Way of the 4 Elements, Variant (5e Subclass)

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Way of the 4 Elements (Not Original Revised Version) (Modified)[edit]

Monk

Apostle of the Elements

When you choose this tradition at 3rd level, you learn magical disciplines that harness the power of the four elements. Some disciplines require you to spend ki points when you use them. You are considered a spellcaster for the purpose of attuning to magic items, and you learn the Elemental Attunement discipline as well as three elemental disciplines of your choice, which are detailed in the elemental disciplines sections below. You learn three additional elemental disciplines of your choice at 6th, 11th, and 17th level. Whenever you gain a level as a Monk, you may replace one or more elemental disciplines that you know with different disciplines that are of an appropriate level. You cannot replace the Elemental Attunement discipline in this manner.

Elemental Spellcasting

The Elemental Magic discipline allows you to learn casting disciplines that let you mimic the effects of spells, with some alterations: material components and arcane foci are not required to cast these spells, spells that can target a number of ally creatures as well as the caster can only target the caster (spells such as fly or gaseous form), and spells you cast are cast at their lowest level, unless otherwise stated. These casting disciplines are considered spells for the purpose of other spells and effects (spells like counterspell, items like the Ring of Spell Turning, and effects like the War Caster feat).

Once you reach 5th level in this class, you can spend additional ki points to increase the level of a casting discipline, provided that its corresponding spell has an enhanced effect at higher levels, as burning hands does. The spell's level increases by 1 for each additional ki point you spend. For example, if you are a 5th-level monk and use Sweeping Cinder Strike to cast burning hands, you can spend 2 ki points to cast it as a 2nd-level spell (the discipline's base cost of 1 ki point plus 1).

The maximum number of ki points you can spend on a discipline by 5th level is 3. This number increases to 4 at 9th level, 5 at 13th level, and 6 at 17th level.

Spellcasting Ability

Wisdom is your spellcasting ability for spells that reference your spellcasting ability. In addition, you use your Wisdom modifier when setting the spell save DC for a spell you cast, or make a spell attack with one.

  • Spell save DC = 8 + Proficiency bonus + Wisdom modifier
  • Spell Attack modifier = Proficiency bonus + Wisdom modifier

Elemental Disciplines[edit]

Elemental Attunement

You can use your action to briefly control elemental forces nearby, causing one of the following effects of your choice:

  • Create a harmless, instantaneous sensory effect related to air, earth, fire, or water, such as a shower of sparks, a puff of wind, a spray of light mist, or a gentle rumbling of stone.
  • Instantaneously light or snuff out a candle, a torch, or a small campfire.
  • Chill or warm up to 1 pound of nonliving material for up to 1 hour.
  • Cause earth, fire, water, or mist that can fit within a 1-foot cube to shape itself into a crude form you designate for 1 minute.
Elemental Spellcasting
Monk
Level
Casting
Discipline
Spell
Name
Ki Point
Cost
3rd Sweeping Cinder Strike Burning Hands 1
3rd Shape the Raincloud Create or Destroy Water 1
3rd Rush of the Gale Spirits Gust of Wind 1
3rd Fist of Four Thunders Thunderwave 1
6th Gong of the Summit Shatter 2
6th Clench of the North Wind Hold Person 2
6th Mote of the Sun Flaming Sphere 2
6th Red Dragon's Claws Scorching Ray 2
11th Eternal Mountain Defense Stoneskin 3
11th Flames of the Phoenix Fireball 3
11th Tears of the Frigid Glacier Sleet Storm 3
11th Sweeping Crosswinds Wind Wall 3
11th Shape of the Flowing River Control Water 4
11th River of Hungry Fire Wall of Fire 4
17th Breath of Winter Cone of Cold 4
17th Wave of Rolling Earth Wall of Stone 4


Elemental Magic

You learn one of the casting disciplines found on the Elemental Spellcasting list. If you are attuned to a magic item that lets you cast a spell that has a corresponding discipline on this list, you may spend a number of Ki points to cast it, instead of expending a charge/use of the magic item, even if you don't know that spell's corresponding discipline. When spending Ki points to cast a spell in this manner, you can only spend the number of Ki points required to cast the spell at its lowest level. You cannot cast a spell in this manner if the spell's minimum casting level is higher than the maximum number of Ki points you are allowed to spend on a discipline. If you cast a spell in this manner, you use your spell save DC, even if a spell save DC is provided by the magic item that the spell originates from. You may take this discipline multiple times, each time learning a new Casting Discipline. Each time you take this discipline, you may replace one or more of the Casting Disciplines you have learned with ones you have not yet learned, so long as your Monk level is of the level required to learn the discipline.

