Special Martial Moves (5e Variant Rule)

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Special Martial Moves[edit]

Why are special moves good?

Martial characters tend to lag behind spellcasters at higher levels because of damage and the effects they can inflict. What I intend to do here is to create a framework for how martials might be able to catch up to casters in the variability of things they can do. I have by no means cruched any numbers to confirm that this helps martials catch up to casters. But, I'm providing options of things they can do, so they aren't quite as bland and they can have a bit more fun. I love variability and options, so if this is how this is handled in the future, I will be very happy. Hopefully now your fighters will be able to do something more interesting than 3 short sword attacks in a row.

Inspiration

A lot of my inspiration comes from older editions of the game and other games. In previous editions, martial characters could invest in feats, which would give you cool abilities to use. These elegant feat trees were devised as part of the game and if used and properly, you would have an arsenal of cool, powerful abilities. Given 5e's simplicity and necessity to be easily picked up by beginners, this is not exactly viable. Players should not have to power game or devise power builds in order to keep pace with casters.

Of course, my biggest inspiration comes from the Battle Master. It's an awesome subclass and I wish base fighter worked as such.

What are special moves?

Just like feats in previous editions, they will provide different and more powerful options to use in combat. Most of them will require dice to be expended, just like Battle Master.


Fighter[edit]

Fighter is easy enough, it just steals from some Battle Master's maneuvers.

At 6th level, you know a number of Battle Master manuevers equal to your proficiency bonus, which adds to any you already have. You also have a number of superiority dice(d6) equal to your proficiency bonus, which adds to any you already have, coming back on a short or long rest. Any manuevers you choose from this feature must be from the following list:

Manuevers[edit]

Brace: When a creature you can see moves into the reach you have with the melee weapon you're wielding, you can use your reaction to expend one superiority die and make one attack against the creature, using that weapon. If the attack hits, add the superiority die to the weapon's damage roll.

Commander's Strike: When you take the Attack action on your turn, you can forgo one of your attacks and use a bonus action to direct one of your companions to strike. When you do so, choose a friendly creature who can see or hear you and expend one superiority die. That creature can immediately use its reaction to make one weapon attack, adding the superiority die to the attack's damage roll.

Disarming Attack: When you hit a creature with a weapon attack, you can expend one superiority die to attempt to disarm the target, forcing it to drop one item of your choice that it's holding. You add the superiority die to the attack's damage roll, and the target must make a Strength saving throw. On a failed save, it drops the object you choose. The object lands at its feet.

Distracting Strike: When you hit a creature with a weapon attack, you can expend one superiority die to distract the creature, giving your allies an opening. You add the superiority die to the attack's damage roll. The next attack roll against the target by an attacker other than you has advantage if the attack is made before the start of your next turn.

Evasive Footwork: When you move, you can expend one superiority die, rolling the die and adding the number rolled to your AC until you stop moving.

Feinting Attack: You can expend one superiority die and use a bonus action on your turn to feint, choosing one creature within 5 feet of you as your target. You have advantage on your next attack roll against that creature before the end of your turn. If that attack hits, add the superiority die to the attack's damage roll.

Goading Attack: When you hit a creature with a weapon attack, you can expend one superiority die to attempt to goad the target into attacking you. You add the superiority die to the attack's damage roll, and the target must make a Wisdom saving throw. On a failed save, the target has disadvantage on all attack rolls against targets other than you until the end of your next turn.

Grappling Strike: Immediately after you hit a creature with a melee attack on your turn, you can expend one superiority die and then try to grapple the target as a bonus action (see the Player's Handbook for rules on grappling). Add the superiority die to your Strength (Athletics) check.

Lunging Attack: When you make a melee weapon attack on your turn, you can expend one superiority die to increase your reach for that attack by 5 feet. If you hit, you add the superiority die to the attack's damage roll.

Maneuvering Attack: When you hit a creature with a weapon attack, you can expend one superiority die to maneuver one of your comrades into a more advantageous position. You add the superiority die to the attack's damage roll, and you choose a friendly creature who can see or hear you. That creature can use its reaction to move up to half its speed without provoking opportunity attacks from the target of your attack.

Menacing Attack: When you hit a creature with a weapon attack, you can expend one superiority die to attempt to frighten the target. You add the superiority die to the attack's damage roll, and the target must make a Wisdom saving throw. On a failed save, it is frightened of you until the end of your next turn.

Parry: When another creature damages you with a melee attack, you can use your reaction and expend one superiority die to reduce the damage by the number you roll on your superiority die + your Dexterity modifier.

