View Full Version : [4e] Swarm/Summoner Druid background help

Edge of Dreams
2009-12-13, 01:33 AM
Hi guys,

Tomorrow I'll be rejoining a friend's campaign that I took a break from. I could use some help coming up with personality and background for my new insect-themed druid character.

Key facts:
Class: Druid, using the swam-themed build from Primal Power and focusing on summoning powers and feats
Paragon Path: Primal Summoner (from Primal Power)
Race: Human, possibly dwarf (I have a hard time seeing dwarf as swarm-themed though)

Setting: Fairly standard D&D world. There's a massive desert region to the north, various forests full of elves, etc. Recently, an army of warforged led by angels has been rampaging around, knocking down city after city. I'm not sure whether that's been dealt with or not since I was last part of the game.

Wild Shape: Usually swarms of insects, particular scarab beetles are cool-looking, or Japanese beetles (which are a particular type of scarab, actually)

Summons: I have three summons, the Giant Toad, Great Eagle, and Shadow Ape. DM gave permission for me to re-flavor them, as long as mechanics don't change, so my Eagle may become "Great Hornet" and the Ape may become "Shadow Swarm". Can't think of a good way to re-flavor the toad and not mess with its jump bonus though.

Stats are yet to be determined, but the build demands Wis and Con.

So, any ideas?

2009-12-13, 02:00 AM
The question is, what does the character summon, and what does the character swarm into. Anything is really possible. A dwarf? Oh yeah. That could be really fun.

Edge of Dreams
2009-12-13, 02:18 AM
Added more info on my summons and wild shape preferences.

2009-12-13, 02:35 AM
I'm actually gonna start up a swarm druid soon. Wilden Swarm Druid, depicted in my avatar.

Just being a swarm druid that happens to be a human or maybe a dwarf doesn't help me a whole lot. Sometimes stats and powers help. For example, my druid has a paragon path that causes them to glow brightly when they're in beast form. I've incorporated it into my background. Part of why I chose a Wilden is the synergy of being many at once when Wild Shaped with the fact that Wilden generally refer to themselves in the plural ('we' instead of 'I'), and that, as tree-people, they feel more Druidey, and they're Wis/Con, the perfect combination for a Swarm Druid. Also, the party I'm in is kinda against a goddess of madness, and Wilden tend to be anti-aberration. The more I designed him and read about my options and all the flavor of them, the more I wanted to play him, and the more I refined his personality and background.

So my advice is to take everything that your character is, every decision you made, and ask "Why did my character choose this to be a major part of his life?" For example: "How does being a Human/Dwarf effect my character's upbringing compared to other races. How would my character have reacted to that upbringing? Why did they become a Druid? Why a Swarm Druid specifically?"

Here's Cedarsting's info:
Cedarsting started out as "Swarm Druid looks interesting... What can I do with that?"



Hates aberrations, but is otherwise balance-minded. Except when fighting... Then he savors the violence. Usually uses Aspect of the Destroyer. Aspect has some slight effect on personality:

Aspect of the Ancients - A little more cautious
Aspect of the Destroyer - A little more aggressive
Aspect of the Hunter - A little more secretive


Mannerisms and Appearance

Cedarsting has green needles like a cedar tree in the summer with a contrasting brown bark. He wild shapes into a swarm of fey insects that glow brighter than fireflies and sting like bees. He always uses the plural to speak of himself and occasionally calls himself "The Glowswarm" as a sort of title.



Cedarsting had always been told as a sapling that Wilden came about to defend the Feywild and Natural world from the aberrations and madness of the Far Realm, but hadn't really believed that until he came across one of the places in the world where one could "look outside" (that is, to glimpse upon the Far Realm and tempt oneself of madness.) Being curious, Cedarsting took a quick glimpse. After several days of meditation in the forest, Cedarsting's mind was not brought into madness, but he understood the need to fight to protect the Feywild and Natural world. He learned to channel the power of the primal spirits to become what he calls The Glowswarm, a swarm of brightly glowing insects who's light is soothing to his friends and who's stingers are painful to his foes.


