Non-Combatant type classes (Mostly for NPCs)

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Nelzie
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Non-Combatant type classes (Mostly for NPCs)

Post by Nelzie »

I just ran an introductory adventure for the new group that revolved around some "Quasi-Ghouls" rooting around in the cemetary and dragging corpses into their lair for consumption. The village Expositor (Interpreter of the Gods, a Priest of the Pantheon with a leadership position) discovered the hastily dug up graves and noticed some drag marks leading to the main mosoleum. So, he ran to get help from the two 1st-level NPCs.

Why would he do that? He's a fairly potent Cleric, even though he's never been the type to go out and swing a mace. He can practically raise the dead, among many other magical healing, curing effects. Per the rules, he should have easily been able to clamp on his platemail (Probably magical armor), grab his trust Mace (Also magical) and the proceed to go to town on the creatures in the cemetary.

Only, he didn't. He wouldn't and he just plain couldn't.

While I do envision him to be the equivalent of a 6th level Cleric for spellcasting purposes, he simultaneously has no real martial ability, thus low hit points and if he was forced to fight, he would do so as a 1st level Cleric.

I want things to be "consistent" in the world and if some player really wanted to create such a combat useless cleric, I would like to have that available. However, I am unsure if using the basic deconstruction rules would result in a "fair" XP chart. For isntance, lacking combat skills and probably not having armor and or weapon choices, would let such a cleric greatly race up in levels. At the same time, it would be nice to be able to have a player pick-up such a character later in the campaign, if their current character expires and then "transform" the scholarly cleric into a warrior for the Pantheon and thus "buy" through XP the combat skills that would bring that character more in line with the rest of the party.

Any thoughts?

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Post by Nelzie »

I was thinking that this type of Cleric might be similar to a Wizard in terms of fighting ability, but even that shouldn't have stopped him from facing the very small number of quasi-undead that was the root of the trouble. A 6th level wizard has an increased BtH and there would have been no reason for him to be unable to put on armor, grab a club or a mace and use spells like Shield of Faith and similar protective spells to have been a one man wrecking crew against the paltry enemies.

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Post by Maliki »

There is a Priest class in the Colin Sez' download found here
http://www.dragonsfoot.org/cc/

It is pretty much the class you are describing. I plan to use them as village healers and such.
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Post by Nelzie »

Maliki wrote:
There is a Priest class in the Colin Sez' download found here
http://www.dragonsfoot.org/cc/

It is pretty much the class you are describing. I plan to use them as village healers and such.

Tha might work, although I think the increasing BtH and the ability to Turn Undead is more than is needed for this type of character. These characters just don't have any need (normally) to ever wield a weapon or even come into contact with Undead to the point where they might need to force their will upon the Undead.

It may not come up for quite some time. So, I do have some time to put together some things. I just want to have really open options that supports a "realistic" feel to the gameworld while staying true to the core concepts of Class/Level based gameplay.

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Post by rabindranath72 »

I do not see any problem in removing increasing BtH and weapon and armor proficiency, and getting a new consistent XP table. Such a class would be heavily penalised in case such things occur. Obviously, if you do not make such events happen, then a full Cleric would be penalised, too, since he would never use his full abilities.

So, in the end, it all depends on how you assign experience, and for what "actions". If there is a lot of combat, a non-fighting cleric would gain little benefit, and suffer high risks.

Cheers,

Antonio

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Post by Nelzie »

rabindranath72 wrote:
I do not see any problem in removing increasing BtH and weapon and armor proficiency, and getting a new consistent XP table. Such a class would be heavily penalised in case such things occur. Obviously, if you do not make such events happen, then a full Cleric would be penalised, too, since he would never use his full abilities.

So, in the end, it all depends on how you assign experience, and for what "actions". If there is a lot of combat, a non-fighting cleric would gain little benefit, and suffer high risks.

Cheers,

Antonio

Well, I would use this primarily as an NPC class and allow players to take over such NPCs, if they lost a character and were open to options. Then, they could be spending XP on "enhancing" the Priest into a capable fighting type until there is some level of parity between the XP the Priest turn Cleric has and the a Cleric of the same level as the Priest, at which point advancement could continue like a standard Cleric.

