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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Troll in the Playground
    Join Date
    Jan 2007

    Default 5e Mythos - The Cynosure Base Class


    The Cynosure

    As the name implies, it is a Cynosure's duty and burden to shine resplendently in the eyes of lesser beings, raised high on a dais of worship and adoration, their will shackled as much by their own ambitions to use the hearts of their zealots and sycophants to their own ends as they are by the ever-slavering need of those servants to be used by their idol.

    To be a candidate for inheritance of the Mythos of Authority, one must be of noble blood, however distant. Or else have made their own blood noble by achieving nobility in their own lifetime. The moment of ignition is an instant of resolute selfishness without guilt or empathy. The sky stands above without purpose, and the earth should not dare to ask why.

    A newly risen baroness looks over the humble land that she and her adventuring party wrested from the savage wilds, securing their titles from the crown. But in that simple instant, she realizes that so paltry a prize could never be enough - perhaps no prize could ever be enough - but light shines from within her and whispers for her to grasp at what she may, and see if the world at her feet might suffice.

    The king's bastard daughter, spirited away at birth and living a happy and fulfilled life, discovers her lineage and realizes that she would cast everything away for just a taste of her birthright. As she hatches a plot to assassinate her father and plunge the land into civil war for nothing but the possibility that she might ascend to power on the backs of a heaped pile of innocent corpses, she wells with the Mythos of Authority and all the world conspires for her success.

    An elected councilwoman of a great republic has spent much of her life ensuring that her people are well represented, their futures safeguarded, their interests protected. But the other councilors fight her at every turn. Some are corrupt, others merely represent the clearly irrational interests of citizens that disagree with the councilwoman's own constituents. She sees a vision of a greater tomorrow, a unified tomorrow, without all the foolish hindrances of progress that compromise and democracy represent. As a Cynosure, she takes the senate floor for the last time, and emerges a tyrant, her once-peers kneeling as they must before her glory.

    Class Features
    As a Cynosure, you gain the following class features.

    Hit Points
    Hit Dice: 1d8 per Cynosure level, +10d8
    Hit Points at First Level: 60
    Hit Points at Higher Levels: 5 per Cynosure level after 1st

    Armor: All Armor, Shields
    Weapons: Simple Weapons, Martial Weapons
    Tools: One Artisan Tool, Gaming Set, or Musical Instrument of your choice

    Saving Throws: Strength, Constitution, Wisdom, Charisma
    Skills: Perception and Persuasion, plus any three of your choice

    You start with the following equipment, in addition to the equipment granted by your background.

    • (a) up to two melee weapons of your choice, a ranged weapon of your choice and 20 units of ammunition, a set of armor and a shield of your choice or (b) a noble estate with a manor house
    • (a) a signet ring or (b) a small family heirloom
    • (a) a set of travelers clothes or (b) a set of fine clothes
    • (a) an equipment pack of your choice and 200gp or (b) a large mass of difficult-to-transport trade goods and livestock worth roughly 1,000gp plus 50 gold pieces on hand

    Level Proficiency Bonus Features
    1st +4 Empyreal Resonance, Inspiring Imperator's Mien, Absolute Transcendence Field, Crushing Visage Of The God-Empress
    2nd +4 The Mandate Of Heaven, Ability Score Improvement
    3rd +5 Numinous God-Body
    4th +5 Treading On The Sky
    5th +5 King-And-Kingdom Apotheosis
    6th +5 Creation-Piercing Heaven Tyrant Vision, Ability Score Improvement
    7th +6 Alpha-And-Omega Beam
    8th +6 Splendid Vassalage Promotion
    9th +6 Ability Score Improvement
    10th +6 Divine Essence Discorporation

    Saving Throws
    Unless otherwise noted, when one of a Cynosure's abilities requires a saving throw, the DC is equal to 8 + your proficiency bonus + your Charisma modifier.

    Empyreal Resonance
    At the end of a Long Rest, if you feel as if you have done one of the following since your last Long Rest, ask your fellows players and GM if they agree. If the majority do, gain one Inspiration. You may only gain one Inspiration in this way per Long Rest.

    • You asserted your authority to bring order to a disorderly situation.
    • Acting as a leader, you delegated responsibility for a task to someone more suited to it than yourself, or took council from those you consider wiser than you and acted upon their advice.
    • You expanded the land you control, acquired new physical resources for your holdings, or acquired political clout or allies.
    • You explained your divine and self-evident right to rulership and power to those who do not believe in you, and either accepted their conversions, or punished them as heretics.
    • You were cast down and humiliated (physically, emotionally, politically, etc), but resolved to reclaim your dignity and seek revenge on those responsible.

