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ATiefling
2018-11-13, 11:22 AM
So, I've been building this on D&D Beyond and before I publish anything I would like to see multiple points of view for balancing and play-ability. This is the first subclass I've made, so I do want to apologize for anything that seems, well, noobish. And with that said.... here I go.

The Oath of the Stoneborn calls to those who are stout of heart. Pun intended. A Dwarven Oath at it's core, though many who have pledged themselves to gods of battle, invention, and the forge have taken up this calling. Sometimes called Rune Knights or Rune Priests, these paladins imbue their weapons and armor with the blessings of their patrons and inspire armies to greatness. They can be tacticians and generals, excellent commanders, hearty healers, and fierce combatants. The cool glow of their Oath Weapon or Armor brings enemies to their knees and hope to their allies.

Tenets of the Stoneborn

What Can Be Built...can also fall. Magic fizzles, stone crumbles, and civilizations fall. This does not mean there is no hope for what is to come, but that everything has a weakness. Do not despair in the strength of your enemy, for you can find their weakness and exploit it.

What Good is Power...without strength? And strength without intelligence? Intelligence without heart? Prove that you carry all three and you will be blessed. Your arm will protect your allies, your mind - lead them, and your heart will embolden them. Those who cannot wield power effectively are not worthy to use it, and if you let power wield you, you are not worthy to own it.

Do Not Rumble...unless you intend to act. The ground growls before it quakes, the skies roar before a storm - and so, too shall your words hold weight. Promises are not meant to be broken, threats are not meant to be empty. Your word is your strongest weapon - it will strengthen resolve and strike fear - but your word without action, is useless.

Channel Divinity

Service of the Stone. As n action, you can call two lesser earth elementals that remain under your control for hours equivalent to your CHA modifier. They will carry items, create a living barricade or be commanded to spy on your enemies or send messages to allies, provided they can meld into nearby stone to do so. These elementals will fight on your behalf, but upon being struck have a chance of running away to safety, sometimes retiring completely back to the elemental plane of Earth.

Stone's Embrace. As an action, you can call upon the ground to act as a tomb around your dying ally. The ground literally raises up and encompasses that ally giving them full cover and any hiding behind them partial cover. You may cast Spare the Dying.

Oath of the Stoneborn Spells

3rd Lvl, cure wounds, heroism

5th Lvl, augury, flame blade

9th Lvl, glyph of warding, meld into stone

13th Lvl, stoneskin, conjure minor elementals

17th Lvl, wall of stone, mass cure wounds

Runic Apprentice

When you take this Oath at level 3 your patron will help you imbue runes onto your armor and weapons that glow with their otherworldly power. These runes can be affixed to an armor or weapon piece and can be changed to new armor/weapons after a long rest. If you land a hit (Runic Weapon) or take a hit (Runic Armor) you gain power in your runes that you can use to empower attacks or abilities. You gain Runic Power at a 1/1 rate, unless where otherwise specified.

Runic Abilities

3 Lvl - Can add to weapon or armor increasing HIT or AC by the amount of runes on item (to max of 3 between the two).

5 Lvl - Can expend runes to add an extra ATK. This attack does not add to runic power gained and can be used as a reaction. 1/turn.

9 Lvl - Can expend runes to increase damage on ATK or Spell DMG. 1/1 for each rune to max of 3.

13 Lvl - Can expend all runes to shield all allies, granting +2 AC until the end of your next turn.

17 Lvl - Can expend runes to increase the amount of people an attack or spell affects. 1/1 for each rune to a max of 3.

20 Lvl - Can expend all runes to use ACTION based spells in the same round as an attack.

Aura of the Flaring Rune

Starting at 7th level, you and friendly creatures gain advantage on attacks and spells, and, in addition, your allys' hits build your runic power while you are conscious and they remain in your aura (15 ft).

At 18th level, the range of this aura increases to 30 feet.

Runic Master

Beginning at 15th level, upon activating all three runes in a round you gain the bless as an aura in addition to the chosen ability you activate. This spell will be shared with any ally adjacent to you. They can add an additional amount equal to your CHA modifier to their roll. This lasts until the beginning of your next turn.

Glyph of the Stone Guard
At 20th level, as an action, your very steps sanctify the ground in the name of your chosen patron. If you remain in an area of no more than 30ft for more than 8 hours the area becomes hallowed ground and gains the benefits as such until you leave the area.

