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About Volund
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D&D 5e
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I'm back playing D&D again after at least a 30 year hiatus. I was one of those teenagers who bought the basic set, ran module B1 for my friends, and then started DM'ing AD&D games in HS. Checked out the free 5e rules online and thought they looked great, eliminating all the oddities of AD&D and keeping the fun. Started playing AL games in the fall of 2016 and got hooked in all over again.
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Grogbards, Tell Me Stories of Greyhawk Sunday, 14th April, 2019 04:43 AM

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Tuesday, 16th April, 2019

  • 06:00 AM - ParanoydStyle mentioned Volund in post Grogbards, Tell Me Stories of Greyhawk
    Oh, thanks everybody for the info! At first for some reason I thought the only response I got was Volund's so the entirety of my initial response was: Weird! I have actually run I2...in SPLINTER of all things as part of the playtest for Sometimes Little Wondrous Things, Ugly Things, and the reworked SPLINTER core rules. Aulicus was the inspiration for the Baphomet in Ugly Things because all True Dragons in SPLINTER are AL 10--which is the equivalent in D&D of CR20+--powerful enough to wipe the floor with the party and too powerful to be working for the Lizard King. All True Dragons in SPLINTER were ancient by default, so while not a dragon, the dragon-like Baphomet monster was created (even in chromatic flavors if I remember right, which True Dragons don't have in SPLINTER) to fill the role of the "Young Adult Dragon" slot in the bestiary. IIRC, the PCs killed him with an RPG (rocket-propelled grenade). I'm not against using Aulicus in my unnamed Greyhawk thingy, but I will always remember the SPLINTER version of him getting killed with a rocket launcher by my PCs. That was a really...

Friday, 15th February, 2019

  • 07:02 AM - MNblockhead mentioned Volund in post My return to TTRPG w/ 5e, reflections after 5 years
    @Volund Sounds like we had a similar journey, except I was into gaming through the 80s until just before 2e came out. Although I never had anything for Forgotten Realms, I have a lot of nolstalgia for Greyhawk, Dragon Lance, and the 1e Ravenloft module. When my interest was rekindled, before I started playing again, I devoured books about the hobby. For non-fiction I liked: Playing at the World, The Evolution of Fantasy Roleplaying Games, Fantasy Freaks & Gaming Geeks, Of Dice and Men, Empires of the Imagination. I also went back an re-read the first four Dragonlance novels and then read many of the formative works that influence Gary Gygax and his generation of games. In particular the Conan novels and Fafhrd and Gray Mouser. I also got back into reading more recent fantasy. Name of the Wind, but Patrick Rothfuss in particular blew me a way. As for gaming with kids. I also started my kids on Hero Labs. We also played some made-for-young-kinds 5e modules. But the system I always recommend...

Saturday, 6th May, 2017

  • 06:50 PM - Satyrn mentioned Volund in post What Rules do you see people mistake or misapply?
    Oh, but I should add that I am all for tracking the magic ammo my gnome battlemaster now has. Those are precious enough to warrant the effort and get fun out of that "Having less and less of what you need as you get closer and closer to the BBEG" that you mentioned, Volund, because I agree with you that that's a neat part of the game.

Saturday, 29th April, 2017

  • 03:50 PM - Maxperson mentioned Volund in post Crawford on Stealth
    I don't think Crawford was in agreement with the DM in this scenario. He talked about swords hitting surrounding obstacles and other clues giving away locations in an active fight. If the invisible, silent creature was not fighting, then yes. But once it is swinging it's sword around and smashing things it's location would be known unless it moved away then stood still after every attack (effectively taking a 'hide' action). But then again...how would the party know it was fighting something physical and not just some "force". There is no sound, no visual queues. You just get "hit" by something. Crawford's wording was in agreement with the way I took @Volund's wording. He stated that you have a general idea of where an invisible creature us unless it has some sort of cover. A silence spell or other way to make that creature silent would be "some sort of cover" for an invisible creature.

