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Terrible Opinions
Oct 17, 2013





Todd Lockwood's art was one of the best parts of 3E and 4E.

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Rigged Death Trap
Feb 13, 2012

BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP



Io's a bit of a shithead and an idiot, isnt he.

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

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Io really only cares about one thing, and that is 'dragons should all get along and not murder each other constantly.'

Green Intern
Dec 29, 2008

Loon, Crazy and Laughable



I really appreciate that nobody spells Regdar the same way.

Halloween Jack
Sep 11, 2003

Let your word be "Yes, Yes" or "No, No"; anything more than this comes from the evil one.




Terrible Opinions posted:

Todd Lockwood's art was one of the best parts of 3E and 4E.
Indeed, Todd Lockwood was the opposite of the whole dungeonpunk-getting-out-of-control. Though I appreciate what they were trying to do with that.

theironjef
Aug 11, 2009

The archmage of unexpected stinks.



I honestly spent a long time thinking Regdar was supposed to be a half-orc. Specifically to show the variation between human-leaning and orc-leaning variations on the race between him and Krusk. It was because his original portrait (you know the one, he's holding up a two handed sword and a longbow like he just won a raffle) has a significant tint of green to his skin.

Also I know Monte meant well but saying that all dwarves are just race: dwarf looks bad when they are also recognizably race: white. The subtle implication is that POC kids looking to identify themselves for inspiration in D&D art are limited to humans but white kids get a fun panoply. I'm glad someone noticed that and fixed it in D&D eventually.

Terrible Opinions
Oct 17, 2013





I'm pretty sure given the way he phrased that particular line Monte knew that by the time the interview happened, but due to subconscious racism didn't think about it when 3.0 was first being developed.

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

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Council of Wyrms: God Says Dragons Are Just Better

There's three different kinds of thing referred to as 'rogue dragon'. The first is just a dragon that goes against its basic nature - a good-aligned chromatic or evil metallic. These dragons are tolerated, but usually feel more comfortable joining another dragon type's clan. Their shift can be slight, such as remaining good/neutral/evil but shifting from lawful to chaotic, or more radical - good to evil. The latter is a much more tense situation. These things tend to be created by traumatic experiences, radical shifts in belief and outlook on life, deep rebellion against the establishment or years of careful thought and weighing of options.

The second kind of rogue is a dragon who jsut refuses to obey the clan leaders. This is most rogues - they protest the plans and agendas of their clans, and rather than be killed or suffer in silence, they strike out on their own. Sometimes, this leads to a new clan forming, but more often, these become lone hunters, surviving in less populous regions. They seldom go too close to clan lands, but sometimes are forced to steal or even kill other dragons to survive. In those cases, the Council may be called on to deal with them.

The final type of rogue is a menace to everyone - a dragon suffering from some form of violent insanity or holding radical beliefs that are dangerous to society. These dragons tend to either have a mental illness or suffer some obsessive ambition. The mentally ill are pitiable, suffering from terrible fear, anger and delusions, and on bad days, striking out at anything nearby, ravaging the countryside out of terror, thrill or a belief that it was the correct thing to do. Overdeveloped senses of good or evil can also produce this result, when a dragon becomes an extremist. A gold dragon who decides to wipe out the evil dragons, for example, or a red dragon who becomes obsessed with being the evillest of all evils. These are the most dangerous rogues, and the Council is often called on to put them down.

The dragons of the Io's Blood do worship gods, but have very little in the way of organized religion. Dragons have no churches, as most have the innate ability to cast divine spells without needing to even pray for them - only dragon-priests pray for spells, and they get more for their worship. Dragons also tend to see themselves as the children of gods, so why worship so obsequiously? However, that is not to say they don't ever pray. Those dragons who practice regular worship are the minority, but do exist. They respect that which they see as supernatural (which doesn't include their innate abilities - those are totally natural). Some of these even study clerical magic and become dragon-priests, intermediary agents of the gods. The most organized and secretive draconic priesthood is the Custodians of Concordance, who serve the great Io. Others pledge themselves to other gods but lack any formal organization. Most dragon-priests are seen as eccentrics who have been touched by the gods in some unique manner. Most dragons pay no daily homage, but do respect and revere their deities - and, in turn, their priests.