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Post by Scurvy_Platypus »

Not sure how much it's worth, but here's my opinion...

I wouldn't really worry about it. Trying to have options and a "realistic" feel is partially what led to such a large difference between the current edition of D&D and older ones. And between AD&D and D&D back in the day.

The class and level system just doesn't really map easily/well to the kind of game worlds most people seem to run. You wind up with a heck of a lot more casters than many people want, and plenty of NPCs that outstrip the PCs in terms of ability.

As for your specific non-combat type priest, if it were to be compared to a regular Cleric, it probably would advance at a much faster rate. Then again, that's assuming the non-combat priest is out there doing stuff and getting the same kind of XP as a regular Cleric is. But the regular Cleric is constantly (in theory) in a much greater postion of danger. Whereas the non-combat priest is mainly hanging out, doing the occasional Bless, and providing community support. Maybe called upon to do a Turn Undead, but not often (depending on your gameworld of course).

You could also have the NPC be gaining Influence or Good Will within the local area. Instead of combat, the priest is developing skills related to social situations, as well as religous teaching. 90% of the clerics I've seen as PCs aren't actually the minister-and-convert type. They're out there trying to kick butt and take names.

So basically, you can build your non-combat type class and still have it be relatively "balanced". Give it a Wizard BAB (or even worse) and no real martial abilities. If it's ever going to be done as a PC type, the character isn't going to be getting XP for killing stuff most likely as its ability to contribute to the combat will be rather limited.

But trying to twist a class and level system so that _everyone_ in the game world can be described using it... that's just borrowing more trouble than you really want, in my opinion. Class and Level are a way to artificially measure, control, and restrict the abilities of Player Characters in relationship to each other and the rest of the game world. Just like "realistically" a person isn't going to be taking multiple hits from a sword and surviving.

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Post by Nelzie »

Scurvy_Platypus wrote:
Not sure how much it's worth, but here's my opinion...

I wouldn't really worry about it. Trying to have options and a "realistic" feel is partially what led to such a large difference between the current edition of D&D and older ones. And between AD&D and D&D back in the day.

The class and level system just doesn't really map easily/well to the kind of game worlds most people seem to run. You wind up with a heck of a lot more casters than many people want, and plenty of NPCs that outstrip the PCs in terms of ability.

As for your specific non-combat type priest, if it were to be compared to a regular Cleric, it probably would advance at a much faster rate. Then again, that's assuming the non-combat priest is out there doing stuff and getting the same kind of XP as a regular Cleric is. But the regular Cleric is constantly (in theory) in a much greater postion of danger. Whereas the non-combat priest is mainly hanging out, doing the occasional Bless, and providing community support. Maybe called upon to do a Turn Undead, but not often (depending on your gameworld of course).

You could also have the NPC be gaining Influence or Good Will within the local area. Instead of combat, the priest is developing skills related to social situations, as well as religous teaching. 90% of the clerics I've seen as PCs aren't actually the minister-and-convert type. They're out there trying to kick butt and take names.

So basically, you can build your non-combat type class and still have it be relatively "balanced". Give it a Wizard BAB (or even worse) and no real martial abilities. If it's ever going to be done as a PC type, the character isn't going to be getting XP for killing stuff most likely as its ability to contribute to the combat will be rather limited.

But trying to twist a class and level system so that _everyone_ in the game world can be described using it... that's just borrowing more trouble than you really want, in my opinion. Class and Level are a way to artificially measure, control, and restrict the abilities of Player Characters in relationship to each other and the rest of the game world. Just like "realistically" a person isn't going to be taking multiple hits from a sword and surviving.

If one of these kind of priests were to become a PC, it would be as a replacement character, perhaps taking a known NPC that the group likes who has always been almost to curious about the trials and travels of the party. Over time, it would be expected that this NPC turn PC would develop along the lines of a "standard" Cleric and I am looking for some way to bridge that gap, perhaps even using a "bridging" Priest to Cleric as an important NPC down the road, like some borderland village that has been forced into fighting for its defense where its village priest has been forced to lay down his peaceful ways and tend to the needs of his flock in a more martial fashion.

