PBP House

Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
Advanced search  

News:

Upgraded to the latest version of the forum software. Let a mod know if you experience any issues.

Show Posts

This section allows you to view all posts made by this member. Note that you can only see posts made in areas you currently have access to.

Topics - cthughua

Pages: [1] 2 3 ... 9
1
The Studio / Variant 5e D&D spellcasting
« on: January 21, 2015, 06:24:39 PM »
I humbly submit this for you to use/tear apart.  Feedback welcome.

Fatiguing Magic
A variant spell casting system for 5th edition Dungeons & Dragons.

Preface
The spell slot system for D&D never quite jived for me.  I wanted a dynamic system where magic was an unpredictable force that spell casters were capable of manipulating but with sometimes disastrous consequence.  Where gods and spirits were fickle hoarders of cosmic power, capriciously doling it out to worshipers.

Yet it also had to be a complete system that blended seamlessly with the other rules of the game.  For me, Fifth Edition seems to be the pinnacle of streamlined play and consistent rules.  A perfect time to finally introduce some of my own thoughts regarding spell casting into the game.

Some of the changes in this text are mostly thematic, explaining some seemingly arbitrary rules.  Other changes allow a player to completely bypass those restrictions for a price. Most changes allow players a little more freedom in how and where their characters cast spells, trading reliability for power.

On the Arcane and the Divine
In many RPGs there isn't really anything separating arcane and divine spells, players select spells from one of two menus, arbitrarily divided. With this system, arcane casters learn magic through a system of formula and rote memorization.  Arcane magic is treated like physics, it is a series of constants and variables.   Divine casters on the other hand must beseech their patrons for their aid, often times with a series of ritual and prayer that to the outside observer may seem very much like arcane casting but in truth it is completely different.  A divine caster wields the power of their deity with blind devotion, never truly understanding the nature of how that power effects reality.

Channeling
Spell casters no longer have spell slots, only spells known and prepared.  When you cast a spell of 1st level or higher you must make a Channeling check equal to the DC of the spell that you have just cast.  This is a special Constitution check that does not suffer from disadvantage from the first level of exhaustion. Failing this check means you suffer a level of exhaustion.  Rolling a 1 on this check requires a roll on the spell mishap table.

Insulation
Experienced casters have a layer of insulation from this fatigue equal to their Total Caster Level.  To determine Total Caster Level add levels of bard, cleric, druid, sorcerer, and wizard together, half your levels (rounded down) in the paladin and ranger classes, and a third of your fighter or rogue levels (rounded down) if you have the Eldritch Knight or Arcane Trickster feature.  Each time a character suffers a level of exhaustion from a failed casting check they may instead expend a number of points from their insulation equal to the level of the spell just cast. See Appendix A of the PHB for effects of exhaustion.

Recovery
Spell casters can recover spent Insulation by expending hit die during a short rest.  Roll a d4 for each hit die expended and add to Insulation up to the character’s maximum Insulation.  Spell casters automatically recover half of their max Insulation (rounded down) during a long rest.

Feats
Practiced Channeller
You add your proficiency bonus to your Channeling check.  Furthermore you add your highest casting ability score modifier to Insulation.

Over-channel
You can cast a spell at a higher level than you normally could, this is called over-channeling.   You automatically suffer a level of exhaustion for each spell level above the highest level you could normally cast.  Insulation cannot help you here, as this is a deliberate attempt to squeeze more energy into a spell than is normally safe to do.  You still make a Channeling roll, success means you over-channel with no added complications, failure means you roll on the spell mishap table.

Known and Prepared Spells
Some spell casters prepare spells whereas others cast from a smaller list of known spells.  Under this system, casters who prepare spells still do so, however they can cast any spell they normally could from a spell book or calling on their patron on a successful Arcana (for Arcane spells) or Religion (for Divine spells) skill check with the DC equal to the spell being cast. Failing this check results in an unpredictable surge of magic. Roll on the spell mishap table.  The spell is fatiguing as normal.  Any spell caster can attempt to cast a spell they have personally observed being cast but do not know, the DC for the check is increased by +5, however.

