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Cuddly
2008-02-14, 07:23 PM
I can't stand the cleric mechanic in 3x.

Why are all clerics identical, except for a couple largely unimportant domains?

Zincorium
2008-02-14, 07:26 PM
Because while 2nd edition had guidelines for making new types (the druid was actually just a variant of the cleric) of priests, everyone just ended up using the default.

So what they probably decided to do was just make a generic sort of priest that would actually go on adventures. As opposed to standing around in the temple leading people in prayer and organizing the church finances.

And poo-poo the domain system if you want, but realize that it's more choice than most classes got in 3.0.

Frosty
2008-02-14, 07:27 PM
Your salvation lies in the PHB2, where clerics can spontaneous cast spells from one of their domains instead of Cure spells.

Trouvere
2008-02-14, 07:29 PM
Yes, it makes me a little sad. The Favored Soul also missed the target. I'd have liked to have seen a spontaneous divine caster whose spells known were drawn from the deity's domains.

Cuddly
2008-02-14, 07:29 PM
And poo-poo the domain system if you want, but realize that it's more choice than most classes got in 3.0.

Fair enough, but why do clerics of the god of thieves, the god of death, and the the god of war all get the same weapon proficiencies, the same spell lists, and know how to wear plate?

It just irritates me.

Fax Celestis
2008-02-14, 07:32 PM
Fair enough, but why do clerics of the god of thieves, the god of death, and the the god of war all get the same weapon proficiencies, the same spell lists, and know how to wear plate?

It just irritates me.

Because essentially making a new base class every time someone thought up a new deity would be a mechanical nightmare and would bring layers of new cheese to the game. Layers. I don't think that D&D needs to look any closer to a 7-layer cheese and bean dip (http://bp2.blogger.com/_B5nNZ6dCV3s/RwZRKmyseaI/AAAAAAAAAX4/TvllmFMOmv8/s1600-h/7+layer+mexican+dip.jpg), do you?

TempusCCK
2008-02-14, 07:36 PM
Meh, there are variants out there for you to mess with, a Cleric of a God of Rogues might do well with the Cloistered Cleric Variant, only given things like Hide and Move Silent on their skill list, and a few more weapons on their proficienies list.

A Cleric of a wargod might have less spells, but full BAB, or even a bumped down rage.

Quit whining that the 3.0 Mechanic doesn't work the way you like, get off your butt, use your brain and fix it up a little.

grego
2008-02-14, 07:40 PM
@ bean dip comment:

Actually, that dip looks delicious. I would prefer D&D being more like that any day.

Fax Celestis
2008-02-14, 07:42 PM
@ bean dip comment:

Actually, that dip looks delicious. I would prefer D&D being more like that any day.

It is indeed delicious. But it will give you gas. And having gas will make your friends not like you because you smell. Cheese in D&D is the same way: it will make your friends not like you.

de-trick
2008-02-14, 08:07 PM
You can always multiclass to make your character unique, or make a varient for your character

Prometheus
2008-02-14, 08:08 PM
I agree that clerics just aren't different enough. Cloistered Cleric and Spontaneous Domain clerics helps, but they still all have the same core spells, and are very similar in their tactics and play-style.

If you put enough spells into it, I'd think the ideal would be to make each cleric domain represent a different spell list, some of which overlap. Then it would truly be the case that all of a clerics spells are either directly relevant to their domain, or the type that all clerics should share (the point is, more should be in the former than the latter). Of course, this requires a lot of work, a lot of splatbooks, and slightly depowers the cleric (relative to other spellcasters that is), which would tend not to make potential cleric players attracted to it.

Starsinger
2008-02-14, 08:19 PM
You could try isolating a few spells that all clerics should have, and then adding to those all the spells in each of the deities domains to create the spell list. So Pelor would have the basic cleric spells, all the spells in the healing domain, all the spells in the sun domain, and all the spells in the good domain.

