June 21, 2015

Hulk

Comments from the Pinky: This class has a feature similar to rage, called hulk mode. When you use this feature, your ability scores switch around, so you get stupid strong. That is, stupid and strong. While not hulking out, this class has basic spellcasting. You can also pursue any Barbarian Path (I recommend War Hulk).
     The basic gist of this class is that you start out as a smart, but weak individual. I mean 1d6 hit die. It's pitiful. Like a comatose magikarp, really. But in the heat of combat, you can turn green, get big, and...well, you've seen the movies. So, without further ado, I present...


Hulk

Those few unlucky ones to be afflicted by a dark, twisted transmutation magic tend to lead isolated lives. Their unpredictable and dangerous alter ego makes them a pariah, so they avoid cities whenever possible. Although they do tend to frequent libraries, as their lonely lifestyle has led them to confide in books. These tortured souls are often well learned and even know some magic.

Class Features

  Hit Dice: 1d6
  Hit Points at 1st level: 6 + your Constitution modifier
  Hit Points at higher levels: 1d6(or 4) + your Constitution modifier

  Proficiencies:
  • Armor: Light Armor, shields
  • Weapons: Simple melee weapons, simple ranged weapons
  • Tools: One artisan's kit, Forgery Kits, Thieve's Tools
  Saving Throws: Intelligence Wisdom
  Skills: Two from: Arcana, History, Insight, Investigation, Medicine, Perception, Religion, and Survival
  Equipment:
  • A dagger
  • (a) a light crossbow or (b) a shortbow
  • a quiver of (a) 20 bolts or (b) 20 arrows
  • Explorer's pack
  • (a) a scholar's pack or (b) one kit you're proficient in

Hulk Mode
At 1st level, some bizarre dark magic possesses you. Now you have the ability to use an action to transform into a mighty humanoid beast. When this happens any armor you are currently wearing is destroyed. Your size is now medium if it was not before, and your weight doubles. Unless you put on new armor, your armor class is now equal to 10 + your Constitution modifier + your Dexterity Modifier. You can use a shield and still gain this benefit.
     While in hulk form, you gain 3 + your Constitution modifier per hulk level in temporary hit points, and you revert back to your normal form when these run out.
     In addition to wardrobe malfunctions, your stats change. Ability scores swap like so:
  • Strength with Intelligence
  • Dexterity with Charisma
  • Constitution with Wisdom
     You also lose all skill, tool, and saving throw proficiencies. Instead, you gain proficiency in Athletics, Acrobatics, Intimidation, with martial melee weapons and in Strength and Constitution saving throws. All these changes are reverted on ending your Hulk Mode.
     You also gain the following benefits in Hulk Mode (if you’re not wearing heavy armor):
  • You gain advantage on Strength checks and saving throws
  • While making a melee attack, you can add a damage bonus that increases with level, as listed in the Hulk Damage column of the class table
  • You have resistance to bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing damage.
     You can’t cast spells or concentrate on them in Hulk Mode. While beginning Hulk Mode requires an action, ending it early requires only a bonus action. Left to its own course, Hulk Mode will last for a number of minutes equal to your level times 3. This ability can be used twice, and you regain expended uses when you finish a long rest.


Spellcasting
When you reach 2nd level, your search for knowledge of whatever is afflicting you has resulted in you learning simple magic. See chapter 10 of the Player’s Handbook for general rules regarding spellcasting and chapter 11 for the wizard spell list.
     Spell Slots. The class table shows how many spell slots you have to cast your spells of 1st level and higher. To cast one of these spells, you must expend a slot of the spell’s level or higher. You regain all expended spell slots when you finish a long rest.
     Spells Known of 1st-Level and Higher. You know two 1st-level spells of your choice from the wizard spell list. The Spells Known column of the class table shows when you learn more wizard spells of your choice. Each of these spells must be of a level for which you have spell slots, and must be from the abjuration, divination, illusion, or transmutation schools of magic. You may use any combination of spells from these schools. Additionally, when you gain a level in this class, you can choose one of the wizard spells you know and replace it with another spell from the wizard spell list.
     Spellcasting Ability. Intelligence is your spellcasting ability for your wizard spells, since you learn your spells through study and memorization. You use your Intelligence whenever a spell refers to your spellcasting ability. In addition, you use your Intelligence modifier when setting the saving throw DC for a wizard spell you cast and when making an attack roll with one.

Spell save DC = 8 + your proficiency bonus + your Intelligence modifier

Spell attack modifier = your proficiency bonus + your Intelligence modifier

Split Personality
At 2nd level, the Hulk has gained sentience and fights for control. When you take a critical hit in Hulk Mode, make a Wisdom saving throw (using your Hulk Mode stats), with a DC equal to 10 + your Hulk level divided by 2 (round down).
     On a successful save, the DC increases by 2. On a failed save, your alignment switches to its opposite, and you are unable to end Hulk Mode early by your own will. Your alignment and the DC reset when Hulk Mode ends.

