So, a short conversation on Twitter about base classes got me thinking and usually that is a dangerous thing.
I have for quite some time now wanted it this way in the new edition of DnD. I would like for there to be a base class that you start with and can specialize in various subclasses. All base classes would get class features. For instance, all clerics would have healing of some sort. All fighters would be proficient with more weapons or get more attacks.etc.
I scribbled down how I would split the “big four” classes as base classes.
Here we go in no particular order.
Base class: Cleric
Subclasses: Crusader -heavy armor, fighter type
Priest – light armor, more emphasis on skills and spells
Druid – nature oriented cleric
Base class: Fighter
Subclasses: Paladin/Knight/Antipaladin – holy warrior
Warrior – regular “fighter” type
Barbarian – berserker fighter
Base Class: Rogue
Subclasses: Bard – arcane magic, bardic music
Thief – the rogue we know and love
Swashbuckler – fighter type rogue
Base Class: Mage
Subclasses: Wizard – the wizard we know and love
Sorceror – spontaneous caster
Gish (swordmage whatever) – fighter mage
From there, I think you should further be able to specialize but I have not put much thought into it. Besides, who knows what WOTC really has planned?