View Profile: Xaelvaen - Morrus' Unofficial Tabletop RPG News
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  • Xaelvaen's Avatar
    Sunday, 4th November, 2018, 03:31 PM
    Elemental Command 24 Evasion 20 Feather Falling 24 Free Action 26 Invisibility 19 Jumping 14 Mind Shielding 20 Protection 13 Ram 26 Regeneration 20
    288 replies | 3683 view(s)
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  • Xaelvaen's Avatar
    Wednesday, 24th October, 2018, 09:52 PM
    A bit of an odd-one, glad you found a work around - sorry it had some sort of issue. I just redownloaded the file myself and checked the permissions; the security was off, and the filling of forms checked 'allowed' so I'm not sure what would have caused that problem. This was checked with the latest version of Acrobat Reader DC.
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  • Xaelvaen's Avatar
    Wednesday, 24th October, 2018, 09:44 PM
    Sorry it's not working for you - I just redownloaded it today and checked it; all attributes round properly on the latest Adobe pdf reader.
    3 replies | 1309 view(s)
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  • Xaelvaen's Avatar
    Saturday, 20th October, 2018, 05:46 PM
    https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/dorksofyore/the-dreams-in-garys-basement-a-documentary-on-gary/description "The Dreams in Gary's Basement" is the title. Already funded (and then some; 150% last check) with 26 days to go.
    0 replies | 192 view(s)
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  • Xaelvaen's Avatar
    Friday, 19th October, 2018, 04:59 PM
    1) I'm fine with two free skills from background, and then some roleplaying fluff (in most cases). 2) Granted - we don't use Inspiration ourselves. Instead we use the Action Point system from the Eberron campaign book from 3rd edition. Far more effective. 3) I've never used those guidelines myself, for any edition to be honest. Magic items are always influenced heavily by the campaign...
    253 replies | 10276 view(s)
    4 XP
  • Xaelvaen's Avatar
    Friday, 19th October, 2018, 04:11 PM
    Well, with the villains, I recommended that one because of my own DMing influence. The villains of horror movies each have a distinct personality (and tentatively, an alignment). If you take Jigsaw, as an example, he's a 'villain' who could never recover from his grief and became a vigilante - he thought he was punishing people who didn't appreciate life. This is classic DnD adventure...
    549 replies | 8410 view(s)
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  • Xaelvaen's Avatar
    Friday, 19th October, 2018, 03:48 PM
    I make these suggestions admitting I have no idea what has, and has not, been done already. Horror Movie Villains (Jigsaw, Jason, Freddy, etc) Horror Movies (in general)
    549 replies | 8410 view(s)
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  • Xaelvaen's Avatar
    Friday, 19th October, 2018, 02:33 PM
    I was voting Wraith and Lich from the beginning - mostly because both of them have very interesting creation stories attached. I'm quite happy about Wraith's win here - thanks for a fun thread, lowkey13 !
    549 replies | 8410 view(s)
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  • Xaelvaen's Avatar
    Thursday, 18th October, 2018, 03:47 PM
    DOWNVOTES ARE THREE Ghoul 2 Skeleton 13-3 = 10 Wight 14 Wraith 11+1 = 12
    549 replies | 8410 view(s)
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  • Xaelvaen's Avatar
    Wednesday, 17th October, 2018, 10:32 PM
    The only thing I can really add that wasn't already covered, would be that not only have I never paid for a table at my FLGS, but I've never even heard one in my area (or surrounding areas) charge money for it. I'm guessing that's a regional thing, I'm not entirely certain.
    60 replies | 2322 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Xaelvaen's Avatar
    Wednesday, 17th October, 2018, 03:05 PM
    DOWNVOTES ARE 3 Ghost 8 Ghoul 11 Revenant 10 Shadow 10 Skeleton 18 Vampire 11-3 = 8 Wight 13 Wraith 19+1 = 20
    549 replies | 8410 view(s)
    0 XP
  • Xaelvaen's Avatar
    Tuesday, 16th October, 2018, 05:43 PM
    You could try the Mini-Dungeon Tome for 5th Edition. I backed this on kickstarter, and it's now available in pdf format on Drivethrurpg. It contains 130+ mini adventures, which might be great for your time constraints - you could even weave 2 of them together if you need to stretch at any point. Buy the pdf, and you could print as many copies as you needed for your sessions, just obviously...
    5 replies | 215 view(s)
    2 XP
  • Xaelvaen's Avatar
    Tuesday, 16th October, 2018, 05:37 PM
    Banshee 15 Ghost 10-3 = 7 Ghoul 16 Revenant 15 Shadow 14 Skeleton 18 Spectre 5 Vampire 18 Wight 19 Wraith 20+1 = 21
    549 replies | 8410 view(s)
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  • Xaelvaen's Avatar
    Tuesday, 16th October, 2018, 05:35 PM
    Nope, can't complain - and the final two itself made me quite happy. Couldn't really go wrong with the winner. Thanks for the fun thread, Sacrosanct
    432 replies | 8454 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Xaelvaen's Avatar
    Tuesday, 16th October, 2018, 05:32 PM
    I hope they like the idea as well, and moreover, I hope it works well for your group - happy to have shared!
    15 replies | 521 view(s)
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  • Xaelvaen's Avatar
    Monday, 15th October, 2018, 07:23 PM
    One alternative method we chose for preserving balance while still eventually getting access to high-level material, was to reduce Hit Dice gains. We don't do it for every campaign; just once or twice it's come up where we wanted something more balanced, like the sweet spot you pointed out, but with more 'danger' and higher level capability. I believe it was normal until level 3, and then you...
    15 replies | 521 view(s)
    5 XP
  • Xaelvaen's Avatar
    Monday, 15th October, 2018, 04:40 PM
    The Hobbit--12-2 = 10 Princess Mononoke--2+1 = 3
    432 replies | 8454 view(s)
    1 XP
  • Xaelvaen's Avatar
    Monday, 15th October, 2018, 04:39 PM
    Downvotes are worth 3 Banshee 20 Ghost 21 Ghoul 23-3 = 20 Lich 9+1 = 10 Mummy 1 Mummy Lord 2 Revenant 22 Shadow 20
    549 replies | 8410 view(s)
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  • Xaelvaen's Avatar
    Sunday, 14th October, 2018, 04:02 PM
    The Hobbit--13-2 = 11 Princess Mononoke--9+1 = 10 Spirited Away--8
    432 replies | 8454 view(s)
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  • Xaelvaen's Avatar
    Sunday, 14th October, 2018, 04:01 PM
    Banshee 19 Demilich 1 Ghast 12 Ghost 24 Ghoul 21 Lich 20 Mummy 9-3 = 6 Mummy Lord 15 Nightwalker 7 Revenant 24
    549 replies | 8410 view(s)
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About Xaelvaen

