Alchemic Shifter (5e Class)

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Alchemic Shifter

Alchemic Shifters are renegade scientists who have pursued their goal of better living through chemistry. Whether by accident or after rigorous testing, Alchemic Shifters have unlocked a stronger, more powerful form. It comes at the cost of their intelligence, but once the battle is over, they can put their smarts to work to mend the survivors.

Alchemic Shifters are front line damage sponges that can take a huge beating. Unlike other defenders, an Alchemic Shifter benefits the most from having high Intelligence, as their form changing lets them add their Intelligence modifier to their Strength rolls.

Creating an Alchemic Shifter

Source: Heroes of the Storm

Quick Build

You can make an Alchemic Shifter quickly by following these suggestions. First, Intelligence should be your highest ability score, followed by Constitution. Second, choose the Scholar background. Third, choose any weapon.

Class Features

As a Alchemic Shifter you gain the following class features.

Hit Points

Hit Dice: 1d12 per Alchemic Shifter level
Hit Points at 1st Level: 12 + Constitution modifier
Hit Points at Higher Levels: 1d12 (or 7) + Constitution modifier per Alchemic Shifter level after 1st


Armor: light
Weapons: Simple weapons, axes, swords, crossbows, unarmed strikes
Tools: Alchemist's Supplies
Saving Throws: Constitution, Intelligence
Skills: Choose two from Atheletics, _SkillInsight, Intimidation, Investigation, History, Nature, Medicine


You start with the following equipment, in addition to the equipment granted by your background:

  • (a) A shortsword or (b) A crossbow or (c) Any simple weapon
  • (a) A dungeoneer's pack or (b) A scholar's pack
  • Alchemist's Supplies

Table: The Alchemic Shifter

Level Proficiency
Features Rage Points Unarmed Damage (Shifted)
1st +2 #Shifter Brew - 1d4
2nd +2 #Rage Powers 2 1d4
3rd +2 Archetype Bonus 3 1d4
4th +2 Ability Score Improvement, Archetype Rage Power 4 1d4
5th +3 #Extra Attack 5 1d6
6th +3 #Unstoppable Rage 6 1d6
7th +3 7 1d6
8th +3 Ability Score Improvement, Archetype Rage Power 8 1d6
9th +4 9 1d6
10th +4 #Improved Synergy, Archetype Bonus 10 1d6
11th +4 11 1d8
12th +4 Ability Score Improvement, Archetype Rage Power 12 1d8
13th +5 #Powerful Leap 13 1d8
14th +5 14 1d8
15th +5 Archetype Bonus 15 1d8
16th +5 Ability Score Improvement, #Overwhelming Might 16 1d8
17th +6 17 1d10
18th +6 #Primal Instincts 18 1d10
19th +6 Ability Score Improvement 19 1d10
20th +6 #Complete Synergy 20 1d10

Ability Score Increase

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. As normal, you can't increase an ability score above 20 using this feature.

Shifter Brew

In the past, an alchemic experiment permanently changed your physiology. While you cannot access the power it grants inherently, each time you perform a long rest you can easily brew and drink a potion that lets you tap into its power, with a formula that you are constantly modifying and improving on. As an action, you may transform into a shifted form, and you may shift back as an action after a minimum of 10 minutes and a maximum of 1 hour. You can do this a number of times equal to your Intelligence modifier before needing to brew another potion. Once a potion is brewed, you must drink it immediately, it does not keep.

When you are not in your shifted form, your current and maximum HP is halved, rounded down. If you were at 20 hit points out of 40 when you shift, your new hit point total will be 40 out of 80. When you shift back, your hit points halve similarly. This does not apply to maximum health gained from multiclassing.

While in your shifted form, you gain the following benefits and weaknesses:

  • You may use Intelligence instead of Strength to calculate jump distance
  • You gain disadvantage on Intelligence checks, but you add your Intelligence modifier to all Strength based rolls.
  • You gain the ability to wield Oversized weapons.
  • Your unarmed damage becomes 1d4. It improves to 1d6 at level 5, 1d8 at level 11, and 1d10 at level 17.
  • Your unarmored AC becomes equal to 8 + your Dexterity modifier + your Intelligence modifier
  • Shifter's clothes are made to stretch in size for both forms, but armor cannot be made in this way. If you shift while wearing non-magical armor, it breaks. Magical armor prevents you from shifting altogether.
  • When shifting to either form as an action, you immediately break free from non-magical restraints and grapples.
  • You gain proficiency in Strength saves, but lose proficiency in Intelligence saves.
  • If you fall to 0 HP or are knocked unconscious, you shift back to normal.