You can emanate an aura of sunlight, as a bonus action. For 1 minute, bright light shines from you in a 15-foot radius, and dim light shines 15 feet beyond that.

Whenever an enemy creature starts its turn in the bright light, the creature must make a Constitution saving throw or will be blinded until it can remove itself from the bright radius around you.

In addition, for the duration, you have advantage on saving throws against spells cast by fiends or elementals.

Once you use this feature, you canít use it again until you finish a long rest.

jiriku
2018-11-15, 10:57 PM
This is very thematic, and offers a very distinctive playstyle. Kudos. There are a several players in my group who would immediately start salivating over this and would want to play it.

That said, a lot of the features are written in a shorthand or summary style that doesn't adequately explain what they do. After my first read, I'm left with more questions than answers and overall I cannot tell how this subclass works. Let me list out some questions; it might be helpful to address these as you work on a second draft.

Channel Divinity: Service of the Stone
What is a lesser earth elemental? Where can I find stats for this?
What's the range on this ability?
As written, a paladin with 20 Charisma and 4 hours to kill can summon two elementals, rest, summon, rest, summon, rest, summon, rest, summon, and then lead 10 lesser elementals into battle for an hour. Is this intended?

Channel Divinity: Stone's Embrace
What's the range on this ability?
How long does the tomb last?
What kind of roll is needed to break or destroy it?
Can the entombed ally freely leave?
The effect says you can cast spare the dying. Do you need to spend another action to do this?

Oath of the Stoneborn Spells
These are all good choices that strongly reinforce the class theme. Good job.

Runic Apprentice
Who is this patron you describe? Is this an NPC? A divine entity?
What's this business about gaining power at a 1/1 rate?

Runic Abilities
It is awkward to try to refer to these abilities since they don't have names. I recommend that you name them.
3rd level: How many runes are on your items? This idea hasn't been explained. Are you referring to points of runic power?
How long does the benefit last? What kind of action do you need to activate it?

5th level: How many runes do you spend?

9th level: This is cryptic. What does it mean?

13th level: What kind of action is do you need to activate this? What's the range at which allies can be protected?

17th level: Again, very cryptic. What actions is needed? What's the range? What limitations are there on who you can affect, where, and with what type of attack or spell?

20th level: I think you mean here that you gain an additional action and that you must use one action to perform the Attack action and the other action to perform the Cast A Spell action. Is this correct?

Aura of the Flaring Rune
"your allies' hits build your runic power" needs some more explanation.
Automatic advantage all the time for all allies in a large (eventually 30 ft) aura is excessive. You should scale this back, probably with limited duration and uses.

Runic Master
What's this "all three runes" business? That was never well-explained.
What does "gain the bless" mean? At first I thought you mean the bless spell, but then you describe something that doesn't work at all like bless, so I really don't know exactly what this ability does. If I'm correct... bless requires concentration. Are you forced to drop any spell you're concentrating on when this ability triggers?

Glyph of the Stone Guard
Is the sunlight supposed to be usable only within the hallow effect, or is this just a new at-will ability you acquire?
You get advantage on saves "for the duration." For the duration of what? Hallow is permanent.


Final Analysis
So overall, my feel is that you have a lot of work to do in answering the specifics about range, action types, durations, and exact mechanical effects of abilities. There's some sort of resource management mechance you've created with runes that needs to be fleshed out and explained more clearly. And conceptually the class starts out well but then gets unfocused as it continues: we begin tightly focused on earth and stone, then we add on a set of runic powers that mostly seem involved with success in combat, and finally we end up with protection from fiends. After the first half of the class that focus on earth and stone seems to be forgotten. You're in a good place for a first draft but I'd definitely suggest a second pass at it.

ATiefling
2018-11-16, 12:45 PM
Thank you so much, jiriku!

I'll start cleaning it up and work on explaining the jumbled mess in my head. I'm happy to have a place to start with to clarify stuff.

