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ALLAN LASSUS
May 11, 2007

apul.prof./ass.prof.


ritorix posted:

...and the elemental planes were the only planes you could get to.

This was one of the stupid gamey things in the original 2e box since mortal wizards could gently caress around all they want with Gate spells and Contact Other Plane and even the goddamn Pact spell that was in Dragon Kings to summon and chat and make deals with creatures from the Outer Planes. But GODS can't access Athas at all? Yeah that makes sense no wait

A much better solution was just to say that the gods of the multiverse simply don't give a poo poo about a barren backwater wasteland.

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Jeb Bush 2012
Apr 4, 2007

A mathematician, like a painter or poet, is a maker of patterns. If his patterns are more permanent than theirs, it is because they are made with ideas.

oratiO_obliqua posted:

This was one of the stupid gamey things in the original 2e box since mortal wizards could gently caress around all they want with Gate spells and Contact Other Plane and even the goddamn Pact spell that was in Dragon Kings to summon and chat and make deals with creatures from the Outer Planes. But GODS can't access Athas at all? Yeah that makes sense no wait

A much better solution was just to say that the gods of the multiverse simply don't give a poo poo about a barren backwater wasteland.

A much better solution was just to say that Athas isn't connected to the outer planes, or if it is you need crazy obscure stuff to get there. Otherwise you just raise the question of why some second-string deity doesn't come in and make the place his personal world of worshippers.

Ze Pollack
May 31, 2006


RicochetD20 posted:

I just want to run an Epic Darksun game where they go searching for the Gods, and eventually find their dead bodies being feasted on by what are essentially Astral Vultures.

curiously, there are about ten of them, two of which are significantly bigger and nastier-looking than the others

ALLAN LASSUS
May 11, 2007

apul.prof./ass.prof.


Jeb Bush 2012 posted:

A much better solution was just to say that Athas isn't connected to the outer planes, or if it is you need crazy obscure stuff to get there. Otherwise you just raise the question of why some second-string deity doesn't come in and make the place his personal world of worshippers.

Well, true. Although in most actual games it was pretty much a non-issue since the Gates and Pacts and whatever were so high level spells that no one ever survived that far. In any case the basic setting's "well there just aren't any gods now move on" wasn't a very well thought out reasoning at all since Athas obviously was just a PMP among others and connected to the Outer Planes according to the actual rules.

I guess they inserted the stuff about the Grey blocking access in the Revised setting but I never owned that.

Gassire
Dec 30, 2004

"They're people. Deeply flawed, yes, but deeply human too. And maybe that's saying the same thing."

RicochetD20 posted:

I just want to run an Epic Darksun game where they go searching for the Gods, and eventually find their dead bodies being feasted on by what are essentially Astral Vultures.

There's a 2E book for Planescape called Dead Gods, it's all about the dangers and benefits of exploiting the corpses of gods floating around the Astral plane.

PeterWeller
Apr 20, 2003

I told you that story so I could tell you this one.


oratiO_obliqua posted:

In any case the basic setting's "well there just aren't any gods now move on" wasn't a very well thought out reasoning at all since Athas obviously was just a PMP among others and connected to the Outer Planes according to the actual rules.

I consider that more the fault of the 2E era's insistence on having all of D&D clearly and explicitly existing in the same multiverse than anything else. "Well there just aren't any gods now move on" should have been explanation enough.

lighttigersoul
Mar 5, 2009

Sailor Scout Enoutner 5:
Moon Healing Escalation


NinjaDebugger posted:

He did, and he'd only been playing D&D for like six sessions.

I keep finding that non-gamers are generally better players than any 'role-player' I've ever met. Which is why I'm always the one to volunteer to run the newbie games at the game shops.

Dr. Angela Ziegler
Jan 2, 2005



Heroes NEVER Die


lighttigersoul posted:

I keep finding that non-gamers are generally better players than any 'role-player' I've ever met. Which is why I'm always the one to volunteer to run the newbie games at the game shops.
I've found this too, with the caveat that extremely veteran players can also bring it. Why is that? Is it just system familiarity or what?

