Talk:Shub (5e Race)

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There's at least a few balancing issues... Just to highlight the most prominent things:

  • Races generally avoid adding more than +2 to an ability score, as ability scores in 5e have a "soft cap" of 20. With this race, it's possible to roll an 18 and gain a +3 to break that cap. Ideally the +3 should be reduced to a +2, so overall the race has +2/+1 like almost all official races do. If you're insistent on the +3, then there should be a notification that the relevant ability score cannot be increases over 20.
  • Literally all of the subrace traits are *IMMENSELY* overpowered, and several of them don't make any sense in 5e. "Advantage on Checks you are proficient in" is a ludicrously huge boon in any campaign not dedicated entirely to combat. "Gain 1 extra attack. Becomes 2 at level 9 and 3 at level 17," makes no sense in 5e, as one simply does not gain extra attacks—and if a race could provide a player-character with so many attacks, the race itself might as well be the fighter class. Bruiser's "anger" racial trait is the only subrace trait approaching something that isn't campaign-breakingly overpowered.
  • The capability to transform between humanoid form and some other form is noted in description and speed, but there is no reference to how this transformation actually works—e.g., is it an action, a bonus action, etc.
  • Racial traits should not scale by "Every Ability Score Increase," especially considering a fighter at 8th level would have a natural attack that would already be 1d12. What would it become after that? A d20?
  • The race is Large size, but the connotations of this are not explained anywhere.

In summary, this race is far too overpowered for a typical campaign. - Guy (talk) 13:36, 27 April 2017 (UTC)

Hello, fellow wikian! I skimmed through the page and I have to admit, I agree with Guy's opinion. This race is overpowered in the following reasons:

  • Ability Score Increase. This covers the main ability score increase and subrace ability score increase. A total of +4 is not recommended, and even moreso when you give a +3 to one. Note that pretty much every race in SRD has a +3 bonus total, with the only exception of human, which gets a rather mediocre +1 bonus one all ability score and no other traits given.
  • Size / Shifter. Having a Large creature is problematic - see 5e Race Design Guide for details. Besides, do I need to stay in Medium size, when staying in Large gives me more advantage in many ways?
  • Speed. Uh, do I need to stay in Medium size?
  • Blindsense. It's hard to compare darkvision and blindsight on a same basis, but I must say that a 120-foot-radius might be a bit too big.
  • Aberration. So you're not humanoid, right? That means you're free from hold person, dominate person, and any other spells that would influence your comrades (if you care to have one or more). Too overpowered for a player race. Plus, eschewing eat, drink, breate, and sleep is like 15th-level class feature. Note that even elf has to take a 4-hour trance.
  • Flesh Weapons. So what, you have a total of 6d4 bludgeoning damage and 6d6 piercing damage by 20th level? Things get worse for fighter, it's now 8d4 and 8d6 each, and three Extra Attack features. This is just too much, I've never seen this much of damage input. Note that other races, such as minotaur from the Unearthed Arcana article, has a fixed damage die for natural weapons.
  • Spawn of an Old One. To all ability score? That's even stronger than barbarian's 20th-level' feature. Plus, gaining immunity to psychic damage is, again, too powerful for a basic racial trait, you may consider resistance for that.
  • Subrace: Bruiser. Note that half-orc's Savage Attacks feature only adds one additional damage die on a critical hit from a melee weapon attack.
  • Subrace: Skirmisher. Define "combat" - there is no defined term or time unit for "a combat" in 5th edition. Besides, the effect you gain is way too strong, and yet completely useless for a spellcaster class.
  • Subrace: Juggernaut. Note that 5th edition attempts to avoid damage reduction as much as possible, the only example listed in PHB is a feat (which is, by the way, completely optional) and it only reduces a certain type of damage by 3. When you reach 20th level as a shub barbarian you get, what, -19 damage from all sources? Why not just write "you cannot be killed"?
  • Subrace: Observer. Again, define "out of combat". Plus, gaining a skill proficiency in every three levels? Note that 5th edition's skill system is revised as few, but strong. This outright defines it.
  • Subrace: Overseer. Oh, that means I can be immune from being exhausted? Immunity to six (eight if you're a fighter) conditions makes you pretty much unstoppable.
  • Subrace: Destroyer. So this assumes that you're a spellcaster, preferably a paladin, sorcerer, or warlock, given to the ability score increase (which is, again, too much). Other than that, you start with one less racial trait than usual. Oh, and did I mention it's completely broken?

