Unearthed Arcana Changing the Artificer from Unearthed Arcana PEACH

Here is what I propose, making it a bit more crafting centric.

Artificer


2nd level
You can expend your arcane recovery towards the cost of crafting an item. So if you would recover 2 spell levels, it will be 2 gold pieces.
You must still possess the proper proficiency.
2nd level
Recharge wands. You may spend your arcane recovery to recharge a wand/magic item of its charges. The item regains a number of charges equal to your arcane recovery levels.
6th level.
Superior artificer
When using your arcane recovery to craft items, the bonus is doubled.
Additionally, by spending 10 minutes focusing on two magic items, you may transfer a number of charges from one to the other.
10th level:
Extra attunement. You may attune one extra magic item. You may also attune wands that are not normally able to be attuned, wands attuned in this fashion are not destroyed on a roll of 1 if all charges are used.
14th level
Master Artificer stays the same.
 
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Ath-kethin

Elder Thing
Your alterations seem decent, and Iike your take better than the UA version if for no better reason than that it actually feels different from the other wizard subclasses.

I really think, though, that the Artificer doesn't work as a wizard subclass. It's too different from the standard wizard in terms of class abilities and "spells."

I'm really thinking that it would function better as a rogue sibclass, or maybe even a fighter subclass. The caster progressions in 5e are, oddly enough, too out of place and restrictive to work for the Artificer concept in my opinion.

Edit: the other issue is that the Artificer should be able to actually, you know, make things, and the lack of an item crafting system in 5e makes that implementation really difficult.
 
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Mercule

Adventurer
I really think, though, that the Artificer doesn't work as a wizard subclass. It's too different from the standard wizard in terms of class abilities and "spells."
Agreed. My personal hallucination is that the Warlock chassis would be a good fit for the Artificer. It deals primarily with lower-level spells, so the conversion from 3.5E would be cleaner. Keep the spells as spells, but change Invocations to Infusions that can be used to do things like affix a spell to an object or otherwise replicate the feel of making stuff without having to rewrite a whole bunch of spells. Also, it bugs me that every other progression is used for multiple classes.
 

DEFCON 1

Legend
Supporter
I'm really thinking that it would function better as a rogue subclass, or maybe even a fighter subclass. The caster progressions in 5e are, oddly enough, too out of place and restrictive to work for the Artificer concept in my opinion.

Whereas the rogue and fighter subclass structure isn't that great for the artificer either.

In truth... it's been mentioned by other before in the past several years, but I think the best option for the Artificer is for it to be its own class, and to use the Warlock mechanical structure to accomplish it. Clerics, Wizards, Druids, and Bards all use the exact same mechanical structure (same spell slot pyramid, same rules for preparation, same rules for attacks and save DCs) even though story-wise they are all very different. So in the Artificer's case, I think using the Warlock mechanical structure of getting a couple actual spells (always cast at highest spell level) and then a whole list of Infusions (Invocations) to choose from that give you special abilities (which are not spells, even if some of them duplicate spell effects) would create the kind of Artificer you'd probably want.

But because the story of the Artificer is so different from the Warlock you can't just make it a Warlock subclass (which oftentimes is what is proposed) because none of the story aspects between the two match up. Artificers would use INT, not CHA; the selection of a Patron is unwanted; the Pacts make no sense for an Artificer; most of the Invocations and the Warlock spell list are not geared towards the idea of an Artificer. So a true subclass doesn't work. But the mechanical structure of the class I think would work beautifully for it. Its own spell list, a couple spells known, a long list of Infusions, and a couple Contructions (Patrons) like the Tinkerer, Alchemist, and Runecarver.
 

DEFCON 1

Legend
Supporter
Agreed. My personal hallucination is that the Warlock chassis would be a good fit for the Artificer. It deals primarily with lower-level spells, so the conversion from 3.5E would be cleaner. Keep the spells as spells, but change Invocations to Infusions that can be used to do things like affix a spell to an object or otherwise replicate the feel of making stuff without having to rewrite a whole bunch of spells. Also, it bugs me that every other progression is used for multiple classes.

Heh... well that was funny! Yours hadn't appeared when I started my response, and it's basically what I had down to a T!

Needless to say, I agree with you 100%! :)
 

Ath-kethin

Elder Thing
My mind went to rogue because I used that framework to recreate a 2e kit initially hung on the wizard but differing substantially from the 5e wizard paradigm. Looking at it now, I agree that the warlock frame might work better.

