House Rules

Clothing Maketh The Man

So, no posts for awhile. My apologies, I was caught up in moving into a solo office of my own and it was quite the busy June and July as a result…

Todays post comes from a set of rules that I’ve had for my fantasy game for awhile now, basically how to cost out clothing for the different social classes – along with a basic description of what comes in a basic outfit from the Heartlands. This came up in the last session because Baron Devin Tresendar managed to loose all of his clothing when they were ambushed by one of the dreaded Knights of the Dearth (aka Death Knight) and was wandering around dressed in peasant garb for awhile. They recently arrived at the capitol, and he finally had the time and place to go properly clothes shopping. This was especially important because there is some significant social combat coming up as they try to figure out if the King’s Champion is actually working with the Ebon Triad is being framed by them…

MS, Devin’s player, was quite shocked what it cost to buy a set of brand-new clothing – especially since it made sense to buy three outfits (two “everyday” and one “good suit”)

I simplified this in deciding that any particular piece of clothing costs the same number of coins, it’s merely the a different type and thus different value of coin. The basic idea is that each of the six social classes clothing costs directly correlates to the six basic coin types. So Beggar’s clothing costs Bronze, Commoner’s Copper, Merchant’s Silver, Gentlefolk Electrum, Noble’s Gold, and High Court garb cost’s Platinum.

But, for those that are interested, here is a description of what each social tends to wear both in terms of items, as well as in terms of materials, colors and decoration. It is also worth nothing a couple of potential price modifiers. Out of Fashion clothing (only applicable to Merchant, Gentlefolk, Noble, and High Court garb) is half-price but may impose Disadvantage in some social situations, and similarly Cheap or Poor Quality clothing has the same price modifier and the same potential detriment. New Fashion costs double the normal amount and may grant Advantage in some situations, and Exotic Fashion (either truly haute couture)  costs triple the normal cost and has a greater chance to grant Advantage (though it may also impose Disadvantage in some cases as well, some plebeians are unable to appreciate true genius after all… Clothing of Superior Quality costs five-times normal, but grants a +1 bonus to applicable rolls, and Masterwork clothing costs ten-times normal and grants a +2 to similar rolls.

Often times there are some various sumptuary laws in effect, but they are often there to be flouted to a degree.

Clothing is expensive enough that it is often handed down for as long as it can be worn, patched and mended as often as needed.

It is also worth noting that weapons and armor are also be subjected to the same price modifiers. For example, while a normal, serviceable broadsword costs 30 Silver, one suitable for Gentlefolk would cost 30 Electrum (with chasing of precious metals, engraving, etc), and one suitable for a Noble would cost 30 Gold. This doesn’t include the potential of gems or jewels being mounted in them either which would of course raise the value and the status of the bearer.

For those who wish to be truly extravagant, there are also a whole series of minor enchantments for clothing that can be purchased in the proper places to ensure proper fit, self-repair, always dry, etc.

 

BEGGAR’S GARB:

So Beggars tend to wear the threadbare and patchworked cast-offs of the higher social classes, most commonly that of Commoners and Merchants. Often undyed (beige and off-white), when they are colored it is in the more basic and drab hues (dun, browns, mustard, muddy blues and greens, etc), often quite faded and invariably stained. Mostly commonly of coarse wool, leathers, and cast-off linen and are often relatively ill-fitting. Beggar’s often only own the clothes on their back.

Men– Tunic (8), Pants (6), Bandanna (1), Belt (1) – 16 Bronze

  • Outerwear: Cap (3), Mittens (1) – 4 Bronze
  • Riding Wear: None
  • Sleepwear: None
  • Accessories: Beltpouch (2) – 2 Bronze

Women– Blouse (6), Long Skirt (6), Headscarf (1), Girdle (4)- 17 Bronze

  • Outerwear: Cap (3), Mittens (1) – 4 Bronze
  • Riding Wear: None
  • Sleepwear: None
  • Accessories: Beltpouch (2) – 2 Bronze

 

COMMONER’S GARB:

Commoners can generally afford their own clothes, but will also wear the cast-offs of the higher social classes, most commonly that of Merchants and occasionally Gentlefolk. Those commoners that are direct servants of Nobles will occasionally be gifted with an old piece of lesser clothing to wear. Often undyed (beige and off-white) or blue (from woad), when they are colored it is in the most basic hues (dun, browns, mustard, greens, dull red, etc).  Commonly of wool, leathers, linen, and occasionally hemp, furs are reserved for cold-weather clothing and not common at all save among rural folk. Superior Quality tends to include elaborate embroidery around the hems and the buttons tend to be copper or bronze. Clothing for Commoners tends to be less than social statement and is more utilitarian in nature, though most commoner’s own not just the clothes on their back, but a set of “festival clothes” that they wear to celebrations and religious observances.

Men– Shirt (6) with Two Cufflinks (1 each), Vest (4) with Five Buttons (1 each), Breeches (6) with three Buttons (1 Each), Leggings (4), Socks (1), Shoes (1), Belt (1) – 27 Copper

  • Outerwear: Cloak (8) with Pin (3), Cap (3), Mittens (1) – 15 Copper
  • Riding Wear: None
  • Sleepwear: None
  • Accessories: Beltpouch (2), Coinpurse (1) – 3 Copper

Women– Blouse (6) with One Button (1), Long Skirt (6), Hairpin (3), Shoes (1), Hose (8), Hosiery Belt (2) Bodice (4), Belt (1), Chemise (3) – 35 Copper

  • =Outerwear: Cloak (8) with Pin (3), Cap (3), Mittens (1) – 15 Copper
  • =Riding Wear: None
  • =Sleepwear: None
  • =Accessories: Beltpouch (2), Coinpurse (1) – 3 Copper

 

MERCHANT’S GARB:

As a point of pride many Merchant refuse to wear cast-offs from Gentlefolk or Nobles, unless of course the fabric can repurposed in such as way as to obscure that fact. Similarly, Merchant garb is often dyed in a variety of colors with several gradients of shades evident from across the spectrum. Commonly of finer wools and linens, you will see cotton garments as well, along with leathers and some furs among those that travel regularly. Superior Quality tends to include elaborate embroidery, fine furs and leather around the hems, as well as more elaborate dyes and patterns – among the richest you will very occasionally see Cloth-of-Silver. The buttons tend to be silver, though these are expensive enough that one set of buttons is often owned and transferred between sets of clothing as needed. Clothing for Merchants tends to be both utilitarian in nature but also a social statement, especially the richer the merchant. Merchant’s tend to own three or more sets of clothing, two sets for everyday wear and a set of “festival clothes.” Some guilds may require a special set of clothing (or outerwear) for use in special guild functions and those Merchant’s who ride extensively will also own a set of Riding Wear (see Gentlefolk for the details).

