The Ebon Empire
The dwarf carefully chisels the runes on the freshly forged hammer, carefully stating the name of each as he goes, watching them glow softly in the light of the forge.
The halfling carefully carves runes into a piece of wood, whispering the completed word and watching it glow with divine light.
With a grim look, the human holds up his shield, showing the divine shielding rune to his enemy, hoping to keep it bay, keeping the rune-inscribed sword at the ready in case it’s not enough.
Runepriests are those who work in sacred forges and divine libraries who seek to unlock the power of the divine runes. Whether chanting them aloud, writing them on strips of paper, or carving them into wood and steel, runepriests have found fragments of the power that helped to shape the world. Using their runic artistries and seeking more runes and secrets, they strike out into the world ready to forge a new legend.
You can make a runepriest quickly by following these suggestions. First, Wisdom should be your highest ability score, followed by Constitution. Second, choose the acolyte or guild artisan background. Third, choose the sacred flame and true strike cantrips.
As a runepriest, you gain the following class features.
Hit Dice: 1d8 per Runepriest level
Hit Points at 1st Level: 8 + your Constitution modifier
Hit Points at Higher Levels: 1d8 (or 5) + your Constitution modifier
Armor: Light armor, medium armor
Weapons: Simple weapons, longswords, mauls, scimitars, shortswords, and warhammers.
Tools: Artisan tools (choice of two)
Saving Throws: Strength, Wisdom
Skills: Chose two from: Athletics, History, Insight, Investigation, Medicine, Perception, Religion, and Survival
You start with the following equipment, in addition to the equipment granted by your background.
• (a) a glaive (if proficient), (b) a rapier (if proficient), © a warhammer, or (d) a shortsword
• (a) scale mail, (b) leather armor, or © chain mail (if proficient)
• (a) any simple weapon, (b) a light crossbow with 20 bolts, or © a shield (if proficient)
• (a) a priest’s pack or (b) an explorer’s pack
• Two sets of artisan’s tools and a holy symbol
Your research into the divine runes coupled with your runic artistry has given you a facility with spells. See chapter 10 for the general rules of spellcasting, and the end of the class description for the Runepriest Spell List.
You know two cantrips of your choice from the Runepriest spell list. You learn additional cantrips of your choice at higher levels, as shown in the Cantrips Known column of the Runepriest table.
The Runepriest table shows how many spell slots you have. The table also shows what the level of slots is; all of your spell slots are the same level. To cast one of your runepriest spells of 1st level or higher, you must expend a spell slot. You regain all expended spell slots when you finish a short or long rest.
For example, when you are 5th level, you have two 3rd-level spell slots. To cast the 1st-level spell thunderwave, you must spend one of those slots, and you cast it as a 3rd-level spell.
SPELLS KNOWN OF 1ST LEVEL AND HIGHER
At 1st level, you know two 1st-level spells of your choice from the runepriest spell list.
The Spells Known column of the Runepriest table shows when you learn more runepriest spells of your choice of 1st level and higher. A spell you choose must be of a level no higher than what’s shown in the table’s Slot Level column for your level. When you reach 6th level, for example, you learn a new runepriest spell, which can be 1st, 2nd, or 3rd level.
Additionally, when you gain a level in this class, you can choose one of the runepriest spells you know and replace it another spell from the runepriest spell list, which also must be of a level for which you have spell slots.
Wisdom is your spellcasting ability for your runepriest spells, so you use your Wisdom modifier whenever a spell refers to your spellcasting ability. In addition, you use your Wisdom modifier when setting the saving throw DC for a runepriest 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 use a holy symbol (found in chapter 5) as a spellcasting focus for your runepriest spells.
At 1st level, you have been taught the basics of mastering the runes. You gain a rune path of your choice: Path of the Divine Shield. Path of the Empowered Word, Path of the Light Bringer, or Path of Vengeance. Each of these paths are detailed at the end of the class description. Your choice grants you features at 1st level, and again at 6th, 10th, and 14th level.
RUNE OF MENDING
Starting at 2nd level, as a bonus action, you may cast cure wounds once per short rest without using a spell slot. You cast it at your current slot level, as shown on the Runepriest table.
