Saturday, March 11, 2017

Hyboria: A few NPC's

Amzi Sayid, 23
Turanian Warrior-3/Raider-1
Str- 13, Con-13, Int-13
Hp: 28
Ac: 5/14 (mail)
Attack: F4
Save: F4
Special Abilities:
Warrior: +1 to melee attacks, weapon expertise (sword 1d10), follow through (one extra attack)
Raider: no penalty to hit while mount moving faster than walk, +2 bonus to hit and AC while mounted and in melee vs infantry, +1 to surprise foe, riding- Dex+1, survival- 40%
Languages: Hyrkanian, Shemitish, Zamoran, Stygian
Equipment: scimitar(1d10+1), dagger (1d4+1), spear (1d6+1), Shemite bow (1d8, 100'), 20 arrows, mail, spired helm, horse, saddle and tack

A former Turanian soldier turned renegade. He was caught by a superior officer stealing arms and armor to sell to the desert tribes. He killed the officer and fled to his Zaugir allies. He maintains relations with the tribes and Turanian thieves and smugglers. He is very cautious as there is bounty on his head.


Tomasi, 21
Zamoran Thief-5
Dex-17, Int-13
Hp: 20
Ac: 5/14 (leather)
Attack: Th5
Save: Th5
Special Abilities:
Thief: pick locks- 35%, find/remove traps- 33%, pick pockets- 40%, move silently- 40%, climb walls- 91%, hide in shadows- 30%, hear noise- 1-3 on 1d6, backstab (+4 hit, x3 dmg)
Languages: Zamoran, Kothic, Shemitish, Ophirian
Equipment: shortsword (1d6) four daggers (1d4), leather vest, rope, thieve's tools

Tomasi was born and raised in Arenjun. He was an important member of a Zamoran kidnapping gang until he double-crossed and killed two of his friends over a disputed sack of gems. He fled the city before the rest of the gang could take revenge on him and has made his way to Shadizar where he is looking for new opportunities to make a fortune in gold.


Yubana, 21
Black Coast Scout- 4
Str-15, Dex-13, Wis-13
Hp: 23
Ac: 6/13 (hide), 5/14 with shield
Attack: F4
Save: F4
Special Abilities:
Scout: +1 to surprise, -1 to be surprised, backstab (+4 hit, x2), survival- 70%
Languages: Bamula, Kushite, Hyrkanian
Equipment: spear (1d6+1), dagger (1d4+1), hunting bow (1d6, 50'), 20 arrows, hide armor, shield

A Bamula tribesman of the Black Coast. Yubana traveled north to Kush where he sailed with the Black Corsairs for months, eventually escaping to the Shemitish coast. He has traveled inland working as a hunter and sometime scout for caravans and local militia. He will readily join up with a group seeking treasure.


Lucianus, 25
Ophirian Thief-2
Dex-15, Int-13, Chs-13
Hp: 9
Ac: 8/11
Attack: Th2
Save: Th2
Special Abilities:
Thief: pick locks- 23%, find/remove traps- 17%, pick pockets- 27%, move silently- 27%, climb walls- 88%, hide in shadows- 17%, hear noise- 1-3 on 1d6, backstab (+4 hit, x2 dmg)
Languages: Ophirian, Kothic, Shemitish
Equipment: long knife (1d6), dagger (1d4), thieve's tools, merchant clothing

Lucianus is a fake merchant based out of the small city state of Pergona in Ophir. He often travels to the larger towns and city-states of Koth with a partners in disguise as merchants to swindle gullible locals and drunks out of their coins and gems. He is considering an expedition into Zamora to try and break into the bigger opportunities he believes is found there.


Ulfvar Kinslayer, 32
Vanir Brute-8
Str-16, Con-16, Chs-8
Hp: 70
Ac: 4/15 (mail and breastplate), 3/16 with shield
Attack: F8
Save: F8
Special Abilities:
Brute: +2 to all melee damage and Strength rolls, +4 save disease and poison, intimidation (8HD of creatures), crusher (-2 hit, x2 damage, 8 times per day)
Languages: : Nordheimer, Aquilonian, Shemitish, Hyrkanian
Equipment: two-handed maul (1d8+4), sword (1d8+4), daggers (1d4+4), mail, helm, sheild

Reaver, slayer, mercenary. Ulfvar is an outcast from his home in Vanaheim after killing his brothers in a violent rage. He has traveled into the southeast to ply his trade as a hired killer and adventurer. He is brutal and easily roused by his bloodlust, especially when drinking. His strategies tend to be simple and violent. He takes great pride in his work; when paid to fight or kill he will not stop until the job is done or he is dead.


Yerdalak, 21
Hyrkanian Archer-2/Raider-1
Str-15, Dex-13, Wis-13
Hp: 17
Ac: 6/13 (leather), 5/14 with shield
Attack: F3
Save: F3
Special Abilities:
Archer: +1 to hit with bows, range increment increased by 50%, no penalty for firing from unstable platform.
Raider: no penalty to hit while mount moving faster than walk, +2 bonus to hit and AC while mounted and in melee vs infantry, +1 to surprise foe, riding- Dex+1, survival- 40%
Languages: Hyrkanian, Shemitish
Equipment: Hyrkanian bow (1d8, 150'), 40 arrows, scimitar (1d8+1), dagger (1d4+1), leather armor, spired iron cap, horse, saddle and tack, lasso

Yerdalak has come to the west seeking his fortunes. He is a proud horseman and archer and seeks work as a mercenary. He is honorable and hates betrayers above all else. If joined with a party he is an honest, hard worker, with a critical eye towards a fair split of the work and the treasures found.

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

Hyboria

He shrugged his shoulders. "I have known many gods. He who denies them is as blind as he who trusts them too deeply. I seek not beyond death. It may be the blackness averred by the Nemedian skeptics, or Crom's realm of ice and cloud, or the snowy plains and vaulted halls of the Nordheimer's Valhalla. I know not, nor do I care. Let me live deep while I live; let me know the rich juices of red meat and stinging wine on my palate, the hot embrace of white arms, the mad exultation of battle when the blue blades flame and crimson, and I am content. Let teachers and priests and philosophers brood over questions of reality and illusion. I know this: if life is illusion, then I am no less an illusion, and being thus, the illusion is real to me. I live, I burn with life, I love, I slay, and am content."
-Queen of the Black Coast

This is primarily a reference for my players.
I took some time this week to pull together and organize my notes I had collected for a Hyborian game I had been fiddling with for several years now. The base rules for this one are BD&D/Labyrinth Lord. As always easy to use with older editions with a bit of minor adjustment.
I'm using my own class variations (for the most part) and my adjustments to the magic rules.
I could use a variety of current OSR products, Crypts & Things and Astonishing Swords and Sorcerers of Hyperborea spring to mind. While I own these and enjoy them I wanted something a bit more to my own tastes in a Hyborian game. I will no doubt be borrowing bits and pieces of treasure and monster from these as my game goes along.


A note on racial adjustments:
I decided to keep it simple and not mess with racial abilities or adjustments for the various races. We all know Cimmerians are strong and Hyrkanians are known for bows and horsemanship but I decided to leave this up to choices in class and roleplaying rather than having even more rules for character creation. Personally I never liked the fiddly bits of this in previous Conan games.
Personal preference.

Information on the Hyborian Age, it's people, nations, Gods, history, etc is easy enough to find so I'll leave a few links instead of writing an unnecessary essay on each of these subjects.
My favorite homebrew Conan game site: Thulsa's Conan D20 
The Hyborian Age: Free pdf download system-less guide to Rpging in the Hyborian Age
Marvel Comics Universe: Conan Appendix

Races of the Hyborian Age 
This section lists  the races of the Hyborian age and the nations they inhabit. It includes the  primary language of each race, which is free and doesn't use a bonus language slot, and the language of their neighboring cultures.  Characters start with their racial language and a bonus language at first level. Normal extra language for higher Intelligence apply.
Preferred classes of each race are shown.

These are, of course, suggestions for a typical leveled member of each race that is likely to be encountered. For Players ANY language or class is open to any race based on the actual background of the character and DM's permission.

