Wednesday, July 20, 2022

OSR: Fixing Fifth Edition: The Fighter (part 2)

Part 1

This is a little series I'm doing to revise some parts of 5E that I feel are lacking.  I've done my best to remain within their rules as much as possible, only adding as much as I felt was necessary to make it work.  

Obviously, none of this has been play-tested.  Use at your own risk.  

Martial Archetypes: 

The Fighter, at level 3, gets to pick a sub-class that allows for further customization of any specific character.  This then grants them extra abilities at Level 3, 7, 10, 15 and 18. 

Now, of the three sub-classes, or Martial Archetypes, I don't really like most of them.  The Battlemaster is perfectly fine- I did something similar with my Martial Maneuvers.  I won't be commenting on that one.  It's perfectly suitable for low-level Fighters and pairs nicely with my suggested changes, see part 1.   

The Champion and the Eldritch Knight, on the other hand, leave much to be desired.  The first, the Champion, comes off as very insubstantial to me.  This is the most basic class in the whole game, as Champion Fighter has the least amount of choices.  The Champion's abilities do not add additional factors or choices, they just slightly improve certain athletic skills and give you a chance to do extra damage, but only in a passive way.  Now there's technically nothing wrong with this class, but I feel it to be a wasted opportunity.  

So here's what I did to it.  

by Jeremy Fenske
The Revised Champion: 


Boundless Strength: Your Ability Scores can increase beyond normal mortals.  Each time you gain a Champion Archetype feature, you gain 1 Ability Score point, which can increase 1 ability score.  Your maximum score for all Ability Scores is 22.

Strength of the Heavens: 1/Day, you can temporarily boost your STR for 1 round, granting advantage on any STR check or saving throw.  Additionally, depending on your STR score, you may perform superhuman feats.  See the table below for details.

STR score:  When enhanced...
12-13: You can lift a man over your head and throw him, or break through a wooden wall or door. 
14-15: You can lift a man with one hand, break a sword or metal tool. 
16-17: You can lift a horse or slasher through a cobblestone wall.
18-19: You can lift an ox or a carriage or smash through a stone wall.
20+: You can lift an Elephant or smash through concrete. 


Speed of the Wind: 1/Day, as an action or a reaction, you can temporarily boost your DEX for 1 round, granting advantage on any DEX check or saving throw.  Additionally, depending on your DEX score, you may perform superhuman feats.  See the table below for details.

When your DEX is enhanced, you may add double your DEX modifier (min +2) to your AC for the duration.

When enhanced,
DEX Score:
12-13: You can dodge a stone from a sling, outrun anyone with a lower DEX in a sprint.
14-15: Dodge an arrow, temporarily outspeed a horse.  You gain Evasion when your DEX is enhanced at this level. 
16:17: Dodge a crossbow bolt, outrun a non-magical bird in flight. 
18-19: Dodge a bullet, outrun a creature with superhuman speed.  You add triple your DEX modifier to your AC at this level, for the duration. 
20+: You can, when enhanced, automatically act before anyone else, unless they have equal or higher DEX.  You gain advantage on any attacks against creatures who have less DEX than you. 


As an action or a reaction to being attacked, you can Harden your body, gaining resistance to non-magical slashing,piercing and bludgeoning until your next turn.  You may do this X times per day, where X is your CON modifier.


As long as you have at least 1 HP, you can take am action to meditate.  If you meditate for at least 1 minute, you regain 1d10 HP.  For each additional minute you meditate after that, you regain +1d6 HP.  This ability can only restore you up to half your maximum HP.  Alternatively, for each minute you meditate, you gain a new save against any of the following conditions: blinded, deafened, poisoned, paralyzed or stunned.  If you pass your new save, that condition ends within 1 round.   


You can enter a state of mental detachment called The Emptiness where you act instinctively, rather than thinking through every action.  When you enter the Emptiness, whenever an enemy creature attacks you with a melee attack or enters your space, you may immediately make a weapon attack against them as a free action.  You can only remain in The Emptiness for 1 round before returning to a normal mental state, but you can enter it X times per day, where X is your WIS modifier. 

artist unknown

The Eldritch Knight:

I revised the Eldritch Knight, not because I found the class that objectionable, but because I didn't feel it appropriate.  The Eldritch Knight just comes off to me like a Fighter who regrets his earlier choice of class, but doesn't want to commit to full multi-classing.  It's a Fighter LARPing as a spellcaster and frankly, it feels undignified.  So I made an Eldritch Knight worthy of the title, as the word Eldritch means 'spooky as hell' (or something).

Knight of Blood:


Weapon Bond: Good the way it is.

Spellcasting: You start with three spells, but no cantrips.  You don't get any new spells, you must buy, trade or steal them.  You can prepare up to X spells, where X is your INT score.  You gain spell slots as normal (see Eldritch Knight chart).  You can learn spells from any school of arcane magic. 

Blood Mage: You have the power to draw energy from a creature that has recently died.  If a creature you can touch died violently within the last minute, you can attempt to harvest that creature's remaining mana.  To harvest, take an action and make an INT check with a DC equal to 5+[Creature's HD]. 

On a failed check, nothing happens.  But on a successful check, you gain X Mana Points, which can be converted into spell slots.  Mana Points convert into spellslots like a Sorcerer's Sorcery Points do.  Spell slots can also be turned back into Mana Points, if you wish.  You can store a number of Mana Points in your body equal to your Constitution score.     


Feed the Butcher Gods: When you attack a creature with the ability to cast spells via either Innate Spellcasting or via Spellcasting with spell slots, on a hit, you can halve the damage you do and force that creature to make a CHA save.  On a failed save, that creature loses X spell slots (starting from level 1 and moving up) or X uses of an Innate spell, where X is half of the damage that would have been dealt to the creature.  You then gain X Mana Points, equal to the amount of spell slots or uses of an innate spell that were lost by the creature you damaged. 


Fodder for the Dogs of War: When you kill a creature with the ability to cast spells, you can attempt to harvest the spells it had the ability to cast.  You do this by cutting out and eating the creature's brain or equivalent organ.  Then make an INT check with a DC equal to 8+[Creature's Spellcasting modifier].  On a successful check, you learn X new spells, where X equals your INT modifier.  These spells can then be prepared, or transferred into a spell book as per normal.  On a failed check, you learn nothing from the creature's brain. 


Arcane Charge: Good the way it is. 


Reign of the Bloody Immortals: If you have Mana Points, you can convert them directly into HP.  As an action, choose how many Mana Points you wish to convert.  Each Mana Point converts to 1d6 HP. 

Additionally, spending 1 Mana Point eliminates the need to eat or drink for 1 week.  Frequently spending Mana Points will also slow down the aging process.  For each week you spend 1 Mana Point, you do not age, remaining at your current age for as long as you continue to regularly spend Mana Points.

from here, artist unknown


  1. I like the revised Champion, especially

  2. You should continue this series. I too enjoy shitting on fifth edition.