ReviewsUnearthed Arcana

Unearthed Arcana 2022: Cleric and Revised Species Breakdown

Welcome to the third packet of OneD&D public playtesting! In this article – as usual – I’ll be digging into the content of the packet: what it means now and what it might mean in the development of OneD&D. This packet brings us the Cleric class, the Ardling, Dragonborn, and Goliath Species, and new Rules Glossary sprockets. This one is mercifully shorter, at a mere 26 pages!

Character Origins | Expert Classes | Cleric & 3 Revised Species

The first two pages are boilerplate at this point, aside from the revelation that “Species” is replacing “Race.” I’m sure that will be divisive for some number of fans, but I won’t be spending a lot of time on that debate.

Jeremy Crawford clarified in a conversation with Todd Kenreck yesterday that yes, 48 subclasses means 4 subclasses for each of the 12 classes, not some other split. As I said when this was first announced, no matter which cleric and wizard subclasses get chopped (rather than… fixed), I know that I’m going to be unhappy about it.

Cleric Class

The changes to the Cleric’s flavor text are fairly subtle, but seek to clarify both the cosmic and worldly role of the Class – including that NPC clergy don’t necessarily have anything to do with the Cleric. Some version of that statement has shown up in a bunch of Cleric writeups, but I think it’s still hard for setting designers and DMs to see “this priest isn’t a Cleric” as kind of… invalidating, often placing them as inescapably inferior to the PC Cleric (an interpretation that this text explicitly reinforces).

