Showing posts with label Wasted Lands. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Wasted Lands. Show all posts

Monday, February 5, 2024

Monstrous Monday: Greater Astral Spiders

 For the next few weeks, I will be posting monsters for use in the various "Powered by O.G.R.E.S." games I work on and use. These are NIGHT SHIFT, Wasted Lands, and the upcoming Thirteen Parsecs. I would also like to use this space to feature some new artists and their work. 

Up first is a favorite around here. This one is bigger.

Astral Spider by John Kozlowski
Astral Spider by John Kozlowski

Astral Spider, Greater

No. Appearing: 1
AC: 4
Move: 40 ft and Special (Astral)
ViD: 8
Special: Wits and toughness drain. 1 point/day each
XP VALUE: 1,600

Greater Astral Spiders are larger and more terrifying versions of the smaller Astral Spiders. Like their smaller cousins, they are not true spiders but creatures of the deeper dark.  These creatures are about three feet high and six feet long when manifesting in the material world. Since they are not true spiders but creatures of fear from the Deeper Dark, they are not limited to just 8 legs.

As their name suggests, these creatures are native to the astral plane, but they are attracted to people with psychic or empathic abilities.  These creatures drain Wits (wisdom) and Toughness (constitution). Like the smaller varieties, these creatures are invisible. They find targets that have high levels of empathy (psychics, witches, sorcerers) and attach themselves to feed. They do not have a physical attack in terms of Vitality damage.

An astrally projected or sensitive witch can see these creatures, either on themselves or others. A Dismissal spell can remove the spider, but they can only be attacked in the Astral Plane. A Dimensional Anchor used against it can prevent it from latching back onto a victim.  A Lesser Restoration and one week of bed rest for each day of ability loss will cure the victim. Without magic, the recovery period is one week per point of Wits and Toughness lost each. Thus, a minimum of two weeks.

Use in the Wasted Lands

During the Dreaming Age the Astral Spiders were far more common and could manifest in the Material World more easily. There is conjecture on their relationship to the other denizens of the Deeper Dark, but few are willing to study them up close.  These creatures can sometimes be summoned by dark-aligned Sorcerers, but with no real means of controlling them, they can be the victim just as often.

Use in NIGHT SHIFT

These creatures cause much fear in the communities of psychics and witches. There is a lot of talk on various online groups on how to best deal with them, but there is little to no consensus.

Astral Spiders online

Use in Thirteen Parsecs

As in the Dreaming Age, Astral Spiders are able to manifest in the Material World. What is worse that due to their ability to travel via the Astral, attacking starships on the Solar Frontier is as easy to them as attacking a sleeping person back on Earth.  The closer a planet is to the Solar Frontier, the more likely an attack by an Astral Spider will become. 


Wednesday, January 31, 2024

Character Creation Challenge: Aradia for Wasted Lands

 All month long, I have been giving you D&D characters of various editions I have converted over to the O.G.R.E.S.-powered Wasted Lands. Today, I am really putting my money where my mouth is and creating a new Witch Queen character native to the Wasted Lands' Dreaming Age. 

So I have presented several Witch Queens for my War of the Witch Queens campaign. The conceit is that every D&D-like world has a Witch Queen. I have presented several here and even converted a couple to Wasted Lands. But today's Queen began in the Wasted Lands and rose to power here. Will she be remembered later on? Obtain some level of divinity? Likely. The Witch Queen I am giving you today is Aradia, Queen of the Witches.

Aradia, Queen of Witches

Aradia is an interesting figure. "Aradia, or the Gospel of the Witches," was a book by American folklorist Charles Godfrey Leland. It makes the claim that Aradia was a historical figure from pagan Tuscany.  It is a similar idea that Margaret Murray's "The Witch-cult in Western Europe" would later adapt and adopt.

As fun as these ideas are, they don't hold up to the most basic academic scrutiny. Still, I like using them in my games, especially NIGHT SHIFT.  

Aradia is also great for Wasted Lands. 

Aradia, Queen of Witches

Aradia is described as the Daughter of the Roman Diana, who has many differences from her Greek counterpart, Artemis. Her father is Lucifer, who is described as a "Sun God" and is either Diana's son or brother. She seduces him and gives birth to their daughter, Aradia. In Leland's book, it is Diana, who is the Queen of Witches, and Aradia, who is akin to a witch Messiah. 

If we return to the Wasted Lands, Diana can be a Warrior/Sorceress from Minoa, and Lucifer would be a Warrior from Ashurii. Aradia learned her magic from mystics in Athenea and learned masters from Atlantis and Mu. She learned folk magic and the secret languages of plants and trees. She has traveled the world, learning magical practices. Her purpose is/was to spread beneficial magic, un-tainted by the Old Ones, to humanity. 

Aradia, then in the Wasted Lands, is the source of Witchcraft. 

Aradia, Queen of Witches
Aradia, Queen of Witches

Class: Sorceress (Witch)
Level: 20
Species: Human
Alignment: Twilight Good
Background: Sorcerous

Abilities
Strength: 10 (+0) 
Agility: 13 (+1) 
Toughness: 14 (+1) 
Intelligence: 17 (+2) N
Wits: 18 (+3) N 
Persona: 20 (+4) A

Fate Points: 1d12
Defense Value: 4
Vitality: 114
Degeneracy: 0
Corruption: 0

Check Bonus (A/N/D): +8/+3/+2
Melee Bonus: +2 (base) 
Ranged Bonus: +2 (base)
Spell Attack: +5
Saves: +7 to Spells and Magical effects (Sorcerer), +2 to Wits saves (Sorcerous Background)

Sorcerous Background
Enhanced Sorcery +10%, Mystical Senses, Bonus Arcane Power: Precognition

Sorceress Abilities
Arcana, Arcane Powers (7): Empathy, Enhanced Senses, Beguile, Detect Thoughts, Teleknesis, Telepathic Transmission, Astral Projection

Sorceress Spells
First Level: Armor of Earth, Bless, Command, Glamour, Predict Weather, Sleep
Second Level: Animal Summoning, Conjure Flame, Invisibility, Lesser Renewal, Subtle Influence
Third Level: Clairvoyance, Cure Disease, Curse, Fly, Speaking Corpse
Fourth Level: Befuddlement, Conjure Fire, Plant Speech, Metamorphosis, Plant Speech
Fifth Level: Banishment, Cornucopia, Restore Life, Shadow Armor
Sixth Level: Dispel Evil, Evoke Weather, Invisible Servant, Reincarnation
Seventh Level: Ball of Sunshine, Call the Restless Soul, Wave of Mutilation, Widdershins Dance
Eighth Level: Mind Shield, Prophesy, Wail of the Banshee
Ninth Level: Breath of the Goddess, Feedback Barrier, Sleeping Village

Heroic/Divine Touchstones 
1st Level: Plus 10% to Spell Casting
2nd Level: Additional Spell: Damage Undead
3rd Level: Familiar: Raven
4th Level: Magical Recovery
5th Level: Grant Spellcasting
6th Level: Immunity to Spells/Magic
7th Level: Cult
*7th Level: Cease to Age
8th Level: Bestow Blessing
9th Level: Heal Corruption

Heroic (Divine) Archetype: Magic

Gear
Staff, Dagger

Aradia in the Wasted Lands

This is the start of Aradia she was the first mortal witch, and her actions are the beginnings of witchcraft in the world. She will be remembered after the Dreaming Age end, and the Age of Humans begin. Later, scholars will claim to know of her, but those memories are something deeper and much older.

