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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    Daemon

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    Default 5e Sorcerous Origin: Truespeech (any critique appreciated)

    Sorcerous Origin: Truespeech

    Across the multiverse those born with sorcery are the envy of many. Some target these gifted few leading to oppression, wars of bitter malice, even mutual destruction. The more enlightened seek alternate paths to power giving rise to schools of wizardry, bardic colleges, divine orders, or pacts with eldritch beings. A scant few, handfuls on any world really, discover something else: The Truespeech.

    The mortal that masters Truespeech to the degree they are able is privy to a sorcerous awakening divorced of any heritage, infection, or blessing. Theirs is a power born from the mind. Like wizardry in some respects, but with the flexibility and innate aspect of sorcery. The subtle variations in their pronunciation give rise to their metamagic. The limits of mortal consciousness limit the potential of Truespeech in some ways. The ability to literally speak reality into existence manifests as mere illusion and the capacity to create life or sentience limited to short lived monstrosities borne of shadow or temporarily imparting life to unliving objects.

    This language, beyond ancient, has as many origins as it does derivatives. All language, that is "all ordered thought expressed," can be traced back to the first utterances made by the first being in a time when magical energies were so dense the ripples of these utterances did not birth sounds, but the very concepts of interrelation. Chaining such utterances together defined that which is and not, chaos and order, good and evil, and all the other fundamental complimentary and analogous concepts and entities.

    To a Truenamer, as sorcerers of this kind are often known, a word can be a weapon to cut down any foe or a key to open any door.

    Features

    Studious Sorcery
    Beginning at 1st level you can choose whether your Spellcasting Ability for this class is Intelligence or Charisma. Once this decision is made it cannot be changed.

    True Linguist
    At 1st level you gain proficiency in your choice of the Draconic, Celestial, or Primordial language. Additionally, whenever you cast a sorcerer spell, you can ignore either the Verbal or Somatic component requirement.
    Spoiler: Etymological Nonsense and Metamagic
    Show
    The languages closest to the Truespeech are the most ancient in the multiverse; Celestial, Primordial, and Draconic. Among scholars it is known that deep reflection on these languages can give rise to the most basic fluency in Truespeech and it is this understanding that elevates such beings to new heights. The difference between Noble Genies and their lessers is the capacity for Truespeech while lesser Celestial beings exalt into higher divine status as they grow to understand more of the Truespeech (a carefully guarded secret among the gods). The Dragons aware of their reflections and echoes in other realities are those that have awakened to Truespeech through their solipsistic musings on the Draconic tongue. Other creatures also verge on such discoveries.

    The writing of the giants echoes the alphabet of the Truespeech but is filled with cultural aspects unique to Giantish giving it its own personality and limiting its power to a handful of runes. Asmodeus himself is known to ruminate on his missives, sensing a deeper power that continues to elude him.

    Guessing part of a creature's True Name is always possible as that name will incorporate obvious elements of their environment and current disposition. The Orc Aruk's True Name would include his present state of wielding an axe and running toward an ally. Those minor elements are enough to make a spell deal more damage (Empower Spell) or be harder to resist (Heighten Spell).

    Bonus Spells
    You gain the spells on the Bonus spells list as additional spells known at the listed levels. Some levels grant only one spell but provide options, you may trade these spells for one of the presented alternatives whenever you gain a level in this class. These spells count as sorcerer spells for you.

    Bonus Spells Known
    1. Word of Radiance or Thunderclap, Healing Word, Command
    3. Shatter, Phantasmal Force
    5. Tiny Servant or Summon Shadow
    7. Hallucinatory Terrain or Polymorph
    9. Animate Objects or Creation
    11. Word of Recall
    13. Divine Word
    15. Power Word Stun or Demiplane or Glibness
    17. Power Word Kill or Power Word Heal

    Given Name
    Beginning at 6th level, when you give an order to a creature summoned, created, or controlled by one of your sorcerer spells you can invoke its Truename and grant it one of the following benefits: If you are using the same bonus action to give multiple creatures the same order, only one gains the benefit.
    - Once before the end of your next turn the creature can reroll an attack and choose the better result, on a hit it will deal additional force damage equal to your sorcerer level.
    - The creature gains Temporary Hit points equal to your level and Resistance to all damage until the end of your next turn.
    You can use this feature a number of times equal to your proficiency bonus and regain all uses after a long rest.

    Transcend Tongue
    At 14th level and beyond your capacity for communication is second to none. You are always under the effect of the spells Tongues, Speak with Animals, and Speak with Plants.

    Truenamer
    At 18th level you master your own True Name. A True Name is not something static, it represents the perfect understanding of a concept and its relationship to all contributing and branching concepts. This interdependence leads to minute fluctuations from moment to moment as the concept interacts with others, changes them and is changed by them. For the Truenamer the utterance of their own Truename affords them the ability to redefine those changes in fantastic ways.

    When you would suffer an effect such as the ones listed below you can use your reaction to utter your own True Name in a manner inconsistent with reality to reject the effect and gain the listed benefit instead.
    - Undesirable Condition such as Prone, Charmed, Stunned, etc. The source of the effect suffers the condition as if you'd caused it instead.
    - Damage. The damage total is applied as healing instead; any healing above your maximum hit points become Temporary Hit Points.
    - Forced Movement by a spell such as Thunderwave or Scatter. You can move to a space of your choice within 50 feet.
    You can only reject one such effect per reaction, so if you suffered an Illithid's Mindblast you could reject either the psychic damage or the stun, not both. You can use this feature once and cannot use it again unless you complete a long rest or expend 3 Sorcerery points to do so.
    Last edited by BerzerkerUnit; 2021-12-01 at 10:23 PM.

