Blog Archive

Tuesday, 24 May 2016

Vined Soldier

These are among the most simplistic servants used by druids. Created from fallen soldiers, they arise from the power of the forest, serving their druidic masters in simple tasks. They appear as skeletons with small green vines covering their bones, similar to a living bodies blood vessels. Since they are not the reanimated bodies or spirits, they are not undead, they are animated through the plants.

Vined Soldier

N Medium Plant
Init -1 Senses Low-light vision; Perception +X
AC 11 touch 9, flat-footed 11 (-1 Dex, +2 natural)
hp 9 hp (2d8)
Fort +3, Ref -1, Will +0 
Speed 30 ft.
Melee Slam +2 (1d6+1)
Ranged Net +0 (1d2), Range 20 ft, Ref DC 11 to avoid or escape
Str 13, Dex 9, Con 10, Int 4, Wis 10, Cha 4
Base Atk +1 CMB +2 CMD 11
Feats Power Attack
Skills +4 climb, +2 Perception , -1 Stealth
Environment     Druids Grove
Organization     Solitary or Clan (3-6)
Treasure Value  Quarter or less
Advancement Range: 3 or 4 HD; +1 level as Barbarian or Fighter Class

Appear as a zombie or skeleton with small, thin but very visible green vines covering them, quite similar to blood vessels but these vines are what is causing the dead skeleton to move, thus this is actually categorized as a plant and not a true undead. They are one of the most common servants that druids use, as they are from living creatures killed in a forest, most often from armies that invade the forest. These corpses are then buried in or near a druid's grove and are raised by the magic of the forest. The vines that surround the dead, act a bit like living blood vessels, but these spread the magic that enables the vine zombie to act, the only requirement for the corpses is that they are complete corpses.  Most druids will tear off the faces of these zombies so they are unrecognizable.

A Vined Soldier is treated as a plant, though most often seen as undead by those unfamiliar with them. However, they can be turned if they are in dungeons as undead, but at +4 bonus to resist. Near a druid's grove, they cannot be turned.

Though rare it is sometimes possible for long-serving vine soldiers to gain sentience, as the vines cognizance combines with the memories of the dead to become more than either alone. Still loyal to the druids cause but they have their own purposes. For this reason, many druids retire them after a few years as these mixed beings are sorrowful creatures, unable to fit in either with the living, the dead or other sentient plant creatures,

Wednesday, 18 May 2016

Smurfling - Small Sized, Blue Coloured Fey

I wanted to create something like these for my fae themed game a while ago, but didn't come up with a good way to run them. Inspired by the tv cartoon that I used to watch in my youth.

Tiny Sized Fey                                   CR 1

AC 16 (+2 Dex, +2 Natural, Size +6), Touch 13, Flat 13
HD 1D6+1 (4 hp)
Saves Fort +1 Ref +4 Will +2
Init +2
Speed 10

Str 5 Con 12 Dex 15. Int 10. Wis 11. Cha 13
Base Atk +3      CMB -4      CMD 8
Melee +3 weapon (Hammer or Slingshot 1d3)
Special Attacks Joined Attack
Special Defenses. Reduce Injury 3 / -, Playful Demeanor
Skills Craft (Any One)+ 3, Climb or Swim +4, Perception +3; Perform (Dance) +10*, Stealth +6
Feats Weapon Finesse or Skill Focus (Any Craft)

Environment Garden or Candyland
Organization Gathering (50-400)
Treasure Half (gems, coins or potions)
Alignment  Any Good ("Bad" Smurflings are Neutral aligned)
Advancement By class (Expert, Rogue, Druid or Ranger most common)

For every additional HD achieved: +2 in Reduce Injury and +1/+1 in ability score adjustments. They also increase +1 in natural AC for every 2 HD gained.

Reduce Injury: Similar to Damage Reduction except it minimizes only after basic injury is inflicted, reducing damage on a one-to-one basis until its limit. For example a 1 HD Smurf would be affected: 
One damage Inflicted = One HP Dmg Taken
Two damage Inflicted = One HP Dmg Taken
Three damage Inflicted = Two HP Dmg Taken

Joined Attack: The few times Smurflings cannot use their charm or escape an encounter through wit, they are able to attack en masse. For every four that attack the same foe, increase both the base calculation and damage dice. (1d3 -- 1d4 -- 1d6 -- 1d8 - 1d10). 

Playful Demeanour Smurflings gain +8 on social skills due to their playfulness. Fey and good aligned outsiders would never consider hurting a Smurfling.

Smurflings are one and a half foot tall fey that have blue skin. They reside in mushroom homes within their forest villages, living in balance with the environment around them. Friendly and helpful, they are keen on making new allies but prefer to avoid strangers as they have been hurt in the past. 

These magical creatures are at one with the animals, plants and fey beings around them. Most of their allies believe they arise spontaneously during blue moon months, a new Smurfling is born inside a blossoming flower. Smurflings are a male species, while there are crazy rumours of females being hatched, this has never been proven. 

Most of their kind focuses on one type of craft to specialize in, not for profit but for the benefits it brings to their village. Smurflings sometimes gain Rogue or Ranger classes to defend their kin and friends from the dangers of the forest. Druid is the most common spell-caster, though Bards just as respected. 

As a magically enriched fey race, Smurflings are living spell components, they do not need components for spells of less than 5th level. In addition, they can create spells that typically fit into another casters area of specialty, but the Smurfling casters can still cast. If working in conjunction with others, they can enhance spells or reduce saving throws beyond comprehension by dance or musical accompaniment. For this reason many evil spell casters seek them out, waiting to use them to buff their castings. While their allies are always concerned, these fey always finds a way to overcome threats.