Men– Shirt (6) with Two Cufflinks (1 each) and Two Buttons (1 Each), Vest (4) with Five Buttons (1 each), Breeches (6) with three Buttons (1 each), Leggings (4), Socks (1), Shoes (1), Broadbelt (4) with Buckle (3) , Codpiece (2) – 43 Silver

  • =Outerwear: Cloak (8) with Pin (3), Hat (4), Gloves (2), Gaiters (2) – 19 Silver
  • =Sleepwear: Nightshirt (6) – 6 Silver
  • =Riding Wear: None
  • =Accessories: Beltpouch (2), Coinpurse (1) – 3 Silver

Women– Full Dress (10), Hairpin (3), Shoes (1), Hose (8), Hosiery Belt (2), Bodice (4), Belt (1) with Buckle (3), Brassiere (4), Chemise (3), Petticoats (4) – 40 Silver

  • =Outerwear: Cloak (8) with Pin (3), Hat (4), Gloves (2) – 17 Silver
  • =Sleepwear: Nightshirt (6) – 6 Silver
  • =Riding Wear: None
  • =Accessories: Beltpouch (2), Coinpurse (1) – 3 Silver

 

GENTLEFOLK’S GARB:

Gentlefolk as a social class covers a certain level of semi-idle wealth that comes a variety of sources. Many Gentlefolk are minor nobles or very rich merchants and guildsmen, but it also covers wealthy adventurers, bards and skalds, courtesans and tantrics, and those who rub elbows with the most powerful. Generally made of fine wools, linens, cottons, leathers, etc. you will occasionally see some silk, velvet, and velour in the most expensive garb, along with elaborate embroidery, fines furs and leathers, and truly amazing dyes and patterns as well as Cloth-of-Electrum. The structural design still tends to wards the practical, though more layers and additional accoutrements and accessories are common. As with merchants, buttons are traded between sets of clothing to reduce costs. Gentlefolk often own at least three sets of clothing, two sets of everyday wear and an additional set of festival garb for special occasions. Those who travel considerably will often own an additional set of clothing for travel. Those who are going to attend court regularly will often invest in either an outfit of Noble’s garb (if they are a Noble) or Superior or Masterwork Gentlefolk garb. This is often the everyday wear of nobles from the countryside who nonetheless wish to remain fashionable and dress as befits their station.

Men– Shirt (6) with Four Cufflinks (1 each) and Two Buttons (1 Each), Doublet (12) with Five Buttons (1 each) and Sleeves (4), Breeches (6) with 3 Buttons (1 Each), Codpiece (2), Leggings (4), Socks (1), Shoes (1), Broadbelt (4) with Buckle (3), Collar (4) – 61 Electrum

  • =Outerwear: Cloak (8) with Pin (3), Hat (4), Gloves (2), Gaiters (2) – 19 Electrum
  • =Riding Wear: High Boots (6), Gauntlets (4) – 10 Electrum
  • =Sleepwear: Nightshirt (6), Robe (12) – 18 Electrum
  • =Accessories: Beltpouch (2), Coinpurse (1), Pomander (3) – 6 Electrum

Women– Full Dress (10) with 4 Cufflinks (1 Each) and 10 Buttons (1 Each), Hairpin (3), Shoes (1), Hose (8), Hosiery Belt (2), Corset (8), Bodice (4), Belt (1) with Buckle (3), Chemise (3), Petticoats (4) – 61 Electrum

  • =Outerwear: Cloak (8) with Pin (3), Hat (4), Gloves (2) – 17 Electrum
  • = Sleepwear: Nightshirt (8), Robe (12) – 18 Electrum
  • =Riding Wear: Soft Boots (2), Riding Skirt with Six Buttons (14), Gauntlets (4) – 20 Electrum
  • =Accessories: Beltpouch (2), Coinpurse (1), Pomander (3) – 6 Electrum

 

NOBLE’S GARB:

Noble Garb is less about practicality and more about the display or power, wealth, and privilege (it is also generally about one-and-half times more encumbering than other clothing dues to it’s extravagant nature). Suitable for wear at court functions it is made of the finest wools, linens, cottons, leathers. Silks, velvets, velours, damasks are also found in the most expensive garb, along with elaborate embroidery, fines furs and leathers, and truly amazing dyes and patterns as well as Cloth-of-Gold. As with merchants and gentlefolk, buttons are often traded between sets of clothing, though many nobles do have multiple sets of buttons for different occasions. Nobles often own at least three sets of clothing, two sets of everyday wear and an additional set of festival garb for special occasions. Those who travel considerably will often own an additional set of clothing for travel, though save for the richest nobles this is commonly Gentlefolk Garb.

Men– Shirt (6) with Six Cufflinks (1 each) and Three Buttons (1 Each), Doublet (12) with Five Buttons (1 each) and Sleeves (4), Breeches (6) with 5 Buttons (1 Each), Codpiece (2), Leggings (4), Socks (1), Shoes (1), Broadbelt (4) with Buckle (3), Collar (4) – 67 Gold

  • =Outerwear: Cloak (8) with Pin (3), Hat (4), Fine Gloves (8), Gaiters (2) – 25 Gold
  • =Sleepwear: Nightshirt (6), Robe (12) – 18 Gold
  • =Riding Wear: Soft Boots (2), Gauntlets (4) – 6 Gold
  • =Accessories: Beltpouch (2), Coinpurse (1), Pomander (3) – 6 Gold

Women– Full Dress (10) with 8 Cufflinks (1 Each) and 15 Buttons (1 Each), Hairpin (3), Shoes (1), Hose (8), Hosiery Belt (2), Corset (8), Bodice (4), Belt (1) with Buckle (3), Chemise (3), Petticoats (4) – 70 Gold

  • =Outerwear: Cloak (8) with Pin (3), Hat (4), Fine Gloves (8), Gaiters (2) – 25 Gold
  • =Sleepwear: Nightshirt (6), Robe (12) – 18 Gold
  • =Riding Wear: Soft Boots (2), Riding Skirt with Ten Buttons (18), Gauntlets (4) – 24 Gold
  • =Accessories: Beltpouch (2), Coinpurse (1), Pomander (3) – 6 Gold

 

HIGH COURT GARB:

This sort of clothing is rare, used and generally worn only by the very richest of nobles for the most formal of occasions (the royal court, the highest of religious ceremonies, etc). The clothing is uniformly costly and ostentations, often being twice as bulky as a normal. It is made of the most expensive fabrics and trim, Silk, Velvet, Velour, Damask, Exotic leathers and furs, Cloth-of-Platinum, etc. Save for royalty or the most powerful peers of the realm rarely does anyone own more than one set of this garb. Such nobles would commonly wear Noble’s garb for everyday wear, and New or Exotic fashions for festivals.

