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The Puppeteer

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The Puppeteer, a Complete Class (levels 1-20) with Archetypes.

With the ability to fight, deceive, and control all at one's fingertips, quite literally, the puppeteer is a self-described control freak both on and off the battlefield. Whether it be with puppets or people, free will is merely an illusion for the adept puppeteer to manipulate. From building increasingly destructive and formidable war puppets to sewing together the corpses of fallen enemies into macabre manikins, the puppeteer is a complex class to master but surprisingly potent.

Full base class available free as a high res web page or printable PDF here:  http://homebrewery.naturalcrit.com/share/BygYSL7Cz

**MINOR UPDATE 5/11/2018**

Fixed some typos and unclear language throughout the document, notable mentions are editing the table and removing the "Heavy Handed improvement" at level 20, bringing the table in line with changes from the major update on 3/18

Clarified language for shared fate, specified that the damage type dealt matches the source type, shared damage dealt through the feature is dealt as necrotic.

Thank you to all who supported this product and continue to find various things to fix!

**MAJOR UPDATE 3/18/2018**

-Nimble Fingers Change:  Changed feat so that two puppets can be controlled at level 5 along with using a bonus action to attack.  The rationale behind the change is that before this change, you could have two puppets prone on the ground, control one, attack, switch control, attack again.  Language change allows for a smoother transition of power between levels 3-5 and works better with the core mechanics of the Maestro.

-Pulling Strings Change:  Added a save when imposing disadvantage on a creature's attack, the thought behind this change is that a puppeteer could easily impose an unavoidable disadvantage on single foe baddie which made this ability overpowered at such a low level.  Now scales properly.

-Click-Clack:  Major change rework, I always liked the idea of this ability, but the initial execution was flat and uninteresting.  Adding options for fear, rage, and damage allowed this ability to become more versatile without being overpowered.  Discord might seem very powerful at 3d8+20 psychic damage, however, I compared many other magical spells with AOE effects at that level, and this still does an average of damage less than those spells.  Future rebalances are possible but it needs more playtesting.

-Heavy Handed:  A bit of a nerf, only one use per long rest.  The ability to use a magic item and this ability to auto-crit up to twice on one target was a bit much.  This balances the damage out a bit more with a language that allows you to use magic items that do not require attunement on soldier puppets without a special module.

-Tinkerer Archetype (Modules):  Modules almost felt like a bit of an afterthought add-on with the first iteration, in this update, we give modules a more polished presentation and add on additional modules that add versatility and customization to a Tinkerer's arsenal.  Each module isn't overwhelming on their own, but combined with other Puppeteer features allows for unique playstyles and tactics for any party composition.

-Warframe AC:  You now gain additional AC to your Warframe based on how many armor proficiencies you have.  Bonuses are +1 for each proficiency you have.  Before Soldier puppets could only benefit from learning better armor proficiencies, now your Warframe does too!

-New Archetype:  Maestro is something I have been working on for awhile, and I really enjoy the different kind of flavor it adds to the Puppeteer class.  Not relying on weapons or items or even corpses, it relies on the creativity and insanity of any Maestro to be effective.  I hope you like the new addition to the Puppeteer kit and have fun roleplaying it as much as I have in my mind!

I wanted to get this out to you all as soon as possible, so please understand that there might be typos and various layout quirks that I will fix once I have the time.  I don't believe there are any that affect readability or comprehension, but let me know if you spot something and I'll put it on the fix-list.  I will also be including an extended Q&A for the Maestro, but again that will happen with a subsequent update when I have the time.

Thank you again to my good friend Andrew for co-authoring this with me!  He is an invaluable copy-editor and his input and balancing feedback are always improving the work we put out here.

We hope you all enjoy the additions and changes, and as always we are open to feedback!

 
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Reviews (6)
Discussions (17)
Customer avatar
Arrman K December 03, 2018 12:22 am UTC
PURCHASER
I had a question about the action economy of this class. If you're controlling two puppets at 5th level, can you command both puppets to Attack using your one action? Or does the second puppet attack using your bonus action, much like two-weapon fighting?

Also, can you command one puppet to attack and the other to dodge, or is the same command given to both puppets?

Also, how does detaching strings work? What purpose does it serve?
Customer avatar
Arrman K December 03, 2018 1:52 am UTC
PURCHASER
Also, does Smarter Strings also apply to Strength, or just Dexterity?
Customer avatar
Jonathan C December 03, 2018 6:48 pm UTC
CREATOR
Hello Arrman, thanks for your questions.

Strictly speaking, if you are controlling two puppets at 5th level, you can use your Action to command one puppet attack once and use your Bonus Action to command your other puppet to attack once. You can also have one puppet attack twice with two commands given using your Action and Bonus Action. Depending on what archetype you are, there are ways to get more attacks with a single command through modules or perhaps a multi-attack feature of a creature you puppetized.

At 5th-level you can use your Action or Bonus Action to give any puppet a command which includes any actions that a player could take such as attack, help, dash, or dodge. You can look at "Attacking and Other Actions" on page 3 for language on what you're allowed to do.

Detaching strings is an ability that allows a puppeteer to be flexible on the battlefield, there's an example of detaching and retaching strings in the Q&A for a tinkerer on page 13 or...See more
Customer avatar
Jonathan C December 03, 2018 6:49 pm UTC
CREATOR
Smarter Strings only allows you to substitute your Intelligence for Dexterity. Strength is unaffected.
Customer avatar
Arrman K December 12, 2018 2:24 am UTC
PURCHASER
Got it, thank you for clarifying!

Also, would I need to be proficient in rapiers to have my proficiency modifier apply to puppets that use them?
Does that ruling apply to shields too, or do I need the protection module specifically?
Can puppets be used for tool use, say a medicine kit or a locksmith's kit, if I have the right proficiencies?
Customer avatar
Jonathan C December 13, 2018 3:45 pm UTC
CREATOR
Hi Arrman,

Thanks for your questions! Just know that I'm answering these questions referencing the current document, there are some changes that might come out in the next few weeks that would alter the answers to these questions but they aren't finalized so I don't want to give you conflicting answers!

1) You would need to have proficiency in rapiers to add your proficiency modifier to any attack roll made by them.
2) Your puppets can equip shields with the protection module even if you don't have proficiency yourself. Otherwise, you must have proficiency with shields to have a puppet equip one without the protection module.
3) If you have proficiencies with any kind of tool/kit your that also extends to your puppet. See "Attacking and Other Action" on page 3 in the first paragraph for the language on a puppet being an extension of you.
Customer avatar
Arrman K January 09, 2019 9:40 pm UTC
PURCHASER
Looking forward to the update!

Also, for spells cast with the Magic Module that involve spell attack rolls and spell DCs, do we use Int, Cha or Dex? I understand that Click-Clack uses Dex (or w/ Smarter Strings, Int), but I don't think spell attack modifiers are mentioned, apart from the Maestro subclass. I fear that having to level up Cha for spells would make the class MAD. Thoughts?
Customer avatar
Jonathan C January 10, 2019 3:22 pm UTC
CREATOR
It would use your spellcasting ability modifier for the tinkerer which would be your INT modifier.

You are correct, there was no direct mention of what modifier to use in the case of a Tinkerer, but the INT modifier was always what Andrew and I assumed it to be. I will definitely update the PDF and put what modifier you should use with the modules explicitly!