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Pixie in the Playground
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    Default Re: 5e Sorcerous Origin: Truespeech (any critique appreciated)

    A few things:

    Quote Originally Posted by BerzerkerUnit View Post
    Sorcerous Origin: Truespeech

    Features

    Studious Sorcery
    Beginning at 1st level you can choose whether your Spellcasting Ability for this class is Intelligence or Charisma. Once this decision is made it cannot be changed.

    True Linguist
    At 1st level you gain proficiency in your choice of the Draconic, Celestial, or Primordial language. Additionally, whenever you cast a sorcerer spell, you can ignore either the Verbal or Somatic component requirement.

    Bonus Spells
    You gain the spells on the Bonus spells list as additional spells known at the listed levels. Some levels grant only one spell but provide options, you may trade these spells for one of the presented alternatives or another spell on the sorcerer list when you gain a level in this class as normal. These spells count as sorcerer spells for you.

    Bonus Spells Known
    1. Word of Radiance or Thunderclap, Healing Word, Command
    2. Shatter, Phantasmal Force
    3. Tiny Servant or Summon Shadow
    4. Hallucinatory Terrain or Polymorph
    5. Animate Objects or Creation
    6. Word of Recall
    7. Divine Word
    8. Power Word Stun or Demiplane or Glibness
    9. Power Word Kill or Power Word Heal

    1: The other two sorcerer subclasses with bonus spells only get bonus spells up to 5th Lv. Your class gets bonus spells of up to 9th level which isn't a problem, but you're really spiking in power over other sorcerers (especially the PHB classes, which get no bonus spells) after level 11, but it's possible to balance.

    2: The way the bonus spell feature is worded, you're getting level 2 spells at class level 2. When you only level 1 spell slots, level 3 spells at class level 3, when you only have level 2 spell slots, and so on. This is easy to reword, just say that you receive the spells at levels 1, 3, 5, 7, 9, 11, 13, 15, and 17, in that order.

    3: Finally, other than the bonus spells, both features at level 1 are ribbons, more there for flavor than having any mechanical benefit. INT or CHA? CHA is a better score in general, and Wizard/Sorcerer multiclassing is really "adding almond milk to milk" if it's not making you MAD. Ignore verbal or somatic components? It'll come up. Once in a while. Gives you less reason to pick up subtle spell. Picking up a language is nice, but also not important. Every other sorcerer subclass gets something at level one. I think that yours should too.

    4: How is comprehend languages not on the spell list?

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    Barbarian in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: 5e Sorcerous Origin: Truespeech (any critique appreciated)

    Quote Originally Posted by Argis13 View Post
    A few things:

    1: The other two sorcerer subclasses with bonus spells only get bonus spells up to 5th Lv. Your class gets bonus spells of up to 9th level which isn't a problem, but you're really spiking in power over other sorcerers (especially the PHB classes, which get no bonus spells) after level 11, but it's possible to balance.

    2: The way the bonus spell feature is worded, you're getting level 2 spells at class level 2. When you only level 1 spell slots, level 3 spells at class level 3, when you only have level 2 spell slots, and so on. This is easy to reword, just say that you receive the spells at levels 1, 3, 5, 7, 9, 11, 13, 15, and 17, in that order.

    3: Finally, other than the bonus spells, both features at level 1 are ribbons, more there for flavor than having any mechanical benefit. INT or CHA? CHA is a better score in general, and Wizard/Sorcerer multiclassing is really "adding almond milk to milk" if it's not making you MAD. Ignore verbal or somatic components? It'll come up. Once in a while. Gives you less reason to pick up subtle spell. Picking up a language is nice, but also not important. Every other sorcerer subclass gets something at level one. I think that yours should too.

    4: How is comprehend languages not on the spell list?
    Thank you so much for the feedback!

    1. When looking at the balance I was reminded of Aberrant Mind and Clockwork. Clockwork does get a distinct mechanical widget, but its value is questionable most of the time. (I guess knocking magic resistance off of foes is pretty strong later on, but isn't common until much later or campaign specific.) The Aberrant Mind's Telepathy is ok but also borders on Ribbon when you have telepathic races and a feat. The real juice for both of these comes from their versatile spell lists and the # of spells known. By level 10 these sorcs have more spells ready than a wizard can prepare. The truenamer here gets a comparable # known but spread out over the course of their career and they are mostly far and away weaker than "any spell of these 2 schools."

    The spells available after level 9 are generally not top tier for their level. Anything dependent on arguably unknowable info (like # of hit points) or requiring hp to be below a threshold so close to death for its level is terrible (unless you run these like Shield is intended to be run, IE a wizard knows if Shield will deflect the attack ergo a Wizard should know if PW Kill will kill the target). Divine Word, 13th level, does functionally nothing to most creatures you'd want to spend a spell slot on until they're so close to defeat it's almost wasting the slot. Niche good against summons, not great against the rest. Depending on DM, Power Words are also all trash (see above), so giving them away isn't really an upgrade at 99% of tables as they're understood to not be worth their slot.

    2. Thank you for catching this!

    3. Studious Sorcery is mostly intended to reinforce the theme a little though as a result you can also get a sorc that blends better with Artificer or Scribing school wizard. Artificer/Sorc without MAD creates some interesting potential you won't otherwise see. (Twin Enlarge on Battlesmith and Pet?) who knows?

    4. It was originally on the list but Truespeech is supposed to be a root language and if knowing latin doesn't let you read italian and spanish, I didn't want knowing Truespeech to let you read any language.

    Again thank you for your feedback! If you have any ideas for a 1st level feature or better selection of spells, I'm listening.

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    Default Re: 5e Sorcerous Origin: Truespeech (any critique appreciated)

    Intel or charisma is fine, as said before charisma is usually better but I don't see a major problem with it anyway.

    Removing either the V or S component... I'm not sure if it's useless or very strong, because to judge that it would require to check every spell to determine which would benefit from it. So it depends on how many spells benefit from it and how powerful are they when casted subtly. No offense but I'm too lazy to check it myself.
    Maybe allowing spells to be casted with subtle for free ŗ number of time equal to proficiency would be better?

