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[D&D 5E] Bean Freak

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  • discriderdiscrider Registered User regular
    edited December 5
    When our 5e group has had Detect Magic as a cantrip, it's generally come down to Detect-Magic-Guy always knows when there's magic, even if they don't explicitly check and despite never explicitly checking (anymore), considering the spell has no chance of failure.

    discrider on
    Sleepitalianranma
  • SleepSleep Registered User regular
    discrider wrote: »
    When our 5e group has had Detect Magic as a cantrip, it's generally come down to Detect-Magic-Guy always knows when there's magic, even if they don't explicitly check and despite never explicitly checking (anymore), considering the spell has no chance of failure.

    My favourite was the guy in my last party that had detect magic on a stick and could tell things were magical yet had no training in arcana. Great you can see it is magical... You have no idea what you're looking at besides the fact it glows and has a magical aura. He basically just acted as a means by which the wizard could go without burning slots on useless detect magics.

    We've also always played a fun game where looking at certain things with detect magic on gets you nice and sick (con save) due to the mental overload. Total house rule but one I've never had a complaint on.

  • RendRend Registered User regular
    Abbalah wrote: »
    Players slowing down the game by pixelbitching a dungeon is a different issue from whether it's metagaming to continue to treat a door as dangerous if you search it for traps and roll poorly.

    Yes I'm aware of that, that's why I was differentiating between a player/character who is reasonably paranoid (by circumstance or character trait) and one who is dragging down the game!

    I think honestly it's pretty generous to say that compulsive trap checkers are "probably" playing paranoid characters, but I definitely did say players and not characters for that reason :p

    JustTee
  • RendRend Registered User regular
    discrider wrote: »
    When our 5e group has had Detect Magic as a cantrip, it's generally come down to Detect-Magic-Guy always knows when there's magic, even if they don't explicitly check and despite never explicitly checking (anymore), considering the spell has no chance of failure.

    I actually considered doing this as well but it's a really cool feeling to look for something special, like detect magic, and then FIND IT. When this happens my players get an excited look on their face and glance around the table as if to say "I KNEW IT, THERE'S MAGIC HERE" and I wanted to preserve that. It ended up working out very well.

    italianranma14357Elvenshae
  • GoumindongGoumindong Registered User regular
    Your passive result is the DC others have to hit in order to get something past you. If you're not actively looking then the other person has to roll stealth opposed by your passive check.

    You only roll a perception check when the player says "I look around" in which case

    They cannot roll lower than their passive check. Not because this is impossible but because anything that had previously attempted to get something by them has to beat their passive in order to even have a chance of you looking for it.

    This works for, more or less, anything that has a passive component*. You have no passive medicine check but you do have a passive insight score.

    *Alternately you have a passive score of +0 for everything and +10 for insight and perception. Observant increases your passive perception from +10 to +15 and your passive investigation from +0 to +5

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  • see317see317 Taco Count 2017: 61 Registered User regular
    Have you had any luck inflicting false positives on your players?
    They roll weak on an unneeded perception check, so you tell them there is a trap requiring they take time (and possibly break expensive tools) to disarm a nonexistant trap? Or a bad perception check gives them information that they don't need? Maybe they hear a rabbit screaming in the distance or some other disturbing noise that isn't actually indicative of an incoming threat?

    Ringo wrote: »
    Well except what see317 said. That guy's always wrong.
  • italianranmaitalianranma Registered User regular
    I used a trap in the game I played last weekend. For the climatic fight between the party and the wererat king in his lair, I'd built up how run down the sewers were and how only moldy scaffolding was holding up some of the stones. I foreshadowed the trap by describing areas were blocks from the ceiling had fallen, and my players successfully capitalized on these terrain 'features' to rain down the ceiling on their enemies. For the scene I described the choke point and how deitris covered much of the floor and again hit on the moldy scaffolding along the archway that was the entrance to the room; the entrance itself divided down the center by a 5' deep half-pipe gutter. My players moved along the paths on either side of the archway and when the first one charged in I didn't give them a roll because they didn't express any interest in looking for traps. Some strategically placed blocks fell on him, but he dodged them with a successful dex saving throw. The barbarian followed on the next turn on the opposite walkway and also didn't express any interest in looking for traps. I threw him a bone and asked him to make a perception roll where he got a '9' so I simply told him where all the enemies were at, and he took that to mean that they had rolled low on their stealth checks. When I asked him to make a Dex save, things kind of fell into place for him :biggrin:

