D&D 5E Paladin's Steed: Unicorn help

I think it all depends on the lore of unicorns in your setting. If you are fully committed to accepting the official lore of unicorns then it's really not going to work. If you feel free to tweak it a bit you can (in increasing levels of lore modification):

A) Say the paladin's horse has been blessed by the unicorn god or whatever, and give it a unicorn horn, ornamental or as a replacement for the hoof attacks.

B) Decide that such specially blessed (or whatever) horses turn into unicorns, and that this is where unicorns come from, and then have the steed gradually change to unicorn stats over the course of the next ten levels or so.

C) Ignore the statblock for unicorns. Just stick a horn on a horse and say that in your world that's all that a unicorn is.
 

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The paladin in my game has a "unicorn" that is just a warhorse stat-wise with an added d6 horn attack (when the warhorse gets a d8 attack anyway, if I remember correctly).
 

Leatherhead

Possibly a Idiot.
CR is all about DPR, so you can take the Warhorse from Find steed:

  • Bump up it's INT and CHA to like 8 and 14 respectively.
  • Make it a celestial that's immune to poison (doesn't change the defensive calculations)
  • Give it a Horn attack that deals no more damage than it's hooves attack (doesn't change the offensive calculations)
  • Give it an ability to heal for something like 1d4+2 hps and heal poison, 3 times per long rest. (The only questionable part, but in-play PCs are allowed to be slightly more powerful than PCs made fresh from a book)

And there is an "unicorn spirit".
 

Blue

Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
As an aside, I hate the Find Steed spell and abhor the Greater Steed spell. The Ranger isn’t using up a spell slot to get his companion nor is the Druid giving up spell slots to Wildshape. I’d rather that the paladin just have a squire or mount as a class feature (with bonus action/reaction uses of the Help action if they don’t want someone tagging along). And it be an ability that grows with them as they level, automatically.
Well, yes. There already was a Unicorn connection being set up in game - but it was for after a particular event. The player just sparked it early with the Find Steed question and now it's enflamed the imagination of the other players.
 

Blue

Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
@Blue Couldn't you just homebrew a CR 1/2 version of a unicorn and call it a "young unicorn" that can be conjured with the 2nd level find steed spell?

And then if your party ever hits 13th level when the paladin gets 4th level spell slots, you could make a CR 2 version of that unicorn and call it an "adolescent unicorn" that can be conjured with find greater familiar?
That's what I tried before posting, but the abilities that make it unicorn-y all disappear by the CR 2 version, much less the CR 1/2 version.
 

Blue

Ravenous Bugblatter Beast of Traal
I think it all depends on the lore of unicorns in your setting. [Various suggestions for "not a MM Unicorn" snipped]
I mentioned that there already has been established in-game and there is an existing connection between him and the unicorns. So the lore is set as Unicorn, with some additional in-world lore (a connection to the elves and the feywild) also established. Highly magical.
 

Fallen star

Explorer
Give him a pacifist unicorn that can't attack anything.

Edit: after reading unicorn stats, take away teleporting and the entangle spell also. The rest is fine as-is.
 

Weiley31

Legend
Perhaps the unicorn’s horn can tap into the paladin’s Lay on Hands ability and maybe use the paladin’s smite through its horn attack (using the paladin’s spell slots).
That is a FANTASTIC idea and I'm jacking it if I ever get a Paladin who gets a Unicorn Mount.
 

Weiley31

Legend
I would say use the stat block for the Tasha's Beast of the Land Primal Beast. Its default Ability Scores are pretty much near, right around the Unicorn's. Then when you gain the Greater Stead version, you can boost it to the Unicorn Ability Scores. Apply the Horn/Hooves to it.

When it becomes a Unicorn, just add its spells to the Paladin. Healing is replaced by the Paladin's Lay on Hands. It can use Smite, which feeds off the Paladin's spell slots as mentioned before. Loses Multi-Attack but the Paladin can swap in one of his extra attacks to have the Unicorn do an attack.
 

Quickleaf

Legend
That's what I tried before posting, but the abilities that make it unicorn-y all disappear by the CR 2 version, much less the CR 1/2 version.
I took a stab, and this looks pretty close to a CR 1/2 to me...

The offensive CR is 1 – due to avg damage 12 and attack +4.
The offensive CR is 1/8 – due to hp 32 and eff AC 14.
Averaged, that's pretty close to 1/2.


Unicorn Yearling
Large Celestial, Lawful Good
Armor Class 12
Hit Points 32 (5d10+5)
Speed 50 ft.
STR DEX CON INT WIS CHA
14 (+2) 14 (+2) 12 (+1) 9 (-1) 14 (+2) 12 (+1)
Damage Immunities poison
Condition Immunities charmed, paralyzed, poisoned
Senses darkvision 60 ft., passive Perception 12
Languages Celestial, Elvish, Sylvan, telepathy 60 ft. (with bonded rider and related unicorns only)
Challenge 1/2 (100 XP) Proficiency Bonus +2

Magic Resistance. The unicorn has advantage on saving throws against spells and other magical effects.

Spellcasting. The unicorn’s spellcasting ability is Charisma (spell save DC 12). It can innately cast the following spells, requiring no components:
At will: druidcraft
1/day each: detect evil and good, pass without trace

Actions

Multiattack.
The unicorn makes an attack with its hooves and with its horn.

Hooves. Melee Weapon Attack: +4 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 7 (1d6+2) bludgeoning damage.

Horn. Melee Weapon Attack: +4 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 4 (1d4+2) piercing damage.

Lesser Healing Touch (2/day). The unicorn touches another creature with its horn. The target magically regains 6 (1d8+2) hit points.

Lesser Shimmering Shield. The unicorn creates a shimmering magical field around itself or its bonded rider (if it can see the bonded rider within 30 feet). The target gains a +2 bonus to AC until the end of the unicorn’s next turn.
 

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