After some initial playtesting and development, the Falleron Druid is about ready for wider review.
The core 5e Druid is a curious class that seems to have too much going on at once. Are you a shapeshifter? A caster of the natural world? Are you supposed to use those weapon and melee augment spells out of shapeshift? You have a lot of gameplay options baked in, but none of them seem to jive all that well with the rest of the toolkit. For the Falleron Druid, we broke down what all druids need as a general rule:
- Affinity to animals in a free animal familiar that grows in power as you level.
- Affinity to plants through the ability to travel through difficult terrain and gain immunity to many types of magical damage you might cause as a druid.
- A range of cantrips from the druid spell-list to do minor wonders like Druidcraft.
- The endgame immortality and ability to control nature.
We then took everything else out, including the spell slots, and put them into three separate archetypes:
- Circle of the Wild: A shapeshifter that fights in melee while summoning many, many animal friends. This archetype serves dual roles as a minion class and melee tank/dps class depending on what beast you transform. You are essentially a walking menagerie and should be shapeshifted most of the time. No other archetype gets shapeshifting, and your spell slots are somewhat lowered due to your increased melee power. Also: extra attack.
- Circle of Nature: A true druidic caster that takes the bonus spells of the natural attunements and builds off this concept. You begin with one natural attunement (for example, grasslands), and you may switch back to it at any time. You also gain the ability to change your attunement to the environment you are currently in, switching out your current bonus prepared spells with the new list. As you grow in power, your options with this attunement to nature bonus increase.
- Circle of the Warden: As the Falleron Ranger dropped the Ranger Spells from its toolkit and become a non-magical class, this spec focuses on casting while in melee and using these skills. Built around using wooden weapons and the flavor of shillelagh, you are a master of bending the wood and trees around you to your will, gaining powerful abilities to switch roles and grow your own weapons, shields and armor. Many ranger-exclusive spells are on your spell list you can choose to prepare, with the more powerful spells unlocking as you level in the archetypes.
After some playtesting, each feels unique and improved from the core 5e druid while serving a more distinct role in the party. We also feel most of these abilities are within the RAW power-levels of other classes. Feel free to shoot us an email with any comments or questions you have about the build!
And now: Enjoy the Falleron Druid:
- Hit Points
- Hit Dice: 1d8 per druid level
- Hit Points at 1st Level: 8 + your Constitution modifier
- Hit Points at Higher Levels: 1d8 (or 5) + your Constitution modifier per druid level after 1st
Starting Proficiencies: You are proficient with the following items, in addition to any proficiencies provided by your race or background.
- Armor: Light Armor, Medium Armor, shields (druids will not wear armor or use shields made of metal)
- Weapons: clubs, daggers, darts, javelins, maces, quarterstaffs, scimitars, sickles, slings, spears, greatclubs, shortbows, or longbows
- Tools: Herbalism kit
Skills: Choose two from Arcana, Animal Handling, Insight, Medicine, Nature, Perception, Religion, and Survival
You start with the following items, plus anything provided by your background
- (a) a wooden Shield or (b) any simple weapon
- (a) a Scimitar or (b) any simple melee weapon
- Leather Armor, an Explorer’s Pack, and a druidic focus
Alternatively, you may start with 2d4 x 10 gp to buy your own Equipment.
|Level||Prof Bonus||Features||Cantrips Known|
|1st||+2||Druidic, Cantrips, Friend of Nature||1|
|2nd||+2||Spellcasting, Druid Circle feature||2|
|4th||+2||Ability Score Improvement||3|
|6th||+3||Druid Circle feature||3|
|8th||+3||Ability Score Improvement||3|
|9th||+4||Improved Friend Of Nature||4|
|10th||+4||Druid Circle feature||4|
|12th||+4||Ability Score Improvement||4|
|14th||+5||Druid Circle feature||4|
|16th||+5||Ability Score Improvement||4|
|19th||+6||Ability Score Improvement||4|
You know Druidic, the secret Language of druids. You can speak the Language and use it to leave hidden messages. You and others who know this Language automatically spot such a Message. Others spot the message’s presence with a successful DC 15 Wisdom (Perception) check but can’t decipher it without magic.
