D&D 5E Homebrew: Monk Subclass: Way of Body

Monks are way too nimble and dextrous for my liking. I want to body my opponents! I want to suplex a train!

This lets you suplex a Tarrasque. Close enough.

But in all seriousness. I dig the idea of the monk sculpting their body into the ultimate weapon. This focuses on that concept while making a Strength monk build viable.

Grappling Fist:

You excel in grappling. When you have a creature in a grapple you can expend one weapons attack to follow-up with these various techniques. Grappling Fist does not work on creatures larger than you.

If you fail a contested grapple check after attempting a Grappling Fist technique the creature is freed from your grapple.

Slam: Prerequisite: Grapple

You attempt to lift and slam a creature dealing damage and knocking them prone. Make a Contested Grapple check on a success the creature takes damage equal to two Martial Arts die+ your Strength modifier and is knocked prone.

Pin: Prerequisite: Grapple, Prone.

You take a prone creature and attempt to damage and restrain them. Make a contested grapple check, on a success the creature takes damage equal to one martial arts die + your Strength modifier and both you and the target are restrained.

Submission: Prerequsite: Grapple, Prone, Restrained.

You take a prone and restrained creature and attempt to damage them. Make a contested grapple check, on a success the creature takes damage equal to three martial arts die + your Strength modifier.

Guarding Strikes:

Starting at 6th level, you strike back at attacks meant for you. Whenever you take the dodge action you gain the following effects.

Vs. Melee Attacks:
Your AC gains a bonus equal to your strength modifier. If the attack misses you spend a Ki Point to use Flurry of Blows.

Vs. Ranged Attacks:
You automatically use Improved Deflect Missles vs. each attack.

Improved Deflect Missles:

You punch or kick the projectile headed your way:

  • The damage reduction is now modifed by strength instead of dexterity
  • If you reduce the damage to zero the projectile is automatically deflected back at the user.
  • This deals bonus damage equal to the excess damage reduction past zero. (So if you were a level 6 monk with a +4 strength and rolled a 10 the attack would be reduced by 20 points of damage. If the projectile would deal 10 damage the reflected projectile would deal a bonus +10 damage.)

Honed Body:

Starting at 11th level you can reflexively brace your body for an oncomming attack significantly lowering the damage you’ll face.

You can spend 3 Ki Points and your reaction upon taking damage to grant yourself resistance to all damage types besides Psychic until the start of your turn. This effect does apply to the triggering attack.

“Orc Martial Artist” by Dion Harris

Unbreakable Body:

Starting at 17th level, you can enter a state where Ki constantly flows out of your body granting you immense power. Through using a Bonus action and expending 3 Ki Points you can enter the Unbreakable Body state. Granting the various effects.

  • You expend 3 Ki Points at the start of your turn.
  • Your martial arts die increases to a D12.
  • If you miss an opponent with a melee unarmed attack they take damage equal to your Strength Modifier.
  • You gain advantage on Strength Athletics checks.
  • You can use Honed Body without expending Ki Points.

UNLIMITED POWER!:

Starting at 20th level your body has become one with Ki enhancing your strength to super human levels:

  • Your Strength score increases by 6 and so does its maximum.(26 Max)
  • You can grapple and use Grappling Fist on creatures of any size.

Anyways that’s it, lemme know what you think in the comments or @TLCStageHazard.

If you’re interested in other D&D 5E Homebrews here’s one about an earth specialized Sorcerer.

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D&D 5E Homebrew: Dexterity “Nerfs”

Dexterity is crazy strong, second only to charisma. (if you have alot of NPC interaction in your campaign)

Dexterity:

  • Gives you extra damage, primarily on ranged weapons which are generally more useful than their melee counterparts.
  • Increases your initiative rolls
  • Increases your AC
  • Its tied to the most some of the most useful skills in the game
  • Helps you versus the majority of saving throws.

Compare this to Strength which allows you to deal a marginal increase in damage only if you choose to wield a two-handed weapon(forfeiting a shield) and helps you out with one skill. Yeah I get it has alot to do with Carrying Capacity and such but the vast majority of DMs I’ve come across pay encumbrance no mind.

But nerfing is never fun for the player and considering we as GM’s have the capability to scale the difficulty for each encounter I say we do something else.

We buff the crap out of everything.

Weapons:

First of all we need to address the fact that Strength weapons aren’t anywhere near strong enough to compete with Finesse and Ranged weapons.

I’ve got two changes in mind, one is to the Two-Handed and Versatile Weapon Properties and the other to Hit points.

(Variant) Two Handed Weapon Fighting – Damage Bonus:

Melee weapons when wielded with two-hands recieve a bonus to damage rolls equal to two times your Strength Modifier.

Meaning if you are wielding a Greatsword with a +7 in Strength your Damage roll will look like 2d6+14.

Explaination:

There just isn’t enough reason to justify playing a strength based fighter outside of flavor. You are better off going dexterity every time. If you choose to use a shield then the rapier is just as good as a longsword/warhammer etc. etc. If you choose to forgo a shield(lowering your AC) you get to raise your average damage by about 1-3 depending on which weapon you choose.

Health Points:

Now that change to weapons will make level 1 even more lethal than it currently is. You can already one shot most starting classes by just wielding a greataxe and rolling well. But if you don’t like your early game to be too lethal you can use one or both of these HP changes.

(Variant) Hit Points at 1st Level:

All classes now start with a base of 3hp.

Meaning a Barbarian with +4 CON would start with 19 HP(3+4+12); a wizard with +0 Con would start with 9(3+0+6).

(Variant) Strength Hit Point Bonus:

You recieve a bonus to your hit points per level equal to half of your Strength modifier rounded up.

So in other words:

Strength Score: HP per Level:
10 0
12 +1
14 +1
16 +2
18 +2
20 +3
22 +3
24 +4

Explaination:

Generally when one thinks of the buff warrior they also picture them being pretty resilient. And while this change to probably doesn’t completely compensate for failing the plethora of dexterity saving throws just seeing a higher HP total on the page really sells the idea.

Initiative:

It’s always bothered me that only one stat modifies initiative. So in my efforts to “nerf” dexterity this seems like the most logical place to start. This change is simple.

(Variant) Initiative:

Initiative is now determined by 3 statistics.
Your Initiative is equal to the modifiers of your Dexterity, Intelligence and Wisdom.

Dexterity measuring the speed of your body.

Intelligence measuring how quickly you can come up with the correct first course of action.

Wisdom measuring how quickly your mind indentifies the danger.

Explaination:

These three combined not only make sense but are generally stats valued by the more roguish classes. So the precedent ideal of speedy rogue/monk/ranger is still kept intact.

Not to mention it makes the mental stats more appealing for non-traditional classes. Which is always a good thing in my mind. This does generally increase initiative rolls amongst most character builds. Except the classic meathead with High Strength and Con and low mental stats.

But what screams buffoon more than entering a fight extremely late?

~ All right that’s what I got. Lemme know what you think in the comments below or @TLCStageHazard. If you’re interested in other homebrews here’s a Druid that specializes in healing.

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