    I'll be honest, I wasn't thinking too much of passive v. active checks at the time. I was just thinking what would I do as a wererat to prepare my lair against assault and naturally there would be traps. But thinking more on the subject I think there are a few things you should do so that your traps feel 'fair' to the players. And by fair I mean they don't become obsessively paranoid and slow down the game while at the same time they start becoming savvy when traps are in the environment. The first is that foreshadowing. Things like previously sprung traps, blood, char marks, weird poison residues etc, basically anything a movie would do to show you a trap is coming. The second thing I would do is to let them encounter one before it gets worked into a bigger fight. The third thing I'd do is to make sure that the trap makes sense for who put it in and how they would work around it. For example, the wererats were never in danger of setting off their own trap because they would always enter their lair through the halfpipe: they didn't care about the sewage. I'd also recommend mixing it up occasionally between obvious trap with hidden solutions and hidden traps with obvious solutions, again going back to movies like Indiana Jones as an example. The corridor that has obvious holes in the walls and maybe even a few spikes peaking through, or the treasure resting on an obvious pressure plate are super fun for the players to solve, often in non-standard ways. After triggering the poison dart trap a few times once players learn not to step on the blue tiles they get a good feeling of accomplishment.

    飛べねぇ豚はただの豚だ。
    JustTee
  • italianranmaitalianranma Registered User regular
    see317 wrote: »
    Have you had any luck inflicting false positives on your players?
    They roll weak on an unneeded perception check, so you tell them there is a trap requiring they take time (and possibly break expensive tools) to disarm a nonexistant trap? Or a bad perception check gives them information that they don't need? Maybe they hear a rabbit screaming in the distance or some other disturbing noise that isn't actually indicative of an incoming threat?

    I wouldn't use this technique outside of perhaps some very specific circumstances. I generally want my players to be bold and decisive with their actions, and IMO giving them false positives slows down the game and induces doubt into their minds. I get that in real life it's difficult sometimes to know with certainty that you succeeded or failed on something, especially trying to find the absence of something. But generally if my players fail at something I want them to try again in a new way rather than start making decisions based on false results.

    飛べねぇ豚はただの豚だ。
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  • doomybeardoomybear Hi People Registered User regular
    i dunno about trap checking

    like

    i guess it makes more sense in older or more resource oriented games where keeping track of time and resources would be considered important parts of play, like slowing down and needing to use another torch

    or if you're going to check for traps, you also roll on a low-chance random encounter table to see if a goblin patrol or slime or something stumbles upon your party

    or the GM just notes that an hour has passed by and pretends to be keeping track of time behind the GM screen or something so that players get paranoid about an unknown countdown

    i suppose this is just GM 101 stuff in that you're supposed to present players with meaningful choices aside from 'is there trap? (y/n)'

    and my question would be: does the DMG or other supplements have guidance for this kind of thing? Like, GM instructions on how to keep traps interesting, or how to incorporate them into adventures?

    "Heaven is far away, but hell can be reached in a day." - the fool, from Ran by Kurosawa
  • italianranmaitalianranma Registered User regular
    Sorry for the triple post, but these I think are three distinct ideas that each deserve their own response.
    discrider wrote: »
    When our 5e group has had Detect Magic as a cantrip, it's generally come down to Detect-Magic-Guy always knows when there's magic, even if they don't explicitly check and despite never explicitly checking (anymore), considering the spell has no chance of failure.
    Rend wrote: »
    I actually considered doing this as well but it's a really cool feeling to look for something special, like detect magic, and then FIND IT. When this happens my players get an excited look on their face and glance around the table as if to say "I KNEW IT, THERE'S MAGIC HERE" and I wanted to preserve that. It ended up working out very well.

    Can I agree with both camps? I personally don't like on-demand Detect Magic for the reason that Rend provided; I don't think it's fun when a player just gets the answer handed to them. I get that there are some camps that, for example, find a potion and just want to know what it is and there are others who enjoy deducing from subtle hints and past experiences what it could be. On the other hand when you're playing an archetype like the Paladin that is built to fight the undead and fiends, as a player (and as a DM) I want to know immediately that it's my time to shine. Letting the paladin know that there is a fiend in the area, that its nefarious presence coats the walls like viscous slime, that the artifact found on its corpse radiates malice, those both build the anticipation and reinforce the themes I craved when I built the character. I think that powers like this when used sparingly are great, but too much and it becomes rote and potentially OP. Consider the Ranger who has a favored enemy of Humanoids against one that has a favored enemy of Goblinoids. One is a much more focused character. From a mechanical perspective there's obviously some trade offs when you specialize, and things like Favored Enemy can be notoriously difficult to balance, but that's a separate can of worms.

    Not that either of you asked for this, but my personal technique for players who have built a character to do something like find all the traps or detect all the magic is to simply flip the tables on them. Traps or magic then become commonplace and their absence becomes the outlier. The trick there is to make that absence significant and meaningful: sometimes not very easy to do!

