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D&D 5E The Binder, a WIP Homebrew Class for 5e

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
Now, please understand that this is a rough draft.

The idea is to play a ritual master who binds powerful energies to their will. The flavor of their magic is that it is all sourced in rituals done throughout the day, during rests, or when first gaining a new ability, and then channeled through ritual implements, circles of power, arcane glyphs and seals, etc.

Some of these powers are called Vestiges. These are more directly linked to a Power in the multiverse, a place of power, an artifact, etc. Things like the Reigns of The Erlking, which tie you to the Great Hunt, and grant you power over mountable creatures and empower your ability to hunt. These are much like Warlock Invocations, but tied specifically to the idea of vestiges, or remnants of beings, places, events, and objects, of power.

Some Vestiges are more simple and open-ended, such as the Vestiges of The 9 Circles of Power, each of which gives a single casting of a 6-9th level spell, and the ability to learn spells of that level, and cannot be taken out of order. ie, Vestige of The 6th Circle allows you to cast a 6th level spell once a day, learn 1 6th level spell when you take the vestige, and learn more 6th level spells as you adventure.

There are also a Greater Vestige Seal, which allows a level 11 or higher Binder to bind truly immensely powerful Vestiges. Something like the shadow of the dead god Io, or the residual energy of the death of a planet, or echoes of worship and sacrifice of an ancient temple. The Seal can only be used once, and recharges over 1-9 days.

The other of 3 pillars of the class's identity is spellcasting, and especially Ritual Casting. The Binder learns and prepares spells like a wizard, has wizard-style ritual casting, but casts spells like a warlock.

The last pillar of the base class are your Implements. You choose one at level 3, and master the other two at later levels.

Also central to the class, as all classes, are the subclasses, which you gain at level 1. Your subclass, called your Binding Seal, determines your primary combat efficacy, especially at level 1, when you have yet to gain pact magic, and only have ritual casting. This is the biggest part of your power, though spellcasting certainly competes with it in terms of giving you your punch. Your spell list is not built for combat, however, so most Binders will rely primarily on subclass to kick ass.

  • The Seal of Goetic Evocation is focused fully on being a Summoner. You choose a creature type specialisation, and can turn anything you summon into that type, and empower any creature that you summon or gain magical control of, and eventually you can magically give your allies your specialization creature type and all the benefits of your class features, as if they were a creature of that type that you had summoned.
  • The Seal of The Gathered Swarm is focused on swarms, and creating areas of effect. not yet written
  • The Seal of The Heretic is a Binder that has bound an angellic power to their will, gaining divine magics and angelic gifts.
  • The Seal of The Ninth Gate is a teleporter who can hack teleportation circles and the like, and create and dispel things like Glyphs of Warding, and stuff like that, and uses gates to help their allies with mobility, defense, and getting around enemy tactics, and can use gates to change the directionality and range of spells using portal physics. not yet written
  • The Seal of The Emergent Truth is your classic Jekyll/Hyde bastard. You turn yourself into a monster. not yet written
  • The Seal of The Blood Bond is hyper focused on buffing the new spell Bind Servant, turning your power into your Servant's power and watching it wreak havoc in your name.


I'd love to hear your feedback on this iteration of it. The main elements I am still not fully sure of are:
  • Gaining spellcasting at level 2, as a "full" caster. The subclass makes you effective without spellcasting, but I don't know if I'm working too hard to put my vision of a caster who is a ritualist first into mechanical representation.
  • Making full spellcasting optional, via vestiges, rather than automatic.
  • Gaining spells known from Binding Seal and from Impliments. This isn't really a power boost so much as a versatility boost, so it's not a balance issue for me, but I worry that giving too many spells known might overshadow the ability to learn spells as you adventure? note here that I will also be including rules for researching and inventing spells in the suppliment that this class will be found in, and those rules will include both downtime and setting aside time as part of each long rest, so that learning new spells is less campaign dependent for wizards, binders, and ritual casters who can learn spells this way. Also, all classes can learn new spells via training and research, but if you don't have a class feature it takes a long time and has limitations.
  • The Greater Vestige Seals. I really like the idea of a power that is so out of the league of any PC that even at high level you cannot use it more than once per day (I'm considering a very high level upgrade that lets you recharge by spending a spell slot at the end of a long rest), and it is just well outside the norm for what you could normally do. On the other hand, I gotta actually design and roughly balance these things, and I even suspect that maybe they'd be better as magic items that don't regain their charge until a month has passed, and binders can recharge them a bit faster by binding to them. IDK.
    • Another idea is to move this idea into the Binding Seal, but that greatly limits what you can do with it.
    • I really like the idea of it being a passive benefit befitting a normal vestige, that you must bind/attune, can only have one active, and can manifest one that doesn't have to be the same one you have bound to you right now. IDK.
    • Maybe you should be able to bind multiple, but can still only ever use one before recharging your Greater Vestige Seal?