Primal Path
Not every hulk is a mindless raging beast, although that does seem to be the trend. Some of them are just misunderstood. Some seek to commune with nature. They are green after all. Each hulk’s unique self is reflected in their primal path.  Any Barbarian primal path can be used, but any features or advantages of these paths, including stat improvements, are only available while in Hulk Mode.

Ability Score Improvement
When you reach 4th level, and again at 8th, 12th, 16th, and 19th level, you can increase one ability score of your choice by 2, or you can increase two ability scores of your choice by 1. You can’t increase an ability score above 20 using this feature.

Extra Attack
Beginning at 5th level, whenever you are in Hulk Mode, you can attack twice, instead of once, whenever you take the Attack action on your turn. 

Fast Movement
Starting at 5th level, your speed increases by 10 feet while you aren’t wearing heavy armor. This applies even when you are not in Hulk Mode.

Feral Instinct
By 7th level, you have become twitchy with fear. Your reflexes are like lightning. As such, you now get advantage on initiative rolls.
     Additionally, if you are surprised at the beginning of combat and you aren’t incapacitated, you can act normally and creatures don't get advantage on attacks against you if you use your reaction to start changing into hulk form, which will complete at the beginning of your turn. However, any damage dealt until the beginning of your turn is still applied to your normal form.

Brutal Critical
Beginning at 9th level, you can roll one additional weapon damage die when determining the extra damage for a critical hit with a melee attack while in Hulk Mode. This increases to two additional dice at 13th level and three additional dice at 17th level.

Resurrection
At 11th level, the hulk can take over when you’re on the brink of death. If you drop to 0 hit points while in normal form and don’t die outright, you automatically go into Hulk Mode, as long as all the uses haven't been expended. This will happen even against your will. When you change back, you drop to 1 hit point.

Large Size
At 15th level, the Hulk's might is manifesting itself in physical size. Your hulk form is now a large creature, and your hulk weight is triple that of your normal form. The Dungeon Master's Guide contains more information about creature sizes.

Indomitable Might
Beginning at 18th level, while in Hulk Mode, if your total for a Strength check is less than your Strength score, you can use that score in place of the total.

Primal Champion
At 20th level, begin to embrace your dark side, rather than fight it. While in Hulk Mode, your Strength and Constitution scores increase by 4.
Note from the Pinky: The War Hulk path has a feature that raises the Strength and Constitution cap to 30. You cannot exceed that cap even with the Primal Champion feature.



Art Credits:
Banner - 2013
Hulk (pg 1) - PReilly
Hulk (pg 4) - spidey-dude

Changelog: 6/25/15: Made clarifications, added Split Personality Feature
9/3/15: Split Personality only applies when you are already in Hulk Mode.
6/19/16: Hulk Mode: Wording changes and changes to Hulk proficiencies

30 comments:

  1. So, how would this work if you chose Rage Mage as your Primal Path?

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    1. Excellent question. The redundant spellcasting ability certainly makes things more complicated, but here's how it would work:

      When entering Hulk Mode, your spellcasting table is replaced with the Eldritch Knight spellcasting table. For example, a Hulk at 5th level can cast four 1st level spells, and two 2nd level spells. Upon transformation, you would normally lose the spellcasting ability, but Rage Mages can still cast three 1st level spells, so long as those spell slots were not expended while in normal form. You also gain cantrips in Hulk Mode by using this Path.

      The spells you cast still have to conform to the rules of Rage Mage. So any spells that require concentration are now useless.

      Hulk Damage replaces Rage Damage, obviously. And while in Hulk Mode, your spellcasting ability changes to Wisdom, which makes the Hulk/Rage Mage combination unusually weak since Hulks have low Wis.

      Spell Fury operates independent of the reckless attack feature, which isn't present in Hulk. So remember that using Spell Fury gives others advantage on attacks against you until your next turn.

      Arcane Resistance and Eldritch Storm operate normally, but are only available in Hulk Mode.

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  2. This is actually amazing. I feel like Hulk mode should be available more than twice per long rest, and I´m not sure why you didn´t just copy the amount of rages that a barbarian gets, really interested in your reasoning there

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    1. When you hulk out, you gain lots of HP. When that runs out, you can hulk again, and receive even more. If I had allowed Hulk Mode 6 times, like in barbarian, then the player would have effectively 6 times more HP than normal.
      So, for the sake of avoiding exploits, hulk mode is only allowed twice.

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    2. But still, this makes the character very weak over a long adventurng day... maybe get an additional use on 6-7, another on 13-15, and unlimited hulk mode+advantage on personality saving throw on 20th level?

