Class Feature Variants: Dungeons And Dragons Fifth Edition Gets An Optional Overhaul To Their Most Beloved Classes Part 2

Class Feature Variants: Dungeons And Dragons Fifth Edition Gets An Optional Overhaul To Their Most Beloved Classes Part 2
Credit: Wizards of the Coast via YouTube

With Dungeons and Dragons seemingly growing more and more popular by the year, it’s no surprise that Wizards of the Coast are continuing to grow their content in new and meaningful ways. This is evident in the continuous release of material through the Unearthed Arcana website, and the second part of the Class Variants installment will be covered below.

The Class Variants installment seeks to enhance or replace existing features in the base Player’s Handbook with new features available for playtesting. Keep in mind this isn’t published material, so the usage of this material is going to depend on what the Dungeon Master allows.

All classes gain access to the Proficiency Versatility feature. Whenever a player gains the Ability Score Increase as outlined by their class, they can swap out one skill proficiency for another offered by their class at first level.

Barbarian, an already powerful class in its own right, doesn’t see much in the way of any new features, beyond Survival Instincts (which replaces Danger Sense) and Instinctive Pounce (which replaces Fast Movement). Survival Instincts allows for proficiency and expertise in two of the following skills: Animal Handling, Medicine, Nature, Perception, or Survival.

Instinctive Pounce allows you to channel the feral side of a barbarian’s rage. When a creature ends its turn within 15 feet of you, you can use your reaction to move up to half of your speed to a space closer to the creature. This movement does not provoke opportunity attacks.

Paladin gains access to the additional Fighting Styles added in this installment, as well as a unique Fighting Style called Blessed Warrior. Blessed Warrior gives the Paladin their choice of two cantrips from the cleric spell list, with Charisma being the casting stat for these cantrips.

Each level gained in this class also gives you the ability to replace one of these cantrips with another from the cleric spell list if you choose to.

Along with these additional Fighting Styles comes additional spells added at various levels throughout the paladin spell list, as well as a new Channel Divinity option. The most notable of these spells is Prayer of Healing and Spirit Guardians.

Spirit Guardians, when combined with the War Caster feat could prove to be a potent combination for a paladin. Harness Divine Power allows the paladin to expend a use of their Channel Divinity to get back a spell slot of 1st level.

More of this installment will be covered in a future article, but if you would like to know more about this playtest or would like to view others, it’s recommended to visit the Unearthed Arcana website for more information.