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Druid Circle - Circle of the Beast
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Druid Circle - Circle of the Beast

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Featured on Wizard's Monthly Content Article Series Unearthed Arcana

http://dnd.wizards.com/articles/features/may-dungeon-masters-guild-review

Other Druid Circles

Circle of the Deathbloom

Circle of the Fountain

Circle of the Land - Additional Circle Spell Terrains

NEW Circle of Life and Death


A Druid Circle that brings back the iconic druid animal companion. Slightly tweaked Animal Companion rules to make it more viable, but you are free to use default rules if you'd like.

New Cover Image because I'm tired of changing the cover image every time!

This and any other homebrew I make will always be 100% FREE! The best payment is just you enjoying my content!

I would like to make this subclass as balanced as possible. I would really appreciate feedback and critique!


Change Log

09-12-16: Included a version of that uses the new Animal Companion rules from UA's Revised Ranger. This file is named 'Circle of the Beast UA Ranger' and is offered in addition to the original rules for Animal Companion.

Added "Onslaught" as an option to Natural Selection (Storm of Claw and Fangs from the Revised Ranger) and removed Darkvision and Burrow Speed.

Added the ability for your companion to move up to half its speed to make an attack with Fight as One. Clarified the advantage on saving throws against charmed/frightened are for both you and your companion

06-28-16: Companion wild shape no longer reuires concentration, you can wild shape with your companion now, and Natural Selection's Pounce DC is now 8 + your proficiency bonus + your companion's strength mod

02-19-16: Renamed Telepathic Link to Nature's Bond, allows beast bond/beast sense to be cast as a ritual on your companion without having the spell prepared. Allows you to cast revivify on your animal companion.

02-12-16: Companions now have a seperate HP pool when wild shaped
02-06-16: Added some clarification, added the ability to use 'Enlarge' on companion with Wild Shape. (Thank you for suggestions, Matt D.!)

 
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Reviews (6)
Discussions (11)
Customer avatar
Frank Z October 09, 2017 8:25 am UTC
PURCHASER
Whats your original intend for the section "Companion Wild Shape" behind the line "or to enhance its current form as if it under the effects of enlarge"

For my side, i see the two option. Option 1 is like the race-feature from duergar:
... , the duergar magically increases in size, along with anything it is wearing or carrying. While enlarged, the duergar is Large, doubles its damage dice on Strength-based weapon attacks (included in the attacks), and makes Strength checks and Strength saving throws with advantage. If the duergar lacks the room to become Large, it attains the maximum size possible in the space available

Or option 2 is the spell "enlarge or reduce"
Enlarge: The target’s size doubles in all dimensions, and its weight is multiplied by eight. This growth increases its size by one category—from Medium to Large, for example. If there isn’t enough room for the target to double its size, the creature or object attains the maximum...See more
Customer avatar
Taylor D September 09, 2017 4:53 am UTC
PURCHASER
Starting to DM a game and a player was looking into alternate druid circles. I've never really played a druid but this circle looked appropriate. However I do have one question concerning late game play (if my campaign makes it that far). Without access to more spells or better wild shape forms, does this circle keep up? At lower levels it's close to just having an extra druid in wildshape, tanking/dealing damage. But at later levels, even with the other features

