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Ghost | New Martial Archetype for Fifth Edition

Martial Archetypes

At 3rd level, a fighter gains the Martial Archetype feature. The following Ghost option is available to a fighter, in addition to those normally offered.

Ghost

“We are the unseen,” read the pamphlets and graffiti left behind by the fighters who share this mysterious, cult-like martial archetype. And there is a lot of truth to that claim. Blending the techniques and stealth of assassins and rogues, Ghost fighters move through the Stretch as careful predators. When finally pitted against a foe, they cut through enemy ranks like a bullet through paper.

The Unseen

Starting at 3rd level when you take the Ghost archetype, you gain proficiency in the Stealth skill and your proficiency bonus is doubled for any ability check you make that uses Stealth.

Expert Strike

Also at 3rd level, you are an expert at taking advantage of your opponent while their guard is down. Once per turn, you can add your proficiency bonus to your damage roll on one attack if you have advantage on the attack roll. You don’t need advantage on the attack roll if another enemy of the target is within 5 feet of it, that enemy isn’t incapacitated, and you don’t have disadvantage on the attack roll.

Reactive

At 7th level, you’ve learned to anticipate dangers before they happen. You add your proficiency bonus to your initiative checks in addition to your Dexterity modifier.

You gain proficiency in Dexterity saving throws. If you already have this proficiency, you instead gain proficiency in Intelligence or Wisdom saving throws (your choice).

Menacing

At 10th level, you can use your bonus action to make a Charisma (Intimidation) check contested by a target’s Wisdom (Insight). The target must be within 30 feet of you and able to see you. If the check is successful, the target is frightened of you until it takes damage or until the end of its next turn. While the creature is frightened, you have advantage on attack rolls against it. If the target succeeds on the contest, it is immune to this feature for the next 24 hours.

You can use this feature three times and regain all expended uses after you complete a long rest.

Killing Blow

Starting at 15th level, you can use your action to make a single melee attack against a target within reach. You have advantage on the attack roll. In addition, if the attack hits you can roll one of the weapon’s damage dice one additional time.

Ghostwalk

At 18th level, as a bonus action or as a reaction when a creature hits you with an attack roll or harmful spell, you can become incorporeal. While incorporeal, you gain resistance to all damage except for radiant and force damage, including from the triggering attack. You can move through other creatures and objects as if they were difficult terrain, but you take 1d10 force damage if you end your turn inside an object. You remain incorporeal as long as you concentrate (as if concentrating on a spell), up to 1 minute, until you make an attack or cast a spell, or you use your bonus action to end the effect.

Once you use this feature, you can’t use it again until you finish a long rest.

 

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Get this PDF and more sub-classes for the Aberranterra campaign setting when you become a Copper patron!

Not only do you get the Ghost martial archetype in PDF form, but you get its motorcycle, the Ghost Lumibike with it.

November 7th, Aberranterra releases, introducing a whole new work of post-apocalyptic madness. This sub-class along with probably a dozen others will be included in that work along with new races, rules, and details for running an Aberranterra campaign.

Art by Shutterstock (used with permission).

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Fighter Seeker Martial Archetype | New Player Option for Fifth Edition

At 3rd level, a fighter gains the Martial Archetype feature. The following Seeker option is available to a fighter, in addition to those normally offered.

Seeker

Seekers are warriors who’ve sworn to protect the world from supernatural threats, often those that most are ignorant to. Darkness, the occult, and black magic are the Seeker’s allies in the fight against evil. The life of the Seeker is a punishing one. Often, the Seeker forfeits his or her own happiness and well-being for the greater good.

Seeker Features

Fighter Level Spell Level Features
3rd 1st Ritual Magic, Mark of the Seeker (1 hour)
4th 2nd
5th 2nd
6th 3rd
7th 3rd Force of Personality
8th 4th
9th 4th
10th 5th Dedicated Seeker, Mark of the Seeker (8 hours)
11th 5th
12th 6th
13th 6th
14th 6th
15th 6th Unseen Seeker, Mark of the Seeker (24 hours)
16th 6th
17th 6th
18th 6th Seeker’s Strike
19th 6th
20th 6th

Seeker Magic

When you reach 3rd level, you learn potent ritual spells which help you in your fight against dark forces. See chapter 10 of the PHB for the general rules of spellcasting and ritual spellcasting.

Ritual Book. At 3rd level, you have a ritual book containing three 1st-level seeker spells. Your ritual book is the repository of the seeker spells you know.

Preparing and Casting Spells. All of the spells that you know can only be cast as rituals, even if the spell lacks the ritual tag. You can cast any ritual spell that you have in your ritual book. You don’t have to have the spell prepared in order to cast it.

Learning Spells of 1st Level and Higher. Each time you gain a fighter level, you can add one seeker spell of your choice to your ritual book for free. Each of these spells must be of a level no higher than what’s shown in the Seeker table’s Spell Level column for your level.

If you come across a spell in written form, such as a magical spell scroll or a wizard’s spellbook, you might be able to add it to your ritual book. The spell must be on the seeker spell list and can be no higher than what’s shown in the Seeker table’s Spell Level column for your level. The process of copying the spell into your ritual book takes 2 hours per level of the spell and costs 50 gp per level. The cost represents material components you expend as you experiment with the spell to master it, as well as the fine inks you need to record it.

Spellcasting Ability. Intelligence is your spellcasting ability for your seeker spells, since you learn your spells through study and practice. You use your Intelligence whenever a spell refers to your spellcasting ability. In addition, you use your Intelligence modifier when setting the saving throw DC for a seeker spell you cast and when making an attack roll with one.

Spell save DC = 8 + your proficiency bonus + your Intelligence modifier

Spell attack modifier = your proficiency bonus + your Intelligence modifier

Mark of the Seeker

Also at 3rd level, as a bonus action, you can choose a creature that you can see within 90 feet of you. For 1 hour, you have advantage on any Wisdom (Perception) or Wisdom (Survival) check you make to find it. This effect ends early if you are incapacitated or die, or if you use this feature to mark another creature.

The duration of this feature increases as you gain levels in this class, increasing to 8 hours when you reach 10th level, and 24 hours when you reach 15th level.

Force of Personality

Starting at 7th level, you have an unshakeable belief in your self-worth. You become proficient in the Intimidation skill and your proficiency bonus is doubled for any ability check you make that uses Intimidation.

Your strong sense of self also causes you to gain proficiency in Charisma saving throws. If you already have this proficiency, you instead gain proficiency in Intelligence or Wisdom saving throws (your choice).

Dedicated Seeker

Starting at 10th level, you can use your Mark of the Seeker feature even if you can’t see the creature. The creature must still be familiar to you, and it must be within 1,000 feet of you. The feature can locate a specific creature known to you or the nearest creature of a specific kind (such as a human or a unicorn), so long as you have seen such a creature up close–within 60 feet–at least once. if the creature you described or named is in a different form, such as being under the effects of a polymorph spell, this feature doesn’t locate the creature.

Unseen Seeker

Starting at 15th level, creatures marked by your Mark of the Seeker feature have disadvantage on their Wisdom (Perception) rolls made to detect you while you are hiding.

Once per turn, you can deal an extra 1d6 damage to one creature you hit with a weapon attack that can’t see you.

Seeker’s Strike

At 18th level, you can deliver a powerful blow capable of incapacitating a creature. As an action, you can make a single weapon attack against a creature marked by your Mark of the Seeker feature. If the attack hits, the creature is stunned for 1 minute. The target can make a Constitution saving throw against your spell save DC, ending the effect on itself with a success.

Once you use this feature, you can’t use it again until you finish a short or long rest.

 

Seeker Spell List

The following spell list shows which spells can be learned and cast by Fighters who choose the Seeker Martial Archetype. All of the spells on the seeker’s spell list can be cast as rituals, even if they do not normally possess the ritual tag.

Seeker Spells

1st Level

Alarm

Comprehend Languages

Detect Evil and Good*

Detect Magic

Detect Poison and Disease

Find Familiar

Fog Cloud*

Identify

Illusory Script

Protection from Evil and Good*

Purify Food and Drink

Speak With Animals

2nd Level

Animal Messenger

Augury

Beast Sense

Continual Flame*

Detect Thoughts*

Enhance Ability*

Flame Blade*

Gentle Repose

Locate Animals or Plants

Magic Mouth

Silence

3rd Level

Dispel Magic*

Elemental Weapon*

Feign Death

Sending*

Speak With Dead*

Tiny Hut

Water Breathing

Water Walk

4th Level

Banishment*

Control Water*

Divine Arsenal

Divination

Outsider’s Trap

Private Sanctum

5th Level

Circle of Power*

Commune

Commune With Nature

Contact Other Plane

Scrying*

Telepathic Bond

6th Level

Instant Summons

Find the Path*

Forbiddance

*These spells are not normally ritual spells but can be cast by the Seeker as rituals. The casting time for these spells increases by 10 minutes.