The greater god Io, the Ninefold Dragon, is the chief god of the Io's Blood islands. He is a god of many aspects, who contains within himself all alignments and whom, the dragons say, created all things. Through his infinite grace, he allowed other gods to shape portions of his creation to suit their own children, but dragons, being the first and best children of Io, received the greatest gifts and powers. Io is rarely directly involved in life and almost never makes his presence known - save for the time he sent his avatar to end the Dragon Wars and establish the Council of Wyrms. Few dragon-priests pray to Io save for the Custodians of Concordance. His holy symbol is an eight-pointed star with a central rising spoke.

Chronepsis is the intermediate draconic god of fate, death and judgment. He has seen all existence through to the end of time, but has sowrn never to speak of it - or of anything. The mute god guards his knowledge carefully and dispassionately. Chronepsis is true netraul, and few dragons worship him directly, but all respect his power. His few direct followers are typically found among the amethyst clans. His symbol is a set of brass scales beneath a harp. Aasterinian is a lesser goddess, the daughter of Io and goddess of play, pleasure and invention as well as the messenger of the draconic pantheon. She is Chaotic Neutral with good tendencies, and her followers revere that which is new and fun. Many gem and metallic dragons favor her, particularly among the brass and copper clans. Her holy symbol is the Morning Star.

Bahamut is the lesser draconic god of goodness and the metallic dragons. He is Lawful Good and is quite active, granting visions to good dragons that serve him. He often wanders the planes, polymorphed and disguised, and is said to debate with Io the value of evil in the world. Gold and silver dragons most commonly follow Bahamut, whose holy symbol is the Pole Star above a milky spiral. Tiamat is the lesser draconic goddess of evil and the chromatic dragons. She is Lawful Evil, and she spurs the chromatics on to greater pride and cruelty. She despies the Council of Wyrms and its harmony, but will not make over threats towards it, for Io himself established it. The chromatics worship her most, primarily among the reds, blues and greens. Her symbol is the five-headed dragon.

Faluzure is Night Dragon, the lesser god of undeath and decay. He is Neutral Evil and hates the other gods. He meddles in the world quite often to ensure that enough death occurs to sustain his being. Only the most twisted and evil dragons follow him, primarily those who have or will become dracoliches, and his symbol is the dragon's skull. Chaotic dragons have also been known to follow Elemtia, the demigod of elementals, while lawful dragons have been known to follow Arcanic, the demigod of magic.

Next time: Dragon magic.

Doresh
Jan 7, 2015


Chronepsis sounds like a condition that makes you question the existence of time magic.

Night10194 posted:

Man, Regdar's armor looks dumb as all hell.

I could see it work in Monster Hunter if it had more dragon scales and a helmet that's somewhat less silly.


theironjef posted:

Also I know Monte meant well but saying that all dwarves are just race: dwarf looks bad when they are also recognizably race: white. The subtle implication is that POC kids looking to identify themselves for inspiration in D&D art are limited to humans but white kids get a fun panoply. I'm glad someone noticed that and fixed it in D&D eventually.
A good thing Drow are a valid player race, amirite?!

Alien Rope Burn
Dec 4, 2004

I wanna be a saikyo HERO!


theironjef posted:

Also I know Monte meant well but saying that all dwarves are just race: dwarf looks bad when they are also recognizably race: white. The subtle implication is that POC kids looking to identify themselves for inspiration in D&D art are limited to humans but white kids get a fun panoply. I'm glad someone noticed that and fixed it in D&D eventually.

Yeah, certainly. The fact that they cared at all was a big step forward, but there was still work to be done.

There always is and always will be.

Kurieg
Jul 19, 2012

RIP Lutri: 5/19/20-4/2/20
:blizz::gamefreak:


There's also the problem with there being an entire race of Black Dwaves, the Duergar, who are always evil psychic slavers.

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

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The psychic ones are the Derro, the duergar are just slavers.

theironjef
Aug 11, 2009

The archmage of unexpected stinks.



I'm not sure what Duergar are like in 5e but in 4e they moved them a little away from just being black dwarves by giving them launchable heated porcupine quills.

Kurieg
Jul 19, 2012

RIP Lutri: 5/19/20-4/2/20
:blizz::gamefreak:


Mors Rattus posted:

The psychic ones are the Derro, the duergar are just slavers.

In 3.5 they're psychic, because something something mind flayers something.

