vs 5e Monster Creation & Modification: Hit Die and Ability scores

In this post I want to look at the differences in monster creation from the 3.5 systems and the 5e system. This first post I'll look at the Hit Die and the basic ability scores. I also want to make a progression based on the 3.5 creature ability arrays.

1. Hit Points and Hit Die

3.5 Hit Die

In 3.5, Hit Die are based on primarily the creature type. Creature types function as the player character classes in that they determine the base die and the level progression of #of Hit Dice.
TypeHit Die
Magical beastd10
Monstrous humanoidd8

5e Hit Die

5e differs in that Hit dice are based on the size of the creature.
Monster SizeHit DieAverage HP
per Die

3.5 Consistency v 5e Inconsistency

In a way, this creates an inconsistency between size and class based hit points in 5e.

On one hand, player Hit Dice are determined by the player's class. On the other hand, monster Hit Dice are based on size, which is primarily based on the creature type or the race.

I believe that this inconsistency is mainly to help maintain class balance. If player HP were based on a race based size, then a wizard could just pick the largest player race. That would create a very hard to kill wizard. Whereas, it would discourage picking small races such as the halfling or gnome because they would die much easier. Race does have a minimum influence on hit points due to the Constitution racial ability bonus that some classes have. A +1 or +2 CON bonus may improve the hit point modifier by one.

Maintaining class based HP on the other hand ties the hit points to the function that they will be doing in the game.

2. Base Ability Scores

The 3.5 has mentioned three base scores depending on the how powerful the creature will be.
Standard (average) average 10
Non-Elite 13, 12, 11, 10, 9, 8
Elite 15, 14, 13, 12, 9, 8

My Attribute Score Progression for 5e

Based on these three pools of stats, I created this progression chart showing a 5e stat increase based on raising two stats by 1 every 4 levels.


Sunday, October 23, 2016

Orc comparison: 5e x 5 to other d100 games.

5e SRD Series
D & D 5th Edition and a 5e x 5 SRD Project
The difficulty with 5e escalating HP and Damage.

I wanted to compare stats on several d100 systems. RMU which is in beta now and upcoming from ICE is not included although I have the file due to a user agreement.

Most of the systems only show the offense, defense, life, and movement.

Attribute Stats

RQ/OQ and the upcoming RMU (not shown) do show the attribute stats.

The RQ/OQ Orc is faster and less durable. The 5e x 5 Orc is more durable and less quick. The RQ orc isn't as strong as the other two. Those are the major differences according to the stats.


Most of the systems show soft leather for beginning orcs, rigid leather for normal orcs, and chain armor or plate breastplate for leaders. The actual defense bonus amount varies for each system. Most of the games include shields with the orc.


5e x 5  weapon wise departs and differs in that the orcs use great axes and javelins. The other games use the scimitar and shortbow.


The older ICE games don't include skills.
The OQ Orc is fairly good at perceiving. The RQ orc is good at dodging and resisting diseases and poisons.The 5e x 5 orc is good at crafting and athletics.

The RQ orc skills that I forgot to add to this chart.
RQ Athletics 30%,  Perception 35%,  Deception 35%
Saves Dexterity 40%, Constitution 55%,

[Click on the chart to enlarge]

Sunday, October 16, 2016

3.5 vs 5.0 d20 - Large Spider comparison

5e SRD Series
D & D 5th Edition and a 5e x 5 SRD Project
The difficulty with 5e escalating HP and Damage.

I want to compare the stat block for the Large sized spider to see how the versions changed. I notice that most of the stats are similar despite being different CR levels. This may only be true at lower levels. I'll try doing a higher level comparison of a dragon next time..

1. Names
3.5e Monstrous Spider, Large
5e Giant Spider

First of all the names are somewhat different. In 3.5e, several sizes are available besides the Large Monstrous Spider. However, 5e only comes in one size in the reference document.

2. Challenge Rating
3.5e Challenge Rating: 2
5e Challenge 1 (200 XP)

The Challenge Rating has gone down one level. Despite this decrease, the stats and abilities seem somewhat similar as will be seen below.

3. Size, Type, alignment
3.5e Size/Type: Large Vermin
5e Large beast, unaligned
Both spiders are Large size

4. Hit Dice & Hitpoints
3.5e Hit Dice: 4d8+4 (22 hp)
5e Hit Points 26 (4d10 + 4)
Despite being lower CR, the 5e giant spider has more hitpoints due to the increase in hitdice from d8 to d10

5. Armor Class
3.5e Armor Class: 14 (-1 size, +3 Dex, +2 natural), touch 12, flat-footed 11
5e Armor Class 14 (natural armor)
Armor Class the same. 3.5 provides additional information that explains how that number was calculated.

6. Speed
3.5e Speed: 30 ft. (6 squares), climb 20 ft.
5e Speed 30 ft., climb 30 ft.
Speed is the same and climb has increased.

