Necromancer, 5th Variant (5e Class)
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A tall, lanky man outstretches his hands, calling forth the spirits of the dead to come to his aid. Tens upon tens of zombies break fresh soil to serve as his minions. A barfight experiences terror as a dwarf grabs his opponent and visibly drains the life from him. A gang of thieves leave a man to die bleeding, only to feel a searing hot pain when the blood collects itself into spears lodged in their spines. A man chases an orc around the corner of an alley to start a fight, but soon realizes he can no longer see, or breathe for that matter. He slowly suffocates to death as the orc watches from shadows.
Masters of Life and Death
Necromancers are infamous for the manipulation of life and toying with death, finding many ways to cheat it. Some seek to revive their loved ones, others may seek nigh infinite power, and others are just trying to survive. Whatever the case, they turned their backs on the gods, and will not receive any help from them.
The Curse of Undeath
Necromancers often face seclusion or rejection from society, given they bring decay and death to those around them. They are usually alone, and convening with a necromancer is often seen as shady business. Many people are under the delusion that necromancers can simply bring back the dead, and others say they’re simply a scam. Necromancers do not become such simply on a whim, but because they seek power, extended life, or the ability to preserve the lives of the ones they love even at the cost of their own.
Creating a Necromancer
Making a Necromancer requires a little bit of backstory, or at least why the person turned to the most occult magic of them all. Were they tricked into it? Did they intend to resurrect a loved one? Or was it simply a hunger for power? How much rejection have they faced? Did they turn their back on a religious order, or turn to an occult one?
- Quick Build
You can make a Necromancer quickly by following these suggestions. First, prioritize your Intelligence score, since this is your spellcasting ability. If you plan on going into Blood Mage, max out your Constitution score as best you can, since most abilities involve self-sacrifice. If you intend to go Umbramancer, choose Dexterity as your second best. If you wish to go War Monger, choose Charisma as your next-highest. Choose spare the dying and one other as your cantrips. Secondly, false life and inflict wounds would be good choices.
As a Necromancer you gain the following class features.
- Hit Points
Weapons: simple, shortswords, hand crossbows
Tools: one of your choice
Saving Throws: Intelligence, Constitution
Skills: choose two from Deception, Survival, Arcana, Religion, Nature, Stealth, and Medicine
You start with the following equipment, in addition to the equipment granted by your background:
- explorer's pack
- one weapon you are proficient in
- (a) an arcane focus or (b) one uncommon magical item
|Features||Cantrips Known||—Spell Slots per Spell Level—|
|1st||+2||Necrotic Branch, Undead Affinity, Subclass Trait||3||2||—||—||—||—||—||—||—||—|
|4th||+2||Ability Score Improvement, Subclass Trait||4||4||3||—||—||—||—||—||—||—|
|5th||+3||Turn To Undead||4||4||3||2||—||—||—||—||—||—|
|8th||+3||Ability Score Improvement||4||4||3||3||2||—||—||—||—||—|
|11th||+4||Subclass Trait, Turn To Undead(2)||5||4||3||3||3||2||1||—||—||—|
|12th||+4||Ability Score Improvement||5||4||3||3||3||2||1||—||—||—|
|16th||+5||Ability Score Improvement||5||4||3||3||3||2||1||1||1||—|
|18th||+6||Turn To Undead(3)||5||4||3||3||3||3||1||1||1||1|
|19th||+6||Ability Score Improvement||5||4||3||3||3||3||2||1||1||1|
As a student of arcane magic, you have a spellbook containing spells that show the first glimmerings of your true power.
At 1st level, you know three cantrips of your choice from the necromancer spell list. You learn additional cantrips of your choice at higher levels, as shown in the Cantrips Known column of the necromancer table.
At 1st level, you have a spellbook containing six 1st-level necromancer spells of your choice. Your spellbook is the repository of the Necromancer spells you know, except your cantrips, which are fixed in your mind.
- Preparing and Casting Spells
The Necromancer 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.
You prepare the list of necromancer spells that are available for you to cast. To do so, choose a number of necromancer spells from your spellbook equal to your Intelligence modifier + your necromancer level (minimum of one spell). The spells must be of a level for which you have spell slots.
For example, if you're a 3rd-level necromancer, you have four 1st-level and two 2nd-level spell slots. With an Intelligence of 16, your list of prepared spells can include six spells of 1st or 2nd level, in any combination, chosen from your spellbook. If you prepare the 1st-level spell magic missile, you can cast it using a 1st-level or a 2nd-level slot. Casting the spell doesn't remove it from your list of prepared spells.
You can change your list of prepared spells when you finish a long rest. Preparing a new list of necromancer spells requires time spent studying your spellbook and memorizing the incantations and gestures you must make to cast the spell: at least 1 minute per spell level for each spell on your list.