Well, that's it for now. In short: Pretty much every single racial trait is overpowered and/or situational, it kinda begs for a specific combination, which is not exactly recommended for a race. --WeirdoWhoever (talk) 05:50, 28 April 2017 (UTC)

Hi, I like the idea but this is really broken, I would like to try and balance it so if the OC would like to do it instead please say so. --2601:644:401:6EBF:1419:4B69:12E2:8A59

no
I didnt like it. I also didnt like it when i was looking it over to see some one changing everything.... :/
I'm not even mad, but I am aggrieved that you didn't even wait.
now imma haveta change it agn. Do you knw how annoying that is?
to work over everything heck even Masamune was polite about it.
Iberisdiablo (talk) 06:30, 28 April 2017 (UTC)
Sry I am tired and didn't want to forget about this, I know I should have, thanks for not minding. --2601:644:401:6EBF:1419:4B69:12E2:8A59
Dear 2601:644:401:6EBF:1419:4B69:12E2:8A59: You can add your signature with four tildes(~). I assume there was some misunderstanding because of the absense of signature. I add your signature to your comments to avoid further confusions. --WeirdoWhoever (talk) 06:32, 28 April 2017 (UTC)
hi whoever --Iberisdiablo
Hello, Iberisdiablo. While I'm at it: You can check the "history" tab above the page to see all edits done on the page. Furthermore, you can "undo" some edits back to past version, that would definietely save your time and decreases your frustration. --WeirdoWhoever (talk) 06:35, 28 April 2017 (UTC)
Thank you for the advice, arghIberisdiablo (talk) 06:37, 28 April 2017 (UTC)
whoever you are stranger you made my edits a bit easier to work with...although unasked for. I might as well use em since they're better than some of mine.

Iberisdiablo (talk) 07:33, 28 April 2017 (UTC)

I just want to note that no-one needs your permission to edit the page. This is a collaborative wiki, and the work is released under the GFD license. However if it is a major change, it is a courtesy to discuss it on the talk page first. Marasmusine (talk) 08:30, 28 April 2017 (UTC)
and it was majorIberisdiablo (talk) 08:55, 28 April 2017 (UTC)
As I say, it's a courtesy, but not something they have to do.
I made some changes on the base race, so that it makes sense (Speed mentions a "centaur form", but then it later says "satyr" form? Which is it?)
I don't like the subraces, they just seem to be there for the sake of it and not much to do with the lore. However I will note these issues:
  • Bruiser: "fail to reach the targets armor class" is an awkward way of saying "if the attack misses".
  • Skirmishre: How long does the speed increase last for? Does it stack if I reduce a bunch of monsters to 0 hp?
  • Juggernaut: Please think about how crazy powerful this is. This can't be available all the time. Was it meant to recharge on a long rest?
  • Observer: It's not clear if this is +2 to all those abilities, or if you have to pick one. By making this broad ("Intelligence/Wisdom/Charisma") it becomes less flavourful and seems lazy. Don't use the term "expertise", that's the name of a class feature, not the mechanic itself. Marasmusine (talk) 08:59, 28 April 2017 (UTC)

Large size is very powerful. Your battlefield control is greater, and you can use Large-sized weapons. That's not to say "no you can't be a Large PC", but it needs handling carefully with a knowledge of the ramifications. Marasmusine (talk) 09:04, 28 April 2017 (UTC)


Yeahhhh i forgot to put in they have no hands...fixing that oh and tentacles can't grip weapons. yay btw the guy who changed it did that those u see im working on it.

nonono the subraces for shub-niggurath fill out a specific niche in her design a puzzle piece if you will, nice talk.