    Lvl 6: you made an interesting choice, you choose to buff the weaker aspect of the most powerful summoning spells, since usually the higher the number of summon the better. Reinforcing only one creature should push the players to go for a lower number of creature, which are more balanced and quicker to play. It's good design, I like it.

    I like the level 14, it's thematic not too powerful.

    I really like the level 18 ability. It's new, it's fresh, and it feel balanced, which isn't that common.

    The spell list I'm not sure what to think of, it's more limited but goes higher in level, there are bad spells and good spells... I don't know, might require some play testing.
    Last edited by Chronic; 2021-11-27 at 09:22 AM.

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    Barbarian in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: 5e Sorcerous Origin: Truespeech (any critique appreciated)

    Quote Originally Posted by Chronic View Post
    Intel or charisma is fine, as said before charisma is usually better but I don't see a major problem with it anyway.

    Removing either the V or S component... I'm not sure if it's useless or very strong, because to judge that it would require to check every spell to determine which would benefit from it. So it depends on how many spells benefit from it and how powerful are they when casted subtly. No offense but I'm too lazy to check it myself.
    Maybe allowing spells to be casted with subtle for free ŗ number of time equal to proficiency would be better?

    Lvl 6: you made an interesting choice, you choose to buff the weaker aspect of the most powerful summoning spells, since usually the higher the number of summon the better. Reinforcing only one creature should push the players to go for a lower number of creature, which are more balanced and quicker to play. It's good design, I like it.

    I like the level 14, it's thematic not too powerful.

    I really like the level 18 ability. It's new, it's fresh, and it feel balanced, which isn't that common.

    The spell list I'm not sure what to think of, it's more limited but goes higher in level, there are bad spells and good spells... I don't know, might require some play testing.
    Thank you for your feedback!

    I did go through the spell list and here's what I found.
    -subtle spell's strength is "cannot be countered bc it cannot be seen being cast" IE no one knows a spell is being cast until the effect manifests. Note: the overwhelming majority of DMs I've played with insist creatures can always tell who cast the spell anyway so I assume it functions that way at most tables.
    -since this still has a component requirement, spells cast can still be countered normally. The big exception is silence. Using Sign Language to cast your spells does allow you to bypass silence. In nearly 7 years of 5e I can count the # of times a silence created a problem for my casting on 1 hand.

    So it does not bring a lot mechanically to the table (as Argis mentioned above). Except when it does. The additional spells @ 1st however, are really good. And later spells (though not always the best) also provide additional versatility and power as you level (essentially a function of a 1st level feature "bonus spells" scaling up).

    I was hoping for someone to comment on the level 6 and 18 features, I'm glad they went over well.

    If you have the opportunity to playtest, I'd greatly appreciate any additional feedback. Thank you again for your time and attention!

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    Default Re: 5e Sorcerous Origin: Truespeech (any critique appreciated)

    Quote Originally Posted by BerzerkerUnit View Post
    Thank you so much for the feedback!

    Again thank you for your feedback! If you have any ideas for a 1st level feature or better selection of spells, I'm listening.
    You're very welcome!

    On my "power spikes after level 11" comment, I misread the feature and thought that it let you replace with any spell from the sorcerer spell list, rather than letting you choose between alternatives on this spell list. You can ignore that.

    The main thing that you want from a subclass is for it to feel like you're distinct from the rest of the subclasses. It's about active vs. passive abailites. As a wise sage once said "If you play a dwarf, you shouldn't just passively be a dwarf. You should be actively dwarfing your way through obstacles."

    When a clockwork soul sorc. uses their restore balance feature to cancel disadvantage, it feels different from being an abberent mind with telepathic speech, and these two abilities are bound to come up within the first 3 game sessions. That's what we're looking for.

    For your subclass, the current 1st level abilities, other than spells known, could run to level 5 and not show up once, or is passively letting you use your intelligence.

    A suggestion I would have is something like the Battlemaster fighter's 7th level ability "Know your enemy," themed around being able to see parts of a creature's true name. Maybe you could see weather or not creatures are under the effects of spells, or see some of the spells that that creature has prepared, or the creature's current HP in relation to yours- information gathering, probably requiring an arcana check. This could synergize with your "needs to know HP" spells on the spell list and the INT switching for the subclass, so that arcana proficiency isn't a bad idea, and a player could use it whenever they want.

    The rest of the subclass looks good, I agree with everything that Chronic said. 14th level is a bit circumstantial... Maybe an improvement to the "information gathering" feature that I suggested at that point, being able to know what spells are being cast so you know weather or not it's a good idea to counterspell? But that's a bit too DM dependent, many just tell you the spell anyway and let you counterspell afterwards.


    Also, if you didn't know, blue text is for sarcasm on this board.

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    Barbarian in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: 5e Sorcerous Origin: Truespeech (any critique appreciated)

    Quote Originally Posted by Argis13 View Post
    You're very welcome!

    On my "power spikes after level 11" comment, I misread the feature and thought that it let you replace with any spell from the sorcerer spell list, rather than letting you choose between alternatives on this spell list. You can ignore that.

    The main thing that you want from a subclass is for it to feel like you're distinct from the rest of the subclasses. It's about active vs. passive abailites. As a wise sage once said "If you play a dwarf, you shouldn't just passively be a dwarf. You should be actively dwarfing your way through obstacles."

    When a clockwork soul sorc. uses their restore balance feature to cancel disadvantage, it feels different from being an abberent mind with telepathic speech, and these two abilities are bound to come up within the first 3 game sessions. That's what we're looking for.

    For your subclass, the current 1st level abilities, other than spells known, could run to level 5 and not show up once, or is passively letting you use your intelligence.

