Friday, November 28, 2014

House Rules - Healing, the Heal Skill, and Healing Herbs


Characters who are injured typically either lose hit points or suffer ability damage. For most characters, this damage can be healed over time by natural means, or magically in a much more rapid manner.

Natural Healing
Characters who are not ironborn or deathbound can heal hit point damage and ability damage naturally.
  • With a full night’s rest (eight hours of sleep or more), a character recovers 1 hit point per character level. Ability damage returns at the rate of 1 point per night of rest for each affected ability score. Any significant interruption during your rest prevents healing that night.
  • If a character undergoes complete bed rest for an entire day and night (a full twenty-four hour period), they recover twice their character level in hit points. Ability damage is temporary, just as hit point damage is. Complete bed rest restores 2 points per day for each affected ability score. Any significant activity during this time period reduces the healing to the "normal" overnight healing.
  • A character naturally heals nonlethal damage at a rate of 1 hit point per hour.
Magical Healing
Various abilities and spells can restore hit points, ability damage, and drained abilities. An ability or spell that heals normal hit point damage also heals an equal number of hit points of nonlethal damage.

Healing Limits
A character can never recover more hit points than they lost. Magical healing won’t raise a character's current hit points higher than their full normal hit point total.

Heal Skill

The Heal skill allows a character to take various actions to assist themselves and others. Generally speaking, you can’t try a Heal check again without proof of the original check’s failure. You can always retry a check to provide first aid, assuming the target of the previous attempt is still alive. A healer’s kit gives a +2 circumstance bonus on Heal checks. The basic actions for which a character may use the Heal skill are:
  • First Aid: You usually use first aid to save a dying character. If a character has negative hit points and is losing hit points (at the rate of 1 per round, 1 per hour, or 1 per day), you can make him or her stable. A stable character regains no hit points but stops losing them. Providing first aid is a standard action. Heal DC: 15.
  • Long-Term Care: Providing long-term care means treating a wounded person for a day or more. If your Heal check is successful, the patient recovers hit points or ability score points (lost to ability damage) at twice the normal rate: 2 hit points per level for a full eight hours of rest in a day, or 4 hit points per level for each full day of complete rest; 2 ability score points for a full eight hours of rest in a day, or 4 ability score points for each full day of complete rest. You can tend as many as six patients at a time. You need a few items and supplies (bandages, salves, and so on) that are easy to come by in settled lands. Giving long-term care counts as light activity for the healer and requires eight hours of light activity. You cannot give long-term care to yourself. Heal DC: 15.
  • Treat Wound from a Caltrop, Spike Growth, or Spike Stones: A creature wounded by stepping on a caltrop moves at one-half normal speed. A successful Heal check removes this movement penalty. Treating a caltrop wound requires ten minutes of work. A creature wounded by a spike growth or spike stones spell must succeed on a Reflex save or take injuries that reduce his speed by one-third. Another character can remove this penalty by taking 10 minutes to dress the victim’s injuries and succeeding on a Heal check against the spell’s save DC. Heal DC: 15 for caltrops or the spell save DC for spike growth or spike stones.
  • Treat Poison: To treat poison means to tend a single character who has been poisoned and who is going to take more damage from the poison (or suffer some other effect). Every time the poisoned character makes a saving throw against the poison, you make a Heal check. The poisoned character uses your check result or his or her saving throw, whichever is higher. Treating poison requires a standard action. Heal DC: The poison's save DC.
  • Treat Disease: To treat a disease means to tend a single diseased character. Every time he or she makes a saving throw against disease effects, you make a Heal check. The diseased character uses your check result or his or her saving throw, whichever is higher. Treating a disease requires ten minutes of work. Heal DC: The disease's save DC.

Healing Herbs (adapted from the Forgotten Realms Campaign Setting and Dragon 82)

Adder's Tongue Ointment4 shillings¼ lb.
Adder's Tongue Tea3 shillings½ lb.
Allium Antiseptic35 shillings¼ lb.
Allium Insect Bite Relief5 shillings-
Allium Insect Repellent2 shillings1 lb.
Arawn's Rod3 shillings¼ lb.
Birthwort Antivenin12 shillings¼ lb.
Birthwort Poultice3 shillings½ lb.
Deadly Nightshade Lycanthropy Cure50 shillings½ lb.
Deadly Nightshade Poison30 shillings¼ lb.
Eiur's Comfort First Aid Bindings8 shillings1 lb.
Eiur's Comfort Infused Wine5 shillings¼ lb.
Eiur's Comfort Tea3 shillings½ lb.
Henbane Poultice10 shillings½ lb.
Henbane Ointment5 shillings¼ lb.
Herb True-Love Antiseptic3 shillings¼ lb.
Herb True-Love Antivenin15 shillings¼ lb.
Hler's Marrow Burn Poultice6 shillings½ lb.
Hler's Marrow Reduction5 shillings¼ lb.
Pelerine Berry Poison Antidote15 shillings¼ lb.
Pelerine Berry Stimulant12 shillings-
Marsh Moss10 shillings½ lb.
Syfa's Wort Antivenin15 shillings¼ lb.
Syfa's Wort Tincture10 shillings¼ lb.
Woundwort7 shillings¼ lb.
Several herbs can be used to aid healing. Herbalists are fairly common throughout the Freeholds, and most villages will have an apothecary or wise woman who can take these various plants and make an array of healing concoctions out of them. Characters can also search for these herbs and brew healing poultices, reductions, tinctures, salves, and ointments for themselves, but it takes time and requires that they make Knowledge: Nature checks to identify the proper plants, and Profession: Herbalist checks to transform them into useful curatives. Heal skill checks are required to use these items properly. A failed heal check usually simply means that the herbal concoction has been applied incorrectly and wasted with no further ill effect, but some herbs have side effects that may result from their misapplication. Unless specified otherwise, the listed costs are for one "dose" of the herb's finished product.

