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juanmaj0027
2015-04-03, 01:15 PM
Hi, I'm not actually new around here, but this is my first post. A while ago I started playing 5e with a group of friends and I couldn't help to notice that every class in this edition SUCKS!, for me at least. So I decided to give it a try and make my own homebrew. The class that I most loved in 3.5, the Dragonfire Adept. Because... why wouldn't you want to be a friggin' dragon!
So, I actually took the homebrew made by xyianth (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?369033-Homebrew-Dragonfire-Adept-for-5e-PEACH) and I made some changes, that to me, appeal more to the class itself and to the former DFA from 3.5, and make it more different from the warlock (which I also loved in 3.5 and now it sucks)
Bare in mind that this is not a hard caster, it is aimed to be a field controller by using the breath weapon, thus the low damage.
Well, that's it for introductions, here you go, and please let me know what you think is overpowered or underpowered so I make the proper modifications. We are playing tomorrow so I'd like a little feedback. Thanks, and enjoy!


DRAGONFIRE ADEPT


http://www.wizards.com/dnd/images/dmag_gallery/100212.jpg

Whether they are bold champions defending the weak and downtrodden, or merciless raiders seeking might and riches, dragonfire adepts are imposing figures who command the magic of dragonkind. Able to call upon a dragon's breath and augment themselves with spells and draconic invocations, dragonfire adepts have access to powers normally beyond the reach of humanoids.
Dragonfire adepts are no masters of martial prowess. Instead, they draw upon a direct link with the nature of draconic existence, infusing their soul with the raw magic of dragons. The most obvious incarnation of this link is their breath weapon, but as they gain experience, dragonfire adepts learn powerful spells and invocations that allow them to access different draconic abilities. Cunning, hearty, and learned, dragonfire adepts can be war leaders or sages with equal ease.
A dragonfire adept is a student devoted to understanding the ways of dragons and emulating them. Evil dragonfire adepts are cruel tyrants who impose their will on others, seeking to control land, build strongholds, and amass vast treasures. Good dragonfire adepts are champions of justice and freedom, using their powers to aid others. Like a warlock, a dragonfire adept gains new powers automatically as she rises in level, tapping ever deeper into the draconic magic in her soul.

CREATING A DRAGONFIRE ADEPT
A dragonfire adept is a flexible character, with a handful of abilities to control the battlefield and able to provide support in combat and aid her allies directly or indirectly. While she lacks the capacity of a fighter or wizard for dealing damage, she is more resistant to damage and can use her abilities to make her comrades more effective.
As you choose a draconic patron and dragon type, make sure to choose the one that suits your personality best.

QUICK BUILD
You can make a dragonfire adept quickly by following these suggestions. First, Constitution should be your highest ability score, followed by Charisma. Second, choose the acolyte background. Third, choose the blade ward cantrip, along with the 1st-level spell instill vulnerability.



Dragonfire Adept



Level
Proficiency Bonus
Features
Cantrips Known
Spells Known
Spells Slots
Slot Level
Invocations Known


1
+2

Draconic Patron, Spellcasting, Breath Weapon
1
1
1
1
0


2
+2
1
2
1
1
1
2


3
+2
Scales
2
2
2
1
2


4
+2
Ability Score Improvement
2
3
2
2
2


5
+3

3
2
2
2
2


6
+3
Expose Scales
3
4
2
2
3


7
+3

3
4
2
3
3


8
+3
Ability Score Improvement
3
5
2
3
3


9
+4
Energy Resistance
3
5
2
3
3


10
+4
Breath Expertise
3
6
3
4
4


11
+4

4
6
3
4
4


12
+4
Ability Score Improvement
4
7
3
4
4


13
+5

4
8
3
5
4


14
+5
Dragon Wings
4
8
3
5
5


15
+5

4
8
3
5
5


16
+5
Ability Score Improvement
4
9
3
5
5


17
+6

4
9
3
5
5


18
+6
Immunities
4
10
4
5
6


19
+6
Ability Score Improvement
4
10
4
5
6


20
+6
Draconic Mastery
4
10
4
5
6



CLASS FEATURES
As a dragonfire adept you gain the following class features.

HIT POINTS
Hit Dice: 1d8 per dragonfire Adept level
Hit Points at 1st Level: 8 + your Constitution modifier
Hit Points at Higher Levels: 1d8 (or 5) + your Constitution modifier per dragonfire adept level after 1st

PROFICIENCIES
Armor: None
Weapons: Simple weapons
Tools: None


Saving Throws: Constitution, Charisma
Skills: Choose two from Arcana, History, Insight, Intimidation, Nature, Perception, Religion, and Survival

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


(a) a light crossbow and 20 bolts or (b) any simple weapon
(a) a component pouch or (b) an arcane focus
(a) a dungeoneerís pack or (b) a scholarís pack
any simple weapon and two daggers



DRACONIC PATRON
At 1st level, you make a choice to follow the ideals of the metallic dragons in the service of Bahamut or to embrace your darker nature and follow Tiamat and her chromatic dragons. You have to choose a type of metallic or chromatic dragon. Your choice will grant you features when you advance in level in this class depending on your choice of dragon type. You may add double your proficiency bonus to any Charisma checks when interacting with metallic or chromatic dragons, depending on your draconic patron choice, even if you would otherwise not be proficient in them.

DRAGON MAGIC
Your draconic nature grants you a certain facility with spells. See chapter 10 for the general rules of spellcasting and the Dragonfire Adept Spells list at the end of the class description.

