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View Full Version : D&D 5e/Next Invocations for cantrips besides Eldritch Blast + some other homebrew feats



Greywander
2018-02-20, 08:14 PM
So I have a rather short list of feats I've put together. Most of them are pretty bland, but one in particular I'd like to get some feedback on is a feat that lets you pick up warlock invocations, and offers a number of alternative invocations to boost cantrips aside from Eldritch Blast. Eldritch Blast + Agonizing Blast just feels too cookie cutter to me, so I'd like to offer some alternatives, particularly for classes besides warlocks. Here's what I have so far:

Dark Contract
You gain two eldritch invocations from the warlock class that you qualify for, or from the list below. You can take this feat more than once, but only gain one additional invocation for each additional time you take this feat.
Command the Dying. When you stabilize a creature by casting spare the dying, you may use your bonus action to animate that creature, causing it to immediately stand up if prone and either make one weapon attack or disengage, and may move the creature up to half its movement speed. If you maintain concentration on this spell, then until the creature either regains consciousness or takes damage, you may continue to use your bonus action move the creature up to half its movement speed and either make one weapon attack or disengage.
Cunning Trickery. When you cast druidcraft, prestidigitation, or thaumaturgy, you can create two effects with one casting of the spell.
Dancing Shadows. When you cast dancing lights, you may instead produce orbs of shadow that turn bright light to dim light and dim light to darkness in a 10 foot radius.
Dead of Winter. Whenever you cast ray of frost, you may add your Intelligence or Charisma modifier to the damage dealt, and an area with a 5 foot radius around your target is chilled with frost, becoming difficult terrain until the start of your next turn. If you target a flying creature with ray of frost, you instead sap the thermals keeping them aloft, causing them to instantly drop 10 feet.
Elemental Sculptor. You learn one cantrip of your choice from control flames, gust, mold earth, or shape water, if you didnít already know them. When you cast any of these spells, you can create two effects with one casting of the spell, or you can create a single effect in a 10 foot cube rather than a 5 foot cube (for gust this allows you to push a Large creature).
Eye of the Storm. When you cast shocking grasp, you add your Intelligence or Charisma modifier to the damage dealt. additionally, after you cast shocking grasp, you may immediately fly up to 10 feet. This movement doesnít provoke opportunity attacks.
Maddening Words. When you cast vicious mockery, you add your Charisma modifier to the damage dealt. Additionally, when you use vicious mockery to give a creature disadvantage on an attack, and that creature misses with that attack, you may use your reaction to make that attack strike another creature of your choice within range.
Otherworldly Caress. Creatures affected by your chill touch cantrip must also succeed on a Wisdom saving throw or be frightened of you until the start of your next turn.
Rite of Kindling. The create bonfire spell no longer requires concentration, and friendly creatures that regain hit points while within 10 feet of the bonfire gain an additional number of hit points equal to their Constitution modifier (minimum 1). Friendly creatures that make a saving throw while within 10 feet of the bonfire also gain a +1 bonus to that saving throw.
Tormenting Flames. Whenever you cast fire bolt, add your Intelligence or Charisma modifier to the damage dealt. In addition, a 5 foot square centered on your target becomes wreathed in hellish flames. Until the start of your next turn, any creature that enters that space or ends their turn on that space takes 1d4 fire damage. This damage increases by 1d4 when you reach 5th level (2d4), 11th level (3d4), and 17th level (4d4).

Command the Dying. When you stabilize a creature by casting spare the dying, you may use your bonus action to animate that creature and move them up to half their movement speed or make one weapon attack.
Dead of Winter. Whenever you cast ray of frost, an area with a 5 foot radius around your target is chilled with frost, becoming difficult terrain until the start of your next turn. If you target a flying creature with ray of frost, you instead sap the thermals keeping them aloft, causing them to instantly drop 10 feet.
Eye of the Storm. After you cast shocking grasp, you may immediately fly up to 10 feet. This movement doesnít provoke opportunity attacks.
Maddening Words. When you use vicious mockery to give a creature disadvantage on an attack, and that creature misses with that attack, you may use your reaction to make that attack strike another creature of your choice within range.
Rite of Kindling. The create bonfire spell no longer requires concentration, and friendly creatures gain a number of temporary hit points equal to your spellcasting ability score modifier (minimum 1) when they start their turn within 10 feet of the bonfire.
Tormenting Flames. Whenever you cast fire bolt, a 5 foot square centered on your target becomes wreathed in hellish flames. Until the start of your next turn, any creature that enters that space or ends their turn on that space takes 1d4 fire damage. This damage increases by 1d4 when you reach 5th level (2d4), 11th level (3d4), and 17th level (4d4).(I'm open to ideas for more cantrip enhancements.)

