5E_TwilightAccord_Logo_Square_small-450x450As soon as upon a time, I used to be going to begin a sequence of articles playtest materials. This wasn’t just like the playtest materials that’s all about redefining a recreation system for an up to date launch. This was the opposite type of playtest. Like all these Unearthed Arcanas that we used to see for future product releases. New rule system. Subclasses meant to work with present class mechanics.

These articles by no means materialized as a result of by the point I used to be prepared to begin them, January occurred, and the OGL debacle occurred. Sadly, the supply of those playtests was placed on maintain, and for some time, we weren’t positive if or once we would get to see extra content material from that supply. Which might be a large disgrace, as a result of it was an ideal undertaking.

The Twilight Accord Returns

The supply, on this occasion, is the Twilight Accord Patreon. This undertaking, offered by Inexperienced Ronin and that includes the work of Steve Kenson, Joseph Carriker, and others, is making a 5e SRD setting that contains a primordial metropolis reaching out to LGBTQIA+ folks throughout the planes to provide them a house. Sadly, it’s a dwelling they have to reclaim from The Shadow Nemesis and the monsters which have overrun numerous wards of town.

And if you wish to take heed to one of many creators clarify the setting and the undertaking method higher than I can, you’ll be able to take heed to my interview with Steve Kenson right here on the Gnomecast. Fortunately, the undertaking is again underway, with new materials, so I made a decision it was time to really begin a few of the materials from the playtest once more. I’m going to begin with a take a look at a few of the subclasses which were launched, however there may be one for each class, so it will most likely be a number of posts.

Additionally, I’m not doing this in launch order, as a result of I organized them in my very own PDF as they got here out, so these might be in alphabetical order based mostly on class. All clear? Good, let’s leap in.

Path of Righteousness (Barbarian)

The Path of Righteousness Barbarian is all about justifiable rage at a world full of injustice, in addition to defending these from communities which have confronted adversity. I just like the twist on rage not simply being battle anger, however anger directed at injustices. Good, stable story, so let’s see if the mechanical components comply with.

  • third Stage–Bear Mom’s Bulwark
  • sixth Stage–Swift Fury
  • tenth Stage–Righteous Retaliation
  • 14th Stage–Oath of Retribution

Bear Mom’s Bulwark helps you to rage robotically should you or an ally you’ll be able to see are broken. If you’re raging, you’ll be able to sprint to an ally that’s focused by a melee assault and power the assault to focus on you as a substitute. For those who take harm from this attacker, you might be resistant towards that harm.  Once you do that, you get benefit to hit that attacker together with your subsequent assault. Swift Fury let’s use a response to share your Hazard Sense to an ally inside 5 ft of you, and if you’re an ally, you’ll be able to see are attacked, you’ll be able to rage instantly. Righteous Retaliation helps you to use your response to impose drawback on somebody you threaten that’s attacking your ally, and you should use your response to make an assault of alternative towards them. Oath of Retribution helps you to name out one enemy, and while you’re raging, you’ve benefit on melee assaults on them, resistance to all of their harm, immunity to being charmed or frightened by them, and the power to maneuver with them in the event that they transfer away should you spend your response. You may reset this means after a brief relaxation, however solely when you defeat that enemy.

I’m undecided if Bear Mom’s Bulwark refers to one thing within the setting. If it does, it’s a cool title. If not, I assume it really works properly sufficient as an allusion to mom bears and protectiveness. Oath of Retribution feels somewhat an excessive amount of like a Paladin means. I don’t have an issue with the power, per se, I might simply keep away from “Oath” at school talents exterior the paladin.

The primary factor that strikes me is that this subclass performs with two issues which are already within the Barbarian’s arsenal, benefit on assaults and resistance to wreck. As somebody that’s not all the time a fan of handing out momentary hit factors, however I believe Bear Mom’s Bulwark ought to most likely grant temp hit factors as a substitute of resistance, which could be wasted if the enemy is utilizing piercing/bludgeoning/slashing harm. I additionally suppose Oath of Retribution ought to present momentary hit factors that recur beneath some circumstance linked to the power. Because the class will get two talents that permit for automated raging, I virtually want it received a bonus motion of some sort. Of your first two talents, one is one thing you’ll be able to select to do as a response, and the opposite grants a passive means to an ally. I want that sixth stage means had one thing extra “energetic” to it. All of that mentioned, I believe because it stands, this subclass strains up properly with the story its telling.