Item Descriptions

Adder's-Tongue: Adder's-tongue has one large leaf, at the base of which rises a thin stalk covered with tiny bumps or knobs. If closely inspected, this stalk is actually a spike of tiny yellow-green flowers. The plant grows in moist meadows and shady clearings. Knowledge: Nature DC: 12, Profession: Herbalist DC: 14.
  • Use: The herb is used as a secondary treatment to help wounded characters regain their strength. Fresh leaves steeped in boiling water make a potent teat which can be drunk three times per day. This tea helps reduce inflammation associated with wounds and restores strength. Adder's-tongue can also be made into an ointment by boiling the cut-up leaves in pig fat and then straining it. This ointment is soothing and promotes rapid healing.
  • Effect: A character who drinks the tea three times per day can recover an additional 1d3 points of damage while on complete bed rest, in addition to the normal two hit points per level per day recovered. Using the ointment made from adder's-tongue will restore 1d2 points of damage immediately, but it can only be administered to a character once per day.
  • Heal DC: 15 to use adder's tongue tea to aid in long-term care, 13 to use adder's tongue ointment to assist in providing first aid. Cost: Tea (3 doses) 3 shillings; Ointment 4 shillings.

Allium: Allium has long, hollow dark green leaves topped with large spherical clusters of tiny white flowers. The entire plant has a very strong smell, which is even more apparent if the leaves are crushed. Allium is extremely well-known and easy to locate in where it grows - damp grounds, meadows, and sparse forests. It is often cultivated as a garden herb as well. Knowledge: Nature DC: 5, Profession: Herbalist DC: 8.
  • Uses: Crushed allium cloves, or diluted allium juice, makes a strong antiseptic. Allium also eases bites and stings from venomous creatures, and it can act as an insect repellent.
  • Effect: The antiseptic properties of allium are such that a wound will heal more rapidly, and without chance of infection. Wounded characters recover an extra hit point per day for the first three days after application. If allium is used as an insect repellent, the juice must be rubbed generously over exposed body parts. For ten minutes thereafter, any insects attacking the character - giant, monstrous, or otherwise - must make a DC 12 Fortitude save to attack the character. If used to ease insect bites and stings, allium juice can be used one time per injury to restore 1d3 hit points that were lost from the bite or sting, or 1 point of ability damage lost from the poisonous effect of the attack.
  • Heal DC: To use allium as an antiseptic, the Heal DC is 13; to relieve venomous bites and stings, the Heal DC is the save DC of the poison. To use it to relieve venomous bites and stings, and to use allium as an insect repellent, the Survival DC is 8 to use allium as an insect repellent. Cost: Antiseptic 35 shillings; Insect Bite Relief 5 shillings; Insect Repellent 2 shillings.
  • Drawbacks: Allium has an especially pungent odor. If it is used for any remedy, especially as an insect repellent, the strong odor may give away the presence of the character using it for the next half an hour, increasing the chance of attracting enemies, especially enemies with the scent ability, which is effective at twice normal range when detecting or tracking a character who has recently used allium.

Arawn's Rod: Arawn's rod, also known as king's candle and the candlestick plant, has many large, pale silvery green leaves that feel like soft felt. The leaves surround a thick tapered stalk of large flowers and smaller leave, which grows four or five feet in height. The prominent spike in flowers is often dipped in suet and burned as a ceremonial candle. The flowers are bright yellow, bearing five petals each. Arawn's rod has a long, white, wood-like root. The plant grows in rocky or clay soil, often on sunny slopes, cliff faces, and terrain such as that found around rock quarries. Knowledge: Nature DC: 12, Profession: Herbalist DC: 15.
  • Uses: Arawn's rod is useful as a pain killer. At least five flowers should be crushed and mixed with water or wine. This mixture, applied directly to fresh wounds, will deaden the pain from an injury.
  • Effect: Since the pain is a critical part of an injury, use of this herb restores 1d4 hit points immediately. These hit points will be lost again within two hours as the pain-killer effect wears off. Arawn's rod can only restore hit points once every two hours: Multiple applications before the first one has worn off are not cumulative.
  • Heal DC: 10. Cost: 3 shillings.
  • Drawbacks: If a character uses this pain-killer to help get back on their feet and fights again while still wounded, they will lose an additional 1d4 hit points when the solution wears off because they have aggravated their injuries.

Birthwort: Birthwort is a bushy climbing vine that can grow up to three feet in height. The leaves are set on long stems and are rounded and heart-shaped, with a deep cleft on the top. The flowers are thin, yellow, and tubular in shape. Birthwort grows wild along hedges and fences and in thickets exposed to the sun. Knowledge: Nature DC: 14, Profession: Herbalist DC: 14.
  • Uses: The leaves and roots of this herb can be boiled briefly to make a poultice which can be placed on wounds that are healing poorly. If the juice of the birthwort is rubbed on a snake bit, it will help neutralize the venom.
  • Effect: If the leaves and stems of this herb are crushed to make a juice and the juice is applied to a poisonous bite or sting within one minute of the initial injury, the character gains an additional +2 herbal bonus to their Fortitude save to resist the secondary effects of the poison. Using a poultice made from birthwort will insure that wounds will heal properly and without complications. A wounded character who applies a birthwort poultice to their wounds gains an extra hit point of healing per day for the first two days, and then heals normally thereafter. Only one application of birthwort per "convalescing session" may be made in this manner.
  • Heal DC: 15 to use birthwort as an antivenin, 13 to use a birthwort poultice to aid in providing long-term care. Cost: Antivenin 12 shillings; Poultice 5 shillings.
  • Drawbacks: Any non-human character that has birthwort applied to their wounds must make a DC 15 Fortitude save two minutes after the application or be paralyzed for 1d8 rounds. This paralysis is so severe that it is indistinguishable by sight from death.

