View Profile: Hjorimir - Morrus' Unofficial Tabletop RPG News
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  • Hjorimir's Avatar
    Monday, 3rd December, 2018, 07:37 AM
    You don't any particular race. In fact, that's one of the things you can meddle with to give your campaign a unique tone. It's easy to pile on more races (there are so many now); it's far more interesting when you start removing some. They could not be a part of your setting, or they could be extinct and your setting could contain ruins of the fallen people. Be creative!
    191 replies | 6312 view(s)
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    Sunday, 2nd December, 2018, 04:54 AM
    It fits the support role of the bard. Combine this with a Healing Word spell and you can really turn things around for an ally under the gun.
    63 replies | 29251 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Hjorimir's Avatar
    Saturday, 1st December, 2018, 04:29 AM
    Yes, I'd pay for a boxed set if I was interested in the offering.
    32 replies | 1266 view(s)
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  • Hjorimir's Avatar
    Friday, 30th November, 2018, 08:27 PM
    One word: Yoink!
    36 replies | 1428 view(s)
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  • Hjorimir's Avatar
    Thursday, 29th November, 2018, 09:29 AM
    The Campaign Date/Actual Date (good for reference) A super brief summary of what is going on and how it might connect to any campaign-encompassing metaplot. (Likely copied from last session’s sheet with some minor updates.) A list of the currently pertinent NPCs In order, ask the following questions about the session’s major villain (in my head I’m always saying, “Answer me these...
    50 replies | 1256 view(s)
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  • Hjorimir's Avatar
    Thursday, 29th November, 2018, 08:39 AM
    Yes, I'm sure we could all make an argument that would have led to a more difficult encounter, but I think it's perfectly fine that it played out this way. Perhaps the githyanki were arrogant - and who could blame them - as they were cruising around the astral sea. But we're talking a new game here after the ambush. Githyanki are an ancient and powerful race well practiced in the art of war....
    15 replies | 725 view(s)
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  • Hjorimir's Avatar
    Wednesday, 28th November, 2018, 06:21 PM
    Somehow I don't think the pack of githyanki knights are going to let this go. Smart money says that there's a reconciliation coming.
    15 replies | 725 view(s)
    4 XP
  • Hjorimir's Avatar
    Wednesday, 28th November, 2018, 09:11 AM
    Thanks for sharing that story. When the players at my table start getting too bunched up, somebody always starts muttering about the dangers of being in "fireball formation." This usually leads to them spreading out a bit more organically as opposed to filing in like a Roman legion everywhere they go.
    15 replies | 725 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Hjorimir's Avatar
    Tuesday, 27th November, 2018, 12:12 AM
    I totally get the desire to play, but I lean towards quality over quantity. What about every other week or once a month?
    13 replies | 405 view(s)
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  • Hjorimir's Avatar
    Monday, 26th November, 2018, 10:42 PM
    I give dragonborn darkvision in my own campaign. /shrug
    167 replies | 4300 view(s)
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  • Hjorimir's Avatar
    Monday, 26th November, 2018, 10:14 PM
    For starters, I'd outlaw cruising the internet and (non-emergency) texting at the table. If they're going to play, it's not too much to ask that they pay attention and be present with the rest of the people sitting at the table. D&D is a social game. If you want to promote story, make the story important. Player agency is a wonderful element to an ongoing campaign. To have that you need your...
    13 replies | 405 view(s)
    4 XP
  • Hjorimir's Avatar
    Saturday, 24th November, 2018, 05:41 PM
    I pre-ordered. They had me at "maps." /shrug
    9 replies | 345 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Hjorimir's Avatar
    Friday, 23rd November, 2018, 03:54 PM
    My houserule is 1 level of exhaustion for being dropped to 0 hit points (maximum 1 level per encounter). I have the maximum in there to avoid the death/exhaustion spiral where a character is knocked to 0, healed, but laying there at the feet of the monster and just pounded to 0 hit points again.
    84 replies | 2077 view(s)
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  • Hjorimir's Avatar
    Friday, 23rd November, 2018, 03:51 PM
    There are multiple ways to apply pressure to a higher level group. Not all encounters need to be "deadly" to apply pressure. Put them on the clock and force them through multiple smaller encounters to drain resources. Put innocent civilians in harm's way. Make sure they have to worry about not burning the city down with their errant fireballs. Also, the flat math of 5e should work in your favor...
    13 replies | 472 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Hjorimir's Avatar
    Friday, 23rd November, 2018, 06:11 AM
    Taking a stab at homebrewing a setting? Less may be more. Consider limiting the types of monsters that you feature and try to give them more depth. Consider Tolkien’s Nazgul (wraiths) or Martin’s White Walkers (wights). Simple monsters with layered context. In my own campaign setting, I don't have liches...I have the Voringians. Once the kings and queens that made up the Kaathic Primacy during...
    6 replies | 325 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Hjorimir's Avatar
    Thursday, 22nd November, 2018, 08:41 PM
    I think this may prove to be difficult to pull off. In my experience, players are very mindful of their own character's abilities. My fear here would be that it could descend into arguments that you don't understand how their abilities/spells work. That said, I think it's a very interesting approach to this kind of encounter. I tip my hat to your creativity and for thinking outside of the box!
    4 replies | 233 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Hjorimir's Avatar
    Wednesday, 21st November, 2018, 09:24 PM
    1. The game clearly needs more DMs! 2. Yes, I'd cry tears of joy for a 5e Star Frontiers Oh, please no! I get what you're driving at, but one of the fundamental things I love about 5e is rulings over rules. This would create a situation where players would argue with DMs on DCs for skill checks and such. Even if I didn't buy it myself, it if was published it enters the conversation. No...
    129 replies | 5228 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Hjorimir's Avatar
    Monday, 19th November, 2018, 08:21 AM
    I love great art, so it's pretty important to me. That said, I don't think you need color artwork at all. Some of my favorite pieces are pencil sketches. Scan through Richard Whitters Twitter feed and find some of his sketches: they're wonderful. https://twitter.com/WhittersRichard
    18 replies | 644 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hjorimir's Avatar
    Sunday, 18th November, 2018, 08:34 AM
    I think adventures should be challenging to promote a sense of, well, adventure. This can be done in many different ways. A tough encounter is an obvious one, but I'd encourage you to run a wide spectrum of difficulties as it keeps the players guessing. Besides, even "easy" encounters drain resources from the PCs and that creates pressure within the adventure as well.
    42 replies | 1111 view(s)
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  • Hjorimir's Avatar
    Saturday, 17th November, 2018, 09:23 AM
    Happy about the Call Lightning changes.
    10 replies | 870 view(s)
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  • Hjorimir's Avatar
    Saturday, 17th November, 2018, 01:48 AM
    I'd play this character as somebody who believes that they are an alien from another star system and their visit here is like some kind of field trip.
    6 replies | 236 view(s)
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  • Hjorimir's Avatar
    Friday, 16th November, 2018, 05:21 PM
    Purple worms need to eat too! What do you have against purple worms? Poor guys.
    74 replies | 2615 view(s)
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  • Hjorimir's Avatar
    Friday, 16th November, 2018, 04:24 PM
    This is great. Thanks for offering this up to the community, Tim!
    11 replies | 494 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Hjorimir's Avatar
    Thursday, 15th November, 2018, 12:33 AM
    Consider also the number of times you might be attacked (that's a lot of zombies). So, let's assume that I (only) mitigate 15% damage from the horde of zombies that's cornered me here with the original example. That's still pretty attractive. What if I have a high AC and am already severely wounded? What if they need a 20 to hit? What if I'm already severely wounded? Your odds of rolling a 20...
    60 replies | 1731 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Hjorimir's Avatar
    Wednesday, 14th November, 2018, 09:51 PM
    Sinister. I approve!
    7 replies | 286 view(s)
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  • Hjorimir's Avatar
    Wednesday, 14th November, 2018, 07:59 PM
    I'd certainly allow the use of abilities (including spells) to flee. In fact, I think that's fantastic. I turn the lich! Poof! He teleports.
    11 replies | 353 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hjorimir's Avatar
    Wednesday, 14th November, 2018, 06:16 PM
    I'm a mastermind criminal and I know the city has access to all kinds of divination magic. Perrrrfect. Excuse me while I pause to steeple my fingers. Ahhhh... The pitfall of spells like detect thoughts and zone of truth is that the casters of such spells have a proclivity to take the information as truth. I will use that to my advantage. I will lie not only to the city officials, but my...
    38 replies | 982 view(s)
    9 XP
  • Hjorimir's Avatar
    Wednesday, 14th November, 2018, 06:03 PM
    A couple of other common Dodge uses at our table include Patient Defense (aka Monk tanking) and combining with Spirit Guardians (cast and then subsequently dodge while moving forward to just let the spell melt everything).
    74 replies | 2073 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Hjorimir's Avatar
    Wednesday, 14th November, 2018, 06:31 AM
    The mantra at our table is, "When in doubt, dodge." Basically, if you don't know what to do with your action or none of the obvious choices seem attractive, dodge instead.
    74 replies | 2073 view(s)
    2 XP
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Thursday, 22nd November, 2018

