Wednesday, 22 June 2016

70C-70c - Duodrone Fixer (Medium Construct - CR 4)

Ormid and the gang came very, very close to a TPK last night, whilst tangling with the minions guarding the entrance to a legendary Lich's lair. I knew things were due to get tough, but man, they went horribly wrong. Fortunately, my NPC (Mother Yvara, chosen of Namaea'Isaala) had a single 7th level spell slot, and the Plane Shift spell prepared, and was able to get the them out of there before Azrael found them all.

And so, the group have been forced to rethink their approach to tackling the Lich, realising that such an ancient being is not going to simply let them walk in and destroy it.

To this end, they are looking at somehow forming an arcane trap, and using the Lich's true name to draw him in and capture him. To do this, they need to seek out an Aeon Stone - a fragment of the Crystal Barrier that separated the settled lands from the primal, wild magics of the Luminous Wastes in the 1st Age; shards imbued with unearthly power far beyond that wielded by even the most potent mages (actually a "corrupted" Aeon Stone).

More than aware of the power and value of such stones, the group have decided to visit the Crystal Villa again to see if 70C-70c (previously Toc-Toc) knows where one can be found....which brings us to....


Cute or horrifying? You decide.

Monday, 20 June 2016

Kazrith - Medium Fiend (CR 8)

In Monster Manual II (4th Edition), there hides a little fella' in the demon entry, that suffers from having some of the least inspiring artwork in the world....the Kazrith. It looks, on that page, like the pokemon Muk, had a baby with sadness and abandoned it next to the cooler looking demon with whom it shrugs.

Image from: http://www.videogamesblogger.com/2013/05/09/151-pokemon.htm/pokemon-089-muk-artwork
Actually, Muks can be pretty badass come to think of it

Anyway, in the PUG there is an order of Juiblex worshipers called "The Unseen", and in preparation for any kinds of conflict that may, or may not occur, I've been statting up some oozy enemies. The Kazrith seemed like a good fit in two ways - oozy (check) demon (check). And so, I have converted it, and made it a bit....um.....sexier? No, not that, but, you know, kickass. 

Image From: http://www.escapistmagazine.com/forums/read/540.101127-The-Escapist-Avatar-Adventure-An-Open-RP-Now-Re-Opened?page=843
...Mmmmmm seeexy...amirite?
Anyway, here it is. Enjoy. It also destroys weapons and armour and stuff now, so, you know....have fun!


Sunday, 19 June 2016

Item Damage in 5th Edition?

llorendyr leapt back from the foul thing, his blade hissing where its slime still coated it.
'By the old ones! It's eating the blade!'
And it was, the fine aelwyn steel becoming dull and tarnished as the daemon's ooze fed upon the metal and magic it held...”

- From “Terror in the Foxfires” by Aaron Verit

Image from http://aldokatayanagi.cgsociety.org/art/rust-keyshot-monster-zbrush-dd-photoshop-dungeons-dragons-creature-armor-knight-warrior-sword-metal-action-digital-painting-attack-fantasy-2d-1163781
"Daaaaaamn!"


I cut my teeth with AD&D 1st Edition, and learned the DM's craft in a system where your items were not safe by any means. This carried on until 4e, when items pretty much got script immunity, even against such horrors as rust monsters and green slime.

In 5e, there are monsters that will eat your items, and I am sure, hazards and traps out there that can smash, dissolve or otherwise trash your gear. However, there is no unified system for determining if an item gets destroyed, and this irritates me a little.

So, here is my house rule for dealing with situations where an item may, or may not, get destroyed.

When an item is exposed to an attack or situation where it may become damaged or destroyed, it makes a saving throw in the same way a player does. As in previous editions, if it is being held or worn by a character, it uses their saving throw bonus. However, if this is not the case, it adds a bonus that depends on what enchantment level it carries*. 

Rarity Save Bonus
Common +0
Uncommon +1
Rare +2
Very Rare +4
Legendary +6

What happens on a failed save depends on the situation. An item may be temporarily useless, or malfunction until it is repaired somehow, or it may become less useful – maybe accumulating some penalty or similar. In some situations however, a failed save may mean the end of the item !

* One of my players has pointed out that sometimes an unattended item may end up being more able  to save than one being held. I would be willing to allow an item to use the better of the two modifiers, especially if it meant the player's Vorpal blade may be about to get destroyed. Of course, this is up to you!

Wednesday, 15 June 2016

Potion of Adaptive Resistance - Rare Potion

Potion of Adaptive Resistance (Rare Potion): When consumed, these potions remain active for 1 hour. The first time the consumer is hit by an attack that would inflict Acid, Cold, Fire, Lightning, Thunder or Radiant damage, they gain Resistance to that damage type until the potion expires. Once a resistance has been granted, that potion cannot grant resistance to another damage type.


Thursday, 9 June 2016

New Elf (Aelwyn) Sub-Race - Glwyrr'Syth Aelwyn (Shadow Elf)

Actually, they are not "new" at all. The Shadow Elves were the stars of a Basic D&D module waaaay back when race was the same as character class, and all maps used wiggly lines to represent curtains. My lads have recently been playing Shadows over Mystara and have been suffering the predations of the Shadow Elves, and I remember writing a bit many years ago about how they existed in some super deep realms of my world.

Clothing optional apparently....
So, what follows is the sub-race description for turning your elf PC into a Shadow Elf (or Glwyrr'Syth in my world)

*    *    *

GLWYRR'SYTH (SHADOW ELF) SUB-RACE

Ability Score Increase: +1 Intelligence

Superior Darkvision: You can see perfectly in total darkness and shadowy conditions, up to 120'.

