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AgentPaper
2012-08-29, 01:46 PM
Also viewable on google docs (https://docs.google.com/document/d/1x7voIC7PFlDvU6ZUmEwAEitj4MGCVE136-aXO0aafyg/edit). That version will likely be more up-to-date than this one. Also, if you spot any differences between the two, please let me know so I can fix it.

Death Knight


http://fc02.deviantart.net/fs38/f/2008/341/d/3/d380b5d76d7a8a96afe5381136ba1bba.jpg
http://nagare-boshi.deviantart.com/art/Death-Knight-105593537

Durability and unequaled weapon mastery help the death knight dominate a battlefield.
Key Abilities: Strength, Charisma, and Constitution. You need Strength for weapon use, Charisma to power your dark magic, and Constitution to help you withstand punishment.

Creating a Death Knight
When you create a character whose first class is death knight, you gain these benefits.
Ability Adjustment: +1 to your Strength, Charisma, or Constitution score
Starting Hit Points: 10 + your Constitution modifier
Armor and Shield Proficiencies: All armor and shields
Weapon Proficiencies: All weapons

The Death Knight
Level|Magic Attack|Weapon Attack|
Spell DC|Runes|Class Features

1|
+2|
+3|10 + Cha|
1|Rune Weapon, Rune Magic, Mastery

2|
+2|
+3|10 + Cha|
1|Killing Machine

3|
+2|
+3|10 + Cha|
1|Mastery

4|
+3|
+4|10 + Cha|
2|Raise Ghoul

5|
+3|
+4|11 + Cha|
2|Mastery

6|
+3|
+4|11 + Cha|
2|

7|
+4|
+5|11 + Cha|
2|Mastery

8|
+4|
+5|11 + Cha|
3|

9|
+4|
+5|11 + Cha|
3|Mastery

10|
+5|
+6|11 + Cha|
3|

11|
+5|
+6|12 + Cha|
3|Mastery

12|
+5|
+6|12 + Cha|
4|

13|
+6|
+7|12 + Cha|
4|Mastery

14|
+6|
+7|12 + Cha|
4|

15|
+6|
+7|12 + Cha|
4|Mastery

16|
+7|
+8|13 + Cha|
5|

17|
+7|
+8|13 + Cha|
5|Mastery

18|
+7|
+8|13 + Cha|
5|

19|
+8|
+9|13 + Cha|
5|Mastery

20|
+8|
+9|13 + Cha|
6|

Class Features
A death knight gains the following class features.
Hit Dice: 1d10 per death knight level
Hit Points: 1d10 (or 6) + your Constitution modifier per death knight level gained

Level 1: Rune Weapon
All death knights learn the art of runecrafting, which allows them to infuse their weapons with potent magic. A weapon infused with such runes becomes more powerful in the death knightís hands.
Benefit: You may carve runes into any weapon you can wield. Carving a rune takes 1 hour per rune and does not require any tools or materials. Once a rune is carved, you may fill it with power by spending a few minutes doing so during a short rest.
You may only have a limited number of runes active at any given time, as indicated by the Death Knight table. Your active runes can all be on the same weapon, or on all different weapons as you prefer, as long as the total number does not exceed your limit.

Level 1: Rune Magic
You have mastered the dark art of rune magic, which allows you to use the power stored in your rune weapon for various effects.
Benefit: You may use any Rune Magic powers you have mastered. At level 1, you have mastered the Rune Strike and Death Grip powers.
Using a Rune Power: Whenever you use a Rune Magic power, one or more of the runes in your rune weapon become expended. If all of your runes have been expended, or if you donít have access to your rune weapon, you canít use Rune Magic.
Magical Attacks: When you make a magical attack using a death knight power, you use your Charisma modifier for the attack roll, and add a bonus to that roll based on the Magic Attack column in the Death Knight table.
Saving Throw DCs: When a death knight power that you cast calls for a saving throw, the save DC equals 10 + your Charisma modifier. As you gain levels, the DC increases, as noted in the Death Knight table.
Blood Plague: As long as a creature is infected with this disease, it must make a constitution saving throw at the beginning of each of itís turns. If it succeeds, the effects end. If it fails, it takes damage equal to 1d8 + your charisma modifier.
Every third level, starting at level 3, increase the damage done by 1d8.
Frost Fever: As long as a creature is infected with this disease, it must make a constitution saving throw at the beginning of each of itís turns. If it succeeds, the effects end. If it fails, itís speed is reduced by 10 and it takes damage equal to your charisma modifier.
Every third level, starting at level 3, increase the damage done by 1d6.

