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UA Unearthed Arcana: Giant Soul Sorcerer

I like the bonus spells and all the different things that vary by giant (dragon sorcerers and circle of the land druids should have this kind of variety), but it seems like it is trying to make the melee sorcerer without a lot of things that are good for melee. It is a strange day when the hill giant origin makes for a "better" fit than many other types. I might have given the fire giant flame blade, the storm giant thunderous smite, and ensnaring strike for the stone giant. Not sure what I would give the cloud giant.
 

Gradine

Final Form
In Eberron, the dragons were the first mortal practitioners of arcane magic, and the first people they taught were the Giants of Xen'drik. The Giants in turn created a smaller slave race (Elves) and taught that magic to them. They basically invented artificing (to the extent that most of the magical technology associated with Eberron was reverse engineered from stuff the Giants made).

Of course, then the Giants got invaded by literal nightmare creatures and had to blow up a moon in order to save their civilization (long story). Then the Elves decided this would be a perfect time to rebel for their freedom, most of them fled Xen'drik, and the Giants were about to pull out their "blow-up-a-moon" weapon again to stop them, and that's when the Dragons said "Enough!" and blasted them back to stone age, to the extent that most surviving Giants are feral savage creatures and the continent is an unchartable mess of non-euclidian terrain (though that last part might actually be the fault of a god that may or may not actually exist... long story). The elves who stayed behind to fight the Giants became the Drow (who, contrary to popular opinion, have a number of different cultures remaining on the continent, only one of which worships scorpions).

Anyway, I could easily see a number of Elven sorcery traditions that harken back to these times, which could be then be represented by this subclass.

I'm definitely going to use it for a drow NPC or two.
 

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Inchoroi

Adventurer
It's so silly, but I love it. You can become Gargantuan for a little while at 18th level.

Enlarge makes you Large, the 14th level feature x1 makes you Huge, and x2 makes you Gargantuan. I want to do it just for that reason alone.
 

Barantor

Explorer
Warlocks can get mage armor through an evocation, I've had several warlock players choose it because of it's usefulness.

Con works for me because it often talks about 'bloodlines' and makes me think of something akin to Harry Potter where you are born with magic rather than learning it like a wizard, making pacts like a warlock, or using the force of personality and voice like the bard.

My ideal would have them able to continue casting spells even after they are out of spell slots by starting to take a toll on their body, like with some sort of exhaustion effect or even losing hit points. Different bloodlines would create different sources of power, be it Dragon, Elementals, Divine/Infernal, etc.

Sorc as a 'wizard but random' just doesn't work anymore IMO.
 

TwoSix

Unserious gamer
Supporter
Good catch! Indeed, there are too many fiddly bits in these abilities, but this one is really too pathetic not to be an oversight. They must have meant +5ft per point of Con bonus!
Since they used the "+1 foot per Con mod" mechanic twice (cloud giant and hill giant 6th level abilities), I think it was less a typo and more of a "not quite thought through". Which is fine, that's what UA is for.
 

pukunui

Hero
Since they used the "+1 foot per Con mod" mechanic twice (cloud giant and hill giant 6th level abilities), I think it was less a typo and more of a "not quite thought through". Which is fine, that's what UA is for.
You could be right but unfortunately there is now precedent for this sort of mechanic in 5e, thanks to the blade bard in Xanathar's. The Mobile Flourish lets you push someone a number of feet equal to 5 + the result of a Bardic Inspiration die. It was pointed out to WotC during playtesting that the random amount of extra movement would most likely be useless, since most people either use 5' squares or TotM, but they didn't seem to care, as the mechanic made it through to the published book unaltered.
 

Coroc

Hero
[MENTION=6752135]Inchoroi[/MENTION] is that legit asuming the UA is RAW? Isn't that some sort of game breaking, ceiling braking, floor braking, wall breaking, clothes breaking, armor breaking...

Naked Godzilla just crashed the townhall!! :)
 

Rhineglade

Explorer
My two cents: Not really a big fan. I think adding new Sorcerer origins is very cool but only to a limited degree in my opinion. Sorcerers are supposed to gain power from the bloodline. With this concept in mind, I naturally ASSUME that means somewhere down the ancestral family tree, one of the player's ancestors must have mated with someone other than human (or of their particular species). I concept of mating with a giant just seems ludicrous to me. There are other bloodline options I would much rather see. Namely- the fae.
 

vincegetorix

Jewel of the North
My two cents: Not really a big fan. I think adding new Sorcerer origins is very cool but only to a limited degree in my opinion. Sorcerers are supposed to gain power from the bloodline. With this concept in mind, I naturally ASSUME that means somewhere down the ancestral family tree, one of the player's ancestors must have mated with someone other than human (or of their particular species). I concept of mating with a giant just seems ludicrous to me. There are other bloodline options I would much rather see. Namely- the fae.

