November 27, 2018

Gospel Domain

Divine Domain
Notes from the Nails: We'll keep releasing these until the Musical book wins on Patreon!

Gospel Domain

In most of the world’s religions, music is used as a way of praising, honoring or currying favour from the Gods. Hymns, chants and litanies are a recurring theme in the rituals of many different faiths. Thus, it is not uncommon for a cleric to devote themselves to holy music, and gospel clerics can be found in temples throughout the land.

Gospel Domain Spells
Cleric Level  Spells
1stbless, shield of faith
3rdenthrall, prayer of healing
5thspirit guardians, tongues
7thaura of purity, dominate beast
9thcommune, dispel evil and good

Armor of the Faithful
When you choose this domain at 1st level, your AC equals 10 + your Dexterity modifier + your Wisdom modifier, as long as you are wearing your sacred vestments.

At 1st level, your voice is so powerful that you can still speak and perform verbal spell components in areas of magical silence.

Channel Divinity: Joyous Praise
Starting at 2nd level, you can use your Channel Divinity to infuse those around you with positive feeling.
    As an action, you present your holy symbol and lead your allies in prayerful song. For the next minute, each friendly creature within 30 feet of you can use your Wisdom modifier instead of their own for any Wisdom check or saving throw they are required to make.

Channel Divinity: Faith Healing
At 6th level, you can use your Channel Divinity to cleanse the sick.
     As an action, you present your holy symbol and evoke purifying energy in a 30-foot radius around yourself. All creatures in that area are cured of the poisoned condition and one disease, should they be afflicted with any.

Divine Strike
At 8th level, you gain the ability to infuse your weapon strikes with divine energy. Once on each of your turns when you hit a creature with a weapon attack, you can cause the attack to deal an extra 1d8 radiant damage to the target. When you reach 14th level, the extra damage increases to 2d8.

Ensemble of Angels
At 17th level, when you cast a spell with a verbal component, you can have up to 9 friendly creatures join you in performing the spell. These creatures must each have proficiency with at least one musical instrument, must spend the entire casting time concentrating on the spell, and cannot take actions other than to contribute to the spell. For each creature that joins you, the total casting time is reduced by 1 minute and the spell is cast as though from a higher level spell slot (maximum 3 slots higher, 9th level.)


  1. With that 17th level ability we might see a cleric slip into the local bardbershop quartet

  2. Maybe clarify somehow that Armor of the Faithful is optional? I can picture situations where you won't be able to wear your vestments lest your AC is reduced to the set value.

    1. That's just standard though. ALL sources of AC are always optional. Look at the way Unarmoured Defense is phrased in the PHB; this is exactly the same.

    2. I don't think the problem is that it's an optional. I think it's more that unlike Unarmored Defense you have to wear a specific clothing piece.

      As Scaalpel said, there are times you might not want to wear a vestment showing off your god. Such as, infiltrating some cultists of a different god, getting throw in a dungeon and having such a garment removed, merely trying to blend in for any reason. I think my problem with the feature is that as a cleric you are given power by this god to represent him, but he's micromanaging me by saying "You better be wearing your vestments or you can go screw". It's just a extra step to fulfill and makes it seem like your god doesn't care for you when, possibly against your will, you aren't wearing your special clothes.

    3. I am not particularly sure they are optional unless the character allows themselves to get hit. I mean, it just outright states "your AC equals exactly this when that happens" as a passive, constantly active effect. The difference between this and Unarmored Defense/Mage Armor that those are always beneficial since they by definition cannot override AC bonuses from armor. This one can. AC bonuses meant to stack with armor generally work like Shield (I think) and grant +X AC instead of setting it to a specific number. Honestly, maybe just add "when you are not wearing armor" somewhere or make it grant +wisdom modifier AC instead and it'd solve the problem instantly.

      I haven't even thought about the roleplay implications but I guess those are not any less reasonable than having to produce your holy symbol to cast spells/channel divinity.

    4. The rules for calculating AC are very clear - if you have access to multiple sources, you can choose which to apply. Therefore, this feature does not "override" armour; if you're wearing both vestments and armour, you can choose whichever AC you prefer.

      And if you don't want to wear vestments, the feature doesn't stop you from wearing armour instead, or using something like Mage Armour. Just like having Unarmoured Defense doesn't stop you from wearing armour.