CANTRIPS
You know one cantrip of your choice from the dragonfire adept spell list. You learn additional cantrips of your choice at higher levels, as shown in the Cantrips Known column of the Dragonfire Adept table.

SPELL SLOTS
The Dragonfire Adept table shows how many spell slots you have. The table also shows what the level of those slots is; all your spell slots are the same level. To cast one of your dragonfire adept spells of 1st level or higher, you must expend a spell slot. You regain all expended spell slots when you finish a short or long rest.
For example, when you are 7th level, you have two 3rd-level spell slots. To cast the 1st-level spell thunderwave, you must spend one of those slots, and you cast it as a 3rd-level spell.

SPELLS KNOWN OF 1ST LEVEL AND HIGHER
At 1st level, you know one 1st-level spell of your choice from the dragonfire adept spell list.
The Spells Known column of the Dragonfire Adept table shows when you learn more dragonfire adept spells of your choice of 1st level and higher. A spell you choose must be of a level no higher than whatís shown in the tableís Slot Level column for your level. When you reach 8th level, for example, you learn a new dragonfire adept spell, which can be 1st, 2nd or 3rd level.
Additionally, when you gain a level in this class, you can choose one of the dragonfire adept spells you know and replace it with another spell from the dragonfire adept spell list, which also must be of a level for which you have spell slots.

SPELLCASTING ABILITY
Charisma is your spellcasting ability for your dragonfire adept spells, so you use your Charisma whenever a spell refers to your spellcasting ability. In addition, you use your Charisma modifier when setting the saving throw DC for a dragonfire adept spell you cast and when making an attack roll with one.

Spell save DC = 8 + your proficiency bonus + your Charisma modifier
Spell attack modifier = your proficiency bonus + your Charisma modifier

SPELLCASTING FOCUS
You can use an arcane focus (found in chapter 5) as a spellcasting focus for your dragonfire adept spells.

DRACONIC INVOCATIONS
As you awaken your draconic heritage, you acquire additional facets of draconic mysticism that imbue you with an abiding magical ability.
At 2nd level, you gain two draconic invocations of your choice. Your invocation options are detailed at the end of the class description. When you gain certain dragonfire adept levels, you gain additional invocations of your choice, as shown in the Invocations Known column of the Dragonfire Adept table.
Additionally, when you gain a level in this class, you can choose one of the invocations you know and replace it with another invocation that you could learn at that level.


BREATH WEAPON
Your draconic patron and dragon type influences your draconic nature at a fundamental level. You gain a breath weapon that deals damage of the type indicated in the table below.
You can use your action to exhale destructive energy. Choose the size and shape (15 ft. cone or 5 by 30 ft. line) of this energy when you use it. All creatures in range must succeed on a Dexterity saving throw or take 1d8 damage. On a successful save, they take half damage. The save DC for this effect is based on your Constitution modifier. The type of damage is determined by your dragon type. This damage increases by 1d8 damage at 5th level (2d8), 11th level (3d8), and 17th level (4d8).

BREATH ENERGY TYPE


Dragon Type
Damage type


Black
Acid


Blue
Lightning


Brass
Fire


Bronze
Lightning


Copper
Acid


Gold
Fire


Green
Poison


Red
Fire


Silver
Cold


White
Cold



SCALES
At 3rd level, you grow a thin set of scales that match the color of your chosen dragon, but are not visible at first glance. These scales give you an AC of 13 + your Dexterity modifier when you arenít wearing armor.

ABILITY SCORE IMPROVEMENT
When you reach 4th level, and again at 8th, 12th, 16th, and 19th level, you can increase one ability score of your choice by 2, or you can increase two ability scores of your choice by 1. As normal, you canít increase an ability score above 20 using this feature.

EXPOSE SCALES
At 6th level, as a reaction in response to being hit with an attack you can expose your scales for a short period of time. Starting with the attack that triggered this reaction and lasting for 1 minute, you have damage reduction (bludgeoning, piercing and slashing) of equal to your proficiency bonus. Once you use this ability, you can not do so again until you finish a short or long rest.

ENERGY RESISTANCE
At 9th level, you gain resistance to your breath weapon energy types.

BREATH EXPERTISE
At 10th level, your mastery of your draconic nature improves enough for a secondary breath weapon type to emerge. Consult the table below to determine your new energy type. You cannot select a different dragon than you selected before. Whenever you use your breath weapon, you can select which of your two energy types to use. Additionally, your breath weaponís range is doubled.

BREATH ENERGY TYPE


Dragon Type
Damage type


Black
Necrotic


Blue
Thunder


Brass
Radiant


Bronze
Thunder


Copper
Necrotic


Gold
Radiant


Green
Psychic


Red
Radiant


Silver
Force


White
Force



DRAGON WINGS
At 14th level, you gain the ability to sprout a pair of dragon wings from your back, gaining a flying speed equal to your current speed. You can create these wings as a bonus action on your turn. They last until you dismiss them as a bonus action on your turn. This ability works exactly like the Draconic Sorcerer ability Dragon Wings.

IMMUNITIES
At 18th level, you become immune to paralysis and magical effects that render you unconscious.

DRACONIC MASTER
At 20th level, you can draw on your inner reserve of draconic power to regain expended invocations and spell slots. You can spend 1 minute of inner reflection to regain all your expended invocations and spell slots. Additionally you restore the enduring power of your scales which allows you to use your Expose Scales ability again. Once you use this feature, you must finish a long rest before you can do so again.


