June 1, 2015

Magitech Hero

Martial Archetype
Comments from the Finger: The Magitech Update begins! Easily my favorite homebrew to come out of GiantITP, the Magitech Templar (original here) is touted (rightfully, I might add) as Iron Man for D&D. Infinitely modular and with the right balance of magic and tech, this class was both flavorful and mechanically sound, despite having a mostly non-linear class feature selection system. It's this very system of non-linear upgrades we wanted to preserve as closely as possible at the core of the Magitech classes we've written to accompany the Hero.
     Another thing of note is that the Hero is the single longest sub-class we've written for 5e, of which the vast majority is the Magitech Upgrades.
    Finally, a note on balance. The Magitech Hero can be many things, and as such runs the gambit from weakly to strongly optimized. A character which chases the main tracks of prerequisite upgrades will likely achieve the most power in terms of sheer number of abilities, but will sacrifice the customization that makes this class so powerful. At higher levels, its damage per round doesn't quite stack up to the Eldritch Knight, though it will probably out-muscle the Champion.

Magitech Hero

The archetypical Magitech Hero is a warrior who possesses a sophisticated suit of magical armor which can be upgraded and modified, making them extremely versatile and dangerous combatants. Some upgrades make the Hero a towering machine of war, others a craven shadow on the wall, and others still a flying mechanical wonder, capable of firing beams of energy from his eyes and palms. No matter the configuration, Magitech Heroes are a formidable force.

Magitech Armor
At 3rd level you gain a suit of magic armor from your church (or family, clan, king, or other organization as appropriate for your character). You may choose any type of armor that you are proficient with. It is of masterwork quality, but is otherwise typical of armor of that type. At any time you may return to any church of your order, and they will provide you with the facilities needed for you to repair, improve, or enchant it, though you must still pay for materials and other associated costs.

Magitech Armor is more powerful than a regular magic item. Only an antimagic field and areas of "dead magic" suppress it's abilities, rendering it mundane masterwork armor until the magic suppression ends. When suppressed by an Anti-Magic Field or similar effect, you also lose any abilities gained from Magitech Upgrades.

Magitech Upgrade
At 3rd level, you may select any two Magitech Upgrades for which you meet the prerequisites. You may not use one of the Upgrades selected at 3rd level as a prerequisite for the other. You may select an additional upgrade at 7th, 10th, 15th, and 18th level.

Magitech Upgrades apply only while you wear your Magitech Armor. Upgrades that cast a spell require no verbal or somatic components. If an Upgrade calls for a saving throw, the DC is equal to 8 + your proficiency bonus + your Intelligence modifier. Your magitech level is equal to your fighter level.

Magitech Upgrades
If a magitech upgrade has prerequisites, you must meet them to learn it.

Armored Mind
You have advantage on saving throws against being charmed and saving throws against being frightened.

Armor Sentience
Prerequisite: Energy Shield and Armored Sense
Your armor gains a more complete sentience and gains the ability to transfer some if its magical power into spells. Your armor has 6 charges. You can use an action and expend 1 or more charges to cast one of the following spells from it: lightning bolt (4 charges), magic missile (1 charge), protection from energy (2 charges), or thunderwave (1 charge). If you expend the armor's last charge, you may take no actions and can't move for 1d4 rounds, after which the armor regains 1 charge. Your armor regains 1d4 + 2 expended charges daily at dawn.
Armored Sense
Prerequisite: Energy Shield
Your armor gains a limited sentience and may alert you early to threats. You gain darkvision and the effects of see invisibility with a range of 30 feet while you wear your armor. You may add double your proficiency bonus to Investigation and Perception checks (including Passive Perception checks.)
Armored Stability
While you wear your armor, you have advantage on ability checks and saving throws against being moved or knocked prone, such as from a Shove action or Trip Attack maneuver.

While you wear your armor, you gain a burrow speed equal to half your base movement speed.

Damage Reduction
Prerequisite: Energy Shield
You may cast protection from energy. You must complete a short or long rest before using this feature again.
Prerequisite: Armored Mind
While you wear your armor, you longer need to eat or sleep and are immune to magical sleep effects. You are also immune to being poisoned.
Dive Attack
Prerequisite: Speed, Propulsion
If you move at least 10 feet downward before making a melee attack against a creature, you have advantage on your first attack against that creature and may add your proficiency bonus to that attack's damage.