7. Abilities

3.5e Abilities: Str 15 (+3), Dex 17 (+3), Con 12 (+1), Int Ø (na), Wis 10 (+0), Cha 2 (-4)

5e STR14 (+2), DEX16 (+3), CON12 (+1), INT2 (−4), WIS11 (+0), CHA4 (−3)
Strength has decreased and intelligence and charisma have increased slightly.

8. Skills

3.5e Skills: Climb +11, Hide +3*, Jump +2*, Spot +4*
Monstrous spiders have a +4 racial bonus on Hide and Spot checks and a +8 racial bonus on Climb checks. A monstrous spider can always choose to take 10on Climb checks, even if rushed or threatened. Monstrous spiders use either their Strength or Dexterity modifier for Climb checks, whichever is higher.
*Hunting spiders have a +10 racial bonus on Jump checks and a +8 racial bonus on Spot checks. Web-spinning spiders have a +8 racial bonus on Hide and Move Silently checks when using their webs. 

5e Skills Stealth +7 Spider Climb. The spider can climb difficult surfaces, including upside down on ceilings, without needing to make an ability check.
Web Sense. While in contact with a web, the spider knows the exact location of any other creature in contact with the same web.
Web Walker. The spider ignores movement restrictions caused by webbing.

The stealth ability seems better for the 5e spider. Climb seems much better since the 5e spider automatically climbs difficult surfaces due to the description of Spider Climb. The 3e spider seems to have to make a climb roll and use a +11 bonus - which means that that spider could fail the roll and fall. While the 3e spider receives +4 Spot bonus, the 5e spider receives a 10 to perception as will be seen in the section 10 Senses section and Web Sense.  This is very much improved senses.

9. Attacks

3.5e Base Attack/Grapple: +3/+9
Attack:Bite +4 melee (1d8+3 plus poison)
Full Attack: Bite +4 melee (1d8+3 plus poison)
Space/Reach: 10 ft./5 ft.
Special Attacks: Poison, web

Poison (Ex)
A monstrous spider has a poisonous bite. The details vary by the spider’s size, as shown on the table below. The save DCs are Constitution-based. The indicated damage is initial and secondary damage.
Web (Ex)
Both types of monstrous spiders often wait in their webs or in trees, then lower themselves silently on silk strands and leap onto prey passing beneath. A single strand is strong enough to support the spider and one creature of the same size. Web-spinners can throw a web eight times per day. This is similar to an attack with a net but has a maximum range of 50 feet, with a range increment of 10 feet, and is effective against targets up to one size category larger than the spider. An entangled creature can escape with a successful Escape Artist check or burst it with a Strength check. Both are standard actions whose DCs are given in the table below. The check DCs are Constitution-based, and the Strength check DC includes a +4 racial bonus.

Web-spinners often create sheets of sticky webbing from 5 to 60 feet square, depending on the size of the spider. They usually position these sheets to snare flying creatures but can also try to trap prey on the ground. Approaching creatures must succeed on a DC 20 Spot check to notice a web; otherwise they stumble into it and become trapped as though by a successful web attack. Attempts to escape or burst the webbing gain a +5 bonus if the trapped creature has something to walk on or grab while pulling free. Each 5-foot section has the hit points given on the table, and sheet webs have damage reduction 5/—.

A monstrous spider can move across its own web at its climb speed and can pinpoint the location of any creature touching its web.

5e Bite. Melee Weapon Attack: +5 to hit, reach 5 ft., one creature. Hit: 7 (1d8 + 3) piercing damage, and the target must make a DC 11 Constitution saving throw, taking 9 (2d8) poison damage on a failed save, or half as much damage on a successful one. If the poison damage reduces the target to 0 hit points, the target is stable but poisoned for 1 hour, even after regaining hit points, and is paralyzed while poisoned in this way.
Web (Recharge 5–6). Ranged Weapon Attack: +5 to hit, range 30/60 ft., one creature. Hit: The target is restrained by webbing. As an action, the restrained target can make a DC 12 Strength check, bursting the webbing on a success. The webbing can also be attacked and destroyed (AC 10; hp 5; vulnerability to fire damage; immunity to bludgeoning, poison, and psychic damage).
To snare its prey, a giant spider spins elaborate webs or shoots sticky strands of webbing from its abdomen. Giant spiders are most commonly found underground, making their lairs on ceilings or in dark, web-­filled crevices. Such lairs are often festooned with web cocoons holding past victims.
Despite being lower CR level, the 5e spider receives a higher bonus to hit and though has similar damage.

10. Senses

3.5e Special Qualities: Darkvision 60 ft., tremorsense 60 ft., vermin traits

Tremorsense (Ex)
A monstrous spider can detect and pinpoint any creature or object within 60 feet in contact with the ground, or within any range in contact with the spider’s webs.