Level 1: Mastery
Each death knight carries a relic that represents their mastery of rune magic. No two relics are alike, but most fall into one of a few categories.
Benefit: Choose a mastery. Three options are presented here: Blood, Frost, and Unholy. At the indicated levels, your mastery gives you a benefit.

Blood
A blood knightís relic is usually a piece of flesh from some sacrificial victim, usually an especially fearsome animal, such as a tiger, but human sacrifices are not unheard of.
Suggested Equipment: Chainmail, greatsword, adventurerís kit, healerís kit, and 24 gp

Level|Power
1|Rune Tap
3|Bone Shield
5|Blood Parasite
7|Heart Strike
9|Blood Boil
11|Dark Command
13|Strangulate
15|Vampiric Blood
17|Will of the Necropolis
19|Dancing Rune Weapon

Frost
A frost knightís relic is usually a small blade or a shard of ice, and is filled with an unnatural cold that chills the air around it.
Suggested Equipment: Chainmail, greataxe, adventurerís kit, healerís kit, and 24 gp

Level|Power
1|Frost Strike
3|Pillar of Frost
5|Obliterate

Unholy
A unholy knightís relic is usually made from the pieces of what was once a holy relic, desecrated using profane rituals into a mockery of what it once was.
Suggested Equipment: Chainmail, greataxe, adventurerís kit, healerís kit, and 24 gp

Level|Power
1|Death Coil
3|Unholy Aura
5|Dark Transformation

Level 2: Killing Machine
Flavor text
Benefit: As long as you are wielding a weapon with a rune carved into it, you score a critical hit on a natural roll of 19-20. In addition, whenever you score a critical hit, one of the runes on that weapon becomes filled with power.

Level 4: Raise Ghoul
Flavor text
Benefit: You can raise a ghoul by spending 10 minutes performing a ritual over the corpse of any small or larger creature. The ghoul is mindless, and cannot act if you are unconscious or otherwise unable to take actions. The ghoul will perform any command you give it to the best of itís ability, even sacrificing itself, until you give it another command. In combat, the ghoul always acts during your turn, either before or after your actions as you choose.

Ghoul
Medium Undead
Armor Class 8
Hit Points 9 (2d8)
Speed 20 ft.
Senses darkvision 60 ft.
Str 15 (+2) Dex 6 (Ė2) Con 10 (+0)
Int 10 (+0) Wis 7 (Ė2) Cha 15 (+2)

TRAITS
Fearless: The zombie cannot be frightened.
Mindless: The zombie cannot be charmed.

ACTIONS
Melee AttackóSlam: +2 to hit (reach 5 ft.; one creature). Hit: 1d6 bludgeoning damage.

Level 6: Reaper
Flavor text
Benefit: You may use an action to perform a ritual killing on any unconscious creature. To do so, make an attack against that creature. If it hits, the creature is killed outright, and one of the runes on your weapon becomes filled with power.

Level 8: Summon Deathcharger
Flavor text
Benefit: You summon an undead mount that you can ride. The mount moves at a speed of 60 feet, can hold up to two medium creatures, and never tires.

Level 10: Runic Empowerment
Flavor text
Benefit: Once per day, you may use your action to completely refill all of your runes with power.

Level 12: Lichborne
Flavor text
Benefit: You gain resistance to necrotic damage, and cannot be frightened or charmed. You gain advantage on all checks made to intimidate living creatures.

Level 14: Dread Plate
Flavor text
Benefit: You can carve runes into your armor as well as your weapons. This allows you to use rune powers even when unarmed. This does not affect the total number of runes you may have filled with power at any given time.
Additionally, as long as your armor has at least one rune carved into it, you may apply your full dexterity bonus even in medium or heavy armor, your speed is not reduced by wearing heavy armor, and you are immune to critical blows. (Any critical hits rolled against you are changed into normal hits)

Level 16: Forceful Deflection
Flavor text
Benefit: You may use your strength modifier in place of your dexterity modifier to determine your AC.

Level 18: Might of the Frozen Wastes
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Benefit: As long as you are wielding a two-handed weapon, your reach is increased by 5 feet, and you apply double your strength modifier to damage rolls.

