View Full Version : D&D 5e/Next Paladin Sacred Oath: Oath of Balance[Conversion, PEACH]

2017-11-22, 12:33 PM
Disclaimer: This is a conversion of Dragon 310 Incarnate variant of paladin

The Oath of Balance is unique enough in that you focus your faith and belief in the philosophy of Balance, that the best of all possible words is both good and evil, both lawful and chaotic, all in equal balance.

Tenets of Balance

Fight the Strongest. When one force becomes too powerful in the region, fight to restore the balance, either by allying with the opposing force or fighting on your own.
Independence. Never make decisions based on other opinions, and always act independently of moral or ethics.
No Attractions. Do not get attracted to anyone or anything, for that disturbs your inner balance.

Oath Spells
You gain oath spells at the paladin levels listed:

Paladin Level

entangle, longstrider

pass without trace, spike growth

plant growth, speak with plants

banishment, freedom of movement

banishing smite, dispel evil and good

Elemental Affinity. When you take this oath at 3rd level, the elemental planes become closer to your mind than the outer ones. As a result, you have a particular affinity to two elements: either air and earth, or fire and water. Each element is associated with a form of energy: air - lightning, earth - acid, fire - fire, water - cold.

Channel Divinity. Also, when you take this oath at 3rd level, you gain the following two Channel Divinity options.

Elemental Burst. As an action, you can create a burst of energy appropriate to your elemental affinity. Make a ranged spell attack against a creature within 60 feet of you. On a hit, you deal 3d8 + your Charisma modifier damage of both your energy associated energy types.
The damage dice increases to 4d8 when you gain 5th level, to 5d8 when you gain 9th level, to 6d8 when you gain 13th level and to 7d8 when you gain 17th level.
For example, if you are a 3rd-level paladin and have Charisma of 16 and associated with fire and water, your elemental burst deals 3d8+3 fire and cold damage.
For the purpose of resistances and immunities, the creature must have resistance to both fire and cold to halve the damage, and it must be immune to both fire and cold damage to take no damage at all.
For the purpose of vulnerabilities, it is enough for the creature to have vulnerability to at least one of the elements (fire or cold) to take double damage.
Rebuke Moral. As an action, you can present a holy symbol and speak a single word. Each celestial or fiend within 60 feet of you must make a Wisdom saving throw. Attack rolls against anyone that failed their saving throws have advantage provided the attacker can see them and such targets cannot benefit from being invisible for up to 1 minute as long as you concentrate (as if on a spell).

Aura of Elemental Resistance. Starting at 7th level, you and all friendly creatures within 10 feet of you have resistance to the types of damage associated with your elemental affinity.
At 18th level, the range of this aura increases to 30 feet.

Natural Balance. Beginning at 15th level, you can cast commune with nature spell once. You must finish a short or a long rest to cast this spell again.

Smite Imbalance. Beginning at 20th level, as an action, you can emanate a 30-foot radius aura of green light. For 1 minute whenever an enemy creature starts its turn in the light, it takes 10 poison damage or twice as much damage if it is lawful good, chaotic good, lawful evil or chaotic evil.
In addition, for 1 minute whenever you use your Divine Smite on a creature that stands in the light, it counts as a fiend for your Divine Smite feature.

2017-11-23, 09:28 AM
The main theme of the oath, so it seems to me, is the balance between lawful-chaotic/good-evil, with two related subtheme of balance between opposed elemental forces and the balance of nature. Is that right?

I strikes me that trying to fit all that thematic material into a subclass makes it seem like it's trying to do too much, especially since paladin already has a nature-related oath in the PHB.

Given that, I'd suggest paring the oath down to the principal theme (balance between cosmic 'alignment' forces) and the elemental balance subtheme.

In that vein, maybe replace the nature-themed Oath Spells with more elemental-type spells, spells such as protection from evil and good, and the like?

As for Natural Balance, you've a couple of options for replacing it with other 5th-level spells, such as contact other plane, conjure elemental, or even commune.

Smite Imbalance: It's a bit unusual seeing a feature that explicitly keys off of alignment, since 5e has mostly tried to remove it from class features and spells. I'm also not convinced poison damage is the way to go (I'm guessing it's another nod to the nature subtheme?).

For the alignment component, given the principal theme of the oath, you could leave it as is. Alternately, you could have the feature affect celestials, fiends, giants, and humanoids, and give them a saving throw option for half damage. That should keep the feature balanced now that it is much more generalised.

For the damage component, I suppose there are two ways you could go about altering it: make the damage a single type (maybe your choice of force, necrotic, or radiant when you activate the feature), or make the damage type match your elemental affinities, with the same logic as elemental burst for adjudicating how much damage a creature takes.

Finally, as a language nitpick, you don't need to specify that your Divine Smites are modified for 1 minute if you mean for them to be modified by the aura, since that's the aura's duration. Instead, all you need to do is start that sentence with something such as 'For the [aura's] duration', or 'During this time', thus linking the modified smite component to the rest of the feature.

Miscellaneous Nitpick: the name of the Elemental Affinity feature is fine, but since you get affinity with two elements, anytime you refer to elemental affinity in other features, I'd suggest either referring to them in plural, as elemental affinities, or refer back to the Elemental Affinity feature.

PS: If you want to retain the 'balance of nature' theme of the Oath, then you can ignore most of my remarks; the only ones to still consider are the ones pertaining to Smite Imbalance (except you can either stick with poison damage, or make it an option when activating the feature).