As for "realistic fee", you should check out my gameworld sometime, I am working hard at making the world a living, breathing landscape that fits together within the confines of the Class/Level system. Most NPCs are 0-Level types (Humans with two Primes, Demi-Humans with 1 prime.) I would like to work up a few NPC versions of the PC Classes that could be used to bridge the gap between NPCs and PCs and also show how PCs are just that much more kickass then everyone else.

It puts PCs clearly a cut above everyone else and will let me develop good NPC personalities that could, at times, be dragged along on adventures and most definately wouldn't have a chance to overshadow the PCs and also point out how those "mundane" folk aren't quite cut out for adventuring.

For instance, I want a Soldier NPC Class that has some elments of the Fighter, but lower hit points, no combat dominance, no extra attack, no weapons specialization. Just an average Soldier providing guard service who could, after gaining a few levels, handle a goblin or two but would consider running, unless he had significant backup, if faced with a more goblins then that.

These NPC Classes wouldn't really work as a lower powered analog for the rest of the classes. In fact, I might limit these "NPC Classes" to little more then the aforementioned Priest and the Soldier, of which the Soldier could have many more options to branch out from, as I would leave them as a "blank slate" enough, so that they could become Rangers, Paladins, Fighters, Knights and similar martially skilled main classes from my gameworld.

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Post by naturaltwenty »

From Dragon Magazine there used to be a "cloistered cleric". He didn't put on any armor, had d4 for hp, limited weapon use, but all spell casting and turning undead. I'll search and post when I get home.

Later
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Post by Grazzt »

naturaltwenty wrote:
From Dragon Magazine there used to be a "cloistered cleric". He didn't put on any armor, had d4 for hp, limited weapon use, but all spell casting and turning undead. I'll search and post when I get home.

Later

Same class I was thinking of when I read the original post actually. Old issue of Dragon (like #68 or #69 I think).

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Post by BeZurKur »

C&C is a game about heroic PC's and not timid NPC's. That's why there isn't classes for them. It is too much crunch for a rules-light system. If you want to come up with classes for them, that's cool, but I wouldn't worry too much about balance or XP requirements; it's not like they're going adventuring anytime soon. Give the cloistered cleric a wizard progression with a spell table like the clerics. For the warrior type, treat it like a cleric without abilites and spells, then call it a day. Or even easier, handwave everything and say he can cast spells like a 6th level cleric. Otherwise, it sounds like an awful amount of energy spent on something that doesn't involve any of the players. Reserve the classes for the heroes: PC or NPC.

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Post by Nelzie »

BeZurKur wrote:
C&C is a game about heroic PC's and not timid NPC's. That's why there isn't classes for them. It is too much crunch for a rules-light system. If you want to come up with classes for them, that's cool, but I wouldn't worry too much about balance or XP requirements; it's not like they're going adventuring anytime soon. Give the cloistered cleric a wizard progression with a spell table like the clerics. For the warrior type, treat it like a cleric without abilites and spells, then call it a day. Or even easier, handwave everything and say he can cast spells like a 6th level cleric. Otherwise, it sounds like an awful amount of energy spent on something that doesn't involve any of the players. Reserve the classes for the heroes: PC or NPC.

They would still follow the same rules light layout that all the other classes follow. Soldiers will be the type of NPCs that guard castles and keeps, maybe make up the forces of some "Bandit King" and could also be the types of Hirelings that any smart adventuring party would hire to watch over their horses and encampment while the PCs delve into some long forgotten fortress, castle ruin, wizard's tower or hole in the ground.

These NPCs would need some kind of "fighting" ability in case the party runs into a goblin war party or similar. Plus, they could provide a decent Role-Playing Experience for the players to have while out in the middle of "nowhere". In time, these nameless NPCs could have names and faces and be ready set replacements if a player loses a character and would rather take up something "familiar" instead of starting completely anew.

With the lower XP requirements, these Soldiers should be about "equal level" or close to "equal level" with the PCs if they get involved in some minor combat here and there, like on the road fights and maybe one or two off screen "fights" that could happen while the PCs are doing their thing. Which would make the transition to PC all that much easier.

The great thing about C&C is that the game can be "ramped up" for as much complication as you might wish.