Level 20: Purgatory
Flavor text
Benefit: You canít die. Whenever you are reduced to 0 hit points, you become paralyzed instead of unconscious, and you automatically succeed on death saving throws. If your head is destroyed, your spirit leaves your body. While in spirit form, you become ethereal, and have the ability to possess the body of another humanoid creature. If you take damage equal to your hit points while in spirit form, you are banished from the physical world for 2d6 days, after which you return to where you died.

AgentPaper
2012-08-29, 02:33 PM
Rune Powers

Rune Strike
One rune power
Flavor Text
Benefit: Make an attack against any target within reach. If that attack hits, it deals extra damage equal to 2d8 + your charisma modifier.
Every third level, starting at level 3, increase the damage bonus by 1d8.

Death Grip
One rune power
Flavor Text
Benefit: Choose a target within 40 feet of you. It must make a strength saving throw. If it fails, it is pulled up to 40 feet directly towards you.

Rune Tap
One rune power
Flavor Text
Benefit: You may spend one of your hit dice to heal yourself. Add your charisma modifier to the hit points gained.
Every third level, starting at level 3, you may spend an additional hit dice.

Bone Shield
One rune power
Flavor Text
Benefit: You create two magical bones which hover around you for up to 5 minutes. Whenever you are attacked, you may sacrifice one of the bones to grant the attacker disadvantage on that attack before the attack is rolled.
Every third level, starting at level 3, increase the number of bones by 1.

Blood Parasite
Two rune power
Flavor Text
Benefit: Make a magical attack against a target within your reach. If you hit, a blood worm burrows into the targetís flesh. During each of that targetís turns, it must make a constitution saving throw. If it succeeds, the blood worm dies and the effect ends. Otherwise, the target takes 2d8 damage and you gain that many hit points.
Every third level, starting at 6, increase the damage done by 1d8.

Heart Strike
One rune power
Flavor Text
Benefit: Make an attack against any target within reach. If that attack hits, it deals extra damage equal to your charisma modifier. If it misses, you deal half damage instead.

Blood Boil
One rune power
Flavor Text
Benefit: Choose any number of targets within 20 feet of you. Each of those targets makes a constitution saving throw. Each target that fails takes damage equal to 1d8 + your charisma modifier, or half that damage if they succeed. Every third level, starting at level 3, increase the damage done by 1d8.

Dark Command
One rune power
Flavor Text
Benefit: Choose a creature within 40 feet of you. You speak a one-word command to it, and it makes a Wisdom saving throw. If the creature fails the saving throw it spends its next turn doing as it was commanded.

Strangulate
One rune power
Flavor Text
Benefit: Choose a target within 40 feet. That target makes a wisdom saving throw. If it fails, it becomes silenced and restrained until the end of your next turn.

Vampiric Blood
Two rune power
Flavor Text
Benefit: Choose yourself or a creature within 40 feet of you. For the next 1 minute, whenever that creature hits with an attack, it gains hit points equal to your charisma modifier.

Will of the Necropolis
One rune power
Flavor Text
Benefit: You may use this ability as a reaction whenever an attack would reduce you to 0 or less hit points. Instead, you are reduced to 1 hit point.

Dancing Rune Weapon
Three rune power
Flavor Text
Benefit: You create a floating, magical weapon identical to your own within 50 feet of you that lasts for 1 minute. Make an attack against any creature within 5 feet of the weapon. The weaponís attack is identical to yours.
Once during each of your turns, when you take an action, you can also move the weapon up to 30 feet and make an attack against a creature within 5 feet of it.

Frost Strike
One rune power
Flavor Text
Benefit: Make an attack against a creature within reach. If that attack hits, it deals an extra 1d8 cold damage and the target has disadvantage on all attacks until the beginning of your next turn.
Every third level, starting at level 3, increase the damage by 1d8

Pillar of Frost
One rune power
Flavor Text
Benefit: For the next 5 minutes, your strength is increased by 2.
Every third level, starting at level 3, increase the bonus by 1.

Obliterate
Two rune power
Flavor Text
Benefit: Your next weapon attack deals an extra 5d8 damage if it hits.
Every third level, starting at level 6, increase the damage by 2d8.

Icy Touch
One rune power
Flavor Text
Benefit: Make a magic attack against a creature within 20 feet of you. If you hit, the target takes 1d8 cold damage and becomes infected with frost fever.
Every third level, starting at level 3, increase the damage by 1d8.

Mind Freeze
One rune power
Flavor Text
Benefit: Use this power as a reaction when a creature casts a spell within 40 feet of you. That creature must make a constitution saving throw. If it fails, the spell is disrupted and it loses any resources required to cast that spell.

