D&D 5E Wights....problem with RaW...

Casimir Liber

Adventurer
I just ran an encounter from ToA that had "tomb dwarves" stated as wights. They were wearing masks that looked like the green yawning devil (classic from Tomb of Horrors) so I had them "suck" your life-spirit out with that creepy gaping mouth.

It can be anything you want it to be.
that is evocative and really cool
 

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Casimir Liber

Adventurer
Old level drain sucked big time, but I haven't found anything that replaces it with the same amount of utter fear for facing such opponents without borking the system. Maybe some form of exhaustion on top of the HP max reduction...
In mine have incorporated draining levels of exhaustion, restorable only by by Lesser Restoration (1-2 lvls) or Greater Restoration (3+ lvls)

See
 


Mannahnin

Scion of Murgen (He/Him)
Yes, but as GM4P already said, it doesn't actually specify how it's delivered other than it's melee... although even if it did say that it was with a claw, I wouldn't see any problem narrating it as done with the weapon.
Sure. I'm always happy to re-skin stuff.

Although I like the implicit world details here. If players/PCs know that undead need to physically touch them to energy drain them, they can make decisions and try to employ tactics around that. In my 5TD & B/X mashup, the first time low level PCs encountered a wight in its tomb, one tried to grapple and pin its arms so it couldn't touch them (at least for a round or two), and I was happy to give them a chance to do that.
 

Casimir Liber

Adventurer
I just ran an encounter from ToA that had "tomb dwarves" stated as wights. They were wearing masks that looked like the green yawning devil (classic from Tomb of Horrors) so I had them "suck" your life-spirit out with that creepy gaping mouth.

It can be anything you want it to be.
So funnily enough, I'd reskinned sowpig as a wight in Thither and used her draining attack as a breath weapon as she is masked while DMing witchlight tonight :)
 

Plaguescarred

D&D Playtester for WoTC since 2012
A wight is not an incorporeal undead like Tolkien's Oathbreaker Dead Men of Dunharrow, they are corporeal undead that can wield weapon like any other creatures capable of it. RAW Life Drain is a different melee weapon attack ability than longsword but nothing prevent you from reflavoring it from its hand to its blade instead.

Personally, i prefer it is delivered through its touch, it makes it more distinctive between other attacks.
 

Casimir Liber

Adventurer
A wight is not an incorporeal undead like Tolkien's Oathbreaker Dead Men of Dunharrow, they are corporeal undead that can wield weapon like any other creatures capable of it. RAW Life Drain is a different melee weapon attack ability than longsword but nothing prevent you from reflavoring it from its hand to its blade instead.

Personally, i prefer it is delivered through its touch, it makes it more distinctive between other attacks.
I've never considered them incorporeal. Very solid. I find describing a black vapour emanating off them evocative...and the players get (rightfully) scared of it. Builds up tension.
 

Mannahnin

Scion of Murgen (He/Him)
I've never considered them incorporeal. Very solid. I find describing a black vapour emanating off them evocative...and the players get (rightfully) scared of it. Builds up tension.
Nice.

In my old-school game I signpost my level draining undead with an unnatural chill in the area around them, a general aura of death and lack of insect or plant life near their tomb/residence, etc. Sometimes with dessicated corpses nearby.
 

Stormonu

Legend
Isn't there a wight attack in a barrow just outside the Shire in The Fellowship? It's not in the movie due to pacing, but as I recall the hobbits make the mistake of making camp in an old barrow and get attacked there.

I prefer my wights to be unarmed, but if I did use them with weapons at all, I wouldn't hesitate to allow them to channel the attack through the weapon (as some sort of undead attunement to the item, so they couldn't do it with just any blade, nor could the PCs benefit if they picked them up later).
 


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