To clarify the all three runes business (which I'll clean up when I fix it all) - When you take this oath you're given 3 rune stones to affix to your armor or weapons. You can split them up as you see fit to mix and match to how you use your items. IE if you are sword and board you can pop 1 on your weapon and two on your shield or 1 weapon, 1 shield, 1 armor or 3 on your shield and none anywhere else. They only give you a plus to these items if you build up your runic power in them by landing attacks with spells, getting him by an enemy or casting a buff or heal on your allies. There are only 3 stones, so only 3 can be active at max. When you have gained levels needed to use your runic abilities and you expend an empowered stone that stone will no longer give the benefit to your armor, shield, or weapon that you affixed it to. I'm going to fix how they work, but I think Ill make it like rage, where they fizzle out after 1 minute of inactivity or if they are used to activate your other abilities. I'm trying to keep the resource management simple, but I don't want it to be OP. I want a nice little bump so that they don't fall behind comparable to other classes, but I don't want it to be like the legendary sword Defender, especially at lower levels. I think, maybe, having it so a person can't add more than +2 to any one piece of armor or weaponry might help balancing that out.

I've changed service of the stone to call up Galeb Duhr and added a percentage die roll to see if they stick around to fight or run off. Stone's embrace I made Spare the Dying as a bonus action, and gave the tomb an AC of 17 and half the HP of the paladin. That way it can grow as your paladin grows. I've also made both of my Channel Divinities once per long rest. I've named my runic abilities to make it all easier and I'm going to work on explaining them better and give ranges and the like.

I just changed up my Aura of the Flaring Rune to make it more balanced. What do you think of: Starting at 7th level, you and friendly creatures gain a bonus of half your CHA modifier to ranged attacks and spells, and, in addition, you can opt to take a hit meant for your ally (10 ft).

At 18th level, the range of this aura increases to 20 feet.

I've changed up Runic Master so it just gives the bless spell as an aura for you and adjacent allies and removed that it gave a bonus of your CHA modifier to the bless roll.

As far as my Glyph of the Stone Guard - there is a spell that I saw a druid cast that like makes land fertile and stuff like that if they pray for so many hours. I'm trying to do that, but make it divine and not as permanent as hallow, but that was the only word I could think of as the time. I didn't want it to be permanent, because that would be silly - every tavern they sleep at is now hallowed ground. I wanted something that could fade after they haven't been in the area, but the area they are in for a long time is noticeably affected for a bit. Everything else in Glyph is focused solely on the aura of sunlight you can emit. The ability cannot be used until you finish a long rest - regardless of the action or bonus action you take. I also took out fiend - as this is primarily strength against and with elemental ability.

I hope this helps in explaining where I'm at now with your helpful advice. Once again - thank you so much. I'll get to cleaning up everything. You're awesome.

ATiefling
2018-11-16, 03:34 PM
Updated Oath:

The Oath of the Stoneborn calls to those who are stout of heart. Pun intended. A Dwarven Oath at its core, though many who have pledged themselves to gods of battle, invention, and the forge have taken up this calling. Sometimes called Rune Knights or Rune Priests, these paladins imbue their weapons and armor with the blessings of their deities and inspire armies to greatness. They can be tacticians and generals, excellent commanders, hearty healers, and fierce combatants. The cool glow of their Oath Weapon or Armor brings enemies to their knees and hope to their allies.

Tenets of the Stoneborn
What Can Be Built...can also fall. Magic fizzles, stone crumbles, and civilizations fall. This does not mean there is no hope for what is to come, but that everything has a weakness. Do not despair in the strength of your enemy, for you can find their weakness and exploit it.
What Good is Power...without strength? And strength without intelligence? Intelligence without heart? Prove that you carry all three and you will be blessed. Your arm will protect your allies, your mind - lead them, and your heart will embolden them. Those who cannot wield power effectively are not worthy to use it, and if you let power wield you, you are not worthy to own it.
Do Not Rumble...unless you intend to act. The ground growls before it quakes, the skies roar before a storm - and so, too shall your words hold weight. Promises are not meant to be broken, threats are not meant to be empty. Your word is your strongest weapon - it will strengthen resolve and strike fear - but your word without action, is useless.

Channel Divinity

Stone's Embrace. (Touch) As an action, you can call upon the ground to act as a tomb around your dying ally. The ground literally raises up and encompasses that ally giving them full cover and any hiding behind them partial cover. While entombed, your ally is stabilized and does not need to make death saving throws. The tomb effect can be dismissed as a bonus action or when it drops to 0 HP. The stone that encompasses your ally has an AC of 17 and half your HP. This cannot be used again until after a long rest.