Deadly Nightshade: The deadly nightshade is a green plant with bell-shaped flowers and dark bluish-purple berries that looks very similar to herb true-love. Nightshade usually grows in shady, moist locations, and rocky, limestone-rich soil. Knowledge: Nature DC: 10, Profession: Herbalist DC: 20.
  • Poison: The berries of the deadly nightshade contain a deadly poison, and they can be made into a concentrate into a used as an ingested poison, or reduced into a sap that can be smeared on weapons. (ingested or injury, Fort save DC 13; initial effect 1d6 Strength damage, secondary effect 2d6 points Strength damage).
  • Craft: Poisonmaking DC: 13. Cost: 30 shillings per dose.
  • Effect: If deadly nightshade berries are consumed by someone who has contracted lycanthropy within one hour after receiving the affliction, the dose allows them a Fortitude DC 20 save to shake off the affliction. Because deadly nightshade berries are poisonous, they must be administered carefully when used in this way so as to avoid giving too many and killing the recipient. Unfortunately, administering sufficient numbers of berries to have the ameliorative effect on lycanthropy also requires ingesting enough of them to poison the recipient.
  • Heal DC: 20. Cost: 50 shillings.
  • Drawbacks: In addition to the obvious negative effect resulting from the fact that deadly nightshade is a poison, the berries have an additional effect upon khülen. If a khülen character ingests or is wounded by a weapon coated with deadly nightshade, they must made a DC 13 Fortitude save or be paralyzed for 1d4 hours.

Eiur's Comfort: Also known as healing herb, Eiur's comfort has large, hairy green leaves and hairy stalks that can grow two to three feet tall. The stalks are hollow and the leaves have a gummy resin which is apparent if the leaves are chewed gently. Small bell-shaped violet or white flowers top the stalks and bear tiny black seeds. Eiur's comfort has a large root system with roots that are black on the outside and white on the inside. The roots are brittle and filled with a clear nearly tasteless sap. Eiur's comfort grows in ditches, watersheds, and moist fields. Knowledge: Nature DC: 15, Profession: Herbalist DC: 17.
  • Uses: This herb can be used as both immediate first aid and a secondary treatment. Almost all of the parts of this "wonder weed" can be used. The root is most effective on fresh wounds - clean one root, bruise it so the clear sap flows, and then bind it against a fresh injury, which will bring about rapid healing. The root can also be dried and powdered for use on wounds as well. Boiling a dozen flowers along with the leaves forms a tea that can be used as a strength restorer. Alternatively, the leaves can be mixed with wine to create a drink that has much the same effect.
  • Effect: If Eiur's comfort root is applied immediately to a wound, the wounded character regains 1d4 hit points of damage. A character who drinks the tea or wine mixture three times per day can recover an additional 1d3 points of damage while on complete bed rest, in addition to the normal two hit points per level per day recovered.
  • Heal DC: 17 to use Eiur's comfort root to aid in first aid, 15 to use Eiur's comfort tea or infused wine to aid in long-term care. Cost: First Aid Bindings 8 shillings; Tea 3 shillings; Infused Wine 5 shillings.

Henbane: Henbane has large, thick, soft, deeply cut leaves covered with hair that lie near the ground. The herb also have many short and tick stalks spread with branches that bear smaller leaves. These stalks have hollow yellow flowers with large sepals covering much of the purple veined petals. The flowers have tiny grey seeds. The root of henbane is thick and branched, and the plant as a whole has a heavy offensive odor. Henbane grows in clearings and along paths. Knowledge: Nature DC: 14, Profession: Herbalist DC: 20.
  • Uses: This herb is a potent pain killer, able to be made into an ointment that deadens virtually all discomfort from a wound or combat the effects of diseases. Boil the leaves, seeds, or roots in a small amount of water and apply as a poultice.
  • Effects: When henbane is applied to a wounded character it will immediately heal 1d6 points of damage they have suffered. 1d4 of these hit points will be lost again within two hours as the pain-killing effect wears off. If a character uses this pain-killer to help get back on their feet and fights again within two hours of taking it, they will be sickened due to the numbing effect of the drug. Henbane can also be used to restore ability damage incurred as the result of disease. Using the poultice daily will restore one additional point of ability damage so long as that ability damage was caused by disease. If a character uses henbane as part of long-term care to recover from a disease, they will be affected in the same way for the entire duration of the treatment.
  • Heal DC: To use henbane as a painkiller, the Heal DC is 15. To use henbane against ability loss due to disease the Heal DC is the save DC of the disease. Cost: Painkilling Ointment 5 shillings; Poultice 10 shillings.
  • Drawbacks: Henbane is poisonous if ingested in any form and any amount. (ingested, Fort save DC 14, initial damage 1d6 Con and unconsciousness for 30 to 60 minutes, secondary damage 1d6 Con). The herb also has hallucinogenic properties if inhaled that may affect the individual preparing the poultice. If the herbalist fails his Profession: Herbalist skill check when making the poultice, he has inhaled the fumes and will be confused for 1d6 rounds.