Asgard, Vanaheim
Language: Nordheimer
Neighboring Languages: Aquilonian, Cimmerian, Hyperborean, Pictish
Preferred Classes: Barbarian, Brute, Scout, Warrior, Witch

Black Kingdoms, Kush, Punt
Language: Kushite or Keshani, Puntan or Zembabwean as appropriate to background.
Neighboring Languages: Black Coast, Darfari, Iranistani, Keshani, Old Stygian, Puntan, Shemitish, Stygian, Zembabwean
Preferred Classes: Barbarian, Bard, Brute, Scout, Warrior, Witch

Black Kingdoms, Darfar, Southern Isles
Languages: Bakalah, Bamulah, Darfari, Southern Islander, Suba, or Wadai
Neighboring Languages: Argossean, Bakalah, Bamulah, Black Coast, Kushite, Puntan, Southern Islander, Shemitish, Stygian, Suba, Tibu, Tombalku, Wadai, Zingaran
Preferred Classes: Archer, Barbarian, Brute, Pirate, Scout, Warrior, Witch

Cimmeria
Language: Cimmerian
Neighboring Languages: Aquilonian, Hyperborean, Nordheimer, Pictish
Preferred Classes: Barbarian, Brute, Scout, Warrior

Himelian Tribesman
The tribes include the Afghulis, Wazuli , Irakzai, Galzai, Dagozai, Kosala , Zhaibari and Khurakzai.
Language: Afghuli
Neighboring Languages: Hyrkanian, Iranistani, Vendhyan
Preferred Classes: Archer, Barbarian, Brute, Raider, Scout, Thief, Warrior

Hyborian
Aquilonia, Argos, Bossonian Marches, Brythunia, Corinthia, Gunderland, Hyperborea, Khauran, Koth, Nemedia, Ophir, Tauran
Language: The language of whichever Hyborian kingdom the character is from.
Neighboring Languages: Aquilonian, Argossean, Bossonian, Brythunian, Corinthian, Hyperborean, Kothic, Nemedian, Ophirean, Shemitish, Stygian
Preferred Classes: Any save Barbarian or Pirate for those not on the coastline.

Hyrkania, Turan
Language: Hyrkanian
Neighboring Languages: Brythunian, Corinthian, Hyperborean, Iranistani, Khitan, Kothic, Shemitish, Stygian, Vendhyan, Yuetshi, Zamorian
Preferred Classes: Archer, Magician, Raider, Scout, Sorcerer, Thief, Warrior

Khitai
Language: Khitan
Neighboring Languages: Afghuli, Archeronian, Demonic, Hyurkanian, Old Stygian, Shemitish, Stygian, Vendhyan
Preferred Classes: Any save Gladiator or Swashbuckler

Pictland
Languages: Pictish, Talking Drum
Neighboring Languages: Aquilonian, Cimmerian, Norheimer, Zingaran
Preferred Classes: Barbarian, Scout, Sorcerer, Warrior, Witch

Shem
Language: Shemitish
Neighboring Languages: Argossean, Hyrkanian, Kothic, Ophirean, Stygian
Preferred Classes: Archer, Assassin, Bard, Magician, Pirate, Raider, Scholar, Sorcerer, Thief, Warrior

Stygia
Language: Stygian
Neighboring Languages: Archeronian, Darfari, Demonic, Hyrkanian, Keshani, Khitan, Kushite, Old Stygian, Puntan, Shemitish, Zembabwean
Preferred Classes: Archer, Assassin, Magician, Pirate, Raider, Scholar, Sorcerer, Thief, Warrior

Vendhya
Language: Vendhyan
Neighboring Languages: Afghuli, Hyrkanian, Iranistani, Khitan, Kosalan
Preferred Classes: Any save Barbarian, Brute, Gladiator, or Swashbuckler

Zamora
Languages: Zamorian
Neighboring Languages: Brythunian, Corinthian, Hyrkanian, Kothic, Shemite
Preferred Classes: Assassin, Bard, Magician, Scholar, Sorcerer, Thief, Warrior, Witch

Zingara
Languages: Zingaran
Neighboring Languages: Aquilonian, Argossean, Ophirean, Pictish, Shemitish
Preferred Classes: Bard, Magician, Pirate, Scholar, Scout, Swashbuckler, Thief, Warrior

Next are the classes.
They are broken up into three types: Fighter, Rogue, and Spellcaster.
I went this route for my multiclassing rules (see below.) I enjoy multiclassing as it gives my players more options. It's going to be hard enough surviving Hyboria, especially without the proliferation of healing magic found in a typical D&D game. Multiclassing gives them more tools to survive. And, quite frankly, it helps model more competent characters in the vein of Conan.

FIGHTERS
Archer
Prime Requ: Dex
Exp: As Fighter
HD: 1d6
Save: As Fighter
Attack: As As Fighter
Armor: Up to chain and shield.
Weapons: Any except two-handed melee.

Bow Expertise
+1 to hit with a bow.

Sure Shot
No penalty for unstable platform such as a running horse, chariot, rolling ship deck, etc.

Long Shot
Range increment's for bows increases by 50 percent.

Level Three:
Dead Shot
After aiming for one full round the archer receives a +4 bonus to his bowshot the next round. If he has Rapid Shot the second attack does not receive this bonus.

Level 9:
Rapid Shot
An extra bow attack is gained.

Level 12:
Trick Shot
Called shot penalties reduced by half.

Barbarian (Hillman)
I never saw a man fight as Conan fought. He put his back to the courtyard wall, and before they overpowered him the dead men were strewn in heaps thigh-deep about him. But at last they dragged him down, a hundred against one.
-A Witch Shall Be Born
Prime Requ: Con
Exp: As Fighter
HD: 1d10
Save: As Fighter
Attack: As Fighter
Armor: Chain and shield. May wear heavier but lose special abilities while in the heavier armor.
Weapons: Any

Alert
Only surprised on a 1 on a 1d6.

Battle Fury
Once per day per level the Barbarian can make a single brutal attack on his opponent, sacrificing accuracy and finesse for sheer damage. The attack is at a -2 to the attack roll but does  x2 damage if successful, x3 if a natural 20 is rolled.

Climb
As a Thief of equal level.

Pantherish Dodge
+1 to AC in chain armor or lighter.

Brute 
Prime Requ: Str
Exp: As Fighter
HD: 1d10
Save: As Fighter
Attack: As Fighter
Armor: Any.
Weapons: Any but greatly prefer melee weapons.

Brawn
A Brute character gains +2 to all melee and unarmed damage rolls (in addition to their normal Strength bonus). They know where to hurt people and hit like a freight train.

Crusher
Once per day per level  the Brute can summon his inner reserves of anger and rage to deliver a brutal strike. With a -2 to the attack roll but doing x2 damage (rolled and modifiers both.) If a natural 20 is rolled the modifier is x3.

Intimidation
Once per day per level the Brute can intimidate creatures with a total HD equal to his level. Thus a fifth level brute can intimidate up to five HD of creatures. Lowest level HD creatures are affected first. The creatures must be able to see the Brute's display of intimidation to be affected. The creatures are allowed a Saving Throw to avoid this effect. Those that fail suffer a –2 to all attacks on the Brute. Most will flee; only the most determined will stay and fight.

Iron Constitution
Brutes make saving throws against disease and poison with a +4 bonus.

Gladiator/Swashbuckler
Prime Requ: Dex
Exp: As Fighter
HD: 1d8
Save: As Fighter
Attack: As Fighter
Weapons: Any
Armor: Chain and sheild.

Acrobat
+2 to Dex rolls/Saves involving Dexterity.

Agile Fighter
+1 to AC in Chain or Lighter.

Dual Weapon
Off hand penalty reduced from 0/-4 to 0/-2 .

Quick with a Blade
The Gladiator is a Dexterity based fighter. He may use his Dexterity bonus instead of his Strength bonus for melee attacks.

NOTE:
I had used the original Pirate class for quite a while now and have become unhappy with it. Thus  I combined it with my Sailor class and am currently happy with the result: more useful at sea but still a fighting rogue-ish character archetype.

New Pirate
Prime Requ: Con
Exp: As Fighter
HD: 1d8
Save: As Fighter
Attack: As Fighter
Weapons: Any
Armor: Leather and shield.

Sailing (includes navigating and ship repair)
Intelligence check. The Pirate receives a +1 to this check and an additonal +1 bonus at every fourth level. This includes the art of steering and keeping the ship running as well as navigating or finding ones position using an Intelligence check with the Sailing bonus included. Bonuses may be given for good charts, maps, etc. When used to repair a successful roll allows x2 the number of ship points to be repaired.