Halloween Jack
Sep 11, 2003

Let your word be "Yes, Yes" or "No, No"; anything more than this comes from the evil one.




My favourite fantasy races are in The Wilderlands of High Fantasy, where the tall thin blonde white people are noble and "pure-blooded," and the inherently evil races are all "swarthy."

Doresh
Jan 7, 2015


What is it with evil subterranean races having unnaturally dark skin? Is there some kind of ganguro curse going on?

theironjef posted:

I'm not sure what Duergar are like in 5e but in 4e they moved them a little away from just being black dwarves by giving them launchable heated porcupine quills.

Should've turned them into mole people.

Fantastic Alice
Jan 23, 2012







Doresh posted:

What is it with evil subterranean races having unnaturally dark skin? Is there some kind of ganguro curse going on?


Should've turned them into mole people.

Something something dark is evil and a lack thinking the implications through. Also ignorance of how beings that love underground tend to actually look.

Alien Rope Burn
Dec 4, 2004

I wanna be a saikyo HERO!


Mors Rattus posted:

The psychic ones are the Derro, the duergar are just slavers.

The likely origins of the Derro are highly problematic in their own way.

Strange Matter
Oct 5, 2009

Ask me about Genocide


xanthan posted:

Something something dark is evil and a lack thinking the implications through. Also ignorance of how beings that love underground tend to actually look.
Yet more reasons why REIGN is the best fantasy setting, because its lily-white people are savages from the sunless armpit of the world.

Doresh
Jan 7, 2015


xanthan posted:

Something something dark is evil and a lack thinking the implications through. Also ignorance of how beings that love underground tend to actually look.

Evil people need to be albinos for a better contrast with their black, spiky armor.

Night10194
Feb 13, 2012

We'll start,
like many good things,
with a bear.


Doresh posted:

What is it with evil subterranean races having unnaturally dark skin? Is there some kind of ganguro curse going on?

The Curse of Ham has deep cultural penetration, I guess.

megane
Jun 20, 2008





Probably "lack of creativity" is also a factor. We have evil elves, and they're distinguished from other elves by being black-skinned and living underground. Clearly we need an evil version of [GNOMES], and they'll be distinguished from other [GNOMES] by, uhhhhhh... Repeat ad nauseum.

Barudak
May 7, 2007



Doresh posted:

What is it with evil subterranean races having unnaturally dark skin? Is there some kind of ganguro curse going on?


Should've turned them into mole people.

It never made sense to me that the god of the sun would have pale skin followers. Thats an evil god right there.

ZorajitZorajit
Sep 15, 2013

No static at all...

megane posted:

Probably "lack of creativity" is also a factor. We have evil elves, and they're distinguished from other elves by being black-skinned and living underground. Clearly we need an evil version of [GNOMES], and they'll be distinguished from other [GNOMES] by, uhhhhhh... Repeat ad nauseum.

If I may offer a historical perspective with regard to western European mytholog, without looking like an apologist for lovely 20th century writers, it's probably because they all started from the same place. The Dark Elves of Norse myth share some of the same stories as the Black Dwarves of Germanic myth and the faeries of Celtic myth. Which is not to suggest those are all the interchangeable. But Elf / Faerie / and Goblin meant the same thing for thousands of years until nerds codified them.

This is why I dig authors that look farther afield, or just make up their own, monsters. Give me more Peng and Set Animals and handlingers.

MightyMatilda
Sep 2, 2015


Alien Rope Burn posted:

The likely origins of the Derro are highly problematic in their own way.

I honestly don't see what the problem is. Do you mean how they're based off of something a schizophrenic guy made?

Alien Rope Burn
Dec 4, 2004

I wanna be a saikyo HERO!


MightyMatilda posted:

I honestly don't see what the problem is. Do you mean how they're based off of something a schizophrenic guy made?

Well, that they're based off of a man's schizophrenic delusions, but also that the source material is full of torture and sexual abuse, typically of women. It was somewhat made into a narrative and sanitized by Amazing Stories, but not entirely.

FMguru
Sep 10, 2003

peed on;
sexually

Strange Matter posted:

the sunless armpit of the world.
If you're not familiar with Reign, please note: this is not figurative or hyperbole or an analogy.

