Oh damn, I'm not the only one! I alternate between working on a new cleric and a fighter/mage class.If I was to play a Basic 5e with only the 4 core classes, this is exactly how I'd create the ''wizard''.
That and having the cleric choose their domain which only affect their extra spell lists and their special Channel Divinity. The archetypes would be HOW you ''cleric'': warpriest, exorcist, miracle worker, spirit talker etc
So you could be a warpriest of the nature domain, or an exorcist with the forge domain, whatever!
Honestly, if I were doing warlocks as the only (arcane) spellcasters in a setting, I'd give them more cantrips to begin with, and let them pick cantrips from any spell list.The three extra cantrips from any spell list can offset that quite a bit. It's probably not everyone's cup of tea, though.
Cantrips are certainly ok, and better than firing a crossbow but at 5th level if I’m falling back on a cantrip as my most common spells once you get past 4th level then I think the class can’t really call itself anything more than wizard-like.The three extra cantrips from any spell list can offset that quite a bit. It's probably not everyone's cup of tea, though.
In fact, with Eldritch Blast dealing one of the least resisted damage types and having lots of avenues for enhancement, I would argue it’s usually better not to take attack cantrips with those other slots. 90% of the time EB will be the only attack cantrip you need, may as well get some good utility out of the rest.It's not just the quantity of the cantrips, but the variety as well: the pact of the tome will let you choose three cantrips from any spellcaster's list. Depending on your playstyle, that can be a big deal. (Not every cantrip needs to be a weapon, after all.)
The modern day magician is best seen in Harry Potter and the MCU. In the MCU especially you have mages who have a constant stream of low-level magic and can sometimes really amplify their efforts to cast something particularly powerful.
Gandalf is cool, and Merlin is cool too, but neither one has ever been a model or any spellcaster in D&D. So if D&D wants to emulate mainstream popfiction, the best example is MCU right now, since its hit critical mass, is including a lot more magic in its recent shows, and its next phase is movies is dealing with a lot of magic.
All this to say, the best class that represents this idea is the Warlock. A Warlock could be the MCU version of the Scarlet Witch or Loki pretty easily if you take a step back in terms of abstraction.
So, I agree. The wizard takes up too much magical space anyway. I for one think don't have wizards at my tables anymore, because it was really naughty word with my worldbuilding and my views on magic.
I think Tome Warlock needs some invocations to slightly expand spells known, maybe like Bard magical secrets or possibly an expanded patron related list e.g. you learn three additional spells which you may choose from your Patron list or the following spells.... Or maybe give them a choice of two spells for their mystic arcana.Quite true. Though we need to respect that Invocations are few and precious, your right that if your truly going for the "warlock as wizard" this is a way to do it.
I could see it. A bag of tricks, rather than magic artillery. You have a few powerful tricks, but you mostly use your ol' reliables.Personally... I'd like to see a massive new list of cantrips created that cover a gamut of functions. Not just the occasional small illusion or "This person becomes my friend for one round" but stuff like Leomund's secret pocket to store small things in, limited area denial of movement or battlefield control, and things of that nature.
Make Warlock cantrips more flexible than a wizard or cleric or druid or bard's and give them a bunch that become the class's unique flavor of bread and butter.
Lots of little effects, a few big ones per short rest, plus invocations? They'd be pretty cool.
About casting spells and the limited number of slots:Cantrips are certainly ok, and better than firing a crossbow but at 5th level if I’m falling back on a cantrip as my most common spells once you get past 4th level then I think the class can’t really call itself anything more than wizard-like.
If your warlock is casting a spell before combat then they are down to 1 spell. If they want to keep something in the bag like an escape spell they’re down to 1 spell. Worse if a short rest can happen once every 2 fights or so.
There are plenty of easy ways of getting cantrips. I’m not sure why you’d stay longer than 3rd level in the warlock class. It reminds me of the old Birthright magician which was a kind of poor mans wizard intended more as an NPC.
It feels like this thread is an attack on wizards for being “no flavor” @EzekielRaiden which seems like a very nebulous dig. Not to mention something I think a lot of people would disagree with. A wizard is researching continuously, they are a Int based caster with a book of spells and they write more out as they get more experienced.
Rather than saying how great a warlock is, most of the arguments seem to be that wizards are too powerful, Warlocks are less effective which is better… followed up with lots of suggestions for how a warlock could be made more powerful.
I don't agree with your premise but I did want to mention that I've long thought the Warlock should be intelligence based rather than charisma based. There are far too many charisma casters in this game, and you know the folks clever enough to gain power from an otherworldly being are likely to be the smarties in the room but not necessarily the charmers.Hello
Now before we start, I should state that I don't mean that the warlock is better at being a wizard than the wizard. At the very birth of D&D there were only 2 classes - the fighting man and the magic user. As more and more magic using classes appeared, even today the wizard remains the best D&D magic user, no doubt about it.
However, I'm starting to feel that from a narrative and balance, the warlock - specifically the tome warlock - is a better depiction of a generic "fantasy mage" (which is not the same as a D&D wizard!).
I came to this realization watching the Dungeon Dudes 's game on youtube. In their current campaign, their party mage is a warlock (GOO, tome). This warlock is from a family of wizards, he joined the academy etc and... sucked. He just didn't have the talent, at all. So his parents made some arrangements for him to find a certain ancient text and ... voila, he's now a "mage!". (this is background stuff, not in the actual campaign).
Because of this, the character is really trying his hardest to "be a wizard", but his toolset is limited. Only a few slots available at any given time. A lot of "shenanigans" to compensate. BUT he's still an effective mage, which some really clutch moments.
And I realized, watching him, that apart from the numerous reference to his patron (Bruce, who looks like a cat), a Tome Warlock is much more like a generic fantasy wizard, or how a wizard is in several other games. They can't fix every problem with a spell (because they don't know that many), the tome aspect makes them "bookish" a bit, they have to rely on wits, guile and luck to fix other problems etc... not at all like the swiss army knife, spell for any situation wizard. This makes them more balanced too! The only change you might need is changing the main stat from cha to int and perhaps tweak the skill selection a bit...
Am I on to something? does this make any sense?
I felt the Scarlet witch, especially in her own tv show, would be best represented by a sorcerer. Loads of power that she doesn’t fully understand, and a foil…All this to say, the best class that represents this idea is the Warlock. A Warlock could be the MCU version of the Scarlet Witch or Loki pretty easily if you take a step back in terms of abstraction.
To me, this is the problem with the wizard chassis. On the one hand, it is the best chassis for a focused spellcaster because its spell list is so broad and it could do everything (except heal) with only moderate refluffing.Yes, there certainly are.
But the "better" wizard comment is not only about some fantasy archetypes, it's also about game balance. The wizards are astounding problem solvers as they go up in level, and this feature is not universal in all games. In multiple systems I've played in, the spellcasters don't have this wide array of magical tricks at their command. Either their magic is themed (fire magic - fire doesn't fix everything!) or simply limited - a "good" mage might know 5-6 spells.