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    3. I agree, you never know if you'll have more than 2 combats in a day.

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    4. I agree, you never know if you'll have more than 2 combats in a day.

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  3. Wouldnt the strength gain from the war hulk class feature be swapped into intelligence when you hulk out?.

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    1. No. Path Features are only applied in Hulk Mode. So the extra strength is added AFTER changing.

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  4. Should Resurrection specify that you can only do it if you have "hulk outs" left to spend? Or does it always happen? If so, that seems a little strong, basically allowing you to live until you are killed outright

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    1. You're right, it should specify. We're working on an edited version, and I'll make note of that.

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  5. Is hulk mode activated automatically when you fail the save in "split personality"? Also, does the hulk always have the opposite alignment of your normal character?

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    1. I've changed Split Personality to clarify that it only happens while you are in Hulk Mode. Also, the Hulk normally has an alignment to your character (IE, it won't slaughter innocent people if you normally won't, unless you fail a save in Split Personality.)

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    2. Okay, that makes much more sense. Thanks!

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  6. I saw few Marvel conctent around here, so I'm wonderin' are you gonna keep making these? They're awsome. Oh, and are you gonna make a symbiont class/subclass? If not, I'll just reflavour the Arachnoidman XD. You have a great talent for this.

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    1. Marvel inspired content* Sorry, my writing sucks when I'm on the phone

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  7. We recently shifted our group from 4e to 5e, starting over with new characters, and our DM was very welcoming to suggestions additional material. I'm playing Hulk with Alchemist in place of Sorcerer as the base. This leads to a more "Mr. Hyde" type science fellow rather than a magical version. It has been going well so far.

    In case anyone else finds this interesting, we kept only the "Natural Philosopher," "Bombs," "Bomb Formulae," and "Brew Potions" skills from the Alchemist class to replace the spell slots from Sorcerer.

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    1. That sounds like a really interesting mash up! Let us know how it plays!

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    2. We're only up to level 7 so far, but will be sure to let you know if there are any interesting developments.

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  8. How do you embed the PDF in the webpage? Is it a Blogger feature?

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    1. A little bit of Google Fu can help you out there. I made use of the Embed thing in Google Drive.

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  9. I'm just curious because it seems to limit the spellcaster half of the class a little, why doesn't Banner mode have cantrips? Also, any suggestions for spell selection. I've been playing warmage for weeks so you could say I'm used to a certain spell style.

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    1. Also, shouldn't Hulk mode give proficiency in strength and con saves?

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    2. Just noticed, it says you lose *advantage* on intelligence and wisdom saving throws. Is that correct, or meant to be proficiency?

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    3. The lack of cantrips is due to the fact that you can spend a very long time in Hulk mode, and we didn't want to outclass a wizard or sorcerer in this right. Admittedly, I haven;t looked at this class in several months, but I believe we has some math to back this up.

      The Int and Wis proficiency bit was only in error in the PDF (and it should be fixed now.) I've messed with the proficiency thing to be more efficient.

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  10. So, I know that the weight is changed when you enter hulk mode, but shouldn't there be a slight height increase as well(before the Large boost)?

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    1. And the weight increases don't reflect the size change. Triple weight only works if you ended up quite heavy in the random weight rolls. Human height: 4'8" + 2d10
      weight: 110lbs + (2d4*the 2d10 from the height) Average height roll is 5'7" and average weight roll is 166lbs. A hulk would seem much bigger than that, and even though this guy isn't THE Hulk until high level, 498 lbs for a big beefy large humanoid (minimum 9'6"ish, more like 10' tall) is not nearly enough. Maybe normal transformation multiplies height by 1.25 from the beginning, and triple weight and 5 or 6 times weight for Large size

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    2. Weight increase is certainly a mistake here -- it should be a result of the cubed law. (IE: double the radius of a sphere, and it's volume multiplies by 2^3 = 8 times.)

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    3. And the weight increases don't reflect the size change. Triple weight only works if you ended up quite heavy in the random weight rolls. Human height: 4'8" + 2d10
      weight: 110lbs + (2d4*the 2d10 from the height) Average height roll is 5'7" and average weight roll is 166lbs. A hulk would seem much bigger than that, and even though this guy isn't THE Hulk until high level, 498 lbs for a big beefy large humanoid (minimum 9'6"ish, more like 10' tall) is not nearly enough. Maybe normal transformation multiplies height by 1.25 from the beginning, and triple weight and 5 or 6 times weight for Large size

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  11. Interesting. If I choose your Path of Iron Primal Path, then by 15th level, the hulk can grow to size large, and shove creatures as if size gargantuan.

    If you can access a magical/ quickly donned set of heavy armor, you come under the effects of enlarge, become size huge, and can shove as if colossal. Holy-Moly. Imagine a gnome who calls himself Professor Cannonball.

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