Poking Around the Starter Set Fighter

I’m sure by now may of you have already seen the Starter Set Fighter preview that was released earlier this week. For fun, I decided to sit down and recreate the Fighter using the final Playtest rules we got last September, just to see where the differences were.

Here’s some of the things I noticed:

Fighters are beginning the game with a +2 Proficiency Bonus. I wonder if that’s an across the board bump or something to make Fighters more attractive.

They’re giving the Fighter a bump to +3 Proficiency at Level 5. Again, accross the board or unique to the martial prowess of the Fighter? Time will tell.

They’ve left intact the “no DEX bonus affects AC of heavy armor, neither positive nor negative” rule. Which I have to say that I really like. In’s interesting in that more or less allows certain fighters to treat DEX as a dump stat, which may encourage them to put points into more interesting places (like this Noble Fighter with the 14 CHA).

They’ve eliminated the Speed penalty for certain heavy armors. In the playtest,this Fighter would be moving 25 feet a round, not 30 feet. I wonder if this is an across the board cut, or just something removed from chainmail? Or could it be that they’ve finally invoked a rule that says high STR negates armor Speed penalties?

He has a proficiency in “playing cards.” That must be some specific invoking of the PT Noble’s gaming set proficiency.

They took away the Noble’s Retainers trait. Which is probably a good thing. I could see that getting really annoying really quickly in the hands of the wrong player.

They’ve tweaked the XP advancement chart. 2nd is at 300 instead of 250, 3rd is at 900 instead of 950, 4th is at 2,700 instead of 2,250, and 5th is at 6,500 instead of 4,750. At first glance it looks like a slowdown in advancement, though that will depend on how the XP rewards play out. If they just upped the XP of monsters, then this is just a cosmetic difference only.

Overall though, they haven’t changed a whole lot on the surface here. I was able to put together more or less the exact same build under the playtest rules. The Proficiency bump is the only real notable difference, and at first level that’s not a huge difference.

That doesn’t mean that the game hasn’t changed at all since the Playtest. The designers have said more than once that the character creation rules were an important part of the playtest and that the playtest ended in part because they were satisfied where those rules ended up. I’m eager to see what has changed under the hood, then, that might not be reflected here. And we only have a couple of weeks to wait until we find out!

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