Aradia in NIGHT SHIFT

This is the Aradia that Leland wrote about and the one Murry wished was true. She is still a force in the modern world, especially when it comes to witches, whom she sees as her progeny. 

Aradia in Thirteen Parsecs

Will Aradia make it beyond the Earth and out into the Solar Frontier? Who is to say, but the Sisters of the Aquarian Order would argue that she is still a force to be reckoned with in their lives.

Aradia in Dungeons & Dragons

In my OSR/BX/D&D games she would be a Classical Witch, but she would also be a Witch Queen Patron to various Warlocks. 

You can get the Wasted Lands RPG and the NIGHT SHIFT RPG at Elf Lair Games. Thirteen Parsecs is coming soon.

Character Creation Challenge

Tuesday, January 30, 2024

Character Creation Challenge: Magnus Ulslime for Wasted Lands

 Heroes are often measured by the bad guys they have to face. If that is the case then Johan Werper and his line are true heroes indeed because their long time foe is a semi-immortal necromancer of the darkest dye. And you have seen him before.

Magnus Ulslime character sheets

Magnus Ulslime had several origin points for me that all seemed to collide at once. First there was Len Lakofka's Death Master class I saw in Best of Dragon Vol. III, a reprint of his class from Dragon #76. There was Ulslime the Chaosar (terrible name) from Module CM2 Death's Ride. And finally what I *thought* Module X6 Quagmire was about. All of these mixed in the same vat I was building classes in; my Healer, Sun-Priest, Witch, and Necromancer.  I saw my Necromancer as the moral opposite of the Healer and the Sun Priest.  Eventually, I would go to get my Profane Necromancer and Death Pact Warlocks out into the world along with my Witch.

Much like Larina is my test character for anything witchy, Magnus is my test for any sort of necromancer. Though I do not have as many versions of him as I do her.  I have featured him, though, as Necromancer for Spellcraft & Swordplay and as a Death Pact Warlock. I have also done his adopted children Runu and Urnu for both Spellcraft and Swordplay and Wasted Lands in the past. 

Magnus Ulslime
Magnus Ulslime

Class: Necromancer
Level: 13
Species: Human
Alignment: Dark Evil
Background: Cult

Abilities
Strength: 10 (+0) 
Agility: 13 (+1) 
Toughness: 14 (+1) 
Intelligence: 19 (+3) N
Wits: 16 (+2) N
Persona: 19 (+3) Z

Fate Points: 1d10
Defense Value: 5
Vitality: 87
Degeneracy: 33
Corruption: 7

Check Bonus (A/N/D): +7/+4/+3
Melee Bonus: +2 (base)
Ranged Bonus: +2 (base)
Magical Attack: +2
Saves: +8 to Persona saves, -2 vs Corruption

Cult Powers
Commune with Deeper Dark (1/week), Familiar (small demon), Forbidden Knowledge 38%, Mystical Senses

Necromancer Abilities
Channel the Dead, See Dead people, Turn Undead, Protection from Dead x5, Summon the Dead, Vampiric Augmentation, Suggestion x2, Command, Vampiric Touch, Beguile Spirit

Arcane Powers
Detect Thoughts, Polymath (Sage Abilities: Level 1), Incubus (touchstone), Shadow Walk (touchstone)

Spells
First level: Black Flames, Night Vision, Glamour
Second level: Invoke Fear, Paralyze Poison

Heroic/Divine Touchstones 
1st Level: Arcane Power: Incubus (1d6)
2nd Level: Arcane Power: Shadow Walk
3rd Level: Class Level, Sorcerer 1
4th Level: Class Level, Sorcerer 2
5th Level: Class Level, Sorcerer 3
6th Level: Class Level, Sorcerer 4
7th Level: Character ceases to age

Heroic (Divine) Archetype: Death

Gear
Death staff

Magnus in the Wasted Lands

These are great stats and I am amazed with how flexible and customizable this game actually is. There is just so much going on here. It is also the first time in a character write-up I was able to really capture his childhood in a Death Cult. The only thing I did not do here is capture his early adulthood as a druid. Maybe a couple of levels of Theosophist would cover that.

Magnus in NIGHT SHIFT

If the Dark Druid can make it to the modern age, then Magnus could as well. I can see a cult trying to bring him back. I see it as sort of like a cheesy 80s movie where a bunch of teens play some record backward and summons Magnus, though I think to be true to his roots AND the 80s, he would have to be called "The Death Master."  Hmm. Maybe this is the missing piece of this 80s adventure I have been wanting to do.

Magnus in Thirteen Parsecs

I honestly have no idea if he will live this long. But maybe I will come up with something. The universe is a big and really weird place.  Though I will admit the name "Magnus" came to me while watching the Doctor Who serial "Talons of Weng-Chiang."  The bad guy in this one, Magnus Greel, was from the 51st Century. He even had a familiar of sorts, Mr. Sin.  I might have to name his quasit familiar Mr. Sin.

You can get the Wasted Lands RPG and the NIGHT SHIFT RPG at Elf Lair Games. Thirteen Parsecs is coming soon.

Character Creation Challenge

Monday, January 29, 2024

Character Creation Challenge: Brigid for Wasted Lands

"A Bhrigid, scar os mo chionn, do bhrat fionn dom anacal."

 Something a little different today, a little bit of Wasted Lands myth-making applied to D&D rather than just using Wasted Lands as a D&D substitute.

One "character" that has been a feature of many of my games (fantasy, horror, sci-fi) is that of Brigid. My version is based on the famous saint, St. Brigid of Kildare AND the goddess Brigid of Celtic myth. I figured with Imbolc (Feb 1) coming up, it is a good time to talk about her.

Brigit (of Kildare / "Cil Dara")

Who Is Brigit?

A simple question with a very complicated answer. In the mytho-historical tales of Ireland there are two Brigits. The Goddess and the Saint. Was the saint named for the goddess? Was the goddess named for the Saint thanks to a 2000+ plus oral tradition that mostly predates writing? In the years I have paid (casual) attention to the academic debates, I have seen them shift back and forth a little (or a lot, depending on the journal).  She is also related to the ancient British Goddess/figure Brigantia, who the Romans saw as aspects of the goddesses Minerva (Athena), Tyche/Fortuna, and Victoria (Nike). She is a complicated Goddess. 