Fax Celestis
2008-02-14, 08:21 PM
You could try isolating a few spells that all clerics should have, and then adding to those all the spells in each of the deities domains to create the spell list. So Pelor would have the basic cleric spells, all the spells in the healing domain, all the spells in the sun domain, and all the spells in the good domain.

...you mean 2e's spheres?

AslanCross
2008-02-14, 08:31 PM
Fair enough, but why do clerics of the god of thieves, the god of death, and the the god of war all get the same weapon proficiencies, the same spell lists, and know how to wear plate?

It just irritates me.

Nitpick: Clerics who get the War domain get free proficiencies and Weapon Focus in their deity's favored weapon.

Further nitpick: They have the same general spell lists, yes, but domains (and their respective spell lists) actually give the clerics a lot more options than you give them credit for.

As for them all knowing how to wear armor, nobody tells you that you HAVE to wear heavy armor and carry a mace and shield. A cleric of Olidammara or Mask could take the Trickery domain, multiclass as a Rogue, wear light armor, and instead rely on buffs like shield of faith and such. And I think clerics are the only class that can multiclass that easily without sucking and losing synergy in their abilities.

Yami
2008-02-14, 08:37 PM
Save that you now lose spellcasting levels, which is a blow to the gut for any class that gets it's hands on tasty tasty magic. The cleric joneses for his spellcasting. Multiclassing out is like quitting cold turkey, it's just too hard. I myself would suggest starting your clerics on a 5 step presteige program that only gives partial spell advancement in return for awesome abilities. It's a longer route to recovery, but I do feel it is the better one.

AslanCross
2008-02-14, 08:41 PM
That's true, of course, but if the complaints were about how the spell lists were too similar and there wasn't enough uniqueness, then there shouldn't be a problem.

Come to think of it, a Cleric with the Trickery domain doesn't even need to multiclass as a rogue. He gets important Rogue skills as class skills and has stuff like invisibility. The only thing he can't do that a Rogue can is get Sneak Attack damage dice. (Of course, there's the problem of limited skill point gain.)

Tura
2008-02-14, 08:47 PM
You can make up a fluff reason for clerics of different gods having the same spells. (Well, you can make up a fluff reason for just about anything, but you know what I mean). The gods grant powers to their favorite priests, or simply worshipers, right? They don't do all that just to have worthy priests guiding pious flocks. For that, a priest doesn't need spells and training and special abilities, he just needs wisdom, charisma and tons of social skills. And if he needs extra guidance at some point, you (the god) can send him an omen in a dream or something.

But clerics are basically warriors of the faith. The gods expect them to fight for them. At the very least, they expect them to be ready to fight, just in case. And when that moment comes, they want their clerics to have healing spells, protection spells. offensive spells and whatnot. And behold: the adventurer.

If you want to fix it a bit more, and make it more specific for every different god, just add domain spells and/or skills. Improvise some other kind of bonus or specialization. But, to me, it makes perfect sense that the core of the spell list remains more or less the same, regardless of deity.

Starsinger
2008-02-14, 09:05 PM
...you mean 2e's spheres?

Never played 2e.. heh.

Tengu
2008-02-14, 09:16 PM
It is indeed delicious. But it will give you gas. And having gas will make your friends not like you because you smell. Cheese in D&D is the same way: it will make your friends not like you.

Unless you refine releasing gas into an art form - for example, stand in karate's Rider form, raise one and both of your fists and lower them slowly, concentrating - it's like an anime fighter using one of his attacks! (and might be such a thing in reality, if you ate enough stinky food)
The next step would be getting a mech with smoke bomb launcher in its bum. Or learning how to fart lightning, like William Wallace.

Okay, I seem to be the only one around my friends who enjoys doing this. Like every artist, I'm misunderstood.

F.L.
2008-02-14, 09:24 PM
Unless you refine releasing gas into an art form - for example, stand in karate's Rider form, raise one and both of your fists and lower them slowly, concentrating - it's like an anime fighter using one of his attacks! (and might be such a thing in reality, if you ate enough stinky food)
The next step would be getting a mech with smoke bomb launcher in its bum. Or learning how to fart lightning, like William Wallace.