School of Dance (Bard)

The School of Dance has a easy story. You’re a bard that expresses your performances by way of dance. Truthfully, I actually prefer it when Bard subclasses understand that the most effective tales for a subclass is to look at a kind of efficiency and the way that may work together with a bard’s talents.

  • third Stage–Unarmored Grace, Spell Dancer
  • sixth Stage–Sleek Motion
  • 14th Stage–Peerless Grace

Okay, sure, it does look somewhat tough, a Bard subclass once more after seeing the 2024 playtest including a tenth stage means to their subclasses. However I digress.

Unarmored Grace is all about encouraging you to not put on armor, so that you get your Dexterity Bonus and Charisma bonus to armor class. You may as well spend an inspiration die so as to add to your armor class as a response after you get hit, however earlier than you discover out what occurs to you from the assault, to probably flip successful right into a miss. You additionally acquire the power to both spend an inspiration die or a spell slot one stage larger than the spell you might be casting to solid a spell with out verbal or materials elements, though you’ll be able to solely do that if the fabric elements don’t have a value listed.

Sleek Motion will increase your motion pace, doubles your leaping distance, and allows you to ignore troublesome terrain. Peerless Grace helps you to spend inspiration to disengage or sprint as a bonus motion, and allows you to spend it by yourself Dexterity or Charisma checks.

All these work very well as dance associated talents. As a result of there’s a lengthy hole between sixth and 14th stage, I want there was a extra “energetic” sixth stage means past simply further motion. Peerless Grace additionally feels somewhat mild for a 14th stage means. Possibly if it did one thing like imposing drawback everytime you sprint or disengage till the top of your subsequent flip, it’d really feel somewhat extra substantial.

Liberation Area (Cleric)

This subclass is all about clerics who really feel referred to as to the side of their deities that need to free the oppressed and take away energy from those that do the oppressing. It’s a transparent area that can also be properly suited to the supposed setting.

  • 1st–Liberation Area Spells, Liberation’s Advocate, Encourage Braveness
  • 2nd–Channel Divinity: Liberate
  • sixth–Liberator’s Command
  • eighth–Liberator’s Strike
  • seventeenth–Chain Breaker

All of the Liberation Area spells are on level for the area. Liberation’s Advocate grants the Cleric proficiency in Perception, Efficiency, or Persuasion. Encourage Braveness is a capability you should use various occasions equal to your proficiency bonus per lengthy relaxation, however a person can solely profit from this means as soon as earlier than it takes a brief relaxation. This provides allies equal to your proficiency bonus immunity to the frightened situation and momentary hit factors.

Channel Divinity: Liberate lets folks inside 30 ft of you spend 5 ft of motion and free themselves of any bonds or restraints and acquire a further save with benefit towards the charmed, frightened, grappled, or restrained situation. Liberator’s Command provides you the power to solid a selected geas as an motion, forcing a creature you select to free anybody they’re holding captive and reversing their oppressive habits, or else take 5d10 psychic harm. Liberator’s Strike is type of the usual eighth stage means that about half of clerics get, dealing an additional 1d8 harm on successful, however on this case it’s Pressure harm, does double harm when used towards objects holding somebody captive, and solely does additional Pressure harm towards an clever creature liable for holding a prisoner or captive.

Chain Breaker boosts your Channel Divinity to 120 ft, and robotically removes charmed, frightened, and restrained, in addition to getting the advantage of your Encourage Braveness means. There may be additionally an inventory of spells you can spend a Channel Divinity on that will increase both it’s space or the variety of creatures focused by a a number of of 10. You may solely use every of those particular situations of Channel Divinity as soon as earlier than you are taking an extended relaxation.

I like the first-level talents, though I’m not 100% clear on efficiency as one of many potential bonus proficiencies. I don’t thoughts it, I’m not clear on the way it performs into the theme.

Liberate is somewhat complicated, as a result of it doesn’t say that folks can transfer 5 ft, however that they’ll spend 5 ft of motion, If that is an motion, I’m undecided why they’re spending motion–does it imply in the event that they already took their flip and used all of their motion, they’ll’t transfer with this means? I’m torn on Liberator’s Command. It’s actually highly effective, nevertheless it additionally solely comes up if you’re coping with somebody that has expressly imprisoned or enthralled somebody. I do suppose the “reversing their oppressive habits” line needs to be eliminated, as a result of it’s fuzzy. Releasing folks they’ve imprisoned is a clear-cut motion they’ll take.