Turn the Prime. As an action, you present your holy Symbol and speak a prayer censuring Elementals, using your Channel Divinity. Each elemetnal that can see or hear you within 30 feet of you must make a Wisdom saving throw. If the creature fails its saving throw, it is turned for 1 minute or until it takes damage.
A turned creature must spend its turns trying to move as far away from you as it can, and it canít willingly move to a space within 30 feet of you. It also canít take reactions. For its action, it can use only the Dash action or try to escape from an effect that prevents it from moving. If thereís nowhere to move, the creature can use the Dodge action.

Oath of the Stoneborn Spells

3 cure wounds, heroism
5 augury, flame blade
9 glyph of warding, meld into stone
13 stoneskin, conjure minor elementals
17 wall of stone, mass cure wounds

Runic Apprentice

When you take this Oath at level 3 your chosen deity will help you imbue runes onto your armor and weapons that glow with their otherworldly power.

RUNE STONES
At level 3 you are granted Rune Stones by your deity. These stones are a conduit of power from your deity to you. When you heal, buff, land an attack, or take a hit it empowers your stones for use in the battle. As you grow in level your mastery over these Rune Stones grows and you can add their power to different actions you take in combat. These rune stones can be affixed to your weapon, armor, or shield (no more than 2 runes per piece) or held in a pouch at your side.

Rune Stones are not activated until you cast a spell, take a hit, or land a hit. Once you use a rune stone it does not add to your weapon or AC until you activate them again. If you crit succeed using an attack or spell you activate two rune stones, otherwise normal hits only activate one at a time. If you crit fail during an attack or saving throw your rune stones fizzle out and cannot be used until activated once more.

The placement of rune stones can be changed during a long rest.

RUNIC ABILITIES
Level Ability Description
3 Empowered Stones You gain 3 rune stones that can be added to your weapon or armor increasing ATK or AC by the number of stones on the item. They activate if you take a hit or land a hit and last for 1 minute once empowered, unless used to empower your abilities.
5 Avalanche Can use 1 rune stone to add an extra ATK. This attack does not add to runic power gained and can be used as a reaction. This can be used once per turn.
9 Pulverize Can use 2 rune stones to increase damage on Melee or Spell DMG. This uses your DMG die for the weapon or spell used. This can be used once round
13 Barricade 15 ft Radius - Self As a bonus action, you can use all rune stones to shield all allies you can see, granting +2 AC until the end of your next turn.
17 Pangea 15 ft Radius - As an action, you can use all 3 rune stones to increase the amount of people an attack or spell hits, provided you can see them, and they are within your determined radius. This lasts until the end of your next turn.
20 Catastrophe Can use all 3 rune stones to gain an additional action. You must use this to perform the Attack action and the other to perform the Cast a Spell action.

Aura of the Unbreakable Rune

Starting at 7th level, you and friendly creatures within 15 feet gain advantage on saving throws against Petrify.
At 18th level, the range of this aura increases to 30 feet.

Service of the Stone

At level 15, as an action, you can call two Galeb Duhr that remain under your control for hours equivalent to your CHA modifier. They will carry items, create a living barricade or be commanded to spy on your enemies or send messages to allies, provided they can meld into nearby stone to do so. These elementals will fight on your behalf if commanded to do so. This ability cannot be used again until after a long rest.

Glyph of the Stone Guard

At 20th level, you can assume the form of an unmoving defender of the earth, taking on a statuesque appearance with your three rune stones embedding into your chest.
Using your action, you undergo a transformation. For 1 minute, you gain the following benefits:
ē At the start combat your AC increases by 5.
ē The terrain around you in a 10-foot radius becomes rough terrain.
ē Enemy creatures within 10 feet of you have disadvantage on attacks against creatures other than you. Once you use this feature you canít use it again until you finish a long rest.

jiriku
2018-11-16, 04:10 PM
This is much clearer and easier to understand. Good work. Let me go down each feature one-by-one.

Tenets of the Stoneborn
With a touch range, this isn't going to be used very often -- you'd probably rather use Lay on Hands or cure wounds to get the ally back in the fight. I'd suggest a 30-ft range and that it heals the ally by your paladin level per round, up to half maximum hit points.