Okay, I seem to be the only one around my friends who enjoys doing this. Like every artist, I'm misunderstood.

I find it funny, but only because I'm wearing a NBC mask.

Tequila Sunrise
2008-02-14, 09:49 PM
Personally, I restrict clerics to individualized Spells Known lists but allow them to take spells from any spell list. That helps reduce the spell uniformity at least.

serow
2008-02-14, 09:52 PM
You could prepare the spells that reflect your deity and not prepare those that don't.

Collin152
2008-02-14, 09:56 PM
You could prepare the spells that reflect your deity and not prepare those that don't.

Psh! Then you'd get Clerics of Erythnul who don't cast healing magic. Which might not be so bad...

Thane of Fife
2008-02-14, 10:35 PM
You could always try replacing Turn Undead with something more appropriate to the deity - for example, a cleric of Erythnul might be able to cause a small amount of damage, while a cleric of Kord might be able to give a slight strength boost.

Depending on the power, it shouldn't be too difficult to shift the focus of the cleric.

Of course, making sure it stays balanced could be a bit tricky, but, eh?

DementedFellow
2008-02-14, 11:07 PM
You could always try replacing Turn Undead with something more appropriate to the deity - for example, a cleric of Erythnul might be able to cause a small amount of damage, while a cleric of Kord might be able to give a slight strength boost.

Depending on the power, it shouldn't be too difficult to shift the focus of the cleric.

Of course, making sure it stays balanced could be a bit tricky, but, eh?

You know that's not too bad an idea. For the strength one, I would do it once per day half cleric level enhancement bonus. But that's just me. It doesn't seem too game-breakingly bad.

SilentNight
2008-02-14, 11:12 PM
It's all the about the flavor. Two priests that use heavy maces can have completely different fighting styles. Also taking a level of fighter or monk is not a bad idea depending on the character. The cleric is as diverse as you make it. It just requires some originality(or stealing from shows/books:smalltongue: )

Chronos
2008-02-15, 12:15 AM
Unless you refine releasing gas into an art formIt's been done. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Le_P%C3%A9tomane)

Aquillion
2008-02-15, 12:15 AM
Hmm. It feels to me almost as if the best way to make a cleric of 'any' deity would be to combine clerics with other classes (the way races are now), and to give each deity a 'favored' class to combine with (e.g. god of thieves favors rogues.) Almost as if 'cleric' was a template or something, or little more than a few feats that give you limited advantages an abilities.

I actually kind of like this. I've always sort of hated the concept of 'divine magic'. It doesn't, when you get down to it, match up with anything in most myths or legends -- most deities just aren't portrayed as being regular, mechanical miracle-dispensers like that. Perhaps there could still be a re-themed-sorcerer class who casts 'divine' spells, modelled on the cloistered cleric, but it would be established that most clerics out there are people with the 'divine ordination' feat or whatever.

And healing? Tone it down and give the important spells to wizards (contrary to what you're thinking, this makes them less overwhelming as a practical, not more, since it means they have to spend some of their magic on healing and keeping the party going.) Wizards and sorcerers who take the appropriate divine ordination feats get the ability to convert spells to healing, as appropriate.

horseboy
2008-02-15, 12:21 AM
It's been done. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Le_P%C3%A9tomane)


#
# In the movie Blazing Saddles (1974), Mel Brooks plays the part of "Governor William J. Le Petomane".It all makes perfect sense now.

Mark Hall
2008-02-15, 12:33 AM
I can't stand the cleric mechanic in 3x.

Why are all clerics identical, except for a couple largely unimportant domains?

Because clerics have been steadily increasing in power since 1974, and rather than emphasize the aspects of a cleric that relate to them being a priest of a deity, WotC went with them being healbots who got to cast other spells, as well.

Cuddly
2008-02-15, 12:45 AM
Clerics real power lies in their full casting. Take away all their other abilities- domains, turning, armor proficiencies, and they're still near the top of the pile.

