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Spell: Wall of Thorns 
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Hlobane Orc
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Post Spell: Wall of Thorns
This is an incredibly wicked spell (or I allowed too much to happen). In running G2 Against the Giants, the druid in the party used this spell to ensnare the 14 foot tall frost giants. The damage from this spell can really wear down the hit points of a giant.
    Should it not be able to be cast around a creature and just be a "wall"?
    Should giants be able to hack thru it a lot easier but would it make a difference?
    I can see the giants getting cover from attacks, would you rule the giant can still pick up and throw boulders?

Quote:
This spell creates a barrier of very tough, pliable and tangled brush, bearing needle-sharp thorns as long as a person’s finger that is 10 cubic feet in size per level of the caster. A simple thorn is used to enact this spell. Any creature forced into or attempting to move through the wall of thorns takes 25 points of damage per round of movement minus 1 point for each point of the creature’s AC that is granted by armor. Dexterity bonus to AC does not count for this calculation.

Creatures can force their way slowly through the wall by making a successful challenge level 10 Strength check A successful creature moves a number of feet equal to its strength divided by 3 (round down). Of course, moving or attempting to move through the thorns incurs damage as described above.

Any creature within the area of the spell when it is cast takes damage as if it had moved into the wall, and is caught inside. In order to escape, it must attempt to push its way free, or it can wait until the spell ends. A creature trapped in the thorns can choose to remain motionless in order to avoid taking any more damage. Creatures with the ability to pass unhindered through overgrown areas can pass through a wall of thorns at normal speed without taking damage.

A wall of thorns can be carefully breached by slow work with edged weapons. Chopping away at the wall creates a safe passage 1 foot deep for every 10 minutes of work. Normal fire cannot harm the barrier, but magical fire burns it away in 10 minutes.


Tue Sep 18, 2018 12:36 am
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Post Re: Spell: Wall of Thorns
I know my druid used it to devastating effect when nwelte ran G2.

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Tue Sep 18, 2018 1:11 am
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Greater Lore Drake
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Post Re: Spell: Wall of Thorns
it goes without saying ... take my comment with a grain of salt , It has been years since I ran or played at a level where this is the standard power of the game & it is a 'magic' question which is not my strong suite.

That said, yes from back in the day I remember it (or something like it) being wicked powerful. And yes I remember letting the druid back in the day form more shapes than just a straight wall. I can't remember if it was allowed to be a circle though...

However, with giants, how thick and how high is the wall ? What may be nearly insurmountable to a 6' tall creature is an annoyance to a massive giant 14' tall beast ... With that, why couldn't the giant crash through the wall - taking a round or 2 of damage - or bash it down with it's club or axe ? That does imply cutting through more of it than 1' for 10 min of cutting. As for throwing boulders, that is a given as long as there are rocks around for them to pick up and chunk at the characters. Plus, the giant could take cover behind the wall and rain rocks down on the party. Or, the giant could crouch down and wait till the party comes close and jams a giant sized spear through the wall and skewer the unfortunate party member. That all depends on how high the wall is and how thick it is.

Similarly, if the druid makes it high enough to keep the giant from tossing rocks, then it takes away from the length or depth of the wall. Which makes it easier for the giants to push through or run around.

So yes, it is a powerful spell, but not all powerful

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Tue Sep 18, 2018 10:55 pm
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Greater Lore Drake
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Post Re: Spell: Wall of Thorns
Some ideas:
Storm Giant has Freedom of Movement; which you may elect to mean it can move through wall of thorns without a strength check.

The Monster Ecology section of the CKG gives you permission but advises against assigning abilities to monsters, but here it's actually the balancing factor: a higher strength makes it easier to travel through the thorns, and giants should have strength in spades. You could use the god-like attribute table from the CKG for this. For reference, 3.5e d20srd gives them:
Code:
GIANT      STR
Cloud        35
Fire           31
Frost         29
Hill            25
Stone       27
Storm       39

(This is probably an awful idea. CKG gives a +10 at 30 and doesn't go above that.)