Friend of Nature
At 1st level, you gain a connection with the nature strong enough to draw an ally to you. You gain the service of an Animal Friend, a beast that has befriended you and serves as your loyal companion. This animal may be a bat, cat, crab, frog (toad), hawk, lizard, octopus, owl, poisonous snake, fish (quipper), rat, raven, sea-horse, spider, or weasel. You may work with your GM to determine if another animal or plant creature with equivalent stats may be chosen instead. Whenever you gain a level in Druid, your animal companions gain a total bonus to their HP equal to your Wisdom modifier.
Your Animal Friend acts independently of you, but it always obeys your commands. You and it share a deep understanding, and can communicate through voice and gesture with perfect understanding so long as you can both see and hear each other. In combat, it rolls its own initiative and acts on its own turn. An Animal Friend can’t attack, but it can take other actions as normal. When the Animal Friend drops to 0 hit points, it dies.
As an action, you can temporarily dismiss your familiar. It disappears into the surrounding area where it awaits your summons. Alternatively, you can dismiss it forever. As an action while it is temporarily dismissed, you can cause it to reappear in any unoccupied space within 30 feet of you.
Should your Animal Friend die, or should you have dismissed it forever, you may, as a ritual taking one hour, summon a new animal friend to take its place. You may select a new animal to be your friend. Alternatively, you may extend this ritual to two hours and call upon the spirits of nature to regenerate your dead Animal Companion. With both options, it appears at full health in your arms. You can’t have more than one Animal Companion at a time.
Finally, when you cast a spell with a range of touch, your familiar can deliver the spell as if it had cast the spell. Your familiar must be within 100 feet of you, and it must use its reaction to deliver the spell when you cast it. If the spell requires an attack roll, you use your attack modifier for the roll.
At 1st level, you know two Cantrips of your choice from the druid spell list. You learn additional druid Cantrips of your choice at higher levels, as shown in the Cantrips Known column of the Druid table.
At 2nd level, you choose to identify with a circle of druids, such as the Circle of the Wild, or Circle of Nature. Your choice grants you features at 2nd level and again at 6th, 10th, and 14th level.
At 2nd level, you can the ability to draw on the divine essence of nature itself, you can cast Spells to shape that essence to your will. See chapter 10 for the general rules of spellcasting and chapter 11 for the druid spell list.
Preparing and Casting Spells
Your Druid Circle table shows how many Spell Slots you have to cast your Spells of 1st level and higher. To cast one of these druid 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 druid Spells that are available for you to cast, choosing from the druid spell list. When you do so, choose a number of druid Spells equal to your Wisdom modifier + your druid level (minimum of one spell). The Spells must be of a level for which you have Spell Slots. Casting the spell doesn’t remove it from your list of prepared Spells.
You can also change your list of prepared Spells when you finish a Long Rest. Preparing a new list of druid Spells requires time spent in prayer and meditation: at least 1 minute per Spell Level for each spell on your list.
Wisdom is your spellcasting ability for your druid Spells, since your magic draws upon your devotion and Attunement to nature. You use your Wisdom whenever a spell refers to your spellcasting ability. In addition, you use your Wisdom modifier when Setting the saving throw DC for a druid spell you cast and when Making an Attack roll with one.
Spell save DC = 8 + your proficiency bonus + your Wisdom modifier
Spell Attack modifier = your proficiency bonus + your Wisdom modifier
You can cast a druid spell as a ritual if that spell has the ritual tag and you have the spell prepared.
You can use a druidic focus (see “Equipment”) as a spellcasting focus for your druid Spells.
Ability Score Improvement
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.
Starting at 5th level, moving through non-magical difficult terrain, or magical difficult terrain you create, with no extra movement costs. You can also pass through non-magical plants, or magical effects you create, without being slowed by them and without taking damage from them if they have thorns, spines, or a similar hazard.
Improved Friend of Nature
Starting at 9th level, your connection with your Animal Friend grows stronger. While your Animal Friend is within 100 feet of you, you can communicate with it telepathically. As an action, you can see through your familiar’s eyes and hear what it hears until the start of your next turn, gaining the benefits of any special senses that the familiar has. During this time, you are deaf and blind with regard to your own senses.
