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View Full Version : D&D 5e/Next Roguish Archetype: Totem Elite [PEACH]



DracoKnight
2016-05-07, 06:57 AM
So I know I asked for inspiration (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?487004-Need-Inspiration!), and I'm working on the suggestions given to me. BUT this idea hit me a couple of hours ago, and I just had to make it! :smallsmile: The concept behind this is that not every tribal character who uses totems is a barbarian, so I wanted to make something for those not inclined to playing a brute. Here's my original Rogue subclass, the Totem Elite (http://www.naturalcrit.com/homebrew/share/rJ6e6vib)! :smallbiggrin:

GandalfTheWhite
2016-05-07, 07:02 AM
First off, nice quality. Second, I think that this is one of the more flavorful things you've ever made. Now, I realize that you copied most of the text that precedes the abilities, but the abilities themselves seem to be fun and flavorful. Third...HOLY CRAP I CAN PLAY T'CHALLA!!! :smallbiggrin: *composes self*

I like the tribal armor (I'm totally seeing it as T'Challa's suit for the Panther totem) I just got back from Civil War, the nerd in me is awake and alive right now)!

I don't think that anything is outright OP, but as always, playtest it :smallsmile:

Requiemforlust
2016-05-07, 07:12 AM
Wow! Well done. After the forum has double-checked this, I will be making it available to my players.

Final Hyena
2016-05-07, 07:43 AM
The advantage of Panther (3rd level) is that you have essentially dual wielding ready to go without needing to draw two weapons, this seems less valuable than the other two options. Never mind I forgot that the way you get a second attack should give you stat to damage.

Chameleon (9th level) is just the thief boon, but better in every way.

The 13th level abilities all seem very powerful, except the snake which is a bit weird. The snake boon makes saves against becoming poisoned an automatic fail (no time limit), but to cause this they have to take poison damage, which requires them to fail a save in the first place. The snake boon also makes poisoned affect attack rolls, which is redundant.

Bestial Ferocity uses charisma whereas every other ability is con based.

Tribal armour should have a fixed weight.

DracoKnight
2016-05-07, 08:25 AM
The advantage of Panther (3rd level) is that you have essentially dual wielding ready to go without needing to draw two weapons, this seems less valuable than the other two options. Never mind I forgot that the way you get a second attack should give you stat to damage.

Yup.


Chameleon (9th level) is just the thief boon, but better in every way.

I should probably drop the Stealth advantage then. Just give it the illusion immunity, or maybe advantage on saving throws against immunity?


The 13th level abilities all seem very powerful, except the snake which is a bit weird. The snake boon makes saves against becoming poisoned an automatic fail (no time limit), but to cause this they have to take poison damage, which requires them to fail a save in the first place. The snake boon also makes poisoned affect attack rolls, which is redundant.

The Snake ability is phrased is supposed to allow Rogues who use poisoned weapons to take advantage of this. And oops, it's supposed to be 1 minute.


Bestial Ferocity uses charisma whereas every other ability is con based.

It is Charisma based, since I don't feel that Constitution is Intimidation stat, and I also didn't want them to always be able to get it - if they're not pumping CHA throughout their build, then this ability will fail more often than not, but when it doesn't fail it will be an amazing ability. And if you're pumping CHA instead of CON, then those other abilities won't be as useful to you. It was a design decision to curb the power of this subclass.


Tribal armour should have a fixed weight.

Okay, I will just make it 15 lb. then.

I will implement these changes and update the link.

Requiemforlust
2016-05-07, 08:39 AM
The 13th level abilities all seem very powerful

Honestly, though, I don't think that any of these abilities (or any combination of the possible abilities) quite stack up against Assassinate + Death Strike. And that's fine. Subclasses are supposed to give you choices, and they should all be equally viable.

Personally, I love the Totem Warrior because it's a customizable subclass, and now you've brought that to my favorite class, so thanks DracoKnight :smallbiggrin:

Final Hyena
2016-05-07, 09:03 AM
I should probably drop the Stealth advantage then. Just give it the illusion immunity, or maybe advantage on saving throws against immunity?
Illusion immunity isn't terrific (although DMs vary). The other thing is that the original thief ability matches the theme of chameleon perfectly. Maybe trying to mix the two, so that you have to move slower than thief, but get a boon against illusions?


The Snake ability is phrased is supposed to allow Rogues who use poisoned weapons to take advantage of this. And oops, it's supposed to be 1 minute.
I only checked basic poison, but even that needs a save in the first place. Not to mention that poison isn't the best supported part of the game.

Also I likely explained poorly in that mumble of sentences.

In addition the poisoned condition imposes disadvantage on such a creatures attack rolls as well as their ability checks.

Poisoned
A poisoned creature has disadvantage on attack rolls and ability checks.
The condition already does that.


It is Charisma based, since I don't feel that Constitution is Intimidation stat, and I also didn't want them to always be able to get it - if they're not pumping CHA throughout their build, then this ability will fail more often than not, but when it doesn't fail it will be an amazing ability. And if you're pumping CHA instead of CON, then those other abilities won't be as useful to you. It was a design decision to curb the power of this subclass.
The thing is you need to buff an attack stat, the other abilities demand a decent con stat and this ability requires another stat. It's rather intensive for an ability that I don't see as great.