Herb True-Love: Herb true-love has a small creeping root just below the surface, from which spring clusters of leaves some of which have one star-like white flower or one blackish-purple berry. Each leaf has four leaflets set at right angles to one another in a cross-like pattern. Herb true-love usually grows in wooded areas or sometimes on the edges of fields. Knowledge: Nature DC: 19, Profession: Herbalist DC: 14.
  • Uses: This herb is useful as an antidote for poisons and as an antiseptic. If poisoned, a victim should eat at least three berries of herb true-love or some how ingest several leaves either raw or, more effectively, mixed with wine or tea. To speed healing and prevent infection in a wound, the leaves should be crushed and used to clean the wound. Alternatively, boil several leaves in a small amount of water and use the resulting broth as a wash to rinse or soak wounds.
  • Effects: The use of herb true-love as an antivenin within one minute of the initial poisoning will provide a +2 herbal bonus to the character's Fortitude save to resist the toxin's secondary effects. This bonus rises to +3 if the recipient is a halfling or gnome. If used as an antiseptic wash, it can be used as part of long-term care to provide a one time bonus of 1 hit point of recovery.
  • Heal DC: To use herb true-love as an antivenin, the Heal DC is the save DC of the poison. To use herb true-love as an antiseptic the Heal DC is 10. Cost: Antivenin 15 shillings; Antiseptic 3 shillings.
  • Drawbacks: If a character searches for herb true-love and fails to identify it properly, they have found a very similar looking plant that is deadly: Nightshade. If a poisoned character mistakenly ingests nightshade as a remedy, they must make an additional set of Fortitude saves against the poisonous nightshade (ingested or injury, Fort save DC 13, initial damage 1d6 Strength, secondary damage 2d6 Strength). Note: Nightshade is usable as a curative to aid in fighting off lycanthropy despite its drawbacks. Also, see the nightshade entry for its additional effects against khülen.

Hler's Marrow: Hler's marrow has soft hairy white stalks that can grow up to three to four feet tall and have many branches. The plant's wide leaves are soft and hairy with serrated edges. It has large pink flowers with purple centers and an extensive system of long whitish-yellow roots that are pliant and tough. These roots are filled with a clear, slimy juice that thickens like jelly when mixed with water. Hler's marrow grows abundantly in salt marshes and in damp meadows near the seashore. Knowledge: Nature DC: 10, Profession: Herbalist DC: 15.
  • Uses: The herb is effective as both an immediate treatment for burns and as a secondary cure for those weakened from loss of blood. The root is used for both applications: Smash it and then dip the pulp into boiling water and use it as a poultice, binding it up against fresh burns. Or crush the root, boil it in a pot of water until a third of the water has boiled away and drink the reduction once a day to help recovery from severe blood loss.
  • Effect: Used daily as a poultice for burns, Hler's marrow speeds healing to such an extent that a character will receive an additional 2 hit points per day of healing for each of the first three days of rest following application, and will recuperate normally thereafter, so long as at least some of their injuries were caused by fire damage. When the reduction is used, the recipient can recover an additional 1d3 points of damage while on complete bed rest, in addition to the normal two hit points per level per day recovered.
  • Heal DC: To use Hler's marrow to ameliorate burns, the Heal DC is 14; to prepare and use a reduction of Hler's marrow to provide long-term care the Heal DC is 18. Cost: Burn Poultice 6 shillings; Reduction 5 shillings.

Pelerine Berry: Pelerine berry is a bush with thick branches bearing short scale-like needles similar to pine needles. The bark is rough with a shredded appearance, and the entire bush is very fragrant. The bush's clusters of berries are green for the first year of their growth, and then turn dark purple when they ripen in the following year. The berries have a strong, distinctive taste. Pelerine berry is so common that it is easy to locate and correctly identify in the heaths and sparse forests where it grows. Knowledge: Nature DC: 5, Profession: Herbalist DC: 14.
  • Uses: Pelerine berries help counteract all forms of poison. More importantly, pelerine berries are a powerful stimulant for those who are severely wounded or near death. If a character is able to, or can be forced to, eat a couple of berries, they may gain the strength to fight off some of the effects of shock.
  • Effect: if a character is brought to zero of fewer hit points (either from lethal or nonlethal damage) and is unconscious, the stimulant effect of pelerine berries will stabilize the character and restore 1d4 hit points as well as 1d6 points of nonlethal damage, possibly bringing him back to consciousness. A character near death who is revived in this manner cannot fight or engage in other strenuous activity until he has otherwise healed enough to regain as many hit points as they "artificially" got back from the berries. A character who is revived from unconsciousness caused by nonlethal damage may act as normal once revived. If pelerine berries are used as an antidote to poison within one minute of the initial poisoning, they allow the character to reroll their Fortitude saving throw against the initial effect of the poison; if successful, the initial effects of the poison are negated, but the character still has to roll a save against the secondary effect. In addition, when used this way, they grant a +1 herbal bonus to the victim's Fortitude saving throw against the poison's secondary effect.
  • Heal DC: To use pelerine berries as a stimulant, the Heal DC is 10 + the number of hit points below zero that the patient is currently at. To use pelerine berries as an antidote to poison, the Heal DC is equal to the poison's save DC. Cost: Stimulant 12 shillings; Poison Antidote 15 shillings.

Marsh Moss: Also known as bog moss or peat moss, marsh moss is pale green in color, although it may turn yellowish or reddish. It consists of many tiny branches of leaves tangled into a clump of moss which grows in large cushions. It has no roots, but absorbs water directly through its leaves, and this absorbent quality makes it almost as effective as a sponge. It is found in wet, boggy spots, and sometimes grows so thickly that it may appear to be solid ground, at least until someone steps on it. Knowledge: Nature DC: 10, Profession: Herbalist DC: 14.
  • Uses: When sterilized, this moss is an ideal dressing for wounds, as two ounces of it can absorb two pounds of liquid. Marsh moss must be collected beforehand to be used, then cleaned and dried, and stores loosely in cloth bags.
  • Effect: If an injury is bound up with marsh moss, the victim will heal more quickly. That is, a character undergoing long term care will recover four hit points per level for every complete full day of rest and care. The dressing must be changed after three days and replaced with fresh moss in order to keep receiving the quick-healing benefit.
  • Heal DC: 13. Cost: 10 shillings.