Swimmer
+2 to Swimming (Strength) checks

Thief Abilities
Being a tricky and dangerous lad the Pirate can Move Silently and Climb Walls as well as a Thief of an equal level.

He can also Backstab as a Thief with the usual bonuses and extra damage.

Old Pirate
Prime Requ: Con
Exp: As Fighter
HD: 1d8
Save: As Fighter
Attack: As Fighter
Weapons: Any
Armor: Leather and sheild.

Close Quarter Fighter
The cramped quarters below decks hinder a man's fighting abilities (-2 to attacks) unless he is experienced with such things. The Pirate receives no penalty for fighting in cramped spaces including below deck, in tunnels, etc.

Swimmer
+2 to Swimming (Strength) checks
+2 to Climbing (Strength or Dexterity whatever DM uses)

Thief Abilities
Being a tricky and dangerous lad the Pirate can Move Silently as well as a Thief of an equal level.

He can also Backstab as a Thief with the usual bonuses and extra damage.

Raider
The riders were typical Hillmen, lean and hawk-faced; peaked steel caps were on their heads and chain mail glinted under their flowing kaftans. Their main weapon was the terrible Shemitish bow, which could send a shaft five hundred paces.
-Black Colossus
Prime Requ: Dex
Exp: As Fighter
HD: 1d8
Save: As Fighter
Attack: As Fighter
Weapons: Any but greatly prefer one-handed melee for riding.
Armor: Mail and sheild.

Mounted Fighter
Raiders are masters of mounted combat, receiving no penaty for a mount moving faster than a walk (normal penalty of -2 to hit.) When fighting in melee against unmounted foes Raiders gain a +2 bonus to hit as well as a +2 bonus to AC (normal bonus of +1 to each.)

Riding
At levels 1, 4, 8, 12, 16, and 20 the Raider gains a cumulative +1 bonus to his riding checks (Dex) for basic riding maneuvers such as staying mounted while the mount is bucking or upset, calming and controlling the mount, etc. In addition, the Raider can do the following:

While mounted the Raider gains a +1 to AC and can use his Dex bonus increase his mount's AC.

With a successful check, the Raider can drop along the side of his mount for cover, gaining a +4 cover bonus to his AC. This is considered pretty dishonorable by quite a few.

With a successful check the Raider can fall from a mount and take half damage (see Riding in Rules Clarifications: Miscellaneous.) This does not apply to flying mounts.

With a successful check the Raider can coax the mount to leap obstacles it would normally balk at jumping.

Stealthy
The Raider is adept at sneaking up on enemy camps. He gains a +1 to surprise foes.

Survival
Just like the Scout the Raider is adept as living in the harsh wilderness. This check is rolled in addition to normal foraging rolls. The DM may modify this check for plentiful or exceptionally harsh terrain. This also includes the ability to track with penalties and bonuses for mud, snow, dry ground, etc at the discretion of the DM. Less skilled than the Scout, the chance for success is 40 percent at first level plus five percent at every even level.

Scout 
Prime Requ: Dex
Exp: As Fighter
HD: 1d8
Save: As Fighter
Attack: As Fighter
Armor: Chain and sheild. Will lose Move Silently while in armor heavier than Leather.
Weapons: Any

Alert
Always vigilant he is difficult to get the drop on and gains a -1 to be surprised.

Backstab
Scouts are capable hunters and once a quarry is found they are adept at attacking from surprise to kill the prey.
+4 to attack. x2 damage. x3 damage at levels 5-8. x4 damage at 9th level.
This also includes ranged attacks until the target(s) are aware they are being fired upon.

Soft Tread
Light on his feet the Scout gains a +1 to surprise foes.

Survival
The Scout’s ability to live off of the land and survive, this check is rolled in addition to normal foraging rolls. The DM may modify this check for plentiful or exceptionally harsh terrain. This also includes the ability to track with penalties and bonuses for mud, snow, dry ground, etc at the discretion of the DM. The chance for success is 60 percent at first level plus five percent at every even level.

Warrior
Prime Requ: Str
Exp: As Fighter
HD: 1d8
Save: As Fighter
Attack: As As Fighter
Armor: Any.
Weapons: Any

Melee Focus
+1 to attack with melee weapons.

Weapon Expert
At levels 1, 5, 10, 15, and 20 the Warrior may choose a melee weapon type (sword, two-handed sword,dagger, spear, etc) and  does damage as if the weapon is one dice code higher. Example: a short sword does 1d8, a sword does 1d10, etc.

Follow Through
At level 3 the Warrior can make an additional attack if the first attack is a hit. The extra attack can be against the same opponent or against another foe if the new target is within five feet of the Warrior. He can attempt a third attack at level 12 and a fourth at level 20.
If an attack misses follow through ends, any remaining attacks are lost.

ROGUE
Assassin
Prime Requ: Dex
Exp: As Fighter
HD:  1d6
Save:  As Thief.
Attack:  As Thief
Armor:  As Thief.
Weapons:  Any.

Death Attack
Usable once per day per 2 levels.
If an assassin studies a victim for 3 consecutive rounds and makes a sneak attack (as a Thief) that successfully deals damage, the sneak attack can potentially kill the target instantly. While studying a victim prior to an attack, the assassin can undertake other minor actions but must stay focused on the target. If the target knows the assassin is present, a death attack is not possible. The victim of such an attack must make a saving throw. If the saving throw fails, the victim dies instantly. If the saving throw succeeds, the attack is treated as a normal Thief sneak attack.

After completing 3 rounds of study, the assassin must attack within the next 3 rounds to use this ability. If a death attack is attempted and fails because the victim succeeds at the saving throw, the assassin cannot make another attempt at a death attack in this circumstance because the victim will almost certainly be aware of the assassin’s status as an enemy. If the assassin attacks and misses (and the target is not aware of the attack), or if the assassin does not launch the attack within 3 rounds of completing the study, 3 new rounds of study are required before another death attack attempt can be made.

Poisons
Given an hour of brew time, and the proper ingredients  the Assassin can create a virulent poisons. The poison can be ingested, contact, or injected as the Assassin desires. At first level the Assassin's poison does 1d6 hp damage and an extra 1d6 at levels 3, 9, 12, 15, and 18. The poison is insidious and slow; starting one hour after exposure it does 1d6 damage per hour until the available d6's of poison are used or the victim is dead. A Saving Throw is allowed during the initial 1d6 hp loss and if successful, all damage done is for half damage as the poison runs its course.

The Assassin can also make an antidote for the poison. When given it stops all damage.

Both poison and antidote have a shelf life of a number of days equal to the Assassin's level.

Thief Abilities
Pick Locks, Move Silently, Climb Walls, Hide in Shadow.

NOTES: This version sets itself further from the classic Thief class. This one is all about stealth and  murder and lacks many of the essential treasure finding skills of the Thief.

Bard 
Prime Requ: Cha
Save: as Thief
HD: 1d6
Save: as Thief
Attack: as Thief
Weapons: Any.
Armor: Leather and shield.

Influence Reactions
When performing before a group that is not attacking (and not intending to attack in just seconds), the Bard  can try to alter the mood of the listeners. He can try to soften their mood or make it uglier. The method can be whatever is most suitable to the situation at the moment -- a fiery speech, collection of jokes, a sad tale, a fine tune played on a fiddle, a haunting lute melody, or a heroic song from the old homeland. Everyone in the group listening must roll a Saving Throw (if the crowd is large, make Saving Throws for groups of people using average hit dice). The die roll is modified by -1 penalty for every three experience levels of the Bard  (round fractions down). If the Saving Throw fails the group's reaction can be shifted one level toward either the friendly or hostile end of the scale, at the player's option. Those who make a successful Saving Throw have their reaction shifted one level toward the opposite end of the scale.

Inspire
The music, poetry, and stories of the Bard can also be inspirational, rallying friends and allies. If the exact nature of an impending threat is known, the Bard  can heroically inspire his companions (immortalizing them in word and song), granting a +1 bonus to attack rolls, or a +1 bonus to Saving Throws, or a +2 bonus to morale (particularly useful in large battles) to those involved in melee. The Bard  must spend at least three full rounds singing or reciting before the battle begins.
This affects those within a range of 10 feet per experience level of the Bard .