Thanks for catching that Arrman!
Customer avatar
Jonathan C January 10, 2019 3:36 pm UTC
CREATOR
I've added a little blurb after the modules that reads:

"Use your Intelligence as the spellcasting ability modifier and your Puppet save DC for any Spell save DC when using Magic Module 1.0 or 2.0."

This is the same language we use for any spells cast by the Collector's Macabre Manikins.
Customer avatar
Arrman K January 11, 2019 12:50 am UTC
PURCHASER
Great! Can't wait for the update to be uploaded. Just did a trial combat run with a soldier puppet. Works very well!
Customer avatar
Arrman K January 11, 2019 12:53 am UTC
PURCHASER
One thing my DM and I talked about was how Shared Sense worked in combat, i.e. do you see out of your own eyes and the puppets simultaneously or one at a time. We decided that each turn, I could pick which sensory source (me or all my puppets collectively) to sense out of. Thoughts?

Also, I assume puppets have your saving throw proficiencies?
Customer avatar
Jonathan C January 14, 2019 5:41 am UTC
CREATOR
Hello Arrman!

In combat shared sense is mostly a mechanism that allows you to see/attack/move a puppet much like your own body. In writing it, Andrew and I thought that you would be able to see simultaneously through your own eyes and the puppets much like a creature facing one way can still "see" behind it because there is the implicit understanding that during a turn, the creature is aware of the area around it and can turn its head to look around in that time. Whether you decide to make that a literal interpretation where the puppeteer can see through all puppets as well as her own eyes simultaneously, or that she needs to quickly switch and scan through her own eyes and her puppets, the final result is this:

The puppeteer is aware of her own immediate surroundings as well as the immediate sights and sounds around her puppets at all times. Effects such as fog, smoke, blindness, etc can be applied on a case-by-case basis.

Puppets share your saving throw proficiencies...See more
Customer avatar
Arrman K February 05, 2019 6:59 pm UTC
PURCHASER
Hey Jonathan, just wanted to ask when the next update will be out. No rush, just curious!
Customer avatar
Jonathan C February 12, 2019 7:47 pm UTC
CREATOR
Hey Arrman,

Hopefully, sooner than later, we are still working on it, the new class has some unique challenges that will have us making some changes through the entire document.

We are trying to keep the clarity and streamlined wording so the process is pretty involved. Combine that with myself getting a new job and transitioning, it might be a few more weeks.

I'll keep you guys updated as much as I can, but I'm thinking late winter/early spring.
Customer avatar
Brandon D November 14, 2018 2:30 am UTC
PURCHASER
I'm quite looking forward to DMing for a player who will be using your class in my campaign. I was wondering if you could answer a question regarding Collectors in their quest to become the very best, like no one ever was.

What considerations should be taken when providing monsters for collecting, specifically in regards to rewarding a player? Obviously, balance is an important part in deciding which monsters to present before the party (as any of them might be added to the Puppeteer's growing collection), but I'm also concerned about showing favoritism to my Collector player. Obtaining more puppets is an important part in the mechanical progression of the class, but I want to avoid under-serving or over-serving my player.

For example, if I provide many lovely foes for my Collector to puppetize while also dolling out as much treasure and/or magic items for him as I do for the other PCs, I fear that it will look like I'm being overly partial to one player and their character over...See more
Customer avatar
Jonathan C November 14, 2018 4:04 am UTC
CREATOR
Hey Brandon!

The collector is really unique since their arsenal has the possibility to span the entire Monster Manual and then some if you use other sources. The addition of a collector puppeteer means that even corpses are considered "treasure" by at least one of your party members and where the crux of your issue lies. Here's my take on it and please feel free to interject if you see differently.

The rewards for the entire group should not change, including the share for the collector. My general reasoning for this is that aside from the free upgrades at level 3 to gain two macabre manikins for CR3 or less (which they should have encountered earlier), the collector needs to spend both gold and time in the game to craft their new puppets. For example, at level 4 the cost to craft a puppet of the same CR would take 400 gold and 32 hours of downtime or 16 long rests (considering the 2 hours of light activity during a long rest).

I'd say it is extremely expensive...See more
Customer avatar
Brandon D December 18, 2018 2:28 am UTC
PURCHASER
Jonathan,

Thank you very much for your reply. Your advice makes a lot of sense. I will definitely keep in it mind when planning encounters and rewards. I predict that your rationale about scroll pricing in particular will help keep things balanced. Once we get further into the campaign, I shall give you feedback on any success and if changes were needed. Thank you again, and please keep up the good work.
Customer avatar
Jonathan C December 20, 2018 10:39 pm UTC
CREATOR
Hey Brandon! Keep us updated, we always love hearing back from players!
Customer avatar
Tristan B September 22, 2018 6:10 pm UTC
PURCHASER
I recently bought this class and am really impressed with it. I have a couple questions about the Collector specifically. (1) If a party member dies, can you turn them into a puppet (If the DM allows it)? (2) If you kill a creature, say a hydra, could you attune it to a scroll and store its body to work on during a rest? The document says you can store a body during any point in the conversion process, but when would you consider the process started?
Customer avatar
Jonathan C September 28, 2018 2:45 pm UTC
CREATOR
Hey Tristan! Thanks for buying the class! Sorry for the delay, in response, I usually only check this board once a week.

As for your questions: Can you turn your party member into a puppet? I LOVE THIS IDEA. I would say 100% yes but with a huge caveat. The process described only tells you how to turn a monster into a puppet. The idea that you could control another player character that could possibly be as powerful as you might be unbalancing. Your DM will need to scale the power of the puppetized player accordingly so that it isn't super powerful and/or rebalance encounters to make up for the extra "person" in the party.

"Could you attune it to a scroll to store its body to work on during a rest?" Yes, you can store it in the middle of a conversion, there's no practical way to work on the conversion straight through in one sitting so you can definitely do it piecemeal! As for when the process starts, it could be the moment you attune the scroll to store...See more
Customer avatar
Tristan B October 14, 2018 11:22 pm UTC
PURCHASER
Jonathan. Thank you for the insight. I will actually be playing a Collector Puppeteer in our next campaign. Only a couple more questions for my own clerification. If we are a level 6 party and we fight and kill a hydra (CR 8), could he begin working on turning it into a puppet at level 6 so it is ready by the time he gets to level 8? Furthermore, if that is permissable could I them start the conversion process of a dead party member to be ready to use at a higher level? My DM already said he would be fine with it, but I wanted your insight, since you are the creator and you know what the classes limits were meant to be.
Customer avatar
Tristan B October 14, 2018 11:23 pm UTC
PURCHASER
P.S. This class is fantastic and its obvious a lot of work has been put into it! Well done and thank you for sharing it openly for everyone.
Customer avatar
Jonathan C October 23, 2018 8:32 pm UTC
CREATOR
Hi Tristian,

Killing a CR8 creature as a level 6 party is a big deal, be careful! But otherwise, yes, if the body is salvageable after the battle (DM discretion) you may begin to puppetize it immediately if you have enough gold/resources. I'd say there's a "soft" unwritten rule that you can only control creatures with a CR equivalent to your level, but this is just a broad balancing technique that might not always apply due to the huge variations and strengths of monsters that you can puppetize.