PeterWeller
Apr 20, 2003

I told you that story so I could tell you this one.


lighttigersoul posted:

I keep finding that non-gamers are generally better players than any 'role-player' I've ever met. Which is why I'm always the one to volunteer to run the newbie games at the game shops.

Non-gamers believe you when you tell them, "it's not about winning; it's about having fun," and they don't know rules minutiae enough to get caught up in the metagame aspect of it all.

In my group, we have one guy who has now played in two campaigns, and another guy who has now played in one. The first guy is now all about charop and being as combat effective possible. The second guy tells me that his favorite sessions were those where we spent most of the game in character and combat was an afterthought. It was only towards the end of the campaign where he really became interested in exploiting his powers to their fullest in a fight. At the same time, the three guys who are D&D veterans build their characters with a roughly equal mix of rules exploitation and in-character choices. For our upcoming Dark Sun campaign, we'll be adding at least one new player, and it will be interesting to see how this pattern plays out.

Edit: Before I give the impression that I'm maligning the first guy in the above example, let me say that he was as invested in the character side of his character as any of the "veterans". There was just a clear switch between playing a character that sounded cool and playing a character that was mechanically cool.

PeterWeller fucked around with this message at Sep 26, 2010 around 03:00

Maddman
Mar 15, 2005

Women...bitch, bitch, bitch, bitch, bitch

PeterWeller posted:

Non-gamers believe you when you tell them, "it's not about winning; it's about having fun," and they don't know rules minutiae enough to get caught up in the metagame aspect of it all.

Nongamers also haven't been abused by ego-trip GMs, creepy stalker types, weirdo furries infesting their games, or any of the other horror stories.

PeterWeller
Apr 20, 2003

I told you that story so I could tell you this one.


Nah, they've met creepy stalkers and weirdo furries at college.

Maddman
Mar 15, 2005

Women...bitch, bitch, bitch, bitch, bitch

Yeah, but if you've got a group of normal people and bring a new gamer into that, they might think that all gamers are basically normal people that play these awesome games. Then they go to a con and don't understand why they should get away from the guy wearing wolf ears, or what that horrible smell is, or why that guy is talking about elfrules with passion usually reserved for Glen Beck fan club meetings.

PeterWeller
Apr 20, 2003

I told you that story so I could tell you this one.


That's why when a new entrant in the gaming community says, "hey I'm thinking about going to that convention this weekend," you reply with, "you're better off staying at home and watching Star Wars prequels on TNT."

Chill la Chill
Jul 2, 2007

Don't lose your gay




PeterWeller posted:

That's why when a new entrant in the gaming community says, "hey I'm thinking about going to that convention this weekend," you reply with, "you're better off staying at home and watching Star Wars prequels on TNT."

This is what my friends have told me when I tell them about going to that baltimore anime convention cuz I can easily dress up as Krillen when I'm in my peak slimming period of weightlifting. I still want to go but there are so many horror stories.

ManMythLegend
Aug 18, 2003

I don't believe in anything, I'm just here for the violence.


So this weekend I decided to complete the city-state flag project I started a while ago. Here they are for any interested parties:

Balic:


Draaj:


Gulg:


Nibenay:


Raam:


Tyr (Pre death of Kalak):


Urik:


Also happened across some French guy's site where he had posted his flags for all the major merchant houses. I figured some of you might be interested so here they are:

Inka:


Mke:


Shom:


Stel:


Tsalaxa:


Vordon:


Wavir:

palecur
Nov 2, 2002

not too simple and not too kind

Fallen Rib

Welp, stealing the gently caress out of those for the one-shot I'm running after the October builder update.

Don't suppose anyone knows a fairly easy 'design-your-own' papercraft software I can grab? I have plans for building the Arena in Draj for a set-piece encounter, and for a 35x35 square arena floor I'm going to need about a 44-square arena total for seating. Given realities of table space, I'm thinking of using a 3/4 inch grid instead of a 1-inch.

