Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Kicking it (my take on the Monk class in D&D)

This is an idea I had two years ago (give or take). In my current RC campaign I don't allow the Mystic class. It doesn' fit into the setting. But if I were to do an asia themed setting, I would probably build a new class (or several) for that. Most of all, because everything you need is already in the core rules. You don't need new subsystems to run a new class (at least they shouldn't be the main thing). This post over at the Vaults of Pandius made me realize a simple truth: Wuxia is totally doable with the Magic User spell list!

Every spell in the list might be used to describe a mystic ability displayed as a kung fu move. You put some flavour into spell names and spell descriptions, the spell effects stay as they are. You might just take the MU as written and have your monk right there!

She uses Fly, for sure!
This is how I would do the Monk, though*:

  • casts and progresses like a Magic User
  • movement rate and AC progress like the special abilities for the Mystic suggest
  • Prime Requisite should be Wisdom, not Intelligence
  • 1d6 HP per level
  • saves like the MU
  • may use any weapon, but no armour

The Monk

Prime Requisites: Dexterity and Wisdom
Experience Bonus: 5% for DEX or WIS higher than 12, 10% for DEX and WIS higher than 12
Hit Dice: 1d6 per level up to 9th level. Starting with 10th level, +2 hit points per level, and Constitution adjustments no longer apply.

Maximum Level: 36 (and might go for immortality)
Armour: None, no shilds permitted
Weapon: Any
Combat Progression: like Cleric
Weapon Mastery: normal
Special Ablities: MU spells, AC bonus, increased Movement

Monk Experience Table

Level         XP   AC  Movement     Wuxia/level
                                  1   2   3   4   5   6   7   8   9
  1            0    9     120'    1
  2        2.500    8     130'    2
  3        5.000    7     140'    2   1
  4       10.000    6     150'    2   2  
  5       20.000    5     160'    2   2   1
  6       40.000    4     170'    2   2   2  
  7       80.000    3     180'    3   2   2   1
  8      160.000    2     190'    3   3   2   2  
  9      240.000    1     200'    3   3   3   2   1
 10      390.000    0     210'    3   3   3   3   2
 11      540.000   -1     220'    4   3   3   3   2   1
 12      690.000   -2     240'    4   4   4   3   2   1
 13      840.000   -3     260'    4   4   4   3   2   2
 14      990.000   -4     280'    4   4   4   4   3   2
 15    1.140.000   -5     300'    5   4   4   4   3   2   1
 16    1.290.000   -6     320'    5   5   5   4   3   2   2
 17    1.440.000   -6     320'    6   5   5   4   4   3   2
 18    1.590.000   -6     320'    6   5   5   4   4   3   2   1
 19    1.740.000   -6     320'    6   5   5   5   4   3   2   2
 20    1.890.000   -6     320'    6   5   5   5   4   4   3   2
 21    2.040.000   -6     320'    6   5   5   5   4   4   3   2   1
 22    2.190.000   -6     320'    6   6   5   5   5   4   3   2   2
 23    2.340.000   -6     320'    6   6   6   6   5   4   3   3   2
 24    2.490.000   -6     320'    7   7   6   6   5   5   4   3   2
 25    2.640.000   -6     320'    7   7   6   6   5   5   4   4   3
 26    2.790.000   -6     320'    7   7   7   6   6   5   5   4   3
 27    2.940.000   -6     320'    7   7   7   6   6   5   5   5   4
 28    3.090.000   -6     320'    8   8   7   6   6   6   6   5   4
 29    3.240.000   -6     320'    8   8   7   7   7   6   6   5   5
 30    3.390.000   -6     320'    8   8   8   7   7   7   6   6   5
 31    3.540.000   -6     320'    8   8   8   7   7   7   7   6   6
 32    3.690.000   -6     320'    9   8   8   8   8   7   7   7   6
 33    3.840.000   -6     320'    9   9   9   8   8   8   7   7   7
 34    3.990.000   -6     320'    9   9   9   9   8   8   8   8   7
 35    4.140.000   -6     320'    9   9   9   9   9   9   8   8   8
 36    4.390.000   -6     320'    9   9   9   9   9   9   9   9   9

Known Wuxia is like known spells for MUs.

Add different schools with different wuxia moves (other spell descriptions and/or spell restrictions) and you're good to go!

* For building classes I use this awesome article from breeyark.org. Check it out! 

2 comments:

  1. Oh snap. I've been thinking about monks and warrior gods wrong all this time - just take away the weapon restrictions and you're there. Magic missile? Check. Charm? Check. Shield might want a special effect - like it's Flurry-o-fists or Iron Sleeves or whatnot, but it's right in genre - as is the one-encounter-per-day MU rhythm. You say cleric-like fighting ability, I'd go with the fighter table, but that's a small distinction. Beautiful.

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  2. Thank you very much! I opted for the cleric combat progression, because the fighter progression would push the xp boundary for level 2 to 2600 xp (would have been my first choice, though).

    And this is exactly how I imagined Shield to work!

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