This is fascinating but only tangentially related to my games, save for how my readings add to them. 

She is a Goddess, a Saint, and a figure in Celtic Pagan Witchcraft. So yeah, I am going to find a place for her in my games. Given her influence on me, I don't think it is a surprise that I have so many redheaded witches.

In my games, Brigit is more of a force than a character. I have talked about her in terms of Celtic Myth. The Witch Guardians for D&D 3.x and 4e. As a historical figure in my modern horror games. And as Protectors of Éire for my Ghosts of Albion games.

In my games where I like to play on the themes of the Rise and Fall of Paganism vs. the Coming of the Christian Faith, Brigit is my chance to "cheat a win."  In these games, Brigit is a pagan Goddess. She has a following of women pagan worshipers who are no longer druids but not yet witches. My version of Bodhmal is a great if not prime, example of this.  In these games/set-up Brigit tucks her fire-red hair under a nun's habit and continues on.  Her witches now hiding in plain sight.

I never worked out how that works for her, but with Wasted Lands I can give it a try!  Before there was the St. Brigit of Kildare, or there was Goddess Brigit, there was the woman Brigit. She was many things: warrior, philosopher, healer, and the spirit of her land. Because of her connection to Ireland, she is remembered by many in many different forms.

Brigit (of Kildare / "Cil Dara")
Brigit (of Kildare / "Cil Dara")

Class: Warrior / Theosophist / Spirit Rider
Level: 15 (5/5/5)
Species: Human
Alignment: Light Good
Background: Animistic

Abilities
Strength: 15 (+1) A
Agility: 12 (+1) 
Toughness: 17 (+2) 
Intelligence: 11 (+1) 
Wits: 16 (+2) N
Persona: 17 (+2) N

Fate Points: 1d12
Defense Value: 5
Vitality: 114
Degeneracy: 0
Corruption: 0

Check Bonus (A/N/D): +7/+4/+3
Melee Bonus: +5 (base) +1 (str) +2 (touchstones)
Ranged Bonus: +5 (base) +1 (touchstone)
Magical Attack: +2
Saves: +2 to all saves (warrior), +2 to Persona saves, but -2 on Magic away from Ireland (Animistic).

Animistic Powers
Mystical senses, Speak with Plants and Animals,  Animal Summoning 1 (spell)

Warrior Abilities
Combat Expertise, Improved Defence, Melee Combat, Master of Battle, Supernatural Attacks (melee and ranged), Spell Resistance, Tracking, Masters of Weapons, Extra Attacks (x2), Extra Damage

Theosophist Abilities
See Dead People, Turn Undead, Summon the Dead, Channel the Dead, Protection from Undead (2/day), Command, Death Knell (Banshee Wail), Suggestion (1/day)

Spirit Rider Abilities
Innate Magic (5), Arcane Power (2), Commune with Spirit, Limited Power (outside of Ireland), Magcial Battery, Add Wits bonus to Supernatural attacks

Arcane Powers
Empathy, Precognition

Spells
First level: Gout of Flame, Restore Vitality
Second level: Eternal Flame, Lesser Renewal
Third level: Concusive Blast (Fire)

Heroic/Divine Touchstones 
1st Level: First Level Spell: Black Flame
2nd Level: +1 to melee combat
3rd Level: Charm Power
4th Level: Favored Enemy: Undead
5th Level: +1 to all checks, attacks, and saves
6th Level: Immunity to Undead Attacks
7th Level: Character ceases to age

Heroic (Divine) Archetype: Craft, Fire, Warrior

Gear
Sword, Leather Armor

Brigit in the Wasted Lands

For these stats, I played up the aspects of her character that will become important in my games: her connection to fire and her hatred of the undead. This is the warrior aspect of her personality.  Her Animitic background (from Wasted Lands) and her levels in Spirit Rider (NIGHT SHIFT) play very well with each other. As long as she is in Ireland (however I choose to define that) she is powerful and can avoid corruption, outside she is less protected.

Brigit in NIGHT SHIFT

From NIGHT SHIFT I get her Theosophist class (Core Rules) and her Spirit Rider class (Night Companion). This works well for me since it also gives me more mechanics to represent her aspects.  Brigit is still active in the world of NIGHT SHIFT since she is the head of the Daughters of the Flame coven. A world-wide organization of witches dedicated to Brigit. 

Brigit in Thirteen Parsecs

Ah...now this one is fun. How does a Celtic Goddess find her way out into the Solar Frontier? I guess this is my answer to the infamous question, "Why does God need a Starship?"  In my Black Star games (soon to be converted wholesale over to Thirteen Parsecs), there is a ship in the Mystic line, the Imbolc Mage NX-3119. This ship is the sister to the Protector NX-3120. I have not talked much about that ship because I have been using it as an NPC ship. I have also been using it as my test-run ship for ship-to-ship combat rules. Brigit herself is not on this ship, but she has a vested interest in it. 

You can get the Wasted Lands RPG and the NIGHT SHIFT RPG at Elf Lair Games. Thirteen Parsecs is coming soon.

Character Creation Challenge

Sunday, January 28, 2024

Character Creation Challenge: "Retsam Elddir" for Wasted Lands

 This one is important to me.  

Yesterday, I briefly introduced you to a character I mentioned around here but finally gave him a proper introduction: Nigel "Death Blade" Delamort. If he sounded like the sort of character a 13-year-old makes while trying to sound edgy, then yes, you are 100% correct. But he is part of a quintet, five aspects of my personality on paper as it were (remember I was just introduced to psychology and I was eating it all up). Today's character is the last of that quintet.

Briefly, when looking at psychoanalytic theory (and please keep in mind I am reducing a hundred+ years worth of thought into the size of a bubble gum wrapper), a person's personality can broken up into two aspects according to Jung (Anima/Animus) or three according to Freud (Id/Ego/Super-ego). I have already introduced you all to my Animus (Phygora), Anima (Larina), Id (Nigel), and Super-Ego (Johan), so all I need now is my Ego-self.  

My ego is Johan Werper, aka Retsam Elddir.

Retsam Elddir / Scott Elders character sheets

Wait. That doesn't make any sense. Here is what I am talking about. 

Again, I ask you to come back with me to the years between 1983 and 1986. I was in High School and playing a ton of D&D...or, more to the point, AD&D. We really tried to draw a very solid line between the two. When I was the DM, it was B/X D&D, and our world was "The Known World," later to be called Mystara. When my friend Michael was DMing, it was AD&D, and the world was Greyhawk. We would merge them, and that world became something like the Mystoerth that I use today.