  • 01:39 AM - Harzel mentioned Hjorimir in post What Does the Game Need Now?
    ...table of good DC for various door types....or for the crazy people who try to break down the wall around the door because the door is too well made. Chases are a thing the DMG covers a bit, but there is more to do there. Interrogating a prisoner Escaping from Jail Dealing with the surprise of meeting the enemy in a forest etc So many common moments that most Dnd players go through. It would be great to have a toolbox book that has specific rules or suggestions tailored for each scenario. Oh, please no! I get what you're driving at, but one of the fundamental things I love about 5e is rulings over rules. This would create a situation where players would argue with DMs on DCs for skill checks and such. Even if I didn't buy it myself, it if was published it enters the conversation. No thanks for me! Yeah, I'm of two minds about this. I think there could be value in something like what Stalker0 suggests, but how it's presented would be hugely important. I agree with Hjorimir that we don't want something presented as (or that could be construed as) a bunch of new rules. One reason is certainly the conflict with players who might then expect hard and fast rules in situations previously handled with rulings, but another is the effect on DMs themselves. Having started out as a DM who looked for or tried to create a rule for everything, IMX that just gets in the way of developing and honing (one aspect of) the improvisational skills that (again IMX) make the game a lot more fun (for everybody) than having a restricted set of situations that you have rules for and then feeling lost at sea with everything else. So, having said what it shouldn't be, how could it be done appropriately? I'm not certain how it would turn out, but perhaps the first thing I would try would be to frame it as a series of discussions of rulings examples. That is, for each generic situation to be addressed, create several specific instances to demonstrate how the particulars can be ta...

