D&D adventures have been a part of the game since its inception, but adventures have changed a lot over the years. Looking at the evolution of adventures can provide valuable insight into creating great adventures of your own.
Sword Coast Legends has been out for a month, and we’re looking for your feedback on what you like and what you want to see next. Or, if you’re not playing Sword Coast Legends, take the survey to let us know why. Thanks!
Ranger Survey Results
In our last survey, we asked a number of questions about the ranger class overall and an example of a new ranger class built from scratch, featuring levels one through five. The class was an attempt to get to the root of the dissatisfaction we’ve seen with the ranger, and determine what changes (if any) we should make to the class in the future.
There are two, interesting elements that emerge from the survey. To start with, the 2nd and 3rd edition versions of the ranger were the most well received versions of the class. Those two versions mixed an animal companion with wilderness skills, spellcasting, and a unique fighting style focused on wielding two weapons. 3rd edition added an archery option. They seem to match closest with the ratings given to the design direction outlined in the ranger article. The concept of the wilderness champion and defender along the lines of a paladin isn’t very popular, but people do like a ranger who can survive in the wilderness through a combination of skill and magical abilities.
Given that background, it’s no surprise that a ranger class that de-emphasizes magic and lacks a full-time, in-the-flesh animal companion received fairly poor ratings.
For the next step, we’ll take a pass on designing a ranger that focuses more heavily on the animal companion and makes it a default part of the class. That approach allows much more of the ranger’s core “power budget” to go toward the companion. You can think of that budget as the total effectiveness the class brings to bear, spread out across its class features. The initial 5e design pushed the animal companion into the ranger archetype choice, requiring it to sit atop all of the core class features. By folding that choice into the core class, we have a lot more power to play with.