Fighting Style
Your Strength or Dexterity increases by 1.
You learn one fighting style of your choice.
If you chose the Protection fighting style, you also gain proficiency with shields.
If you chose the Defense fighting style, you also gain proficiency in light and medium armor.
If you chose any other fighting style, you gain proficiency in any two weapons of your choice.
You may take this feat more than once.
Your Strength or Dexterity increases by 1.
You learn one fighting style of your choice.
(Maybe also grant additional weapon proficiencies?)
Metamagic
Choose two metamagic options from the sorcerer class. You may use that metamagic to enhance your spells. You have a number of sorcery points equal to one fourth your level, rounded up. You can take this feat more than once, but for each time after the first you must choose to gain either one additional metamagic option or 3 sorcery points.
Choose two metamagic options from the sorcerer class. You may use that metamagic to enhance your spells. You have a number of sorcery points equal to one fourth your level, rounded up.
(Thoughts on taking this more than once? Should it grant one additional metamagic option, or give you, say, 2 or 3 more sorcery points?)
Unarmored Defense
While you are wearing no armor and not wielding a shield, your AC is equals 11 + your Dexterity modifier + half your Proficiency bonus, rounded down.
(Thoughts on shield vs. no shield? Maybe allow a shield if you also have the Shield Master feat?)

Unified Theory
Your Intelligence increases by 1.
You may use Intelligence as your spellcasting ability score for all your spells.
In addition, during a long rest, you are able to prepare one additional spell from any spell list. The spell must be of a level you can cast, and equal to or lower than your Intelligence modifier (minimum of 1st level).
Your Intelligence increases by 1.
You may use Intelligence as your spellcasting ability score for all your spells.
Walking Museum
You may spend spend time focusing on a magic item, which attunes that item to you temporarily. The length of the temporary attunement depends on the length of time you spend focusing on that item.
If you focus for 1 minute, the temporary attunement lasts for 10 minutes.
If you focus for 10 minutes, the temporary attunement lasts for 1 hour.
If you focus for 1 hour, or as part of a short rest, the temporary attunement lasts for 8 hours.
If you focus for 8 hours, or as part of a long rest, the temporary attunement lasts for 24 hours.
If you attune yourself in this way to a cursed item, the attunement does not expire like it normally would. If you have less than three magic items attuned already, then that cursed item attunes normally taking up one of your attunement slots. If you already have three magic items attuned to you, then you may not form any more temporary attunements until you unattune one of your magic items (or remove the curse).
You have a number of attunement points equal to your level, and the cost to attune a magic item is dependent on its rarity.
Common magic items cost 2 attunement point.
Uncommon magic items cost 3 attunement points.
Rare magic items cost 5 attunement points.
Very rare magic items cost 6 attunement points.
Legendary magic items cost 7 attunement points.
You can always attune up to three magic items, regardless of the cost in attunement points.
You may attune up to three additional magic items.
(Too much? Maybe you could only have three attuned items active, but you could attune three "backup" items that can be switched out as an action. Other ideas that could expand this feat: at-will or once per day Identify and/or Detect Magic, bonus to Arcana and History checks to identify magic items or recall magic item lore, reduced weight of magic items.)

ShadowSandbag
2018-02-21, 11:01 PM
I'm not entirely sure how temporary HP works since it rarely comes up in my games, but theoretically could someone use the bonfire one to get an excess of HP between fights?

Greywander
2018-02-21, 11:50 PM
Temp HP doesn't stack. If you get temp HP from two sources, you pick one or the other (usually the one that gives you more). If you lose some of your temp HP, and you gain more temp HP, the new amount of temp HP replaces what you already had, assuming it was more than what you had. It doesn't add to it.

So it would let you enter battle with a few extra temp HP, but you could not in any way stack up an indefinite amount of temp HP. There are a few other abilities that allow you to gain temp HP between fights. The Fiendish Vigor invocation lets you cast False Life at 1st level at will, which gives you 1d4+4 temp HP (so just call it 8). The Inspiring Leader feat allows you to spend 10 minutes giving up to six people (including yourself) a pep talk that grants temp HP equal to your level + your CHA mod.

The Rite of Kindling invocation was inspired by Dark Souls, so I wanted to make it do something reminiscent of the bonfires in the game. Now that I think about it, this basically turns a cantrip into an AoE Heroism, minus the fear immunity, so maybe that is a little too good.

