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Thread: Dungeonscape

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    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Default Dungeonscape

    I didn't see any threads about it, and it's by Rich. Has anyone gotten it, and taken a look at it? If so, what are your opinions on it?

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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Dungeonscape

    Saw it at the local RP store the other day.
    I like the intelligent ooze template. Can't remember the name)
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    Default Re: Dungeonscape

    I've only scanned it thus far, but it looks like a pretty awesome book. It's got a lot of "Theory of Dungeon Design" type stuff, with suggestions for making a series of encounter templates that you can use throughout your party's career without too much extra work.

    On the other hand, if you're past master of dungeonmaking you might not find it all that useful, as most of the crunch is of the "this is one way to do it, or make changes as is appropriate for your game" variety, rather than the "here are new rules for handling X" variety.

    Me, personally, I think it will come in VERY HANDY.
    "'To know, to do, and to keep silent.' Crowley had the first two down pat."

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    NecromancerGirl

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    Default Re: Dungeonscape

    It's nice, but it's more for the DM (which is not my case).
    But I liked the variants class abilities.
    Last edited by Aximili; 2007-03-06 at 06:48 PM.
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    NinjaGuy

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    Default Re: Dungeonscape

    I've got it, and I think it's interesting but definitely not necessary. If you are a DM who runs a campaign that is mostly in dungeons (or at least underground) then Dungeonscape would be very useful for you, but there isn't a whole lot in there for players: a few new feats that are pretty much useless outside dungeons, a new class (factotum) that seems a bit boring, and a few prestige classes. There are also base class variants that look like they would be useful at best.

    One interesting thing of note: the wizard variant is called "Wizard of Sun and Moon". If you read the articles Rich posted in the Gaming section of this website, the magic in that setting is based on the Sun and Moon, so that's the one part of the book that we can be sure was Rich's idea, not Jason Buhlman's.

    If you aren't in a dungeon crawl: don't bother
    If you're a player in a dungeon crawl: nice to look at
    If you're a relatively inexperienced DM for a dungeon crawl: terrific book
    If you're a more experienced DM for a dungeon crawl: you probably bend the existing rules a lot anyway, so would have less interest in the Dungeonscape variants and new info, but there are probably still intriguing ideas.

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    NecromancerGirl

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    I thought the factotum quite nifty actually.
    I mean, when you can choose new arcane spells every day, you start doing stuff even the wizard can't (even though it's only a few times per day).
    And adding inteligence to all those skills isn't bad either...
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lysander View Post
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    NinjaGuy

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    Default Re: Dungeonscape

    Quote Originally Posted by Aximili View Post
    I thought the factotum quite nifty actually.
    I mean, when you can choose new arcane spells every day, you start doing stuff even the wizard can't (even though it's only a few times per day).
    And adding inteligence to all those skills isn't bad either...
    I dunno, I don't really like the "jack-of-all-trades" classes. I'd rather be really good at something. A factotum in a smaller party would be cool because they could fill multiple roles, but I don't have any interest in it.

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    Jack Mann's Avatar

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    Default Re: Dungeonscape

    One thing I thought was pretty awesome were the mundane items. Definitely useful, at least until magic renders mundane anything irrelevant.
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    Default Re: Dungeonscape

    I don't really like the name 'factotum.'

    It sounds... a little too odd for me.

    "I'm a fighter!"
    "I'm a sorcerer!"
    "I'm a duskblade!"
    "I'm a ..... fac... totum?"

    I'll have to re-name it...

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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Dungeonscape

    Quote Originally Posted by CockroachTeaParty View Post
    I don't really like the name 'factotum.'

    It sounds... a little too odd for me.

    "I'm a fighter!"
    "I'm a sorcerer!"
    "I'm a duskblade!"
    "I'm a ..... fac... totum?"

    I'll have to re-name it...
    Could be worse.

    "I'm an Initiate of the Sevenfold Order!"

    "I'm a Fighter 1/Swashbuckler 1/Ranger 2/Whisperknife 4/Master Thrower 5" (actual suggested build )

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    Jack Mann's Avatar

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    Default Re: Dungeonscape

    Well, no many characters are going to introduce themself as a "fighter" either, and if they do, they're just as likely to be a barbarian or a ranger. It's just a name for that particular mechanics bundle. I wouldn't get caught up with the name.
    I am a poor man, some say Im half crazy,
    son of the sword and the knife
    Lady I pledge you my sword and my honor,
    my heart and my pride and my life
    --Bella Doa, by Joe Bethancourt
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    Alas, poor Draknir. By Mephibosheth

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    Default Re: Dungeonscape

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Mann View Post
    Well, no many characters are going to introduce themself as a "fighter" either, and if they do, they're just as likely to be a barbarian or a ranger. It's just a name for that particular mechanics bundle. I wouldn't get caught up with the name.
    "I am a guy who kills people and takes things that don't belong to me... like your wallet."

    The factotum is okay. I tend to hate playing not bardic JoaTs though.

