Savant (Intelligence) (5A)

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This is an original Exemplar subclass for 5A.

Hobgoblins are not always hostile. They respect displays of strength and adore banners. So let's put Yorik's shield on a pole and present ourselves boldly rather than skulk back here. Even if we have to fight them, they will fight more honorably if we face them openly.

A savant has a deep understanding of many subjects, allowing them to cross-reference information and see solutions that combine many fields of knowledge. They are masters of quickly finding solutions. The savant is perhaps closest to the general idea of what an exemplar is; a scholar or sage who goes out into the wider world in pursuit of knowledge. They might be known as advisors, scholars, sages, administrators, or armchair detectives.

1st Level: Focus Ability

Your Focus Ability is Intelligence. You are proficient in Intelligence and Wisdom saving throws.

1st Level: Savant Proficiencies

You gain proficiency with Arcana, History, Nature, and Religion. For each of these skills you already know, select another skill to learn. You gain expertise (double Proficiency Bonus) in one of these skills of your choice.

1st Level: Exploit Weakness

With alchemist's supplies in hand, you can spend a bonus action to change the damage type of a weapon you touch. For the next minute, the weapon inflicts your chosen damage type. You cannot use this ability on weapons held by enemies.

What damage types you can change into depends on your level.

At 3rd level you can make the weapon inflict magical damage without changing the damage type.
At 6th level you can make the weapon inflict magical Bludgeoning, Piercing, or Slashing damage.
At 11th level you can make the weapon inflict Acid, Cold, Fire, Lightning, Poison, or Thunder damage.
At 14th level you can make the weapon inflict Force, Necrotic, Psychic, or Radiant damage.

2nd Level: Savant Tricks

You can choose these tricks only available to Savants:

  • Create Instability. When you hit an enemy with an attack, you can use this trick to create an instability in the creature. The target must make an Intelligence saving throw, or it suffers disadvantage on all saving throws until the start of your next turn.
  • Create Opening. When you hit an enemy with an attack, you can use this trick to create an opening. The target must make an Intelligence saving throw, or all attacks against the creature have advantage until the start of your next turn.
  • Create Weakness. When you hit an enemy with an attack, you can use this trick to create a vulnerability or weaken a resistance in the target for the next minute. The target must make a Constitution saving throw. If it fails, choose one damage type. If the creature lacks resistance or immunity to the chosen damage type, it gets vulnerability to this damage. If it has resistance to this damage, it loses that resistance. The effect ends at the start of your next turn.
  • Find Opportunity. Choose a creature you see and an immediate objective towards that creature, such as defeating, escaping, bypassing, or befriending it. You learn an action that (in the GM's estimation) would be a good way of achieving this immediate goal, and if you follow this advice, you have advantage on attack rolls or ability checks to act this out until the start of your next turn. You can use Find Opportunity on behalf of another, in which case they get the advantage instead of you as long as they follow the recommended course of action. The suggested action is always something that can be done or at least started within the next round, but not necessarily something you are good at or eager to do.
How to Play Find Opportunity

The actions proposed by Find Opportunity are usually straightforward, geared towards exploiting an enemy's weakness. Find Opportunity plays on individual quirks in the target making the proposed action easier than similar actions done another way. Sometimes the suggested actions may require special equipment or be humiliating, you and allies might be unable or unwilling to follow such advice, but it is still a useful clue.

  • A Troll guarding a bridge might be bypassed by swimming the river.
  • Freeing prisoners from a chaotic band of orcs might be facilitated by pretending to be slaves or slavers.
  • Bypassing an ogre might be done by bribing it with food.
  • Befriending the leader of a band of elves might be done by showing interest in the intricate leather-work of his quiver.
  • Hitting a dragon might be best done by attacking the shoulders, which a Small character can only do with a ranged or reach weapon.
  • Escaping capture by a goblin chief might be done by embarrassing toadying.

It is important to note that the DM should not tell the players what to do. Find Opportunity should not lay out what to do, only how. That is why the objective given in Find Opportunity needs to be specific. The players should set their own objectives. Even if the plan is just to charge, then Find Opportunity can give them final details on how to make that plan work.

Another aspect of Find Opportunity is that it allows the GM to flesh out the opposition. If Find Opportunity recommends befriending a dwarf king by crawling on all fours, it is a clue to the king's sensitivity on stature.

3rd Level: Savant Identification

As a bonus action, you can observe a creature and make an Arcana, History, Nature, or Religion check to recall knowledge about it. You always learn its creature type and any tags the creature has. If creatures of the target's type have a typical alignment, you learn that alignment. In addition you learn all its permanent damage immunities, damage resistances, damage vulnerabilities, and condition immunities. If a creature has any temporary abilities from this list, of if it temporarily lacks any of these abilities, you do not learn this.

6th Level: Savant Dice

When you spend an Exemplar Die on an action to interact with, harm, observe, or defend against a creature, you learn additional information about the target. Read the Exemplar Die and learn information as given below.

  1. What attacks the creature has and the damage each attack.
  2. What Armor Class the creature has, any reactions it can use, and what saving throws it is proficient in.
  3. What spells the target knows (if any). In the case of creatures that prepare spells, you learn what spell lists they can pick spells from.
  4. What skills the target knows.
  5. The target's point of origin, native terrain, and what languages it speaks (if any).
  6. On a result of six or more, you get to chose what information you learn.

10th Level: Polymath

You can cram a subject to bring out latent knowledge. During a long or short rest, choose a skill, tool, musical instrument, language, or vehicle. You can pick things you have never before encountered. If you chose a skill you know you gain expertise (double proficiency Bonus) in that skill. Otherwise you gain proficiency in the skill or tool. You retain this benefit until you use Polymath again.

14th Level: Wide Application

When you use any Savant Trick or the Create instability, Savant Understanding, or Savant Dice abilities, you learn which creatures that you see (if any) have identical statistics to the target, and all identical targets within 30 feet of your target also suffers the effect when you use any of these abilities against. Only the primary target makes any allowed saving throw, the effect of which applies to all targets.