  • Spellfist Stance*: You have learned how to effortlessly flow between elemental and martial assault. At 11th level, so long as you have taken the Elemental Magic discipline, you gain this discipline for free. When you use a casting discipline, you can use your bonus action on the same turn to make an unarmed strike or perform your Flurry of Blows.
Note
The casting disciplines and corresponding spells offered on the Elemental Spellcasting list are adjustable. Altering the number of spells and the kinds of spells on the list is encouraged, as it could make the list more fitting for your campaign setting (for DMs), or help flesh out the kind of character you want your Monk to be (for players).


3rd Level Elemental Disciplines
  • Enduring Mountain Stance

When you use the Dodge action, you cannot be moved, pushed, grappled, frightened, or knocked prone against your will until the start of your next turn, even if magically compelled to do so. You must be standing on the ground to use this ability.

  • Hurricane Throw

You can treat simple thrown weapons as monk weapons for the purposes of Martial Arts. You may make attacks with simple thrown weapons in place of unarmed strikes when you use your Flurry of Blows ability.

  • Fangs of the Fire Snake

When you make an unarmed attack on your turn, you can choose to increase your melee attack range by 5 feet for that attack, and it deals fire damage instead of bludgeoning damage. If the attack hits, you can spend 1 ki point to deal an extra 1d10 fire damage. You may spend additional ki points, up to the maximum number allowed for your level, to increase the amount of fire damage dealt by this discipline by an extra 1d10 per ki point spent.

  • Fist of Unbroken Air

When you make an unarmed attack on your turn, you can choose to increase your melee attack range by 10 feet for that attack. If the attack hits, you can spend 1 ki point to force the target to make a Strength saving throw or be pushed 10 feet and knocked prone.

  • Golden Snake's Icy Path

Whenever you take the Dash action, until the end of your turn, for any movement you make along a surface you can leave a path of slippery ice. This ice is considered difficult terrain and lasts a number of rounds equal to your Wisdom modifier (minimum 1). Also, any creature other than you that enters a space covered in this ice must make a Dexterity saving throw, falling prone on a failed save. If this ice covers a space that would normally be hazardous (such as acid or lava), then that hazard is ignored by creatures standing on this ice, but the duration of this ice is reduced by half, rounded down (minimum 1). In addition this movement can be over water.

  • Water Whip

As a bonus action, you can spend 1 ki point to create a whip of water. A creature that you can see that is within 30 feet of you must make a Dexterity saving throw. On a failed save, the creature takes bludgeoning damage equal to 2 times your Martial Arts die + your Wisdom modifier, and you can either knock it prone or pull it up to 25 feet closer to you. On a successful save, the creature takes half as much damage, and you don't pull it or knock it prone. You may spend additional ki points, up to the maximum number allowed for your level, to increase the amount of bludgeoning damage dealt by this discipline by an extra 1d10 per ki point spent. You can't use this discipline the same turn you use a casting discipline.

  • Exploding Cinder Strike**

Whenever you make an attack granted by your Flurry of Blows ability, you may replace it with an explosive strike. Your target and all enemies adjacent to it must make a Dexterity saving throw. On a failed save, an effected creature takes fire damage equal to your level, or half as much on a successful save.

  • Flowing Water Stance

Whenever you make an attack granted by your Flurry of Blows ability, you may immediately move an additional 5 feet, and you may also force your target to make a Dexterity saving throw (even if you do not succeed on the attack). On a failed save, your target is pushed 5 feet in any direction of your choice. Neither movement provokes an attack of opportunity.


6th Level Elemental Disciplines
  • Leaf on the Wind

Your Slow Fall ability no longer requires a reaction to use, and may instead by used automatically so long as you are conscious and not incapacitated. When you use your Slow Fall ability, all falling damage is negated regardless of distance, and for every 5 feet, you fall you may glide for 5 feet in a horizontal direction. Additionally, when you use your Step of the Wind feature, you gain advantage on all Strength (Athletics) checks made to jump or Shove until the end of your turn.

  • Iron Tortoise Shield***

As a reaction, you can form a rock wall to block any incoming attack within 30 feet of you. This rock wall will decrease the damage of the attack by double your deflect missiles ability and will provide cover to anyone near it until you choose or the beginning of your next turn (whichever is sooner), and then it will crumble away.

  • Patient Badger Listens***

As a bonus action, you can spend 1 ki point to gain tremorsense with a range of 30 feet (you can detect everyone within the range and attack rolls against you can't have an advantage) and a burrow speed equal to half your walking speed for 1 minute (with Concentration). Your movement leaves behind a tunnel that remains for as long as this ability is active, and then collapses.

  • Eyes of Fire***

As a bonus action, you can spend 1 ki points to gain magical infravision with a range of 60 feet for 1 minute (with Concentration). This allows you to see any heat source in range, typically created by creatures or fire, revealing nothing else but the general size, location, and form of the heat source. Heat sources that would otherwise be invisible, hidden, obscured, or located on the other side of walls or barriers you could not normally see through are revealed with this ability. This ability cannot penetrate ice, snow, or water nor can it detect creatures that do not produce heat, such as undead or constructs.

