5E Four New Elf Subraces in Unearthed Arcana - Page 10
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  1. #91
    Quote Originally Posted by DEFCON 1 View Post
    But that doesn't solve what I think they were going for, which was the Shadowfell-equivalent to an Archfey. As it stands, there are quite a number of characters from folklore and the various editions of the game that are considered under the designation of Archfey. If you go to THIS THREAD on the Candlekeep forums you can find a huge list of characters, mainly from the 4E books dealing with the Feywild, that could all be consider potential Archfey patrons.

    But what is the equivalent list of Shadowlords? There really isn't any. The two biggest names that were designated as living in the Shadowfell were the Raven Queen and Orcus-- one of which is a god (and thus not a patron) and the other is a demon lord (and thus would fall under the Fiend patron designation.) The only other entity that I know of and can remember that lived in the Shadowfell as a potential Shadowlord patron (and I know this because I have a player whose Warlock PC was specifically created with Shadowfell patronage) was the archlich Mourne, from the Shades of Darkness organization article in Dragon 387. And even he's technically undead and thus should really be an Undying patron.

    I imagine there are probably other entities named in some of the various 4E Shadowfell-based articles or books, but none of them have gained any real foothold into our consciousness. Especially considering that unfortunately, most of the powerful entities you might consider for Shadowfell patronage are actually undead too, and thus would also fall under the Undying patron as well.

    Which is really why I have to wonder if Mike & Co. were actually thinking that quite possibly the most well-known "evil" and "darkness" type of entity that was NOT already a god, devil, or demon was in fact Blackrazor. Which is how they came upon the idea of using Blackrazor (and other evil intelligent weapons like it) as the potential patron for Shadowfellian PCs. Personally... I'd love it if they just went through their history to find other "Shadowlords"-- shadow or darkness-based entities that are not gods, demons, devils or undead that they could begin to emphasize and build up to the level we already have for all the various archfey. But my guess is that's a tall order and easier said than done.
    I think somewhere between the Shadowfell and the Feywild being on the same emotional spectrum (and being parallel in planar terms) and the history of seelie/unseelie in myth and fantasy, they may have come up with the idea that the Fell is another Fey realm. If that is the case (and they haven't specified this, although it feels like they are hinting around it), then at least some of the shadowlords are a subgroup of the archfey. One thing I did notice in the UA that had the hexblade is that they did not actually specify that the Raven Queen was a goddess; that seemed conspicuous in its absence since they did describe her. My suspicion is that outside of Points of Light, she has been ungoddessed (and turned into an archfey of the Shadowfell) so that she can fit in the FR or Ebberon (or any other setting) without complicating the religions of the setting. It is kind of like if Lolth showed up on Athas and they were like "that is the demon lord Lolth, not the goddess Lolth", then they could ignore anyone who complains "there are no gods in Dark Sun."

    On the plus side, it is a good sign for her to be popular enough to be used across settings.

    Also, so far there isn't a god type in 5e (Tiamat was a fiend), and since there also isn't a shadow or shade type, she needs something else if she is ever statted.

    For patrons, I think they are willing to give the DM and players as much room as they want, so the sword itself, whoever forged the sword, or someone who put a curse on it are all viable patrons.

  2. #92
    Quote Originally Posted by lowkey13 View Post
    But that's because I'm a horrible, judge-y person.
    You're a right paladin about it, one might say.
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  3. #93
    Quote Originally Posted by lowkey13 View Post
    Sure. Elves are like, the Walmart of races. Cheap, disposable, and sold in large quantities under horrid fluorescent lighting. It's fine, if you're into that sort of thing.

    Doesn't really appeal to my snob instincts, thought. I hear, "Elf," I think, "Oh noes, Brad wants to play Legolas again." I hear "Varieties of Elf," and I think, "Man, some people like sparkly vampires."

    But that's because I'm a horrible, judge-y person.
    As a rational being, it is your natural end to judge.