*    *    *   *    *    *    *    *    *    *    *    *    *    *    *    *    *    *    *    *    *    *    *    *    *    *    *  

I am leaning towards using  Reduce Injury to replace simple Damage reduction.

Monday, 9 May 2016

Table Rules

My House Rules - These are the assumed rules I use for running all games. Even when I run other system stories and I am gm, this is what I think should be the default. Again, most times unless it is appropriate, I just use these rules unless there`s apart of the story/game that dictates otherwise.

Clerics, except for raise dead spells, require only one spell component - their holy symbol, this is the rule for all spells regardless of the description in the PHB or other sources. Clerics are utterly tied to their holy symbol, which is why most will have more than one in their possession.  If they lose access to their holy symbol, they cannot cast any spells. One free feat clerics receive at first level is Create Holy Symbol. This requires 1 hour of prayer at an obelisk or holy site, (or six hours otherwise) and they must verbally say the required prayers. If they are unable to complete the verbal and somatic components, they cannot complete this ritual.

Wizards do not require spell components for spells less than 3rd level while in cities, as there is plenty of magical energies as a result of the obelisks or temples nearby. This is not assumed to be the case in remote areas. The dedication of the obelisk is unimportant, if it acts as a connection to the heavenly or demonic forces, it will still charge all spell casters as noted above.

Undead arise when anything dies and the corpse is not properly interned. Things killed by undead generally take 5-12 days, unless a shorter period is listed in the monsters description. If killed by anything else (including a natural death), it usually takes 21-40 days, and will usually arise as a Carcass (HD 1+.) Anything that dies in a settled area will be buried in either a druid's grove, temple's catacombs or public mausoleum usually called Tower of Sorrow. Searing Towers are an archaic tradition of cremation, especially in Phastia, the Desert Lands. Creating undead is perhaps the most vile and hated action imaginable, no society (evil or chaotic ones) condones it.

Constructs treat their HD number as their intelligence, wisdom and charisma scores until they reach 15 HD. If they have an intelligent score higher than 7, they can speak. Otherwise use as per the construct entry in the MM. Constructs have no soul at creation, though rare, it is possible for them to generate one. Some sentient constructs worship the Holy Cog, and can gain cleric levels in lawful forces.

Cosmology There are no stars in the sky. 4 moons dominate. The seasons, magic cycles, predictions are based on their relative locations. There are actually more than 100 moons all around, very few of them are ever actually visible without a telescope, but they all have meaning and most have specific connections to magic, fate and the gods. Weeks are also usually called the Ten-Day. Years are called Cycles. Months are often called Turns, and are each five weeks long there are 15 to a standard year. Holidays occur outside of the weeks.

Deities The High Gods cannot physically come to Nyssa, only their proxies or servants. Most gods have multiple domains, each will have a different proxy or Avatar. These are utterly and completely loyal. Demi-Gods are able to walk the land, but only in areas of their faithful.

Active vs Passive Skill Checks: If the player asks to do something, that is an active roll, and done as normal. At any time, a DM can roll at a half chance check to determine if they notice or realize something that just jumps into their heads, this is a passive roll.

Roll vs Role Playing: How they do something is equally important as a dice roll. For example with trap finding: If a player tells me what they are going to do or how they are going to check, if it fits the scenario, I give them a bonus to the skill check roll. If a player tells me look for traps, without any detail or description, they just roll the dice. This is how a non-thief can potentially disarm a trap, or convince a stranger to do something, or anything else in game, etc.

Low Magic My world is an assumed low magic item world, every dweomered item essentially decays over months (or years), so going into a dungeon they might find info, scrolls and coins, but all the 'Real Magic' has long since faded back into the Ether. Only items found on an outer-plane or at last partially stuck in the Ether can avoid this, but then once on Nyssa, the decay starts to happen. There are ways to avoid this, but usually only available at higher levels.

Free Character Change No penalty for changing characters: outside of a dungeon.  Go ahead, play what you want. Getting killed imposes a slight drop in level for starting a new character.

Dueling Proficiency: Most characters are proficient with both rapier and dagger, as duels are common and it is the weapon of choice for aristocrats and most soldiers. You can carry these anywhere. Many places allow dueling, as it's assumed that both parties consent. Even in places that do not allow dueling as a daily practice, it happens on Sword Day (last day of the Ten-Day week) as its a traditional fair day when competition happens. Duels, both for training and honor occur regularly. The majority of duels are stopped once three strikes happen or other stated condition.

Firearms are available in some remote locations much more common than urban ones. Though guns cannot be enchanted; ammunition can be. However, it is more common for ammunition to be made out of magical materials (like anthril), but is rare and expensive.

Spells or spell-like affects are not affected by critical or fumble rolls unless there are side rules specifically in the spell description.

Teleport Spell (5th level) can only be cast from one teleport pad to another. You must know the exact location of the second pad. If it is blocked (a simple cloth covering it) you cannot teleport through. It takes one hour to carve a temporary teleport insignia in sand (up to six hours if in stone.) The Greater Teleport (7th level) does not need a teleport pad to begin; but it always needs a teleport pad to go to.

A hoard of gold (especially coins) act as a blocker, which is one reasons why kings and dragons cannot be scryed. Top priority.

A hoard of silver (especially coins) acts as an enhancer to many spell & spell effects involving illusions.  Most Fey collect silver for this reason. Seconded priority.

A hoard of platinum (especially coins) prevents charm spells & effects. Some say this is why it is so rare. No Priority - works when there are more platinum in one central location.

A hoard of electrum (especially coins) prevents deception in spells or spell effects.

A hoard of copper coins prevents strength draining magic or effects. Giants always have tonnes of copper in their lairs.