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Post by Treebore »

I would just have it be a difference in attitude. Let the "cloistered" cleric be smart enough not to be an adventurer. So they don't wear the armor or carry the weapons, but the training regimen of the church still requires him to have the ability and knowledge appropriate to his "rank".

So if you ever do need to turn him into a PC they just have a change in attitude. They now have a good enough reason to go out and put their life at risk. Plus they all have the appropriate training because the church, in their greater wisdom, required him to have it.

That is how I deal with this issue.
Since its 20,000 I suggest "Captain Nemo" as his title. Beyond the obvious connection, he is one who sails on his own terms and ignores those he doesn't agree with...confident in his journey and goals.
Sounds obvious to me! -Gm Michael

Grand Knight Commander of the Society.

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Post by JonusBlackthorn »

I would simply give the NPC any abilities you want him to have. If you then want him to be taken over by a player simply figure the cost of the missing abilities. so a 6th level "priest" with no combat ability and no armor becomes a PC figure out the XP needed to advance to a 6th level cleric and subtract the XP cost for the abilities they need to earn. once they get the XP back they can now advance as a cleric.

Example: A cleric needs 35201 to get to 6th level. our priest can cast spells and turn undead as a 6th level cleric already so is lacking combat ability and armor and weapons. oh, and maybe he uses a d4 for HD.

OK -

BtH +1/2 levels = 275

the difference between d4 and d8 = 250 (400-150)

Weapon proficiency = 250

Armor Allowed = 250

so total = 1025 this is what those abilities would cost to get them to 2nd level we need to get to 6th level so we multiply by 16 (the multiple doubles with each level after 2nd) for 16400 XP

So subtract 16400 from 35201 to get 18801 XP this is the amount you start the priest at when he becomes a PC. At least that is how I would do it by the numbers, personally I would go with Tree on this and just make it easy on yourself.

Keith

EDIT*** ONe more thing about this method. You can give out the abilities in incriments by using the multiples.

For example: for our priest turned cleric we add the 1025 to 18801 to get 19826 - this is when his combat is effectivly level 2 so give him a plus 1 and posibly d8 worth of hitpoints the next logical stop is at the half way point or 27401 (18801 + 8600) so now our character is +2 BtH and gets another d8 of hit points. and finally at 35201 he is a 6th level cleric with +3 BtH and can roll a d8 one more time for hit points.
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Post by johns »

I would treat the NPC as a monster. In the case of a noncombatant, give him 0 HD (+0 to hit, 1d4 hp), and then just stack on the special abilities you think he should have. If you want to throw in a few HD, go ahead. So, your priest could be a 1 HD human with the spellcasting and turning ability of a 6th level cleric (and maybe he has the Judgement secondary skill from Zagyg).

A guide the party hires could just be a 3 HD human (or elf, or dwarf) with the tracking and survival abilities (or Woodsman secondary skill from Zagyg).

If they're NPCs, the background mechanics do not matter. It's not like your players are going to audit you at some point (I hope!)

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Post by BeZurKur »

I personally approach it like johns, but you are absolutely correct:
Nelzie wrote:
The great thing about C&C is that the game can be "ramped up" for as much complication as you might wish.

My only concern -- for my own game -- would be too much time spent tweaking/ designing and not enough playing. But that is up to personal taste. Your route to NPC classes look sound.

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Post by Nelzie »

johns wrote:
I would treat the NPC as a monster. In the case of a noncombatant, give him 0 HD (+0 to hit, 1d4 hp), and then just stack on the special abilities you think he should have. If you want to throw in a few HD, go ahead. So, your priest could be a 1 HD human with the spellcasting and turning ability of a 6th level cleric (and maybe he has the Judgement secondary skill from Zagyg).

A guide the party hires could just be a 3 HD human (or elf, or dwarf) with the tracking and survival abilities (or Woodsman secondary skill from Zagyg).

If they're NPCs, the background mechanics do not matter. It's not like your players are going to audit you at some point (I hope!)

Of course they aren't going to audit me, I am just looking at creating my own completeness that could make for some interesting stories down the road.