  4. #94
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marandahir View Post
    To be fair, Shadar-kai were Fey in 3.0's Fiend Folio. 4e's Shadow Humanoid Shadar-kai was cooler, though. Is the idea to merge Shadar-kai with Dusk Elves?

    Also, I'm confused, because Volo's Guide to Monsters cannibalized past artwork from both 4e Dark Ones and 4e Shadar-kai in the new 5e creature known as the Darkling. I thought Shadar-kai had been reworked into Darkling Elders, which was disappointing but not entirely off the mark given how the lore for the creature was pretty close to the Fiend Folio version.
    New creature? Heh! that's the 1e Dark Creeper/Dark Stalker, not a new creature.

  5. #95
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    Quote Originally Posted by DEFCON 1 View Post
    But that doesn't solve what I think they were going for, which was the Shadowfell-equivalent to an Archfey. As it stands, there are quite a number of characters from folklore and the various editions of the game that are considered under the designation of Archfey. If you go to THIS THREAD on the Candlekeep forums you can find a huge list of characters, mainly from the 4E books dealing with the Feywild, that could all be consider potential Archfey patrons.

    But what is the equivalent list of Shadowlords? There really isn't any. The two biggest names that were designated as living in the Shadowfell were the Raven Queen and Orcus-- one of which is a god (and thus not a patron) and the other is a demon lord (and thus would fall under the Fiend patron designation.) The only other entity that I know of and can remember that lived in the Shadowfell as a potential Shadowlord patron (and I know this because I have a player whose Warlock PC was specifically created with Shadowfell patronage) was the archlich Mourne, from the Shades of Darkness organization article in Dragon 387. And even he's technically undead and thus should really be an Undying patron.

    I imagine there are probably other entities named in some of the various 4E Shadowfell-based articles or books, but none of them have gained any real foothold into our consciousness. Especially considering that unfortunately, most of the powerful entities you might consider for Shadowfell patronage are actually undead too, and thus would also fall under the Undying patron as well.

    Which is really why I have to wonder if Mike & Co. were actually thinking that quite possibly the most well-known "evil" and "darkness" type of entity that was NOT already a god, devil, or demon was in fact Blackrazor. Which is how they came upon the idea of using Blackrazor (and other evil intelligent weapons like it) as the potential patron for Shadowfellian PCs. Personally... I'd love it if they just went through their history to find other "Shadowlords"-- shadow or darkness-based entities that are not gods, demons, devils or undead that they could begin to emphasize and build up to the level we already have for all the various archfey. But my guess is that's a tall order and easier said than done.
    Queen of Air and Darkness could be a fey pact or a shadow pact. Two for the price of one.

    Plus, for some reason...she really creeps me out. She's terrifying.

  6. #96
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    Quote Originally Posted by Azzy View Post
    New creature? Heh! that's the 1e Dark Creeper/Dark Stalker, not a new creature.
    To be fair, Dark Creeper and Dark Stalker were the two main varieties of Dark One in the 4e Monster Manual. So yeah, Darkling takes influence deeply in a throughline of 1e Dark Creeper/Stalker > 4e Dark One > 5e Darkling. But what I was remarking on was the using of Shadar-kai artwork for the Darkling Elder, seemingly fusing the Shadar-kai character art into the Dark One's flavor and throwing away the Shadar-kai flavor.

    I'm glad that Shadar-kai are coming back via Unearthed Arcana, but concerned that they will either have to redesign them from their awesome 4e artwork or else live with Shadar-kai that look exactly like Darkling Elders.

  7. #97
    I present: The Random Elf Generator.