    飛べねぇ豚はただの豚だ。
    JustTee
  • italianranmaitalianranma Registered User regular
    doomybear wrote: »
    i dunno about trap checking

    like

    i guess it makes more sense in older or more resource oriented games where keeping track of time and resources would be considered important parts of play, like slowing down and needing to use another torch

    or if you're going to check for traps, you also roll on a low-chance random encounter table to see if a goblin patrol or slime or something stumbles upon your party

    or the GM just notes that an hour has passed by and pretends to be keeping track of time behind the GM screen or something so that players get paranoid about an unknown countdown

    i suppose this is just GM 101 stuff in that you're supposed to present players with meaningful choices aside from 'is there trap? (y/n)'

    and my question would be: does the DMG or other supplements have guidance for this kind of thing? Like, GM instructions on how to keep traps interesting, or how to incorporate them into adventures?

    The DMG is a little sparse on traps. It gives you some tips on how they should look/sound/work, but doesn't really give you a philosophy of how to use them. Xanathar's has a whole section on it that I didn't read until just now but has some good advice. But GMing 101 isn't just about reading the text, there's a class discussion part which is the real meat of the course. My philosophy on traps is that they can be boiled down into two groups: those that support an encounter and those that are the encounter. When you use a trap to support an encounter have it complement other aspects of it. For example use a trap that restrains or creates difficult terrain for an encounter that features ranged attackers. Use one that creates or simply is dangerous terrain for a big monster that likes to shove as a bonus action. Or use something like a fire trap with enemies immune to fire to give them a little more oomph. Basically when you use traps in this way instead of additional creatures you're setting a variable level of encounter for your players: if they find and can mitigate the trap the encounter will be much easier. If they don't then the encounter becomes much harder. Using traps in this way promotes a kind of system or narrative mastery where you reward your players for pattern recognition and problem-solving. The thing to be careful of is to first properly highlight that traps are a thing in the ways I wrote above, and to second use them sparingly or back off if your players become too cautious and play slows.

    When you use traps as the encounter you're presenting a different kind of challenge to your players than the usual combat focus. In this case the characters are more than likely going to need to use a combination of skills and magic and usually a good dose of critical thinking instead of their regular combat routines. To succeed here you need to make the stakes very clear, and you need to make sure that all your players fully understand their environment before they start committing to actions. Consider the most basic example: the 10' long spiked pit. It's obvious (no one fails to notice the spiked pit), the stakes are all understood (you'll get seriously hurt falling on those spikes), and the objective is clear (get to the other side). How exactly the party accomplishes this will be up to them, but it's probably not going to be by making attack rolls.

    Things that I would shy away from are singular hidden traps that are extremely difficult to detect and do nothing more than deal damage outside of an encounter. If you're going to use them I would make the first one deal low damage (or no damage at all) to serve as a warning to the PCs, and then I would integrate them as part of the dungeon so they became somewhat expected. That can be a fun change of pace if used sparingly.

    飛べねぇ豚はただの豚だ。
    doomybear
  • FryFry Registered User regular
    For always-on detect magic, I think I would invoke the Dresden Files about that: even if you can detect magic whenever you want to, you don't leave it turned on, because there is plenty of shit out there that you don't want to see and can't unsee.

  • IvelliusIvellius Registered User regular
    I was making a homebrew world where I slap-dashed all my favorite tropes... but then I realized that Eberron is 90% of what I want and dusted off those books instead. I'm tempted to pick up a few more of the old 3.5 splats if I can find them reasonably priced. They're incredibly dense with well developed fluff, and reading through the decrepit 3.5 mechanics is worth a laugh. It's funny to think that there was a time where it all made sense to me and I thought it was the pinnacle of game design. It's also a wonder that I was able to afford all this stuff when I was a poor college student, or even moreso that I held on to these books for 13+ years.

    You are giving me flashbacks to all the time I spent homebrewing in 3e. I even put a bunch of World of Warcraft classes (from their d20 setting) into some sort of computerized character generator / creator (I've forgotten its name, but I probably have the files somewhere).

    sigh I still have a giant Word document of homebrew Warcraft material that covers the games and the MMO's first three expansions. (I think I got a smidge of Cataclysm in there, too.)

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  • NotoriusBENNotoriusBEN Registered User regular
    Fry wrote: »
    For always-on detect magic, I think I would invoke the Dresden Files about that: even if you can detect magic whenever you want to, you don't leave it turned on, because there is plenty of shit out there that you don't want to see and can't unsee.

    Ice King sums it up best.

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  • IvelliusIvellius Registered User regular
    Ivellius wrote: »
    You are giving me flashbacks to all the time I spent homebrewing in 3e. I even put a bunch of World of Warcraft classes (from their d20 setting) into some sort of computerized character generator / creator (I've forgotten its name, but I probably have the files somewhere).