Later in the campaign, if the group is dungeon diving, but they appear to be getting a little bored of things or maybe I have "run out" of things to do. I could offer the group a little "Hireling Adventure" where they can "act out" the things that sometimes, rarely or almost always happens to their hirelings while the PCs are getting into trouble searching some dungeon.

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Post by Treebore »

Thanks Nelzie, you just gave me a great "distraction/change of pace" game session or two. Actually, I have been thinkig of running a game with the players playing groups adventuring simultaneously in various areas of the campaign world. Since my players are my wife and kids it should play out well.
Since its 20,000 I suggest "Captain Nemo" as his title. Beyond the obvious connection, he is one who sails on his own terms and ignores those he doesn't agree with...confident in his journey and goals.
Sounds obvious to me! -Gm Michael

Grand Knight Commander of the Society.

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Post by Nelzie »

Treebore wrote:
Thanks Nelzie, you just gave me a great "distraction/change of pace" game session or two. Actually, I have been thinkig of running a game with the players playing groups adventuring simultaneously in various areas of the campaign world. Since my players are my wife and kids it should play out well.

You are most welcome.

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Post by baran_i_kanu »

I don't know how much this will help anyone but I was actually thinking about this the other day at work.

I was remembering the Cloistered Cleric article from years ago and I wanted a detective kind of monk. Sort of in the vein of Brother Cadfael or The Name of the Rose.

I began toying and fudging with the abilities lists from Serleran's Classes Deconstructed and came up with this for my own games.

When I get my other player-DM trained to run a game I so desperately want to play this thing.

As a NPC they wouldn't hog the combat spotlight but could contribute some to a battle. As NPC's they would be extremely helpful in helping the primarily combat PC's along on puzzles, collection of clues in the adventure, etc.

Scholarly Cleric

Prime: Int

HD: ...........d6

Exp Progression: ........... As Druid (2000 XP).

Base to Hit = +1 / 3 Levels ........... As Rogue.

Weapon Proficiency = Limited ........... As Cleric.

Armor Allowed = Restricted ........... Leather Armor, Leather Coat, Padded Armor, Any Shield.

Cast Spells ........... As Cleric.

Decipher Script (Int) ........... As Bard.

Turn Undead (Wis) ........... As Cleric.

Legend Lore (Int) ........... As Bard.

Bonus Languages ........... 3 bonus languages at 1st level. These are in addition to Bonus Languages from Int.

The Prime is Int to reflect their more scholarly leanings. I retained full Clerical spell use and Turning Undead because they are still Clerics, this is a function of their Faith.

Basic combat training showing in lower BtH, easy to use nontrained Armor. Weapons of their religion remain the same as Cleric. They just aren't as good at using it, ie. the lower BtH again.

Decipher Script, Legend Lore, and 3 Bonus Languages were chosen to reflect their education and common cloistered activities such as translating and recopying manuscripts.

And cause I thought it was kinda cool.
If one of my players wanted to make them less capable in combat I would drop HP, BtH, Weapon Selection, and Armor down to Wizard. Exp would be dropped down to Bard.

Anything lower and I really don't know if they would survive adventuring.
rabindranath72 wrote:
So, in the end, it all depends on how you assign experience, and for what "actions". If there is a lot of combat, a non-fighting cleric would gain little benefit, and suffer high risks.

Definitely. These non-combatants have to be rewarded with puzzle and mystery type XP to keep up in levels.

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Post by rabindranath72 »

Nice ideas guys!

I am toying with a Scholar class for my Hyborian games, which could be used to represent both priests and sorcerers; the class would be usable both as a PC or NPC. The inspiration comes from the Conan d20 game, but without all the "hassle" of the game system used therein.

Basically, the Scholar would be something like:

BtH: as wizard

Armor: as wizard

Weapons: as wizard

Class abilities: Legends lore, Decipher script

Prime: Intelligence

Depending on the background of the Scholar, it could gain spellcasting capabilities by using a Secondary Skill, which I call "Arcane training". Such skill basically confers the spellcasting abilities of a wizard (in terms of spellcasting table). Each level of the skill is equivalent to 2 caster levels.

