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D&D 5E 2024 Playtest Brings Changes to Multiple Classes and Feats

New spells, changes to feats and classes, and a long overdue Monk rework are included in the newest Unearthed Arcana.

With a new core rulebook set to release next year, Wizards of the Coast have been hard at work tweaking and reworking the core gameplay of D&D, including spells, classes, and several other game elements. As part of their efforts to refine the new rules, Wizards has been releasing several sets of playtest materials for players to try and provide feedback, and the latest set of materials is here.

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This newest playtest material is the biggest we have seen so far, coming in at 77 pages with a lot of information, including class changes, new subclasses, reworked spells, feats, and several other changes and tweaks to the D&D rules.

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Newest D&D 5E Unearthed Arcana Changes several Classes and Spells

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In the newest Unearthed Arcana, Wizards of the Coast have outlined several changes and additions to multiple classes, with the Monk class finally getting some attention in this latest round of playtesting. This playtest also see’s the standardization of subclasses, with all classes now receiving their subclass at level 3, with features being received at different levels.

The most notable changes to the Monk include reworks of the Ki points, now called Martial Discipline, and an improved version of Step of the Wind, allowing players to both the Disengage and the Dash action when the ability is used. Additionally, Martial Arts have seen a buff that has the class start with a d6 rather than a d4 for the Martial Arts dice and will now go up to a d12 at higher levels. Still, they will only apply to Unarmed Strikes, as the Monk can now benefit from the Weapon Mastery feature. They have also seen Deflect Missile and Stunning Strike redesigns and seen several new feats introduced.

Several other classes have seen changes, with Druid getting a new 1st level feature called Primal Order that gives players some options for improving proficiencies and spellcasting and Wildshape returning to using beast stat blocks. Bards have received a new subclass, the College of Dance, and see changes to Bardic Inspiration, Font of Inspiration, Countercharm, and Magical Secret. Alongside these, the Cleric, Ranger, Rogue, and Paladin have all seen changes to feats, certain spells, and a few reworks.

Aside from classes, several new and revised spells are included in this playtest, with smite spells, excluding Searing Smite and Wrathful Smite, now being Paladin exclusive and working alongside their new Paladin’s Smite feat. Hex is now a Warlock-exclusive spell, Hunters Mark, Conjure Barrage, and Conjure Volley have become Ranger-exclusive spells, and spells like Frostbite, Thunderclap, and Toll the Dead have been added to the spell list in their appropriate spell school.

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This huge Unearthed Arcana includes a load of other changes and tweaks, with Weapon Mastery returning with a change or two and several other reworks in response to fan feedback. Going forward, it’s likely we won’t see as many significant changes, as Wizards has stated they are now moving into the “refinement” stage of the playtest, and with the new rulebook set to release sometime next year, we have a lot of time to see how other changes will help shape the next D&D experience.

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Matthew Fuller
Matt is a freelance writer based in the UK and has spent over three years covering and writing about video games. He discovered his love of games journalism while attending Canterbury Christchurch University, where he earned a bachelor's and master's degree in Game Design and has been writing ever since. He will find any excuse to play and write about games. When he isn't fighting dragons or exploring far-off galaxies, he spends his free time playing D&D, listening to music, or reading a good book. His primary game bests are Diablo IV, the Final Fantasy series, D&D, and anything new releasing that tickles his fancy.