Super Waffle
Sep 25, 2007

I'm a hermaphrodite and my parents (40K nerds) named me Slaanesh, THANKS MOM

If you want to get really spergy, the Draj arena is a 19-square diameter circle as measured from the map in the book, with a 3x6 pile of corpses at the base of the temple (the stats for which are in the back of the creature catalog).

ritorix
Jul 22, 2007

Vancian Roulette


ManMythLegend posted:


Stel:








ritorix fucked around with this message at Oct 2, 2010 around 04:47

Super Waffle
Sep 25, 2007

I'm a hermaphrodite and my parents (40K nerds) named me Slaanesh, THANKS MOM

The thri-kreen swarm druid in my game just multi-classed into assassin, and I'm not sure how to treat his abilities in a social context. Are shrouds visible to anyone besides the target? Would it be unfair to treat it the same as arcane?

palecur
Nov 2, 2002

not too simple and not too kind

Fallen Rib

Super Waffle posted:

The thri-kreen swarm druid in my game just multi-classed into assassin, and I'm not sure how to treat his abilities in a social context. Are shrouds visible to anyone besides the target? Would it be unfair to treat it the same as arcane?

I don't think shrouds are any more visible than marks -- they're more of a spiritual darkness. Any particular reason you want to treat them as arcane? I'd just leave it as shadow power source, especially since it gives you plot hooks into the Gray.

If by 'treating it as arcane' you mean 'regular NPCs pretty much assume anything not obviously psionic is arcane and thus freak out unless you make a Bluff roll to conceal the nature of the effect,' then yeah, I could see going with that.

ManMythLegend
Aug 18, 2003

I don't believe in anything, I'm just here for the violence.


Gomi posted:

I'd just leave it as shadow power source, especially since it gives you plot hooks into the Gray.

If I were to truly sperg out I would say that the Shadow power source came from the Black and not the Grey, but either one works really.

greatn
Nov 15, 2006

by Lowtax


ManMythLegend posted:

If I were to truly sperg out I would say that the Shadow power source came from the Black and not the Grey, but either one works really.

Well Shadow is like, between light and dark.

The Saddest Robot
Apr 17, 2007


If you want to use the some of the existing "never happened" lore, shadow power source would make sense as coming from the grey, and perhaps even originating with Rajaat's halfling servants that were thrown into the hollow and became shadow people. Perhaps using Shadow magic actually weakens the Hollow in a tiny, miniscule way and this is a long, long reaching plan to eventually free Rajaat in a few millenia.

I started my Dark Sun campaign for my group last weekend, my first time dming a real 4e flesh and blood game. I wasn't really prepared, I thought we were going to spend the night making characters and background and figuring out what sort of campaign we wanted to do, but they got tired of that and wanted to start playing.

I have a Mul barbarian nomad, searching the wastes for a rumored paradise. An Eladrin wizard preserver member of the veiled alliance, exiled from his own people, looking for ways to save the lands within the winds (and stop defilers/sorc kings). And a pair of halfling twins, one an animist shaman elemental priest named... Pancake - though everyone else refuses to call her anything but Pan. This led to an amusing bit of lore creation where we decided that sometimes halflings that leave the ridge will name themselves after their favorite foods. The other halfling sibling is a ranger with a raptor. They both came out of the forest ridge to try to free some of their people from the Sorcerer Kings. (will probably make it family or something).

They all eagerly opted to roll for random talents, the shaman can spontaneously start un-held flammable objects on fire (contemplating making this talent go off randomly, but turning players powers against them could be a dick move so I'm still heavily contemplating it), the other halfling can form psionic tools (non-damaging), which I think is probably the most useful of the lot, especially in the hands of a halfling. Need a lock pick? A hammer? A knife? Bam. The wizard has the power to create enthralling illusions in his hands, and the Mul always knows which way is north (also a very useful power, especially when I start throwing them into sand storms or they get lost underground). The Mul player was a little bummed about his unimpressive power, but I think he'll come to see just how useful it is in the long run.

They all met up on the way to Tyr and took part in the uprising/riots/overthrow of Kalek as part of their background, and now they're kind of slumming it around in the city as it tries to stabilize and power structures sort themselves out.