    I totally though up the Cleric-in-a-Box Kit years ago.
    'Cept mine was better... it had wheels and came with a monkey.
    Last edited by Orzel; 2007-03-06 at 11:50 PM.
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    NinjaGuy

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    Default Re: Dungeonscape

    I don't really like the name just because I keep confusing it with the Factotums in Planescape.

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    Default Re: Dungeonscape

    Call 'em Larries. Yes, from now on, every Factotum will be assumed to be named Larry.
    I am a poor man, some say Im half crazy,
    son of the sword and the knife
    Lady I pledge you my sword and my honor,
    my heart and my pride and my life
    --Bella Doa, by Joe Bethancourt
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    Alas, poor Draknir. By Mephibosheth

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    You will be missed, dear 'stache...

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    Default Re: Dungeonscape

    Incidentally, the Factotum was originally going to be called the Journeyman. They changed it because "Factotum" sounds so much more cool and adventuresome than "Journeyman" (that, and technically a journeyman is someone who has completed apprenticeship, but since when did Wizards care about the meaning of words?).

    No, I don't have the book; that's just some trivia I picked up off the Wizards site. No, I don't read everything on the Wizards site; I just pick up random bits of trivia very easily.
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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Jack Mann's Avatar

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    Default Re: Dungeonscape

    And now they're called Larries. The cycle is complete.
    I am a poor man, some say Im half crazy,
    son of the sword and the knife
    Lady I pledge you my sword and my honor,
    my heart and my pride and my life
    --Bella Doa, by Joe Bethancourt
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    Alas, poor Draknir. By Mephibosheth

    Owl-atar by KingGolem
    You will be missed, dear 'stache...

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    GnomePirate

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    Default Re: Dungeonscape

    Yeah, the things you call your characters and the things they call themselves are often very different.

    "He's a human Fighter, TWF-ing with a quarterstaff." "I hail from the burning sands of the Ashfall wastes, where I trained to master the traditional wyrmpole of my people!"
    "She's a halfling Sorcerer, specializing in Summon Monster." "I come from the nomadic Mistcaller clan, whose members all possess mystical abilities beyond what you know!"
    "He's a tiefling Rogue." "...I'm a barber. I got a few other talents, y'know, bit of everything. Nothing too important."
    "He's a half-elf Factotum." "Oh, me? I do a little of everything. And I do more things than the "barber" over there. I wouldn't trust him to shave my peaches."

    Back on topic, I found Dungeonscape to be decently interesting, with the new mundane items, equipment modifications, and the Factotum being the high points. The armor/weapon enchantments are also worth picking up, especially if you keep getting woken up in the middle of the night by swarms. Or rather, if you keep getting eaten by swarms since you don't wake up.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dareon View Post
    "Oh, me? I do a little of everything. And I do more things than the "barber" over there. I wouldn't trust him to shave my peaches."
    LOLOMG would you trust anybody to shave your peaches?

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    Default Re: Dungeonscape

    What peach are you talking about?

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    PirateWench

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    Default Re: Dungeonscape

    Quote Originally Posted by Dareon View Post
    The armor/weapon enchantments are also worth picking up, especially if you keep getting woken up in the middle of the night by swarms. Or rather, if you keep getting eaten by swarms since you don't wake up.
    There's an item (or rather, set of items) in this book that helps with just that. It's a set of blankets that instantly rouse any people sleeping under them when the command word is spoken. But the best thing about this item is its name: the Blanket of Security.

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    Quote Originally Posted by daggaz View Post
    LOLOMG would you trust anybody to shave your peaches?
    A girlfriend/boyfriend? There's a certain vested interest there.

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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    NinjaGuy

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    Quote Originally Posted by daggaz View Post
    LOLOMG would you trust anybody to shave your peaches?
    No. Especially not a tiefling.

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    I'm surprised more people haven't been playing around with the Dungeon Crasher varient for fighters and Penetrating Strike for rogues.

    Dungeon Crasher makes bullrushing fighters neat.

    Penetrating Strike allows rogues to sneak attack stuff that had normally been immune to the sneak attack. They only get half the damage and can only do it when flanking but I'm working right now on a Spellthief/Rogue/Swashbuckler with a Pseudodragon familiar. The familiar will flank while occupying the same square as his master (via Island of Blades from ToB) and allow the master to sneak attack pretty much anything at anytime.

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    NecromancerGirl

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hyfigh View Post
    The familiar will flank while occupying the same square as his master (via Island of Blades from ToB) and allow the master to sneak attack pretty much anything at anytime.
    Oh, how I wish my DM would allow somwthing like this...
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    Default Re: Dungeonscape

    The Factotum, as in, Matt Dillon?



    My power is that I write poorly and get seduced by B-list actresses?

    Yeah, I'm not a fan of the name either. I would have gone with Operative or something similar.

    But in general, I prefer the setting books to splat books. I haven't seen it yet, but since Rich wrote it I intend to give it a read through at the book store and buy it if I think its good.

    Quote Originally Posted by Hyfigh View Post
    Dungeon Crasher makes bullrushing fighters neat.
    Goliath Fighter/Pyrokineticist/Warmind built around the Knockback and Knock-Down feats. Flaming Homer on steroids?