    When using your World-Shaping Demiurge Authority, you have dominion over nobility, politics, government, heraldry, etiquette, and high-class functions, such as lavish galas and enthronements.

    Inspiring Imperator's Mien
    Once, there was a maiden with eyes like burning stars...

    While you are not wearing armor of any kind, you may calculate your Armor Class as [10 + your Charisma modifier + (the higher of your Constitution or Dexterity modifier)]. You may not also benefit from a shield. Such is the lofty weight of your very presence that the world trembles around you and its slings and arrows turn aside, its flames recoil, its swords stagger and bend away.

    As an action, you may target up to two allies that can see and hear you within 100ft. They are graced by the light of your glory. Choose one of the following effects for each target. You might be verbally directing them, quoting something inspiring, or else you might simply be standing with stoic grandeur and that is enough.

    • Your target may make a free melee attack against one of your enemies.
    • Your target may move up to 10ft.
    • Your target may make a new saving throw against one of the following conditions afflicting them: Charmed, Frightened, Stunned. If the original source of the condition did not have a saving throw, they automatically succeed.
    • The next divine spell the target casts before the beginning of your next turn that heals or deals damage is empowered. The target may reroll up to (your Charisma modifier) damage or healing dice from the spell. They must keep the new results.

    Absolute Transcendence Field
    ...and her glory was a tower from which none could escape her gaze.

    The boundary between your flesh and will is less defined than a mortal's. As your divine will is sacrosanct, so too is it beyond the right of your lessers to trespass on the domain of your body.

    You have a special pool of Hit Points separate from your normal total and separate from any Temporary Hit Points you might have. This is your AT Pool, and its maximum total is equal to [your Constitution modifier x (10 + your level)]. At the beginning of the first session of the game, the pool is full, but it does not recover under the same conditions as normal Hit Points. Healing dealt by divine magic can restore it, as can taking a long rest while at least one of the following three conditions is met:

    • You are maintaining an Aristocratic lifestyle, surrounded by sycophants that lavish you with praise and wait on your whims.
    • You have a cult of at least (10 x level) adherents whose primary daily task is to pray and worship in your name.
    • You are the sovereign ruler of a nation or city-state containing at least (10,000 x level) souls.

    When you take damage, it is first applied to your AT Pool, then to Temporary Hit Points (if any), then to your normal Hit Points. When an attack or other effect that deals damage, but also has additional effects other than damage, damages you, but all the damage is taken from your AT Pool, any of those additional effects other than damage do not occur.

    (For example, a Battlemaster Fighter uses their Menacing Attack maneuver on you. This adds an additional effect onto their successful melee attack, forcing you to make a saving throw or become Frightened. The attack deals 12 damage. Your AT Pool has 33 points in it, subtracting 12, leaving 21. Because all of the damage was absorbed by your AT Pool, you do not have to make a saving throw at all.)

    Attacks completely absorbed by your AT Pool are visually ineffectual. A sword swing might bounce off your skin without so much as a scratch, while arrows might fling themselves into the ground at your feet as if they had a will of their own, and a Thunderwave spell might not even ruffle your hair or dishevel your clothing.

    While you have at least 1 point in your AT Pool, the following is true:

    • As a bonus action, you may cause your body to emit a calm, beautiful white light with brightness equal to a torch. This light turns off automatically if your AT Pool is emptied, or if you spend another bonus action to will it.
    • Your person is notably clean and neat. Mud or blood doesn't seem to cling to you, your clothing looks freshly laundered and ironed, and regardless of your surroundings you smell faintly of a regal incense (unless you've taken intentional steps to perfume yourself in another fashion).

    Crushing Visage Of The God-Empress
    Her servants and slaves called her "Tyrant"...

    Your gaze has all the weight of the Universe Empress and Emperor behind it for, like them, you are true royalty, beyond the petty ken of mortal rulers who squabble over dirt and shiny pebbles with their mayfly lives. In antiquity, when the Empress deigned to gaze upon her subjects, they knelt in grateful terror of her majesty. In time, your own kingdom may know the joy of submission to heaven.

    All creatures within 30ft of you that can see your eyes must make a Charisma saving throw at the beginning of their turn or else become Frightened and Charmed until the beginning of their next turn. Alternatively, they might close their own eyes to avoid being drawn into your awe-inspiring mien; in this case, they are considered Blinded until they choose to reopen their eyes (they must make the choice to reopen their eyes at the beginning of their turn, at which point they make the save against this ability if they can see you). A creature that makes their saving throw is immune to your gaze for the next hour.