- Spellcasting Ability
Intelligence is your spellcasting ability for your necromancer spells, since you learn your spells through dedicated 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 necromancer 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
- Ritual Casting
You can cast a necromancer spell as a ritual if that spell has the ritual tag and you have the spell in your spellbook. You don’t need to have the spell prepared.
- Spellcasting Focus
You can use an arcane focus as a spellcasting focus for your necromancer spells.
- Learning Spells of 1st Level and Higher
Each time you gain a necromancer level, you can add two necromancer spells of your choice to your spellbook for free. Each of these spells must be of a level for which you have spell slots, as shown on the Necromancer table. On your adventures, you might find other spells that you can add to your spellbook.
When you begin Necromancy, your first choice must be determining your Necromancy Branch. This not only determines your role in the game, but what stats you should focus on, how you can interact with the undead, and sometimes grabbing spells from other classes.
Undead see you as one of their own, and will not attack you unless you’ve attacked them first. Additionally, any fire damage you deal instead becomes cold damage and radiant damage becomes necrotic damage.
Beginning when you select this school at 2nd level, the gold and time you must spend to copy a necromancy spell into your spellbook is halved.
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.
Turn To Undead
Starting at Level 5, if you find a corpse that has not begun decaying, you can take an action and summon that person as an undead minion. Its stats and un-weaponed attacks will be the same as a Ghoul in the Monster's Handbook. You can only use this once before a long rest. Undead minions last until exposed to daylight, which they will take 1d10 radiant damage per turn. This damage is reduced to 1d8 at level 12, and to 1d6 at level 18.
Starting at level 9, each round at the start of your turn, you gain temporary hit points equal to half your Intelligence modifier rounded up. These hit points can be transferred to undead under your power.
Starting at level 14, once per every five turns, you can attempt to bring an undead to your side. This will either require a Persuasion or Comprehension check of your choice. Additionally, you share a telepathic link with your constructs and they have their own separate turn. Undead under your power last for a minimum of 6 days or until re-death. Undead with CR 11 or higher will last until they drop to 0 hit points.
Starting at level 20, undead under your power cannot die due to radiant damage, daylight, fire, psychic damage, be incapacitated, or be unconscious. Their minimum AC is now 16.
Umbramancy is, quite literally, the darkest of the necromantic arts. It is, however, not considered the most evil. Umbramancers tend to lie among the thieves, tricksters, and such. Umbramancy, by definition, is the mastery of dark darker than normal darkness. Umbramancers tend to focus their powers into completely overwhelming their foes, who rarely see them coming until it’s too late.
- Bonus Proficiencies
You gain proficiency in light armor, Sleight of Hand, and Stealth.
- Dark Aura
Almost immediately, your shadow becomes thick with cruel power. Creatures within 60 feet of you are under the Darkness effect for as long as they are within that area. Light spells below level 5 cannot pierce this darkness, and you have darkvision for 60 feet. Both ranges increase by 15 feet at 5th, 10th, 15th, and 20th levels.
- Shadow Pool
Starting at 4th level, you have a pool of umbramancy abilities, the points of which equals your Necromancer level X 2, rounded up. All Umbra points are regained during a long rest, and half the maximum rounded up after a short rest. You can expend 2 Umbra points to add 1d8 necrotic damage to an attack. This changes to 1d10 at 8th level, 1d12 at 12th level, 2d8 at 16th level, and 2d10 at 20th level.
- Shadow Minions
Starting at 7th level , Undead that you summon or turn will be converted to Shadow Minions, which are effectively Wraiths. These minions are stored in your shadow, safe from harm unless the owner of the shadow is killed. Additionally, they have no damage resistances. When casting Create Undead, you can spend 5 Umbra points to summon a Shadow with a maximum of 20 HP, which also has no damage resistances. At 14th level you you can spend 10 Umbra points to summon a Shadow with a maximum of 20 HP, which has a resistance to necrotic and poison damage. At 20th level you you can spend 5 Umbra points to summon a Shadow with a maximum of 20 HP, which has a resistance to necrotic and poison damage or You can spend 10 Umbra points to summon a Shadow with a maximum of 40 HP, which has a resistance to necrotic and poison damage.
- Shadow Blade
Starting at 11th level, you can cast Spiritual weapon as a bonus action at the cost of 3 Umbra points and an additional 3 for every spell level higher it is cast at. The weapon deals necrotic damage that ignores resistance, treats immunity like resistance, absorption like immunity. At 20th level when this weapon deals creatures with no resistance to necrotic they gain vulnerability additionally ignore immunity and treat absorption like resistance.
