Changes from the D&D Playtest: The Starter Set Cleric

Now that we have the Cleric’s character sheet, let’s have a look at what has changed from the last of the playtest documents (October 2013)!

Preserve Life: This was called Restore Health in the playtest. The restriction barring it from being used on constructs or undead has been removed, and the range has been increased from 25 ft. to 30 ft.

Turn Undead: It now works on undead up to 30 feet away rather than 25 feet away. The DC of the check has been reduced (now 8 + proficiency bonus + wisdom modifier rather than 10 + proficiency bonus + wisdom modifier). Turned creatures may Dodge if they can’t move further away. The destruction of undead is handled differently: rather than a hit point comparison, at 5th level you instantly destroy undead of challenge rating ½ or less. (This probably increases as levels are gained).

Dash: A new action, possibly replacing Hustle. I suspect it allows you to move again in a turn.

Domain Spells: At 5th level, the Life Domain no longer gives access to Prayer as a domain spell; instead it gives access to revivify, one of the new spells that wasn’t in the playtest.

Prepared Spells: In the playtest, a cleric prepared 1+cleric level spells each day. The starter set cleric prepares their Wisdom modifier + cleric level spells each day. (Note the jump in spells/day at 4th level, when the cleric’s Wisdom increases).

Cantrips: The playtest gave 3 cantrips per day, which never changed. The starter set cleric gains a new cantrip at 4th level – I suspect the number of cantrips a character has is equal to their spellcasting modifier.

Darkvision: The playtest had darkvision allowing characters to see in darkness as dim light. The starter set retains that, but also allows characters to see in dim light as if it were bright light.

Stonecunning: Dwarves now add double their proficiency bonus to the Intelligence (History) checks to determine the origin of stonework rather than just their proficiency bonus. They can now become lost underground.

Dwarven Toughness: No longer adds one to the hit points regained by rolling Hit Dice during a rest.

Skills: The soldier background no longer gives the Survival skill. How skill and proficiency acquisition is handled is uncertain at this point.

Proficiencies: A soldier gained Gaming Set, Mounts (Land) and Vehicles (Land) in the playtest. The starter set cleric does not gain Mounts (Land), and Gaming Set has become Playing Cards. The cleric’s free Healing Kit proficiency has been removed, but the character has Mason’s Tools as a proficiency, possibly due to a new dwarven racial feature.

New Personality Traits, Ideals, Bonds and Flaws.

Challenge Rating: Monsters are ranked by Challenge Ratings. There are Challenge Rating ½ monsters.

Previous updates on changes from the playtest: The Starter Set Fighter and More Changes


  1. Pingback: Changes from the D&D Playtest: More Starter Fighter changes | Merric's Musings

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