    It came to me as I came back to this thread: Redblade.

    The site hasn't been updated in about 10 years.

    Me elsewhere:
    Steam, various fora: Ivellius
    League of Legends: Doctor Ivellius
    Twitch, probably another place or two I forget: LPIvellius
  • JustTeeJustTee Registered User regular
    edited December 6
    The Angry GM has a pretty solid article on traps:
    Traps Suck

    The usual caveats apply to him: ignore the shtick, focus on the why and how, and you'll get a good amount of meaningful info from him.

    *Edit* I don't know if its kosher to link to humble bundle stuff, but there's currently one going for ~$1-17 with a pretty large amount of 5E content that plugs into their Tome of Beasts (and other stuff). I'm a glutton for other people's ideas to hack into my games, so I grabbed it, but its Kobold Press / Frog God Games content.

    JustTee on
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  • Hexmage-PAHexmage-PA Registered User regular
    After looking at the 5E Monster Manual I'm disappointed to discover that all the 4E lore on Cyclopes has been jettisoned. In response, I'm thinking about trying to make a Goliath-variant called the Cyclopeans. Here's my initial idea:

    The Cyclopes used to be the servants of the Fomorians but were cursed when they tried to overthrow their masters and claim the cities and goods they had made under Fomorian rule. The curse, which is still in effect today, causes the gaze of a Cyclops to be destructive to their own race's creations, reducing stone to rubble and metal to rust in mere moments. The Cyclopes retreated from the cities they had constructed in the Underdark, unwilling to destroy with their cursed sight that which they and their ancestors had built over countless generations. Since that time, however, a descendant race of the Cyclopes known as the Cyclopeans has come into being. Though each is smaller and weaker than a true Cyclops, the Cyclopeans can look upon their works without them weathering under their gaze. The Cyclopeans have a limited ability to utilize the vestigial magical energy of their ancestors' curse, and on occassion can cause any item they train their eye on to instaneously degrade in quality. This power is called the Eye of Ruin.

    Does anyone have any suggestions on how to frame the Eye of Ruin ability mechanically? Is there a spell that it could be derived from? Or is this perhaps not that great a racial ability?

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  • DevoutlyApatheticDevoutlyApathetic Registered User regular
    JustTee wrote: »
    The Angry GM has a pretty solid article on traps:
    Traps Suck

    The usual caveats apply to him: ignore the shtick, focus on the why and how, and you'll get a good amount of meaningful info from him.

    My guidelines on traps is simple: Place as many as you want but each time you place one you don't get to bitch about the party being slow and cautious for a month afterwards.

    The number of traps has a direct impact on stuff like parties searching before every step they take. If traps are everywhere that sort of searching is actually pretty reasonable....so if you hate dealing with it don't make the world justify it.

    MegaMekFryFuselageIvelliusOptimusZedMrVyngaardMvrck
  • see317see317 Taco Count 2017: 61 Registered User regular
    Hexmage-PA wrote: »
    After looking at the 5E Monster Manual I'm disappointed to discover that all the 4E lore on Cyclopes has been jettisoned. In response, I'm thinking about trying to make a Goliath-variant called the Cyclopeans. Here's my initial idea:

    The Cyclopes used to be the servants of the Fomorians but were cursed when they tried to overthrow their masters and claim the cities and goods they had made under Fomorian rule. The curse, which is still in effect today, causes the gaze of a Cyclops to be destructive to their own race's creations, reducing stone to rubble and metal to rust in mere moments. The Cyclopes retreated from the cities they had constructed in the Underdark, unwilling to destroy with their cursed sight that which they and their ancestors had built over countless generations. Since that time, however, a descendant race of the Cyclopes known as the Cyclopeans has come into being. Though each is smaller and weaker than a true Cyclops, the Cyclopeans can look upon their works without them weathering under their gaze. The Cyclopeans have a limited ability to utilize the vestigial magical energy of their ancestors' curse, and on occassion can cause any item they train their eye on to instaneously degrade in quality. This power is called the Eye of Ruin.

    Does anyone have any suggestions on how to frame the Eye of Ruin ability mechanically? Is there a spell that it could be derived from? Or is this perhaps not that great a racial ability?

    Rust monsters are still a thing in 5e, right?

    Maybe use their Rust Metal ability as a basis for the racial ability. Maybe they can use it a certain amount of times per rest as a ranged ability?
    Rust Metal: Any nonmagical weapon made of metal that hits the rust monster corrodes. After dealing damage, the weapon takes a permanent and cumulative -1 penalty to Damage Rolls. If its penalty drops to -5, the weapon is destroyed. Non magical ammunition made of metal that hits the rust monster is destroyed after dealing damage.
    You probably wouldn't be eroding weapons to dust unless you had a full party of Cyclopeans, but it seems like it might be useful as a racial ability.