- Zone of Shadows
Starting at 17th level, your Dark Aura begins to deal 2d4 necrotic damage to creatures on every turn they end while in that area. You can expend 5 Umbra points and a bonus action to extend both your dark aura and darkvision by 60 feet for two turns, dealing 4d8 necrotic damage on a failed Constitution saving throw against your spellcasting ability to creatures within that area every turn, and half damage upon success.
Known as the standard Necromancer, War Mongers are most known for wresting power from governments by sheer force and numbers. How do they get those numbers? War Mongers are masters of raising and turning the undead to their will, and some have even been mistaken as Liches because of this. (Warning: Significant stat sheet hassle!)
- Wrest Afterlife
If you kill a humanoid with necrotic damage, you can choose to resurrect them as an undead minion at a maximum of 10 HP. They now have the INT, WIS, and CHA scores of a Ghoul. Your total horde may not exceed a total challenge rating equal to your Necromancer levels X [CHA + INT]. Your total horde no long have the 24 hours rule and then will always be at your beck and command.
- Rotten Affinity
Starting at 4th level, you have mastered yourself in the dark arts so much that you become akin to your minions. You gain vulnerability to radiant and lightning damage, resistance to necrotic and poison damage, and do not need to eat or sleep. However, you can still be put to sleep by magic(unless stated otherwise by racial feats), but gain the benefits of a long rest after 2 hours of inactivity instead of 8, and a short rest after 1 hour of inactivity instead of 4.
- Intelligent Minions
When you reach 7th level, your minions, when resurrected or turned, roll a d20 for their Intelligence, Wisdom and Charisma scores with a maximum of 17 and a minimum of 4.
- Extra Summons
Starting at 11th level, when you cast Raise Dead or Animate Dead, you can roll a d10. On a 8-10, you gain an extra minion with identical stats. This can only be used once before a long rest.
- War Zombies
Starting at 17th level, your armies can gain proficiency with one armor type, one weapon, and gain one 1st-level spell with a recharge of 8 turns.
Of all the necromantic arts, none is more feared nor despised and forbidden than the Blood Mage. There has never been a good-hearted blood mage, or at least none that ended that way. This is mostly because of the contract they make from the very beginning, the one which essentially trades their life and soul for unbelievable power.
- Blood Pact
You create a pact with demons, offering your own blood as a special sacrifice. Choose one of the 4 options below. You can gain one additional option at 10th and 18th level.
Blood Weapon: As an action or bonus action, you summon a weapon with a weight of 10 lbs. or less, and cannot have the Reach feature. Summoning a weapon costs 10 HP. This weapon deals 3d6 at 4th level, 4d6 at 8, 5d6 at 12th, 6d6 at 16th level, and 7d6 at 20th level. The weapon counts as magical, and you can add your Intelligence modifier to both attack rolls and damage rolls with this weapon.
Blood Armor: As an action or bonus action, you can summon armor made of your own life. You sacrifice 15 HP, and gain an AC of 13+your Dexterity modifier+your Intelligence modifier. This armor lasts until you dismiss it as an action, or Dispel Magic is cast upon it.
Iron Blood: Your blood becomes incredibly thick, granting you immense endurance. You take 8 less damage from all damage types except psychic, radiant, and necrotic. You also gain immunity to poison damage. However, you gain 8 less hit points from any healing spell cast upon you.
Regenerator: Your foes will experience immense frustration when fighting you, for you heal for 4 + your Intelligence modifier hit points at the start of each turn. However, you lose proficiency in Constitution saving throws in exchange for either Strength or Dexterity(your choice)
- Blood Cloak
At level 4, your fiendish patrons grant you a strange white cloak, which acts as a pool of life for you to freely use. The cloak can store up to a total of 100 hit points. Whenever you deal slashing or piercing damage to a target within 20 ft. of you, their blood trails to your cloak and it gains hit points to its pool equal to half the damage you dealt. As an action, you can draw hit points from the cloak equal to your Necromancer level. When using a Blood Pact ability, you can instead draw hit points from this cloak. If you have the Regenerator pact, you can gain 10 additional hit points as a bonus action, which draws from the cloak’s pool.
- Blood Frenzy
Beginning at level 7, your blood pumps furiously, sending you into frenzies during battle. As a bonus action a number of times per short rest equal to your Constitution modifier(minimum of 1), you can go into a Blood Frenzy. You are effectively under the Haste spell's effect, and gain +10 to movement speed of all types, effectively gaining a minimum swim speed of 10 and a minimum flight speed of 10. Your jump distance is doubled, and you can take two extra Attack actions. You also add your Dexterity, Charisma, and Wisdom modifiers to your damage rolls for the duration, so long as they are not already added. However, you cannot attack with anything except unarmed strikes, or your Blood Weapon if you took it. This lasts for a number of rounds equal to your Charisma modifier. After this effect end, your Blood Pact are deactivated for two rounds.