Born of the Deep Fires: The Glwyrr'Syth tend to live near areas of volcanic activity, and have an innate Resistance to Fire

Born to the Shadows: Glwyrr'Syth are naturally stealthy. They are automatically proficient with the Stealth skill, and may add twice their proficiency bonus to Stealth checks.

Cavern Born: Glwyrr'Syth cannot become lost in natural cavern complexes or similar areas, and always know which way is North.

Tuesday, 7 June 2016

Deep Flame - Uncommon Wondrous Item (Material)

Deep Flame (Uncommon Wondrous Item) In truth this is a naturally occuring crystal, found in regions of the world that stand close to active gates to Fey dimensions. In light, it appears to be a glassy, cuboid or prismatic crystal of deep blue or black colour. Light plays over its surface with a strange labradorescence, and its shadow is oddly morphic, having no real relationship to the shape of the piece casting it.

In darkness, how the crystal appears depends on the one seeing it. Creatures without dark vision see nothing but the darkness. However, those with darkvision see that the crystal emanates bright light, the radius of this being a product of its size.

As a general rule, for every 1 inch diameter of crystal present, it emits bright light in a 2ft radius, and dim light for 1ft beyond.

This crystal is highly prized by many subterranean races for illuminating areas – usually for cosmetic effects, though others make use of them as signals, boundary markers, and in combination with certain other spells and effects, defensive items. 

 

Saturday, 4 June 2016

Harsh Weapon - Uncommon Weapon (Requires Attunement)

Harsh Weapon (Uncommon Weapon; Requires Attunement): It is unclear who made these items or when. They are occasionally seen in the hands of adventurer's who like to live dangerously, or being used by unfortunates in pit fights they are not intended to win. They are fairly common in the markets of the Crystal Villa, and it is rumoured a large number began to appear in the hands of some Alliance soldiers during the Aelwyn wars.

Any kind of weapon can be a Harsh Weapon. All appear largely unremarkable, apart from having an objectively significant crack or split in them. However, when attuned to their wielder they bestow the following benefit and curse;

  • When the wielder hits a target with the weapon, it rolls twice its base damage dice, the additional damage being bane damage.

  • When the wielder misses a target with the weapon, they suffer 5 (1d10) bane damage.

Whenever the weapon hits a target, strange light flares from the crack or split and jags out towards them. When it misses a target, the light flashes back at the wielder with a snarling crackle of power.

Sometimes broken is...good? bad? errr....


Saturday, 28 May 2016

The Sons of the Accursed

Pre-Sundering 3rd Age:  (Standard; golden sunburst, surrounded by ten smaller versions. The main device has an inverted pentacle of red in its middle. Angelic scripts declares “Punishment, Judgement, Obedience”; Other symbols include broken swords, and a sigil very similar to the Helldazzlers “Final Sun”, only rendered in black and gold/copper).

Order of tainted Solumite Paladins who embraced one of the shattered God’s more brutal aspects. They are utterly remorseless  in their pursuit of “evil” entertaining a view that any kind of love for something other than their God is heresy, and proof that the individual must be cleansed by the “Sun’s Kiss” (fire or radiant energy). All have been blessed with unnatural strength and resilience. They ride huge mounts of silver, and both paladin and mount wear thick, heavy plate, inscribed with solumite script. All bear Vothniir swords, often blessed to deal additional fire and / or radiant damage, and all speak the primal language of Law.




Picture from http://majesticchicken.deviantart.com/art/Chaos-Warrior-177623541
Pictured: "Lawful Good"



The order’s leader is High Lord Azlan, a being of cold, angelic beauty that rules from the white stone keep of Alar’Eatheria – built in what was once the Cyranoch Valley in Mid Fey.

The Order has a chapter of Witch Hunters, who routinely help "purify" towns and hunt "witches". In truth, for every genuine nest of evil they destroy, they eradicate tens of innocent settlements and hundreds of innocent souls.

Post Sundering:
The evil nature of the surviving Son's manifested, and they became daemonic reflections of what they supposedly were. The Order was officially dead, but bands of "brothers" still stalk the land, seeking to wipe away the taint of the invading dimensions and to establish their Brutal God's doctrine.

Taking of Lumor
: The Sons were one of the most active groups seeking to take back the Holy city, and held it a number of times. Each victory would be celebrated with the ritual purification by fire of the "heretic" Each occupation was short lived however, as normally unassociated orders would join together to drive them from the site - often then turning quickly on each other.

Sword of the Son (Very Rare Weapon; Requires Attunement)
Forged from Gothniir, and inlaid with runes of solar power, these blades can only be wielded normally by those with at least Strength 18, and Dexterity 13 (others suffer disadvantage on their attack rolls and damage rolls). Their base damage is 2d12 slashing, They have the Heavy property, and are Large weapons. In addition, they have the following properties when wielded by one to whom they are attuned.

* +2 to attack and damage rolls
* On any damage roll of 12 on the weapon dice, it is rolled again. This continues until an 11 or less is rolled
* Brutal 2 (re-roll damage results of 2 or 1).
* The weapon strikes as if it were alchemical silver and radiant damage (though its actual damage type remains unchanged)

Wednesday, 25 May 2016

Grimslake - Large Monstrosity - (CR 6)

This beast is from Pathfinder and is in their SRD. I've never used them, but can see multiple ways they could be put in a wide variety of scenarios. To this end, I've converted it to 5e!

And you thought Vine Weevil larvae were bad....


