The Hierophant, a cleric-warlock variant

1Mac

First Post
An experiment in seeing if the cool mechanics of the warlock can be extrapolated to other classes. Presenting The Hierophant!

Link

Features:


  • Completely unplaytested!
  • "Benedictions" and "Mystic Revelations" provide warlock-like mechanics without the grimdark warlock taste.
  • No-fuss adaptation of cleric domains; just plug and play*!
  • Channel Divinity, including a new, more flexible take on turning.
  • Again, I can't reiterate enough how completely unplaytested this is.

4/29/2016 update
-Added the Templar, a fighter archetype and alternative to the paladin using hierophant mechanics.
-Added a replacement ability for the Arcana domain, as my new version of turning makes the old Arcana channel ability irrelevant.
-Removed beasts and plants from the list of turnable creatures. I didn't want to come up with a new Nature domain turning ability, plus improved turning for such creatures was a bit overpowered.
-Added/clarified a few designer notes. Speaking of which: One note I didn't add is sort of discussed below. Unlike the warlock's bonus pact spells, the hierophant adds domain spells as bonus spells known, instead of merely adding them to their spell list. The reason for this is that many cleric domain spells are already on the cleric's spell list, and I wanted to make using existing domains as easy as possible. I believe the warlock is a little underpowered in this regard, so I think it's fine. I suggest houseruling the warlock so its pact spells are bonus spells known. If you are disinclined to do this, then the other option would be to make hierophant domain spells work like warlock pact spells, and just strike all domain spells from the hierophant's spell list. This, however, is rather drastic, as it involves removing spells like cure wounds and bless.
-I did not add any of TwoSix's suggestions in the post below. They are good suggestions, but I didn't have time to come up with new benedictions, plus I simply forgot to reword Hospitaler :blush:. Perhaps in a future update!
 
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TwoSix

"Diegetics", by L. Ron Gygax
Looks really nice at first glance, let me dig into it a bit and see what I can find.

1) Obviously, it's using the warlock chassis with no major modifications for spellcasting, so that seems fine.
2) Gaining the domain spells automatically may be too strong. (Depending on how you feel about the strength of the warlock, of course.) Warlocks only add their pact spells to their spell list, not gain them as spells known.
3) Clerics only gain Channel Divinity 3/rest...I'm assuming the 4th Channel is a replacement for the loss of Potent Spellcasting/Divine Strike. Feels pretty good to me.
4) I like using sacred flame as a replacement for eldritch blast, and I like the obvious chain from Heavenly Fire at 2nd level to Potent Spellcasting at 8th. (You might need to add text to clarify that they don't stack, unless you were intending them to.)
5) Despite that, I think using Mystery to grab shillelagh/greenflame blade or booming blade is a fairly obvious choice for at-will damage, and possibly retraining to eldritch blast and Potent Spellcasting at 8th. Not saying it's bad, warlocks and clerics can also do it easily.
6) Turning works fine with your approach, looks good.
7) Maybe a few more 12th or 15th level benedictions? A lot of the high level invocations are centered around the pact, maybe some benedictions requiring a certain domain? You could probably combine some of the related domains to streamline the process, for example, have a benediction giving a wizard spell available to Arcana and Knowledge Hierophants, or a storm-related one for Nature and Tempest.
8) Hospitaler is a little wonky. Maybe just "The first time you cast a healing spell from a hierophant spell slot, that spell slot is not expended. You can use this ability once per short rest." One free heal per short rest seems fair for a healing focused hierophant.

Great work, though, thanks very much, I'll be using this. (And I bookmarked your minis blog!)
 

1Mac

First Post
Thanks! Good feedback. The gain domain spells automatically was to make plugging in domains easier, as too many domain spells are on the cleric/hierophant spell list. I think I'd advocate a similar change to the warlock and its patron spells.

I like your suggestions for high-level benedictions, and I agree that I should have used your wording for Hospitaler.

