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  1. - Top - End - #451
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    Default Re: OOTS #912 - The Discussion Thread

    Xykon's been slacking. Redcloak's been doing all the work and has grown significantly stronger. His perspective has changed since he lost his eye. Getting the phylactery and swapping it mark a serious change in events. Xykon will either be tricked into completing the ritual, forced into completing the ritual through magic or the simple threat of destruction. He couldn't harm Xykon before because he wasn't strong enough. Now that it's getting closer to the end of the story, Redcloak will grow enough to finally make an attempt on Xykon directly. Frankly, I wouldn't put it past Xykon to turn on Redcloak at the end anyway. I predict as we get further and further into the next book, we'll see Redcloak growing to be worse than Xykon as he becomes more and more dependent on RC's divine magic. He's basically in the home-stretch of his plan, and narratively speaking, he has to grow strong enough to pose a challenge. A hot conflict between the two is inevitable.

    I've never read SoD so there's probably a whole lot I'm missing.

    EDIT: To clarify, I'm backing down from the position that he would use his rebuking ability. I meant more to state that a Divine spellcaster has more options to deal with Intelligent Undead. I'm certain that having a creatures soul contained in an object is a pretty powerful focus for any sort of undead controlling effect. Now that Xykon believes his phylactery is safe and away from Redcloak he won't be watching his back as much, leaving Redcloak time to mess with the phylactery.
    Last edited by Hague; 2013-08-20 at 02:46 PM.

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    Default Re: OOTS #912 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Hague View Post
    I've never read SoD so there's probably a whole lot I'm missing.
    "SoD" reveals
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    that Xykon's always been a slacker.

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    Default Re: OOTS #912 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Hague View Post
    Xykon's been slacking. Redcloak's been doing all the work and has grown significantly stronger. His perspective has changed since he lost his eye. Getting the phylactery and swapping it mark a serious change in events. Xykon will either be tricked into completing the ritual, forced into completing the ritual through magic or the simple threat of destruction. He couldn't harm Xykon before because he wasn't strong enough.
    The level gap between Xykon and Redcloak has shrunk very little if at all. It may even have grown; Xykon didn't show twelfth-level spell slots or Superb Dispelling before his fight with Spliced-Vaarsuvius.

    Though, thanks to Celia, we know Xykon did have enough epic levels to cast Cloister before Dungeon Crawlin' Fools; on the other hand, Rich described Cloister's creator as "low-epic," and there's nothing low about Xykon's epic.

    Being in a position to destroy Xykon's phylactery puts Redcloak closer to being able to destroy Xykon than anyone else in the comic. That is more than significant enough to be going on with, without exaggerating it into him having an I Win button and Xykon being his unwitting slave.
    Last edited by Kish; 2013-08-20 at 02:58 PM.
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    "The really unforgivable acts are committed by calm men in beautiful green silk rooms, who deal death wholesale, by the shipload, without lust, or anger, or desire, or any redeeming emotion to excuse them but cold fear of some pretended future. But the crimes they hope to prevent in the future are imaginary. The ones they commit in the present--they are real." --Aral Vorkosigan

    Quote Originally Posted by The Giant View Post
    This, in a nutshell.
    Yes, exactly.

  4. - Top - End - #454
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    Default Re: OOTS #912 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Kish View Post
    Brevity succeeds in occluding what you're getting at.

    Is it, "Redcloak's master plan involves gaining 30 levels between now and whenever he needs to control Xykon while Xykon doesn't gain any levels"? 'Cause Redcloak would need to be twice Xykon's level to control Xykon.
    Unless he manages to nab a "Greater Command Undead" ability... which is unlikely.

  5. - Top - End - #455
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    Default Re: OOTS #912 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Math_Mage View Post
    But there is no impetus driving this loss, and Tarquin has every opportunity to reverse the trend if left to his own devices. At worst he can take off on some Last Epic Adventureô and leave a pretty corpse.
    Sure there is. Read my original scenario again. The impetus is two-fold.