Liberator’s Strike is unusual, as a result of each WotC Cleric subclass is both a bonus to cantrip harm, or +1d8 harm of a while to melee assaults, of some particular harm kind. I can see the place they could need to restrict this means extra, as a result of they provide it a secondary impact, inflicting structural harm to restraints, and since they use the very best harm kind, Pressure harm. I might quite see the Struggle Area model, the place the weapon simply does additional harm of the weapon’s regular kind however permits it for use towards anyone. I wouldn’t even thoughts the particular case restraint harm as a kicker, as a result of it’s so specialised.

I like the primary perform of Chain Breaker. Including a further impact to an present means is all the time a great start line for a higher-level means, if you will discover the appropriate ones to mix. I believe the second use loses the thread somewhat bit. It’s type of cool you can feed extra folks with create meals and water, however the wider vary on a few of the damaging spells feels prefer it’s simply widening your probability to do collateral harm, particularly if you’re happening rescue missions loads. I virtually want this had extra specialised modifications for all of the spells listed, possibly making enemies weak to wreck from a few of the spells that do harm as a substitute.

Circle of the Hedge (Druid)

Circle of the Hedge Druids dwell in communities close to pure assets and assist them domesticate these assets responsibly. They’re as involved about caring for the neighborhood as ensuring the neighborhood doesn’t harm the assets they should survive.

  • 2nd Stage–Circle of the Hedge Spells, Hedge-Craft
  • sixth Stage–Guardian of the Flock
  • tenth Stage–Hedge Rider
  • 14th Stage–Guardian of the Rows

The circle spells that this subclass will get all make sense for managing assets, coping with home animals, working with meals provides, and offering a protected place to dwell. Hedge-Craft is somewhat unusual, however in step with the theme. Your herbalism package now has various makes use of like a healer’s package, and you’ll replenish makes use of throughout downtime. You may make poisons with the package, and you’ll expend makes use of to supply elixirs, though your elixirs are restricted to various makes use of equal to your proficiency bonus per lengthy relaxation. These do issues like including benefit to poison saves or saves versus illness, saves versus concern, or therapeutic. You may as well create a poison that damages people who drink it, or causes them to go to sleep as per a sleep spell.

Guardian of the Flock helps you to use Wild Form free of charge while you roll initiative, and allows you to use the animal kind’s initiative bonus, because you instantly become your wild form. You may solely do that as soon as per quick relaxation, however if you’re medium or smaller in your animal kind, you get benefit on stealth checks. Hedge Rider provides you tree stride and transport by way of vegetation as circle spells, and allows you to solid each as soon as per lengthy relaxation with out utilizing a spell slot. Guardian of the Rows helps you to use two Wild Form makes use of to grow to be a plant with a CR equal to half your Druid stage, or you’ll be able to spend one Wild Form to animate three woke up shrubs. You may double this quantity with two makes use of of Wild Form, and your quantity doubles while you attain 18th stage.

As completely different as it’s, I actually like Hedge-Craft. It’s enjoyable, and actually works with the theme of tending to the locals utilizing the assets you scavenge from close by. Guardian of the Flock is somewhat unusual, as a result of it doesn’t present something above and past what you get for baseline Wild Form to make it extra tempting to leap into fight in animal kind. I believe it wants a kicker to make the animal kind somewhat extra substantial, in any other case that is primarily a technique to probably get a greater initiative spot. I like Hedge Rider as a method of speaking that the Druid is aware of all of the hedges and bushes of the neighborhood and might zip round by way of them. I like the primary perform of Guardian of the Rows, however I’m not a fan of a function that may produce 3, 6, or 12 further creatures on the battlefield. That is a type of instances the place I might quite see a specialised stat block for a single plant that may be summoned with this, with a lift to its means for utilizing extra Wild Shapes, and one other enhance to its talents at 18th stage.

Wrapping Up For Now

I believe we’re going to depart off after tackling 4 of the lessons from these playtests. I actually just like the story of all these subclasses, and I believe a lot of the talents play into these tales properly. I believe all of those are a stable foundation for brand new subclasses, and a number of other of them can be good in the event that they got here out of their present kind, regardless of a few of my preferences. I do fear somewhat bit that somebody taking the Liberation Area Cleric might want to have a DM that could be very aware of offering foes who meet the factors for the Cleric’s particular talents.

Hopefully it received’t be too lengthy earlier than I can get to the following installment of this sequence. Till then, be sure that to take a look at the Patreon for the Twilight Accord. It’s nice work for an ideal purpose, and you must actually learn a few of the story components and the thought course of behind the setting.