DRACONIC INVOCATIONS
If a draconic invocation has prerequisites, you must meet them to learn it. You can learn the invocation at the same time that you meet its prerequisites.


Baleful Geas
Prerequisite: 9th level
You can cast geas once using a dragonfire adept spell slot. You canít do so again until you finish a long rest.

Beguiling Influence
You gain proficiency in the Deception and Persuasion.

Breath of the Night
Prerequisite: 12th level
You can cast fog cloud at-will, without expending a spell slot.

Discorporating Breath of Bahamut
Prerequisite: 14th level, Draconic patron Bahamut, Breath Weapon
You learn to mimic the effects of the mighty breath weapon of Bahamut. As an action on your turn you can produce a breath weapon that inflicts 10d10 untyped damage to those in range unless they succeed on a dexterity saving throw. Those that do save take half damage. This damage bypasses all resistances and immunities. If a creature is dropped to 0 hit points with this damage, it and all of its non-magical possessions turn to dust. (see the disintegrate spell for details) Once you use this ability, you can not do so again until you finish a long rest.

Draconic Knowledge
You gain proficiency in the Arcana and History skills.

Draconic Toughness
Prerequisite: 7th level
You can cast false life on yourself at-will as a 2nd-level spell, without expending a spell slot or material components.

Dragonsight
You can see normally in darkness, both magical and non magical, to a distance of 120 feet.

Aimed Breath
Prerequisite: Breath Weapon
You have learned to control the shape of your breath weapon to avoid hitting allies. When you use your breath weapon, it only affects enemies in range.

Entangling Exhalation
Prerequisite: Breath Weapon
When you use your breath weapon, you can choose to make it an entangling blast of energy. Your breath weapon deals 1d4 damage, but any creature that takes damage becomes restrained for 1d4 rounds. Any creature so restrained takes 1d8 damage of the same type as your breath weapon at the start of its turn. It can use its action to end the effect, and at the end of each turn it can attempt a Dexterity check against your breath weaponís save DC to end the effect early. You can use this ability at-will. Multiple uses of this ability with the same energy type donít stack. Multiple uses of this ability with different energy types overlap for the purposes of the restrained condition, but the damage from all energy sources is resolved independently. After the effect ends, the creature is immune to the same effect until the end of its next turn. The initial damage of the breath is increased by 1d4 damage at 5th level (2d4), 11th level (3d4), and 17th level (4d4).

Enthralling Voice
Prerequisite: 5th level
You can cast the spell enthrall at-will, without expending a spell slot.

Fivefold Breath of Tiamat
Prerequisite: 14th level, Draconic patron Tiamat, Breath Weapon
You learn to mimic the effects of the mighty breath weapon of Tiamat. You can, as an action on your turn use your breath weapon 5 times simultaneously. Each breath weapon is resolved independently and can be aimed at different targets. Each breath weapon corresponds to one of the five primary energy types: acid, lightning, poison, fire, and cold. Once you use this feature, you can not do so again until you finish a long rest.

Humanoid Shape
Prerequisite: 15th level
You can cast alter self at-will, without expending a spell slot.

Lingering Breath
Prerequisite: 9th level, Breath Weapon
When you use your breath weapon you can choose to have it linger as a cloud for 1 round. Any creature that enters or ends its turn inside the cloud takes half normal damage and/or feels the effects of the breath weapon, but only for half the normal duration. You can use this ability at-will.

Magic Insight
You can cast detect magic at will, without expending a spell slot. If you concentrate on a magic item for 1 minute, you learn its properties as if you had cast identify on the item.

Powerful Breath
Prerequisite: Breath Weapon
When you use your breath weapon, add your Charisma modifier to the damage it deals to each creature in range.

Sleep Breath
Prerequisite: 9th level, Breath Weapon
When you use your breath weapon, you can choose to breathe a sleep-inducing gas instead. Your breath weapon deals no damage, and all creatures affected must succeed on a Constitution save or be affected as by the sleep spell. Each creature can attempt a new save each round for the duration (2 rounds) to ignore the sleep effect for that round. After the effect ends, the creature is immune to the same effect until the end of its next turn. You may use this ability at-will.

Slow Breath
Prerequisite: 6th level, Breath Weapon
When you use your breath weapon, you can choose to breathe a magical slow effect instead, that distorts your enemyís perception of time. Your breath weapon deals no damage and all creatures affected must succeed on a Wisdom save or be affected as by the slow spell. Each creature can attempt a new save each round for the duration (2 rounds) to ignore the slow effect for that round. After the effect ends, the creature is immune to the same effect until the end of its next turn. You may use this ability at-will.

Terrifying Roar
Prerequisite: 7th level
You can cast fear at will, without expending a spell slot. Your roar has a duration of 2 rounds. Any creature that succeeds on its Wisdom save is immune to your fear spells for 24 hours.

Voracious Dispelling
Prerequisite: 5th level
You can cast dispel magic once using a dragonfire adept spell slot. You canít do so again until you finish a long rest.

Whispers of the Dragon
Prerequisite: 15th level
You can cast suggestion at-will, without expending a spell slot.

Wingstorm
Prerequisite: 13th level, Dragon Wings
While flying with your dragon wings, you can cast gust of wind at-will, without expending a spell slot as a bonus action. The gust only lasts 1 round each use.