(Reign owns)

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

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Council of Wyrms: Dragons Are Like Wizards, Except Not

All dragons can tap into magical power, in the form of their ability to naturally cast wizard and/or priest spells, without use of components, spellbooks or tools. However, some dragons also want to study true magic, and follow the path of the dragon-mage. Dragon-mages can cast spells in the same way as normal wizards - memorizing them, using simple gestures, spell components and magic words. They must gather their spells in spellbooks, because in learning to cast arcane magic of more variety, they lose access to their innate spellcasting, and must instead do spell research and gather magical scrolls and transcribe them. However, they do also get the ability to make magic items, which most dragons simple cannot do. Still, dragons have no fear of magic, as some species do. They have a distaste for the undead, being both alive and able to smell things, but they don't dread them. After all, dragons are (if you were to ask them) inherently superior and able to defeat all foes without much trouble.

Dragons love to wear rings, bracers, earrings and other forms of jewelry. Some even carve runes or symbols into their scales as a form of artistic or enchanted tattoo. Some of this is social, but some is also practical, in the form of magic items. They do not utilize crafted weapons...most of the time, but dragons have invented two particular forms of weapon that are unique to them. The first is the wing spur, a wicked hook that is worn in pairs on the edge of the wings. This makes their wing buffets deal +2 damage. The second is the tail mace, a sort of metal tail glove with sharp spikes, worn on the tip of the tail. This makes the tail slap deal +4 damage. These items can be enchanted, of course. Dragons otherwise have little use for magic weapons.

The holy symbols wielded by dragon-priests come in two types. First, many wear ornate jewelery around the neck bearing the symbol. Second, a more permanent symbol can be gained by carving the symbol into one or more scales. Both can be used as a focus for divine magic, and many dragons feel the carved scales show greater devotion. Most other magical tools - weapons, cloaks, robes, etc. - are more often found in the hands of demihuman vassals, as dragons have little use for them. However, dragons have developed magical items suitable for their own use, primarily crafted either by dragon-mages or vassal mages. Potions, certainly, are extremely common, and most dominates have access to many at any given time. However, potions of dragon control are very, very illegal in the Io's Blood, and by Council decree, mere possession of such power by a non-dragon is grounds for execution. For a dragon, there is also punishment, but usually not death. As a side note, you remember how I said a while ago that the orb of Io takes a lot of power to activate? Specifically, it costs six wizard spell slots or their equivalent. Those are just gone for the day. Poof. Once active, the orbs pick up any voices within 20 feet, for two rounds, plus one round per extra spell slot spent by the activator.



Now we get a chapter on how to run campaigns with all this material. Players should, in a dragon campaign, either do a dragon and kindred or a half-dragon. They should pick a clan, and with the GM's approval can make up whatever details they like about that clan. To make life simple for everyone, the first 25 years of life should be spent as wards of the Council, and book three has some useful starting adventures to do that with, but from there you can develop things as you like - just wandering and fighting poo poo, or getting involved in epic-scale events, or politics, or seeking personal power. Whatever, dragons can do all that poo poo. The book explicitly does not recommend, however, mixing dragon PCs with other campaign settings. Dragons are, it says, too powerful and disruptive to be integrated easily...and dragons advance too slowly, taking years to gain one level while normal adventurers could get to the upper levels in that time. Half-dragons, however, are closer to traditional PCs and might be able to integrate well. Their powers are useful, but not overwhemling compared to normal demihumans. If you want to do a guest shot for one adventure with a dragon, maybe that'd work, but not for any real length of time, it says. The book also says to calibrate how much XP you give to how many adventures you want to run per age category - so each adventure should give maybe 15-25 percent of what a mdsized dragon PC needs to level up. This is decent advice, except of course for the part where different dragon classes have wildly differing XP requirements.

Now we get the different kits that dragons can use. Dragons are required to pick a kit - dragon, dragon-mage, dragon-priest or dragon-psionicist. That said, you can pretty cromulently run a game where everyone has the dragon kit. The dragon kit, after all, is basically the standard issue dragon. Anyone can use it, and it's basically a general-issue 'how to do dragons' kit. On top of the normal dragon racial bonuses, a dragon PC begins the game with one item in its bonded hoard (you know, the original egg lump). However, to reach every 3rd level, it must have at least 200 XP worth of magic items per current age catefory in its hoard. Silver and gold dragons may instead substitute art objects worth 500 gp per age category. They must select kindredbond proficiency by 4th level.