need to add more lore. wiat i thought i mentioned they have no hands in the phys description. or was it implied tell me what u think -over- Iberisdiablo (talk) 09:16, 28 April 2017 (UTC)

Hello, fellow wikian! As you requested me via my Talk page, I took a look at the new and improved version of Shub. Here are my comments on the current version. Note that I am making new comments as if I've never seen the previous version, so some comments may overlap with my past words:

  • Age. This must be a nitpick, but I'm afraid I have to express myself that having a creature infinite life span is kind of... too boring. Note that some classes, such as druid and monk, have a class feature that eschews disadvantages of being old, but not becoming immortal. Heck, even elf ages, however long do they live, to the point it's practically immortal. Being immortal is Epic Boon-quality feature - I don't personally think it should be a racial trait that you can gain from 1st level.
  • Speed. Having slower speed for Large form is nice and all, but then, the walking speed of 45 feet in Medium form is too much. Note that the fastest race in PHB is wood elf, and their walking speed is 35 feet. Also, ×1.5 multiplier is kinda discouraged in 5th edition, although it was taken for granted in 3.5rd edition, as far as I remember.
  • Abberation. One question: Is a shub humanoid and abberation, or just an abberation? Here is a comment from the pre-loaded race template: "Not being humanoid gives a race immunity to certain spells and effects, and should be considered carefully." If a shub is just an abberation, it becomes immunes to so many spells and effects that affect humanoid only, whether is beneficial or detrimental. I am personally against that, especially when even a dragonborn is not treated as a dragon with its blatant relationship with dragons. I suggests you to add something like "You are treated as an aberration in addition to a humanoid" or similar lines.
I read Marasmusine's comments from somewhere else, and it went like: Don't use "months" or "weeks", just "days". You can find in your copy of DMG that calendar might vary from setting to setting. This is just me nitpicking, but I suggest using "days" or "hours" instead of "weeks".
While I'm at it - I am personally against requiring humanoid sacrifice to sustain a shub. That kinda forces a shub to become at least a bit Evil, and plus, what if a shub cannot afford a humanoid creature during adventure, except for its fellow adventurers? Not all campaigns come with a humanoid creatures handy enough. Plus, if the purpose of providing sacrifice is to sustain a shub, does it have to be a humanoid? I suggest changing it to "you require double/triple/quadruple/whatever worth of food and water to sustain yourself", because (a) although it kind a erodes the Lovecraftian atmosphere of a shub as you might have intended, it better fits a shub to become more of a D&D player character than a CoC monster; and (b) instead of having a rather subjective value of "Medium" and "Small" (incidentally, the creature size is based on how much space it takes, not exactly its weight or nutrition) having a limitation based on the food and water consumption enables you to track the necessities more easily.
  • Spawn of Shub-Niggurath. Note that although it was more frequently used in 3.5rd editions, having a randomly determined day counts has greatly reduced in 5th edition. I suggest having a fixed amount of time required would do.
Another quick question: How many tentacles do you have? One? Two? This is kinda important, because if you can use your tentacle to grab an object (but not weapon, apparently) having a tentacle is practically having another arm.
Here are my version of wordings for tentacles and bites. I'm not going to force you in any ways, but if it could help you in any ways, please feel free to use and modify it:
  • Tentacles. You are proficient with your tentacle(s?), which are a melee weapon that deals 1d4 bludgeoning or slashing damage (your choice) and has a reach property. The damage is increased by 1d4 while you are in your Large form. You can use your tentacle(s?) to grab and throw objects, but you cannot perform a complex actions with your tentacles, and you cannot wield a weapon or a shield with it. If your tentacle(s?) are cut of, it regrows after (one day?), when you finish a short rest or long rest.
  • Bite. You are proficient with your teeth, which are a melee weapon that deals 1d6 piercing damage. The damage is increased by 1d6 while you are in your Large form.
  • Shifter. Again, having a randomly determined time count is kinda discouraged. Besides, I think taking even 1 minute to transform is maybe a bit too much, considering so many strategic advantages you can take by being a Large creature. Oh, and as I said above, having a ×1.5 multiplier is not recommended, and if a Large form is supposed to be slower than the Medium form, I personally do not think it's even necessary.
