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Sunday, 14th March, 2004, 10:04 AM #1
Acolyte (Lvl 2)
d20 Lankhmar (for anyone who's interested): A Work in Progress
Well, with the release of Unearthed Arcana, I've (slowly) began work on creating a D&D/d20 rule set for playing & running a Lankhmar-based campaign. There is soem other versions on the Yahoo! Lankhmar group, but I'm going to take a somewhat different approach.
Here's what I have so far:
With some exceptions (& DM permission), the only race (typically) available in Nehwon is human.
I'm not providing different stat sets for the different human cultures. Instead, I'm using the regional feats system introduced in the Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting (tailored for Nehwon, of course). The regions I intend to create/develop are:
- Cold Wastes
- Great Forest
- Rime Isle
- Great Marsh
- Lakes of Pleea
- Nehwon Ghouls
- Ice Cap
- Lankhmar Below
In addition to this, I will provide stats for a few human variants (like Quarmallian humans), as well as for classic Nehwon races like the Invisibles of Stardock, the crystal-fleshed Ghouls, Ice Gnomes, Simorgyans, and Rat-folk (the Rats of Lankhmar Below, using the shapechanging rat hengeyokai from Oriental Adventures as the basis instead of wererats).
I'm also going to provide a few creative addtions, for any less-canonical Lankhmar games: Winter Elves (based off of the winter elf entry from Lankhmar random encounter charts in the 1st ed. Deities & Demigods), Half-Winter Elves, Half-Ogres, Half-Orcs (to represent a magically-engineered race, ala Saruman & his Uruk-Hai), Planetouched (for example, Air Genasi could work for inhabitants of Arilia), Feytouched, & possibly a few others as well.
Instead of modifying the PHB classes, I'm going to use the 3 generic classes from UA: warrior, expert, & spellcaster. Warriors & experts will be used as is, while the spellcaster will be slightly modified:
In Nehwon all spellcasters are treated as arcane spellcasters (subject to arcane spell failure while wearing armor). There are 3 different types of spellcasters in Nehwon: black mages, elemental mages, and white mages.
A black mage casts arcane spells, and uses his/her Intelligence stat for determining his/her abilities as a spellcaster.
A black mage cannot begin play with an Alliegiance to good. A black mage gathers Taint points from using his/her spells--after obtaining a certain # of Taint points (&/or after gaining access to 3rd-level spells), a black mage must have an Alliegiance to evil.
A black mage can select any spell from the Players’ Handbook except for those spells with the good descriptor (e.g., protection from evil, detect evil, etc.). Also, at least half (rounded up) of the black mage's spells must come from the sorcerer/wizard list.
An elemental mage casts arcane spells, and uses his/her Charisma stat for determining his/her abilities as a spellcaster.
An elemental mage can select any spell from the Players’ Handbook. However, at least half of the elemental mage’s known spells (rounding up) should relate to the mage’s chosen element.
A white mage casts arcane spells, and uses his/her Wisdom stat for determining his/her abilities as a spellcaster.
A white mage must begin play with an Alliegiance to good. A white mage can select any spell from the Players’ Handbook except for those spells with the evil descriptor (e.g., protection from good, detect good, etc.). Also, at least half (rounded up) of the white mage's spells must come from the druid list.
Despite what type of mage a spellcaster is, the number of bonus spells gained from a high attribute applies to both the spellcaster's spells/day & the spellcaster's total # of spells known.
In addition to this, I'll develop some Lankhmar-based prestige classes (or use/adapt existing ones). Some PrCs will include Lankhmar Guild Thieves, Northerner Berserkers, Priests of (A Certain Deity), Gladiators, Northerner Skalds, Ice Witches, Eastern Fire Sorcerers, and others.
Character Money & Equipment:
For ease of use in game, here's the coins & their values for d20 Lankhmar:
Lankhmar coin = D&D coin
Iron tik = Copper piece
Bronze agol = Silver piece
Silver smerduk = Gold piece
Gold rilk = Platinum piece
Diamond-in-amber gluditch = 1,000 gold pieces
As for equipment, there'll be a few basic changes:
- Only a few certain exotic weapons (like the bastard sword, whip, dwarven waraxe, & other somewhat-more-realistic weapons) will be available to PCs. Very exotic weapons (like the double-bladed sword, repeating crossbow, orc double-axe, & others) will only be available much later in game, or available to certain character concepts/kinds (like gladiators, who are more likely to be given such weird weapons in order to enhance their "entertainment value").
- The cost of all heavy armors will be tripled (since heavy armor is rarer in Lankhmar).
- Very few, if any, special materials for weapons & armor.
- Magic items will be much rarer.
Here are some optional rules that will be standard fare for d20 Lankhmar:
- Use of Action Points (ala d20 Modern), from UA;
- Use of Alliegiances from d20 Modern instead of Alignment;
- Use of Contacts, from UA;
- Use of Reputation score, from UA;
- Use of a class-based Defense Bonus (not the 1 listed in UA, but rather something different that stacks with Armor Bonuses); OR use the Defense Roll mentioned on p. 25 of the DMG;
- Use of Incantations for certain types of spells, from UA;
- Use of Taint & Taint Points (in regards to using black magic spells/incantations), from UA; &
- Character Traits & Flaws, from UA.
Other things I might consider (or at least list as options for the game):
- Class-Based Defense, from UA, along with Armor as Damage Resistance;
- Use of VP/WP instead of HP, from UA;
- Spell points, from UA;
- Psionics (for Quarmallian characters);
- Additional (rare) Races for PCs/NPCs; &
- Use of Gunpowder in Nehwon.
I also intend to work on a list of feasible monsters to encounter while adventuring in Nehwon (including any modifications due to the low-magic setting), notable NPC stats (like the Twain, their mentors, key allies & foes, & others), the Gods & Powers of Nehwon, & other useful info.
FYI--I've started work on the Twain. Here's some basic info:
Male human expert/warrior
Alligiances: Grey Mouser, Good, (current lover, whether it's Vlana, Afreyt, or another); may include others such as Ningauble, Lankhmar, &/or Rime Isle
Starting (1st-level character) stats:
S 18; D 17; C 18; I 15; W 10; Ch 17
Notable gear: Masterwork bastard sword (Graywand); dagger; battle axe; mighty composite longbow; masterwork leather (or studded leather) armor; mountain climbing gear.
Male human expert/black mage/warrior
Alliegiances: Fafhrd, (current lover, whether it's Ivrian, Cif, or another); may include others such as Sheelba, Lankhmar, &/or Rime Isle
Starting (1st-level character) stats:
S 15; D 18; C 17; I 16; W 10; Ch 17
Notable gear: Masterwork rapier (Scalpel); masterwork dagger (Cat's Claw); sling; masterwork leather (or studded leather) armor; masterwork thieves' tools.
Well, what do you think so far? Any comments/ideas/criticisms/etc.?
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