In your study of divine runes and its lore, you have unearthed new runes and methodologies for using them that imbue you with an abiding magical ability.
At 2nd level, you gain two Runic Secrets of your choice. Your runic secret options are detailed at the end of the class description. When you gain certain runepriest levels, you gain additional runic secrets of your choice, as shown in the Runic Secrets Known column of the Runepriest table.
Additionally, when you gain a level in this class, you can choose one of the runic secrets you know and replace it with another runic secret you could learn at that level.
Due to your mastery of the runes, whenever you make an attack or cast a spell, you may empower yourself with a special rune. You enter into a rune state based on the rune you choose. While you are in this rune state, you gain an additional benefit. The benefit persists while you remain in this rune state. You lose your rune state if you are incapacitated, unconscious, dying, or dead. Your runic artistry, and some runic secrets, will grant you an additional rune state you may enter into.
Some rune states end if a specific action is undertaken, as noted with the specific rune. If a rune state ends, the benefits end until you can enter into a new rune state.
RUNE OF DESTRUCTION
Your allies gain a +1 bonus to attack rolls against enemies that are within 10 feet of you.
RUNE OF PROTECTION
While within 10 feet of you, your allies gain a +1 bonus to their Armor Class.
At 3rd level, you have begun the process of mastering the art of your runic path with the form of art you use to create and manifest your divine runes. Runes carved, written, etched, or stamped into a surface glow very dimly. Not enough to illuminate an area, but enough to be easily noticed. You gain one of the following features of your choice:
You prefer to write your runes on paper, or carve them into wood. The runes strengthen and protect the item, making them more resistant to harm from the elements. Understanding this new state of semi-permanency, you have learned to protect yourself better. Whenever an enemy makes an attack and against you and misses, you gain a bonus to your Armor Class against that foe equal to your Wisdom modifier until the end of your next turn. You only gain this bonus once per turn, regardless of the number of attacks the enemy makes.
If you spend time crafting an object made of paper or wood, or if you illuminate a manuscript with rune enhanced drawings, that item becomes highly resistant to the effects of age or other damaging events. It is not immune to damage, but will be resistant to water damage, nonmagical fires, normal wear and tear take longer to appear, and will even resist nonmagical attacks made against it. This is a downtime action.
You prefer to etch your runes on glass and metal surfaces, and are particularly good at etching them along the edges of blades of any kinds. Relying on fluidity and precise movements, you may use your Wisdom modifier in place of your Dexterity modifier for determining your Armor Class.
If you spend time carefully etching runes on a glass or metal surface, you make that object resistant to damage. When used on weapons or armor, the maintenance of the item becomes easier, and costs only half as much as normal. This is a downtime action.
You prefer to stamp your runes into harder surfaces, whether into stone with a hammer and chisel, or stamp into the hard surface of a large weapon such as a hammer, you have learned how precise hits create the greatest effect. Whenever an enemy successfully hits you with an attack, you gain a bonus to your damage rolls equal to your Constitution modifier against that enemy until the end of your next turn. You gain this bonus only once per turn, regardless of the number of times you are hit with an attack.
If you carefully use your rune-enhanced stamp or chisel on to stamp or carve a rune onto an object’s surface, it becomes resistant to damage, and normal wear and tear take longer to appear. This is a downtime action.
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.
At 5th level, when you use the Attack action, you can attack twice.
At 11th level, you have gained knowledge of a special greater rune. Choose one 6th-level spell from the runepriest spell list as this greater rune.
You can cast your greater rune spell once without expending a spell slot. You must finish a long rest before you can do so again.
At higher levels, you gain more runepriest spells of your choice in this way: one 7th-level spell at 13th level, one 8th-level spell at 15th level, and one 9th-level spell at 17th level. You regain all uses of your Greater Rune when you finish a long rest.
At 20th level, you can draw on your inner reserves of runic power to regain expended spell slots. You can spend 1 minute reciting rune names to regain all of your expended spell slots from your Rune Magic feature. Once you regain spell slots with this feature, you must finish a long rest before you can do so again.