  • No baseline changes to Hit Dice (d8s), Saving Throws, Skills (but see Holy Order, below), Weapons, or Armor (but, again, see Holy Order, below).
  • Channel Divinity drops down to 1st level, and every Cleric has two Channel Divinity options. (The text says you gain new options at higher levels, but we have to assume that means “from your Subclass.”) You have PB/Long Rest uses of Channel Divinity, which is the first thing that I think is a deeply bad move in this Class. No, I’m not surprised by it – the move to PB/Long Rest started back in TCOE – but I think 2-3 uses of CD per Long Rest for the most common levels of play is a big step down from 1/rest up to 5th and 2/rest up to 17th. My firm view is that the game is better if every Class gets something back per Short Rest and something back per Long Rest.
    • So, those two Channel options: Divine Spark heals one creature or deals Radiant Damage to one creature, as a Magic Action. The healing or damage done is 1d8 per PB, and if you’re dealing damage the creature takes half damage on a successful Con Save. That damage is a little bit better than a cantrip; thanks to Blessed Strikes, it stays a pretty steady average of 4.5 points better than a cantrip at most levels of play. My point is, using Divine Spark for damage is a waste at current healing/damage scaling, unless “half damage on save” makes a huge difference right this moment.
    • Turn Undead now inflicts the new Dazed condition, and doesn’t compel the creature to flee, but it chooses between doing nothing and fleeing. Random side thought: previously Undead would need a special “immune to Turn Undead” trait to be, in fact, immune to Turning, but now any undead with immunity to the new Dazed condition is immune to Turning. I’m betting a lot of designers don’t think that through quite far enough when they release monster books, going forward.
    • Getting this at 1st level and scaling its uses per day and effectiveness on Proficiency Bonus promises to be ugly on the multiclassing side. It’s awfully easy to just grab one Cleric level and have a ton of extra healing to go around. I decline to imagine that as intended behavior.
  • Spellcasting functions on Prepared Spells, as we saw with the Bard and Ranger. Clerics get the full Divine Spell List, of course – “should a Cleric get this” is still the polestar of whether it goes on the Divine list.
  • Holy Order at 2nd level is “Fighting Style, but make it Cleric.” You know how the 2014 cleric chooses between weapons and cantrips, creating some weirdness at 8th level of each Cleric subclass where the designer has to decide whether to boost weapon or cantrip damage? Holy Order and Blessed Strikes (at 7th) addresses that. On its face, it’s about whether you’re a fighting Cleric (Protector), Scholar, or cantrip-blasty wonder-worker (Thaumaturge). Scratching that surface just a little more, it’s about letting Domains give you one less thing at 1st or 2nd level, and making it much more open to your choice.
    • Protector grants Proficiency with Martial Weapons and Training in Heavy Armor – that baseline War Domain feature, now for anyone who wants to be a frontliner. I hope that when we see Trickery, this is a good fit for them, maybe with Rapiers. There’s one glaring problem with this: if you start at 1st level and get starting gear at 1st level, you need one set of gear to get through 1st level and a different set as soon as you reach 2nd. Changing your basic gear needs after 1st level is always rocky, and more so when it’s still early enough in the game that affording new gear is a challenge.
    • Scholar is great, because it not only gives you Proficiency in two skills (chosen from Arcana, History, Nature, Persuasion, or Religion), it also lets you play a holy sage. You can add your Wisdom modifier to rolls of the two Skills you choose for this. I’d like to see Investigation added, since it’s on the Study Action list.
    • Thaumaturge grants an extra cantrip and you recover one use of Channel Divinity when you finish a Short Rest. Um, wow. The cantrip doesn’t matter much at 2nd level and matters gradually less as you advance, but the additional uses of Channel Divinity are a big deal.
    • At 9th level you choose another Holy Order. I’m betting that almost no one picks up Protector at 9th level, because you don’t suddenly start having stats that make it good – you’ve picked your playstyle by 9th level, for sure. It’s easy enough to see that new Holy Orders – Exorcist, Inquisitor, and so on – would be one of the first pieces of third-party content everyone created.
  • You don’t pick your Domain until 3rd level, and that’s a huge shift for the Cleric. They’re trying really hard to get all of the classes on the same 3/6/10/14 levels for subclasses, and it may not matter if that makes no sense for the class’s story. I think the concept here is less that which god you might serve is undecided, but that you don’t choose your Domain of that god’s list of options until 3rd, or you don’t have any mechanical expression specific to that god until 3rd. As many have noted, though, this is going to look a lot worse when we get to sorcerers and warlocks.
    • It should go without saying that the gap between 8th and 17th level in Cleric subclass features was always a bummer.
  • Feats at 4, 8, 12, 16, 19.
  • Smite Undead at 5th level upgrades your Turn Undead by tacking on your Divine Spark damage to every creature that fails its save against your Turn attempt. (There’s no second save for half damage – it’s all or nothing.) This replaces Destroy Undead, which never did come up all that much, and makes absolutely sure that using Turn Undead is worthwhile when you run into Undead – not only might you Daze them, you might also deal a bunch of damage to each of them. Undead that would have been Destroyed by the old Destroy Undead are likely to be seriously weakened or vaporized by 3+ d8s of Radiant Damage.
  • Blessed Strikes drops from 8th to 7th, and as in TCOE adds +1d8 Radiant Damage to your Weapon Attacks and 0-level Spells, once per turn. (I don’t understand why 0-level Spells would be clearer language than Cantrips, but you still have to know that they’re the same thing.)
  • Divine Intervention moves up to 11th Its main change is that there’s a little more guidance on appropriate forms of intervention – such as the effect of “any Divine Spell.” Instead of needing to wait 7 days after any successful intervention roll, you now wait 2d6 days.
  • Greater Divine Intervention, previously called Divine Intervention Improvement, has dropped from 20th to 18th like all “capstone” features. Your Divine Intervention roll automatically succeeds, and it now takes 2d4 days to refresh, rather than 2d6.
  • The default EPIC BOON at 20th level is the Epic Boon of Fate, which we’ll get to in a bit.
  • A note on Multiclassing: I didn’t really study how this would work before, but you prep spells based on your Cleric level, but get spell slots based on your total spellcaster level. That was true before as well, but now you’re preparing a specific number of spells of each level. I still don’t understand why preparing spells by slot helps anything – it looks to me like just another hurdle.

