Why won’t you let me Gnome Barbarian?!

Comment A question on Small Races and the Great Weapon Master Feat:

RAW, since a Small Race can’t wield a 2H weapon properly, they can’t utilize the feat to its full extent. This is frustrating to me, since while I understand the weapon size limitation, it seems to make sense to me to allow a Small Race to benefit from the Feat if using a Versatile Weapon with two hands.

Did this factor into the design consideration at all? TL; DR Why won’t you let me Gnome Barbarian?!

mikemearls24 points21 days ago
It’s purely a flavor issue. You can ignore it and nothing breaks, probably the kind of thing that would disappear if we were building the game today. from discussion AMA: Mike Mearls, D&D Creative Director.

One thought on “Why won’t you let me Gnome Barbarian?!

  1. D. Walker says:

    You can actually work around it in some fun ways.

    Small races can us Heavy weapons, they just get Disadvantage. So if you can find a reliable way to get Advantage, you can cancel the two out.

    One reliable way to do this is to use the Mounted Combatant feat. This gives you automatic Advantage on melee attacks against unmounted enemies that are smaller than your mount.

    Small races may typically ride on Medium creatures, which would only give you advantage against other Small creatures, but there’s nothing stopping them from riding on bigger mounts instead.

    If you stick a Gnome Barbarian with Great Weapon Master and Mounted Combatant on a horse (size Large) or even something like an Elephant (size Huge), then they can ride around and smash people with their heavy weapons without Disadvantage.

    Fun tip – the same concept works for blind characters.

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