Dungeons & Dragons Releases New Playtest Featuring New Monk, Reworked Classes

Dungeons & Dragons has launched its most extensive playtest yet for the upcoming 2024 Player's Handbook, providing players with a first glimpse of the revamped monk class and revised versions of several other classes. The new playtest packet, released earlier today, is the largest of its kind for the 2024 Core Rulebooks, which aim to introduce notable changes to character creation rules based on player feedback. The inclusion of the new Monk class is a significant highlight of the playtest, as it has undergone substantial revisions to align its damage output more closely with other classes. Additionally, the playtest packet features updates to the Rogue, Paladin, Ranger, Cleric, Druid, and Bard classes, incorporating valuable player input.

The Monk class has undergone the most significant transformations, deviating considerably from its 2014 iteration. The Martial Arts dice feature has been entirely overhauled, with all dice sizes increased to maintain pace with the damage output of other classes. Ki points have been renamed discipline points, reflecting the Monk's departure from Eastern mysticism tropes. A new Defy Death feature has been introduced, allowing Monk players to spend discipline points to regain a limited number of hit points when reaching 0 points. At Level 13, Monks gain the ability to deflect all ranged attacks, including spell attacks, and can utilize discipline points to gain resistance to all damage types (except force damage) through the Superior Defense feature.

The Bard class has received a new capstone ability called Words of Creation, enabling Bards to simultaneously cast a Power Word spell on two targets. On the other hand, the Druid class has removed pre-made primal beast stat blocks from a previous playtest, requiring players to "prepare" beast stat blocks for Wild Shape at the beginning of each day. The Rogue class has gained a new Cunning Strike ability, allowing players to reduce damage on their attacks to add additional effects, such as disarming, poisoning, or tripping foes.

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