    Firstly, he is basically defeated, but not all at once, in an obvious, narratively satisfying way. No, he is defeated by drips and drabs, slow bureaucratic nibblings, by the small, unseen actions of a thousand thousand regular, anonymous people, as dictatorships usually fall in real life, not by the explosive heroics of some fantasy protagonist. Nothing there will make for a good story, all of it is small and mundane things, but it all adds up. That is what I mean by "and one day he wakes up to find himself the titular but powerless head of a representative democracy".

    Secondly, I postulated that Tarquin HIMSELF will decline. Time, in essence, will rob him of his powers. His mental faculties, his genre savvinness, his ability to plan, his ability to anticipate his enemies, ALL of it will slowly wane, bit by bit, as he gets older. He will lose it all, a little at a time. He will become less and less formidable, and easier and easier to defeat. It will be a slow and imperceptible process, because part of what he loses will be the ability to RECOGNIZE that he is losing it. So when he sets up and plans for A, B, and C contingencies, more and more he will not get the A, and finds himself settling for B, then over time he will start failing to get B, and finds himself settling for C. But he will not realize it. Because his own genre-savvinness and cleverness is declining, he still thinks he is getting his A. He will delude himself. The combination of the arrogance of habitual success in his earlier years and the slow diminishment engendered by the relentless grinding of the seasons will rob him of the ability to anticipate what his happening. So when he finally falls, it will come as a complete surprise to him.

    And when the fall finally comes, it will come at a time when his powers and capacities have diminished enough that he CAN'T reverse the trend, even if left to his own devices, any more. Because he is not the Tarquin of his younger years. He is OLD Tarquin now, and far less formidable. Neither will he retain the ability to go on "one last epic adventure". He will lose that ability too, and he will NOT NOTICE losing it until it is too late.

    Basically, my scenario is for Tarquin to slowly and gradually GO SENILE, and in the process lose everything, step by step, until he is left with nothing. Nothing at all. Not even the ability to recapture ANY of his lost glory. He will retain JUST enough of his faculties to recognize that he has lost absolutely everything, JUST enough to be bitter and disillusioned, and have LOTS of time to wallow in that bitterness and disillusionment.

    And all his attempts to reclaim his former glory will end in pathetic, hilarious failure, because he will no longer be the formidable, brilliant Tarquin he once was. He will instead be turned, by the merciless hand of time, into a decrepit version of NALE, and he will be stuck as a decrepit version of NALE for at least twice as long as he spent as brilliant mastermind Tarquin, before the final mercy of death releases him.

    THAT is what I see as a most karmically deserving fate for Tarquin.

  6. - Top - End - #456
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    Default Re: OOTS #912 - The Discussion Thread

    You know, the longer this goes the more I look forward to the inevitable Tarquin and co prequel book. *squee!*

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    Default Re: OOTS #912 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Amphiox View Post
    Secondly, I postulated that Tarquin HIMSELF will decline. Time, in essence, will rob him of his powers. His mental faculties, his genre savvinness, his ability to plan, his ability to anticipate his enemies, ALL of it will slowly wane, bit by bit, as he gets older.
    Griffon puckey! Everyone knows that Tarquin will only grow smarter, wiser and more charming as he grows older! Sure his physical strength will wane, but that's what them whatchamacallits, mini-onions are fer! Get yerself some mini-onions, give em good armor and weapons, and yer set fer life!

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    Default Re: OOTS #912 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Sir_Leorik View Post
    "SoD" reveals
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    that Xykon's always been a slacker.
    how they acquired Mid...the game-changer
    All that we see or seem
    is just a dream within a dream


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    Default Re: OOTS #912 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Dracon1us View Post
    how they acquired Mid...the game-changer
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    It definitely was for the Flying Graysons.

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    Default Re: OOTS #912 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Amphiox View Post
    Sure there is. Read my original scenario again. The impetus is two-fold.

    ...[Giant wall of Awesome]...

    THAT is what I see as a most karmically deserving fate for Tarquin.
    That's... that's beautiful. Now, does the Book of Vile Darkness have any spells for Inflict Disease (Alzheimer's) to maybe speed things up a bit?
    Last edited by RadagastTheBrow; 2013-08-20 at 03:42 PM.
    I guess sometimes it's more interesting to accept a mistake and go with it.