Syfa's Wort: Syfa's wort grows about knee-high, with hard, woody stalks. It has smooth and oval paired leaves that appear to form the shape of a figure eight. The leaves have very tiny, pin-prick-sized holes in them that are only visible when held up to light. Syfa's wort has a large yellow flower with five petals that yield a reddish, resinous juice when bruised. The flowers also bear small blackish seeds. The plant's brownish root is hard and woody. Knowledge: Nature DC: 10, Profession: Herbalist DC: 13.
  • Uses: The oil from fresh flowers is especially good for healing wounds; boiling a dozen flowers in wine makes a tincture that can be applied to injuries that helps close wounds and heal bruises. A teaspoon of powdered seeds mixed into a broth helps combat the effects of venom.
  • Effect: If a tincture of Syfa's wort is applied to a wound within 2 minutes, it will heal 1d4 points of damage. When the seed broth is drunk as an antidote to venom it grants a +1 herbal bonus to the Fortitude saving throw to resist the secondary effects of the poison.
  • Heal DC: To use the tincture on wounds, the Heal DC is 12; to use the broth as an antivenin, the Heal DC is 10. Cost: Tincture 10 shillings; Antivenin 15 shillings.

Woundwort: Woundwort has rough slender green stalks up to two feet high bearing long and narrow dark green leaves covered with fine hairs. The leaves are pointed, with jagged edges. The flowers of woundwort are large and purplish red, with white spots. The roots are long and stringy with small tubers growing among them. The plant has a strong acrid smell. It grows in or near ditches, or by the sides of paths or fields. The marsh woundwort grows in marshy areas. Knowledge: Nature DC: 15, Profession: Herbalist DC: 14.
  • Uses: This herb is very effective as an immediate treatment for all wounds, especially deep cuts. Woundwort is a remarkable styptic, staunching bleeding almost immediately and quickening the coagulation of blood to form scabs. It is used by binding fresh leaves against a wound to form a dressing, or by steeping the leaves in hot water to form a poultice.
  • Effect: If applied to a wound within two minutes, woundwort will stop bleeding and prevent further weakness from blood loss. An application of woundwort to a character that has been brought below zero hit points will stabilize that character. In addition, if applied to a wound, the wounded character will recover twenty percent (rounded down) of the hit points they lost due to the injury, due to the prevention of the blood loss associated with the wound.
  • Heal DC: 12. Cost: 7 shillings.
  • Drawbacks: Woundwort will always stop bleeding and benefit the user as described above. However, dwarves sometimes suffer an adverse effect from it. If woundwort is used on a dwarf, he must make a DC 15 Fortitude save or be blinded for 1d6 rounds.
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Sunday, November 23, 2014

Campaign Design - Prestige Class: Fleet Runner of Syfa

Fleet Runner of Syfa (adapted from Dragon 283)

In the wild, speed is sometimes essential. Often, an animal’s only hope of survival is to outrun another creature. Certain followers of Syfa, goddess of the woodlands, emulate this aspect of the natural world above all others, cultivating their natural speed until they become like the deer leaping between the trees - or, eventually, the wind that blows through them.

Most fleet runners of Syfa are clerics, favored souls, or druids who serve that deity, though a number of rangers also follow this path. Multiclass cleric/scouts, favored soul/scouts, or druid/scouts commonly become fleet runners, and sometimes barbarians multiclassed with a divine spellcasting class take up this path, but members of other classes are rarely interested. Many fleet runners are almost feral creatures of the woodland. They have been known the run with the centaurs and dance with satyrs, though many prefer the company of animals to that of more sophisticated creatures. They use their speed and travel-related abilities in defense of the woodlands - to carry messages, send for aid, or bring aid themselves.

Hit Die: d8.
Luck Die: (d4 + 1).