    A suggestion I would have is something like the Battlemaster fighter's 7th level ability "Know your enemy," themed around being able to see parts of a creature's true name. Maybe you could see weather or not creatures are under the effects of spells, or see some of the spells that that creature has prepared, or the creature's current HP in relation to yours- information gathering, probably requiring an arcana check. This could synergize with your "needs to know HP" spells on the spell list and the INT switching for the subclass, so that arcana proficiency isn't a bad idea, and a player could use it whenever they want.

    The rest of the subclass looks good, I agree with everything that Chronic said. 14th level is a bit circumstantial... Maybe an improvement to the "information gathering" feature that I suggested at that point, being able to know what spells are being cast so you know weather or not it's a good idea to counterspell? But that's a bit too DM dependent, many just tell you the spell anyway and let you counterspell afterwards.


    Also, if you didn't know, blue text is for sarcasm on this board.
    Thanks for the note about blue text, itís news to me and Iíve wondered about.

    The dwarf comparison doesnít feel like apples to apples here...

    What makes a dwarf fighter distinct from a an elf? Weapon selection maybe? How does one actively dwarf? Playing to strengths, using Stone cunning?

    Feels like just highlighting the fact your PC casts spells solely by shouting jibberish or using sign language is the same as using an axe. Having a Sorc with a better Int than Cha and all the RP fodder that comes with seems like an active way to play it.

    The active telepathic speech of the Aberrant Mind will almost certainly come up in session one, but will a few minutes of limited telepathy actually be ďneeded?Ē Probably not, at least no more than having the message Cantrip.

    That said, an ability that lets you Arcana check to get part of a creatureís true name and in so doing get a status report is interesting. Not being a fan of unnecessarily adding dice rolls, letís try this:

    Truenaming
    Beginning at 1st level you can guess parts of a creatureís true name based on how it interacts with your spells. Knowing these aspects gives you information about the creature. When you hit a creature you can see with a sorcerer spellís attack or it fails a saving throw against one of your sorcerer spells, you can use a bonus action to gain one of the following pieces of information.
    - Current Hit Points.
    - One Condition or spell currently affecting the creature other than your own, or lack thereof.
    - The creatureís type.
    You can use this feature a number of times equal to your proficiency bonus and regain all uses after a long rest.

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    Default Re: 5e Sorcerous Origin: Truespeech (any critique appreciated)

    I've reconsidered slightly my opinion on the level 6 ability. I realized that it doesn't really push the players to use a lower number of invocation, because the damaging option is better than the defensive one and that the damage stay the same no matter the number of summoned creature. I generally consider invocation spells to be slightly problematic in terms of balance. The single entity ones are fine, but the multiple entities invocation push the player to always go for the max number of summon because it's superior in every way. More damage, more defense except against aoe etc. So i'm gonna propose a change, you tell me what you think about it.

    For the damage part, either divide the damage by 2 or lower the damage proficiency bonus+Intel bonus if there is more than one creature summoned by the same spell on the field. It's a nerf, but it's still good.
    For the defensive part, I think it might need a slight buff to make it competitive against its damaging counterpart. Same feature but you add: you can also spend your reaction to provide this bonus when one of your summon takes damage.
    This way it takes your reaction but allow you to use it reactively if needed.

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    Barbarian in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: 5e Sorcerous Origin: Truespeech (any critique appreciated)

    Quote Originally Posted by Chronic View Post
    I've reconsidered slightly my opinion on the level 6 ability. I realized that it doesn't really push the players to use a lower number of invocation, because the damaging option is better than the defensive one and that the damage stay the same no matter the number of summoned creature. I generally consider invocation spells to be slightly problematic in terms of balance. The single entity ones are fine, but the multiple entities invocation push the player to always go for the max number of summon because it's superior in every way. More damage, more defense except against aoe etc. So i'm gonna propose a change, you tell me what you think about it.

    For the damage part, either divide the damage by 2 or lower the damage proficiency bonus+Intel bonus if there is more than one creature summoned by the same spell on the field. It's a nerf, but it's still good.
    For the defensive part, I think it might need a slight buff to make it competitive against its damaging counterpart. Same feature but you add: you can also spend your reaction to provide this bonus when one of your summon takes damage.
    This way it takes your reaction but allow you to use it reactively if needed.
    First, let me say thank you again for the feedback. I've been wanting an excuse to do a real dig into comparisons on these and this was well timed.

    According to dnd beyond the sorc gets 2 "summoning spells" on the class list, one of which is Infestation. Tasha's did not add others. The subclass will provide you the option of Summon Shadowspawn or Tiny Servant at 5th.

    At 9th level you have access to Animate Objects on the subclass list and Summon Draconic Spirit. Both of these are already Sorc spells, but the subclass is a bonus known so you'll likely have it unless the utility of Creation is something you can make good use of.

    Some specific notes about the feature: the bonus action is used before the creature/s act. Notably, the new Summons don't require bonus actions, so I'll need to tweak the language so it either doesn't require the bonus action, or does. I'm leaning on doesn't given the limited uses. In either case, it will require tactical application, IE planning to make the most of it.

    Also the feature only affects your sorcerer spell creations/summons.

    Some quick Comparisons:

    Summon Shadow deals high accuracy cold damage, has reasonable HP and excellent debuff options. Tiny Servant has great duration, OK utility (blind sense, tiny size for scouting/B&E), poor defense and weak combat capability.
    For a 3rd level slot there's no contest, Shadow wins.
    4th level slot, Shadow is now attacking twice, vs 3 servants. Shadow still wins due to damage die and bonus.
    5th level slot, 2d12+16 vs 5d4+15. Damage is a wash against anything that isn't immune or resistant to cold, but accuracy puts Shadow squarely ahead.

    However, there are other options at 5th.