    By maintaining a lofty, imperious demeanor and turning your gaze upward and away from those around you, you may spare them the weight of your attention. However, you cannot turn this ability off. As soon as you begin looking directly at the people around you, they will once against become consumed in your power.

    In a stressful situation, such as combat, those who fight on your side are emboldened by their loyalty to you. They have Advantage on their saving throws against this ability.

    The Mandate Of Heaven
    ...but the word did not set them free.

    Choose one of the following three abilities to acquire.

    Seated On The Throne Of The World
    The universe conspires to see you rule it. When you utilize the Building A Stronghold downtime activity (DMG pg128) to build a stronghold worth 50,000gp or more, the actual cost to do so in practice is 20% less. For mysterious reasons, tools seem to last longer during construction before wearing out, accidents are less frequent, less material is wasted, and laborers are just a little happier and more attentive with their work.

    Furthermore, each day you personally oversee construction actually counts as (Charisma modifier, minimum 1) days towards completion.

    King-of-Kings Immanence
    Your soul ignites and becomes not unlike the essence of a god, though its radiance is yet burgeoning. You may cast any ritual cleric spell of 1st or 2nd level, even though you have no spell slots, but only as rituals. Furthermore, creatures with the proper conviction and the spark of true faith may become Clerics of you and your divine legend grants them spells as a god would.

    By using the Research downtime activity, you may seek out and make contact with commoners that have what it takes to acquire the Cleric class. With your support and encouragement, they might be persuaded to form or join your congregation.

    The Many Hands Of The Empress
    When someone you trust uses an Intelligence check in which they're proficient to give you advice on a matter of rulership or governance, they gain Advantage if you are not proficient in the same check. (For example, if tensions are rising between two religious factions in your land, you might ask your vizier to consider what the first step towards a resolution might be. If they are proficient in the Religion skill, and you are not, they have Advantage on the roll to analyze the situation and come up with a solution.)

    Numinous God-Body
    Her enemies called her "Demon"...

    Choose one of the following three abilities to acquire.

    Grace Beyond Flesh
    Soft, white light begins to shine from beneath your skin, dim but warm. The light subtly changes your appearance, smoothing over your features to be causally more perfect. Blemishes and incongruities melt into the light and, in bright conditions, you appear heroically, jaw-droppingly handsome or beautiful. In the dark, only a fool would mistake you for something so base as the most attractive human in the world - your inner light wreaths you like an otherworldly apparition, a god or demigod of surpassing purity and grace.

    Your maximum hit points are reduced by 35 and your AT Pool increases by 50. Furthermore, each time you level up, your maximum hit points only increase by 3, while your AT Pool increases by an additional 2.

    Personality-Force Barrier
    A visible halo of light appears behind you while you have at least 1 point in your AT Pool, and your excitement or anger causes your hair and clothing to billow as if by a sourceless wind. You have Advantage on Strength, Constitution, and Wisdom saving throws while you have at least 1 point in your AT Pool, and damaging effects completely absorbed by your AT Pool appear to be rebuked by manifested conjurations of your will formed of hardened light.

    Twin-Hearted Empyrean Internalization
    Aligning the resonance of your soul more perfectly with the light of Authority causes intense physical and chemical changes to your body's composition. The next time you take a long rest, you emerge in a new form more befitting your purpose and the nature you are meant to have. This new form manifests in one of two ways. (1) You become entirely androgynous, reflecting subtle masculinity or femininity in accordance with whatever your viewer finds most pleasurable to see. (2) You become both intensely masculine and intensely feminine, displaying exaggerated characteristics of both forms simultaneously. Those attracted to power see something in you regardless of orientation, but those who find weakness or timidity desirable only see you as alien and disconcerting.

    In both cases, you are physically hermaphroditic, though your mind is left to decide for itself how it identifies. You also grow a second heart in your chest; this, along with a more perfect internal structuring, provides a permanent +2 bonus to your Strength, Dexterity, and Constitution ability scores.

    Treading On The Sky
    ...but the word did not save their lives.

    With supreme confidence, you supersede the commands of gravity and ascend to the sky, born aloft by the light of your authority. You gain a flying speed of 60ft and you may hover while flying. In flight, you are suffused with an otherworldly aura that trails curling ribbons of light as you move.