To become a fleet runner, one must meet the following criteria:
  • Alignment: Neutral Good.
  • Base Will Save: +3.
  • Skills: Knowledge: Nature 11+ ranks, Knowledge: Religion 3+ ranks, Survival 5+ ranks.
  • Feats: Dodge, Mobility, Run.
  • Spell Casting: Must be able to cast divine spells.
  • Special: Must have Syfa as their patron deity.
Class Skills
  • The fleet runner’s class skills (and the key ability for each skill) are Concentration (Con), Heal (Wis), Hide (Dex), Knowledge: Nature (Int), Knowledge: Religion (Int), Move Silently (Dex), and Survival (Wis).
  • Note: Because the Three Worlds campaign uses the Skills by Character house rule, the list of class skills given here is only included for the sake of completeness, and is not used by characters in the campaign setting.
  • Skill Points at each level: 4 + Intelligence modifier.
Class Features
All of the following are class features of the fleet runner of Syfa prestige class.
  • Base Attack Bonus: Average. A fleet runner of Syfa gains +¾ base attack bonus per class level.
  • Base Fortitude Save Bonus: Good. A fleet runner of Syfa gains a +½ base Fortitude save bonus per class level.
  • Base Reflex Save Bonus: Poor. A fleet runner of Syfa gains a +13 base Reflex save bonus per class level.
  • Base Will Save Bonus: Good. A fleet runner of Syfa gains a +½ base Will save bonus per class level.
  • Weapon and Armor Proficiencies: Fleet runners of Syfa gain proficiency with all simple and martial weapons, with light armor, large shields, small shields, and bucklers. Note that armor check penalties apply to the skills Balance, Climb, Escape Artist, Hide, Jump, Move Silently, Pick Pocket, and Tumble, and that carrying heavy gear imposes a penalty on Swim checks.
  • Bonus Spells: Similar to bonus spells for high ability scores, for each level of fleet runner that a spell casting character attains, she gains bonus spells added to the number of divine spells per day he may cast. These bonus spells can be added to whatever levels of spells the caster can currently cast, but no more than one can be added to the caster’s highest current spell level. If a fleet runner has two divine spell casting classes already, he must choose which previous class of spells gains the bonus. Bonus spells cannot be added to an arcane spell casting class. Once a fleet runner has chosen how to apply his bonus spells, they cannot be shifted again.
  • Fast Movement (Ex): A fleet runner has a speed faster than that which is normal for their race. Their speed is increased by +10 feet when wearing no armor, light armor or medium armor and not carrying a heavy load. This increase stacks with similar speed increases such as those granted by the barbarian, scout, or monk classes.
  • Greater Mobility (Ex): A fleet runner has a +8 dodge bonus to AC against attacks of opportunity caused when he moves out of or within a threatened area. This supersedes the bonus granted by the Mobility feat.
  • Additional Domain (Su): A fleet runner of Syfa may select another of Syfa’s domains as a third clerical domain. He may use the granted power of the domain (using his fleet runner level instead of his cleric level), and may select spells from the spell lists of any of his three domains when selecting his daily domain spell. He may still only cast one domain spell of each level per day (1st through 9th). Fleet runners who do not have a level of cleric gain no benefit from this granted ability.
  • Evasion (Ex): At 2nd level and above, a fleet runner can avoid even magical and unusual attacks with great agility. If he makes a successful Reflex saving throw against an attack that normally deals half damage on a successful save, he instead takes no damage. A fleet runner can only use his evasion ability if he is wearing light armor or no armor.
  • Leap of the Hart (Ex): At 3rd level or higher, a fleet runner’s vertical and horizontal jumping distance is not limited by his height.
  • Shot on the Run (Ex): At 4th level, a fleet runner gains the Shot on the Run feat, even if he does not have the prerequisite Point Blank Shot feat.
  • Run of the Huntress (Su): At 5th level, a fleet runner gains supernatural stamina while running. He may run for a number of rounds equal to twice his Constitution score before making any checks, and he gains a +8 bonus to Constitution checks made to continue running after that point.
  • Improved Evasion (Ex): At 6th level, a fleet runner’s evasion ability improves. He still takes no damage on a successful Reflex save against spells such as fireball or a breath weapon, but also takes only half damage on a failed save. The fleet runner may only use the improved evasion ability if he is wearing light armor or no armor.
  • Run Like the Wind (Sp): At 7th level, a fleet runner may slip magically between spaces as if affected by the spell dimension door once per day. The fleet runner uses his fleet runner of Syfa class level as his caster level for purposes of this ability.
  • Leopard’s Pounce (Ex): At 8th level, a fleet runner may make a full attack at the end of a charge.
  • Swiftness of the Tigress (Ex): When she reaches 9th level, a fleet runner may act as if affected by a haste spell for a total of one round per class level per day. These rounds need not be consecutive.
  • Cheetah’s Sprint (Su): Once an hour, a 10th level fleet runner may take a charge action to move ten times his normal speed.
Fleet Runner of Syfa
LevelSpecialBonus Spells
1stFast movement, greater mobility, additional domain1
2nd Evasion2
3rdLeap of the hart1
4thShot on the Run2
5thRun like the huntress1
6thImproved evasion2
7thRun like the wind1
8thLeopard’s pounce2
9thSwiftness of the tigress1
10thCheetah’s sprint2

Home     Prestige Classes     Syfa

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Summary of Dungeon Master's Guide Prestige Classes in the Three Worlds

Most of the prestige classes found in the Dungeon Master's Guide are generally available in the Three Worlds campaign setting. In many cases the training needed to obtain levels in these classes can be obtained via one of the many groups and organizations found in the setting. In most cases, these prestige classes are not exclusive to any one organization or mentor, but can potentially be learned from a variety of sources.

Arcane Archer: As there are no elves or half-elves in the Three Worlds campaign, the arcane archer prestige class is one of the few such classes found in the Dungeon Master's Guide that is not available.

Arcane Trickster: Arcane tricksters can be found almost anywhere there are thieves' guilds. Although members of any race can become arcane tricksters, the vast majority are gnomes or halflings, with many of the various merchant houses and pirate clans of halflings having a number of such individuals in their ranks. Among the Collegium, many arcane tricksters take the role of spies and special operatives.

Archmage: To become an archmage one must obtain training directly from an existing archmage. The most famous archmages in the Freeholds are Dallen and Mannan. Although this has never been confirmed, it is widely believed that Leannan of Dewintir is also an archmage. Members of the Collegium and the Leucadian Brotherhood would have access to at least one potential mentor through their organization.

Assassin: As an exclusively evil class, the assassin prestige class is not generally available to player characters in the Three Worlds. Groups of assassins may be found throughout the Three Worlds, often associated with the cults devoted to Gangyn, Kivutar, and Vassatar, although assassins may be found in the service of almost all of the Lords of Hell. The vast Gemelas criminal network based in Castille also relies upon a large cadre of assassins to enforce its will.

Blackguard: Like assassins, the blackguard is an exclusively evil class and is therefore not generally available to player characters in the Three Worlds. Blackguards are found among all of the devotees of the Lords of Hell, serving their priesthoods as lieutenants, champions, and war leaders. Blackguards are especially common among the cults of Belial, Darmas, Khil, and Tuni.

Dragon Disciple: As dragon disciples are associated with the Great Dragons, they are most often found among the Cult of the Dragon in the Dekkulde Islands, but there are a number located in the Gorovlic Isles or on Croesfan Island due to the close proximity of the dragon Hraegnscaga in the Pirsh'tas Islands.