Around 85-86 we were both working making new character classes and trying them out. Mine were the Healer, the Sun-Priest, a variant on the Necromancer/Death Mage, and my most successful one, The Witch. Grenda was not sitting by. He had created, sort of as a joke, a super-powered class of psychic adepts that had to hide their powers since at that time we said psionics were considered unnatural in a world of magic. That class was the Riddle Master, named after the Patricia A. McKillip book, The Riddle-Master of Hed. As it happened, he really loved the class. So much so that he wanted me to try it out.  So I said fine, roll up my stats and I'll come over.  He did and the stats for my new Riddle Master were the exact same as the ones Johan I had. So we thought this was the Johan of Oerth and not the same as the Mystara one I was playing. We were both high from the Crisis on Infinite Earths, I had also been reading Job: A Comedy of Justice by Heinlein and The Coming of the Quantum Cats by Pohl. So we decided that this new Johan was a "Quantum Cat" or multiverse counterpart (the current en vogue term is Variant) of my first Johan. Much like Superman of Earth 1 vs. Superman of Earth 2 there was a generational age difference.

We decided that this new Riddle Master character had to use a different name to avoid confusion in our inevitable cross-overs.  I did the only logical thing. I spelled his name backwards, much to the chagrin of Grenda. Of course I stole the idea from him. He had characters named Adnerg and Htaed.

Thus began the adventuring life of Retsam Elddir. He crazy powerful psionic powers and still made dumb mistakes. Like when he stuck his hands into a Gelatinous Cube (he wore gloves after that forever to hide the scars), he was best friends with Larina, married Heather, and killed the ancient vampire Mal Havoc

Later on, Retsam, using the name Scott Elders, would show up in Ghosts of Albion, WitchCraft, and even feature in a Star Trek game as a guest, then as the main PC. The AD&D version was a blast to play with but I also enjoyed the WitchCraft version a lot. It was the WitchCraft version that I used in my Vacation in Vancouver campaign.

Retsam has a lot of things in common with both Johan (Super-Ego) and Phygora (Animus). Like both of those characters, he is an occult/arcane scholar. Like them both he is an expert in magic. In Larina's library, there are books with blue covers from Johan, black covers from Pygora, and red covers from Retsam.

Retsam Elddir / Scott Elders
Retsam Elddir / Scott Elders / Johan Werper

Class: Psychic / Scholar
Level: 20
Species: Human
Alignment: Light Neutral
Background: Scholar

Abilities
Strength: 15 (+2) 
Agility: 10 (+0) 
Toughness: 12 (+0) 
Intelligence: 15 (+1) N
Wits: 15 (+1) N
Persona: 19 (+3) A

Fate Points: 1d12
Defense Value: 5
Vitality: 120
Degeneracy: 0
Corruption: 0

Check Bonus (A/N/D): +8/+6/+2
Melee Bonus: +4 (base) +1 (touchstone) 
Ranged Bonus: +4 (base)
Psychic Attack: +7
Saves: +7 vs Persona (Psychic), +1 to all (touchstone)

Psychic Abilities
Psychic powers: 5, Supernatural attacks, Supernatural power: Astral Projection

Psychic Powers
Bio-feedback
Psychokinesis
ESP
Telepathy
Temporal Sense

Sage Abilities
Languages: 15, Lore 95%, Mesmerize others, suggestion, Renegade Skills: 3rd level, Spells 3/2/1

Stealth Skills
Open Locks: 30%
Bypass Traps: 25%
Sleight of Hand: 35%
Sneak: 30%

Spells
First level: Arcane Dart, Damage Undead, Mystical Senses
Second level: Lesser Renewal, Unlock
Third level: Concussive Blast

Heroic/Divine Touchstones 
1st Level: First Level Spell: Black Flame
2nd Level: +1 to melee combat
3rd Level: Charm Power
4th Level: Favored Enemy: Vampire
5th Level: +1 to all checks, attacks, and saves
6th Level: Immunity to Undead Attacks
7th Level: Character ceases to age
8th Level: Persistent Luck
9th Level: Down but not out
10th Level: Time Slip

Heroic (Divine) Archetype: Knowledge

Gear
Sword, Leather Armor

Retsam in the Wasted Lands

Much like Nigel this is where Retsam starts. In the Wasted Lands I would focus on his psychic abilities and his desire to hunt the undead, vampires in particular.

Retsam in NIGHT SHIFT

In modern times Retsam is using the name Scott Elders. NIGHT SHIFT works great (naturally) with the type of supernatural games I like to play/run. In this sort of game I can use Retsam/Scott as Prof. Scott Elders, an occult scholar and faculty at St. Andrews University. 

Retsam in Thirteen Parsecs

This Scott Elders was the Chief Medical Officer and then Captain of the medical starship Mercy. To have one system to be able to do all three of these different versions is fantastic. Especially one system that allows me to do this character so well.

ALL allow me to use the same character across different times, different places, and right up to the Solar Frontier.

You can get the Wasted Lands RPG and the NIGHT SHIFT RPG at Elf Lair Games. Thirteen Parsecs is coming soon.

Character Creation Challenge

Saturday, January 27, 2024

Character Creation Challenge: Nigel Blade for Wasted Lands

 Back in the mid-80s, I discovered psychology. I thought it was a great topic and it really fascinated me. I started, of course, with the classics where most people start, Freud and Jung. Well, really, Jung and then Freud , I wanted to read Jung and, in particular, Synchronicity in the original German. It was not easy let me tell you. While both Freud and Jung are psychoanalysts, but Jung always more like philosophy to me.  One of his concepts was that of the Anima and the Animus side of your personality. Like a Ying and Yang. Similarly, Freud had his view of the Id, Ego, and Super-ego (das Es, Ich, and Über-Ich), which I think a lot of people at least have a passing knowledge of. 

You might be asking, great, but what does this arm-chair psychology have to do with characters? Well for this weekend, a lot. 

Psychology Character Sheets

My exploration of psychology (which also led to my eventual career as a Psychologist) was going on at the same time as some of my most prolific character creations.  It is no shock, then, that I have characters that represent these psychoanalytic concepts. 

On the Jungian side (because I am still Jung at heart! Yes, I use that joke often) we have my obvious Anima in Larina. In fact, I may have identified her as an anima before she was a character. My Animus is Phygora. I have not explored him much because what is there to say? He is an academic, he has magic. Swap magic for science, and you have me.     

On the Freudian side, Johan I is very much my Super-ego. So, who are my Id and Ego characters?  

Ego represents you, who you are to the outside world. My Ego character is "Retsam Elddir" (yeah, I will explain that later).

Id represents all your unchecked desires and dark impulses. My Id is Nigel "Death Blade" Delamort.

Nigel "Death Blade" Delamort sheets

Who is Nigel "Death Blade" Delamort?

Nigel was a 1st Ed AD&D character and I had a lot of fun with him. He is/was a Neutral Evil assassin that used to adventure in the same party as Johan II. I fudged it and said that both heard a prophecy that they would both be needed in a great war and they could not harm each other.  All BS of course, I wanted to have a LG Paladin and a NE Assassin at the same time. 

