View Full Version : D&D 3.x Class 3.5e War Chef Class Homebrew - Thoughts Appreciated

2017-05-24, 11:53 PM
Hello! Longtime visitor, but I decided to finally make an account to share a homebrew class that I've been working on. It's called the War Chef, and is designed to be a funky caster / warrior mix. Please let me know your thoughts on balancing, because I would love to run this in some upcoming groups!

D&D 3.5
War Chef

War Chef
There is one weakness that all adventurers share; they all need to eat. The War Chef, master of all culinary arts as well as battle, is able to easily fulfill this need, while bestowing their allies with magical reinforcement through their arcane cuisine. Hardy, strong-willed, and deliberate, the War Chef travels the land, constantly looking for new ways to improve their craft.
War Chefs depend heavily on their cooking, but can also hold their own in a fight. Through a unique fighting style that combines sharp kitchen implements with food-based attacks, the War Chef is able to take down even the most tasteless of foes – that is, if they aren't too busy eating to fight.

Adventures: War Chefs are constantly on adventures, always searching for new and interesting ways to prepare food. By expanding their repertoire, the War Chef is able to surpass their peers on the road to becoming a master. Often traveling in groups, or in a band of adventurers, the War Chef enjoys company. This means that the War Chef makes fast friends with all types of adventurers. Their free-spirited and cheerful nature makes them quite personable, and for that reason War Chefs make good leaders in groups.
Good War Chefs might be found traveling with a party of weathered adventurers, supporting them in their long and arduous quests for good. Evil War Chefs might be found traveling with dark cults, luring away victims with the smell of their irresistible craft.

Characteristics: War Chefs cook through either an innate relationship with food or through careful study. These two types of War Chefs, while equally common, tend to dislike one another. Either way, the magic in their cooking is directed towards effects that assist allies, rather than harm enemies. Through the use of special oils and other cooking ingredients, high level War Chefs can harness several forms of fire and acid based magic, but that is, for the most part, the extent of their offensive magical capabilities. To counterbalance this, the War Chef constantly trains with their cooking implements, and keeps them honed to a razor's edge. This unique fighting style, different for each War Chef, forms the center of their offensive capabilities. While the Chefs do develop some abilities in this regard, theirs are not as advanced as those of classes fully devoted to the fighting arts.

Alignment: The War Chef can be any alignment, but tends slightly towards chaotic over lawful. Most lawful War Chefs use careful study to prepare and create their cooking. Chaotic War Chefs, by comparison, are much more likely to “wing it” while cooking, and tend to look down on those who use recipe books.

Religion: War Chefs can worship any number of deities, but many tend towards Fharlanghn, the God of Roads, to protect them on their frequent and dangerous journeys for new methods of cooking. Some War Chefs also pay tribute to Obad-Hai, God of Nature, for providing ingredients for them to cook with. However, most War Chefs are too devoted to their work to spend any large amount of time in the service of a deity.

Background: War Chefs usually become enchanted with cooking early in childhood, whether due to the influence of another War Chef or some other particularly great chef in their lives. Inspired to learn the culinary arts, the War Chef finds over time that their craft is not as good as they desire. It is this drive, this wish to improve, that begins the War Chef on their journey of discovery. Once a hopeful encounters a War Chef, and learns the rudimentary arts of combining the arcane and culinary, they too can become a War Chef.
War Chefs have strong bonds with one another, especially if they have a history together. Equally likely to travel alone as in groups, War Chefs are divided by only one thing; their style of cooking. Those who are spontaneous cooks rarely interact with those who study and prepare, and the opposite is true. They often form large coalitions within their styles of cooking, in order to share gained knowledge and affect what goes on in the world around them, if they so desire.

Races: Any race can be a War Chef, though Half-Orcs and other less intelligent races are less likely to appreciate the culinary arts.

Other Classes: War Chefs find plenty in common with other adventurers, and have been known to delve into other disciplines at times. However, War Chefs driven by improvisation find it harder to get along with the more serious classes, as War Chefs who use meticulous cooking methods find it more difficult to relate to the more spontaneous classes.

Role: A War Chef often plays the role of support for a team of adventurers, preparing foodstuffs for them ahead of time, then assisting in combat later. In social settings, War Chefs make good, charismatic leaders, as long as the people they are interacting with don't have anything against their profession. Good at negotiations and diplomacy, a War Chef is handy to have whether surrounded by allies or enemies.

Game Rule Information

Abilities: The most important ability for the War Chef is either Intelligence or Wisdom, based on their cooking style. After that, dexterity is important for their unique fighting style. Charisma is important to several of the War Chefs key spell foods, making it just as important as Dexterity for the successful War Chef.

Alignment: Any

Hit Die: d6

Class Skills
The War Chef's class skills (and the key ability for each skill) are Concentration (Con), Craft (Food) (Int), Decipher Script (Int), Gather Information (Cha), Knowledge (Cooking) (Int), Perform (Cooking) (Cha), Profession (Chef) (Wis), Search (Int), Sense Motive (Wis), and Tumble (Dex). See Chapter 4: Skills for skill descriptions.

Skill Points at 1st Level: (3 + Int Modifier) x 4

Skill Points at Each Additional Level: 3 + Int Modifier

Class Features

All of the following are class features of the War Chef.

