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D&D 5E Does this Celestial warlock invocation sound "too good"?

FireLance

Legend
Hi all, I'm thinking of the following eldritch invocation (working title: Focused Flame) to enable Celestial warlocks to enhance sacred flame:

  • The damage dice increase from d8s to d10s.
  • When you roll damage, treat any result less than twice your Charisma modifier as twice your Charisma modifier (so with a Charisma bonus of +3 a roll of 1 to 5 would be treated as a 6).

Mathematically, I am aware that it still deals less damage on average (assuming the same Charisma modifier) than the combination of eldritch blast and Agonizing Blast. However, I am wondering if the second part, in particular, sounds "too good" on first reading.

What do you think? Thanks in advance for your views.
 

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Dausuul

Legend
Hi all, I'm thinking of the following eldritch invocation (working title: Focused Flame) to enable Celestial warlocks to enhance sacred flame:

  • The damage dice increase from d8s to d10s.
  • When you roll damage, treat any result less than twice your Charisma modifier as twice your Charisma modifier (so with a Charisma bonus of +3 a roll of 1 to 5 would be treated as a 6).

Mathematically, I am aware that it still deals less damage on average (assuming the same Charisma modifier) than the combination of eldritch blast and Agonizing Blast. However, I am wondering if the second part, in particular, sounds "too good" on first reading.

What do you think? Thanks in advance for your views.
Hmm. So at 6th level, when Radiant Soul kicks in, you'd be looking at:

Eldritch blast + Agonizing Blast: Average damage 19, which can be split across two targets
Sacred flame + Focused Flame: Average damage 20.6, one target only

At 8th level, EB goes up to 21 and SF goes up to 25. So it's on the strong side at higher levels, but not overwhelmingly so. Plus, unlike eldritch blast, you can't layer on other invocations to add battlefield control effects (Repelling Blast, Lance of Lethargy, etc.).

The main issue I have with it is that a lot of the time, your die rolls won't matter. If you have 18 Charisma, for instance, 80% of your rolls will get replaced by the minimum--you're tossing dice just for the occasional +1 or +2 damage. I would change the invocation to simply "Sacred flame deals maximum damage on each die roll." That comes very close to matching eldritch blast at most levels, and is a lot simpler.
 

I would go with "Reroll 1s and 2s", just because I prefer to repurpose existing mechanics rather than adding new ones.

Sacred Flame has a different enough use case to Eldritch blast - no disadvantage for using it in melee, may be able to damage a target whose AC is too high to hit - that it doesn't have to match it DP for DP.
 

Personally I'd just allow Agonizing Blast to apply +Cha mod damage per damage dice to any one damage-dealing cantrip, chosen at the time you select the invocation. Same with the other Eldritch-Blast-specific invocation.

I really view the extreme reliance on Eldritch Blast as a glaring design flaw in the Warlock class. Undying pact warlocks doing necrotic damage and efreet genie pact warlocks throwing fire bolt around are much more interesting and thematic than all warlocks being force-damage spammers. But Agonizing Blast is just such a powerful option that it relegates all other damaging cantrips to afterthoughts for warlocks.
 

Hi all, I'm thinking of the following eldritch invocation (working title: Focused Flame) to enable Celestial warlocks to enhance sacred flame:

  • The damage dice increase from d8s to d10s.
  • When you roll damage, treat any result less than twice your Charisma modifier as twice your Charisma modifier (so with a Charisma bonus of +3 a roll of 1 to 5 would be treated as a 6).

Mathematically, I am aware that it still deals less damage on average (assuming the same Charisma modifier) than the combination of eldritch blast and Agonizing Blast. However, I am wondering if the second part, in particular, sounds "too good" on first reading.

What do you think? Thanks in advance for your views.
I think getting a minimum roll of close to the max of the dice is unnecessary - Just saying max damage might be better.

If you want to bring Sacred Flame up to being as good as Eldritch+Agonising, without just making them identical, I might suggest:

Incandescence:
Targets you deal radiant damage to have vulnerability to fire damage until the end of your next turn.
Targets you deal fire damage to have vulnerability to radiant damage until the end of your next turn.

Searing radiance:
The target of your Sacred Flame spell radiates bright light out to a distance of 30ft and dim light out to 60ft until the end of your next turn. While this effect is active, any creature you choose (including the target) that starts its turn within 5 ft of the target takes 1d6 fire damage. This damage increases to 2d6 at 5th level, 3d6 at 11th, and 4d6 at 17th.
 

jgsugden

Legend
It is not unbalancing. It strengths the warlock, but not unreasonably so. I would likely not change the damage die size due to the 6th level ability. Yes, at higher levels you might have them getting a result of 10 on those d8s (or 12 or 14 if they find some Tomes).
 

Rune

Once A Fool
Personally I'd just allow Agonizing Blast to apply +Cha mod damage per damage dice to any one damage-dealing cantrip, chosen at the time you select the invocation. Same with the other Eldritch-Blast-specific invocation.

I really view the extreme reliance on Eldritch Blast as a glaring design flaw in the Warlock class. Undying pact warlocks doing necrotic damage and efreet genie pact warlocks throwing fire bolt around are much more interesting and thematic than all warlocks being force-damage spammers. But Agonizing Blast is just such a powerful option that it relegates all other damaging cantrips to afterthoughts for warlocks.
It seems to me like the best approach would be to let all eldritch blast invocations apply to any damaging cantrip (rewording as necessary – for instance, multiplying range/reach by 2.5 instead of increasing to 300 ft).

This adresses the the issue pointed out in the quote, and in a much simpler way than the OP boosts sacred flame (which, by the way, is too powerful; at 20 Cha, it’ll be max damage every time). And for a Warlock, getting to 20 Cha will probably be a priority already.
 

NotAYakk

Legend

Eldritch Blast​

A beam of crackling energy streaks toward a creature within range. Make a ranged spell Attack against the target. On a hit, the target takes 1d10 force damage.
This blast deals en extra 1d10 force damage at level 5, 11 and 17.

Eldritch Agony​

Starting at 2nd level, a Warlock deals extra damage equal to its charisma damage modifier to creatures damage by its cantrips.
Remove the agonizing blast invocation

Eldritch Deconstruction​

Starting at 5th level, when a Warlock casts a Cantrip that deals more than 1 die of damage to its first target, they may choose to break the spell into two pieces by reducing the damage of the spell by 1 die. If the spell has an attack roll, you can then make a 2nd attack with the cantrip on the same or different target, with the damage dice reduced to 1. If the spell does not have an attack roll, you may target an additional creature within range, and the damage dice of the additional target are also reduced to 1.

At 11th level you on a Cantrip dealing at least 3 dice of damage you can reduce the damage by 2 dice to gain 2 additional targets (as above), and at 17th level if the spell deals at least 4 dice of damage you can reduce the damage by 3 dice to gain 3 additional targets (as above).

That should put most damage dealing cantrips on par with Eldritch Blast. Save-or-damage spells have to be spread out, as imposing a chain of saves is not something you are supposed to do in 5e.

This weakens a Warlock 2 level dip -- you no longer get 4d10+20 damage from it at level 19 -- but makes pure Warlocks, and Warlocks who dip other classes, stronger.
 


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