Nothing is said about mating with a specific creatures to gain sorcereous powers down the line. For example, I cannot imagine how someone would mate with ''Chaos'' to create wild sorcerer. Think of it more in term of ''touched by greater powers''. Sorcerers can be the descendant of a warlock pact-maker, or the child of a cursed archaeologist who found a relic of older powers, or can be born under a specific auspice/star etc. I personally hate it when players think that by playing a dragon sorcerer, it allows them to say ''hey, my dad was a dragon'' (same goes with Tiefling. No, your mother is not a demoness.). I keep reminding them that their are not ''half-dragon'', this is not how it works. Maybe your ancestor was, but you're not.
 

The 5e sorcerer moves away from the idea of bloodlines as the only way to become a sorcerer. For example, the storm sorcerer may have been born during a fierce storm, the spider sorcerer may have been bitten by a radioactive spider, and so on.
 

flametitan

Explorer
I haven't been able to figure out how much I like/dislike the mechanics, simply because for whatever reason, I can't get over the Giant origin. I get that it's a blessing, not a literal bloodline that hails from giants, but I've still never really associated Giants with magic, for some reason (especially not the lower castes of giantkind.) Even the books go to point out the awkward relationship between giants and magic with discussion about how it's not really practised in favour of doing things that go into improving status in the Ordning.

Perhaps if the fluff focused more on the rune magic part of giant magic, I might be more on board.
 

Hexmage-EN

Adventurer
In 4E giants were creations of elemental titans (for example, the hill giants were created by earth titans), and the titans were creatures created as the greatest servants of the primordials of the Elemental Chaos. So this may be where the idea of giants being magical in nature comes from.
 

MechaTarrasque

Adventurer
Nothing is said about mating with a specific creatures to gain sorcereous powers down the line. For example, I cannot imagine how someone would mate with ''Chaos'' to create wild sorcerer. Think of it more in term of ''touched by greater powers''. Sorcerers can be the descendant of a warlock pact-maker, or the child of a cursed archaeologist who found a relic of older powers, or can be born under a specific auspice/star etc. I personally hate it when players think that by playing a dragon sorcerer, it allows them to say ''hey, my dad was a dragon'' (same goes with Tiefling. No, your mother is not a demoness.). I keep reminding them that their are not ''half-dragon'', this is not how it works. Maybe your ancestor was, but you're not.

In the PHB, one of the possible origins of the WM sorcerer was a slaadi infecting someone and the baby slaadi failed to come to turn. Since higher level slaadi can change back into whoever incubated them, I think you could argue that the baby slaadi picks up some DNA (or whatever accounts for heredity in D&D) from the host/parent. In the WM sorcerer's case, the parent picks up some DNA (or whatever) from the slaadi instead. No reason the "DNA" couldn't be passed down to the host's more conventional offspring.

The other two suggested origins involve fey and demons (remarkable how the WM sorcerer's suggested origins parallel the warlock's patrons), and obviously either of them can reproduce with pretty much anything in D&D.

There are no shortage of aspects of chaos running around D&D, and most of them can have kids (admittedly some times in weird/gross ways, but that's chaos for you).
 
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(remarkable how the WM sorcerer's suggested origins parallel the warlock's patrons)

And suddenly I want to get together with another player and create a pair of siblings: one, a sorcerer, who inherited great-grandma's magic; the other a warlock, who didn't, and--seething with envy over it--tracked great-grandma down and made a deal.
 

In the PHB, one of the possible origins of the WM sorcerer was a slaadi infecting someone and the baby slaadi failed to come to turn. Since higher level slaadi can change back into whoever incubated them, I think you could argue that the baby slaadi picks up some DNA (or whatever accounts for heredity in D&D) from the host/parent. In the WM sorcerer's case, the parent picks up some DNA (or whatever) from the slaadi instead. No reason the "DNA" couldn't be passed down to the host's more conventional offspring.
Didn't that happen to Sigourney Weaver?
 

DEFCON 1

Legend
Supporter
Having now run games that have included sorcerers for a while now, I have to say I don't really like the idea of them anymore because the fluff is just so wishy-washy on the whole deal.

