Mythological Figures: Genghis Khan (5E)

Today Mythological Figures considers one of history’s most wide-reaching rulers, the founder of the Mongol Empire and brilliant tactician: Genghis Khan!





Born as Temüjin (“blacksmith”) Khan, he was renamed Genghis Khan after founding the Mongol Empire which became the largest contiguous empire in history after his death at 65) by uniting nomadic tribes in northeast Asia. They launched Mongol invasions that conquered most of Eurasia (usually with large-scale massacres of the civilian populations), and when he died his kids broke the Mongol Empire into smaller sections that they expanded across the world (using similar bloody tactics). Among the many things he did, he decreed the adoption of the Uyghur script as the Mongol Empire's writing system, practiced meritocracy and encouraged religious tolerance in the Mongol Empire, brought the Silk Road under one cohesive political environment (easing communication and trade between Northeast Asia, Muslim Southwest Asia, and Christian Europe).

Genghis Khan’s life started off rough and wild (his father was poisoned by a rival tribe in his youth and after some impetuousness his family was cast out to fend for their own), he proved to be a canny warrior able to escape capture and win difficult battles, and in 1186 becomes leader of the Mongols. The rise to further power is fraught with betrayals and conspiracies, whether by his family or close friends. Throughout his life however, Genghis Khan displayed a mastery of military strategy, was extremely intelligent, wasn’t afraid to incorporate new ideas or technology into his armies, and while capable of mercy was ultimately a ruthless fellow.

Design Notes: Horsework was extremely important in the Mongolian warrior culture (each soldier typically kept 3-4 horses), and for a while his family literally survived off of what they could hunt and gather so we’re kicking it off with ranger. Speaking of soldiers, we’re going to clad him in lamellar (scale mail) and give him a scimitar, lance, and longbow. Archery skill and mobility were important as well so he’s got feats to represent that, plus to represent his position as a commander a bunch of fighter levels (using the ‘warlord’ archetype). Since he spent plenty of time ruling over others the build finishes up with rogue (‘mastermind’ archetype), making him a fine negotiator.


Genghis Khan
Medium humanoid (human), lawful neutral ranger (animal master) 3/fighter (warmaster) 12/rogue (genius) 5
Armor Class 17 (scale mail, defense fighting style; 19 with shield)
Hit Points 164 (3d10+12d10+5d8+60)
Speed 40 ft. (mounted 60 ft.)

STRDEXCONINTWISCHA
14 (+2)14 (+2)16 (+3)15 (+2)11 (+0)14 (+2)

Saving Throws
Str +8, Dex +8
Skills Animal Handling +6, Deception +8, History +8, Insight +12, Investigation +8, Persuasion +14
Senses passive Perception 10
Languages Common (Middle Mongolian)
Challenge 10 (5,900 XP)

Background: Military Service - Rank. Genghis Khan commands respect in the army. Soldiers loyal to the Khan know he is their superior, and he can use his influence to temporarily requisition simple equipment or horses, or gain entrance to military fortresses and outposts.

Action Surge (1/Short Rest).Once on his turn, Genghis Khan can take an additional action on top of his regular action and a possible bonus action.

Animal Companion (Riding Horse). Genghis Khan’s horse increases its AC, saving throws, attack bonuses, and damage rolls by +6. Telling the beast where to move does not require any action from Genghis Khan, but he can otherwise use an action to make the horse take either the Attack (in which case Genghis Khan makes an attack of his own), Dash, Disengage, Dodge, or Help action. While traveling through grasslands while only with his horse, they move stealthily at a normal pace.

Cunning Action (1/Turn).
Genghis Khan can take a bonus action to take the Dash, Disengage, Help, or Hide action.

Fast Learner. After Genghis Khan has heard a creature speak for 1 minute or longer, he can mimic its manner of speaking as long as he knows the same language as the creature (allowing him to seem like he is local to a given region).

Favored Enemy. Genghis Khan has advantage on Wisdom (Survival) checks to track humans, as well as on Intelligence checks to recall information about them.

Feat: Brilliant.Genghis Khan always knows how long it will be before the next sunset or sunrise, the northerly direction, and can perfectly remember anything he’s experienced within the last 31 days.

Feat: Mobility. Genghis Khan can Dash through difficult terrain without requiring additional movement. Whenever he makes an attack against a creature, he doesn’t provoke opportunity attacks from that creature until the end of his turn.

