I have been thinking about the racial attack bonus for Rangers and thought it does not fit very well as the Ranger advances. Here is what I came up with at 1st they may choose a racial enemy within 4 HD of their current level (ie Orcs or Ogres ect) then at 5th level they an choose another with the same rules so up to 9HD then again at 9th and 13th etc. This way they gain a bit of what was lost between 1st and 2nd editions but not over powerful since it is only +4 to hit bonus. What do you think of this house rule?
I think this would allow for enemy level progression as a young 1st level Ranger having Hill Giants as an enemy would be pretty much a death sentence if they seek them out. But if it was Hobgoblins at 1st level then Trolls at 5th and Hill Giants at 9th that would make more sense as the scaling is more in line with the challenge level.
The species enemy chosen should have some special significance to that ranger. True, a high HD enemy (like a troll or giant) to a 2nd lvl ranger (that level at which the ranger must choose) can be a near suicidal endeavor, particularly tackling that enemy outright with brute force instead of using cunning and subtlety. Conversely, a typical goblinoid of low HD to a 7th+ lvl ranger poses only a minor challenge, at best. That is where the DM comes in to make the species enemy more threatening (give the humanoids classes and levels, or increase their number), if too weak, or give the ranger some assistance (fellow PCs or NPCs) if the enemy is too difficult at that time.
In the end, it really is your choice, but in my campaigns, I have adopted the rule as it stands.
The way I always got around that problem in 2e was to choose a favored enemy that would be of a sufficient challenge at all levels that the bonus would continue to prove useful. Thus, I almost always chose either 'drow' or 'human'.
"Human" is too broad of a category, thus more than a bit cheesy. It must be a more specific group of humans, not just "I hate 80% of the world! +4 to hit! Raaargh!" Decent refinements of that would be "humans of the Scarlet Brotherhood", "bandits/outlaws", "slavers", "Naerie human military", "human servants of Iuz", etc. The whole human race, boundless in its variety, didn't wrong somebody, just a particular group did. Particular monsters work well as they are not encountered all that often, and (unlike humans) they are defined by their nature. This bonus is not meant to be in effect near constantly. Another too broad example would be "undead". Need to specify what type of undead, though as they are more rare than orcs for instance, you might allow a choice between skeletal undead (skeletons, skeleton warriors, yes of fear and flame, morrghs, liches, demi-liches, etc.), corporeal undead (zombies, ghouls, ghasts, wights, revenants, vampires, etc.), and incorporeal undead (wraiths, swordwraiths, specters, banshees, ghosts, etc.). However, if undead (or some other creature/group) will be very rare in the campaign, the DM could go with a whole classification or broader group.
Also, choosing an enemy doesn't mean that a character is on a death quest to find and kill them. Ogres, or even giants, may have wiped out the ranger's village, killed his family, or simply be despoilers of his homeland, such that everyone who is from there traditionally hates these things (Shield Landers hating Hobgoblins for instance), but that doesn't mean the ranger will be off to commit suicide trying to kill his hated foe as soon as possible. No, it just means the ranger has a deep, abiding hatred for a particular creature or group, whatever they are. Eventually, when he is powerful enough, he may even choose to hunt them (Duke Karrl of Urnst is a good example), but in the mean time he will certainly do whatever is in his power to hinder or kill them as he can; with help if he is unable to do so on his own. _________________ - Moderator/Admin (in some areas)/Member -
Last edited by Cebrion on Mon Dec 22, 2014 1:54 pm; edited 1 time in total
I agree with Cebrion on this, and the Complete Handbook of Rangers pretty much states the same about picking a species enemy and its guidelines. If you can, get your hands on it. I think it's one of the better "Handbook" guides out there.
I think the intent on Human would be like worshippers of Iuz type of choice and not all humans or you would be a pretty sad team player in a party of human players LOL. I guess as a DM I could award additional enemies based on the encounters during play. Currently DMing a Evil party so no Rangers anyways.
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