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90% of D&D Games Stop By Level 10; Wizards More Popular At Higher Levels Thursday, 7th February, 2019 06:17 PM

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Sunday, 3rd February, 2019

  • 08:31 PM - squibbles mentioned toucanbuzz in post Dark Sun 5E conversion - draft
    I'm a big fan of Darksun, but never had a chance to play it. I'd be commenting a bunch more in this thread except that toucanbuzz and other commentators are clearly much more familiar with the setting than I am. So... all I've got to say is: keep up the awesome work!

Friday, 18th January, 2019

  • 09:54 PM - Quickleaf mentioned toucanbuzz in post What level should this spell be?
    ... exhaustion means different things for a PC vs. for a monster/NPC (who usually has less "screen time") – thus, it affects the PC more. One thing to be aware of is that your homebrew spell could be devastating when combined with hold person or similar spells/effects that restrain/paralyze. Heck, it would even be devastating with grapple tactics. If the target can't move away, then their only recourse is to hope they succeed on their Con checks sooner than later. Because of this synchronicity – and because my hunch is that my previous point about long-lasting exhaustion implies your version is more potent than sickening radiance – I think this is probably +1 level. So my hunch is that – in it's current version – your Drain Stamina is a 5th level spell. This makes sense if you look at another 5th level spell – greater restoration – which introduces the ability to offset one level of exhaustion per casting. That parallels your homebrew nicely, don't you think? EDIT: Ninja'd by toucanbuzz! :)

Tuesday, 10th April, 2018

  • 08:10 PM - Hawk Diesel mentioned toucanbuzz in post Curse of Strahd and Strongholds
    ... am changing the script for some things regarding Lady Wachter and her relationship to the Baron and Izek based on some suggests I've found on these boards, so who knows who will survive that event. But the Blue Water Inn already makes a pretty nice base of operations, even if not exactly a player controlled stronghold. Krezk would be more reasonable, but the players may stumble into Van Richten's Tower by then, which has stronghold written all over it. Also, I know that Death House is like... super cursed. But I like to reward my players for creativity. I won't say it's impossible to break the curse. And I don't even know if they would want to claim the house as theirs. But outside of Castle Ravenloft and the Amber Temple, it is the most like a traditional dungeon crawl. And with them trapped in there and being forced to put some much work and effort into clearing it and surviving, I definitely see them being invested to the point that they may want to claim it for themselves. toucanbuzz I definitely hear you about the Dark Powers and the difficulty associated with cleansing the house. But this could also be a double-edged sword for the players. Clearing the Death House is the thing that may pique Strahd's interest in the players, and by his will he may allow them to believe the house is clear, only for him to use it as a means of observing the characters while their. As to the campaign goal of getting out... that may be true. But I can't assume that the players will want to get out by the end of it. For all I know, one or all of them may want to take Strahd's place, with the Dark Powers jumping on the opportunity to corrupt an individual or group even stronger than Strahd. As for the safety piece, I disagree. As even pointed out in the book, horror themed campaigns require some instances of safety and levity. There needs to be a rhythm. If it is all horror, all the time, it can hamper the fun factor. It also creates difficulty as a DM or storyteller because you...

Sunday, 1st April, 2018


Tuesday, 6th February, 2018

  • 09:42 PM - QuietBrowser mentioned toucanbuzz in post Homebrewing a race: Gnomeferatu
    Satyrn: I actually just forgot to include it... As for a shapeshifting feat... I like the concept, but I really don't know how to balance it out mechanically. toucanbuzz: Yes, I know about the existence of Ravenloft's demihuman vampires.

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Saturday, 2nd February, 2019

  • 04:49 AM - Charlaquin quoted toucanbuzz in post Dark Sun 5E conversion - draft
    Arcane classes have been a task. I want to preserve choice but also preserve flavor. If we have a bunch of arcane spellcasting classes, then it lessens the essence of this setting: magic f***ed the planet up and the only good wizard is a dead wizard. Yet, if I remove the Bard, Sorcerer, and Warlock, we are left with only the wizard and we've removed all the Charisma-based classes and removed a lot of fun options for players. Later editions rationalized them all away, but each rationalization takes something out of the setting. This is why I found myself really liking someone’s suggestion earlier to do the opposite of what 4e did with defiling. Instead of preserving being the default and defiling giving you a bonus, make defiling the default and make preserving something you have to pay a cost or accept a drawback to do. I think it’s far more on-theme with the idea that magic destroyed the world. Instead of something extra poweful but evil and addictive, it’s just what casters are used to. You...