Anyway, this is certainly not a direct port of any previous version of the Binder, but rather a summoner class whose flavor and principles are directly inspired by those of past Binders. @TwoSix I know you wanted to see what I've got, so here is the rough second draft. Some abilities aren't even named yet, so please take it as a rough draft.
 

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Couple of questions:

Why only gaining spellcasting at 2nd level?
The class is a full caster: superior to a Warlock and has a powerful and versatile spell list.
The abilities gained at 1st level do not replace spellcasting, and several of them directly reference it - Leading to the class gaining abilities at 1st level that it cannot actually use.

What is up with the weapon proficiencies?
They don't even get simple weapon proficiency, yet they are also given a superior martial weapon in the glaive. It seems odd that a class can't even use a club or spear, but is then taught a specialised battlefield weapon.

Goetic Key seems to be taking aspects of both a Wizard spellbook (you get to add 2 free spells every level) and that of a Tome Pact Warlock with the Book of Ancient Secrets invocation (you can also add non-class ritual spells). Is that correct, or is it missing text limiting it to Binder ritual spells?

Implements:
Bell: You get your Int bonus to the DC of any creature's attempt to escape from your control. - Is this only in the context of creatures summoned by you, or is it wider? (Would enchantment spells (Charm, Hold, Dominate etc) spells get this benefit? Could do with a bit of clarification.

Blade: You should probably add a restriction to the ability to use a cantrip as an attack. I'm guessing this class isn't going to get Extra Attack, but there is some fairly serious abuse potential in multiclassing so you get to use multiple, scaling cantrips as an action. Looks like there is no ability mod to damage potential for that ability however, which is good.

Bowl: - The Binder is basically just getting an extra spell slot? So a 5th level Bowl Binder has three short-rest 3rd-level slots compared to the two that Warlocks and other Binders get?

Mastery of the Second Implement:
As I read it, the only benefit of the implements that require attunement is the additional spells to your prepared spells?
The Int bonus to spell DCs of the Bell, and the extra spell of the Bowl etc do not require attunement?

Vestiges of the Xth Circle: Seem to be like the Warlock's Mystic Arcanum but with the additional bonus of being more swappable from others you find.

Spells Maths:

Spells known: At first glance it looks like the spells know by a Binder are similar to those of a Wizard with the Ritual Caster feat. - However it looks like they can gain more spells known from vestiges.

Spells prepared - It looks like the Binder has more spells prepared than any other class? Binder level + Ability modifier + Implement spells + Binding Seal spells.

Even dedicated casters generally only get 2 bonus spells prepared each odd level up to level 9. The Binder gets 3.
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
Couple of questions:
Thank you for the useful feedback!
Why only gaining spellcasting at 2nd level?
The class is a full caster: superior to a Warlock and has a powerful and versatile spell list.
The abilities gained at 1st level do not replace spellcasting, and several of them directly reference it - Leading to the class gaining abilities at 1st level that it cannot actually use.
The Spellcasting needs a lot of rewording, for sure.
The subclass should absolutely “replace” Spellcasting at level one.

You get ritual casting for utility, and your subclass gives you plenty of combat efficacy. If that isn’t the case right now with the existing subclasses, that can be fixed, but level 1 isnt actually an important balance level, it’s mostly just important to avoid being noticeably too powerful at level 1, and even that is mostly for MC consideration.

What is up with the weapon proficiencies?
They don't even get simple weapon proficiency, yet they are also given a superior martial weapon in the glaive. It seems odd that a class can't even use a club or spear, but is then taught a specialised battlefield weapon.
giving them simple weapon proficiency is fine, but the glaive isn’t just a “specialized battlefield weapon”, it is used here to represent weapons like Odin’s long fighting spear, the reaper’s scythe, etc.

