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3.5 Ed - Ranger

Discussion in 'Dungeons & Dragons + Other RPGs' started by Blackthorne TA, Dec 15, 2005.

  1. Blackthorne TA

    Blackthorne TA Master in his Own Mind Staff Member ★ SPS Account Holder Adored Veteran Pillars of Eternity SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!) New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    Just got my sweet leather-bound special editions of the DMG and PHB 3.5E, and I love the changes they made to the Ranger class.

    More skill points, fast progression in both Fortitide and Reflex saves instead of just Fortitude, choice of archery or two-weapon fighting for concentration with the various feats that come along with them, Animal Companion, Evasion, wilderness Hide in Plain Sight (though this is pretty late in the progression). The only things I would have liked that are missing are Improved Evasion, and Uncanny Dodge and Improved Uncanny Dodge, and maybe a little earlier with the Hide in Plain Sight.

    Two levels of Shadowdancer gives the Uncanny Dodge and an unrestricted Hide in Plain Sight though, so not too bad.

    The only negative I see is D8 instead of D10 for hit dice.

    I also noticed they got rid of the Ambidexterity feat so all you need is the Two-Weapon Fighting feat to reduce the penalties as much as you can.
     
  2. kuemper Gems: 31/31
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    I had loads of fun with my ranger. She took the 2 weapon fighting style instead of archery. I learned a lot about the quarterstaff (her weapon of choice) and so did my DM. :evil:

    I do miss the higher HD though.
     
  3. T2Bruno

    T2Bruno The only source of knowledge is experience Distinguished Member ★ SPS Account Holder Adored Veteran New Server Contributor [2012] (for helping Sorcerer's Place lease a new, more powerful server!) Torment: Tides of Numenera SP Immortalizer (for helping immortalize Sorcerer's Place in the game!)

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    First edition rangers had d8. Granted, they started with 2d8 instead of 1d10. It looks like they're trying to bring back more of what the original ranger had (as conceived by EGG).
     
  4. raptor Gems: 16/31
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    For all the bonuses the Ranger did get, i wouldnt mind beeing reduced to D6 as well ;)

    The ranger certainlly fits more as a support/backup unit now, they sucked at tanking as it was, and now they can even rival a fighter at archery (somewhat). All in all the ranger is much more alround. My old ranger doubled up as the group "rogue/scout" since nobody bothered to pick rogue, and those skill points was much apreciated.

    (finally there is a point in picking ranger above fighter/druid)
     
  5. Faragon Gems: 25/31
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    The 3.5 ranger is much much much better than the 3.0 version.

    I'm just sad that the only combat style options are archery and dualwielding. I would've like to see some twohanded (spears! :p ) option. In my opinion, spears and bastard swords fit a ranger much more than dualwielding.

    This week we ended a nearly two year long campaing (one session each week) in which I played a ranger. The class is very well balanced. I went for archery initially, but my lack of focus on it bit me in the behind later on. (creatures with DR are a big pain) I opted for the sneakery route, and became a master at that. Very fun class to play, all in all.
     
  6. Fabius Maximus Gems: 19/31
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    There were some alternate fighting styles printed in Dragon #326: For throwing weapons, two-handed weapons, mounted combat, wrestling and net and trident.
     
  7. Faragon Gems: 25/31
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    Sweet. Better get my hands on that issue of dragon then. Thanks Fabius.
     