The effect lasts one round per level. Once the effect wears off it can't be renewed if the recipients are still in battle. However, troops who have withdrawn from combat can be inspired again by the Bard 's words.

Languages
The Bard  receives twice the number of beginning langages.
At third level the Bard has an  80% chance to read any normal writing or language (including simple codes, dead languages, treasure maps, and so on, but not magical writings). If he tries but fails to read a piece of writing, he must gain at least one experience level before trying to read it again.
This is an important ability since the Bard  has no ready access to Read Language spells.

Lore
Bards learn a little bit of everything in their studies and travels. Bards have 25 percent chance at first level plus five percent at each level after, to a maximum of 100 percent to know local legends, sites, famous or notorious individuals, etc. They also use the same chance to identify the general purpose and function of any magical item. The Bard  need not handle the item but must examine it closely taking 1d10 rounds. Even if successful, the exact function of the item is not revealed, only its general nature.

Thief Abilities
Hear Noise, Pick Locks, and  Pick Pockets as a thief of equivalent level.

Magical Items:
Bards may employ any magical weapons not specifically restricted to a single class (of course, the weapon must be of a type Bards can normally use). They may wear magical armor of the type appropriate to their armor restrictions. They may also use all other magic items usable by Fighters and Thieves and may use a Horn of Valhalla.

Scholar  
Prime Requ: Int
HD: 1d4
Save: as Thief
Attack: as Thief
Weapons: Any.
Armor: Leather and shield.

Languages
The Scholar receives twice the number of beginning langages.
Unlike the Bard, the Scholar has an 80 percent chance to read unknown written languages and codes at first level.

Medicine
With study of the body comes knowledge to aid in healing it. The Scholar  can heal 1d4 damage per wound per level per day. He cannot use the same healing on a wound twice. For example he could not attempt to heal it again the next day.  For example: A first level Scholar could heal one wound per day. At third level he could heal three different wounds per day, be it three people once or the same person three times in the same 24 hours, provided that person was wounded on three separate occasions. This healing can be used for not only combat damage, but also disease, poison, and any other type of damage which affects hit points. This ability can be used after a character has had their wounds bound after combat as it is not the same as this ability.

Observation
The Scholar  has a keen eye for details in the world around him. When actively looking for clues or other hidden objects he has a 1-2 on a 1d6 of finding them. These could be hidden bloodstains, footprints, hidden doors, hearing noise, etc. The DM can modify this for difficulty.

Research
The Scholar, after studying information related to a problem or mystery, can make a Research check. The length of this study may vary and depend on several sources such as dusty old tomes, talking to locals, etc. The necessary time and requirements are up to the DM. The chance for this check is 45 percent plus 5 percent per level to a maximum of 100 percent. If successful the Scholar  may ask the DM a single yes or no question which the DM must answer honestly. The Scholar can do this once per adventure at 1st level and can ask another question at levels at 5, 10, 15, and 20. Therefore an 8th level Scholar  may ask the DM two questions per adventure.

Ritual Bonus
A Scholar's studiousness and organized mind gives him an advantage over other non-spell casters in the casting of magic rituals.  The Scholar can add half of his Scholar level (round up) as a bonus to the casting roll.

Thief Abilities
Hear Noise, Pick Locks, Find and Remove Traps as a thief of equivalent level.
The Scholar is a listener and has honed his senses to catch snatches of conversation and other noise to sift through for information.

Some tomes and secrets are behind lock, key, and trap. The Scholar can use his abilities to safely learn these secrets.

Magical Items:
Scholars may employ any magical weapons not specifically restricted to a single class and usable by a Thief. They may wear magical armor of the type appropriate to their armor restrictions.

Thief
HD: 1d6
Thief requirements, restrictions, and abiities as per the base books.

SPELLCASTER
Magician
As a standard Magic User with the following changes:

The Magician can ONLY cast spells via rituals and can use Folkloric and Infernal options. 
The Magician can attempt to cast spells of a higher level. The Magician may add his level to the casting roll.

The Magician may cast both Magic User and Cleric spells. If a spell is listed in both the Cleric and Magic User lists the Magician uses the Magic User version.

Extra Spells
The Magician receives a extra spell slot per spell level at each level of Magician. For Example: A fourth level Magic User would have two 1st level spell slots and two 2nd level slots available. The  fourth level Magician has three 1st and three 2nd.

Potions, Salves, and Charms
A Magician may work any spell known into a potion, salve, or charm.
Potions must be drunk, salves applied to skin, and charms hidden on or in the house of the target of the spell.

Spells which compel the target to obey the caster, such as Charm, take effect as if the caster is the one who gave the item to the one who drank or used it.

Creation time is the same as for rituals and costs the daily spell slot of the spell used. The Magician is adapt at this form of magic and can make a number of items equal to twice his Magician level, and each has a shelf life equal to twice the Magician's level in days.

Sorcerer
As a standard Magic User with the following additions:

Unlike the Magician the Sorcerer can cast spells normally.  He can also cast both Magic User and Cleric spells. If a spell is listed in both the Cleric and Magic User lists the Sorcerer uses the Magic User version.

The Sorcerer can cast ritual magic and can use the Folkloric and Infernal options.
The Sorcerer can attempt to cast spells of a higher level.  The Sorcerer may add his level to the casting roll.

Witch/Warlock
Prime Requ: Wis
HD: 1d6
Save: as Cleric
Attack: as Cleric
Weapons: Any.
Armor: Leather

The Witch may cast the same number of spells per day as the Cleric in the base rulebook.
The Witch may cast both Magic User and Cleric spells. If a spell is listed in both the Cleric and Magic User lists she uses the Cleric version.
The Witch can cast spells via rituals and can use Folkloric and Infernal options.
The Magician can attempt to cast spells of a higher level.  The Witch may add her level to the casting roll.

Potions, Salves, and Charms
A Witch can create these items just like a Magician. Their methods are less sophisticated and can only make a number of items equal to her level, and each has a shelf life equal to the Witch's level in days.

Poisons
Given an hour of brew time, and the proper ingredients herbs such as human or animal parts, the Witch can create virulent poisons. The poison can be ingested, contact, or injected as the Witch desires. At first level the Witch's poison does 1d6 hp damage and an extra 1d6 at levels 3, 9, 12, 15, and 18. The poison is insidious and slow; starting one hour after exposure it does 1d6 damage per hour until the available d6's of poison are used or the victim is dead. A Saving Throw is allowed during the initial 1d6 hp loss and if successful, all damage done is for half damage as the poison runs its course.

The Witch can also make an antidote for the poison. When given it stops all damage.

Both poison and antidote have a shelf life of a number of days equal to the Witch's level.

Multiclassing
Maximum total character levels: 20
Maximum total classes: 3

To gain a new class the character must gain enough experience points to reach a new level in his current class. Once this happens he gains a level of the new desired class. The total levels in both classes are added to find his total character level. Whichever class has the highest exp requirement to reach the next character level becomes the new required exp for the character to level in either class. There is no restriction on which class he must level in, he can raise either as long as he gains the proper exp to gain a new character level.

For Example:
A 5th level Warrior has trained to become a Sorcerer when he gains 32,000 exp (required to reach Warrior  level 6). He is now a 5th level Warrior/1st level Sorcerer. His total character level is 6.
He switches to the exp requirements of the higher cost Sorcerer. He must now gain 80,000 exp (required to reach Sorcerer level 7) to gain a level of either Warrior  or Sorcerer. If he had not multiclassed he would have reached Warrior level 7 at 64,000 exp.

If the same type of class (Fighters, Rogues, Spellcasters) is chosen for the new level the character continues with his normal progression in attack and saving throw. If a different type of class is chosen the best of both classes is used.

For Example:
The above 5th level Warrior /1st level Sorcerer would use the 5th level  Warrior attack and saving throws. If he were to gain enough levels of Sorcerer to beat his Warrior attack and saves he would then use them. Use the best of both.
If he had chosen another Fighter class, say Scout, his attack and saving throw would continue as a 6th level Warrior .

The character can use any weapon his classes allow but he must follow the armor restrictions for class abilities:
Leather armor or less if a Thief class is chosen, no armor for spells as a Sorcerer, etc.
Shields may be used if a class allows but must be dropped or slung for thieving or magic.

