Path of the Scarred Mind – A Grim Monk sub-class for D&D 5th Edition

We’ve been living in the flames
We’ve been eating up our brains
Oh please don’t let these shakes go on”

– Blue Oyster Cult (Veteran of the Psychic Wars)

The Path of the Scarred Mind is a hard road walked by many monks.  They have taken up the mantle of battle after escaping the pain and trauma that it brought.  In an effort to sculpt both your mind and body into a combat machine, you have suffered far more than most warriors.  To warriors of the Old Guard, you are an admirable comrade who has endured much.  To those oathbound in cynicism, you are respectable for understanding the harsh truths of the world.  Like both, you are a veteran; battered, scarred, and bruised.  Your attempts to give up the ways of the warrior have in turn failed, resulting in you harnessing the very essence of your struggle to fight once more.  Your life is one of sorrow and agony, but you have come to accept this.  Unable to move on, you struggle day by day to survive a harsh world and a broken soul.

Author’s Note:  I had tons of fun making content based on music last year, so I’m revisiting that once more.  This time, one of my favorite songs by Blue Oyster Cult!  A big thanks to the anonymous requester on Tumblr who wanted me to revisit this idea, at least for one creation.

3 – Where the Tides of Madness Swell – You’ve stared deep into the abyss and you were rightfully horrified by what you saw.  However, your mind has somewhat stabilized since the dark days of your past.  In fact, your defenses against many dark powers is bolstered appropriately.  You have resistance to psychic damage.  Furthermore, you are proficient with saving throws involving enchantment and illusion effects.

3 – Where the Winds of Limbo Roar – Channeling the agony you have faced, you unleash an ear piercing scream as an action at the cost of 1 Ki point.  All creatures within 30 ft. must make a constitution saving throw.  Failure results in 1d8 thunder damage and being deafened for 1 round.  You may add an extra 1d8 damage for every extra Ki point spent on this attack.  You must take a short rest or long rest before using this ability again.

6 – Wounds Are All I’m Made Of – You focus on the pain inflicting you, in an effort to dispel it quickly.  You gain advantage on any one saving throw that you make.  Upon doing this, you must take a short rest or long rest before using this ability again. This becomes twice per short rest or long rest at level 14.

11 – Young Enough to Look At And Far too Old to See – For ages, you’ve been tormented by dreadful powers and forces; nearly being driven mad by a sense of paranoia.  Now, you’ve learned to harness such ability to contact distant realms and spy upon numerous foes.  You may use 6 Ki to create a spell-like effect; this works like either Contact other Plane or Scrying.  The effect must be chosen before this ability is used.  You may use this ability twice before taking a short rest or long rest.

17 – The War’s Still Going On – Here you are a veteran of a thousand psychic wars.  After a life on the end, you’ve come to realize the war within will never end.  As such, you’ve learned to booster absolute fury into your attacks.  Your despair and anxiety literally drains the life force from your enemy.  When you hit with an attack, you can spend 4 Ki to add an extra 6d10 necrotic damage plus 6d10 cold damage.  In addition, the target must make an intelligence saving throw or fall prone and become incapacitated for the round.  The saving throw for this is equal to 8 + Your Wisdom modifier + Your proficiency bonus.  Successful save results in the subject not being prone or incapacitated.  You cannot use this ability more than once per round.

Credit: Yama Orce/Paizo

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One thought on “Path of the Scarred Mind – A Grim Monk sub-class for D&D 5th Edition

  1. Pingback: Dusty Trails to Haunted Homes – Gothic Ficiton, Gaslamp Fantasy and more. | Daemons & Deathrays

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