As for the dead party member, the same rules would apply, so you can then puppetize that dead party member immediately after death following the rules in the guide for monsters or any DM specific rules you choose to homebrew-in-the-homebrew. If you really like your party member puppet and you want to continue to use him and "level" him up, I'd set up a situation where you can pay more gold and spend more time to bring that player up to another level, where the gold/time...See more
Customer avatar
Tristan B November 01, 2018 1:02 am UTC
PURCHASER
Thanks Jonathan!! Are you at all working on adding any new subclasses or making any tweaks to the classes in the future? It would be nice to see a few alternative puppet options for the Tinkerer and the Maestro! If not, would you be opposed to me and my DM home brewing some alternative puppets? I want to respect the class you built, but I'm a huge fan of variety. Maybe a Containment Puppet for the Tinkerer (similar to Naruto's Black Ant) or others. Just wanted to know what you think, being the mastermind behind the class. Also have you done any other classes or content for D&D?
Customer avatar
Tristan B November 01, 2018 1:10 am UTC
PURCHASER
I would love to see and try out any new archetypes you may have. Even if a typical class has only 3, I would be ecstatic to play something new. I will be playing a Collector in a new campaign a buddy of mine is starting and I have had hands on experience with all 3 now and they are mostly fantastic! He has bought the class to for use in his campaign. Great product guys!! Hope to see more from this. Would gladly help play test and give feedback on any new subclasses or content you have!!
Customer avatar
Jonathan C November 02, 2018 4:10 am UTC
CREATOR
Hi Tristan, thanks for enjoying and engaging so much with our work! We are very proud of it.

My friend and co-author Andrew are beginning to flesh out the fourth archetype for this class that spawned from Andrew's imagination. Not sure how long it will take since we just started brainstorming it a weekend or two ago, but hopefully soon. To add contrast this will focus on a puppeteer with one main puppet, so they eschew the large collections of the other classes, we are still working out a mechanic for this.

You are more than welcome to brew alternative puppets for your own use, if you share them I'd be glad to help you balance them! I was also thinking of something like Naruto's Black Ant, I suppose a puppet like that could be based upon spell which does a similar effect. That would be interesting to add to the list, perhaps a module specifically for the constrictor puppet to simplify and streamline integration. Let me know what you come up with and I'll mull it over as well!...See more
Customer avatar
Tristan B November 04, 2018 6:02 am UTC
PURCHASER
Thanks!!
Customer avatar
Tristan B December 08, 2018 9:12 am UTC
PURCHASER
Through looking at the Tinkerer subclass, I found it very difficult to want to play it over the other two, due to its lack of proficiencies. It just becomes a wait and grind to wait for ASIs to get feats, which I could use for my attributes. A fix me and my DM came up with was granting Tinkerer proficiency in light armor, shields, and martial weapons. This seems like a lot, but it adds more playability to the subclass, which is expensive (cost of puppets an gear) anyways. It opens up ASI for stat increases you may need and it gives your puppets more survivabilty and use as support in battle, especially at the lower levels for slower campaigns. It is just something that I believe makes the subclass appealing when being compared the the Maestro and Collector, both of which work well without having to use ASI to pour into a ton of feats. If the class had an extra ASI in the front end, like a fighter, this may be different. But these are my thoughts on the Tinkerer. Collector is great and I wouldn't change a thing!!...See more
Customer avatar
Jonathan C December 10, 2018 5:10 am UTC
CREATOR
Hey Tristan! Thanks for continuing to provide your feedback on this!

I was thinking about giving a feat buff to the tinkerer or some kind of change that would give their puppets a bit of a boost. Giving the Tinkerer all those feats does seem like a bit much, but giving it nothing at all seems like a mistake too. I'll brainstorm on some kind of change that would make the power curve for the tinkerer more palatable in terms of ASI seeing that the other sub-classes do have more of an oomph early levels.

As for the Maestro, I had a theme of "religious purity" with the archetype, which meant that puppets were of one theme and all that the Maestro needed. That being said, there's nothing wrong with adding another ability or change that would keep things interesting if we kept it balanced. What were you thinking of?

I'll post back here after consulting with my co-author!

Thank you, again!
Customer avatar
Jonathan C December 10, 2018 8:17 pm UTC
CREATOR
I'm currently discussing it with the co-author, Andrew. We will try to do a manual comparative playtest through 5th level for the three archetypes, but Andrew brought up a very good point, some races get feats/proficiency bonuses at level 1, so that incentivizes you to roleplay perhaps a dwarf tinkerer that has medium armor proficiency already etc.

I am leaning towards giving shields proficiency at level 3, some kind of weapon adjustment, but giving an armor proficiency with all that seems a bit much considering any other bonuses you might get from different races or backgrounds. In addition to giving proficiency with shields, I'll change the "protection module" to something different that gives the tinkerer more utility.

Again these are rough changes that might or might not go through, but please know that we are working on it!
Customer avatar
Tristan B December 19, 2018 2:08 pm UTC
PURCHASER
Sounds good! Once again, I'm loving the class. Your rationale for the Maestro makes sense, hearing it put that way. I am having a hard time pulling the trigger with the Tinkerer, in its current form. Giving a shield and martial weapon proficiency would be fantastic and would leave more than enough ASI to gain armor feats and attribute boosts through the levels, in my opinion.

In terms of the armor argument, I understand. I get the Dwarf argument, but it is only one subrace of a single race. But balance is still a thing. (Perhaps replacing the protection module with an armor one???) I haven't had extensive experience with a Tinkerer. My DM had the suggestion of taking a level in Fighter, but it would lock the 20th level ability from your build should your game go that far. Your argument makes sense, but I'm glad you are accepting feedback.

P.S. Have you or Andrew ever thrown around the idea of adding an ability to control 3 or more puppets at once??? The Collector made me think of this....See more
Customer avatar
Jonathan C December 20, 2018 10:52 pm UTC
CREATOR
Hey Tristan!

Changes are coming, probably a mix between the two, where the tinkerer chooses a defensive or offensive discipline so that all puppets get armor proficiency with shields OR they get martial weapon proficiency. Giving full proficiencies with everything for nothing at level three basically rivals a fighter's proficiency which seemed a little too much.

So, depending on how you want to play your Tinkerer you can be a defensive support or offensive but not both at level 3, this will require the use of an ASI for a feat to get proficiencies of the thing your missing, but it's an improvement over the two ASI upgrade you'd have to select before. So a definite smoother power ramp of a Tinkerer and we flavored it in a way that is consistent with what a Tinkerer is! I also changed the protection module to something else and added in another higher level module where I felt utility was lacking.

Three or more puppets controlled at once was in my original build wayyyyyy...See more
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Tristan B December 22, 2018 1:15 pm UTC
PURCHASER
Love the idea of selecting a defensive and offensive option for the tinkerer! Well done indeed. And new modules will always be welcome. The new subclass sounds really interesting and am exited to hear further developments. I totally get the three puppet thing. Thanks
Customer avatar
Alexana B May 16, 2018 11:47 am UTC
PURCHASER
Hello! I recently bought this after you directed me to it on a post i made in a facebook group, and my DM and I are super excited to see how it plays out! My character race is a Puppet, and so they will be a puppet puppeteer :D I just had a couple questions for you if that’s alright, firstly, how important would you say it is for this class to have good con? And what would you advise as the top two stats for a tinkerer? And finally, I saw on the modules section, theres an eldritch module, but it doesn’t seem to have a level assigned to it. At what level do you gain the ability to use that module?
Thanks in advance, and great work on an absolutely awesome class! :D
Customer avatar
Jonathan C May 16, 2018 5:06 pm UTC
CREATOR
Hello, thank you for your support! I am absolutely thrilled to have you play it.