Starting at 18th level, the primal magic that you wield causes you to age more slowly. For every 10 years that pass, your body ages only 1 year.
At 20th level, you have achieved a level of connection with the wild that is unparalleled. You may use any level spell slot to cast the spell: Guardian of Nature and its duration increases to 10 minutes. Additionally, you can ignore the verbal and somatic Components of your druid Spells, as well as any material Components that lack a cost and aren’t consumed by a spell.
Falleron Druid Archetypes:
Archetype: Circle of the Wild
Druid: Circle of the Wild Table
|Wild Shape Uses||Spell Slots per Spell Level|
|Druid Level||Wild Shapes Per Day||Wild Shape CR||Limitations||Animal Friend Attack & Bonus HP Dice||1st||2nd||3rd||4th||5th|
|2||2||1/2||No flying or swimming speed||–||2|
|3||2||1/2||No flying or swimming speed||–||3|
|4||2||1||No flying speed||1d4||3|
|5||2||1||No flying speed||1d4||4||2|
|6||3||1||No flying speed||1d4||4||2|
|7||3||1||No flying speed||1d4||4||3|
Starting at 2nd level, You learn to magically assume the shape of a beast that you have seen before as an action. Your druid level determines the Beasts you can transform into, as shown in the Druid: Circle of the Wild table. At 2nd level, for example, you can transform into any beast that has a challenge rating of 1/2 or lower that doesn’t have a flying or swimming speed. You gain a number of Wild Shapes per day as shown on the Druid: Circle of the Wild table. These replenish on a short or long rest.
You can stay in a beast shape for a number of hours equal to half your druid level (rounded down). You then revert to your normal form unless you expend another use of this feature. You can revert to your normal form earlier by using a Bonus Action or a Reaction. You automatically revert if you fall Unconscious, drop to 0 hit points, or die.
While you are transformed, the following rules apply:
- Your game Statistics are replaced by the Statistics of the beast, but you retain your alignment, personality, and Intelligence, Wisdom, and Charisma scores. You also retain all of your skill and saving throw proficiencies, in addition to gaining those of the creature. If the creature has the same proficiency as you and the bonus in its stat block is higher than yours, use the creature’s bonus instead of yours. If the creature has any legendary or lair actions, you can’t use them.
- When you transform, you assume the beast’s Hit Points and Hit Dice. When you revert to your normal form, you return to the number of hit points you had before you transformed. However, if you revert as a result of Dropping to 0 Hit Points, any excess damage carries over to your normal form. For example, if you take 10 damage in animal form and have only 1 hit point left, you revert and take 9 damage. As long as the excess damage doesn’t reduce your normal form to 0 hit points, you aren’t knocked Unconscious.
- You can’t cast Spells, and your ability to speak or take any action that requires hands is limited to the capabilities of your beast form. Transforming doesn’t break your Concentration on a spell you’ve already cast, however, or prevent you from taking actions that are part of a spell, such as Call Lightning, that you’ve already cast.
- You retain the benefit of any features from your class, race, or other source and can use them if the new form is physically capable of doing so. However, you can’t use any of your Special senses, such as Darkvision, unless your new form also has that sense.
- You choose whether your Equipment falls to the ground in your space, merges into your new form, or is worn by it. Worn Equipment functions as normal, but the DM decides whether it is practical for the new form to wear a piece of Equipment, based on the creature’s shape and size. Your Equipment doesn’t change size or shape to match the new form, and any Equipment that the new form can’t wear must either fall to the ground or merge with it. Equipment that merges with the form has no effect until you leave the form.
At 2nd level, your beast forms in wild shape retain some of your magical potency. Your attacks in wild shapes are considered magical for the purpose of overcoming resistance and immunity to non-magical attacks and damage. In addition, while in Wild Shape you gain the ability to communicate in the language of beasts through their natural noises and motions. Most beasts are unintelligent creatures and lack the knowledge or understanding to convey complex or sophisticated concepts. This ability does not convey friendship with beasts, but you can combine this skill with gifts and favors as you would any other NPC. At 2nd level, may cast a certain set of spells while in wild shape. You must have access to the appropriate level of spell slots in order to do so. You may consider these spells as prepared whenever you are in Wild Shape.
