January 29, 2016

The Wild Hunt

Otherworldly Patron
Note from the Palm: This is my preferred attempt at the Arcane Archer, though with a bias towards cold and wintery effects. Also, I was playing a LOT of The Witcher III when I wrote this.

The Wild Hunt

Less a single patron and more a force of nature, the Wild Hunt consists of a menagerie of ghostly warriors and hunters, forever cursed to roam the wintry skies, hunting down those who try to escape the wrath of the gods. While most who eventually join the Hunt are ghosts and/or other forms of spirit who escaped from the law of man in their life, some are mortals who are called by Woden, leader of the Hunt, to aid him in the capture of some fell beast; other still are those who call to the Hunt for aid, bargaining service in exchange for the specters' unmatched tracking skills.

Hunter's Bond
Only those who seek that which cannot be found willingly entreat the Hunt's aid. Choose or roll for a bond from the table below.


d10Bond
1I seek a sibling, parent, or other family member
2I seek a spouse or lost love
3I seek a past or future mentor
4I seek riches beyond your wildest dreams
5I seek unfathomable power
6I seek unmatched fame and/or glory
7I seek a gateway to the afterlife or another plane of existence
8I seek a long lost artifact
9I seek the cure for an unknown disease or plague
10I seek repentance for past crimes

Wild Hunt Warlock Spell list
Spell LevelSpells
1ensnaring strike, ice knife
2find steed, Snilloc's snowball swarm
3lightning arrow, sleet storm
4locate creature, freedom of movement
5cone of cold, conjure volley

Huntsman's Bow
At 1st level, you craft or are gifted a special item: a Huntsman's Bow. Your Huntsman's Bow may be any type of bow or crossbow you could normally wield. You are proficient in wielding your Huntsman's Bow. This bow can be used as a normal bow of its type, but it serves a second, more important function: as a unique spellcasting focus. When you use your bow as a focus for a spell with a range greater than self, that spell gains the following benefits:
  • The spell's range is replaced with the range of the bow.
  • Ranged spell attacks required by the spell can be made as ranged weapon attacks instead, though you do not add your Dexterity modifier to the damage of these attacks.  
  • You may choose to deal either magical piercing damage or cold damage instead of the spells normal damage type. 
     If you lose or break your huntsman's bow, you can replace it; doing so takes 24 hours and 100 gp worth of ritual materials.

Hound of the Hunt
At 6th level, you gain a loyal hunting companion. Following a long rest, you may summon a Hound of the Hunt, a fey creature which takes the shape of a frost-covered wolf. You forge a bond with this hound, and will always summon this hound when you use this ability.
     Your hound is in most ways identical to a normal wolf, though its bond with you and its fey heritage grant it some special properties. Your hound has abilities and game statistics determined in part by your level: it uses your proficiency bonus rather than its own, and n addition to the areas where it normally uses its proficiency bonus your hound also adds your proficiency bonus to its AC and to its damage rolls. Your hound gains proficiency in two skills of your choice and becomes proficient with all saving throws.
     For each level you gain after 6th, your hound gains an additional hit die and increases its hit points accordingly. Whenever you gain the Ability Score Improvement class feature, your hound’s abilities also improve. Your hound can increase one ability score of your choice by 2, or it can increase two ability scores of your choice by 1. As normal, your hound can’t increase an ability score above 20 using this feature unless its description specifies otherwise.
     Your hound obeys your commands as best it can, and communicates with you telepathically. It rolls for initiative like any other creature, but you determine its actions, decisions, attitudes, and so on. If you are incapacitated or absent, your companion acts on its own.
     Your Hound of the Hunt is resistant to cold damage, and when it would deal damage to a creature with its bite attack, you may have it deal cold damage instead of piercing damage. If your hound damages a creature that is currently under the effects of a hex spell that you cast on it, the creature takes additional damage from the spell as if you had damaged it.
     Should your hound be reduced to 0 hp, it is immediately banished back to its home plane. You may not summon your hound back to your plane for 24 hours.   

Huntsman's Endurance
At 10th level, your connection to the Wild Hunt gives you the vigor to continue your hunt, be it in the heat of summer or the dead of winter. You and any mount you are riding can comfortably survive in temperatures from -100° to 300° Fahrenheit. Additionally, you and your mount gain resistance to both cold damage and fire damage. 

Huntsman's Rain
At level 14, you can summon the Wild Hunt to aid you on a massive volley attack. When you cast eldritch blast through your huntsman's bow, instead of the normal number of blasts you may fire one blast at every target you can see within the range of your bow. You make a separate attack roll for each target. Once you use this ability, you must take a short or long rest before you can do so again.

New Invocations
These invocations are available to warlocks of the Wild Hunt.

Bow of the Wild Lord
Prerequisite: Pact of the Blade feature
You can create a longbow using your Pact of the Blade feature, which functions as your Huntsman's Bow. When you draw back its string and fire, it creates an arrow of blackened wood with a sharp, icy head, which vanishes after 1 minute. When you take the Attack action and hit a creature with this bow, you can expend a spell slot to deal an additional 2d8 piercing damage to the target per spell level. Ranged attacks made with your bow have advantage against beasts.