Friday, 28th April, 2017

  • 05:13 PM - iserith mentioned Volund in post Crawford on Stealth
    I think he was talking about noticing threats, not searching for a specific book (which at my table would be an investigation check anyway). In that context, it makes sense. When a hiding character' stealth check fails to surpass an observer's passive perception, the observer notices the hider. Otherwise, on the observers turn, he has to take the search action for an active search. As for rogues witg impossibley high passive perception...they spent the resources for it...a feat, high wisdom score, trained skill, expertise. So they will have lower ability at other things. That was my take on it as well. This whole discussion was very much in the context of someone sneaking up on someone else or a creature hiding in combat. They were vague enough on some statements that it could be taken the way @Volund heard it, but in context I think this was pretty much about stealthy creatures, not hidden objects. I may have to give it another listen.

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Wednesday, 20th March, 2019

  • 01:28 PM - iserith quoted Volund in post Perception should be an intelligence proficiency
    I have the opposite problem in the game I DM. In a party of six 4th level characters the highest passive perception is 12. Three PC's have Perception proficiency paired with a wisdom score of 10. One PC has a wisdom of 14 but isn't proficient in Perception. As a group they are much better at Arcana/History/Investigation/Religion skills. They're always pushing me to use Investigation to find traps and secret doors and I'm always pushing back that they have to notice something before they can investigate it. Perception lets you walk around with a broad awareness until something unusual grabs your attention. Investigation is putting your focus on a single thing and giving it all your attention. Using investigation to find traps and secret doors would require a focused examination of every surface: good lighting, brushing off dust, poking and probing, listening, moving slowly, etc. Certainly possible, but time consuming. If I was in a party like this, I'd suggest we put one person in front to ...

Thursday, 14th March, 2019

  • 03:37 PM - S'mon quoted Volund in post Good high level (10+) swords and sorcery themed adventures?
    Rappan Athuk. Have the party enter RA through the Cloister of the Frog God (Tier 2) or the Cavern of the Kraken (Tier 3). Using bits of Rappan Athuk sounds plausible - I've just come off a couple years running Stonehell megadungeon so not looking to do the whole thing. I'm really looking more for specifically Conanesque swords & sorcery fantasy rather than 'D&D fantasy' (even dark D&D fantasy) though. So closer to pulp action-horror adventure stories; the kind of thing Conan & co might have stumbled across. Looking at my resources, there are a ton of low level S&S themed adventures that could be converted; I think stuff like The Licheway & Halls of Tizun Thane from Best of White Dwarf just need their levels bumped up a bit, pretty easily done just by making goblins into Tcho-Tchos, lizardmen into Deep Ones etc. I had been hoping for specifically 5e D&D S&S but that isn't looking too promising.

Saturday, 9th March, 2019

  • 07:08 AM - guachi quoted Volund in post Dragon Talk Interview with Kate Welch re Ghosts of Saltmarsh
    Kate: That's partially because we wanted 5e to be more new-player friendly, and also that having a barrier to playing D&D, and that barrier being you have to know a lot about the history and the lore, that's a gate. That's not something that a lot of people have time for or even interest in, so the idea of gating anything behind this sort of vintage knowledge, certainly knowledge that I don't have, so if that had been a requirement of this job I definitely wouldn't have been sitting here. I did research it. I researched everything. The Forgotten Realms is just the most popular setting, and that's all there is to it. It's like they want to have their cake and eat it, too. Play upon nostalgia of old adventures and old monsters but not do the actual work of caring about their own 40-year history. "We don't care" is the WOTC philosophy. If you don't care about your company's own history, stop strip-mining it for lazy rehashes.