Saturday, 21st April, 2018

  • 03:44 AM - Nevvur mentioned Hjorimir in post Awarding One Magic Weapon only to each player in a campaign
    I once wanted to do something like @Hjorimir described, but it was part of a broader campaign concept that never got off the ground. The idea came about in the early months of my transition from 4e to 5e. I was harboring some preferences from the earlier edition, and the evolving weapon concept was meant to combine the paucity of magic items in 5e with the expected magic item power levels of 4e. I'd still like to do something like this, but it's going to have to stay on the back burner for awhile. Just launched a new campaign a couple months ago, and it's not really appropriate to include such items for that table. Regardless, I will second his suggestion. I do think it calls for special narrative treatment and player buy in, so I would approach my players about the idea before pushing these weapons on them. As to replacing magical weapons in my current and previous campaigns, I tend to be rather stingy with them so there isn't much replacement going on. At some point in their career (I design most campaigns to run from level...

Thursday, 19th April, 2018

  • 07:37 PM - Oofta mentioned Hjorimir in post 40 years...
    Hjorimir, good to hear that there are other old-timers out there. I had to add it up, but I first played D&D 41 years ago when an older friend brought home this new game from college. Who knew I'd still be sticking with it all these years? Or that I'd be using the same basic world I first created as a DM way back then? Admittedly my adventures are a little more advanced than they used to be, although I am still inordinately proud that one of my first dungeons had corridors that spelled out DEATH, DOOM and DESTRUCTION for every level. The last level took two whole pieces of graph paper to map out! Talk about intricate, in- depth planning. B-) Things have changed over the years, and there was a period of time when I wasn't playing for about 10 years. When I started up again it was just like old times, sitting around a table laughing, joking and in general having a good time. I think someone asked me one time why I played and I simply told them that I laugh more per hour in a D&D s...