New Spells

The following spells are available to Seekers, Sorcerers, Warlocks, and Wizards.


Divine Arsenal

4th-level transmutation (ritual)

Casting Time: 1 hour

Range: Touch

Components: V, S

Duration: 8 hours

You touch up to 4 nonmagical weapons. Until the spell ends, the weapons become magic weapons with a +1 bonus to attack rolls and damage rolls. In addition, the weapon deals an additional 1d8 radiant damage if it hits an undead or fiend.


Outsider’s Trap

4th-level abjuration (ritual)

Casting Time: 10 minutes

Range: Touch

Components: V, S, M (chalk, a sprinkling of holy water, rare incense, and a powdered ruby worth at least 500 gp)

Duration: Until dispelled

Using chalk, you draw a 5-foot-radius circle on a surface that acts as a trap for a specific type of creature. Choose one or more of the following: celestials, elementals, fey, fiends, and undead. When the chosen creature enters the area or any area no more than 10 feet directly above or below the circle for the first time on a turn, the creature must succeed on a Charisma saving throw or become trapped.

While within the trap, the creature has disadvantage on Intelligence, Wisdom, and Charisma saving throws against spells and magic effects. A creature inside the circle can’t leave it by nonmagical means. A creature within the trap can still make weapon attacks as long as its target is within range. If a creature tries to cast a spell, it must first make a Charisma saving throw. On a successful saving throw, the creature casts the spell. This includes any magic used to exit the trap such as teleportation or interplanar travel. On a failed saving throw, the spell takes no effect and is wasted.

The spell’s area can’t overlap with another outsider’s trap spell. The effect can penetrate nonmagical organic material such as leather, woven blankets, or rugs but no more than 1 inch thick. Any other material over the circle such as wood, dirt, stone, or metal blocks the spell’s effect.

The spell remains until the circle is broken by any creature that is not trapped by the spell, or if the creature uses a spell or feature that damages the surface that the circle is drawn on, such as the earthquake spell.

 

BroadSword is Coming!

The first issue of BroadSword Monthly will be out in just a few weeks. Be sure to grab a copy if you haven’t already. Currently, pre-orders get a 10% discount on the cover price.

The book will include 4 new adventures, new campaign settings, new monsters, new magic items, and more!

Get BroadSword #1 now for 10% off the cover price!

Art by Games Workshop.

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Roguish Feats | New Player Options for Fifth Edition

If you haven’t heard the news, requests are back on over on my Patreon. The first set of requests I got came from longtime DMDave fan and Patron, Charlie R.

Cool if I can get a feat for throwing daggers or other throwing items? It would work like crossbow expert where you would get advantage on throw attacks and the damage die would go up by one, and even if its a bonus action attack you can use a mod or something like that. And for the next one would be something that boosts finesse weapons in some way.

Sounds fun! Since both feats fit with “assassin” type characters, I figured I’d call them “feats for rogues.” Of course, any character is free to use them any way they like. Dex-based monks, rangers, and fighters will benefit greatly from these feats, too. Also, I wanted to make sure that the feats still worked with other feats, so I tried to avoid duplication of feat benefits and class features.

 

Nimble

Prerequisite: Dexterity 13 or higher

When you take the Disengage or Dodge action, you gain a bonus to your AC equal to your proficiency bonus until the start of your next turn. You lose this benefit if you are incapacitated or if your speed drops to 0.

 

Offensive Duelist

Prerequisite: Dexterity 13 or higher

When a creature misses you with a melee attack, you can use your reaction to make an attack with a light melee weapon against the creature.

 

Reactive

Prerequisite: Dexterity 13 or higher

During the first round of combat, you can use your bonus action to make a single weapon attack against a creature that hasn’t taken a turn in combat yet.

 

Thrown Weapon Master

Almost any weapon that you are proficient with becomes a ranged danger in your hands. You gain the following benefits:

  • All weapons that you are proficient with gain the thrown weapon property (range 20/60) when you wield them, so long as the weapon does not have the heavy or two-handed properties.
  • The normal range for your thrown weapons increases by 10 ft. and the long range increases by 20 ft. This excludes any weapons that gain the thrown weapon property from this feat.
  • You can use your Dexterity instead of Strength for the attack and damage rolls of your thrown weapons even if the weapon lacks the finesse property.

Have a Request?

Patrons of certain tiers get monthly requests. Not only do they get their dream Fifth Edition content made, but the final content appears in BroadSword Monthly.

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Psychic Warrior | New Fighter Martial Archetype for Fifth Edition

At 3rd level, a fighter gains the Martial Archetype feature. The following Psychic Warrior option is available to a fighter, in addition to those normally offered.

Psychic Warrior

One who turns the mind’s potential to the warrior’s art is known as a psychic warrior. Where psions devote themselves wholly to the development of mind-engendered abilities, psychic warriors give emphasis to the development of the body.

With mental and physical energy working in union, the psychic warrior strives toward martial perfection. The sword, axe, and bow are physical tools that psychic warriors embrace along with their psionic abilities. Well trained in both physical and psionic matters, the psychic warrior is a formidable adversary.

Psychic Warrior Manifestation

Fighter Level Combat Modes Powers Known PSPs
Max Power Level
3rd 2 3 4 1st
4th 2 4 6 1st
5th 2 4 6 1st
6th 2 4 6 1st
7th 2 5 14 2nd
8th 2 6 14 2nd
9th 2 6 14 2nd
10th 3 7 17 2nd
11th 3 8 17 2nd
12th 3 8 17 2nd
13th 3 9 27 3rd
14th 3 10 27 3rd
15th 3 10 27 3rd
16th 3 11 32 3rd
17th 3 11 32 3rd
18th 3 11 32 3rd
19th 3 12 38 4th
20th 3 13 38 4th

Psionics

When you reach 3rd level, you gain the ability to manifest psionic powers. See DMDave’s Psion class for the general rules of Fifth Edition Psionics.

Combat Modes. You learn one defense and one offense combat mode of your choice. You learn another combat mode of your choice at 10th level which can be either offense or defense.

PSPs. The Psychic Warrior Manifestation table shows how many PSPs you have to manifest your powers of 1st level and higher. To manifest one of these powers, you must expend the PSPs detailed under the power’s description. You regain all expended PSPs when you finish a long rest.

Powers Known of 1st-Level an Higher. You know three 1st-level psionic powers of your choice, two of which you must choose from the psychokinesis and telepathy disciplines.

The Powers Known column of the Psychic Warrior Manifestation table shows when you learn more psionic powers of 1st-level or higher. Each of these powers must be a psychometabolism or psychoportation power of your choice and must be of a level no higher than the Max Power Level as shown on the Psychic Warrior Manifestation table.

The powers you learn at 8th, 14th, and 20th can come from any discipline.

Whenever you gain a level in this class, you can replace one of the psionic powers you know with another power of your choice from the psionic powers list. The new power must be of a level that you can learn, and it must be a psychometabolism or psychoportation discipline, unless you’re replacing the power you gained at 8th, 14th, or 20th level.

Dropping to 0 PSPs. As a psychic warrior, you possess stronger command over your mind’s facilities and have reshaped your mental conduit for maximum efficiency. As such, when you run out of PSPs, you leave yourself open to attack. If your PSPs are reduced to 0, you suffer the following penalties:

  • Any of your own psionic powers or effects that you are concentrating on or under the effects of immediately stop functioning.
  • You cannot use your combat modes.
  • You have disadvantage on saving throws against psionic powers and psychic effects.
  • You gain vulnerability to psychic damage unless you are under or come under a non-psionic effect that grants you resistance or immunity to psychic damage (such as a wizard’s mind blank spell).

These effects last as long as your PSPs remain at 0.