Since I wasn't really prepared to run anything I resorted to the venture in the campaign guide. The wizard made some inquiries at various inns, trying to get in contact with the Veiled Alliance, while the others kind of poked around the city. He eventually met up with a contact who was kind of wary of him, due to not knowing who he was and him being a strange creature, so he asked him to help out a supporter of theirs with a problem to prove his sincerity (lame, but I wasn't really prepared). So they go over to House Wavir, got the story on a caravan that should have arrived yesterday and probably got lost in a sand storm that blew through the day before.

They loaded up on supplies and set out on the road, got about a day and a half out and found what could have been wagon tracks veering off the road. They followed them, ran into a silt runner ambush and nearly got killed, but the Mul pulled through, 1 hitting one silt runner, and charging and critting another in a single turn. Mul barbarians They quickly figured out that the silt runners were decidedly going after their eladrin wizard. The party lacks a defender, but I am hoping that with 2 conjurations from the shaman and the ranger's dino-pet they will have enough battlefield control to make up for it.

They continued to follow the tracks, and came to the wagon and the kruthiks poking around. I decided the kruthiks would be very aggressive to another animal like the dinosaur, so they focused on that, tearing the poor thing to shreds but not killing it.

We called it a night there. What's left in the book's arc is just the stone tower, but since I have time to prepare I am thinking of mixing it up a bit. The tower will be a half-buried ancient place, nestled in the rocks and protected from the winds. It will be built for short people, so the hallways and doors (but not the chambers themselves) will only be like 4-5 feet tall, making it difficult terrain for the taller people. I'm going to try to have some big obsidian orb and a mindscape battle with a defiler-hunting killer lizard -- though he will really go after any arcane user which is what led him to attack the caravan in the first place. I have a few ideas for the mind battle, hopefully I can pull it off in a neat way.

Ultimately I want the tower to be some relic from the blue or green age, though there's really nothing left of value save for a few worn down statues and unintelligible murals which will hint at some form of spirit-worship. The boss-lizard will have the place set up to perform rituals to conjure up sand storms and obsidian clouds. Maybe there will be one bearing down on them when they set off to follow the tracks from the wagon to the tower.

I kind of want to incorporate the idea of the trapped fire spirit communicating by glassing the ground but I'm trying to be careful about things like magic items and literacy. There is one eladrin wizard so literacy shouldn't be a problem, though I think a primal spirit would only be able to communicate in sylvan or primordial... which might make for a kind of sad encounter since they'll ultimately be unable to communicate with the fire spirit. Maybe the spirit will resort to drawing pictures.

By the time they get back to Tyr with the recovered loot, the city will be in flames and riots again as various groups unhappy with Tithian's ascension to kinghood make their move.

One thing I'm really having trouble with is magic items. Even the encounters game gives away a few magic items, and I don't want to talk about the magic items in Marauders. I had never played in Dark Sun before, but everything I've read and heard about it lead me to assume that permanent, non-psionic enhancing magic items were ultra rare, even rarer than a metal weapon. How have other people reconciled this with 4e tossing out magic items at all levels? Should I swallow my pride and preconceptions of what Dark Sun is like and sprinkle in some magic items at low levels? Make them work off of charges/healing surges? Should I replace any magic items in official 'ventures with masterwork (+1) items, like a well made, sturdy bonespear instead of an acidic spear? I like most of the magic properties listed in the campaign guide, since a lot of them can be viewed in a non-flashy way, but I don't see how something like an acidic spear can be viewed as anything but 'omg magic'. Dunno what to do about this.

Drox
Aug 9, 2007

by Y Kant Ozma Post


How about the acidic spear is a venomous stinger off of some monstrosity tied to a pole?

lighttigersoul
Mar 5, 2009

Sailor Scout Enoutner 5:
Moon Healing Escalation


Drox posted:

How about the acidic spear is a venomous stinger off of some monstrosity tied to a pole?

I totally did that in a 3.x game once. My kobold cleric used a shortspear, and the point was a giant scorpion stinger.