Alternate Class Abilities
Certain class abilities become more or less useful under this system or down right useless and therefore need some modification.  Other changes/additions have been made to alter the feel and role of each of the spell casting classes, further distinguishing them from each other.

Bard
Spell Weaving: By subtly inter-weaving their music with magic, a bard is able to concentrate on two spells at once however he cannot stop playing or singing while concentrating.  This makes stealth checks automatically fail.  A bard cannot maintain spell weaving and also countersong or use their inspiration ability.

Sotto Voce: At 15th level a bard learns to use sub-harmonics to remain near silent while maintaining two concentration spells at once.  He can make Stealth checks as normal.

Alumni Dues: As members of a bardic college, bards must pay annual dues equal their bard level x 100gp.  Alternately, a bard may return to his college to pass on his knowledge, this takes a month and his dues are waived for the year.  A bard who uncovers a particular piece of lore or a bard only magic item could donate it to the college, his dues would then be waived for a value equal to the full value of the item.

Cleric
Divine Intervention: Functions exactly as written, however instead of using “duplicates a spell” as a rough guideline of the power scale of the intervention instead consider it to be a “we win” button for the players.  The manifestation of a deity’s will should be awesome and thematically in line with that deity’s domains.  A storm god smites all of your enemies with lightning, a god of life restores all slain comrades, a god of knowledge resets time to just before the battle begun but all character retain all memories of the past that never happened.  Get creative!  Offer spot bonuses (or penalties) to the chance the roll succeeds based on how well the player roleplays their plea or the environment.  Praying to the storm god indoors?  Give the player a penalty, -5% at most.  Really good roleplaying? Go as high as +15%.

Druid
Tend the Wild:  The balance of nature must ever be maintained; a druid must spend time in a natural environment a number of hours equal to her level each month, performing rituals, culling weaker animals and plants or nurturing young and growing flora and fauna (depending on her alignment).  Failing to do so weakens her bond with nature, she loses access to her highest level spells.  Thereafter, each week that a druid fails to perform her duties she loses her next highest level of spells. Atonement equal to the total number of hours missed is required before her spells are returned.  A druid can attempt to over-channel as normal.

Sacred Places: When a druid is within a stone circle or some other place considered sacred by druids (DM’s call) she has advantage on Channeling checks.

Sorcerer
Raw Magic: A sorcerer’s access to the arcane is precocious at best, his magic wants to be used. If a sorcerer goes 24 hours without casting his highest level spell he must make a DC 15 Arcana check, failure means rolling on the spell mishap table as he loses control over his powers.  At 10th level the DC is reduced to 10.  At 15th level he no longer needs to make this check, his self-mastery complete.   The DM is free to impose this check on him any other time his magic might want to surge out of him, times of high stress, areas of wild magic, proximity to dragons, etc.

Over-Channel Expert: A sorcerer’s mastery over the raw nature of magic allows them to reduce the fatigue of any over-channel attempt by 1 (to a minimum of 1).

Warlock
The warlock is a special case, they do not cast spells like most other casters.  Although truly closer to a divine caster they are even more so a conduit for the energies they wield rather than a conscious practitioner of the arcane arts.  This results in them often being looked down upon by other casters.  Furthermore, the rules as written provide no impetus for a warlock that is beholden to another power to adhere to any requests from their patron.  The DM is free to impose little side missions or quests, especially that coincide (or clash!) with the party’s current goals.  The agenda of their patron is often inscrutable yet certain patterns may come to light as the adventures progress.  A Warlock who refuses to obey their patron may find their spells and abilities fail them.  A Warlock who has mildly displeased his master must roll on the spell mishap table every time he misses with a spell attack. Additional failure will be met with the loss of invocations and spell slots.  The DM is free to determine a suitable act of atonement.

