Unearthed Arcana Unearthed Arcana: Four New Subclasses

There's a new Unearthed Arcana from Ben Petrisor, Dan Dillon, Bill Benham, Jeremy Crawford, F. Wesley Schneider. This one has four new subclasses Path of the Beast (Barbarian), Way of Mercy (Monk), Oath of the Watchers (Paladin), Noble Genie (Warlock).


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Russ Morrissey

Russ Morrissey


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TwoSix

Unserious gamer
I always felt the paladin should have been a sub fighter like class, but what ever. The Oath of the Watchers not sure if it was done on purpose but could it be similar to a certain show that came out a few weeks ago?
You're about 7 years late with that feedback, friend. :)
 

Aaron L

Hero
I really like this Unearthed Arcana update! The Way of Mercy Monks are extremely flavorful (creepy!) and cool, and the Oath of the Watchers Paladin seems very neat as well (Chromatic Orb is an interesting choice as a Paladin Oath spell but I can totally see the reasoning behind it; allowing the Paladin to select the elemental damage type based on the specific resistances of the Fiend he is fighting) and a perfect complement to the Horizon Walker Ranger. I could see an Order of Knights dedicated to guarding their world against extraplanar incursions, composed of Horizon Walker Rangers and Paladins of the Oath of the Watcher.

I approve.
 



gyor

Legend
Maybe tether is supposed to replicate the Sha-ir gen servant, but it's a clunky workaround that the Pact Boon isn't given until 3rd level, and the next opportunity to give an otherwordly patron feature to alter it isn't until 6th level.

I do like the idea of the Sha-ir being a warlock (2nd edition didn't have these other spell caster classes). But I think the best thing to do would be to make a minor gen servant

I would then alter the Collector's vessel to "Gen Vessel" keep it as a spellcasting focus, allow you to "release gen servant", and have the gen servant have an AC and Saving Throws equal to yours, beastmaster's beast style hit points, but you can cast spells from it's square and boosts your perception and arcana for an hour (I'd add arcana to give a little more of that consult gen for spell knowledge feel). If it reduced to 0 hit points it returns fully intact to your vessel.

I'd then add a pull box with fluff that connects your gen to your boons (the gen servant fetches you a weapon from the genie's horde [blade] spells from the library [book] or animals from their menagerie [chain])

Protective wish would then be more clearly turning the minor gen into some extra hit points for you (hence the Beastmaster pet HP progression)

With maybe an Eldritch invocation for chain warlocks to get an elemental servant OR include a stat block of a greater gen servant and have a box "at the DM's option a Warlock pact of the chain can select a greater gen servant as their familiar).

4e did have other arcane spellcasting classes including the Warlock and the Shi'ar was still a Wizard not a Warlock. They are supposed have full access to the wizards spell list. Shi'ar should be Wizards. The Noble Genie Patron is clearly not entended to replace the Shi'ar wizard, which is why it focuses more on the NOBLE Genie aspect, then the elemental nature a Genie, so they don't step on each others feet.
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
4e did have other arcane spellcasting classes including the Warlock and the Shi'ar was still a Wizard not a Warlock. They are supposed have full access to the wizards spell list. Shi'ar should be Wizards. The Noble Genie Patron is clearly not entended to replace the Shi'ar wizard, which is why it focuses more on the NOBLE Genie aspect, then the elemental nature a Genie, so they don't step on each others feet.
I don’t think that “they’re supposed to be wizards” is an argument wotc will care about without getting feedback to that effect.
 

maceochaid

Explorer
4e did have other arcane spellcasting classes including the Warlock and the Shi'ar was still a Wizard not a Warlock. They are supposed to have full access to the wizard's spell list. Shi'ar should be Wizards. The Noble Genie Patron is clearly not intended to replace the Shi'ar wizard, which is why it focuses more on the NOBLE Genie aspect, then the elemental nature a Genie, so they don't step on each others feet.