- First level: Animal Friendship, Speak with Animals
- Second level: Animal Messenger, Beast Sense, Locate Plants or Animals
- Third Level: Conjure Animals
- Fourth Level: Conjure Woodland Beings
- Fifth Level: Commune with Nature
Creatures conjured by your spells are always local beasts, rather than fey spirits. Your conjured creatures share a turn(s) with your Animal Friend, but may take their attacks, movements, and actions independently.
The Beast Within
At 4th level, you gain the ability to use Wild Shape on your turn as a bonus action,
rather than as an action. Additionally, while you are transformed by Wild Shape, you can use a bonus action to expend one spell slot to regain 1d8 hit points per level of the spell slot expended.
At 6th level, you gain the ability to make two attacks whenever you take the attack action on your turn. While under the effects of Wild Shape you may make any combination of attacks available to your form in this fashion.
Friends with Benefits
Starting at 10th level, Beasts conjured by your spells are more resilient than normal. Conjured beasts you summon appear with two extra hit points per hit die the creature has. In addition, conjured beasts you summon treat their attacks as magical for the purpose of overcoming resistance and immunity to non-magical attacks and damage.
Beginning at 14th level, the bestial summons you have befriended protect you when you are vulnerable. If you are reduced to 0 hit points or are incapacitated against your will, as a free action you can immediately cast Conjure Animals using your highest remaining spell-slot. If no spell slots are remaining, this spell casts at 3rd level. The conjured beasts appear within 20 feet of you. If they receive no commands from you, they protect you from harm and attack your foes. The spell lasts for 1 hour. Once you use this feature, you can’t use it again until you finish a long rest.
Archetype: Circle of Nature
Table: Circle of Nature
|Level||Attunement Charges||Spell Slots per Spell Level|
Starting at 2nd level, you can use your Connection to Nature action to attune yourself to the spirits of the land. At 3rd, 5th, 7th, and 9th level you gain access to circle spells attuned
to the land where you became a druid. Choose that land—arctic, coast, desert, forest, grassland, mountain, swamp, or Underdark—and consult the associated list of spells. As a ritual taking 10 minutes, you may also commune with the location you are presently at to switch your attunement to the closest land type to your present location. You may switch between your native attunement and attuning to the local environment by spending an attunement charge and completing a ritual taking ten minutes. During this ritual you must remain in a deep meditation and may not be moved or disturbed.
Your attunement charges replenish at the end of a long rest.
Whenever you would switch attunements, you switch out your bonus prepared spells for those in the new attunement. If your attunement gives you access to a spell that doesn’t appear on the druid spell list, the spell becomes a druid spell for you while you are so attuned.
When attuning to the local environment, select the option that is the most relevant to your current location. If you are in an Urban or unusual environment, consult with your GM about which option makes the most sense (for example: the grasslands that the city is built upon, or the Underdark when in a deep crypt, etc.).
As you attune to the chosen environment, your physical form may shift to adapt to the attuned environment. Whenever you shift attunements you may gain the effects of the Alter Self spell.
Druid Level Circle Spells
3rd hold person, spike growth
5th sleet storm, slow
7th freedom of movement, ice storm
9th commune with nature, cone of cold
Druid Level Circle Spells
3rd mirror image, misty step
5th water breathing, water walk
7th control water, freedom of movement
9th conjure elemental, scrying
Druid Level Circle Spells
3rd blur, silence
5th create food and water, protection from energy
7th blight, hallucinatory terrain
9th insect plague, wall of stone
Druid Level Circle Spells
3rd barkskin, spider climb
5th call lightning, plant growth
7th divination, freedom of movement
9th commune with nature, tree stride
Druid Level Circle Spells
3rd invisibility, pass without trace
5th daylight, haste
7th divination, freedom of movement
9th dream, insect plague
Druid Level Circle Spells
3rd spider climb, spike growth
5th lightning bolt, meld into stone
7th stone shape, stoneskin
9th passwall, wall of stone
Druid Level Circle Spells
3rd darkness, melf’s-acid-arrow
5th water walk, stinking cloud
7th freedom of movement, locate creature
9th insect plague, scrying
3rd spider climb, web
5th gaseous form, stinking clouds
7th greater invisibility, stone shape
9th cloudkill, insect plague
Starting at 2nd level, you can regain some of your magical energy by spending an attunement charge to draw upon the latent magic in the land around you. During a short rest, you choose expended spell slots to recover. The spell slots can have a combined level that is equal to or less than half your druid level (rounded up), and none of the slots can be 6th level or higher. For example, when you are a 4th-level druid, you can recover up to two levels worth of spell slots. You can recover either a 2nd-level slot or two 1st-level slots.