A dragon-mage learns how to perform arcane spellcasting rather than develop their own innate spells. In the time between hatching and reaching 1st level, they receive a spellbook and training from another dragon-mage. The spellbook of a 1st level dragon-mage contains read magic, detect magic and three 1st level spells selected by the GM, which should include one attack spell and one defensive spell. However, the dragon-mage no longer receives any innate spellcasting whatsoever, instead gaining spell slots as it levels up. At 1st level, that'd be a single 1st level spell slot. Dragon-mages must have Int and Dex of at least 13. They receive one fewer combat proficiency than a normal dragon of their type, but receive wizard spellcraft as a bonus noncombat proficiency at 1st level. They must take reading/writing proficiency at 1st level and kindredbond at 4th. On top of the egg-lump item that normal dragons receive, they get their spellbook and collection of spell components. Starting at adult age, they can create magic items as other mages can. However, to level up, at every age category they must add one o more magic items to their hoard, worth at least 300 XP per current age category.

A dragon-priest dedicates themselves to one of the draconic gods and serves a role...similar to a cleric, except without the religious structure around it. They are essentially a traveling church all in themselves, bringing the words and visions of the gods to other dragons. Between hatching and first level, they receive visions from their chosen god, and starting at first level they gain spells as if they were a cleric, losing all access to their innate spellcasting. Dragon-priests must have Wis and Dex of 13 or better. They begin play with one fewer combat proficiency than their type normally gets, but get priest spellcraft as a bonus noncombat proficiency. They must take religion proficiency at 1st level and kindredbond by 4th. At 1st level, they receive or create a holy symbol for their deity, on top of the egg-lump item they have as a hoard. They also get an additional noncombat proficiency slot at 1st level, and starting at adult age may make magic items as a cleric can. However, to level up, every second age category, they must add one or more clerical magic items to their hoard, worth at least 200 XP per current age category, and at least half that total must be in clerical scrolls.

A dragon-psionicist must be a gem dragon, as only the gem dragons get psionic powers. Further, their alignment must be non-chaotic, and they must have Con of at least 11, Int of at least 12 and Wis of at least 15. (Note: Crystal and Topaz dragons can still join the class, but must shift their alignment to Neutral.) Dragon-psionicists get access to their psionic powers at 1st level, at the cost of losing their innate spellcasting and psionic abilities. They also receive one less combat proficiency than normal for their type. They receive the psioncraft noncombat proficiency free at 1st level, and must take kindredbond proficiency by 4th level. Like everyone else, they get their egg-item. They gain PSPs at each level equal to 10% of the normal total listed for their dragon type in the Monster Manual or equivalent listing, but are not restricted to the sciences, disciplines and devotions of their type. To reach every 4th level, they must have in their hoard at least 200 XP in scrolls per age category, and one or more 'living' ioun stones of different types, the amount going up each time.

Next time: Dragon riders and half-dragon kits.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

To witness titanic events is always dangerous, usually painful, and often fatal.





Mors Rattus posted:

Next time: Dragon riders and half-dragon kits.
But you already did the Dragon Wife chapter!

Alien Rope Burn
Dec 4, 2004

I wanna be a saikyo HERO!




Rifts World Book 10: Juicer Uprising, Part 6: "Highly individualistic and driven, she saw no moral dilemma in the creation of beings who might eventually need to hunt down and kill others of her kind."

Techno-Wizard Juicers

Yep, we've got more. These are Juicer treatments that involve magic, though not necessarily techno-wizardry. In fact, I'm not sure any of them technically involve techno-wizardry.


The fact that he can use a dragon head as a pauldron means he murdered a baby.

Dragon Juicer
a.k.a. the Blood Drinker


Once, when a group of adventurers slew a dragon, a techno-wizard with them named Regius decided to extract what he could of the dragon's blood for experiments. He tried drinking it, and it almost killed him! Well, he survived to experiment more with it, and discovered that if you mixed it with Juicer chemicals, you could give people supernatural powers. However, the treatment had the slight drawback: the person needed regular infusions of dragon blood. With the help of a dragon who gave blood donations, they opened a chop-shop (that's Riftsese for a human augmentation clinic) in Kingsdale that could create Dragon Juicers. Members of Federation of Magic made a deal with Regius for exclusive rights to the process, but what could they plan with it? Well, presumably a group of dragon blood-enhanced murderers, it doesn't seem like that much of a puzzle, book. :ssh:


"Have you considered saying 'please'?!"

