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5E Archetypes to add to 5e


Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
While talking about the most recent UA, Jeremy Crawford said they have covered most of the standard D&D tropes at this point in the editions life. In a discussion about that UA here it seemed many disagreed with that statement.

So, what archetypes do you think needs some subclass support to play in 5e? What's missing that you'd like to see that is a wide gap, not just a small niche that would never be considered at many tables.

If possible, give an example character from a movie, novel, police report, or wherever you get your inspiration. Something that a new player might come into the game going "I want to build a character like X!", and we want to make sure D&D doesn't let them down.

I'm trying to focus on concept and narrative, not mechanics. For example there are plenty of classes from earlier editions that don't exist but a character of a similar concept can be built even if the underlying mechanics differ.

Also, I'll say it here so that we don't need to have the thread get into a huge discussion on it: Warlord.
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Let's go through the classes in order. I'll leave blacks that I might fill in later, should inspiration strike.

Barbarian: "tooth and claw" physically transformed when raging. Goes back to the original Norse ber-serkir who where believed to literally transform into bears. In literature, Beorn in The Hobbit.

Bard: college with access to druid spell list. Goes back to 1st edition, which in term goes back to the Victorian reinvention of druids, and the myth of Taliesin.

Cleric: Chaos domain. present in earlier editions.


Fighter: Some new battlemaster manoeuvres would be nice.

Monk: 1/3 caster of cleric spells. Sacred Fist (3rd edition). And I think there was something of this sort in Oriental Adventures (I haven't read it since the 80s so my memory is hazy).

Paladin: Oath of the rapier gnome. Speaks for itself.



Sorcerer: Abhorrent - H. P. lovecraft inspired. The X-men. Spirit Shaman (3.5) has access to druid spells,

Warlock: Pact of The Ancient Dragon. Also, It would be nice to have something other than chain/book/blade pact gifts.

Wizard: School of General Magic


Let's go through the classes in order. I'll leave blacks that I might fill in later, should inspiration strike.
Because D&D doesn't replicate all fantasy literature exactly, it will never cover all archetypes for stand alone classes. That's why we have multiclass options. And most of what you listed can be done by using multiclassing and/or feats and backgrounds. So those archetypes are covered currently. For example:

Barbarian: "tooth and claw" physically transformed when raging. Goes back to the original Norse ber-serkir who where believed to literally transform into bears. In literature, Beorn in The Hobbit.
Also Barak from the Belgarian series. Actually, last year Barak was my inspiration for a PC that does just that. I was a barbarian/druid, and it worked really well to capture that

Fighter: Some new battlemaster manoeuvres would be nice.
Not an archetype

FWIW, I agree with Jeremy, and not sure how anyone could disagree. He didn't say all archetypes were covered, but most were. And that seems true. It seems most suggestions are these small niche ones that the OP says are out of scope.


I think you can get a taste of just about anything in 5e, but for some things, "a taste" is about all you get, so that is what I would like to see addressed as 5e progresses.

Add my vote for the transforming barbarian. I like 4e's warden, and I know the oath of ancients paladin touches on this (and paladins in general transform as their capstone), but it doesn't feel central to that (sub)class.

In the spirit of the oathbreaker paladin/death domain cleric (more NPC than PC), some kind of possessed barbarian (possibly connected to the transforming barbarian).

A pet class: the pet has almost all the combat power, and the "PC" is there mostly to talk to other people.

You could probably get this by multiclassing hexblade and devotion paladin, but it seems like there ought to be "oath of stewardship" paladin who guards some item (or maybe "oath of protection" if you want to expand it past guarding an item to guarding a person). There is nothing that says the paladin can use the item right away, so it wouldn't be "1st level paladin using an artifact").

I wouldn't mind more of a "bad touch" monk. The monk has some innate "bad touch" abilities, but this would double down on it; maybe spend some ki point to cast cleric "bad touch" spells, plus can use unarmed strike as the "touch" in delivering the spell. Again, this might be more NPC than PC.