Crisis21
2018-02-22, 12:45 AM
Unified theory really doesn't make sense except for wizards who have cross-classed into another spellcasting class (or cross-classed to Wizard from the other class). It's basically a way to make up for having either Wisdom or Charisma as a dump stat while cross-classing into Cleric/Druid/Ranger/Bard/Paladin/Sorcerer/Warlock. And if you're cross-classing into one of those in the first place, you should have decent Wisdom/Charisma to begin with.

Basically, if you're spending a Feat on that, then it's time to reconsider your build.


If it was me, I'd scrap Unified Theory or build a Prestige Class around it.


Like, say, revive Mystic Theurge for 5e.

Requirements:
3 levels in Wizard.
3 levels in Cleric or Druid - or 6 levels in Ranger.
3 levels in Bard or Sorcerer - or 6 levels in Paladin.
Minimum character level 10.
Minimum Intelligence 17.
Submit a detailed magical research paper to a highly prestigious magical institution and have it accepted and published.

Class features:
Spellcasting - Treat each level in this class as a level in full caster for spellcasting progression.
Level 1 - Cross-Class Dabbling - Learn 3 cantrips from any spell list.
Level 2 - Increase your non-Wizard spells known by 2.
Level 3 - Unified Spell Theory - Intelligence is your spellcasting modifier for all of your spells.
Level 4 - Increase your non-Wizard spells known by 2.
Level 5 - Enlightenment - Increase your Intelligence by 4. Your maximum Intelligence also increases by 4.


Edit:

And yes, Walking Museum is hugely overpowered. Attuning to additional magic items is a big part of the Artificer class and they get +1 at 5th, 15th, and 20th level. So, yeah, getting +3 for just a Feat is ginormous.

I'd say cut it back to allowing attunement to ONE additional magic item and nothing else. No Ability score increase, nada.

ShadowSandbag
2018-02-22, 06:43 PM
Ah, alright. I think it might just be a better idea to make these their own thing where you take 3 of them instead of them being warlock invocations.

I think adding shield proficiency if you take the defence or protection styles would also be good.

Ventruenox
2018-02-23, 03:58 PM
I am not so sure how effective Command the Dying can be. Most of the time when Spare the Dying is cast, the target is already down. It would take half their movement speed just to stand them up. Even stable, they are still at 0 HP and likely to fall back down again. Unless they collapsed onto a table or somehow were upright, they wouldn't have the opportunity to make that one weapon attack without disadvantage. I can see how this invocation would appeal to Chumbawumba fans, however.

Greywander
2018-02-26, 11:34 PM
Okay, I've made some updates that should hopefully balance things a bit better.


It would take half their movement speed just to stand them up. Even stable, they are still at 0 HP and likely to fall back down again.
I've addressed this by allowing the fallen character to immediately stand up if prone. I've also extended it by allowing the caster to maintain concentration, so that they can use a bonus action to move the character or make them attack as long as they concentrate.


I think adding shield proficiency if you take the defence or protection styles would also be good.
The Protection fighting style now also grants shield proficiency (since that fighting style is effectively useless without a shield).
The Defense fighting style now also grants light and medium armor proficiency (since that fighting style is useless without armor). Most classes that don't have any armor proficiency usually have another way of boosting their AC, such as Mage Armor or Unarmored Defense. As such, simply granting them light armor proficiency would be essentially useless. Certain light armor only classes might have been able to benefit without medium armor, but those are mostly DEX focuses classes anyway, and will probably prefer to remain in light armor, or else forgo the extra AC from DEX.
All other fighting styles grant proficiency in two weapons of your choice.
As such, this feat essentially replaces the lackluster Lightly/Moderately Armored feats and the Weapon Master feat. That said, Moderately Armored does grant both medium armor and shield proficiency, and Weapon Master does grant four weapon proficiencies instead of two.

I also added an option for taking both Fighting Style and Metamagic more than once.


Unified theory really doesn't make sense except for wizards who have cross-classed into another spellcasting class (or cross-classed to Wizard from the other class). It's basically a way to make up for having either Wisdom or Charisma as a dump stat while cross-classing into Cleric/Druid/Ranger/Bard/Paladin/Sorcerer/Warlock. And if you're cross-classing into one of those in the first place, you should have decent Wisdom/Charisma to begin with.

Basically, if you're spending a Feat on that, then it's time to reconsider your build.
Ah, but I disagree that it would single out wizards. A wizard/cleric multiclass would see as much benefit from this as a bard/cleric, in that both classes each use a different spellcasting ability score and with this feat they don't. The real question of utility is if this affects only your spell attack bonus and spell save DC, or if it affects other class features as well. For example, would this feat allow a warlock with Agonizing Blast to add their INT mod to the damage of Eldritch Blast, or would they still need to use their CHA mod? Would a paladin with Aura of Protection be able to add their INT mod to saving throws instead of their CHA mod? As written, the feat only affects spell attack and spell save DC, and should probably remain that way, but with such a tweak it would become extremely useful.