That covers the Cleric’s core. I think Holy Order and Channel Divinity need to swap places so that Protectors don’t buy starting gear that you can’t use for a level, or have to replace all of your gear at 2nd level; also, so that Cleric 1 doesn’t become an unbeatable 1-level dip. I said it above and I’ll say it again – setting Channel Divinity to PB/LR (+1/SR if you buy Thaumaturge) feels bad. You don’t need more single-encounter burst power, not for damage or healing – you need more staying power over the course of a day. We already know what a D&D with everything on per-long-rest/per-day looks like, and people who still work there moved away from that with clear intent and understanding.

I feel like the game has lost some sight of the purpose of Simple Weapons. They’re Weapons for people who don’t use Weapons, plus Monks. Seems like a waste at this point.

Life Domain

The interesting thematic change is that Life is fundamentally connected to existence per se, so every god and philosophy might grant this Domain. (Your Cleric can be the turbo healing one, no matter what else you’re doing. It’s fine.)

  • Because you don’t get Domain Spells until 3rd level, you don’t retroactively gain any 1st-level spells as always-prepared. That seems like a strange choice to me, since you wind up with more 2nd-level Spells prepared than 1st-level Spells. The list is somewhat changed from the 2014 PH, with even more healing focus this time. The nice thing is that most of the healing you’ll need other than Cure Wounds and Healing Word is handled, so you can use your prep slots for everything else.
  • Disciple of Life, also at 3rd level, lets you add 2 + spell level to the healing you do with Spell Slots. You’ll notice some changes in the wording from the 2014 version – “on the turn you cast the Spell” seems weird at first. This is about spells like Healing Spirit and Aura of Vitality that deliver healing round-over-round.
    • The weird thing here that I only think I understand: the additional healing is based on the Spell’s level, not the level of the Spell Slot you use to cast it.
  • Preserve Life at 6th level is essentially the same, except that it clarifies that you can choose yourself, and it now works on Constructs and Undead for some reason. Since Divine Spark can also heal Constructs and Undead, I strongly suspect that “Constructs and Undead can’t be healed by most healing magic” is gone as a setting baseline.
  • Blessed Healer at 10th level splashes 2 + Spell level healing onto you when you heal another creature, just as in 2014. Here again, “on the turn you cast the Spell” wording, as well as basing the additional healing on Spell level rather than Spell Slot level. (My interpretation could still be wrong. I just can’t understand why Disciple of Life and Blessed Healer shouldn’t pay extra for upcasting.)
  • Finally, Supreme Healing at 14th level still maximizes healing. This one does work for round-over-round healing.
    • This is the first feature that doesn’t place nice with the Healer feat. Bit weird, but not a huge deal I guess?
    • Worth mentioning that Disciple of Life, Blessed Healer, and Supreme Healing all care about spells you cast with a Spell Slot, so if you have a feature that casts a Spell of 1st level or higher without expending a Spell Slot (such as Magic Initiate), you need to pay attention to that and not add your kicker effects. This might be about making sure you don’t add this to staff of healing Spells, so everyone using items like that gets the same throughput?

Overall I’m fine with the Life Domain, and the worst I’d say of it is that healing magic working just fine on Constructs and Undead seems like letting down the narrative, and I dislike it strongly. Maybe they’re planning to store that information on every Construct and Undead? That seems like way more work. Also, I’d like to see 1st-level Domain Spells come back even if you get the feature at 3rd level.


The story and concept of the Ardlings has shifted focus from the Upper Planes to the Beastlands in particular, placing them a lot closer to Eberron’s Shifters. It’s a lot harder to see why they’re connected to Divine Magic rather than Primal, now.