Well I mean it's all arbitrary, but my idea is that if they had made the Sha'ir in 2e and had warlock as an option they would have made it a warlock, but they didn't so they made it a wizard. Their special feature was that they could swap out spell slots in a way that kind of traded a memorization problem of 2e spell casting with a new problem, but the memorization, not a problem that exists in the current system.* So what is the core identity of a 2nd Edition Sha'ir? That it is a "wizard" or that it serves a patron? (And also from cursory research on the term in Arabic folklore a Sha'ir sounds like it should be a Bard anyways).





*(Actually thinking about it would work pretty well with Mystic Arcanum. Makes me want to think about how to homebrew that in to a revised Noble Genie patron)
 

cbwjm

Legend
Considering that a 2e sha'ir had access to priest spells (though at a penalty to find), reducing it to just a wizard subclass seems to be reducing its versatility anyway. I think wotc would look at the spirit of the class rather than which class it belonged to, and the spirit of the class seems to me to be a genie warlock patron. It's how I built it anyway and most (all?) homebrew versions I've seen seem to do the same.
 

gyor

Legend
I really like this Unearthed Arcana update! The Way of Mercy Monks are extremely flavorful (creepy!) and cool, and the Oath of the Watchers Paladin seems very neat as well (Chromatic Orb is an interesting choice as a Paladin Oath spell but I can totally see the reasoning behind it; allowing the Paladin to select the elemental damage type based on the specific resistances of the Fiend he is fighting) and a perfect complement to the Horizon Walker Ranger. I could see an Order of Knights dedicated to guarding their world against extraplanar incursions, composed of Horizon Walker Rangers and Paladins of the Oath of the Watcher.

I approve.

They are literally Dr. Kovorkian Monks, trained as a healer, but able to give death when it would be more merciful.
 






Aaron L

Hero
Or even merely debatable material. Most people seem to like it, so not a lot of arguing going on, so people run out of stuff to talk about it.

I personally liked all the subclasses revealed so far.
Exactamundo. Nothing to complain about or even debate with this entry, just a good solid example of Unearthed Arcana. I wish more of them were this "boringly" good. :)

I am already planning out a new order of mystical knights, comprised of Horizon Walker Rangers, Paladins of the Oath of the Watcher, and Eldritch Knight Fighters, who guard my setting of Alterra against extraplanar incursions, working alongside my existing psionic Psychopomp Order which guides the souls of the followers of a Socratic-inspired atheistic/philosophical psychic belief system, leading them to a mortally-crafted afterlife they have carved for themselves in the domains of the spirit and pure imagination and belief (the Outer Planes) which lie beyond the domain of the mind and thought and reason (the Astral Plane.) This mortal Human-crafted afterlife lies metaphysically close to the domain of the Elven afterlife, where the set number of immortal Elven spirits (as opposed to the infinite number of mortal Human souls) dwell for a time before being reborn as their own descendants. There is a good amount of cross-traffic between the Human souls and the Elven spirits as they visit each other.

The Psychopomp Order is made up of extremely high level individuals who have achieved immortality through psionic disciplines (I use that fantastic Mystic class from the Unearthed Arcana article for them) and over the millennia they have managed to forge for themselves their own afterlife amongst the realms of the gods. A place for the souls of mortals who did not sublimate their souls to the worship of a deity and therefore go on to an ultimate reward of Heavenly bliss (or Hellish damnation) for a few millennia until they are ultimately absorbed into the divine essence of their deity, to exist as fragments of the god's mind, and act as fuel its continued divinity (the souls of the worshipers of the few Good gods in my world are basically consumed/absorbed/"become one with" their deity after a few thousand years of bliss, becoming pleasant "thoughts" in the mind of the deity, while the souls of Demon and Devil worshipers, or those who let themselves become ensnared in diabolical contracts or demonic trickery, are damned and directly devoured by Demon Lords and Archdevils after a few millennia of torture, or become currency to be traded by Night Hags, sold as fuel to empower metaphysical fiendish machines, and sold to Liches to be consumed to further their undead existence and prevent their "ascension" to Demiliches. The souls of worshiper of Outer Gods and Great Old Ones are left straggling on the Prime Material Plane to become undead spirits, ghosts, wraiths, and spectres, or to be scavenged as they are lost on the Astral Plane by whatever fiendish entity cares to go after them, since the various Eldritch Abominations simply don't care enough about mortal souls to bother collecting them since they are simply beneath their notice or concern, if they even notice their worshipers in the first place. All except for Nyarlathotep, who delights in collecting and tormenting mortal souls and using them for various schemes of Chaos.)