Men– Shirt (6) with Eight Cufflinks (1 each) and Three Buttons (1 Each), Doublet (12) with Five Buttons (1 each) and Sleeves (4) with 2 Cufflinks (1 each), Breeches (6) with 7 Buttons (1 Each), Codpiece (2), Leggings (4), Socks (1), Shoes (1), Broadbelt (4) with Buckle (3), Collar (4) – 72 Platinum

  • =Outerwear: Mantle (6) with Pin (3), Cape (8) with Pin (3), Fine Gloves (8) – 28 Platinum

Women– Full Dress (10) with 10 Cufflinks (1 Each) and 20 Buttons (1 Each), Hairpin (3), Shoes (1), Hose (8), Hosiery Belt (2), Corset (8), Bodice (4), Belt (1) with Buckle (3), Chemise (3), Petticoats (4) – 77 Gold

  • =Outerwear: Mantle (6) with Pin (3), Cape (8) with Pin (3), Fine Gloves (8) – 28 Platinum
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Mystic, Psionics, and 5E vs AD&D Balance

So, the playtest of the full, 20-level, Mystic came out via Unearthed Arcana last week and it looks pretty decent. I’m not sure I like all of it, but I like most of it and I find the whole package quite workable even if I have some qualms about specific Disciplines and don’t think there are enough Talents.

I also don’t like that there is no “psionic vs. psionic” combat – all psionic attacks work against anyone, and there is seemingly no benefit in being psionic when it comes to resisting psionic attacks or damage.

Part of this is because I want to keep some of the flavor of AD&D psionics, and there are a handful of things which don’t translate well or haven’t been translated at all – and there are some things which I like a great deal and because I never played 3E or 4E or even any 2E Psionics, I never had any exposure to them. I played with a “Psionics as the random extra” straight out of the Player’s Handbook and the Psionicist class out of the Dragon Magazine. I also used the Deryni from the same issue and adapted various races do include an innately psionic component.

Now, you could certainly adapt Feats as a way to grant some access to psionics without having to go full-Mystic or even have to adopt a psionic subclass (which I am sure will appear sooner or later, I’m pretty sure that’s what the Soul Knife is going to end up as). There are the Magic Initiate and Ritual Caster Feats and some analogy would be easy enough to develop.

But I’m also a fan of the “psionics as a rare and random extra” for characters. So my current thought experiment is that there is a percentage chance equal to the total of the character’s modifiers for Intelligence, Wisdom, and Charisma that the character is psionic. This might be too high, I haven’t checked against the old chances in 1E.

And then a table both for total number and for random Disciplines and Talents – similar to the old 1E method of handling things. I’d probably make Psionic Strength Points a multiplier of level rather than the completely random method used in 1E, perhaps 2x or 3x level, so that it is always lower than an actual Mystic.

5E has attempted (and failed, as usual) to keep characters tightly balanced. The action economy, the mostly nonsense of bounded accuracy, the general increase of hit points, and the overall nerfing of spell-casting (fewer slots, concentration, etc). The problem is that even with spell-casters being nerfed, they still outclass other classes in Tier 3 & 4 play. Some are positively sickening such as the Eldritch Blast Warlock, and the non-caster melee types simply pale in comparison.

As broken as Exalted was (is), this is where it was amazing with it’s Charms, you could play a melee character and it was as bad-ass as a spell-caster (possibly more so in some ways, but that was the nature of the wuxia-inspired system).

So, as an old 1E AD&D DM, I’m much more comfortable with characters of unequal power, and in fact with characters that are fundamentally more powerful than they are in 5E. Heck, I have a campaign world somewhat predicated on it, there’s some wriggle-room, but I really wouldn’t want to depend on a 5E Tier 4 character for the fate of the multiverse…

Pretty much all my house rules continue in the vein of making 5E characters more powerful, especially the spell-casters. We are miles away from the quadratic casters of earlier editions, but I simply have no problems with the idea of high-level casters being significantly more powerful than melee-types.

When I think of high-level spell-casters I’m thinking Gandalf fighting 1v1 with the Balarog (yes, yes, I know that they’re both really angels, but you know what I mean) or Ged fighting multiple dragons by himself, or Elric, or Pug, or even Doctor Strange. These are characters you really can’t replicate any more given the power restrictions of 5E.

D.

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Updates and Skills vs Tools vs Professions

Yeah, so I’ve spent some time today updating my House Rules page, as well as a large number of entries. I can’t say it’s done yet (will it ever?), but things are moving in the right direction.

I’m kind of thinking about a series of posts, one for each profession, that lays out who and where you could find them for my campaign world. There’s all sorts of odd nuances here and there that would be nice to spell out.

I’m also thinking that I hate how the Tools rules end up working out. Essentially, all you need to be able to do is learn how to use a Tool kit (which takes about six months according to the RAW if I recall correctly) and you can make a living at any particular profession. Having been a tradesman for part of my life I can certainly address the fallacy in that but from a strictly gameist perspective it creates an odd mix of things when it comes to Backgrounds and Character Class.

Plus some of those Tool Kits should take a heck of a lot more to learn than a six-month course. Alchemy? Herbalism? Smithcraft? It seems like there should be something like Professions (which are “easy” to start out with) and a selection of skills that, while representing a profession, also require investing something like a Feat (like Alchemy) because of there breadth and depth of knowledge involved. This might mean some more benefits, or it might just mean that the base benefits are just that good.

IDK, something to ponder…

TTFN!

D.

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Druidic Foci and Tools

Druids as a character class actually cover a wide range of related, even similar but still quite different religions, commonly referred to as the Old Faith. Similar to Priestly Vestments, the tools and instruments of the Druids are a sign of their religious status as well as being regular ritual tools and foci. Of these, only the Torc, Crane Skin Bag, and Cloak are possible to be found used by related classes (such as Rangers or Bards of the College of the Old Faith) and the Druid’s tend to keep their secrets close. All of these items must be attuned, and while Druid’s themselves are not generally punished for losing such items – the uninitiated and thieves are often cursed or worse by the Old Powers.

 

Druid’s Cloak – Woven to be warm in cold weather and cool in the heat, the Druid’s Robes grant them Advantage on Survival Checks, these robes mark the wearer as a Druid. The robes also grant the Druid Advantage on Stealth Checks when in the wilderness. It also provides Resistance to damage from Beasts, and allows the Druid personal use of Invisibility to Beasts once between rests.

