The expert classes in DND 5e work by increasing abilities with levels, but some of this information has changed with the new Unearthed Arcana documents.
Dungeons and Dragons fifth edition (DND 5e) has always received mixed reviews from players as it has some excellent gameplay mechanics but also some drawbacks.
The original way that expert classes worked in DND 5e is part of this discourse. Fortunately, with the arrival of the Unearthed Arcana, also came some changes to this expert class system.
What worked and what did not work with DND 5e
The fifth edition of Dungeons and Dragons was released in 2014 and it is the most recent instalment in the series. However, since its release, this fifth edition has been receiving mixed reviews from both veteran players and newbies.
This version of the game moves the focus from exploration in favour of a more encounter-focussed approach, which does make it more familiar to new players who are used to video game formats.
However, with that being said, it does lack some of the storytelling and exploring mechanics that veteran players are used to.
The simplified rules do make the game much more approachable, but they do take away some fun from the weapons, armour and equipment within the game.
DND 5e: Expert classes
When the DND 5e first came out, the class system worked similarly to that of the third edition. This means that players gain new abilities as they reach new levels, and these abilities and expertise can then be used to defeat stronger monsters.
The original way that expertise in the class system for DND 5e worked, is that players could double their proficiency bonus on a skill once they reached this class ability.
Since 5e has a soft cap on gaining 10 on a bonus, this expertise could prove to be very useful during regular gameplay. However, there are some drawbacks to how the expert classes work in DND 5e.
The reality is that level three Bards and level one Rogues truly benefited the most from the expert class system in DND 5e, because they could choose from any of their skills to double their proficiency.
Whereas in other cases, this would only help in extremely specific class or race expertise and would not always be useful during gameplay.
Another way to make the most out of the way that expert classes work in 5e is multi-classing. However, in this case, you will need to balance gaining expertise with falling behind in gaining levels throughout the game.
However, there have been many developments in the world of DND since the release of the fifth edition in 2014.
The most notable of these developments is the release of the Unearthed Arcana, as part of the so-called One DND, where players are encouraged to playtest a new, unreleased version of the game with new rules and systems.
The newest of these Unearthed Arcana documents details a new class grouping called the expert class, which is made up of the Ranger, the Bard and the Rogue, as well as a few other changes to the rules of the game.
What has changed from 5e to the Unearthed Arcana for the Ranger expert class?
The changes for the Ranger from the original 5e expertise rules to the way that expert classes work in Unearthed Arcana are probably the most notable out of all of the groups that will now fall into the expert classification.
According to the Unearthed Arcana rules, a Ranger can also double their proficiency bonus for any skill that is in their preferred terrain, in the same way that the Bard and the Rogue could in the fifth edition. On top of that, you become a Ritual Caster for any spell with a Ritual tag.
What has changed from 5e to the Unearthed Arcana for the Bard expert class?
The most noticeable change from the original 5e expert system to that of the Unearthed Arcana for the Bard is that Unearthed Arcana seems to try and emphasise that Bards should be seen as more than just musicians.
Bards will be able to choose between Magical Secrets and Feats and will have to deal with somewhat decent healing and damage abilities until later in the game.
What has changed from 5e to the Unearthed Arcana for the Rogue expert class?
When it comes to the changes in the way that the expertise worked for Rogues in 5e and the way that it works in the Unearthed Arcana, Rogues are mostly better off.
Rogues will no longer be able to use their sneak attacks during their off turns, but there are many other changes to the feature and feat progressions that makes the gameplay much tighter.