Nigel began life through a dirt-poor second son in Specularum, he tried to steal a dagger from a local blacksmith. Instead of turning the boy in the blacksmith trained him, until the blacksmith was killed by assassins.  I won't get into the details here, but suffice to say that he was a fun character who allowed me to live out a lot of violence (it is what my Id would do).  

He mellowed out over the years. Which is good because he was a bit of an asshole.

Through a series of events that are too long and complicated to get into here, Nigel was transported to the future so I could use him Star Frontiers. He would come back to help Johan in my big war at the end of High School with his spaceship, the Lucifer.  Along the way, he became immortal, or at least very long-lived, and he has been a galactic bounty hunter for hire. 

Nigel "Death Blade" Delamort
Nigel "Death Blade" Delamort

Class: Renegade
Level: 20
Species: Human
Alignment: Twilight Evil
Background: Craft (Blacksmith)

Abilities
Strength: 18 (+3) N
Agility: 20 (+4) A
Toughness: 17 (+2) N
Intelligence: 13 (+1) 
Wits: 12 (+1) 
Persona: 8 (-1) 

Fate Points: 1d12
Defense Value: 2
Vitality: 119
Degeneracy: 1
Corruption: 0

Check Bonus (A/N/D): +8/+6/+4
Melee Bonus: +6 (base) +3 +2 (touchstones) 
Ranged Bonus: +6 (base) +4 +1 (touchstone)
Spell Attack: NA
Saves: +7 vs Death effects (Renegade), +2 to Toughness-based saves related to stamina and endurance (Craft). +1 to all (touchstone)

Renegade Abilities
Improved Defence, Ranged Combat, Stealth Skills, Climbing, Danger Sense (1-7 d8), Perception, Vital Strike x7, Read Languages, Stealth Skills

Warrior Abilities
Combat Expertise, Improved Defence, Melee Combat, Master of Battle, Supernatural Attacks, Spell Resistance, Tracking, Masters of Weapons, Extra Attacks (x2), Extra Damage

Stealth Skills
Open Locks: 95%
Bypass Traps: 95%
Sleight of Hand: 95%
Sneak: 95%
Climbing: 95%
Perception: 95%

Heroic/Divine Touchstones 
1st Level:  +1 to melee attacks
2nd Level: Favored Weapon: Sword (+1 to hit, +2 Damage)
3rd Level: Level 1 of Warrior
4th Level: Level 2 of Warrior
5th Level: +1 to all checks, attacks, and saves
6th Level: Level 3 of Warrior
7th Level: Character ceases to age
8th Level: Level 4 of Warrior
9th Level: Down but not Out
10th Level: Level 5 of Warrior

Heroic (Divine) Archetype: War

Gear
Sword, Leather Armor, thieves tools, (later plasma rifle).

Nigel in the Wasted Lands

This is the starting point for Nigel, my D&D stand-in. When I had him move between systems I always had to restat him. Here he can move between the epochs with ease.

Nigel in NIGHT SHIFT

In modern times Nigel is something of a supernatural hunter. From his personal timeline this occurred after he spent his time in literal Hell. After coming back from the future he went back to Glantri. Here he followed his daughter's (Raven) killer into hell. Again like said above it is long and complicated. But after Hell, Nigel was a WitchCraft/Armageddon character.

Nigel in Thirteen Parsecs

This was right after "D&D" and here I used Star Frontiers for his stats. It was an interesting translation.  Then we tried a little Gamma World, then a little (tiny little) bit of Traveller. Each translation I felt something in the character was lost even if my knowledge of the games increased. Thirteen Parsecs hopefully will fix that for me. Nigel will be one of my first 13P characters.

ALL allow me to use the same character across different times, different places and right on up to the Solar Frontier.

You can get the Wasted Lands RPG and the NIGHT SHIFT RPG at Elf Lair Games. Thirteen Parsecs is coming soon.

Character Creation Challenge

Wednesday, January 24, 2024

Character Creation Challenge: Darlessa for Wasted Lands

I meant to do this character earlier and kinda forgot. Well, today is the day I fix that. When it comes right down to it, no character really represents my shift from D&D to Wasted Lands quite as well as Darlessa the Vampire Queen.

Of course, everyone here knows Darlessa. She has been featured here many times and I already did her witch stats for Swords & Wizardry and her vampire stats for Basic-era D&D. She is also the central antagonist of my Dungeon23 Tomb of the Vampire Queen. She is responsible for the death of my first character, Johan, and ultimately, the cause for him to be elevated to a Saint. She even has (or had) her own Dark Domain, Arevenir.

Darlessa the Vampire Queen character sheets

I am using the Night Companion again for her so I can get the rules for making her a vampire. She has always been a witch, but a good case could be made for her to be a Spirit Rider, too. Maybe I'll give her a level in that later on, but today, I wanted to compare apples to apples: my OSR witches vs a NIGHT SHIFT witch.

Darlessa the Vampire Queen
Darlessa, the Vampire Queen

Class: Witch (Persona)
Level: 13
Species: Human Vampire
Alignment: Dark Evil
Background: Sorcerous

Abilities
Strength: 18 (+3) (+2 from Vampire)
Agility: 18 (+3) (+2 from Vampire)
Toughness: 18 (+3) 
Intelligence: 15 (+1) N
Wits: 14 (+1) N
Persona: 22 (+5) A

Fate Points: 1d10
Defense Value: -5
Vitality: 75
Degeneracy: 0
Corruption: 0

Check Bonus (A/N/D): +6/+4/+2
Melee Bonus: +2 (base) +2 (touchstones) 
Ranged Bonus: +2 (base) +1 (touchstones)
Spell Attack: +7 (witch) +1 (touchstones)
Saves: +7 to Spells and Magical effects (Sorcerer & Scholar), +3 to Wits (vampire) +1 to All (touchstones)

Witch Abilities
Arcana, Arcane Powers (5): Succubus (6d6), Shadow Walking, Telekinesis, Beguile, Subtle Influence

Sorceress Spells
First Level: Arcane Darts, Black Flames, Chill Ray, Glamour, Object Reading, Armor of Earth
Second Level: Conjure Flame, ESP, Invoke Fear, See Invisible
Third Level: Clairvoyance, Create Zombies & Skeletons, Curse, Fly
Fourth Level: All-Seeing Invisible Eye, Black Tentacles, Improved Invisibility, Kiss of the Succubus
Fifth Level: Commune with Deeper Dark, Create Undead, Shadow Armor
Sixth Level: Instant Death, Zone of Death
Seventh Level: Wave of Mutilation

Heroic/Divine Touchstones 
1st Level: Additional Spell: Armor of Earth
2nd Level: +1 to Melee attacks
3rd Level: Spirit Guide: Undead Raven, "Lucifer"
4th Level: Favored Enemy: Lawful (Light) Good Clerics
5th Level: +1 to all attack rolls, defense rolls, spells, and saves
6th Level: Glamour at Will

Heroic (Divine) Archetype: Power

Gear
Dagger

Wasted Lands Vampires

Ok! This Darlessa is much more powerful than previous versions. This is due largely to proper rules on how to make a character a vampire and how that adds to the character's power. But also Witches in NIGHT SHIFT and the Wasted Lands are a bit more powerful. Lets not forget those divine/heroic touchstones. Those add a LOT of power to the character. This is a version of Darlessa that should properly terrify a group of characters. 

