View Full Version : Random Druid Drifts

2007-04-26, 10:54 PM
Heya all. I've made myself a series of tables for randomly determining drifts for druids (and maybe the occasional curse or weird magic effect), and I'm thinking of putting them up here for perusal and use. It's in Excel, and seeing as we're not allowed to post attachments, it could be a bit of a pain to put up, so I thought I'd check whether anyone's interested first. I've based it on categories of living natural thingies (plant, mammal, bird, reptile, aquatic (incl. amphibian), bugs [for lack of a better word or the motivation to look it up. Invertebrates?]), with varying-length lists of drifts. The dice to be rolled are a bit, well, demented, due to the numbers thought of, but it should be easy enough to add more or take unliked ones away and so improve the rolling. So. What do y'all think? Useful?

2007-04-27, 08:15 PM
What exactly is a 'drift' in this context?

2007-04-28, 01:06 AM
Little changes in appearances, aimed at moving the Druid more and more into "Nature Personified", with aspects of various things on their being. Taken from the Geomancer class I guess.

I guess "Arthropods" is the word you're looking for, regarding bugs, vermin, crustaceans, and other assorted chitinous/exoskeletal beasts.

Inyssius Tor
2007-04-28, 01:11 AM
I express interest!

Furthermore, I question the length and width of your tables, for I am a novice forum tabler with too much time on my hands?

In addition: you can upload the item elsewhere, and link to the download here.

2007-04-28, 05:49 AM
In addition: you can try to upload the item elsewhere, and link to the download here.
Fixed. Buuut, I'll see what I can do. I also haven't been game to try the tabling here yet, either. We'll see.

2007-04-28, 03:31 PM
I also express interest!

...it's not just me? I can't see anything... :p

Amphimir Míriel
2007-04-28, 10:36 PM
Your ideas intrigue me and I wish to know more

2007-04-29, 11:04 AM
gah, such a pain to do! Here, I'll see if I can PM it to you. Elsewise, it shall probably take a while. For the record, the rolls are really... not very straightforward. Like I said, adding or taking away some options may help, but I was also thinking I could just order them a little bit, give some of them multiple numbers and make it a simple d%. Actually, now I think of it, I should definitely do that for at least one table... (d%/2 isn't very practical, though more so than d%/4... wait, I can fix that the same way! >slaps forehead<)

edit: woo for cross-programmage! Note that in-game crunchy relevance is flexible. eg. 2 stomachs may or may not have more relevance than an unusual amount of burping.

2007-04-29, 11:21 AM

2007-04-29, 11:38 AM
Just put them into d%s, whichever ones you want higher you give them more numbers(eg. Mechanically useless feature, 1/25 chance, so 4 numbers, like 4-7) Just to throw a few more suggestions.

Digitigrade. Foot extends, you walk on toes. +5 feet move, -2 to Balance checks(because you're taller, and less stable).

Extra joints. +2 to Escape Artist checks. Like those Chitines.

Aquatic could also produce "Shells", which reduce your movespeed or give ASF(not that it should matter, unless you go Arcane Heirophant), but functions like a shield.

I think it's supposed to be Carapace, not Carapice, although the font is a little hard to read.

I dunno, just throwing out ideas I can think of off the top of my head. :)

2007-04-30, 12:22 AM
Keep 'em coming, I'll add them in when I have a chance. I may add an extra couple of columns - example in-game effect and example source creature - but it probably won't be for a while. And you're right, it is supposed to be carapace. Dammit. I'll see about making it bigger, too.
I'm not too sure about the digitigrade rules; you're thinking cats, and they're not exactly un-balanced (well, physically, anyway), but I guess if you only have the feet, without the 2 extra limbs and a balancing tail, then it makes sense. Good idea, though, even if it's only aesthetic. Same with the extra joints. I think we did have a shell in there, but I took it out to make it easier to determine the rolls. Now that I'm eventually gonna make it all d%, I'll throw it back in.

Tor the Fallen
2007-04-30, 01:09 AM
Drifts seem more abominable than nature-y. :/

2007-04-30, 01:56 AM
My drifts, or drifts in general? I can see where you're going, but, well, I don't care, I like 'em :smalltongue:

Tor the Fallen
2007-04-30, 02:06 AM
My drifts, or drifts in general? I can see where you're going, but, well, I don't care, I like 'em :smalltongue:

Drifts in general.
My friend was real bi gon 3.0 geomancer class for fullplate casting and sprouting hooves.