A simple +2 for every size category larger than medium would work (from the otherwise unrelated Grapple rules), but C&C only has 3 size categories. Still, +2 is something. If you want to use 3.5e sizes to compute this (+2 large, +4 huge):
Code:
Cloud  Huge
Fire Large
Frost Large
Hill Large
Stone Large
Storm Huge


I always am curious where all these boulders are coming from. It says they can hurl them, but they have to catch one from a catapult or otherwise have them at hand, in my opinion. I'd say if the wall is below their waist and they have a bag of boulders, then sure, they can throw them. But I'd probably make them make a check if they have to find boulders under the thorns, and not let them do it at all if it's a nice marble floor with no rockslides in sight.

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Wed Sep 19, 2018 2:36 am
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Greater Lore Drake
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Post Re: Spell: Wall of Thorns
magical thorns should not bother say a dragon.... scales too tough? Things that take magic to hit?

I always bump the heights of my giants and would give a +/- 12th lvl monster much more ease to get out of wall of thorns...

I assume everything is scaled to be impressive to a human or a natural animal.

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Fri Sep 21, 2018 1:18 am
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Hlobane Orc
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Post Re: Spell: Wall of Thorns
Lurker wrote:
it goes without saying ... take my comment with a grain of salt , It has been years since I ran or played at a level where this is the standard power of the game & it is a 'magic' question which is not my strong suite.

That said, yes from back in the day I remember it (or something like it) being wicked powerful. And yes I remember letting the druid back in the day form more shapes than just a straight wall. I can't remember if it was allowed to be a circle though...

However, with giants, how thick and how high is the wall ? What may be nearly insurmountable to a 6' tall creature is an annoyance to a massive giant 14' tall beast ... With that, why couldn't the giant crash through the wall - taking a round or 2 of damage - or bash it down with it's club or axe ? That does imply cutting through more of it than 1' for 10 min of cutting. As for throwing boulders, that is a given as long as there are rocks around for them to pick up and chunk at the characters. Plus, the giant could take cover behind the wall and rain rocks down on the party. Or, the giant could crouch down and wait till the party comes close and jams a giant sized spear through the wall and skewer the unfortunate party member. That all depends on how high the wall is and how thick it is.

Similarly, if the druid makes it high enough to keep the giant from tossing rocks, then it takes away from the length or depth of the wall. Which makes it easier for the giants to push through or run around.

So yes, it is a powerful spell, but not all powerful


I like your points. I think the giants should be taller by 2-4' to really make them more impressive. When I run it again, I'll be more prepared for this. I have the experience and will rule the giants aren't that hindered by it.

I don't want to change the rules or approach I've used by much. However, since the party retreated so the giants definitely have time to prepare. In this, there will be some new tactics by the giants to overcome this wall of thorns bit. Giants will have a bag of stones with them to hurl (rather than trying to pick up boulders). A little less damage but equally impressive. Frost giants will have axes. 1 round to clear some debris around them, then they get up on top and walk across therefore taking less damage as well as running in. Other giants will help those stuck in the thorns with tossing a table down on the thorns, etc. I'm going to add in a shaman as well. Why not, right? Maybe a possible dispel magic. Lastly, I need to make the giants call out an alarm to alert the whole dungeon. I've been bad about that.

The part about calling out for help (or since there's too much pride, "Here they are! Rend them in the ground!") which could easily awaken the 2 big nasty sleeping monsters from the depths below. Then really, it's game over for the party. The entrance / exit is then sealed with a wall of ice. After that, it's just a matter of time.


Fri Sep 21, 2018 9:30 am
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Greater Lore Drake
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Post Re: Spell: Wall of Thorns
Giant's carry clubs, yes, but they also carry weapons, especially frost giant's a giant machete, sword or better still sickles or scythe. They are fully affected by the spell and but they are prepared to clear away the thorns like a Saturday clearing out the back field that got overgrown with blackberrys. Giants are smart and most are old. Frost Giants to me are Northern Norse variants of giants and I make them extra smart with Illusionist magic and well equipped.. they know where the dwarves live too.

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Sat Sep 22, 2018 12:18 pm
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