Vampires in the Wasted Lands are also more akin to Akivasha of Robert E. Howard's tale The Hour of the Dragon than they are of Stoker's Dracula. Indeed, Darlessa is cut from the same cloth as Akivasha. Well same cloth, but dyed in the same dyes as various Hammer Horror vampires. 

But in native Wasted Lands, the world envisioned by Elf Lair Games' Jason Vey, vampires are more dangerous and closely tied to the powers of the Deeper Dark. This works fine for me since I have always seen Darlessa as shedding bits of her soul for power to whatever demon would grant it to her. Now, for a pure Wasted Lands game and for the publication of the Tomb of the Vampire Queen, I might go with a different name and slightly changed background. But it will be Darlessa all the same really. 

You can get the Wasted Lands RPG and the NIGHT SHIFT RPG at Elf Lair Games.

Character Creation Challenge

Tuesday, January 23, 2024

Character Creation Challenge: Boudica for Wasted Lands

 Last week I heard of the passing of James Herbert "Herbie" Brennan, the prolific author of fiction and non-fiction as well as the RPG "Man, Myth & Magic." I don't have a lot to say on the matter. I have not read any of his books and my knowledge of him comes solely through my interaction with MM&M. But I did not want his death to go unremarked here.

While I have done other MM&M characters for myself, I thought for today I might revisit one I did a while back and fit both his game and Wasted Lands: Boudica, Queen of the Icini Celts.

I have a long relationship with Boudica. She was a figure I always found fascinating, especially during my time of reading an absolute ton of Celtic history, myth, and legends. Then I wrote the Ghosts of Albion RPG, and she was a central character of that franchise, though by then, she was a ghost.  So, given Herbie Brennan's fix of history and fantasy of his Man, Myth & Magic game, doing stats for Boudica was a no-brainer.  That is also true today.

Boudica sheets

Boudica for the Wasted Lands could have gone a number of different ways. Obviously, Warrior is a great choice (and what I went with in MM&M), but she didn't start out as one; she was forced into it by the Romans, who murdered her husband and raped her daughters. From NIGHT SHIFT, I could also say Survivor is good, but then again, so is Chosen One. In the end, though, the only real choice for me was to make her a Spirit Rider from the NIGHT SHIFT Night Companion and adapt that to Wasted Lands. Something the O.G.R.E.S. makes very, very easy. Trivial even.

The Spirit Rider is a person charged with the power of a particular place. Our archetype of this is Marie Laveau who is given magic by the "Spirit of New Orleans." Cú Chulainn is the Spirit Rider of mytho-historical Ulster as Fionn Mac Cumhail is the Spirit Rider of Éire. We have debated whether Merlin or King Arthur is the Spirit Rider of ancient Britain. 

Note: As an aside it never dawned on me until this moment that I *could* have Boudica as one of my Witch Queens. I mean she is not really a witch, but her Wasted Lands and Ghosts of Albion versions both have some magic.  Thoughts for another day.

Queen Boudica
Queen Boudica

Class: Spirit Rider (Briton) (from NIGHT SHIFT's Night Companion)
Level: 10
Species: Human
Alignment: Light* (*while she killed people and burned villages to the ground she was doing what she felt was right and correct. Removing an invading force from her home.)
Background: Barbarian

Abilities
Strength: 16 (+2) 
Agility: 13 (+1) 
Toughness: 18 (+3) N 
Intelligence: 12 (+0) 
Wits: 17 (+2) A
Persona: 17 (+2) N 

Fate Points: 1d10
Defense Value: 5
Vitality: 70
Degeneracy: 0
Corruption: 0

Check Bonus (A/N/D): +5/+3/+2
Melee Bonus: +2 (base)  +1 (Heroic Touchstone)
Ranged Bonus: +2 (base) 
Saves: +4 to Wits and Persona saves (class), +2 to Toughness saves (barbarian).

Spirit Rider Abilities
Innate Magic (10), Arcane Powers (5), Commune with Spirit of the Land, Limited Power (outside of Briton), Magic Battery

Barbarian Background Skills
Perception, Danger Sense, Scale surfaces, Nature Lore, Any Weapons

Arcane Powers (used like powers)
Beguile, Shadow Walk, Detect Thoughts, Enhanced Senses, Subtle Influence

Innate Magic (used like spells)
First Level: Armor of Earth, Mystical Senses, Command, Sense Death
Second Level: Animal Summoning (usually large war dogs), Invoke Fear
Third Level: Curse, Impassible Thicket
Fourth Level: Forest Metamorphosis
Fifth Level: Shadow Armor

Heroic/Divine Touchstones 
1st Level: +1 Melee Combat: Spear
2nd Level: Luck Benefit
3rd Level: Powerful Defence
4th Level: Favored Enemy: Rome
5th Level: Divine Smite

Heroic (Divine) Archetype: Vengence

Gear
Spear, armor, sword

Wasted Lands Spirit Riders

Spirit Riders might not fit well thematically with Wasted Lands RAW, but in Wasted Lands as D&D, it works great. I might tweak it a bit working with Boudica here for slightly less magic and more options for combat prowess. Given that I am saying that Cú Chulainn was also one then something like his Ríastrad or Battle Frenzy would be an option. Maybe call it something like "Caomhnóir" or Guardian.

It would be fun to try out that is for sure. 

You can get the Wasted Lands RPG and the NIGHT SHIFT RPG at Elf Lair Games.

Character Creation Challenge

Monday, January 22, 2024

Character Creation Challenge: Keller the Silent for Wasted Lands

 Working on moving to my Forgotten Realms characters for my upcoming deep-dive into all editions of the Forgotten Realms. I decided to try a few more of those this week. I have already done Sinéad, who will be my eyes and ears in the Realms, plus others that are likely to appear in my games, like NidaJassic, Kelek, and Skylla

Today, though, is something a little different. I wanted to do a monk character (or mystic if I was using the D&D Rules Cyclopedia), but I don't really have any I want to try! There was Kurtzen, the monk I made for AD&D 1st Ed way back when, but he isn't really all that interesting. Spoiler: I was trying for a Night Crawler (from X-Men)-like character, but I never got it to where I wanted. So instead today I will take on a character I "adopted" rather than rolled up. Keller the Silent.