Friday, 8th March, 2019

  • 11:49 PM - gyor quoted Volund in post Dragon Talk Interview with Kate Welch re Ghosts of Saltmarsh
    Today's Dragon Talk podcast interview with Kate Welch, lead designer of Ghosts of Saltmarsh, offered a few more nuggets about this upcoming release. I pre-ordered GoS so I'm eager for any specifics about it. Some of this may be common knowledge, but here are some highlights that were new information for me. Kobold Press was responsible for updating the old adventures to 5e. The port city of Saltmarsh gets its own chapter. Best exchange of the podcast: "So what can you tell me about the town of Saltmarsh? ...Well, Saltmarsh is a pretty s#!tty place." There are different crime families and enterprises that are vying for control over Saltmarsh as well as law-abiding sailors. There will be "plenty of colorful new NPC's." There will be stat blocks for ships, which we already got in the UA Of Ships and the Sea, and also more robust rules for underwater adventures than are found in the DMG. For me, the most interesting part of the interview was about Greyhawk. If you are a fan of Greyha...
  • 07:30 AM - epithet quoted Volund in post Dragon Talk Interview with Kate Welch re Ghosts of Saltmarsh
    ... For me, the most interesting part of the interview was about Greyhawk. If you are a fan of Greyhawk, and were hoping that GoS was a sign that WotC will be devoting a future release to exploring this legacy setting, Kate Welch's cavalier attitude about Greyhawk will break your heart. If her comments reflect the overall philosophy of the D&D team (aside from Mike Mearls) then we won't be seeing any Greyhawk updates ever. ... Those comments can be summed up as "I don't know much at all about Greyhawk, but I don't really care because the Forgotten Realms is just much more popular." Well, no [excrement], Kate. Maybe if your team gave other D&D settings as much support as you've given to a setting from Magic the Card Game, more people would be playing somewhere other than the kitchen sink.

Sunday, 3rd March, 2019

  • 06:46 AM - 5ekyu quoted Volund in post [5E] Interrupting a Spellcaster via Ready Action
    Announcing that what is or isn't in the text of the rules (RAW) is not a valid reference point for discussing the rules, or that people's explanations of the rules as written are not worth considering if they don't work for WotC, is maybe not the most inviting approach to a forum discussion about rules. Also, I was shocked that the folks didn't immediately ask how the wizard was casting Shield when they weren't hit by an attack or magic missile! it was clarified that it was supposed to be shield of faith in a subsequent post and someone did bring it up.

Friday, 1st March, 2019

  • 04:02 PM - FrogReaver quoted Volund in post EK Half orc Shield and longsword
    What's better than Tasha's Hideous Laughter? Find Familiar! The other two you chose are perfect for an EK. Prot from Evil/Good is a great spell. Against the right creatures it gives you everything blur does and more for a lower level spell. And the list of creatures is works against is extensive: aberrations, celestials, elementals, fey, fiends, and undead. That's about 120 stat blocks from the MM. Everyone's game is different, but my EK uses this spell almost every session. Blur is better than Mirror Image despite the concentration. The images are easy to hit and once you start running into monsters with multi-attack they will end them in a round or two. Since your strength is already 20 you have feats to spare so go ahead and take War Caster and don't worry about concentration. I wouldn't take hold person. They get a save at the end of their turn, your DC isn't that high. I took the dueling FS for my half orc EK, who now is at 9th level. Your spells already make you a good tank with...

Thursday, 28th February, 2019

  • 12:28 PM - Adb0782 quoted Volund in post EK Half orc Shield and longsword
    #1 Hold Person only works on humanoids and not beasts/elementals and many of the other creatures you will likely encounter. While it's a great combo for humanoids, that's a pretty niche use case. #2 Ignore War Magic. It's bad without the melee cantrips. #3 Shield Spell is the best way to make him tanky (assuming DM let's you cast it while holding a sword and shield, DM may not allow this at all or may require warcaster feat or may be really nice and require neither) #4 For a fighter Duelist adds a ton of damage. Unless you expect the DM literally will have nearly every enemy all the time focus on you then take duelist over defensive #5 Ritual Caster really helps give you the out of combat caster feel with an EK. If all your worried about is combat then ignore it, but if not then it's very nice and fun. Somewhat less important if you don't have a wizard or bard in the party. #6 You can take very few non-abjuration and non-evocation spells so pick those very carefully. You know very...

Monday, 25th February, 2019

  • 09:19 PM - BookBarbarian quoted Volund in post If Medusa dies, do petrified players/NPCs come back from stone?
    The medusa description in the MM is very specific about how to end the petrification: The petrification lasts until the creature is freed by the greater restoration spell or other magic. In my current campaign, one of the PCs was turned to stone by a Medusa and after the rest of the group killed the Medusa they took some of her blood and found an alchemist to make a potion to restore the stoned PC. Something like that could work. Let them make medusa blood stone-to-flesh potions. Edit: Technically "oils". :) I'd let potions brewed from medusa remains fall in the "other magic" category specified in the monster text, but not go for the killing it ends the effect option.