DRAGONFIRE ADEPT SPELLS



Spell Level
Spells


0th
blade ward, dancing lights, friends, light, mage hand, message, minor illusion, prestidigitation, thaumaturgy, true strike, vicious mockery


1st
charm person, comprehend languages, disguise self, expeditious retreat, feather fall, grease, illusory script, instill vulnerability*, magic missile, ray of sickness, shield, silent image, sleep, thunderwave


2nd
arcane lock, cloud of daggers, darkness, detect thoughts, enlarge/reduce, hold person, invisibility, locate object, magic mouth, mirror image, misty step, ray of enfeeblement, shatter


3rd
bestow curse, glyph of warding, haste, hypnotic pattern, magic circle, remove curse, sending, sleet storm, stinking cloud, tongues, water breathing


4th
banishment, dimension door, fire shield, ice storm, stoneskin, wall of fire


5th
cloudkill, creation, hold monster, legend lore, scrying, telekinesis



DRACONIC PATRON BAHAMUT EXPANDED SPELL LIST



Spell Level
Spells


1st
color spray, protection from evil


2nd
calm emotions, heat metal


3rd
counterspell, gaseous form


4th
hallucinatory terrain, otilukeís resilient sphere


5th
bigbyís hand, contact other plane



DRACONIC PATRON TIAMAT EXPANDED SPELL LIST



Spell Level
Spells


1st
chromatic orb, protection from good


2nd
crown of madness, blindness/deafness


3rd
animate dead, vampiric touch


4th
blight, phantasmal killer


5th
modify memory, planar binding



New Spell
Instill Vulnerability
1st-level necromancy


Casting Time: 1 bonus action
Range: 90 feet
Components: V, S
Duration: Concentration, up to 1 hour

You project your draconic majesty towards a creature that you can see within range. Until the spell ends, that creature gains vulnerability to one energy type of your choice. If the target is resistant to that energy type, it instead loses that resistance. If the target is immune to that energy, it instead becomes resistant to it. Also, the target has disadvantage on ability checks made to resist your breath weapon.
If the target drops to 0 hit points before the spell ends, you can use a bonus action on a subsequent turn of yours to instill vulnerability in a new creature.
A remove curse cast on the target ends this spell early.
At Higher Levels. When you cast this spell using a spell slot of 3rd or 4th level, you can maintain your concentration on the spell for up to 8 hours. When you use a spell slot of 5th level or higher, you can maintain your concentration on the spell for up to 24 hours.

New Feat
Master of Invocations
Prerequisite: Know at least one invocation of any type
You have learnt to master any invocation, no matter its source.
When you gain a new invocation in your class you can choose one from either the warlock or dragonfire adept invocation lists, as long as you meet the prerequisites.

juanmaj0027
2015-04-03, 01:18 PM
*reserved for updates*

- Entangling Exhalation, Sleep Breath and Slow Breath updated: now they dont have the -1 DC each turn, but, "After the effect ends, the creature is immune to the same effect until the end of its next turn".
- Dragon Wings moved back to lvl 14, Energy Resistance moved to lvl 9.

eleazzaar
2015-04-03, 03:26 PM
I've always thought the DfA was an interesting class, but i've never had a chance to play it.

It isn't easy to compare to the warlock because both of these classes have a lot of optional moving parts, but my guess is that it is overpowered.

You get an at-will AoE weapons, and you get at-will flight earlier than anybody else.

Let's look at Flight. the DfA get's at-will flight 5 levels sooner than the sorcerer or Eagle Totem barbarian, and just one level after the druid gets flight by using up a wild-shape (and loosing the ability to cast). Casters can fly at 6th level, but it takes up a spells slot, only lasts 10 min and requires concentration. This is a very strong ability.

Now the breath weapon. It has slightly lower damage than the warlock's signature ability against a single enemy, but can blast lots of enemies at once. Of course, how useful this is depends on what kind of foes the GM throws at you. This is significantly better than any other classes at-will magic attack (that i'm aware of).

For stake of argument lets assume that the assorted abilities are equally strong as the warlock's assorted abilities, (because it would be really time consuming to compare)

What does the DfA loose to pay for these strong abilities? Your "invocations known" progression is a little slower. Doesn't seem like a fair trade.

As a off-the-cuff attempt at balance, i'd move the flight ability back to 14th level and/or only provide it with significant limitations. Then i'd reduce the either the spell or the invocation progression.

alackthereof
2015-04-03, 10:52 PM
Compared to other classes, I feel that the damage is appropriate, as it scales against the full-blown casters' cantrip damage progression.
Dragon Wings does NOT need to be at 9th level. I realize that is how it scaled in the 3.5 edition, and was consistent with warlocks from that version. Warlocks in 5e do not get spider climb or Fell Flight as invocations. The closest they have at 9th level grant Levitate and Jump at will.

Continuing to compare between the 3.5 and 5e versions of DfA and Warlock (its closest reference), the classic DfA gains an AoE damage source at the expense of BAB. In 5e, BAB disappears and is replaced with an across-the-board proficiency bonus (and fewer attacks for most classes). The 5e Warlock handles this by gaining a splitting Eldritch Blast, has some invocations turned to spells, enjoys the cantrip conversion that all casters get to support Eldritch Blast, and gets a general tweak of invocations for balance. For DfA to balance out in 5e, we have to look at what overlaps so far.

