D&December 2017 – Rapid Fire: W4D4-Trinkets/Treasures, W4D6-Forbidden Knowledge, W4D7-Spell/Item

DnDecember2017

Nothing like waiting til the last minute for the last three topics I didn’t get done. So here we go in rapid fire succession. Trinkets & Treasures, Forbidden Knowledge and Favorite Spell/Item. 

Favorite Trinkets & Treasures

As a DM, my favorite treasure items are those that have a bit of a cursed trait to them. Or at least some significant downside anyway. Any adventure I run has to have a couple of cursed items. Well, during my first foray as DM it was a LOT of cursed items. Don’t worry, I’ve toned it way down since then. Now, in cursed items, I’m including any item that has a significant downside to it, not just those specifically defined as cursed. For instance, it may be a long sword +2, but it might also be an intelligent sword. And that sword is prone to lecturing the player in a condescending tone on their fighting techniques the entire time it is wielded. This would force the player to make a save every round or have a penalty to hit that round. I find those kinds of items to be far more fun than a straight up cursed item.

Forbidden Knowledge

My character Delban is an expert on forbidden knowledge. During their adventure in Ravenloft, Delban stole a Tome of Evil from Lord Soth’s castle, using it’s knowledge to advance his skills. The end result was that he left the party and became an NPC for a few years, serving as one of the bad guys when I ran the Speaker in Dreams adventure. He later found that Soth wasn’t too happy with the theft and tracked Delban down to his tower outside of Brindonford. The knowledge and power of the Tome was ripped from him and Delban was forced to flee into PC status for the City of the Spider Queen campaign.

There’s a reason that forbidden knowledge is forbidden. Leave it there. So says Delban. Learn from Delban. Don’t be like Delban.

Favorite Spell or Item

I’ve already discussed my favorite spell in a previous post. So this time I’ll talk about two of my favorite items, one magical and the other not.

First, my favorite magic item is the Deck of Many Things. This is a classic D&D item. You find a deck of strange cards. Drawing a card at random provides a magical effect of some sort, as often bad as good. There are many variations on the Deck and each DM tends to create their own version when called upon. When I was running my dwarven cleric Gogun Elfcrusher, he drew several times from the Deck we found in White Plume Mountain. Among the effects was he grew to about 6′ tall and grew a third eye on the back of his neck. Everyone started calling him “The Gogun”.

Of course, he was also the one that found one of the Keraptis scrolls and learned how to cast fireballs. A minor secondary effect was that he eventually come to believe he was Keraptis. He was last seen vanishing into the night from Silverhall, taking Whelm and the Keraptis reborn baby with him into the forests of the Dalelands.

My favorite mundane item is rope. What’s not to like about rope? It’s the handiest and most useful non-magical item in the game. Everything from descending into pits to tying up wizards so that the barbarian can cut their head off when we tell him to “bag the wizard”. Every character I’ve ever created carries 50′ or 100′ of silk rope. It’s always the first thing I buy when I create them.

 

So there you have it. My rapid fire coverage of the last three topics for DnDecember 2017. Hope you enjoyed it. Time to get back to some other things.

D&December 2017 – W4D3 – Wizards

DnDecember2017

wizard

Wizards have got to be my favorite class in Dungeons & Dragons. Being the smartest person in the party and using their gift to call forth the powers of the universe to alter reality itself is a fun-factor that’s hard to deny. All things being equal, I would probably rather play the wizard. That’s a bit odd considering I’ve only run two wizards in the Wyrmfang Chronicles, and one of them was a multi-class fighter/wizard. That was Storin, the first character I played in the Wyrmfang Chronicles. He met a most unpleasant end that I’ve mentioned previously

The second character I ran in the Wyrmfang Chronicles was my wizard Endeleban Losteast, or Delban for short. He was an Aes Saidarr from Cormyr tasked with tracking down a bard named Thomison for one reason or another. On finding Tomasin, Delban and his warrior escort Yoshi, were sucked into Ravenloft along with the bard. Adventuring in Soth’s castle in Ravenloft left Delban a changed wizard. He wandered off into NPC land after that. While Delban did make a return to PC status for City of the Spider Queen a couple years ago, not one of my other characters has been a wizard. 

I’m not sure what to attribute that to, except that I’m also one who doesn’t mind sharing the fun. So if someone else wants to be the arcanist, I’m willing to let them. Maybe I’ll have to call dibs on wizard right now for whatever we do next. But that’s a ways off into the future. We’ve still got a year or two to go in the deserts of Golarion before we think about what’s next.

I’m not sure what it is exactly that makes wizards so appealing to me. Certainly, they have the brains and they can blow stuff up from 400 yards away. I’ve also had great love for wizards in literature: Gandalf, Raistlin, Elminster, Merlin, Dr Strange, Harry Dresden. And don’t you dare lump Harry Potter in with those greats. Compared to the others, the Potter books are complete drivel and garbage. I’ve never been able to read an entire Potter book or watch one of the movies all the way through. I did sit through most of Fantastic Beasts, though it made me a bit nauseous. Anyway, where was I? Oh, yeah. Great wizards of literature inspired me. 🙂 But whatever the reason, wizards just seem to be the most fun to play. 

They do have their downsides. Keeping track of everything can be a big pain and they die pretty easily if dragged into melee. But when I can toss a fireball or lightning bolt down upon groups of enemies, it’s more than worth it.