Friday, 1st February, 2019

  • 05:50 PM - Charlaquin quoted toucanbuzz in post Dark Sun 5E conversion - draft
    Yeah, I'm on the classes now as well a dual-project of converting the monsters. Agreed the volume of arcane archetypes just don't fit Dark Sun, and while admitting there weren't as many classes in AD&D, the only arcane class was the wizard. There's not an eldritch knight or arcane archer around every corner. The one primary class giving me issues on that point is the Bard. Allow or not allow? Third proposed it fit (they proposed everything fit though...) as a caster who masks her abilities with performance, but the AD&D bard was pretty much the assassin with performance skill. The 5e bard is totally different from the Dark Sun bard. If you want to cleave as close to 2e Dark Sun as possible, I would leave the bard class out of it and make minstrels a Rogue subclass. Or even just call the Assassin subclass a minstrel.
  • 04:35 PM - Dispater quoted toucanbuzz in post Dark Sun 5E conversion - draft
    Latest draft with modifications (balance) for several races, and delving into the class section. I'm trying to keep classes simple, comparable to the 3rd edition conversion, and most changes are cosmetic. The cleric has been a project. All other conversions have simply created the 4 elemental domains, but I like the diversity of choice, and so I've attempted to translate, with some modification, existing domains into the elements. That will be for a future draft. In summary, I think the races look pretty good. Its interesting seeing all these 5e conversions of DS coming up. I did mine about a year ago, and everyone has different ideas. It is refreshing to read. You are going to have to have a long, hard think about the classes (as did I). Once I started going down that road I realized the core 5e vanilla classes didn't have that DS feel, and that WotC is too obsessed about arcane subclasses for everything; which doesn't make a fit for DS. It took some time converting classes, I suspect ...

Thursday, 31st January, 2019

  • 04:08 AM - cbwjm quoted toucanbuzz in post Dark Sun 5E conversion - draft
    The Defiler as a separate class in this Edition is where we run into the problem that a 6th level preserver is in a life and death situation and resolves that defiling, for the first time in her life, is necessary for the greater good. She never defiles again. Is she now a defiler class with more power? Can she abuse the rules, defile one time, then preserve the rest of her career, to get a power bump? That's where I'm having to craft against it being a "path" or a different class. I'm not sure where I read it, but I could have sworn there were rules for switching between the two types of arcane magic. Something that allowed a preserver to defile but require atonement or fall and a defiler to give up defiling magic and switch to a preserver. I'm sure it was in 2e and that going from defiler to preserver could cost you some levels but for the life of me, I can't recall where I read it. Like you, I think defiling works much better if it is a choice made by the caster rather than having a pres...

Wednesday, 30th January, 2019


Tuesday, 29th January, 2019

  • 10:02 AM - Charlaquin quoted toucanbuzz in post Dark Sun 5E conversion - draft
    Racial fixes: Elf, removed weapon proficiency. The Athas elf didn't have them (they did get a bonus for using tribe crafted weapons, but not any bow and sword). Doesn't fit. Removed Keen senses, also not really an Athasian quality. Simplified the Elf Run to a huge bonus (Con score) to forced marches and no penalty to fast travel. Added Mask of the Wild (see Wood elf) as wilderness hiding is listed as an attribute of the AD&D athasian elf. Nice. An alternative suggestion for the Elf Run trait - what about instead of a bonus to all forced march saved and removing the perception penalty for fast pace, they keep the penalty (I mean, they’re supposed to be running the whole way, right? Disadvantage on perception makes sense) and auto-succeed on forced march saves, but only as long as they travel at a fast pace. Without Trance, that’s 16 hours of travel and 8 hours of rest per day for a total of 62 miles per day with no risk of exhaustion, but only if they eat that perception penalty the whole way. Slo...

Monday, 28th January, 2019

  • 08:07 PM - Charlaquin quoted toucanbuzz in post Dark Sun 5E conversion - draft
    Always looking for improvement. Goal #1, get players excited about the new take on races. Traditional races can get to be old news, flat and generic if you play enough games. But I don't have any framework or playtest to see how these work. When you say busy and overworked, let me know what you're seeing. I'm guessing there's too many traits going on. My goal #2 was to stay as true to the AD&D version as possible within reason (no half-giants, you don't get double hit points every level) and avoid things that don't fit (why would an Athasian halfling be "lucky"?) Too many abilities, yeah, and some of the abilities feel clunky to me. Dasl, for example, feels really weird as a racial ability. I’d probably leave it out entirely and include in the equipment section that chatkcha and gythka are made from crystallized Thri-Kreen venom, and can’t be crafted without it. . Thri-Kreen physiology and weapon training feel distinctly un-5e like in presentation with those bullet points, though what they do...
  • 05:50 PM - Azzy quoted toucanbuzz in post Dark Sun 5E conversion - draft
    Defiling will be a task, to keep it simple yet meaningful. After all, there's a reason the sorcerer kings and so many others went to the "dark side" rather than preserving magic. I see the common solution is to give defilers a bonus of sorts. If you want to encourage defiling versus preserving, that's one route. However, you could go about this in the opposite manner: defiling does provide any inherent bonus (it's standard spellcasting). Preserving, otoh, comes with penalties—say it takes longer to cast spells, or spells are treated as cast a level lower or whatever.

