Revisiting Unearthed Arcana: Heroes of Krynn

FG0Jpa2XEAYrJWm_croppedI don’t revisit my first impression of an Unearthed Arcana article, but after hearing how widely disparate the reads for this Unearthed Arcana were, I wanted to revisit the document and also throw in how I read some of these (beyond my mistaken read).

Return of the Kender!

This is a quicker revisit than what I’m going to present later, but the more I listen to others, the more I think that the Kender Ace ability should be simplified. I’m not sure the issue is as much randomized tables, so much as it’s just a “flavor” ability that is complex for no direct benefit.

One thing that Brandes Stoddard brought up was that it would be great to declare you have an item useful to you that someone in the party has. So if there is an extra magic item floating around that isn’t yours, but might be handy for you to have in an encounter, boom, you found it in your pocket!

I think this ability could be reworked so that you could find:

  • Something useful in general under a certain gold piece value
  • Something useful that someone in the party has
  • Something that the villain has that they are not currently using (with a save)

This would reinforce the idea that kender get blamed for stealing things, because they can end up with items from other people, as opposed to just finding random stuff in your pocket. I also think you can set up a rule where the player character allows the kender’s PC to trigger the ability on their gear, but their characters don’t understand what just happened.

One other thing I wanted to touch on that I’ve heard mentioned a few places, regarding kender and having a connection to the Feywild. I heard several people saying that “the Feywild wasn’t part of Dragonlance, so that’s a weird connection to make,” but I think that’s a literalist reading. There have been fey and otherworldly realms that sit parallel to the prime material plane. They just weren’t literally referred to as the Feywild. In fact, other than “The Abyss,” Dragonlance is kind of dodgy about actually giving proper names to any alternate realities in its cosmology.

Realigning with the Lunar Sorcerer

So my original read of the Lunar Sorcerer was way off, which I updated as soon as it sunk it, i.e. this has nothing to do with matching the actual lunar cycle of the moon/moons of the world. That said, I didn’t realize how many different reads there were on the different abilities, so I wanted to give my idea of how I thought these worked, and how I hope they don’t, I guess?

Regarding Lunar Embodiment, I assumed that you only received the bonus spells when you were aligned to that phase of the moon. In other words, you don’t get access to all 15 of those spells at the same time over the course of your career. You have access to a maximum of five over the course of your career, and if you change your lunar alignment, you have access to a different set of five.

The “once you are aligned you can cast the spells on this list once without using a spell slot” is kind of confusing. I have seen people that read that both ways, as in, you can cast each spell on that list once without a spell slot, versus, you can choose one of those spells to case once for free, until you finish a long rest. I would assume the more restrictive read, especially if the other reading also means that if you shift your moon phase, you then get to cast all of those aligned spells without spell slots as well. So, I initially read this as “you can pick one of these additional spells to cast once per long rest without using a spell slot,” and that’s the reading of the ability that makes me okay with how this would work.

I don’t think it’s a power issue so much as a clarity issue, but I think the Lunar Boon ability at 6th level should only apply to the spells on the Lunar Spells list, instead of taking time to reference the school of the spell about to be used. That makes the subclass more tied together with its own theme.

I’m not sure that I have a whole lot of extra insight that occurred to me about the higher level game features. Maybe adding the ability to spend sorcery points to cast a spell from the currently aligned phase?

From a Krynn specific perspective, I would almost be interested in using this subclass to represent sorcerers that aren’t aligned to one of the robes, i.e. maybe a renegade mage, as they are freely drawing power from all of the moons whenever they align themselves to that moon, because otherwise, this feels really weird to have a white robe sorcerer aligning to the “new moon,” which kind of feels like Nuitari.

Backgrounds and Feats

I don’t really have any more insight into these, other than reiterating that I think there might be a Holy Order of Stars cleric background that grants divinely favored feat for free, and I’m still wondering if there isn’t a formal “initiation” ritual/adventure later on that grants the connected “second tier” feats that are listed in the document.

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