  • Humanoid, Small or Medium size, 30 ft speed, 200-year average lifespan.
  • Much like Shifters, you choose a category of animal that you’re connected to: Climber, Flyer, Racer, or Swimmer. Each category has its own feature, of course:
    • Climber gives you a Climb Speed equal to your normal Speed, and 1/turn when you deal Unarmed Strike damage, you can add your PB. The Climb Speed is nice for most characters; the Unarmed Strike damage is a tough sell for anyone but Monks and people who already bought Tavern Brawler (or any Fighting Style, like those in TCOE, that winds up increasing Unarmed Strike damage).
    • Flyers don’t have a Flying Speed, but can slow their fall with their stubby wings. As long as you can use your Reaction, you won’t take falling damage. You also have Advantage on Jump Action Ability Checks. Okay for everyone; no better than okay for anyone, that I can see.
    • Racers gain a bonus of 10 x PB to their Speed during a Dash Action. Incredible for Rogues and Monks; we’ll see if other ways to Dash as a Bonus Action show up. It’s enough extra Speed to shut down many kinds of chase scenes.
    • I hope we’ll see the design team tinker with the DMG’s Chase system in the revision – it’s got some good ideas but I think it could use a fresh look and more player choices.
    • Swimmer lets you hold your breath for up to an hour – enough for maybe a 5-room underwater dungeon, but not much more than that – and gives you both a Swim Speed equal to your normal Speed and Resistance to Cold Damage.
  • You gain one Divine cantrip, which is Thaumaturgy by default; you can choose Int, Wis, or Cha as your casting stat for it.
    • Why is this not Primal, though?
  • Keen Senses gives you Proficiency in Perception.

That’s it for the Ardlings. I wonder if their Animal Ancestry features are useful enough to justify being the main thing, since the cantrip and Proficiency in Perception are useful but inarguably kind of bland. Overall, I think this is a pretty solid beastfolk Species concept, and I’m more interested in having a lot of beastfolk concepts gathered in one Species listing than a separate Species listing for every Family within the Animalia Kingdom.


I’m going to cut right to the chase on this: what we’re looking at here is a different handling for Dragonborn breath weapons, and a way to delay access to Flight. Let me try to explain the problem.

There are, fundamentally, three main ideas for how to handle a Dragonborn breath weapon.

  1. As in 4e, it might use your Bonus Action. This has one key benefit and two problems, as far as I know. On the plus side, every Class gets the same number of Bonus Actions in a turn see 2 and 3 for what I’m getting at here). On the down side, some Classes care a lot more about using their Bonus Action every round to hit their expected damage marks (lookin’ at you, Horizon Walker Ranger and literally every Monk). That means a BA breath weapon is just recapitulating the 2014 TWF problem, though at least with some usage limit. For other classes, any substantial number of BA uses of an AoE likely pushes their damage numbers too high.
  2. As in 2014’s PH and the previous OneD&D UA draft, your breath weapon might take your Action for the round. It’s incredibly hard to keep this option exciting or worthwhile compared to the Weapon Attacks or Magic Actions you’re giving up, though being a small AoE helps. (2014 in particular had scaling problems that meant the breath weapon was pretty worthless after 5th level or so.)
  3. As in Fizban’s Treasury of Dragons and this UA draft, your breath weapon might replace one Attack from your Attack Action. This is great for Fighters, Monks, and to a slightly lesser degree Barbarians, Paladins, Rangers, and blade ‘Locks. It’s real bad for anyone who doesn’t have more than one Attack from their Attack Action, i.e., Rogues and all the Classes that can’t combine their breath weapon with a Spell. This one is also the most confusing for new players.

All of these options have harsh tradeoffs, and – to be blunt – they’ll probably keep dithering between 2 and 3 until one proves to be the most popular with the community. There aren’t a lot of Species that grant a significant damage-dealing feature, so this is outside the standard dynamic.

The damage scaling on the breath weapon is also retuned – 1d10 per tier – and you choose between a 30-ft line and a 15-ft cone. You get PB uses per Long Rest, and never mind the fact that this is another great candidate for the per-Short-Rest treatment. If you’re having “this is a lot of damage for your cool trick” problems, force it to spread out a bit over multiple encounters.

They have also cut the Draconic Language feature (I personally liked that Draconic was a magical language that Dragonborn innately knew), and replaced it with Draconic Flight at 5th level: 1/Long Rest, you gain a Flight Speed equal to your normal speed for 10 minutes, as a Bonus Action. Your wings are spectral and go away if you’re Incapacitated.

