Link Dump

Duncehack Edition

So who are you?

Just some tosser with an over inflated sense of self importance.

Send verbal abuse via

What is the Duncehack?

It emerged from a place of frustration. There's quite a number of areas where 5e could be improved but... it's not going to happen for various reasons.

The Duncehack is my attempt to fix these problems I have. Plan is to go through the whole game - all of it - and homebrew it into the game I think is should have been.

Feel free to disagree with me, but ultimately I think there's no harm in putting my thoughts out there, at the very least if even one DM decides to adopt these rules, then my job is done.

No DM Guild? No OGL Release?

I chafe under binding contracts and both of these are exactly that.

The DM Guild gives you more room to mess with established rules, but basically demands that all be under the service of flagship settings.

The SRD on the other hand gives more room for interesting settings but clamps down extremely hard on what established rules you're allowed to use. Their biggest contention is that they don't want someone to sell a sourcebook that removes the need for core books. Translation: they don't want Pathfinder to happen all over again.

More to the point, both assume money will change hands. I don't want money, I just want Wizards to fix their game.


Groundrules for the Duncehack are as follows:

  • No Nerfs: the goal is to bring weaker archetypes on the level of the stronger ones.

  • Remove Traps: incentives built into classes and archetypes should provide an active payoff, rather than be the suboptimal choice.

  • Frontload Agency, Backend Power: Generally speaking, people like having more options to do things, rather than more raw power. As a design rule: things that feel like core class features, or are defining class mechanics, should happen in the first ten levels, sheer numeric increases in power should come after that.

No money changed hands here

This is a passion project. I want to keep it that way.

I also want to avoid legal issues for self-evident reasons.


Not a priority, too much changes. Orphaned UAs (that is, will never get an official release), will get attention though.

Obligatory Natural Crit Plug

Someone else made a thing that lets me make homebrews without having to post them on pastebin or something. They deserve a lot of credit for that.

Obligatory /tg/ Plug

The feedback I got from various Anons on this helped me build this into something that wasn't bad and stupid.

Special thanks

MalthusPrime (and his players): I'm pretty humbled that a whole table would go out of their way to try my work well before you'd even spoken to me for the first time. Thank you.

No Images?

I originally wanted to, but I was encountering problems with the sheer size of these PDFs. I have to break these into parts to upload them anywhere as it is.

What is this Document?

It's a page of Homebrewery links to the entire Duncehack.

So this is kind of my bible for everything.


DUNGEONS & DRAGONS, D&D, Wizards of the Coast, Forgotten Realms, Ravenloft, Eberron, the dragon ampersand, Ravnica and all other Wizards of the Coast product names, and their respective logos are trademarks of Wizards of the Coast in the USA and other countries. This work contains material that is copyright Wizards of the Coast and/or other authors.

Everything contained herein is building upon that foundation laid out in the above.



Ability Scores

And Saving Throws

The following is to be revised, expect changes soon.

Combat Options

Proper rules overhaul on combat

General Feats

Note: These feat writeups are outdated, as some of them are superceded by changes elsewhere.

Full Feats


Main Weapons Writeups


Weapons (Quick and Dirty Changes)

Note: These assume you AREN'T using my main weapon's writeup.


Optional Rules

Black Hack Resources

Streamlined Resource Tracking

Recommended for games that, for whatever reason want resource tracking, but want to streamline the process into something easier to manage.

Leg/Job Adventuring Cycle

Random Encounter System

Recommended for games that treat the players as mercenaries in a hositle world out to kill them. Not necessarily recommended for the epic adventure style most tables would be accustomed to.

Simplified Encounters

4e Minions style system for use in 5e

Recommended for DMs who want to cut down on the bookkeeping during encounters.

To-Do list

  • Alternative rest systems

    Because the ones outlined in the DMG were awful

  • Factions

    For your Metaplot tracking and making the setting feel more alive.

  • Enclave (Think Darkest Dungeon Hamlet)

    Sometimes it's a town you're telling the story of.