Wizard
Arcane Recovery: Instead of spell slots, you recover that much Insulation instead.

Spell Mastery: The spells chosen do not require a Channeling roll.

Signature Spells: The two spells chosen do not require a Channeling roll.

School Specialist: At level 2 when a player selects a specialty school, that player also selects another school to be his least favored school.  From that moment on, the caster has advantage on Channeling rolls for the specialty school and disadvantage on the other.  Magic is fickle.

Spell Mishap Table
Roll d20.
1-10 Roll on the Wild Magic Table.
11-15 The caster is cutoff from magic until taking a short rest.
16-20 The caster suffers 1d4 levels of exhaustion.

2
The Rec Room / Amazing Spiderman 2
« on: May 12, 2014, 01:58:23 PM »
Saw it last weekend, really good. I missed thew wise-cracking Peter Parker from the comic books in the last trilogy, glad to see he's back.  I'm really liking some of the changes in the Ultimate Marvel Universe.

3
The Game Room / Circle of Hands
« on: March 20, 2014, 07:32:11 PM »
Ron Edwards has a kickstarter out, I have pledged, I highly endorse it.  Here's the kickstarter and HERE is the free playtest.

4
The Game Room / SWTOR
« on: February 14, 2014, 05:37:31 PM »
Anyone play? It would not run on my old card but ive just got a new one and it screams.

Deskida on The Harbinger

5
The Game Room / Banner Saga
« on: February 11, 2014, 10:10:47 PM »
Holy shit...  Banner Saga.  I was looking for a cheap RPG on Steam and came across this.  Party-based, turn-based, STUNNING art.  Real choices very much like The Walking Dead game (also damn good).  Why did I never hear of this before? It was KickStarted, but again, I never heard of it. 

Here's review: http://www.pcgamer.com/review/the-banner-saga-review-2/2

And here's the badass trailer:

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FbIH0vS9AG4[/youtube]

6
The Game Room / Darkest Dungeon Kickstarter
« on: February 11, 2014, 07:52:13 PM »
You absolutely must give these guys your money right now.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AQLxdHfMPF8[/youtube]

7
The Game Room / Theninthworld.com
« on: January 04, 2014, 08:09:20 PM »
Hey guys, as you know I'm a fan of Monte Cooks new RPG Numenera, check out the fansite www.theninthworld.com.  They're having a contest during the month of January for top fan-submitted content.  I have submitted 3 deadly plants, The Weepvine, Oven Oak, and Ghoul Maple.  Check them out here: http://theninthworld.com/encounters/

I'm posting there using my real name, JC Madden.

If you like them, give me an upvote, but of course check out the other fantastic submissions and give them some love too!  (Just vote for me more...)  :P

8
Food for worms / Osul the Kislevite
« on: December 23, 2013, 09:53:24 PM »
Osul the Ungol Streltsi
The story is not new.  It is a truth that almost every Kislevite knows; villages burn, parents die, sisters and brothers die.  You vow revenge, trudge to Erengrad and join the army, fight Chaos, watch friends die.  We win the war but for us in the north it is never really over, it is ever at our door.  The dreams start, easy enough to forget, but then the dreams come when awake.  Only Tor's helper* dulls the screams.  You long for death but you are a coward.  You find yourself on a road heading south and you are not sure why, maybe the din in your head will quiet with distance, this is what you tell yourself as you go on.

*A Kislevite expression that means liquor.


5'11" Black Hair, Black Eyes, and Bushy Mustache


Baseline
Exp
Starting
Current
WS
42
10''
42
52
BS
39
10
39
39
S
32
5
32
32
T
37
5'
37
42
Ag
35
5
35
35
Int
31
-
31
31
WP
31
5
31
31
Fel
28
-
28
28


Baseline
Exp
Starting
Current
A
1
-
1
1
W
11
2''
11
13
M
4
-
4
4
Mag
0
-
0
0
IP
0
-
0
0
FP
2
-
2
2

Hag's Curse
Cursed is this child to never skin rabbit, fox, nor bear neither.

