Yesterday I wrote about Koliada the Winter Witch for D&D 5th Edition. While I really enjoyed how she worked out I could not help but think how she might fare under the 36 levels of the Basic-era D&D BECMI.
I felt from the start of D&D 4 that is shared certain characteristics with BECMI. Both go to really high levels (30 for 4e and 36 for BECMI) and both have immortality as a possible option for characters at their highest levels.
Early on, and I am not sure if I posted this or not. I remarked on how 4e characters start out fairly powerful. I said, at the time, that really a 1st level 4e character is closer in power to a 5th or 6th level classic character. I have been wanting to put that idea to use (and I'll talk about this next month in fact), but I thought I would give it a go here first.
In D&D4 Koliada is a 26th level character. Let's work under the assumption that the translation for D&D4 to BECMI is to add four levels. So Koliada would be a 30th level Basic/BECMI D&D character. But what kind?
In 4e she is called a "Solo Skirmisher". When I translated her to D&D5 I opted for a Warlock with the Magic Initiate feat to give her some Sorcerer spells too. BECMI is not as flexible in terms of class customization. Magic-User is a choice. But, and this should be no surprise, I am opting for Witch as her character class.
My 5e conversion made it pretty obvious that she is a Fey Pact. In my Witch book this would translate as a Faerie Tradition. Though I think there is now ample evidence to me that there must be something like a Winter Witch Tradition too. Not ready to debut that just yet though.
Also, in complete dumb luck, a 30th level witch in my Basic Witch book has the level title of "Winter Court Witch". Witch it is then!
Now I Would have LOVED to convert this for Astonishing Swordsmen & Sorcerers of Hyperborea. After all what can be more Hyperborean than an evil winter witch? But the level caps would not give me the conversion I wanted. Sure I could do a 13th level Koliada, but that would not give me a decent basis of comparison. So instead I am going with the D&D Rules Cyclopedia.
I also went to the 4e book, Player's Option: Heroes of the Feywild for ideas on their witches and on the Feywild.
30th level Witch (Faerie Tradition)
Death Ray/Poison 3
Magic Wands 4
Paralysis, Polymorph 3
Dragon Breath 6
Rods, Staffs, Spells 5
Hit Points: 80
(leather armor +4, Ring of Protection +3, Dex 20 -4)
(I know, THAC0 was not used in Basic D&D. You know what this means)
(like a frozen sprite. From Dungeon 162)
Lesser: Speak to Animals (not plants as well)
Minor: Fae Shape
Major: Shape Change
Cantrips (6): Alarm Ward, Chill, Daze, Ghost Sound, Inflict Minor Wounds, Spark
1st (9+3): Bewitch I, Black Fire, Cause Fear, Charm Person, Chill Touch, Endure Elements, Fey Sight, Ghostly Slashing, Glamour, Light/Darkness, Minor Fighting Prowess, Silver Tongue
2nd (8+3): Bewitch II, Defoliate, Discord, Enthrall, Freezing Gaze, Ghost Touch, Hold Person, Invisibility, Phantasmal Spirit, Spell Missile, Whispering Wind
3rd (8+2): Arctic Grasp, Bestow Curse, Bewitch III, Dispel Magic, Feral Spirit, Improved Faerie Fire, Lifeblood, Spirit of Hyperborea (Spirit of Avalon), Toad Mind, Witch Wail
4th (7+2): Analyze Magic, Bewitch IV, Charm Monster, Elemental Armor (Ice), Fluid Mastery, Intangible Cloak of Shadows, Phantom Lacerations, Spiritual Dagger, Withering Touch
5th (7): Bewitch V, Blade Dance, Death Curse, Dreadful Bloodletting, Hold Monster, Nightmare, Waves of Fatigue
6th (7): Bewitch VI, Death Blade, Evaporate Fluids, Eye Bite, Mass Agony, Mislead, True Seeing
7th (6): Bewitch VII, Death Aura, Greater Arcane Eye, Greater Blindness, Insanity, Wave of Mutilation
8th (6): Bewitch VIII, Destroy Life, Greater Mislead, Mystic Barrier, Wail of the Banshee, Imprisonment (Ritual)
Note: Koliada's spells will manifest with some wintery, cold, or icy aspect. So Black Fire is cold, Defoliate will cause a freezing wind to blow and kill plants, Elemental Armor will be ice and so on.
She has a lot more spells here than either the 5e or 4e version. But both 4e and 5e have a number of "at will" powers or other powers/spells that can be regained. BECMI characters have to wait till the next day for their spells to return. So she also has some spells that have similar effects to other spells.
I also think I need a Winter Witch tradition and some more cold based spells.
Books used in the conversion process.