As you might guess from my comments above, I see the tinkering with breath weapon mechanics as having no ideal solution within 5e/OneD&D’s Action economy, just mostly-unpleasant tradeoffs, so my take on this Dragonborn as a whole is that it’s… fine? I’d play it, and its mechanics are more exciting than the 2014 PH. (I still think they’re a good candidate for not having Darkvision.)


It’s fascinating to see even a potential hint that Goliaths might move into the Player’s Handbook core Species – that’s a big move up from their first appearance in Races of Stone. It looks like WotC is also contemplating a huge thematic broadening.

Quick break for crass self-promotion: this version of the Goliath shares more than a little with the Jotunnar that I converted to 5e for Rite Publishing’s In the Company of Giants.

  • Humanoid, Medium (always at the upper bound of “Medium”), 35-ft Speed, roughly Human life span.
  • Giant Ancestry diversifies the Goliath to be a Humanoid version for all Giant types within the Ordning. You pick one, and your appearance reflects that choice somehow. You can use the effect PB times per Long Rest.
    • Cloud’s Jaunt lets you Teleport up to 30 feet as a Bonus Action. There’s almost never been a character who couldn’t use a few extra Misty Steps – but PB uses of a 2nd-level spell as a feature from 1st level is very potent.
    • Fire’s Burn adds 1d10 Fire to your damage with anything that takes an Attack Roll, so most character concepts can find a good use for this with minimal effort.
    • Frost’s Chill adds 1d6 Cold and a -10 ft Speed snare to anything that takes an Attack Roll. Solid.
    • Hill’s Tumble… okay, not so sure about this name… is a knockdown (no Saving Throw, limited to Large or smaller creatures) that you tack onto a successful Attack Roll.
    • Stone’s Endurance is the same Reaction to reduce damage taken by 1d12 + Con modifier. I remain steadfastly convinced that being able to burn all this damage mitigation in a single encounter is doing no one any favors, compared to when this was on a per-Short Rest cooldown. Among other things, it runs so oddly against making encounters more predictable, as the creature statblock redesign has been pushing, and as came up in the “no NPC crits” rule.
    • Storm’s Thunder lets you use your Reaction to deal 1d8 Thunder Damage to a creature within a huge range that deals damage to you. No way to avoid the damage makes this feature pretty solid.
  • Large Form lets you hulk out, growing to Large for 10 minutes as a Bonus Action, 1/Long Rest. This boosts your Speed by 10 and grants Advantage on Strength Checks. Those benefits feel kind of underwhelming – those aren’t the things that make people want to play Large characters. It does at least let you avoid the drawbacks of being always-Large, like not fitting into smaller dungeon spaces or weighing so much that bridges or elevators aren’t rated for your use. (The feature doesn’t mention the square-cube law, but I’m assuming you don’t approach ultralight density either.)
  • Powerful Build now grants Advantage on Saves to end the Grappled condition, and lets you handle heavy objects as if you were one size larger.

These are very flashy features, occupying the same space as the Giant-themed Feats we saw most recently in the Wonders of the Multiverse UA. What it offers will feel cool and active in the course of an adventure, but also increase pressure to burn through feature uses fast and take another Long Rest soon. (We’ll see a wording tweak to Long Rests, clarifying that you can’t start another Long Rest within 16 hours of your last one – that’s unlikely to help in any significant way.)


The Feats section is short – they just want to drop some EPIC BOONS for the Priestly set.

Epic Boon of Fate (Mage or Priest group) is identical to the Epic Boon of Luck from the Expert Classes UA, except that instead of being self-only, you can only use it for creatures you can see within 60 feet. It’s Bardic Inspiration as used by a Bard of 10th-14th level, and thus hard to regard as all that epic. It’s improved from 2014 by refreshing when you roll Initiative as well as when you finish a Short or Long Rest.

The Bard not being able to take this Feat, because they don’t have an exception granting Mage group access, is one of those fundamental flaws in the Class Group system – a DM can issue an exception, but D&D Beyond will make your life hard about it.

