View Full Version : D&D 5e/Next Poisoner Archetype for Rogue

2015-05-26, 06:19 PM
Not much flavor text as the idea is simple, a rogue who uses poison to get an edge.

3rd: Poison Crafter
• Proficiency with Poisoner Kit
• Can apply poison as a bonus action
• When harvesting poison from a creature, acquire 2 doses
• When crafting poison, a day of work creates 25 gp of poison for a materials cost of 5 gp.

9th: Poison Expertise
• Expertise with Poisoner Kit
• Can apply poison as a reaction
• When harvesting poison from a creature, acquire 5 doses
• When crafting poison, a day of work creates 100 gp of poison for a materials cost of 10 gp.
• Can change the form of a poison (injury, ingested, contact, inhaled) from one to another in an hour with a poisoner’s kit.

13th: Concentrated Poison
• If a poison does hp damage, add the poisoner’s Intelligence bonus to the damage
• Add the poisoner’s Intelligence bonus to the save difficulty when they poison someone

17th: Constant Poison
• The poisoner is able to keep their weapons permanently poisoned. As long as they are they one using the weapons, every attack that does not use another poison has the effects of basic poison applied (which is amplified by the Concentrated poison ability).
• Whenever a poison inflicts the Poisoned condition, the poisoner has the option of inflicting one of the following conditions for a single round instead: Blinded, Frightened, or Incapacitated.

Stylistically, I’d prefer 1-2 items per level that gains archetype bonuses. It just didn’t work out that way. I’m also operating under the view that poison is nerfed so some of the improvements are denerfing poison. I’m also not thrilled with the crafting rules – between them and poison prices, crafting poisons is nigh useless. It would take a month to make even the simplest poisons. Rather than play with prices, I have increased the poisoner’s crafting rate for poisons; the market is probably limited enough that a poisoner will have trouble getting rich making poison. If you want poisons more generally available, tryi reducing price to a half to a fifth of the official prices.

To judge effectiveness, the assassin archetype is the closest match. They both specialize in killing through exotic techniques.

This archetype is very difficult to balance as campaign details will have a big effect. To be effective, a poisoner needs downtime to make poisons. The amount of treasure also determines how much poison they can afford to craft – the poisoner will have less cool equipment than other characters due to the constant need to get more poison. If conditions are such that nearly every attack uses poison, the poisoner is likely too strong. If the characters are poor and constantly fighting, a poisoner will manage to use poison less than once a week and the archetype will be nearly useless. DM attitude towards poison will also affect how hard it will be to play a poisoner.

Yea, making a poison bonus based on Int is MAD - I'm torn whether it should be prof bonus or a flat bonus instead. But I like the idea of poison being more effective in the hands of a clever user and Int gets few perks.