"You have magic in you!" just seems so lacking in any sort of interesting story, especially with anything and everything triggering it in people. Dragons, weather, celestials, the shadow realm, wild energy, and now giants? There's like no rhyme nor reason to getting magic. Which in my personal opinion reduces what makes the acquisition of magic special.

In my mind, somehow acquiring magical ability should be meaningful. You might be blessed by a god. You might have made a deal with a literal devil. You have become so attuned with the natural world that you can pull its essence out. Or you have hacked the formula to pull the energy out of the air.

Then when it comes to the sorcerer in the PHB, there were two stories-- either you literally had the blood of a massive magical font of a creature running through you... or you were some odd mutant that could pull magic out of the ether like the wizard could, but because you had no training in it everything went sideways when you did. So at least those two made a bit of flavorful sense.

But here's the problem... in all other cases where an odd creature is in a character's ancestry... it creates a new race, not a new class. If you have an angel in your family history, it produced an aasimar. For a devil, a tiefling. For genies, a genasi. An ork produced a halfork. An elf produced a half-elf. And even with a dragon, it traditional produced a half-dragon.

So even having a "bloodline" to create a new class seems kind of off. The story doesn't sit right with me when the story in all other cases is to produce new races, not new classes. I kind of sigh and say okay when it comes to dragons because the game *is* Dungeons & Dragons after all, so having you be a dragonblooded person who gets magic I can kind of accept. But all the other sorcerer subclasses? To me they all should be Warlock patrons.

The Warlock's story makes so much more sense and to me is so much more compelling than the sorcerer. Warlocks are the people who sit between the clerics and the wizards. Warlocks are people who have not been blessed by a god to be granted magical ability, and were not smart enough or capable enough to hack the magical system (or Weave) to pull it out themselves. So instead they go to an intermediary and make deals for it. And it is THAT class for which having 20 different types of entities granting magical power makes much more sense, and makes the stories much more compelling to my mind. A "giant soul"? It means you were in touch with a giant and were gifted a part of its power, which makes you a warlock. Not a "sorcerer". A "divine soul"? It means you were selected by a divine being who doesn't have the power and esteem of a god but still were able to grant some of your essence to a mortal, which makes the mortal a warlock, not a "sorcerer".

Looking at the stories in this way, it makes sorcerers superfluous. Which is good in many ways because it opens up Metamagic to get potentially used by other classes, plus it stops the complete doubling up of "power source" we are getting now between warlocks and sorcerers where pretty much the exact same essence is gifting power to both classes-- Shadow/Hexblade, Divine Soul/Celestial, Storm Sorcerer/Storm Giant. I mean I'm almost shocked we haven't gotten the "Fey origin" or "Demon origin" sorcerer or the "dragon patron" warlock yet. And when we do, we'll know that having both classes in the game is completely unnecessary because their stories have become now virtually identical.
 
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mrpopstar

Sparkly Dude
I dunno, guys. I'm just not diggin' the sorcerer all that much in 5th Edition. The more I consider these options, the more I want us to go back to the drawing board on magic-users. I'm uninspired by this giant stuff and want more emphasis on spell lists than class features.

:(
 

MechaTarrasque

Adventurer
Having now run games that have included sorcerers for a while now, I have to say I don't really like the idea of them anymore because the fluff is just so wishy-washy on the whole deal.

"You have magic in you!" just seems so lacking in any sort of interesting story, especially with anything and everything triggering it in people. Dragons, weather, celestials, the shadow realm, wild energy, and now giants? There's like no rhyme nor reason to getting magic. Which in my personal opinion reduces what makes the acquisition of magic special.

In my mind, somehow acquiring magical ability should be meaningful. You might be blessed by a god. You might have made a deal with a literal devil. You have become so attuned with the natural world that you can pull its essence out. Or you have hacked the formula to pull the energy out of the air.

Then when it comes to the sorcerer in the PHB, there were two stories-- either you literally had the blood of a massive magical font of a creature running through you... or you were some odd mutant that could pull magic out of the ether like the wizard could, but because you had no training in it everything went sideways when you did. So at least those two made a bit of flavorful sense.

But here's the problem... in all other cases where an odd creature is in a character's ancestry... it creates a new race, not a new class. If you have an angel in your family history, it produced an aasimar. For a devil, a tiefling. For genies, a genasi. An ork produced a halfork. An elf produced a half-elf. And even with a dragon, it traditional produced a half-dragon.

