Content of the article: "Large PC races are totally viable (and fun)!"
In all the 6 years since the release of the 5e, we still haven't seen any official large player race, only medium and small, which at first glance seems logical since having an 8ft tall (or more) looks like something very strong. But after some playtesting, and IMHO, I can say it is totally viable and balanced to have a Large playable race.
In the last 8 months I have been playing Curse of Strahd using a character made with this homebrew (I only used the Half-Human so I can't say how balanced are the other races), it is being extremely fun to play and at no point until now my character overshadowed the rest of the party. First let's look at what you get from being large in this homebrew:
- Advantage on STR ability checks and saves
- +1d4 when using large weapons
- +2 for unarmed strikes
- Increase push, drag, lift and carrying capacity
- Grapple and shove Huge creatures
- When on medium spaces movement costs double, disadvantage on attack rolls and Dexterity saving throws, and attack rolls against it have advantage
- To handle something very small the DM may call for a Dexterity check.
- Require mounts at least one size larger than you.
- require four times as much food as normal and your armor requires four times the materials to be made. (somewhat situational)
- 10 by 10 foot area
Looking at the bad things most of them are kinda situational and will not be a problem in the majority of the adventure, so being large is not something that punish the player so much. The biggest problem is when you enter a medium sized space, but I say that everyone making a Large character is 100% expecting this type of situation.
The good things have much more influence on the game. The advantage on STR rolls is very good, but as everyone knows STR is on of the least common types of saves and is only used with one skill, you are just a little bit better at breaking and lifting things, you also have advantage on grappling, which could be strong if you make a build that focus on it.
The +1d4 is probably the strongest feature, since your character will probably be using the large version of the weapons (unless they lose it). It is a small, but reliable, source of extra damage and I can't argue against those that think it would be op, but at least in my experience, it is such a small value that when you are fighting enemies with 100+ hp, your attack having an average bonus of +2,5 and and dealing 16,5 damage instead of 14 doesn't change the combat too much.
+2 for unarmed strikes is a good bonus, but even with a build that focuses on only using fists the most you can get is a d8 with Unarmed Fighting (UA), and since you are not using large weapons you don't have the +1d4, of course I will mention that it can be strong on early levels with a monk using Flurry of Blows, but it is the same for the +1d4, on higher levels it is such a small difference that you don't even notice. I still would not see any problem with WotC releasing a large race and not giving bonus damage to attacks.
The increase in pushing, dragging, lifting and carrying capacity is very situational (a lot of players dont even use encumbrance rules). Grappling and shoving huge creatures is also ok, if you can do that to large and small creature, it is not like being able to do the same to huge one would change anything.
And for the last the neutral feature, you occupy a space of 10 by 10. It is neutral because you can have more control over the battlefield with opportunity attacks and blocking enemies path, but it is also easier to surround you (which is very bad if you are using flank rules).
To conclude I think the best argument for having a Large player race is that if you compare this homebrew to the Enlarge spell, it has much more bonuses than the +1d4 damage the spell gives. If with even with such extra features it did not break my game, anything weaker than this could be totally viable to be officially released.
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