Liesmith
Jan 29, 2006

by Y Kant Ozma Post


The Saddest Robot posted:

One thing I'm really having trouble with is magic items. Even the encounters game gives away a few magic items, and I don't want to talk about the magic items in Marauders. I had never played in Dark Sun before, but everything I've read and heard about it lead me to assume that permanent, non-psionic enhancing magic items were ultra rare, even rarer than a metal weapon. How have other people reconciled this with 4e tossing out magic items at all levels? Should I swallow my pride and preconceptions of what Dark Sun is like and sprinkle in some magic items at low levels? Make them work off of charges/healing surges? Should I replace any magic items in official 'ventures with masterwork (+1) items, like a well made, sturdy bonespear instead of an acidic spear? I like most of the magic properties listed in the campaign guide, since a lot of them can be viewed in a non-flashy way, but I don't see how something like an acidic spear can be viewed as anything but 'omg magic'. Dunno what to do about this.

reskin all the masterwork and +1 or so magical items as really well made bone or flint items with maybe some special poison or whatever. Give them a lower chance to break, I'm sure the Dark Sun book can help with figuring out the specifics.

Drox posted:

How about the acidic spear is a venomous stinger off of some monstrosity tied to a pole?

A great example. This would be really cool to find and kill poo poo with, more memorable than a regular +1 mace or whatever.

ManMythLegend
Aug 18, 2003

I don't believe in anything, I'm just here for the violence.


Again, if you want to really sperg out about the setting, the Shadow power source would come from the Black, not the Grey. I mean a person's shadow is literally a portal to the Black. Also Rajaat's halfling guard/shadow giants live in the Black not the Hollow. Here is some words on the subject from the Wizards of Athas book:

The Black posted:

The Black is one of two planes that directly touch the prime world of Athas; the other is the Gray. The Black, a realm of chill darkness similar to the Demiplane of Shadow, can be accessed wherever light creates shadows. In the absence of light, no
connection to the Black exists.

This vast dimension of darkness separates everything that exists from everything that doesnít. Itís an absence filled with numbing cold, endless darkness, and even living beings. Shadow people, who some erroneously refer to as shadow giants, live
as part of the Black. These one-time halflings were the loyal servants of Rajaat the First Sorcerer. To complete their betrayal of Rajaat, the Champions trapped the halflings in the Black, and now the halflings can only interact with the world
through shadows. King Tithian of Tyr, who tried to free Rajaat from his prison beyond the Black, is also trapped within this dimension. Due to the circumstances of his interment, Tithian can only interact with the world through the Cerulean Storm.

The Black lurks below the surface of all things, like the leathery shell of a great egg, buried shallow and about to hatch. The world of Athas exists outside the shell of this egg. Inside, cold gloom fills the plane, the entirety of which is a dark stain visible only as an absence. Deep within the shell lies the Hollow, a realm of absolute nothingness. Within the vast emptiness of the Hollow, Rajaat the First Sorcerer languishes in a prison formed of treachery and magic.

Shadow wizards tap into the Black to gain the energy needed for their magic. Indeed, those who follow shadow sacrifice a portion of themselves to the Black, becoming part shadow. They depend as much on light as they do darkness for the power they wield.

If that doesn't scream "Shadow Power Source", I don't know what does. Though again, if you want to ignore the Black/The Hollow all together for your game then go for it. It's not really a big deal in the 4E setting anyway.

alg
Mar 14, 2007

stay on target


There's an adventure for characters level 5-7 in Dungeon today:

http://www.wizards.com/DnD/Article....d/duad/20101020

MMAgCh
Aug 15, 2001
I am the poet,
The prophet of the pit
Like a hollow-point bullet
Straight to the head
I never missed...you

Treasure includes five magic items.

palecur
Nov 2, 2002

not too simple and not too kind

Fallen Rib

The sheer badassery of what's essentially a bone Jawa Sandcrawler with claws does make up for it. Plus it's trivially easy to make those 'magic items' boons or echoes of power or battle scars from DMG2 or the Dark Sun CG.

ritorix
Jul 22, 2007

Vancian Roulette


And hey look at that, they actually dont use Dungeon Tiles this time. I'm surprised.


Actually came here to post about a guy showing off his collection of original Brom and Baxa artwork. Tons of good stuff here. Hopefully he will post more of it because hes sitting on a goddamn goldmine.

http://www.comicartfans.com/Images/...llection012.jpg

http://community.wizards.com/go/thr...90-93_Baxa-Brom

I mean drat, these guys are awesome.