Druids Boline – Druids are steeped in tradition, and the boline is an ancient design – a curved, bronze blade that are used primarily for ritual work (Archdruids often have one made of Orikalkium). Enchanted to be as hard as steel, it is a Bane to Aberrations, Demons, and Lycanthropes. It is also used to harvest herbs and perform sacrifices – it is not to be used against mundane foes or for profane tasks. It can function as a Druidic Focus.

As Druids gain levels, they often increase the magical power of their tools and instruments, as in the following examples:

Druid’s Torc – An often ornate neck ring of bronze or precious metals with a variety of animal motifs worn by women, warriors, and those of higher social station. They are meant to be worn at all times, and are invariably damaged removed. The Druid’s Torc allows them to cast spells while wearing it in animal form during Wild Shape. It also increases the Spell Slots by one of each level. It also allows the use of Animal Friendship once per Long Rest.

Druid’s Crane Skin Bag – Traditionally made of crane skin in the Heartlands, the bag is a small repository of various small items of personal, mystic and spiritual significance for the Druid that must remain secret from all others. Of all the Druid’s Tools, this is the most precious as if it is held by another the Druid has Disadvantage in all things and the bearer has Advantage against the Druid in all things. If opened and scattered, the Druid loses all spell-casting abilities until the next new moon, and creating a new one (which generally does not remove the power of the old one) takes about two months per level of the Druid. It has a number of abilities:

  • It grants the Druid Inspiration, once between Rests.
  • It grants the use of the Guidance cantrip for the sole use of the Druid.
  • It allows the recall of a single Spell Slot, no higher than half the Druid’s level, once between Long Rests.
  • It can function as a Druidic Focus.
  • The Druid always knows where their Crane Skin Bag is.

Druid’s Anguinum – A small construct or occasionally a natural stone or crystal in the shape of an egg containing precious herbs and the essence of serpents, it is an aid to healing and herbalism. It provides Advantage on all skill checks related to healing and medicine (and, poison lore). It also allows the use of the Detect Poison and Disease ritual. It can be used as an Druidic Focus.

Druid’s Cauldron – Sometimes plain but more often ornate, the Druid’s Cauldron is a large container used in various rituals. In addition to these uses, it also has a number of other abilities.

  • It can Purify Water as a Ritual.
  • It can create a refreshing draught that can heal each member of the party once between Long Rests. This heals 2 Hit Dice worth of damage (without costing Hit Dice), removes a single level of Exhaustion, and cures Poison and grant Inspiration.
  • It can cast Scrying as a Ritual.
  • Grants Advantage to Alchemy Checks when used during the process.

Druids Staff – Traditionally two handspans in length taller than the Druid, the Druid’s Staff allows the use of the Shillelagh Cantrip on itself at any time. At its most basic the staff has the following characteristics.

  • Treated as an Enchanted, +1 weapon per five full levels of the character.
  • The staff does additional damage of an elemental type chosen by the Druid equal to their Proficiency bonus.
  • When held and planted on the ground, the Staff provides Advantage on Saving Throws against and Resistance to Arcane damage.
  • It increases their Spell Slots by one of each level.
  • It can function as a Druidic Focus.
  • The Druid always knows where their staff is located.

Archdruid’s rarely have any special items that mark them as being particularly different from lesser Druids. They are far more likely to simply have more puissant magic, and just generally more items at their disposal. Archdruids is less the actual term of strict hierarchical rank in this instance and more a term denoting the higher ranking Druids in their orders.

In the Heartlands, the Old Faith is a relatively structured with matching orders of male and female Druids and related groups of Rangers and Bards – with occasional Paladins and Warlocks in the mix, not to mention the occasional solitary Druid out in the woods, disconnected from any hierarchy. In Kistath there is a similar Old Faith that is focused on the Old Powers of the deserts, and in Ith you can find occasional, isolated shaman who follow their own path based on the spirits of the jungle.

Wood Elves are primarily Druid in spirituality, but like all elven spirituality it is often a more personal matter rather than an organized religion in the way that humans practice – but also with a strong connection to their Berserkers. That said, those E’lin who practice Druidry are highly respected and their Tools are often similar to those of human Druids – suggesting a strong connection. Instead of a Staff that are quite likely to use a Warspear instead.

Gnomes are also highly Druidic, worshipping a Great Mother and a Green Man with a respect for the Old Powers. Their tools are similart though instead of a Staff they common use a Wand of some sort it it’s place. They do not have the highly structured religion of humans, but do have an organized structure along clan lines.

Finally, some Khazan follow the Old Faith as well. Often a more bloody and dire sort, with Hunstman Archtype Rangers in attendance. Again, their Tools and Foci are often quite similar to other Druids, but they do not have an structured hierarchy or an organized religion.

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Priestly Vestments and Foci (5e)

While the details and forms of the foci and instruments of clergy will vary considerably from religion to religion, there have developed a common set of vestments that different priests and priestesses use. These Vestments mark the wearer as clergy or as one of the related professions. Depending upon the religion it will likely even identify specific orders as well as a ranks and roles. Those who wear Vestments can include Paladins, and certainly there is the potential for some Archtypes with Divine magic to use them as well. These items require Attunement – and any divine servant that loses, mistreats, or misuses their vestments suffers Disadvantage at the very least until the wrong is righted, often Curses and other punishments plague such misfortunate priests. The creation of vestments is included in the training of most clergy, though examples abound of them being created simply be strength of faith and devotion itself. Similarly, the vestments of the most devout (or wealthy) priests may have additional abilities beyond those listed here.

All of the items are considered magical and have Advantage on all of their saves.

The Priest’s Holy Text – Most priests carry at least a basic copy of their religions Holy Text. The length and breadth of this can vary considerably from religion to religion, and the beauty and ornateness of the copy or edition can also vary – much like a Holy Symbol. The primary use of the Holy Text is as a teaching aid, and as a source of Inspiration. During a Short or a Long Rest, a any sufficiently devout individual can grant themselves Inspiration by reading and reviewing their Holy Text, a priest can do it for themselves and any other members of the same faith that are present.

The Priest’s Book of Rites – Many priests also keep a copy of their Book of Rites handy, as this is required to cast Ritual Spells. For many religions it also has the information for the proper ceremonies when performing marriages, last rites, naming and dedications, along with the creation of holy water, holy oils, etc. At their most basic, a Book of Rites contains only a handful of Ritual Spells as well as basic community rites, at great temples or seminaries these may be a huge tomes with Ritual Versions of each and every spell that a cleric could cast.