Keller the Silent

I detailed Keller's story a bit back. She is a wood-elf monk (I said she was a Siswa from the adventure B7 Rahasia), and she joined my party in Baldur's Gate 3.

Now, I could do her sheets for a post-2000 game (3e, 4e, or 5e) where elves can be monks, but for now, I will stick to Wasted Lands and see what I get.

Keller the Silent
Keller the Silent

Class: Mystic Martial Artist (from NIGHT SHIFT's Night Companion)
Level: 4
Species: Elf
Alignment: Light
Background: Elf (Wood Elf)

Abilities
Strength: 16 (+2) N
Agility: 18 (+3) A
Toughness: 15 (+1) N 
Intelligence: 10 (+0) 
Wits: 10 (+0) 
Persona: 9 (+0) 

Fate Points: 1d8
Defense Value: 5
Vitality: 30
Degeneracy: 0
Corruption: 0

Check Bonus (A/N/D): +3/+2/+1
Melee Bonus: +2 (base) +3 (Agility) +1 (Heroic Touchstone)
Ranged Bonus: +2 (base) +3 (Agility)
Saves: +1 to magic and spells (elf), +2 to Toughness and Agility saves.

Mystic Martial Artist Abilities
Martial Arts, Agile (+3 to Agility), Melee and Ranged Combat, Lightning Fast (+1 to Initiative), Powers: Danger Sense, Supernatural Attacks

Stealth Skills
Climb, Hide, and Move Silent as 1st level Survivor/Renegade

Heroic/Divine Touchstones 
1st Level: +1 to Defence
2nd Level: +1 to bare-handed melee attacks.

Heroic (Divine) Archetype: Combat

Gear
Staff, Leather Armor, thieves tools

Wasted Lands Mystic Martial Artists

Now, this is a version of Keller I would have fun playing. The Mystic Martial Artist, while having its origin in Wuxa or Wire-fu cinema, makes for a great addition to my Wasted-Lands-as-D&D game. I admit I wish I could run my upcoming Forgotten Realms games using the Wasted Lands rules. It would be easier than moving through the various editions. 

I really had not considered using Keller in this at all, but this makes me want to. I have to figure out where she is from now and when she joins my little party of explorers. Also, I need to figure out how a character who has taken a vow of silence would work in my games.

On another note, I think I have settled on a Heroic/Divine Touchstone on every other level. It feels really powerful, but it also is a great way to customize characters. Maybe every three levels is also good.

You can get the Wasted Lands RPG and the NIGHT SHIFT RPG at Elf Lair Games.

Character Creation Challenge

Sunday, January 21, 2024

Character Creation Challenge: Liath Luchara for Wasted Lands

 Yesterday I had the pleasure to introduce you to what I am now considering the Gold Standard version of Bodhmal. Today I want to introduce you to the what I think is the best version of Liath Luchara I have ever done. If I was happy yesterday, then I am ecstatic today. 

Briefly, Liath and Bodhmal are part of the Fenian Cycle of Irish myth and legend. They are foster mothers to a young Fion MacCumhail (Finn MacCool). They were a featured set of characters in my Dark Druid adventure.  

Liath Luchara sheets

Liath is a warrior woman, but she also has a bit of magic about her. Capturing her properly in D&D-like games has been a challenge. I have tried various mixes of warriors, rangers, and barbarians. Nothing has been a great fit. Barbarians have no magic (even the 5e Wild magic one), and Rangers really have too much or not the right kind. So what am I to do? Well, once again, Wasted Lands to the rescue.

Liath starts out simple enough. She is a warrior. That is her calling, and that is how she is always described in the myths and legends, so who am I to argue. But she does have a bit more going on. So I am going with Wasted Land's secret weapons, Backgrounds and the Divine Touchstones.

Again this post is for my late friend Rebecca Joanne Ashling. She would have loved this.

Liath Luchara
Liath Luchara

Class: Warrior
Level: 10
Species: Human
Alignment: Light
Background: Barbarian

Abilities
Strength: 16 (+2) A
Agility: 14 (+1) 
Toughness: 14 (+1) 
Intelligence: 10 (+0) 
Wits: 16 (+2) N
Persona: 14 (+1) N

Fate Points: 1d10
Defense Value: 5
Vitality: 72
Degeneracy: 0
Corruption: 0

Check Bonus (A/N/D): +5/+3/+2
Melee Bonus: +4 (base) +2 +1 (divine touchstone)
Ranged Bonus: +4 (base) +1 +1 (divine touchstone)
Spell Attack: +1
Saves: +3 to all saves (Warrior) +2 to toughness (Barbarian)

Warrior Abilities
Combat Expertise, Improved Defence, Melee Combat, Master of Battle, Supernatural Attacks, Spell Resistance, Tracking, Masters of Weapons, Extra Attacks (x3)

Sorceress Spells
First Level: Mystical Senses

Heroic/Divine Touchstones 
1st Level: Arcane Power: Wild Shape (Liath was always becoming a salmon in the myths)
2nd Level: Additional +1 to combat
3rd Level: Sorceress level 1: Arcane Power: Arcane Bond (Liath)
4th Level: Divine Smite
5th Level: Great Smite

Barbarian Abilities
+2 to toughness saves, 

Heroic (Divine) Archetype: Protection

Gear
Gáe Assail (great spear), Dagger

Wasted Lands Liath & Bodhmal

Ok. This is rather perfect. Again, Ranger had too much magic, and Barbarians too little. But this gives me a nice balance really. She has a barbarian background, but her divine touchstones have given her a bit more magical ability and ones she "earned" on her own. Game-wise, this feels like she was discovering more and more secrets. I have considered trying out an Archer or Divine Warrior, but those concepts, while great, were not a great fit for her.  She is not a "Chosen One" by any stretch even if there are some cool things going on in that class. Save that one for Fionn himself I think.

Getting Liath and Bodhmal together, they are far more than the sum of their parts. Their Arcane Bond is focused on each other, allowing them to boost each other's magic when needed and replacing the Anamchara quality as it is supposed to.  

It is one thing to design this all in mind, it is another to see it working and working far better than you imagined. Seriously, with Wasted Lands, I might never need "D&D" again.  Putting them in Wasted Lands also just feel right.

You can get the Wasted Lands RPG and the NIGHT SHIFT RPG at Elf Lair Games.

Character Creation Challenge

If you want to read more tales of Bodhmal and especially Liath then I highly and enthusiastically recommend Irish Imbas Books.

Saturday, January 20, 2024

Character Creation Challenge: Bodhmal for Wasted Lands

 As Casey Kasem used to say, "The hits keep coming."  Though when I say it, I usually mean something bad. And I do today as well. Lost another friend this past week, Rebecca Joanne Ashling. She had some health problems, but her death is still a bit of a shock.  Rebecca and I had known each other for about 22+ years. We talked a lot online and she was a huge fan of my witches and modern horror stuff. In particular, she loved my takes on Willow and Tara. She often provided me some critiques on various builds and let me know about new games that she thought I would like. It still feels a bit unreal since I still half expect to get a text from her when this post goes live.  So today's and tomorrow's characters are for her.