  • One with the Tides***

As a bonus action, you can spend 2 ki points to gain underwater adaptations for 8 hours. While this ability is active and you are underwater, you can both breath and move normally, and you gain a swim speed equal to your walking speed, blindsight with a range of 60 feet, and resistance to Cold damage.

  • Shape the flowing water**

As an action, you can spend 1 ki point to choose an area of ice or water no larger than 60 feet on a side within 120 feet of you. You can change water to ice within the area and vice versa with a free action, and you can reshape ice in the area in any manner you choose. The extent of any such changes can't exceed half the area's largest dimension. Any damage delt with this ability (such as spikes of ice) is equal to double your Martial Arts die + your Wisdom modifier.


11th Level Elemental Disciplines
  • Ride the Wind

As a bonus action, you can spend 2 ki points to gain a fly speed equal to your walking speed for 1 minute (with Concentration).

  • Hungry Flames

Whenever you deal fire damage to a creature, that creature catches fire, if it has not already. A creature that has caught fire by this effect will continue to take fire damage equal to your Martial Arts die at the end of each of its turns for 1 minute. The fire can be extinguished through mundane means, such as water or a strong wind. A creature or an adjacent ally can also use an action to extinguish the flames affecting it, and creatures that were already on fire due to some other effect are immune to this effect.

  • Mending River

As an action, you can spend 3 ki points to target a creature that you can see within 30 ft and restore a number of its health points equal to 2d8 + your Wisdom modifier.



17th Level Elemental Disciplines
  • Wind Cloak**

As an action, you can spend 4 ki points to create a cloak of wind around you for 1 minute. While this ability is active, your Deflect Missiles ability no longer requires a reaction, and instead occurs automatically. You also do not need to spend additional ki points to make a ranged attack with a ranged weapon or piece of ammunition that you catch, which also occurs automatically if a ranged attack's damage is reduced to 0 through the use of your Deflect Missiles ability. If this discipline is used in coordination with the Iron Tortoise Shell discipline, you can spend 1 ki points as a free action to use your Deflect Missiles ability against any ranged or melee attack you see within 30 feet, but if you reduce an attack's damage to 0 through this particular usage of your Deflect Missiles ability, you cannot make a followup, ranged attack.

  • Freezing Stun Strike**

The duration of your Stunning Strike ability is increased to 1 minute. At the end of each of its turns, it target makes another Constitution saving throw. On a successful save, the effect ends on the target. This ability does not increase the duration of your Stunning Strike ability when it is used against a creature that has either resistance or immunity to Cold damage.

  • Changing the Tide**

If a creature you can see makes an attack against you and misses, you can spend 1 ki point and, as a reaction, have the missed attack's target change to another creature within range of the attacker's attack.

  • Avatar of the Elements

As an action, you can spend 4 ki points to gain multiple benefits for 1 minute. While this ability is active, you gain resistance to bludgeoning, piercing, slashing, cold, fire, lightning, and thunder damage. You also gain a burrow, fly, and swim speed equal to your land speed. Lastly, you can use any of the following abilities as a bonus action, action, or attack:

  • You create a small tremor on the ground in a 15-foot radius around you. Each creature in that area must make a Dexterity saving throw. On a failed save, a creature takes 2d10 bludgeoning damage and is knocked prone. On a successful save, the creature takes half as much damage and is not knock prone.
  • You create a line of fire 15 feet long and 5 feet wide that extends from you in a direction of your choice. Each creature in that line must make a Dexterity saving throw. A creature takes 4d10 points of fire damage on a failed save, and halve as much on a successful one.
  • You create a 30-foot cube of swirling wind centered on a point you can see within 60 feet. Each creature in that area must make a constitution saving throw. A creature takes 4d10 bludgeoning damage on a failed save, and half as much on a successful one. If a Large or smaller creature fails the save, that creature is also pushed up to 10 feet away from the center of the cube.
  • You create a 15-foot cone of ice shards extending from you in a direction of your choice. Each creature in the cone must make a Constitution saving throw. On a failed save, a creature takes 4d10 cold damage and has its speed halved until the start of your next turn. On a successful save, the creature takes half as much damage and doesn't have its speed halved.
  • Soul of the Iron Mountain

As an action, you can spend 4 ki points to gain multiple benefits for 1 minute. While this ability is active, you gain resistance to bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing damage, you can move across difficult terrain made of earth or stone without spending extra movement, you gain a burrow speed equal to your land speed, and you have advantage on ability checks and saving throws to avoid being knocked prone. Lastly, you can use the following ability as an action:

  • You create a localized earthquake on the ground in a 30-foot radius around you. Each creature in that area must make a Dexterity saving throw. On a failed save, a creature takes 5d10 bludgeoning damage and is knocked prone. On a successful save, the creature takes half as much damage and is not knocked prone.




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