(Related to this question)

I am working on selecting all the available races/subraces for my 5th Edition campaign. Because I don't like the way that WoTC has laid out the race/subrace info, I'm creating a completely new listing for each subrace that lists all the traits they possess. For example, rather than listing one set of traits for dwarves and then listing the additional traits that Hill Dwarves get, I'm creating a single entry for Hil Dwarves that includes all of their relevant info.

In the Sword Coast Adventurers Guide, there is a tiefling variant called the Feral Tiefling. Currently, the only change in this variant from the Player's Handbook Tiefling is to change it's ability score bonuses. I'd like to create more variance by also trading it's Infernal Legacy trait for something else. However, I'm not sure what the "value" of Infernal legacy is.

Looking at all the races and subraces, there is only one that trades away spell-like abilities. It's the Winged Tiefling also from the Sword Coast Adventurers Guide. They replace Infernal Legacy with the Winged trait, which is an extremely strong trait.

How strong is Infernal Legacy, and what traits are a good equivalent for it? I am thinking of adding a claw attack similar to that of the Aarakocra, but that doesn't seem to be as powerful as Infernal Legacy.

A good answer would refer to either the users own experience with homebrewing races in 5th Edition or some kind information from the game designers. I have consulted the custom race information in the DMG, but it doesn't give any kind of equivalency between racial traits or give more than the vaguest advice about "balancing" races.

  • \$\begingroup\$ So this is just my opinion, but if you are talking about substituting infernal legacy, then I would have to say that infernal legacy is more appropriate for a feral tiefling than for a normal tiefling. Assuming of course you are using the term feral by its basic definition of being returned to the wild. \$\endgroup\$ – Escoce Apr 1 '16 at 15:52
  • \$\begingroup\$ I can understand that. I'm looking at it as something more bestial/animalistic, so having spell-like abilities at all seems odd for my particular version of it. \$\endgroup\$ – Discord Apr 1 '16 at 18:08
  • \$\begingroup\$ Understood but the infernal legacy is more like the inherent disposition of commanding magic...I dunno, it was just an opinion based on imagery of an imagined race. \$\endgroup\$ – Escoce Apr 1 '16 at 18:10

In the original Unearth Arcana (That old Black Magic) they play tested am Abyssal Tiefling Variants, which replaces Infernal Legacy with:

You can cast a spell gained from this trait only once until you complete your next long rest. You can cast a cantrip gained from this trait at will, as normal. For 1st-level spells whose effect changes if cast using a spell slot of 2nd level or higher, you cast the spell as if using a 2nd-level slot. Spells of 2nd level are cast as if using a 2nd-level slot. One Cantrip at level 1, one 1st level spell (cast at the second level) at 3rd level, and one 2nd level spell at the fifth level -- each as a once a day.

At the end of each long rest, you lose the cantrips and spells previously granted by this feature, even if you did not cast them. You replace those cantrips and spells by rolling for new ones on the Abyssal Arcana Spells table. Roll separately for each cantrip and spell. If you roll the same spell or cantrip you gained at the end of your previous long rest, roll again until you get a different result.

Abyssal Arcana Spells

d6 1st               3rd               5th
1  Dancing lights    Burning hands     Alter self
2  True strike       Charm person      Darkness
3  Light             Magic missile     Invisibility
4  Message           Cure wounds       Levitate
5  Spare the dying   Tasha’s hideous   Mirror image
6 Prestidigitation  Thunderwave       Spider climb 

I would assume that homebrew could trust this list to be at least somewhat balanced as possible spell replacements because it made it to UA; but keep in mind UA is not strictly cannon, but play test material from WoTC game designers.

In that regard, the Infernal Legacy looks a lot like a Dragon Mark (Unearthed Arcana - Ebberon [1.1]) or Magic Initiate feat. You could also skin one of those feats into a racial ability, as a homebrew that wouldn't deviate to much from the rules.

And completely RAW, you could always do a Feral Tiefling with Devils Tounge, too.

| improve this answer | |

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.