What would be the ramifications of allowing a Wild Magic Sorcerer’s Bend Luck ability to scale with level?

I was wondering why a Wild Magic Sorcerer’s Bend Luck ability is always 2 sorcery points and a reaction to increase or reduce another creature’s attack roll, ability check or saving throw by 1d4.

I think it’s pretty wild (pun intended) that is does not scale with levels considering there’s another spellcaster class, Bards, that have a very similar ability with Bardic Inspiration.

Bardic Inspiration affects the same types of rolls (attack rolls, ability checks and saving throws), does not use a reaction (uses a bonus action instead) and players can hold onto their bardic inspiration for a moment of their choosing. Furthermore, Bardic Inspirations are their own unique resource (equal to Charisma modifier, minimum of 1) and best of all they scale with levels (starting as d6’s and ending as d12’s at level 15). After reaching 5th level, Font of Inspiration allows Bards to regain all their Bardic Inspirations after a short rest.

In comparison, Bend Luck is pretty pitiful.

  1. It costs 2 sorcery points (equivalent of a level 1 spell slot and also the resource required for using metamagic, basically the best part of being a Sorcerer).
  2. It is always a flat 1d4. The chance of a 1d4 being impactful diminishes as you level up & enemies get stronger.
  3. It uses your reaction, which can be super valuable for casting Shield, Counterspell, Featherfall etc.

The only real benefit I can see is that it can be used offensively, whereas Bardic Inspiration cannot.

My questions:

  1. Am I missing something? Have I accurately portrayed the usefulness of Bend Luck?
  2. If I’m not missing anything, is it reasonable to have Bend Luck scale with levels? (At 6th level, it becomes a 1d6, 11th level 1d8, 16th level 1d10, for example?)

What concerns should I have with allowing a character to hurl bombs with Telekinetic Projectile?

I have a wizard player who wants to use Telekinetic Projectile to hurl bombs. I think this is cool, and would like to allow it, but I’m not sure if it would be too powerful or cause other issues.

Preparing and throwing an alchemical bomb takes one action, uses a weapon attack, and has a range increment of 20′.

Telekinetic Projectile is a spell which hurls "a loose, unattended object" at a target, dealing physical damage. Additionally, the spell states:

No specific traits or magic properties of the hurled item affect the attack or the damage.

Depending on how you read that, RAW may dictate that the bomb’s effects wouldn’t trigger. But you could read it as "the bomb’s effects don’t affect the spell attack or spell damage," which doesn’t say anything about the bomb’s effects not working separately.

That being said, can think of two possibilities for how to allow it to work:

  1. 1 action must be spent preparing the bomb, and then the regular 2 actions spent casting the spell.
  2. More strictly (and less fun), 1 action must be spent preparing the bomb, 1 action must be spent putting the bomb down carefully so it becomes "a loose, unattended object", and then 2 actions must be spent casting the spell. This would obviously be a 2-turn maneuver, unquickened.

Potential concerns and balance issues:

  1. Using the spell to hurl the bomb allows casters to use their spell attack for the throw, instead of their (probably worse) weapon attack roll.
  2. You’d get the spell damage and bomb effect from one attack roll, rather than having to do one attack (spell or bomb), and then a second attack at -5 (spell or bomb).
  3. Using the spell to hurl the bomb eliminates the bomb’s 20′ range increment and gives it a flat range of 30′ (unless the spell is given reach). So better at short ranges, but impossible to use at ranges over 30′.
  4. Possible that the rules intend for this gameplay style to be restricted to the alchemist class? This isn’t really a balance thing but more a "spirit of the game" thing, which isn’t high on my list of concerns for allowing my player to have a bit of fun.

Honestly, I’m not convinced that spending an entire turn to deal bomb effect + 1d6 + ability mod is terribly unbalanced. Not to mention that the wizard is limited by the amount of bombs he has. What concerns should I have with allowing a character to spend 3 actions to hurl a bomb with Telekinetic Projectile?

What mechanical implications exist when allowing duplicate stronghold types in a castle?