Monday, 21st January, 2019

  • 07:40 AM - 5ekyu quoted toucanbuzz in post Raise Dead penalty cumulative?
    The way I read it is that the -4 penalty is cumulative when raised, but I don't want to screw over my players if I'm missing something. Had a player raised 2x in a short period of time. She's looking at a -6 cumulative penalty to all d20 rolls, making her effectively useless in a scenario where time is of the essence.Without reading the spell in 5e the penalties from ongoing effects are not cumulative if they are the same named source. That said-4 is likely pretty close to useless anyway compared to -6. The character should try things which dont require checks- help actions, buffs, etc best they can. This is just the downside of persistent penalties in an rpg. It can lead to problematic player-side issues. From a practical side, is there an npc ally that you could perhaps allow them to run while their PC is in the "un-fun penalty box"?

Sunday, 30th December, 2018

  • 04:44 AM - 5ekyu quoted toucanbuzz in post A monstrous campaign
    Has anyone run a monstrous campaign, especially with Volo monsters-as-players? Looking for ideas for running a one-off (4-6 hour) adventure where the party is either monstrous or temporarily in monstrous form (adventure ideas needed). Looking at whether players enjoyed the diversion from the norm, issues with balance, immersion, role-play and so on.Goliath, Water Genasi, Tiefling, Lizardfolk and one human... solo session warm-ups and char-gen ends Tuesday, first sessions Thursday. All looking forward to it. Oh and three of the five have negative bonus charismas and the other two are bards so... Fun times ahead.

Saturday, 29th December, 2018

  • 08:19 PM - doctorbadwolf quoted toucanbuzz in post A monstrous campaign
    It's theorycrafting for running a table at a convention, so likely 4-6 players and a 4 or 6 hour block. Like the idea of having a stack of CR (whatever) monsters, including traditional races like goblins, and a McGuffin explaining how everyone can talk and work together. Could be silly (escape from the zoo), reversal of roles (defend your dungeon), or an adventure (players transformed into monsters for the purpose of getting behind enemy lines), and so on. Plucky heroes from cultures that are treated as beasts and monsters by pretty-but-evil "civilized" colonizer races is a fun option, too.
  • 08:17 PM - doctorbadwolf quoted toucanbuzz in post A monstrous campaign
    Has anyone run a monstrous campaign, especially with Volo monsters-as-players? Looking for ideas for running a one-off (4-6 hour) adventure where the party is either monstrous or temporarily in monstrous form (adventure ideas needed). Looking at whether players enjoyed the diversion from the norm, issues with balance, immersion, role-play and so on. I did in 4e, and it was a lot of fun! I'm planning on bringing it back in 5e, but I'll have to do some homebrewing first so we can have a kobold that isn't terrible (ours was a Paladin!), and a playable Gnoll. The Goblin, Drow, Bugbear, are all fine. Instead of a playing them as monsters, we played them as people just like other races, in a world that views them as monsters/second class citizens at best. Very, outcast group of underdogs. Not a game for people with low tolerance for using games to explore issues of racism, classism, and building community while trying to survive oppression. Very fun in the Robin Hood/Leverage style of advent...
  • 06:47 AM - Dausuul quoted toucanbuzz in post A monstrous campaign
    Has anyone run a monstrous campaign, especially with Volo monsters-as-players? Looking for ideas for running a one-off (4-6 hour) adventure where the party is either monstrous or temporarily in monstrous form (adventure ideas needed). Looking at whether players enjoyed the diversion from the norm, issues with balance, immersion, role-play and so on. Not in 5E, but I did it once in 3E. It was a blast, albeit really crazy. If you're going to do a one-off, I wouldn't limit yourself to the Volo's "monster races." The whole point of a one-off is that you can go absolutely freakin' nuts and to hell with the long-term campaign consequences. So go all-out! Give your players a CR limit and let them pick any danged monster* they please. If they pick something with CR lower than the cap, let them make up the difference by adding sidekick levels per the recent UA. *Well... almost any. They probably shouldn't be allowed to pick legendary monsters, just because that would slow combat to a crawl.
  • 06:29 AM - Dannyalcatraz quoted toucanbuzz in post A monstrous campaign
    Looking for ideas for running a one-off (4-6 hour) adventure where the party is either monstrous or temporarily in monstrous form (adventure ideas needed). Looking at whether players enjoyed the diversion from the norm, issues with balance, immersion, role-play and so on. Well, getting the right mix is key. Some monsters work better when in groups of their own kind, like a tribe of Gnolls or Hobgoblins. Others can work in mixed groups if they’re part of an organization that makes them work together, like a unit in an overlord’s army. How many players?