  • Subrace: Bruiser. I'm a passionate nitpicker when it comes to a critical range modifier, because considering so many advantages you can add, it is a bit too powerful to the point that even official works decided it exclusive to fighter. I suggest having it as a "once-per-short-rest-or-long-rest" kind of trait, instead of passive trait, would be more balanced.
  • Subrace: Skirmisher. I kinda see what you intend with this subrace trait, I personally like it, but I'm afraid I can see a way to abuse it. Once one of my player attempted to abuse a tiger's Pounce feature (which ended as a misinterpretation of the text - none of my players were fluent with English, I did all the translation for them, and apparently he attempted to snake his way) and I see the same problem arising with this feature. In short: You just need to stop moving, not moving straight toward to the target, is it? That means a zigzagging back and forth or circling around a creature still triggers damage, which is too cheap considering the effort. Oh, and I see that the damage is automatic, with no attack roll or saving throw or whatever.
Here are my version of wordings for the Frenzy feature. Again, I'm not forcing this, but if it could help you in any ways, please feel free to use and modify it:
  • Frenzy. Your primordial blood boils in combat, and you rush to trample all in your ways. You can take the Dash action as a bonus action. Additionally, if you take the Dash action on your turn and move at least 20 feet straight toward a creature and ends your move within 5 feet of that creature, you can attempt to trample the creature. The creature must make a Dexterity saving throw. The DC equals 8 plus your proficiency bonus plus your Dexterity modifier. On a failed save, the creature takes bludgeoning damage and is knocked prone. The damage equals 1d8 plus your Dexterity modifier while you are in your Medium form, and 2d8 plus your Dexterity modifier while you are in your Large form.
  • Subrace: Juggernaut. I remember I said this before, but does the damage reduction apply to all kind of damage? Note that the only feat that grants damage reduction is limited to bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing damage from nonmagical weapons. Plus, damage reduction in the Large form could be too much, since it scales with your Constitution modifier and (again) is applied to all damage. Personally, I don't see why would a Juggernaut!shub would not stay in the Large form with this beautifully overpowered feature.
  • Subrace: Observer. First of all, How do this trait works? Does the victim know that a shub is actively undermining its thinking process with any methods? Secondly, Intelligence check is not frequently used, other than recalling or learning new knowledges. If you intended Intelligence saving throw, it is also one of the "weak" saving throw, as in, not many obstacles or spells even require an Intelligence saving throw. Thirdly, I think imposing disadvantage to the check (or roll, or saving throw) would clean things nicely, instead of setting a random subtraction that scales with your level.
  • Subrace: Overseer. Having an advantage on any saving throws? And you can use it up to five times? Too powerful. Either you might want to specify which saving throw you can gain advantage on which situations, and/or limit it to once per long rest, it's too powerful.
  • Subrace: Destroyer. Like the Overseer trait above, I think imposing disvadvantge would clean thinks nicely. See sorcerer's Heightened Spell Metamagic option for wordings. And even then, I suggest this feature must be restricted to a number of times (once, in my opinion) per short rest and/or long rest, since this is already powerful enough to be a class option itself.

In short: From what I see, some features still need some tweaking here and there. I acknowldege that a shub is based on the Dark Young, the spawn of Goat with the Thousand Youngs herself, but gameplay-wise, a Lovecraftian creature as a player character definitely needs a nerf or two to keep things balanced enough. I hope my comments help you further improve and revise your works. --WeirdoWhoever (talk) 13:24, 30 April 2017 (UTC)

Aside from the wording improvements, many of the traits can be balanced by limiting how often they can be used.

A continual Large size is a problem, but perhaps not if it is only for 1 hour a day.
Aversion and Loathing can be reduced to one use. They can be used again when you finish a long rest. (Not "per". Bad per, naughty per!).
+1 to all attack and damage rolls all the time is pretty crazy. Less so when it only has one use though, right? And no, an attack bonus shouldn't scale with level, that's what the proficiency bonus is for. Marasmusine (talk) 16:04, 29 January 2019 (MST)
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