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Monday, 3rd December, 2018


Friday, 30th November, 2018

  • 08:42 PM - Satyrn quoted Hjorimir in post Intellect Devourer ate my Intelligence
    One word: Yoink! Indeed! My random treasure table is already littered with stat boosting/modifying items that give values from 8 to 18. Even the worst of these items would be great after facing an Intellect Devourer. It's weird that I never even considered the possibility. . . . And of course, I can totally expand my monster list to include Sanity Suckers and Personality Eaters.
  • 12:39 AM - doctorbadwolf quoted Hjorimir in post WotC's Nathan Stewart Teases New D&D Setting Book in 2019
    I think the reason Dragonlance was so popular was, first and foremost, the Dragonlance Chronicles novels. In terms of writing they were awful, but in terms of story they were quite good, and even the characters were fun and alive - especially to the target demographic, the tween and teen D&D fanbase. How many early teen boys (such as myself) identified with Tanis, fell in love with Laurana and had early lustful thoughts about Kitiara? To my newly emerging emotional self, the deaths of Sturm and Flint were heart-wrenching. In a way, Dragonlance essentialized the approach that WotC is taking now: making story front and center. But they did it through a great big meta-plot, with a corresponding railroady campaign. 4E came out 30 years later, with 30 years of D&D worlds and stories and trends, and an entirely different generation (or two!). Most new D&D players are Millenials and Gen Zers, who were born after 9/11, with a very different worldview. But what I'm getting at is that I think the D&D w...

Thursday, 29th November, 2018

  • 10:53 PM - doctorbadwolf quoted Hjorimir in post WotC's Nathan Stewart Teases New D&D Setting Book in 2019
    I'll admit that I don't know much about Dragonlance. What would you say the hook is? Every time I see Dragonlance mentioned I'm given the impression that it's just a typical fantasy world. A very different focus on dragons, Wizard magic as a monolithic school that will hunt you down if you defy it's rules (including going beyond hedge wizardry without becoming part of the system), a world with very little divine magic even in the era where Divine magic had returned, very different takes on a few races (very interesting Dwarves, for instance), more personal and flawed deities, The Balance, and a strong and consistent theme in terms of how the world is built. For a start. Yeah, that’s always been its strength, and its weakness. Having an epic struggle against a monolithic foe can be great, but it can also make things difficult – capturing that epic feel without either infringing on the main story or having the main story overshadow the PCs isn’t always an easy task. Were I to run a D...
  • 10:04 PM - Ralif Redhammer quoted Hjorimir in post WotC's Nathan Stewart Teases New D&D Setting Book in 2019
    I’d pick that up and run it in a heartbeat. I could see a new War of the Lance hardcover module. Give the PCs a chance to be the next Heroes of the Lance. Tell the story with some giant battles for them to take part in and shape. Include just enough references to the previous War to connect it while not requiring people to know the lore. Maybe Lord Soth shows up as an adversary. I'd love to see it come back a few hundred years into the future past all of those events to clear space for the heroes of a DM's campaign...the players.

Wednesday, 28th November, 2018

  • 07:14 PM - Tormyr quoted Hjorimir in post The Power of Surprise: How my 7th level party took out a 40k xp challenge without a sweat
    Somehow I don't think the pack of githyanki knights are going to let this go. Smart money says that there's a reconciliation coming. I agree. To follow on Dausuul 's thoughts, a party that feels like they can start fresh, alpha strike, and then go home to rest can easily do a full day's worth of XP without breaking a sweat with good planning, surprise, and good initiative. Retreating enemies also helps the party avoid damage. If a retaliation comes before the party can rest, they might be captured and brought into the consequences of picking a fight with such a strong, well-equipped foe.