Chains of Ice
One rune power
Flavor Text
Benefit: Make a magical attack against a creature within 40 feet. If you hit, that creatureís speed is reduced to 5 feet.

Icebound Fortitude
One rune power
Flavor Text
Benefit: For the next 5 minutes, your constitution is increased by 2.
Every third level, starting at level 3, increase the bonus by 1.

Hungering Cold
Three rune power
Flavor Text
Benefit: Each creature within 10 feet of you becomes frozen in ice and is stunned and immune to all attacks. At the beginning of each of itís turns, it may make a strength saving throw. If it succeeds, or after 1 minute has passed, it breaks free of the ice. It is no longer stunned or immune to damage, and may act on that turn as normal.

Howling Blast
Two rune power
Flavor Text
Benefit: Each creature in a 15-foot cone originating from you makes a Dexterity saving throw. If it fails, it takes 2d8 cold damage and is restrained until the end of your next turn. If it succeeds, it takes half as much damage and is not restrained.

Pestilence
One rune power
Flavor Text
Benefit: Choose a creature within 20 feet of you. Each creature of your choice within 20 feet of the original target must make a constitution saving throw. If it fails, it becomes infected with any diseases the original target is suffering.

Remorseless Winter
Four rune power
Flavor Text
Benefit: You create a heavy blizzard in a 100-foot radius sphere centered on you which lasts for 1 minute. All terrain within the area of effect is considered difficult terrain. Any creature that is flying must make a strength saving throw. If it fails, it loses the ability to fly until it leaves the area of effect. Each creatures in the radius must make a constitution saving throw at the beginning of their turn. If they fail, they take 4d8 cold damage, or half damage if they succeed. All ranged attacks made by or against creatures inside the area of effect have disadvantage. You may choose to exclude any number of creatures from the effects of this spell.

Death Coil
One rune power
Flavor Text
Benefit: Make a magical attack against one creature within 100 feet of you. On a hit, the target takes necrotic damage equal to 2d8 + your charisma modifier.
Every third level, starting at level 3, increase the damage by 1d8.

Unholy Aura
One rune power
Flavor Text
Benefit: For the next minute, all allies within 40 feet of you gain a +1 bonus to the damage of their attacks, and their speed is increased by 10.
Every third level, starting at level 3, increase the damage bonus by 1.

Dark Transformation
Two rune power
Flavor Text
Benefit: Your ghoul is empowered for the next 1 minute. While empowered, all attacks made by your ghoul gain advantage, and deal an additional 1d6 damage and knock the target back 10 feet if they hit. Your ghoul also regains any hit points it has lost, and itís maximum hit points are doubled.
Every third level, starting at level 3, increase the damage bonus by 1d6.

Unholy Blight
One rune power
Flavor Text
Benefit: For 1 minute, any creature that moves within 10 feet of you or begins their turn there must make a constitution saving throw. If they fail, they become infected with blood plague.

Plague Strike
One rune power
Flavor Text
Benefit: Make an attack with your rune weapon. If that attack hits, the target becomes infected with Blood Plague.

Anti-Magic Zone
One rune power
Flavor Text
Benefit: You create a 10-foot sphere of anti-magic that lasts until the beginning of your next turn. While in the area of effect, creatures gain immunity to magical attacks, and automatically succeed on any saving throws provoked by spells.

Unholy Frenzy
Two rune power
Flavor Text
Benefit: Choose yourself or another creature within 40 feet. That creature makes a wisdom saving throw. If it fails, or chooses not to resist, it goes into a frenzy, and gains a bonus to itís strength and dexterity scores equal to your charisma modifier. The effect persists indefinitely, but the creature may choose to make an wisdom saving throw at the beginning of each of their turns. If they succeed, the effect ends. If they fail, or choose not to resist, the effect continues and they take 1d6 damage.
Every third level, starting at level 6, increase the damage taken by 1d6.

Scourge Strike
One rune power
Flavor Text
Benefit: When you take an action, you can make a weapon attack against a creature within your reach during that action. If you hit, the target becomes infected with Blood Plague.


Desecrated Ground
Three rune power
Flavor Text
Benefit: You create an area of desecrated ground within 20 feet of you. Any creatures of your choice within the area take disadvantage on any attacks or saving throws they make, and treat all terrain within the area as difficult terrain. If you move, the effect follows you. During each of your turns, you may choose to use your action to sustain the effect. Otherwise, it ends at the beginning of your turn.