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    Default Re: OOTS #912 - The Discussion Thread

    Now that we're talking about Redcloak and Xykon, I love Redcloak. Such an awesome character. But I feel like Start of Darkness is a really important book when it comes to characterizing Team Evil, so if you haven't read it, get to it! It's awesome!

    The only issue with the book is that it makes Redcloak act horribly off-character in the first 120 comics, and kind of off-character until Don't Split the Party / after the Azure City siege. He just sorta seems like a minion until the Azure City battle, and then if you haven't read SoD, you'd get the expression ruling the city has given him a new character.

  12. - Top - End - #462
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    Default Re: OOTS #912 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Arrowstorm122 View Post
    Now that we're talking about Redcloak and Xykon, I love Redcloak. Such an awesome character. But I feel like Start of Darkness is a really important book when it comes to characterizing Team Evil, so if you haven't read it, get to it! It's awesome!

    The only issue with the book is that it makes Redcloak act horribly off-character in the first 120 comics, and kind of off-character until Don't Split the Party / after the Azure City siege. He just sorta seems like a minion until the Azure City battle, and then if you haven't read SoD, you'd get the expression ruling the city has given him a new character.
    There's actually a bit of (pardon the TV Trope term) Fridge Brillance there.

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    The events at the end of Start of Darnkess so badly shook up Recloak as to make him mentally subservient to Xykon. Redcloak murdering his brother in cold blood AND having Xykon rub his face in it shattered his worldview to such a degree that he regressed into a Mister Smithers-like lackey role while he attempted to process what he did.

    Only when Xykon was 'killed' the first time and when he got in charge of the hobgoblins did he start to come out of his shell and act like the 'old' Redcloak.
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  13. - Top - End - #463
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    Default Re: OOTS #912 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Porthos View Post
    There's actually a bit of (pardon the TV Trope term) Fridge Brillance there.

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    The events at the end of Start of Darnkess so badly shook up Recloak as to make him mentally subservient to Xykon. Redcloak murdering his brother in cold blood AND having Xykon rub his face in it shattered his worldview to such a degree that he regressed into a Mister Smithers-like lackey role while he attempted to process what he did.

    Only when Xykon was 'killed' the first time and when he got in charge of the hobgoblins did he start to come out of his shell and act like the 'old' Redcloak.
    Don't you dare put that on TV Tropes before I have a chance to do it first!
    A game is a fictional construct created for the sake of the players, not the other way around. If you have a question "How do I keep X from happening at my table," and you feel that the out-of-game answer "Talk the the other people at your table" won't help, then the in-game answers "Remove mechanics A, B, and/or C, impose mechanics L, M, and/or N" will not help either.

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  14. - Top - End - #464
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    Default Re: OOTS #912 - The Discussion Thread

    Redcloak already has an "I win" button. The narrative itself speaks that Redcloak will overcome Xykon simply through the nature of their actions. Xykon's own shortcuts will be his downfall.

    It doesn't even have to be about level-gap. It has to do with the level of dependence all Xykon's plans have with a divine caster who hates him with the very core of his being. Being an Epic sorcerer is great, but you can already see where things are shifting against him. MiD is growing a conscience. Redcloak has alternate plans. Xykon dismissed the death of an actually "friendly" (if misguided) ally easily.

    There will be a confrontation between Xykon and Redcloak. RC comes out on top, seizing semi-ultimate power and moves to wipe out OotS and O'Chul (who will be there with Shinjo) and MiD will flip the heck out and we'll see an epic battle of Dark One Avatar Redcloak and whatever the hell MiD is.

    Or not. It's all just speculation. :P

    What if the gates are actually like a "Being John Malkovich" thing? And that they are actually portals into the consciousness of a sleeping or idle deity?

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    Default Re: OOTS #912 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Porthos View Post
    There's actually a bit of (pardon the TV Trope term) Fridge Brillance there.

    Spoiler
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    The events at the end of Start of Darnkess so badly shook up Recloak as to make him mentally subservient to Xykon. Redcloak murdering his brother in cold blood AND having Xykon rub his face in it shattered his worldview to such a degree that he regressed into a Mister Smithers-like lackey role while he attempted to process what he did.