Tuesday, 24 May 2016

Powerful Rewards for Epic Difficulty

So, the following is cut and pasted from my notes for tonight's game.  As you can guess from the power of these items, things in that campaign regularly get hilariously tough, and indeed, are only going to get tougher as they try to track down and lay to rest the legendary Lich Gimble Brandersnatch (I was 15 when I named him - he's been a pain in the universes side for 27 Earth years). 

Long time readers might wonder what these guys are up to, and the answer is, moving towards the ultimate conclusion of their story's. Once the Lich is (hopefully) defeated, and the four major rogues guilds of the Northern Republic united under Llewellyn's rule, the party are going to be facing their final, and most epic, deadly and nigh impossible task yet - a task that will be taking them beyond 20th level in 5th Edition, and will let us test the DMG's suggestions, as well as some popular rules off the GM's Guild site. 

Anyway, here is the first ten minutes of tonight's game...

*    *    *

In recognition of their role in saving the people of Lorehaven, all those involved in destroying the necrotic anchors are publicly rewarded. All receive a platinum and electrum medal, forged by the artisans of the Bardic College, as well as the title of “Guardian of Lore”. The group however, not only neutralised two of the anchors, but slew the Thorynrr Death Knight, Ulshebb “The Spite”, as well as his retinue of Bloodletters.

In recognition of this, and the fact that the group are seeking the ones behind the attack, the city has agreed to give them three of its sacred treasures. These are;

Thundersinger's Gorget (Legendary Wondrous Item; Requires Attunement by an individual that can use Warforged Components) Long believed to be an uncomfortable, heavy gorget, recent research in light of Veteran's reactivation has shown it to be an item forged by ancient Guild Artificers, intended as a weapon. Attaching to the throat of the user, it allows them, as an action, to emit a silent scream of devastating sonic energy, forcing all creatures in a 60ft cone to suffer 105 (30d6) thunder damage, half if they make a Constitution saving throw (D.C. = 8 + the user's Constitution modifier + the user's Proficiency modifier). Creatures that fail their save by 5+ are also deafened until cured. Once this power has been used, it cannot be used until 24 hours have passed.

Naturally this deadly item is given to the Veteran.

Holo-Stract (Legendary Wondrous Item; Requires Attunement) Another ancient Guild item, this thing resembles a large cabochon onyx, with a number of crystalline lenses set around its curve. As an action, it can be activated, and thrown up to 30ft away. Once it hits the ground, it creates a perfect illusion of the one that is attuned to it. This illusion has all sensory components, and lasts either until 1 hour has passed, it is dismissed by the Holo-Stract's user (a bonus action), until it takes 100 hit points worth or damage, or until it is disbelieved (D.C 18 Intelligence saving throw). The illusion can be made to perform specific tasks by the owner (changing these is a bonus action), as long as they are within 100ft of it, and the illusion can wander up to 30ft from the Holo-Stract itself. The main use of this item seems to be as a lure or distraction tool.Once activated, the Holo-Stract cannot be used for 24 hours.

This item is given to Llewellyn.

Lifelight Torch (Legendary Wondrous Item; Requires Attunement) The origins of this item are unclear, as it has been in Lorehaven's vaults for long and long. The artful craftmanship and beautiful design however, would suggest it is another guild item that escaped confinement in the legendary void vaults. Resembling a sconce of tempered electrum and silver, studded with fire agates, diamonds, sunstones and rubies, it is crowned by a cluster of what seems to be ever smouldering embers. These embers shine with an argent fire, and cast bright light in a 60ft radius (dim light for another 30ft beyond that). The torch has a number of uses;

  • It can be used as a melee weapon (attuned user is automatically proficient) that grants a +2 bonus to attack and damage rolls and inflicts 2d6 bludgeoning and 2d6 radiant damage per hit. As a weapon, it is considered to be made from both silver and cold iron.
  • The torch has 5 charges. At noon each day it regains 2 (1d4) charges. These can be used to manifest a number of abilities (activating each is an action unless otherwise noted).

1 charge: Silver flames surround the torch and for the next 10 rounds it inflicts an additional +10 (3d6) fire and +3 (1d6) radiant damage per hit. Furthermore, it scores a critical hit against undead, creatures from the plane of shadows and daemons of all kinds, on a natural roll of 19 or 20. Activating this ability is a bonus action.

1 charge: The wielder may hurl a blast of radiant flame up to 200 ft away. It explodes in a 20ft radius blast, inflicting 21 (6d6) fire and 21 (6d6) radiant damage to all creatures within. A D.C. 17 Dexterity saving throw is allowed to halve this damage, though undead, daemons of all kinds and creatures from the shadow planes suffer disadvantage on this.

2 charges: The wielder may cast a Greater Restoration spell

2 charge: The wielder may cast a Heal spell (70 hit points)

5 charges: The wielder may cast a True Resurrection spell.

If all the torches charges are used, it becomes inert and loses all magical abilities and properties until it regains at least 1 charge. Furthermore, at noon each day, when it would regain a charge, if it is not exposed to direct sunlight, it must roll a d20. On a 9 or less, it does not gain any charges that day, and must wait until the following noon.

This item is given to Ormid.

Friday, 20 May 2016

Death Shard (Medium Elemental) - CR 5


Closest thing I could find - surprising lack of "death shard" pictures about!

4th Edition's Monster Manual II introduced the so called Chaos Shards, sentient shards of condensed energy. The Death Shard is one I have converted, mainly because they are exactly the sort of thing the Dwaer'Syth would summon to guard their secrets....and I'm running a game with the Dwaer'Syth in it....

Enjoy!