Power Boost. Some powers allow you to increase the potency of your powers. If you choose to do so, you must pay the power boost’s associated PSP cost as detailed under the power’s description. You can only use one power boost per use of a power. You can use power boosts a number of times equal to your Intelligence modifier, and you regain all expended uses after you finish a long rest

Manifestation Ability. Intelligence is your manifestation ability for your psionic powers since you learn your powers through dedicated study and mental discipline. You use your Intelligence whenever a power refers to your manifestation ability. In addition, you use your Intelligence modifier when setting the saving throw DC for a psionic power you manifest and when making an attack roll with one.

Power save DC = 8 + your proficiency bonus + your Intelligence modifier

Power attack modifier = your proficiency bonus + your Intelligence modifier

Weapon Bond

At 3rd level, you learn a ritual that creates a psychic bond between yourself and one weapon. You perform the ritual over the course of 1 hour, which can be done during a short rest. The weapon must be within your reach throughout the ritual, at the conclusion of which you touch the weapon and forge the bond.

Once you have bonded a weapon to yourself, you can’t be disarmed of that weapon unless you are incapacitated. If it is on the same plane of existence, you can summon that weapon as a bonus action on your turn, causing it to teleport instantly to your hand.

You can have up to two bonded weapons but can summon only one at a time with your bonus action. If you attempt to bond with a third weapon, you must break the bond with one of the other two.

Paralyzing Strike

Beginning at 7th level, once per turn, you can interfere with the psychic energies in an opponent’s body. When you hit another creature with a melee weapon attack, you can spend 2 PSPs to attempt a stunning strike. The target must succeed on a Constitution saving throw or be paralyzed until the end of your next turn.

Psychic Strike

At 10th level, you can convert the physical energy dealt by your weapon strikes into psychic energy. When you hit a creature with a weapon attack, you can spend 2 PSPs to convert the damage dealt into psychic damage. In addition, the creature has disadvantage on the next saving throw it makes against a power you manifest before the end of your next turn.

Psychic Recharge

At 15th level, you regain a number of PSPs equal to 1d6 + your Intelligence modifier when you use your Action Surge.

War Psionicist

Starting at 18th level, when you use your action to manifest a power, you can make one weapon attack as a bonus action.


Psionics: A New Book by DMDave

Towards the end of this month, this entry along with many others will be included in a new book titled Psionics. Patrons at all levels will have first access to this.

Check out DMDave’s Patreon

Art by Wizards of the Coast.

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‘Heart of the Iron God’ Darkblades | New NPC for Dungeons & Dragons Fifth Edition

Tasha, Pwenkin, Yurit, Manithare, Gared, and Ioka form the Darkblades–simple, cruel, and greedy mercenaries. They obey Xentarich unquestioningly and fight to the bitter end provided they are paid. When the ‘Heart of the Iron God’ adventure begins, two Darkblades sleep in area 11 and the other four man the ballistas in area 24.

Darkblade

Medium humanoid (human), lawful evil


Armor Class 18 (half-plate, shield)

Hit Points 130 (20d8 + 40)

Speed 30 ft.


Abilities Str 18 (+4), Dex 12 (+1), Con 14 (+2), Int 10 (+0), Wis 14 (+2), Cha 11 (+0)


Saving Throws Str +7, Con +5

Skills Athletics +7, Intimidation +3

Senses passive Perception 12

Languages Common, Gnome

Challenge 8 (2,300 XP)


Special Equipment. The darkblade carries a +1 longsword and a potion of superior healing.

Alert. The darkblade gains a +5 bonus to initiative, it can’t be surprised while it is conscious, and other creatures don’t gain advantage on attack rolls against the darkblade as a result of being unseen by it.

Indomitable (3/Day). The darkblade can reroll a saving throw it fails. It must use the new roll.


Actions

Multiattack. The darkblade makes two longsword attacks.

+1 Longsword. Melee Weapon Attack: +8 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 9 (1d8 + 5) slashing damage.


Legendary Actions

The Darkblade can take 3 legendary actions, choosing from the options below. Only one legendary action option can be used at a time and only at the end of another creature’s turn. The Darkblade regains spent legendary actions at the start of its turn.

Weapon Attack. The Darkblade makes a weapon attack.

Move (Costs 2 Actions). The Darkblade moves up to its movement speed.

Power Attack (Costs 3 Actions). The Darkblade makes a melee weapon attack with disadvantage. If the attack hits, the Darkblade deals 27 (5d8 + 5) slashing damage, and if the target is a creature, it must succeed on a DC 15 Constitution saving throw or become stunned until the end of its next turn.

 

Darkblades are a part of the adventure conversion ‘Heart of the Iron God’. More to come.

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Fighter Armorer Martial Archetype | New Player Option for Dungeons & Dragons Fifth Edition

Today, I started a series of subclass creations called 26 Days of Subclasses. This series is taking suggestions from Instagram followers and turning them into full-fledged subclasses.

First on the agenda is Armorer (naturally starting with ‘A’). A relatively simple idea, right? An Armorer makes Armor. But I thought I might take it a step further and make an “Iron Man” archetype. Basically, a fighter that can build a special suit of armor that allows him or her to build weapons directly into his/her armor.


Playtest Content

The material here is presented for playtesting and to spark your imagination. These game mechanics are in draft form, usable in your campaign but not refined by final game design and editing. They aren’t officially part of the game.

Constructive feedback is welcome and appreciated in either comments or social media. If you can give me a valid reason with examples why something is off, 9/10 I’m likely to make changes to the content and credit you for doing so. Otherwise, feedback without anything to back it up gets ignored (or at most a smile emoji like this 🙂 ) Thanks!


Design Notes

The fighter naturally lends itself to a lot of stuff this class will need, namely, armor and weapon proficiencies. Now it’s just a matter of making that stuff better so long as its parallel with what already exists.

Since this fighter is going to have all sorts of nifty gadgets in its armor, I figure the best subclass to base the armorer off of will be the Eldritch Knight, specifically since it has evocation and abjuration powers. I don’t want the Armorer to “run out of power”, so I want to make sure that all of its spells are permanent or at least semi-permanent use.

Once I had that idea in place, it was simply a matter of tossing some spells its way (rewording them in a lot of places) and almost giving it a “warlocky” feel to the subclass.

Let me know what you think in the comments.

iron-man-dnd
Art by Dibujante-nocturno

Fighter Archetype

At 3rd level, a fighter gains the Martial Archetype feature. The following Armorer option is available to a fighter, in addition to those normally offered.

Armorer

As an armorer, you’re not just a master of martial combat, but you’re also a master crafter, using your talents to create amazing, high-powered heavy armor with built-in weaponry and multi-functional gadgets.

Armorer Features

Fighter Level Feature
3rd Bonus Proficiency, Iron Man, Armor Enhancements (4 options)
7th Life Support System, Armor Enhancements (6 options)
10th Targeting System, Armor Enhancements (8 options)
13th Armor Enhancements (10 options)
15th Backup System
16th Armor Enhancements (12 options)
18th War Machine
19th Armor Enhancements (14 options)

Bonus Proficiencies

Starting when you take this archetype at 3rd level, you gain proficiency in smith’s tools.


Iron Man

At 3rd level, you can build a powerful suit of armor that not only protects you but gives you extra advantages in combat as well.

You learn a ritual that creates a magical bond between yourself and a suit of heavy armor. You perform the ritual over the course of 1 hour, which can be done during a short rest. The armor must be within your reach throughout the ritual, at the conclusion of which you touch the armor and forge the bond.

Once you have bonded the armor to yourself, you can add enhancements to it as detailed below. If it is on the same plane of existence, you can summon the armor as a bonus action on your turn, causing it to instantly form on your body. Also, it only takes an action to doff or don the armor.

If you attempt to bond with another suit of heavy armor, you must break the bond with the first suit of armor.


Armor Enhancements

At 3rd level, you can build special weapons and gadgets into a suit of armor that you have built a bond through using your Iron Man feature called enhancements. Many of the weapons and gadgets are magical in nature and work similar to spells. See chapter 10 of the PHB for general rules of spellcasting and chapter 11 of the PHB for the wizard spell list. However, the spells do not require material components in order for you to cast them.

Your armor starts with four enhancements of your choice, which are detailed in the “Enhancements” section below. You add two additional enhancements when you reach 7th level, 10th level, 13th level, 16th level, and 19th level.

Whenever you gain a level in this class, you can replace one of your armor’s enhancements with another enhancement of your choice from the Enhancements list below.

