[RPG] Replacing Wild Shape (5e)


I encountered this problem with one of my players. They wanted to play a druid character. Everything was fitting except that the druid didn't use wild shape, the character had kind of a "This form was given to me by Nature. Why would I want to change?" mentality and he was trying to be more of a summoner and someone who would commune with spirits. I thought it was cool and I went with it.

But there was the issue with a key mechanic of the Druid, Wild Shape. The character never used it so we tried to give the druid some kind of a replacement.
I ended up giving him an option to burn his "wild shape" uses to hold a concentration of a single spell…

Turns out that being able to use two spells with concentration makes you really OP…
So I would like to ask if you know of any way how this could be balanced? And if you know of any other valid Wild shape replacements.

I thought that I could use the wild shape uses to keep the concentration up in case the druid fails the con check. I am not sure if that would be balanced either. Another option was to ReSpec to Nature Cleric and give him the druid spell list instead of the cleric one. But that didn't fit the character.

Best Answer

Consider drawing inspiration from the Circle of Spores.

The Circle of Spores, published in the Guildmasters' Guide to Ravnica, gives an alternate use of Wild Shape called Symbiotic Entity:

At 2nd level, you gain the ability to channel magic into your spores. As an action, you can expend a use of your Wild Shape feature to awaken those spores, rather than transforming into a beast form, and you gain 5 temporary hit points for each level you have in this class. While this feature is active, you gain the following benefits:

• When you deal your Halo of Spores damage, roll the damage die a second time and add it to the total.

• Your melee weapon attacks deal an extra 1d6 poison damage to any target they hit.

These benefits last for 10 minutes, until you lose all these temporary hit points, or until you use your Wild Shape again.

I don't know if this would be on-theme for your player's character, but you may be able to reflavor or slightly alter it to make it work.