Epic Boon of Spell Recall (Mage or Priest group) gives you another casting of a 5th-level or lower spell without expending a Spell Slot, 1/Long Rest. (See my note in the Life Domain about Spells that technically don’t expend Spell Slots.) Nice to have, and probably legitimately worth the Epic Boon feat, but it’s a big step down from the 2014 Boon of Spell Recall (“any spell you know or have prepared”) and the Boon of High Magic (“here, have another 9th-level spell slot, as a treat”).

Epic Boon of Truesight (Priest only, for some reason) grants 60-ft Truesight. An always-on superior perception ability is actually pretty epic, as such things go. Well done here. (Also, this one is unchanged from the 2014 DMG.)

Rules Glossary

I’m only covering things highlighted in the Change Log (and God bless them for including a Change Log sidebar, rather than testing our reading acumen).

Aid now grants 5 Temporary Hit Points rather than additional Maximum Hit Points, with Instantaneous duration rather than 8 hours, but it affects 6 creatures rather than 3. So, you know, it does less, and in many groups you also can’t use all of its power in any given casting, but it is now something you’d at least consider casting during combat. It’s also now competing directly with Barkskin and a lot of other Class, Subclass, and Feat features. I very much dislike this change and I hope it’ll get reverted, but if they’re sticking with THP, maybe we can talk about making it a Bonus Action instead of an Action?

Attack Action (Equipping Weapons section): You can now equip or unequip one Weapon before or after each attack you make in an Attack Action. I’m pretty sure this is about make Extra Attack coexist peacefully with Thrown Weapons; there’s also some improved potential for shoot-move-stab as a thing, or using a Ranged Weapon after you drop the enemy within your Reach.

Banishment has had its Range chopped to 30 feet, and it now grants a new Saving Throw at the end of each of the target’s turns. This essentially guarantees that the “and stay out!” effect (which now only works on Aberrations, Celestials, Elementals, Fey, or Fiends… as future-proofing for Planescape, among other things) won’t ever happen. Ten saves? One of them is all but guaranteed to pass. You also can’t use this as cheap Plane Shift home – not that a random destination anywhere on your homeworld is exactly a great offer! So it’s nerfs all the way down on this one, but maybe that was needed? Crowd control design is hard, especially wit no concept of Diminishing Returns mechanics.

Grappled has had a very nitpicky change, but since I was one of the people talking about the problem they’ve solved… You may remember that I talked before about how to resolve Movable with any effect that forced the creature grappling you to move – a shove, a Thunderwave, whatever. The change to the language here carves out that the grappler can only drag or carry you when it Moves (that is, moves on its own turn).

The throughput here is the forced movement does break a grapple, which is the preferable call. It matters because otherwise the main way to break a grapple is to succeed your save at the end of your turn – at which point you’re still adjacent to the enemy who grappled you, and they can just grapple you again. Maybe with some damage, as a treat. (I still hate the feel of grapple attacks targeting AC.)

Guidance gets another draft here – the survey ended barely before the packet dropped, so any change doesn’t come from survey results. Could be from the public response on Twitter in the week after the previous packet dropped, or it could just be experimenting with multiple models. Whatever. The change this time is that the Range is cut down to 10 ft, but there’s not a limit on how often a character can benefit from this in a single Long Rest period. I still don’t like Reaction triggers that aren’t in-character observable events, when it’s one character using Verbal and Somatic components to cast a spell on another character. As some kind of Clerical or Druidic reflex, that really feels off to me.

Influence is reworked to take check DCs not from Attitude, but from the higher of 15 or the target’s Intelligence. Attitude now provides the range of possibilities of what a successful Charisma Ability Check can get you. Your roleplaying choices in the Interaction step could adjust a creature’s Attitude by a step up or down – essentially this acknowledges that a creature has a sliding scale of opinion about you, and it can change with little warning. For Hostile creatures, it’s possible to get to “no die roll can possibly succeed” levels of Hostile, which is an important guard-rail against Charisma Ability Checks as mind control. My interpretation is that Friendly creature can rapidly become deeply Hostile to a sufficiently unreasonably request.