The Priest’s Holy Symbol – The most basic of a priest’s vestments, the Holy Symbol is a cleric’s basic Divine Focus. Some spells may require additional components, but the presence of a Holy Symbol is necessary for all Divine magic. The appearance of a holy symbol can vary considerably depending upon the wealth and social class of the cleric or temple it comes from. Unlike a Wizard’s Wand however, any of the devout may carry a Holy Symbol, and it’s mere presence does not confirm the bearer as a priest. A priest merely openly bearing or presenting a Holy Symbol benefits from Protection vs Good & Evil (and this is a common enchantment on Holy Symbols for the devout). A priest presenting a Holy Symbol and Concentrating, may invoke Sanctuary for themselves.

As Priests gain higher levels it is not uncommon for them to gain increased magical items such as the following:

The Priest’s Robes – The most commonly visible and obvious of the vestments, these come in many different version. From the cassocks of the Church of the Lords of Light, to the robes of the En Khoda Theos Kirk, to the mask of the priest of the Midnight Sun or even the blackened splint mail of Khazan shamans. Aside from clearly marking them as clergy, a priests robes allow the priest the use of the Shield of the Faithful once between Long Rests.

The Priest’s Prayer Beads – A length of beads, usually with a set number according to doctrine and faith, often of particular materials. They may be worn as a necklace, a bracelet, or even simply hanging from the belt or kept in a pouch. The faithful use Prayer Beads to guide their individual worship, both prayers and mediation. Priests may also use their Prayer Beads in two special ways. First, it allows them to maintain Concentration on one additional spell if held in the hand. Second, using it allows them a Divine Recovery after a Short Rest if that is all that they focus on. They may recover spell levels equal to half their level, none of them higher than 6th level.

The Priest’s Girdle – Generally in the form of a belt or cincture or some sort to wear around their Robes, the Priest’s Girdle is another of the Vestments that commonly mark the wearer as a priest – and the absence of which (much like Robes) may cause some to question the authenticity or veracity of the claimant. When worn, the Girdle allows the personal use of the Resistance cantrip if they do not know the it, and also grants them the effect of an Aid spell once between Long Rests.

The term “Archpriest” in this context means that the following items, as Vestments, are often reserved for specific ranks within a religious hierarchy – or that they can only be created and gifted by higher ranks. They are often reflective of the greater divine mandate that these priests have, and are often reserved for Clerics of 10th level or greater. Exceptions have been made in some cases, and for the particularly devout but lower ranked priests, they may find that their “lesser vestments” may take on some or all of these abilities as well. These are the equivalents of Bishops, Cardinals, Abbots, and similarly ranked religious figures.

The Archpriest’s Medallion – Often an ornate piece included in either a set of Prayer Beads, the Archpriest’s Medallion often commemorates some special event or personage. In the Church of the Lords of Light it might be one of the Elect, while in the En Khoda Theos Kirk it might some special crystal or stone from the site of a significant manifestation of one of the Great Dragons. When included as part of a set of Prayer Beads, it does not require separate Attunement. This is the one Archpriest item that is most commonly found in the possession of non-Archpriests – often gifted to favored priests and other members of the Faithful.

  • Can hold Concentration for one spell cast by the Cleric.
  • Can use a Bless once before requiring a Short or Long Rest.
  • Can use an Aid spell once before requiring a Short of Long Rest.
  • The Cleric gains one additional use of their Channel Divinity

The Archpriest’s Cloak – Often a more ornate and elaborate addition to the Priest’s Robes, this is often a short cloak or mantle such as chasuble or alb – though for some religions it can be nothing more that a veil.

  • Provides a bonus to AC equal to +1 per five full levels of the Cleric class.
  • The Cleric may use a Hellish Rebuke, but the damage is Radiant and the Save is Wisdom, once between Rests.

The Archpriest’s Pectoral – A large and ornate Holy Symbol that is worn on the chest as a reminder of the status and power of the Archpriest in question.

  • +2 to Armor Class (it is treated as a Breastplate)
  • Protection vs Good & Evil at all times
  • With Concentration can invoke Sanctuary as desired
  • The Cleric has Divine Favor.
  • The Cleric also radiates a Crusader’s Mantle

The Archpriest’s Signet – Essentially the religious version of a noble’s seal, an Archpriest’s Signet is a worn by those priests that hold high rank within their religious organization. These are commonly destroyed on their death of the priest that they were made for, though some faith’s pass them along to the next holder of the office. Using one without sanction is a guarantee of getting the attention of the church authorities – not top mention the Divine Power who sanctioned the item’s creation in the first place.

  • With members of their Faith, may issue a Command as a Standard Action.
  • Can use Bless as a Standard Action.
  • May use a Guardian of Faith once per day
  • The Cleric gains one additional Spell Slot for each Spell Level.
  • The Cleric gains one additional use of their Channel Divinity.

The Archpriest’s Crown – Like the Archpriest’s Signet (q.v.) the Archpriest’s Crown is a physical symbol of the priests spiritual and temporal might using a familiar secular symbol.

  • Members of the Faithful have Disadvantage on saves against the Clerics magic
  • The Cleric has Advantage when making Charisma check with members if the Faithful
  • Advantage on Saves against Enchantments.
  • The Crown gains one additional Spell Slot for each Spell Level.
  • The Cleric gains one additional use of their Channel Divinity

The Archpriest’s Sceptre – Often a symbol of both divine and temporal power, the Archpriest’s Sceptre is usually an ornate rod of office – though in some more blood-thirsty religions it may be an actual weapon and may then share some characteristics with a Sanctified Weapon (q.v.).

  • Treated as a Holy Symbol for purposes of casting spells.
  • Always treated, at a minimum, as an Enchanted Weapon.
  • Weapon damage can vary from that of a Club to a Warhammer.
  • Treated as a+1 weapon per five full levels of the Cleric class.
  • Does additional Radiant Damage equal to the Proficiency Bonus of the Cleric
  • Weapon Bonus also adds to Spell Strike and Spell Save modifier.

The Sanctified Weapon – Some faiths, as well as most religious orders of warriors (including Paladins), have deities which are closely associated with a particular weapon. These are actually able to be used by any member of the faithful, but holy law often reserves their use to Clerics & Paladins, or a few select others who are deemed the most worthy. Considered a Holy Weapon, these are often relics and highly prized by the Faithful.

  • Always treated, at a minimum, as an Enchanted Weapon.
  • Treated as a+1 weapon per five full levels of the character.
  • Does additional Radiant Damage equal to the Proficiency Bonus of the character.
  • Some are able to Smite as a Bonus action a number of time per day equal to their Channel Divinity (and recovered in a similar manner). Smiting a foe means that the wielder may add their level to the damage done (Radiant). On a Critical, this damage is doubled.