    King-And-Kingdom Apotheosis
    The sun called her "Evil"...

    In the days of old, the Empyrean Titan was the Empress on the universal throne and also the vast, unknowable gulf between worlds. All places were her dominion, and her light reached every soul, no matter how remote. The king could not be destroyed so long as the kingdom remained, and the kingdom stood so long as the king lived. She reigned until one child brought everything to ruin.

    Choose one of the following three abilities to acquire.

    Raising The House Of Glory
    This ability can be activated once, by meditating on your glory while within a stronghold you own that is worth a base cost of at least 50,000gp to construct (usually a castle or temple). After a day of meditation, your soul increases in spiritual magnitude until it divides itself, the second cast-off soul coming to inhabit the stronghold and the grounds around it. This soul is still yours, and the stronghold is now you, but separate. You are spiritually greater than an individual now.

    Inhabited by your glory, the stronghold rends itself from the lesser world that clings to it like so many beggars and ascends heavenward.

    You gain a set of Lair Actions that you can utilize within your lair, which is your now-flying stronghold. On initiative count 20 (losing initiative ties), you can take one of the following Lair Actions each round.
    • Alter the speed or direction of your stronghold. Its max speed is 30 miles per hour horizontally, or half that while ascending or descending. As a being of the sky, it cannot be commanded to move its lowest point within 100ft of the ground. It follows its last command until commanded otherwise or until it hits this 100ft threshold, at which point it stops itself.
    • Shake the stronghold with an effort of will, causing all standing within other than yourself to make a Dexterity saving throw or be knocked prone. This ability takes some effort can cannot be used two rounds in a row.
    • Open, close, and/or lock or unlock any number of doors or windows in the stronghold by mentally focusing on them.
    • Light or snuff any number of mundane light sources attached to the stronghold itself by mentally focusing on them. (For example, you cannot snuff a lantern someone is holding, but you could snuff a lantern on a hook on the wall, a torch on a wall-bracket, or a lamp sitting on a table.)
    • Speak and have your voice be carried clearly to every corner of the stronghold, thunderously.

    Should you die, your stronghold will remain where it is. However, if you are permanently slain beyond mortal magic's ability to restore, or willingly merge with the afterlife you have been sent to and forsake all future resurrections, your stronghold collapses in on itself and falls to the earth.

    You are always aware of your stronghold's distance and direction from you, and if it ever suffers great structural damage (such as from seige weaponry), you become distantly aware of that as well.

    The Luminous Gaze Of God
    By meditating for one hour, you may cast your senses and consciousness from your body. A gathering of luminescent clouds appears far overheard, farther up even than the world's natural cloud-cover, brushing the firmament itself. Then, a beautiful, terrifying pillar of divine light emerges from the clouds and descends to earth. The pillar is a 300ft diameter cylinder, and your sense of sight and hearing extend throughout, but nowhere beyond. The quality of your senses is identical to those possessed by your body - if you are blind, then your vision is blinded in the pillar, if you have the True Seeing spell cast on you, it extends to your vision in the pillar, and so on - and you must still make Perception checks to perceive things that are being purposefully hidden from your gaze.

    Though the pillar is initially centered on your body, you may will it to move. Its top speed is 100mph and it accelerates and decelerates instantly. However, at any speed over 30mph, you can only perceive general features of the land over which you pass (there are trees here, there is a river here, etc). The DM may call for Perception checks to notice something interesting occurring at a smaller scale as your gaze passes by. At 30mph or lower, you can see quite clearly.

    If the pillar remains stationary for a full round, all magical darkness beneath it is dispelled if it is the result of mortal magic. A DC 20 Charisma check is required to dispel darkness created by a god or the powers of an Anthol. Creatures in the area also count exposure to the pillar as exposure to sunlight after being bathed in its radiance for over a round.

    When this ability is used while you are in a building or underground, the pillar still appears outside; above wherever it is that you are. While this ability is in use, you cannot take actions with your body, although your senses other than sight and hearing are still active from that point. Ending this ability is a bonus action that causes the pillar to vanish over the course of a few seconds.

    Sacred Spirit Presence
    You wield the very concept of ownership like any artisan might wield their tools. While within the borders of an area you rule over, you may spend a Bonus Action to slip into space adjacent to the dimensions within which mortal perception extends, move up to your movement speed, and then rephase yourself. All physical objects and even magical or ethereal effects can do nothing to stop your motion (you cannot choose to stop moving in such a way that you would rephase yourself into an object you cannot spatially cohabitate with). To the outside world, you have teleported, but the movement is not instantaneous and your perceptions are still active throughout the journey.