Matt Colville’s supplement Strongholds & Followers details, among other things, rules for building optional strongholds and castles, with castles being complexes of multiple strongholds.

The strongholds are divided into four broad types: keeps, towers, temples, and establishments. A stronghold (of any variety) can be controlled by only one PC at a time, and can only offer its most direct benefits to that character. On page 11 of Strongholds & Followers the rules state that castles cannot contain more than one of each stronghold type.

A castle cannot contain multiple of the same type of stronghold. If you build a castle with two towers, for instance, only one of them grants the benefits of spell research. Also, a stronghold’s benefit only applies to one character at a time. (Strongholds & Followers, page 11)

I am running a game using these rules in which two PCs (a Wizard and a Sorcerer) will almost certainly want to build a tower each. Even if they don’t, the party has no use for a temple (or variant on a temple, like a Druid’s Grove). With four players that means that unless there is at least one duplicate stronghold type, at least one player will be left out. This is easy enough to just overrule (I plan on allowing two towers), but I’m curious about why the restriction on duplicates exists. I have not found anything in the book itself.

Is there a mechanical implication to duplicating stronghold types within a single castle?

Has anyone tested the effect of allowing cantrips to be repeatedly cast between battles?

Short Version: Some characters have cantrips (or unlimited-used abilities) that they would like to have in combat, like Shillelagh. Has anyone tested or experienced methods of allowing these to be ready in advance?

Long Version: I have a player who wants to build an Arcana Cleric who uses Shillelagh, a non-concentration cantrip with a 1-minute duration, for melee combat. She would like to have it ready when combat begins for action economy (to do such other things as casting Spiritual Weapon on the first turn). She figures she can simply cast it continuously while walking around between fights.

I was considering allowing this, with a few caveats. My thoughts were:

  • Constantly casting a cantrip will give Disadvantage to be aware of surroundings, giving a -5 to Passive Perception/Investigation.
  • Since it has a Verbal component, she will be constantly emitting noise, possibly giving enemies some advance warning of the party’s approach.
  • Originally I was going to have her roll a d10 at the start of any battle to see how much time was left on the 1-minute cantrip (since it’s conveniently 10 rounds of duration), but technically she could recast it every 6 seconds to restart the timer, RAW, rather than waiting until it expired.

There are other potential factors, such as aggravating any NPCs that travel with them (imagine someone repeating the same 6 seconds of magic words over and over. ALL. DAY. LONG.), and not being able to renew it while her focus was required elsewhere (like solving a tricky puzzle, or while hiding, or while having a conversation).

Here are my questions:

  • Are there any other factors that need to be weighed, mechanically-speaking?
  • Is there any problem with my interpretation of the ability to recast it every 6 seconds?
  • Has anyone used or witnessed their own method of handling a PC constantly re-using a similar spell or ability?

What are the game playing impacts of allowing players to take turns out of initiative order? [duplicate]

As per a previous question I asked RAW do not allow players to go later in initiative order in 5E as they could in earlier editions of DnD and other roleplaying systems.

What are the potential things to consider if I choose to home brew changes to this behavior as part of my own rules?

The rule I am considering is as follows.

In a players turn they may either hold an action based on a trigger as per RAW or they can choose to delay there entire turn until after another stated players turn. A player may only delay once per round and cannot name a player Or NPC higher in initiative order to wait for. E G a 5 character combat 4 players and NPC roll initiative and are in order players 1 to 4(high to low) with the NPC sitting after player 3

Player 1 can choose to delay their turn and take it after players 2-4, or the NPC, they state they will go after player 3

On player 3 go they may choose to either go after player 4 or now, they cannot decide to go directly after player 1

Player 1 now takes their turn and must have a turn they may not choose to delay again.

Next round the players return to original initiative order.

In order to stick to stack guidelines I am looking for specific examples from players and GMs who have tried this rather then opinions.

Would allowing all Unearthed Arcana create rules problems?

I’m thinking of running a campaign where the players don’t have books and I wanted to recommend that they use the SRD until then, but also use any Unearthed Arcana material from Wizards’ site if they wanted.

Would allowing all Unearthed Arcana material create any balance problems or fundamental rule contradictions?

