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View Full Version : D&D 5e/Next Michael's Specific Warlock Patron #11: Orcus, Demon Lord of Thanatos



Michael7123
2015-07-20, 09:13 PM
I love the themes the warlock class bring to the table. Any character who wound up pledging himself to some sort of mysterious (Great old one), downright weird (Archfey), or devil (Fiend) will almost always have some sort of interesting backstory which is fun to explore in game.

However, the warlock subclasses in of themselves are pretty limited. Playing a warlock of Dagon, a demon lord of the abyss who resides in water, gives you the same classic "kill them all with fire" benefits as playing a warlock of Asmodeus. This is my attempt to change this.



Orcus, Lord of Thanatos

http://i925.photobucket.com/albums/ad91/bluejanus/Orcus.png~original
Don't fear the reaper. BE the reaper.

Expanded Spell list:



Spell Level
Spells


1st
Inflict Wounds, False Life



2nd
Blindness Deafness, Alter Self


3rd
Animate Dead, Bestow Curse


4th
Death Ward, Polymorph



5th
Contaigion, Antilife shell




Pact features:

Be the Reaper:
Starting at level 1, any creature killed by you cannot be brought back to life save through the use of a wish or miracle spell.

Familiar Death:
At level 6, you can choose one undead creature you have animated with your animate dead spell to become your familiar. This creature has all the benefits a familiar normally gets, in addition to it's normal ability. You never loose control of this creature.

Undead Apotheosis
Starting at level 10, you take on all the traits of an undead. You gain immunity to poison and the poisoned condition, immunity to exhaustion, and darkvison out to 60ft. do not benefit from healing spells, and heal from necrotic damage.

Unholy Aura:
Starting at level 14, unholy darkness washes out from you in a 30-foot radius around you. Creatures of your choice in that radius when you cast this spell shed darkness in a 5-foot radius, lowing the light condition by one category (bright light becomes dim light, for example). Other creatures have disadvantage on attack rolls against them up to five times per long rest (the player controlling these creatures chooses when these creatures choose to use this ability.) . In addition, when a celestial or Paladin (besides oathbreakers) hits an affected creature with a melee attack, you can have the darkness wash over them. The attacker must succeed on a Constitution saving throw or be blinded for the next 10 rounds. You can use this part of the ability five times per long rest, at your discretion.

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If you ever use this class in a game, please post a link to the game in this thread or send me a pm telling me how this class performed. Any tips you can offer are helpful!

Michael7123
2015-07-20, 09:14 PM
This is sort of like the dread necromancer class from 3.5, but with some changes. Sadly, WoC got rid of the positive/negative energy dynamic, as inflict wounds spells don't heal undead by default. However, with this patron, you can now fuel yourself off negative energy like any other good necromancer ought to.

The final ability is an extreemly limited version of holy aura (with the concept flipped on it's head, obviously. I think it'll be useful for those among you who want to create a small army of undead and wreak some good old fashioned chaos.

JNAProductions
2015-07-20, 09:25 PM
The blind condition should allow for a save after every turn.

Other than that... "Be The Reaper" GOD I LOVE THAT! That's just so cool sounding!

Princess
2016-01-09, 12:39 PM
"Be the Reaper" is very flavorful, but I don't think it would actually help a first level character very much. I'd consider adding that on to a higher level ability and giving them something else to start off with, because the ability to make Raise Dead not work properly is very unlikely to come up before level 9 or so.

Belac93
2016-01-09, 12:50 PM
Nice. I feel like be the reaper should have another little ability. Maybe your spells of 1st level or higher deal extra necrotic damage equal to your charisma modifier? Or maybe 1d6?
Glad to see you doing these again.

M Placeholder
2016-01-09, 02:48 PM
Be the Reaper:
Starting at level 1, any creature killed by you cannot be brought back to life save through the use of a wish or miracle spell.

How about any creature killed by you cannot be brought back to life period? Or that there is a chance that the wish or the miracle spells will be twisted by Orcus? Also, I second the necrotic damage.

Princess
2016-01-09, 04:57 PM
How about any creature killed by you cannot be brought back to life period? Or that there is a chance that the wish or the miracle spells will be twisted by Orcus? Also, I second the necrotic damage.

Overriding a "miracle" implies you can do something a *god* can't undo, which is way too intense for a level 1 character, while simultaneously being nearly useless, because why is your level 1 character trying to kill things that have friends who can raise the dead? That's bad news, and they will beat you up for sure.

M Placeholder
2016-01-09, 07:07 PM
Overriding a "miracle" implies you can do something a *god* can't undo, which is way too intense for a level 1 character, while simultaneously being nearly useless, because why is your level 1 character trying to kill things that have friends who can raise the dead? That's bad news, and they will beat you up for sure.