    Furthermore, by focusing your mind on the location of a temple, castle, or large government-associated building (like a courthouse or the senate building) within the borders of an area you rule over, you may meditate for one minute and slip through space to appear at a suitably dramatic location within that structure. You may take up to (Charisma modifier) passengers with you.

    Creation-Piercing Heaven Tyrant Vision
    ...but the word meant nothing.

    Your visual acuity improves, granting you the equivalent of permanent "truesight" (PHB pg185).
    Furthermore, you may choose to focus your vision further, piercing all physical matter within 60ft, seeing beyond it as if it were transparent. However, while so focused, you have Disadvantage on Perception checks to notice things more than 60ft away from you. Focusing and unfocusing your vision in this way is a Bonus Action. If used in combination with The Luminous Gaze Of God, you are able to see through all visible matter within the pillar 60ft thick or thinner (this allows you to see roughly 60ft deep into the earth).

    Alpha-And-Omega Beam
    One day, she looked at herself...

    As an action, you may focus the intense gaze granted by Crushing Visage Of The God-Empress into a look so potently proud and grandiose that it manifests visibly and can tear apart physical matter. Until the beginning of your next turn, no one need make saving throws against Crushing Visage Of The God-Empress.

    The beam of white flame generated can be targeted at anyone you can see within 60ft, even if you don't have line of effect to them, so long as there is at least a small unbroken path (a few inches wide at the smallest) somewhere from you to them within 60ft. This is because the beam can arc and zig-zag through the air at your will, pursuing targets around corners and behind cover that you have seen through with Creation-Piercing Heaven Tyrant Vision. Because the beam is unerring and always strikes a valid target, the only defense is a Charisma saving throw.

    Those that fail the save take (your Charisma modifier)d8+(your Charisma modifier) radiant damage. A creature killed by an Alpha-And-Omega Beam has their physical form disintegrated to nothing, leaving their equipment to fall empty into a pile. If you so choose, you may add a one or two sentence message to them, which is the last thing they hear as they die; no one else hears it, and they have no chance to reply before being incinerated.

    Splendid Vassalage Promotion
    ...and never left her tower again.

    You gain the ability to appoint up to (Charisma modifier) Vassals. While such an appointment should be accompanied by a ceremony, a celebration, and a grant of land and title, it is not strictly necessary; only an action spent to touch the willing recipient and receive their oath of fealty unto death. The oath is an important part. Afterward, a glowing white brand in the shape of your personal crest or insignia appears somewhere on their body (usually the chest, back, forehead, or forearm). You may withdraw the benefits of Vassalhood from any given Vassal with a thought, requiring no action, but they remain your Vassal unto death. Upon death, their brand disappears and you are free to appoint a new Vassal in their place.

    Choose one of the following two abilities to determine what benefit your Vassals reap. All Vassals receive the same benefit, and this choice cannot be altered later. Regardless of choice, your Vassals always receive the ability to spend a Bonus Action to summon or dismiss a halo of white light around their heads that shines as brightly as a torch.

    Sword Of The Empress
    Your Vassals deal an additional 1d8 radiant damage with their first successful melee or ranged weapon or unarmed attack in a round. They are resistant to radiant damage and non-magical slashing, piercing, and bludgeoning damage.

    Mercy Of The Empress
    Your Vassals gain the "Lay On Hands" Paladin class feature, substituting their character level in place of their Paladin level (members of a Mythos Class add +10 to their effective character level), but cannot use this feature to heal themselves; only on behalf of others. If the Vassal is already a Paladin, their healing pool for Lay On Hands is simply doubled.

    Divine Essence Discorporation
    "I am many things..." she said "...but here, I am God."

    When you are slain, your soul escapes and resists the draw of the afterlife. It flees to the most important stronghold that you own whose base construction cost is at least 50,000gp. Over the course of seven weeks, your soul draws in energy and when the time has fully elapsed it reconstitutes a physical body and you are risen from the dead without detriment. If you own no such valuable stronghold, this ability does not activate. If the stronghold your soul is recuperating in is destroyed, your soul passes on to the afterlife as if you had just died.
    Last edited by Xefas; 2017-05-04 at 06:05 PM.