Death Siphon
One rune power
Flavor Text
Benefit: Choose a creature within 40 feet of you. That creature makes a constitution saving throw. If it fails, it takes 2d6 damage and you gain that much life. During each of your turns, if the creature is still within range, you may choose to use your action to sustain the effect.
Every third level, starting at level 3, increase the damage taken by 1d6.

Army of the Dead
Four rune power
Flavor Text
Benefit: You raise all corpses within 40 feet of you into ghouls. You may raise a number of ghouls equal to your hit dice, or twice the total hit dice of all of the corpses in the area of effect, whichever is smaller. These ghouls are identical to the ghoul created by your Raise Dead class feature, except they last only 1 minute, after which they fall apart and turn into dust.s lost, and itís maximum hit points are doubled.

Dublock
2012-08-29, 04:45 PM
World of Warcraft anyone? :p

I do have a question though. You don't make it clear when you can use a run power. You do make it clear that you expand a use to use a power but not when you gain I have quoted the two parts that I think are relevant.



Benefit: You may carve runes into any weapon you can wield. Carving a rune takes 1 hour per rune and does not require any tools or materials. Once a rune is carved, you may fill it with power by spending a few minutes doing so during a short rest.


Level 2: Killing Machine
Flavor text
Benefit: Whenever you land a critical hit or land a killing blow on an enemy using your rune weapon, one of the runes in that weapon becomes charged.


Different terminology which is what threw me off the first two times I read it so I completely missed the first part.

Is it intended that you can use one rune power per encounter at level 1? And then be at the mercy of the DM/RNG? If I as a DM had a single monster as an encounter then any DK would need to get a crit before they can use another power, which can be intended, but pretty limiting.

Then as a DM if I toss in a lot of minion creatures (4E, 1 HP, or just a lot of rats or whatever), then the DK can use a rune power every turn, more so if he uses his goul effectively, do damage, get killing blow, and repeat.

I guess my main complaint is that its relying on encounters/RNG to use the rune powers.

AgentPaper
2012-08-29, 05:03 PM
I'm still working out the terminology for runes. Basically though, they are intended to be encounter powers. The death knight will also gain some daily powers in later levels, for example at level 6 they get an ability that allows them to instantly re-charge all of their runes once per day.

Killing machine is probably too powerful, this is true. I think I'll change it so you just get the re-charge from a crit, and another small bonus (possibly crit on a 19, to make it less swingy), and then give the death-recharge at a later level once regaining a single rune point isn't as big of a deal.

As for how you actually use the rune powers, that's confusing because I've changed my mind a couple times on how rune powers work. At first, they were just abilities you could use at-will whenever you want, as long as you have the rune to power it. Now, I think it'd work better if I made most of them into an action unless otherwise stated. That does mean I'll need to re-word some of them.

Edit: Added on the rest of the levels, though there aren't any more class features yet. Also added on a bunch more powers for the blood mastery.

I'm intending that you'll be able to pick and choose you powers if you don't like the three masteries provided. Basically, you just choose a power every odd level, and you can't choose a power that costs more runes than your maximum.

AgentPaper
2012-08-30, 01:04 PM
Added a link to the google doc (https://docs.google.com/document/d/1x7voIC7PFlDvU6ZUmEwAEitj4MGCVE136-aXO0aafyg/edit) in the first post, which will be more updated than this version. Feel free to leave comments on there as well as here, if you wish. I've added a lot more class features on there, but that won't be reflected here until I've got them in a more stable form.


Probably the biggest issue for me right now is figuring out what to use as a capstone. Any ideas?

AgentPaper
2012-08-30, 08:57 PM
Added in the rest of the class features, including a capstone, which I think turned out pretty well. I don't think you could really call yourself a death knight unless you had mastery over death itself, anyways.

Still working on getting the rest of the powers done. I also decided to add in Blood Plague and Frost Fever as a basic element of rune magic, so that many different powers could inflict them and not have to say what they do every time. As always, the google doc is more updated than what's shown here, so check that out if you want to see more.

Edit: Also, pretty picture. Hopefully it doesn't do too much screen-stretching. it doesn't for me, but I know my screen is wider than most. If it causes anyone problems, let me know.

AgentPaper
2012-09-02, 04:13 PM
Big update. The class is essentially finished now, though I'm sure it needs a lot of work for balance. If anyone tries this out in a game, make sure to let me know how it works, whether it's dealing too much damage, not enough, if it's too easy to lock stuff down, etc.