    Only when Xykon was 'killed' the first time and when he got in charge of the hobgoblins did he start to come out of his shell and act like the 'old' Redcloak.
    I was thinking that something like this happened, but I feel like you just don't "get it" without having read SoD, which is a way more important book than OtOoPC when it comes to the plot.

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    Default Re: OOTS #912 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Tragak View Post
    Don't you dare put that on TV Tropes before I have a chance to do it first!
    I don't edit over at TV Tropes, so go right ahead.

    Besides, if I did, I would have put it there a long time ago.
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    Default Re: OOTS #912 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Hague View Post
    Redcloak already has an "I win" button. The narrative itself speaks that Redcloak will overcome Xykon simply through the nature of their actions. Xykon's own shortcuts will be his downfall.

    It doesn't even have to be about level-gap. It has to do with the level of dependence all Xykon's plans have with a divine caster who hates him with the very core of his being. Being an Epic sorcerer is great, but you can already see where things are shifting against him. MiD is growing a conscience. Redcloak has alternate plans. Xykon dismissed the death of an actually "friendly" (if misguided) ally easily.

    There will be a confrontation between Xykon and Redcloak. RC comes out on top, seizing semi-ultimate power and moves to wipe out OotS and O'Chul (who will be there with Shinjo) and MiD will flip the heck out and we'll see an epic battle of Dark One Avatar Redcloak and whatever the hell MiD is.

    Or not. It's all just speculation. :P

    What if the gates are actually like a "Being John Malkovich" thing? And that they are actually portals into the consciousness of a sleeping or idle deity?
    If Redcloak betrays Xykon, (minor spoiler from Sod)
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    MiD will instantly eat Redcloak. With the kind of force he's pulled off stomping and hitting lightly, Anyone would be doomed if they came in a serious fight with MiD.

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    Default Re: OOTS #912 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Arrowstorm122 View Post
    If Redcloak betrays Xykon, (minor spoiler from Sod)
    Spoiler
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    MiD will instantly eat Redcloak. With the kind of force he's pulled off stomping and hitting lightly, Anyone would be doomed if they came in a serious fight with MiD.
    Well, that's what Xykon thinks will happen.

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    Default Re: OOTS #912 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by SavageWombat View Post
    Well, that's what Xykon thinks will happen.
    That's what happens unless Xykon is a lousy spellcaster.

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    Default Re: OOTS #912 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Shining Wrath View Post
    3.5 arcane casters have no direct access to healing - it's their one "hole".
    Bards are arcane casters, and are capable of using healing spells; as an interesting consequence, that means that sorcerers can learn the same spells per RAW due to the special rules for how sorcerers learn spells. Given that sorcerers have a strictly limited number of spells known, though, it's hardly a game breaker.
    Last edited by Poppy Appletree; 2013-08-20 at 04:21 PM.

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    Default Re: OOTS #912 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Porthos View Post
    I don't edit over at TV Tropes, so go right ahead.

    Besides, if I did, I would have put it there a long time ago.
    Taken care of, if anybody's interested
    A game is a fictional construct created for the sake of the players, not the other way around. If you have a question "How do I keep X from happening at my table," and you feel that the out-of-game answer "Talk the the other people at your table" won't help, then the in-game answers "Remove mechanics A, B, and/or C, impose mechanics L, M, and/or N" will not help either.

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    Default Re: OOTS #912 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Poppy Appletree View Post
    Bards are arcane casters, and are capable of using healing spells; as an interesting consequence, that means that sorcerers can learn the same spells per RAW due to the special rules for how sorcerers learn spells. Given that sorcerers have a strictly limited number of spells known, though, it's hardly a game breaker.
    That's an urban legend of Zelda that people keep bringing up. Sorcerers can only learn spells that are on the Sorcerer/Wizard spell list. They can't learn spells on the Bard, Cleric, Domain, Paladin, Ranger, Favored Soul, Wu Jen, Warmage, Assassin or Blackguard spell lists, unless the spell is also on the Sorcerer/Wizard spell list, or they have a special Feat allowing them too, like Arcane Disciple.