Goetic Key seems to be taking aspects of both a Wizard spellbook (you get to add 2 free spells every level) and that of a Tome Pact Warlock with the Book of Ancient Secrets invocation (you can also add non-class ritual spells). Is that correct, or is it missing text limiting it to Binder ritual spells?
Yes, they are better ritualists than spellcasters, and are better ritualists than pretty much anyone else.
Implements:
Bell: You get your Int bonus to the DC of any creature's attempt to escape from your control. - Is this only in the context of creatures summoned by you, or is it wider? (Would enchantment spells (Charm, Hold, Dominate etc) spells get this benefit? Could do with a bit of clarification.
All controlled creatures. Summoning and controlling is pretty much the central ID of the class, so having a way to go hard on that is a must, but the class needs to be broad enough that you don’t have to specialize in that, and can branch out a bit instead.
Blade: You should probably add a restriction to the ability to use a cantrip as an attack. I'm guessing this class isn't going to get Extra Attack, but there is some fairly serious abuse potential in multiclassing so you get to use multiple, scaling cantrips as an action. Looks like there is no ability mod to damage potential for that ability however, which is good.
IIRC you do it as an action. I’ll check the wording to be sure, but the intention is that it’s an action, and that you are attacking as if you’d taken the attack action. So, it can benefit from things that benefit the attack action. The wording is rough, but will be greatly clarified with iteration.
Bowl: - The Binder is basically just getting an extra spell slot? So a 5th level Bowl Binder has three short-rest 3rd-level slots compared to the two that Warlocks and other Binders get?
Yes. This is where it’s most key to remind the reader that you end up with all three Implements eventually.
Mastery of the Second Implement:
As I read it, the only benefit of the implements that require attunement is the additional spells to your prepared spells?
The Int bonus to spell DCs of the Bell, and the extra spell of the Bowl etc do not require attunement?
You can only have one Implement active at a time, and all benefits of the Implement require it being your active Implement. “Attune” was a hasty word choice. I know I need to make that explicit.
Vestiges of the Xth Circle: Seem to be like the Warlock's Mystic Arcanum but with the additional bonus of being more swappable from others you find.
I’m not sure what you mean by more swappable?
Spells Maths:

Spells known: At first glance it looks like the spells know by a Binder are similar to those of a Wizard with the Ritual Caster feat. - However it looks like they can gain more spells known from vestiges.
Just like a Wizard can find scrolls or spell books or learn from another Wizard.
Spells prepared - It looks like the Binder has more spells prepared than any other class? Binder level + Ability modifier + Implement spells + Binding Seal spells.

Even dedicated casters generally only get 2 bonus spells prepared each odd level up to level 9. The Binder gets 3.
That’s one extra prepared spell. I’m okay with that. The class spell list is one area where power will come down as I iterate and collect feedback about balance, so having more prepared, from a spell list that only has combat power in control and summoning, which are nearly all concentration spells, is probably fine. I’ll keep an eye on it though, and possibly decrease the subclass to 1/level if really necessary.
 

TwoSix

Unserious gamer
Interesting. I think the overall skeleton is sound, it's a warlock base, but with Eldritch Blast's and the invocations' power budget shunted into the subclasses (which seem stronger, generally, than Warlock's) and the vestiges.

I like the overall idea of vestiges, they're presented in the fiction as almost like found magic items, which is cool. I think giving them a distinct niche from warlock invocations is difficult since their number scales identically with warlock invocations; I wonder if giving less overall but making each of them stronger and more distinct would give them a unique role. Have a couple of useful low-level vestiges available to everyone, and then more specific Implement-related vestiges and and maybe a subclass-related vestige at higher levels.

Goetic Evocation seems to be covering a lot of ground (supporting a menu of 5 options is a lot of work for one subclass), I think establishing an overall subclass power level with some more focused subclasses might make future divine work easier. Some of the Goetic Evocation options (fey, especially) are begging for their own focused subclass, especially since so many of the vestiges already done are fey-inspired.
 


The Spellcasting needs a lot of rewording, for sure.
The subclass should absolutely “replace” Spellcasting at level one.

You get ritual casting for utility, and your subclass gives you plenty of combat efficacy. If that isn’t the case right now with the existing subclasses, that can be fixed, but level 1 isnt actually an important balance level, it’s mostly just important to avoid being noticeably too powerful at level 1, and even that is mostly for MC consideration.
The aside from an oddly superior weapon, the class doesn't get much at level one, and subclasses don't contribute much as written. - Although you choose them at level one, many of their abilities seem to be unusable until you actually get spellcasting.