Saturday, 14 May 2016

Thanagorim (Death Giant) - Huge Giant - CR 17

Another epic level foe for your uber characters to deal with, the Death Giant was yet another of those 3.5 / 4e monsters on my "I need to use those dudes" list, that I never got to use. In my games, they are Adaric Giants who were once like the Adrai (Adrai'Gigorim or Storm Giants), but who fell victim to some kind of magical mishap - probably of their own making - and became the vile soul feeders they are today.

Rare in the extreme, some tribes have struck pacts with the Cold Lords of the Divenei Velonai mountains, as well as the Order of Ravens. Still others live in secret covens, hidden from the world. Most however have fled the physical plane, to dwell in their own fuliginous cities.

Anywho, here you go!

/r iamverybadass


Thursday, 12 May 2016

Death Lance - Rare Weapon (Requires Attunement)

I first remember reading about these things in Homeland, and then in Drow of the Underdark. The PUG are going to be tangling with the Dwaer'Syth soon (my world's drow), so I converted them to 5e so I could make sure their horror goes on. Here are the stats.

image at http://www.trollandtoad.com/p115022.html
Not exactly how I imagine it, but the closest I could find!


*    *    *

Dwaer Death Lance (Rare weapon. Requires Attunement)

This +1 (+1 bonus to attack and damage rolls) Lance is made from foul, mottled metals, and inflicts +4 (1d8) Necrotic damage per hit. On a critical hit, the Lance inflicts an additional 17 (5d6) Necrotic damage and the target gains 1d2 levels of Exhaustion (D.C. 16 Fortitude save allowed to halve the additional necrotic damage and to avoid accumulating exhaustion)

Saturday, 7 May 2016

Ring of Gathering Momentum - Rare Ring (Requires Attunement)

Ring of Gathering Momentum (Rare, requires attunement): These rings are typically spun from magically thickened mercury, and were originally created by the Synd'Aelwyn of Aeldas'Salviras, during their early wars against their kin in the Age of Loss, during the first exile.

An individual that is attuned to this ring finds that their initiative improves by 1 at the start of each round of combat. Furthermore, 1/short rest, the wearer can inflict additional damage with a single melee attack equal to the number of rounds that have passed up to that point (so an individual in round 5 of a battle would inflict +5 damage).

Thursday, 5 May 2016

Salt Mephit (Small Elemental) - CR 1

"Ak! Urgh! Oh GODS I hate these guys!"
- Me on encountering Salt Mephits in DDO

There are many, many types of Mephits (and Mephlings if you are a 3.0 / 3.5 type player), and as a rule they are all horrible. In DDO, you will battle countless Mephits at almost every level of play. You will grow to hate them. 

Pictured: Bastard


However, out of all the Mephits I encountered in that game, none had me roaring in fury more than the horrible Salt Mephit. Admittedly, in that game they could blind you, which always sucked. However, their D&D stats hardly made them any less monstrous, especially given their low CR (in both earlier, and as it happens, this edition). 

Anyway, it's time to make your players feel the pain. Enjoy.




Wednesday, 4 May 2016

Glitterdust - Level 2 Conjuration

Glitterdust
Level 2 Conjuration

Casting Time: 1 Action
Range: 130 ft
Components: V, S, M (mica dust)
Saving Throw: Dexterity (negates blindness)
Duration: 5 rounds


You conjure a cloud of sparkling motes, which stick to everyone and everything within a 10ft sphere.
Creatures affected by this spell are blinded unless they make a Dexterity saving throw for the duration of the spell. All creatures have disadvantage on Stealth checks, and all invisible items and creatures in the area a re outlined and become visible.

At Higher Levels: When you use a spell slot higher than 2nd, the spells area increases by +5ft and its duration increases by 1 round for every level higher than 2nd it is.

Spell Lists: Artificer, Bard, Sorcerer, Wizard 



Save Failed vs Sparkly...
 

Monday, 2 May 2016

The Tome of Cursed Utterances - Legendary Wondrous Item

Ormid, The Veteran and Llewellyn sought this vile tome, and failed to recover it, for the vyrleen was slain and Ormid lost his mind. It is a work of blackest sorcery, that serves only to corrupt and destroy. As it likely won't be seen in my games, I thought I would share it here for you now.

*    *    *

This nightmarish work of blackest sorcery was penned in the early second age by the Grand Pope of Tyrants, Vyroth Keth'Darkold. It details many foul spells, the way to create certain malevolent items, the true names of a number of dark and ancient entities and details of several cursed locales.

The first draft of "Twilight" was inked in human blood and written on vellum flensed from angels

The Tome contains the following spells;

Animate Dead, Call the Heart*, Chain Enervation*, Conjure Barlgura**, Conjure Hezrou**, Conjure Lesser Daemon**, Conjure Shadow Daemon**, Conjure Vrock**, Create Undead, Dark Empowerment*, Gate, Imprisonment, Spiritwrack, Torment, Vampiric Touch, Wither Limb

* Book of Lost Spells
** Unearthed Arcana - That Old Black Magic

The book also details six powerful daemons, the rituals needed to summon them, which all include blood sacrifices, the sacrifice of magic and often the formation of foul pacts.

The locations of ten cursed sites on Arbel are detailed, along with the rituals needed to draw on their power and warnings of the effects of doing so.

The book contains information on how to create the following vile items;

Devil's Blood (Very Rare consumable) Coated on a weapon, this loathsome oil causes it to inflict +7 (2d6) bane poison damage to targets with the next thirteen strikes. In addition, the target must make a D.C. 15 Constitution saving throw, or be Weakened for 1 minute (Disadvantage on all strength based ability and skill checks and attack rolls. Half damage with all Strength based attacks)*

Heaven's Thorn (Rare Consumable) As a standard action the bearer can use the Thorn to make a Strength or Dexterity based attack roll against a single angel. If the Thorn hits, it shatters and the target must make a D.C. 18 Intelligence check, failure indicating that it is stunned for 1d4 rounds (it may save at the end of each of its turns to end the effect early, though does so with Disadvantage)*.