    5th Draconic Spirit vs Animated Objects.
    Draconic Spirit brings a metric buttload to the table. Excellent duration, Large (area denial, imposing presence, can be a mount), Flies (mounted flight for 1 or more PCs as needed), Grants you your choice of energy resistance including stuff like force and radiant. Has an AOE (admittedly weak, but with high save dc and tailored damage per casting and done every round and half on a success). Great HP and a variety of its own resistances. Melee damage is lower than expected, but not negligible and has reach though it does not bypass resistance or immunity by RAW, accuracy is high (+8-+10 depending on build and equipment).

    Compare to Tiny swarm of Animated Objects. Accuracy at this level is acceptable (+8), only melee, also does not bypass resistance, also flies but slower. Does not scale.

    We're going to assume all attacks hit and saves fail. If we don't, the Dragon's damage needs to be multiplied by a percentage to account for its superior accuracy and my math isn't so hot anymore.

    5th level, Dragon damage is 2d6+18 piercing +2d6 energy of choice(30ft cone). compared to objects, 10d4+40, going pure statistical mean we have 32-46/rd (assuming 1-3 creatures caught in breath) vs 65/rd. Assuming 3 rd combats, AO is the clear winner... or is it.

    In a classic dungeon scenario (not mega dungeon) you could expect to have a couple of encounters within a 1 hour period. Look at Castle Ravenloft or Amber Temple in COS, you might go 5-10 minutes room by room and see no one after an encounter. The Dragon is still viable, the AO is not. This is exacerbated further by metamagic Extend Spell (a no brainer pick for a Summoner type) that has no real value when applied to AO in combat.

    So AO will deal about 195 damage per cast (assuming a fireball doesn't kill them all in one go), the Dragon might see 9-12 combat rounds if reach and tactical movement are employed to conserve its HP. Damage per cast might hit 198 on the low end. So damage out value per spell is a wash, but when you add the utility and durability of the dragon, there's no contest and that's right from level 9.

    Draconic Spirit accuracy scales up as your Spell Attack does, meaning its damage potential outstrips AO by level 12 since you approach a point where on level fights will have the AOs missing as often as not unless you're deliberately building suboptimally.

    So for Sorcerers specifically, 1 big is the better combat option in all cases. I'd also reference the Fighter Indomitable feature. If you fail a check bc you have a low bonus, a reroll isn't likely to make you succeed, its a hail mary. When those work, they are fun, but rerolls are best applied when a crappy roll made you fail something you were likely to succeed. As the 6th level feature provides a reroll to hit, it's best applied to your high accuracy single pet, since as written, it's a buff you apply before attacks are made. So if you have 3 teapots bashing a target, you have to pick the one that gets the boost, if it misses, rerolls, and misses again, the boost is wasted, vs your Summon Pet which will probably hit anyway making the reroll just a chance to crit (getting better use of the larger dice of the single pets) but guaranteeing the extra damage.

    The defensive boost is also always better applied to something whose base HP makes the resistance a major boon so it can be used to provoke a bunch of opportunity attacks, rush a trap or a hazard, or trigger an ambush and survive.

    So with all that in mind, I think I can safely leave it as is (other than tweaking the language to account for action differences). I think (and mind you I said my math isn't the best) the math bears out, for a Sorc, one big pet is a better deal. Thank you again for the insights!

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    Default Re: 5e Sorcerous Origin: Truespeech (any critique appreciated)

    Nice analysis, truth be told I was speaking about summon in general, not really taking into account the spells available for sorcerers, your post put things into perspective. The only thing I'd argue is about the duration of the spells, I think the usefulness vary widely depending on the gm. With a gm like me it's so-so, I rarely go for repeated combat in short amount of time. So it's a thing to take into account.

    I'd still take both spells.
    Last edited by Chronic; 2021-11-29 at 08:27 AM.

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    Default Re: 5e Sorcerous Origin: Truespeech (any critique appreciated)

    Quote Originally Posted by Chronic View Post
    Nice analysis, truth be told I was speaking about summon in general, not really taking into account the spells available for sorcerers, your post put things into perspective. The only thing I'd argue is about the duration of the spells, I think the usefulness vary widely depending on the gm. With a gm like me it's so-so, I rarely go for repeated combat in short amount of time. So it's a thing to take into account.

    I'd still take both spells.
    Further analysis, if you take both spells (Which you can do because I said theyíre sorcerer spells specifically for you, so even if you don't get it from the subclass you can still choose it with one of your normal sorcery selections), at 5th level there's a potential combo using: twin spell; Dragon's Breath; find familiar (if you've taken the magic initiate or ritual caster feat for wizard) and tiny servant.

    Familiar carries tiny servant and both use actions to dragonís breath.

    Thatís a major investment of resources which turns both pets into obvious targets, but the potential to throw 6d6/round at 15x15 spaces is very appealing at that level and you might be able to pull some shenanigans like animating a shield or helmet that your familiar can take total cover under during its offturns and use the L6 feature to make the tiny servant tankier.

    Those kinds of combos are not broken (IMO) but that might be too much for some DMs at level 5, even though you can really only do it twice a day and itís value diminishes significantly as you rise in level.
    Last edited by BerzerkerUnit; 2021-11-29 at 03:44 PM.

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    Default Re: 5e Sorcerous Origin: Truespeech (any critique appreciated)

    I don't know if I'm not understanding the flavor of the theme or the playstyle, but I feel some general direction and streamlining is needed. Can you guide me through this?

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    Default Re: 5e Sorcerous Origin: Truespeech (any critique appreciated)

    Quote Originally Posted by BerzerkerUnit View Post
    Additionally, whenever you cast a sorcerer spell, you can ignore either the Verbal or Somatic component requirement.
    Regardless of the rest of the (sub)class, this feature just feels way too powerful for a constant 1st-level ability. More to the point, it feels like an ability that is begging to be multiclassed for a great deal of power. Being able to cast any sorcerer spell of your choice silently screams stealth character, but being able to cast combat spells with a sword in one hand and a shield in the other is also huge.