Most of your power issues don't seem to kick in until level 3, which is where the class gets the abilities that make it a superior caster to Warlocks etc. That is probably the point where multiclass dips may be an issue.

The level 1 multiclass dips for things like converting damage to radiant, and access to spells like Bind Servant are granted anyway.

giving them simple weapon proficiency is fine, but the glaive isn’t just a “specialized battlefield weapon”, it is used here to represent weapons like Odin’s long fighting spear, the reaper’s scythe, etc.
Why not use the actual spear to represent Odin's spear? It is it's balance, not length that is noticeable, and he does use it for throwing, which kinda rules out the glaive. Scythe is an improvised tool dealing piercing damage consisting of a blade on a stick. - Why not just use spear and remove the Thrown property?

If you want the class to have the best weapons, just give it Martial weapon proficiency. Cherrypicking a superior option from the category doesn't change balancing considerations compared to just giving the class access to any of them.

All controlled creatures. Summoning and controlling is pretty much the central ID of the class, so having a way to go hard on that is a must, but the class needs to be broad enough that you don’t have to specialize in that, and can branch out a bit instead.
That wording really needs tightening up then. Clarify whether it would apply in the case of Charm, Hold, Dominate-type spells and abilities - What about the Command spell for example? Is this only to break out of effects, or does it apply to the initial saving throw as well?



IIRC you do it as an action. I’ll check the wording to be sure, but the intention is that it’s an action, and that you are attacking as if you’d taken the attack action. So, it can benefit from things that benefit the attack action. The wording is rough, but will be greatly clarified with iteration.
Currently it is as an Attack as part of the Attack action. So you get multiple cantrips if you have Extra Attacks, haste etc, and it also enables bonus action attacks etc.
Outside of potential reach/range (no information on ranged weapon implements yet) of the weapon, it doesn't seem to have any impact on the effect. Its a melee spell attack even if applied at range, so you're not getting disadvantage if you're in melee, but otherwise I can't see much point. You might at least allow magical or similar bonuses on the weapon to apply to the spell attack roll for example.

You can only have one Implement active at a time, and all benefits of the Implement require it being your active Implement. “Attune” was a hasty word choice. I know I need to make that explicit.
Attune works. You just have to make it clearer that you need to be attuned to the implement to get any benefits of it.

I’m not sure what you mean by more swappable?
Seals have text allowing you to learn further spells of that level. Mystic Arcanum does not allow this.

Just like a Wizard can find scrolls or spell books or learn from another Wizard.
Does adding a spell from a scroll or spell book to their Goetic Key allow the Binder to prepare it? Or can it only be cast as a Ritual?

That’s one extra prepared spell. I’m okay with that. The class spell list is one area where power will come down as I iterate and collect feedback about balance, so having more prepared, from a spell list that only has combat power in control and summoning, which are nearly all concentration spells, is probably fine. I’ll keep an eye on it though, and possibly decrease the subclass to 1/level if really necessary.
Speaking of the spells, while the list looks pretty powerful, you really need to fix the Bind Servant spell.
Remove the Ritual tag, give it a duration (same or less than) Summon Beast, make it concentration, and raise it to the same level.

As written it is deeply, horrifically, broken.
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
The aside from an oddly superior weapon, the class doesn't get much at level one, and subclasses don't contribute much as written. - Although you choose them at level one, many of their abilities seem to be unusable until you actually get spellcasting.
If you won’t actually engage with my replies, further communication is probably not going to be fruitful. The rough draft of subclasses aren’t balanced yet. I know. I literally said they haven’t been balanced yet. 🤷‍♂️
Most of your power issues don't seem to kick in until level 3, which is where the class gets the abilities that make it a superior caster to Warlocks etc. That is probably the point where multiclass dips may be an issue.
I disagree that it’s a superior caster.
The level 1 multiclass dips for things like converting damage to radiant, and access to spells like Bind Servant are granted anyway.