Harrowheart Rapier (Uncommon Weapon, Requires Attunement by an evil individual): This barbed rapier grants the wielder a +1 bonus to attack and damage rolls, and when scoring a critical hit against a good hearted individual or heavenly being, rolls triple the normal dice instead of double*.

Cadaveric Sweet Meats (Uncommon Consumable): Made from the flesh of sentient beings, it takes an action to consume a portion. None evil individuals must make a D.C. 20 Sanity saving throw or become Poisoned, Unhinged and Debilitated for 1 hour. They gain no benefits from this food in any case. Evil Characters gain 10 temporary hit points for 1 hour, and have advantage on all Constitution saving throws for the duration. If they are slain whilst under the effects of this meal, they have a 2% chance per level (or 2%x their CR) chance of rising as a ghoul at dusk that day.


* These are items from the 3.0 Book of Vile Darkness, converted to 5e.

The book also talks about a vile Great Scimitar called "Abiding Hatred" that can devour souls and conjure them as spectres under the wielder's command, though it has no mention of where it may be.

USING THE BOOK: Obtaining a single piece of information from the book requires 3d10 hours study. At the end of this time, the reader must make a D.C. 20 Sanity saving throw, failure indicating that they suffer a temporary madness. If they have failed a save before from the Tome, their Sanity score is permanently lowered by 1 and they suffer an Intermediate madness. A third failed save lowers the readers Sanity permanently by another 3 points, and inflicts them with a permanent madness from the DMG, as well as the following madness...

Tyrannic: You seek to bend all others to your will by subtlety or force, and care only for yourself. All others are nought but tools or obstacles, to be used or removed as needed. You have no empathy, no love and are never content with what you have. Only the strong survive, and in this universe, there is only one strong individual - you.

This madness cannot be cured without the direct intervention of a holy deity or their direct agents.

Finally, the one carrying this book has a +1 bonus to their AC and saving throws against the attacks of angels and other holy spirits, and is under the effects of a permanent Protection from Good.

Saturday, 30 April 2016

Corruption Corpse (Medium Undead) - CR 3

4th Edition's Monster Manual contained these putrid fellows; zombies cast (reanimated) in the same mold as those dudes in Quake who lobbed bits of their own decaying flesh at you. I thought I would do a conversion, and try to stick to the design philosophy of that edition - namely that "Artillery" beasties are glass cannons; high damage, but low defences and hit points.

I think this fits the bill...


"How dare you imply I have problems with my personal hygiene! Good day to you sir! I said good day!"

Wednesday, 27 April 2016

Using 4e Fortune Cards to Reward 5th Edition Characters

So, we, like many groups, do not use XP to advance the characters. In my games I prefer to advance them at the appropriate moments, which stops the "mid adventure" level up, and allows me to accurately gauge the approximate power of the groups when writing. However, this sometimes leaves me feeling a bit cruel - usually after a series of challenging tasks or battles.

5e Version: You move an additional 10ft

In the Ormid et Al games, and now, in the PUG, I intent to start, when I feel the group deserves something, to hand out minor boons that last until a member of the party uses it, or until the end of their next long rest. These boons are actually those written on the 4e "Fortune Cards" - most of which translate seamlessly into 5e. It allows me to give something a bit different (and as it will involve rolling to determine the boon from a possible 440 boons) exciting and oft' different reward.
What do you think?

5e Version: As written, but you ignore all the "Vulnerability equals one-half you level" stuff, you just get Vulnerability

 Last night, the group got to re-roll any 1's they rolled for damage once. It allowed Ormid to inflict +7 damage with a spell ('twas a night of poor rolls).

5e Version: You can move an ally in any direction up to 10ft, then you move, without provoking opportunity attacks, up to 10ft.

Friday, 22 April 2016

Star Rose Tincture (Positoxin) - Rare Consumable

Positoxins were first introduced in the 3.5 Book of Exalted Deeds - the opposite tome to the wonderful Book of Vile Darkness. They were basically poisons that were dangerous to the undead, that paladins could use without taking the shine off their halos. Here is a quick one I dreamed up whilst brushing my fangs...enjoy!

Star Rose Tincture (Positoxin – Rare Consumable): As a general rule the undead are immune to poisons. However, there are certain substances, distilled from celestial materials and infused with the radiant energies of life, that act just like toxins to them. These “Positoxins” are rare, but valuable substances that can greatly aid those that hunt the unquiet dead. 

Image from https://staticdelivery.nexusmods.com/mods/110/images/19174-2-1340299286.jpg


Star Roses are a species of empyreal flower that sprawl across the lower peaks of several heavenly mountains. Their soft blooms glow with a blue-white light, much like moonlight, and their pollen fills the fragrant air with tiny specs of silvery light. When the essence of these divine flowers is infused into blessed water, and mixed with certain other substances baneful to the undead, the result is this substance – a faintly luminous, clear positoxin, that smells quite strongly of rose blossoms, and is slightly thicker than water.

Harmless to the living, it deals 13 (3d8) points of radiant damage to the undead when delivered on a weapon (D.C. 15 Constitution saving throw for half). A vial of this substance inflicts 27 (5d10) radiant damage if smashed against an undead creature (D.C. 15 Constitution saving throw for half). This substance resonates at a strange dimensional frequency, and is able to harm incorporeal targets as readily as corporeal ones. In other words, such targets do not get their usual resistance to this substances damage.