    Right now, sorcerers need to burn a point to do this. Requiring a resource limits the use. Yes, the sorcerer can ignore both the V and the S with Metamagic at the same time, while your subclass only ignores one of the two (at their choice) all the time. But
    a) Metamagic requires level 3
    b) You only have a finite number of Metamagic options, these guys therefore get a substantial bonus as instead of getting 2 they basically get 2 and a half.
    c) You can only use one Metamagic on a spell at a time, while your subclass can make any spell still or silent, then put Metamagic on top of that.
    d) Metamagic burns a finite resource that could normally be used for reclaiming expended spell slots. This does not.
    e) In my opinion, the times where you'd only need to ignore V or S far outnumber the times you really have to ignore both.

    The Warcaster Feat allows you to use weapons/shields in one/both hands, but (a) it's a Feat, you have to go out of your way to have it, and (b) when paired with this subclass you can cast spells with a blade in each hand, silently, indefinitely.

    On top of that...I don't think the ability fits the subclass thematically. These guys are whizzes at ancient languages, magical communication, and True Names. None of that goes seems to fit with constant silent spellcasting. So I'm not even sure why it's even there. A ton of bonus spells you gave these guys are "word" spells with V-only that, therefore, would have no components at all. Healing word is an already powerful spell. Silent healing word the no-components-at-all spell feels too strong, but that's what you gave them. And silent command is something else I can't even wrap my brain around.

    "The ability to literally speak reality into existence" just does not match with constant silent spellcasting.

    Maybe I'm biased, I'm ye olde schoole and spell components are something I watch over in my campaigns like a hawk. Maybe most people kind of gloss over the components or handwave them for simplicity, in such campaigns, my concern is no longer relevant. But regardless of your intent when making the subclass, this power feels so strong -- especially considering it's 1st level and always active -- that I would forbid it in my campaigns. I'd just be worried that a warrior would either Multiple Attack, or a Rogue would Sneak Attack, then follow it with a full-powered upcast Quickened spell or cantrip while both hands are full without the Warcaster feat, allowing them to do massive amounts of damage without sacrificing much (such as stat points) to make it happen. And I try to judge class abilities (spells, magic items, etc) at their full potential, which that certainly qualifies.

    Could I possibly ask you to reconsider? I just think it's too strong, and I don't think it needs to be there at all. Even if that reconsidering is "yeah we barely use components anyhow so nobody will notice"? Personally I think the subclass would be fine if that feature was just gone entirely. Or make it only remove S? That's still really powerful in combat, but at least it fits the subclass theme. Or, I mean, if you replaced that 1st-level ability with "you get Subtle Spell in addition to your other Metamagics" and every concern I have instantly vanishes, even in my own campaigns, because it puts the sorcerer's spells back on familiar terrain. I'd still think it was strange that a language-based spell source would have it, but at least I wouldn't be worried about the power level of Subtle Spell since it's an already existing sorcerer ability that's finite and restricted.

    P.S. It is worth noting that, even if you ignore S components for any reason at all, if the spell has an M component you need that item or the spellcasting focus that replaces it in one hand. As long as you're watching out for which spells have M and which don't, that does lower the power of the 1st-level class ability. Not enough for me, but it might be enough for you. If you handwave M components to speed gameplay along, my concerns snap right back into place at full force, because it makes combat spellcasting even easier than it already was.

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    Default Re: 5e Sorcerous Origin: Truespeech (any critique appreciated)

    Quote Originally Posted by Breccia View Post
    Regardless of the rest of the (sub)class, this feature just feels way too powerful for a constant 1st-level ability. More to the point, it feels like an ability that is begging to be multiclassed for a great deal of power. Being able to cast any sorcerer spell of your choice silently screams stealth character, but being able to cast combat spells with a sword in one hand and a shield in the other is also huge.

    Right now, sorcerers need to burn a point to do this. Requiring a resource limits the use. Yes, the sorcerer can ignore both the V and the S with Metamagic at the same time, while your subclass only ignores one of the two (at their choice) all the time. But
    a) Metamagic requires level 3
    b) You only have a finite number of Metamagic options, these guys therefore get a substantial bonus as instead of getting 2 they basically get 2 and a half.
    c) You can only use one Metamagic on a spell at a time, while your subclass can make any spell still or silent, then put Metamagic on top of that.
    d) Metamagic burns a finite resource that could normally be used for reclaiming expended spell slots. This does not.
    e) In my opinion, the times where you'd only need to ignore V or S far outnumber the times you really have to ignore both.

    The Warcaster Feat allows you to use weapons/shields in one/both hands, but (a) it's a Feat, you have to go out of your way to have it, and (b) when paired with this subclass you can cast spells with a blade in each hand, silently, indefinitely.

    On top of that...I don't think the ability fits the subclass thematically. These guys are whizzes at ancient languages, magical communication, and True Names. None of that goes seems to fit with constant silent spellcasting. So I'm not even sure why it's even there. A ton of bonus spells you gave these guys are "word" spells with V-only that, therefore, would have no components at all. Healing word is an already powerful spell. Silent healing word the no-components-at-all spell feels too strong, but that's what you gave them. And silent command is something else I can't even wrap my brain around.

    "The ability to literally speak reality into existence" just does not match with constant silent spellcasting.

    Maybe I'm biased, I'm ye olde schoole and spell components are something I watch over in my campaigns like a hawk. Maybe most people kind of gloss over the components or handwave them for simplicity, in such campaigns, my concern is no longer relevant. But regardless of your intent when making the subclass, this power feels so strong -- especially considering it's 1st level and always active -- that I would forbid it in my campaigns. I'd just be worried that a warrior would either Multiple Attack, or a Rogue would Sneak Attack, then follow it with a full-powered upcast Quickened spell or cantrip while both hands are full without the Warcaster feat, allowing them to do massive amounts of damage without sacrificing much (such as stat points) to make it happen. And I try to judge class abilities (spells, magic items, etc) at their full potential, which that certainly qualifies.