Instead, the philosophical believers dedicated themselves in life to learning the truths of existence and reaching divinity on their own terms, so as to maintain the continued individuality (and, ultimately, existence) of their souls after death through intense philosophical reflection, psychic study, and psionic discipline, and this special afterlife is maintained by the Psychopomps; it is mostly a place for the peaceful contemplation by the souls of the followers of the psychic philosophy; members of the Mystic class, certain orders of Monks, a large number of Wizards, Sorcerers, and Warlocks who follow the way of philosophy, and the relatively few common people who follow the way, are all taught mental techniques and disciplines that prepare their souls so that they can be easily identified and found on the Astral Plane by members of the Psychopomp Order soon after their deaths, since they will not be met and claimed in the Astral by the angels of any deity to guide them to a god's realm, and the Psychopomps then act in the role of angel and guide the souls of the philosophers to the afterlife.

On occasion certain deserving living mortals who are not members of the Order of the Psychopomp are even allowed to enter this special afterlife realm in order to receive special advanced training in unique skills developed by ancient and legendary masters who have devoted their afterlives to perfecting their arcane magical skills and martial arts (think Dragon Ball Z, and the idea from the DMG of PCs receiving a bonus Feat as an extraordinary reward of advanced training.) The leaders of the Psychopomp Order are the most skilled, legendary members of the psychic philosophy belief, with some having maintained their continued mortal existence for over 20,000 years through advanced psionic disciplines, which is really the ultimate goal of the Psionic Masters, as well as certain orders of Monks, and many arcane magic-users; to transcend the boundaries of life and death and become equally habituated to both the mortal realm and the realms of the afterlife (at 20th level members of the Mystic class become infused with psychic energy and cease aging, becoming biologically immortal, and can only die through violence... and even if they do die violently they still have a 55% chance to simply discorporate on the spot until their minds and bodies reform 1-3 days later like Dr. Manhattan, somewhere else on the same plane of existence, as if they had merely been sleeping for that time. I had already been working with a similar idea for these supremely powerful psionicists of my world for about 20 years and figured I would just treat it as a special psionic power that could be learned by 20th level psionicists (like how advanced Force-Users could learn to become Force Ghosts) but I never had a defined game mechanic for how it all functioned; the Mystic class provided all the mechanics I needed built right into the class. It was as if the designers had been reading my mind and built the class to provide me with everything I had been wanting in a psionic class, including its ultimate capstone abilities of transcendent psionic immortality.)

This order of Horizon Walkers, Watchers, and Eldritch Knights have a Citadel of Sublimation (think Diablo II) on the metaphysical borders where the Prime Material Plane, Ethereal Plane, and Astral Plane all come closest to being coterminous (the Astral and Ethereal do not normally touch each other, with the Prime Material being required as a conduit between the two, but this Citadel extends into all three Planes of Existence simultaneously and thus acts as a bottleneck for cross-planar traffic, so any sub-deific level entity attempting to cross into the Prime Material has to pass through its metaphysical airspace.

These are all extremely powerful, "Epic-Level" groups, and none of this is anything that the normal people of Alterra have any idea of, a level of multi-planar politics far above even the concerns of Kings; it is strictly the domain of Archmages, Most-High Priests, Hierophant Druids, Psionic Masters, and ancient Elves and Dwarves. In other words, the stuff that only 20+ level PCs will ever learn about and get involved with, although they may begin to get hints about it once they get into the upper teens. It's the idea-space where Magic, Religion, Philosophy, Mad Science all start to blend together

Whoo-boy, that turned into a book! Sorry, I didn't intend that (I haven't slept in two days and I'm a bit loopy) but I'm just going to leave it as is, I had too much fun writing it to get rid of it. Take it or leave it as you like. ;)
 
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gyor

Legend
Exactamundo. Nothing to complain about or even debate with this entry, just a good solid example of Unearthed Arcana. I wish more of them were this "boringly" good. :)

I was actually happy with the December and early series of Subclass UAs as well. I want them all.
 




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