View Full Version : D&D 5e/Next Monster Tamer Class- advice?

White Mage Tam
2015-01-04, 03:28 PM
I've done some work on a 5e monster tamer class over the last few weeks but the idea of how to handle the features and archetypes overall is frustrating me.

What sorts of features would you want monster tamers to have? I figured it'd just be easier to ask a forum rather than try to make it all by myself.

My two Archetype ideas so far are "Monster Trainer" and "Monster Sculptor." A "Monster Trainer" makes creatures more intelligent and gives them class levels, whereas a "Monster Sculptor" changes and evolves the base creature with things like wings, natural armor, fire-breath, and so on.

The problem with each is that I don't know where to put what ability for Monster Trainer, whereas for Monster Sculptor, I'm not sure how to actually balance being able to alter the creature's biology with the idea of "maximum controlled CR."

If you have any features or archetypes suggestions, please, let me know! If you complete your own monster-tamer class or know of one, that'd ALSO be great!

Here is what I actually have on the class so far, all of it subject to alterations of course. I have largely based it on the ranger beast-master archetype mixed with the Monster Tamer homebrew class (http://www.dandwiki.com/wiki/Monster_Tamer_(3.5e_Class)) from 3.5e.

HD: d6
SKILLS: Choose three out of Animal Handling, Arcana, Nature, Performance, Perception, Stealth, and Survival
WEAPONS: Simple, Nets, Whip
ARMOR: Light
SAVING THROWS: Dexterity, Charisma

Starting Items
1) Whip and a dagger OR a shortbow with 20 arrows.
2) Leather armor
3) 3 nets and two daggers
4) Entertainer's Pack or Explorer's Pack
5) One CR 1/4 or less animal/monster companion of your choice and DM's approval.


You may control a monster (defined as any creature you can tame) no greater than half your Monster Tamer level rounded down (CR 1/2 at level one). Add your proficiency bonus to your monster's AC, attack rolls, and damage rolls, as well as to any saving throws and skills it is proficient in. Its hit point maximum equals its normal maximum or four times your Monster Tamer level, whichever is higher.
It takes turns on your initiative. It may move without cost to you, and you may use your action to verbally command your companion to take the Attack, Dash, Disengage, Dodge, or Help actions. Once you have the Extra Attack feature, you can make one weapon attack yourself when you command your companion to take the Attack action.
To bind a monster to themselves, Tamers have an hour-long arcane ritual. They need to stay near the monster during the entire ritual. The monster need not be conscious. This can be done during a short rest. When the ritual is complete, the monster is stored in an extra-dimensional space, ready to be summoned when the tamer wills it. It does not need to eat, drink, or breathe while in this space, and heals whenever the tamer takes a short or long rest as if it has taken the same rest. Once bound this way, the monster is considered permanently charmed.
Summoning a monster is a spell-like ability that requires a standard action. You may only summon a monster once, after which you require either a short or long rest to do it again. You may only have one monster summoned at a time; summoning a second monster will fail. You may dismiss your monster with your Reaction.
You may undo the bond with your monster. This takes a 10 minute ritual, at which point the monster is free to do whatever it wishes. When a Monster Tamer dies, all of their monsters are summoned on the spot, free of all control, and are no longer charmed.
Monster Tamers start with one monster of any type, and they may have more monsters of their favored types. If their first monster is released or killed, they may again tame a monster of any type.
Several Monster Tamer features raise a monster's effective CR. If a monster's CR is raised beyond the controllable limit, it breaks its bond and goes berserk, attacking everything in sight.

Beginning at first level, you have significant experience studying, tracking, hunting, and taming a certain type of monster. Choose a type of favored companion: beasts, dragons, elementals, monstrosities, or plants. You have advantage on Wisdom (Survival) and Wisdom (Animal Handling) checks when dealing with this type of monster. You may have one extra monster in your possession of a Favored type.
At 6th level and 14th level, you may take one new Favored Type. You may choose the same type twice, in which case the only bonus you gain is one extra monster of the Favored type.

GROW MONSTER (DEFINITELY needs adjustment, replacement, or removal)
Starting at 2nd level, a Monster Tamer learns an arcane ritual to cause their monster to grow. At 2nd level, you may grow it one size category, to a maximum of Large, increasing its CR by 2. (CR 1/4 increases to 1, 1/2 increases to 2.). At 6th level, you may grow it a second size category (Maximum Huge), and at 10th level, a third (Maximum Gargantuan).
A monster enlarged in this way gains +2 to its Strength ability score. Natural weapons increase in damage accordingly, and hit die increase in size accordingly and need to be recalculated.

At 3rd level, you choose an archetype that reflects how you wish to train your monsters. The archetype you choose grants you features at 3rd level and again at 7th, 11th, and 15th level.

Starting at 4th level, monster tamers may speak with any monster of their favored type as if they share a language, even if the monster normally does not have one.

Beginning at 8th level, on any of your turns when your monster doesn't attack, you can use a bonus action to command the monster to take the Dash, Disengage, Dodge, or Help action.