Enhancement Ability. The potency of your armor, its weapons, and all of its gadgets depend on your Intelligence. You use your Intelligence whenever an enhancement refers to your Enhancement ability. In addition, you use your Intelligence modifier when setting the saving throw DC if an enhancement duplicates the effects of a wizard spell it casts and when making an attack roll with one.

Enhancement save DC = 8 + your proficiency bonus + your Intelligence modifier

Enhancement attack modifier = your proficiency bonus + your Intelligence modifier


Enhancements

The enhancements are presented in alphabetical order. Each enhancement requires you to be wearing the suit of armor that you bonded with using your Iron Man feature in order to gain its benefits. If an enhancement requires a level, you must be that level in this class to add the enhancement.

Advanced Protection (19th Level Required). You gain a +2 bonus to your AC and you gain resistance to nonmagical bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing damage. The benefits of Advanced Protection and Fortified do not stack.

Arm Blades. As a bonus action, two built-in blades emerge from your wrists which you can use to attack with as if they were both light weapons. You are proficient with these blades and they count as short swords. When you reach 7th level in this class, these blades are considered magical for the purpose of overcoming resistance and immunity to nonmagical attacks and damage. You must use your action or bonus action to retract the blades.

Bunker Buster (13th Level Required). As an action, choose a point that you can see within 150 feet of you. A large bomb ejects from your armor and lands at that point; each creature in a 20-foot-radius sphere centered on that point must make a Dexterity saving throw. A target takes 8d6 fire damage on a failed save, or half as much damage on a successful one. The fire spreads around corners. It ignites flammable objects in the area that aren’t being worn or carried. Once you use this enhancement, you can’t use it again until you finish a long rest.

Cloaking Device (7th Level Required). You can cast invisibility targeting yourself. While using this effect, you must maintain concentration (as if concentrating on a spell) or the effect ends. Once you use this enhancement, you can’t use it again until you finish a long rest.

Communication Systems. You learn the message cantrip.

Eldritch Sensors. You can cast detect magic at will.

Electrified Gauntlets. As an action, you create crackling energy around your armor’s gauntlets. While in effect, your unarmed strikes deal 1d8 lightning damage plus your Strength modifier on a hit, and the target can’t take reactions until the start of its next turn. In addition, you have advantage on the attack roll if the target is wearing armor made of metal. To end the effect, you must dismiss it as an action. The damage that your electrified gauntlets deals increases by 1d8 when you reach 13th level (2d8).

Enhanced Combat Mode (13th Level Required). You can cast haste targeting yourself. While using this effect, you must maintain concentration (as if concentrating on a spell) or the effect ends. Once you use this enhancement, you can’t use it again until you finish a long rest.

Environmental Adaptation System (13th Level Required). When you are targeted by a spell or effect that deals acid, cold, fire, lightning, or thunder damage, you can use your reaction to give yourself resistance to the same damage type until the end of your next turn.

Flame Thrower. As an action, you create a 15-foot cone of flame that extends from your wrists. Each creature in the area must make a Dexterity saving throw. A creature takes 3d6 fire damage on a failed save, or half as much damage on a successful one. The damage increases by 1d6 when you reach 7th level (4d6), 13th level (5d6), and 19th level (6d6). The fire ignites any flammable objects in the area that aren’t being worn or carried. Once you use this enhancement, you can’t use it again until you finish a short or long rest.

Force Missiles. You know the eldritch blast cantrip.

Force Ray (7th Level Required). As an action, you create a blast of force from your armor. Choose one target within 120 feet of you. Make a ranged attack using your Enhancement attack modifier. On a hit, the target takes 6d6 force damage. The damage increases by 2d6 when you reach 13th level (8d6), and 19th level (10d6). Once you use this effect, you can’t use it again until you finish a long rest.

Force Sword (10th Level Required). As an action, you emit a three-foot length of force energy from your fist that acts like a sword made of light. On a hit, the weapon deals 1d10 radiant damage plus your Strength or Dexterity modifier (your choice) or 1d12 radiant damage plus your Strength or Dexterity modifier when wielded with two hands. This weapon is considered magical for the purpose of overcoming resistance and immunity to nonmagical attacks and damage. In addition, the sword is much deadlier than a normal sword; you gain a +1 bonus to attack and damage rolls while you wield it. When you reach 19th level in this class, this bonus increases to +2. You must use your action or bonus action to dismiss your force sword.

Fortified. You gain a +1 bonus to your AC. In addition, you can use your action to have your armor create extra defenses; until the end of your next turn, you have resistance against bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing damage dealt by weapon attacks.

Giant Buster Mode (7th Level Required). As an action, your armor expands and fortifies to help better equip you again larger targets. For up to 1 minute, you gain the following benefits:

  • Your size doubles in all dimensions and your weight is multiplied by eight. You increase to Large size. If there isn’t enough room for you to grow to this size, the effect automatically ends.
  • You have advantage on Strength checks and Strength saving throws.
  • Your weapon attacks deal an extra 1d4 damage.

To end the effect early, you must dismiss it as an action. Once you use this enhancement, you can’t use it again until you complete a long rest.

Haze. You can cast blur. Once you use this effect, you can’t use it again until you finish a short or long rest.

Hologram Projector. You can cast silent image at will.

Homing Missile. As an action, you launch a small, explosive missile of force energy from your armor. Choose a target that you can see within 120 feet of you. The missile automatically hits unless blocked by a shield spell or any other effect or condition that can counter a magic missile spell. The missile deals 3d6 force damage to its target. The damage increases by 1d6 when you reach 7th level (4d6), 13th level (5d6), and 19th level (6d6). Once you use this enhancement, you can’t use it again until you finish a short or long rest.

Illumination. As an action, you can make part of your armor shed bright light in a 20-foot radius and dim light for an additional 20 feet. The light can be colored as you like. To end the effect, you must dismiss it as an action.

Impenetrable Force Field (19th Level Required). You can cast Otiluke’s resilient sphere targeting yourself and it cannot be picked up and moved by other creatures. Once you use this enhancement, you can’t use it again until you finish a long rest.

Invisibility Sensors (7th Level Required). You can cast see invisibility at will.

Kinetic Burst (7th Level Required). Whenever you are hit by a melee weapon attack, as a reaction, you can create a wave of thunderous force that sweeps out from you. Each creature in a 15-foot cube originating from you must make a Constitution saving throw. On a failed save, a creature takes 2d8 thunder damage and is pushed 10 feet away from you. On a successful save, the creature takes half as much damage and isn’t pushed. In addition, unsecured objects that are completely within the area of effect are automatically pushed 10 feet away from you by the enhancement’s effect, and the burst emits a thunderous boom audible out to 300 feet. The damage increases by 1d8 when you reach 7th level (3d8), 13th level (4d8), and 19th level (5d8). Once you use this enhancement, you can’t use it again until you finish a short or long rest.

Laser Web (19th Level Required). As an action, dozens of rays of force energy fire from your armor, hitting all Small or larger creatures that are not prone within 20 feet of you. Each creature in the area must succeed on a Dexterity saving throw. A creature takes 7d6 force damage on a failed saving throw or half as much on a successful one. Once you use this effect, you can’t use it again until you finish a long rest.

Lightning Launcher (13th Level Required). A stroke of lightning forming a line 100 feet long and 5 feed wide blasts out from you in a direction you choose. Each creature in the line must make a Dexterity saving throw. A creature takes 8d6 lightning damage on a failed save, or half as much damage on a successful one.

Medical Systems (19th Level Required). At the start of each of your turns, you regain hit points equal to 5 + your Constitution modifier if you have no more than half of your hit points left. You don’t gain this benefit if you have 0 hit points. However, you make all death saving throws with advantage.

Remote Sensor. You can cast arcane eye. Once you use this enhancement, you can’t use it again until you finish a long rest.

Rocket Boosters (13th Level Required). Your jump distance is tripled. In addition, you can use your action to grant yourself a flying speed of 60 feet that lasts for up to 10 minutes. You must concentrate on this effect to maintain it (as if concentrating on a spell). When the effect ends, you fall if you are still aloft, unless you can stop the fall. Once you use this effect to give yourself a flying speed, you can’t grant yourself a flying speed again until you finish a long rest.

Translator. You can cast comprehend languages at will.

