Way of Heavenly Guidance Monk (v1)

Many wait to help guide mortals along the way of life. Many monks follow the ways set forth by an ideal or philosophy, or even an especially enlightened mortal teacher. But some turn to the heavens for guidance, calling upon the strength of will and wisdom of thought of the very gods themselves.

 

Read on for the enlightening truth of the Way of Heavenly Guidance Monk!

Monk Way of Heavenly Guidance v1

You can also find the PDF version here.

 

A monk of the Way of Heavenly Guidance rarely identifies themselves as such. Each monastery has its own name for its philosophy, based on the ideals of the god or gods it worships. But they all share the same strength and the same power. To those they fight, it matters little which god they worship. The only thing that matters is their fists and determination to see the gods’ will enacted righteously.

FEATURES:

  • Embrace your Inner Light and let it burn away the wicked who seek to hinder your journey.
  • Remember, the Well-Guided Strike hits harder than a thousand thousand lesser blows.
  • Give courage to your allies, and let them feel the might of being in the Presence of the Divine!
  • Finally, let yourself become an instrument of heaven’s wrath, a living embodiment of the Will of the Gods!

 

DESIGN NOTES:

  • This one actually comes from a suggestion! To be specific, the concept was for a monk that used a mechanic similar to the paladin’s Divine Smite. Thanks man! (Note to Self – next time, ask suggestion-maker if they want their name mentioned or not before making the ‘brew…)
  • So, initially, I wasn’t sure if the concept would work. I thought that monk had too much damage potential built into the base class for any additional damage to be added on in a subclass. Then I realized that all that would happen is the monk would run out of ki faster, so that’s what I went with. The basic Flurry of Blows is meant to be replaced entirely by The Well-Guided Strike, which deals less damage, but is more conveniently stacked onto a single attack roll.
  • That being said, just “running out of ki” might not be a limitation enough. If it isn’t, though, it’s an easy fix. I can just add a caveat specifying that The Well-Guided Strike and Flurry of Blows can’t be used on the same turn. Seems like an easy fix, and it would create more of an interesting interplay between using The Well-Guided Strike normally, but then switching to Flurry of Blows while crusader’s mantle is up for more chances at bonus damage.
  • Which brings me to my second concern, namely Presence of the Divine. It seems fine to me conceptually, but it’s a lot more out-of-sync with the Open-Palm monk feature I originally based it on. For some reason I had remembered sanctuary as a 2nd level spell, and crusader’s mantle as also being a 2nd level spell. In reality, santuary is 1st level and crusader’s mantle is 3rd. A bit more of a gap than I’d like, to be honest, but we’ll see how it does.
  • At the end of the day, I am satisfied with where this subclass has gone. It feels like it has enough of a thematic tie with the paladin to be truly worthy of the concept of the smite-monk, but it also seems mechanically divergent enough that it isn’t just the same as multiclassing. How much of that works out in practice, though, will remain to be seen.

 

Thanks for reading!

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