The Church of the Lords of Light uses all of these vestments, their Robes being a simple cassock (often in specific colors and design as guided by Rule and Rite), their Girdle is the typical triple-braided cord worn by all members of the faith, the Holy Symbol being an Argentos, and the Prayer Beads being simply that (and made from a variety if materials). Their Sanctified Weapon, commonly made of sunsteel, is either a fighting knife or a broadsword (less commonly a longsword and very rarely a battlesword or greatsword).

As befits the somewhat disorganized nature of the En Khoda Theos Kirk they are not particularly organized in their use of vestments. Their Holy Symbols, a Scale (usually of a drake, but rarely that of an actual dragon) combines the functions of both the Holy Symbol and the Girdle. Similarly, while some Dorje wear Robes with the standard effects, for others they wear a sash that (confusingly) combines the abilities of the Robes and Girdle (effects do not stack) – this is an ancient style preferred by the Dragonborn. Prayer beads are commonly carried, most commonly made of stone. Sanctified weapons are commonly mainly with the military religious orders of the Kenza, and are not nearly as common within the ranks of the Dorje. They do not, however, have holy texts, and while there are a series of philosophical treatises that can function in the same way as Holy Text there are no Books of Rites.

While the Heptarchy uses all of these vestments, the individual style depends upon the actual deity, few generalizations being able to be made. Holy Symbols are the solar and lunar symbols noted in the specific descriptions, and while Robes are worn by most of the clergy, for the priests of the Midnight Sun this is a Black Mask, while for the Daughter of Blood they a considered Robed if nude and covered with a least some freshly spilled blood. The Sister of Bone only has prayer beads of bone, while Mother of Pearl uses only pearls. Sanctified Weapons are most common among the followers of Sol Invictus (usually sword, spear, or lance), Sister of Bone (bone dagger), and Daughter of Blood (battle axe of some sort).

A Note On Damage: While the damage done is generally Radiant for religions that are Good or Neutral, some Neutral and most Evil will do Necrotic damage instead. For some Deities, especially those with an Elemental or Nature portfolio, the damage may be Fire, Thunder, Lightning, or even Poison. This is determined by the Dungeon Master.

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Animal Companion (Druid Spell) and Familiar Bond (Wizard Spell) (DnD 5e)

Animal Companion

2nd-Level Enchantment (Ritual)

  • Casting Time: 1 Day
  • Range: 20 Feet
  • Components: V, S, M (100sp of Charcoal, Herbs, and Incense that must be consumed in a fire)
  • Duration: Instantaneous

The Druid gains the companionship of a Beast of no more than CR½ that is present during the course of the ritual, popular animal choices include, but are not limited to, Black Bears, Boars, Deer, Hawks, Owls, Panthers, Ravens, and Wolves. A Druid of 11th level of greater may gain the companionship of a Beast up to CR1.

The Druid may speak with their animal companion at all times in a way similar to the Speak with Animals spell (q.v.)

The animal companion acts independently of the Druid and is a “boon companion” rather than a familiar or other similar spirit aide. In combat it rolls its own initiative and takes its own actions. The animal companion gains hit dice such that it always has the same number of hit dice as their Druid companion, and they are allowed either Ability Score Improvements or Feats at the same time as their Druids gain the same improvement. Their proficiency score is always equal to that of their Druid, and they may use the Druid’s Intelligence and Wisdom saves instead of their own

The animal companion remains with the Druid until death or until it is released – while amazingly hale and hearty it’s lifespan is not greater than that of its wilder brethren. Released companions often stay near to Druidic places of Power and act as guardians as the Druids take care of them in their final years. Additionally, nothing prevents a Druid from Awakening (q.v.) an Animal Companion – often making these guardians quite dangerous.

A Druid may only have one Animal Companion at a time.

 

Familiar Bond

2nd-Level Enchantment (Ritual)

  • Casting Time: 8 Hours
  • Range: 10 Feet
  • Components: V, S, M (30sp of Charcoal, Herbs, and Incense that must be consumed in a fire in a brazier)
  • Duration: Instantaneous

Unlike the 1st-Level Find Familiar (q.v.) which summons a spiritual “Fetch” to aid the magic user, the spell Familiar Bond creates an oath-bound alliance between the Wizard and an allied creature. Often performed with infant animals (or possibly with the animals parents in some cases), the spell creates an intense bond that cannot be broken save by either the violation of the agreement by the Wizard – these creatures rarely exceed CR½. In exceedingly rare cases, bonds may even be formed with Fey, Celestials, or Fiends if the Wizard can contact appropriately powerful entities from the appropriate Court to negotiate with – these creatures can be CR1 or possibly even higher if the oath’s are worthy of it.

The Familiar rolls its own initiative and takes its own actions. The hit dice of the Familiar is always at least equal to their Wizard, and the Familiar may always use the Wizards proficiency bonus as well. If the Wizards saves are better the Familiar may also substitute those saves for their own. The Familiar also gains Ability Score improvements and Feats at the same time as their Wizard.

The Wizard may communicate telepathically with the Familiar if they within 100 feet of each other, and they may also, as an Action, “ride along” with one or more senses of their Familiar (being oblivious to their own matching sense at while doing so).

The Familiar can maintain Concentration for one spell that the Wizard has cast as long as they are within 100 feet of the caster. The Familiar may act as the “point of origin” for purposes of range for the Wizard as long as they are within 100 feet.

If the Familiar takes damage, the Wizard takes an equal amount of Psychic damage (that bypasses any Resistance or Immunity). The Wizard is also Stunned for one round (Charisma Save, DC15, for no effect). If the Familiar is reduced to zero hit points then the Wizard immediately takes Psychic damage equal to the Familiar’s Hit Points (Charisma Save, DC15, Half Damage, other bypassing any Resistance or Immunity). They are also automatically Stunned for one round. Both Wizard and Familiar have Advantage on Death Saves while the other is still alive. If the Familiar is slain, the Wizard is affected as if by a Feeblemind spell (DC10+ Familiar’s Hit Dice).

A Wizard may only have one Familiar at a time, though they may also have a Fetch as summoned by the 1st-Level Find Familiar spell.

 

NOTE: Yes, a multi-classed Druid/Warlock/Wizard could have an Animal Companion, a Pact of the Chain Familiar, a Fetch, and a Familiar. If they were also a Ranger with the Beast Master Archtype they could also have Ranger’s Companion as well.