    Could I possibly ask you to reconsider? I just think it's too strong, and I don't think it needs to be there at all. Even if that reconsidering is "yeah we barely use components anyhow so nobody will notice"? Personally I think the subclass would be fine if that feature was just gone entirely. Or make it only remove S? That's still really powerful in combat, but at least it fits the subclass theme. Or, I mean, if you replaced that 1st-level ability with "you get Subtle Spell in addition to your other Metamagics" and every concern I have instantly vanishes, even in my own campaigns, because it puts the sorcerer's spells back on familiar terrain. I'd still think it was strange that a language-based spell source would have it, but at least I wouldn't be worried about the power level of Subtle Spell since it's an already existing sorcerer ability that's finite and restricted.

    P.S. It is worth noting that, even if you ignore S components for any reason at all, if the spell has an M component you need that item or the spellcasting focus that replaces it in one hand. As long as you're watching out for which spells have M and which don't, that does lower the power of the 1st-level class ability. Not enough for me, but it might be enough for you. If you handwave M components to speed gameplay along, my concerns snap right back into place at full force, because it makes combat spellcasting even easier than it already was.
    Alright, emphasis in the quote is mine. Thereís an entire class of people that speak exclusively in hand gestures. A staggering amount of communication occurs nonverbally and not everyone is aware itís even occurring. As a subclass that focuses on the truest form of communication, I chose to include those.

    Many of your examples just donít concern me.

    Itís only Sorcerer spells. Since subclasses from other classes donít grant sorcerer spells, youíre limited to whatever you went into sorcerer for. So a 1 level dip accomplished virtually nothing.

    Casting spells with a blade in each hand? You can already do so wielding 2 handed weapons without this feature, a statistically provable better fighting style.

    So I just canít see the concern. The first feedback I got pointed to this feature as little more than a ribbon outside niche instances.

    That said, Iím glad you seemed to like the rest and encourage you to adjust as desired if you want to use it, I can DM you some language if you like.
    Last edited by BerzerkerUnit; 2021-12-01 at 01:19 PM.

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    Default Re: 5e Sorcerous Origin: Truespeech (any critique appreciated)

    Quote Originally Posted by Bjarkmundur View Post
    I don't know if I'm not understanding the flavor of the theme or the playstyle, but I feel some general direction and streamlining is needed. Can you guide me through this?
    5e established some canonical norms with the College of Creation for Bards. Some of the fluff is legacy stuff from the 3.5 Truenamer class.

    J. Crawford noted that subsystems are wonderful but only if people use them. Having created several core classes for DM's Guild I can tell you that new systems, no matter their virtue or or elegance (at least in the eye of the creator), are a tough sell (at least without a solid artist to help market them).

    So I took the Truenamer concept and made it use spells, a system you've already bought into if you play DND.

    Then I considered what kind of caster. Wizard made sense bc of the studious nature of truenaming, but Sorcerer seemed the best fit for someone that self initiates into more flexible magic. I added the studious sorcery feature so a PC had the option of being knowledgeable or persuasive without having to dump dex or con or choose mediocrity. I don't support this for every class, but here I thought it could reinforce theme. But there's no doubt some linguists get by on charisma, so it's fine leaving it if that's the Player's choice.

    As mentioned in an earlier response, there's a lot of nonverbal communication going on in every interaction, but there's also an entire class of people that speak exclusively in hand gestures. I didn't want to create a subclass that purported to operate on the most fundamental/truest form of communication that excluded that class, so making a feature that say "no, sign language is also a fundamentally valid means to tap into cosmic power" was my choice.

    Bonus spells in general were chosen because they had "Word" in the title, implying that this is a single word you say around which magic takes form. The idea that knowing Truespeech imparts knowledge of all those spells made sense to me. Your other spells being sentences or phrases of Truespeech with subtle variation used to create metamagic felt right as well.

    Going back to Creation Bard, it touches on the nature of their magic (song of creation) being to impart life to the inanimate. So I opted to lean into that with the spell selection and level 6 feature. Your bonus spells guarantee you the ability to create either tiny servants or a shadowspawn and the 6th level feature allows you to give them names to empower them. While you might only guess part of a Dragon's Truename because it's in a place at a time you know, you can give a name to creatures you create because you know everything about them.

    Later features allow you to speak with pretty much anything and come to know your own truename, altering reality to suit you in certain ways.

    To sum up concept: you know the original language, you can't "speak it" like in conversation because to speak it literally changes reality like spells. How much you can speak (like a limited vocabulary) is the measure of how many spells known, but the most fundamental concepts around which the language is built allow you to create or impart life (tiny servant, summon shadow), alter the nature of things (polymorph/creation), annihilate a creature with a word or restore one from the verge of destruction to absolute health (Power Words). Wish is essentially fluency in the Truespeech, a language that can be spoken with words or gestures.

    Playstyle:
    Tier 1. This is basic. Default Sorcerer play from 1-4. Probably blasting with some support heals. Out of combat you may perform a more scholarly role. Lower need for Subtle spell but it will have value after level ~8 when potential for counterspells increases. Extend is a good choice for later summons.

    Tier 2. 5-10 you may rely on Summoning and will greatly benefit from doing so whether you twin Tiny Servant or Extend your Shadowspawn. The option to add a solid flat damage boost or make them a 1 round tank 3-4 times a day is not to be underestimated, particularly at 9th when Summon Draconic Spirit is an option.

    Tier 3. Continue as T2 but with more flexibility. Sorc 6-8 spells are not the best and the ones added by the class list are not spectacular either, but your schtick of giving life and making it awesome doesn't get old and scales OK. The temp HP granted by the L6 feature are effectively doubled if you use the creature like a battering ram the round they have resistance.

