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Most of the credit and inspiration for this work goes to Keith Baker and his World of Eberron. This work is more of a 5e modification with changes to make it fit in my world.

The arcanist is my answer to the WoTC Artificer. It is built loosely based on the cleric with the knowledge domain and has been modified from there based on numerous Internet sources and attempting to follow this WoTC Article on Modifying Classes.

If anyone is willing to play test it, that would be great. If not, it still fills an important roll in the development and history of the game world.

*** This is a play-test version of the arcanist class and is subject to change. ***


The arcanists were the first wizards to offer up a unified theory of magic. Specifically, that all magic comes from the same single source; that being the residual energy of creation. Although, different entities may access this energy using different methods, the source of the energy is the same.

It was this new unified theory and the ability to use it to blend disparate magical disciplines that gave the arcanists what they needed to build their greatest creations, the warforged.

The arcanists of old and their warforged were the first to show the world that someone could fight the Yuan Ti empire and succeed. It was this success that directly led to the first mass slave rebellion which forced the already failing empire to the point of no return.

Although, the arcanists have suffered along with the rest of the world and most of their knowledge has been lost, their tradition lives on in those who seek out the lost magic of old and strive to understand it.

Click here for the complete Arcanist Spell List, including some New and Modified Spells.

Hit Points

Hit Dice			1d8 per arcanist level
Hit Points at 1st Level		8 + Constitution modifier
Hit Points at Higher Levels	1d8 (or 5) + Constitution modifier


Armor		Light armour, medium armour, and shields
Weapon		All simple weapons and one martial weapon
Tools		(Special, see Arcanist Focus)
Saving Throws	Intelligence, Charisma
Skills		Choose two from History, Insight, Investigation,
		and Perception (Special, see Arcanist Focus)


You start with the following equipment, in addition to what is granted by your background. You may not select items with which you do not have proficiency.

  • Any simple weapon and any one weapon of your choice
  • Leather armour, or scale mail
  • Shield and one tool set
  • Explorer’s Pack, burglar’s pack, or scholar’s pack
  • An arcanist workbook
  • An arcane focus; a staff or wand and an orb or a device of your
    own creation

Level Progression

Level Prof Features			  Cantrips 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
1st   +2   Arcanist Focus		     3     2 - - - - - - - -
2nd   +2   Arcanist Tradition (1/rest)	     3     3 - - - - - - - -
3rd   +2   Infuse Potions, Infuse Scrolls    3     4 2 - - - - - - -
4th   +2   Ability Score Improvement	     4     4 3 - - - - - - -
5th   +3   Weapon Augmentation +1	     4     4 3 2 - - - - - -
	   Use Magic Device
6th   +3   Artifice Tradition (2/rest)	     4     4 3 3 - - - - - -
7th   +3   ---				     4     4 3 3 1 - - - - -
8th   +3   Ability Score Improvement	     4     4 3 3 2 - - - - -
           Potent Spellcasting
9th   +4   ---				     4     4 3 3 3 1 - - - -
10th  +4   Armour Augmentation		     5     4 3 3 3 2 - - - -
11th  +4   ---				     5     4 3 3 3 2 1 - - -
12th  +4   Ability Score Improvement	     5     4 3 3 3 2 1 - - -
13th  +5   ---				     5     4 3 3 3 2 1 1 - -
14th  +5   Weapon Augmentation +2	     5     4 3 3 3 2 1 1 - -
15th  +5   Superior Arcanist		     5     4 3 3 3 2 1 1 1 -
16th  +5   Ability Score Improvement	     5     4 3 3 3 2 1 1 1 -
17th  +6   ---				     5     4 3 3 3 2 1 1 1 1
18th  +6   Artifice Tradition (3/rest)	     5     4 3 3 3 3 1 1 1 1
19th  +6   Ability Score Improvement	     5     4 3 3 3 3 2 1 1 1
20th  +6   Arcanist Mastercraft		     5     4 3 3 3 3 2 2 1 1


An arcanist casts very few spells, his specialty is to infuse magic into objects, creating temporary magic items. Arcanist spells come from the arcanist spell list.

Spellcasting Ability

Intelligence is the spellcasting ability for the arcanist.

Spell Save DC		= 8 + Proficiency Bonus + Intelligence Mod
Spell Attack Modifier	= Proficiency Bonus + Intelligence Mod


You know 3 cantrips from the arcanist spell list at 1st level, 4 at 4th level, and 5 at 10th level.

Preparing and Casting Spells

You may prepare a number of spells from your arcanist workbook equal to your Intelligence modifier + your arcanist level. The spells must be of a level for which you have spell slots.

The arcanist Level Progression Table shows how many spell slots you have to cast your spells of 1st level and higher. To cast one of these spells, you must expend a slot of the spell’s level or higher. You regain all expended spell slots when you finish a long rest.

You can change your list of prepared spells when you finish a long rest. Preparing a new list of arcanist spells requires time spent studying your workbook; at least 1 minute per spell level for each spell on your list.

Ritual Casting

You can cast any spell as a ritual if that spell has the ritual tag and is recorded in your he arcanist workbook. You do not need to have the spell prepared.

Mechanically, the arcanist is performing a ritual just like any other class. Thematically, the arcanist has reverse engineered a magical affect and has hacked it into producing the desired affect.

