Last night was game night and I was talking with the uber goobs about the sleep. I crunch some numbers.
With 5th edition based on hit points. It's current write up knocks out 5d8 hit points worth of enemies. I'll use the goblin as the standard enemy. I check the goblin stats in the Starter Set and they have 7hp. So an average roll for the spell would be 22 to 23 hit points affected. So in 5e a mage can put to sleep an average of 3 goblins.
In older editions the standard sleep spell could take out 4d4 creature with 1 hit die or less. Goblins average less than a hit die in older versions. So the mage would average 10 goblins a Sleep spell.
So the Sleep spell in 5e has been nerfed a bit. I don't mind the change. I always thought Sleep was overpowering to begin with. I like the 5e version because its not overpowering at low levels and doesn't become completely useless at high levels.
JDJarvis brings up an interesting situation.
What interests me in that notation is if the HP limits for spell effects
are meant to be the targets usual healthy HP score or the current
score. If the current score it opens a host of tactics that were
otherwise completely absent, hitting a troll a couple times and casting
sleep on it is now valid (but does it wake up when it regenerates above
the HP limit of the spell?).
I think I would run with current hit points. The party manages to whittle down a giant to 10 hit points and the mage hit it with a sleep, I say good on them. Maybe the next giant will get to make meat soup.
How would you guys rule it?