It doesn’t think, It doesn’t feel, It doesn’t laugh or cry. All it does from dusk till dawn is make the soldiers die.

This quote is flavor text from an old Magic The Gathering card I have called the Phyrexian Hulk. I still find it an eerie quote about a thoughtless killing machine. That is what this build is about. It would make for an interesting HK type character from the Knights Of The Old Republic, but it is also great for DM’s to add as a minor boss in a dungeon.

In this build, I am going all-in with fear. This is a shambling hunk of metal that just won’t seem to die, creating terror in friend and foe’s hearts. This is what I use it for as a DM; a sarcastic robot with no morals may be easier to play in a party. Whatever the way you decide to roleplay, the build is the same. Here is how to make a heartless killing machine.

This build uses some Unearthed Arcana, so make sure your dm is ok with it.

Can’t Be A Heartless Killing Machine Without Being A Machine First

The race that everyone is expecting is warfoged. With warforged, you already do not have to eat, drink, or breathe. You are also fully aware when you are resting, just like an undead waiting for an enemy to come by.

It Is A Comforting Groaning

Attributes may seem a little weird; however, they do serve a purpose. I max the two essential attributes at level 1, but the useful attributes are for your playstyle. I like going melee, but a lumbering behemoth just outside of range pelting enemies can equally be scary.

Important Attributes

Constitution: you are a very healthy decrepit machine. This health makes it hard for victims to put you down and keep you there.

Charisma: This is the primary ability for both classes and can make you felt before seen.

Useful Attributes

Strength: Good for a melee attacking build.

Dexterity: Good for a range attacking build.

Not useful Attributes

Intelligence: It doesn’t think.

Wisdom: It doesn’t feel.

Whenever you can increase your constitution and charisma evenly since you will need high levels of both.

One thing to keep in mind is that charisma does not always mean appearance or likeability. It can also mean a force of presence. Have you ever had someone important walk into a room and everyone goes quiet? That is their charisma.

robot

The Fearsome Double Class

This build uses two classes, warlock, and sorcerer. You start level 1 with a level in warlock. At level 2, you take a level in sorcerer and then take the rest in warlock.

It’s In Your Blood

The sorcerer is an excellent class if you want to take a level 1 dip. In this build, you choose the shadow archetype. The darkvision is perfect, but the real power is in the Strength of the Grave ability. This allows you to make a constitution save to stay in the fight when you drop to zero hp. While it can only be used successfully once per long rest, it will not be the only way to keep you from falling in combat.

Death Was Only The Beginning For Me, Now It’s The Same For You

Warlock uses the Unearthed Arcana archetype undead, so again make sure your DM is ok with this. This archetype has some great qualities, the first being Form of Dread. Along with an excellent health buff. The best part is that when you hit an enemy with an attack once per turn, you can have it make a wisdom save or become frightened. This is the best evil killing machine ability making all enemies take penalties while they see you.

Grave touched is perfect for damage. The ability to no longer eat, drink, or breathe does not matter since warforges already don’t do that. However, the second part of that ability is where the fun happens. You can change the damage type of any spell to necromancy damage and roll an additional damage die. This is great for keeping you a fearsome threat.

Warlock

Let’s Not Shuffle Off This Mortal Coil

Mortal Husk is the other way to keep you in the fight. When you drop to zero hp, you explode, doing damage, and return to 1 hp. With both Mortal Husk and Strength of the Grave, it will take many tries to keep you down.

The last ability Spirit Projection does not fit too thematically; however, it does give you the ability to heal when doing necrotic damage.

Undying Pact

Unfortunately, there are not a lot of ways to deal unarmed damage without being a monk. That being said, the Pact of the Blade is still the best choice. You can wield a greatsword that looks like a hunk of metal torn off your body or a spear that is a fallen foe’s sharpened bone. Regardless of what your weapon looks like being up close and personal is the way to go.

Invocations That Make You Tremble

Eldritch Invocations are a significant part of the warlock class. They can add both flavor and power to any build. Here are the invocations to take. The levels stated are the warlock level you get them at. Remember, the level in sorcerer means you access level 2 invocations at character level 3.

Level 2

Fiendish Vigor: The ability to give yourself bonus health at will is a great way to gain HP when one of your “stop from dropping” powers kick in

Thief of Five Fates: Bane is a great spell, and its debuff fits with the theme of this build.

insect swarm

Level 5

Cloak of Flies: This is a great horror ability. Advantage on charisma checks and auto poison damage is a must for this build.

Thirsting Blade: The extra attack is always nice. At level 5, switch out Fiendish Vigor for this ability since temporary hp does not stack, and Form of Dread gives you plenty.

Level 7

Relentless Hex: This makes it hard for enemies to flee in terror as you teleport next to them.

Level 9

Ascendant Step: While casting levitate may not seem useful, remember you can use it on enemies forcing them in place.

Level 12

Lifedrinker: Why stop with the bonus damage. You get to add your charisma as necrotic damage to your weapon attacks.

Level 15

Maddening Hex: A level 5 may not seem like it fits here, but with noting thematic at this level, the additional psychic damage does wonders. Shroud of Shadows may appear thematic; however, many of your undead abilities require enemies to see you.

Spells
Remember that you can use sorcerer slots for warlock spells and warlock slots for sorcerer spells.

Sorcerer spells

Cantrips

Ray of Frost: good damage and slows down enemies

Shocking Grasp: Great against armored targets

Green Flame Blade: Great extra damage when you attack with your weapon.

Firebolt: Good damage at short range

Level 1 Spells

Ray of Sickness: Terrific poison damage and can also poison them.

Earth Tremor: Good AoE damage with the ability to knock people prone.

Warlock spells

Cantrips

True Strike: Advantage on your next attack is always good

Infestation: Damage that lets you move a person. Also thematic since bugs are already surrounding you.

Poison Spray: One of the highest damage cantrips range doesn’t matter since you are already close range.

Toll the Dead: Great damage spell that deals more damage if the target is hurt.

Level 1 Spells

Cause Fear: More fear is always a good thing.

Hex: Extra bonus damage, plus, is needed for your invocations.

Level 2 Spells

Mindspike: Good damage, and on a failed save, the target cannot hide from you.

Mirror Image: An excellent defensive spell making it harder for enemies to hit you.

Misty Step: this lets you teleport to an enemy as a bonus action.

Ray of Enfeeblement: Lets you halve the damage against you from strength-based attacks.

Level 3 Spells

Enemies Abound: Makes one target attack anyone at random.

Fear: A better version of cause fear.

Vampiric Touch: Necrotic Damage that lets you heal. You heal fully with Spirit Projection active.

Level 4 Spells

Blight: High necrotic damage with bonuses against plants.

Shadow of Moil: Even more aura damage around your character.

Level 5 Spells

Enervation: Like Vampiric Touch but with damage over time that automatically hits.

Level 6 Spells

Scatter: Controlled teleportation of enemies so they can never run away.

Level 7 Spells

Finger of Death: Boatloads of necrotic damage and can raise a permanent undead (mindless killing machines do not use undead, which is why I avoided other spells like this, but the damage is too good in this case.

Power Word Pain: Great against lower hp enemies.

Level 8 Spells

Feeblemind: A powerful spell that can shut down spellcasters.

Level 9 Spells

Power Word Kill: If the target has less than 100hp, it dies, enough said.

Psychic Scream: Psychic damage that can stun and make heads explode.

It Slowly Comes

And that is how to make a heartless killing machine. Remember that the horror aspect is something I like to use as a DM. If you want to go with a soulless killing machine that inflicts fear into your enemies’ hearts, that might make it easier to roleplay as a character.

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