Tuesday, 5th February, 2019

  • 10:18 AM - Sadras quoted Volund in post Expanded Weapons List
    I'm jealous of your D&D table-making skills! https://homebrewery.naturalcrit.com/ Everyone deserves to be a D&D-maker ;)

Sunday, 3rd February, 2019

  • 04:47 PM - FrogReaver quoted Volund in post An in-depth optimized Cleric build for levels 1-5
    Interesting take on a tempest cleric build. I like that you highlighted ways the character will play differently as they level up. One question on the ability scores: You never said what the Dex will be, but I am assuming 16 since you later mention a +3 dex mod? Beginning stats are 8/16/14/10/16/8? If that's the case, I think you are putting too much into Dex considering that you are wearing scale mail and giving up on the longbow after just one level. I'd suggest starting with Dex 13 + 1 from V. human and put the extra 4 points somewhere else, maybe 10 Str and 10 Cha or even just 12 Cha since Cha is a proficient save. Maybe put 2 points into Con to start with an odd score in case you wanted to take the Resilient (Con) feat down the line. [Edit: yes you'll still need Dex for that rapier, but IME the weapon attacks become a lot less important as you head into Tier 2] Spell selection isn't that important since you can change them out every day, but early on, when you only have 2-3 spel...

Monday, 28th January, 2019

  • 06:48 PM - ad_hoc quoted Volund in post Druid Armor Restrictions
    What's the point of med armor proficiency if you can't eventually find some? Hide armour is medium. That's why Druids have medium armour proficiency.

Sunday, 16th December, 2018

  • 07:58 PM - Gavin O. quoted Volund in post Is it worth it to dip Hexblade as a Paladin? A level by level comparison
    Nice analysis. I see this build fairly often and have played it twice myself: once starting at level 1, and another time in a different group starting at level 9. From experience starting at level 1, getting EB, Hexblade Curse, a short rest recharging Shield spell, and unifying your attack and spellcasting stats are all worthwhile even if you never took another level of warlock. Also, that one level dip is very painful to experience when you play just 3 hours every other week and you need an extra 9000 xp to finally feel like a full-fledged paladin with Extra Attack and Aura. I took my HB dip after Paladin 2 in order to have smites, spells, and a fighting style. Here is my cautionary tale about playing a high level Paladin/Hexblade/Sorcerer: Paladins and Hexblades are already very potent classes by themselves and combining them for an even more powerful PC may not be a good fit your group. If you want to play a hexadin because you've done some white room analysis of the massive crit-smite da...
  • 05:26 PM - Blue quoted Volund in post Most frustrating quirk of 5E?
    The VSM requirements for spellcasting are a quirk from the early days that just won't die. There are plenty of reasons for material component besides just expensive ones: Primarily, they allow mages to be disarmed the same way that weapon wielders can be disarmed in order to allow a whole category of narrative - capture, escape, imprisonment - anything where you need to be crafty. I remember having my wizard kidnapped in a city and was being taken away in a cart. I was able to escape my restrains by being clever and with a hidden item, get off the cart using verbal spells, spend an action to get both sand (for sleep for the low level guards) and a smooth rock (for some other spell) as components to cast. It's also useful to specify what spells can be cast silently (no V), important information for PCs who want to do something unnoticed either in sneaky or potentially even a social situation. That components are quirky in terms of execution in 5e I'll give you, and may want to massage th...

Monday, 10th December, 2018

  • 10:24 PM - Blue quoted Volund in post Optimizing a two person party
    I like your ideas, just exploring some options adjacent to them as well. One of the heavy armor clerics paired with a paladin would be my first choice. Both half elves for extra skills. Thought about Vuman but darkvision, fey ancenstry and extra skills won out. They start with excellent AC and mental saves and at 4th level they both take the Resilient (Con) feat to boost hp, saves, and concentration. This duo will be weak on knowledge skills, but Guidance will help. A half elf cleric can have the full suite of wisdom skills to address exploration and discovery: perception, insight, survival, animal handling. Being able to create food and water is a plus. They won't be stealthy. What about a swapping a Hill Dwarf Knowledge cleric. Hill Dwarf means +2 HPs per level (+2 CON plus Dwarven Toughness), +1 WIS, and if at some point does take a feat for heavy armor no need to worry abut STR for it. And Darkvision. Knowledge cleric makes up the half-elf skill loss though knowledge skills only, ...

Sunday, 9th December, 2018

  • 07:51 PM - Satyrn quoted Volund in post Ridding D&D of All Races - Multiple Choice Poll
    I am immediately suspicious of anyone who wants to play a tabaxi. Invariably they want to role play cute cat cliches like batting at balls of yarn, licking their paws to groom themselves and curling up to nap in sunbeams. "I have white furry feet, my name is Socks, and I like to collect shiny objects." Ugh. Go back to the island of cat people and save that s@!# for your furry con. It's a fair cop :blush:
  • 07:12 AM - doctorbadwolf quoted Volund in post Ridding D&D of All Races - Multiple Choice Poll
    I am immediately suspicious of anyone who wants to play a tabaxi. Invariably they want to role play cute cat cliches like batting at balls of yarn, licking their paws to groom themselves and curling up to nap in sunbeams. "I have white furry feet, my name is Socks, and I like to collect shiny objects." Ugh. Go back to the island of cat people and save that s@!# for your furry con. It’s possible you take life a bit too seriously. Also invariably? Nope. We’ve had several in our games so far, not to mention other feline people in older games and Star Wars games. Never had balls of yarn or the like. No more likely to nap in the sun that lizard people, both of which is just playing the idiosyncratic nature of different types of creature. I know humans who like to do that, as well, though not half as much as felines and reptiles.

Friday, 30th November, 2018

  • 08:29 AM - Harzel quoted Volund in post Questions on "Sight" Spells, and Ready Spell Action
    If we agree that: 1) the targeting rules require a line of sight 2) a target in another room that you can only see via a familiar has total cover and therefore can't be targeted If you are talking about the general targeting rule (as opposed to the description of a particular spell), what is required is a "clear path", which is not the same as "line of sight" (at least the way I understand the phrase "line of sight"). You can have "line of sight" to something on the other side of a Wall of Force, but you don't have a clear path to it, so it cannot be a spell target. Conversely, heavy fog might block line of sight, but you could still target something in the fog provided that there was not something like a wall between you and it and the particular spell did not require a target that you can see. Maybe, though, I misunderstand what you mean by "line of sight". Or maybe you only intended to address spells that require a visible target?

Monday, 19th November, 2018

  • 05:40 PM - neobolts quoted Volund in post Monsters that punch above their CR
    Flying Snakes - 1/8 CR. Only 5 hp, but AC 14, 60ft fly speed with Flyby ability. +6 to hit doing 1 piercing plus 7 poison. Against a swarm of them, if you don't have AoE damage (or poison resistance), you will die. I came looking for this. Flying Snake swarms will destroy a 1st level party. I have a party of PCs that still talk about the snakes in hushed tones at level 11, lest they appear without warning.

Monday, 29th October, 2018

  • 08:56 PM - RogueJK quoted Volund in post Re-Optimizing my Eldritch Knight
    Finally, since you are taking War Caster you might think about how to take advantage of the third feature of the feat and what cantrips you can cast instead of an opportunity attack. A Chill Touch attack would be at disadvantage because it's a ranged attack against a target within 5 feet, but Shocking Grasp is a melee attack. Shocking Grasp also works well with War Magic since you'll most likely want to make some sort of melee cantrip attack. Booming Blade would be a significantly better cantrip choice for a War Caster EK to use on Opportunity Attacks than Shocking Grasp. -Better damage (Weapon+STR+Spell damage, rather than just spell damage) -Greater chance to hit (since the attack roll is keying off STR instead of INT) -Additional damage if they continue to move (and considering that trying to move away from you is what triggered the OA to begin with, that extra damage will be almost guaranteed)


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