Clerical Repertoires

Does anyone use clerical repertoires - meaning you customize a different spell list for the different deities or religions in the game? It’s ambiguous whether you should build a consolidated divine list across all divine classes, and pick a subset for each of your clerical sects, or take the limited clerical list and pare it down further. Since I don’t recall seeing it in action anywhere, I thought I’d ask.

Since the cleric list is already fairly small, I’m most likely going to just vary the class proficiencies (essentially create a template for each religious order), but I’ve considered consolidating the divine list (witch, priestess, shaman, bladedancer, cleric, etc) and creating a custom clerical list for each religion.

For elemental clerics in Dark Sun, I created a list of common spells (Sphere of the Cosmos) and then a smaller list for each element. Any given cleric has all of the spells on their element list + the general list.

It’s a lot easier that way than having to define an entirely new list, especially since you’re going to see a lot of repetition on a full list for each. Just pick a number (I used four to six as my baseline), remove that number from the existing cleric spell list, and then pick that many new spells.

Note that you can’t just pick arcane spells, as many spells will end up at different levels for arcane and divine casters, so this does involve altering or creating a relatively significant number of spells.

CharlesDM did a good deconstruction of the divine caster classes with the ACKSPC rules at . I usually don’t go quite to that level of regularity, but I did up some custom cleric variants at and

I modify the list to suit the gods/faith. I created a ‘rogue priest’ style class, and Divine Elves, who all had distinct spell lists that suited their style.
For example:

While I think CharlesDM did an interesting breakdown, I fundamentally disagree with his conclusion that sacrificing Turn Undead is necessary for true customization of the spell list. Even Alex has said that if he had it to do again, he would have taken Turning from Blade Dancers in exchange for some abilities…but not radically altered their spell list (which has been through two versions already). Besides, there are only 3 data points for comparison and that really isn’t enough to make that kind of conclusion I think.

Anyway, long story short, yes, modify the lists away.

I wasn’t really looking at making alternate divine casters like the blade dancer or shaman - just seeing what folks were doing to customize clerical repertoires within the cleric class. Doesn’t sound like folks are doing it much - if anything they’re developing alternate divine classes.

Eh, I’ve always felt that having clerics of all gods have the same base weapon and armor profs (and class skills <-> proficiency lists) was rather silly. Seems just as reasonable a thing to vary with faith. I think the reason altering the spell lists is rarer is that there just aren’t that many existing ACKS divine spells to swap in; the spell construction rules are helpful here, but it’s still a fair amount of work. Shaman and Witch have a lot of thematic overlap in their spell lists (and Witch has a fair bit of overlap with arcane), while a lot of the Priestess and Bladedancer stuff is very thematically similar to the cleric list. So we have good existing spell coverage for naturey clerics and Old Testament clerics, but not so much for, say, clerics of the god of finance and trickery (some overlap with Witch, but mostly arcane) or fertility (again, some overlap with Witch) or probably other archetypes.

Good points!