If there were options for making a cleric that took away casting and gave relevant perks (rather than a cleric/rogue multiclass, which sucks, since nothing really synergizes, and PrCs out there aren't going to help a great deal), that'd be groovy.

Variants. Sneaky clerics with sneaky spell lists and some sneak attack damage. Convincing clerics. Martial clerics. As it is, all clerics get the same stuff, which is really what makes them so powerful. If they had to trade it out for mediocre class abilities, we wouldn't see them so powerful. Especially if they had to work from more restricted spell lists.

Khanderas
2008-02-15, 04:23 AM
Fair enough, but why do clerics of the god of thieves, the god of death, and the the god of war all get the same weapon proficiencies, the same spell lists, and know how to wear plate?

It just irritates me.
Anyone can know how to wear plate.
But rogues sneak worth crap in it. And move too slow for their agility to work properly.
Wizards need to form complex movements and plate slows it down. Not to mention wizards are often physically weak and like to be comfy.

A cleric of thievs may well be using leather (especially duing a burglery or the like), but the class abilities do not require him to wear lighter clothing, and plate does protect abit better.

As for all simple weapons. Idonno, crusading clerics would get the training though.

raygungothic
2008-02-15, 05:49 AM
I like clerics with the PHBII "spontaneous cast from domain rather than cure/cause" option.

And archivists. Archivists are nice.

Clerical spells are fine. The Turn Undead mechanic... *shudder*... I wonder if it could be completely replaced with a tweak to the spell system?

MorkaisChosen
2008-02-15, 07:00 AM
I played a Cleric of Olidammara once- took Rapier proficiency, only wore leather armour, the DM houseruled me Hide and Move Silently- good fun, maybe not totally optimised, but enjoyable. I agree that the class looks a bit generic, but you can do a lot with RP style (for example, the Cleric of Olidammara taking risks and Inflicting Wounds on Ettins without casting defensviely, then getting critted on the AoO...).

Telonius
2008-02-15, 09:34 AM
I think the "Cloistered Cleric" variant goes a long way to making Clerics that don't seem cookie-cutter. It would make sense for all Clerics to have training in Light Armor and simple weapons. If the Cleric wants to be a melee combatant, he'd pretty much have to take the War domain. But melee would just be one choice among many now, because of the lower hit die and only light armor proficiency.

Person_Man
2008-02-15, 10:19 AM
Try my homebrew Domain Favored Soul (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=57097). Ultimate customization, and an insanely high level of flexibility within the game as well. I've played it in a campaign, and it was tremendously fun and balanced.


Favored Soul

d8 hit points
all strong Saves
all armor and shields except tower shields
all simple weapons
3/4 BAB
4 skill points base
Skill List: Concentration, Craft, Diplomacy, Gather Information, Heal, Intimidate, Knowledge (history, religion), Profession, Sense Motive, Spellcraft, Use Magic Device.

Class Abilities:

Spellcasting: Charisma based spellcasting, using the Sorcerer's spells per day progression. Your spell list is drawn entirely from your domain lists, plus any additional spells that you might pick up from feats, PrC, etc. Unlike most other casters, you do not have any 0th level spells.

Revelation: At first level you are granted any two domains from your god's list of domains, including the granted powers. At 4th, 8th, 12th, 16th, and 20th levels, you gain 1 additional domain, expanding your spell list and gaining another power. This additional domain must also be from your god's list of domains. If your god does not have 7 domains, pick a related domain that follows your god's general ethos, subject to the approval of your DM.

If a domain's spell list overlaps with the spell list of another domain that you are currently granted, you gain +2 Caster Level when you cast that spell. For example, if you had the Strength and War domains, you would gain +2 Caster Level when you cast Magic Vestment, though you would have one fewer spell known to draw upon. If a spell appears on more then two domain spell lists, the benefits to your Caster Level stack (though obviously your spells known for that level would be severely limited).

If a domain's granted power requires the Turn or Rebuke Undead ability and you do not currently have the ability to do so (for example, the Sun Domain), you are granted the Turn Undead ability as your domain power instead of the standard domain power.