For a rogue (especially at level 17) all you care about is getting one sneak attack a turn. Given that most of the totems are more melee focussed you can assume by level 17 your team is set up to have a sneak attack buddy. Even when you only have a 50% hit chance you're changing the chance of getting a sneak attack from 75% to 93.75 which is actually pretty reasonable, but then there is the aspect that it's only against one target a long rest and they get a save.

Taking away the save would make it pretty good though.

DracoKnight
2016-05-07, 09:12 AM
Illusion immunity isn't terrific (although DMs vary). The other thing is that the original thief ability matches the theme of chameleon perfectly. Maybe trying to mix the two, so that you have to move slower than thief, but get a boon against illusions?

So maybe a speed reduction (like -10) while you're stealthing?


I only checked basic poison, but even that needs a save in the first place. Not to mention that poison isn't the best supported part of the game.

Also I likely explained poorly in that mumble of sentences.


The condition already does that.

Oh....welp, I'm a dunce.


The thing is you need to buff an attack stat, the other abilities demand a decent con stat and this ability requires another stat. It's rather intensive for an ability that I don't see as great.

For a rogue (especially at level 17) all you care about is getting one sneak attack a turn. Given that most of the totems are more melee focussed you can assume by level 17 your team is set up to have a sneak attack buddy. Even when you only have a 50% hit chance you're changing the chance of getting a sneak attack from 75% to 93.75 which is actually pretty reasonable, but then there is the aspect that it's only against one target a long rest and they get a save.

Taking away the save would make it pretty good though.

Okay. I will take away the save then.

Final Hyena
2016-05-07, 09:13 AM
Honestly, though, I don't think that any of these abilities (or any combination of the possible abilities) quite stack up against Assassinate + Death Strike. And that's fine. Subclasses are supposed to give you choices, and they should all be equally viable.

I never said anything to the contrary, I do think that the 13th level abilities are stronger than their counterparts, but the 17th level is weaker.

DracoKnight
2016-05-07, 09:18 AM
Updated the link in the OP.

Final Hyena
2016-05-07, 09:19 AM
So maybe a speed reduction (like -10) while you're stealthing?
Well the thief gives you a -15 minimum. You could simply say that it applies but each move/dash is reduced to 10 feet.


Oh....welp, I'm a dunce.
It's a 300 page rule book, we all miss things.

Requiemforlust
2016-05-07, 09:20 AM
I never said anything to the contrary, I do think that the 13th level abilities are stronger than their counterparts, but the 17th level is weaker.

Fair. Sorry if I seemed hostile.

DracoKnight
2016-05-07, 09:21 AM
Well the thief gives you a -15 minimum. You could simply say that it applies but each move/dash is reduced to 10 feet.

The new wording is effectively this.


It's a 300 page rule book, we all miss things.

Truth.

Final Hyena
2016-05-07, 09:24 AM
Fair. Sorry if I seemed hostile.
I didn't feel hostility. It was a fair point, if you were to lower the 13th level abilities without buffing the late game it would have been an issue.

Also I never got round to saying that I love the theme. I hope Draco makes more tribal paths for everybody!

DracoKnight
2016-05-07, 09:30 AM
Also I never got round to saying that I love the theme. I hope Draco makes more tribal paths for everybody!

I'm actually thinking about making a tribal option for every class! :smallbiggrin: I'm having a huge amount of fun with the customization possible through making the Totems :smallsmile:

I think that the next class I'll make a Totem Path for is the Druid - Totemic Shaman :smallbiggrin:

Requiemforlust
2016-05-07, 09:41 AM
I didn't feel hostility. It was a fair point, if you were to lower the 13th level abilities without buffing the late game it would have been an issue.

Also I never got round to saying that I love the theme. I hope Draco makes more tribal paths for everybody!

I'm loving it too! I'm also really impressed with the amount of thought that DracoKnight put into the theme of this subclass. Normally Draco (no offense, Draco) just gives subclasses ways to stack on MOAR DAMAGE!!! But with this subclass, Draco's put a lot of care into crafting interesting abilities. Hell, only two of the abilities directly deal damage. Panther does 1d6, and Snake does 1d4+1d6. Everything else is flavor, survivability, and utility - things that a tribal rogue would have. And this also fits an excellent niche. If I'm playing an outlander, none of the Rogue archetypes really fit - Thief...maybe. But when have I been learning Wizard Spells? Assassin could be argued to be refluffed into a hunter, but then HOW are you so good at infiltrating places? This gives an excellent wildling rogue :smallbiggrin:

GandalfTheWhite
2016-05-07, 09:46 AM
Updated the link in the OP.

It's all looking balanced to me :smallsmile:


I think that the next class I'll make a Totem Path for is the Druid - Totemic Shaman :smallbiggrin:

*heavy breathing*

DracoKnight
2016-05-07, 10:02 AM
It's all looking balanced to me :smallsmile:

Excellent :smallbiggrin:

Requiemforlust
2016-05-07, 02:33 PM
I think that the next class I'll make a Totem Path for is the Druid - Totemic Shaman :smallbiggrin:

*squeals* That would be so cool!!