The main reasons being would be to allow players to use free material without worrying about buying books just yet, but also having available more interesting stuff to work with.

How powerful can a 20th-level Wizard make a 1st-level Fighter without allowing him to realize it is the Wizard’s doing?

A 20th level Wizard makes a bet with another 20th level Wizard – he has to make his grandson succeed on a difficult mission. Without allowing his grandson (a first level Fighter) or his grandson’s compatriots (a first level Rogue, Bard, and Druid) to realize that the Wizard is secretly aiding them, or doing anything to defeat their foes directly, or helping anyone but his grandson (these are all terms of the bet).

To clarify –

  • This Wizard can cast spells on his grandson, only. He can’t Dominate the monsters or Disintegrate locked doors.
  • His grandson has to defeat the challenges (the Wizard can’t even weaken them).
  • Neither his grandson, or any of his party members, can realize or even suspect that someone is aiding them.

Luckily the grandson and his entire party not only lack Spellcraft but also Knowledge: Arcana. However they don’t lack basic induction – suddenly being able to fly or shoot fireballs is likely to raise their suspicion. A magic sword left leaning casually against a door would certainly count as a fail.

So given this situation, with a level 20 Wizard who is unafraid to spend resources to win this bet with his buddy (xp, magic items, scrolls, favours) what can he do to make his grandson’s party succeed at an adventure that may have CR 5-6 encounters or worse?

For the sake of this example, assume the wizard has access to whatever feats, spells, or wealth he needs to achieve this difficult task – he’s using optimization tricks to rebuild or has his own time-slowed demiplane or whatever, he’s a Tricky Wizard and not just a fireball-slinger.

Suggest allowing new color brackets

By now I have spent a bit of effort in writing Mathematica notebook for my analysis tasks and appreciate the power of the Mathematica language. At the same time, I also discover that a significant fraction of my time had been spent on balancing the (, [ and { bracket, or scratching my head to discover that the weird results I got were due to improper placement of the closing brackets. I wonder if the code developers have considered allowing different colors to make my chore easier. An example may be that every time an open bracket is invoked, whether (, [ or {, a new and different color is attached to that bracket, and likewise, at closing. In this manner, if an improper placement is made, I would discover it immediately. Just a suggestion.

Ensure function has completed before allowing another Ajax call

I am updating an array saved in a users meta field using an ajax function.

The values added to the array are taken from the data-attributes within the tags which also act at the trigger to make the ajax call.

Whilst the function works 95% of the time, it can be a bit hit and miss whether the values save or not. I suspect this is because a user can fire these ajax calls too quickly and not give enough time for the original function call to save and update the meta field.

What would be the best method to ensure the ajax triggered function of updating the meta field value has been completed before allowing the function to run again?

Hope this makes sense – needless to say, please let me know if you need any more info.

Thanks in advance!!

Sample HTML

<div id="rjb_slots" class="slots">   <h5>Mon, 24th Aug 2020</h5>   <div class="slot">     <span class="time">10:30</span>     <a class="book" data-timestamp="1598265000" href="#"></a>   </div>   <div class="slot">     <span class="time">11:00</span>     <a class="booked" data-timestamp="1598266800" href="#"></a>   </div>   <div class="slot">     <span class="time">11:30</span>     <a class="booked" data-timestamp="1598268600" href="#"></a>   </div>   <div class="slot">     <span class="time">12:00</span>     <a class="book" data-timestamp="1598270400" href="#"></a>   </div>   <div class="slot">     <span class="time">12:30</span>     <a class="booked" data-timestamp="1598272200" href="#"></a>   </div>   <div class="slot">     <span class="time">13:00</span>     <a class="book" data-timestamp="1598274000" href="#"></a>   </div>   <div class="slot">     <span class="time">19:30</span>     <a class="book" data-timestamp="1598297400" href="#"></a>   </div> </div> 