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Troll in the Playground
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    Jan 2007

    Default Re: 5e Mythos - The Cynosure Base Class

    So, specific things I'm looking for critique/suggestions on/for in regards to the Cynosure (but feel free to comment on whatever you'd like):

    • Is the flavor evocative enough to inspire character concepts while reading it?
    • Does the flavor reflect a demigodlike/fairytalehero-esque character?
    • Can the flavor support a variety of distinct character concepts?
    • Are mechanical effects properly explained and easily understood?
    • Is there adequate meaningful choice when mechanically constructing a character?
    • Do the mechanics actually allow the character to enforce their will on the world? In the Cynosure's case, she should be able to convince others to follow her, while also being able to support and empower her allies, culminating in the seizing of political power and/or the formation of a widespread cult. Once she establishes a territory of her own, she should be able to hold onto her position and domain better than a mortal could.

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Ogre in the Playground
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    May 2011
    Somewhere Warm

    Default Re: 5e Mythos - The Cynosure Base Class

    So, my first character concept is basically:

    "In the place of a Dark Lord you would have a Queen! Not dark but beautiful and terrible as the Morn! Treacherous as the Seas! Stronger than the foundations of the Earth! All shall love me and despair!"

    A dread queen of awful beauty, who travels on a palanquin carried by her beloved servants and emerges only to bring her future subjects to their knees with her sheer majesty.

    Reminds me a bit of the sacred kings of certain African cultures, who would wear veils for similar ritual purposes.

    Which I feel answers your first two questions quite adequately.

    I also feel like you could go for alternative angles there, with character building, to end up as an Arthur-esque true king or the like.

    I'll skip to the last question, because I feel like the mechanics are very clear and precise as they are:

    I think the the Cynosure will have a very personal grip on power, like early medieval kings, with their authority build heavily on personal loyalty. I have no doubt that they'd be able to create a group of people who they see personally who love and adore them unconditionally; who obey their commands, but I wonder how well they can project that power.

    The two abilities I can see that directly impact their ability to rule are The Many-Hand of Empress, and Seated Upon the Throne of the World, as those can either allow them to make better decisions, or oversee rapid expansion in military fortifications and the like.

    Otherwise most of their political skill derives from a very personal sort of bludgeoning charisma. They'll probably be able to get adoring masses quite easily, especially if they can enforce religious worship of them and do regular tours of the kingdom, but I'm not sure how well they'd do in political intrigue and the like.

    Part of me thinks it would work out fine, part of me worries if you'd hit a situation where their ambition would exceed ability. It's sort of ambiguous because D&D doesn't really focus on this sort of thing, so I'm not used to examining abilities for their kingdom-ruling potential.

    Were I a Cynosure, I would probably put stock in good advisors and administrators, delegate accordingly and make sure the populace as a whole worships me as a generous and awesome god. That way, I have a source of support if my administration turns on me; and, no one thinks I'm an awful tyrant if I have to kill the rebels with my laser eyes.

    Which seems to be the intended route, so perhaps everything is fine?

    There's also the use of confidence to insert facts about nobility and politics to leverage, but that's kind of hard to factor in with white-room thought experiments. (And I'd personally just use that ability to talk fashion as it meets politics with the DM because I like a good fashion talk.)
    On a quest to marry Asmodeus, lord of the Nine Hells, or die trying.

  4. - Top - End - #4
    Troll in the Playground
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    Default Re: 5e Mythos - The Cynosure Base Class

    Quote Originally Posted by Zale View Post

    re: Ruling ability. I'm getting the impression that Swordbearers also feel like they need one more ability somewhere to complete their picture.

    Maybe Swordbearers will get a fighting style bonus feat, and Cynosures will get an ability that more defines their rulership skill and style. I will think on this. one thinks I'm an awful tyrant if I have to kill the rebels with my laser eyes.
    Every single time I read Alpha-And-Omega Beam, I find myself incapable of deciding whether it's too silly to live or if it's just incredibly awesome. There's definitely a line there, somewhere, and I can't see it.

    (Maybe I've never been able to see it.)

  5. - Top - End - #5
    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Jan 2008
    In the heart of the beast

    Default Re: 5e Mythos - The Cynosure Base Class

    Quote Originally Posted by Zale View Post
    "In the place of a Dark Lord you would have a Queen! Not dark but beautiful and terrible as the Morn! Treacherous as the Seas! Stronger than the foundations of the Earth! All shall love me and despair!"
    Okaywaitaminute. Why the HECK did she say that? I still don't understand. Was she testing herself by letting the power of the ring touch her ever so slightly? I think that's what it was, but I'm not sure at all.