Always struck me as an aberration type of thing, rather than animal. You know, since things that are unnatural in D&D are typically a chimera of ugly looking natural things (bleh).

2007-04-30, 04:40 AM
The only problem I have with Drifts is that they seem too sudden.

If I were to implement any kind of Drift into a game (and this includes allowing the Geomancer class), it would have to be pretty specific.


The Geomancer PrC (as written) allows a character to start off getting viny-hair and stripy skin, they then can get a variety of different things (at choice) from hooves, horns, thick, barky skin and all manner of different weirdness in no particular order or theme.

The Geomancer PrC in a game I ran (or any Druid drifts) would have to be thematically based on a single animal/plant or type of animal/plant. This means that you could take Drifts that first give you soft fur (cosmetic), which later thickens into a tough pelt (Natural Armour). Your hands and wrists thicken and grow large claws (Natural Attack: Claws) and your face extands into a muzzle (cosmetic) before your teeth sharpen and elongate into fangs (Natural Attack: Bite). Guess what? You're Drifting into a Bear. That means you won't be getting Zebra stripes or Sap-like blood or a Prehensile tail, for those you would have to be Drifting into a Zebra, Tree or Monkey respectively.

So, whilst I like and appreciate the amount of work the OP has put into this, having Drifts be random doesn't make a lot of sense to me. Perhaps a better table would be to randomly select a creature/plant to Drift into and what traits of that choice manifest (at all) and in what order.

First Die selects kingdom (Forest, Sea, Plains, Etc.)

Second Die selects type (Animal, Vermin, Plant)

Third Die selects creature (Wolf, Bear, Eagle, etc.)

Fourth and subsequent Dice select specific Drifts (cosmetic fur, claws, etc.)
Whilst this would take tons and tons of work, it is the only method of "Random Drifts" I, myself, would be happy with. As such, unless I find myself with far too much time on my hands, I will stick with "Chosen Thematic Drifts".

2007-04-30, 10:26 AM
I quite like the idea of thematic drifting, but I don't see that nature always has to be predictable, nor is it always gradual. Why can't someone be infused with random bits of nature? If you're worried about the suddenness, maybe it should be rolled up at the start of the level before the one where the drift is obtained (in the case of my game, at 4th level in preparation for 5th), and have it slowly develop over that level. It's almost completely flavour and fluff anyway.

2007-04-30, 10:48 AM
The problem I have with the 'random bits of nature' approach to Drift is the Chimerical nature that Druids/Geomancers end up with that Tor mentioned. As he said, it just seems more like an abberations trait than a servant of natures trait.

You say that nature isn't always predictable and isn't always gradual, but the unpredictable and sudden parts of nature are rarely exhibited in creatures and plants. They are present in the form of lightning, earthquakes, tidal waves and the like - things that are better represented by the Druids' spellcasting IMO. Granted that sometimes a creature will be born that is abberant to its parents in some way, but it is rare (mutation is a given, but it is extremely rare for it to be noticable).

I would possibly allow one, maybe two but no more, Drifts that lay outside of the theme, but the player (or myself if it's me playing the character) would have to do some expert persuading to convince me (for example, Mr.Bear the Geomancer from my previous post wants to take a Drift that gives him a Climb bonus [which one of the example ones does]. One way he could persuade me could be by reminding me that the adventure has been taking place in a jungle environment for some time now [where previously it had been mountain/forest] and he's starting to take on some of the traits of monkeys and/or lizards instead. In this instance, I would allow such a Drift, though the general theme would continue because Mr.Bear has a Bear for an Animal Companion and his 'spiritual identity', so to speak, is very bear-like).

2007-04-30, 11:48 AM
I could point out that biological science is starting to move away from thinking of evolution as a gradual thing, but rather a stop-start progression, but that's not the point of the thread. If you want it, it's here. If you think of something that can improve it, make a suggestion. Plus I'm too tired to argue about something I like but you obviously don't, and neither of us'll be changing our minds any time soon.

2007-04-30, 02:39 PM
Heh I love this idea, but why limit it to druids? I think I could see implementing this as a sort of flaw/feat kinda thing...

Just rolled up a wizard with no eyelids and a poisonous bite. Woot! =)

2007-04-30, 09:12 PM
I was thinking it could be good for curses and random magic effects and things like that. Maybe a mark for a witch.
Nice wizard. Now you just need a gecko tongue to wash your eyes with. (something i have to add)