  8. The Shaman Gems: 28/31
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    I suppose it is balanced, but I am still a bit irked at the reason for the 1d8 hit die - after all, as was said before, rangers weren't exactly tanks even with a d10 hit die. All the wilderness training and survival should make them hardy enough to rival any fighter or paladin, so I can't say the d8 was warranted from that purpose. It's even funnier as it is the exact same die the druid (a full-blown divine spellcaster) is using.
    Another thing that might seem strange, especially since it's been in for a while, is that perhaps there is very little rationale that rangers should get two-weapon fighting as a choice; to the best of my knowledge, most fantasy literature has very few rangers using two weapons at once, and the one that comes to mind immediately mastered the style before he became a ranger. It is an exotic fighting style - and unlike a fighter, a ranger is not likely to have enough spare time to know such. The only two real-life fighting styles that are more common are the kenjutsu with a katana and wakizashi and Elizabethan fencing with rapier and dirk, and both are associated with well-trained, urbane fighters, not woodmen. The quarterstaff is perhaps the only exception, but I'm not sure how often both ends were utilized in a fight. Archery was a natural choice, though - kudos to the people who thought of that. And being able to properly use a two-handed weapon - or better still, a single one-handed weapon (miss the 1-weapon style from BG :( ) fits the idea much better. 1-handed weapon and shield is a bit less likely - can't imagine someone wandering freely around the forests with a 5 kg shield in their left hand :) .

    By the way, did the ranger get the same animal companion progression (half the ranger levels + any druid levels to determine "fake" druid level) in 3.0? I only know it through NWN, where at lvl.6 a ranger would get a companion just like that of a lvl.6 druid.
     
  9. Ilmater's Suffering Gems: 21/31
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    the ranger gets an animal companion at lvl 4 and it is half his character level according to the 3.5 Player Handbook.

    The dual wieldling fits more with the Tolkien idea of the ranger who's an elite fighter (knight)/woodsman, though the d8 hit die and the ability to communicate with animals (Dar anyone?) is a step away from the Tolkien idea.
     
  10. Gothmog

    Gothmog Man, a curious beast indeed! ★ SPS Account Holder Veteran

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    I think the d8 is a lot better. Being on par with druids HD is a borderline, bu there's not much between d8 and d10 ;)
    As for being sturdy because of the enviroment they live in, i disagree. While that is true, HP are in my opinion more a representation of combat reflexes and experience than being simply tough. That's why fighters and barbarians get high hp dice. They're constantly in combat, and barbarian has an even higher die because he doesnt rely on armor as much as fighter. Ranger on the other hand, is similar to rogue, prefering to use his skills to creater a favorable situation where he can win.

    Dualwieding... against the idea, might be elite woodsman or some such, but most of all wielding two weapons requires endless practice. There's simply no doubt fighters have more time for practising (hence the combat feats).
     
  11. The Shaman Gems: 28/31
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    On the hit points representing reflexes, experience etc - possibly, but I can't consider it satisfactory. Don't forget, it's not a balance issue, simply an explanation one. Besides, the ranger has to always be alert too - hence, for example, spot etc. as class skills and a good reflex save progression - and unlike the barbarian and fighter, they have to constantly be on their guard as they never know when their fights are coming to them.
    Still, the ranger remains a viable class for me, but I always interpreted it as a warrior class and I am kinda worried that with less HPs, it will be much less viable in that particular role.
     
  12. Ilmater's Suffering Gems: 21/31
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    By Tolkien standards, rangers shouldn't have abilities like evasion, wild empathy, animal companion, or such. They should be wandering warriors with a feel similar to a more trained barbarian.
     
  13. The Shaman Gems: 28/31
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    Well, apparently it wasn't exactly classical Tolkien reading... Have there been any other early fantasy books where the ranger archetype might have originated from? I mean, aside from the natural Robin Hood association (it's not fantasy, but I'd say it has influenced the ranger archetype a lot, especially the all-good restriction in 2nd ed.) :) ?
    If we consider the archetype for a ranger - woodland guardian, protective of the forest (substitute with whatever terrain) and having a bond with nature, the skills and feats are natural enough (no pun intended). The ranger wears lighter, less restrictive armor in order not to be encumbered and to maintain it more easily, and hence fights more as an opportunist than a heavily armed knight. Evasion perfectly fits for a light-armored warrior class. Why should someone who knows a bit or two about fighting and probably trains more for a similar occasion be considered less able to dodge a fireball than a common housebreaker? This is only more fitting with the ranger as someone skillful with traps - chances are, s/he knows a fair bit about avoiding them as well.
    I suppose wild empathy and animal companion simply go with the "one with nature" bit. Although somehow I associate an animal companion with a ranger more than with a druid... A druid feels a little too... religious for a proper, practical bond with an animal. It would have been more fitting, perhaps, if the druid could get a more spiritual companion - a totem animal spirit, for example.
     