Runic Apprentice
Getting +3 worth of enchantments at 3rd level is a little much. And the wording is still a little clunky here and there. I would suggest granting one rune at 3rd level, a second at 9th, and the third at 15th. Some suggested text is below, feel free to use or disregard it. In particular, Pangaea was a little wonky and what I suggested is just one possible way you might adjust it.


RUNE STONES
At 3rd level your deity grants you a runestone. You gain an additional runestone at 9th level and a third at 15th level. As part of a long rest you can attach or remove any number of your runestones to your weapons, armor, or shield. As long as you have at least one runestone attached to your equipment or carried on your person, you become a conduit of your deity's power.

Whenever you cast a spell, attack an enemy, or are hit by an enemy, you may charge one of your equipped runestones. A weapon with a charged runestone is a magic weapon with +1 to hit and damage per charged runestone. A suit of armor or shield gains +1 AC per charged runestone.


RUNIC ABILITIES
At 5th level, you can expend the charge on your runestones to produce Runic Abiities. You learn Avalanche at 5rd level, and learn additional Runic Abilities when you level up, as shown below.

Avalanche (5th level)
As a reaction, expend one charge to make a weapon attack with one weapon you wield.

Pulverize
Once per round when you deal damage with a weapon or spell, expend two charges to roll one additional damage die.

Barricade (13th)
As a bonus action, expend one or more charges to grant an AC bonus equal to the charges expended to all allies within 15 ft until the end of your next turn.

Pangaea (17th)
As an action when you cast a spell that targets one or more creatures, expend three charges to target one additional creature within range.

Catastrophe (20th)
When you use the Attack action on your turn, expend three charges to immediately cast a spell whose casting time is 1 action.

Aura of the Unbreakable Rune
This is scaled well back, but petrification is so rare that you might never have a campaign where it's useful. Maybe broaden it a little to cover one or two additional conditions, like slowed, paralyzed, stunned -- something along those lines.

Glyph of the Stone Guard
It's not clear how the relocation of the glyphs will impact your weapon and armor bonuses. What did you have in mind?

ATiefling
2018-11-16, 04:40 PM
I figured that they would lose the bonuses on the weapons and armor for the additional abilities for the Glyph of the Stone Guard. If it wouldn't make the player OP I wouldn't be adverse to allowing them to keep unspent runes on weapons and armor, but I imagine that since the stones were the conduit to the deity's power they would be spent to enact the transformation. I'm definitely changing what you suggested to keep it balanced and clearer, especially when it comes to spacing out the runes. My DM and I discussed it, I just wasn't sure how to scale everything else afterwards.

jiriku
2018-11-16, 04:48 PM
The dirty secret is that with a 20th level ability it probably doesn't matter because it will never see play.

But if it did, you're spending an action to produce an effect which can only be used for 1 minute per day, is entirely defensive in nature, and only affects nearby enemies who do not move away from you. It's pretty harmless.

Incidentally, "statuesque" means "attractively tall and dignified." Is that the word you wanted or did you mean something more like "statue-like?"

ATiefling
2018-11-16, 04:58 PM
The dirty secret is that with a 20th level ability it probably doesn't matter because it will never see play.

But if it did, you're spending an action to produce an effect which can only be used for 1 minute per day, is entirely defensive in nature, and only affects nearby enemies who do not move away from you. It's pretty harmless.

Incidentally, "statuesque" means "attractively tall and dignified." Is that the word you wanted or did you mean something more like "statue-like?"

Ah, if that's the case, then I can add that unspent runestones add to your hit, damage and/or AC. In the greater scheme of things plus 1-3 points for a minute probably doesn't mean much once you hit 20 even if you do take it, right? I am a fool. I meant statue-like.

jiriku
2018-11-16, 05:08 PM
In the greater scheme of things plus 1-3 points for a minute probably doesn't mean much once you hit 20 even if you do take it, right?

Honestly, I have no idea. I suspect not. I have only played one character to 20th level in 5e. By that level my warlock was a giant mecha-dragon Gundam using another mecha-dragon Gundam as a fire-breathing gunblade in aerial battles backed up by our party's two airships, each of which was armed with multiple cannons with enchanted explosive cannonballs. The party cleric rode a ki-rin into battle and had a host of angels to back him up. We were all pretty off-the-hook. The DM would throw dozens of powerful fiends at us in each encounter and we would mop the floor with them. If your game ends like ours did, no one is going to notice a few +1 bonuses.