Explorer’s Guide to Wildemount Subclasses Guide

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The Explorer's Guide to Wildemount (set to release March 17) marks the first official full setting specifically created for Dungeons and Dragons 5th edition.

Explorer’s Guide to Wildemount Subclasses Guide

New D&D Setting

NOTE: THIS GUIDE COULD CONTAIN SPOILERS FOR CRITICAL ROLE CAMPAIGN 2 (YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED!)

As a long time Critter (Critical Role Fan), and a long time Dungeons and Dragons nerd, I can’t even begin to express my EXCITEMENT for this new Setting set to release on March 17! Critical Role has brought in A LOT of new nerds, and we have found ourselves in a sort of Geek Renaissance because of it. The love child between Matthew Mercer (The Dungeon Master of Critical Role) and Wizards of the Coast was just bound to happen. WELL, HERE IT IS! 

Critical Role started as a home game and, as many of us know, all home games have their elements of Homebrew content. Critical Role is no different. In its over 7 years of running (5 of which are streamed), Matthew Mercer has developed a slew of Homebrew concepts, most of which will be featured in the folds of this whopping 304-page tome! New spells, the new magic called “Dunamancy”, starting adventures, roll tables for generating backgrounds, lore, but best of all SUBCLASSES!

Though it’s unclear if many of his subclasses like the Cobalt Soul Monk, Runechild, Gunslinger, or Blood Hunter will be featured, due to possible copyright overlap (A previous Critical Role Setting book was released by Green Ronin), we DO know that its pages will contain at least 3 subclasses. The Echo knight, the Chronurgist, and the Graviturgist. I absolutely cannot wait to build characters using these new subclasses!

SO LET'S NOT WAIT. We know very little of the official rules, but let’s go through what we DO know and work together to theory craft from there!  

What is Dunamancy?

Briefly, before covering these classes we must have an understanding of the family of magic all these stem from. There is an energy, a build of anticipation, a buzzing in the air, the actual “vibrating potential” leading up to any choice a person makes. This energy of potentiality can be taken and harnessed as magical power. This is Dunamancy.

Dunamancy lays claim over the very base elements of the universe such as time, gravity, and fate. Rick Sanchez would be proud, “Wubba lubba dub dub!” 

Echo Knight

A Kryn Echo Knight Soldier goes full shadow clone jutsu to overwhelm his enemies.

“The Echo Knight is a martial class that has come to manipulate dunamis in a martial way” –Matthew Mercer (Author of Explorer’s Guide to Wildemount and Dungeon Master of Critical Role). Every time we are faced with a decision, then we choose which path to take, our timeline solidifies as the butterfly effect of that decision begins to ripple through our world. The Echo Knights, however, can call on versions of themselves from alternate timelines toassist them in battle! 

The Echo Knight IS. SO. COOL. Imagine the possible characters that could come of this! Perhaps your Echo Knight can speak to these Echoes and find out how their life could be changed if they had made a different decision and use this to learn from their mistakes! Maybe you play as an Echo that was brought to this timeline but you see that it’s much better than your own, so you killed your “prime” and you have hijacked their life! 

What We Know:

  • You can use your actions as yourself or your echo. This feels a lot like “Invoke Duplicity” from the Trickster Cleric. 
  • You can swap places with your echo. I'M OVER HERE. NOPE, OVER HERE!
  • They can send their Echo long distances and channel their senses through it like the “Find Familiar Spell”. 
  • You can attend work meetings and relax at home simultaneously. 

Critical Role References

  • In episode 13 the players fought a heavily injured Echo Knight (Thuron) in the sewers (I guess you could say he was POOPED). There, we got a small sneak peek of what the echo knight MAY be capable of. Each time Thuron hit for the first time on his turn, an echo rose from an adjacent space.
  • An echo was hit for 16 damage and disappeared as a result. So, they will, most likely, have low hit points.
  • The first time Thuron was hit, an echo appeared behind the assaulting player.
  • After the echo hit a player, it disappeared.
  • As a reaction, The Echo Knight used an ability called “Transpose Echo”, switching spots with his echo. This allowed him to avoid a critical hit!
  • To note: A Player Character (Caleb) was able to learn a spell from the same civilization as the Echo Knight called “Resonant Echo” which allows him to summon an echo of himself that can cast 1 spell before disappearing. This seems in line with the echo that scored 1 hit before disappearing.

Theory Build

So, from the hints we have so far, it seems like the Echo Knight will be a fighter subclass. We did not see the Echo Knight cast any spells during its fight, so the possibility of it being a “half caster” like the Eldritch Knight is not confirmed. From what we do know, it seems that the Echo is like an extra combatant on the field. 