The spell lists effectively accessible would depend on the background of the Scholar:

Cleric and Druid lists: mostly reserved to Scholars involved in cults and their practices, which are considered priests. Usually, the spells are taught only to priests of the cult.

Wizard and Illusionist lists: mostly reserved to Scholars acolytes involved with covenants and secret societies.

In some rare cases, a Scholar could be both a priest and an acolyte (e.g. the members of the Black Ring of Stygia), and therefore be capable to access all spell lists.

In any case, gaining spells is not automatic, and the spells must be studied (I am still working on the details).

Suggestions anyone?

Cheers,

Antonio

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Post by baran_i_kanu »

rabindranath72 wrote:
Nice ideas guys!

I am toying with a Scholar class for my Hyborian games, which could be used to represent both priests and sorcerers; the class would be usable both as a PC or NPC. The inspiration comes from the Conan d20 game, but without all the "hassle" of the game system used therein.

Basically, the Scholar would be something like:

BtH: as wizard

Armor: as wizard

Weapons: as wizard

Class abilities: Legends lore, Decipher script

Prime: Intelligence

Depending on the background of the Scholar, it could gain spellcasting capabilities by using a Secondary Skill, which I call "Arcane training". Such skill basically confers the spellcasting abilities of a wizard (in terms of spellcasting table). Each level of the skill is equivalent to 2 caster levels.

The spell lists effectively accessible would depend on the background of the Scholar:

Cleric and Druid lists: mostly reserved to Scholars involved in cults and their practices, which are considered priests. Usually, the spells are taught only to priests of the cult.

Wizard and Illusionist lists: mostly reserved to Scholars acolytes involved with covenants and secret societies.

In some rare cases, a Scholar could be both a priest and an acolyte (e.g. the members of the Black Ring of Stygia), and therefore be capable to access all spell lists.

In any case, gaining spells is not automatic, and the spells must be studied (I am still working on the details).

Suggestions anyone?

Cheers,

Antonio

Nice.

I have been tinkering with a Scholar for a Hyborian or a Dark Ages game the last few weeks as well.

I like yoiur spell list combinations for Hyborian Scholar backgrounds.

As for my own game,I've went through a lot of options and I'm thinking of using a magic system similar to the 2ed Masque of the Red Death. Simple and quick.

Probably fewer beginning spells, perhaps slower at gaining spells.

As a low-magic setting this is important to my view of the game. Less magic but still powerful at higher levels.

Casting Spells: Int checks (+scholar level) with a challenge level = +1 per spell level.

Research and copying spells would be the same from PHB.

I'm thinking of keeping them seperate from a Cleric class, not combining them. The Cleric would be similiarly depowered and have to make a Wis Check to cast spells (a "Faith" check.)

Hopefully I'll make some decisions the next few weeks on this one.

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Post by Treebore »

There are two, well three, reasons why I love this board. One is the great members, two is great ideas like these that keep popping up.

A heck of a lot better than buying 30 to 40 dollar books to tell you how to do things like this.
Since its 20,000 I suggest "Captain Nemo" as his title. Beyond the obvious connection, he is one who sails on his own terms and ignores those he doesn't agree with...confident in his journey and goals.
Sounds obvious to me! -Gm Michael

Grand Knight Commander of the Society.

baran_i_kanu
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Post by baran_i_kanu »

Treebore wrote:
There are two, well three, reasons why I love this board. One is the great members, two is great ideas like these that keep popping up.

A heck of a lot better than buying 30 to 40 dollar books to tell you how to do things like this.

Amen Brother!
I have swiped so many great classes, house rules, and general ideas from here and Dragonsfoot that it's freaking me out!

GOD I LOVE THIS GAME!!!!

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Post by rabindranath72 »

baran_i_kanu wrote:
Nice.

I have been tinkering with a Scholar for a Hyborian or a Dark Ages game the last few weeks as well.

I like yoiur spell list combinations for Hyborian Scholar backgrounds.

As for my own game,I've went through a lot of options and I'm thinking of using a magic system similar to the 2ed Masque of the Red Death. Simple and quick.

Probably fewer beginning spells, perhaps slower at gaining spells.

As a low-magic setting this is important to my view of the game. Less magic but still powerful at higher levels.