Universal Lockpick (10th Level Required). You can spend one minute focusing your targeting system and tools focusing on one object of your choice that can be a door, box, chest, set of manacles, padlock, or another object that contains a mundane locking mechanism. At the end of 1 minute, the target becomes unlocked. If the object has multiple locks, only one of them is unlocked. In addition, if you choose a target that is held shut with arcane lock, your sensors detect this immediately.

Web Launcher (7th Level Required). You can cast the web spell. Once you use this enhancement, you can’t use it again until you finish a long rest.


Life Support System

Beginning at 7th level, while wearing the armor you bonded to using your Iron Man feature, you do not need to breathe air. You gain a swimming speed equal to your walking speed. And you are immune to the effects of extreme cold and extreme heat.


Targeting System

At 10th level, as a bonus action, you can target a creature that you can see within 60 feet of you. The creature must make an Intelligence saving throw against your Enhancement save DC. On a failed saving throw, the creature has disadvantage on the next saving throw it makes against one of your enhancement’s effects before the end of your next turn.


Backup System

At 15th level, when you use your Action Surge you regain one use of one of your enhancements as if you had completed a long rest.


War Machine

Beginning at 18th level, when you use your action to use one of your enhancements, you can make one weapon attack as a bonus action.

 

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Gunslinger Class | New Player Option for Dungeons & Dragons Fifth Edition

It was inevitable. Sooner or later I’d have to create a gunslinger class for Fifth Edition. I suppose it’s sort of like a coming-of-age for those of us who create original Fifth Edition content.

This comes in as a request from one of my Patrons. And you know the rules: if it comes in as a request from a patron, that means it’s added to the lore of the crowdsourced world Wandrossa, which really makes for an interesting thematic addition.

Already, I’ve imagined Wandrossa having sort of a mix of age of sail and Napoleonic Wars vibe to it. This adds to that.


Playtest Content

The material here is presented for playtesting and to spark your imagination. These game mechanics are in draft form, usable in your campaign but not refined by final game design and editing. They aren’t officially part of the game.

Constructive feedback is welcome and appreciated in either comments or social media. If you can give me a valid reason with examples why something is off, 9/10 I’m likely to make changes to the content and credit you for doing so. Otherwise, feedback without anything to back it up gets ignored (or at most a smile emoji like this 🙂 ) Thanks!


Design Notes

Right away, I had a feeling for how I wanted to make this class. For a little insight into how my game balancing and creation method works, I do something called “parallel balance.” Basically, I take a preexisting piece of official content, pick the optimal settings for it, then retheme it so it fits whatever I’m building.

For example, the tactician class that I recently put together is a bard minus magic (the subs will make up for that) with optimal support powers. There is nothing that the tactician can do that, in theory, a support bard couldn’t also do.

Same deal with the gunslinger I’m about to build. Part of me really wanted to take the monk class and use it, but instead, I went with fighter for the ASIs and attacks.

The build was pretty straight forward. Here are the major changes:

  • A lot of the class blends in elements of rogue with a little monk spiced in. I felt that it didn’t make sense for a gunslinger to be walking around in plate mail, so I gave it light armor only and UD (using Charisma) to bring it up a notch.
  • Equipment had to really be thinned out to make up for the enormous cost of pistols (250gp for a ranged weapon that deals 1d10 damage and bullets that cost 3sp each!).
  • The Gunfighter feature more or less remodels Fighting Style and throws in a few benefits to help make up for any obvious weaknesses the class would have.
  • Elusive is just Second Wind as a reaction.
  • Cover Fire works similar to Action Surge, but lets you give it to an ally instead of yourself with a little bit of the haste spell tossed in.
  • The ASIs are modeled after the fighter’s except that I replaced the one at 6th with the overcome magic power that will be much needed for this class due to its limited range of weaponry.
  • The gunslinger gets the same attack count as a fighter does at high levels, making it a DPS machine for sure.
  • Quick Draw adds a nice little bonus to initiative that scales. It’s more thematic than anything as the marginal bonus doesn’t really do much ’til later levels (and is still somewhat weaker than Alertness, which, frankly, would stack awesome with this power).
  • Unflappable awards an immunity to being frightened and proficiency in Wisdom saving throws. This happens a couple levels after Samurai get it, so it should, in theory, be fine. My only trepidation is giving what is basically a “fighter” both Dex and Wis saves. However, its AC, overall, is lower than a fighter’s so it should be fine.
  • Hand of God is more or less an Eldritch Knight with a divine flavor and the ranger’s spell list. I chose ranger because it could easily be rethemed as paladin-like (more focus on ranged attacks than melee) and still has the western gunslinger vibe to it.
  • Instead of rewriting all of Arcane Archer, I just added in notes on how to change the wording. Otherwise, it works exactly the same.
  • Fluff will come with a finalized version.

And that’s it! Hope you enjoy!

gunslinger

The Gunslinger

Level Proficiency Bonus Features
1st +2 Elusive, Unarmored Defense, Gunfighting
2nd +2 Cover Fire
3rd +2 Gunslinger Archetype
4th +2 Ability Score Improvement
5th +3 Extra Attack
6th +3 Deadshot, Quick Draw (1d4)
7th +3 Gunslinger Archetype feature
8th +3 Ability Score Improvement
9th +4 Evasion
10th +4 Gunslinger Archetype feature
11th +4 Extra Attack, Quick Draw (1d6)
12th +4 Ability Score Improvement
13th +5 Unflappable
14th +5 Ability Score Improvement
15th +5 Gunslinger Archetype feature
16th +5 Ability Score Improvement
17th +6 Cover Fire (two uses), Quick Draw (1d8)
18th +6 Gunslinger Archetype feature
19th +6 Ability Score Improvement
20th +6 Extra Attack

Class Features

As a gunslinger, you gain the following class features.

Hit Points

Hit Dice: 1d10 per gunslinger level

Hit Points at 1st Level: 10 + your Constitution modifier

Hit Points at Higher Levels: 1d10 (or 6) + your Consitution modifier per gunslinger level after 1st


Proficiencies

Armor: Light armor

Weapons: Simple weapons, martial weapons

Tools: Choose one type of artisan’s tools or one musical instrument

Saving Throws: Dexterity, Charisma

Skills: Choose two skills from Acrobatics, Animal Handling, Deception, Insight, Intimidation, Perception, Sleight of Hand, Stealth, and Survival


Equipment

You start with the following equipment, in addition to the equipment granted by your background:

  • a pistol with 20 bullets
  • (a) a simple weapon or (b) 3 daggers
  • (a) a dungeoneer’s pack or (b) an explorer’s pack

Unarmored Defense

Beginning at 1st level, while you are wearing no armor and not wielding a shield, your AC equals 10 + your Dexterity modifier + your Charisma modifier.


Gunfighter

Starting at 1st level, you are an expert with the use of firearms. You gain the following benefits:

  • You gain a +2 bonus to attack rolls you make with firearms.
  • When you take the Attack action and attack with a pistol that you’re holding in one hand, you can use a bonus action to attack with a different pistol weapon that you’re holding in the other hand. You don’t add your ability modifier to the attack roll or damage of the bonus attack unless that modifier is negative.
  • You can draw or stow two one-handed firearms when you would normally be able to draw or stow only one.
  • You ignore the loading property of firearms with which you are proficient.

Elusive

You have a knack for avoiding attacks. When you are hit by an attack, you can use your reaction to reduce the attack by an amount equal to 1d10 + your gunslinger level. Once you use this feature, you must finish a short or long rest before you can use it again.


Cover Fire

Starting at 2nd level, you can assist an ally in combat by distracting foes with your shots. On your turn, immediately after you take the Attack action using a firearm, choose one creature that is not incapacitated within 10 feet of you. That creature gains a +2 bonus to its AC and it can use its reaction to take one of the following actions: Attack (one weapon only), Dash, Disengage, Hide, or Use an Object.

Once you use this feature, you must finish a short or long rest before you can use it again. Starting at 17th level, you can use it twice before a rest, but only once on the same turn.


Gunslinger Archetype

At 3rd level, you choose an archetype that you strive to emulate in your combat styles and techniques. Choose Hand of the God or Trick Shot, both detailed at the end of the class description. The archetype you choose grants you features at 3rd level and again at 7th, 10th, 15th, and 18th level.


Ability Score Improvement

When you reach 4th level, and again at 8th, 12th, 14th, 16th, and 19th level, you can increase one ability score of your choice by 2, or you can increase two ability scores of your choice by 1. As normal, you can’t increase an ability score above 20 using this feature.