Why not use the actual spear to represent Odin's spear? It is it's balance, not length that is noticeable, and he does use it for throwing, which kinda rules out the glaive. Scythe is an improvised tool dealing piercing damage consisting of a blade on a stick. - Why not just use spear and remove the Thrown property?
Because that’s kludgy and what proficiencies you get should be simple.
If you want the class to have the best weapons, just give it Martial weapon proficiency. Cherrypicking a superior option from the category doesn't change balancing considerations compared to just giving the class access to any of them.
It again seems like you didn’t actually read what I wrote, and are instead just looking for an argument.
That wording really needs tightening up then.
Did you not read any of the several times I made it explicitly clear this is a rough draft. Getting hung up on wording rather than engaging with concept is the opposite of helpful.
Clarify whether it would apply in the case of Charm, Hold, Dominate-type spells and abilities - What about the Command spell for example? Is this only to break out of effects, or does it apply to the initial saving throw as well?
It is explicitly checks and saves to get out of being controlled. And again, yes I know the wording isn’t finished. I said that in the OP.
Currently it is as an Attack as part of the Attack action. So you get multiple cantrips if you have Extra Attacks, haste etc, and it also enables bonus action attacks etc.
Outside of potential reach/range (no information on ranged weapon implements yet) of the weapon, it doesn't seem to have any impact on the effect. Its a melee spell attack even if applied at range, so you're not getting disadvantage if you're in melee, but otherwise I can't see much point. You might at least allow magical or similar bonuses on the weapon to apply to the spell attack roll for example.
The point is that you can use chill touch in melee, or booming blade with a thrown weapon.
Attune works. You just have to make it clearer that you need to be attuned to the implement to get any benefits of it.
No, it clearly doesn’t work, because you still think the idea is that it requires attunement, which I’ve said it doesn’t. You just have to choose which implement you are using, and thus benefiting from. Haven’t decided when you can change implements yet. Thematically it could be like switching weapons, but in game terms it’s probably better if it takes a bit longer.
Seals have text allowing you to learn further spells of that level. Mystic Arcanum does not allow this.
Right, because Binders are prepared casters. They can still only prepare and cast 1 spell of that level.
Does adding a spell from a scroll or spell book to their Goetic Key allow the Binder to prepare it? Or can it only be cast as a Ritual?
Why would it be restricted to ritual casting?
Speaking of the spells, while the list looks pretty powerful, you really need to fix the Bind Servant spell.
Remove the Ritual tag, give it a duration (same or less than) Summon Beast, make it concentration, and raise it to the same level.

As written it is deeply, horrifically, broken.
No, it isn’t. You’d have to see the stat block to even guess if it’s broken, but it sure as hell isn’t. It’s Find Familiar with the ability to upcast, and make the familiar bigger when you do so.
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
Interesting. I think the overall skeleton is sound, it's a warlock base, but with Eldritch Blast's and the invocations' power budget shunted into the subclasses (which seem stronger, generally, than Warlock's) and the vestiges.
Exactly the idea! Sweet.
I like the overall idea of vestiges, they're presented in the fiction as almost like found magic items, which is cool. I think giving them a distinct niche from warlock invocations is difficult since their number scales identically with warlock invocations; I wonder if giving less overall but making each of them stronger and more distinct would give them a unique role. Have a couple of useful low-level vestiges available to everyone, and then more specific Implement-related vestiges and and maybe a subclass-related vestige at higher levels.

Goetic Evocation seems to be covering a lot of ground (supporting a menu of 5 options is a lot of work for one subclass), I think establishing an overall subclass power level with some more focused subclasses might make future divine work easier. Some of the Goetic Evocation options (fey, especially) are begging for their own focused subclass, especially since so many of the vestiges already done are fey-inspired.
Great feedback, thank you!

I totally get what you’re saying with Goetic Evocation. The idea is that this is the subclass for the straight up summoner, but I felt that needed a specialization element to really pop.

On one hand, I don’t want to build a distinct summoner for each creature type.

On the other hand, a Seal of The Tuatha could be really cool.

On vestiges, I totally get that. I think I will forge ahead as is for now, and circle back to that when the class is a little closer to balanced and solid. It depends on just how strong subclasses end up being, and how many spells get taken off the spell list, etc.

I may completely scrub all blasting spells from the base class, for instance.
 

If you won’t actually engage with my replies, further communication is probably not going to be fruitful. The rough draft of subclasses aren’t balanced yet. I know. I literally said they haven’t been balanced yet. 🤷‍♂️
Yes, and you're asking for help with potential issues. I'm not getting into power balance, I'm pointing out that it has class abilities granted at first level that it can't use at first level.