Today, I want to start with the druidess Bodhmal.

I am choosing her for all the reasons Rebecca would have liked. Bodhmal has a long history in my games, and her character helped drive my vision of NIGHT SHIFT and thus influenced The Wasted Lands. This version is a "conversion" of sorts of D&D 4th Edition, a game we both enjoyed and continue to enjoy. Plus, and maybe most importantly, Bodhmal, while a mythological figure from Irish myth, was also my "Willow" stand-in. Since I did her main antagonist (and grandfather), the Dark Druid, yesterday, she would be good for today. 

Bodhmal character sheets

Bodhmal for the Wasted Lands

Bodhmal is not a goddess. Nor will become one. She is, though, a very important figure of the Fenian Cycle of Irish myth and legend. Because of this she fits rather well with the central conceits of the Wasted Lands.  I also wanted to try out another Druid, but one with a bit more mysticism about them. Or to be blunt, a druid that is becoming something akin to a witch.  She is the "last common ancestor" of Druids and Witches.

Like Fear Dorich, Bodhmal has been worked up for the Buffy the Vampire Slayer RPG, D&D 5e, Castles & Crusades, Blue Rose 2nd Edition, my Pagan Witch class, and today's experiment, D&D 4e.

D&D 4e had some nice quirks that allowed me to get to the version of Bodhmal I liked. I have to admit, Wasted Lands works even better.

The Druidess Bodhmal nic Tadgh
Bodhmal nic Tadgh

Class: Sorceress (Druid, Witch or Ban Drui)
Level: 10
Species: Human
Alignment: Light
Background: Scholar

Abilities
Strength: 10 (+0) 
Agility: 10 (+0) 
Toughness: 14 (+1) 
Intelligence: 14 (+1) N
Wits: 18 (+3) A
Persona: 11 (+0) N

Fate Points: 1d10
Defense Value: 8
Vitality: 42
Degeneracy: 0
Corruption: 0

Check Bonus (A/N/D): +5/+3/+2
Melee Bonus: +2 (base) 
Ranged Bonus: +2 (base)
Spell Attack: +5
Saves: +7 to Spells and Magical effects (Sorcerer & Scholar)

Sorceress Abilities
Arcana, Arcane Powers (4): Enhanced Senses, Arcane Bond (Liath), Wild Form, Telepathic Transmission

Sorceress Spells
First Level: Armor of Earth, Glamour, Mystical Senses, Sleep
Second Level: Animal Summoning, Conjure Flame, Invisibility, Subtle Influence
Third Level: Cure Disease, Dark Lightning, Staves to Snakes
Fourth Level: Befuddlement, Forest Walk, Plant Speech
Fifth Level: Miasma of Creeping Death, Telekinesis

Heroic/Divine Touchstones 
1st Level: Psychic Power: Supernatural Senses 
2nd Level: Additional Spell: Bless
3rd Level: Spirit Guide: Cait Sith
4th Level: Magical Recovery
5th Level: Grant Spellcasting

Scholar Abilities
1st Level Spell: Create Light

Heroic (Divine) Archetype: Knowledge

Gear
Staff, Dagger

Wasted Lands Druids & Witches

I like this version of Bodhmal. She has her druid side and can take on a wild shape, but that is not the most important part of her character. She also sees everything. Mystical, Supernatural, and more. She can talk to animals and plants. She even has some offensive spells when she needs them.

More to the point, her connection to Liath is there via the Arcane Bond. 

I can see this Bodhmal as a druid who began a line of pagan witches. Liath is even there as her Cowan or witch guardian. This is perfect in my mind. I wish you all could feel this; how perfect of a fit she is for my concept of her. This is much better than any other system I have done. 

You can get the Wasted Lands RPG and the NIGHT SHIFT RPG at Elf Lair Games.

Character Creation Challenge


Thursday, January 18, 2024

Character Creation Challenge: Fear Dorich for Wasted Lands

 I got to thinking about these experiments, and I realized that I had yet to try converting a druid. I am a huge fan of druids, both as a concept and as a character class, with the 1st Ed AD&D one near the top of my list. I have done more than a few Bards, but no druid yet.

This also got me thinking about which Druid to use. I have plenty, including a few that have never seen "print" on these pages. But in the end, I am opting for an atypical druid. I am going to build Fear Dorich, the Dark Druid. 

Dark Druid Sheets

Fear Dorich has a history in my games. I stated him up once for Castles & Crusades for a previous Character Creation Challenge, and he was the main antagonist of the Buffy adventure The Dark Druid. He is a great character with quite a lot of history with me. 

Fear Dorich, and that is not his name, It means "Dark Man," is or was a normal Druid. But in my games he is fighting the rising tide of Christianity. So he has taken it upon himself to keep the worship of the new God to a minimum by killing all the new worshipers. It is a losing battle, we all know, but that is the character I am playing here.  So he is not about grabbing what power he can to achieve those ends.

Fear Dorich, the Dark Druid
Fear Dorich, the Dark Druid

Class: Sorcerer
Level: 5
Species: Human
Alignment: Dark
Background: Animistic

Abilities
Strength: 12 (+0) 
Agility: 16 (+2) 
Toughness: 14 (+1) N
Intelligence: 18 (+3) N
Wits: 17 (+2) A
Persona: 18 (+3) 

Fate Points: 1d8
Defense Value: 8
Vitality: 25
Degeneracy: 0
Corruption: 1

Check Bonus (A/N/D): +3/+2/+1
Melee Bonus: +1 (base) 
Ranged Bonus: +1 (base)
Spell Attack: +3
Saves: +4 (+2) to Spells and Magical effects (Sorcerer), +2 to Persona saves, -2 to magic saves if far from a source of Radiance

Sorcerer Abilities
Arcana, Arcane Powers (2): Wild Form, Shadow Walk

Sorcerer Spells
First Level: Armor of Earth, Bless, Restore Food and Water
Second Level: Beguile Person, Invoke Fear
Third Level: Dark Lightning

Heroic/Divine Touchstones 
1st Level: +1 to combat, Scimitar
2nd Level: Precognition Power

Animistic Background
Animal Summoning 1
Speak with Plants and Animals


Heroic (Divine) Archetype: Death

Gear
Scimitar

Wasted Lands Druids

This is Fear Dorich early into his career of killing members of the new faith. He already has a 1 point of corruption, and I am expecting a lot more.

Wasted Lands does an excellent job with druids; to be honest, you just have to choose your arcane powers and divine touchstones well.

He also fits in well to something else I am working on, but maybe more on that next week or even later down the line.

You can get the Wasted Lands RPG and the NIGHT SHIFT RPG at Elf Lair Games.

Character Creation Challenge