Rage Powers

Starting at 2nd level, you gain Rage points equal to your Alchemic Shifter level. You regain all Rage points after a long rest. Some Rage Powers require a saving throw to be made; the saving throw DC is 8 + your Proficiency bonus + your Intelligence.

  • Ignore Pain: As a reaction to taking damage, you can pay 1 rage to reduce the damage by 1d10 + your Intelligence modifier + your Shifter level.
  • Path of Destruction: As a bonus action, you can pay 1 rage. For the remainder of your turn, you ignore difficult terrain and destroy any obstructions such as tables, barricades, or thin wooden doors effortlessly.
  • Staggering Blow: When you make a successful melee attack, you can pay 2 rage. You knock the target back 15 feet, and they must make a Dexterity save or be knocked prone. The knockback distance is reduced by 5 feet for every size category larger than you the creature is.

Extra Attack

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

Unstoppable Rage

Starting at 6th level, your unarmed strikes in shifted form count as magical for the purpose of overcoming resistance and immunity to nonmagical attacks and damage.

Improved Synergy

Starting at 10th level, you no longer need to brew a potion to use your Shift. You no longer have a minimum duration for shifting.

Powerful Leap

Starting at 13th level, you no longer need to move 10 feet to make a running long jump in Shifted form, and your jump distance in all directions is tripled. Note that this does not affect your land speed, and your turn may still end mid-jump. If this happens, you simply continue your jump where you left off at the start of your next turn. You can use your reaction when you fall to reduce any falling damage you take by an amount equal to five times your Shifter level.

Overwhelming Might

Starting at 16h level, at the start of your turn, you can choose to make your attacks at an advantage this round. If you do so, all attacks made against you are at an advantage until the start of your next turn.

Primal Instincts

Starting at 18th level, while shifted, you are immune to Charmed and Frightened statuses.

Complete Synergy

At 20th level, you can now shift back and forth between your forms freely, without limit or duration.


Imposing Size

When you take this archetype at level 3, your shifted size is now considered to be Large. You may not wield Large weapons, but your lift, push, and carry capacities all double, and you gain an extra 5 ft of reach on melee weapons.

Brutish Rage

You gain the following Rage powers at the following levels:

  • Level 4 - Fastball Special: At the cost of 1 rage, you may throw a willing creature of your size class up to 20 feet, or a smaller creature up to 30 feet. Upon landing, they may make a melee attack as a reaction.
  • Level 8 - Ground Slam: As an action with the cost of 2 rage, you punch the ground. All enemies within 30 feet of you must make a Dexterity save, or take damage equal to your unarmed damage and be knocked prone.
  • Level 12 - Menacing Roar: As an action with the cost of 2 rage, you let out a loud roar. Target all creatures of your choice within 60 feet that can see you. They must make Wisdom saves or be knocked back 5 feet and be frightened of you for 1 minute. They can repeat this save at the start of their turn. Once this effect ends, targets are immune to the Fear aspect of this ability for 24 hours.
Iron Body

Starting at 10th level, when you are targeted by an Area of Effect ability with a Dexterity Save that would cause you to take half damage on a success, you may use Strength instead. If you do so, you take no damage on a success.

Oppressive Aura

Startng at 15th level, your physical strength manifests as a crushing presence that literally weighs down people near you. The ground within 15 feet around you is considered difficult terrain for all creatures of your choice.


<!-Introduce this class option here->


Starting when you take this archetype, when you are in your unshifted form, you may use a shift usage to change your appearance. This is treated as if you cast a Disguise Self spell, but you cannot alter your equipment, and the change is not an illusion. Do note that you do not get unlimited usages of this ability at Level 20.

Wild Rage

You gain the following Rage powers at the following levels:

  • Level 4 - Tail Strike: As a bonus action with the cost of 1 rage, you make an unarmed melee attack with a reach of 15 feet.
  • Level 8 - Quick Escape: At the cost of 1 rage, you may Dash and Disengage as a bonus action.
  • Level 12 - Disembowel: When you make a successful unarmed attack at advantage, you may pay 2 rage to increase the damage by three times your unarmed damage.

Starting at level 10, you no longer have disadvantage on Intelligence checks in your shifted form, and you can add your Intelligence modifier to Dexterity checks as well.


Starting at level 15, you may now use Shapechanger in your shifted form. You may now perfectly imitate the appearance of any humanoid of your size category when using Shapechanger, and if you are Shifted, you may disguise as a Large humanoid too. Do note that you are not treated as a Large creature if you disguise in this way.


Prerequisites. To qualify for multiclassing into the Alchemic Shifter class, you must have 15 Intelligence.

Proficiencies. When you multiclass into the Alchemic Shifter class, you gain the following proficiencies:

  • Alchemist's Supplies
  • Unarmed Strikes

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