Arcanist Workbook

An arcanist workbook is a complex resource containing arcanist spells, potion and ink formulas, and the details regarding the construction, runes, and magical infusion of your wand, weapon, and orb or device. Also, it contains the formula for any magic items you have learned to create. Lastly, the arcanist workbook contains all of the spell schema you have learned. Your arcanist workbook contains the following spells:

Detect Magic, Identify, and three 1st level spells from any
class spell list.

Gaining New Spells

Every time you gain an arcanist level, you add one new spell of at least 1st level from any class spell list to your workbook. If it is an arcanist spell it is added normally. If it is not an arcanist spell it is recorded as a spell schema.

You can also add a spell you find to your book, similar to the Spellbook sidebar (PHB page 114) but the cost and time are doubled (4 hours and 100 gold per spell level). Schema employ a different formulation than spells in spellbooks or ritual books, so a spellbook can not supply a schema and vice versa; however, other schema, spell scrolls, and certain other magical writings can supply the appropriate information. You cannot learn a spell or spell schema of any level for which you don’t have spell slots.

Spell Schema

A spell schema can be created from any spell. These schema are the hacked and reverse engineered magical blueprints related to linking magic to objects. Spell schema can only be cast using the Spell Storing Device arcanist spell or as a ritual with either your orb or device as an additional material component.


Arcane Focus

Casting spells requires the arcanist to use a special wand etched with runes and infused with magic. To use the weapon augmentation ability the arcanist must use a special weapon that has also been etched with runes and infused with magic. To use spell schema or cast rituals you are required to use a special device of your own creation (usually an orb). If any of these items are lost, it takes a full day to replace each item. As the arcanist must prepare the new item just as he prepared the original.

Magic Items

You may activate or create magic items as if you were a spellcaster whose spell list includes all spells on the arcanist spell list and all spell schema in your workbook.

Arcanist Class Features

Class features are presented in the order they are acquired.

Arcanist Focus

At 1st level, you become proficient with Arcana and any two type of Artisans’ Tools (including Thieves’ Tools). Your proficiency bonus is doubled for any ability checks you make using Arcana and these tools.

Arcanist Tradition

This ability functions in a manner identical to the cleric ability, Channel Divinity, but the arcanist doesn’t have access to Turn Undead. Instead, he starts with Weapon Augmentation and gains access to Perfect Tool from the Arcanist Tradition.

Arcanist Tradition Spells

Arcanists gain the following spells at the arcanist levels noted. Once you gain a tradition spell, you always have it prepared, and it doesn’t count against the number of spells you can prepare each day.

Level		Spells
 1st		Detect Magic, Identify
 3rd		Magic Weapon, Enhance Ability
 5th		Counterspell, Dispel Magic
 7th		Freedom of Movement, Stoneskin
 9th		Animate Objects, Greater Restoration

Arcanist Tradition – Perfect Tool

You may infuse an object with an enchantment that makes it the perfect tool for whatever situation you are dealing with. As an action, choose one skill or tool. For the next 10 minutes, or as long as you have the object, you have proficiency with the chosen skill or tool.

Arcanist Tradition – Weapon Augmentation

As an action, you may enhance a weapon you are holding. For the next minute or until you let go of the weapon, you gain one of the following benefits. At 5th level your weapon also becomes +1. At 14th level this increases to +2.

Disrupting Weapon   +1d6 radiant damage, bright light 20-ft rad.
Flame Tongue	    +1d6 fire damage, you have cold resistance
Frost Brand	    +1d6 cold damage, you have fire resistance


Infuse Potions

Starting at 3rd level, you can produce magic potions. With a vial of mundane water and a component pouch you may spend 10 minutes focusing your magic and expend a spell slot to transform it into a potion. Once you have expended a spell slot to create a potion, you cannot regain that slot until the potion is consumed or after 1 week, at which time the potion loses its effectiveness. You can create up to three potions at a time; creating a fourth potion causes the
oldest currently active potion to immediately lose its potency. If that potion has been consumed, its effects immediately end.

The spell slot you expend determines the type of potion you can create. (See DMG chapter 7 for complete rules on potions.)

Spell Slot	Potion Created
   1st		Climbing, growth, or healing
   2nd		Mind reading or greater healing
   3rd		Invisibility, superior healing, or water breathing
   4th		Resistance

Infuse Scrolls

At 3rd level you can tap into your reserves of magical energy to create spell scrolls. You must finish a short or long rest, then spend 10 minutes with parchment, quill, and ink to create a spell scroll containing one spell or spell schema chosen from those recorded in your arcanist workbook. You must sacrifice a spell slot of the appropriate level when creating the scroll. The spell slot is not regained until the scroll has been used and you then finish a long rest.

Use Magic Device

At 5th level you may use any magic item as if you have access to all spell lists and regardless of class requirements. Magic items requiring special abilities, class features, alignment, or race restrictions can not be satisfied with this class feature.

Potent Spellcasting

At 8th level, add your Intelligence modifier to the damage you deal with any cantrip.

Armour Augmentation

At 10th level the bonus from Weapon Augmentation also applies to either your armour or shield.

Superior Arcanist

At 15th level, your mastery of infusions allows you to produce a variety of magic items. You can create a single item chosen from Magic Item Tables A and B (DMG page 144). It takes you 1 week to produce such an item, and you must rest for 1 month before using this ability to craft another item.

Arcanist Mastercraft

At 20th level you may create any one magic item. However, the GM may determine any requirements.