The fundamental problem, in my mind, is the entire 5e subclass system - it strongly inhibits the development of a variant that is different from the others from its beginning; i.e. from first level. The re-envisioning of the artificer on the warlock frame would require jettisoning all the spells known/spell slots (perhaps replacing spell slots with crafting points like they had in 3.5) and a larger number of invocations/infusions.

Specializing form there I'd be cool with, as others have suggested. Actually, I would just add the spells slots/known bit above to what the others have suggested already for the class.
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
my 2 copper:

Artificer should be a full class, with a Alchemist, Engineer, and Improviser subclass, on a warlock style chassis. (but normal spellcasting)

The Alchemist would be the most complex, with choices ranging from PF style buff potions, to magical grenades.

You simply burn spell slots to imbue spells into items, and they last until you regain those spell slots, with features that let you imbue certain spells for longer periods, as a ritual. I like to have the ritual imbuing take 10minXspell level, normally. Makes it so you can't use 10 rituals to imbue all the things in a short rest.

At level two I put in a choice between three types of Artificer's weapons: A crossbow, cane/staff/, and an upgrade module for your Assistant, which gains a type based on your level 1 choice of Specialization. Basically a homunculus, IMp, etc that helps you with rituals and crafting.
 



I fully agree that the Artificer SHOULD be its own class, there are too many fiddly bits to fully capture the feel of the original. I used the unearthed arcana as basis because that is what is released, semi officially. Though, the creation of a full class offers other difficulties, such as creating different specialties. How different are artificers? At their core, do they ACTUALLY need their own class? And if so, what are three viable sub-types for the artificer? In my mind, the class should focus on three aspects - the adventuring, rogue-lite that uses his artificer abilities to disable traps and ancient secrets, the more "build magic items for the party", and possibly a psionic - grow items out if crystals. Keep in mind that the Artificer was built for Eberron, they are the people who make all the minor magic items that infuse the setting, and when designing the class, that must be kept in mind, with it being ported to other worlds second. This is important because if you want to create the artificer, you need to know what it is meant to do, and where it fits into a society/world. Eberron has lots of low level magic, and utility magic - this is what the artificer should be focused on.

in terms of class emulation, I am looking to the ranger, lower spell casting - limited to rituals maybe, and unique abilities toward the downtime crafting bent seems a decent mix.

While discussing the virtues of which class has the best core mechanics is interesting, It doesn't help me much in determiming if my changes are balanced or thematically sound.

While a full crafting system is not implemented, there is the downtime action, which I heavily relied on, to create many minor items, and gear, that I feel an artificer should excel at.
 
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DEFCON 1

Legend
Supporter
How different are artificers? At their core, do they ACTUALLY need their own class? And if so, what are three viable sub-types for the artificer? In my mind, the class should focus on three aspects - the adventuring, rogue-lite that uses his artificer abilities to disable traps and ancient secrets, the more "build magic items for the party", and possibly a psionic - grow items out if crystals. Keep in mind that the Artificer was built for Eberron, they are the people who make all the minor magic items that infuse the setting, and when designing the class, that must be kept in mind, with it being ported to other worlds second. This is important because if you want to create the artificer, you need to know what it is meant to do, and where it fits into a society/world. Eberron has lots of low level magic, and utility magic - this is what the artificer should be focused on..

In my opinion, the various types of Artificers would follow along the Wizard path. The Wizard's spells are broken into Schools (or types) of magic and a character specializes in one of them (while still being able to use all of them). The Artificer should specialize in one type (or Curriculum) of magical technology while still being able to use the others. The various types of artificing could include things like alchemy, scroll-writing, runecarving, clockwork machinery, magitech item creation, and true engineering/science.

But if you are going to bother to make this class for the game, then hopefully you'll also spend the time to finalize true item creation and magitech rules so that the class has something to play with. You wouldn't make a bunch of spellcasting classes if you didn't have a full set of spellcasting rules and spells for them to use with it... so I'd hope you wouldn't make a magical infusion class without also having rules for magical infusion creation, plus magical and non-magical science and technology. Airships, tools, potions, trains, scrolls, guns for pete's sake... you have all these bits and bobs of rules involving tinkering, engineering, magitech and science that have no underlying mechanical heft. So if you want to have a class that uses all of that stuff... make sure you give all those things the heft it needs to actually support the class you make for it.
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
3.5 incarnum magic. The incarnate is basically an artificer already. Just port the system to 5E, make the soulmelds physical objects, and you're done.

