That Broken GWM/SS “Fix”


The most notorious feats in 5th Edition D&D are Sharpshooter (SS) and Great Weapon Master (GWM). These feats are considered the most powerful because of a mechanic they share in common.

The RAW Mechanic

The GWM/SS mechanic allows a character to subtract 5 from their attack roll in exchange for adding 10 to their damage roll.

This effect is pronounced when the attacker rolls with advantage, which mitigates a fair portion of attack detriment. As a result, the GWM/SS problems can be exacerbated when combined with other feats that affect or simulate advantage. Elven Accuracy gives you an additional advantage die to roll when you have advantage (i.e. “superadvantage”). Lucky allows you to basically simulate advantage (or turn disadvantage into superadvantage, unless you’re playing RAI).

The Common “Fix”

The most popular “fix” I’ve seen for this problem is to change the math on the -attack/+damage mechanic. That’s a good…

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