Duelist: Duelists can be found almost anywhere, although for obvious reasons, many duelists are found in the Gorovlic Islands among the pirate clans and merchant houses found there. Many fighting schools in Enselm teach the elements of this class, but teachers may be found anywhere lightly armored warriors are in demand.

Dwarven Defender: Members of the dwarven defender class can be found anywhere there are dwarves, but they are most common in Steinigreich, which is where dwarven legend says that the teachings and methods of this class originated. Many members of the Order of the Shield are also members of this class, with dwarven members of the Order routinely alternating between this and the prestige paladin class.

Eldritch Knight: Eldritch knights can be found anywhere there are warriors and mages, and as one might expect, many members of this class are gnomes or avari. Eldritch knights are also often associated with Dewintir, as they form the backbone of that nation's armies. Eldritch knights do not, however, exclusively hail from Dewintir and most arcane organizations have at least a handful of members who dabble in martial matters. In the Freeholds, many eldritch knights hail from Dyfed, and there are many members of this class among the Wardens and Warknights of the Council. In addition, members of this class are often frequently found among the cults devoted to Woda, Ishii, Füllar, and Vali.

Hierophant: Hierophants may be found among nearly every faith or circle of druids in the Three Worlds.

Horizon Walker: I am currently unsure where the horizon walker class would fit in the Three Worlds campaign setting, and as a result, this prestige class is not available for player characters.

Loremaster: In the Three Worlds, loremasters are most often associated with the deities Woda and Füllar, although many devotees of Ishii also take up this calling and very rarely, devotees of Vassatar. Loremasters are also associated with the great libraries and centers of learning in the Three Worlds, with the most famous being Mannan and his followers who study at his fortress on Ynys Mon.

Mystic Theurge: As a class dedicated to the merger of divine and arcane magic, it is natural that many mystic theurges may be found among the adherents of the cults of Woda, Füllar, and Ishii, but they can be found among the ranks of almost every faith in the Three Worlds. Although rarer, there are those among some druidic circles who believe that the only way to understand and honor the power of y'Grym is to combine divine knowledge with arcane power. Notably, there are many mystic theurges found among the ranks of the Wardens of the Council, as the versatility has proved extremely useful in many situations.

Red Wizard: The Red Wizards are the ruling elite of Valentia. They were once one of the most powerful of the many factions vying for control of Yle, but since the mystical destruction of that land, they have been reduced to a remnant of their former numbers. The Red Wizards have made clear that they are not content to rule a single isolated island in the Sea of Fear, and their tendrils of influence extend throughout Midrun and beyond. For a player character to become a member of the Red Wizards in the Three Worlds campaign setting would be unusual, although not necessarily impossible.

Shadowdancer: Until a few centuries ago, shadowdancers were fairly common in the Three Worlds, with many finding their home among the Sang-Nuit in Enselm. Then, for reasons unknown, the Collegium turned on the practitioners of this art and embarked upon a ruthless campaign of extermination apparently aimed at destroying anyone who had any knowledge of the shadowdancing way. Now shadowdancers are rare, and conceal their abilities from anyone who does not have their complete trust.

Thaumaturge: Thaumaturges are found among nearly every priesthood in the Three Worlds, but are most common among the devotees of Caire, Hler, Wünd, and Yng. Among the cults devoted to the various Lords of Hell, Thaumaturges are often found among the ranks of those serving Belial, Gangyn, Halpas, and Ishii.

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Campaign Design - Base Classes: Deathbound

(from the White Wolf Quarterly/Sword & Sorcery Insider: Vol. 3.2 (Spring 2005))

A deathbound character can take up to three levels in "Deathbound" at any time. Deathbound levels represent the individual focusing on developing his undead capabilities

Abilities: No particular ability is most important for the Deathbound class, although the class emphasizes improvements to Strength.
Race: Deathbound.
Alignment: Any.
Hit Die: d12.
Luck Die: None.

Class Skills
  • Skill List: The deathbound's class skills (and the key ability for each skill) are Bluff (Cha), Craft: Any (Int), Hide (Dex), Intimidate (Cha), and Jump (Str).
  • Note: Because the Three Worlds campaign uses the Skills by Character house rule, the list of class skills given here is only included for the sake of completeness, and is not used by characters in the campaign setting.
  • Skill Points at 1st Level: (2 + Intelligence modifier) x4.
  • Skill Points at Each Additional Level: 2 + Intelligence modifier.
Class Features
All of the following are class features of the deathbound:
  • Weapon and Armor Proficiency: Deathbound are proficient with all simple weapons and light armor.
  • Base Attack Bonus: Average. A deathbound gains +¾ base attack bonus per class level.
  • Base Fortitude Save Bonus: Poor. A deathbound gains +13 base Fortitude save bonus per class level.
  • Base Reflex Save Bonus: Poor. A deathbound gains +13 base Reflex Save bonus per class level.
  • Base Will Save Bonus: Good. A deathbound gains a +2½ base Will save bonus at first level, and an additional +½ base Will save bonus per class level.
  • Deathbound Armor: Due to the unnatural hardiness of the undead, each level gained of the deathbound class grants the character an additional +1 natural armor bonus to their Armor Class.

  • Deathbound Strength: The deathbound gain preternatural strength, gaining a +1 bonus to their Strength score for each level of the deathbound class.
  • Slam (Ex): A deathbound gains a slam attack that deals 1d6 points of bludgeoning damage.

  • Increased Hit Die (Ex): The deathbound's body possesses the toughness and resilience of undeath. Whenever he gains a hit die, he uses the next largest one instead of the normal hit die for his chosen class. For example, a deathbound who gains a wizard level rolls 1d6 for hit point rather than 1d4. A deathbound who would roll 1d12 for hit points (for taking a barbarian class level, for example) would roll 1d12+2.