  14. Ilmater's Suffering Gems: 21/31
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    I think the Druid ends up with an animal companion because of the Celtic god Cerannos who was the god most associated with the Briton druid. Cerannos was almost always pictured with an animal companion (a stag usually). The Irish druid also had a connection of sort to the woodland creatures, but shapechanging and more "traditional" magic (often almost necromatic as there where more then a few evil druids in Irish Mythology) was the focus of Irish druids. Druids are really hard ones to do along their historical roots, specifically since the Pre-Christain Celts used human sacrifice within fertility rituals (the druids where the ones who would do the killing), not to mention the emphasis that the druid placed on nature was culturally dependant (Irish myths make references to Sidhe Elf druids and the Sidhe have absolutely no connection to nature and are otherworldy creatures who live under faerie mounds).
     
  15. Meatdog Gems: 15/31
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    Well, if you take Dar as a reference for rangers (he's rather stealthy, talks to animals, is not heavily armored) then dualwielding suddenly makes alot of sense. ;)
     
  16. LKD Gems: 31/31
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    I've always seen the Ranger as a highly intelligent and skilled fighter -- I like the 3.5 version's method of reflecting that with the 6 skill points / level rule. That makes him more skilled than a Druid (who uses his magic to get along in the wild more than a ranger does) and SIGNIFICANTLY more skilled than a fighter. I think that's why the Ranger has only d8 HD -- he doesn't spend as much time bulking up as a fighter, and rather uses woodland skills to achieve his goals. I think it works out, though it's strange to me to see a member of what I considered to be a warrior class having less than d10.

    One criticism I have of the whole class is that even with tightly focused feat selection and choice of the Archery fighting style, a Fighter who focuses on archery still stomps all over a Ranger who does the same. The same could also be argued for a 2 weapon Fighter vs a 2 weapon Ranger (especially if you factor in some of the cool new 2 weapon feats I recently read about in "The Complete Warrior")
     
  17. Ilmater's Suffering Gems: 21/31
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    a high level ranger (level 17) can simply just avoid a fight with a fighter via high in plain sight. If the ranger wants to fight fire a couple of shots off, then hide, rinse, repeat. A bow ranger can start the whole mess off with an entangle and really screw with the bow fighter. Also the Ranger's pet may be pretty weak, but up close against someone using a bow, that's an extra attack every round for the pet, some of those are going to be natural 20s.
     
  18. Fabius Maximus Gems: 19/31
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    I think dualwielding was implemented because everyone wanted to play a good drow ranger with two scimitars for some reason... :rolleyes:
     
  19. Ilmater's Suffering Gems: 21/31
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    the only drow I play is a NE enchantress, any good drow is an an evil drow :D . If she wasn't evil then she couldn't try to constantly manipulate my heroic CG barbarian or go to great lengths to prove herself wasn't in love with him and she's merely using him for her own gain.

    I'm also still a little confused as to how Drizzt ended up a ranger... he did grow up in the underdark from what I remember... Mielikki, I doubt, has much contact with anything from down there. You'd think a fighter would be more appropriate for a drow.
     
  20. Daie d'Malkin

    Daie d'Malkin Shoulda gone to Specsavers

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    Montolio.

    I only use a CG drow cleric of EIlistrawhateverhernameis. SHe's fun cos she's got adaptation issues with the surface. Much, much confusion, such as a lack of understanding of the word Modesty (Mod Esti? WHere's that?)

    Anyway, new ranger rules sound cool. I'll dust off my character sheet and do a conversion.
     
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