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    6. Ah, we're talking about different parts of the text. Alos the part about your AC equaling something? I just checked mu players handbook and it says the same thing. There is no "your AC can equal -" it just says "Your AC equals". so no that part is right and works as any other source of base AC, you get to choose which formula to use.

      The part I was talking about was "as long as you are wearing your sacred vestments". Unarmed Defense doesn't state that you need a particular clothing, merely the absence of armor (and shield in monks case). It's kinda of a big stipulation that the cleric gets but no one else gets. It's not like the Barbarian has to wear animal skins for their AC, or monks wear Gi. So why should the cleric get outed as having to wear a special piece of clothing? I'm legitimately curious, not trying to bash you or anything I really would like to know.

      "I haven't even thought about the roleplay implications but I guess those are not any less reasonable than having to produce your holy symbol to cast spells/channel divinity." But it is a bigger deal. You can hide a holy symbol if it's on your necklace, you can put a skin over your shield to cover it's symbol. There are ways to hide your holy symbol, I can't think of a good way, short of disguise self, that would let you hide holy vestments.

    7. The cleric has to do that because they're a servant of a/the god(s), and the powers they manifest are rewards from the divine for their devotion. In this case, devotion = special clothes. No clothes, no devotion, no special power.

    8. That makes no sense. Is this god so insecure that they need constant reminders that their servants are in fact their servants? A cleric doesn't just stop devoting their life to a god because they take off a piece of clothing, they still belive in the god and work towards their goals. This god saying "Well, I know your working for me and are doing great things everyday but you took off that vestment, guess I don't need to protect you now." Sounds like a right tosser(to use less colorful language). Seriously, this god expects this person, who might have devoted their ENTIRE life up that point and are constantly working towards a goal this god wants them to is denied safty because, oops those bandits took and burned your vestments, guess you don't need my help anymore. It makes no sense, your devotion doesn't come from some article of clothing, it comes from the acts your character makes every day.

    9. When a cleric puts on their vestments, they wrap themselves in their faith. It's symbolic.

      It's like, a bunch of people singing is a choir, but a bunch of people singing *in robes* is a gospel choir, you know?

    10. It's still unnecessarily restrictive and doesn't make sense to me. Getting better armor isn't a symblolic gesture, it's a blessing by this god. It's like saying, "are you wearing your vestments today? No? Then I guess you can't Blessing of the Trickster/Warding Flare/Blessing of the Forge/Eyes of the Grave/ect". Trying to tie in a "blessing" at first level with a strict requirement (must be wearing vestments) not only doesn't fit the pattern the other domains have made but it doesn't make sense from a logic standpoint. Clerics don't make their own power, they aren't orks from 40k, beliving doesn't make it real. Power from a god makes it real, so why is this god only giving protection to people wearing his vestment when the only reason this cleric has this power in the first place is because this god GAVE it to them. Clerics in 5e don't get power from a life of devotion, they are gifted power by the gods themselves. This god is giving this person power to do their will and then says "if you want this power you better be running my colors, ok?". It doesn't make sense.

    11. Fair enough, I guess I'm arguing semantics at this point. Being insufferable about clear wording is a bit of a pet peeve of mine.

      To put my two cents into the symbolism debate: if you think about, it doesn't make a lick less or more sense than the cleric having to produce either their holy symbol or sacred icons/texts/holy water/whatnot to cast spells. It's important because the gods don't just freely dish out the power they grant - they don't explicitly need clerics with holy superpowers for their will to be done, after all. What they generally want in return is the promotion of the faith in some form. Act like a badass, say "it was because of this and this deity", get more worshippers, profit. Divine marketing, if you will. In most cases - maybe with the exception of deities of duplicity, trickery and betrayal - a cleric who denies their god is on a short road to excommunication.

      Or, at least, in my headcanon. Who the hell knows if this is actually true or not, it just seems to make sense to me.

  3. im just imaging a cleric busting into battle scream-singing "OUR GOD IS AN AWESOME GOOOODDDDD"

    1. "The gods made heavy metal//
      And saw that it was good//
      They said to play it louder than hell//
      We promised that we would"

  4. Divine strike do thunder damage for flavor win or no?

    1. Radiant is fine, isn't it? I don't really see a good argument for changing it.

    2. I could see thunder working if you're singing your guts out while you hit them, but it's one of those things I'd say ask your DM about.
      Really like the subclass. Reminds me of when one of my Cleric players took a level in Bard just to cast their holy spells while playing bagpipes.

    3. Whether radiant or thunder is better really comes down to what kind of musical performance your deity prefers.