I'm glad you like the hierophant turning. It was the one area I was a bit worried about. For one, I'll obviously need a new turning power for the Arcana domain. Also, is dominating turned, low-level beasts too powerful? In effect it's rather like conjure animals, but even that has a ceiling of how many beasts you can control. I feel like that needs some tinkering.

Thanks for taking a look and for your suggestions (and for checking out the blog!).
 


Theodoxus

First Post
4) I like using sacred flame as a replacement for eldritch blast, and I like the obvious chain from Heavenly Fire at 2nd level to Potent Spellcasting at 8th. (You might need to add text to clarify that they don't stack, unless you were intending them to.)

Uh, the only damaging cantrip they get is Sacred Flame... it's literally replacing the same ability, and is redundant. I'd change Potent Spellcasting to add Wis to any spell, not cantrips. Yes, it's more powerful than Clerics, but the whole class is significantly less powerful. 2 spells for the majority of play for any particular encounter hampers the cleric's role. Give them a little blaster-y love.
 

TwoSix

"Diegetics", by L. Ron Gygax
Uh, the only damaging cantrip they get is Sacred Flame... it's literally replacing the same ability, and is redundant. I'd change Potent Spellcasting to add Wis to any spell, not cantrips. Yes, it's more powerful than Clerics, but the whole class is significantly less powerful. 2 spells for the majority of play for any particular encounter hampers the cleric's role. Give them a little blaster-y love.
Adding +mod to all spells is a really strong ability that you shouldn't hand out on a whim. +Mod on Spiritual Weapon, or Spirit Guardians, or Fireball (Light domain), or any of the spells an Arcana hierophant overtakes a Warlock in blasting ability, which shouldn't happen, since the hierophant has greater utility.
 

Irda Ranger

First Post
First off, I love it. I've been tinkering with this exact same idea myself. I like the Warlock's class design and it really could replace the standard spell slot table in Cleric and Wizard.

Some thoughts on your design...

Given how few Channel Divinity's characters have, the Divine Smite on offer is a very poor choice of Benediction. And extra 1d8 once or twice per rest is pretty weak. I would allow one "free" Divine Smite at the character's current spell slot once per short rest (using the spell slot-based damage rules from Paladin), and then additional Divine Smites by using a spell slot.

I would add Lay on Hands as a Benediction you can choose. Or maybe just make it a class ability at 3rd level.

The Mystery benediction is really good. Personally I would move ritual casting to the regular spellcasting feature of the class. You have very few spells known anyway. Perhaps consider instead that ritual casting is available by default, but a Benediction allows you to record additional rituals to a Book of Holy Mysteries.

I have no objection to adding your Domain Spells to the spells known automatically. I'm playing a GOO Warlock right now (6th level) and my DM let me add my GOO spells to spells known, and it's a major improvement to the class IMO. The 2 spell slots/SR is the real limitation. Basically I have more ways to be useful in a given "scene", but I still have to choose between them very carefully. It's fine. I am still using cantrips or invocations most of the time because of the spell slot limits.

By the way, my house rule for Warlocks is that the spell slots from Mystic Arcanum are just normal spell slots. So at 11th level you gain one 6th level spell slot that you can use once per long rest. The benefit of putting it this way is you can cast one of your lesser spells known using this spell slot if you want. Same for the slots you gain at 13th, 15th, and 17th levels.
 

TwoSix

"Diegetics", by L. Ron Gygax
Yea, I don't know if [MENTION=48998]1Mac[/MENTION] is still around, but I might take a crack at updating this.
 

1Mac

First Post
Yea, I don't know if [MENTION=48998]1Mac[/MENTION] is still around, but I might take a crack at updating this.

So long as it’s properly credited,that’s fine by me. I don’t have the time I’d like for home brewing, and I’m happy to see this getting attention!
 

TwoSix

"Diegetics", by L. Ron Gygax
So long as it’s properly credited,that’s fine by me. I don’t have the time I’d like for home brewing, and I’m happy to see this getting attention!
Oh, absolutely. Just want to implement some of the suggestions from upthread, add some higher level Benedictions, and maybe add support for the new domains once XGTE comes out.
 

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