Constitution isn't a primary stat to worry about as a puppeteer in general. That being said, the Collector's heartstrings feature requires you to channel your life energy into your puppet (you lose HP equal to twice that of the creature's CR). Controlling a very strong creature could easily bring a low constitution collector down below half HP before they are even hit! So I would consider constitution important specifically for a collector interested in controlling very strong high-CR creatures.

The top two stats vary based on what type or archetype you'd like to play.

Tinkerer - Dexterity/Intelligence & Other Misc stat that applies to your character background.

Collector - Strength & Intelligence/Dexterity. If you want to use macabre puppets to cast, you should max intelligence so you max their respective spell saving throw DCs.

Maestro - Charisma &...See more
Customer avatar
No E May 09, 2018 3:49 pm UTC
PURCHASER
Hey - really liking the fantasy of this class!
Though, I have one question regarding "Nimble Fingers" and number of actions/attacks.
At 5th level, I can control up to 2 puppets - can I command "puppet 1" to attack, with my Action, and then command "puppet 2" to attack, with my Bonus Action?
And would the bonus action attack count as an "Off-hand Strike" without ability modifiers? or would it count as a normal attack action as any other melee fighter?

And in case of only using 1 puppet at level 5, would I be able to have the same puppet use its attack action twice, using both action and bonus action, essentially giving it multi-attack?

Thanks in advance!
Customer avatar
Jonathan C May 11, 2018 11:52 am UTC
CREATOR
Hello! Thank you for your comment.

If you have two puppets and use your action to command puppet #1 to attack and then use your bonus action to control puppet #2 to attack, the attack of the second puppet is made with its main hand.

If you instead used your action then bonus action to make puppet #1 attack twice, the first would be a main hand strike and then an off-hand strike like if you were dual wielding with any other character. Only if you have the dual wielding feat could you add your ability modifier to your stats. However, using a dual wielding puppet will "use up" your action and bonus action almost every turn if you use it just to attack. There are probably better ways of using that action or bonus action!

The benefit of wielding two puppets is that you can have two main-hand attacks on two different enemy creatures, essentially tying them up and possibly obtaining an opportunity of attack on two creatures versus just one, or you can later use two...See more
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No E May 11, 2018 12:09 pm UTC
PURCHASER
Ah, makes sense! Thank you very much!
Customer avatar
Jonathan C April 19, 2018 11:23 pm UTC
CREATOR
Trying to figure out why the full-size preview link isn't showing anymore, I'll e-mail support and see if they can fix that. I've tried uploading and updating the page multiple times to no avail.
Customer avatar
Ryan P April 15, 2018 12:13 am UTC
PURCHASER
Hey just curious about your meaning behind click clack's discord saying "taking 3d8+20 psychic damage for each of your Puppeteer levels." Thanks
Customer avatar
Jonathan C April 18, 2018 1:17 pm UTC
CREATOR
Whoaaaaa, that's a big typo. Should be just 3d8+20, I think I left language in there for damage scaling with level but forgot to remove it when I decided it should have been a flat roll.

That would be pretty crazy if it were per level, I'll fix it and roll out a corrected PDF ASAP. Thanks for catching that!
Customer avatar
Jonathan C April 18, 2018 1:28 pm UTC
CREATOR
Okay I should have uploaded a fix, the full-size preview link disappeared, but I think the system is munching on the new file to create the preview, hopefully, it will show soon. Thank you again for finding that typo.
Customer avatar
Jonathan C February 01, 2018 6:46 pm UTC
CREATOR
New archetype and significant revisions are coming. Stay tuned within the next few months or so for the update! Sorry for the delay but life has been busy!
Customer avatar
Khương Lĩnh V February 01, 2018 11:52 pm UTC
PURCHASER
Great ^^!
At 1st and 2nd level, this class somehow weaker than the others ... but later, really strong and have many awsome tactics :D
I can't wait to see "the Maestro"
Customer avatar
Ryan P September 25, 2017 8:55 pm UTC
PURCHASER
Hey guys, I was just wondering if you'd say a puppeteer would be able to use another player's or npc's creature scrolls as long as they were chosen as one of their daily picks or if it would be only useful to the creature that made them? And if so, would a tinkerer be able to use another collector's scrolls and visa versa?
Customer avatar
Jonathan C October 20, 2017 11:58 pm UTC
CREATOR
For role-playing purposes I'd say you'd have to consider the following:

1) Anybody familiar with the art of puppeteering can read anybody else's scrolls and as long as they "attune" with the stranger's scrolls to ready them, scrolls are interchangeable. This is awesome and allows you to trade/buy scrolls with other puppeteer NPCs or even other players within the same campaign but it also puts your scrolls up as a commodity to be stolen which a DM can use against you. Very cool choice!

2) Anybody that creates a puppet scroll does so with their own "signature" so only they can use their scrolls or perhaps somebody that they give permission to. Think of Naruto making a contract with the frog summoning scroll with a bloody handprint! This gives your scrolls security so nobody else has an incentive to steal them, but also makes anybody else's scroll useless unless they give you permission ahead of time or you're able to "hack" it somehow. Again super cool...See more
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Khương Lĩnh V October 21, 2017 12:49 am UTC
PURCHASER
Wow, nice idea, how about this
1, Tinkerer can use Colector's scrolls but with disadvantage in every attack rolls, ability check or saving throw made by macabre manikin and vice versa. Also for every hour carrying wrong type of scroll make Puppeteer get 1 level of "exhausted".
2, Same as Janathan's 2nd idea, Scrolls will have "signature" by the creator, and can only be used by other Puppeteer if they has the creator's permission.
3, Puppeteer can erase their "signature" on their scrolls to make them usable by/tradable to other Puppeteers
Customer avatar
Ryan P October 31, 2017 7:45 pm UTC
PURCHASER
Thanks for the response.
1. I like the idea that the scrolls could essentially become a bargaining chip or, depending on what it contains, a symbol of power for say the leader of a city.
2. In terms of the idea of "hacking" another puppeteer's scroll, if it ever comes up I've been think of maybe trying either a Charisma skill check vs. the creator's puppet DC to see if you could overpower the creator's will or if the scroll is attuned to the owner at the time of trying to "hack" it, possibly a contested Charisma check to see who takes control, but both would require holding the scroll with the puppet already returned to it. Please let me know what you'd think of this.
Customer avatar
Jonathan C November 05, 2017 1:34 am UTC
CREATOR
Regarding the charisma check to steal the scroll I definitely like that! I'd probably make it so you need to make the charisma check against the scroll while sitting down with it for an hour to be able to figure out how it is encrypted and what not. Grabbing a scroll then contesting it in mid-fight then using it right away sound super cool, but also not very balanced!