They get to be modest mega-damage creatures with supernatural strength, but are somewhat slower and less agile than normal Juicers. However, they get nightvision, can see invisible stuff, enhanced smell, and healing. However, the actual process to become one is crazy expensive (about half a million to a million credits), and they need to infuse themselves with fresh dragon blood in an alchemical process every six months - without it, they get penalties and die in six months if they don't get more. They have a normal Juicer lifespan, but getting an ancient dragon's blood can extend their lifespan by around another 20 months, whatever "ancient" means. Also, they have periodic dreams and nightmares involving dragons. After two years, they automatically go insane (no save vs. insanity, no sir) and have to roll on an insanity table of dragon-based psychoses. One, "Dragon vampire!", is actually useful since it lets you consume dragon blood directly without the need for the infusion process, and automatically adds 1d6 months to your life! I mean, sure, you're probably a genocidal maniac, but that seems part and parcel with being a dragon juicer in the first place.

For the amount of drawbacks you take - short lifespan, having to hunt creatures roughly ten times as powerful as you, insanity - it's oddly not that overwhelming. I mean, in a game where you couldn't just play a dragon, I guess it'd be hot poo poo, but this is a game where you can just play a dragon. So playing a half-assed dragon wannabe with a bunch of drawbacks is less appealing, even if it's thematically fairly rad until you realize you're just straight-up slaughtering sentient beings for a high.


"I mostly just pose for heavy metal albums, actually."

Murder Wraith
Undead Juicer - NPC Villain


Yep, here's a monster right the middle of the class section. Palladium, always keeping you on your toes with a strategic lack of organization! So, this is a necromantic creation created using a dying Juicer, and was invented by worshippers of Death known as the Grim Reapers. By the way, that's the Horseman of Death in Rifts World Book 4: Africa, not the abstract concept. So, to become a murder wraith, you have to be a Juicer that volunteers to commit a number of sacrifical rituals to prepare themselves during the "Last Call" period. Then a final ceremony is performed when you die, and now you're an immortal, evil soul vampire... with all of the benefits of being a Juicer. However, the sun burns you and you have to consume life-force to survive, as expected.

This works on any Juicer type save for the "techno-wizard" Juicers or Psycho-Stalkers. They lose any psychic powers they had (tough luck, Delphi Juicers), get mild penalties in sunlight, are bound to serve their creator, and reduce their mental attributes and beauty. However, their strength is boosted and becomes supernatural, they're invulnerable to any attacks that don't involve magic or a silver weapon, regenerate, and drain lifeforce. Survivors of a life drain attempt may be driven insane, because this game just doesn't pass up a chance to give PCs mental issues! Overall they're pretty drat powerful, mainly on account of their broad invulnerability, but are directly prohibited as a PC type.


Because we all know attacks are only aimed at the naughty bits.

Splugorth Juicers
By C.J. Carella & Kevin Siembieda


So, the Atlanteans were impressed enough by Juicer technology to adopt it - presumably because the limited lifespan is not something they particularly care about, given they're usually inflicting the process on slaves. They have access to the normal Juicer, as well as the Titan and Hyperion treatments, and lastly are set to develop Mega-Juicers in the near future. However, they've also created a special "Maxi-Inducer" that replicates the Juicer harness through Bio-Wizardry, creating a...

Maxi-Killer - Bio-Wizard Juicer
Inspired by Designs by Vince Martin


Yeah. This book nearly hits peak nineties with a class named the "Maxi-Killer". Though it's not quite as nineties as the Null Psyborg (from Rifts Sourcebook Three: Mindwerks), it's probably in the top three. Because it's a killer to the maxi.

So, these are usually humans, ogres, or elves raised as warrior-slaves since a young age, and only the most maxi warrior-slaves are gifted with a Maxi-Inducer, making them into Maxi-Killers. Sometimes, though, sufficiently maxi kydians (ogre-like guys from Atlantis) and kittani (Planet of the Apes + mecha + Atlantis) can volunteer to become Maxi-Killers. Though some have escaped Atlantean slavery, the Maxi-Inducer can't be removed without killing them.

