The Tal’dorei Campaign Setting Reborn book updates the world of Exandria with new monsters, NPCs, locations, spells, magic items, subclasses, and more. Every addition adds a unique flavor to Dungeons & Dragons Fifth Edition and can enhance your campaign or provide non-standard options for new and experienced players.
With the subclasses options presented, you can see the essences of characters and factions from Critical Role with updated features and balance changes that make them far and above anything you can find in the Player’s Handbook. To find the best subclass for your Exandrian adventurer, let’s take a deep dive into what each one offers.
9 Paladin: Oath Of The Open Sea
The Oath of the Sea Paladin is likely to be the weakest subclass in the campaign book, as it has surprisingly low utility combined with situational buffs that will remind you of early Rangers before Tasha’s. Their initial, third level feature has only one real choice, as the marine layer is far too situational and can hurt your ally’s line of sight.
As far as their four subclass features goes, the only one that could be considered strong is the 15th-level feature that knocks enemies prone and deals 1d12 damage. They also have a 20th-level feature, but it only provides general buffs, and most players are unlikely to see level 20 anyway.
8 Barbarian: Path Of The Juggernaut
While barbarians are notoriously tanky, the juggernaut subclass takes it to the extreme and perhaps crosses a line into underwhelming with its situational abilities which don’t unlock until level ten. The third and sixth level features are too limiting compared to other barbarian subclasses, like Resolute Stance weakening your attack rolls.
At tenth level, though, the ability to maneuver creatures becomes useful as you can start to knock enemies prone and allow allies to make additional attacks. Additionally, their 14th-level feature gives you a slew of condition immunities that finally turn you into the ultimate tank.
7 Wizard: Blood Magic
The blood magic features on their own can be utilized in unique ways and would be considered strong if they were attached to any other class. As wizards have the lowest hit point average, the multiple abilities that deal damage to you start to feel like their cost is just too high to justify, especially when it could outright bring you to zero at level two.
In fact, both subclasses that deal in blood would benefit if their abilities switched. While the blood cleric wouldn’t change much, a blood wizard feels more like a wizard when using the Bloodletting Focus or Sanguine Recall features rather than their current abilities which are more martial focused.
6 Bard: College Of Tragedy
The college of tragedy subclass is a unique idea and the subclass abilities perfectly encapsulate the idea of a tragedy actor performing in the theater of life. However, their abilities lean into exploitative and situational when considering a handful require rolls with only a five percent chance of success to activate.
While the subclass features are really strong when activated, requiring a natural one or 20 on checks and attack rolls could leave bard players spending whole sessions without using Poetry in Misery or Tale of Hubris. Yet, this bard subclass has the potential to affect strong debuffs to enemies, which will leave them struggling.
5 Sorcerer: Runechild
Out of all the sorcerer subclasses, the runechild is the most complicated by adding another resource on top of having to worry about spell slots and sorcery points while making these charged runes work with every subclass feature.
However, if you are willing to take the time to manage this extra resource and track them alongside your sorcery points, you will find that the subclass abilities are exceptionally strong, especially at level 18. The runechild also contains a mix of combat and exploration tools that will make your sorcerer one of the more useful party members.
4 Cleric: Blood Domain
Containing a mix of strong narrative and combat tools, blood domain clerics have some exceptionally strong subclass features mixed with less useful ones that spread them out maybe a little too thin. Like their additional proficiency with martial weapons yet buffing spell attack damage, and giving them divine strikes and a way to recover spell slots.
Although not really allowing you to lean into spellcasting or melee, the Blood Puppet channel divinity option is strong enough to justify any underwhelming features besides. While clerics are not traditionally built as damage dealers, the blood domain will at least take you most of the way.
3 Druid: Circle Of The Blighted
The circle of the blighted is a subclass that focuses on its Defile Ground feature and provides it with some exceptionally strong effects and summoning triggers that will make you into a master of decay. Although the flavoring of the subclass could force you into unwanted aesthetic choices, that could easily be flavored away with a generous enough dungeon master.
The tenth level Foul Conjuration is exceptionally strong, but it will narrow your focus onto choosing spells, feats, and even magic items that require summons. You should make sure that is an acceptable path for your character if you want to make the most out of this subclass.
2 Monk: Way Of The Cobalt Soul
One of the most iconic factions in the Exandrian universe and Critical Role campaign, monks of the cobalt soul are masters of study and balancing their ki to learn about and influence their opponents. However, to truly master this subclass requires both an experienced DM and player to make the most of their unique features.
While the surface of their subclass features seem situational or even simple, they can be used to devastating effect, and the 11th-level Mind of Mercy feature should be standard for all monks. At 17th level, your monk could even solo high-health enemies and double the damage potential of your entire party.
1 Cleric: Moon Domain
By far the most balanced subclass in the Tal’dorei Reborn book, and reliable for both new and experienced players, moon clerics have options to exceptionally aid the party with both combat and exploration tools that are simple yet incredibly effective.
Every subclass feature is balanced for the level you receive it at, and even then some, like the sixth level channel divinity which allows you to concentrate on multiple spells simultaneously. If you want to play a support character in your party, then a moon cleric should always be a first choice if you choose from this book.
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