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Variant Turning: Negative (Or rather positive) Levels

Kae'Yoss

First Post
I thought of a variant turning rule that should prove more effective while retaining the divine and energetic flavour, but it still needs some wrinkles worked out:

A cleric will make a turning check as usual to determine his effective turning level (Equal to Max HD), and then roll for turning damage.

Now, from closest undead outwards, compare turning results. If your effective turning level is equal to this undead's level (as modified by their turn resistance as usual), they gain a "positive level" (which is just like a negative level, but it affects undead). For every point your level surpasses the undead's, it gains an extra positive level. Turning damage determines the maximum number of negative levels you can deal per turning attempt.


Evil clerics
Evil clerics would do the same (this will weaken them and might make them more susceptible for spells like control undead). They can also opt to deal negative levels instead, which will first eliminate positive levels and then work normally.

Temporary hit points act as a buffer for positive levels: If an undead to be turned has THP, those will be wiped out by turning attempts - 10 per positive level it would have received - but no other effects of the positive level is incurred.


Powerful clerics and weak undead
Good clerics get something you could call "turning cleave": If you destroy an undead with your turning attempt, only half the negative levels inflicted count against your turning damage (minimum 1).

Evil clerics can instead opt to take control of an undead instead of destroying it (the turning damage he'd have used to destroy the undead are still counted in full against the turning damage). A cleric can only control a number of undead whose total hit dice are equal to or less than his cleric level.
 

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