Monday, 18 April 2016

Composite Longbow and Shortbow - Martial Weapon

Composite Longbow – Martial Weapon

Cost: 65 gp
Range: 165 / 660
Damage: 1d8 piercing
Weight: 3lbs
Properties: Ammunition, Heavy, Two-Handed, Special
Special: A composite bow allows the bearer to add either their Strength or Dexterity modifier to damage.

Composite Shortbow – Martial Weapon

Cost: 30 gp
Range: 90 / 355
Damage: 1d6 piercing
Weight: 2lbs
Properties: Ammunition, Two-Handed, Special
Special: A composite bow allows the bearer to add either their Strength or Dexterity modifier to damage.


I'll be honest, I hadn't really realised that these weapons had not been redone in 5e, and I decided to change that. So here they are, a nice choice for your melee fighter, for when they need something at range. I did think about using similar rules to 3.0 / 3.5, and making it so there were grades of bow that allowed for greater amounts of strength based damage, but it seemed overly complex. Anyway, let me know if you think these are awful or great. 

Sunday, 17 April 2016

Dread Wraith - Medium Undead (CR 15)

"Err guys, I am gonna' up the CR on these things. They really kicked far more ass than I thought they would. I was expecting that encounter to be a roadbump, not a near TPK."

- Me, last game

Although they may have been floating around (pun intended) in earlier editions of D&D, the first time I remember seeing them statted up  as a separate entity was in 3.5, and I am fairly sure I faced them again and again in DD). 

Ormid and the gang are currently very close to facing the legendary Lich Gimble Brandersnatch (name created when I was 17, please allow for this), and are starting to face some of his more vicious minions. In the last game, they set out to destroy one of the anchors holding an epic spell in place over Lorehaven, and before the encounter around the anchor itself ran into a group of undead that were supposed to let them "warm up" a bit before the main event. The encounter involved a Bone Golem and four Dread Wraiths....things got messy....really, really messy. Constitution drain is VICIOUS in 5e, and things only got nastier when one of the NPC's died and returned as a Wraith..

Art from here https://www.pinterest.com/fig0012/tattoos/
They see me floatin' they hatin'....


Hit point drain + Constitution Drain is utterly, utterly horrible, especially if you don't have ready access to the spells needed to remove it (which the group don't). 

Anyway, the Dread Wraiths proved themselves to be a truly deadly opponent, and as I have their stats, I thought I would share, so other GM's can unleash the pain on their players!


Erdeen (Earth Elemental of Chaos) - Large Elemental (CR 8)

The four "Elementals of Chaos" were from the Mystara setting, and I first encountered them in the 2nd Edition AD&D Monstrous Compendium that detailed monsters from that world, although I may have missed them being elsewhere. The Erdeen gets a conversion as I might need it in a game soon, and, as I have been pretty busy lately, I thought I would share it as I've not posted much of late.

From the 2nd Edition AD&D Monstrous Compendium "Mystara"

Wednesday, 6 April 2016

Slithering Tracker - Small Ooze (CR 3)

"People assume I am terrified of the dark and deep places after the horrors of Meshari's tomb. It makes sense I suppose. However, they are wrong. I hated the deep places long before I ever crossed the threshold of that cursed vault. 

"So what, you may be wondering, cemented my loathing? Something I never saw. Something that came into our crude camp, and whilst we slept, slew two of my companions, leaving them little more than dehydrated husks. 

"Never did work out what did it; what could be smart enough to sneak into our camp, and to silently drain the life from my more than capable companions without them even uttering a word. I never could work it out, and I admit, I have no intent of ever finding out. From now on, the horrors can keep the deeps. I'll stick to the light realms above. It's safer."

- From the Journal of Kelvos Storr (three days before being eaten by a Roc in the wide open spaces).


Slithering Tracker by Bill Willingham

Wednesday, 23 March 2016

Deathbringer - CR 18 (Large Undead)

When you reach the epic tier in 5th Edition, you need a accept that you are going to face some badass enemies. These hulks, pulled from the 3.0 Monster Manual II are just that - undead tanks, that can steamroll a party, heal their allies and still find enough things to do to keep your high level heroes more than busy just trying to stay alive.

Created or summoned by Liches and other potent dark masters, these brutes tower almost 12 feet in height, and strike at enemies with their hideous bone flails. Only the strongest or bravest souls will try and take one on - and they are often met in groups....

 "I've come about the flailin'"


Thursday, 10 March 2016

Expanding on the "Weakened" Condition

I'm a fan of 4e's Weakened condition, and indeed, created a 5th Edition version right here. However, I was thinking today, whilst creating a vile Tome for the Ormid game, of how the same mechanic could be expanded to all statistics.

So,  here are seven new conditions (well,  six, as I've repeated the Weakened condition for completeness).

Lemme know what you think.

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Weakened: Disadvantage with all Strength based ability and skill checks, and attack rolls. Strength based damage is halved (rounded down)

Clumsy:  Disadvantage with all Dexterity based ability and skill checks, and attack rolls. Dexterity based damage is halved (rounded down)

Debilitated:  Disadvantage with all Constitution based ability and skill checks, and attack rolls. Constitution based damage is halved (rounded down)

Vexed:  Disadvantage with all Intelligence based ability and skill checks, and attack rolls. Intelligence based damage is halved (rounded down)

Foolish:  Disadvantage with all Wisdom based ability and skill checks, and attack rolls. Wisdom based damage is halved (rounded down)

Withdrawn:  Disadvantage with all Charisma based ability and skill checks, and attack rolls. Charisma based damage is halved (rounded down)

Unhinged:  Disadvantage with all Sanity based ability and skill checks, and attack rolls. Sanity based damage is halved (rounded down)

Wednesday, 2 March 2016

A Feast of Fantastical Foods

Although most foods are just that, some, either through deliberate enchantment or because of their exotic and arcane ingredients, bestow boons on those that consume them. Most boons are short lived though useful, whilst others are potent and permanent. What follows are a small selection of magical foods encountered in Gatespace. Hope you enjoy!