Extra Attack

Beginning at 5th level, you can attack twice, instead of once, whenever you take the Attack action on your turn.

The number of attacks increases to three when you reach 11th level in this class and to four when you reach 20th level in this class.


Deadshot

At 6th level, you learn how to make your firearms shots undercut a creature’s resistances. Shots from your firearms count as magical for the purpose of overcoming resistance and immunity to nonmagical attacks and damage.


Quick Draw

Also at 6th level, your keen awareness and reflexes give you an edge in combat. When you make an initiative check and you aren’t surprised, you can roll a bonus 1d4 and add it to the initiative check.

At 11th level, your bonus die turns into 1d6 and at 18th level, it turns into 1d8.


Evasion

At 9th level, your quick reflexes let you dodge out of the way of certain area effects, such as a blue dragon’s lightning breath or a fireball spell. When you are subjected to an effect that allows you to make a Dexterity saving throw to take only half damage, you instead take no damage if you succeed on the saving throw, and only half damage if you fail.


Unflappable

Starting at 13th level, there’s not a whole lot in the multiverse that can shake you. You have advantage on saving throws against becoming frightened.

Plus, your self-control causes you to gain proficiency in Wisdom saving throws. If you already have this proficiency, you instead gain proficiency in Intelligence saving throws.

Gunslinger Archetypes

Different gunslingers choose different approaches to perfecting their gunfighting prowess. The gunslinger archetype you choose to emulate reflects your approach.

Hand of God

The Hands of God are extensions of the deities of the multiverse. They combine the firearms mastery common to all gunslingers with a careful study of divine magic. Hands of God use magical techniques similar to rangers. These gunslingers learn a comparatively small number of spells than rangers.

Spellcasting

When you reach 3rd level, you augment your martial prowess with the ability to cast spells. See Chapter 10 for the general rules of spellcasting and chapter 11 for the ranger spell list.

Hand of God Spellcasting

Gunslinger Level
Spells Known
Spell Slots per Level
1st 2nd 3rd 4th
3rd 2 2
4th 3 3
5th 3 3
6th 3 3
7th 4 4 2
8th 4 4 2
9th 4 4 2
10th 5 4 3
11th 5 4 3
12th 5 4 3
13th 6 4 3 2
14th 6 4 3 2
15th 6 4 3 2
16th 7 4 3 3
17th 7 4 3 3
18th 7 4 3 3
19th 8 4 3 3 1
20th 8 4 3 3 1

Spell Slots. The Hand of God Spellcasting table shows how many spell slots you have to cast your spells of 1st level and higher. To cast one of these spells, you must expend a slot of the spell’s level or higher. You regain all expended spell slots when you finish a long rest.

For example, if you know the 1st-level spell hail of thorns and have a 1st-level and a 2nd-level spell slot available, you can cast hail of thorns using either slot.

Spells Known of 1st-Level and Higher. You know three 1st-level ranger spells of your choice.

The Spells Known column of the Hand of God Spellcasting table shows when you learn more ranger spells of 1st level or higher. Each of these spells must be of a level for which you have spell slots. For instance, when you reach 7th level in this class, you can learn one new spell of 1st or 2nd level.

Whenever you gain a level in this class, you can replace one of the ranger spells you know with another spell of your choice from the ranger spell list. The new spell must be of a level for which you have spell slots.

Spellcasting Ability. Charisma is your spellcasting ability for your ranger spells since you learn your spells through prayer and sheer force of will. You use Charisma whenever a spell refers to your spellcasting ability. In addition, you use your Charisma modifier when setting the saving throw DC for a ranger spell you cast and when making an attack roll with one.

Spell save DC = 8 + your proficiency bonus + your Charisma modifier

Spell attack modifier = your proficiency bonus + your Charisma modifier

Weapon Bond

At 3rd level, you learn a ritual that creates a magical bond between yourself and one weapon. You perform the ritual over the course of 1 hour, which can be done during a short rest. The weapon must be within your reach throughout the ritual, at the conclusion of which you touch the weapon and forge the bond.

Once you have bonded a weapon to yourself, you can’t be disarmed of that weapon unless you are incapacitated. If it is on the same plane of existence, you can summon that weapon as a bonus action on your turn, causing it to teleport instantly to your hand.

You can have up to two bonded weapons but can summon only one at a time with your bonus action. If you attempt to bond with a third weapon, you must break the bond with one of the other two.

Divine Shot

Starting at 7th level, when you hit a creature with a ranged weapon attack, you can expend one spell slot to deal radiant damage to the target, in addition to the weapon’s damage. The extra damage is 2d6 for a 1st-level spell slot, plus 1d6 for each spell level higher than 1st, to a maximum of 4d6. The damage increases by 1d6 if the target is undead or a fiend.

Divine Protection

Starting at 10th level, you can use some of your divine might to protect one of your allies. As a bonus action, choose a friendly creature within 10 feet of you that you can see. The creature gains a bonus to its saving throw equal to your Charisma modifier (with a minimum bonus of +1). The effect lasts as long as you are conscious and the creature remains within 10 feet of you, until you use this feature again to select a different friendly creature, or you use your action or bonus action to end the effect.

Godly Reposition

At 15th level, when you use your Cover Fire feature, you can teleport the same creature that gains the extra action up to 30 feet to an unoccupied space that you can see. You can teleport the creature before or after it takes its reaction.

Deus ex Machina

Starting at 18th level, when you use your action to cast a spell, you can make one weapon attack as a bonus action.


Trick Shot

The Trick Shot gunslinger studies a unique method of gunfighting that weaves magic into its shots to produce supernatural effects. Trick Shots are some of the most elite gunfighters in the multiverse.

Note: for all intents and purposes, the Trick Shot archetype is the Arcane Archer archetype from Xanathar’s Guide to Everything except with the following changes:

  • Any instance of “Arcane Archer” is replaced with “Trick Shot.”
  • Any instance of “shortbow or longbow” is replaced with “pistol.”
  • Any instance of “arrow” is replaced with “bullet.”
  • Any instance of “archery” is replaced with “trick shots.”

 

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Art by Phazone.

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Fighter Ancient Weapon Master | New Player Option for Dungeons & Dragons Fifth Edition

Currently, I’m working towards the February book which is titled Creaturepedia: Monsters of the Ninth Kingdom Vol 1. It will include a number of monsters that I’ve created for the Patron-sourced campaign setting, Wandrossa. In addition to the monsters, the book will include a few subclasses, too.

Following a poll on my Patreon, these are the classes that the worldbuilders said they wanted to see made:

In addition, I’m tossing in a secret subclass that will come out only with the book.

Playtest Content

The material here is presented for playtesting and to spark your imagination. These game mechanics are in draft form, usable in your campaign but not refined by final game design and editing. They aren’t officially part of the game.

Constructive feedback is welcome and appreciated in either comments or social media. If you can give me a valid reason with examples why something is off, 9/10 I’m likely to make changes to the content and credit you for doing so. Otherwise, feedback without anything to back it up gets ignored (or at most a smile emoji like this 🙂 ) Thanks!

Design Notes

Here are my notes for this build.

Before the Build

Back in third edition, the Oriental Adventures samurai class was waaay better. Basically, you got a special heirloom weapon which leveled up as you did. I think. At least, that’s how I want to remember it. And that’s more or less what I want to do with this build.

Here is what I hope to accomplish:

  • The fighter attunes to one specific weapon.
  • As the fighter gains levels in the class, the weapon grants the fighter powers.
  • By the time the fighter hits its capstone, it has the equivalent of a legendary weapon.

After the Build

I think I got the balance of this one just right, but I’m sure I’ll get some feedback telling me otherwise. Overall, I wanted this archetype to support three different types of fighters: a stealth fighter, one that is sort of “holy”, and an “over-the-top” powerful model.