Tuesday, 27th November, 2018

  • 02:35 AM - DM Dave1 quoted Hjorimir in post How to add story to my irregular games?
    Are you running location-based adventures (e.g. dungeons) or event-based adventures (e.g. plots to follow)? The former is far easier to run if you're dealing with an irregular group of players. (Far easier in general, except for prep, actually.) The latter can turn into a mess when there's lack of continuity in players. I run games for a player pool (more players than seats in a given session) so I run my game expecting the group to change week to week. And I'll put my recommendation behind location-based adventures for such a setup, hands down. The "story" is just what the individual groups do per session and how that impacts the setting as a result. So much this. In one of the groups I run, we have had 12 different players - and one player has two different characters that he alternates using. It is a West Marches style campaign (this Kickstarter guy does a good job of explaining it), so most sessions are a discrete adventure with a goal, several encounters, and typically start an...
  • 01:44 AM - Retreater quoted Hjorimir in post How to add story to my irregular games?
    I totally get the desire to play, but I lean towards quality over quantity. What about every other week or once a month? We do play once a month for one group, bi-weekly for the others. The problem I'm having is trying to maintain the groups' interest in the games between sessions and a cohesive story. Unless you're suggesting cutting back my number of games to one biweekly game. The issue I think is being in a smaller community with few people willing to DM, so I end up running more games than most DMs.

Thursday, 22nd November, 2018

  • 08:50 PM - Quickleaf quoted Hjorimir in post Ring of Delusion question
    I think this may prove to be difficult to pull off. In my experience, players are very mindful of their own character's abilities. My fear here would be that it could descend into arguments that you don't understand how their abilities/spells work. That said, I think it's a very interesting approach to this kind of encounter. I tip my hat to your creativity and for thinking outside of the box! Indeed. I'm making a point to ask each of them about how they're leveling their PCs. I'm thinking about going over those class features at the start of our next session...and after they share what new thing they can do, interjecting with a "so you feel very confident about that?" or "you're surely going to defeat the birds now" and other trite phrases. Already been dropping bits of this.
  • 05:52 PM - Slit518 quoted Hjorimir in post How important is art to you?
    I love great art, so it's pretty important to me. That said, I don't think you need color artwork at all. Some of my favorite pieces are pencil sketches. Scan through Richard Whitters Twitter feed and find some of his sketches: they're wonderful. https://twitter.com/WhittersRichard I'm familiar with Richard, I've talked to him on several occasions. Great guy from what I can tell, and a great artist as well. Seriously, his sketch potential, it is massive. He also did all of the Xvart portrait work for the D&D team that they all used on social media a bit back.
  • 01:39 AM - Harzel quoted Hjorimir in post What Does the Game Need Now?
    ...table of good DC for various door types....or for the crazy people who try to break down the wall around the door because the door is too well made. Chases are a thing the DMG covers a bit, but there is more to do there. Interrogating a prisoner Escaping from Jail Dealing with the surprise of meeting the enemy in a forest etc So many common moments that most Dnd players go through. It would be great to have a toolbox book that has specific rules or suggestions tailored for each scenario. Oh, please no! I get what you're driving at, but one of the fundamental things I love about 5e is rulings over rules. This would create a situation where players would argue with DMs on DCs for skill checks and such. Even if I didn't buy it myself, it if was published it enters the conversation. No thanks for me! Yeah, I'm of two minds about this. I think there could be value in something like what Stalker0 suggests, but how it's presented would be hugely important. I agree with Hjorimir that we don't want something presented as (or that could be construed as) a bunch of new rules. One reason is certainly the conflict with players who might then expect hard and fast rules in situations previously handled with rulings, but another is the effect on DMs themselves. Having started out as a DM who looked for or tried to create a rule for everything, IMX that just gets in the way of developing and honing (one aspect of) the improvisational skills that (again IMX) make the game a lot more fun (for everybody) than having a restricted set of situations that you have rules for and then feeling lost at sea with everything else. So, having said what it shouldn't be, how could it be done appropriately? I'm not certain how it would turn out, but perhaps the first thing I would try would be to frame it as a series of discussions of rulings examples. That is, for each generic situation to be addressed, create several specific instances to demonstrate how the particulars can be ta...

Wednesday, 14th November, 2018

  • 06:56 AM - Azzy quoted Hjorimir in post How useful is the Dodge action?
    The mantra at our table is, "When in doubt, dodge." Basically, if you don't know what to do with your action or none of the obvious choices seem attractive, dodge instead. I forget about Dodge all the time. There were a few times I should have used it in the two sessions I played. Oops. :D

Sunday, 4th November, 2018

  • 03:03 PM - smbakeresq quoted Hjorimir in post What variant rules should I add to my new campaign?
    We use a pseudo-minion rule, which is basically if you don't one shot the monster it dies the next time it takes damage. No hard and fast rule as to what kind of monsters are minions, but generally orcs and other "support" type monsters once the characters are of sufficiently high level. I use this also, scaling on level. Sometimes a creature can take 2 hits, sometimes 3.