The implied range of DCs is uncommonly narrow, from 15 to 20 (with very rare NPCs venturing a little higher). I’ll point out again that the Eloquence Bard who was in my campaign for years couldn’t fail a DC 20 Persuasion check as of 3rd level. Maybe it’s okay for a 3rd-level character to be essentially unstoppable anytime they can get the DM to agree to let them roll at all? But it certainly isn’t a tense die roll.

It’s kind of odd that Intelligence governs the DC for a Charisma Check (Deception), given… you know, Insight as a Wisdom skill? But I don’t think I’ve seen a lot of attempts at rules around DC-setting for interaction that drilled down to details without being terrible.

Light has had its wording revised, but I’m not equal to the task of finding anything meaningful in that change. It may have just been a somewhat labored wording that is now somewhat less so.

Long Rests have had their Exhausted reduction rule added to the bullet point list, and you can now resume an interrupted rest rather than needing to start the 8-hour count over again. It’s better, but I still think restoring all expended HD rather than half of expended HD is getting rid of one of the only remaining ways for any consequence to last more than a few hours.

As I mentioned above, the “cooldown” until you can start a rest again is now clarified to be 16 hours, which means you can’t ever move bedtime earlier, you can only stay up later and later. Seems right.

It’s a rule that wouldn’t have to exist except to block off players being unreasonable, and as such it just means that – since Short Rests do almost nothing to help you keep going along on the adventure – the players have been encouraged to ruin their own fun through risk aversion, and the DM’s response is kind of terrible escalation (that is, encounters come to interrupt your rest).

Magic has only changed to note that some features can use the Magic Action, not just spellcasting and Magic Items.

Prayer of Healing has long been disdained for healing, probably because players see its healing value and get excited right up to the moment they see that Casting Time. It’s an ugly moment of disappointment. Anyway, it’s changed here – reduced healing done (2d8 rather than 2d8 + spellcasting Ability Modifier) and number of targets (Spellcasting Ability Modifier rather than 6), but it also counts as a Short Rest (so you can spend HD). You can’t receive this benefit again until you finish a Long Rest. This is a great spell when what you need is out-of-combat healing and an unusually quick Short Rest. (But they should shorten the default length of a Short Rest to 30 minutes anyway.)

Not that it’d come up often, but this Spell has no clause excluding Constructs and Undead. Could be an accidental omission, could be a new intention.

Priest’s Pack is a new default equipment item. It has normal adventuring gear. The Holy Water and the Robe are what make it Priestly.

Resistance has undergone exactly the same change as Guidance, and I have the same problem – why are you able to sense and react to Spells or Environmental Hazard effects with no obvious signifier?

Spiritual Weapon is only changed in that it now requires Concentration, so… there goes Clerics having another spell to run alongside Bless. It was always weird that this didn’t require Concentration – everything even a little bit like it does – but that’s an issue with Cleric (and Druid, while I’m here) leaning hard on setting up passive or near-passive effects so they can both perform their Leader role and deal damage.

Truesight gets its first player-facing Rules Glossary entry. Its functions are all what we’d expect from 2014, just presented in the player-facing content rather than the Monster Manual.


I really miss more naturally-flowing language, but this direction comes from players nitpicking the rules rather than choosing a reasonable reading. It’s why we can’t have nice things. I think moving in the direction of almost everything being per Long Rest is giving players a way to ruin their own fun, rather than using the design tools that we have to protect it.

The Cleric is mostly fine, though I think some of the Cleric mainstays have just been gutted for little benefit – with the effect of pushing Cleric damage or assist contributions downward. The new versions of each Species are fine? Though Dragonborn and Goliaths feel more active and exciting than Ardlings.

I appreciate that the document is shorter, though they’ll have to go back to longer documents if they’re even getting through all of the Classes before late 2023, to say nothing of the game’s other content. I mean, I assume they’ll show us anything other than player-facing content?