Both get cantrips, though DfA gets one fewer likely because of Breath Weapon
Both get known spells, though DfA gets 5 fewer at max. (Your numerical progression in this column seems odd)
Both get generic spell slots & a spell level progression, though DfA gets fewer overall
Both get invocations, though DfA gets two fewer


So, does one fewer cantrip, 5 fewer spells, slower spell slot gains, and two fewer invocations balance out for what is effectively a cantrip that not only affects an area, but deals half (vice zero) damage on a successful save? My opinion is that you keep either spells OR invocations, and drop the other. I would favor keeping the invocations, but you could always stick with the spells, since some of the invocations have spell analogs already. However, that is but one person's opinion.

xyianth
2015-04-04, 01:56 AM
First, I'm thrilled my version was helpful for inspiration. :smallbiggrin:

Second, I think you would be well served to switch the elemental resistance feature to 9th and move the dragon wings feature to 14th. This puts the at-will flight in line with when other classes get it.

Third, I think this looks great (I am admittedly biased) and could not disagree more with the people asking for further nerfs. Evocation wizards can already do half damage on misses with cantrips. The damage of eldritch blast far outstrips the breath weapon due to agonizing blast applying to each blast. And honestly, the invocations that add an effect to your breath are more likely to be used than the base damage version. This class will provide fair battlefield control and low damage to groups. If you get rid of spells or invocations, you need to greatly boost the efficacy of whatever is left or this class will become one of the weakest available.

Finally, I have a single semi-selfish request: Since it sounds like you are going to get a chance to play this, could you follow up and post your experience with it? I think this class and mine are similar enough that I can use your experience to help balance and playtest my version.

Good luck with your game!

eleazzaar
2015-04-04, 08:28 AM
Third, I think this looks great (I am admittedly biased) and could not disagree more with the people asking for further nerfs. Evocation wizards can already do half damage on misses with cantrips. The damage of eldritch blast far outstrips the breath weapon due to agonizing blast applying to each blast.

But neither of them can hit multiple targets with a cantrip without weakening the damage. The closest thing to an AoE cantrip is acid splash which does d6 to two adjacent targets, and the eldritch blast which can divide up the damage. And since the DfA can avoid hitting allies there's no downside to the breath.

A warlock that's maxed Cha can do 4d10 + 20 (ave 42) to one target, while a DfA (with the same Cha and "powerful breath") could do 4d8 +5 ave (ave 23) per target. If it can line up a shot with two foes in range, it's total damage is slightly better (46), if it can line up three the damage is much better (69).

Not the most overpowered thing ever, but IMHO it is a significant point of comparison.

xyianth
2015-04-04, 11:24 AM
But neither of them can hit multiple targets with a cantrip without weakening the damage. The closest thing to an AoE cantrip is acid splash which does d6 to two adjacent targets, and the eldritch blast which can divide up the damage. And since the DfA can avoid hitting allies there's no downside to the breath.

A warlock that's maxed Cha can do 4d10 + 20 (ave 42) to one target, while a DfA (with the same Cha and "powerful breath") could do 4d8 +5 ave (ave 23) per target. If it can line up a shot with two foes in range, it's total damage is slightly better (46), if it can line up three the damage is much better (69).

Not the most overpowered thing ever, but IMHO it is a significant point of comparison.

Yes, when you compare the breath weapon to eldritch blast or other cantrips, the breath weapon comes out ahead. But the DFA is paying for that boost by having the worst caster chassis in the game. Compare warlocks to other full casters. (and don't kid yourself, warlocks are intended to be full casters) Full casters get 22+ spells per day of 1st-9th level + cantrips that do ~22 damage. Warlocks get 16 spells per day of 1st-9th level + eldritch blast that deals ~42 damage. Without eldritch blast's power boost, warlocks would suck horribly compared to other casters. Now let's see how this DFA compares: 12 spells per day of 1st-5th level + an AoE cantrip that deals ~27 damage per target. This is, without doubt, the worst caster chassis in the game. Just for comparison: the ranger (a half caster) gets 15 spells per day of 1st-5th level + the ability to make 3+ attacks per round. (they know more spells too) And rangers are widely considered weak by these forums.

TL;DR: this DFA is trading: 5 spells known, a much slower progression of spell level, all spells of 6th-9th level, and 2 invocations for the breath weapon and it's augments. How much more do you want them to trade for an at-will AoE attack? (that you even admit isn't the most overpowered thing ever)

Amnoriath
2015-04-04, 01:19 PM
You have a lot of dead levels and as others have said you really need to move the wings back. Your Breath Weapon is quite potent over all the issue isn't the base itself as unlike other cantrips you need to stay with the class(I'm assuming) and it is its namesake feature so it should be better than a base cantrip. The issue is combos and chaining. If you would have Entangling Exhalation you can end up dealing more damage over time than your base along with an automatic restrained effect regardless if they save or not(unless they have Evasion). While it doesn't stack with itself it does with your base making them fail automatically and becomes more potent with Lingering Breath. It also begs the question does Powerful Breath add to the ongoing damage? In general that invocation is way too powerful and can be a lot simpler. IE to remember the -1 to DC and does the player's action allow them to ignore the effect entirely or partially?
This is how I would do it.