Here are my notes on balancing for each of the features. Feel free to give your own feedback on each:

  • Some will complain that the class is bound to a specific weapon. However, the weapon is easily replaceable (it only takes an hour to imbue another weapon with its power, so basically, a short rest). Also, you get locate object specific to your weapon.
  • Mathematically speaking, martial symbiosis works similar to the way samurai’s fighting spirit does. Fighting spirit gives advantage, which is effectively a +2.4 damage bonus on attacks. Adding 1d4 damage is the same thing. Plus, instead of the temporary hit points, it gives you a scaleable bonus to AC that lasts until the start of your next turn.
  • Magical Awakening makes your magic weapon. Not exciting, but necessary. Plus, it gives some unique powers, none of which are more powerful than a 3rd level spell.
    • Dispelling Strike works like dispel magic, but without the upper benefits.
    • Mind of Its Own turns your weapon into an off-hand weapon that you can move around with your mind. Kinda like spiritual weapon.
    • And Out of Sight lets you turn invisible.
  • Unbreakable Bond is the typical “if you’re out of gas, here’s a can” feature necessary to fuel X uses/day powers such as Arcane Shot and Fighting Spirit.
  • Ferocious Strike gives you a chance to make a creature shaken when you hit it the first time during combat. This is balanced against Cavalier’s Ferocious Charger that knocks a creature prone.
  • Finally, the big capstone power gives you multiple choices again:
    • Avatar of Destruction lets you fly and do dive attacks with your weapon. The weapon’s bonus damage is 2d6, which is roughly where arcane shots are. At 18th level, an Arcane Archer can pull off roughly 6-8 Arcane Shots per day thanks to its Ever-Ready Shot feature. In one minute of combat, you may be able to pull off an equal number (especially if fighting a Deadly challenge). So the damage output may actually be weaker than the Arcane Archer’s. However, you still have the ability to fly, which in itself is huge.
    • Ghostwalk works both as a defensive and offensive maneuver, similar to Feylock’s Misty Escape feature, but offering up damage immunities, too.
    • Finally, Legendary Radiance makes your weapon glow with bright light and each attack you make with it gets an additional 1d6. Again, a fighter should only get off so many attacks with its weapon in this state, so it should be balanced with the damage output of a high-level Arcane Archer. Plus, the other powers this feature grants are pretty niche.

Let me know what you think. Looking forward to your feedback!

shutterstock_611644448

Fighter Archetype

At 3rd level, a fighter gains the Martial Archetype feature. The following Ancient Weapon Master option is available to a fighter, in addition to those normally offered.

Ancient Weapon Master

Some fighters specialize in multiple weapons. Others are practitioners of the bow. And then, there are those who develop a kinship with a single weapon, that chosen weapon becoming an extension of the fighter itself.

As an ancient weapon master, you have selected a weapon to develop a bond with. Through your travels, you and the chosen weapon grow as one. In time, it is less a weapon, and more a partner; perhaps it is even like family.

Bonus Proficiencies

When you choose this archetype at 3rd level, you gain proficiency with the History skill and smith’s tools.

Chosen Weapon

When you select this archetype at 3rd level, you can attune to a weapon of your choice, making it your chosen weapon. To do so, you must conduct an hour-long ritual that binds you to that weapon. Once the hour ends, the chosen weapon takes on a dull blue glow, emitting dim light in a 10-foot sphere. As a bonus action, you can deactivate or reactivate this light.

While you are away from your chosen weapon, you can use an action to sense the direction of your weapon, as long as the weapon is on the same plane of existence as you. If the weapon is in motion, you know the direction of its movement. This effect can’t locate your weapon if any thickness of lead, even a thin sheet, blocks a direct path between you and your weapon.

Any creature other than you that makes an attack with your chosen weapon does so with disadvantage.

You may only have one chosen weapon at a time. If you perform this ritual again on another weapon, the chosen weapon status of the first weapon is removed and reapplied to the new weapon.

Martial Symbiosis

As a bonus action on your turn, you can empower your chosen weapon. While empowered, your chosen weapon deals an additional 1d4 damage on a hit. In addition, you also gain a +1 bonus to your AC. The bonus to your AC increases when you reach certain levels in this class, increasing to +2 at 10th level, and +3 at 15th level. These effects last until the start of your next turn.

You can use this feature three times, and you regain all expended uses of it when you finish a long rest.

Magical Awakening

Starting at 7th level, unless it is already a magical weapon, your chosen weapon counts as magical for the purpose of overcoming resistance and immunity to nonmagical attacks and damage. In addition, you gain one of the following benefits of your choice.

Dispelling Strike. Immediately after you use the Attack action on your turn and successfully hit a creature or object with your chosen weapon, you can end the effect of any spell of 3rd level or lower on the target. Once you use this feature, you can’t use it again until you finish a long rest.

Mind of its Own. As an action, you can imbue your chosen weapon with temporary cognizance which lasts for 1 minute. While cognizant, your chosen weapon gains a flying speed of 20 feet. On each of your turns, including the turn you grant its cognizance, you can use your bonus action to telepathically move the chosen weapon and attack a creature within reach or range of it. This effect also extends to any ammunition used by the chosen weapon which follows it. While your chosen weapon acts on its own, it does not add your Strength or Dexterity modifier to its damage rolls. Furthermore, your chosen weapon must remain within 20 feet of you, or it loses its cognizance, and if it is flying it immediately falls to the ground. At the end of the duration, your chosen weapon immediately returns to your hand unless it is prevented from doing so. Once you use this feature, you can’t use it again until you finish a long rest.

Out of Sight. As an action on your turn, you can turn invisible as long as you are carrying your chosen weapon. This invisibility lasts for 1 minute, or until you attack or cast a spell. Once you use this feature, you can’t use it again until you finish a long rest.

Unbreakable Bond

Starting at 10th level, when you roll initiative and have no uses of Martial Symbiosis remaining, you regain one use.

Ferocious Strike

Starting at 15th level, the attacks you make with your chosen weapon have the potential of disorienting your targets. When you hit a creature with an attack using your chosen weapon, that target must succeed on a Wisdom saving throw (DC 8 + your proficiency bonus + your Wisdom modifier) or the target has disadvantage on its attack rolls until the end of your next turn. If the creature succeeds on its saving throw or the effect ends for it, it is immune to this effect for 24 hours. You can use this feature only once on each of your turns.

Legendary Weapon

At 18th level, you gain one of the following features of your choice.

Avatar of Destruction. While you are wielding your chosen weapon, as a bonus action on your turn you can transform into an Avatar of Destruction. You take on a fearsome appearance, which gives you advantage on Charisma (Intimidation) checks. Plus, you gain a fly speed of 30 feet. If you fly and dive at least 30 feet straight toward a target and then hit it with your chosen weapon, the attack deals an extra 2d6 damage to the target. This effect lasts for 1 minute or until you use your bonus action to dismiss it. Once you use this feature, you can’t use it again until you finish a long rest.

Ghostwalk. While you are wielding your chosen weapon, as a bonus action on your turn you become incorporeal and can teleport up to 60 feet to an unoccupied space that you can see. In your incorporeal state, you gain immunity to bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing damage from nonmagical attacks and you have advantage on Dexterity saving throws. Other objects and creature can move through you as if you were difficult terrain. You remain incorporeal until the start of your next turn or until you move or take an action or reaction. Once you use this feature, you can’t use it again until you finish a long rest.

Legendary Radiance. As a bonus action on your turn, you can cause your chosen weapon to glow with radiant energy. Your weapon casts bright light in a 30-foot radius sphere and dim light for an additional 30 feet. While your chosen weapon glows, undead and fiends have disadvantage on their saving throws and invisible creatures become visible within 30 feet of you. If you hit a creature with your chosen weapon while it is glowing, it deals an extra 1d6 radiant damage. This effect lasts for 1 minute or until you use your bonus action to dismiss it. Once you use this feature, you can’t use it again until you finish a long rest.

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EVIL is now on sale.

The first compendium of 2019 is already up and for sale on the site. It includes 17 new subclasses, 3 new playable races, 16 new monsters, 4 new spells, advanced weapons rules, and a whole lot more. It’s 56 pages of original Fifth Edition content.

It’s only $10 to purchase. Or, if you become a Patron, it’s FREE.

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EVIL book cover art by DMDave. Thumbnail art by Shutterstock.

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Fighter Valkyrie Martial Archetype | New Player Option for Fifth Edition

This one comes from not just a patron, but actually a member of the Bloody Bunch. Basically, it’s a subclass built off of the classic Valkyries from Norse Mythology. Seeing as how I’m currently in the middle of cooking up two different settings that can work it in–Omerian Echo and the forthcoming MARTIAL guidebook–I thought this fit pretty well for both.

Playtest Content

The material here is presented for playtesting and to spark your imagination. These game mechanics are in draft form, usable in your campaign but not refined by final game design and editing. They aren’t officially part of the game.