    Maybe add to it that it works against any non magical metal, not just weapons. That way they could use it outside of combat to rust a lock or trap or something.
    Armor takes a -1 penalty to AC.

    Ringo wrote: »
    Well except what see317 said. That guy's always wrong.
    FuselageIvellius
  • webguy20webguy20 Registered User regular
    edited December 6
    Advantage on attacks against an enemy when used against armor, disadvantage on weapon attacks made by enemy. Advantage on attempts to break or smash things. Only effects things up to medium size. Once per day. Example you could weaken a person sized area in a castle portcullis, but not the entire thing.

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  • AldoAldo Hippo Hooray the swamp, always the swampRegistered User regular
    So Santa Claus informed me that Xanathar's is completely sold out in The Netherlands. They are hoping for new copies coming available in January.

    I did not expect that at all! Is this normal for dnd shit?

    Elendil wrote: »
    said Aldo hazily, before clop-clop-clopping out of the room
  • SleepSleep Registered User regular
    edited December 7
    Aldo wrote: »
    So Santa Claus informed me that Xanathar's is completely sold out in The Netherlands. They are hoping for new copies coming available in January.

    I did not expect that at all! Is this normal for dnd shit?

    If you are looking for d&d style fun 5e delivers it very well, and xanathar's is an excellent product in a very limited line of products.

    Everyone wants it.

    Sleep on
    webguy20Moridin889Zonugal
  • AldoAldo Hippo Hooray the swamp, always the swampRegistered User regular
    Well yes, so apparently the distributor just did not know that. :(

    Elendil wrote: »
    said Aldo hazily, before clop-clop-clopping out of the room
  • iguanacusiguanacus Desert PlanetRegistered User regular
    Aldo wrote: »
    So Santa Claus informed me that Xanathar's is completely sold out in The Netherlands. They are hoping for new copies coming available in January.

    I did not expect that at all! Is this normal for dnd shit?

    I think I read that Xanathar's hit number 1 on a couple sales lists. There's a second printing that should be hitting markets soonish.

    I dunno, I take you seriously on some topics and dick rider is your profession
    SleepSmrtnikAldoZonugal
  • Hexmage-PAHexmage-PA Registered User regular
    edited December 9
    Someone sell me on non-4E angels (and archons and guardinals and whatever else).

    Here are what 4E angels are like:
    - Angels have blank faces (other than the eyes) and a trailing mist in place of legs.
    - They came into being at the same time as the gods in the Astral Sea.
    - Angels serve every non-CE god. Most do not have just one god they are loyal to but instead will serve one for a time before moving to another, carrying any outstanding obligations towards their former master with them (except where they would interfere with their new master).
    - Pride themselves on being trustworthy, loyal and selfless in service to the gods.
    - Angelic titles refer to the function an Angel is serving (for example, an Angel of Wrath is a foot soldier in divine armies).
    - Fought against Elemental Archons, who served a similar role in the Elemental Chaos and were designed by the primordials using Angels as inspiration.
    - Devas are former angels who reincarnate continuously in the mortal world as human-like beings. Their original incarnations did this to help protect it, and any Deva incarnation who strays from this path is in danger of being reborn as a Rakshasa.
    - Devils came into being when the angel Asmodeus slew the god He Who Was to become a god himself. As a non-CE god Asmodeus is eligible to be served by angels, but he prefers to employ the Devils of his domain.
    - Angels oppose elementals and demons unless given a very good reason not to attack them. Devils are largely tolerated in the Astral Sea, which both Angels and Devils call home, but Angels in service to gods who oppose Devils will fight against them in the mortal world.

    I plan to carry this take on angels forward in 5E and just keep ignoring the other celestials, but I thought I'd give someone else a chance to change my mind.

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  • JustTeeJustTee Registered User regular
    JustTee wrote: »
    The Angry GM has a pretty solid article on traps:
    Traps Suck

    The usual caveats apply to him: ignore the shtick, focus on the why and how, and you'll get a good amount of meaningful info from him.

    My guidelines on traps is simple: Place as many as you want but each time you place one you don't get to bitch about the party being slow and cautious for a month afterwards.

    The number of traps has a direct impact on stuff like parties searching before every step they take. If traps are everywhere that sort of searching is actually pretty reasonable....so if you hate dealing with it don't make the world justify it.

    Yeah, my key take away for traps is that they have to be designed intentionally, and to be designed as their own encounter. As in, I fully reward experience points for dealing with traps. So even when the trap fires and does damage and hurts the players, they still get a reward (plus info to potentially avoid traps in the future).

