I am aware of the how to ask a homebrew review guidelines, however, I feel that a whole class review (specifically for D&D 5e here, but may apply to other systems and editions) is a problem by itself. We got one recently, and I even thought about posting mine up for review but I decided not to because I think it would not be a good question for this SE.

So, the problem I see is that a whole class is a lot. At worst, a martial class will have almost a feature per level, while spellcasting classes may be a little easier since there is already a fixed spell progression, but nonetheless, a whole class still would have a handful of features.

So, I see two options right now, but both seem quite... bad.

  • Post the whole class. This will be a huge question, which IMO is a problem since it might be just overwhelming and not interest many people to read and actually answer it.

  • Split it in tier or features or some other way. The problem I see here is that the features should be analyzed together. Maybe we are giving a quite strong key feature to the class at 5th level because the features it will be getting from 6 to 8 are flavorish and underpowered (e.g. Favored Enemy or Terrain).

Even if the querent has a very good grasp on what it wants to balance (e.g., "this feature at 6th level"), it probably would still require a look in the entire class to understand the synergies and the overall power level, and it is still a huge effort for answerers.

That said, I would like to understand the community view on how a question about reviewing a whole class would be well done and nicely accepted.

As a note, I do understand that the answer might be "there is no way because it simply doesn't fit well here".


3 Answers 3


A whole class is probably workable

We currently have 15 questions tagged with both and , only 4 of which are closed (and none as Too Broad). There may well be some undertagging here though. That tells me that reviewing a class is possible.

But I agree with you that a class is a large scope. We can handle the scoping of a question on a case by case basis though. Here are some of the main points (that I can think of) which the asker (and responders) should be aware of:

  • Number of subclasses. Multiple subclasses might be good for a class with the intent of being shared, but it makes the reviewing process way harder. I'll heavily recommend asking with only one subclass. It should be possible to also ask for reviews of other subclasses against that one.

  • Modality and options. If the class has a lot of different options it can take at various points it makes the class harder to review. Whether that would make it 'Too Broad' or not we'll have to take on case by case basis.

  • If you're doing something very different to the published classes it'll be hard to review it. This might just end up being the answer you get though, that there's just no way to tell how good this is without a bunch of playtesting.

  • There's a paradox with homebrew review questions, in that the better a job you have done in balancing the material, the more work is needed to give a good answer. Whether that's relevant before posting, or only if it should not get an answer quickly, I'll leave to you.

With the middle two points made, I'd just like to muse that we'd probably have a hard time analyzing the D&D 5e Warlock if someone asked for a review (and it wasn't already published obviously). It simply does too many weird things compared to the framework and has too many little options which interact with that weird thing. Mostly this just highlights that a homebrew review isn't a replacement for playtesting the material.


Present the whole class but explain your own thoughts on it as well

Note: I'll be using "you" to mean "a general person" not specifically the OP.

First, if you are homebrewing an entire class here are three helpful questions:

When designing your class, you should be paying close attention to pre-existing classes and what role/niche your new one is filling that wasn't previously filled and that cannot be solved by simply changing the fluff of an existing class (or subclass). This helps both yourself and potential answerers.

When you come up with an entire class hopefully you are not thinking "I need some help, because what if every single one of these features is utterly broken and I simply cannot tell". Instead you should already have ideas about which features might be problematic, what synergies exist, etc... (if you don't, that's potentially a problem where you are just chucking a class at us to analyze where you haven't actually done any work yourself).

Having ideas about what might be balanced or imbalanced lets you point those features out and also helps you to explain why you think a given feature is problematic (or not problematic). This lets answers look primarily at the things you yourself want to have looked at and the entire class being available means answereres can still look at the entire thing and its synergies with itself and others.

When a question about balancing a homebrew class includes why the class exists, why it has the features it does (why those features do what they do), and where you see potential problems, it makes understanding the class immensely easier for an answerer.

This understanding means the answerer can see the creative process and assess the vitally important question of whether or not the goals for the class are being met as well as whether or not the class is balanced compared to the pre-existing ones.

It certainly sounds like a lot of work, reviewing an entire class, but if you first analyze it well yourself through comparisons to other classes and perhaps some back-of-the-napkin math or something, and explain where you're coming from with the whole thing, it becomes much easier for an answerer to do so.


One of the best ways is to do some research first

This article for D&D 5e class modification is almost five years old. It provides a conceptual framework around 'what each class is intended to be' and a few mechanical notes on class features. It also provides two complete examples of how to modify an existing class. And yet I see, time and again, homebrew review questions that don't follow that framework. (tip of the cap to the ones who do, however, there have been some very well done questions). Two examples of areas where one ought to tread cautiously are offered for all of the PHB classes:

  • The monk’s Martial Arts feature was carefully worded to prevent unintended combinations; this is why the feature does not treat unarmed strikes as a finesse weapon, since that could have unforeseen consequences in future material about finesse weapons that is appropriate for, say, a rapier or a dagger but not an unarmed strike.

  • Rogues rely chiefly on two features for both the class’s feel and its strength in combat: Sneak Attack and Cunning Action. These are fundamental to the rogue, and Uncanny Dodge at 5th level is almost their equal in importance to the class. Leave these features as is, unless you have a powerful reason for changing anything.

The balance part is a bit tougher to estimate ahead of time, which is where asking for a homebrew review is helpful to any final form that a DM puts a custom class or sub class into play at their table. Play testing is recommended, but how to do that becomes very table centric.

As with anything in class design, be prepared to playtest your ideas and then make changes if things aren’t turning out the way you want them to. The first thing to do when creating a new class option is to figure out what that option’s unique aspect is, both in terms of the class’s underlying story and the option’s place in the campaign world. Figuring out the story behind the class option, and what kinds of characters you want to enable your players to create with it, is the most critical step in the process because it will serve as a guiding example for you.


You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .