Rule 63 it is then


SOME spoilers for ghosts of saltmarsh

Yeah, exactly that. I have a sizeable group of 7 players in my ghosts of saltmarsh campaign. After an almost-TPK to giant weasels during first encounter and burning the "haunted" house, and framing a random scoundrel for that, they got right into one of Gellan's extravagant feasts for everyone because he's just that chill. And maybe also because he bought a cargo worth of goods from pirates that raided an exotic merchant tradeship.

Among all the exotic fruits and snacks stockpiled on the tables along the street for townsfolk to stuff themselves, was every shape and size you could guess. Giant watermelon-like blueberry? check. Spiky watery contraption with stock inside? check. A bush that in itself is a fruit with some umami flavour? CHECK. Obviously, OBVIOUSLY my clever players conducted a ritual of detect magic in one of the now-empty alleyways, and started to SEARCH something MAGICAL in the FRUITS and CHIPS. Well, I do not have a heart of stone and I did throw them a bone. Well, maybe a banana. A banana with runes that seemingly grew on it. And they found out that it radiates transmutation magic field. So, they took it from the pile, like adventurers do and continued with their adventurous lives.

Без названия.jpg

That is not the point, though and would not invoke a whole post on itself. You know what I expected with the aforementioned banana? Maybe a one-time gig. A fun moment when they make a citizen eat it, or maybe stuff it in someone's mouth. Or at bare minimum one of them would feel stupid enough to eat it then and there. What I didn't expext was that next day they decided to take a bite out of curiosity. 5 OF THEM DID. SIMULTANEOUSLY. EACH OF THEM TOOK A PIECE AND WENT TO SLEEP. WITHOUT A SECOND THOUGHT.

Well, you see, I have all-male player group here. All but one of them had male characters. And the banana... Well, it was supposed to change sex of a person who ate it. So, at dawn, our orc-fisherman-communist-barbarian (a proud founder of United Saltmarsh Seafaring Rodmen), who refused to partake in conspicuous consumption of unknown fruits, woke up on a boat full of girls of various shapes and classes.

god, what a chaos it caused. I even had to instill a homerule that players get 1d6-1 chest size so they would stop bombarding me with irrelevant AND embarassing questions. I tried to stir the adventure to at least a partial conclusion, but almost to no avail.

The question is, dear colleagues and comrades: What do I do in the situation?

It seems ok at first, but some of the players are not entirely fine with their sudden "curse", others are ok, but the conversation almost always drifts toward gender studies now. That being said, I strictly dont want to make the effects just go away. Noone and i mean NO_ONE eats unknown magical fruit together with almost everyone in the party on their own volition and escapes without consequences.
I would've thought a cursed magical banana would turn the character who ate it into a Chimp.

And, usually, if you split a potion or other magical consumable, it either doesn't work at all, or works for a greatly reduced duration. So, yeah, you'd be fine letting it wear off fairly quickly.


< BLAH HA Ha ha >
You can always make a secondary adventure of finding where the "magical fruit" came from, and finding a cure.

Researching and finding a "Ring of Gender Swapping (5e)", a Girdle of Gender Change (1e), etc.


Scion of Ceres
In my years of DMing I have learned something vital. Never, ever randomly curse the players for eating something you found on a random table, or made up on a whim.

Also, don't bring up sex-changing fruit around an all-male group. Like, ever. No matter how civil you think your players are, they are not civil enough.

Oh, ahem, the advice. Right.

Talk to your players about how their characters will be perceived, how will their friends react to their sudden change in sex.

Hope for the best. Hope that your game doesn't devolve into sexist jokes. It's kind of difficult to do something in on of these scenarios if your players are not mature enough to handle sex-changing curses.
A curse like a sex change is a direct roleplaying challenge to the players, INFLICTED upon them unwillingly. It doesn't matter that they should have been more cautious, the consequences you're putting on them are, "Accept this roleplaying challenge... OR ELSE..." Or else, what, exactly? Some players are just not up for a roleplaying challenge of any kind and fewer are going to be up for this kind in particular. You CANNOT force them to like it or even to roll with it as justifiable punishment, because they have to be WILLING participants in that punishment. They are not. Example:

"The adventure says clearly, the first PC that steps on that square becomes a tree. BAM! You're a tree. Now play a tree."
"But I don't want to play a tree. I want to play my Orc-fisherman-communist-barbarian."
"Tough. You're now a tree. You play a tree."
"I roll up another PC exactly like my PC before he became a tree."
"You can't. You have to play a tree."
"I quit."
"You can't quit - you have to come back here and play a tree and LIKE IT!"

Same as if they randomly change from male to female. Doesn't matter that they had it coming to them. You can't FORCE them to play along with their punishment if they really don't want to. You're only pushing them to drastic actions to get out from under it or never-ending misery and dislike of you and your campaign. Even if they do accept it as punishment, you can't force them to LIKE it and you forevermore have unhappy players that only get less happy the more insistent you are that they play female PC's they now DON'T like, that were formerly male and DID like.

Call your game a total loss or give them an out they WILL accept. Have some compassionate Female deity of Female Womanliness show up and say, "You are all PATHETIC examples of females of your species and ungrateful for the blessing you have been given. That one even has a beard! I will not tolerate you being female any longer. You are all hereby cursed to be male. Serves you right." Then for the future be aware of other roleplaying challenges that players DON'T have to go along with if they really don't want to, no matter how much they might deserve the burden - like forced changes to race, class, alignment...


It really depends on the maturity level of your group, as well as their style of play. In a heavy RP group with a significant level of maturity, I'd just let them run with it, roleplaying out the changes in mentality and cultural adjustment (expect chaos for the next session or two). If your group lacks the maturity (probable), I'd have the change not affect anything other than physical features, so they'll have to deal with the RP aspect a bit, with the occasional hilarious moments (see the Gamers 2 for some great examples). If your group is less concerned with RP, regardless of level of maturity, I'd just have NPCs make occasional comments of surprise or awkwardness (like being hit on by a drunken sailor). As always, PCs should act based on the determination of the player, within the context of the game style.


39th lv DM
Well I guess it's a good thing that there's this spell call Remove Curse.....
If they don't already have it, make it available for a price.
The price being whatever you wish to extract from the characters. Excess $? "Go do x for me 1st", "Now you owe NPC a favor/treasure/etc" in the future....

Or you can have it naturally expire after x time.
Maybe based on a save. Fail 3 times before a success & the only way back is through Remove Curse or something greater.

I recommend applying all of these (and simply rolling with whatever Inmature humor in the meantime).


Some day, I am going to read someone's coming-out story and it's going to start with "so everyone in my party in a D&D game ate a magical banana, and it turned us into girls, and at first I was sort of bothered, but it actually felt really comfortable for some reason..."

the Jester

Remove curse sounds like it will remedy this. No big deal. They just need to deal with it like any other situation. If need be, tell them out of game that they just need to figure it out.


Rotten DM
This was a bad idea in the 80s. Unless your group has a wacky sense of humor, this bad idea today.