Content of the article: "What do people think of the Way of Mercy Monk?"
I was a big fan of the Long Death Monk, and this feels to me to be its spiritual successor with themes around medicine and biological study, with a little more "Yin and Yang, Light and Dark" as opposed to outright morbidity. Moreover, I really like low-magnitude healing options that lessen the pressure on classes like Cleric to be healbots. Monk is commonly considered underpowered, but it's famous for having great mobility and some interesting disruption options. Until now that mobility went largely wasted, since most battles set up so that you run at an enemy and then trade blows until someone dies. But with this new healing option, suddenly Mercy Monks have a reason to hang around in the front lines and yet also dash around the battlefield wherever they're needed.
The efficiency of the healing option is also appealing to me. The fact that while using Flurry of Blows you can trade one attack for a heal, with no additional Ki or action cost, seems huge for a class that is trying to squeeze efficiency out of its actions.
While the poisoning options are slightly less efficient, I feel similarly nonetheless. Monks shine offensively in early levels when they can get three attacks while other allies only have one, and I could see Hand of Harm being dangerous at low levels. And then at level 6, while Poisoned is a condition that many creatures are outright immune to the fact that you can add it as a rider for free after the single Ki you spend for Hand of Harm with no save means it might go a long way to being kind of a budget Stunning Strike when the enemy will likely save, and you want to neuter its attacks even if you can't take it completely out of the fight.
While the 11th level ability isn't very flashy, it adds onto the efficiency of the Mercy Monk's Ki usage, which is good because at this point the Monk is a full-fledged Stun machine and a lot of your Ki will be going to that. Being able to use two heals for a single Ki point as a bonus action, or using Hand of Harm (plus poison rider) for free on top of Flurry of Blows, really encourages the use of those abilities. Since the Monk is probably lagging by way of damage at this time, this gives it a way to be relevant even at this level of combat.
Overall I think the Mercy Monk seems very cool, and I'm curious as to how effective it will end up being in play.
- Has the Way of Mercy elegantly solved many of the Monk’s weaknesses?
- Monk of Mercy: Actually Useful?
- Way of mercy or Way of astral self, A Monk comparison
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