Bloodspear Carrot (Rare Consumable): Found in mountain valleys below the snow line, these rare plants are most common in Calsor and Uppper Malgoroth's eastern reaches. Several roots must be consumed raw for them to be effective, this taking 2 minutes. Once finished, they cause the consumer to heal 5 (1d10) hit points at the start of each of their turns for 1 minute. The vegetable gets its name from the red colouration of the roots, and the slightly coppery taste of its juices.

Bulette Steak (Very Rare Consumable): This rare delicacy is served (in the Second Age's closing years) in Dulduthrak, the “Trull's Bane Arms”, famed home to the legendary hero (and later, herald of Thorduin) Brundor Trullslayer. In later ages, it is a very rare feature on more adventurous menus, or a bonus for those adventurers that fight and slay a Land Shark (A character can make 1d6 steaks from a slain Bulette with a D.C. 12 Intelligence [Cooks Utensils] check). Thick and succulent, it takes a full 20 minutes to consume on of these. However, the one doing so gains 20 temporary hit points, and for the next 24 hours gains a +2 bonus to all Strength and Constitution related skill checks, attack and damage rolls, and saving throws. If they use either of those statistics to calculate the D.C. Of an ability, that is also increased by +2. Finally, their total and current hit points are increased for the duration by their level x2.

Cave Fisher Claw Meat (Rare Consumable): This rather smelly, oily meat is pale yellow, and quickly spoils if not stored in either strong brine or oil. It takes 5 minutes to consume a piece, and grants the one doing so 10 temporary hit points and +1 AC for 12 hours, as well as advantage on any checks or saving throws to escape being restrained.

Dendwyr Cheese (Rare Consumable): This rare soft cheese is made by the Synd'Aelwyn using certain creams and pollens. Delicately flavoured, it is usually spread on sweet breads or biscuits, and once consumed (which takes 1 minute), grants the diner a sense of peace that allows them advantage on saving throws against being frightened, or in any other way affected by their emotions. The effects of the cheese last for 3 hours.

Duron Cheese (Uncommon Consumable): Non dundiir must make a D.C. 12 Constitution saving throw when trying to eat a piece of this, or be unable to do so due to the repulsive stench and foul texture. Furthermore, they are so revolted that they become Poisoned for 1 hour due to their dry heaving, involuntary twitches of disgust and general feelings of having put something utterly toxic in their mouths. Assuming they manage it, it takes 1 minute to consume a piece of this cheese, which grants the one doing so Poison Reduction 5 for 12 hours.

Earth Salt Sprinkled Baked Flour Root (Uncommon Consumable): Flour Root is a rather common plant in subtropical regions, and forms the basis of many folks' diets. However, there are some that manage to instil them with a wholesome energy as they bake, sealing it in with certain salts and spices. These roots take 10 minutes to eat, and grant the diner a +1 bonus to Constitution checks made to resist Exhaustion for 1 hour.

Giant Cockroach Eggs (Common Consumable): Many deep realm communities consume these surprisingly strong tasting, but quite disgusting things. Doing so takes only 2 rounds, but unless they are cooked properly, there is a chance that the diner may be exposed to Sewer Plague. Even well cooked eggs are not that helpful, for although they keep a medium or large character sated for 2 full days, during that time, they cause the diner to suffer a -1 penalty on saving throws against diseases.

Mud Pudding (Uncommon Consumable): This rather gritty textured but sweet pudding is considered a delicacy by the dundiir. It takes 1 minute to consume, and grants the one doing so Tremorsense 10 for 1 hour.

Rothe Blood Sausage (Common Consumable): These gamy, black sausages take 1 minute to consume, and grants the one doing so 5 temporary hit points for 1 hour.

Ssylvyir'Thyssai (Rare Consumable): This delicate, sweet pudding is prepared by the Lir'Aelwyn, and can only be properly made under the light of a full moon. If consumed (which takes 1 minute), it grants the one doing so, Darkvision 30ft (or adds 30ft to existing Darkvision) for 1 hour. If eaten under the light of the full moon, its effects last 3 months.

Stonebread (Common Consumable): This stuff seems inedible, and requires a lot of chewing and fluid to wash down. This means it takes 5 minutes to eat a slice (2 if eaten by a dundiir). However, each slice grants the one eating it 5 temporary hit points and a +1 bonus to Constitution saving throws for 1 hour.

Tarrasque Tongue (Legendary Consumable): The Tarrasque itself is an immortal beast created during the Primal Wars, and then put into an eternal slumber and sent into space. However, the Tarrasques spoken of by legend are not one beast, but instances of multiple creatures – lesser (though still utterly monstrous) entities based on the original, created by the Daemonori as siege engines, beasts of burden (seriously) and even as a food source. One of the few areas of a Tarrasque edible to most mortals is the tongue, though managing to eat some and survive is a trial. A piece of Tarrasque Tongue requires an hour to consume, and the one doing so must make 2d4 Constitution saving throws (the first is D.C. 15, and each subsequent one is +2 more difficult). If they fail at least half of the saving throws, they are unable to finish the meal and it is ruined. If they succeed, they must make a D.C. 22 Constitution saving throw, or die; torn apart by the blindly regenerating piece of Tarrasque in their body (which will reach 1 hit point – and awaken – in 1d12+12 rounds). If they make the save, they are able to digest the meal, and gain a permanent +1 bonus to both Strength and Constitution (maximum 30), a permanent sheen of hardened scales over their body which causes all non-magical damage inflicted on them to be reduced by an amount equal to half their Constitution score (rounded down and applied before any resistance). Finally, they gain Regeneration 10, a +5 bonus to their Armour Class, and increase in size by one category (if the GM is happy to allow it, such character may increase their reach by +5ft, and be able to wield larger weapons in one hand – though items do not change size to match the characters new form unless their description says they do) for 24 hours. Whilst changed, they are clearly infused with power, and appear reptilian and bestial.