Precision Attack: When you make a weapon attack roll against a creature, you can expend one superiority die to add it to the roll. You can use this maneuver before or after making the attack roll, but before any effects of the attack are applied.

Pushing Attack: When you hit a creature with a weapon attack, you can expend one superiority die to attempt to drive the target back. You add the superiority die to the attack's damage roll, and if the target is Large or smaller, it must make a Strength saving throw. On a failed save, you push the target up to 15 feet away from you.

Quick Toss: As a bonus action, you can expend one superiority die and make a ranged attack with a weapon that has the thrown property. You can draw the weapon as part of making this attack. If you hit, add the superiority die to the weapon's damage roll.

Riposte: When a creature misses you with a melee attack, you can use your reaction and expend one superiority die to make a melee weapon attack against the creature. If you hit, you add the superiority die to the attack's damage roll.

Sweeping Attack: When you hit a creature with a melee weapon attack, you can expend one superiority die to attempt to damage another creature with the same attack. Choose another creature within 5 feet of the original target and within your reach. If the original attack roll would hit the second creature, it takes damage equal to the number you roll on your superiority die. The damage is of the same type dealt by the original attack.

Trip Attack: When you hit a creature with a weapon attack, you can expend one superiority die to attempt to knock the target down. You add the superiority die to the attack's damage roll, and if the target is Large or smaller, it must make a Strength saving throw. On a failed save, you knock the target prone.

If your Superiority dice increase in size at any time, all the dice you have do.


Monk[edit]

Monk is a bit harder. There's no good framework for this but I think it needs a bit more help. I'm trying to make a low-level feature with weak options you can use once per turn that modifies only unarmed strikes. Then, have an option at higher level that is similar to Battle Master maneuvers. None of this will cost ki. Ki is a pitiful resource as is and should be reserved for flurry of blows and other fun abilities.

Striking Disciplines:[edit]

At 3rd level, you know a number of Striking Disciplines equal to your proficiency bonus. You can choose from the main list or the list associated with your subclass. Once per turn, when you hit with an unarmed strike, you can choose too inflict an effect of a Striking Discipline you know.

Main List

Pushing Strike: You push the target 5 feet away

Slowing Strike: The target's speed is reduced by 10 feet until the end of their next turn

Distracting Strike: The target can't take reactions until the start of its next turn


Shadow List

Opportunist's Strike: You may use your reaction to move 5 feet in any direction, not triggering an opportunity attack from the creature you hit


Mercy List

Stabilizing Strike: You may use your bonus action to stabilize a creature at 0 hit points within 5 feet of the creature you attacked

Imbued Strike: Your attack deals poison damage instead of bludgeoning


Open Hand List

Vibrating Strike: You can use your bonus action before the end of your turn to deal 1d4 bludgeoning damage


Sun Soul List

Imbued Strike: Your strike deals radiant damage instead of bludgeoning

Brightening Strike: The creature you hit sheds bright light for 5 feet and dim light for another 5 feet


Kensei List

Sharpened Strike: Your strike deals piercing or slashing damage instead of bludgeoning


Four Elements List

Imbued Strike: Your strike deals fire or cold damage instead of bludgeoning


Long Death List

Imbued Strike: Your strike deals necrotic damage instead of bludgeoning


Special Attacks:[edit]

At 6th level, you know a number of Special Attacks equal to your proficiency bonus. You can use Special Attacks a number of times per short or long rest equal to your proficiency bonus. You can choose from the main list or from the list associated with your subclass.

If a saving throw is called for, the Ki save DC is used.

Main List

Spinning Attack: Using your action, all creatures within 5 feet of you must make a Dexterity save or take slashing or bludgeoning damage equal to a roll of your Martial Arts die

Flying Kick: If you move at least 10 feet towards a creature and hit it with an attack, you knock it back 10 feet and deal extra damage equal to your Martial Arts die

Sweeping Kick: If you make an Unarmed Strike and hit, you can knock the target prone

Magic Strike: When you hit with an attack, you can cause it to deal extra force damage equal to a roll of your Martial Arts die

Cursed Strike: When you hit a creature with an attack, you curse it for an hour. At any point during this time when the creature rolls a d20, you may roll your Martial Arts die and subtract it from the total. If this would reduce a natural 20 below 20, it is no longer considered a natural 20.

Targeted Strike: When you hit with an attack, you can choose to inflict one of the following effects: Poisoned, blinded, deafened, or target cannot speak. The effect lasts until the end of the target's next turn.