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Casting spells and wearing armor (5e)

So, as I go through the list of things that I like about 5e as compared to 1e, and things I like much, much better in 1e the whole concept of wearing armor and casting spells comes up. In 5e, this is simply a matter of proficiency – if you are proficient in the armor, then it doesn’t interfere in your spell-casting. Now, in 1e spell-casting and armor was severely limited and was one of the great balancers for non-human races, fundamentally for Arcane Magic.

Now, truthfully, there are all sorts of different flavors of Arcane Magic now (and we’ll ignore my “historical game” switched all sorts of things up, like Druids using Arcane Magic, blah, blah, blah…) but, in the quest to nerf the idea of level-dipping, and continue to add back at least some of the verisimilitude that made my campaign world make sense…

Divine Magic has no inherent limits on armor (just like 1e), it is simply a matter of the armor training you get from your class. A character Deity is happy to pump divine energy into you, whatever you’re wearing, as long as you’re doing “the right stuff”!

Arcane Magic is where it gets wonky…

Wizards, Eldritch Knights, Arcane Tricksters, and Sorcerers may only wear only wear Ultralight Armor.

Bards and Warlocks may wear Ultralight and Light Armor.

Elves, High Men, Half-Elves, Sh’dai, Dwarrow, the Old Race, and Gnomes (this could expand as additional races are detailed) may wear non-metallic Light and Medium Armor and cast Arcane Magic, they may also wear enchanted metallic armor of the same types.

This gets us back to the image of locking wizards into specially-made suits of armor as a way to neutralize them without having to cut their tongues out or cut off their fingers and hands… It’s also the reason why these races are likely to get targeted first by tactically knowledgeable opponents, they are going to be assumed to be spell-casters, no matter what they actually are, and are perceived as mysterious, dangerous, and the most significant threat sans any more obvious target.

D.

 

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Unearthed Arcana, 5e Playtest Material, and Min-Maxing

I have to say that while I enjoy reading the various material that come through Unearthed Arcana, and even approve of most of them – reading people utterly flip out on EnWorld about them is probably more enjoyable. It’s a collection of folks freaking out as they come up with every possible Min-Maxed way that something could be or should be broken, complaints about the flavor text, and just general Internet fan-boy hysteria.

The latest one, with the Hexblade Patron, the Raven Queen Patron, the extra Eldritch Boons, and the then Lore Master Arcane Tradition for Wizards has people’s heads exploding. Personally I don’t find any of them particularly bad and kind of like them, I can certainly see some of the complaints – but when you grew up with quadratic magic-users I’m not exactly intimidated by these.

Part of the issue is the idea of level-dipping, an annoying metagamey artifact of 3E D&D. This is a problem only if the DM is dumb enough (or inexperienced enough) to allow it unchecked. Those of us raised and nourished in the halcyon days of 1E pretty much view any ability to “switch classes” after character creation to be a gift from the gods (aka the DM, often via an actual act of deity). As such, at least in my campaign, it’s should never be viewed as a given (or a “right”) it should be viewed as illustration of character development.

Case in point, if your Fighter character really starts thinking like a Paladin and you wanted to “multiclass” I’d be much more tempted to simply switch the character’s class than have a “Fighter/Paladin” – same thing with Cleric in many cases.  If your Cleric wants to train as a Monk… well, yeah, that takes awhile and you’re probably going to have a Cleric/Monk…

Also, in my campaign, multi-classing is generally going to result in a significant investment of time on the part of the character (months, not days or weeks) – which means that they are going to lag behind in level if the rest of the party has continued adventuring. Let be serious, 5e characters are already amazing overpowered compared to 1E and 2E (and, by accounts, to 3E & 4E as well), multi-classing makes them even more powerful – so yes, I’m going to make players work for it a bit.

Which, as anyone who knows me, doesn’t mean that I particularly care about powerful PC’s – I love players having powerful PC’s and I have yet to meet one that I can’t kill or otherwise deal with if I really wanted to. I threw out CR awhile ago as broken and most creatures in my games are not Monster Manual standard – another artifact of a long-running campaign world. In fact the majority of the “problems” in my current campaign has been from one of two sources, hewing to closely to some of the 5e assumptions regarding game balance, and trying to hard to follow the actual adventure path for the Age of Worms.

I should probably update my page for House Rules to address all of the various articles as to which are allowed and which aren’t.

TTFN!

D.

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Death and the Player Character (5E DnD)

So, as I study for the EPPP, part of my brain recovery (or cushioning more likely) has been watching Matthew Colville’s Running the Game series and the odd video or three from Web DM. I strongly recommend both sets of videos, for a variety of reasons – you can decide on your own. Now, that said, this has more to do with the recent release of Matt Mercer’s Resurrection rules from Critical Whatever. I don’t watch it, but the rules came across my feed.

It force me to think about this in my game, as well as reflecting on some of the differences between 1E and 5E. In the old 1E games, things were much more lethal, and characters were a bit more careful as result. In 5E, healing is much more available, dying is much harder (mechanically), and there are none of the limitations or costs on Raising that previously existed (System Shocks, Con loss, racial limitations). We are finally at the level where Raise Dead is available (or will be soon) and while I like the idea of Matt Mercer’s rules they are just way to fiddly in some ways. 5E DnD has done a lot to get rid of fiddly in some ways and his rules actually seem more fiddly than 1E AD&D was.

I’ve also been thinking about simply how easy it is to bring back people from death or it’s brink in 5E. I like this flavor to tell the truth, but the Gentle Repose and Revivify combo is a, um, “killer” on top of the normal magical curing, healing kits, and Spare the Dying cantrip. It is really pretty darn hard to die and they’ve made it pretty darn easy to come back from it…

Perhaps too easy for my evolved campaign setting.

Now, one suggestion is to make diamonds (the material component for Revivify, Raise Dead, Resurrection, and True Resurrection) much less common and very difficult to find. Truthfully, I already know exactly had rare they are and they already aren’t that common. But I also don’t exactly mind Revivify given the time limitations involved. I do miss the System Shock rolls of the old Raise Dead spells, as well as the racial limitations – these are huge social and cultural limiting factors in my campaign.

Note, this is also all in my search to re-humanize my world a bit. It is intended to be humanocentric world, and there is no mechanical reason for this in 5E unlike the reasons why this would be in 1E.

So, normal rules of dealing with near death still apply. Dropping to 0HP is just like the rules. Healing from that works as normal and Revivify works as normal. A Saving Throw on the part of the character being brought back from death is required for Gentle Repose + Revivify, Raise Dead, and Resurrection. There is no Saving Throw needed for True Resurrection or Reincarnate. For purposes of effects, any time you are Revivified outside of the base timing of the spell because of some other spell or magic item in the mix, you need to make the Ability Check.

