I haven't done a paladin in a while, and I figure it's time I fixed that.
So far, we only have one evil-oriented paladin option, the Oathbreaker in the Dungeon Master's Guide. The Oathbreaker is a general, all-purpose, "this is what happens when good paladins go bad" sort of class option. I wanted to explore a different option: a paladin who is evil (or regularly tempted by it) from the start.
The oath of the Hellsworn is what awaits those who pledge themselves to the service of Asmodeus (and/or your local Satan proxy) or one of his legions of underlings. The hellknights that take this pledge do so for a variety of reasons, but most either desperately needed the power for the sake of someone or something they loved, or simply loved power itself.
A hellknight is bound to honor contracts and is expected to enlist help. Any who fight on the hellknight's side fight (by extension) on the side of Hell, after all.
What makes this a fun alternative paladin to play? Let's see:
- Use your Channel Divinity to charge your weapon with Hellfire, or to Turn away the enemies of Hell!
- Teleport your friends with Hellgate! Keep your enemies guessing by rearranging the battlefield.
- Transform yourself into a fiend, slay those that oppose you.
- It's always hard to balance capstones. I'd like help figuring out if Infernal Inheritor is too strong or weak.
- Fiendish Smite might get some criticism, but it's almost a downgrade. Radiant is one of the least resisted damage types (Resists in the Monster Manual: 4, Immunes: 0) while both Necrotic (R: 11, I: 11) and Fire (R: 37, I: 40) are among the most resisted damage types.
WHAT I LEARNED:
- Niche ideas are always worth exploring. I'm really happy with how this came out so far.