Deflect Blows: When you take bludgeoning, slashing, or piercing damage, you may use your reaction to deflect the force of the attack. When you do so, damage is reduced by a roll of your Martial Arts die. If you reduce the damage to 0, you may choose to impose disadvantage on the next attack roll they make or make an Unarmed Strike as part of that same reaction.


Shadow List

Mantle of Shadow: When you are hit by an attack while standing in dim light or darkness, you can manifest a mantle of shadow to protect you. The damage is reduced by an amount equal to your Martial Arts die. If this reduces damage to or below 0, dim light in the space you are standing in becomes darkness until the end of your next turn.

Sneak Attack: If you hit a creature who is surprised, you may deal additional damage equal to your Martial Arts die, rolling twice and taking the higher die.


Mercy List

Imbued Attack: When you hit with an attack roll, you can deal additional poison damage equal to a roll of your Martial Arts die.

Transfer Life Force: When you hit with an attack roll, you can use your bonus action and choose a creature within 10 feet that you can see, including yourself. They regain hit points equal to a roll of your Martial Arts die.

Diseasing Strikes: When you hit with an attack roll, you can choose for it to deal poison damage instead of the normal damage type. The target must make a Constitution save or be poisoned for 1 minute. The target may retry their save at the end of each of their turns.


Open Hand List

Flat-Palmed Strike: When you hit with an attack roll, you may knock the target back an amount of feet equal to your Unarmored Movement distance. They must make a Dexterity save or be knocked prone.

1-inch punch: When you roll an attack roll for an Unarmed Strike, you can add a roll of your Martial Arts die to the total.


Sun Soul List

Imbued Attack: When you hit with an attack roll, you can deal additional radiant damage equal to a roll of your Martial Arts die.

Blinding Strike: When you hit with an attack roll, the target sheds bright light for 15 feet and dim light for another 15 feet for 1 minute. They must make a Constitution save or be blinded until the end of their next turn.


Kensei List

Violent Blow: When you hit with an attack roll with a kensei weapon, you can deal additional damage equal to a roll of your Martial Arts die.

Precise Strike: When you roll an attack roll with a kensei weapon, you can add a roll of your Martial Arts die to the total.


Four Elements List

Imbued Attack: When you hit with an attack roll, you can deal additional fire, cold, or lightning damage equal to a roll of your Martial Arts die.

Mantle of the Elements: When you take acid, cold, fire, lightning, poison, or thunder damage, you can reduce the amount of damage you take by a roll of your Martial Arts die. The next time you deal damage within the next minute, you deal extra damage of the type you reduced equal to your Wisdom modifier.


Long Death List

Imbued Attack: When you hit with an attack roll, you can deal additional necrotic damage equal to a roll of your Martial Arts die.

Sapping Strike: When you hit with an attack roll, the target cannot regain hit points for the next minute. Also, the next time the target makes a save, the total is reduced by an amount equal to a roll of your Martial Arts die.


Barbarian[edit]

Barbarian probably doesn't need this for damage output, but I did it anyway. Wanted to make this one weapon specific, so you can only use a certain special move while wielding a certain weapon.

Combat Moves:[edit]

At 6th level, you know a number of combat moves equal to your proficiency bonus. You may use a Combat Move a number of times per short or long rest equal to your proficiency bonus. You may only use a Combat Move you know while wielding a type of weapon associated with the list it came from.

Axes

Cleave: You use your bonus action to target a piece of armor an opponent is wearing. You reduce their AC by an amount equal to your proficiency bonus until they get new armor or spend a short rest repairing it.


Swords

Wrench: After making a successful attack, you may twist the sword as a bonus action, dealing the weapon's damage die again.

Feint: You may cause an attack roll to miss, giving your next attack this turn advantage and a bonus to damage equal to your proficiency bonus.

Thrust: You use a bonus action to make an attack roll. If the target gained any benefit to AC from its Dexterity modifier, it doesn't gain the benefit in this case.


Polearms

Shove: After making a successful attack, you may shove the target of the attack back 10 feet and choose to knock them prone.


Thrown Weapons

Twist: You may twist your weapon as you throw it, giving it a bonus to attack and damage rolls equal to your Dexterity modifier.


Clubs/Mauls

Conk: After making a successful hit, you may force the target to make a Constitution save(DC: 8+proficiency bonus+Strength modifier) or be poisoned for a minute. An affected creature can retry the save at the end of each of its turns.


Rogue[edit]

Drawing from called shots mechanics…(TB completed)



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