The ability that the Ability Check is rolled on is chosen by the player of the character being brought back as long as they can justify it. The Ability Check is Medium (15), using Bywater-grade diamonds (basically industrial quality) incurs Disadvantage, while 1st Water diamonds grant Advantage. For what it is worth, Bywater is pretty much all that is available in Towns (and probably only enough for one casting of Revivify) while 2nd and 3rd Water are available Cities, and 1st Water diamonds are generally only available (at normal price) in Great Cities.

Things that normally affect Ability Checks will also affect this one – meaning that a group of companions pleading with their deities, cleansing the area spiritually, calling out psychically to help the spirit find it’s way to the body, whatever, can potentially help this roll (see p175 “Working Together” in the Player’s Handbook).

Jewelry with an appropriately-sized diamond in it is very “fashionable” for many adventurers and usually able to be found in most cities.

In the realm of verisimilitude and Gygaxian Naturalism, these sorts of spells also incurs a significant bit of interest in a divine caster’s deity, even if unconscious. So bringing character back from death that do not worship the same deity, are of significant different alignments, etc., etc., etc. can have significant repercussions for everyone involved. Geasa, religious conversion, spell refusal/failure, and the like are all possible and should be expected. This is beyond how some cultures and races view and deal with death. For example, Dwarves can be Raised, but culturally are loath to come back and see it as a curse rather than a blessing. There is also, invariably, some other cost to coming back from the dead – ability score penalty, insanity, whatever. It really depends upon the situation and context – hacked to death by swords is a bit more traumatic than a quiet backstab that killed someone instantly, but assume that dying is troubling to the emotional well-being of a character and even their spiritual health.

I’m slowly updating the write-ups of the character races with their relationship with death.

TTFN!

D.

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The Shadowlands (Environmental Effects)

So, when the party travelled to the Shadowlands, they discovered that it has rather grievous effects on non-natives. Being so close to the Realm of the Dead, this creates a drain on those not born to it. The following are the basic rules for how the Shadowlands affects creatures and classes who travel for any length of time there without magical protection.

RACIAL PENALTIES:

  • Humans: Must make a DC15 Charisma Check Weekly or suffer a level of Exhaustion, on the Fumble they also lose 1 Sanity.
  • Khazan: Must make a DC5 Constitution Check monthly or suffer a level of Exhaustion, on the Fumble they also lose 1 Sanity.
  • Half-Elves: Half-Elves suffer from much the same penalty as both of their kin, just to a lesser degree. Use of their Faerie Magic requires a DC15 Con check, and they must also make a DC15 Charisma Check weekly or suffer a level of Exhaustion, on the Fumble they also lose 1 Sanity.
  • Dwarves: Dwarves are generally unaffected by the Shadowlands, merely needing to make a DC15 Constitution Check Weekly or suffer a level of Exhaustion, on the Fumble they also lose 1 Sanity.
  • Gnomes: Closely tied to the Mortal Realms and Faerie, Gnomes lose their Speech with the Wild Things and Mask of the Wild feature. Use of their Faerie Magic requires a DC15 Con check. They suffer greatly from the lack of sun (see their Disadvantages) and they must make a DC15 Charisma check Weekly or suffer a level of Exhaustion, on the Fumble they also lose 1 Sanity.
  • Elves: Closely tied to Faerie, Elves are grievously affected when within the Shadowlands. They lose their Faerie Mien unless they make a DC15 Con check to call it forth – and then must maintain Concentration upon it. They must make a DC15 Charisma check Weekly or suffer a level of Exhaustion, on the Fumble they also lose 1 Sanity.

For periods spent Carousing in the Shadowlands the roll to check for Exhaustion may be reduced to a DC5 Check.

Exhaustion levels may be reversed for each week spent Carousing. Sanity loses may be partially reversed in the Mortal Realms for every month spent Carousing, if started weeks equal to the 1 + the Wisdom modifier of the character in question. If Sanity is lost, no more than half can be regained in this way (rounded down).

HEALING AND REST PENALTIES:

  • Long Rest only restores 1HD (not half), unless accompanied by the excitation of strong physical and emotional passions (or by some forms of intensely focused meditation).
  • Death Saving Throws are at Disadvantage. A Healer’s Kit is and a DC10 Wisdom (Medicine) check is needed to stabilize a creature.

CLASS EFFECTS:

  • Bard: Song of Rest will restore +1HD if played during a Short or a Long Rest. Bardic Inspiration may also be used to restore 1HD per use of the Bardic Inspiration. Recovery of Bardic Inspiration requires a DC15 Charisma check. After a Bard has resided in the Shadowlands for 1 month per level they recover Inspiration as normal.
  • Cleric: Clerics of the Life, Light, and Nature Domains must make a DC15 Wisdom save to use their Channel Divinity feature. They also only regain one (1) use between rests. Clerics of a Death Domain do not suffer from Racial or Healing & Rest Penalties, and have the same benefit as the Druidic Natural Recovery feature.
  • Druid: Due to the alien nature of the Shadowlands, until a Druid has resided there for months equal to their level, they only regain half the number of spells as normal after a Long Rest.
  • Monk: Due to their studious discipline, Monks may recover HD as normal. Monks of the Way of the Shadow have Advantage in Combat, and only need spend 1 Ki to use their Shadow Arts.
  • Paladin: Paladins of the Oath of the Ancient must make a DC15 Wisdom save to use their Channel Divinity feature. They also only regain one (1) use between rests. Until they have resided in the Shadowlands for months equal to their level, they only regain half the number of spells after a Long Rest.
  • Ranger: Rangers have Disadvantage when using their Natural Explorer feature until they have resided in the Shadowlands for one week per level of experience.
  • Warlock: The nature of Pact magic means that there is no mechanical issues for Warlocks in play. Those with the Archfey Patron may find that they must make Charisma tests to use Patron-related features, while those with a Patron among the Great Old Ones are likely to become the targets of the Wild Hunt…
  • Wizard: Those who study the School of Necromancy do not suffer from Racial or Healing & Rest Penalties, and have the same benefit as the Druidic Natural Recovery feature.

DAMAGE MODIFIERS:

  • Cold, Necrotic, Poison, Psychic, and Radiant damage is +1 per die of damage.

EFFECTS ON GEAR:

  • Non-magical equipment and gear from the Mortal Realms suffers from -1 Penalty each week of existence in the Shadowlands. After no more than five weeks (and a potential -5 penalty) it finally reaches a functionally useless state.
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