Entangling Exhalation: When you would use your breath weapon class feature you may choose to use this instead. Creatures in the area take 1d8 damage of your energy type. The breath weapon lasts for 1 round increasing to 2 at level 5, 3 at level 11, and 4 at level 17 ending at the beginning of your turn. Creatures are allowed a Dexterity save for half damage but if it fails they are restrained until the beginning of their next turn in which they may try again taking the damage again. If they take an action to escape they may make the save with advantage. Whether they save or not the area is considered to be difficult terrain to anyone that is subject to the effect.
P.S. For Instill Vulnerability saves are not considered ability checks in the rules language. It also is a bit much to have both a 50% increase in damage and a disadvantage to the save.

alackthereof
2015-04-04, 01:22 PM
TL;DR: this DFA is trading: 5 spells known, a much slower progression of spell level, all spells of 6th-9th level, and 2 invocations for the breath weapon and it's augments. How much more do you want them to trade for an at-will AoE attack? (that you even admit isn't the most overpowered thing ever)

I think that due to the power of Dragon Breath being an AoE ability with all the additional Invocations to modify it, I feel that either A) removing spells, making some of them Invocations, and boosting the number of Invocations to that of a Warlock; or B) removing invocations, making some of them spells, and raising the number of spells would be the right idea. Personally, I'd go with A, but the unmodified Dragon Breath ability shouldn't do greater than half the damage of 8th level spells. The original DfA didn't have the regular ability to do more than 9d6 damage before modifications.

xyianth
2015-04-04, 03:50 PM
... but the unmodified Dragon Breath ability shouldn't do greater than half the damage of 8th level spells. The original DfA didn't have the regular ability to do more than 9d6 damage before modifications.

Uhh, what the hell are you talking about? How is 4d8 save for half greater than half the damage of 8th level spells? There are 3 8th level spells that do damage: incendiary cloud, sunburst, and tsunami. Incendiary cloud does 10d8 save half damage each turn for 1 minute to a 20' sphere. Sunburst does 12d6 save half + blind for 1 minute over a 60' sphere. Tsunami does 21d10 damage over 6 rounds to all targets in a 300' x 300' area.

And the original DFA in 3.5 did 9d6 to each target it hit, not split among number of targets. This isn't relevant though because the balance of 3.5 was much higher than in 5e, so I'm not even sure what your point is.

Bottom-line: the breath weapon + 8 invocations and no spells (your proposal) would be severely underpowered unless those invocations replicated some pretty powerful abilities. Not just compared to warlocks, but compared to everything. It might, might, be acceptable to lose spells if you boost the number of invocations to 12+ and change some of the spells into invocations. It is hard to tell for sure as it's a paradigm that doesn't exist in 5e: a non-martial, non-caster class.


You have a lot of dead levels and as others have said you really need to move the wings back. Your Breath Weapon is quite potent over all the issue isn't the base itself as unlike other cantrips you need to stay with the class(I'm assuming) and it is its namesake feature so it should be better than a base cantrip. The issue is combos and chaining. If you would have Entangling Exhalation you can end up dealing more damage over time than your base along with an automatic restrained effect regardless if they save or not(unless they have Evasion). While it doesn't stack with itself it does with your base making them fail automatically and becomes more potent with Lingering Breath. It also begs the question does Powerful Breath add to the ongoing damage? In general that invocation is way too powerful and can be a lot simpler. IE to remember the -1 to DC and does the player's action allow them to ignore the effect entirely or partially?
This is how I would do it.

Entangling Exhalation: When you would use your breath weapon class feature you may choose to use this instead. Creatures in the area take 1d8 damage of your energy type. The breath weapon lasts for 1 round increasing to 2 at level 5, 3 at level 11, and 4 at level 17 ending at the beginning of your turn. Creatures are allowed a Dexterity save for half damage but if it fails they are restrained until the beginning of their next turn in which they may try again taking the damage again. If they take an action to escape they may make the save with advantage. Whether they save or not the area is considered to be difficult terrain to anyone that is subject to the effect.
P.S. For Instill Vulnerability saves are not considered ability checks in the rules language. It also is a bit much to have both a 50% increase in damage and a disadvantage to the save.

The combos should be powerful, you are investing 3/6 invocations to get that effect. That is 4 class features worth of abilities. (breath weapon + invocations) Regardless, your version of entangling exhalation seems stronger than the original version so maybe I am not understanding your point. And the Instill Vulnerability issue might be an error, but I read it as giving disadvantage on the check to break entangling exhalation's restrained condition. (which is a check, not a save) If the intent was to disadvantage the save, then it fails that. But as you pointed out, restrained causes auto-fail on those saves anyway. Either way, it probably could be worded more clearly to prevent confusion.

juanmaj0027
2015-04-04, 04:10 PM
Currently playing. Will update soon.

alackthereof
2015-04-04, 07:08 PM
And the original DFA in 3.5 did 9d6 to each target it hit, not split among number of targets.

It might, might, be acceptable to lose spells if you boost the number of invocations to 12+ and change some of the spells into invocations. It is hard to tell for sure as it's a paradigm that doesn't exist in 5e: a non-martial, non-caster class.


The version of DFA that is described below does the same damage to every target hit, not split among targets. I'm not sure where you got the impression the damage was split. I can agree with the suggestion to raise the invocations to 12 as well as converting some spells to invocations. Even as written, if chosen, at second level you are dealing 1d8+Cha bonus to each creature in range of your blast, and you don't even have to worry about hitting your friends. That alone is fairly powerful, and it ramps up as you gain levels.

