Assuming I'm using the Spontaneous Cleric Variant and there's an Initiate of [some deity] which grants some special spells (only when this feat is taken) and the spontaneous cleric takes that feat when he gains a lvl...

What then?

Extra known spells? Or can you now choose these spells as if those were from your standard cleric list?

The second one seems like the neatest rule understanding...

I'm looking for answers by RAW and by deduction in case those are different.

@Edit: Favored Soul!

As a matter of fact, the original issue is that the char taking the feat is a favored soul which at first sight is not a Cleric (nor a Paladin) pre-Reqs of "Initiate of" tier feats. However the DM is convinced that for this purpose he would take the Favored Soul as a Cleric of the same lvl.

  • \$\begingroup\$ You can take the feat as a favored soul, the answer was found on my linked question. The spells are added in the spell list wich is not spell known sadly but if the dm says yes go for it, if knowstones are allowed you could buy them and it would work as the spells are in your list now. But it's expensive. rpg.stackexchange.com/questions/163668/… \$\endgroup\$ – Maxime Cuillerier Jun 27 '20 at 17:53

I suggest handling [Initiate] feats as an extra domain, as both consist essentially of an extra mini-spell list and a special ability.

The rules for adding a domain to a Favored Soul are found in Complete Divine, page 20:

If the noncleric [who gains a domain] is a spontaneous caster like a sorcerer or favored soul, then she may select a domain spell to add to her spells known whenever she would have an option to choose a new known spell. A sorcerer does not get to exceed his normal limit of spells known. Once the domain spell is known, the sorcerer may cast it freely.

This should be even less nebulous for the Favored Soul than the spontaneous Cleric, as the Favored Soul does not have the Cleric's split method of learning spells. Both the "domain method" and the "add spells to the Cleric spell list method" should give the same result - the spells are now available as an option for the Favored Soul to select as part of their normal spells known.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Dracolyte is an exception you really gain the domain \$\endgroup\$ – Maxime Cuillerier Jun 27 '20 at 17:44
  • \$\begingroup\$ But even if you gain another domain this rule still apply it just opens the door for more prestige classes but it says you gain the domain but you don't cast it as a regular cleric so for some prerequisite it might Be fine. \$\endgroup\$ – Maxime Cuillerier Jun 27 '20 at 17:57

It's the DM's Call

I'm assuming you're using the Spontaneous Divine Casters variant. With that in mind, you're rarely going to find any official rulings on such variants; they are designed to differentiate entire campaigns from traditional campaigns and remain largely unsupported.

That said, the text says that

each time the character gains a new spell level, he gains one or more bonus spells known to add to his list. A cleric may add his two domain spells to his list of spells known, while a druid may add the appropriate summon nature's ally spell to her list of spells known. (An entry of 0 on the table indicates that the cleric knows only his domain spells of that level, and the druid knows only the summon nature's ally spell of that level.)

So I would try to convince the DM that taking an Initiate feat that grants spells is equivalent to gaining the Domain spells, making them available simultaneously with the Domain spells as bonus spells. The character demonstrated his devotion to a deity by taking the feat in the same way he embodies his faith via his chosen Domains. Further, mechanically, the character has expended the resource--an entire feat, one of only maybe seven or eight in his career--so the DM should work with the player so his character enjoys the entire feat's benefits.

A less generous DM would have the spells added to the cleric's spell list as options to be picked normally; such a DM would likely see the value in such additions despite them not being bonus spells because the added spells permit the cleric to employ a wider variety of magic items.

Favored Souls and Initiate Feats
Favored souls (CD 6) use mechanics similar to the spontaneous divine caster variant clerics and druids but favored souls lack the automatic Domain and summon nature's ally spells and have delayed access to higher-level spells. Allowing a favored soul to count his levels as cleric levels for the purposes of Initiate feats is a DM's call in both permission and function, but in the abstract it shouldn't be unbalancing to simply grant the favored soul the Initiate feat's spells as spells known. Personally, I consider the feat Extra Spell (CAr 79) a bad deal ("Just pick better spells!"); getting a handful of new spells known yet not allowing the favored soul to pick the spells seems reasonable.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Indeed I was talking about the spontaneous caster rule of UA... but, as a matter of fact, the original issue is that the char taking the feat is a favored soul which at first sight is not a Cleric (nor a Paladin) pre-Reqs of "Initiate of" tier feats. However the DM is convinced that for this purpose he would take the Favored Soul as a Cleric of the same lvl. Taking that into account, this class has no domain spells granted (that I'm aware of, I'll RTM). So, if the char has a number of spells per day (Like as a sorcerer) I'd ask not to change the mechanics. Would that be imbalanced? \$\endgroup\$ – apacay Apr 1 '14 at 15:17
  • \$\begingroup\$ rpg.stackexchange.com/a/171023/51979 it's legal as a favored souls and others that I might now know \$\endgroup\$ – Maxime Cuillerier Jul 22 '20 at 6:21

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