5e Senses blindsight 10 ft., darkvision 60 ft., passive Perception 10

11. Saves

3.5e Saves: Fort +5, Ref +4, Will +1
5e STR14 (+2), DEX16 (+3), CON12 (+1), INT2 (−4), WIS11 (+0), CHA4 (−3)
5e switched to basic stat based resistance instead of fort, ref, and will. It also has charisma save.

12 Remaining information from 3.5e.
Environment:Temperate forests
Organization:Solitary or colony (2-5)

Treasure:1/10 coins; 50% goods; 50% items
Advancement:5-7 HD (Large)

This is information missing from the 5e SRD. This information is helpful for setting and treasure distribution.

In all, I think that the large monstrous spider and the giant spider are comparable between versions with only small changes.

Sunday, October 9, 2016

5e Skill Observations compared to 3.5 and OSRIC

Two thing that is interesting about 5e, which I have mentioned in a few forum posts, are the number of skills compared to 3.5 and the Proficiency Bonus.

Number of skills

This is very different than to what I remember from many of the systems that I played 30 years ago. Those classes had very few skills if any. I do seem to recall that the thief had a few skills listed on the level chart or something like that. Skills were not a focus back then.

In the 80s and early 90s several games caused skill explosion.

By the early 2000s, I count like 45 skills listed in the d20 3.5 game core. That is not to mention all of the derived manuals many of which increase the skill count dramatically. In 5e however, at the moment it focuses on about 20 skills, radically reducing the skill proliferation.

Another difference that I see is the way that skills increase.

Skill Increase

In the basic game that I remember 30 years ago, the few classes that had skills had numbers written on the experience level chart.

Looking over 3.5, I see that they did not use the individual skills rank increases using skill points the amount which were based on the player character's intelligence score and class. There was also that rule to limit ranks to 4 ranks for class list skills and 2 ranks for cross-class skills.

5e now uses a level based universal proficiency bonus for select skills based on class, race, and path.

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Fantasy Constructed Languages Part 3: Parts of speech - adjectives

Other fantasy language posts
Creating a fantasy languageElfin and Orcish amount of words so far
Fantasy Constructed Languages Part 1: Sounds
Fantasy Constructed Languages Part 2: Parts of speech - nouns
Fantasy Constructed Languages Part 3: Parts of speech - adjectives
Fantasy Constructed Languages Part 4: Parts of speech - articles, quantifiers, prepositions, questions
Fantasy Constructed Languages Part 5: Parts of speech - why, pronouns, conjunctions,

Before going to far into adjectives, ahead of time you want to figure out
  1. how your will differentiate adjectives from nouns
  2. how will you show comparison and superlatives
  3. how you will position your adjectives compared to your nouns.
Differentiate the noun
English uses two main ways to differentiate adjectives. First, English uses words to proceed adjectives to show comparison 'more' and superlative 'most'. Second, it also uses several suffixes such as -ful, -al, -some, -ar, -ish, -ary, -ic, -less, -like, -ly, -y, and -ous. It uses -er for comparative and -est for superlatives. In Fairy I'll use prefixes.

Normal, comparative, and superlatives
For Fairy I will use na- for normal use,  nga- for comparison, and ma- for superlative as prefixes to the adjective words.

Adjectives v Noun position
In English, normally adjective go before the nouns that they describe, like the 'white house'. I think in Fairy I will keep that convention of adjective + noun. Some of my other languages have adjectives after nouns which is more like Spanish.

30 Fairy adjectives
I use 30 Swadesh adjectives to create my first adjectives. I try to keep the words at one syllable since I will be adding a prefix to the root word, sometimes looking at the nouns that I did last time to become possible root words for those nouns.

Normal form will be na + root word, comparative nga + root word, and superlative ma + root word
For these adjective words for this fairy language,
1. big            lang
2. long          tof
3. wide         zan
4. thick         dan
5. heavy       dot
6. small         iha
7. short         viz
8. narrow      da
9. thin           ile
10. warm      yan
11. cold        win
12. full          jof
13. new        yen
14. old         hom
15. good      shin
16. bad        tsom
17. rotten     tash
18. dirty       ez
19. straight   fol
20. round     ji
21. sharp     di
22. dull         los
23. smooth   dah
24. wet         sar
25. dry         sho
26. correct   jana
27. near       tsay
28. far         don
29. right       joly
30. left         vily

Now we can do small phrases using normal, comparative, and superlatives forms with the 53 nouns and these 30 adjectives.

big dog        nalang vava
bigger dog   ngalang vava
biggest dog  malang vava

new tree      nayen lanyi
newer tree   ngayen lanyi
newest tree  mayen lanyi

Now we have 53 nouns and 30 adjectives in the constructed Fairy Language equaling 83 total words.

Next Post

I want to create some prepositions or articles the next post.