venerdì 28 ottobre 2016

A New Random Encounters Table for Curse of Strahd

They increase diversity in a game, which often means they can increase fun.

So, even if I'm running official adventures, I also create alternative random encounters table.

This is the one I've developed one for Curse of Strahd.

Roll 1d12+1d8

2 1d4 vampire's spawns
3 1 paladin (50% with 1d4 guards)
4 1 priest and 1d6 acolytes
5 1 dryad
6 Heavy rain
7 1d4+1 specters
8 1 owlbear
9 1d4 brown bears
10 1d4 giant boars
11 2d4 barovian witches
12 Mosquitoes
13 2d6 ghouls
14 1 satyr
15 1 mage with 2d4 skeletons
16 1d6 wereboars
17 1 cult fanatic with 2d6 cultists
18 1d4 poltergeists
19 1 wraith
20 Old cemetery

Barovian Witches
At day they are gathering herbs and other stuff for their rites.
At night they're performing an unholy rite in a circle of old standing stones.

Brown Bears
They're either hunting for food or protecting their children near their lair.
The lair, once cleared, can be safely used for short or long rests.

Cult Fanatics
50% they've got some prisoners (1d4 commoners) to be sacrificed for the devils they adore. If encountered at night, they're performing the sacrifice at a crude stone altar.
They might be connected with the cult in Vallaki, and if interrogated might give some clues about it.

She can be either (50%/50%) an ally of the party, giving shelter, repair and informations about Barovia or, corrupted by the Dark Powers, an enemy.
In the last case she tries to charm and lure players into traps.

Heavy Rain
It starts raining for 1d4 days. During the rain every outside area is lightly obscured.
When the party find shelter the rain stops to start again when they go outside.

They're are raised from old graves and look for no more than slaying the living.
This encounter happens only at night.
While running the adventure, sometimes I switch from one table to the other: the more random events, the more fun for the players.

Giant Boars
They are searching the area for foods. They try to escape but if threatened they attack.

The mage is a necromancer with some of his minions. She might be a Strahd's spy or have her own business. She might give some clues about the Amber Temple or Yester Hill.

A swarm of mosquitoes annoys the party. Each member makes a Constitution saving throw DC 15. On a failed save, the characters get a disease, which gives one level of exhaustion cumulative on each day until cured.

Old cemetery
It seems a rather usual but ancient and forgotten Barovian cemetery.
If the PCs start investigating the area they found their names written on some tombstones. If they dig near them they find some rotten corpses with their nonmagical equipment.

This encounter happens only at night.
The owlbear is savage and brutal as an member of its race.

The paladin is on a holy quest and can ask for help to the players (50%).
Otherwise (50%) his quest comes from the Abbey of Saint Markovia and he's looking for the party to defeat it.
In any case he can give clues about the Abbey.
You find there his stats block.

PCs find an abandoned structure (a tower, a house) haunted by poltergeists.
If killed,  the party can use the structure for short or long rests.

The priest is a follower of the Morninglord. He can help the party with useful spells or informations about Barovia, Vallaki or Krezk.
In some cases (25%) he's an emissary from the Abbey of Saint Markovia.

Like the dryad, he can be helpful (50%) or can be an enemy (50%).
If he's an enemy he stays hidden behind bushes and trees and playing his pipe.

Some specters are haunting an old battlefield. They were members of the Order of the Silver Dragon and might give clues about Argynvostholt.

Vampire's Spawns
They're sent by Strahd to test the party.

It's a tiny tribe which lives in the woods of Barovia. If encountered at night they're in boar form, otherwise they are in human form.
They're hostile but party can persuade them to change their behavior.
If successful, they can give clues about the Werewolf den and Wizard of Wines vinery.

Risen from its tomb this creature is only looking for some soul to torture.
Sometimes (25%) it leads a small group (1d4) of wights.

You can add this table to your Curse of Strahd adventure or to any other campaign you run in Ravenloft.


The DM.

giovedì 20 ottobre 2016

Paladin - NPC stats block

You already know that I like a lot the paladin class.

I also like when in my campaign the party meets a paladin.

While a paladin can be both an ally or an opponent of the PCs, anyway in the MM of D&D 5th edition a NPC paladin isn't included.

So here you can find my own version of a paladin NPC, which was easily created by starting from the knight block in the MM:

The paladin is at the service of its order; it stands stand in front of the enemy of its religion without any fear or care for death. Every paladin holds a strict code of honor or ethics. To break this code is to loss everything they stand for in life.
A paladin is often chosen by other respectable members or leaders to lead a small group or a contingent of warriors on a holy quest. They are often the best choosen for such task due to them being more responsible than others.

  medium humanoid (any race), any alignment                      
  Armor Class 20 (plate, shield)                                        
  Hit Points 68 (8d10 + 24)                                                
  Speed 30 ft.                                                                  
        STR             DEX             CON             INT             WIS             CHA        
        16 (+3)             12 (+1)             16 (+3)             12 (+0)             12 (+1)             15 (+2)        
  Saving Throws Str +5, Dex +3, Con +5, Int +2, Wis +6, Cha +7
  Skills Athletics +6, Persuasion +5, Religion +4                    
  Senses passive Perception 11                                        
  Languages any one language (usually Common)                
  Challenge 5 (1.800 XP)                                                  
  Dueling. The paladin gains a +2 bonus to damage rolls while attacking with a melee weapon in one hand and no other weapons.  
  Aura of Protection. Whenever the paladin or a friendly creature within 10 feet of it must make a saving throw, the creature gains a bonus equal to its Charisma modifier. The paladin must be conscious to grant this bonus. The bonus is already counted in the paladin's saving throws  
  Brave. The paladin has advantage on saving throws against being frightened  
  Divine Smite. When the paladin hit a creature with a melee weapon attack, it can expend one spell slot to deal radiant damage to the target, in addition to the weapon's damage. The extra damage us 2d8 for a 1-st level spell slot, plus 1d8 for each spell level higher than 1st, to a maximum of 5d8. The damage increases by 1d8 if the target is an undead or fiend.  
  Spellcasting. The paladin is a 8th level spellcaster. Its spellcasting ability is Charisma (spell save DC 13, +5 to hit with spell attacks). It has the following paladin spells prepared:
  level (4 slots):
bless, cure wounds, shield of faith, thunderous smite 2nd level (3 slots): branding smite, magic weapon
  Multiattack. The paladin makes two melee attacks.  
  Lay on Hands. The paladin's blessed touch can heal wounds. It has a pool of 40 hit points which is recharged to its maximum after a long rest. As a action it can touch a creature a draw and draw power from the pool to restore a number of hit points to that creature, up to the maximum amunt remaining in its pool. Alternatively it can expend 5 hit points from the pool to cure the target of one disease or neutralize one poison affecting it.
  Turn Unholy. Each fiend or undead that can see or hear the paladin within 30 feet of it must make a DC 13 Wisdom saving throw or become frightened for 1 minute. A creature can repeat the saving throw at the end of each of its turns, ending the effect on itself on a success. If a creature's saving throw is successful or the effect ends for it, the creature is immune to the paladin's Turn Unholy for the next 24 hours.   
  Longsword.  Melee Weapon Attack: +6 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 8 (1d8+3) slashing damage.  


The DM.