    Moving on to the class, I really appreciate what you did here. The Cynosure and other classes like it always worried me because I sort of expected them to NEED to have a massive horde of people around them at all times. This way, it feels like they merely need to be the boss within their party, as well as providing the base of operations. They CAN have the slaves and/or servants there, but they don't NEED them. Nice job.
    My Homebrew

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    Dwarf in the Playground
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    Default Re: 5e Mythos - The Cynosure Base Class

    Quote Originally Posted by Zale View Post
    "In the place of a Dark Lord you would have a Queen! Not dark but beautiful and terrible as the Morn! Treacherous as the Seas! Stronger than the foundations of the Earth! All shall love me and despair!"
    I can't match that pedigree. In it's place:

    I am mightier than the God
    The Devil is my slave
    More beautiful than the Goddess
    I put her face to shame!

    Oh, look at me, oh what do you see?
    There's no one greater than me
    I'm the queen, the best you've seen
    So worship me!

    On the subject of Alpha-And-Omega Beam... I think the important part is that you can kill a man with a hard look. Whether that's because a beam of light fires from your eyes, or because their own vacuous sensory organs melt as their body reflexively annihilates itself in remorse for offending you, it makes little difference.

  7. - Top - End - #7
    Troll in the Playground
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    Default Re: 5e Mythos - The Cynosure Base Class

    Quote Originally Posted by Primal Fury View Post
    Okaywaitaminute. Why the HECK did she say that? I still don't understand. Was she testing herself by letting the power of the ring touch her ever so slightly? I think that's what it was, but I'm not sure at all.
    The 1978 animated version, which has the unabridged version of the quote (the modern movies truncated it a bit), seemed to interpret her as being sarcastic and intentionally melodramatic, rather than genuinely tempted.

    Quote Originally Posted by VoodooPaladin View Post
    On the subject of Alpha-And-Omega Beam... I think the important part is that you can kill a man with a hard look. Whether that's because a beam of light fires from your eyes, or because their own vacuous sensory organs melt as their body reflexively annihilates itself in remorse for offending you, it makes little difference.
    Certainly. Crushing a man with a contemptuous look should be a viable alternative for folks who think the-


    -is inappropriate for their particular character.
    Last edited by Xefas; 2017-04-25 at 12:15 AM.

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    Ogre in the Playground
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    Default Re: 5e Mythos - The Cynosure Base Class

    Quote Originally Posted by Primal Fury View Post
    Okaywaitaminute. Why the HECK did she say that? I still don't understand. Was she testing herself by letting the power of the ring touch her ever so slightly? I think that's what it was, but I'm not sure at all.

    Well, it's not as if it's not true. She's kind of prideful at times; I'm not surprised she'd look at the ring and go, "Oh, yes, I could totally crush the world beneath my iron fist with that much power. I could be a goddess-queen of middle earth. Probably not worth it though."

    Also, as I recall early sources have her a very active participant in an ancient elvish rebellion (against the will of the gods, etc); and she was consigned to eternal exile as a result, doomed to wither away on middle earth as all elves would.

    I'm not surprised she'd find power tempting, she's just not stupid enough to think it will work.

    Anyway, that's what was guiding my reference. Also I'd gotten .5 hours of sleep and my brain rattled with references.
    Last edited by Zale; 2017-04-25 at 12:50 AM.
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    Default Re: 5e Mythos - The Cynosure Base Class

    This is glorious. All hail the conquering king!

    But yes, I think some sort of flavorful ability to define their ruling style would help the focus remain on dominion over others. Since there is little in the main rules that deal with this aspect, anything leading the characters in the right direction would probably help. Maybe not something akin to Leadership, but perhaps the ability to sway people to your cause (and keep them there) using a variety of different techniques?

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    Orc in the Playground

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    Default Re: 5e Mythos - The Cynosure Base Class

    Regarding the recruitment of peons, I've got a vague inkling that the Bellator Swordbearer ability "Brilliant Strategic Mind" could be copied, butchered and repurposed. For example, when you ask a buncha people to do your thing, and they make a counter offer, make +CHA conditions, capitulations and circumstances take place etc. etc. except better and not as awful.
    Quote Originally Posted by Xefas
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kymme
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    Default Re: 5e Mythos - The Cynosure Base Class

    Great work, Xefas! I kind of want to recreate Mottom now.
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    Default Re: 5e Mythos - The Cynosure Base Class

    I'm thinking of replacing The Mandate Of Heaven with this:


    The Mandate Of Heaven
    Choose one of the following three abilities to acquire.

