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  1. #41
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    A 1e title so awesome it's not in the book (Lvl 21)

    AbdulAlhazred's Avatar

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    Quote Originally Posted by Garthanos View Post
    Designing the Martial Techniques is bringng home the interchangeability of things... ie your generic boon idea.
    Yeah, its hard not to think of those as things that I would make into feats in 4e. At least they are blurring the lines a good bit. I think that was one of the things which convinced WotC not to push the idea. Not that it was bad, but it was hard to come up with a rule for contributors that said what was a feat and what was a practice.

    Luckily HoML doesn't have that issue...

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    Boons

    Boons are attributes which characters have or which they gain by virtue of their race, class, level, and/or story. They may be rewards earned through adventuring, such as ancient magical treasures, they may represent knowledge gained by the character in the course of pursuing her career, or they may be things acquired by the character as a result of exposure to mystical forces beyond human ken.
    Every character has various boons. Each boon is an attribute of the character which modifies the character in some way. Some may alter the values of other attributes, others may allow the character to do entirely new things that are not normally possible. Lists of possible boons are provided in various places. Each race has racial boons which a character may acquire. Each class has class boons which characters of that class may acquire. In addition there are items, spells, etc., all of which are boons. The Game Master generally assigns most boons, but players may have a choice of boons granted by class, race, and other player selected options.
    The higher level the character is the more potent their boons may become. Some boons don't change with level (a permanent bonus for instance is equally valuable at all levels), but others such as the damage dealt by an attack might increase with each level to keep pace with the challenges the character faces. In many cases these boons grant powers, which are discussed separately in their own section.
    Major and Minor Boons

    Some boons are minor, they are things that help a character but are not critical to the definition of the character. Minor boons might include money, minor magical equipment, potions or other consumables which can be used only once, a small trick or minor ability the character has, etc. Major boons are character-defining benefits which represent significant increases to the power of a character and help to shape the character's story and identity in the game. A major boon might be a powerful magical sword, a spell which grants mastery of fire, or the ability to blend into shadows and vanish from ordinary men's sight. The status of a particular boon MAY be situational. A character who's life goal is to establish a kingdom and rule the known world might find the title to a strong fortress to be a major boon. A character who's goal is to discover all the true names of the things in the world might not find ownership of a fortress to be a defining part of her story.
    In general when a PC receives a major boon the character is also increased in level by one and gains the benefits of her new level as soon as the GM decides it is appropriate (such as when the party reaches the next scene or returns to a safe haven). Receiving a minor boon has no effect on the character's level, but most PCs should receive one to three such boons per level, depending on their exact nature and value. For example a PC might easily find a potion, a modestly valuable gem, and a map of the local area. Another character might receive a more substantial amount of cash, and a third character might find a suit of expensive armor which fits him particularly well. All of these might represent minor boons appropriate to a PC over the course of a level, however the GM has complete freedom in parceling out such things.
    Limitations

    Similarly to boons each character may have limitations. Whereas boons primarily define additional or enhanced capabilities of a character, or give it extra resources, limitations put restrictions on what a character can do. For instance a halfling would have the 'small' limitation. This means the character has a more limited ability to use large weapons and carry heavy loads. Unlike boons however each limitation can also work in favor of the character. Thus the halfling's small size may prevent him from using a 2-handed sword, but it also allows him to squeeze into small areas and avoid disadvantage in places with very low ceilings.
    The reason limitations are designed this way is simple. If they were provided simply as disadvantages with no corresponding advantage they would simply punish whomever had them. If players were allowed to gain boons to cancel out the negative aspects of limitations then there would be constant temptation to 'min/max' and game the system. Instead limitations are assigned whenever and however is appropriate as a whole package. They may still on average benefit or hamper a character more than not, but on the whole they are less subject to being gamed.
    Curses

    Curses are a form of limitation which is generally imposed on a character by the GM for a story reason. These might be a genuine curse, or a terrible disease, or possibly a malign magical item which the character is unable to get rid of. In general these sorts of limitations can be cured and are at least somewhat temporary. In some cases curing them may be difficult, but it is possible to remove almost any curse except the very most terrible ones, which are only earned in response to terrible crimes or circumstances. In a simple case a curse might just grant disadvantage, or produce some other similar effect under some conditions, more complicated cases are normally treated as afflictions (see below).
    Afflictions


    Name: Sample Affliction
    Description: This is a nasty one!
    Keywords: Disease
    Check: Constitution
    Frequency: 10 minutes
    Stage 1- DV 10: You got it now, lose one Vitality Point.
    Stage 2- DV 10: Lose one Vitality Point and you are Dazed.
    Stage 3- DV 12: Lose one Vitality Point and you are incapacitated.