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About Xaelvaen
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Ravnica & Dungeon of the Mad Mage Are In Stores Today! Saturday, 10th November, 2018 05:46 PM

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Saturday, 10th November, 2018

  • 08:06 PM - Mercador quoted Xaelvaen in post Ravnica & Dungeon of the Mad Mage Are In Stores Today!
    As for D&D Beyond's formatting, absolutely 5 stars. As for the contents of the book, that's a bit trickier. I only bought it for the setting flavor, so I completely glossed over the player options for the most part, and I'm far from finished reading everything about the setting. Absolutely a solid 4 stars from me thus far, however. I would buy it for the setting as well, I don't play 5E, I got plenty of PF books but I read them for the content, not for playing it.
  • 12:39 AM - Mercador quoted Xaelvaen in post Ravnica & Dungeon of the Mad Mage Are In Stores Today!
    Got my Guildmaster's Guide on D&D Beyond this morning, and have been reading through it extensively. Consider me a satisfied consumer. On 5 stars?

Friday, 19th October, 2018

  • 03:55 PM - lowkey13 quoted Xaelvaen in post Survivor Halloween 2018 5e Undead- Wraith WINS!
    I make these suggestions admitting I have no idea what has, and has not, been done already. Horror Movie Villains (Jigsaw, Jason, Freddy, etc) Horror Movies (in general) Both excellent ideas! I try to have some sort of D&D tie-in, however. :( If you go to the first page of any survivor thread, and click on the "prior threads" hyperlink the in first paragraph, you can see all the prior threads I've done, other than the ones eaten in the Last Great Enworld Outage.

Tuesday, 16th October, 2018

  • 12:06 AM - OB1 quoted Xaelvaen in post High-Level Features for Mid-Level Campaigns?
    One alternative method we chose for preserving balance while still eventually getting access to high-level material, was to reduce Hit Dice gains. We don't do it for every campaign; just once or twice it's come up where we wanted something more balanced, like the sweet spot you pointed out, but with more 'danger' and higher level capability. I believe it was normal until level 3, and then you only gained Hit Dice at every even level thereafter, but you continued to get your class powers. This gives you the effective HP / HD pool of a 12th level character at level 20, but with all the abilities along the way. Makes the sweet spot last a bit longer in regards to party longevity. A few things to keep in mind; my group enjoys gritty gaming, so the 'beaten, broken, and battered' feel is common in our campaigns. This certainly makes attrition a bit easier to achieve, while letting the characters get their 'nuke' buttons before it's time for the group to move on, while still reminding them t...