DracoKnight
2016-05-07, 03:47 PM
Quick poll: is the Tribal Armor's 13 + DEX broken in light of everything else they get?

Requiemforlust
2016-05-07, 05:57 PM
Quick poll: is the Tribal Armor's 13 + DEX broken in light of everything else they get?

Actually...It's not broken but it is REALLY good...maybe drop it to 12, and make a "Light Armor Master" feat that gives +1 AC and the only prereq is Light Armor proficiency, so almost everyone could get it.

DracoKnight
2016-05-07, 05:59 PM
Actually...It's not broken but it is REALLY good...maybe drop it to 12, and make a "Light Armor Master" feat that gives +1 AC and the only prereq is Light Armor proficiency, so almost everyone could get it.

Okay. Thanks for clarifying. A DM and I were having a debate about it, and this is actually pretty much exactly what he recommended, so I will concede.

JNAProductions
2016-05-07, 07:52 PM
Tribal Armor is just Studded Leather. It's not bad, just pointless.

Eyes of the Night is a nice perk for Humans and Dragonborn, but will usually also be useless.

Chameleon 3 is worth a feat and more. Little much.

Panther is fine... Kinda? I'd make it 1d4, just so at level 3 you aren't out-Monking the Monk. Besides, most damage is sneak attack anyway. VASYLY subpar compared to Chameleon.

Snake HAS to allow a saving throw each round. Overall, though, seems fine to me.

Chameleon 9 is the Thief feature... but better. That's already a powerful feature, and you made this unarguably better. Nerf it. Hard.

Panther is pretty good. Not too terribly useful unless you experience a lot of magical darkness, but great for observing without light. Not bad.

Snake is also not bad.

Chameleon 13 seems fine, EXCEPT it should require Concentration.

Panther is, for once, the seemingly OP one. It gives you easily 3 rages per day, which I guess is less than a barbarian? But still...

Snake is too much as well. Short of immunity to poison (which is admittedly common), you get to say "Nope, you now suck for the rest of this battle." Two changes-make it disadvantage, not an autofail, and allow a save every round.

Bestial Ferocity is really good, but it's also a level 17 feature. Seems cool to me.

DracoKnight
2016-05-07, 08:38 PM
-snip-

I addressed your issues, and implemented most of your changes :smallbiggrin:

JNAProductions
2016-05-07, 08:40 PM
Level 9 Chameleon now stinks, because it imposes a penalty. Just make it relate to illusions.

In addition, the level 3 Chameleon is still too powerful. It's equivalent to the Skulker feat plus a climb speed.

DracoKnight
2016-05-07, 08:45 PM
Level 9 Chameleon now stinks, because it imposes a penalty. Just make it relate to illusions.

It always had the penalty. :smallsmile:


In addition, the level 3 Chameleon is still too powerful. It's equivalent to the Skulker feat plus a climb speed.

It's not the full skulker benefits, but how would you fix this so that it's more balanced?

JNAProductions
2016-05-07, 08:47 PM
Moving Stealthily does not normally impose a penalty to speed. Only the Thief special feature does.

As for level 3 Chameleon... Hrm...

Honestly, maybe just the climb speed and the ability so Spider Climb for small periods of time?

DracoKnight
2016-05-07, 08:49 PM
Honestly, maybe just the climb speed and the ability so Spider Climb for small periods of time?

Hmmmmm... maybe...

DracoKnight
2016-05-08, 01:20 PM
Any more thoughts?

Requiemforlust
2016-05-08, 01:42 PM
Any more thoughts?

Nope. You should be fine. I actually disagree with JNA about you needing to nerf the Chameleon's 3rd level ability. It's good but a) it's a climb speed (mariner fighting style gives you that + extra goodies) b) it's not the entire skulker feat, just the part about when you miss. They're both highly thematic for the chameleon, so I would leave them.

Final Hyena
2016-05-08, 01:47 PM
Given the nerf to tribal armour perhaps make it 10lb? I know it's a very minor thing, but right now it's just studded leather, but more expensive and heavier.

DracoKnight
2016-05-08, 01:48 PM
Given the nerf to tribal armour perhaps make it 10lb? I know it's a very minor thing, but right now it's just studded leather, but more expensive and heavier.

Ah, yes. Probably a good idea.

DracoKnight
2016-05-09, 09:12 PM
Does anyone have a better name for this subclass than Totem Elite? It was more of a placeholder name, and I don't like it very much :smalltongue:

Professor Gnoll
2016-05-10, 02:45 AM
Does anyone have a better name for this subclass than Totem Elite? It was more of a placeholder name, and I don't like it very much :smalltongue:
Totem Stalker? Totem Whisperer? Wildland Prowler? Ambush Hunter? Spirit Stalker?
Fursuit Assassin?

DracoKnight
2016-05-10, 03:51 AM
Spirit Stalker?

Ooooooooo! THIS! Thank you! :smallbiggrin:


Fursuit Assassin?

Lol