At 4th level, your Animal Friend gains some of your magical attunement. Whenever your attune to an environment, your Animal Friend morphs to become adapted to that environment. The creature’s form morphs to become a phenotype appropriate for the environment (for example, gaining a thick, white coat for Arctic) gaining +10 on stealth checks while in that environment. In addition, it gain a bonus adaptability based upon the environment it is attuned to:
- Arctic: Cold Resistance
- Coast: Waterbreathing, +10 to swimming speed.
- Desert: Fire Resistance
- Forest: Gain the effects of Barkskin
- Grassland: double movement speed
- Mountain: Thunder Resistance
- Swamp: Immunity to Disease and Poison
- Underdark: Darkvision
Attuned to the Wild
At 6th level, your attunement to the surrounding area provides you a number of advantages as you sense the surrounding area. When you spend an attunement charge to convert to the local environment, or use the Natural Recovery feature while attuned to the local environment, you may gain the effects of the Clairvoyance spell on the location you spend the attunement charge at. This effect lasts for up to 1 hour. You also gain a bonus equal to half your druid level on survival and stealth checks while attuned to the local environment.
When you reach 10th level, your connection with nature is so strong that you are always connected to the world around you. You may attune to the local environment as a bonus action without spending an attunement charge. You also gain the same bonus adaptability as your Animal Friend. In addition, as a ritual over a short rest you may replace your native attunement with that of your current environment.
Starting at 14th level, your attunement to the spirits of the land allow you to magically shift an area from one biome to another for a short period of time. Once per day, when you attune to a biome that is not that of the local area you may to convert all terrain within 60ft of you to become the chosen Biome. Structures and landscapes are not altered in shape, but their composition becomes appropriate to the chosen biome (for example, trees might change type based upon the biome, ground may shift from grass to desert sand, a city street might become made of ice or covered in snow, or a field might become dark and barren aside from occasional mushrooms if Underdark is chosen, etc).
When this occurs, creatures that do not share attunement to the biome treat this area as difficult terrain. When cast upon targets within this area, your spells granted by the Nature Attunement have advantage on spell attack rolls and impose disadvantage on those who must make saving throws against them.
This alteration of the environment is temporary in nature, and lasts for one hour before magically reverting to the original terrain. Any changes made to the environment during the effects of this spell carry over to the original biome once reverted (for example, a rock transformed to ice and then melted remains a melted rock).
Archetype: Circle of the Warden
Table: Circle of the Warden
|Level||Weald Attunement Charges||Spell Slots per Spell Level|
Wield the Weald
When you adopt this circle at 2nd level, your connection to the wild allows you to grow a weapon, shield, or breastplate to perfectly match your needs in combat. As a ritual taking 10 minutes, you can entice a source of living wood to grow a shield, breastplate, club, javelin, pike, quarterstaff, greatclub, shortbow, or longbow that fits your body perfectly. These grown items are of an unusually strong wooden material while in your possession, and resist burning, weathering, or physical and fire damage to a similar degree to common metals. The grown weapon, shield, or armor also becomes magical, if it isn’t already. These weapons are all of one piece of living material, organically grown, and occasionally have buds, flowers, or leaves sprout from them. You may choose their shape and design as you complete the ritual.