Monday, 22nd October, 2018

  • 02:49 AM - CleverNickName quoted Hjorimir in post Survivor Monster Types- DRAGON WINS!
    Whenever I'm creating a dungeon, I always have to ask myself how monsters I place survive. What do they eat? What do they do all day? Do they just stand in a room waiting for the PCs to come along? Undead are the best for this reason. Standing in torpor actually makes sense for them. I don't need to worry how they survive. They can be mindless or they have ancient machinations that they've continued to advance over the ages and anything in-between.. They're the perfect dungeon monster.I feel the same way. See also: Constructs, Elementals.

Tuesday, 25th September, 2018

  • 12:19 AM - barasawa quoted Hjorimir in post Anybody else excited for Esper Genesis?
    I'm pretty excited for Esper Genesis to arrive. When Paizo announced Starfinder, I instantly wished that WotC would do something similar (Star Fronties 5e please). Esper Genesis is scratching that itch for me. While I'm glad to hear that WotC is going to produce some campaign setting material outside of Forgotten Realms (no hate, just not my cup o' tea), I really don't care about either the Ravnica or Eberron offerings. What about you guys? Any plans out there to run EG? If so, what are you planning? Star Frontiers can still be obtained, and I think I've heard someone is working on an updated version or something. (If you hit the Star Frontiers sites, you'll be able to find out for sure, or if it's just a fervent imagination playing tricks.) And yes, I think a 5th edition rules of the Star Frontiers game would be pretty fantastic! As to Esper Genesis, I like it better than Starfinder, though Starfinder is getting adventures out faster.

Monday, 24th September, 2018

  • 04:10 AM - 5ekyu quoted Hjorimir in post Anybody else excited for Esper Genesis?
    I'm pretty excited for Esper Genesis to arrive. When Paizo announced Starfinder, I instantly wished that WotC would do something similar (Star Fronties 5e please). Esper Genesis is scratching that itch for me. While I'm glad to hear that WotC is going to produce some campaign setting material outside of Forgotten Realms (no hate, just not my cup o' tea), I really don't care about either the Ravnica or Eberron offerings. What about you guys? Any plans out there to run EG? If so, what are you planning?Been running campaign for over a year... started with the kickstarter playtest stuff. It's great! PCs up to 7th level now.

Wednesday, 9th May, 2018

  • 06:31 PM - BookBarbarian quoted Hjorimir in post Why does 5E SUCK?
    The only thing that sucks about 5e is not being able to play it more than I already do. Truth!
  • 05:15 PM - akr71 quoted Hjorimir in post DMing for kids: quiz for XP!
    I do a very similar thing at my table (adults, not children). Instead of awarding XP I award Inspiration (we use an Inspiration pot that any character can draw from). Good! Inspirational pot should not be awarded to children.
  • 01:55 AM - Slit518 quoted Hjorimir in post Surprise for my group
    Posted the how-to on page 1. Thanks! I'm no artist, so me doing my maps on Inkarnate will not look as good.

Friday, 4th May, 2018

  • 05:29 AM - Lanefan quoted Hjorimir in post Button Pusher, Lever Puller, Potion Taster (When players are absent)
    So a running joke at our table is that when a player misses a session that their character volunteers for all button pushing, lever pulling, and potion tasting activities. Honestly, we generally hand out the sheet to a different player to control in combat and the DM covers the RP for the absent player. How do you handle this at your table? Any interesting ideas out there?Pretty much what we do also, incuding the same joke. :) The character is still considered an active member of the party and is expected to do things it would normally do when its player is present. And if the absent player leaves any instructions with the DM those are followed when and where practical.


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Apparently a post I made back in June with a PDF attachment of a character sheet I use for 4e garnered some interest...and I got some private messages sent to me asking for copies of the original. I've never had Private Messages here before (not too ...
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