If a domain's granted power gives you access to a Skill which is already on your Skill List at the time you gain the domain, you gain Skill Focus for that Skill as a bonus feat.

Shield of Faith: At 1st level you gain Energy Resistance against all types of energy equal to your current Favored Soul level. Energy Resistance from multiple sources never stack.

Power of Faith: At 5th level you gain the use of one Faith Point per day. At 10th, 15th, and 20th levels, you gain one additional Faith Point (to a maximum of 4 Faith Points at 20th level). Once you use a Faith Point, it is expended until you rest for 8 hours and restore your spells per day.

Faith Points can be used in four ways:

First, you can use a Faith Point to gain one additional use of any domain power you currently possess. For example, a Favored Soul with the Death Domain could use a Faith Point to make an additional death touch attack.

Second, you may use a Faith Point as an Immediate Action to reroll any Saving Throw after your DM has announced the result of the Save. For example, after rolling your Saving Throw for a Fireball and being informed by your DM that your result failed, you may use a Faith Point to re-roll that Save.

Third, you may use a Faith Point as an Immediate Action to fully negate the effects of any Save that you have just passed. For example, after rolling a Save for a Fireball your DM informs you that you pass the Saving Throw and take half damage, you may you may use a Faith Point to completely negate the effect of the Fireball.

Finally, you may use a Faith Point as an Immediate Action to negate a critical hit which you have just taken. You still take normal damage from the attack, as if it were not a Critical Hit.

Ascension: At 20th level you gain wings with a Fly speed equal to your base land movement and your type changes to Outsider (native), except you can still be resurrected. You also gain DR 10/the alignment opposite your deity's. For example, if you worship a CG god, then you have DR 10/lawful or evil. If your deity is true neutral, then you gain DR 10/silver.

hamlet
2008-02-15, 10:21 AM
Because while 2nd edition had guidelines for making new types (the druid was actually just a variant of the cleric) of priests, everyone just ended up using the default.



Not true.

The PHB in 2nd edition showed us how to make unique domain/deity specific clerics. With the advent of the "Legends and Lore" text for 2nd edition (or whatever that version of it called itself, I've forgotten), we had a whole slew of unique clerics for specific gods. Each cleric had a different spell list based on what spheres he was granted access to (not all gods gave the same spells) and they all had unique special powers (not all of them could turn undead) and could use different weapons, armor, proficiencies, etc.

That was what was great about 2e clerics: you could have all the variation you wanted if you were just willing to do the work of setting it up.

Wolf53226
2008-02-15, 10:43 AM
That was what was great about 2e clerics: you could have all the variation you wanted if you were just willing to do the work of setting it up.

Of course you still have this option, it's called talking to your DM and coming up with a trade off.

Yes, I will give up heavy armor proficiency, turning undead, and this list of spells that don't make sense for the character for a couple skills being made class skills, one or two more skill points per level, and the use of light weapons.

Please players...you have an idea....WORK with your DM, we will help you if you ask, not all of us have the same features as some paladins. {Read stick in an uncomfortable place}

Draz74
2008-02-15, 11:25 AM
Yes, it makes me a little sad. The Favored Soul also missed the target. I'd have liked to have seen a spontaneous divine caster whose spells known were drawn from the deity's domains.

Try the Ardent! All it needs is a fluff re-write.

Or the Spontaneous Divine Caster variant from UA is a good start too. Since it means your domain spells are a large fraction of your limited Spells Known pool.

hamlet
2008-02-15, 12:15 PM
Of course you still have this option, it's called talking to your DM and coming up with a trade off.

Yes, I will give up heavy armor proficiency, turning undead, and this list of spells that don't make sense for the character for a couple skills being made class skills, one or two more skill points per level, and the use of light weapons.