    I never just spring them on players, and I always foreshadow, hint, and preview. When they research the place they're going, they are told of hideous traps, or proclivity of that monster/human towards trapping, etc. They see already tripped examples before encountering their own. And when they do engage them, they have agency to determine how well they can get out of the way.

    That being said, I rarely end up using very many traps, mostly because designing the above intelligently and intentionally is difficult, and I only use it if I have some cool idea, or the thing they're going after is *known* to be a trap fiend. Like kobolds.

    Diagnosed with AML on 6/1/12. Read about it: www.effleukemia.com
    IvelliusHexmage-PA
  • NotoriusBENNotoriusBEN Registered User regular
    Oh hey, for the DMs around here, Matt Colville did a thing on the origins of Vecna and his body parts as well as talking about construction of EBB (or BBEG) abilities.

    1hr condensed, basically, let your EBB break the rules of the game in ways that reinforce what they are all about. Also, EBBs are the final bosses, not the incidental lieutenants or monsters players usually fight. These are the world enders and they should be able to change the status quo. So break the rules very sparingly.

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  • GaddezGaddez Registered User regular
    I took a slightly different approach with angels in 5e; for the most part they are as written with a few key differences.
    1. angels are creatures of mount celestia and as such are pure manifestations of lawful good, with any that fall being hunted down as traitors to their kind.
    2. While specific angels may pledge service to Lawful good deities and aid other ones for various reasons as a whole they are more loyal to their own hierarchy known as the celestial chorus.
    3. The Celestial Chorus determines hierarchy of individual members by a combination of power, age, expierience and judgement, with angels being able to move up or down as circumstances require between the 3 primary tiers of angels.
    4. The 3 primary tiers are Solars, Planetars and Devas.
    5. At present, The chorus is experimenting with a 4th tier in the form of Aasimar; this is an attempt to counter the actions of Asmodeus in the creation of tieflings by creating beings with a greater level of free will but still carrying some degree of angelic light. This also has the advantage of giving them greater perspective on mortal society which they struggle with. The risk with doing this however, is that Aasimar are both empowered by an angels light and unbound by any sort of ethics so as a result the chorus risks a great deal if the Aasimar is either corrupted or has their soul captured by fiends or other malevolent beings.
    6. There are 24 solars in total, and while each is a comparable to a demigod in terms of raw power (and collectively could threaten even the most powerful of gods), the majority of their time is spent overseeing the actions of the chorus in it's fight against evil across the multiverse and as such their grasp of mortal motivations and day to day lives is almost completely lost on them.
    7. Planetars are both elite soldiers and generals amongst the angels. As such they are almost always on the move and directly confronting whatever foe has presented itself to the chorus.
    8. The rank and file soldiers of the chorus are the Devas. for these beings, interactions with mortals are the most common and can range from keeping vigil over the fugue plains, intervening on behalf of innocents, lashing out at those that would try to tamper with mount celestia, or simply tend to the weak.
    9. Regardless of Position within the hierarchy, all angels are guided by an ideal that they dedicate themselves; examples of this would be justice, self sacrifice, love, determination and love.

    Richy wrote: »
    But I think the resistance I’m getting more has to do with “rawr! Loklar said it! Rage!” than anything else.

    No, it has to do with the fact that you're done nothing but throw lies, blatant flasehoods, and downright dumb statements at us so far.
    Fuselage
  • SleepSleep Registered User regular
    In my setting angels are just another flavor of outsider that gives the barest of shits for mortals, and will burn through a number of them to kill demons and devils at the whims of dieties that, barring a few, see mortals as mostly insignificant except as supplicants... luckily most of these outsiders have been imprisoned in the current age.

    Fuselage
  • Hexmage-PAHexmage-PA Registered User regular
    I'm following a thread on RPG.net that is developing a 5E adaptation for the Maztica setting and came upon an interesting detail from an older Forgotten Realms sourcebook:
    Page 164 of Player's Guide to Faerûn; "Toril actually connects to several different Astral Planes, each one linking Toril's Material Plane to the outer-planar homes of a different group of deities. These Astral Planes are based on the geographical areas of control held by the different pantheons."

    I don't know if I'll ever use this idea, but it is pretty neat.