Energy Shield
You can cast shield. You can use this ability again after taking a short or long rest.

Prerequisite: Speed and Stealth
You gain the Rogue Evasion and Uncanny Dodge features.

Explosive Energy
Prerequisite: Power Fist, Repulsor Rays
As an action, you can channel all of the energy of your Magitech Armor into an explosive electrical attack. Each creature within a 30 feet of you must make a Dexterity save. On a failed save a creature takes 3d6 points of lightning damage for each point of your proficiency bonus, or half as much on a successful one. After you use this ability you can take no actions and can't move for 1d4 rounds. You must complete a short or long rest before using this feature again.

Flame Thower
You can fire a stream of flame at your foes as an action. Each creature in a 15-foot cone must make Dexterity saving throw. A creature takes 4d6 fire damage on a failed save, and half as much damage on a successful one. You must complete a short or long rest before using this feature again.
Frost Missile
As an action, you may fire a Frost Missile. The missile has a range of 5 feet times your magitech level. Make a ranged attack. If it hits, the missile deals 2d8 points of Cold damage, and the target is can move only half its maximum speed until the beginning of your next turn.
Great Strength
Your armor assists you in physical exertion. While you are wearing your armor, increase your Strength score by 1, to a maximum of 20. In addition, your lifting and carrying capacity is doubled.

Your armor is so imposing that enemies cannot ignore your presence. Any space that you occupy blocks the line of sight and line of effect of any enemy attack on the same or lower level of elevation as you. Thus this gives objects and creatures total cover from effects that require a straight line of effect through your square. Friendly creatures that are familiar with your presence may target others through your square normally. Enemies on higher elevation then you ignore this effect, as do enemies that are larger then you.
Light Beams
As a bonus action, you may fire beams of light from your eyes. The light beams have a range of 5 times your magitech level (max 60 feet). Make a ranged attack. If it hits, it deals 2d4 points of Fire damage. After you use this ability you may not use it again for 1d4+1 rounds.

Mecha Transformation
Prerequisite: Power Fist, Transmutation
Your armor can become a towering machine of war. As an action, for 1 minute, your size triples in all dimensions, and your weight is multiplied by 27. This growth increases your size by two categories—from Medium to Huge, for example. You also has advantage on Strength checks and Strength saving throws. Your weapons do not grow to match your new size, but your Power Fist does. While the Power Fist is enlarged, your attacks with it deal double damage. In addition, your armor is Fortified as per the Transmutation feature while you are enlarged. You must complete a long rest before using this feature again.
Planar Adaption
Choose a plane of existence other than the Material Plane. You may move and act on that plane as if you were a native, and do not take penalties associated with being a non-native to this plane. This upgrade requires DM approval, as the cosmology of various game worlds vary dramatically.
Power Fist
Your armor has a Power Fist built into one of its arms, which is a one handed melee weapon that deals 1d8 bludgeoning damage, and cannot be disarmed. You are proficient with the Power Fist. You may hold or otherwise manipulate a weapon, shield, or other object on the same arm as your Power Fist, though you may not attack with your Power Fist and use an object or weapon held in that hand on the same turn.

Prerequisite: Speed
While you wear your armor, you gain a fly speed equal to your base movement speed. You may not take the Dash or Disengage actions while flying. Flying for more than 1 minute at a time drains your suit of power, after which you fall and can take no actions nor move for 1d4 rounds.
Prerequisite: Energy Shield, Damage Reduction
At the beginning of your turn, you heal a number of health points equal to your proficiency bonus if you have no more than half of your hit points left. You don’t gain this benefit if you have 0 hit points.

Repeating Crossbow
Your armor has a special masterwork repeating hand crossbow built into one of its arms, which is a ranged weapon that deals 1d6 piercing damage, has range 30/120 feet, cannot be disarmed, and possesses the Light weapon property. You are proficient with this weapon. You may hold or otherwise manipulate a weapon, shield, or other object on the same arm as your Repeating Crossbow (including a Power Fist). Your armor contains an extradimensional space which can store up to 100 bolts, and the repeating crossbow automatically loads any stored bolt of your choice automatically requiring no action.