  23. - Top - End - #473
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    Default Re: OOTS #912 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Sir_Leorik View Post
    That's an urban legend of Zelda that people keep bringing up. Sorcerers can only learn spells that are on the Sorcerer/Wizard spell list. They can't learn spells on the Bard, Cleric, Domain, Paladin, Ranger, Favored Soul, Wu Jen, Warmage, Assassin or Blackguard spell lists, unless the spell is also on the Sorcerer/Wizard spell list, or they have a special Feat allowing them too, like Arcane Disciple.
    Theoretically, they could 'research' it:

    Adding Spells to a Sorcererís or Bardís Repertoire

    A sorcerer or bard gains spells each time he attains a new level in his class and never gains spells any other way. When your sorcerer or bard gains a new level, consult Table: The Bard or Table: Sorcerer Spells Known to learn how many spells from the appropriate spell list he now knows. With permission, sorcerers and bards can also select the spells they gain from new and unusual spells that they have gained some understanding of.
    (highligheted by me)

    I seem to recall either the 3.0 or 3.5 DMG going further than this by saying they could try to learn some new power from a, well Power*. With all of the fun that implies. For the DM at least.

    * NOTE: I did not say Diety. Power being anything sufficiently above the scale of your run-of-the-mill PC.


    Quote Originally Posted by Tragak View Post
    Taken care of, if anybody's interested
    So you have. Nice touch on the linkback to here as well.
    Last edited by Porthos; 2013-08-20 at 04:46 PM.
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    Default Re: OOTS #912 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Sir_Leorik View Post
    That's an urban legend of Zelda that people keep bringing up. Sorcerers can only learn spells that are on the Sorcerer/Wizard spell list. They can't learn spells on the Bard, Cleric, Domain, Paladin, Ranger, Favored Soul, Wu Jen, Warmage, Assassin or Blackguard spell lists, unless the spell is also on the Sorcerer/Wizard spell list, or they have a special Feat allowing them too, like Arcane Disciple.
    An urban legend of what now? I honestly have no idea what you're talking about; it's something I discovered by reading the rules. I can't copy-paste text or links currently (I'm browsing on a 3DS) but if you check the Player's Handbook or d20srd.org, it's the final sentence in the section about adding spells to a sorcerer or bard's spell list, and it makes no such stipulation about the sorcerer/wizard spell list.

    EDIT: Swordsaged.
    Last edited by Poppy Appletree; 2013-08-20 at 04:44 PM.

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    Default Re: OOTS #912 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Porthos View Post
    Theoretically, they could 'research' it:

    I seem to recall either the 3.0 or 3.5 DMG going further than this by saying they could try to learn some new power from a, well Power. With all of the fun that implies. For the DM at least.
    That's intended to allow Sorcerers and Bards the same freedom as any other spellcaster to research a new spell for their class' spell list. It was worded so ambiguously that it spawned an Urban Legend of Zelda. Like all other spellcasters, a PC who researchs a new spell needs DM approval. A DM who approves a Sorcerer or Wizard version of Heal is getting what he deserves.

    EDIT:
    Quote Originally Posted by Poppy Appletree View Post
    An urban legend of what now?
    A rumor about some sort of secret or Easter Egg in a game, that is not actually there. In this case, the lines you're referring to are in the 3.0 and 3.5 PHB, but they don't allow Sorcerers or Bards to learn spells that aren't on their list that they haven't spent time and gold researching (and that requires DM approval).
    Last edited by Sir_Leorik; 2013-08-20 at 04:53 PM.

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    Default Re: OOTS #912 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Arrowstorm122 View Post
    That's what happens unless Xykon is a lousy spellcaster.
    Not necessarily. For example,
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    what if MitD is not around at the time (for example, if he's been given the order to deal with a persistant group of pesky heroes)? It could well be the case that Redcloak successfully betrays Xykon while they are alone, killing him permanently - probably with a rebuking, which would certainly not be strong enough to command Xykon but might cow him for a few rounds - while MitD is off somewhere else. Even a single round is enough for Redcloak to cast Heal and Quickened Cure Light Wounds, which is enough to finish off any normal undead - and I'm sure Redcloak would make preparations first to neutralize Xykon's ring that protects him from positive energy (since he learned of its existence after Xykon killed his brother - something that a smarter lich would never have revealed, but Xykon had to gloat). Then when MitD comes back and realizes that Redcloak betrayed Xykon, his brainwashing from Xykon kicks in and he devours Redcloak.