That said, I've added an additional feature to that feat which should help make it appealing to even single classed characters.


And yes, Walking Museum is hugely overpowered. Attuning to additional magic items is a big part of the Artificer class and they get +1 at 5th, 15th, and 20th level. So, yeah, getting +3 for just a Feat is ginormous.

I'd say cut it back to allowing attunement to ONE additional magic item and nothing else. No Ability score increase, nada.
One additional magic item is probably the wisest choice, but I've also come up with an attunement point system that I'm curious to see some feedback on. It would allow you to attune a lot of Common and Uncommon magic items, but three Legendary magic items would eat up all your attunement points, not allowing you to attune any more. Thoughts?

Crisis21
2018-02-27, 12:33 AM
Ah, but I disagree that it would single out wizards. A wizard/cleric multiclass would see as much benefit from this as a bard/cleric, in that both classes each use a different spellcasting ability score and with this feat they don't. The real question of utility is if this affects only your spell attack bonus and spell save DC, or if it affects other class features as well. For example, would this feat allow a warlock with Agonizing Blast to add their INT mod to the damage of Eldritch Blast, or would they still need to use their CHA mod? Would a paladin with Aura of Protection be able to add their INT mod to saving throws instead of their CHA mod? As written, the feat only affects spell attack and spell save DC, and should probably remain that way, but with such a tweak it would become extremely useful.

That said, I've added an additional feature to that feat which should help make it appealing to even single classed characters.


One additional magic item is probably the wisest choice, but I've also come up with an attunement point system that I'm curious to see some feedback on. It would allow you to attune a lot of Common and Uncommon magic items, but three Legendary magic items would eat up all your attunement points, not allowing you to attune any more. Thoughts?

The one extra spell prepared could come in useful, yes. Just keep in mind that the only spellcasting classes (outside archetypes) that must prepare spells are Wizard, Cleric, Druid, and Paladin. Bard, Sorcerer, Ranger, and Warlock all have 'spells known' instead. The first type (with the wonky exception of Wizard who have to research/find their spells and record them in a book) have access to their entire spell list at the cost of only being able to prepare a few each day while the second group only know part of their spell list with the trade-off that they can always cast any spell they know.

I honestly feel Unified Spell Theory would be better as part of a prestige class that requires multiclassing in different spellcasting classes, as it sounds like something that takes a great deal of time and research to pull off.


As for the attunement point system... I'd have to take a look at it to judge. Would it be something that scales with level, where adventurers just starting out might be able to attune to three common magic items and progressing to legendary adventurers who can attune to three legendary class items? How would Artificers progress in this system given that currently they get +1 attunement slot at 5th, 15th, and 20th level (with the last also giving them +1 to saving throws for each magic item they are attuned to)? Would they just get double the attunement points to begin with and keep it that way, or would there be a curve to their gain where they start with the same number as everyone else and end up with twice as many?

Greywander
2018-02-27, 05:18 AM
Eh, I rethought the attunement system I'd laid out for Walking Museum and decided to scrap it. It was something that would have been easy to abuse if you had access to a lot of unusually powerful Common and Uncommon magic items, but even at 20th level you would still only be able to use three Legendary magic items.

I replaced it with a temporary item attunement system. There's technically no limit to the number of items you can attune now, but the length of time required to form a temporary attunement means that you can only have a few "extra" magic items attuned at a time, and the temporary attunement of those items will overlap less and less the more of them you attune to yourself. Thematically, it fits the flavor of the feat even better, as you now have a reason to carry a lot of magic items around. Mechanically, it still functionally allows you to have one extra magic item attuned by forming a temporary attunement during a short or long rest, while giving a bit more than just a bland "+1 magic item slot". It's useful without being completely broken.

Edit: I've also made a few other tweaks, notably to Dark Contract, as I still felt like many of the options presented there weren't strong enough to be considered a viable alternative to Eldritch Blast + Agonizing Blast. Most of the damaging cantrips now add your spellcasting modifier (depending on which spell list they came from) to the damage dealt, which is still weaker than EB+AB, since EB adds your CHA mod to each beam. The biggest change is to Rite of Kindling, which had the temp HP scrapped in favor of increased healing and a bonus to saving throws.

Edit edit: I also just realized that someone with Eye of the Storm basically has a flight cantrip, albeit one that only lets them fly in 10 foot bursts. Probably not to strong, since you can't chain it together to achieve actual flight, so it's really more like a 10 foot jump. However, if you pair it with Ascendant Step, you basically have at-will flight, albeit still concentration based for Levitate.