Casting Spells: Int checks (+scholar level) with a challenge level = +1 per spell level.

Research and copying spells would be the same from PHB.

I'm thinking of keeping them seperate from a Cleric class, not combining them. The Cleric would be similiarly depowered and have to make a Wis Check to cast spells (a "Faith" check.)

Hopefully I'll make some decisions the next few weeks on this one.

Interesting. What is the method of Masque of Red Death?

If you use an intelligence/wisdom check, then I suppose you do not use tables?

The only thing I would not do is using a spell points system which only makes things complex.

Ideally I prefer using the standard tables, perhaps with the possibility of using an high level slot to cast lower level spells; and without the need for memorization (but perhaps putting a limitation on the number of known spells).

johns
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Post by johns »

If you want a "spellcaster" that uses attribute checks, check out Grey Elf's psionicist - I've tested it, and it's a good class. Modifying it into a wizard would probably just be a matter of flavor text.

Here's his website.
http://www.grey-elf.com/candc/

baran_i_kanu
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Post by baran_i_kanu »

rabindranath72 wrote:
Interesting. What is the method of Masque of Red Death?

In MotRD: you cast spells by making a Proficiency check (there was the nonweapon proficiencies Spellcraft (Int) for Adepts and Spiritcraft (Wis) for Mystics.) -1 to the proficiency check per spell level. If you rolled a natural "20" something bad happened: attack spells boomeranged back on the party, defensive spells were reversed to make you easier to hit, and all others had their effects perverted at the DM's whim.

Casting times were increased by one increment: casting time 1 to 1 round, 1 round to 1 hour, etc.

Wizardry

You started out with 5 spells, 3 of which must be cantrip, detect, and read magic. The other two were chosen from a small list of offensive and defensive spells on a chart you selected or randomly rolled for.

You cast a number of times per day based on the standard Magic Use tables.

New spells for your spellbook were gained at the rate of one per level advancement (just like C&C.) You had to pick which spell ahead of time to "research" it.

Reversable spells must be researched seperately from the nonreversed version.

When you attempt to learn a new spell you make a System Shock test (harnessing the energies of the cosmos, and all) failure results in a permanent loss of a Str or Con point.

If you discovered a new spell via adventuring you had to make 3 proficiency checks to:

1) Discover the spells nature and school. If you fail this roll you really don't know what the spell is or will do. You can still copy successfully and cast the spell to see what happens.

2)Copy the spell. You fail and you dont' get to try to copy again until you gain a level.

3)Attempt to cast the spell. As above.

Mysticism

Start with bless, detect evil, and detect magic. Minor access to the All sphere.

When they advance a level they can choose a new sphere to minor in or advance to major in a sphere they already have access too. Once they leave a sphere they have minor access too to study another they cannot advance to major access in the one they left.

Whereas the Adept risks health (Str or Con loss) the mystic becomes disconnected from the material world. They take an iniative penalty equal to their level. OUCH.
Oh yeah, ANY spell, even a simple benign healing spell, caused you to make a Powers Check. Necromantic spells doubled the Powers Check percentages.

And that's MotRD magic in a nutshell.

baran_i_kanu
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Post by baran_i_kanu »

rabindranath72 wrote:
Depending on the background of the Scholar, it could gain spellcasting capabilities by using a Secondary Skill, which I call "Arcane training". Such skill basically confers the spellcasting abilities of a wizard (in terms of spellcasting table). Each level of the skill is equivalent to 2 caster levels.

The spell lists effectively accessible would depend on the background of the Scholar:

Cleric and Druid lists: mostly reserved to Scholars involved in cults and their practices, which are considered priests. Usually, the spells are taught only to priests of the cult.

Wizard and Illusionist lists: mostly reserved to Scholars acolytes involved with covenants and secret societies.

In some rare cases, a Scholar could be both a priest and an acolyte (e.g. the members of the Black Ring of Stygia), and therefore be capable to access all spell lists.

In any case, gaining spells is not automatic, and the spells must be studied (I am still working on the details).

I find this method interesting. It's very versatile.

If I were to run a Conan game based on the D20 book instead of other sources I would prob use this method instead of multiclassing to save on character levels to get more of a variety of spells.