Also, I might consider adding an invocation that changes your damage type temporarily, or having Instill Vulnerability become one of the invocations.

juanmaj0027
2015-04-04, 08:34 PM
Ok, so we just finished the session.
First of all I want to thank you for your comments and above all thank xyianth for his support.
Well, as a lot of you said, yes, the CC might be a little bit strong. We had a Party that consisted in a fighter (ridiculous amounts of damage), a ranger (pretty much a jack of all trades in what combat matters), a rogue (impossible to target due to stealth, and decent damage), a warlock (which died early but did more than double my damage) and my DFA (lvl 6, 20 CON).
We all were lvl 6/7, so I didn't get to try all the abilities of the class.

1) I didn't cast a single spell (so I might remove spells from the class, and add some invocations known)
2) I used my unmodified breath sometimes. The damage was ridiculous low compared to the rest of the party
3) I spammed Entangling Exhalation, which proved to be really useful as a CC.
4) I used Slow Breath sometimes, on high DEX foes, to target WIS saves.
5) In the first encounter (fire elemental, earth elemental, beholder) I fired 5 breaths. First targeted both elementals, both saved. Second targeted both elementals, only earth failed. Third targeted only earth elemental, since fire elemental was already dead (not thanks to me, btw), elemental saved with a natural 20. Fourth targeted the beholder, which did only 7 damage (and luckily killed it, yay!). The Warlock died in this encounter. There was one more breath that I don't remember what I targeted, but it failed.
6)In the second encounter we fought a troll and a metal construct. I fired a lot more breaths. The fighter died with two hits of the construct and the ranger was killed by the troll, I think. It was up to the rogue and me. We managed to kill the troll and, and with a lot of cc breaths, the DM kindly let us kill the construct (which had a lot of hp remaining, but it would have ended in a party wipe otherwise). Again the damage output was ridiculously low.
So, yes, the CC was great. It really helped the party go through those encounters. But the damage was really low, which is only normal, since the class is aimed to be a field controller, not a damage dealer.
7) Positioning is of crucial importance playing this class. And even being smart won't always help you. I could only target two creatures at the same time in two different turns. Out of like 15 turns, total. So I don't consider that the breath, just for being AoE, is op, at all.

We thought to nerf the breath effects: Creatures are immune to the same breath effect in the following turn of the one they got rid of that effect. That way you can't keep them them restrained, or slowed, or slept all the turns. But you can breath another effect on them.
So, based on my experience, the class was perfectly balanced, little damage, not a lot of things to do, not a lot of resources, but great cc.
If I remove the spells, I'm not sure yet what to do with Instill vulnerability. Probably one use per long rest invocation, which may scale.

Ok, I think that's all. Thanks again for reading and commenting.

*Updates in comment n2.

alackthereof
2015-04-04, 10:04 PM
I really appreciate your info on the playtest, juanmaj0027.
By chance, did you keep track of how many rounds the combat stretched into? Because I suppose with the damage tooled the way it is, the DfA might only shine in damage sustainability in really long combat scenarios.

Based on this info, I think the following alterations could be reasonable:
Breath Weapon damage progression is 1d6 at first level, and goes up by 1d6 every 2 levels afterward (3rd, 5th, etc).
Spells are removed
Invocations are gained at 1st level, and advance similar to how "good" BAB used to advance.
The following spells become Invocations that are used once per short rest unless specified otherwise:
General
1st level - Charm Person, Instill Vulnerability
3rd level - Detect Thoughts, Shatter
5th level - Bestow Curse, Tongues
7th level - Dimension Door, Stoneskin
9th level - Hold Monster, Comprehend Languages (at will)
11th level - Sending (at will)
13th level - Feather Fall (at will)
15th level - Invisibility (self only, at will)

Bahamut Archetype
1st level - Protection from Evil
3rd level - Calm Emotions
5th level - Gaseous Form
7th level - Otiluke's Resilient Sphere
5th level - Contact Other Plane

Tiamat Archetype
1st level - Protection from Good
3rd level - Crown of Madness
5th level - Vampiric Touch
7th level - Blight
9th level - Planar Binding

The Breath Weapon damage and Invocations are summed up as follows:


Level
Breath damage
Invocations


1
1d6
1


2

2


3
2d6
3


4

3


5
3d6
4


6

5


7
4d6
6


8

6


9
5d6
7


10

8


11
6d6
9


12

9


13
7d6
10


14

11


15
8d6
12


16

12


17
9d6
13


18

14


19
10d6
15


20

15

juanmaj0027
2015-04-04, 10:23 PM
I really appreciate your info on the playtest, juanmaj0027.
By chance, did you keep track of how many rounds the combat stretched into? Because I suppose with the damage tooled the way it is, the DfA might only shine in damage sustainability in really long combat scenarios.