Feat: Mounted Combat. When Genghis Khan’s mount is attacked, he can make himself the target of that attack. In addition, he has advantage on melee attack rolls when his target is an unmounted creature smaller than his mount (usually any unmounted target of Medium size or smaller). Finally, when Genghis Khan’s mount is subjected to an effect that allows it to make a Dexterity saving throw to take only half damage, it instead takes no damage if it succeeds on the saving throw, and only half damage if it fails.

Feat: Superb Aim. Genghis Khan ignores half cover and three-quarters cover when making a ranged weapon attack, and he doesn’t have disadvantage when attacking at long range. When Genghis Khan makes his first ranged weapon attack in a turn, he can choose to take a -5 penalty to his ranged weapon attack rolls in exchange for a +10 bonus to ranged weapon damage.

Indomitable (1/Long Rest). Genghis Khan can reroll a saving throw that he fails but must use the new roll.

Ranger Features. Genghis Khan has the Natural Explorer (grassland) and Primeval Awareness ranger class features.

Second Wind (1/Short Rest).On his turn, Genghis Khan can use a bonus action to regain 1d10+12 hit points.

Sneak Attack (1/Turn). Genghis Khan deals an extra 10 (3d6) damage when he hits a target with a weapon attack and has advantage on the attack roll, or when the target is within 5 feet of an ally of Genghis Khan that isn’t incapacitated and Genghis Khan doesn’t have disadvantage on the attack roll.

Spellcasting.Genghis Khan is a 1st level spellcaster that uses Wisdom as his spellcasting ability (spell save DC 14; +6 to hit with spell attacks). He has the following spells prepared from the ranger’s spell list:
1st-level (3 slots): hunter’s mark

Tactical Focal Point.Genghis Khan selects a 10-foot square to be his tactical focal point as a bonus action or as part of the attack action, choosing one of the following benefits to apply to it. This lasts until he cannot take actions or uses this feature again. Each time Genghis Khan completes a long rest, he can swap one of these benefits for a different one.

  • Area Clear. When an ally inside Genghis Khan’s focal point hits a creature with an attack, the ally can move that creature 5 feet.
  • Cover the Flank. As many as three target creatures of Genghis Khan’s choice can use a reaction to move up to their speed when an enemy that he can see enters his focal point, so long as that movement does not end in the focal point. If a target creature is ending their movement adjacent to the enemy that triggered this feature, they do not have to use their reaction.
  • Phalanx Sidestep. An ally inside of Genghis Khan’s tactical focal point doesn’t provoke opportunity attacks as long as they move from a square adjacent to an ally and into another square adjacent to an ally. In addition, Genghis Khan and his allies can end their movement in space occupied by an ally. The ally immediately moves 5 feet away from the direction they came in and must end movement inside of his tactical focal point.
  • Run Away! When an ally inside of Genghis Khan’s tactical focal point is forced to make a Dexterity saving throw, they move up to their speed by using their reaction and are no longer subjected to the triggering effect if their movement takes them outside of the area or range.

Tactical Mastery (9/Long Rest).
Genghis Khan uses part of his Attack action or a bonus action to take mastery of the battlefield, granting it to himself and allies within his focal point by expending uses of this feature. A creature that is granted a use of Genghis Khan’s Tactical Mastery can either regain 2d10 hit points when it is granted (any hit points greater than its maximum are temporary hit points) or use it to deal an extra 2d10 damage with an attack.

Tactician. Genghis Khan is able to use the Help action to aid an ally attacking a creature as long as the target of the attack is able to see and hear Genghis Khan and is within 30 feet of him.



ACTIONS
Extra Attack.Genghis Khan can attack three times, instead of once, whenever he takes the Attack action on his turn.

Scimitar. Melee Weapon Attack: +8 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 5 (1d6+2 slashing damage.

Lance. Melee Weapon Attack: +8 to hit, reach 10 ft., one target. Hit: 8 (1d12+2) piercing damage. This attack roll has disadvantage if the target is within 5 feet.

Longbow.Ranged Weapon Attack: +10 to hit, range 150/600 ft., one target. Hit: 6 (1d8+2) piercing damage.

Tactical Maneuver (4/Long Rest). Each time Genghis Khan completes a long rest, he can swap one of these benefits for a different one.