I meant that Orcus himself twisted the wish, not the actual player, and I said nothing about level 1 characters ganging up on something that has friends that are at level 17. And Orcus has killed gods in the past. And yeah, it is strong for the first level, but having the corruption of Wish and Miracle come into play later would be so cool.

After all, you are the Reaper. Nobody killed by your hands (or the hands of your undead familiar) should escape deaths kingdom.

Jerenda
2016-01-20, 02:46 PM
I am building up the lady Erandis Vol from the world of Eberron to be a patron for my warlock. I like the undeath theme you have going here, but I won't be using all of it. I'm expecting my warlock to take the Pact of the Blade, and to eventually pick a fight with Erandis. My warlock is multiclassing, 50% bard and 50% warlock, so he really won't hit these higher levels, but I'm statting them up anyway. I'm concerned about overpowering my warlock, and we may be modifying this as we play.

I stole the first-level ability from the Fiend instead of using yours, and the sixth-level ability from the Great Old One. I'm modifying your 10th-level ability to be closer to what the MM seems to think an undead should be able to do, and to fit with the 5e idea that positive and negative energy don't deal damage differently.


Undead Apotheosis (modified from Orcus, Lord of Thanatos [online homebrew])
Starting at 10th level, you take on the traits of an undead. You donít require air, food, drink, or sleep, gain immunity to poison and the poisoned condition, and darkvison out to 60ft.

I'm not sure what to do with the 14th level ability. I like your idea of an unholy aura, and I'd like to use it, but I'm keeping it closer to the original spell.


Unholy Aura (modified from Orcus, Lord of Thanatos [online homebrew])
Starting at 14th level, you can cast unholy aura (see below) once per long rest.

Unholy Aura
8th level spell
Casting Time: 1 action
Range: Self
Components: V, S, M (a tiny reliquary worth at least 1,000 gp containing a sacred relic, such as a scrap of cloth from a saintís robe or a piece of parchment from a religious text, not consumed upon casting)
Duration: Concentration, up to 1 minute
Darkness washes out from you and coalesces in a dark aura in a 30-foot radius around you. This darkness lowers the light condition by one category and is magical in nature.
Up to five creatures of your choice in that radius when you cast this spell shed darkness in a 5-foot radius and have advantage on all saving throws, and other creatures have disadvantage on attack rolls against them until the spell ends. In addition, when a celestial or a paladin (not an oathbreaker) hits an affected creature with a melee attack, the aura flashes with brilliant light. The attacker must succeed on a Constitution saving throw or be blinded until the spell ends.

My only problem with this ability is that the spell you're adapting is an 8th level spell, and warlocks never gain access to such powerful spells. On the other hand, perhaps their patron's 14th level boons could be considered equally powerful. I'm contemplating removing the ability to affect more creatures than yourself, to bring it more in line with what warlocks can typically do. Opinions?

I'd also like to give him some custom invocations. Perhaps the ability to do necromantic damage with his Eldrich Blast. Do you have any suggestions?

PoeticDwarf
2016-01-20, 02:51 PM
The level 1 feature could be added to the level 14 feature (in the aura anyone who is killed by you or something, and nerf the normal aura a bit and then give something unique for first level you can use in combat

Very cool subclass tho

NecroDancer
2016-11-24, 12:22 PM
Isn't letting a warlock cast animate dead every short rest a bit too strong?

faustin
2016-11-24, 01:18 PM
I would change the level 1 for something like "death hungers": when the target has 1/4 or 1/3 of their remaining hp, the warlock 's attacks do extra damage.

clash
2016-11-25, 09:57 AM
Isn't letting a warlock cast animate dead every short rest a bit too strong?

2nd this it becomes very abusable very fast.

ie Instead of a long rest I opt to take 8 shorts rests, animating dead in between each one, and still have full spell slots to start the day.

Princess
2016-11-26, 01:51 PM
Isn't letting a warlock cast animate dead every short rest a bit too strong?

I agree - it should probably be a new Invocation along the lines of "Mire the Mind" or "Sculptor of the Flesh"

Something like:
"No Rest for the Wicked"
Prereq: 5th level
You can cast Animate Dead once using a warlock spell slot. You can't do so again until you finish a long rest.

That way they get some zombie friends, but not an entire horde as a mid-level character. Which is exactly why "Undying" patron in Sword Coast didn't get animate dead as a pact spell, because it would totally overpower all other zombie minion builds, and potentially make warlocks better *tanks* than anyone else too.

Maybe 'stinking cloud' or 'speak with dead' would be an appropriate replacement?