- Blood Manipulation
Beginning at level 11, you can manipulate your blood into spells, taking hit points from your Blood Cloak or yourself. The damage dealt is magical piercing, magical slashing, magical bludgeoning, or poison damage which cannot be overridden by resistance. This also uses up a spell slot of that level. Guiding Bolt lv 1(piercing) = 16 HP Spiritual Weapon lv 2(based on weapon type) = 6 HP per turn. Call Lightning lv 3(Divvy the die into 3 parts: lightning, necrotic, fire) = 20 HP Lightning Bolt lv 4(same as Call Lightning) = 25 HP Arcane Hand lv 5(magical bludgeoning) = 16 HP per turn. Cannot move further than 20 feet from you. Cloudkill lv 6(overriding poison) = 22 HP per turn. Arcane Sword lv 7(magical slashing) = 27 HP per turn. Cannot move further than 20 feet from you. Tsunami lv 8(magical bludgeoning) = 80 HP.
- Blood of the Fiend
At 17th level, once per long rest, you can use your action for two rounds to call for your otherworldly patron to reside in your body. You take 6d10 necrotic damage. For 1 minute, you gain the following benefits:
- You gain +5 to all rolls involving Strength, Constitution, Dexterity, and Charisma.
- You gain a flying speed of 60 feet, a swimming speed of 60 ft., and a movement speed of 80 ft. as wings sprout from your back.
- Your AC is 15 + your Dexterity modifier + your Charisma modifier + your Intelligence modifier
- You add your Charisma, Wisdom, and Intelligence modifiers to attacks with spells.
- You can attack three times per turn, without a use of Adrenaline.
- You are immune to all conditions except prone, and have a 50% chance to see invisible enemies.
- You cannot regain health or drop below 10 hit points.
After the spell ends, you collapse unconscious for 3 hours and gain 3 levels of exhaustion, due to the amount of strain it puts on you.
Whilst many necromancers focus on power wielding and amassing damage dealing abilities, The Undying is the incarnation of undeath, and where all necrotic energies flood into the body and strengthen it.
- Durable Body
You gain proficiency in Athletics and acrobatics checks, as well as +10 hit point per Necromancer level you are.
Instead of sleeping, you go into a state exactly as if you were under the effects of the feign death spell. You are somewhat capable of determining your surroundings, but not to your normal level. Whilst in this “coma,” you have disadvantage on Perception checks, and cannot open your eyes unless you choose to wake up. You can go under these effects for 1 hour at a time, which will give the benefits of a long rest. However, you must return to this sleep within 7 hours, or take 1d20 necrotic damage per hour past. For all spells and effects, you are considered an undead.
- Cadaverous Resilience
Beginning at level 4, you gain an otherworldly level of perseverance in even the harshest environments. You do not require eating or drinking, and cannot die from exhaustion. A number of times per long rest equivalent to your Constitution modifier, you can choose to bolster yourself. When you do so, your movement speed is 0 for that turn, you gain temporary hit points equal to your Spell Attack Modifier, and you gain resistance to one chosen type of damage until your next turn. Instead of resistance, you can alternatively give yourself a +10 to any of your ability scores until your next turn.
- Adrenaline Rush
Beginning at level 7, your comatose state reverses and your blood pumps furiously, sending you into frenzies during battle. As a bonus action a number of times per short rest equal to your Constitution modifier(minimum of 1), you can go into an Adrenaline Rush. You are effectively under the Haste spell's effect, and gain +10 to movement speed of all types, effectively gaining a minimum swim speed of 10 and a minimum flight speed of 10. Your jump distance is doubled, and you can take an extra Attack action. You also add your Dexterity, Charisma, and Wisdom modifiers to your damage rolls for the duration, so long as they are not already added. However, you can only make unarmed strikes. This lasts for a number of rounds equal to your Charisma modifier.
- Madman's Downfall
At 11th level, your mind has become just as resilient as your body. You have resistance to both necrotic and psychic damage, and immunity to poison damage. You are proficient in wisdom saving throws. You also have advantage on either Intelligence or Wisdom throws, which you can switch between after a Comatose rest.
- Invulnerable Pallor
At 17th level, your inner necrotic energies have turned you into nothing short of a monster. Instead of casting a spell against an enemy that deals necrotic damage, you can cast it upon yourself. Doing so will, instead of damaging you, provide you with temporary hit points equal to half the damage rolled that decrease by 4 on each of your turns. Additionally, your Constitution score increases by 8.
Necromancer Spell List
You can learn any of the spells on the basic Wizard spell list (aside from divination) and necromancy spells from the cleric spell list.
Prerequisites. To qualify for multiclassing into the Necromancer class, you must meet these prerequisites: Intelligence of 15, and Constitution of 13.
Proficiencies. When you multiclass into the Necromancer class, you gain the following proficiencies: simple weapons, shortswords