That seems like more work, to me, than just building the thing in 5e without trying to convert things directly from an older edition
 

Mercule

Adventurer
3.5 incarnum magic. The incarnate is basically an artificer already. Just port the system to 5E, make the soulmelds physical objects, and you're done.
It's been a long time, but I remember that there was something about the flavor of Incarnum that really rubbed me wrong. I pretty much skipped that one.
 

Mercule

Adventurer
I fully agree that the Artificer SHOULD be its own class, there are too many fiddly bits to fully capture the feel of the original. I used the unearthed arcana as basis because that is what is released, semi officially. Though, the creation of a full class offers other difficulties, such as creating different specialties. How different are artificers?
The three sub-classes of Artificer should be, IMO:

* Crafter: Builds "real" magic items, from everburning torches to holy avengers. This is the most obvious, but also most difficult to do. I always hated the XP-for-items system in 3E, but it at least had a balance point. 5E doesn't really even have a crafting system, so I have no clue where to even start.

* Field Tinkerer: Applies useful, but short-lived effects to items. This is the most likely build to be used in a typical D&D party. I'd use mechanics like allowing another PC, even a Fighter or Rogue, to use their "concentration slot" to hold a spell that the Artificer would otherwise have to maintain concentration on. Alternatively, certain effects could be maintained on unusual targets and/or without concentration (i.e. magic weapon on the Ranger's bow) by "locking in" a spell slot; that would work very well with the Warlock short-rest mechanic for balance.

* Maker or Binder: Someone focused on constructs, golems, and even lightning rails and flying ships. This could be useful to adventurers, but it has a lot of peril. Kind of like the Beast Master, it would have to find the right balance point. There would also need to some new minor constructs created or the low levels would be painfully non-thematic. These guys would probably have a homoculous as a pet, and have a number of Infusions available to tweak the build.
 

It's been a long time, but I remember that there was something about the flavor of Incarnum that really rubbed me wrong.
Me too. I've never run it straight. But the mechanics are ripe for reskinning. I've used them for tattooed monks, shamans, and artificers.

That seems like more work, to me, than just building the thing in 5e without trying to convert things directly from an older edition
Converting directly from 3E to 5E is pretty easy. You mostly just have to keep an eye on the changes to the system math -- dial back bonuses, maybe switch some things to advantage. The challenge comes if you want to do a philosophical conversion. Then you have to start thinking about what's fiddly and detail-ridden about the 3E system and how a 5E approach might streamline it. But even then, it's still easier to work from a starting point than to create a new system whole cloth.
 
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* Crafter: Builds "real" magic items, from everburning torches to holy avengers. This is the most obvious, but also most difficult to do. I always hated the XP-for-items system in 3E, but it at least had a balance point. 5E doesn't really even have a crafting system, so I have no clue where to even start.
I don't see this as a subclass; I see this as the core of the class. Have item slots instead of (or in addition to) spell slots: an Nth level artificer can make/maintain X 1st-level, Y 2nd-level, and Z 3rd-level items. Some items can be handed out to anybody (magic swords), but some require special proficiency (lightning guns), so the artificer has things to do in a fight besides cheer on the other guys who are using his stuff.
 

Mercule

Adventurer
I don't see this as a subclass; I see this as the core of the class.
I could go either way. I think there are enough interesting ideas that don't require permanent magic items. Even if it fits make up the core of the class, I could see room for a focused subclass that brought it to the forefront.
 
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doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
I don't see this as a subclass; I see this as the core of the class. Have item slots instead of (or in addition to) spell slots: an Nth level artificer can make/maintain X 1st-level, Y 2nd-level, and Z 3rd-level items. Some items can be handed out to anybody (magic swords), but some require special proficiency (lightning guns), so the artificer has things to do in a fight besides cheer on the other guys who are using his stuff.

for me, infusing magic into things is the core of the class, but permanent enchantment doesn't need to be a low level thing. YMMV, obviously, but I'd rather the Artificer start out just being more efficient at using the core magic item crafting rules than other characters, and only get easy permanent enchantment at at least level...8ish.

I still think the warlock's invocations are the best model for what in my artificer-in-progress, I call Artifices. (name also, very much, in progress)

I also give my artificer a specialized weapon at level 2 It has three choices, like the warlock's pact boon.

