DMs Guild Review – The Slayer Class

The Slayer is a monster hunting ranger-rogue player class with five subclass specialties.

A review copy of “The Slayer Class” was provided by the publisher. Find more DMs Guild Reviews on my website and YouTube channel.

Support my work by using affiliate links for shopping and pledging via Patreon.

Designed by: Jacob S. Kellogg

Another new player class, and another attempt to remake the oft-lamented ranger. “The Slayer Class” adds a new hunter class that follows the typical route of combining fighter, ranger, and rogue into a single monster-hunting class. Including five subclasses is impressive, but they’re all a bit too short and simple.

“The Slayer Class” is one of the more straightforward products I’ve ever reviewed, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. The formatting, organization, font, and even the use of official licensed D&D art is all very standard, and looks great. The entire class could easily fit between the pages of the Player’s Handbook, and you wouldn’t be able to tell the difference.

While I love the physical layout, I wasn’t crazy about the class itself. The slayer doesn’t have any spells, gadgets, or fighting styles. It has d10 hit die, medium armor and martial weapons, and primarily uses Dexterity and Intelligence.

Props for using INT, since most classes rightfully treat INT as a dump stat.

The slayer is a hunter of creatures, reflected by the Slayer’s Focus ability. At second level, the slayer adds their INT modifier to Perception checks to find their quarry (designating a quarry with a bonus action) and adds INT to the damage die. Later they can add their INT modifier to initiative rolls, and become a true ranger-rogue hybrid with Extra Attack and Evasion, as well as their Slayer’s Focus damage scaling up slightly, like a much weaker sneak attack.

That’s all well and good, but none of it is very interesting. A lot of their power comes from passive bonuses or defenses, like magical darkvision (even gaining blindsight at 17th level), or being good at crafting poisons and immunity to poison damage. There’s nothing really unique or special about the slayer.

The included subclasses can and should go a long way toward flushing out the class. Five different specialties are available, which is impressive, but only one of them seems halfway interesting. The bounty hunter gains bonuses to skill checks and attacks with any creature with an Intelligence over 6. The bounty hunter can also designate someone as their nemesis, which is a fun way to combine role-playing with useful combat and skill bonuses.

Three of the five subclasses are variations on the same monster-hunting theme, with ghostkiller, fiendhunter, and monster hunter targeting undead, demons, and large monsters respectively. As with the slayer, however, none of their abilities are very interesting. The ghostkiller’s extra damage changes to radiant, and increases against undead, and they gain the paladin’s Divine Sense. The monster hunter gets bonuses to AC and saving throws. Ho-hum.

Though mundane, each subclass does seem balanced. The only exception may be the ninja’s Disappearance feature at 7th level. Misty Step + Invisibility a number of times per INT modifier per short rest is way too powerful!

Transforming the ranger into a ranger-rogue monster-hunting class is a fine idea, but there needs to be something significant for players to play around with. Classes in Fifth Edition have a lot of cool stuff going on, from Ki points to combat maneuvers, invocations, and of course lots and lots of spells. The slayer can’t quite keep up.

Pros:

  • Professional organization and layout.
  • Five subclasses, each centered around a different theme.

Cons:

  • The Slayer doesn’t add any fun new mechanics or interesting gameplay.

The Verdict: “The Slayer Class” is another attempt at remaking the ranger, but falls short of providing any worthwhile new gameplay.

A review copy of “The Slayer Class” was provided by the publisher. Find more DMs Guild Reviews on my website and YouTube channel.

Support my work by using affiliate links for shopping and pledging via Patreon.

Author: roguewatson

Freelance Writer

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