Based on this info, I think the following alterations could be reasonable:
Breath Weapon damage progression is 1d6 at first level, and goes up by 1d6 every 2 levels afterward (3rd, 5th, etc).
Spells are removed
Invocations are gained at 1st level, and advance similar to how "good" BAB used to advance.
The following spells become Invocations that are used once per short rest unless specified otherwise:
General
1st level - Charm Person, Instill Vulnerability
3rd level - Detect Thoughts, Shatter
5th level - Bestow Curse, Tongues
7th level - Dimension Door, Stoneskin
9th level - Hold Monster, Comprehend Languages (at will)
11th level - Sending (at will)
13th level - Feather Fall (at will)
15th level - Invisibility (self only, at will)

Bahamut Archetype
1st level - Protection from Evil
3rd level - Calm Emotions
5th level - Gaseous Form
7th level - Otiluke's Resilient Sphere
5th level - Contact Other Plane

Tiamat Archetype
1st level - Protection from Good
3rd level - Crown of Madness
5th level - Vampiric Touch
7th level - Blight
9th level - Planar Binding

The Breath Weapon damage and Invocations are summed up as follows:


Level
Breath damage
Invocations


1
1d6
1


2

2


3
2d6
3


4

3


5
3d6
4


6

5


7
4d6
6


8

6


9
5d6
7


10

8


11
6d6
9


12

9


13
7d6
10


14

11


15
8d6
12


16

12


17
9d6
13


18

14


19
10d6
15


20

15



I really like your conversion of spells to invocations. I'd have to see how balanced they actually are. Obviously taking out the spells.
About the damage, having a higher damage is not really the point of the class... BUT!!! I'm considering creating 3 paths to the class: a CC based, a damage based, and an Invocation based (maybe plus spells). This will require a lot of time, which I don't really have, but I'll try to start working on it.

xyianth
2015-04-04, 10:46 PM
snip

Thank you for the great info on your experience. I like the idea of adding temporary immunity to your CC effects as a balancing measure. Since you didn't use any spells, I can understand your damage being low. Instill Vulnerability was created so you could ramp up your damage a bit against one target at a time. (similar to a warlock's hex spell) If you do decide to drop spells, I would make Instill Vulnerability an invocation that is usable at-will or at the very least 1/short rest. Without it, the DFA has nearly no ability to 'focus fire' on targets with lots of hp. (like that construct you faced)


snip

That is probably too much damage for an at-will shapeable AoE ability. (it'd be fine if it was 1 target/use) The damage problem is better solved using Instill Vulnerability. It doubles the damage taken by your breath (and ally abilities using the same element) but is limited to a single target. This way the raw damage potential of the AoE isn't too high, but you can still do good damage against 1 target at a time. The invocation number looks good to me, though it too may be a bit high.


Based on juanmaj0027's experience and the comments from alackthereof, eleazzaar, and Amnoriath, I will probably be changing my DFA class a bit. I'm thinking that I should borrow a bit more from the original DFA class from 3.5 and separate invocations from breath augmentations, giving a separate progression for each. I will also drop the spells and make some of them available as invocations and add some kind of fading immunities to CC effects. I'll include links to this thread and credit each of you for helping. (it may take me a few days to update)

Amnoriath
2015-04-04, 10:57 PM
The combos should be powerful, you are investing 3/6 invocations to get that effect. That is 4 class features worth of abilities. (breath weapon + invocations) Regardless, your version of entangling exhalation seems stronger than the original version so maybe I am not understanding your point. And the Instill Vulnerability issue might be an error, but I read it as giving disadvantage on the check to break entangling exhalation's restrained condition. (which is a check, not a save) If the intent was to disadvantage the save, then it fails that. But as you pointed out, restrained causes auto-fail on those saves anyway. Either way, it probably could be worded more clearly to prevent confusion.

It isn't the combo that is the issue it is the 1 invocation. The others just makes it that much better. No it isn't because what he had before was not only an issue of what exactly the action actually does but they lose a turn pretty much either way. Additionally it he only needed a 2 or higher on the duration roll to deal more damage on average than his regular breath even without Powerful Breath. Finally it being just a Dexterity check only proves how unlikely they are going to make it as even a maxed character needs a 14 or better. Mine on the other hand clearly explains how it works and is far more reasonable because rather than saying they are restrained automatically until they do something to waste their turn in one way or the other they are entitled to it at the beginning. If they really want to ignore it then they can use their action. Also even if you were to add Powerful Breath to each round of mine they would need to fail many times in a row to match the other in the long run. Admittedly though it might need a prerequisite level as is but an at will restrained effect kind of should be anyways as the Entangled condition was much more modest than Restrained.

alackthereof
2015-04-04, 11:03 PM
That is probably too much damage for an at-will shapeable AoE ability. (it'd be fine if it was 1 target/use) The damage problem is better solved using Instill Vulnerability.
That is a good point. Having Instill Vulnerability as an Invocation puts a lot more power behind it, too.


The invocation number looks good to me, though it too may be a bit high.
Perhaps start it at 2 invocations at first level, raise it to 3 at 2nd, and by one every 2 levels after that? That would cap it at 12 Invocations total.

eleazzaar
2015-04-04, 11:36 PM
I think it's worth noting that those combats described were far from a best case scenario for the DfA. I know campaigns and DMs vary, but I've rarely had a session where there weren't ever more than 3 foes on the field at once.

Against 5 or 8 or 15 foes the DfA should shine a lot more.

"BUT!!! I'm considering creating 3 paths to the class: a CC based, a damage based, and an Invocation based (maybe plus spells)."

The good thing about a class with a lot of optional features (invocations) is that you don't need a lot of content in the archetypes to still give the player lots of control.

As for an archetype with more spells and invocations, maybe it's not neccesarily. Will the result be a lot different from multiclassing with a dragon sorcerer?

You could put in a note that dragon sorc and DfA levels BOTH count for getting the wings ( assuming the feature is the same and achieved at the same point)

EDIT:
glad to see the action report too :)

Dominuce2112
2015-06-06, 06:41 PM
You must be happy with the elemental bane spell lol