I'll see what I can put into the addition! Thank you!
Customer avatar
Jonathan C March 19, 2018 1:28 am UTC
CREATOR
I wasn't able to add the scroll stuff in this change. Still need to work on that idea, until then keep homebrewin' the homebrew!
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Khương Lĩnh V September 07, 2017 4:17 pm UTC
PURCHASER
Nice work guys, here some of my question (sr for my bad English T^T)

1- About the level of Macabre manikin
It will be equal to the level of Player or the creature's level when Player make that manikin ?
And it can level up or stay there forever ?
And if I make a macabre manikin of one of my dead friend's player ? Like a level 10 Wizard, so I can control it to cast all the spells in that friend spell book ? and of couse, when I level up, is that manikin level up ???

2- About the feature "Art Imitates Life"
Ex: If player manage to control the powerfull creature, of couse with disadvantage when attacking with spell attacks or normal attacks (cause the STR + INT/DEX of Player is lower than that sum of the creature), but the creature can cast spell that can inflict damage. Is that spell casting with disadvantage ? and how to calculate ?
And when Player use Art Imitates Life with that powerfull creature, the disadvantage still apply ?

3-...See more
Customer avatar
Jonathan C September 08, 2017 6:28 pm UTC
CREATOR
Hi, Khương Lĩnh!

Thanks for your comment, let me try my best to answer some of your questions:

1 - The level of your Macabre Manikin does not change. So it is in your best interest to continually upgrade your manikin and your collection! That being said, any creature of CR level 15 is of a difficulty that would be challenging to a group of 4 level 15 players! So while the CR level of a monster might be 15, it is usually much stronger than any single player at that given level.

I've never considered making a Macabre Manikin from another player! How interesting! I would double check with your DM if that's OK. That adds another player entity into any encounters so that might make it difficult to incorporate. Otherwise I'd say go for it! It would also make sense that it would level up since it used to be a player character. But I don't think it should level up at the same rate as you, being that it's dead, I might think of increasing the EXP requirements of the puppet...See more
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Khương Lĩnh V September 09, 2017 4:50 pm UTC
PURCHASER
oh thanks ^^! but there are a few thing make me confuse

1- About upgrade Macabre manikin, how much it cost (time, gold, etc ...) ? So if I got a level 3 Skeleton, I want to upgrate it to level 4, how can I do that ?

2- So, as u says, if I control a Storm Giant, that puppet will attack/spell attack with disadvantage because my STR + INT/DEX stats lower than Storm Giant's . But when I use Art Imitates Life, I, as the Storm Giant, won't be disadvantage cause by that feature right ? But still can be effect by other sources

3- Ya, I just re-thought about Battery module :)) 6 puppet active at the same time will make the Puppeteer become the Army of One. About the ideal that Puppeteer must have feats (such as proficiency in heavy or medium armor) for the puppet using equipment, that really good and balance one, but how about you guys make a module "Copycat" (or Mimic or doppelganger) or something like that, that allow the puppet gain 1 feature from the feats table ? ...See more
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Jonathan C September 11, 2017 5:02 pm UTC
CREATOR
1 - You can't upgrade a skeleton you have as the rules are written now, because the skeletons in the monster manual do not level up, they have a set CR. You'd have to find a tougher skeleton statted out to be a CR4 creature and create a puppet out of that. With that said, if you have that existing CR3 skeleton and an existing CR4 skeleton, a good homebrew rule might be to subtract the cost of crafting the CR3 skeleton when creating the CR4 macabre skeleton puppet and the lower level puppet is consumed and destroyed in the process. In short -> Find a CR4 skeleton, create a new macabre mannikin from that a discounted cost if you destroy and use your CR3 skeleton as material and fodder for the new CR4 puppet.

2 - Yes, you are correct, once you inhabit the Storm Giant, you'll be able to control that puppet without disadvantage since you are using Art Imitates Life. Don't forget about your body left behind!

3 - A "Copy Cat Module" that sounds interesting! You modify a soldier...See more
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Khương Lĩnh V September 12, 2017 7:41 am UTC
PURCHASER
Thanks for making my head clear :D
I come up with some ideal, maybe interesting

- "Copy Cat Module": ya right, balancing it will be tough, should make a limit of features that can be picked. But somehow, I think it balanced since 1 puppet has only 1 installed module as a time (Beside the Breath Weapon Module is always for Warframe puppet) so they can't install other module. I think this Copy Cat Module is for Soldier puppet only. Contractor/Warframe can't install this module. Or you can make some other modules, each will gain 1 different feat, since you have Protection Module for using Shield...

- "Movement Module" (Climb/Swim/Fly/Hover ability): It should add some move speed for only the puppet. Ex: Flying Movement Module will add 15 ft flying type for puppet. And changing it physical form (like adding Wings or a Jetpack to it)

- "Over-Charged Module": It buffs the puppet in 1 turn but will get some downside after that turn till short/long...See more
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Jonathan C September 22, 2017 7:19 pm UTC
CREATOR
I like the idea of the charged modules with a backlash. I'm also making a thorns module that changes click-clack and makes opponents that fail a saving throw attack the puppet instead of fleeing and take damage every time they land an attack. Expect an additional PDF by the end of the year! (Sorry, I'm working full-time as a teacher as well!)
Customer avatar
Jonathan C March 19, 2018 1:29 am UTC
CREATOR
Included a movement module and "over-charged" modules in the new update, some aren't as powerful as you wanted, but they don't come with a penalty to use, so there's that! Having a puppeteer end a fight in one fell swoop is cool, but you could just keep doing that and ending the fight quickly then fixing your puppets, didn't want that to become a cycle.
Customer avatar
Khương Lĩnh V March 19, 2018 8:14 am UTC
PURCHASER
Wonderfull :") I like the update. There is a bug in your pdf:
- In the table, at 20th Level, still have the "Heavy-Handed Improvement", so I think you should add something replace that. Because if there is only feat Reassemble at level 20, I think many player will multiclass instead.
+ My idea is "Reassemble" that puppet will never be totally destroyed, when its HP drop to 0, it automatic stored to your scroll and all puppets that have 0 HP left, can automatic repaired with HP = 1 after a short rest.
-------------------------------------
And I got few more Module that want to share with you:
+ Forcefield Module (Level 9): AC +2 when attacked by Weapon Attack that made from metal

+ Spell Carrier Module (Level 13): Can stored up to 1 Spell level 5 or below from any classes, but it required Puppeteer knowledge about that spell.

+ Fixing Module (Level 3): Allow the puppet installed this module, can use action to heal other puppet...See more
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Nick S August 28, 2017 8:18 pm UTC
PURCHASER
Hey very interested in this class and will probably play it the next time im get the chance. I do have a question, at lvl 5 i believe you are able to use only one hand to control you puppet and i do see some advantages to having a free hand. But have you thought about maybe giving a bonus for a puppeteer who still uses 2 hands at this point.
Customer avatar
Andrew S August 29, 2017 1:59 am UTC
Hi, Nick! Actually, at 3rd level is when you get to control a puppet single-handedly. =) At 5th level you can using a bonus action to give that puppet a second command (e.g., an attack).

As for a bonus for opting to use both hands to control one puppet, that's an interesting idea! Jon and I have actually been discussing adding another archetype or two, one of which focuses on just using one puppet. So we may incorporate that idea into a new archetype. The reason it might not work currently (with the class as it's written) is because of the description within the "Range, Movement, and Control" section on page 4:

"Detaching your chakra strings from one
puppet and attaching them to another is considered
interacting with an object, which you may do once for free
during your turn."