  • Coordinated Blows. Genghis Khan takes the Attack action and uses deft commands to coordinate his companions to attack enemies and set them off-guard, knocking them down. Until the end of Genghis Khan’s turn, enemies inside of his tactical focal point make a DC 16 Strength saving throw whenever they are hit by an attack or are they are knocked prone.
  • Group Assault.Genghis Khan takes the Attack action and chooses a creature he can see within his tactical focal point. The creature makes a DC 16 Constitution saving throw at the start of his next turn provided that Genghis Khan or an ally hits it with an attack after he activates this feature. The creature has disadvantage on the saving throw if it has been hit by 3 or more attacks this turn. On a failure, it is stunned until the end of Genghis Khan’s next turn.
  • Move to Flank. Genghis Khan takes the Attack action and calls out to as many as 2 allies that can see or hear him. They can use their reactions to move up to their speed. A creature makes a DC 16 Strength saving throw if it is adjacent to these allies or Genghis Khan and one of these allies at the end of their movement. On a failure, it is restrained until the end of Genghis Khan’s next turn.


REACTIONS

Leading Example. When Genghis Khan hits a creature with a weapon attack, until the end of his next turn the target of his attack has disadvantage on saving throws against his Tactical Maneuvers.

Uncanny Dodge. When an attacker Genghis Khan can see hits him with an attack, Genghis Khan can use his reaction to halve the attack’s damage against him.
 
Mike Myler

Comments

Mike Myler

Explorer
My opinion is Genghis Khan is one of the best examples of the warlord, class designed for 5th Ed by Robert Schwalb.
That *is* OGL too, and no more or less RAW than the unofficial Mearls warlord archetype used here. In future we might see Schwalb's warlord up here. :D
 
Best quote from Genghis Khan," I am the Scourge of God. If you had not committed such great sins, then God would not have created me to punish you". Now that's trash talk.
 

Alzrius

The EN World kitten
Best quote from Genghis Khan," I am the Scourge of God. If you had not committed such great sins, then God would not have created me to punish you". Now that's trash talk.
I've always been partial to the Pious Augustus version of the quote, from Eternal Darkness: Sanity's Requiem:

"I am the Scourge of God, appointed to chastise you, since no one knows the remedy for your iniquity except me. You are wicked, but I am more wicked than you. So be silent!"
 

ZenBear

Villager
Genghis Khan has got it goin on. He’s all I want, and I’ve waited for so long. Kublai can’t you see, you’re just not the Khan for me. I know it might be wrong, but I’m in love with Genghis Khan!
 

Ramaster

Explorer
I've checked with my buddy who is a history teacher at NYU and he told me that, in fact, Genghis Khan was a spellcaster that used Inteligence as his spellcasting score. Please, improve your research.
 

Mike Myler

Explorer
I've checked with my buddy who is a history teacher at NYU and he told me that, in fact, Genghis Khan was a spellcaster that used Inteligence as his spellcasting score. Please, improve your research.
I *did* consider giving him a geomancer level but ultimately opted out because it isn't RAW. :/
 

ParanoydStyle

Peace Among Worlds
nerdly point of order: isn't Genghis Khan a historical figure, not a mythological figure? I mean, dude definitely existed.
 

Mike Myler

Explorer
nerdly point of order: isn't Genghis Khan a historical figure, not a mythological figure? I mean, dude definitely existed.
I don't think many mythological figures were made up in their entirety and have somebody that was the original person, accruing more and more glory and deeds in the ancestral game of telephone.

That said the Mythological Figures column does also include proper historical figures (Rasputin is the most recent) and some literary ones as well (Conan, Tarzan).
 

Derren

Adventurer
Best quote from Genghis Khan," I am the Scourge of God. If you had not committed such great sins, then God would not have created me to punish you". Now that's trash talk.
That quote was not from Genghis but from Timur a century later.

Edit: My bad, that quote is from Khan. The Augustus version above "I am the Scourge of God, appointed to chastise you...." is from Timur.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

Mike Myler

Explorer
Why 20 levels? And why restrict yourself to PC classes anyways?
All the Mythological Figures are built RAW so if, say, you're doing a one shot game and needed a quick PC badaboom we've got you covered. Anyone of sufficient importance/need is 20th level (Odysseus, John Henry) and rarely if every above that (Merlin screeched in at 23rd or 24th level I think).
 

Dahak

Villager
I'm assuming the AGE tag is accidental? I stumbled into this article from a tag link for that system.
 

Garthanos

Arcadian Knight
You havent done Alexander the Great have you? Mythic as in thought he was a god... ok there is medication that will cure that but.
 

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