Thursday, August 28, 2014

Warlocks in 5e Dungeons and Dragons

Warlocks, as a class, came about in 3.5 D&D in Complete Arcane. I found them to be a great class, utilizing both an effective ranged attack with their Eldritch Blast ability and filling a utility role with their Invocations. In 5e Dungeons & Dragons, they fill this role and more. Their utility and (somewhat) full casting keeps them from being solely a support role and their Pacts make them different enough that no two characters will be the same.
I feel that the Warlock really came into its own in 4e. When you ask most gamers the Tiefling and Warlock are one in the same to them. That's evidence enough for me that they were both very popular choices for PC's.
 But that can't be the only race that fits well with the class, and 5e shows this off quite well.

-The primary ability score for the 5e Warlock is Charisma and the recommended secondary ability is Constitution. This alone lends itself to many races, the half-elf, human (if you don't choose the variant ability package, or if you do and pick Chr and Con), and tiefling are just the ones who have the bonuses to the necessary abilities right out of the gate.

Many would say that Warlocks are all the same, like some players do about Fighters. This is another area where 5e Warlocks excel. I'll give just a few examples of how the class lends itself to a vast array of different characters.

-The main feature of the class: Pacts.
In the PHB we have the Blade Pact, the Chain Pact, and the Tome Pact (my personal favorite). I am hoping any future expansions will have more types of Pacts, but these three fill the bill nicely. There is enough variation once you decide who your pact is with to make your PC distinct from others.

-The Otherworldly Patrons are very different from each other as are the abilities and spells they grant:
The Archfey: the Lords and Ladies of Faerie

The Fiend: Demons lords, Archdevils, Yugoloths

The Great Old One: Cthulhu, Tharizdun
*Note: I plan to do a write-up of other Patrons, such as Vestiges and Dead Gods.

-The Pact Boon really sets each Warlock apart:
Pact of the Chain allows you to summon a familiar. The "Chain" is all about summoning and binding.

Pact of the Blade gives you an otherworldly weapon, similar to Stormbringer, but can take a form the Warlock or Patron desires, from a great sword of black hellish metal inscribed with devilish runes to a slender rapier covered in leaf motifs.

Pact of the Tome gives the Warlock a Book of Shadows. A mystical tome, a ironbound  book of hell-wrought design, or the scribbled journal of a raving lunatic.

That's just scratching the surface! The possibilities can be bottomless for Warlocks in 5e, and I didn't even go into feats, not to mention Spell choice and Invocation.
I hope to have a chance to play a Warlock in the 5e game I'm a part of now.
The possibilities are endless!

About Me

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I'm James and I'm a geek. I'm into Folk Metal, Nerdcore Hip-Hop, Punk, Irish Traditional and lots of music that makes me seem strange. Did I say I'm a geek, like full on D&D player for 20+ years, Star Wars/Trek, yeah, that stuff. I love Guinness, too, and I have the scars to prove it.