So a Puppeteer who uses both hands to control their puppet to gain a bonus could simply drop their chakra strings after attacking with the puppet, use their free...See more
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Jacob H August 20, 2017 1:27 am UTC
PURCHASER
Hey Jonathan and Andrew, This was awesome really, keep up the good work XD
Customer avatar
Jonathan C August 20, 2017 4:35 pm UTC
CREATOR
Thank you! Please let us know if you have any suggestions with regards to your playtesting experience! I look forward to hearing more from your adventures with this class!
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Andrew S August 28, 2017 1:00 am UTC
Thank you for your review, Jacob! You clearly put thought into it. It was detailed and generous and it truly made our day! =)
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Tyler B August 14, 2017 5:27 am UTC
PURCHASER
Why would anyone use the automaton ability under tinker? Besides giving it 5 extra feet to move(which can go past the range restrictions) and action, this ability seems lacking. If I may suggest that it could make one puppet completely independent for 1 minute and restoring on a rest. Also I want to understand if a puppet can only get 1 attack from a action and at level 5 a bonus attack? Also does the soldiers have proficiency in armor and all weapons even if the caster does not?
Customer avatar
Jonathan C August 16, 2017 3:44 am UTC
CREATOR
If you read the Q&A it explains both proficiency (pg. 10) and why you would want to use automation (pg. 12) and how to do so in various situations. Proficiency is also addressed in the main body of the document where it says that puppets are an extension of you and uses your proficiencies. So if your puppet wields something you are not proficient in it does so with any applicable penalties to movement/casting/attack that you would suffer. This encourages you to use your ability score increases to invest in feats that would make your Tinkerer more battle ready, in comparison a collector does not need to invest in feats heavily but rather their stats directly so they can control more powerful corpse puppets.

Let me know if you have any other questions!
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Jonathan C August 16, 2017 4:06 am UTC
CREATOR
"Also I want to understand if a puppet can only get 1 attack from a [sic] action and at level 5 a bonus attack?"

If I'm understanding your question correctly, at level 5 you can use your action to make your puppet attack, and then your bonus action to make it attack again.

If you're wondering what to do with your free hand between levels 3-5, you can use a shield, a hand crossbow to alternate attacks between your puppet and you, perhaps a sword if you want to get into the fray with your puppet. If your DM allows it, you might use your action to attack a creature with your puppet, and if you're in melee range, attack the puppet with your off hand! Risky but interesting!

Customer avatar
Andrew S August 16, 2017 4:08 am UTC
One thing to remember is that you cannot control puppets that your chakra strings aren't attached to, and that puppets you aren't actively controlling this way that are on the battlefield are considered "unconscious". Automation temporarily makes that a non-issue, since your puppet is considered actively controlled even if your string aren't attached to it. This allows you to control a different puppet (or use your chakra strings for something else) while the automated puppet performs an action. Consider this feature a class-specific way to delay your action. For instance, you can create a combo with multiple puppets acting on your subsequent turn. Or consider using Automation for the enhanced "attack of opportunity" benefit it gains, almost acting as a stationary sentinel for one round. The action an automated puppet can take can occur anytime during the round, not just during your turn!

Until 11th level, you can only control one puppet at a time (though you can have more than...See more
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Tyler B August 16, 2017 11:26 pm UTC
PURCHASER
So stating you can equip two simple or martial weapons and armor is pointless(In fact its pointless for a puppet to wield two weapons)...a puppeteer HAS to be a fighter before taking this class in which case I lose out of the puppeteer Reassemble and 5/4/6 hp for the puppet. Unfortunately forcing me to get three feats on armor and 1 or more on weapons makes this class weakness(if I want to deck out in Plate and wield a great axe). You can't tell players that they have a soldier who can't wear armor or use martial weapons but for a low price of 4 out of 5 ASI they can be awesome. You don't have any spellcasting for this class and the puppets are weaken without equipment or base AC for the materials they are made with. The problem with this is the idea that the puppets are a "Extension of Yourself", in a sense that's true but what armor or weapons it uses has nothing to do with that extension. You are a puppeteer, you don't need to know how to fight like a real knight or soldier for controlling a puppet,...See more
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Jonathan C August 17, 2017 2:07 am UTC
CREATOR
A puppet wielding two weapons is useful if you're going to attack twice with the puppet after level 5. You can choose your class and race to perhaps gain proficiency in a feat at level one such as a variant human that will allow you to wear armor. Your soldier might wear only light armor instead of plate armor, you don't NEED to invest in every single armor proficiency because you have the option of having it or not and customizing your build to your personal preference. If you're going to focus on using heavy armor then you DO need to figure out a path to having your soldiers wear that type of armor. However, a puppet using light armor (studded leather) has an AC of 12 + your Dex modifier, which could be +5, so 17, then equip a shield on that soldier and their AC increases to 19 which is higher than plate armor at 18. Have that puppet dual wield with the feat and their AC would be 18. That is an incredibly high AC for something that isn't even living and that can fight FOR you without risk to you.
...See more
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Tyler B August 17, 2017 2:33 am UTC
PURCHASER
You don't need two weapons to attack twice, since its an additional command(Basically an extra attack but giving up a bonus action to do it, two weapon fighting).
Can't use a shield since puppeteer can't and you still had to use feats to get that AC. That's the point I'm talking about.
"Don't need to" isn't same as it shouldn't be so difficult.
The OP or ground breaking? No, I recommend that the issue be readdressed and I gave examples.
" you're a puppeteer and want to fight with a weapon you don't know, you just need to put it in a puppet's hands and you magically know how to use it? That is pretty unrealistic." Unrealistic...really, really...you move a puppet with magical strings and this is where you stand on realistic? First the skill of the operator isn't the same as a fighter. The puppet has no problem using it. The puppeteer can move a whole puppet around and the puppeteer isn't proficient in moving his own puppets? He magically know how to move three joints just...See more
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Tyler B August 17, 2017 3:07 am UTC
PURCHASER
Fact is unless you actually have the choice of battlefield on where you fight, this the puppeteer will be target the quickest just like any spell caster. If you want to hear OP, choose warlock eldritch blast. Maxed out is 4d10+20 force damage and if you get hexed involved an additional 4d6 necrotic damage. Adding Armor to a puppet and allowing it use weapons is no way OP, especially if its only a subclass that gets it..
Customer avatar
Jonathan C August 17, 2017 1:34 pm UTC
CREATOR
"Don't need to" isn't same as it shouldn't be so difficult. - It is difficult because it isn't a fighter class and gaining the ability to become fluent in fighting is a decision that you must make as a puppeteer if that's the type of puppeteer you want to be. Just like another player could focus on using puppets to simply grant advantage on the battlefield with puppets or perhaps take use of their other abilities like pulling strings. And if you dual wield weapons you can also attack using your action with your main hand and once again using your bonus action using the puppet's off hand, as if you were controlling a dual wielding rogue. As for shields the Protection Module gives the puppet proficiency with shields, says so on page 7 of the guide, so you are able to use shields without needing to be proficient in it since there is no feat for using shields specifically.