Constructive feedback is welcome and appreciated in either comments or social media. If you can give me a valid reason with examples why something is off, 9/10 I’m likely to make changes to the content and credit you for doing so. Otherwise, feedback without anything to back it up gets ignored (or at most a smile emoji like this 🙂 ) Thanks!

Design Notes

Here are my notes for this build.

Before the Build

So what is a Valkyrie? Let’s see what the ol’ Wikipedia has to say first.

In Norse mythology, a Valkyrie (/vælˈkɪəriˈkrivɑːl-, ˈvælkəri/; from Old Norse valkyrja “chooser of the slain”) is one of a host of female figures who choose those who may die in battle and those who may live. Selecting among half of those who die in battle (the other half go to the goddess Freyja’s afterlife field Fólkvangr), the valkyries bring their chosen to the afterlife hall of the slain, Valhalla, ruled over by the god Odin. There, the deceased warriors become einherjar (Old Norse “single (or once) fighters”[2]). When the einherjar are not preparing for the events of Ragnarök, the valkyries bear them mead. Valkyries also appear as lovers of heroes and other mortals, where they are sometimes described as the daughters of royalty, sometimes accompanied by ravens and sometimes connected to swans or horses.

Surprisingly, they’re not as cool as Marvel comics would have us believe. But of course, we want to invoke the rule of cool instead of mead-bearing assistants to Odin, so let’s see the Marvel comics definition.

The Valkyrior are warrior goddesses of Asgard who ride winged horses. Originally, under the leadership of Brunnhilde, they took mortally wounded human heroes from German and Scandinavian battlegrounds and brought them to Valhalla, an area of the Asgardian dimension where the astral forms of the dead Asgardians and human heroes eternally feast and compete in friendly battles. The Valkyries were no longer able to perform this task when Odin, ruler of Asgard, vowed to the Celestials a millennium ago that he would severely restrict Asgardian contact with Earth.

Great! So now we know some cool things about them. Here is what I need to try to accomplish with this build:

  • Warrior Goddesses. Restrict to female only?
  • They ride winged horses.
  • Take mortally wounded heroes to Valhalla.

Otherwise, it would seem I’m fairly wide open.

After the Build

This one wasn’t too much trouble. I know that I wanted to put the steeds in there, but I had to really “bring it down a notch” in order to work. I used the Samurai as a comparison subclass. Then, I pulled part “find steed” and “find greater” steed and cut out the stuff that would have made it overpowered such as the telepathic connection and shared spells. The one major buff that I did give it, though, is that it gets ranger animal companion style hit points with 3x level. This will juice it up slightly at 7th and then earn it 3 hp per level thereafter. Also, I tossed in a Charisma bonus to its AC and saving throws. This might make it a little tougher than the usual steed, but it also makes the fighter way more MAD than it normally is, so it should be fine. That seems fair and keeps it from getting smooshed at later levels. Also, I didn’t want to overwrite any of the mounted combatant goodies for those who want to min-max the shit out of this class.

Note the female restriction. This isn’t to cause controversy, but hey… I wanted to give it a little more flavor.

Mounted Fury works just like the Samurai’s Fighting Spirit except flipped where it imposes disadvantage and gives a damage bonus.

The Valkyrie gets immunity to fear and Wis saves at 7th. That shouldn’t be a big deal.

Then the ol’ “if you’re outta gas, here’s a can” power at 10th which also throws in the telepathic horse power.

15th lets the valkyrie disrupt attacks with her reaction. So a slight boost to action economy and more defensive, tanky powers.

Finally, at 18th, her horse gets a fly speed. I wish I could have brought this one up sooner, but it would have just been too powerful at low levels. Even sorcerers have to wait until 14th or so before they can fly full time.

Errata: 

  • 2/3/2019: Reduced the class’ need for its mount and fixed some poor wording.

Martial Archetype

At 3rd level, a fighter gains the Martial Archetype feature. The following Valkyrie option is available to a fighter, in addition to those normally offered.

Valkyrie

You are of the Valkyrior, a host of warrior goddesses who ride upon the backs of winged horses into combat. Your mission is to seek out the mortally wounded of the world and bring them to the Outer Planes where they may eternally feast in the hall of fallen warriors.

Of course, much of that is part of the myth that surrounds you. In truth, you are a powerful warrior, whose mettle has never been truly tested. You are also an accomplished rider and mounted combatant. As you become more experienced, you grow a bond with your steed.

Restriction: Females Only

Only female humanoids can join the ranks of Valkyrion. Due to societal constraints, only females are chosen to become valkyries.

Your GM can lift this restriction to better suit the campaign.

The Valkyrie’s Steed

When you choose this archetype at 3rd level, you can perform a 10-minute ritual in order to summon a spirit that assumes the form of an unusually intelligent, strong, and loyal warhorse, creating a long-lasting bond with it. The horse has the same stats as the warhorse presented in Appendix D of the PHB however, with the following changes:

  • Its type is celestial.
  • Its hit points equal those in its stat block or 3 times your levels in this class, whichever is higher.
  • Its Intelligence is 6 and it gains the ability to understand one language of your choice that you speak.
  • It gains a bonus to its AC and saving throws equal to your Charisma modifier (minimum of 0).

When your horse drops to 0 hit points, it disappears, leaving behind no physical form. You can also dismiss your steed at any time as an action, causing it to disappear. In either case, using this feature again summons the same horse, restored to its hit point maximum.

You can’t have more than one horse bonded by this feature at one time. As an action, you can release your warhorse from its bond at any time, causing it to disappear.

Once you use this feature to summon your steed, you can’t use it again until you finish a long rest even if your steed disappears or you willingly dismiss it.

Fury of the Valkyrie

Starting at 3rd level, you are excellent at avoiding your opponent’s attacks while dealing additional damage. As a bonus action on your turn, you can impose a disadvantage on attack rolls against you and your mount until the start of your next turn. When you do so, you also gain a +2 bonus to the damage you deal with melee weapon attacks. This damage bonus increases when you reach certain levels in this class, increasing to +3 at 10th level and +4 at 15th level.

You can use this feature three times, and you regain all expended uses of it when you finish a long rest.

Fearless Warrior

Starting at 7th level, you are unflappable in the face of danger. You are immune to being frightened.

In addition, you gain proficiency in Wisdom saving throws. You have outstanding self-control and rarely deter from a mission. If you already have this proficiency, you instead gain proficiency in Intelligence or Charisma saving throws (your choice).

Improved Valkyrie’s Steed

Starting at 10th level, when you roll initiative and have no uses of Fury of the Valkyrie remaining, you regain one use. Also, while your Valkyrie’s Steed is within 1 mile of you, you can communicate with it telepathically.

Valkyrie’s Strike

Starting at 15th level, you are a master at turning your opponent’s strikes against them. If a creature within reach of your melee weapon targets you or your mount with a melee weapon attack while it has disadvantage on an attack roll, you can use your reaction to immediately make an attack against the creature. If you hit, the creature automatically misses its attack.

Flight of the Valkyrie

Starting at 18th level, your Valkyrie’s Steed grows feathery wings. It gains a flight speed of 60 ft.

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MARTIAL: February 2019’s Theme (Fighters and Monks)

Big announcement today! While Patreon is slowly recovering from what  I’m calling Patreonapocalypse 2019 (sorry for those who are trying to get a copy of EVIL or sign-up!), I thought I’d go ahead and announce February’s collected edition theme:

MARTIAL: A Fifth Edition Companion – The Collected Works of DMDave February 2019

In the vein of the 3rd edition player option books like Sword and Fist and Complete Warrior, MARTIAL will cover and focus on Fighters and Monks mostly, but also offer player options for the other subclasses.

Already, I’ve got some requests geared towards this so you can expect at least one fully functional class to accompany this book plus a few of the subclasses you’ve already seen here. In addition, I plan on having fully functional Mass Combat Rules along with tokens which you can print-and-play-with. Patrons of higher ranks may even get a boxed set edition of the Mass Combat Rules setting!

Here is (at minimum) what I expect to be in this book (subject to change, of course):

  • 3 new Fighter subclasses
  • 3 new Monk subclasses
  • More “martial” subclasses for the other classes
  • More monk fighting stances
  • The Tactician Class
  • Gunslinger Class
  • Awakened animals playable races
  • Leveling magic items
  • The expanded weapons rules
  • Mass combat rules
  • Martial monsters and NPCs
  • Kaiju challenge geared towards martial combatants
  • A shit ton more. 🙂

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