  • Small Business

    Sometimes the PC wants to retire to a nice item shop. Sometimes they're adventuring to actually stock the damn thing.

  • World Generation

    Making this a shared thing means that players will know as much about the setting as their characters.



Inspiration Mechanics



Last Updated: Too Long Ago. In Process of Updating. (@) Marks an incomplete Update.

Artificer (@)

Base Class



Base Class


Bard (@)

Base Class


Cleric (@)

Base Class

Archetypes I (PHB)

Archetypes II (Non-PHB)

Druid (@)

Base Class


Fighter (@)

Base Class


Fighting Styles (@)

Monk (@)

Base Class


Paladin (@)

Base Class



Base Class


Rogue (@)

Base Class



Base Class


Warlock (@)

Base Class


Wizard (@)

Base Class



Class Modifications


Half-Caster Variant


Eldritch Knight Modifications



And Racial Feats

Note: In the process of cleaning up

I'm separating races into their own pages for readability. Bear with me here. It'll all be much nicer when it's done. (@) marks an incomplete update

Balance Rationale

Humans and Variant Humans

Common Races

Dwarves (@)


Halflings (@)

Uncommon Races

Dragonborn (@)


Planetouched Races

Tieflings (Inc. Abyssal) (@)

To Be Cleaned Up:

Uncommon Races

Half-Elves, Half-Orcs, Gnomes

Planetouched Races

Aasimar, Genasi, Gith

Goblinoid Races

Bugbears, Hobgoblins, Goblins, Orcs

Rare Races

Firbolg, Goliath, Kalashtar, Kor, Vedalken, Merfolk, Triton

Bestial Races I

Aaracockra, Grung, Kenku, Khenra, Loxodon

Bestial Races II

Lizardfolk, Minotaur, Naga, Tabaxi, Tortle

Monstrous Races (And Warforged)

Changeling, Kobold, Vampire, Yuan-ti Pureblood, Warforged

Hybrid Races

Centaur, Shifter, Simic Hybrid, Siren

To be added

Locathah, Verdan

About that move away from 'races'.

I ain't going to get into arguments about that, leave that at the door. Until I learn more, I'll keep trucking along here. I'm just one dude, takes me a while to catch up to some of these things.

Also, I'm not American: the particulars of the cultural context that led to that change are something I am ostensibly an outsider to.

If it's simply a change to terminology, I'll update it to reflect that. If it's a change in mechanics however, I'll have to do a full page about it, detailing such.

Watch this space is all I'm saying.




Note to self: better to break this up by school or by level?


UA Overhauls

Special Thanks to the Anon who pointed out which ones are orphaned.

What's this then?

Not all UAs are getting an official release, especially since WotC pruned the D&D team back to skeleton crew. Mearls' absence isn't helping here either, Crawford's more unpopular assertions have emerged in this time leading to the general thought that ultimately they needed each other (or at absolute minimum, Crawford needed Mearls).

How do you tell an Orphaned UA?

Honestly, I'm relying on other people to judge that for me as I don't pay much attention to the behind the scenes stuff.

It's a pretty safe bet at this point though that anything older than the release of the artificer is not going to be released.

UA Archetypes are going to be redone a little and handled by class down the road. Expect things to be shuffled around.

UA Archetypes - Ranger

Primeval Guardian and Swarmkeeper

UA Archetypes - Part 1

Twilight Druid, Tranquility Monk, Treachery Paladin

Twitter Archetypes

Beauty, Darkness, Destruction Cleric & Llolth Patron Warlock

To-Do list

  • Modern Magic Archetypes
  • The Seeker patron
  • Kraken Patron
  • Mearls Twitter stuff in general like Acrobat Rogue
  • Sea/Stone/Phoenix/Giant Sorcerer.
  • Innovation Wizard
  • Lore Wizard



These are just my own personal mad experiments in Races, Classes and Spells and the like. Don't assume anything here is worth actually using.