Way of the Drunken Master (5A)

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This is a Monk monastic tradition for 5A.

The Way of the Drunken Master teaches its students to move with the jerky, unpredictable movements of a drunkard. A drunken master sways, tottering on unsteady feet, to present what seems like an incompetent combatant who proves frustrating to engage. The drunken master’s erratic stumbles conceal a carefully executed dance of blocks, parries, advances, attacks, and retreats.

A drunken master often enjoys playing the fool to bring gladness to the despondent or to demonstrate humility to the arrogant, but when battle is joined, the drunken master can be a maddening, masterful foe.

Greyhawk: Odd even in the Celestial Empire, drunken warriors are so rare as to be unknown—which fits the practitioners perfectly, as the discipline is built on surprise.

Source: Xanathar's Guide to Everything

Monastic Tradition Abilities

Bonus Proficiencies

When you choose this tradition at 3rd level, you gain proficiency in the Performance skill. If you don't already have it you instead gain proficiency in another skill of your choice. Your martial arts technique mixes combat training with the precision of a dancer and the antics of a jester. You also gain proficiency with brewer's supplies. If you don't already have it you instead gain proficiency in a language or set of artisan's tools of your choice.

Tipsy Sway

Starting at 3rd 6th level, you can move in sudden, swaying ways. You gain the following benefits.

  • Drunken Technique. Whenever you use Flurry of Blows, you gain advantage on the Flurry of Blows attack, the benefit of the Disengage action, and your walking speed increases by 10 feet until the end of the current turn.
  • Leap to Your Feet. When you're prone, you can stand up by spending 5 feet of movement, rather than half your speed. Enemies do not get advantage against you when you are prone.
  • Redirect Attack. When a creature misses you with a melee attack roll, you can spend 1 ki point as a reaction to cause that attack to hit one creature of your choice, other than the attacker, that you can see within 5 feet of you.
  • Improvising Brawler. You can use improvised weapons as if they were unarmed attacks.

Provocative Drunk

Starting at 6th level, you are a master of provoking opponents. You gain the following abilities.

  • Walk the Line When within 5 ft. of creature, you can force them to make an opportunity attack against you if they can take a reaction.
  • Drunken Bump When you use an unarmed strike to hit a creature with an opportunity attack, that creature falls Prone in the space it was trying to leave.

Drunkard's Luck

Starting at 11th level, you always seem to get a lucky bounce at the right moment. When you make an ability check, an attack roll, or a saving throw and have disadvantage, you can spend 1 ki point 2 ki points to cancel the disadvantage and instead have advantage for that roll.

Intoxicated Frenzy

At 17th level, you gain the ability to make an overwhelming number of attacks against a group of enemies. When you use your Flurry of Blows, you can make up to three additional attacks with it (up to a total of five Flurry of Blows attacks) any number of attacks, provided that each Flurry of Blows attack targets a different creature this turn.

Designer's Notes

This is a straight upgrade. The level 6 abilities were moved to level 3 and new level 6 abilities were added. Many abilities were also improved.

  • One synergy now is that when you are prone, you can use drunkard's luck to gain advantage and then spend only 5 ft. of movement to stand up again.
  • The subclass lacks a damage booster, instead it has Redirect Attack. This is a very chancy ability, on some rounds it might be great, on other rounds it will do nothing.