Skills
Common Knowledge (Kislev) (Int), Perception (Int), Consume Alcohol (T+10), Dodge Blow (Ag), Gamble (Int), Speak Language (Kislevarin) (Int), Speak language (Riekspiel) (Int)

Talents
Marksman, Master Gunner, Provincial Expertise (Eastern Kislev), Rapid Reload, Sharpshooter, Specialist Weapon Group (Gunpowder, Two-Handed), Warrior Born

Trappings
Leather Jerkin, Leggings, Helmet
Berdysh
Firearm
10 shot
Shabby wool coat with bear fur collar
Funny Hat
Cup and Spoon
Bedroll

9
The Game Room / Fallout 1, 2, & Tactics FREE
« on: December 12, 2013, 09:52:13 PM »
From GOG.com until the end of tomorrow.  They're loosing the digital distro license so they're just GIVING it away.  Enjoy!

10
The Game Room / What DnD NEXT should have been
« on: December 12, 2013, 11:33:14 AM »
So my discussion with Bobitron got me started thinking about what I want DnD to be and what it's not.  Also there are certain "sacred cows" of DnD that while I don't think are the most elegent solutions to the mechanics they're genre defining and thus iconic.  Things like hit points and saving throws. 

So my question is this: if I designed a d20 system that performs as D20 NEXT originally advertised (modular, scalable, old school feel with new school thinking) would people be interested in playtesting it?

11
Game Interest and Speculation / A few game ideas...
« on: December 06, 2013, 10:06:55 AM »
I'm ready to start a new game/campaign...

I have a few ideas and I'd like to know if there's any interest in any of them.

1) A sandbox superheroes game; I've tried this before and I think I didn't do a good job of describing my expectations.  What I'm looking for is to create a new world/mythos of supers.  Something like Heroes or Alphas.  Characters are very complex but their powers are more simplistic/one-sided.  Although I love MnM I think I want to go with something much more rules-lite/free-form.  Open to suggestions.  The idea would be that it's more of a collaboration of story-tellers, my role would be to arbitrate rules questions/make final judgements.

2) A Numenera game.  I got the book and I'd love to run something.  Probably start with an adventure out of the back of the book.

3) A return to La Nuveau Monde... I'd love to run another True20 game set in my gothic horror version of colonial N. America.  See my previous game here:  The Black Pearl of R'lyeh

12
The Rec Room / Should we have a membership drive?
« on: December 06, 2013, 09:45:57 AM »
Here at PbPHouse we've never promoted our site to other communities, we've grown simply by word of mouth.  It's the holiday season and games tend to pick up as people have more time off and want to veg out after eating so much food!  We want to know what you guys think, should we get some new blood pumping through these old veins?

13
The Game Room / Neverwinter Online
« on: December 06, 2013, 09:34:32 AM »
Anyone else play?  I'm on Mindflayer; I have 3 level 60s: Great Weapon Fighter, Trickster Rogue, & Guardian Fighter.  Just started my Ranger as the class just came out.  It's a really good tactical Real-Time RPG... and it's free.

14
FAQs / We're back!
« on: November 22, 2013, 08:39:42 PM »
The database crashed, it took a while to fix and I'm still doing some necessary maintenance, thank you for your understanding and patience.

15
The Rec Room / Comic Books
« on: February 01, 2013, 04:50:59 PM »
Recently Started Avengers and New Avengers, written by Hickman.  Writings good.  It's funny, I'm liking the storyline of New Avengers WAY more but I don't like the characters.  Avengers feels like it's a little plodding (almost like a Manga storyline) sticking with it, hope it pays off.

The real star is SAGA.  It's a sci-fantasy adult fiction romp.  I started at issue 7 but I think I'll pick up the 1-6 trade paperback because it's quite good.  It reminds me a lot of Numenera and I think I'll be borrowing a lot for my game when it comes out.

So what are you reading?

Pages: [1] 2 3 ... 9