+1 natural armor bonus to Armor Class, +1 Strength
+1 natural armor bonus to Armor Class, +1 Strength, slam
+1 natural armor bonus to Armor Class, +1 Strength, increased hit die

Home     Base Classes

Campaign Design - Race: Deathbound

(adapted from the White Wolf Quarterly/Sword & Sorcery Insider: Vol. 3.2 (Spring 2005))

The deathbound are a created race, made via powerful dark rituals performed by the priests and priestesses of Tuni and Tunar. Through the vile necromantic magics known only to the members of the White Hand, a living creature is killed and in the same moment cursed with unlife as a twisted mockery of the being it was. In regions controlled by the White Hand, whole villages and towns are subjected to the deathbound curse, resulting in an unliving populace serving the dark masters of the necromantic arts.

Personality: The deathbound are the creation of dark nectomantic magics, and as such, whatever personalities they had in life have been warped and twisted. Under the influence of Tuni and Tunar's power, most have turned to evil, but some attempt to reclaim their lost humanity by acting in kind and helpful ways. Most allow the hatred and rage in their hearts to fester into malice and cruelty.

Physical Description: The deathbound look like dead people. Their skin is gray and rotting, showing bone and muscle in places. Their pupil-less eyes glow with dim, white ghost light. Their muscles are withered, making them scrawny. Their movements are slow and jagged. Deathbound hardly ever smile unless their lips have rotted away, in which case they smile all the time. The necromantic magic of the deathbound curse keeps them somewhat preserved, but natural decay still proceed, just more slowly than normal.

Relations: The deathbound have tolerable relations with the other servants of the White Hand, although other living servants often view the honored position held by the deathbound with jealousy. Outside of the structure of the White Hand, most humanoids hate and fear the deathbound. Gnolls have an odd relationship with the deathbound, either regarding them as a potential ritual meal, or (more rarely) revering them as emissaries of their infernal master.

Alignment: Most deathbound are lawful evil, reflecting their nature as the creation of Tuni and Tunar. A small minority diverge from this alignment, mostly tending towards neutral or chaotic evil, especially those who find themselves aligned with Kivutar. A very tiny number of deathbound are able to reject their cruel masters and turn towards good.

Deathbound Lands: There are no deathbound lands, but they are common wherever the White Hand wields power, most notably Loring. They are also fairly common in evil lands such as Polthia and the Hallitsijainen Empire.

Religion: The deathbound are living undead, created to show the power of Tuni and Tunar over life and death. As such most are enslaved to the worship of the gods of the White Hand. Some very strong-willed and iconoclastic members turn to other faiths, most frequently becoming devotees of Kivutar, but the deathbound can be found among the ranks of the adherents of all of the Lords of Hell. Although there are no known deathbound adherents of the faiths of the Lords of Heaven, such individuals would not be an impossibility.

Language: The deathbound speak the languages they knew in life. As the devoted servants of the White Hand, all deathbound also speak Infernal.

Names: The deathbound keep the names they had when they were alive. As most deathbound were human, these tend to be human names. If a deathbound cannot remember their name, they may make up a suitable name or read one from a headstone or other inscription.
  • Type: Undead.

    • The deathbound do not have a Constitution score and gain no bonus hit points per hit die.
    • The deathbound are immune to all mind-affecting effects (charms, compulsions, phantasms, patterns, and morale effects)
    • The deathbound are immune to poison, sleep effects, paralysis, stunning, disease, and death effects.
    • The deathbound are not subject to critical hits, nonlethal damage, ability drain, or energy drain. They are immune to damage to their physical ability scores, as well as to fatigue and exhaustion effects.
    • The deathbound are healed by negative energy effects, and damaged by positive energy effects.
    • The deathbound do not heal naturally.
    • The deathbound are immune to any effect that requires a Fortitude save, unless that effect also works on objects or is harmless.
    • The deathbound use their Charisma modifier for Concentration checks .
    • Not at risk of death from massive damage. Unlike other undead, the deathbound are not destroyed when reduced to 0 hit points or less. Instead, at 0 hit points, a deathbound is disabled and only able to perform one move action or standard action each round, but does not risk further damage from strenuous activity. Between -1 and -9 hit points, a deathbound is unconscious and cannot act, but does not risk further damage (unless his enemies attack him or some other unfortunate event befalls him). At -10 hit points, a deathbound is destroyed.
    • A deathbound is not affected by raise dead and reincarnate spells or abilities. Resurrection and true resurrection spells and effects can affect the deathbound by returning a destroyed deathbound to their undead life. The deathbound curse makes it virtually impossible to bring a deathbound back to life as the creature it was before it died. Only a wish or miracle can accomplish that.
    • The deathbound do not breathe, eat, or sleep. Deathbound spell casters dtill need 8 hours of uninterrupted meditation and contemplation before preparing their spells.

  • Ability Scores: +2 Strength, -2 Dexterity. Undeath grants physical power but dulls reflexes.

  • Size: Medium size.

  • Movement: The deathbound have a base speed of 30 feet.
  • Deathless Sight: The deathbound can see in the dark up to 60 feet. Darkvision is black and white only, but it is otherwise like normal sight. The deathbound can function perfectly well with no light at all.

  • Racial Levels: Unlike humans and some other races, the deathbound can take levels in the "Deathbound" class to develop their racial qualities more fully.

  • Automatic Languages: Infernal plus any one other language, depending on the the deathbound's origin.

  • Favored Class: Fighter.

  • Favored Class: Warrior.

  • Exclusive Class: Deathbound.

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