You also gain a bonus based upon the type of Weald you are equipped with as the power of nature courses through your weapon, shield, or armor and into your being:
- Breastplate: Your wooden breastplate senses danger and will gently prod you when action is needed. You gain a bonus to initiative equal to your Wisdom Modifier (minimum of +1).
- Shield: Whenever you take damage from a source within 5ft of you, your shield grows thorns and stabs the attacker for 1/3rd your druid level in damage (rounded down, minimum of 1).
- Melee Weapon: Your weapon cannot be disarmed against your will as your weapon winds around your hand until it needs to be released. When you throw your weapon, it has the returning property as tiny vines attached to your wrist extend out with the thrown weapon to return it to you.
- Ranged Weapon: Your weapon grows wooden ammunition as you fire, which has similar properties to your weapon until after they deal damage. This ammunition is considered magical.
Weapons produced in this fashion are valid targets of the spell Shillelagh. If their base damage is above a d8, you may choose to keep their damage as the base value instead.
Should these items leave your possession, they retain their shape but become made out of a common, unseasoned wood that becomes brittle under use and will break upon striking a hard object, taking a substantial blow as a branch of a common tree might. It also becomes flammable.
At 2nd level you also gain a Weald Attunement pool you may use to alter your living weapon or armor. As a bonus action, you may spend an attunement charge to cause your grown item to transform from its current form into one of the other possible forms. The item grows around you, and is immediately equipped, if it wasn’t already. You regain your Weald Attunement pool at the end of each short or long rest.
At 2nd level you may only have one Weald Weapon, Breastplate, or Shield attuned at any time. This increases to two Weald Weapons or armor at level 8, and to three at level 14.
Finally, your connection to nature allows you to convert an existing weapon, shield, or breastplate into a wooden version when you have a source of living wood nearby. As a ritual over a long rest, you may have a source of living wood grow around another weapon, shield, or armor, and the produce an exact copy of it out of wood. This wooden copy retains all enchantments, properties, or effects of the original. The original item is consumed by this ritual, becoming reduced to a pile of rust or dust after that cannot be restored. Weapons, Shields, and Armors altered in this fashion will retain their shape and qualities outside of your possession so long as they remain attuned to you, but once unattuned will transform into brittle wood as with your other weapons, shields, and armors.
Starting at 2nd level, your circle begins to teach you a range of spells you may choose to prepare as part of your Druid Spellcasting. As you gain druid levels, new spells become available to you. For the cantrips listed, you may choose to select these as your available cantrips when you gain a new cantrip as you grow in druid levels.
|Circle of the Warden Spells|
|Cantrips||Sword Burst, Green Flame Blade, Booming Blade|
|2nd||Ensnaring Strike, Zephyr Strike, Hail of Thorns|
|4th||Cordon of Arrows, Find Steed|
|8th||Conjure Barrage, Lighting Arrow|
|10th||Find Greater Steed, Fire Shield|
|14th||Conjure Volley, Steel Wind Strike|
Starting at 6th level, you can attack twice, instead of once, whenever you take the Attack action on your turn.
Beginning at 10th level, your control over wooden objects has increased considerably. You may now spend a spell slot to invigorate dead wood (such as crafted planks, decayed trees, etc.) to return it to life as a source of living wood. In addition, you may warp this wood into a shape of your choosing as with the Stone Shape spell, with the size of the wood you can alter being dependant upon the spell slot expended:
|Spell Slot||Size of Effect|
|1st||An object no larger than 2ft by 2ft|
|2nd||An object no larger than 3ft by 3ft|
|3rd||An object the size of medium-sized humanoid.|
|4th||A 5ft by 5ft square object|
|Higher Levels||Add an additional 5ft by 5ft square of effect per additional spell level.|
Wood that has been reanimated in this effect will attempt to grow into the surrounding soil and seek out sunlight during this transformation. If this is possible within the space allowed, it will remain living until destroyed. If not, it will remain living until your next short or long rest, after which it will die.
Starting at 14th level, you add your Wisdom modifier (minimum of +1) to the damage of your weapon attacks made by your Weald Weapons in addition to their usual combat ability score. If you are under the effects of the Shillelagh spell, instead add your Wisdom modifier twice.