Tuesday, September 15, 2020

Eludecia, the Succubus Paladin for Basic-era games

ePic Character Generator

Back in the 3.5 days there was this contest, the D&D Creature Competition. It was a fun little romp of pitting monster vs. monster in a bracket-style competition where people voted.  There were such mainstays as the Tarrasque, Meepo the Kobold, and a gelatinous cube, and some odd ones like a half gold dragon/half pixie, a warforged ninja, and Half-Amethyst Dragon/Iridescent Naga.  But the strangest one, and the one that eventually won was Eludecia, the Succubus Paladin.

Eludecia got a featured write-up and even an adventure centered around her, Legend of the Silver Skeleton.  I always thought the character was a really interesting one.  She is seeking redemption at a level that honestly staggers the mind. She has suffered (imprisoned inside a gelatinous cube to burn the entire time) and yet she is still trying to be better. She is a character I could see working quite well in D&D 5th edition.  But what about Basic-era D&D?  

Basic D&D: B/X or BECMI?

Lately, I have been playing an unholy hybrid of D&D B/X and BECMI and OSR.  It might not work for others, but for me it has been fantastic.

So I try to aim at a 1st to 14th level range, this allows me not to have to choose between B/X and BECMI level play.  I add in BECMI details when things get higher in level.  Thankfully for me, there are plenty of examples of Eludecia at levels 8th, 14th, and 18th level.  Once you figure her 6HD of Succubus this makes her 2nd, 8th, and 12th level Paladin.  That keeps her within the bounds of my B/X sweet spot.

In this version of Eludecia has been roaming the multiverse, seeking quests not to prove her worthiness, but to test it.  She has a shape-change ability, but she keeps her succubus features in the open so that everyone knows what she is.  To her, it is far more important to be truthful in her dealings with all mortals than to pass herself off as human.  She carries a holy sword, even though its touch hurts her. 

For her Basic build, I am going to start with the Succubus as presented in Eldritch Wizardry. Then I am going to add the Paladin class on top of that.  For the Paladin, there are a lot of choices including the BECMI Paladin in the Companion Rules or the OSE Paladin.  I think in the end I'll use the OSE Paladin and add in the BECMI material as needed.

The Eldritch Wizardry Succubus has the following features.

Succubi prefer to act alone and Eludecia is no different. In her case though it is because she knows her journey is a solo one. Only she can earn her redemption. Plus she knows she is a target by the forces of Evil and sometimes Good alike. She does not wish to put others in harm. She still has all her succubus powers; causing darkness, drain life, become ethereal, charm person, ESP, clairaudience, shape change, and gate.  She considers these powers to be tainted and will never use them, even to save her own life.  Her Gate ability will not work even if she tried, no demon will answer her summons. She does know this. She can't control her 70% magic resistance.

Her base AC is 9, movement is 40 (120), and 60 (180) flight. Her base HD is 6.  

I think for this build I want her a little higher level than her 3.5 days, so here she is now a 14th level Paladin. With her base 6HD this makes her a 20HD/level NPC.

Her base 3.5 stats are a little bit outside the realms of Basic D&D (unless I use some Companion or Immortal Rules).  
Str 18, Dex 14, Con 14, Int 16, Wis 14, Cha 30

I'll re-scale these to Basic levels.

I also opted to make her blonde as a nod to Sheila Mullen the supposed "model" for the succubus in the AD&D Monster Manual. 

Eludecia, the Succubus Paladin

14th level Paladin, Lawful (Lawful Good)

Strength: 18 (+3)
Intelligence: 16 (+2 languages)
Wisdom: 14 (+1 on magic-based saves)
Dexterity: 14 (+1)
Constitution: 14 (+1)
Charisma: 20 (likely it is a lot more) (+4)

Saving throws: D 2, W 3, P 4, B 3, S 6.  MR 70%

AC: 0 [19]
HP: 93 (6d8+6, 9d8+9,+10)
THAC0: 10 [+9]

Powers, Succubus: +2 weapons needed to hit, 70% magic resistance (these are powers she can't control)

Powers, Paladin: Divine Spells, Lay on Hands, Undead Turning

Equipment: Plate Armor +2, holy sword +3, holy symbol, normal shield


1st level: Cure Light Wounds, Detect Evil, Protection from Evil

2nd level: Bless, Hold Person

3rd level: Striking

How I Would Use Her

There is so much that could be done with this character. I guess that is why 15 years after she appeared I still find reasons to pull her out for things.

I am getting near the end of my HUGE Order of the Platinum Dragon campaign (more on that later) and presently the characters are stuck in the Abyss.  I think it is entirely possible that they might find her silver bones stuck in the Gelatinous Cube. The PCs could free her and gain an ally.  AND since I now have Basic-era stats for her, I can see her making an appearance in my new campaign, War of the Witch Queens.

Anyone ever use her in your own games?


freddyboomboom said...

I have not used her, but during the AD&D Second Edition time frame (early 1990's for me) I had a Lich Paladin. He was a freshly minted Paladin, who pissed off the wrong high level evil magic user, who turned him into a Lich. He didn't realize it until his flesh started rotting off, and his Lay on Hands didn't really work the way he expected... He was a ton of fun to play.

mythusmage said...

I like your thinking, and I think I could adapt her to Mythus using Gary guidelines for conversion. I can see a former agent of the Accursed out to redeem herself, thanks for giving me the opportunity.

Timothy S. Brannan said...

@freddyboomboom, I am sure it did! did you Paladin ever come back to life?

@mythusmage, ah Mythus. I want so much to like that game. Never really clicked with me. If you make the conversion I would love to see it.

mythusmage said...

Gary could come on a bit strong for some people, just recently I learned that according to some people the first edition of AD&D was written at the college level.

Whereto the conversion: Guess I've got some reading to do.:)

Rowcar Gellert said...

Thank you! You just gave me the exact NPC I need for my campaign! :-)

Rowcar Gellert said...

Thank you! You just gave me the exact NPC I need for my campaign! :-)

Redpilled and Bloodstoned said...

Eludecia just might be my favourite D&D NPC; I voted for her back in the competition on the WotC boards! I could see myself playing such a character under a patient DM....

As I recall, the Succubus Paladin only had qualms with using her demon powers if they were harmful to others. *Darkness* or *Ethereal Jaunt* could be used for the better part of valour, for instance, and *ESP* or even *Charm* could be used harmlessly, though that might stretch Lawful Good to the breaking point.... ;)

In 3rd Edition Eludecia's race/class combo was called abusive as Succubi have (in proportion to HD) the best Charisma in the game (seriously; Aphrodite herself has the Charisma of an extremely-advanced Succubus who rolled a 16 as her starting Cha). That would push her saves through the roof thanks to Divine Grace, so Wizards gave us a lower-level version of her who hadn't gotten that Level 3 Paladin feature yet.

Finally, the original competition described her as having a Vrock Bonded Mount, but that was dropped in the final version. Evidently having TWO extreme one-in-a-million exceptions was too much even for the competition!