Wednesday, 10th October, 2018

  • 10:48 PM - Charlaquin quoted Xaelvaen in post Survivor Thread: Animated Fantasy Movies--Hobbit Wins!
    ... note movie The Dark Crystal--18 ^ Here it should go down to 8, but goes down to 7 instead. The Hobbit--12 Princess Mononoke--14 Nausicaš of the Valley of the Wind--11 Spirited Away--14 The Secret of NIMH--2 Kubo and the Two Strings--8+1 = 9 The Dark Crystal--19-2 = 17 ^Here it correctly goes up to 9. The Hobbit--12 Princess Mononoke--14 Nausicaš of the Valley of the Wind--11 Spirited Away--14 The Secret of NIMH--2 Kubo and the Two Strings--8 The Dark Crystal--19 Corrected Kudo again @rczarnec incorrectly / accidentally added one to its total ^ Here it incorrectly goes down to 8. The Hobbit--12 Princess Mononoke--14 Nausicaš of the Valley of the Wind--11 Spirited Away--14 The Secret of NIMH--0 - Sorry :( Kubo and the Two Strings--9 The Dark Crystal--19 ^ Here it goes up to 9, should go up to 10. The Hobbit--13 Princess Mononoke--14 Nausicaš of the Valley of the Wind--11 Spirited Away--14 Kubo and the Two Strings--7 The Dark Crystal--17 Xaelvaenís downvote doesnít seem to have been counted, so Iím putting it in blue. ^ Here it goes down to 7, should go down to 8. The Hobbit--14 Princess Mononoke--14 Nausicaš of the Valley of the Wind--9 Spirited Away--14 Kubo and the Two Strings--8 The Dark Crystal--15 ^Here it goes up to 8, should go up to 9. Kubo and the Two Strings should currently be at 9.

Saturday, 6th October, 2018

  • 12:45 AM - Jay Verkuilen quoted Xaelvaen in post Worlds of Design: Tabletop RPGs Are the Most Naturally Co-operative Games
    I like your comparison between alignments and cooperation many times being at odds, @lewpuls - it is often the case unless the campaign specifically revolves around the idea that evil and good must somehow work together for a greater goal. Lawful Good and Lawful Evil both want the world to remain, so it's good to put aside their differences and stop the big bad Chaos from wrecking the Earth outright, as an example. As it is now October, take a read through Roger Zelazny's A Night in the Lonesome October. The protagonist is Jack the Ripper's dog. Jack is a hero in the story. IMO an interesting campaign might be a Order vs Chaos oriented one, meaning devils and the lawful good dwarves might be on the same side vs. djinn, elves, and demons.