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  • Hexmage-PAHexmage-PA Registered User regular
    edited December 9
    One thing about D&D that I really appreciate is that it also sparks within me an interest in real world mythology. I'm reading about Norse mythology now and finding neat details that I wish I had known sooner. For example:

    - Dragons were often mortals who transformed themselves to guard their treasure hoards. A large pile of gold was referred to as a "dragon's bed".
    - Though many giants were dangerous, a number of the Aesir had giants as lovers and even as family members (Thor, for example, was a half-giant). The giant Gerd was said to be the most beautiful woman in the world.
    - The swords Daenslif and Tyrfing were both forged by dwarves and both cursed to take a life whenever they were drawn.
    - Yggdrasil connects nine realms. An exact listing of these realms has not been found, but they are often believed to be:
    1 - Asgard, home of the Aesir.
    2 - Alfheim, home of the light elves
    3 - Svartalfaheim, home of the dwarves
    4 - Midgard, home of the humans.
    5 - Jotunheim, home of the giants.
    6 - Vanaheim, home of the Vanir.
    7 - Niflheim, a plane of cold.
    8 - Muspelheim, a plane of fire and home of Surtr.
    9 - Hel, home of the dishonorable dead and the goddess Hel.
    - Some sources claim that Hel is a location within Niflheim, while others seem to suggest that the Hel of Niflheim is actually a separate location called Niflhel.

    I especially find the idea of gods finding companionship from among the ranks of the normally dangerous giants, as well as the idea of the realm of the dead having some kind of connection to a plane of elemental cold very inspiring. Since I'm deriving a lot of my cosmology ideas from 4E, maybe a number of giants were promoted to divinity for defecting from the primordials to the side of the gods during the Dawn War. And I'm totally having an NPC refer to a wealthy noble as having a "dragon's bed" hidden in his mansion.

    EDIT: Apparently Gandalf might have been based on Odin, a god with a limited ability to see the future who would disguise himself as a mortal and travel Midgard while wearing a cloak and a very wide-brimmed hat. Perhaps in a D&D setting the first wizards could have been mistaken for aspects of gods, seeing as they seemingly to do not have to rely on supernatural patrons for their powers.

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  • FuselageFuselage Bantha Three ValhallaRegistered User regular
    One thing that's easy to transport to any setting is Kennings, which are basically poetic metaphors that are other names for things. In hindsight, maybe Diablo 2 magic item naming conventions are entirely based on this. Mind. Blown.

    Just by changing the word choices or how NPCs talk you could really get your players steeped in your new Nordic flavor.

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kenning

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  • Hexmage-PAHexmage-PA Registered User regular
    I myself was inspired by how 4E tried to make everything feel like it was part of the same world with the same gods. In contrast, many campaign settings will have areas heavily based on a real world analogue and the religious beliefs of those cultures in that area. For example, the Forgotten Realms has Maztica as a stand-in for the Aztecs, complete with two of the chief gods pretty much being Quetzalcoatl split into a good deity called Qotal and an evil deity named Zaltec.

    In the Realms' defense, though, the book I referenced earlier claimed that this was so because there is more than one Astral Plane, with each having a different pantheon of gods unaffected by their rivals in other Astral Planes. I feel like this is an interesting way to justify it, but I personally would rather try to have a cosmology that is more synthetic, combining the similarities between various real world mythologies to make an amalgam where most things will fit anywhere.

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  • NotoriusBENNotoriusBEN Registered User regular
    The one thing I've liked about Norse mythology was obtaining your Wyrd (closest pronunciation is a cross between ''word'' and ''weird'')
    Your Wyrd is the knowledge of how/when/where you would die. Basically, your Fate.

    If you tried to run from your fate, it led to your downfall, dishonor and condemnation in Hell that much quicker, but if you truly embraced it, you would live for eternity. That's not to say, don't go seeking it, but accept that when it happens, it happens.

    There was an Apocalypse scenario in one of my "The End of the World" RPG books that had you playing out Ragnarok. Everyone on Earth got their Wyrd, even the players, and the mechanic for the players was that you could choose this moment or fight as your Wyrd, you'd then get all your Stats Max'd out and it was nearly impossible to fail a die roll. The caveat being, you died after that scenario, no saves, or nothing. You accepted your Wyrd and you got to go out on your terms.

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  • GaddezGaddez Registered User regular
    I fucking adore finding ways to work real world mythology, cultures and gods into my roleplaying games in general with the caveat being that I usually try to go for the less obvious ones; Case in point when I was running my Moonshae campaign I did my best to try and emulate an old british/celtic vibe with how nobles used retainers and Huscarls as opposed to knights and men at arms, or how Druidism was the religion de jur of the common folk. Hell, I even did my best to establish the northmen as being on the verge of a bloody succession war due to the fact that the high king hadn't nominated an heir and as such the Jarls were likely to engage in whole sale slaughter of each other to try and cement their claim on the throne.