So, they're similar to Dragon Juicers that they're slightly slower Juicers with mega-damage and supernatural-strength, but also get much improved regeneration. They have grafted bio-armor which mainly seems to only cover their censorable portions yet provides full protection, but has the bizarre drawback of feeding off the user to regenerate. So if you're too injured, it might literally eat you to death. Ooops. Their lifespan uses a different formula in that it's 1/20th whatever the average lifespan is, which for humans is 4-5 years. Also, they have a 40% chance of going insane... because... reasons? Generally they become obsessed with danger or fighting, or develop some Atlantean-related phobia.

The races that can get this treatment are: true atlanteans, kittani, kydians, wolfen, elves, dwarves, simvan, hawrk-whatevers, high lords, and human-level D-bees. It says that supernatural beings cannot take this treatment even though it explicitly said gargoyles and brodkil could earlier. Which is true? Well, it's up to the reader to interpret which side of the bad editing was a mistake. It's part of the Palladium mystique!

also they can grow lovely arm blades like in the art, i mean the blades are rad, they just hardly do any damage

Next: Let's just get the job done.

Zereth
Jul 8, 2003




Mors Rattus posted:

Io really only cares about one thing, and that is 'dragons should all get along and not murder each other constantly.'
But not enough to actually stick around and make sure it happens. "Get along, guys! Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm going to gently caress off and not actually check if you're doing so for a long time."

Halloween Jack
Sep 11, 2003

Let your word be "Yes, Yes" or "No, No"; anything more than this comes from the evil one.




I love how much mileage Rifts got out of "Combine X with Y." Undead Juicers. Dragon Crazies. Psi-stalker bears. My only complaint is that they leaned way, way, way too much on animal hybrids because that's so easy. (If you use all the available charts to make a Nightbane, you will make some kind of warped TMNT character 90% of the time.)

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

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Council of Wyrms: The Kit You Can't Actually Use

First we get a list of acceptable demihuman kits, with the note that any kindred must take kindredbond proficiency. The list includes the Complete Book of Dwarves, the Complete Bard's Handbook, the Complete Book of Elves and the Complete Book of Gnomes and Halflings. Well, presumably the gnome half, as there aren't any halflings in Council of Wyrms. We do, however, get a new kit: Dragon Rider. Any demihuman fighter can become a dragon rider, and so can a multiclass fighter with Str 14+ and Wis 15+. Dragon riders must take proficiency in: longsword or shortsword, lance, and a missile weapon of some kind. They get the aerial riding proficiency free, however, with dragon specialization. They are required to take kindredbond proficiency and survival proficiency in their dragon master's favored terrain. Dragon riders cannot use shields, but get a free saddle for their dragon master. Why would you be a dragon rider? Well, when a dragon rider is mounted on their master, both dragon and rider get a +1 AC bonus (which, remember, makes your AC go down, not up, because down is better) and +1 to attack rolls. Also, both are considered to have 360-degree vision in the air. However, when fighting seperately, both dragon and rider get -1 to all attack rolls. Also, they get (4d4)*10 gp.

So in practice, you take the kit to get -1 to attack rolls, because the game specifically says you're never really going to be playing dragon and kindred at the same time.

Half-dragons are allowed to take any kit their demihuman half would be able to, except dragon rider, and a few from the Complete Book of Humanoids are also namedropped. There's also two new kits specifically for half-dragons. First, the Exile. Any half-dragon can be an exile, but most are thieves and most are either neutral or chaotic. Exiles get survivial proficiency free, and receive an extra nonweapon proficiency slot at chargen. Those with thieving skills get an extra 15 points to spread among them. However, they get a -3 reaction penalty with all NPCs, because everyone hates half-dragons and especially exiles. They also only get 3d6 gp to start rather than the normal amount.

The other half-dragon kit is the Ward, a half-dragon with a draconic patron. Any half-dragon can be a ward. They get Etiquette proficiency free, and about once a year, they will receive aid when they most need it. Plus, they get (5d6)*10 gp to start! All for the low, low cost of a -1 reaction penalty with all NPCs.