Surprise modifiers and armor class bonuses granted by classes do not stack.

A few Hyborian Setting Rules
Attribute Rolls
Roll 4d6 for each, arrange as desired.

Binding Wounds
After combat characters treat their wounds and regain 1d4 hit points.

Bonus Languages
There is no common tongue in this setting and the stories often show the heroes and primary characters able to learn and speak many languages. Characters start with their racial language and a bonus language at first level. Normal extra language for higher Intelligence apply.

If exposed to new languages and have the opportunity to learn it a character can learn a new language every fourth level or HD (4, 8, 12, etc.)

Healing
Hyborian characters regain two hit points per level each day if they rest. Slow travel on foot, horse, or cart is permitted. If they are involved in combat, movement faster than walking speed, etc they only gain one hit point per level.

Hit Points
Hyborian characters start out at maximum hit points at first level. When rollng hit points each level after all one's on the dice are rerolled.

Gambling & Cheating
To make a gambling check each gambler rolls a 1d6 + Int modifier, highest roll wins.

Those attempting to cheat roll a Dexterity check for a +1 bonus to the gambling check.
Any character with the  Pick Pockets ability may substitute this roll instead of his Dexterity roll if he has a better chance.  If the cheater rolls a natural 20 or a natural 95-100 percent he has been spotted by his victim or victims.

If the cheater fails his roll the victim has a 1-2 in 6 chance of detecting the cheating. This is modified by the cheater's Dexterity bonus, if any, and the victim's Wisdom bonus, if any.  Each victim of the cheat gets to roll to notice.

Riding
A basic riding check is a Dexterity check with modifiers as decided by the DM.

Falling off a moving horse or wagon does damage depending on the horse's movement. At a walk the damage is 1d3, at a trot the damage is 1d4, and for running the damage is 1d6.

Those attacking on a horse moving faster than a walk receive a -2 penalty to attack unless stated otherwise in a class ability.

Riders in melee against unmounted foes receive a +1 to hit and a +1 AC bonus for being on higher ground.

New Bow Rules 
A long bow and a strong bow, and let the sky grow dark!
The cord to the nock, the shaft to the ear, and the king of Koth for a mark!
-The Scarlet Citadel

I decided to make a few changes to the bow statistics (always a considered and sometimes controversial subject) to reflect the importance and power of certain cultural bows in the setting.
These rules are used with only one attack per round from a bow. This and the limitations of ammunition should keep things from getting out of hand.

The Bossonian longbow and the Stygian bow are large and very powerful warbows. They inflict severe wounds due to their heavy pull and large arrows. A Strength score of 12 is required to fire either bow. Neither can be fired while mounted.

The common hunting bow is a short bow found across the Hyborian world. It is the most common type of bow. It can be used mounted.

The Hyrkanian and Shemitish bows are of similar design. They are hard hitting but not as powerful as the Bossonian or Stygian bows. They do have a better range and can be used while mounted.

Arrows can be tipped with barbs giving a +1 bonus to damage.

Crossbows are loaded by pulling the string back by hand and takes one full round to reload. The Arbalest is a deadly steel bowed crossbow which must be cocked with a crank or winding mechanism. This takes three full rounds to reload.











Thursday, March 2, 2017

The Haunted Valley: A Few Ways of Getting the PC's Involved

 Financial
Hired to find a missing person  or find stolen item or items.
Hired to assassinate a resident of the valley.
Rumors of a lost treasure has found them, perhaps even with a map to ruins in the valley.
The Bishop's cousin, missing, last seen travelling through Geron via coach. Went missing and the coach went on ahead and reported his loss. The Party is hired to find out what happened.
Via traveling monks reports of witchcraft, diabolism, and evil spirits has reached the Bishop. The Party is hired to escort a member of the church to investigate. They are seeking proof of devil worship, black magic, witches, sorcery, demons, devils, ghosts, and anything out of the ordinary. If possible destroy the threats. They are also tasked with rooting out any other heresies be they mundane or supernatural in origin.

Personal
A family member or friend missing and must investigate. A scholar friend was passing through the valley. Last letter is from Geron. Stayed to study ruins and rumors of occult activity. Letters stopped alerting PC's to his disappearance. Where is he?
Perhaps a stolen family heirloom or even a stolen spellbook or item has led the Party to the valley.
An NPC in Geron murdered a family member, friend, or lover of a PC. He has tracked the culprit to the valley. The guilty party does not know who the PC is.

Seeking knowledge
Rumor of a magical tome or item in the valley reaches the ears of the PC's. They require it and must seek it out.
A member of the Party or someone they know is deathly sick and  mundane medicine has failed them. The Party has heard  rumors of a possible cure in the valley.

A Few Possible Trigger Events
Ideas to move things along or get the Party into action.

Assassination Attempt
Guards and Captain, manipulated by supernatural force or actual grudge against PC's
Townsfolk, whose secrets were learned
Supernatural force riled by the PC's

Barmaid Murdered
Hair taken
Similarity to the unnamed child killed years ago (Little Girl's Ghost)
Clues to Eurys

Being followed
Guards
Midnight Cat
Townsfolk
Minions of the Infernal Emissary

Demon Murders
Minion of the Infernal Emissary
Sent after enemies, those too close to the truth(s)

Grave Robbed
Ghouls
Desperate townsfolk, traveler, etc looking for loot or item

Gravedigger Murder
Eurys the Mouse's revenge for the blackmail
Covering tracks or clues to the murder

Gypsies
Harassed in the village
Offer to trade or service for a favor from PC's
Mother of the hanged ghost gypsy boy seeking revenge

Old Svalovich
Seen creeping about
Looking in at night on the PC's
Interacting with PC's
Hidden coffin

Scarecrow Bodies
Travelling monks killed and hidden  in fields outside of town
Found by farmer
Who killed? Sacrificed?

Friday, February 17, 2017

Haunted Valley: The Curse and The Tower



The Valley was cursed many years ago.  

The Cursed Tower
The East Wood, many centuries past.
An ancient road ran through the forest in those days and was guarded by a tower, the home of two brothers, knights. The older brother was a prideful man, a powerful warrior. The younger was also a skilled warrior but was kind and merciful. They argued as brothers are wont to do. For years they guarded the road from bandits, protecting travelers and keeping law and order in the land. The elder brother grew ill, sick and half mad. How this occurred is lost to time, later tales were unclear. In the end it drove him to madness and he attacked his brother, slaying him in a fevered rage before he took his own life. But fate was not done with the mad knight. For his actions he was cursed to rise as a Death Knight. He soon began to haunt the road despoiling and killing those he had been charged to protect.

A companion of the brothers, a priest, returned to his home from a pilgrimage and learned of the attacks from the tower. He entered the tower with his own key of silver, given freely by his former companions in trust, to discover what had befallen his allies. Soon he found his friend the younger, a pile of moldering bones and, to his horror, the heart of the noble brother, intact and still beating. Alerted to the priest's presence the older brother, the cursed Death Knight, came forth from his upper chambers. In a fright the priest fled, barely escaping the dread knight. Leaping through the door he turned and locked it with his silver key and layed a powerful curse on the Death Knight, locking it into the tower for eternity.

The priest bound the knight, the knight's actions and presence infected the tower, the tower's presence slowly cursed the valley over the centuries with darkness and evil, drawing madness and fell creatures to the valley. Until the Death Knight is destroyed the valley remains under the sway of evil.

The priest, wracked with guilt over his failure to completely cleanse the evil and physically broken by the laying of the binding curse, stayed to watch over the valley and the village which had sprung up in the years since. He slowly wasted away and died, unable to bring himself to enter the tower and freeing is friend's souls for fear of releasing the creature trapped within. To keep the Death Knight bound and protect the valley's residents he instructed the village priest to bury him in a secret grave with the silver key to the tower.

The tale survives all these centuries later as bits and pieces of legend and folktale. Most of the details were intentionally hidden by the old priests and ancestors of the villagers. Forgotten and buried away.

