View Full Version : All Is For the Best... [Domain]

Grey Watcher
2007-12-16, 11:44 PM
One night, on the long drive home, I was listening to Bernstein's adaptation of Voltaire's Candide. It occured to me that Optimism, the philosophy satirized in Voltaire's work, deserved to be codified into a D&D domain.

Optimism Domain

Granted Power: Once per day, on a failed saving throw, a Cleric with the Optimism domain can use the margin by which he or she has failed the saving throw as a morale bonus, to be used on any one subsequent attack roll, saving throw, skill check, or ability check that day. Such a bonus cannot come from a saving throw that is deliberately failed. You also cannot derive a bonus from a failed saving throw against an effect to which you are immune. A natural one, while an automatic failure, does not count differently for determining the size of this bonus. Thus, if a natural one produces a result that would otherwise have passed the check, it produces no bonus.

Domain Spells

1st: Healthful Rest
2nd: Divine Insight
4th: Permanency
5th: Mage's Lucubration
6th: Forbiddance?
8th: Greater Spell Immunity
9th: Miracle

Examples of the Optimism Domain in action:

Jozan makes a Fortitude save against disease. The DC is 30. His result is 24. He fails the save, but can use the Optimism domain to gain a +6 morale bonus on any check he might make later that day. He chooses to spend this on his next saving throw against the disease. With this bonus, his next saving throw results in a 31. His granted power from the Optimism domain is now spent for the day.

Jozan is subject to a spell that requires a DC 10 Will save. Jozan's Will save bonus is +11. He rolls a natural one, failing the save. However, because he did not fail the save by any numerical margin (his total save would have been 12 vs a DC of 10), he cannot derive any morale bonus from this failed save.

Jozan is within the area of effect of a Fireball. The DC is 18, and his saving throw bonus is +4. He rolls a natural one. Comparing his result (5) to the DC 18, he can derive a +13 morale bonus through the Optimism domain, which he can then apply to any check he might have to make later in the day.

Mialee casts Reduce Person on Jozan so that he can accompany Lidda the halfling Rogue through a space too small for a normal human adult. Because Jozan is a willing target of the spell, he deliberately fails his saving throw. As a result, he cannot use this failed save to gain any morale bonus through the Optimism domain.

Jozan takes three levels of Paladin, rendering himself immune to fear effects, as per the Aura of Courage class ability. If he fails a saving throw against a dragon's Frightful Presence, he cannot use that failed save to gain a morale bonus, as his Aura of Courage prevents him from suffering any ill effects from failing his save.

With a bit of help from Gorbash Kazdar, I was able to flesh out a domain power that does what I wanted it to do. It allows you to take a bad result, and make it work to your advantage. I'm toying with the idea of adding some kind of limit, like the bonus can't exceed your level, or your level x Cha mod, or something, but you have to fail a saving throw just to get the bonus, and you can only get it once per day, so I don't know if that's too severe a restriction.

I'm also, obviously, having trouble with the spell list. Having a rather poor selection of books (I stopped buying books when they announced 4th edition), I'm sure there are spells out there that can do I want. What I was aiming for are spells that maximize, extend, or otherwise make various existing attacks, effects, etc. function to their best. Healthful Rest is really the most representative of this idea. Lucubration and Permanency don't quite fit as well, but they work very well on the theme that the domain power itself has, of working your way out of a bad situation.

Fax Celestis
2007-12-17, 02:03 PM
Heroism and Greater Heroism, maybe?

2007-12-17, 02:13 PM

3rd: Good Hope
6th: Heroes' Feast (Forbiddance seems more pessimistic to me)
7th: Limited Wish