5e Feat - Arcane Artilllerist

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5e Feat - Arcane Artilllerist

Postby AvonRekaes » Sat Aug 26, 2017 2:26 am

So, I thought this would be interesting. This feat is actually an amalgamation of two separate conversations I've had with fellow players. One fellow DM was looking for ideas to make a mechanic that would encourage players to use wands. The other conversation was with my players about how they felt cantrips weren't quite strong enough to make them feel worthwhile to continue adventuring when they ran out of spell slots. I ultimately decided to make the requirements for the feat so that it precludes warlocks; since they regain their spell slots every short rest, I didn't think they needed the extra oomph.

Arcane Artillerist
Prerequisite: you must possess the Spellcasting feature

You are adept at wielding wands, especially when used as an arcane focus to cast cantrips. You gain the following benefits:

  • When you cast a cantrip that deals damage to a target, if you use a wand focus you can choose to give the target advantage on their saving throw to resist the cantrip, or take a -5 penalty to your spell attack roll. If the target fails their save, or your attack hits, you add +10 to the cantrip's damage. If your cantrip can damage multiple targets, each target has advantage on their save or you take the attack penalty on all your spell attacks for the cantrip. Each target that takes damage from the cantrip takes this extra damage.
  • When you expend charges to activate a wand you are attuned to, you may reduce the cost of expended charges by 1, to a minimum of 0. You must finish a short or long rest before you can use this ability again.
Last edited by AvonRekaes on Sun Aug 27, 2017 10:17 pm, edited 4 times in total.
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Re: 5e Feat - Arcane Artilllerist

Postby tetrasodium » Sat Aug 26, 2017 4:15 am

interesting for flavor as a way to align casters with stuff like GWM & such. since a player recently asked me about it too, I'd think maybe adding another to allow cast a spell then bonus action attack with an offhand light weapon or something. By coincidence the player is playing a valenar elf bladesinger so I allowed it with a tenative "but I might change my mind if it turns out to allow something broken"
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Re: 5e Feat - Arcane Artilllerist

Postby AvonRekaes » Sat Aug 26, 2017 4:43 am

For that, I'd direct people to play an Eldritch Knight fighter or a Bladesinger wizard (from Sword Coast). They have class features to allow that kind of blade & spell fighting style. I hesitate to make feats that replicate class features, unless they're severely limited versions of them, like martial adept or magic initiate
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Re: 5e Feat - Arcane Artilllerist

Postby tetrasodium » Sat Aug 26, 2017 6:58 am

AvonRekaes wrote:For that, I'd direct people to play an Eldritch Knight fighter or a Bladesinger wizard (from Sword Coast). They have class features to allow that kind of blade & spell fighting style. I hesitate to make feats that replicate class features, unless they're severely limited versions of them, like martial adept or magic initiate


I originally kinda assumed it would grant something like that for bladesinger, but it does not &eldritch knight also lacks any kind of class feature to explicitly ability to do that bonus action offhand attack w/ no stat bonus ala dual wield but w/ a focus & light weapon instead of light & light. Since attacking w/ the offhand requires being in melee range it evens out & is basically just a modified warcaster. EK gets a similar but better ability that allows adding the stat bonus

I think you might be mixing up the PHB195 two weapon fighting offhand attack with a regular attack bonus action though
"When you take the Attack action and attack with a light melee weapon that you’re holding in one hand, you can use a bonus action to attack with a different light melee weapon that you’re holding in the other hand. [i]You don’t add your ability modifier to the damage of the bonus attack, unless that modifier is negative.[.i]
If either weapon has the thrown property, you can throw the weapon, instead of making a melee attack with it.

At best it's a an extra d6+0after a d20+proficiency hit roll on top of being MAD plus needing to get into melee range to use it.
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Re: 5e Feat - Arcane Artilllerist

Postby ThePurple » Sat Aug 26, 2017 7:17 pm

AvonRekaes wrote:When you complete a short rest, one magic wand you are attuned to that has charges regains one charge. This can't increase a wand's charges above its maximum.