The location of the tower has been lost to the ages. The evil seeping from it twisted the Darken Wood around the tower aiding in hiding it from those who enter the Eastern Woods. The tower itself fades out of reality, only visible and accessible on the night's of the full moon and the anniversary of the locking of the tower. Eventually the curse grew strong enough that those who did stumble upon it (such as Old Svalovich) forget the location soon after seeing it (1d6 hours). They do often dream of an old tower in the woods but cannot comprehend why upon waking. Another insidious property of the curse is that those who dwell in the valley for one full month (full cycle of the moon) must make a Saving throw. If they fail they will be compelled to dwell within the valley, trapping them in the curse with no desire to return to their true homes. Those who are born in the valley automatically fail this Saving throw when they come of age. They are trapped in misery.

  • To lift the curse the lore of the tower must be discovered. 
  • The location of the tower and the secret grave of the priest with the silver key must be found through the lore and clues. 
  • The key must be used to open the tower, the eternally beating heart of the noble brother must be staked to release his soul, and the Death Knight must be destroyed. 
  • Once this is done the pall which hangs over the valley will be lifted and the evil creatures in it will soon leave or fade away. 

Life will become normal for its inhabitants. They will be free to stay or leave.

Information Sources
Here are several possible sources of information for the DM to dole out to his players to solve the mystery of the Tower and Valley. I've kept it vague in many areas for you to rearrange and place clues as needed.

This will probably be reorganized and edited as I go. We shall see.

Tavern: 
Rumors and half truth information about the broken witch coven, ghosts, sightings. Lots of speculation and red herrings here. One juicy find would be the mention of a few people having similar dreams, especially some older hunters over the years, of a lost tower in a forest.

Church records: 
Letters, journals, records about ghosts, demons, and goblins in the valley. Enough to seed a few missions into the forests and lead to encounters with entities.
A few letters about bad dreams and tower sightings.
An ancient broken stained glass window in the cellar showing two knights in a forest tower with a key and a heart between them..

Lore twisted over time, Children's Rhymes:
(passed down, bits come may come in dream to sleepers, may be carved on trees, stonewalls, etc)

The Curse has been laid upon our good Town
The Witch and Wolves and Ogres gather round
Surrounded by Darkness, alone in our Town
We wait for te Evil to swallow us down

The Knight in his Tower
He broods all alone
for a Brother he lost
Long long ago

Find the Key, lift the Spell
Find the Heart of the Brother who fell

Mad Gaston;
Witches, Ogre, The Black Rider, Old Svalovich creeping, the journal. He has seen them.
Old Svalovich's Journal: Location of Lost Tower. In his madness Gaston believes that he must keep the tower a secret. He will not reveal what he knows short of charming spells, extreme torture, etc. If the journal can be found in his hovel it is written in legible French and Latin.

Mother Toad:
Information on remedies, superstitions, charms. Basic information on the witch coven, leaders, meeting place, etc. Knows of many who dream of a lost tower somewhere in the valley. Believes Gaston may know more but he won't tell. She may have the knowledge to show the investigators how to summon a ghost via the creation of ghost chimes or spirit candles. 

The Midnight Cat:
The witch coven, location of the alter hiding place, ghosts, information on the Guard Captain. He may know where the investigators can find more information. For a price.

'The Hanged Ghost:
Ghosts of past executions may know of Tower lore possibly even location. Names of the (legally) executed are kept in the church records.

Gypsies: 
Ghosts, sightings, the Hanged Ghost.
Location of the priest's hidden grave (the silver key). This will be a VERY costly secret.










Haunted Valley. NPC statistics.


Statistics for the villagers and other inhabitants of the Haunted Valley of Wolves described here.


Baker
Eurys the Mouse, 37
HD: 1
HP: 4
AC: 8/11, quilted jerkin
Damage: 1d4, knife
Save: 17/F1
Move: 120/40
Alignment: Neutral (insane)
Eurys is skilled at attacking from behind. He has a backstab bonus of +4 hit/x2 damage .

When the urge to kill again takes him and he does the deed, Eurys is transformed into a Boogeyman. He appears normal but gains a number of dark gifts to aide in his murder.

Eurys the Bogeyman
HD: 4
HP: 22
AC: 6/13, supernatural resistance
Damage: 1d4+2, knife. two attacks per round.
Save: 14/F4
Move: 120/40
Alignment: Chaotic (insane)
As a Bogeyman Eurys is stronger, receiving a +2 to hit/damage from strength. He can attack twice per round. If he gets the drop on an opponent he can backstab for a +4  to hit/x3 damage bonus.

His unnatural state allows him to regenerate two hit points per round until he is at zero hit points or below.
He can also shadow-walk three times per day: as a full round action he can step into any shadow and appear out of another shadow within his line of sight.

Blacksmith
Rolf Muller, 48
HD: 2
HP: 9
AC: 7/12, leather apron
Damage:  1d4+1, hammer
Save: 16/F2
Move: 120/40
Alignment: Neutral
Rolf is strong and receives a +1 to hit/damage from is strength bonus. As a former member of the witch coven he learned a few ritual magic spells: Detect evil, Protection from evil, and Snake charm.

Candlemaker
Etaine, 33
HD: 2
HP:  7
AC: 8/11, dexterity bonus
Damage:  1d4, knife. 1d8, wheellock pistol.
Save: 14/Th2
Move: 120/40
Alignment: Neutral
Etaine is a 2nd level Thief with all of the abilities of such. He has exceptional dexterity and receives a +1 to AC/ranged to hit.

Clergy (Franciscan)
Father Olwyn, 52
HD: 1
HP: 4
AC: 9/10
Damage: 1d2, fist
Save: 17/Cl1
Move: 120/40
Alignment: Lawful

Friar Martin, 24
HD: 1
HP: 5
AC: 9/10
Damage: 1d2, fist
Save: 17/F1
Move: 120/40
Alignment: Lawful

Friar Eric, 25
HD: 1
HP: 6
AC: 9/10
Damage: 1d4, knife.
Save: 17/Th1
Move: 120/40
Alignment: Neutral
Eric has experience with thievery to feed his mother before becoming a friar. He has the abilities of hide in shadows, move silently, and climb walls as a first level Thief.

Grave Digger
Pippin the Lame, 34
HD:  1
HP: 6
AC: 9/10
Damage: 1d4+1, spade
Save: 17/F1
Move:90/30, club foot
Alignment: Chaotic
Pippin is strong and receives a +1 to hit/damage from is strength bonus. He is also a natural bushwacker and can backstab with a bonus of  +4 hit/x2 damage.

Guard Barracks
Captain Julian, 41
 HD: 6
HP:  28
AC: 4/15, studded leather and dexterity bonus
Damage: 1d8+1, sword. 1d4+1, dagger. 1d8, 2 wheellock pistols.
Save: 12/F6
Move: 120/40
Alignment: Chaotic
Julian is strong receiving a +1 to hit/damage from is strength bonus as well as fast, receiving a a +2 to AC/ranged to hit from his dexterity bonus. He is adept at two-weapon fighting and receives a 0 penalty to his primary (right) hand and a -2 penalty to his off (left) hand.

Sergeant, Andres
HD:  3
HP:  18
AC: AC: 5/14, chain shirt
Damage:  1d8+1, sword. 1d2, 10' range, whip. 1d8, 2 wheellock pistols.
Save: 14/F3
Move: 120/40
Alignment: Chaotic
Andres is strong brute, receiving a +1 to hit/damage from is strength bonus.

Guardsmen
HD: 1
HP:  7
AC: 7/12, leather
Damage:  1d8, sword. 1d4, dagger. 1d8, wheellock pistol.  2d8, matchlock musket.
Save: 11/F7
Move: 120/40
Alignment: Neutral

Merchant
Reynauld Aubrie, 43
Special: see here

Physician
Dr. Elloi Reno, 62
HD: 1
HP:  5
AC: 9/10
Damage: 1d3, walking stick. 1d6, pocket pistol. 1d4, surgeon's knife.
Save: 17/Cl1
Move: 120/40
Alignment: Lawful
Dr. Reno has the abilities of a 1st level Physician found here. He is also a good source of anatomical and medical knowledge and coud be consulted, despite the relatively crude methods and theories of the time. He serves as the local coroner for official documentation.

Tanner
Benoist, 31
HD: 1
HP: 5
AC: 9/10, 8/11 when dressed in skins.
Damage: 1d4, hook knife
Save: 17/Th1
Move: 120/40
Alignment: Neutral
Benoist is skilled at skulking and has the same chance to move quietly and hide in shadows as a third level Thief.