Heck, I may still use your way eventually.
When you get the details worked out please post them. I am very curious.
rabindranath72 wrote:
If you use an intelligence/wisdom check, then I suppose you do not use tables?

The only thing I would not do is using a spell points system which only makes things complex.

Ideally I prefer using the standard tables, perhaps with the possibility of using an high level slot to cast lower level spells; and without the need for memorization (but perhaps putting a limitation on the number of known spells).

No spell points in my game. I really don't like them.

I decided today at work that I wouldn't restrict as much as in Masque of the Red Death.

In fact all I would use from MotRD is the proficiency check modified by spell level.

I will be using standard spell tables, Int, bonuses, casting times, etc.

BUT for I will be using the Illusionist Tables for him. When he gains spells from advancing in levels this is where he'll have to choose from.

However....if he can find a tome or scroll with a lightning bolt spell or some other spell only on the wizard's spell lists, I will allow him to copy it and cast it at the level a standard wizard would.

I think the likelyhood of a spell failing at lower levels (and wasting the spell slot for the day) is risky enough. If you only get one fireball a day and you fail your Int check, you're screwed.

I had written up a spell table with fewer spells but, as above, I think they are going to need all of the spell slots they can get so I'm keeping the standard tables.

So here's my version of Low-Magic or Hyborian Scholar. It's a very traditional class build.

I'm going to replace the standard Wizard and Illusionist with this guy in my European Dark Ages game I'm planning.

Scholarly Wizard

Exp: as wizard

HD: d4

BtH: as wizard

Armor: as wizard

Weapons: as wizard

Class abilities: Legend Lore (Int), Decipher Script (Int), Spells (Illusionist - can find and copy spells from Wizards lists.)

Prime: Intelligence

Casting Spells:

Scholarly wizards do not need to prepare spells ahead of time. They may cast from any spells known, using the spell tables for how many times per day they can cast a spell of each spell level.

To successfully cast a spell, the wizard must make an Int check (+level) with a challenge level = +1 per spell level.

If the wizard is casting from a scroll or his spell book there is no +1 per spell level penalty, it is a straight Int check (+level).

Gaining a Level:

Same as the PHB - one new spell is learned per level.

Spells from scrolls and other spellbooks.

Reading Written Spells: Standard Read Magic rules as in PHB.

Learning Written Spells: Int check to learn the spell after number of days studying outlined in PHB.

Copying Written Spells: Int check required. Failure means the spell is beyond the wizard's current ability and must wait to gain a new level to try again.

NOTE: Again I am clarifying that this is for my PC's and normal scholar-wizards types in my Low-Magic games. NPC's will be built by normal PHB rules because guys like Thoth-Amon, Thulsa Doom, and Natohk the Black Live for Ages and make Dark Pacts to become more powerful than my NonServant of the Darkess PC's can achieve and remain PC's.

baran_i_kanu
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Post by baran_i_kanu »

Here's a stab at my Priest / Cleric for Low-Magic games

Priest

Exp: as cleric

HD: d6

BtH: as cleric

Armor: as wizard

Weapons: as cleric

Class abilities: Legend Lore (Int), Decipher Script (Int), Turn/Control Undead (Wis), Spells (Cleric Tables)

Prime: Wisdom

Casting Spells:

Priests do not need to prepare spells ahead of time. They may cast from any spells known, using the spell tables for how many times per day they can cast a spell of each spell level.

To successfully cast a spell, the priest must make an Faith check (Int bonus + level) with a challenge level = +1 per spell level.

If the priest is casting from a scroll, divine text, or has a holy relic (not a comon symbol but a saint's bone, or shard of the cross, or a holy shroud, etc.) present then there is no +1 per spell level penalty, it is a straight Wis check (+level).

Gaining a Level:

Same as the PHB - one new spell is learned per level.

Spells from scrolls and divine texts.

Reading and Learning Divine Spells: Standard divine writing rules as in PHB.

Copying Divine Spells: Wis check required. Failure means the spell is beyond the wizard's current ability and must wait to gain a new level to try again.

NOTE: Pretty much my excuse to get Cleric types as PC's into a Hyborian game.

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