Repulsor Rays
Prerequisite: Power Fist
You fire a number of rays equal to your proficiency bonus. Make a ranged attack for each ray. These rays each have a range equal to 5 feet times you magitech level. If hit, a creature takes 1d6 plus your Intelligence modifier force damage. In addition, creatures hit by rays must make a Strength saving throw with a DC equal to 5 times the number of rays that hit them. Each creature hit makes only 1 saving throw. On a failed save, a creature is pushed back 10 feet.

Your base speed increases by 10 feet.

Spider Climb
While you are in your armor, you gain the effects of spider climb.

Prerequisite: Speed
While you wear your armor, suffer no disadvantage on stealth checks due to it and you may add double your proficiency bonus to Dexterity (Stealth) checks. You may also cast invisibility. After using this, you cannot cast invisibility again until you complete a long rest.

Prerequisite: Power Fist
As an action, you can change the shape and form of your armor to assume the appearance of a normal set of clothing. You can also take an action to Fortify your armor for 1 minute. During this duration, you move at half speed in your armor, and have resistance to Bludgeoning, Piercing, and Slashing damage. After using this, you cannot Fortify your armor again until you complete a long rest.
You can cast web. You cannot use this feature again until you take a short or long rest.

Changelog: Renamed to Magitech Hero (previously Magitech Templar) at request of original author
6/8/15: Armored Sentience, Propulsion, and Explosive Energy now limit your movement as well as your actions for 1d4 rounds.
6/10/15: Powerfist is clarified to deal bludgeoning damage.
6/10/15: Armored Sentience, Propulsion, and Explosive Energy edited again to specify incapacitated.
11/9/15: Magitech Upgrades no longer specify fighter level - instead they use magitech level, which is equal to fighter level. This is to make the Upgrades more generic for use with other classes.


  1. I think the only worrisome ability might be the spamable frost missile. Ray of Frost might deal the same and more damage after level 5, but it reduces the speed by 10ft instead of half. Maybe include that the slowing effect can´t occur on the same target more than once per X rounds?

    Other than that, it looks really well done, and I´m looking forward how this will get branded as "omgwtfOP" when you post it to reddit someday ;)

    1. I'm confused by what you mean with the Frost Missile. The effect ends before your next turn begins, so you can't double-slow someone.

      And I agree that reddit will yell and scream over this one. I could care less; it's my favorite :)

    2. What I meant is that the Frost Missile slow is superior to the Ray of Frost slow, allowing you to kite creatures even if they dash. You can keep the slow applied every round (You use it on enemy, enemy is slowed on his turn, effects end on beginning of your turn, you use it on enemy again etc.) and halving it means that even with dashing most creatures won´t be able to reach you if you started from a distance. (Of course the usual restrictions apply to kiting like they always do, most importantly the shape of the battlefield, but I feel like this makes it somewhat too easy and abusable, might just be me tho)

    3. Actually, that strategy was an intended effect. Frost Missile can certainly be used round-after-round to hit an enemy for a paltry 2d6 and keep him slowed, barring a few things: the enemy breaks line of sight, you miss, or one of you runs out of room to run. I expect an enemy might spend their action to dash and move at a normal pace, and will probably have a decent chance at closing in on you, or breaking line of sight.

      Of course, this strategy isn't terribly optimal in most situations. 2d6 cold damage is pretty poor damage, especially at higher levels, so the ability to slow basically makes up for that.

    4. I don´t know, speaking from experience, ray of frost kiting is often somewhat potent, espescially against "dumb" enemies, or at least it´s potent in my group. I might just be very biased here since I flat out don´t like this strategy when it isn´t necesary, i.e. when you the group tries to kite everything in existence just because they can (smarter maybe, but makes things take way longer than intended). It´s also 2d8 frost damage in your version instead of 2d6, but that doesn´t matter much imo.

  2. Replies
    1. I am not. I'm merely converting one of his classes to 5th ed, because I love it and I thought it needed to see the new edition.