Most of the warlock patrons have a musical connection (from Devil went Down to Georgia to the weird pipe music in Lovecraft), so an instrument pact implement. I have also noticed some NPC warlocks have 4e-stule transformations, and I was thinking of a tattoo implement that would give you that.


Cleric/Divine Monk: Friar Tuck as interpreted by the MMORPG Dark Age of Camelot. Staff fighting, cloth armour and nimbleness, minor healing and blessings for your party and especially to enhance your own survival in combat. Just because the imagery was soooo cool in DAoC!

P.S. Are their Friars in Camelot Unchained?

Little Sparrow.jpg

Li Shenron

I love this little game, comes up every time new subclasses are previewed...

1) a generalist wizard: not sure what name would be best for the concept, as "generalist" sounds too modern and "loremaster" doesn't convince me either.

2) a pure dungeon delver rogue, which is all about traps and underground hazards, think Indiana Jones

3) herbalist druid, all about plants

4) alchemist wizard, though we already know it'll be covered by the Artificer

5) peacekeeping cleric

There are ways to represent all these fairly well already, but they could also be their own archetype.


Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
Sub-question here - Several people have mentioned a "trap/hazard rogue". What's the thought about "limited focus" subclasses, that might be of limited utility at times or at least at the DM's discression, but do supply mechanical ways to build some common out-of-D&D characters. Undead/vampire hunters. Terrain-specific ranger subclasses. Arctic seal hunters.


Some ideas that suggest themselves:

Sorcerer Bloodlines:

- Fey
  • Fiendish
  • Genie
  • Elemental in general
  • Old Ones/Far Realms
  • Yuan-Ti

Warlock Patrons:

  • Shamanic Nature Spirits
  • Dragon
  • Genie

Wizard Tradition:
  • Hedge Wizard (touch o' the Druid)
  • Arcane Expert (touch o' the Bard)
  • Mystic Theurge (but different than last time)
  • Tinkerer (touch o' the Artificer)


Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
Would we want subclasses that infroduct the need for new general mechanics into the game? A Truenamer subclass for example. Things like psionics we seem to be introducing as their own classes (though potentially then having subclasses, like the EK equivilant with psionics instead of magic).


Perhaps a sapper / demolitions expert. I think of Fiddler and Hedge in the Malazan series. Not the "artillerist": that builds turrets and wands and casts spells. Basically an infantry grunt crazy enough to handle explosive substances and bring down walls, bridges, you name it.


I don’t have all the hardbacks, is there a kensai (sword saint) archetype? Essentially a fighter that is dedicated to mastering a single weapon.


A Divine spellcasting rogue.

Shi'ar wizard

Wu Jen

Cosmic Sorcerer

Vice Paladin

Domain of Passion Cleric

Glorious Servitor Paladin

Holy Liberator Paladin

Werewolf/Weretiger Druid or Barbarian

Arborist Ranger

Vampiric Sorcerer

Brawler Fighter

Warlord Fighter

Death Knight Paladin

Mummy Lord Domain Cleric

Ringmaster Bard

Jester Bard

Urban Druid

Kraken Pact Warlock

Mordron Pact Warlock

Slaadi Pack Warlock

Primordial Pact Warlock

Elemental Domain Cleric

Tantric Monk

Zigiest Pact Warlock

Sworrowspawn Warlock

Ethereal Sorcerer

Seducteress Rogue

Hierodule Bard (divine magic Bard)

Aboleth Pact Warlock

Nishruu Sorcerer.

Psychic Warrior Fighter

Soul Knife Rogue

Ardent Bard

Wilder Sorcerer

Godmind Cleric

Dragon Shaman Druid

Beguiler Sorcerer

Lumberjack Ranger

Voyager Ranger

Conquestidor Fighter

Nethermancer Wizard
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