Tavern, "The Fatted Calf"
Jean and Hilda Babineau, 30's
HD: 1
HP: 8
AC: 9/10
Damage: 1d4, knife. 1d6, cleaver. 1d4 club. 1 hp, lash.
Save: 17/F1
Move: 120/40
Alignment: Chaotic

Etta and Sabine, 20's
HD: 1
HP: 5
AC: 9/10
Damage: 1d3, stiletto.
Save: 17/F1
Move: 120/40
Alignment: Neutral

Roche, 41, the barkeep.
HD: 2
HP: 12
AC: 9/10
Damage: 1d4, club or knife. 1d3, two fists.
Special Abilities:
Save: 17/F2
Move: 120/40
Alignment: Neutral
Roche is quick with his fists getting two attacks per round and doing 1d3 damage per fist.

Trader
Lazlo, 53
HD: 2
HP: 8
AC: 8/11, quilted vest
Damage: 1d4, knife. 1d6, pocket pistol. 1d6, crossbow.
Save: 16/F2
Move: 120/40
Alignment: Chaotic
Lazlo is an accomplished gambler and cheat. He gains a +2 on gambling checks. He can also pick pockets as a second level Thief.

The Mad Hermit
Gaston, 67
HD: 1
HP: 4
AC: 9/10
Damage: 1d3, stick. 1d4, knife.
Save: 11/F7
Move: 120/40
Alignment: Neutral

The Wise Woman
Mother Toad, 89
HD: 1
HP: 3
AC: 10/9, crippled from age
Damage: 1d4-1, knife.
Save: 17/Cl1
Move: 60/20
Alignment: Lawful
Mother Toad's physical condition has been going down hill due to her advanced years. Melee and ranged hit bonuses, melee damage , and AC are all at a -1 penalty due to her reduced strength and dexterity. She has also lost a few hit points over the years due to reduced constitution.

She has learned how to make a number of low level healing potions (heal 1d3 hit points), can treat or cure a number of diseases, and has a variety useful knowledge, the extent of which is up to the DM. She is a source of healing, information, and should be useful to the PC's once discovered.

Outsiders
Coachman
HD: 1
HP:  7
AC: 8/11, buff coat
Damage:  1d6, hatchet. 1d4, dagger. 1d10, wheellock horse pistol. 3d6, blunderbuss.*
Save: 11/F7
Move: 120/40
Alignment: Neutral
* A blunderbuss makes an attack roll against everyone in a cone extending out from the muzzle. The width of the cone is  5’ at the muzzle and extends to a maximum width of 15' within the first range increment. There are five range increments of twenty feet each. Bonuses/penaties to hit are: +2 to Hit  at range increments one and two, -2 at increment three, -4 at increment four,  -6 at increment five.
Damage inflicted is 3d6 damage to targets struck in the first two range increments, 2d6 to targets in the third and fourth range increments, and 1d6 to targets in the fifth range increment.

Assistant Coachman
HD: 1
HP:  6
AC: 8/11, buff coat
Damage:  1d4, club. 1d4, dagger. 2d8 matchlock caliver.
Save: 11/F7
Move: 120/40
Alignment: Neutral

Gypsy
HD: 1
HP:  5
AC: 8/11, leather vests
Damage:  1d4, dagger. 1d6, long knife. 1d12, matchlock musket.
Save: 11/F7
Move: 120/40
Alignment: Neutral
Gypsies are notorious for trickery. Individiuls may have thieving abilities at the DM's discretion.

Mercenary/Bandit
HD: 1
HP:  7
AC: 7/12, leather
Damage:  1d8, sword. 1d4, dagger. 1d8, wheellock pistol. 2d8, matchlock musket.
Save: 11/F7
Move: 120/40
Alignment: Neutral



Thursday, February 16, 2017

Haunted Valley: The Infernal Emissary

One of the  most prominent citizens of the Valley of Wolves Reynauld Aubrie is secretly an Infernal Emissary and the Devil's primary agent in collecting the uncorrupted souls still left in the valley. 

Merchant
Reynauld Aubrie, 43
HD: 8
HP:  41
AC: 7/12,
Damage: 1d8, sword. 1d8 wheellock pistol.  
Save: 8/Cl 1
Move: 120/40
Alignment: Lawful
As an Infernal Emissary, Aubrie has many powers at his dark command.
He is protected from most harm and is only hit with weapons of silver or magic. His marked hand, when used to strike a foe, paralyzes his enemy as a ghoul's attack would (Saving throw allowed). He can also animate the dead three times per day with the hand's power. His eyes are hypnotic allowing him to cast Charm person through them three times daily.

He has the ability to partially control the wolf pack and batswarm. He can attempt to do is once per night. If he makes a successful Saving throw they will follow his command. Each new command requires a new Saving throw and failure means he cannot try until the next night.

In addition to these abilities he also has the power of an eighth level witch.
He knows the following spells (he can cast two of each level per day):
Level One: Detect magic, Read magic, Sleep.
Level Two: Detect evil, ESP, Hold person, Locate object.
Level Three: Dispel magic, Fly, Speak with dead.
Level Four: Confusion, Dimension door, Protection from evil 10'.
Level Five: Commune, Finger of death, Teleport.

He can also brew poison (2d6), and create potions, salves, and charms as a witch.

Along with his mundane weapons and wealth he has access to a number of items. Among them is a human hand of glory made from Jaques Savoy, a head of revelations, a brand of subjugation, and 6 zombie coins. He has a various number of potions, salves, and charms at the ready.

Purpose
Aubrie's purpose in the valley is to corrupt the souls of those not already damned and deliver them unto his master Satan. He is slowly growing in power and influence; he is a careful manipulator and will stay in the shadows as long as possible. He is gathering minions and knowledge to use to his advantage. He will use every trick he can to corrupt those around him: blackmail, promises of power, diabolic magic, murder, mind games, and anything else that will turn them to bargain their souls away. He plans to eventually control the entire valley, turning the inhabitants into a cult, and spreading his influence outward.

Aubrie is carefully building a network of minions to serve him. He has recruited Etaine the candlemaker and Pippin the gravedigger to assist him. They do not know who he is as he remains hooded and masked but they have felt his power and are willing to serve him. Soon he will demand that they sign their souls to his master in exchange for favors.

He is also considering trying to recruit Rolf the blacksmith and the Guard Captain Julian. He does not believe either will sell their souls and willingly serve but the power of the brand of subjugation will bring them in line. Aubrie can also use the brand on a Player Character to spy on the PC's Party when they begin to complicate things.

Often going cloaked at night to observe and plot his diabolic plans, he has learned many secrets since returning to the valley and is considering ways to use them to his own purposes.

  • He has knowledge of the witch's coven and knows that the blacksmith Rolf Muller was a secret member. He will try to use this knowledge to persuade then blackmail Rolf. 
  • He has seen the Midnight Cat and knows it was the witch Yolanda's familiar. He is aware that the cat is plotting something but the creature is sly and keeps clear of Aubrie.
  • He has seen the Little Girl's Ghost but she fled from him, sensing his evil. 
  • He has observed the Black Rider and his hounds taking a soul on the East Trade Road.
  • He is aware of Old Svalovich and the Ogre but considers them minor nuisances for now. 
  • He feels a vast dark power in the East Woods (the hidden Tower) but cannot locate it. He has been warned off of investigating this mystery when communing with his master. Unknown to him his master will use him to protect the cursed tower from those who would discover it and lift the curse. This will ultimately bring him into direct conflict with the players.


Lovecraftian Racial Classes Part II. OSR

More Mythos inspired Race Class.
The original post is Here.

Apeman
Requirements: STR 9, CON 9
Prime Requisite: STR
Hit Dice: 1d8
Maximum Level: 12
Advance: Dwarf
Attack: As Dwarf
Saves: As Dwarf
Apemen are primitive with brutal features, long arms, and twisted muscular bodies covered in hair ranging from white to rusty red to brown and black. They are remnants of ancient and degenerated forgotten cities. They may be captured by hunters or scientists and brought back to civilizations as curiosities, scientific specimens, or even minions. The Apemen are intelligent with knowledge of fire, weaponry, tactics, etc. Their bestial appearance and manner halves their Charisma when dealing with normal folk.

They speak their own primitive language but can be taught to roughly speak other languages. 