Starting at 10th level, a Monster Tamer may add their proficiency bonus to all Wisdom and Charisma checks they are not already adding their proficiency bonus to when it involves a monster of their Favored type.

Starting at 12th level, your monster can make two attacks when you command it to use the attack action.

(An 18th level feature is required.)

At 20th level, you and your monsters become as one on the battlefield. Once on each of their turns, a Monster Tamer may add their Charisma bonus to the damage roll of an attack made by their monster.



Starting at 3rd level, a Monster Trainer may spend an hour-long ritual with their monster. After this ritual, add the Monster Trainer's proficiency bonus to a Monster's intelligence, up to a maximum of the Monster Trainer's own intelligence. Unaligned monsters are now considered Neutral. Expanded Mind monsters may take two new skill proficiencies. Expanding a monster's mind adds +1 CR. You may use this ritual more than once, adding +1 CR each time.

Starting at 7th level, the monsters under a Monster Trainer's control are now so well-taught that they may function as well as any humanoid. After spending an 8 hour period training the monster, it may take one level in the adventurer class of your choice. This is considered multiclassing. Every class level a monster takes adds +1 to its CR. A monster's total class level is considered to be its total CR. A CR 5 monster that takes a level in Rogue is now a 6th level adventurer. A monster under your control may not, under any circumstances, take a familiar or an animal companion, nor may it take levels in the Monster Tamer class.

(11th level feature is required)

The 15th level Monster Trainer may now control Celestials, Fiends, or Fey, and may control one extra monster of these types (but not one extra each).


Starting at 3rd level, a Monster Sculptor learns an arcane ritual to to cause their monster to change. You may add one of the following features to your monster, if it does not already have them:

1) Iron Skin: Increase the Natural Armor bonus of the monster by +3 if it does not already have natural armor. CR +1
2) Wings: The monster now has a fly speed of 40 ft. CR +1
3) Amphibious: The monster may now breathe under water, and has a swim speed of 40 feet. +1 CR
4) Iron Claws: All attacks with natural weapons by the monster are now magical weapons, for the case of bypassing damage reduction and resistance. If the monster did not have natural weapons, it now possesses claws appropriate for its size. CR +1
5) Poison: Choose one of the monster's natural weapons; it is now poisoned. Creatures hurt by this attack must make a Constitution save (DC 8 + Proficiency Bonus). Failure means they take an extra weapon die of the monster's attack in poison damage per turn. At the end of every turn, they may make another save; success ends the damage. CR +1
6) Magic Resistance: The monster now has advantage on saving throws against spells and spell-like effects. CR+1

Starting at 7th level, a Monster Sculptor learns a ritual with their monster to cause it to change. You may change the monster to a suitable creature of the same type of its base CR or higher. This undoes the rituals "Grow Monster" and "Sculpt Monster," although it does not prevent you from casting them again. Consult your GM on your choice of creature.

Starting at 11th level, a Monster Sculptor gains the Dragon-Shape ritual. This allows them to give their monster the Half-Dragon template. The Monster Sculptor may choose the color of dragon. This raises the CR of the monster by 2. Dragon-Shape is not undone by Shape Monster, and monsters with the Half-Dragon template are considered to also be dragons when choosing a new form with Shape Monster. This ritual cannot be used on monsters that are already considered dragons.

MONSTER FUSION (Likely need to eliminate one of these options)
Starting at 15th level, the Monster Sculptor may choose, as a full-round action, to fuse with their monster. The Monster Sculptor may not command a second monster while this fusion is active. This ability may be used once between long rests. This fusion may take one of two forms.

1) Possess Monster: The Monster Sculptor simply possesses the body of the monster. The Intelligence, Wisdom, and Charisma scores of the monster are replaced by the Sculptor's, but all stats otherwise remain the same. For the duration of the fusion, the Sculptor is considered to have Total Cover, and immunity to all damage except Psionic and recurring damage effects, such as poison, they are already affected by. The Monster Sculptor retains the ability to use spells and class features while fused, so long as the monster is capable of them (has the required limbs or vocal chords, for instance). The fusion is undone when the Sculptor wishes it, after one hour, or when the monster reaches 0 hit points. The Sculptor appears in the nearest unoccupied space when this happens.

2) Absorb Monster: The Monster Sculptor absorbs the body of their monster. For the duration of the fusion, the monster is considered to have total cover, and immunity to all damage except psionic and recurring damage effects, such as poison, they are already affected by. Sculpters gain the following features from their companion:
*Natural Armor
*The speeds of the monster (if they are higher), and whatever means necessary to use them (wings, fins, Amphibious, claws, etc.). Clothing and armor that is not adapted for these features is destroyed.
*Natural Weapons, including Breath Weapons
*Senses, such as blindsense, tremorsense, and darkvision.
*Damage Resistances and Damage Immunities
*Any features the monster has
This fusion is undone when the Sculptor wishes it, after one hour, or when they reach 0 hit points. The creature appears in the nearest unoccupied space when this happens, or is dismissed if the Sculptor is unconscious.