    An affliction is a type of curse, condition, wound, or disease which can progress through various stages. This could also represent something like a long-acting poison. Each affliction has 2 or more stages, and each stage has a recovery DV. If a character succeeds at the recovery check then they move to the next lower stage of the affliction. If a character's check result is a critical failure then the character's affliction worsens and they move to the next higher stage. The final stage of an affliction often inflicts some permanent Limitation on a character, or possibly even something worse, like death. Each affliction has a standardized description as shown here. Note that unless stated otherwise the effects of an affliction are cumulative. That is if you have stage 3 you also suffer from the consequences of stages 1 and 2. The frequency attribute of the affliction indicates how often a recovery check is required, it may vary anywhere from once per combat round on up to once a month. Many afflictions have daily frequency, which is typical of a wide variety of diseases, poisons tend to act more quickly, and some curses may only require a check once a month or even less often.
    Treatment- Afflictions vary greatly in their treatment. A poison might have an antidote or it could be cured by application of a specific ritual, Cure Poison. Unless the affliction provides specific rules its keywords define the general categories of things which will cure it. Most treatments, when applied, reduce the severity of the affliction by one stage. If a character is attended by someone with the Heal skill this person can assist the character (see the helping rules) using a Heal check at the same DV as the recovery check DV. Success in this check grants the character advantage on her recovery check roll.
    Some afflictions may provide slightly different procedures. A given affliction may behave in ways substantially different from that given here, but the general concept is always the same.
    Boon Description


    Boons vary widely in their content, but they are all described in a roughly similar fashion.
    Name: This is the name of the boon.
    Association: If this boon is associated with a class, race, background, or some other game element then this is noted.
    Prerequisites: In a few cases a boon may have preconditions which must be met before the character is able to acquire the boon.
    Level: The boon's level indicates the approximate minimum level where the boon is usually granted to a player character or NPC opponent.
    Type: This is either Major, Minor, or Limitation.
    Description: This is a general narrative description of what the boon represents. It may contain as much background information as is required to put the boon into story context.
    Benefits: This describes the actual mechanical benefits of the boon. This usually includes some sort of power, bonus, proficiency, etc. Some boons may have several benefits. Some may require the player to choose between various options.
    Disadvantages: Limitations have this section, which describes the negative aspects of the Limitation.

    Example Boon



    Example Boon
    Level: 1 Major
    Association: Rabbits
    Prerequisites: None
    Description: This is the narrative description of the boon. It explains what the boon is in story terms, what it does and how it can be acquired.
    Benefits: This explains the benefits of the boon, including any power choices it grants and/or any attributes a character acquires by having the boon.
    Disadvantages: If this is a Limitation then any disadvantages will be discussed here, including any attributes which the character may acquire by having the limitation.


    This format is useful for general boons, ones that aren't of a more specific type. There may be some categories of boons which have different formats, and some things may be boons in some contexts but not in others, like ritual formulas which don't specifically follow this format at all.

    Boon Acquisition

    There are many ways in which boons might be acquired. Some of these possibilities are under the control of players, and some are the province of the GM. There is no exhaustive or definitive list of these ways. GMs should simply award boons when the character's circumstances make it narratively appropriate. Some possibilities might include:

    • Treasure: the boon is an item, or is granted as a consequence of acquiring an item. Magic items are the usual form this takes, but it is possible the boon isn't the item itself, it could be an effect of acquiring an item, or of just handling it.
    • Training: a character may spend some period of time mastering skills, knowledge, and/or techniques which grant the boon. This may take substantial time, or it may happen reasonably quickly depending on the situation and the nature of the boon.
    • Imbuement: a character may become imbued with a boon. That is the character's nature may be altered or enhanced in some way. Exposure to magical forces, for example, might result in a character gaining some sort of ability. This could happen fairly quickly, though it may also take some time for such a change to set in, or for the character to master his new power.
    • Grant: greater powers, gods etc., may grant a character access to some of their power, allowing the character access to some new boon. This kind of acquisition is often quite sudden, although characters may still need to master what they have been gifted.
    • Manifestation: a character may simply find that he or she has some kind of heritage or gift that was not previously known or understood, or an existing boon or other attribute may be mastered or increase in power so that a new boon is acquired. This is often a long process and may involve a significant part of the character's backstory.


    OK, I don't know if anyone will READ that wall of text, lol. The TL;DR is



    1. Boons are things characters gain or have, attributes of the character which aren't automatically present like hit points or strength.
    2. Boons can scale in effect with level.
    3. Some boons are major, some are minor.
    4. Major boons increase the character's level. Each time you get one, you level up one level.
    5. Minor boons don't increase the character's level. There's no specific definitive number of these that characters have, they are just stuff which isn't definitive of the character. Consumables, money, etc. are generally minor boons.
    6. Limitations are 'anti-boons'. They always produce some sort of disadvantage for the character, but they may also help in some situations. (as an aside, there's no rule I made about whether a Limitation could serve to advance a character a level, but I think it can count as a 'major boon'. Something like lycanthropy might qualify).
    7. Curses are a subtype of limitation. There aren't any curse specific rules, except "curses usually have a cure."
    8. Afflictions are curses which use basically the old 4e disease track. They include wounds, diseases, poison, etc.
    9. Boons could be acquired as treasure, training, imbuement, grant, or manifestation. This isn't a definitive list, and the 'form' of the boon doesn't affect its mechanics.
    Last edited by AbdulAlhazred; Saturday, 16th June, 2018 at 05:10 PM.

  3. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by AbdulAlhazred View Post
    Yeah, its hard not to think of those as things that I would make into feats in 4e. At least they are blurring the lines a good bit. I think that was one of the things which convinced WotC not to push the idea. Not that it was bad, but it was hard to come up with a rule for contributors that said what was a feat and what was a practice.

    Luckily HoML doesn't have that issue...
    To tell you the truth It all reminds me of somethings Gygax suggested about Spells being a Wizards magic Item treasure and how the Fighter +++ from 1e era who was considered a Warrior in 2e, ie the Paladins had Boons AND a limit on magic items. The connection has been there forever.

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