Base Attack Bonus: A War Chef’s Base Attack Bonus is equal to that of a Bard at equal level.

Saves: A War Chef’s saves are equal to that of a Bard of equal level.

Spells Per Day: A War Chef’s spells per day are equal to a Wizard of equal level.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency: War Chefs are proficient with weapons similar to those they use in cooking. These include the dagger, quarterstaff, sap, short sword, handaxe, and light mace. In addition, War Chefs are Proficient with any kitchen implement suitable for use as a weapon. War Chefs are not proficient with any armor or shields; in the kitchen and on the battlefield, they require completely unrestricted movement in order to properly perform their craft.

Cooking Style: At 1st level, a War Chef must declare their cooking style as either Spontaneous or Planned. A Spontaneous chef uses Wisdom in any rolls involving their cooking abilities. A Planned chef uses Intelligence in any rolls involving their cooking abilities. Once determined, a War Chef's cooking style may not change.

Kiln Mastery (Ex): A War Chef becomes highly resistant to physical blows due to constant injuries in the kitchen, and they have a sixth sense for avoiding additional harm. When unarmored or unencumbered, the War Chef adds their Cooking style Ability Modifier (either Wisdom or Intelligence) to their AC. In addition, The presence of their Arcane Kiln gives a War Chef gains a +1 bonus to AC. at 10th level, this bonus is increased to +2, and increases to +3 at 20th level. These AC bonuses apply even against touch attacks or when the War Chef is flat-footed. They lose these bonuses when they are immobilized or helpless, when they wear any armor, when they carry a shield, or when they carry a heavy load.

Culinary Kung-Fu: A War Chef is proficient with all kitchen implements as weapons. They are treated as improvised weapons, however the War Chef suffers no -4 penalty when wielding them. A War Chef may dual-wield kitchen implements as though they had the Dual-Wielding feat. Additionally, when dual-wielding kitchen implements, the War Chef may perform a Flurry of Blows as a Monk half their level, rounded up. As they gain levels, the War Chef's skill with kitchenware grows beyond any normal capacity. At 4th level, and every 4 levels thereafter, they may treat an improvised kitchen implement as a weapon of one size greater than it is for purposes of damage. (For Example, a frying pan deals 1d3 damage at 1st level, 1d4 damage at 4th level, 1d6 damage at 8th level, and so on.)

Arcane Foodstuffs: A War Chef may infuse the food they cook each day with spells. In order to do this, they need an Arcane Kiln and proper cooking ingredients. They may use any number of spell slots at the beginning of each day as they prepare food, infusing the chosen spell of their choice into whatever they make. At the beginning of each day, the War Chef may take time to cook any number of Arcane Foodstuffs, as long as they are able to commit the required amount of spell-slots for the day. The War Chef uses the Wizard's spell list, but may only use non-damaging spells from it in their cooking. Any remaining slots may be used to prepare Arcane Flame spells.

Revitalizing Snack: A War Chef keeps a certain number of healthy ingredients on hand at all times – enough to whip together a dish known as a Revitalizing Snack at a moment's notice. They may craft a number of these equal to one half their level (rounded up) per day, and may, as long as they are within range, toss them to their allies without rolling. Consuming a snack is a standard action, and heals 1d6 hit points. At 6th level, this increases to 1d8 hit points. At 11th level, this increases to 1d10, and at 16th level, this increases to 1d12. A Revitalizing snack must be consumed fresh to receive any benefit; it loses it's potency one minute after creation.

Arcane Flame: As a War Chef gains experience, they learn over time to use their arcane kilns for more than just cooking. War Chefs gain access to one fire based spell of each level as they advance, and may prepare daily spell slots with these attacks instead of Arcane Foodstuffs. A War Chef may prepare an Arcane Flame spell only as long as they have access to spells of that level. A War Chef may only cast these spells if they have access to their Arcane Kiln.

Arcane Flame Spell List

Lv. 0 - Light
Lv. 1 - Orb of Fire, Lesser
Lv. 2 - Fireburst
Lv. 3 - Fireball
Lv. 4 - Blast of Flame
Lv. 5 - Fireburst, Greater
Lv. 6 - Fire Seeds
Lv. 7 - Fire Storm
Lv. 8 - Incendiary Cloud
Lv. 9 - Meteor Swarm

2017-05-25, 02:33 PM
First, I don't claim to be an expert critic. I don't have as much experience with actual gameplay as other might.

It does seem to be underpowered in combat, unarmored, with a d6 hit die, 3/4 BAB, and a less-than-stellar weapons list (especially at lower levels). I think a ranged option would help (either a weapon added to their list or a cooking implement that explicitly works as a ammo-like thrown weapon or something).

Can you be a bit more specific about how the Arcane Foodstuffs work? I assume they grant the spell's effect to the consumer, but that doesn't really make sense with multi-target or area spells. What if the spell doesn't act on creatures? (eg. mud to rock is "non-damaging," but can only be cast on mud.)
Spellcasting based on the Artificer's infusions might work better.

Finally, the Craft mechanics don't work very well with food, so Profession (Chef) is usually used. Maybe you could offer both, because one is keyed off of Wisdom and the other Intelligence.

Again, not an expert, could be totally wrong about the balance.

I like idea, and it seems well developed. The biggest thing is fleshing out the casting system.