Because that’s kludgy and what proficiencies you get should be simple.
Which is why I'm suggesting that if you want the class to have access to a wide range of weapons to represent all the possible archetypes its easier to just give it martial weapons.

Did you not read any of the several times I made it explicitly clear this is a rough draft. Getting hung up on wording rather than engaging with concept is the opposite of helpful.
You have said that its a rough draft. That is why we're offering help in making it less rough, and pointing out potential issues where the wording means concept or mechanics are unclear.

It is explicitly checks and saves to get out of being controlled. And again, yes I know the wording isn’t finished. I said that in the OP.
Yep, but how that actually translates into the concept is not clear because of the fuzziness of the 5e ruleset.
The archetype being very good at using command spells and not being able to break out of their dominate effects is a quite distant concept to one which simply has an iron grip over its summoned creatures for example.

No, it clearly doesn’t work, because you still think the idea is that it requires attunement, which I’ve said it doesn’t. You just have to choose which implement you are using, and thus benefiting from. Haven’t decided when you can change implements yet. Thematically it could be like switching weapons, but in game terms it’s probably better if it takes a bit longer.
OK. So it doesn't requite an attunement slot etc? Given it actually changes your spells prepared, you could use attunement restrictions and just say they don't cost slots. Short or long rests seem appropriate - This doesn't seem like a thing that you could easily swap mid-combat.
If you

Why would it be restricted to ritual casting?
I wasn't sure. You compared the way vestiges granted extra spells as like the way a wizard could find scrolls, books, or learn from another wizard. This confused me because I thought the Binder already was able to incorporate scrolls, books etc like a wizard could. I thought vestige-granted spells were in addition to this.

No, it isn’t. You’d have to see the stat block to even guess if it’s broken, but it sure as hell isn’t. It’s Find Familiar with the ability to upcast, and make the familiar bigger when you do so.
The spell says that its like Summon Beast. If I've misread it and its not running off a combat-capable statblock, then that mitigates the level issues.
However you still have the issue of a spell that permanently creates an ally with no spell slot cost. Hence broken.- I'd suggest at least limiting the number of servants you can have at any one time.

I was under the impression that you were asking us to highlight potential issues with the working, concept or rules, and this is a potential biggie.
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
Yes, and you're asking for help with potential issues. I'm not getting into power balance, I'm pointing out that it has class abilities granted at first level that it can't use at first level.
And like I said, that’s a wording issue that will be solved in the next draft.
Which is why I'm suggesting that if you want the class to have access to a wide range of weapons to represent all the possible archetypes its easier to just give it martial weapons.
Plenty of classes have a curated list. I’ll make it simple weapons and the curated list, but I’m not gonna give them the same weapon list as fighters. That’s boring and fails to make clear the flavor.
You have said that its a rough draft. That is why we're offering help in making it less rough, and pointing out potential issues where the wording means concept or mechanics are unclear.

Yep, but how that actually translates into the concept is not clear because of the fuzziness of the 5e ruleset.
The archetype being very good at using command spells and not being able to break out of their dominate effects is a quite distant concept to one which simply has an iron grip over its summoned creatures for example.
Okay, I thought I had clarified in a previous reply that the intention is for it to work with any spell where the target is under the control of the Binder, or has been summoned by the Binder.
OK. So it doesn't requite an attunement slot etc? Given it actually changes your spells prepared, you could use attunement restrictions and just say they don't cost slots. Short or long rests seem appropriate - This doesn't seem like a thing that you could easily swap mid-combat.
If you
Forum glitch, at the end? Rest works, as would a 1 or 10 minute ritual.
I will also have to keep in mind when doing the next pass that the intent for extra spells was that Seal spells are known but not auto-prepared, while Impliment spells are known and auto-prepared. I’d forgotten about that and I think I forgot to change the wording appropriately.
I wasn't sure. You compared the way vestiges granted extra spells as like the way a wizard could find scrolls, books, or learn from another wizard. This confused me because I thought the Binder already was able to incorporate scrolls, books etc like a wizard could. I thought vestige-granted spells were in addition to this.
I’m not really sure what the initial disconnect even was? Some vestiges might teach a spell, yes. Likely on a “you can add these spells to your Goetic Key” basis, possibly even requiring you to spend time and gold, but that is probably bad gameplay. (Good thematically, but bad gameplay)