Huntsman's Prowess
Prerequisite: 7th level
When you take the Attack action on your turn using your Huntsman's Bow, you gain the benefits of the Archery fighting style. You cannot gain the benefits of a fighting style more than once.
     Additionally, you gain proficiency in the Animal Handling and Survival skills.

Arrows of the Pursuer
When you hit a creature with a ranged weapon attack from your Huntsman's Bow, that creature's speed is reduced by 10 feet until the start of your next turn. This effect stacks with itself, reducing a creature’s movement to a minimum of 0 feet.



Changelog:
01/30/16: Changed spell list (swapped Faithful Hound for Freedom of Movement), rolled Imbued Arrow into the Huntsman's Bow feature, and added Hound of the Hunt ability.
01/31/16: Added a line limiting the ability to add charisma damage multiple times to your Eldritch arrows.
02/11/16: Removed contradictory wording about point of origin spells from Huntsman's Bow
1/8/17: Changed wording for Huntsman's bow to be less confusing, and Changed hound of the hunt to match Revised Ranger animal companion rules.
3/13/17: Revised Huntsman's bow, added new invocations. 

23 comments:

  1. This immediately makes me think of Witcher 3, and thus I immediately love it

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    1. That was, in fact, the intent. I have a change coming that I think will make this more flavorful and fun.

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  2. I think that the Pack Hunter - level 6 feature on the post is not included in the pdf.

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    1. That feature is not complete, and is a change that is in progress. The PDF will be updated soon.

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  3. I love the idea of Hunter's rain, it's pretty cool, but I don't think it's really that good for once per day.
    At most, you're a bladelock with the +cha mod damage on the bow so it's 1d10+10 damage on each hit. If you're fighting an army of orcs or peasants, everything will die, but if you're fighting two or three tough creatures,it's just better to blast them normally.

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    1. That is part of the idea. Most 14th level abilities deal with a single large creature; this one let's you deal with a whole army of mooks.

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    2. I think his point is at 14th level, it wouldn't work even against an army of mooks. Most mooks at that level would have 50+ HP, and all you'd do is piss them off. Basically as a 1/day 14th level feature it's completely underwhelming, especially considering the WH 'lock gets access to some far more effect AoE spells long before that level (Cone of Cold, Conjure Volley.)

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  4. I really like it, Spirit Guardians might be a cool 3rd level spell for this if it wasn't a 15 ft range

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  5. It looks cool to play "as intended" but honestly my first thought was that turning Eldritch Blast into Cold damage lets you double dip with Dragon Sorcerer 6. Then again, Undying Light exists anyway to get double Charisma to spells?

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    1. Huh, I never thought about that. I don't know that it's game-breaking by itself, but it's certainly very good. I'll look into it.

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    2. Frankly, I think that Agonizing Blast should specify that it does not stack with other abilities that allow you to add your charisma bonus to damage, but that's just me.

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  6. How would the Huntsman's Bow interact with the feats Sharpshooter and Spellslinger?

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    1. Since you can make your eldritch blasts as either Ranged Spell attacks or as Ranged Weapon attacks, you can use both feats, just not at the same time. As well, the Archery Fighting Style would affect your eldritch arrows when making them as ranged weapon attacks, but not when making them as ranged spell attacks.

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  7. Quick clarification question. The bows range is 150/600 does getting eldritch spear (make eldritch blast range 300ft) make it 300/600? Also would spell sniper make the range then 600/1200? or not effect the range at all?

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    1. Looking back over both the feat and the invocation, I can say this:

      1. Eldritch Spear does not affect the range of an Eldritch blast cast through your bow because Eldritch spear sets the range of eldritch blast to 300 feet instead of doubling the spells range.

      2. Spell Sniper simply specifies attacks granted by casting a spell, not Spell Attacks. RAW, spell sniper affects any spell cast through the bow, regardless if it's a ranged spell attack or ranged weapon attack.

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  8. Just out of curiosity, why not just make the Hound of the Wild Hunt a familiar since they function nearly the same, with a difference being the hound can't be sent into a pocket dimension and it can attack.

    I suppose, why did you choose to make it an unseen servant as opposed to a familiar?

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  9. PDF and this site don't match. Huntsman's Bow and Hound of the Hunt show major differences between the two sources.

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    1. That should be fixed reasonably soon.

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  10. So, I figure a couple levels of this and one or two of your alchemist would make a good witcher.

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    1. I'm not gonna lie: This would actually not make for a very good Witcher at all, if you're going for the feel of the Third games.

      If I were to make a Witcher from pre-existing classes, I would probably go Three levels of Fiend Blade warlock (to get Burning hands(igni), Charm Person(axii), Blade Ward (Quen), Pact Weapon (Silver Sword), Devil's Sight (cat eyes), and Eldritch Sight (to detect monsters), Several levels of Alchemist, and the remaining levels in UA hunter Conclave ranger. Take Magic Initiate to get Thunderwave (Aard), Control Flames (more Igni), and Friends (more Axii).

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  11. Hey, just wanted to give you a heads up there is a spelling mistake in the proficiency section of the Hound of the Hunt ability. Nothing big, just wanted to bring it to your attention.

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