Can we use the Echo to flank and generate advantage on a hit? This wouldn’t be unreasonable. The Trickster Cleric’s “Invoke Duplicity” can generate advantage and this seems to be in the same vein. If this is the case, it could be a very strong multiclass with Rogue! Generate advantage for your sneak attack, and have the You-that-chose-not-to-eat-Cheetos-for-breakfast stab the enemy in the face. Could this work with the Ranged rogue by acting as an ally within 5ft of the enemy?

Skills

While building an Echo Knight, I imagine, dexterity would be the superior skill. Increase initiative, armor class, your “to hit” and damage bonus, sneak skill, and your other dexterity based skills. However, strength could be tempting in a greatsword build. Generate advantage with your shadow clones and use the Great Weapon Master feat to take that -5 to hit for +10 damage. If the Echo Knight is a half caster, depending on if the echo requires concentration or not, I would boost your spellcasting skill second. 

Feats

If your echo can share feats with you, I can think of a few strong combos to take with your little buddy. Mage Slayer could be cool if you and your echo focused in different areas of the battle and one of you was near a mage who casts a spell. SENTINEL, this would work with your echo amazingly! If you are hit, your echo could make an opportunity attack, or if they hit your echo, YOU can make an opportunity attack. Great Weapon Master, like I previously mentioned. Sharpshooter could be strong if you set up in 2 different areas with your echo and you both took turns sniping the enemy. If you ARE a half caster, like the Eldritch Knight, then War Caster is a MUST.

Maybe you can summon a version of yourself that went to culinary school hmmm.

Chronurgist

The Chronurgist or the Timey Wimey Wizard holds the sands of time at his command. He can go back and eat his breakfast that he forgot about.

The manipulator of time, one of the most unforgiving forces in the universe. Everything in life is a race against time, and life ends when its time is up. Imagine a wizard who could play with time like Adam Sandler from “Click”. Eh, it didn’t turn out too well for him.

Great Scott! The Chronurgist is a Wizard Subclass with the ability to manipulate time. Put WAY too many slo-mo scenes in your combat, no one’s going to judge you.  

What We Know:

  • They can speed up, in the moment, to boost their initiative.
  • Freeze time on an enemy set them aside, and deal with them later.
  • Cast a spell, then lock it in time. Even handing it to another party member to be used! The barbarian would be SHOOK.

Critical Role References:

Unfortunately, the players haven’t encountered a chronurgist, in-game, that has shown off any sort of abilities. Nor, has their time-obsessed wizard player character, unlocked any “time” dunamis spells to break down here. But that doesn’t stop us from speculating a bit. Matt, during his interview, states that the chronurgist focuses on manipulating small points of time rather than “ripping the cosmos apart”. So, I think it’s reasonable to expect spells like hold person, slow, or haste.

Theory Build

Skills

As we know, The Chronurgist will be a wizard subclass. So, we will be focusing on having fewer feats in favor of more ability score increases to Intelligence, and for, what feels like a concentration heavy class, your constitution. I don’t think you will have to carry around a flux capacitor, so strength can be a dump stat along with charisma (Doc wasn’t a very smooth talker either).

Boost your Dex 3rd, highest behind Intelligence and Constitution, to compliment your initiative bonus and boost your AC. After all, you can’t reverse time if you’re dead!

Spells

Without the new spells being officially released, we can’t make up an entire spell list, but some spells to keep in mind while making your timey wimey wizard could be: Misty step (like you’re stopping time for a moment, and moving to another place before time restarts again), Blur (like you’re quickening time on yourself to dodge more effectively), Expeditious retreat and Haste (also by speeding up time on yourself), Mirror image/Shield (flavored as “you were hit but rewind to a time that you weren’t”), Slow for obvious reasons, Hold person, Timestop, or even Disintegrate (flavored as forcefully speeding up time on a target so fast, they crumble to dust).

Feats

Feats that immediately come to mind are Lucky and Alert. Lucky allows for 3 rerolls, whether it be your own or forcing a reroll on an enemy. Flavor this feat as rewinding time to have a second chance on something. Alert gives you another +5 to initiative tagged on to whatever your subclass feature bonus ends up giving you, along with the ability to never be surprised. So, even if the baddies spring an ambush, you roll initiative, most likely getting to go first, and ratta tatta timey wimeying the baddies in the face before they even get to act. This subclass feels as though it will be heavily reliant on concentration, so the Resilient (Constitution) feat might not be a bad idea either!