And, of course, there is a human kit: Dragon Slayer. Dragon slayers are human warriors that worship Io but consider all dragons to be imperfect copies of the true dragon god. To become a dragon slayer, you need Str 14+, Int 10+ and Con 12+. Dragon slayers favor weapons that are large and do heavy damage, such as long swords, awl pikes, bardiches, glaive-guisarmes, spetums, bastard swords, two-handed swords and tridents. I typed that out just for the excuse to type 'glaive-guisarme.' Dragon slayers get dragon lore proficiency and tracking (dragon) proficiency for free, along with the ability to speak one of the three dragon family languages. They cannot use any armor except the special dragon slayer armor they get. They get that army free, however, and at 4th level, it develops magical abilities due to a longstanding pact with Io. When facing dragons, the armor becomes plate mail +1, and once per level, the dragon slayer may attempt a quest to increase the bonus by 1, to a max of +5. Dragon slayers also usually try to get ahold of useful magic weapons for dragon fighting, such as dragon slayer swords +2. Dragon slayers begin play with (5d4)*10 gp, but are required to spend some of it on the suit of armor that will be their unique, special armor. They can never use any other armor than that one, remember.

On top of this, dragon slayers get a number of benefits inherently. They are immune to dragon fear entirely. They get +2 to attack rolls against all dragons, and +4 against the dragon type they hate most. They get a damage bonus equal to their level against dragons. When they are attacked with breath weapons, they save for no damage and even on failure only take half. A successful save also negates any special effects of the breath. They grant these abilities to their mount, as well, except the damage bonus, and their mount is always either a powerful warhorse or a flying mount of some kind.

Further, at 1st, 4th and 7th levels, they get to pick one of three attack powers. First, they can learn a wing attack, allowing them to target a wing at a -3 penalty to ground the target dragon for 1 round per point of damage dealt. Second, they can learn a breath stun, allowing them to target the gullet at a -4 penalty to lock off the breath for 1 round per damage dealt. Finally, there's the great blow, which allows the dragon slayer to choose to expend any number of HP and then make an attack at -4. If they hit, they deal extra damage equal to the amount of expended HP.

What's the cost? First, dragon slayers get a -4 reaction penalty with all dragons. Second, they use the Ranger/Paladin XP track instead of the Warrior one.

Next time: Adventures!

Night10194
Feb 13, 2012

We'll start,
like many good things,
with a bear.


Dragon Slayers can actually be really scary for a dragon PC, having actually run this setting some back in the day.

They're only really good at killing dragons, but at least they get the job done and present an actual threat. A group of these buggers is downright pesky for a giant lizard.

Dareon
Apr 6, 2009


Dragons: What the christ, Io. There's this human here claiming to be killing us in your name.
Io: Yeah, uhh, don't know anything about that, what a wackjob, eh? Psst, hey guy, here's some magic for your armor.

Night10194
Feb 13, 2012

We'll start,
like many good things,
with a bear.


The core problem for dragons is their tendency to be assholes. Io is the Ninefold Dragon. Therefore Io is the Ninefold rear end in a top hat.

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

FATAL & Friends
Walls of Text
#1 Builder
2014-2018



Remember, Io explicitly made the dragon slayers to be an enemy for dragons to unite against. He wants dragons to be terrified of them - and, well, they are, because these guys are pretty good at shutting dragons down by 2e standards. The 2e fighter has pretty good saves, is more than capable of interrupting casting, and the fact that with this kit they can force a dragon to remain grounded and not breath weaponing removes a dragon's two best weapons for keeping the fight outside the slayer's range.

e: against anyone else they're just fighters, but against dragons they punch well above their weight class.

Night10194
Feb 13, 2012

We'll start,
like many good things,
with a bear.


The 2e fighter should never be confused with the 3e fighter. The 2e fighter could actually do stuff.

Doresh
Jan 7, 2015


Pretty good foresight for them to be able to shut down wings.

Halloween Jack posted:

I love how much mileage Rifts got out of "Combine X with Y." Undead Juicers. Dragon Crazies. Psi-stalker bears. My only complaint is that they leaned way, way, way too much on animal hybrids because that's so easy. (If you use all the available charts to make a Nightbane, you will make some kind of warped TMNT character 90% of the time.)

Class-based systems without class change rules (aside from like that Juicer stuff) make for easy class bloat.

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slap me and kiss me
Apr 1, 2008

You best protect ya neck


Night10194 posted:

The 2e fighter should never be confused with the 3e fighter. The 2e fighter could actually do stuff.

Darts every day. All day long.

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