Friday, 5th October, 2018

  • 09:03 PM - Lanefan quoted Xaelvaen in post Burning Questions: How Do You Deal With Ludicrous Players?
    Yeah, I absolutely employ the "dynamic encounter" approach myself, making situation difficulty not based on any sort of initial design, but how I want the characters to feel after the encounter is said and done. I use the reinforcements tactic myself, and consumables too (bad guys have some healing potions when necessary, or spell scrolls laying about). If they don't need to use the consumables, they didn't exist of course so there's no extra treasure to worry over doling out - never so much as to make a fight obnoxious or endless either, then again pretty hard for potions to do that with action economy anyway.This leads into an argument that can - and has, in the past - become an entire long thread on its own: dynamic encounters vs. static encounters; and is a DM cheating if she changes the parameters of an encounter on the fly while it's in process of being played out. Put another way: should we design based on how we want our characters to feel, or should we design what we design and le...
  • 07:49 PM - Jay Verkuilen quoted Xaelvaen in post Burning Questions: How Do You Deal With Ludicrous Players?
    Understand what you're getting at now. I can see how DMs who aren't used to a specific player, or that specific type of play will have a lot of trouble adapting, for sure. I can very easily descend into DM vs. player if not handled well by both player and DM. The search for exploits and exceptions was one reason I really disliked DMing 4E. I never really developed a feel for it the way I had for other editions. Yeah, I absolutely employ the "dynamic encounter" approach myself, making situation difficulty not based on any sort of initial design, but how I want the characters to feel after the encounter is said and done. I use the reinforcements tactic myself, and consumables too (bad guys have some healing potions when necessary, or spell scrolls laying about). If they don't need to use the consumables, they didn't exist of course so there's no extra treasure to worry over doling out. You can even hand out the consumables. Consumables like some healing potions or the like are gre...
  • 07:35 PM - Ralif Redhammer quoted Xaelvaen in post Burning Questions: How Do You Deal With Ludicrous Players?
    Heh, that sounds hilarious and awesome. I've seen Galavant. Pretty funny stuff. The lead actor was also in the excellent Frankenstein's Army, where horrible things happen to him. On this note, we ran a Galavant inspired campaign after the first season (link included in case people weren't aware of it). It's a musical tv series set in a fantasy genre that absolutely cracked us up. No one was allowed to play an actual 'Bard' in that we were all musically inclined and occasionally had to belt out into song (as was the nature of the world), even the baddies did it too - a truly hilarious campaign I will treasure for ages to come.
  • 07:28 PM - Jay Verkuilen quoted Xaelvaen in post Burning Questions: How Do You Deal With Ludicrous Players?
    Can you give me a specific example of this? I ask not argumentatively, I add, but only in that I've not had to deal with rules lawyers in a very long time because my table has a strict 'confront after the session' policy, even when I DM at the FLGS, so I'm curious how this impacts live play, or if others don't use that policy and why? Especially since the induction of 5E and its emphasis on 'rulings' I'd imagine that rules lawyers have lost a lot of their bluster, or is my conception of this misguided? I don't think "rulings not rules" really helps. Rules lawyering has been around since the early days of the game, after all. What 3.X and 4E tried to do in somewhat different ways was provide so many rules that the DM could basically look up the answer. This failed because, well, the burden was high and there was still no way for every last thing to be delineated. Furthermore, there were still unexpected interactions floating around. But if you want an example of how being a really good ...
  • 05:41 PM - Jay Verkuilen quoted Xaelvaen in post Burning Questions: How Do You Deal With Ludicrous Players?
    It's all about intent. The player who, not because of his or her character, but because of their own obnoxiousness, tries to intentionally go against the flow of the adventure and story, and even their fellow party members, is a bad egg. This needs to be addressed. <...> That sort of disruptive behavior isn't the sort of thing I agree with just 'rolling with the punches' and making in character consequences, because it's taking time away from the greater whole, and more than one person is suffering - your entire group is, which was likely the intended goal of the disruptive player in the first place. This is a very good explanation of griefer-type behavior. However, the other type of disruptive action, which is just a player being incredibly clever and 'breaking your careful planning' with an amazingly well-thought-out action, should not only be met by the DM easily adapting to the change in their plans and the melding of the story, but an appropriate reward as well. Crazy action...
  • 04:56 PM - Ralif Redhammer quoted Xaelvaen in post Burning Questions: How Do You Deal With Ludicrous Players?
    Totally agreed. Thereís a world of difference between someone doing something/not doing something because of established character personality traits, and someone that just comes up with a rando action because they think itíd be funny, or even purposefully trying to sabotage the game. Iíve played with those sorts of players, and let me say, I donít play with them now. Not saying D&D canít be funny, because heck yeah it is. But when a character is only defined so far as a conveyance for jokes and whatever bizarre impulses spring into a playerís mind, no thank you. It's all about intent. The player who, not because of his or her character, but because of their own obnoxiousness, tries to intentionally go against the flow of the adventure and story, and even their fellow party members, is a bad egg. This needs to be addressed.

Thursday, 4th October, 2018

  • 10:53 PM - 5ekyu quoted Xaelvaen in post 5e GMs - Why or Why Not Wandering Treasure?
    I like your terminology for this - "wandering treasure" - and yes, I use it sparingly. I much prefer magic items to help tell a story that relates to a character as opposed to its own story, unless I'm going to be doling out an artifact or sentient magical item, in which it having its own unique story is sometimes a better option. How this pertains to the wandering aspect: As I make up these specific items for the players, or even find that perfect item, it'd be sort of redundant to put them all in the obvious chest after a big boss is slaughtered after a dungeon or at the end of an adventure. I like to put them in as many unexpected places as possible. So, Perception, Investigation, Survival checks - sometimes a check isn't even involved necessarily - if a PC chooses to specifically check out an area that wasn't even really all that suspicious but I had chosen it for a reason, and their instincts lined up to my planning, well good for them. I'll also add, that just because a PC passes up...
  • 09:42 PM - CapnZapp quoted Xaelvaen in post News Digest: Evil Hat Scales Back Release Schedule, D&D Errata Announced, Star Trek Adventures: DS9, and more!
    https://twitter.com/jeremyecrawford/status/1023352291837935616?lang=en Pretty much. Whether it actually didn't score well (the revision), or it's just too complicated to change them out, looks like the revision, or any revision, just won't be happening.Nah, they just figure 5E is enough of a hit that they don't need to work at it no more... [emoji58]
  • 09:41 PM - Abstruse quoted Xaelvaen in post News Digest: Evil Hat Scales Back Release Schedule, D&D Errata Announced, Star Trek Adventures: DS9, and more!
    https://twitter.com/jeremyecrawford/status/1023352291837935616?lang=en Pretty much. Whether it actually didn't score well (the revision), or it's just too complicated to change them out, looks like the revision, or any revision, just won't be happening. The good news is that there's at least the semi-official update through Unearthed Arcana and, unless you're playing Adventure League, there's no Game Police to kick down your door to arrest you for not sticking to RAW. And a lot more DMs seem to be willing to use non-official content these days as there's an entire generation who weren't scarred by the D20 System OGL glut of broken third-party sourcebooks.