1)A cane, which can either have a hidden blade, grapple hook+climbing hook built in, built in tesla zapper, or telescope into a staff.
2) Crossbow (any) which has a collapsible stock, and either a revolving autoloader*, a grapple shot/zip-liner, or retractable bayonet
3)Improved familiar, with stats based on a few different critters,

Each weapon, including the familiar, starts with two module slots, and you pick two modules for those slots from a list. Each also has modules that only work for it, and there is an Artifice that lets you learn to swap modules as a bonus action (usually takes 1 min and tools), even in combat, and even to use some modules as standalone devices, like the grapple shot. You get an extra module at, IIRC, lvl 6, 11, and 15, something like that, and Some artifices give you an extra module slot and let you gain an extra module.

I may even include a Self Forged spec, where you turn yourself into a warforged cyborg, and add modules onto yourself, but that is low priority. I've streamlined the modules into the Artifice system, as well as Infusions.

The Alchemists is better than anyone at potion and bomb type Infusions, and each subclass gets a few things that only they can make, or at least only they can make without using the laborious and expensive crafting rules. THings like universal solvent, etc.

The engineer has some unique module options, unique options for upgrading a mechanized familiar, and if I end up making it more a Battle Engineer, will get a fighting style. Either way it will get a second option from the weapon choices. Probably will, so that the Improviser can be more the general mechanic, and may be renamed Mechanic.

The improviser can cannibalize traps, and any other device they come across. They gain Proficiency in Arcana, if they don't already have it, and can use Mechanics Tools in place of Theives tools to disable and dismantle devices, including locks and traps. They can take apart both magical and mundane devices, make and set traps, and imbue attack spells into traps.

I wonder if the Artificer has room for another subclass that specializes in things like portals, wards, etc?

The base class has access to things like binding elemental creatures, transmutation, and some basic chemistry fun, mostly because I couldn't fit all of it into the Alchemist without making the Alchemist it's own class. :D

Artificer's Tools are a bit of a sticky wicket for me, because I feel like Arti tools that do the mechanical stuff and the alchemical stuff would be too much, but Mechanic's Tools and Alchemist's Tools seems like too much. IDk, I guess if they are proficient in both, it's fine...

Also, I'd give them some Artifices that just make being an Artificer easier in the game world, like a folding case of acutriments that is bigger on the inside, and can fold out into a workbench, a bag of seeds that grow any herb, weed, or similar plant in minutes, etc.

The base class mechanic is Imbuing, which allows the Arti to burn a spell slot to put one of their spells into an item, which lasts until the take a long rest, or the spell is used. This allows things like casting things that are normally "self" on the party fighter, for instance. Any actions required come from the character using the item. So, if you put a reaction spell on the rogue to keep him alive, the rogue has to use their reaction to activate the spell.
You can imbue as a ritual, but it takes 10 minutes x spell level to do so, and still only lasts until you take a long rest. So, it's only abusable if the DM literally blatantly allows you to abuse it.

You can also Imbue spells into things and set a trigger, starting at...I think level 3. This requires ritual time, and a spell slot, but can be maintained by burning the same spell level slot as an action at the end of a long rest. No hard limit, except for the limit on spell slots.

It's a pretty broad ability, and gives the class most of the power that it gets, but it makes the class much simpler, IMO, than most Artificers I've seen online. Even the weapon modules and artifices are simpler than they probably seem reading this. I'll post it at some point, when I polish it up and tinker with the levels and all that.
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
eeesh. That's a lot of text.

sorry. in short: I'm building an Artificer that is shaped like a warlock, with a subclass proper, and a tool use choice, like patron and pact boon, and Artifices, like Invocations. It's also a full caster, but with a casting system more like other casters, and it can burn spell slots to imbue items, or do so as a long ritual (10 minutes x spell level).

edit: Curious what people think of giving certian wondrous items as things the Artificer can learn to make much more efficiently than anyone else? Would they have to deteriorate, unlike the "normal" version? Could they be craftable as part of a long rest, or is that too easy?

Also, has anyone already made any good expanded lists of magic items for 5e, espesially consumables? What about expanded weapon/other gear lists?

Looking at my document, I right now have it set up so that Imbuing a spell into an item works exactly like casting it (except the ritual thing, above), and takes a bonus action or reaction to Activate once Imbued. I think that works better than what I wrote in the text wall.

Also, an ability I gave the Artificer that, IMO, feels right and helps it buff people better, in a scaling way.

Elemental Transference: Starting at level 1, you can cast AbsorbElements without components. At level 5, you can cast it without spending aspell slot. At level 11, you can use this ability a number of times equal toyour Intelligence Modifier. You must complete a long rest to regain thisability.
 
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