    There's no way of knowing what will happen, but either way it's clear that the two main villains mistrust of each other has led them to set quite a few traps for each other - effectively placing devastating ticking timebombs in their own camp that may well end up bringing them down.
    Last edited by wolfdreams01; 2013-08-20 at 04:55 PM.

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    Default Re: OOTS #912 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Sir_Leorik View Post
    A DM who approves a Sorcerer or Wizard version of Heal is getting what he deserves.
    Like I implied, any player that goes to a DM and says, "My Sorcerer wants to learn how to Heal" should elict a wide Cheshire-Cat style grin out of a DM.

    An almost, but not quite, "My character wants to cast a non-standard request Wish" wide level grin.
    Last edited by Porthos; 2013-08-20 at 04:50 PM.
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    Coming Soon: OOTS by Final Post Count II: The Post Counts Always Chart Twice
    Coming Later: The Stick Awards III: The Search for More Votes


    __________________________

    No matter how subtle the wizard, a knife between the shoulder blades will seriously cramp his style - Jhereg Proverb

  28. - Top - End - #478
    Orc in the Playground
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Gender
    Female

    Default Re: OOTS #912 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Sir_Leorik View Post
    That's intended to allow Sorcerers and Bards the same freedom as any other spellcaster to research a new spell for their class' spell list. It was worded so ambiguously that it spawned an Urban Legend of Zelda. Like all other spellcasters, a PC who researchs a new spell needs DM approval. A DM who approves a Sorcerer or Wizard version of Heal is getting what he deserves.
    It has nothing to do with the wording, the issue is that bards were given healing spells despite being arcanists. As I mentioned, it's hardly a game breaker, and it's a sorcerer option, not a wizard option.

  29. - Top - End - #479
    Titan in the Playground
     
    NinjaGuy

    Join Date
    Jan 2007

    Default Re: OOTS #912 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Tragak View Post
    Taken care of, if anybody's interested
    Quote Originally Posted by Porthos View Post
    So you have. Nice touch on the linkback to here as well.
    BTW, I'm not sure the 'are not considered 100% canon line' at the beginning of your entry there is quite right. Perhaps 'are not considered 100% canon by some' would be better. To reflect the YMMV nature of the consideration.

    Aside from that minor quibble, good work.
    Concluded: The Stick Awards II: Second Edition
    Ongoing: OOTS by Page Count
    Coming Soon: OOTS by Final Post Count II: The Post Counts Always Chart Twice
    Coming Later: The Stick Awards III: The Search for More Votes


    __________________________

    No matter how subtle the wizard, a knife between the shoulder blades will seriously cramp his style - Jhereg Proverb

  30. - Top - End - #480
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    PaladinGuy

    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Arad, Israel
    Gender
    Male

    Default Re: OOTS #912 - The Discussion Thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Poppy Appletree View Post
    It has nothing to do with the wording, the issue is that bards were given healing spells despite being arcanists. As I mentioned, it's hardly a game breaker, and it's a sorcerer option, not a wizard option.
    There are two reasons Bards got healing spells in 3.X: they had them in AD&D (but lost them in 2E) and they get fewer spells (and at a slower progression) than Sorcerers do. In AD&D Bards could cast a limited number of Druid spells, including Cure Light Wounds and Neutralize Poison. They lost that ability when the Bard class was streamlined from a hodgepodge that was difficult to qualify for, to a simpler class that had elements of Fighters, Thieves and Wizards, but in a limited capacity. In 3.X the designers decided to bring back the old school spells the Bard had access to in AD&D.

    For Players who want a character who can cast healing spells spontaneously in 3.X, in addition to the Bard there are Favored Souls and Healers (the former from "Complete Divine", the latter from "The Miniatures Handbook").

    Wizards can also research new spells, spending time and gold, but also need DM approval.

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