Posts Tagged With: Ranger

Gift of the Ancients and the Shield of the Faithful

Nanietharil – Gift of the Ancients

A vest of Masterwork Leaf Armor made of overlapping layers of Ironwood carved into the form of tiny leaves. It’s dark hue is broken by a leaf-and-branch pattern of bronze and gold.

Requirements:

  • Proficient in Medium Armor
  • Survival Skill
  • Elven or Half-Elven Blood

Properties:

  • +2 Ironwood Leaf Armor Vest (AC 13)
  • Resistance to Non-Magical Slashing, Piercing, and Bludgeoning Damage
  • Considered Enchanted
  • Treated as Light Armor
  • May re-roll any Survival skill check, 1/day.
  • When wooded or grassy areas, the leaves shift in shape and hue to match the native flora.

Level Bonuses:

  • 5th: One with the Wild – Characters with the Animal Handling skill may use it with non-domesticated animals.
  • 6th: Walk Unseen – The character has Advantage on Stealth checks in natural surroundings.
  • 7th: Walker in the Wild – The character has Advantage on Survival checks.
  • 8th: +3 Ironwood Leaf Armor Vest (AC 14)
  • 10th: Voice of the Wild – 3/Day – May Speak with Animals as the spell.
  • 12th: Armor of the Wild – A character wearing this while using the Wild Shape class feature gains all the benefits of the armor.
  • 13th: +4 Ironwood Leaf Armor Vest (AC 15)
  • 14th: Predator’s Dash – Base speed increases by 10′ per round.
  • 16th: Shape of the Wild – A character with the Wild Shape class feature gains one additional use of this ability per day.

The Aegis Inviolable – Shield of the Faithful

A Kite Shield of Fine Quality and sized for a Medium creature made of fire-blackened steel. It is bordered in bright sunsteel, with the sunburst symbol of the same metal in the center.

Requirements:

  • Proficiency with Shields
  • Proficiency with Heavy Armor
  • Religion Skill
  • Good Alignment

Properties:

  • +1 Kite Shield (+3 AC)
  • Considered Enchanted
  • The wielder is considered one level higher for the purposes of Turning and Destroying Undead as long as they already have that class feature.
  • When strapped onto the wielders arm, the sunburst symbol glows brightly. While not bright enough to provide any illumination, it makes it impossible to hide or sneak about unseen.

Level Bonuses:

  • 5th: Light Fortification – 25% to negate Critical Hits or Sneak Attacks
  • 6th: Energy Aegis – 1/Day – Can choose Resistance to a single type of energy as a Reaction, this last 1 round.
  • 8th: Holy Vessel – For Clerics and Paladins of Good Alignment, the Aegis Inviolate functions as their Holy Symbol.
  • 9th: +2 Kite Shield (+4 AC)
  • 10th: Protection of the Gods – 1/Day – The wielder may use the Shield of Faith spell.
  • 11th: Energy Aegis Inviolable – The Resistance (q.v.) becomes Immunity.
  • 12th: Medium Fortification – 50% to negate Critical Hits or Sneak Attacks
  • 13th: +3 Kite Shield (+5 AC)
  • 16th: Divine Ward – 1/Day – The wielder may invoke a Death Ward as a Reaction.
Categories: Magic Item | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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.

Categories: Campaign Development, Game Design, House Rules, Magic Item | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

5E – Ranger Archtype – The Ranger Knight

Ranger Knight

The epitome of the wandering “knight errant” of the wilderness, the Ranger Knight is actually quite comfortable with civilization and will move from rural, to urban, and then to wilderness with nary a concern save for the most effective way they can protect their charges and combat their enemies. Their presence, both open and hidden, has proven the deciding factor in the survival of many a settlement in the face of invading goblin hordes and rampaging troll warbands.

Stalwart Foe

At 3rd level, the Ranger Knight is able to add their Proficiency Modifier to the damage from successful weapon attacks against Favored Enemies.

Staunch Defender

When reaching 7th level, the Ranger Knight gains Advantage all Attacks and Saving Throws when defending the weak and the helpless from immediate danger or threat. This includes the defense of fortifications where innocents are not in the direct line of fire but does not include situations where the Ranger Knight has sought out their opponent. This would also include a rearguard defense while wounded of a group flee the site of battle.

Inspiring Presence

For Ranger Knights of 11th level and greater, their mere presence grants companions and allies Advantage on Saving Throws against Fear and similar effects. They also have Advantage on attempts to rally troops or other related activities.

Implacable Enemy

Finally, at 15th level, when fighting a Favored Enemy, a Ranger Knight will make a Critical Attack on a 19 or 20.

—-

This is an attempt to create a “Ranger that feels like a Ranger” because I’m not a huge fan of either Beastmaster Rangers as the default or that thing they call a “Hunter” in the Player’s Handbook. So with this I think we get a bit closer to my idea of a Ranger, a bit more Aragorn, a hint more of 1e rather than 2e or later. I expect that I should come up with an “”official list” of potential Favored Enemies for my game world as well, given the changes in commonality of some creatures.