I've never made it past lvl 10 in any campaign and never played a druid... so I'm a little out of my depth trying to figure out what's appropriate for my campaign. My only experience with high level play is watching critical role... and Kilith... doesn't seem like a good role model.
Customer avatar
Venkatesh R August 04, 2017 12:24 am UTC
PURCHASER
Is the UA Ranger one more powerful than the older revisions? I see that the UA version can increase ability scores but its HP seems to be less than that of the older version?
Customer avatar
George L July 24, 2017 10:05 pm UTC
PURCHASER
I really like this Druid option. The ability to shape change your companion to make it more powerful is tremendously helpful, giving companions that slight boost in power they desperately need at higher levels. That said, my only concern is that the companion doesn't get any option to overcome resistance or immunity to non-magical attacks. Is there a spell or option I missed related to that?
Customer avatar
Martin S September 23, 2016 12:01 pm UTC
PURCHASER
Can you tell me what is the actual version? i see there 5 pdf files... is it the 9_12 UA or the 9_12 or an other?
Customer avatar
Stray C December 05, 2016 4:17 am UTC
CREATOR
Sorry for the late reply. The files are dated, I believe 9.12 was the most recent one. The One with the UA rules is labelled with Ranger_UA
Customer avatar
February 05, 2017 3:27 am UTC
PURCHASER
I don't see the file for the UA version at all... Is there something I'm missing?
Customer avatar
George L July 24, 2017 9:53 pm UTC
PURCHASER
You will see it in the Download section after going through the check out process. The UA Ranger version is pretty good, limiting the power of the companion like the Ranger, but still giving some nice high level combat options.
Customer avatar
Nod H July 18, 2016 4:38 am UTC
PURCHASER
It shows two files with the same name. Which one is the updated one from 6/28?
Customer avatar
Stray C August 27, 2016 7:06 am UTC
CREATOR
Sorry, the file upload is kind of weird, just reuploaded and labelled it.
Customer avatar
dan H July 02, 2016 9:18 pm UTC
PURCHASER
Issuing a bonus action attack is too strong. Consider getting a poisonous snake at level 2 and your bonus action attack does 1d6+6+3d6 poison on failed save. The hit point fix for animal companion is good, a bit too good early and a bit not good enough later on.
Customer avatar
dan H July 02, 2016 9:31 pm UTC
PURCHASER
Also, something should be said about barding and the + Proficiency to AC. Cliarification of which animal companions can wear barding or simply disallowing it
Customer avatar
George L July 24, 2017 9:54 pm UTC
PURCHASER
The UA Ranger version of the Druid companion should address these issues. Now you'd have to shapechange your companion to temporarily get the benefits of extra attack, poison, etc.
Customer avatar
Robert A May 17, 2016 3:50 am UTC
PURCHASER
I really enjoy this circle option; I may use it to replace the ranger option instead, however, because it always felt a little weak to me and this one feels stronger.
Customer avatar
Matt D May 10, 2016 1:25 am UTC
PURCHASER
Congrats on getting your druid circles featured I UA. It is well deserved as these 3 druid circles are well balanced, and have a strong identity when held up against the standard options. Now, when are you going to submit more stuff??!!
Customer avatar
Stray C June 14, 2016 3:49 am UTC
CREATOR
When I get more ideas! Hahaha. I'm totally honored at the feature on UA, but I honestly don't have too many more ideas that haven't been homebrewed to death already. I'll try to make more of an effort to make something new :)
Customer avatar
Kyle C May 09, 2016 8:02 pm UTC
PURCHASER
Nicely done. This makes some nice tweaks to the existing beastmaster archetype, and gives druids a new option that is fun both in and out of combat. I have a couple thoughts based on my initial read-through.

* From an action economy standpoint, issuing an Attack as a bonus action may be a bit too strong, especially at 2nd level. I could see leaving "Attack" out at 2nd level, and adding it as an additional command option beginning at 6th level.

* I don't feel that companion wild shape should use your concentration. I understand it from a flavor perspective, but from a game-play standpoint, a full caster being forced to use his/her concentration on a "weakened" Conjure Animals may be hard to swallow.

* The save for Pounce could be changed to "8 + your proficiency bonus + your companions STR modifer" (although a static 13 is fine).

* The 14th level ability is wonderful as-is
Customer avatar
Joshua M June 08, 2016 3:25 am UTC
PURCHASER
My thought on issuing an attack as a bonus action at this level is that it isn't nearly as broken as turning into CR 1 creature's at level 2. It's much more balanced, in my opinion, than an officially published Circle.
Customer avatar
Stray C June 14, 2016 3:47 am UTC
CREATOR
* From an action economy standpoint, issuing an Attack as a bonus action may be a bit too strong, especially at 2nd level. I could see leaving "Attack" out at 2nd level, and adding it as an additional command option beginning at 6th level.

I thought about this for a while and ultimately decided that the bonus action wasn't too strong, but I like your idea of adding the bonus action as an additional command at 6th level and I'll consider it for any future revision!
Customer avatar
Allan D February 17, 2016 6:49 pm UTC
PURCHASER
Just realized you cant reply to reviews so I'll post here in case you want to discuss what i said in my review :)
Customer avatar
Stray C February 19, 2016 11:23 pm UTC
CREATOR
Thanks so much, I totally appreciate all the feedback :D I'm working on adding a few of the suggestions now, mainly with the telepathic link (renamed nature's bond) adding revivify and rewording it a bit.

I decided against adding the changes to the animal companion action, HP, and HD (for now, at least). For the action, I'm trying to think of alternatives, but I think some sacrifice to have your companion attack makes sense. GMs can certainly decide that you're allowed to use lesser actions in 'higher' action spots (ie, bonus action in an action slot), but I think that it might just be better to leave it as is and have the druid change their tactics to accommodate. For the HP/HD, I think it's fine because HD aren't supposed to be the _only_ form of healing, and by design I think smaller pets should be less durable than medium. Remember you're absolutely allowed to use normal healing on your pet! :)

Thank you again for all the feedback and I look forward to any new comments as you play...See more
Customer avatar
Allan D February 20, 2016 1:49 am UTC
PURCHASER
A friend suggested instead of adding revivify maybe just add a clause in the acquiring a new pet that allows you to rez your old one. not sure what is easier or better.
I see what you mean bout the action economy and the HD. I suppose the pet is pretty much an super cantrip so that makes sense.
Anyhoo, keep up the good work & I look forward to your next rendition : )
Customer avatar
Stray C February 20, 2016 3:55 am UTC
CREATOR
I really like Revivify personally, and it fits in fairly well with the theme of that feature, so I think I'm going to stick with that one :)
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File Last Updated:
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This title was added to our catalog on February 05, 2016.