Ajax .js

$  ('.slot').on('click', 'a.book', function(e) {   e.preventDefault();    var user   = $  ('#rjb_day').attr( 'data-user' );   var stamp  = $  (this).attr( 'data-timestamp' );       // console.log(bookCap);      $  (this).removeClass('book').addClass('booked');    $  .ajax({     type: 'POST',     url: ajax_object.ajaxurl,     data: {         action: 'rjb_make_diary_slots',         user: user,         stamp: stamp     },     success: function(data) {       // This outputs the result of the ajax request       console.log(data);     },     error: function(errorThrown){         console.log(errorThrown);     }   });      }); 

Function that updates the user metafield

add_action( 'wp_ajax_rjb_make_diary_slots', 'rjb_make_diary_slots' );  function rjb_make_diary_slots() {    $  user   = $  _POST['user'];    $  stamp  = array(               array(                  'rjb_cal_day'           => strtotime('today', $  _POST['stamp']),                 'rjb_cal_when'          => $  _POST['stamp'],                 'rjb_cal_position_id'   => '',                 'rjb_cal_candidate_id'  => ''               )             );    $  calendar   = get_user_meta( $  user, 'rjb_cal', true);   $  stamps     = !empty($  calendar) ? $  calendar : array();   $  new_stamp  = array_merge($  stamps, $  stamp);    usort($  new_stamp, function($  a, $  b) {     return $  a['rjb_cal_when'] <=> $  b['rjb_cal_when'];   });    update_user_meta( $  user, 'rjb_cal', $  new_stamp);    $  log = print_r($  stamp);    wp_die($  log);  } 

Example of a value stored in the rjb_cal user meta field

array (   [0] => array (     [rjb_cal_day] => 1598227200     [rjb_cal_when] => 1598266800     [rjb_cal_position_id] =>      [rjb_cal_candidate_id] =>    )   [1] => array (     [rjb_cal_day] => 1598227200     [rjb_cal_when] => 1598268600     [rjb_cal_position_id] =>      [rjb_cal_candidate_id] =>    )   [2] => array (     [rjb_cal_day] => 1598227200     [rjb_cal_when] => 1598272200     [rjb_cal_position_id] =>      [rjb_cal_candidate_id] =>    ) ) 

Allowing Disengage for free

I’m the DM, and I’m concerned that combat feels pretty static.

As I understand it in RAW:

  • Once you’ve reached melee range, moving further away will provoke an opportunity attack, unless you disengage
  • disengage costs an action (unless you have a feature that lets you do it for free)

This seems to mean adventurers who get within 5′ of an enemy stay there until the enemy is dead, to avoid getting an opportunity attack.

This seems to make combat rather static, which I find irritating. It seems static compared to my martial arts experience (HEMA), or to say video games. (I realise 5e is a different thing to these, but it leads me to wonder if combat is unintentionally static, given the disengage action has been provided).

Some recent instances which annoyed me –

  • In a recent encounter, the tank threw the halfling at a slime (it was on the ceiling, out of reach…). They succeeded appropriate rolls, and after the combat I asked where they’d want to land. They placed themselves adjacent to the slime, as they’d be hit by an opportunity attack otherwise. I left it, as I wasn’t sure I wanted to set a precedent, but I felt that they should probably land further away.
  • A mounted character charged into combat. Despite having plenty of move left, they ended turn next to the enemy. It feels more RP that they should pass the enemy and end turn out of melee range?
  • A large enemy tied down most of the players; even those which were badly wounded stayed in combat, aiming to defeat the enemy before their next turn, rather than pulling out and letting the other characters handle it. It feels unnatural that if a large monster is fighting ~4 players in melee, they’d be free to get an opportunity attack if one moves out of range – particularly if that character has moved to the back/side.

I’m thinking of:

  • Allowing a free disengage if a player enters combat ‘with some momentum’ (e.g. mounted or otherwise moving faster than normal). Probably I’d limit this to the initial charge into combat for the mounted character. (This When a controlled mount takes the Disengage action, does the rider still provoke an opportunity attack if he or she does not also Disengage? seems to suggest this would be OK for mounted characters?)
  • Allowing a free disengage from behind a (large+?) creature if other players are also in combat with it and thus presumably distracting it.

Does this break things? Is there anything else I should be doing to make the combat more dynamic?