Please players...you have an idea....WORK with your DM, we will help you if you ask, not all of us have the same features as some paladins. {Read stick in an uncomfortable place}

Of course you still have the choice. However, I bring it up because I've been on this board making the argument that there's plenty of room for customization in AD&D as long as you work with your DM and make intelligent choices and been told that that point of view was bunk and too dependent on "DM Fiat*" and I was just some stupid grognard.



*I beging more and more to despise the term DM Fiat as it is used as a curse word on these boards.

CockroachTeaParty
2008-02-15, 12:49 PM
You know, with the spontaneous domain casting variant from the PHB II, I see little reason for clerics of evil deities to use anything else. Really, spontaneous inflict spells will only be useful if you're amassing an army of undead, and that doesn't fit the flavor of a lot of evil deities. It's useful for players (especially inexperienced ones) to be able to have healing always available, but for the bad guys, the spontaneous domain casting seems to be the way to go.

Dan_Hemmens
2008-02-15, 01:50 PM
Clerics are the most obvious example of a wider problem with D&D: the setting is supposed to be customisable, but the mechanics actually imply an awful lot of very specific flavour, which doesn't actually fit that well with most settings.

Clerics in particular fall awkwardly between stools, because they're simultaneously extremely generic (any priest, in any culture, in any setting is a Cleric) and also extremely specific (they're still always Priests). A Rogue could be a a thief, a spy, or a pirate, and you can broadly customise it to fit, as long as you're willing to handwave a couple of things (why do *all* thieves *everywhere* train in Sneak Attack). A Paladin, on the other hand, is always the Shiny Knight of Shiny Light. In both cases they fit what they're supposed to be.

The problem is further compounded because "Priest" implies a very, very specific social and cultural role, which very few Clerics actually fulfill. As a result the idea of a "Cleric" becomes almost wholly divorced from the IC concept of the priesthood.

If it weren't a colossal break with the system, I'd suggest that maybe the best way to deal with things would be to abolish the distinction between Divine and Arcane magic entirely, abolish Clerics as a class, and just have Priests be Experts if they just run a parish, Fighters if they're militant, and Wizards or Sorcerers if they cast spells. Make whether somebody is actually a "priest" or not up to them and their god.

fendrin
2008-02-15, 03:06 PM
Try the Ardent! All it needs is a fluff re-write.
Quoted for undeniable truth. The Ardent is what the Cleric should have been.

For those not familiar with the Ardent:

Source: Complete Psionic
rough outline: IIRC it looks A LOT like a cleric in terms of BAB, saves Hit Die, and weapon proficiencies. I think it has less armor proficiencies (but I could easily be wrong).

The big difference? Instead of having a standard power list and 2 domains, An ardent starts with two mantles and gains more as the level up.

Mantles are essentially domains with a different name, though They don't always have one power per level. Ardents can only manifest powers on one of their mantle lists.

In the end, they have (MANY) fewer powers known than a cleric has spells, but more special abilities and much more customized flavor.

Details may be wrong, this is from memory. I haven't even looked at the book in ages. Too many DMs are afraid of psionics, and even fewer allow CPsi. :smallannoyed:

Deepblue706
2008-02-15, 03:54 PM
If it weren't a colossal break with the system, I'd suggest that maybe the best way to deal with things would be to abolish the distinction between Divine and Arcane magic entirely, abolish Clerics as a class, and just have Priests be Experts if they just run a parish, Fighters if they're militant, and Wizards or Sorcerers if they cast spells. Make whether somebody is actually a "priest" or not up to them and their god.

I've actually wanted this for quite some time, but I don't think it'll ever happen. I think people will feel D&D is too "different" if you remove some of its iconic details, even if they're craptastic.

Fhaolan
2008-02-15, 05:29 PM
I've actually wanted this for quite some time, but I don't think it'll ever happen. I think people will feel D&D is too "different" if you remove some of its iconic details, even if they're craptastic.

There are several published versions of this, the main one I'm aware of being True20. I've never played with the system myself, but the reports I've had from people who have were favourable.

Mystral
2008-02-15, 10:53 PM
I played a Cleric until recently. It was a Level 11 Cleric of Akadi (that Faerun Wind Goddess) with the Domains Travel and Trickery.