I can see some potential exploitation here since you're not requiring that the wand be used each encounter (the intent seems to be to provide one "free" use per fight). You could have an extremely powerful wand that you use heavily in difficult combats and then just kind of sit on otherwise. You may want to rephrase this to "Once per short rest, when you use an attuned wand, it does not consume a charge (or consumes one fewer charges than normal if it normally consumes more than 1 charge)."
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Re: 5e Feat - Arcane Artilllerist

Postby AvonRekaes » Sun Aug 27, 2017 7:49 am

Oh good point. What about an extra sentence added to my version that goes "this extra charge fades if not used by the end of your next rest"?
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Re: 5e Feat - Arcane Artilllerist

Postby ThePurple » Sun Aug 27, 2017 8:09 am

AvonRekaes wrote:Oh good point. What about an extra sentence added to my version that goes "this extra charge fades if not used by the end of your next rest"?


Eh, it would work but it seems like a kludge-y workaround (gaining and then fading if unused accomplishes the same thing, but simply reducing the consumption of a charge once per rest works the same without the wand having charge values vary arbitrarily). That's personal opinion though. As long as you have *some* kind of limiter that prevents it from being used to completely recharge a wand by abusing rests, it should be fine (with certain interpretations of the resting rules, as written, you could basically recharge any wand completely every single day) especially since wands in 5e apparently regain charges each day by default.
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Re: 5e Feat - Arcane Artilllerist

Postby AvonRekaes » Sun Aug 27, 2017 8:39 am

  • When you complete a short rest, one magic wand you are attuned to that has charges gains one bonus charge. The bonus charge fades if not used by the end of your next rest.

How's this? I think calling it a "bonus charge" keeps it mentally separate. I also got rid of the "can't exceed cap" restriction because it's easier bookkeeping and before it only really kept you from using the feat with a wand full on charges.
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Re: 5e Feat - Arcane Artilllerist

Postby enderxenocide0 » Sun Aug 27, 2017 7:37 pm

Personally, I'm with ThePurple on having the ability to reduce a charge use once per short or long rest, but if you're intent on having an additional charge, I'd use "temporary charge" as the wording, so it matches up with temporary hit points and other temporary abilities, rather than "bonus charge" which doesn't really imply that the bonus isn't permanent.
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Re: 5e Feat - Arcane Artilllerist

Postby AvonRekaes » Sun Aug 27, 2017 8:39 pm

"Temporary" works for me.

Perhaps my brain just works differently. To me a "free temporary charge" between rests just seems easier to wrap your head around than a reduction in cost that you can only apply once between rests.
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Re: 5e Feat - Arcane Artilllerist

Postby enderxenocide0 » Sun Aug 27, 2017 8:49 pm

Well, the difference lies in actual tracking. I'd be willing to bet most charge-tracking is counted down. You write down your current charges and when you use one, you decrement the number. If you use a temporary charge, you add to your total charges, then remove that charge once used or when the rest occurs. But make sure that charge is kept separate from the regular charges so you don't forget it's not permanent. If you have an ability that says you don't need to spend a charge, then to track it... you do nothing. You literally change no numbers, erase nothing, add nothing. You might have a binary "do I have this ability right now" placeholder on the sheet, but that's it. That's why I would use a cost reduction, because then there's actually less tracking taking place.
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Re: 5e Feat - Arcane Artilllerist

Postby AvonRekaes » Sun Aug 27, 2017 10:16 pm

Hmmmm. You're right. While still I think the temporary charge is easier to word in a sentence and understand, the cost reduction is easier to track. How's this for the rules text:

  • When you expend charges to activate a wand you are attuned to, you may reduce the cost of expended charges by 1, to a minimum of 0. You must finish a short or long rest before you can use this ability again.
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Re: 5e Feat - Arcane Artilllerist

Postby ThePurple » Mon Aug 28, 2017 12:43 am

AvonRekaes wrote:How's this for the rules text


That works.
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Re: 5e Feat - Arcane Artilllerist

Postby AvonRekaes » Mon Aug 28, 2017 4:00 am

Sweet. Thanks for the feedback guys!
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