Thursday, 20th December, 2018

  • 09:56 PM - 5ekyu quoted toucanbuzz in post Initiative Reboot [homebrew]
    1. Removed all colors. Sorry 'bout that, on a different computer and its font has a black background. 2. Does movement affect your speed of action? Movement has no impact on initiative like default. 3. What if everyone rolled initiative as normal (using dex or Int per your system), and then their action for that round modifies that number? I've explored conversion of Hackmaster's "count-up" initiative where you have a starting initiative, and from there, your actions determine when you can take another. It's on my "to do" list. To make that system count, though, they use weapon speeds and casting speeds, which would be a monumental task for D&D unfortunately because the two systems operate completely differently, and the last thing I'd want is to have quick weapons used to spam bonus actions and sneak attacks and the like. I'm still looking a homebrewed attempt ("to do list"). 4. Excellent points. It'd defeat one of the very purposes and allow significant abuse. ___________________...
  • 04:17 AM - guachi quoted toucanbuzz in post How would changing bows to Str-only change the game?
    2. Introduce composite bows and allow bows into the game that require a minimum STR to use, and they can apply either the users STR or DEX bonus to damage. Gives STR-based characters a longer range weapon option. So something like a reverse finesse property.

Tuesday, 18th December, 2018

  • 10:48 PM - MechaTarrasque quoted toucanbuzz in post What would a slaad say?
    I like giving bad guys a "catch phrase" in my campaign notes, always good stuff. Slaadi don't say anything as they're communicating in Telepathy, which means they won't sound like an idiot referring to themselves in the 3rd person. Rather, the characters will be hit with pure thoughts. This could be images, sounds, smells, pretty much anything that sums it up. Prior edition descriptions of Telepathy have said it's "communication" (so players can communicate back), but just like communication, it's tough to carry on 5 different conversations. For example, rather than say "I'm going to rip you apart," the slaad instead bombards the character with imagery of the character being ripped apart by the slaad's oversized and exaggerated claws, blood spraying everywhere, with the iron-tang smell in the air. The thought is conveyed in a way the target would understand. If the target is a Modron, it instead would perceive its parts being disassembled and placed out of order by the big claws, no blood. But...

Friday, 14th December, 2018

  • 10:08 PM - Saelorn quoted toucanbuzz in post Trying to make 5e more oldish and want some people's opinions
    Also, short rests allow parties to exist that don't have dedicated healers, giving players more freedom to play what they really want to play. By making healing take a week, you'd effectively be forcing someone to play a class that heals.When I played 2E, we never had a healer, and we were just fine. If you got in one combat over here, and it takes a week of travel before you have another combat, then you were mostly fine by the time you got there. You only need a healer if you absolutely must face several dangerous encounters in the same day, which the variant rule pre-supposes is not happening. wasn't he going to kill the hostages tomorrow? Well, nothing we can do about it because that random encounter sucked my spells dry and I can't get them back for another week."Encounters don't "suck your spells dry", as you put it. Encounters provide opportunities for you to manage your resources, in such a way that you don't end up empty when you need them. If you know that Strahd is going to sacrifice...

Monday, 3rd December, 2018

  • 06:30 PM - MostlyHarmless42 quoted toucanbuzz in post How to roll every type of die in an attack?
    Probably several combos. My "solution" without getting into crazy multi-classing: 7th level Eldritch Knight casts Enlarge (concentration), +d4 damage to weapon damage, enters combat and attacks target (d20) using War Magic class feature (1 cantrip action + 1 weapon attack as bonus action), casts Fire Bolt (d10 damage) and attacks with greataxe (d12), then uses Action Surge to cast cantrip Green Blade (weapon attack +d8 fire at 5th level). At any time, spends his Bardic Inspiration die (d6) on an Attack roll. Note, per D&D errata you can cast with a two-handed weapon as that property is only necessary when attacking. d20 - attack d12 - greataxe d10 - Fire Bolt cantrip d8 - Fighter Action surge, cast Green-Flame Blade, +1d8 damage. d6 - Bardic Inspiration die (from 3rd party) d4 - Enlarge (concentration), +1d4 weapon damage Tweak it to the following: d20 - attack d12 greataxe d10 superiority die from battlemaster fighter of the required level d8 - from green flame blade cantrip (...

Sunday, 11th November, 2018

  • 12:20 PM - S'mon quoted toucanbuzz in post Brand new DM to 5E and many concerns...
    Remember, monster casters are weaker than player casters because monsters don't get proficiency bonuses (unless otherwise stated). All the published spellcasting monsters & NPCs get a Proficiency Bonus based off their CR (not caster level). This does make them weaker than PCs at higher level, but they do have a PB.


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