They greatly prefer attacks with clubs, axes, and other melee weaponry. They rarely wear armor heavier than leather as it interferes with their ability to climb.

The Apeman is stronger than a human. To reflect this he gains a +2  (in addition to their normal Strength bonus) to all  melee and unarmed damage rolls, as well as to attempts to open doors. The +2 is also used as a bonus to any Strength attribute checks. Their bulky frames give them a +2 to AC from fur and muscle.

If angered or attacked  the Apeman must make a saving throw or go into a violent rage attacking the source of his distress with a +2 bonus to hit/damage with melee weapons, a -2 penalty with ranged weapons, and a -2 penalty to AC. Once combat is over (the irritation is dead or has successfully fled) the Apeman must make another saving throw to calm down and not attack his allies in his frenzy. He makes this saving throw check each round til he comes out of the rage.

The Apeman's body is adapted to climbing as a Thief of the same level.

Their primitive origins give them a few disadvantages. They have an ingrained fear of the unknown and receive a  -2 to Saving Throws versus magic. They also receive a -2 /10 percent penalty to rolls using modern technology such as firearms, vehicles, electronics, etc.


Mythos Spawn (Yes it's a Wilbur Whately Class)
Requirements: STR 9, INT 9
Prime Requisite: INT
Hit Dice: 1d6
Maximum Level: 10
Advance: Elf
Attack: As Elf
Saves: As Dwarf
Half human, half Mythos entity. These creatures are the result of the mating of a cultist, or innocent victim, with the powerful god-like entities of the Mythos. They are taller than an average human and tend to have heavy, bestial features. They can pass, barely, as a deformed member of their human parent's race with heavy clothing and other disguises. When unclothed they are a horrific sight: strange odd colored inhuman skin, rough, thick, or scaled. Their feet are often pads or hooves. Various growths such as eyes and small useless limbs, tails, or tentacles are present. 

The Mythos Spawn can speak any language a normal man would.

Mythos Spawn can use any weapon but  avoid armor as it is uncomfortable on their bodies and interfere with their ritual casting. 

Due to their strangeness their effective Charisma is half of their normal score and when  their true nature is discovered Charisma drops to 0 for those who have seen. Animals also react negatively to their presence. If a Mythos Spawn comes within 30' of an animal that is aware of its presence the animal will become agitated, barking and making other warnings to keep the Mythos Spawn at bay. If it comes within 10' the animal must make a Saving throw or go berserk and attacking with a ferocity giving the animal a +2 to hit. The animal will attack until the Mythos Spawn moves out of the 10' range. Guard animals, predators and other animals which would normally attack still receive the Saving throw to gain the +2 attack bonus.

Their heritage gives them a number of advantages physically. They receive an AC bonus of +2 due to their nature and can see perfectly in the dark up to 60'. They regenerate one hit point per round until they are brought to zero hit points or lower.

The Mythos Spawn can cast Detect Magic and Read Magic as an innate ability.  Other than normal movement the effort takes up their entire round. They can use these as desired, there is no limit per day.

Their magic is not like the mundane spell-casters, the Spawn is innately adept at casting ritual magic. They gain a +4 to their casting roll as per these rules. They can cast any spell of any level they have discovered as a ritual. The limit on spells cast this way is equal to their Hit Dice +. Thus a 6HD Mythos Spawn could cast 7 ritual spells per day (this is less than the average Magic User but the Spawn's advantage is its ability to better cast higher level spells as rituals.)
Wilbur Whately by Ivan Berov
https://dribbble.com/shots/1646937-Wilbur-Whateley

Servant Slime
Requirements: DEX 9, CON 9
Prime Requisite: CON
Hit Dice: 1d6
Maximum Level: 10
Advance: Magic User
Attack: As Dwarf
Saves: As Dwarf
Servant Slimes are man-sized mounds of pseudo-flesh slime which can manipulate their forms for movement, manipulation, and attacks. They are often compelled or serve willingly dark priests and sorcerers. A few are actually created by their masters. A rare few have remained independent, freed or out of work when their master was destroyed. They will often attempt to join up with other creatures due to curiosity or a longing for company after years of servitude. If rejected they will often stalk their would-be companions.  Because of their physical nature they do not require food, air, or water although, because of the pseudo-flesh nature of their bodies, they can be affected by disease and poisons. They can easily use tools and weaponry but cannot wear armor. Magic rings of protection will function if kept embedded in it's main mass.

They understand languages but cannot speak them. They will communicate via writing or signing with pseud-pods.

A Servant Slime can stretch and manipulate its shape. It can become a thin puddle to ooze between cracks, under doors, and climb up walls. It gains a +4 AC bonus and acts as if under a Spider climb spell. Its senses are functionally the same as a normal human although they do have the ability to see in darkness up to 60'.

It's body regenerates 2 hit points per round unless the damage is from magic, acid, cold, or fire. It will heal normally from these. Regeneration ceases when brought to zero hit points or lower. The Slime receives a +2 Saving throw vs disease and poison and a -4 penalty to Saving throws versus cold attacks.

Although it can attack with weaponry it also has the ability to extrude acid from its body or from parts of its body at will. This acid is a touch attack and does 1d6 damage per round of contact.
The Slime Monster by Know-Kname
http://know-kname.deviantart.com/art/the-slime-monster-382401546

Subhuman
Requirements: DEX 9, CON 9
Prime Requisite: DEX
Hit Dice: 1d6
Maximum Level: 12
Advance: Halfling
Attack: As Halfling
Saves: As Halfling
Small, often hairy, pale, degenerate creatures they are descendants of men which have devolved into underground dwellers. They are cannibalistic and deformed, less than four feet tall and apish in form and manner. Their maximum Intelligence and Wisdom scores are limited to 12. Their ghastly appearance, odious habits, and violent tendencies are horrific to behold. 

They speak their own language and sometime Ghoulish. They are capable of learning and understanding human languages but their vocalizations are guttural and hard to understand at times.. 

Subhumans  can use small weapons and rarely used ranged. The prefer their vicious bite which does 1d4 damage. The use of armor is rare, mostly scraps of leather and other materials for a +2 armor class bonus. 

Like Ghouls they are excellent at hiding and stealth ability to disappear into the shadows when underground, in both natural and man-made structures, with 90% ability. They can also hide in shadows or behind other forms of cover in wilderness or urban settings on a roll of 1-2 on 1d6, but they must be silent and motionless. Their underground life has given them the ability to see in the dark up to 60'. 

Being opportunistic hunters they can backstab as a Thief of equal level. 

Worm-Thing
Requirements: DEX 9, CON 9
Prime Requisite: DEX
Hit Dice: 1d8
Maximum Level: 10
Advance: Dwarf
Attack: As Dwarf
Saves: As Dwarf
Cold, mutated worm-men from the depths beneath the earth,  born perhaps naturally or due to some magical or man-made accident, and have come above ground to walk among us. They appear much like  humanoid segmented earthworms black eyes and a large fanged maw. Their motives are unknown and may be sinister or merely curiosity. They favor using their consume likeness ability to infiltrate and enjoy the comforts of society. Once discovered their true form is hideous to normal men.

They are quite intelligent and, besides their own putrid speech, pick up language and customs quickly. 

They can use any weapon or armor. 

The squishy worm-flesh take minimum damage from piercing weapons and regenerate one hit point per round until they reach zero hit points or less. They cannot regenerate damage from cold, fire, salt, or magic and Save against cold with a -2 penalty.  Contact with pure salt damages their bodies at a rate of 1d6 hit points per round of contact. Their mucousy bodies allow climbing as per the Spider climb spell and a Worm-Thing can see perfectly in the dark out to 60'. 

Although they can use weapons the Worm-Thing has formidable natural attacks: their toothy bite does 1d4 damage and can spit acid three times per day for 2d6 damage. The effective range of this attack is 10'. 

The most insidious power of the Worm-Thing is their ability to consume the likeness of others. It can swallow a human-sized corpse taking three rounds to do so. After 1d6+6 minutes of bloated digesting the outer form of the Worm-Thing splits open and the tissue below assumes the form of the now absorbed corpse. This appearance will last as long as the Worm-Thing desires unless it is wounded or rendered unconscious. When either occurs it must make a Saving Throw to retain the form otherwise its assumed form splits open, the skin sloughs off and, wrapped in mucous, the true form of the Worm-Thing is revealed.