DMs Guild Review – Feats Don’t Fail Me Now

A collection of over 40 humorous feats for player characters.

dms guild review

A review copy of “Feats Don’t Fail Me Now” was provided by the publisher. Find more DMs Guild Reviews on my website and YouTube channel.

Support my work by using affiliate links for shopping and pledging via Patreon.

Designed by: Gordon McAlpinM.T. BlackAndrew CawoodJeremy ForbingLaura HirsbrunnerChris Sims

Feats are such a ubiquitous part of D&D that’s it’s easy to forget they’re technically a variant rule. There are already plenty of great feats to choose from in officially published books. Feats Don’t Fail Me Now adds over 40 new feats with a much more humorous, and personable, tone.

Every four levels, a player can choose between increasing their ability scores, or adding a feat to their character sheet. Often the ability score improvement is the superior, if far more boring choice, while many character builds rely on one or two feats to truly come online.

Given that official feats run the gamut between mostly useless (Keen Mind, Linguist, Weapon/Armor Master) and game-breakingly must-haves (Lucky, Tough, GWW/Sharpshooter), creating and balancing new feats is a daunting task. Feats Don’t Fail Me Now takes a grounded approach to feat design that starts with a joke, and ends with working that joke into a reasonable trait, feature, or ability.

Let’s start with an easy joke we’ve all made before: Second Wind surely involves farting, right? It does if you take the new Breaking Wind feat! Now whenever you use Second Wind, you also “issue forth a blast of foul wind,” forcing a target to make a CON save, or push them 5 feet and temporarily poison them.

Liquid Courage allows you to imbibe three or more alcoholic drinks to gain temporary hit points, immunity to frighten, and adding your PB to STR, CON, and CHA check and saving throws, while suffering disadvantage on any mental checks and saves. Socially Distant grants resistance to poison damage and advantage on saves vs poison and disease if you’re now within 5 feet of any creature. Topical!

dms guild

Many feats grant fun new actions and abilities in combat, such as Earworm, Fiendish Facade, Swearing Mastery, Superhero Pose, Super Nice, and Weak Stomach. Earworm is particularly delightful, using an action to force a WIS save (DC based on your Performance modifier) to charm a single target using a catchy song, preventing them from attacking you. You can then keep singing as a bonus action to maintain the effect, though they can save at the end of each turn, as per 5E’s normal save rules.

Some feats work in tandem with your fellow party members. Fastball Special lets you pick up a smaller companion and hurl them at enemies, Wolverine style, while Herbalist lets you perform an, er, ritual on top of resting to regain additional hit points for the whole party.

Most of the new feats are designed with role-playing in mind, to the point where I suspect the idea or joke came first, then the mechanics second. Influencer, Micromanager, Goth Phase, Heart of Fur, and Squirrel Master are all fun ideas that help define a player character’s unique personality right from level 1, while granting some thematic traits and features. I plan on introducing the new house rule for our campaigns to let all players choose a free feat from level 1, for exactly this purpose.

My personal favorite feats are More Than Meets the Eye (turn your Warforged into a goddamn transformer), Stupefying Ignorance (impose penalties on attackers whenever you fail a mental save), and Combat Melodramatist (heal a downed ally or gain advantage on attacks whenever an ally reaches 0 hit points).

I’m avoiding talking about balancing in these feats, because the official feats are already so grossly unbalanced. The only one that really made me cock an eyebrow was the instant ally revive granted by Combat Melodramtist, as well as the 3-in-1 Blowgun Mastery feat that’s been relegated to the single appendix (presumably for being a bit too much).

Feats may be one of the least needed or desired additions to D&D 5e, yet I couldn’t help but love almost all of the clever ideas and concepts in Feats Don’t Fail Me Now, all wrapped up in a professional layout with awesome original artwork from McAlpin.

Pros:

  • Dozens of fun feat ideas and concepts that are (mostly) balanced.
  • Wonderful original artwork from Gordon McAlpin.

Cons:

  • None!

The Verdict: More than a joke book (but still funny), Feats Don’t Fail Me Now provides clever and fun feats that emphasize character building, role-playing, and plenty of laughter.

A review copy of “Feats Don’t Fail Me Now” was provided by the publisher. Find more DMs Guild Reviews on my website and YouTube channel.

Support my work by using affiliate links for shopping and pledging via Patreon.

Author: roguewatson

Freelance Writer

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