    Kingdom Of Glory Everlasting
    As master of both heaven and earth, it is only right that your subjects honor you with grandeur, and it is only right that the world itself conspires to be great for you. All things crafted by loyal subjects of a place that you rule over, within that domain - structures, tools, armaments, and so on - cost 20% less in materials and take 20% less time to finish. Tools last longer than they should, raw materials go unwasted, workplace accidents disappear, schedules align themselves, workers apply extra diligence to the most innocuous tasks, and managers govern fairly.

    Practically speaking, this means that your kingdom will grow abundant with wealth in short order, provided they have access to resources and trade. Who can undercut a nation in the trade of finished goods wherein the least apprentice works faster than a master in their own? If this is allowed to continue, your people will have paved roads where others have dirt, aqueducts and bath houses where others have trenches of sewage down their streets, monuments in your image at every village square, and armies clad in iron where others have leather and wood.

    As only loyal subjects benefit, those who reap these great rewards know that it is to you and only you that they owe their bounty.

    King-Of-Kings Immanence
    You inscribe your godly essence unto your earthly domain and it comes to know its lord. Within the bounds of a place that you rule, all your subjects know you as an incarnate deity, and most nameless NPCs you rule over believe this to be right and good and that all other gods are lesser to you. It is to your discretion how other deities are viewed - outright monotheism is liable to cause strife from within and without - but doctrine that sees other gods as your aspects, children, or the citizens of your divine kingdom may fair better. Churches and shrines to other powers also double as your holy places and prayers are expected to begin and end with fealty to you, regardless of what other names are said in between.

    Clerics that worship you are granted spells, just as if they worshiped any other deity, and clerics that reject your supremacy that attempt to cast spells within your domain must expend a spell slot one higher than they would normally need to, as their connection to their benefactor is weakened.

    If you have at least a few thousand faithful within your domain, their prayers empower you, and your magnanimity uplifts them. You gain access to all cantrips on the Cleric spell list, and may cast all 1st and 2nd level Ritual Cleric spells, but only as rituals. Your spellcasting ability for these spells is Charisma. Your faithful subjects each (those that have reached adulthood), in turn, gain access to one cantrip from the Cleric spell list that most benefits their role in society. Craftsmen might acquire Mending, while physicians might acquire Spare The Dying, and peacekeepers might acquire Sacred Flame.

    Mother Governs Children
    In the time of the Universe Empress, her subjects were all her children, birthed into the cosmos in her crucible of flame from the conceptual Beyond. They knew fealty to her as a sovereign, but also possessed a fierce loyalty as dutiful sons and daughters, as well as camaraderie with one another as siblings. When they misbehaved, her husband descended from the heavens to punish them in a nuclear inferno, and they accepted this as any errant child might do so once caught.

    To call forth these same precepts of primordial, familial rulership, you must have an immediate family of which you are the head - a spouse or spouses at a minimum, and children wouldn't hurt either. If you meet this requirement, then the domain you rule over is blessed with morality befitting a massive, close-knit blood relationship. While individual, important NPCs, and all PCs, must choose for themselves, all the nameless masses of your subjects are affected.

    Crime disappears overnight as compassion and empathy pervade the land. The destitute and unwell are welcomed into homes as long-lost children. Those in need are helped to the extent that they require it, asked for compensation only to the degree that they may, with certainty that each individual can expect without a doubt equal treatment from every other person in the nation. People are likely to refer to others their own age as brother or sister, those younger as niece or nephew, and those older as aunt or uncle, with you as their Sovereign Mother or Father.

    (This behavior will probably creep the hell out of foreigners, and none of your subjects are necessarily compelled to extend kindness to those outside the family.)

    Because of these ties, you have Disadvantage on checks to oppose the Deception skill used by one of your subjects. However, against your subjects that you believe have wronged you, you have Advantage on all attack rolls meant to nonlethally incapacitate them, and your Crushing Visage Of The God Empress causes Paralysis on a failed save in addition to the other effects it has.

    Finally, your trusted advisors have Advantage on all Intelligence checks to advise you, such is the power evoked by unity and faith in one another.

    -and then bumping it to 1st level to provide some choice and extra rulershipness. 2nd level will gain a new ability accordingly.


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    Default Re: 5e Mythos - The Cynosure Base Class

    Quote Originally Posted by Xefas View Post
    I'm thinking of replacing The Mandate Of Heaven with this:
    I'm liking it! Very Medieval Epic, which I (personally) feel is a good bedrock for our little Lady Brightseid's Mythos.

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