Let's Roll: More than "just" a Cleric
Let's Roll

Let's Roll: More than "just" a Cleric

Unpopular Opinion: Clerics are boring. I always feel stuck in the same mold: a devout worshipper goes and travels the land, spreading the good word to all he meets. Let's change that up.

I've played very few Clerics. There was my very first Cleric — he got pushed down a hole and died — and one I made for Pathfinder Society after we got TPKd (he was a Monk with a single Cleric level.)

I find them... boring. I'm sorry!!! They all end up being the same to me (which, in hindsight, I guess most classes have this problem): a very devout worshiper of some god or goddess, traveling and spreading "the word."

After I posted my first three posts to Reddit, I was put on to the idea of making a Cleric that isn't your generic Cleric. I have a little experience in this field of reflavoring: I'm currently playing a Warlock according to the rules, but the character itself is a Bard. We got to pick magic items to start with, and while everyone else got something a bit "cooler," I chose a lute that caused little illusions to flutter about when played.

He's amazing. Lol.

With this post, I'm striving to make a Cleric that I could see myself playing one day, just like any other magic class. And I think I stumbled on at least one good idea.

Let's build a Cleric

... but they're actually a Druid.

This is the easiest to do, especially since Druids are already very Cleric-like to me. This Cleric would only be so according to the rules and mechanics, but the flavor would be very Druidic. Perhaps this Druid has lost their ability to shift and can no longer understand their secret language.

Why has nature forsaken them? What is the bigger picture? They'll have to explore to find out.

For this build, Nature Domain is the obvious choice. I think Grave, Tempest, and Twilight could also fit as well depending on how obsessed with "nature" your character is.

... but they're using religion to cope.

They are subconsciously — maybe more purposefully — blind to the errors of the world. They pray and they pray and they pray, clinging perhaps to some obscure trinket every night and every morning. What are they hiding? What in their past is so traumatic?

Arcana Domain could be a Cleric who dives into studying to cope. I can also see Order or Peace Domain being flavorful, as this character would be so obsessed with things being "right" or "good."

Without their trinket, they are a lost cause, crumbling and going mad.

Speaking of going mad...

... but they're accidentally worshiping Cthulhu.

They start off fine. A standard, generic cleric. But as they progress and their powers grow, they see things. They lash out. The more knowledge they gain and the more they investigate their god, the crazier everything — including themselves — get. Throw in a Warlock level or two for good measure. Or, if you and your DM are up for it: convert all of your Cleric levels into Warlock levels down the road.

(Oh, wait. Did I end up just making a Warlock again? Darn!)

My favorite of the bunch. Hopefully this one is played from the earliest level possible.

The first domain that pops in my head for this build is Knowledge Domain (for obvious reasons). Aracana Domain can fill that roll as well. Or, if you're up for fun from the start, Trickery Domain: your duplicate from Invoke Duplicity sometimes stares at you madly or giggles silently. Just a bit of creepiness.

That's all I could come up with, sadly. But that last one intrigues me, so I'd be excited to try it out one day. And this post specifically ignores another route I could take: playing a Divine Soul Sorcerer or a Celestial Warlock, or any other class but with a religion-focus. My goal here was to play a Cleric according to the rules, but with a different flavor.

Do you have any ideas I could use to reflavor a Cleric? Let me know in the comments or on Twitter!

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