    The other bit for me, is reflavoring weapons; There is a joy for me in finding weapons that aren't that well known and super imposing their name over the stats for one of the vanilla weapons in the PHB. Examples of this include:

    Changing the longsword
    Seen here:
    AH-3423.png

    Into one of these:
    z0Da7j7.jpg

    Or Taking a hand axe
    CL-202.png

    Into the pure nightmare fuel that is this:
    latest?cb=20100616220547
    Litteraly an axe with a dick on it

    Richy wrote: »
    But I think the resistance I’m getting more has to do with “rawr! Loklar said it! Rage!” than anything else.

    No, it has to do with the fact that you're done nothing but throw lies, blatant flasehoods, and downright dumb statements at us so far.
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  • ArthilArthil Registered User regular
    I try to reflavor my weapons a lot within reason. The only stretch so far has been my big Lizardman barbarian but instead of a battleaxe he's got a Great-Flail with a really short chain.

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  • doomybeardoomybear Hi People Registered User regular
    but flails are supposed to have really short chains/links

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  • spool32spool32 Contrary Library Registered User regular
    doomybear wrote: »
    i dunno about trap checking

    like

    i guess it makes more sense in older or more resource oriented games where keeping track of time and resources would be considered important parts of play, like slowing down and needing to use another torch

    or if you're going to check for traps, you also roll on a low-chance random encounter table to see if a goblin patrol or slime or something stumbles upon your party

    or the GM just notes that an hour has passed by and pretends to be keeping track of time behind the GM screen or something so that players get paranoid about an unknown countdown

    i suppose this is just GM 101 stuff in that you're supposed to present players with meaningful choices aside from 'is there trap? (y/n)'

    and my question would be: does the DMG or other supplements have guidance for this kind of thing? Like, GM instructions on how to keep traps interesting, or how to incorporate them into adventures?

    The DMG is a little sparse on traps. It gives you some tips on how they should look/sound/work, but doesn't really give you a philosophy of how to use them. Xanathar's has a whole section on it that I didn't read until just now but has some good advice. But GMing 101 isn't just about reading the text, there's a class discussion part which is the real meat of the course. My philosophy on traps is that they can be boiled down into two groups: those that support an encounter and those that are the encounter. When you use a trap to support an encounter have it complement other aspects of it. For example use a trap that restrains or creates difficult terrain for an encounter that features ranged attackers. Use one that creates or simply is dangerous terrain for a big monster that likes to shove as a bonus action. Or use something like a fire trap with enemies immune to fire to give them a little more oomph. Basically when you use traps in this way instead of additional creatures you're setting a variable level of encounter for your players: if they find and can mitigate the trap the encounter will be much easier. If they don't then the encounter becomes much harder. Using traps in this way promotes a kind of system or narrative mastery where you reward your players for pattern recognition and problem-solving. The thing to be careful of is to first properly highlight that traps are a thing in the ways I wrote above, and to second use them sparingly or back off if your players become too cautious and play slows.

    When you use traps as the encounter you're presenting a different kind of challenge to your players than the usual combat focus. In this case the characters are more than likely going to need to use a combination of skills and magic and usually a good dose of critical thinking instead of their regular combat routines. To succeed here you need to make the stakes very clear, and you need to make sure that all your players fully understand their environment before they start committing to actions. Consider the most basic example: the 10' long spiked pit. It's obvious (no one fails to notice the spiked pit), the stakes are all understood (you'll get seriously hurt falling on those spikes), and the objective is clear (get to the other side). How exactly the party accomplishes this will be up to them, but it's probably not going to be by making attack rolls.

    Things that I would shy away from are singular hidden traps that are extremely difficult to detect and do nothing more than deal damage outside of an encounter. If you're going to use them I would make the first one deal low damage (or no damage at all) to serve as a warning to the PCs, and then I would integrate them as part of the dungeon so they became somewhat expected. That can be a fun change of pace if used sparingly.

    One design I like is a single entrance into an area with a series of easily detectable traps that you have to do something annoying to avoid, like stand on a series of spots on the floor or take spike damage. Long hall with a bunch of them... then later, the party is faced with a situation where they might need to flee back through it and suddenly the easy traps become a lot more of a problem.

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  • ArthilArthil Registered User regular
    doomybear wrote: »
    but flails are supposed to have really short chains/links

    Well, shorter I suppose I should say. It's kind of attached to his arm and not held in the hand. Just to make sure the range isn't further than a battleaxe.

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  • QuidQuid I don't... what... hnnng Registered User regular
    DM: Okay, now that each of you has arrived in town and met an NPC, you’ll control them with your characters in this giant fight.

    *two hours of combat later*

    Us: Hot damn we survived. The only people that died were all of the NPCs we used as pawns for our protection. Pretty smart of us to use them like that.

    DM: EACH ONE OF THEM HAD A UNIQUE QUEST FOR YOU.

    Us: ...

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