"The OP or ground breaking? No, I recommend that the issue be readdressed and I gave examples." Your examples...See more
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Jonathan C August 17, 2017 1:38 pm UTC
CREATOR
The puppeteer can hide and still control puppets, with the Thinner Strings feature at higher levels he can remain hidden but use puppets while the creatures need to make a perception check to find you. You can effectively remain hidden and safe while your puppets kill everything on the battlefield. And if you happen to get spotted, you can have another set of puppets near you for defense.

Also, there's the fact that in a campaign you're not alone and other players can choose to protect you while you deal damage since you'll be a team support.
Customer avatar
Jonathan C August 17, 2017 1:49 pm UTC
CREATOR
As for your review, "But heres [sic] the thing, these are not leaving creatures and do not get attacks of opportunity and can't give sneak attack to rogues."

That is incorrect. A puppet can give a sneak attack advantage for a Rogue, the description for it on page 96 of the PHB states that you can sneak attack if "another enemy of the target is within 5 feet of it", a puppet fulfills that if it is adjacent to the target, living or not.

As for opportunity attacks, on page 195 of the PHB there is nothing indicating that a non-living puppet would not get this attack. An animated golem construct would, so why not a puppet?

If you could I'd like you to edit your review and just remove that incorrect line, thank you.
Customer avatar
Tyler B August 17, 2017 3:46 pm UTC
PURCHASER
No, since it is correct. I get that you think this one person trying to ruin your class but in no way have a gave anything to make this class overpowered, in fact I have gave you examples and told straight up it is YOUR choice to do with as you choose but mine to warn people of the flaws I seen. I get you think this might be overpowered but trust me if fighting a dragon or beholder its not (examples). Giving a Puppet armor just because you not used to wearing it is silly, you don't need to wear armor for it to wear armor. You already moving a large or smaller puppet. Fact is I tire of listen to say its "overpowered" and you can remain hidden, you don't always get the choice of the battle field, sometimes the battlefield comes to you. Giving some armor and some weapons is not overpowered and the fact you think that it somehow breaks the balance is silly and if you can't wrap your mind around a puppeteer controlling a knight or puppet then that fine but I'm not interested in debating this topic of "armor...See more
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Tyler B August 17, 2017 6:14 pm UTC
PURCHASER
The biggest problem with this class is the puppets themselves, the restrictions to the puppet are severe. Childs play is a fun ability and relies on the stats(I rule it as physical stats) of the creatures and might start looking at that as a subclass. Look at moon druid for inspiration where a puppeteer makes copies(non-taxidermy style) and use the physical stats of the creature. Having puppets of different strength would be fun and interesting. The balance you have made is like a python latched onto his prey.
Customer avatar
Andrew S August 19, 2017 7:24 am UTC
Hello! Co-author here. Just thought I'd chime in, if that's okay. =) Tyler B, I think I hear what you're saying. I'm going to try summarizing it. Please correct me if I get anything wrong!

Your primary concern is that the soldier puppets are underpowered because of their inability to use armor without penalty. Related to this is that you believe forgoing your Ability Score Improvement (ASI) to instead take feats is too high a cost to make the puppeteer effective in battle. A secondary concern is that the soldier puppets' damage output is too low.

If you’ll hear me out, I’m hoping to persuade you that the class is not as underpowered as you might think. =)

The Puppeteer was created to be a support class, somewhere between a Druid and a (Conjuration) Wizard in playstyle and somewhere between a Bard and Rogue in theme. Thus, the Puppeteer gains features that assist in both non-combat and combat situations.

Outside of combat, features like Dress Up and Throw...See more
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Andrew S August 19, 2017 7:25 am UTC
Our intention was to design the Puppeteer to be customizable to different playstyles. Someone who wants to focus on combat-effective puppets would invest in some feats. Someone who wants to be more of a support character would invest in their ASIs. You can also multiclass to gain proficiencies or simply to play a neat character concept. That’s why we introduced the Smarter Strings feature, so that someone could replace Dexterity with Intelligence and do a character concept around that. We’re hesitant to add armor and weapon proficiencies to the class, because we feel it would be implying that the Puppeteer is just one type of puppeteer, a combat-oriented one.

As Jon said before, you are more than welcome to adjust this class in consultation with your DM if you feel it is lacking in some way and make it your own. =) Have you actually tried playing with the Puppeteer as it is written and playtest it with your group? You might find that it is more effective than you realize in actual play!
...See more
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Jonathan C August 19, 2017 1:59 pm UTC
CREATOR
I hope we've done enough to convince you that this class is not underpowered as you see it. People have downloaded this and have begun using it in their campaigns and they have not felt the need to contact us and say that the class is ineffective or needs changing in any way.

I sincerely ask that you try to build this character as described in the guide and use it in a campaign before you decide to critique any further! Thank you very much for your time and consideration.
Customer avatar
Tyler B November 28, 2017 4:42 am UTC
PURCHASER

Wow, I completely forgot about this class. No, with all do respect, you did not convince me. That's as far as I read on the into any message you replied to me. Not because you might or might not had valued points but because no matter what you did or did not say wasn't going to change anything I had said or reviewed. If you made changes good but if didn't oh well. My review stands with the rating it was giving.
Customer avatar
Sefire L August 06, 2017 1:32 am UTC
PURCHASER
Hm. Regarding "Pulling Strings" haven't you created a ridiculously insanely overpowered ability in the form of hurling small items?
Example.
I wear two dagger belts across my chest, filled with 5 daggers each for 10 daggers.
My turn. I connect a chakra wire to each dagger (One from each fingertip) and throw 10 daggers at a target, for 10d4+10 damage for a single action.

I do the same thing every round until everything is dead. Puppet's not needed.
Am I reading this ability correctly? The rest seems great, but this seems... quite powerful. As much as I've always wondered why the puppet guys in Naruto didn't just hurl daggers from every direction, this has only further assured me it would be incredibly effective xD
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Tyler B August 14, 2017 3:58 am UTC
PURCHASER
True, seems like it's on par with sneak attack.
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Tyler B August 14, 2017 5:30 am UTC
PURCHASER
I read it again and you are required to roll for each object. So roll a d20 ten times... I don't know if that's better or worse.
Customer avatar
Jonathan C August 16, 2017 3:35 am UTC
CREATOR
In the situation where you are using Pulling Strings, you may use your bonus action to use it, you only have on bonus action each turn, you cannot use your action to use Pulling strings. So at most, every round, you can make only one use of this ability.

1st level Magic Missle in the player's handbook does 1d4+1 damage per projectile and makes up to three of them. Higher spell slot used will allow for an additional projectile for each spell slot used above level 1. So this is on par with a level 3 magic missile spell for damage but lacks because it doesn't automatically hit and has less range.

So I think it's pretty balanced! Scale the damage if you'd like, but if you're only spamming this ability to throw stuff, you're not going to get very far in a battle because you're going to leave yourself vulnerable.
Customer avatar
Andrew S August 16, 2017 4:35 am UTC
Just to reiterate what Jon said, the damage listed in that first example under "Pulling Strings" states that the five, small-sized objects each do 1d4+1 damage. If you want to try flinging weapons around and benefiting from the weapons' damage (cool idea!), you would need your DM's permission, since that is more damage output than we intended!