Categories: Campaign Development, Game Design, House Rules | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

5E – Ranger Archtype – The Huntsmen

Astute readers will likely note the similarities to the Huntsmen of Annuvin from Lloyd Alexander’s Chronicles of Prydain series – and well they should. These are modeled in most ways upon them, though they also owe a nod to the Valley of the Earth Mother from Dragon magazine #102, where the idea of an “anti-Ranger” was given written form. In any case, I really need to have these figured for my game world and this is what I came up with for 5E.

———

The Huntsmen

Amongst the lore of Rangers there are tales that speak of a dreaded brotherhood sworn to the death and who work in the service of evil cults and leaders in the wilds and ruins of the world. In many ways the antithesis of everything that Rangers normally stand for, Huntsmen are wild and savage and their secret rites of blood unite them unto to death and even beyond.

Brotherhood of Death

At 3rd level, allied as they are to Death, Huntsmen have Advantage when saving against both Fear and Enchantments. More importantly, when a member of the Huntsmen is within 30′ of another member of the Huntsmen who dies they immediately gain a 1d10 points of healing (which may grant temporary Hit Points) and gain Advantage on their next attack. Any Temporary Hit Points disappear after a Short or Long rest.

Huntsman’s Horn

When reaching 7th level, the horns and cries of Huntsmen can cause Fear to all foes within 30′ – those foes who fail a Wisdom check will drop what they are holding and take a Dash action away from the Hunstmen each round until they succeed at a Wisdom check – they are also under the Fear condition.

Bloodthirst

For Huntsmen of 11th level, their bloodlust has grown strong indeed. As a result, upon drawing blood against an opponent they may add their Proficiency bonus to Damage against that opponent, and have Advantage on all Tracking and Perception checks related to that foe.

Reaper’s Prize

Finally, at 15th level a Huntsman reaches the point where they actually feed upon death of living things, gaining Hit Points for each death within 30′ equal to their Proficiency Bonus plus their Wisdom modifier, doubled if they struck the killing blow themselves.

Categories: Campaign Development, Game Design, House Rules | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

The Old Faith and Ranger Lodges

This was, as with the previous post, the intersessionary email for the Old Faith folks.

So, shortly after you all get back to Seraph Keep, after treasure is divided up, a trio of members of the Old Faith show up. Jezebel is happy to see Ru (short for “Kharukash”) show up, her sponser into both the Ban Draoi and the Rangers. Ru is a half-elven Ranger/Druid/Mage that she knows from her past training, and who generally serves as liaison between the Rangers and the Ban Draoi (the distaff side of the Druidic Orders) – as well as being a member of the Circle, a kind of larger, over-arching organization of rangers, druids, mages, and bards (as well as other classes, but these are the most represented).

Ru takes Jezebel back to Áine, a Druidess whose grove is deep in the mountains, and where she undergoes her initiation into the 1st Circle of the Ban Draoi Order. Imagine lots of dancing naked around fires, sleeping in caves, and meditation under the night sky wrapped in animal skins. Jezebel also spends time under the eye of Ru herself as she gets inducted into Dragonblood Lodge – this involves lots of sweatlodges, running naked in the woods hunting things with your bare hands and teeth, and being painted in woad and blood – possibly some tattoos as well. Now, this isn’t free, each of these costs you in the neighborhood of 1000sp. If you don’t have the money, or don’t have things you can offer up in place of money – so after treasure picks (and yes, you do know that this sort of thing is going to take cash, this isn’t a surprise) we’ll see where you are at. But don’t worry, you’ll get your initiations and inductions no matter what. Ru isn’t going to let a prospect of your potential slip through the cracks.

The other two who show up are the ranger Laighhean and the Caedmon the Druid. Laighhean is a pretty well-respected ranger (he’s like 8th level) and he takes Arvid and Taloth off into the mountains after they get a blessing from Caedmon where they meet up with a handful of other rangers and they get inducted into the Blackmoon Lodge. Similarly to Jezebel, this involves lots of sweatlodges, lots of hunting things with nothing more than your hands and teeth, being painted in woad and blood, possible tattoos, and meditating under the night sky wrapped in animal skins. This is going to cost each of you roughly 1000sp, let me know if you don’t think you’ll have enough cash or trade after the treasure picks. It will get figured out.

This shows the players a bit more about what they can expect from both being members of the Old Faith, but also introduces them to a couple of “movers and shakers” when I say Druid (and Druidess) I’m talking the 12th level ones – the folks that are important. Plus Ru is pretty darn spiffy as well, the Circle is one of those groups that was spawned a million years ago in my game, by a mention of a group of rangers and druids of the same name by Ed Greenwood long before he was ever talking about the Harpers. I think it was in one of his Pages from the Mages articles.

The other part is that as we discussed this all in person, it also “came out” that there had been at least a couple of days spent all together doing said ranger-y things off in some hidden valley where the rangers and the druids hang out. Not sure where exactly that will go, but it’s good to know that I have that in the wings as well if I need it. Plus, Taloth’s new broadsword let’s him Teleport once per day – and he spent some time making a point of memorizing the teleport terrace in the hidden valley. So, if all else fails, he has a spot to bamf out to for safety.

D.

Categories: Campaign, Campaign Development, Game Play | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

Blog at WordPress.com.