Tuesday, 2nd October, 2018

  • 09:45 PM - Gradine quoted Xaelvaen in post Roll20 users; are my impressions right or wrong on this
    I merely wanted to point out that it was a possible reason for the behavior having existed, not that I condoned it in any way. That's fair; though if your intent isn't to condone behaviors/attitudes you might want to avoid playing devil's advocate. Would clear up a lot of confusion that way :p
  • 09:22 PM - billd91 quoted Xaelvaen in post Roll20 users; are my impressions right or wrong on this
    For the sake of devil's advocate, and only for that reason, yes - "safe space" was a reason for "boys" to keep "girls" out of their nerdy interests. Now to graduate that to "men" and "women" is an entirely different question entirely. There is a maturity question to analyze, obviously. It wasn't just jocks picking on the nerds, but also the women attracted to the type that would demean and demoralize - don't think all women/girls of the times were innocent. Influenced by the overly male dominated culture? Sure, but far from innocent. That likely had a major influence on how it all emotionally graduated. That might have made sense if it weren't for that fact that girl nerds were being picked on just as much by the jocks and mean girls. It doesn't explain how nerd boys needed a safe space from nerd girls.
  • 09:16 PM - Gradine quoted Xaelvaen in post Roll20 users; are my impressions right or wrong on this
    For the sake of devil's advocate, and only for that reason, yes - "safe space" was a reason for "boys" to keep "girls" out of their nerdy interests. Now to graduate that to "men" and "women" is an entirely different question entirely. There is a maturity question to analyze, obviously. It wasn't just jocks picking on the nerds, but also the women attracted to the type that would demean and demoralize - don't think all women/girls of the times were innocent. Influenced by the overly male dominated culture? Sure, but far from innocent. That likely had a major influence on how it all emotionally graduated. Internalized misogyny is a hell of a thing. I can think of few demographics in our culture more proselytized to, torn in more (often contradictory) directions and held to more (often contradictory) ideals, more demonized and infantilized and vilified and lionized as teenage girls. That anyone is able to emerge from that gauntlet with a strong sense of identity and self is a constan...

Monday, 1st October, 2018

  • 03:57 PM - Ralif Redhammer quoted Xaelvaen in post Drinking Problem
    The two that spring to mind immediately are Fish House Punch and Hot Buttered Rum: Fish House Punch: 2.0 quarts Jamaican Rum 1.0 quart brandy 0.5 pint peach brandy 0.5 pint maraschino liquor 1.0 quart freshly made green tea 1.0 pint lemon juice 1.0 pound powdered (not confectionersí) sugar 1.0 bottle champagne Stir together in a large pot with lid. Let brew (they advise for two days). When ready, pour over ice in a punch bowl and stir in the champagne Hot Buttered Rum: 1 1/2 oz dark rum 1/4 oz maraschino liqueur very hot black tea 3/4 oz lemon juice 3/4 oz sugar (1-1.5 tablespoon) cloves slim pat of butter Pre-heat your glass, preferably a clear one. Add your rum, maraschino, lemon and sugar while the tea is steeping in another container. Add the hot tea. Garnish with a strip of lemon peel studded with cloves and float the butter on top. Of the two, I prefer Hot Buttered Rum. Though, I think it is a little smoother with gold rum in place of dark. As far as tea and spirits, I've n...
  • 03:23 PM - Ralif Redhammer quoted Xaelvaen in post Drinking Problem
    Moonshine, real moonshine, is dangerous stuff. The stuff I had at the in-laws Thanksgiving the one year, well, one taste was enough. I knew more than that and Iíd be in trouble. And it was frightfully smooth. I will say that sometimes, when gaming at home, I look like Iím drinking more than I am. Iíll disappear into the kitchen and come back with a tall tiki mug. But really, itís something like iced mint tea with lavender simple syrup and a splash of bitters. going blind from the local Moonshine wouldn't work well at all for DMing.


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