Boy, do I ever feel foolish after finally sorting this out.

I have been complaining about the Monk class for years — perhaps as long as I have been playing D&D. I even did a video where I talked about Monks because I have such a problem with them. So this idea I had is like a facepalm to the soul.

Divine. Monks.

Like, Monks with spells if you’re playing an edition prior to 4e. Or, just Monks with the Divine power source if you’re playing with 4e rules. I complained about the 4e Monk already — it was a slap in the face to the Martial power source.

But even the Monk doesn’t belong to the Martial power source. It might have seemed like that, coming from where it was in 2e/3e — I don’t know enough about 1e to make that call — but dang. Of course the Monk is Divine.

Let’s look at it from the 4e perspective first.

Every power source in 4e had roughly four classes assigned to it initially, before they broke away from that. The Arcane source never made much sense and they just kept remaking the Wizard over and over and over again…

The Divine source got a treat — Cleric, Paladin, Avenger, Invoker — a full set.

The Avenger is pretty much the worst striker around. All three of its primary class options for dealing extra damage revolve around situations that don’t come up in standard play — monsters don’t run away, or allies don’t work together, … I don’t even remember what the third one was. The Avenger just didn’t make sense.

It also didn’t make sense with its flavor. It was a Divine assassin of sorts. It was pretty clear to see where the focus was supposed to be — it just failed to meet expectations. The Avenger was designed to be a “boss-killer.”

But when is that even necessary?

We waited until the Player’s Handbook 3 for a weird Psionic Monk. And because the Monk was Psionic, that meant a lot of the Ki Focuses were designed to be used with psychic powers and… let’s not get into that too much.

See, if they had just gone with a Divine Monk, they don’t have had to create the freaky-weird Avenger, and the Monk would not have sucked “as much.”

Mysticism permeates the concepts of the Asian monasticism that D&D draws from so heavily — monks were often philosophers and spiritual leaders in addition to martial artists — doesn’t that sound like the Divine power source? Okay, how about an attack called “Heavenly Dragon Fist?” It’s just so obvious.

I’m probably glossing over a lot because of how stupid this whole thing made me feel. Divine Monks. Monks with Divine powers. Duh. It is obvious, isn’t it? You could make Monks Martial, but the Divine power source needs a striker — not the Avenger. Read that flavor and tell me it wasn’t basically a Monk anyway.

So yeah. My next rewrite to the Monk will be Divine.

And he might just have a power called, “Facepalm to the Soul.”