again, the doc this will be part of will also have expanded rules for learning/inventing spells, during downtime and during adventuring.
The spell says that its like Summon Beast. If I've misread it and its not running off a combat-capable statblock, then that mitigates the level issues.
I’ll reread it when I’m at home. I thought it also referenced find familiar. It’s basically Find Familiar (light) with scaling if you spend a spell slot similar to Summon Beast.
However you still have the issue of a spell that permanently creates an ally with no spell slot cost. Hence broken.- I'd suggest at least limiting the number of servants you can have at any one time.
Sure, and it will be mutually exclusive with find familiar. In fact, it may have language that references familiars directly, so you can cast the spell on a familiar using a slot to empower it.
I was under the impression that you were asking us to highlight potential issues with the working, concept or rules, and this is a potential biggie.
I may end up making it a class feature that empowers find familiar rather than a spell, but either way the concept is to always have a companion that you can spend resources to empower. Probably should make it a class feature, and let the subclasses modify it.
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
Okay! So, rather than necessarily boosting subclasses at level 1 or putting Spellcasting at level 1, I am considering adding some version of the following:

Bound Servant
Starting at level 1, you can perform a 1 hour ritual to bind into your service a creature of an origin of your choosing; a beast, monstrosity, fey, fiend, or aberration. The Servant uses one of the statistics for one of; Servant of Air, Servant of Earth, Servant of Shadow, Servant of The Wood, which can be found below.

CR 1/8 or so statblocks. Not combat useful as is. Each has a feature named Empower Servant, where you use a spell a lot to give a boost based on spell level to the servant, scaling similarly to the Tasha’s summon spells, and a feature that allows you to cast a spell that would normally summon a single creature to instead transform your servant into that creature.

Basic concept seem sound?
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
Probably simplify that a bit, actually.

So, the actual stat block of the servant.

I said 1/8 CR before, but the base CR will likely depend on how balanced I can make the spellcasting, vestiges, and subclasses, with most of the servant's power being how other features buff them. At least one subclass will basically put all of it's power into the servant, and even be able to spend HD to heal the servant.

Another consideration is whether I want to also rewrite Find Familiar, or leave it alone. THe problem I see with FF is that the familiars it summons can't reasonably help the caster with the things a familiar should be good for. It can't help you craft potions, or research spells, or research anything else, or help your spellcasting in any way, so how exactly is it even a familiar?


The Bound Servant will be able to do all of those things, with combat utility coming in only when you spend resources to make the Servant stronger.
 

Okay! So, rather than necessarily boosting subclasses at level 1 or putting Spellcasting at level 1, I am considering adding some version of the following:

Bound Servant
Starting at level 1, you can perform a 1 hour ritual to bind into your service a creature of an origin of your choosing; a beast, monstrosity, fey, fiend, or aberration. The Servant uses one of the statistics for one of; Servant of Air, Servant of Earth, Servant of Shadow, Servant of The Wood, which can be found below.

CR 1/8 or so statblocks. Not combat useful as is. Each has a feature named Empower Servant, where you use a spell a lot to give a boost based on spell level to the servant, scaling similarly to the Tasha’s summon spells, and a feature that allows you to cast a spell that would normally summon a single creature to instead transform your servant into that creature.

Basic concept seem sound?
Going this route makes sense if you want the Binder to primarily be a pet class, with ways to do other things - but if you want to focus on rituals more broadly, I'd say this isn't the best road to take. I'd address it more in the subclasses - you might not be there yet, but after you flesh those out you'll need to make sure they all work as intended.

In other words: I'd boost the subclasses by giving them a bonus ritual (find familiar but it can attack for Goetic) or cantrip (searing light for Heretic.)
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
Going this route makes sense if you want the Binder to primarily be a pet class, with ways to do other things - but if you want to focus on rituals more broadly, I'd say this isn't the best road to take. I'd address it more in the subclasses - you might not be there yet, but after you flesh those out you'll need to make sure they all work as intended.

In other words: I'd boost the subclasses by giving them a bonus ritual (find familiar but it can attack for Goetic) or cantrip (searing light for Heretic.)
Good points. The original concept was a full summoner class, and thus a pet class. During initial development, the idea became that of a ritualist.

I think that it isn’t too hard to balance what is basically a familiar you can spend resources to buff as a base class feature, though. I’ll work on it in the next iteration.
 

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