Thorn Bread (Uncommon Consumable): The vyrleen of fey know how to make this lightly spiced bread, that has a layer of caramelised thorns on top of it. They also know it is particularly good at helping others overcome their worries. Eating a slice of this takes 1 action, and the diner gains a minor luck effect for the next 3 hours. During that time, they may re-roll any single failed saving throw. Multiple slices do not allow for multiple uses of this ability, and at least 3 hours must pass between uses of the boon.

Vasp (Rare Consumable): Vasp is a sharp spice, made from the ground up stings of a species of tropical ant. On its own, it is nothing but an astringent addition to a meal. However, when added to a food that grants a boon or curse of some kind, it acts to extend their effects, increasing their duration by 50%. Applying Vasp is usually a standard action.

Sunday, 28 February 2016

Eye Stinger - Medium Monstrosity (CR 1)

I am lucky enough to own a copy of Out of the Pit, a guide to the monsters of the amazing Fighting Fantasy world Titan. Many of the monsters in the original Fiend Folio came from the same brains as those in that tome, and so, I decided I would do a few conversions; partly because there is some seriously weird stuff in there, and partly because I think many of my older, long term players would appreciate encountering a Blood Beast or an....Eye Stinger?

The Eye Stinger then is a sort of cross between an Eye of the Deep and a Gas Spore....covered in toxic spikes. Its a nasty little fella' and I hope I am not invoking any daemons of copywrite by posting this conversion to 5e here (If I am, send me a note and I shall remove it).

Anyway, here it is! The Eye Stinger!


 Mistakes were made, and the final round of this year's Conker Knockout competition was one of the bloodiest....


Friday, 19 February 2016

Juggernaut - Huge Monstrosity (CR 14)

The Juggernaut is one of those monsters that I have always wanted to make use of, and somehow, never did. I loved it in the original Temple of Elemental Evil, and later, when I ran a 4e conversion of the Tomb of Horrors, noticed there was one in there....not that they got that far. I vaguely remember having one ready to roll out and grind my player's characters into paste in an adventure set in a Lich' lair, but again, they somehow never ran into (or unfortunately, under) it.

Bah!

Fortunately, I have plenty of new opportunities to unleash one (or more) of these on my current players - although that requires me to get it converted....

...DONE!



Thursday, 18 February 2016

Lock Lurker - Tiny Monstrosity (CR 1/2)

Errr....so, the Haunted Halls of Eveningstar seems to be the first place I find these odd little critters. They seem to come from the same school of evolution as Xavers, Mimics and other monsters that look like things you might want to touch, and, yeah, I like 'em.

Enjoy!



Sunday, 14 February 2016

Wyvern Watch - 2nd Level Evocation

Wyvern Watch
Level 2 Evocation

Cleric, Druid

Casting Time: 1 Action (Ritual)
Range: 30 ft; Wyvern Watch guards an area with a 30 ft Radius centred on the construct
Components: V, S, M (Sting from a scorpion or Wyvern)
Saving Throw: See Below
Duration: 8 Hours

When you cast this spell, a vaguely visible medium construct of insubstantial force that resembles a curled wyvern appears where you command, within 30ft. Hard to spot, it can usually be detected with a Wisdom (Perception) check made against the caster's spell save D.C.

As the spell is cast, the caster may name up to 8 individuals apart from themselves that the construct ignores. Once conjured, the construct watches over a 30ft radius area, doing so with a Perception check equal to the caster's spell attack modifier, and with advantage.

The construct has darkvision.

if an enemy is detected in this area, the construct makes a single attack roll against them, using the caster's spell attack modifier. If it hits, the target is Paralysed for 1 minute, although they may make a Constitution saving throw at the end of each of their turns to end the effect early.

Once the construct has made one attack, the spell ends and it dissipates.

At Higher Levels: When you use a spell slot of 3rd level or higher, the area watched over by the construct increases by +10ft for every level higher than 2nd the slot is.

Friday, 12 February 2016

Stirge's Bane Spaulders - Very Rare Heavy Armour

Requires Attunement

Worn by the Paladin Sorcerer Enkuban "The Relucent"  these highly polished Spaulders are crafted from silvery metal, and decorated with sigils inlaid with gold and Sunstone.

Designed to replace the shoulder armour of plate armour, they can be used by anyone in any kind of heavy armour, and once attuned grant the wearer Damage Reduction Vs Piercing 10, as well as Resistance to Piercing damage. Only legendary weapons can bypass this protection.

Furthermore, 1/long rest, the bearer may gain advantage on a single Strength or Dexterity based roll made to escape being restrained.

[damage reduction is applied before resistance]

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Hello! Sorry for the dearth of new stuff. I have been slacking quite a bit, thanks to some rather addictive games on the Xbone, and have not been writing as much. Anyway, I'll not let that continue. Here is an item I came up with whilst waiting for my lads to come out of school. A potentially potent little item that would be of great benefit to any character that often finds themselves at the pointy end of things...