Kalak getting killed wounded.

ritorix fucked around with this message at Oct 20, 2010 around 01:42

PeterWeller
Apr 20, 2003

I told you that story so I could tell you this one.


That stuff is all from the flip book adventures. Seriously, if you can find them for a decent price, get them! Even if you totally ignore the plot and don't bother adapting any of the encounters, the players' flip books they come with are a great table resource full of maps and art and other great bits of flavor that you can easily adapt.

ManMythLegend
Aug 18, 2003

I don't believe in anything, I'm just here for the violence.


ritorix posted:

And hey look at that, they actually dont use Dungeon Tiles this time. I'm surprised.


Actually came here to post about a guy showing off his collection of original Brom and Baxa artwork. Tons of good stuff here. Hopefully he will post more of it because hes sitting on a goddamn goldmine.

http://www.comicartfans.com/Images/...llection012.jpg

http://community.wizards.com/go/thr...90-93_Baxa-Brom

I mean drat, these guys are awesome.

Kalak getting killed wounded.

I was just looking at that thread yesterday on the WotC boards. The hard core nerd in me is super jealous of the full size Crimson Legion painting.

Attention Deficit
Nov 25, 2006
fine til you came along..

So the wife's starting up a Dark Sun campaign soon and wanted to kick off with the - freely available - Bloodsand Arena module. Well, available except for map scans.

If it was me, I'd just use our huge Chessex Megamat and draw it, but she's not keen on sketching. Things tend to be.. ambiguous.. when she does. Fair enough. We've invested in a plethora of dungeon tiles so we're set for every adventure except Bloodsand Arena.

In the end, we did a bit of a hack job by copy/pasting the encounter maps out of the pdf in 8x11 square chunks then resizing the image to 8"x11", coloring a little, and printing on A4. It's workable, if not too pretty, and has the letters indicating where monsters start on too.

Did anyone get round to scanning the maps in the end? I saw angrylinuxgeek mention it but didn't see a followup.

Beyond that, the party is taking shape with:
  • Halfling Rogue (Trickster)
  • Half-Giant Battlemind (Wild)
  • Elf Hybrid Seeker/Ranger
  • Tiefling Warlock (Dark) or possibly Human Warlock (Star)
  • Dwarf Shaman (Bear - Athasian style)

Good times ahead.

alg
Mar 14, 2007

stay on target


I'm sending them off this coming week to get scanned, there was a bit of a delay waiting for a couple of maps before I sent them out. I'll certainly share them (if that's not )

BetterWeirdthanDead
Mar 7, 2006

Ask me why I really
went to see Terminator


You couldn't offer to draw the maps for her?

palecur
Nov 2, 2002

not too simple and not too kind

Fallen Rib

BetterWeirdthanDead posted:

You couldn't offer to draw the maps for her?



Also, I know if tiles were available I'd prefer those.

BetterWeirdthanDead
Mar 7, 2006

Ask me why I really
went to see Terminator


Well, yeah. I prefer to use tiles over drawing, but printing out and coloring them seemed like more effort than drawing on the game mat.

Attention Deficit
Nov 25, 2006
fine til you came along..

I'd be happy to However I believe she sees that as the DMs job.. and she was planning to take her time and draw the Arena in advance of the session so, progress.

Cheers angrylinuxgeek, looking forward to it.

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BetterWeirdthanDead
Mar 7, 2006

Ask me why I really
went to see Terminator


Attention Deficit posted:

I'd be happy to However I believe she sees that as the DMs job.. and she was planning to take her time and draw the Arena in advance of the session so, progress.

Paizo makes a card-stock battle mat with an arena printed on it for those who truly need niche maps. However, that means you're stuck with a Roman-style arena on that map, and it has limited uses.

The same goes for most of the other maps in the series, unless your players are always frequenting the same tavern or theater.

Edit: Which city-state has the best arena? I imagine Urik's arena has lots of sharpened obsidian obstacles to brutalize the combatants, but I haven't picked up the Gladiator's handbook in a while.

BetterWeirdthanDead fucked around with this message at Oct 28, 2010 around 12:52

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