    Table 1: Roll on this as many times as you like.
    1) High
    2) Sea
    3) Grey
    4) Mountain
    5) Cave
    6) Dark
    7) Light
    8) Shadow
    9) Dusk
    10) Fire
    11) Morning
    12) Earth
    13) Wind
    14) Avatar
    15) Water
    16) Lightning
    17) Storm
    18) Cloud
    19) Undersea
    20) Trailer
    21) Park
    22) Urban
    23) Demi-
    24) Half-
    25) Semi-
    26) Moon
    27) Sun
    28) Gold
    29) Bronze
    30) Copper
    31) Thinly-Veiled Analogy
    32) Brass
    33) Tin
    34) Cookie
    35) Platinum
    36) Fangirl
    37) Mary Sue (re-roll. All elves are Mary Sues)
    38) Merry
    39) Dragon
    40) Underhill
    41) Fey
    42) Fairy
    43) Faerie
    44) Olde
    45) Young
    46) Settled
    47) Low
    48) Tall
    49) Short
    50) Vulkan
    51) Russian (reverse the order of the names and change any instances of "Vulkan" to "Wulkan")
    52) Steel
    53) Hybrid
    54) Shapeshifter
    55) Shapeshifting
    56) Were-
    57) Wolf
    58) Bear
    59) Tree
    60) Hippy
    61) Cat
    62) Dippy
    63) Leaf
    64) Bark
    65) Shark
    66) Dolphin
    67) Fish
    68) Barricuda
    69) Pirrhana
    70) Tiny
    71) Winged
    72) Hovering
    73) Levitating
    74) Flying
    75) Inexplicably-
    76) Scientific
    77) Curious
    78) Lucky
    79) Lovecraftian
    80) Strange
    81) Fate
    82) Time
    83) Space
    84) Outside
    85) Outsider
    85) Out of
    86) Ninja
    87) Spy
    88) Clan
    89) Tribe
    90) City
    91) Culture
    92) Horrifying
    93) Rabbit
    94) Roman
    95) Teleporting
    96) Glamourous (on a 1-5 on 1d6, looks hideous under glamour)
    97) Alluring (on a 1-5 on 1d6, wants to inflict horrific tortures on you)
    98) Shy (on a 1-5 on 1d6, is really faking it to trick you into something horrific)
    99) Commanding (on a 1 on 1d10, their goals are more or less benign)
    100) Sidhe

    Table 2: Roll on this table once.
    1) Elf
    Last edited by Random Bystander; Wednesday, 15th November, 2017 at 04:25 AM. Reason: There was no 39. There always was a 39. We have always been at war with 39.
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  8. #98
    Quote Originally Posted by Ath-kethin View Post
    You're a right paladin about it, one might say.
    Ah, Paladins aren't "judgey". They just *know* people are horrible One of my players had a Paladin once who hated detect evil... and had to use it anyway, confirming too often that the world was dark and ugly...

  9. #99
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    Quote Originally Posted by guachi View Post
    Any reason we get race after race and sub-race after sub-race of elves dwarves and halflings but we only get one race of humans? Why don't we get different races of humans in 5e?
    We do, already in the PHB.

    They are all mechanically identical tho, and the reason is not balance IYKWIMAITYD.
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  10. #100
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    I don't really see why someone can criticize these elves subraces from a mechanical point of view, they are all very consistent with the PHB elven subraces, with minor variations around a clear pattern:

    +1 to secondary ability score
    3-4 bonus weapon proficiencies
    cantrip (or something roughly equivalent)

    The only subrace that's really different mechanical is the Avariels, which only get a flight speed, and this is IMO the REAL focus for playtesting... giving a PC flying capabilities at 1st level is always very risky, so they are probably pretty much looking for feedback on this one. Is the flight speed powerful enough so that the subrace should get no other bonuses? Is it even too much anyway?

    ---

    From a narrative point of view, it's legitimate to complain on having too many subraces of a single race, particularly if it's the only race getting this treatment.

    It should go without saying that even if these get published (but my bet is that they won't, or at most only 2 of them) nobody is forced to allocate them to every fantasy world (there are lots of DMs who don't allow even Drow from the PHB).

    Still, if we keep getting lots of elven subraces at every edition, it's because there are still a lot of players who want them. "Deal with it".
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