So even having a "bloodline" to create a new class seems kind of off. The story doesn't sit right with me when the story in all other cases is to produce new races, not new classes. I kind of sigh and say okay when it comes to dragons because the game *is* Dungeons & Dragons after all, so having you be a dragonblooded person who gets magic I can kind of accept. But all the other sorcerer subclasses? To me they all should be Warlock patrons.

The Warlock's story makes so much more sense and to me is so much more compelling than the sorcerer. Warlocks are the people who sit between the clerics and the wizards. Warlocks are people who have not been blessed by a god to be granted magical ability, and were not smart enough or capable enough to hack the magical system (or Weave) to pull it out themselves. So instead they go to an intermediary and make deals for it. And it is THAT class for which having 20 different types of entities granting magical power makes much more sense, and makes the stories much more compelling to my mind. A "giant soul"? It means you were in touch with a giant and were gifted a part of its power, which makes you a warlock. Not a "sorcerer". A "divine soul"? It means you were selected by a divine being who doesn't have the power and esteem of a god but still were able to grant some of your essence to a mortal, which makes the mortal a warlock, not a "sorcerer".

Looking at the stories in this way, it makes sorcerers superfluous. Which is good in many ways because it opens up Metamagic to get potentially used by other classes, plus it stops the complete doubling up of "power source" we are getting now between warlocks and sorcerers where pretty much the exact same essence is gifting power to both classes-- Shadow/Hexblade, Divine Soul/Celestial, Storm Sorcerer/Storm Giant. I mean I'm almost shocked we haven't gotten the "Fey origin" or "Demon origin" sorcerer or the "dragon patron" warlock yet. And when we do, we'll know that having both classes in the game is completely unnecessary because their stories have become now virtually identical.

The story that they had in 4e (and implied in the 5e playtest*) was basically "you are a human/elf/dwarf, etc. and now you are becoming a dragon/elemental/far realm critter, etc." I think that worked better than "good luck" (seriously how come all halflings aren't sorcerers?). It fits the ugly duckling and changeling bits and fits the X-men "yesterday you were a goofy kid, now you are a goofy mutant, and tomorrow you will be an Omega class mutant who can beat up the Hulk" storylines that the sorcerer is supposed to represent.**

Mechanically, I don't know if metamagic, spell points, or even charisma make much sense for the (d)evolving type of class.

* One could interpret the playtest version of the sorcerer as "you think you are a human, but you are really a dragon who is subconsciously using magic as a protective camouflage [there are a lot more big scary things that make concentrated effort to do in potential competitors like baby dragons than do so for random humans], and when you run out of magic, the camouflage fades."

** the only other big sorcerer storyline is the "natural", but if you had a "natural" gift for feeling magic, you would probably be a wisdom caster, since subconsciously finding patterns is pretty much wisdom's gig.
 

DEFCON 1

Legend
Supporter
The story that they had in 4e (and implied in the 5e playtest*) was basically "you are a human/elf/dwarf, etc. and now you are becoming a dragon/elemental/far realm critter, etc." I think that worked better than "good luck" (seriously how come all halflings aren't sorcerers?). It fits the ugly duckling and changeling bits and fits the X-men "yesterday you were a goofy kid, now you are a goofy mutant, and tomorrow you will be an Omega class mutant who can beat up the Hulk" storylines that the sorcerer is supposed to represent.**

Mechanically, I don't know if metamagic, spell points, or even charisma make much sense for the (d)evolving type of class.

* One could interpret the playtest version of the sorcerer as "you think you are a human, but you are really a dragon who is subconsciously using magic as a protective camouflage [there are a lot more big scary things that make concentrated effort to do in potential competitors like baby dragons than do so for random humans], and when you run out of magic, the camouflage fades."

** the only other big sorcerer storyline is the "natural", but if you had a "natural" gift for feeling magic, you would probably be a wisdom caster, since subconsciously finding patterns is pretty much wisdom's gig.

Yeah, I can get the idea of you "evolving" into another creature because of whatever it is you have in you that is causing it... but again, to me any kind of "ancestral blood" is already represented by your races. Heck, I even forgot another two in my list above, which was the shifter than has lycanthropic blood, and the changeling which has doppleganger blood. So even the 4E and 5E playtest idea that you have this essence inside of you and its trying to get out... eh... I just personally find it kind of running over familiar ground to turn it into a class when it should be a race. But that's just me.

Needless to say though... I'm pretty sure I'm just going to be removing Sorcerers from my next campaign, especially considering I'm going to be changing the primary ability score for clerics and wizards depending on your domain or school respectively. So I don't need a CHA caster, especially not when you have the Bard still available.
 


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