Also, in the description for "Pulling Strings", it states: "You may use this feature as a bonus action to do one of the following with your chakra strings from one hand." Just one hand using your one bonus action. So only five chakra strings, assuming you aren't Tyrone Rugen, the six-fingered man (which would be a cool character concept, pending your DM's approval). =)

Keep in mind we only listed those as official uses of "Pulling Strings," but encourage you to come up with some novel ways of using it!
Customer avatar
Sefire L August 27, 2017 2:30 pm UTC
PURCHASER
I don't know if that's balanced. The ability to throw out 5 attacks as a bonus action on your turn will almost always be better than anything you could ever do otherwise.
Yes, it's equivalent to a 3rd level magic missile that can miss, however, you're comparing a free use ability to a 3rd level spell. You can never run out of doing this, AND you still have your action to do yet more stuff.

Pulling Strings in general seems like one of the more versatile, and powerful abilities within this class.
Restrain a target as a bonus action. Infinite uses.
Force disadvantage, infinite uses.
5x 1d4+1 attacks, infinite uses.

That... is insane xD

I don't think there is a single bonus action ability that has infinite uses in the game that comes close to this one. Which is why it's unbalanced. The rest is great, but Pulled Strings is... errcch.
Customer avatar
Jonathan C August 28, 2017 12:38 am UTC
CREATOR
You're right in saying that pulling strings is a versatile and powerful ability. It's meant to be that way such that the puppeteer has wide latitude on the battlefield when trying to decide on what to do with their bonus action that turn.

Level 6 is one of the largest power increases of the puppeteer because levels below such are much harder to make an influence on the battlefield aside from having a single puppet fighting for you. The infinite uses seems super powerful, however, let's take a look at different situations that compares the pulling strings ability in comparison with other abilities of the like.

Let's just say you're a level 6 puppeteer with +3 Dex bonus using a dexterity based weapon with a puppet (dagger).

If you use your pulling strings ability to throw 5 objects at a single creature and hit with all of them, your damage curve looks like this: AVG DMG: 13.5, MAX 21 (I'm using anydice.com for these stats FYI.) Anything with resistance to bludgeoning...See more
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Andrew S August 28, 2017 2:17 am UTC
Hi, Sefire L! Co-author Andrew here. Jon and I were just chatting further about your feedback (thank you for sharing your thoughts, by the way). We're going to make an adjustment to the Pulling Strings feature based on your feedback. =) You should see the updates within a few days if not tonight.

CHANGE: We're going to add a Dexterity check to the second suggested use of Pulling Strings to resist the disadvantage effect.

As we, you, and others who have purchased the product continue to playtest it, we'll revisit this if it seems too have nerfed this feature too much. But we're grateful for the suggestion and we'll see how it plays out. =)
Customer avatar
Jonathan C August 28, 2017 2:45 am UTC
CREATOR
Andrew brought up the fact that the effect could be used to cause a creature with multiple attacks to all roll at a disadvantage while the paladin only can react once to one single attack. That and it can be spammed every turn was too much! I didn't consider the idea of using it against a single powerful target that perhaps everybody was fighting against. Adding the saving throw removes that spamming ability and makes it a bit more tactical when deciding whether to use the restraining feature or the disadvantage effect based on the type of enemy you are fighting.

Thanks again for your feedback! It definitely improves our thinking when considering balance!
Customer avatar
Zack C June 24, 2017 4:38 am UTC
PURCHASER
Do puppets share your feats? Im confused by the mention of this.
Customer avatar
Jonathan C June 29, 2017 4:20 pm UTC
CREATOR
Hello, yes, they do. Puppets are an extension of you, so any feats that you make have your puppets have as well. For example, if you lets say has the Sharpshooter feat, your puppet could make ranged weapon attacks as if it had the Sharpshooter feat as well since you are controlling that puppet.

Some feats, however, don't make sense when transferred to the puppet, such as Keen Mind. That's primarily going to affect you and you alone since your puppet always knowing which way is North is really just YOU knowing which way is north.

If you have any specific questions about any feats, ask them here and I'll be happy to reply!
Customer avatar
Tyrell H May 08, 2017 5:49 am UTC
PURCHASER
Question: could macabre manikins use magic weapons
Customer avatar
Jonathan C May 08, 2017 11:50 pm UTC
CREATOR
Good question! I would err on the side of caution and say no. Some monsters do not have magical weapons to begin with and to use them successfully they'd have to attune themselves to the weapon... which they can't... because they're dead. The only puppets that can use magical weapons are the tinkerer's puppets with an eldritch module installed which allows you to extend your attunement to your puppets so to speak.

Some monsters like the Marilith have a little blurb in their stat block that makes their attacks magical for the purpose of overcoming damage resistance, if you managed to puppetize and create a macabre manikin out of that monster then any attacks it would do would be dealt as if it came for a magical weapon!
Customer avatar
Tyrell H May 09, 2017 3:24 am UTC
PURCHASER
thank you that has been nagging at me since i started working on my puppeteer and now know to keep my magic weapons for me in case, and DM forbid, my puppets go down
Customer avatar
Jonathan C May 10, 2017 2:56 pm UTC
CREATOR
Good idea, you definitely need to keep yourself armed at early levels as your puppets are relatively weak early on! As you progress and the number of readied puppets increase, hopefully, those weapons will go largely unused!
Customer avatar
Tyler B August 13, 2017 7:17 pm UTC
PURCHASER
So do the puppets attack count as magic?
Customer avatar
Tyler B August 13, 2017 8:00 pm UTC
PURCHASER
And why can't a puppet use a non-attunement magic weapon or armor?
Customer avatar
Jonathan C August 16, 2017 3:45 am UTC
CREATOR
Puppet attacks do not count as magic if they are not wielding a magic weapon.
Customer avatar
Jonathan C August 16, 2017 3:47 am UTC
CREATOR
Again, puppets are an extension of yourself and therefore for your puppet to use an item you must be attuned to it if the item requires. If the item does not require attunement then they'd be able to use that item without the eldritch module I'd suppose. I think however that most items in 5e require attunement to use! Your DM will let you know if you need to attune the item or not for balance purposes.
Customer avatar
Tyler B August 17, 2017 1:36 am UTC
PURCHASER
+1/2/3 weapons/armor do not require attunement but it states you cannot use magical gear with your puppet at all(unless you use that special module). Why doesn't the puppet attacks eventually count as magical?
Customer avatar
Jonathan C August 17, 2017 2:17 pm UTC
CREATOR
I think we stated earlier that if they do not require attunement you'd be able to use them. The non-magical part was specifically referring to attuned magical items, I'll take a look at the language and revise it. Thanks!
Customer avatar
Jonathan C August 17, 2017 2:30 pm UTC
CREATOR
I've fixed the language, it now reads: "A soldier puppet can equip up to two simple or martial weapons and wear any armor. It cannot equip a magic item that requires attunement without a special module." So any magical item that doesn't require attunement can be equipped.
Customer avatar
Andrew S August 17, 2017 3:52 pm UTC
Tyler B, there is the opportunity to have magical attacks with your puppets for both archetypes! =)

For the Tinkerer, there is the Eldritch module. For the Collector, you can puppetize a creature that has magical attacks in its stat block.

Neither of these options is available immediately, because magical attacks are, in our opinion, powerful and ought to be limited at early levels. However, puppets and manikins can use magical equipment that doesn't require attunement, which allows you and your DM to accelerate this and allow you to deal magical attacks sooner should you wish.
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File Last Updated:
May 16, 2018
This title was added to our catalog on April 16, 2017.