  3. Some of your greatest work yet. I'll look over it for any problems or balance issues. Thanks for making this.

    It seems a little weak at levels 15 or 17 and you might want to add the last few tech that you didn't add already.

  4. Can you explain the benefits of this armor being of "masterwork" quality if there are any?

    1. There is no mechanical benefit. It's mostly just described that way for flavor.

  5. Hey. I'm Person_Man. (Feel free to PM me at giantitp to confirm it. Though if you're a regular there, we probably know each other). Good to see people are still interested in my work. It's an interesting take on converting the class from 3.5-5E. Though I would say that I don't think that it fits well into a subclass. There's just too much stuff, and some abilities are just way more useful then others. When I get around to it, I'll probably just make a whole homebrew 5E class for it, with subclasses related to the various power armor tropes (tinkerer/engineer, mecha, knight, etc).

    Also, I'm not sure if you asked my permission to use my work. If you did, then by all means. (I honestly don't remember. People ask pseudo-regularly). I certainly grant it to pretty much everyone who asks. If not, then its polite to ask. My stuff is not the most original in the world, but I still put a lot of work into it.

    1. Hello there, Person_Man! I did not ask permission to convert this to 5th edition, but if I could kindly ask for your blessing now, I'd be appreciative. If you prefer we take this down until you have a crack at a conversion, we can do that too.

      You're right that this class doesn't fit snugly into an archetype and definitely deserves its own entire class. When we updated our campaign to 5th edition, we didn't want the resident Magitech Templar in the group to be left out, so we placed him in a temporary fighter position. From that point, making this a fighter subclass was a compromise for the table. Additionally, it's a whole lot easier to craft the mechanics of a unique subclass, rather than an entire new class, so we went with this option in the interest of time.

      This class actually inspired a number of other Magitech subclasses, most notably our take on the Renegade Mastermaker prestige class, which will release in a few days. I'd love to hear what you think on most of them.

    2. I don't care if you borrow or rewrite my 3.5 version for this. I just ask that you name it something else, because I am in the process of doing my own 5E conversion (for a completely new base class), and plan to post it when its done. Thanks.

  6. https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B9ePUWJ_GznBbXNfdDg5OGM4ems/view?usp=sharing
    I changed a lot of stuff and added new things. The class seemed weak at higher levels. You could give armor to other people and everyone gets the powers.
    Dispel magic should have a temporary effect on you.
    I changed lots of things hopefully for the better. Just a different version of it.
    Tell me what you think.

  7. 'You proficient with this weapon.'
    Under the repeating crossbow, I laughed pretty hard.

  8. Now that templar is out, how about instead of hero, which sounds a bit generic, what about a bit more flavorful names like, Magitech Knight, Magitech Centurion, Magitech Armiger, Magitech Dragoon, etc. there are so many options that are cooler then "hero."

  9. I think this class looks great, and I can't wait for a chance to use it! However, I have a question about the wording of the feature "Magitech Upgrades;" the pdf says one gets "upgrades" at 7th, 10th, 15th, and 18th level. How many upgrades does one get per level?

    1. This is one upgrade at each of these levels (two at 3rd level). I'll change the wording to be more precise.

  10. So my group recently started a game where one of the players has been playing the magitech hero and I'm DMing. They recently got to a point where they are rendered unconscious and taken to a holding area deprived of their equipment. My fighter was making a point that since his armor is both full plate mail and has all these fantastical magical elements woven into it that the possibility of the enemy being unable to remove him from the armor is good. He compared it to a fail safe system you might see in an Ironman suit where the armor couldn't be touched or removed without the users awareness. I'm willing to give him the point but was wanting to see how you viewed it before giving a final verdict.

    1. I think that's a pretty solid interpretation. When we played with a magitech hero at our table, we actually refluffed it to fit within manifest -- the armor was an elven artifact that the character was locked inside of. If someone was going to capture that character, I imagine that they would simply bind him with chains from head to toe.

    2. You've just given me an idea I may implement against him down the line about being stuck inside it (at least temporarily, wouldn't want to be too mean and keep his character locked up inside it forever).

      And thanks for the response. I'm gonna give it to him and like you said I'm just going to have them bind him with chains or maybe throw him in a pit once they figure out they can't get him out.