====== Created Using Wizards of the Coast D&D Character Builder ======
Cedarsting, level 17
Wilden, Druid, Luminescent Swarm
Primal Aspect: Primal Swarm
Hardy Form: Hardy Form Will
Background: Arcane Student Who Saw Too Much (Arcane Student Who Saw Too Much Benefit)

Str 9, Con 22, Dex 12, Int 11, Wis 23, Cha 11.

Str 8, Con 16, Dex 11, Int 10, Wis 17, Cha 10.

AC: 32 Fort: 28 Reflex: 24 Will: 30
HP: 124 Surges: 13 Surge Value: 33

Nature +22, Heal +19, Perception +21, Insight +21

Acrobatics +8, Arcana +8, Bluff +8, Diplomacy +9, Dungeoneering +14, Endurance +13, History +8, Intimidate +8, Religion +8, Stealth +10, Streetwise +8, Thievery +8, Athletics +6

Druid: Ritual Caster
Level 1: Ferocious Tiger Form
Level 2: Stinging Swarm
Level 4: Implement Expertise (totem)
Level 6: Hide Armor Expertise
Level 8: Toughness
Level 10: Durable (retrained to Uncanny Dodge at Level 15)
Level 11: Bolstered Swarm
Level 12: Hunting Wolf Form
Level 14: Quick Wild Shape
Level 16: Scattering Swarm

Druid at-will 1: Grasping Claws
Druid at-will 1: Flame Seed
Druid at-will 1: Swarming Locusts
Power User Choice: Swarm Notes
Druid encounter 1: Scattered Form
Druid daily 1: Savage Frenzy
Druid utility 2: Fleet Pursuit
Druid encounter 3: Flowing Swarm
Druid daily 5: Primal Wolverine
Druid utility 6: Swarm Dispersal
Druid encounter 7: Poison Sting
Druid daily 9: Flurry of Stingers
Druid utility 10: Swarm Swap
Druid encounter 13: Expose Weakness (replaces Poison Sting)
Druid daily 15: Revitalizing Pounce (replaces Savage Frenzy)
Druid utility 16: Howl of the Wild
Druid encounter 17: Scattered Form (replaces Scattered Form)

Ritual Book, Amulet of Protection +4, Predator Darkhide Armor +4, Strikebacks (heroic tier), Belt of Vigor (paragon tier), Tattoo of the Wolverine (heroic tier), Panther Slippers (heroic tier), Potion of Vitality (paragon tier) (3), Adventurer's Kit, Climber's Kit, Bracers of Rejuvenation (heroic tier), Handy Haversack (heroic tier), Rope of Climbing (heroic tier), Diadem of Acuity (heroic tier), Oalian's Balance Totem +4
Animal Messenger, Make Whole
====== Copy to Clipboard and Press the Import Button on the Summary Tab ======

Inyssius Tor
2009-12-13, 03:12 AM
(I have a hard time seeing dwarf as swarm-themed though)


minimum character limit says hi

2009-12-13, 03:50 AM
swarms of underground beasts would work fine for dwarfs.
Rats or bats, cave beetles, spiders, ants.

And as for reflavoring a frog use a jumping (or short flying) insect. Maybe locust, grasshopper, cicada or theres a type of spider that jumps and pounces.

2009-12-13, 06:09 AM
I second the locust or grasshopper idea for the toad, it should be very nice. It's up to you whether you want to make it a swarm of normal insects or just a single big specimen.

2009-12-13, 12:17 PM

minimum character limit says hi

A dwarf that wildshapes into a swirling mass of gravel would be one of the coolest characters ever.

I support this.

2009-12-13, 12:24 PM
I think a jumping spider works better, mainly because of the pull effect of the attack, call it web or something.

Isn't there some ridiculous harpoon shooting cricket in one of the 3.x MMs?