 

Graviturgist

The most primal aspect of the universe, gravity, commanded by a Kryn Wizard can be deadly in positioning their enemies for assault.

Manipulating gravity will have its “Ups and Downs”. Baddum Pshhh. I’m sorry, I had to tell that gravity joke, it was really “weighing me down”.

The Graviturgist is a “singularity of gravitational force”, with all sorts of abilities and spells that focus on “chess piecing” their enemies around. This could, possibly, make them the frontrunner of control mages in all of Dungeons and Dragons. I don’t know about you, but I NEED this subclass. I have yearned for the ability to play as a Gravity Master Wizard. I’m only upset that we have to wait until March 17th to try it out! 

What We Know:

  • A Graviturgist can manipulate the density, or gravity, affecting any creature including themselves.
  • Graviturgist can cause a creature to move slower, due to increased gravity, move faster (at the cost of gravity no longer assisting their physical attacks), or give creatures the ability to jump farther.
  • The Graviturgist can use their abilities to move things around the battlefield, ultimately, controlling the position of their enemies.
  • They can increase the power of an ally’s attack by increasing the gravity assistance on their swing.
  • These don’t appear to be singularly Graviturgist abilities, but there are a couple of new spells to mention coming in this supplement that fit the Graviturgist theme. One being, “Gravity Fissure” a line spell (similar to Lightning bolt), but along its path, it sucks everything within 10ft of it towards the center of the spell. There is no official wording on this one, but another spell can create a sort of black hole on the battlefield, sucking all creatures around it into its center.

Critical Role References:

Unlike the Chronurgist, the players of Critical Role have come across a couple of Graviturgist and even fought one of them.

  • Their first meeting with a graviturgist was in combat, against an NPC named Lythir. Lythir had an ability called “Gravity well” that allowed him to push a target 10 feet in any direction, after affecting the creature with a spell effect.
  • Lythir used a spell called “Compress Gravity”. The affected players had to make a Constitution save, on a failure the players took force damage and had their speed HALVED for 1 round.
  • Lythir also used a spell called “Vacuum Blast”, which forced all creatures within a 20-foot radius of a point the caster chose to make a Constitution save or take force damage.
  • There is also a friendly NPC to the party named Essek who can float everywhere he goes as if gravity does not affect him.
  • Essek, on one occasion, used his gravity magic to lift an enemy into the air and crush their body in at the chest, instantly killing them.

Theory Build

Like the Chronurgist, the Graviturgist is a Wizard subclass. That means we will be concentrating on ability score improvements. In my opinion, the best way to play this subclass is going to be using your gravity well and vacuum spells to move enemies into centralized locations to be dominated by your AOE damage spells!

Skills

Per usual for Wizards, our priority skill will be intelligence to boost our spellcasting modifiers and save DC. Our second focus will be Constitution, to protect your nerd body, and help with those concentration checks. Dump strength because you can, literally, make things lighter with your mind, and dump charisma because you can’t get a girlfriend.

Spells

Some spells to keep in mind for your gravity manipulator are: Slow (again, but flavored they are moving slowly due to increased gravity), Haste (because they are lighter due to decreased gravity), Melf’s minute meteors, Reverse gravity (of course), Telekinesis could be a key spell in moving things around, while concentrating, and coupling it with your “Gravity Well” ability, Catapult (flavored as making your target have a higher gravitational pull), Feather fall, Jump, Earthbind (allowing gravity to pull flying creatures out of the air), Gust of Wind (flavored as gravity pulling your enemies backward), Levitate, or many other forced movement spells that can be re-flavored as “pushing/pulling creatures around the battlefield.”

Some more spells to keep in mind, with moving your enemies into ideal locations, are AOE damage spells like Fireball, Lightning bolt (used after Gravity fissure because the enemies are pulled more into a line,) or Cloudkill (pulling your enemies back into the area of effect with your Gravity Well after they escape).

Feats

The only Feat I would grab on this subclass might be Resilient (Constitution) to help with concentration checks which, I believe, will mostly be used on Telekinesis. If the Wildemount setting releases a lot of gravity manipulation spells that require attack rolls, then Spell Sniper could be good, stay far away as you move the battlefield to your liking. Other than this though, I would be boosting my Intelligence and Constitution with ability score improvements! 

 

That’s all I have for our theory crafted builds! I absolutely cannot wait to play a Graviturgist and be one with the very forces of creation! Let me know what subclass YOU’RE most excited about! If I missed any cool spell combos that could be attributed to these subclasses let me know, or if you have your own theory crafted builds I would love to see them!

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