He had the feats:

EWP Spiked Chain
Combat Expertise
Power Attack
Improved Trip
Spontaneus Domain (Travel)

and ran around with an Elven Chainmail. He spent his time mainly being chaotic neutral and felt very different to play, if only for the fluff of Akadi which is basically "Do whatever you like, just don't get caught." With a little thought put into it, everyone can play a unique cleric, most simply don't choose to do.

Oh yeah, and the DM forced me to leave the party with this character because he was just to chaotic neutral for the party.

Tequila Sunrise
2008-02-16, 12:06 AM
Of course you still have the choice. However, I bring it up because I've been on this board making the argument that there's plenty of room for customization in AD&D as long as you work with your DM and make intelligent choices and been told that that point of view was bunk and too dependent on "DM Fiat*" and I was just some stupid grognard.


Whaddya gonna do? Some people are just stupid, yet somehow find the faulty rationale to call others the same. I say just ignore them. If they want to mindlessly depend on TSR/WotC for new mechanics, it's a free country and they can waste their money however they see fit. And if they try to tell me that I should do the same, I'll tell them where to shove it.

TS

Roderick_BR
2008-02-16, 12:13 PM
I played a Cleric of Olidammara once- took Rapier proficiency, only wore leather armour, the DM houseruled me Hide and Move Silently- good fun, maybe not totally optimised, but enjoyable. I agree that the class looks a bit generic, but you can do a lot with RP style (for example, the Cleric of Olidammara taking risks and Inflicting Wounds on Ettins without casting defensviely, then getting critted on the AoO...).
If you take the trickery domain, you already get these skills as class skills for clerics, doesn't it? No need for houserule this time.

MorkaisChosen
2008-02-16, 12:28 PM
Hide, Bluff and Disguise from Trickery, so MS was houseruled, but Hide wasn't.

Beren One-Hand
2008-02-16, 04:11 PM
I think the "Cloistered Cleric" variant goes a long way to making Clerics that don't seem cookie-cutter. It would make sense for all Clerics to have training in Light Armor and simple weapons. If the Cleric wants to be a melee combatant, he'd pretty much have to take the War domain. But melee would just be one choice among many now, because of the lower hit die and only light armor proficiency.

I'm not sure I would agree with this...
If all clerics were cloistered, you'd get non-sense beings such as Grendel the Savage (Ogre cleric with 21 Str; 6 Int; with the War, Destruction, and Knowledge?! domains)

LotharBot
2008-02-17, 01:30 PM
It's all the about the flavor.... The cleric is as diverse as you make it.

QFT.

Clerics have domain spells and domain powers, which give you some inherent differences. But the differences don't end there. There are clerics who focus on healing and buffs, those who focus on damage, those who focus on hitting stuff with their mace, and so on. My wife made a cleric "of goodness and light" (good/sun domains) who spent most of her time casting spells that used light in one way or other. She refused to cast curses, poison, inflict spells, and many other spells that just didn't fit with her character.

I dislike the idea of limiting clerics to "spheres" or equivalent -- at least, I dislike the idea of making that the default mechanic. Instead, I think the players of clerics should be free to pick and choose the spells that make the most sense to them. Sure, you'll have some who just go for "most mechanically effective", but you'll have others who have a focus or theme behind their casting. That's really what keeps clerics from being cookie-cutter in my games.

(My group thought arcane casters were cookie-cutter blaster-casters, too. I'm now playing an illusion/enchantment-focused sorcerer, and it's changed that perception.)

EDIT: one simple way to add flavor to clerics would be to give them a few bonus feats, perhaps every 5 levels, selected from Spell Focus, Extra Domain, or Spontaneous Domain. All of these make the cleric either "better at" or "more likely to cast from" a particular subset of their spells, which naturally leads them to focus their attention a particular direction. I'd also grant an extra Spell Focus (or similar) feat every 5 levels to sorcerers in order to enhance flavor/customization.