Homebrew Monk Subclass - Drunken Master
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  1. #1

    Monk Subclass - Drunken Master

    Way of Drunken Boxing

    Monks of the Way of Drunken Boxing are trained in the secret art of fighting while (appearing to be) drunk. The style is known for being able to strike while appearing unbalanced, and lends itself to reactionary fighting ("rolling with the punches"). The style is very difficult to master, and is guarded jealously by those who know it. Others freely wish to teach others the way, though many find it far more difficult than they anticipate it. A Drunken Boxer always appears off guard, but never truly is.

    Drunken Boxing
    Starting when you choose this tradition at 3rd level, you become immune to Intoxication. Additionally, you fight just as well when Prone as you do standing regularly. Enemies do not have Advantage on attacks against you while prone, you do not have Disadvantage on attacks while Prone and you can stand up without using any Movement.

    Improvisation Expert
    At 3rd level, you have learned to use just about anything around you while fighting. You gain Proficiency with Improvised Weapons. Treat these weapons as Monk weapons.

    Numb Body
    At 6th level you have learned to endure great pain by simply ignoring it. When you are successfully attacked you may spend a Reaction and 2 Ki points in order to gain Resistance to all damage from the attack.

    Flowing Strikes
    At 11th level you have honed your ability to react to your opponents' predictable movements, punishing any who would attack you. When you are attacked within 5ft, you may spend a Reaction and 1 Ki point to make a melee attack against them.

    Drunken Revelry
    At 17th level you have attained perfection of form. You may spend 2 Reactions per round instead of the normal 1, though you may only use 1 reaction per turn.

    ----------------------------------------------------------------

    I wanted to make a Monk who felt like he just moving and reacting to other people's attacks, and just flowing with them. Watched The Legend of Drunken Master recently and took a few cues from the movie.


    • The style itself is based around "looking unbalanced but never actually BEING unbalanced" and in Jackie's performance he often fought while on his knees/on the ground, so I made the "prone" changes to emphasize that.
    • He sometimes used bottles and other things in the fights. This also encourages a Monk of the Way of Drunken Boxing to carry and drink alcohol *during the fight.* Making them immune to the negative effects of Intoxication also encourages this.
    • A couple times he is hit with an attack or a table and completely ignored it. Thus, Numb Body.
    • His style often resulted in him being attacked and *then* attacking in a burst back at them. With Flowing Strikes, he can potentially Ready an Action to Attack when he is attacked, then counter-attacking...hard.
    • The whole style is based on Reactions. His "capstone" means he can react twice as much.


    Let me know what you guys think!
    XP TheEvilDM, Greenmtn, bedir than, Rune, Satyrn and 1 others gave XP for this post

  2. #2
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    I love this, and i plan on using it in my chat game. Thanks a bunch.

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    Sounds like a lot of fun!

    Side effect (or perhaps intentional) of the Improvisation Expert feature: Everything is now a thrown weapon with range 20/60, with your regular attack bonus and martial arts damage.
    This means you can be throwing around chopsticks, packs of cards, beer bottles, etc... exactly the kind of shenanigans Jackie pulls off all the time, without giving up any effectiveness!

    The only problem then is that you still have to draw or pick up all those things, but maybe you could add in an ability that allows you to pick up any random object within reach anytime before you make an attack?

    Any way, good job, at first glance it seems pretty balanced.


    EDIT- Oh, and I see you're new here, have some XP!

  4. #4
    Great job.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by TheEvilDM View Post
    Sounds like a lot of fun!

    Side effect (or perhaps intentional) of the Improvisation Expert feature: Everything is now a thrown weapon with range 20/60, with your regular attack bonus and martial arts damage.
    This means you can be throwing around chopsticks, packs of cards, beer bottles, etc... exactly the kind of shenanigans Jackie pulls off all the time, without giving up any effectiveness!

    The only problem then is that you still have to draw or pick up all those things, but maybe you could add in an ability that allows you to pick up any random object within reach anytime before you make an attack?
    Basically the idea was that a Drunken Master goes with the flow, and fights with whatever is on hand so yep, definitely intentional. I'm sure there will be stuff that people find non-sensical with regards to larger objects but this is always the case when dealing with Improvised Actions anyways. Honestly, I think I'm fine with picking up random stuff still requiring actions. I feel like improved drawing/picking up stuff is better served as part of a Feat than as a Class feature but that might be just me.

    Thanks for the kind words!

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheEvilDM View Post
    Side effect (or perhaps intentional) of the Improvisation Expert feature: Everything is now a thrown weapon with range 20/60, with your regular attack bonus and martial arts damage.
    This means you can be throwing around chopsticks, packs of cards, beer bottles, etc... exactly the kind of shenanigans Jackie pulls off all the time, without giving up any effectiveness!
    I hate that an improvised weapon is as effective a ranged weapon as throwing axes, throwing hammers, spears, daggers, and darts.

    It makes sense for this class, but it certainly doesn't make sense for the normal game.

  7. #7
    I think it is on the weak side.

    At level 3 it should have a unique ability that helps define what it does in combat. The ones you have are fine but are more like ribbons. Perhaps something else to do with reactions like adding AC against an attack and then next turn getting more damage against the attacker.

    At level 6 I would like to see some sort of social ability. That is something that the Monk subclasses currently lack and would be perfect for a Drunken Master.

  8. #8
    The improvisation expert is a perfect fit. Nicely done.

  9. #9
    "When you are successfully attacked you may spend a Reaction and 2 Ki points in order to gain Resistance to all damage from the attack."

    I feel like since it is against a single attack once per turn I would drop the cost down to 1 ki. Once enemies get multiattack spending 2 ki to avoid one attack seems a bit expensive.

    Alternatively, make it last for one round or against all attacks from one creature.



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    Well done! As others have noted, I think it wouldn't hurt to push the power a little bit more in a couple places, but in essence you've created a simple, elegant, and thematic subclass that captures the fantasy of the drunken master. It looks a lot like what I'd expect out of WotC should they ever decide to visit this theme.

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