D&D (2024) The Cleric should be retired

Kobold Stew

Last Guy in the Airlock
Oh, I know there are solutions. What I don't like is that the game doesn't give them. It's clearly a design choice, that they've stuck to, and (to me) it makes no sense. Getting an attack cantrip is trivially easy (High Elf/Kobold, etc.; Magic Initiate Feat; 1-level dip). And I am very happy to play to that: there's fun for me as a player in making the concept work despite the rules, rather than ask for an exemption.

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Right, that's what I was getting at - I think Sacred Flame is perfectly cromulent, we just have an incorrect perception because of player rolls vs. DM rolls.
Right. Attack rolls are controlled by the player, which feel better than saving throws, and are especially beneficial for those players who fudge rolls. But the DM controls saving throws, removing that direct player agency, and nerfing roll-fudgers. (Historically, I have had several roll-fudgers in my games.)

As for BG3, Shadowheart hits more reliably with Sacred Flame if you respec her to have a higher Wisdom, and use it to target enemies with low Dex saves. She'll hit more reliably with melee if you respec her Strength to be higher.

She sucks with crossbows and bows because they are Dex-based. And her Fire Bolt sucks because she gets it from being a half-high elf, and that is Intelligence-based.


I love Clerics. If we are going to get rid of classes in D&D we should start with Druids, Barbarians and Artificers all of which lack any sort of unique class identity appropriate for a fantasy game IMO.

A Barbarian is just a weaker Fighter and a Druid is just a Cleric that can shapeshift into an animal.

Artificers actually have an identity as a high-tech gadget guy, but it is one not consistent with the fantasy Genre IMO.

Kobold Stew

Last Guy in the Airlock
Not to mention Death or Arcana Domains.

I mentioned the Arcana cleric in post 279, on the previous page. When I wrote the post quoted there (in 2017), Toll the Dead hadn't been released yet: and so Death Cleric wasn't yet viable. But you're right: it has since become so.
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The Priest class in World of Warcraft.
Doesn't have much more to do with Cleric than it does with Psionicist, so that's a bizarre comparison.

Whereas the Paladin class in World of Warcraft is pretty much a D&D Cleric if they're Holy spec'd. WoW Priests though? No. Absolutely not. They're a completely bizarre and wild class that just doesn't exist in D&D (the closest maybe being 4E's Invokers?), which a Light/Shadow motif and also have some psychic powers stuff.
White Mage in Final Fantasy.
It doesn't just lack the robes, it also lacks the "Holy Warrior" aspect. Instead it's thematically rather closer to Druid in most of Final Fantasy where it appears. They're focused on nature and life and healing.
Almost any organized religious figure in most fantasy stories.
An extreme claim that requires extreme evidence.

Of which there is, as keen reader of fantasy literature, I assure you, little to none. It is simply not an accurate claim.

Most religious figures in most fantasy stories have no supernatural powers whatsoever, or where they do, they tend to be somewhat creepy ritualized powers that lean towards what D&D calls Arcane magic, or beseeching supernatural entities.
The only real difference is that these fantasy priests are wearing priestly smocks, nun habits, or monk robes in place of armor.

As I've illustrated and can happily illustrate in considerably more depth, this simply is not true. The vast majority of "fantasy priests" simply do not have powers. Even when they do have powers, they're often arcane powers, from learning, rather than the divine.

The only figures I can immediately think of in fantasy who even vaguely resemble D&D Clerics tend to get called things like "Paladin" or "Warrior-Priest". For example, in Warhammer Fantasy, which derives heavily from D&D, the Warrior-Priests of Sigmar have abilities which line up relatively well with low-to-mid-level D&D Clerics. Because they're inspired by D&D Clerics. They're even armoured and tend to use hammers (albeit to honour Sigmar rather than any other reason). They in turn inspired WoW's Paladins, who are also quite Cleric-like, especially if spec'd Holy.

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