    T4- You have Wish, no one cares about anything else though if your DM runs PW Kill like I do, it doesn't suck. Your L18 feature is awesome, but can rapidly become a sorc point sink if overused.

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    Default Re: 5e Sorcerous Origin: Truespeech (any critique appreciated)

    Thank you so much! That was excellent!

    So the theme is rock solid, and it's the playstyle that's a bit wobbly. You could probably take what you're doing for this Subclass and break it down into at least 2, if not 3, seperate Subclasses. Each would lean more into a specific playstyle, but all have the same flavor.

    The Summoner, warping reality to manifest his words.
    - Transmutation, Evocation, Minions

    The Scholar, using his words to see through the fabric of reality, and the truth that permeates it.
    - Divination, Knowledge

    The Controller, using his Word to take control of those he names.
    - Command, Mind Control, Hold Person
    This would make it much easier to live up to the fantasy the subclass promises.

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    Default Re: 5e Sorcerous Origin: Truespeech (any critique appreciated)

    Quote Originally Posted by Bjarkmundur View Post
    Thank you so much! That was excellent!

    So the theme is rock solid, and it's the playstyle that's a bit wobbly. You could probably take what you're doing for this Subclass and break it down into at least 2, if not 3, seperate Subclasses. Each would lean more into a specific playstyle, but all have the same flavor.



    This would make it much easier to live up to the fantasy the subclass promises.
    Iím glad you find the concept so exciting! Iím inclined to say I think I can get a little closer to your target with the addition of one phrase to the level 6 feature. The rest can be accomplished with your own spell selection.

    Iíll revisit the language in short while, so give it a look now to see if you can make more out of it.
    Last edited by BerzerkerUnit; 2021-12-01 at 08:03 PM.

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    Default Re: 5e Sorcerous Origin: Truespeech (any critique appreciated)

    Limited by their mortal minds and knowledge of Truespeech, Truenamers often specialize in a certain way of implementing the Words of their craft.

    When you choose this subclass at first level, choose on of the following Bonus Spell lists. Spells from your Bonus spell lists are permanently added to your list of known spells, and are considered Sorcerer spells for you

    Words of Truth
    -Insert Utility spells here-
    Words of Command
    -insert control spells here-
    Words of Creation
    -insert summoning spells here-

    Sprinkle in some other spells to round out the spell lists, and not make it underpower or boring. They can all get Power Words for example. It's just the theme of the spell list, not a hard rule.

    I still think ignoring verbal components of speech flavored Spellcasting goes against the theme. If a player wants to sign, i think he can just talk to his DM about it...

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    Default Re: 5e Sorcerous Origin: Truespeech (any critique appreciated)

    This one is more something I just found Interesting than an actual suggestion. Website ate my post, so Im rewriting it.


    Mastered Sarting
    You have discover the secrets behind the words of a single spell, giving you incredible mastery over it. Starting at 6th level, choose one spell from your list of known spells. When you cast this spell, you can add Metamagic to it at a reduced cost. Count up all the Sorcery Points spent on Metamagic, and reduce it by half (minimum 1).
    When you gain a level in this class you can choose a new spell to master, but because of the limits of the mortal mind, you lose mastery of your old spell when you do so.

    name
    Starting at 6th level, choose one of the following benefits:

    Truth: Once per long rest, you can cast a Divination spell without expending a spell slot.
    Command: Once per long rest, when a creature makes a Saving Throw against an Enchantment spell you cast, you can apply Disadvantage to the saving throw.
    Creation: Some summoning buff you fancy.

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    Default Re: 5e Sorcerous Origin: Truespeech (any critique appreciated)

    Quote Originally Posted by Bjarkmundur View Post
    Limited by their mortal minds and knowledge of Truespeech, Truenamers often specialize in a certain way of implementing the Words of their craft.

    When you choose this subclass at first level, choose on of the following Bonus Spell lists. Spells from your Bonus spell lists are permanently added to your list of known spells, and are considered Sorcerer spells for you

    Words of Truth
    -Insert Utility spells here-
    Words of Command
    -insert control spells here-
    Words of Creation
    -insert summoning spells here-

    Sprinkle in some other spells to round out the spell lists, and not make it underpower or boring. They can all get Power Words for example. It's just the theme of the spell list, not a hard rule.

    I still think ignoring verbal components of speech flavored Spellcasting goes against the theme. If a player wants to sign, i think he can just talk to his DM about it...
    Genie Pact Warlock seems like enough of a precedent for something like this to work. I'm satisfied with the list I've provided, but I'm sure whatever you come up with would be fairly reasonable.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bjarkmundur View Post
    This one is more something I just found Interesting than an actual suggestion. Website ate my post, so Im rewriting it.


    Mastered Sarting
    You have discover the secrets behind the words of a single spell, giving you incredible mastery over it. Starting at 6th level, choose one spell from your list of known spells. When you cast this spell, you can add Metamagic to it at a reduced cost. Count up all the Sorcery Points spent on Metamagic, and reduce it by half (minimum 1).
    When you gain a level in this class you can choose a new spell to master, but because of the limits of the mortal mind, you lose mastery of your old spell when you do so.

    name
    Starting at 6th level, choose one of the following benefits:

    Truth: Once per long rest, you can cast a Divination spell without expending a spell slot.
    Command: Once per long rest, when a creature makes a Saving Throw against an Enchantment spell you cast, you can apply Disadvantage to the saving throw.
    Creation: Some summoning buff you fancy.
    Not sure about this one(2?) but if you think it would work at your table, no one can stop you. I think adding the bit where the L6 buff can be applied to controlled creatures (adding to its utility if the PC prefers enchantment spells ((double ooh, gotta change it to Charmed rather than controlled))).

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