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    Goliath

    Overwhelming Attack Monk 2/Fighter 2/Psychic Warrior 2/Pyrokineticist 1/Warmind 5/Full BAB class X

    Bonus Feats: Improved Unarmed Strike, Power Attack, Improved Bull Rush, Combat Reflexes, Combat Expertise, Improved Trip, Knock-Down.

    Feats from levels: Cleave, Knockback, Leap Attack, Shock Trooper, Hold the Line.

    Other Feats for Consideration: Overchannel (Always useful), Mage Slayer, Battle Jump, Robilar's Gambit.

    Books: SRD, Complete Warrior, Races of Stone (Knockback), Unapproachable East (Battle Jump), PHBII (Robilar's Gambit).


    Before combat, use the Expansion power on yourself to increase your reach.

    Charge 10 feet into your enemy. Make a touch attack with your fire lash as a two-handed weapon (as it explicitly says you can in the FAQ). Transfer your full BAB to Leap Attack. Make sure that your initial enemy is close to you when you attack him if possible, as you want to keep your enemies in your threatened area each time you knock him back.

    If you hit (you probably will) and deal more then 10 or more points of damage (you will) you get a free Trip attempt (from Knock-Down).

    If your enemy is standing next to anyone, each attack also applies to them (Warmind Sweeping Strike). You will also get a free Trip attempt against him and a follow up attack (Improved Trip), which will also apply to someone standing next to him, until pretty much everyone in your threatened area has been hit multiple times and is prone.

    Regardless of whether or not the Trip attempts succeed, you get a free Bull Rush attempt (Knockback, which requires that you be a Goliath) on each attack, applying your damage and Power Attack bonus to the opposed Str check.

    This should allow you to push your enemy several spaces backwards. For each space you move your enemy backwards, you may also shift him one hex to the left or the right (Shock Trooper). If this pushes your enemy into the same hex as another enemy, you get a free Trip Attempt on each of them (Shock Trooper again - though if one of the enemies is already Prone from a successful Trip, you can't Trip him again).

    Again, each successful Trip gets a free follow up attack, and each successful melee attack gets a free Bull Rush, which can start another Trip. And every melee attack can also apply to someone standing next to your enemy using Sweeping Strike.

    Plus, if you kill someone (you will) you get a Cleave attack, which will also apply to whoever is standing next to them, and start the Attack+Trip+Attack+Bull Rush+Trip+Attack... combo, again.

    If you're feeling really saucy, use Psionic Lion's Charge for a full attack.

    If someone charges you (they pretty much have to in order reach you) you get a free AoO from Hold the Line, resolved immediately before the charge attack, in addition to the normal AoO you'd get for them moving through your threatened area.

    If you don't like Goliath, you can drop the Bull Rush/Knockback combo and it'll still be a very strong Attack+Trip+Attack build. An Orc with the Headlong Rush feat (Races of Faerun) also works well.

    You can even drop Pyro and just rely on Shock Trooper to hit, though doing so will lower your AC a lot. If you are Pyro, be sure to carry around a good magical reach weapon with the trip ability (Guisarme works fine) for when you come across enemies who are immune to fire. You should also buy a few magic items that are effective against flying enemies.


  26. - Top - End - #26
    Pixie in the Playground
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    Default Re: Dungeonscape

    I picked up the book the week it came out, and as I DM am I quite happy with it. The information is well organized, entertaining to read and provides both some novel thoughts as well as some game mechanics to flesh out the old tropes (walls of bones, pools of magma).

    To give some background, I played D&D and then AD&D starting around 1980, but got out of it a few years into second edition in favor of other RP systems. I have been DM 90% of the time in my roleplaying career, so I'd consider myself generally experienced. I just got back into the D&D groove last year.

    The book is mostly useful in having some good sections on how to think about making the dungeon crawl experience more dramatic. I love the setting, but am well past the days of wanting to run "knock down a door and slay the occupants, lather, rinse, repeat" adventures. The book gives me some good thoughts and confidence to build dungeon crawls with meaning.

    I especially appreciated the well done chapter on Trap Encounters. I've always loved setting parties up against challenges based on situation as well as just adversaries. Whether it is a social misunderstanding, foul weather, a race to get somewhere in time. Having this great guidance on doing the same with traps (and how to CR them) is definitely worth it.

    Overall, one of the better DM focussed WotC books I've picked up. I selected it over DMG II and given the price delta I'm happy with my choice.

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    Default Re: Dungeonscape

    Praise to Rich, he seems to put out a top-notch product. I am especially happy with the class features (Logic has been looking for an excuse to get rid of his paladin mount since 3rd edition was released) and as always, the interior art is the thing that suckers me in. Call me shallow, but I knew I was buying the book the second I saw those beholders.
    Go in Peace...

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    Default Re: Dungeonscape

    I can't help but notice the sidebar on page 68, an example explanation for random dungeons.

    The world was created as a prison for a cosmic evil, and its influence causes spontaneous dungeon creation... Gee, which of the authors came up with that one?
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