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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    MindFlayer

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    Default Statting Out Things That Don't Belong (4e)

    Okay, that title is a bit more melodramatic than I needed, but hey, whatever.

    So I'm DMing a 4e game. Lots of fun, took a while to get used to so many monsters in combat, et cetera. But since 4e doesn't have the same "build your own NPCs" that 3e did, I find myself homebrewing a few things. Once every few levels the group will meet something that is not in the MM, and they have no idea what to expect. It's fun, and not hard at all to balance, really.

    But now for the fun part - I was recently rereading my copy of Vector Prime (great book, it was my first Star Wars book and it got me hooked - though I'd suggest starting with Heir to the Empire), and it struck me how AWESOME the Yuuzhan Vong would be as bad guys. I thought "but I can't take something directly, out of a book, can I?" But then I looked down - at the Monster Manual.

    Few tidbits on the Yuuzhan Vong (MINOR spoilers): they come from another galaxy, they are a very war loving society, with self mutilation and pain being two major parts of their culture. Caste system, always honor their Gods, ritual sacrifice, et cetera. They absolutely HATE machinery, especially droids, and everything they use is bio-engineered. They are also completely absent in the Force. They can't be read, noticed or... well, anything. It just ignores them.

    Now how could I represent that these guys are so disconnected from regular reality? I plan on having them hate magic, and use a lot of the same things as the books (Vonduum Crab armor, Ooglish Maskers, Amphistaffs [amphistaffs are snake-like animals that the Yuuzhan Vong weird as weapons, they harden and soften as necessary, so kinda like a Spiked Chain + a quarterstaff... except they have poisoned bites]), but I have no idea how to show that they are not at ALL normal. Something simple, one thing that all of them can have in common, similar to the Force immunity... But can't be the same, as immunity to magic would be very, very boring.

    Thoughts? Ideas? Just something to show that they're from the Far Realm - possibly even farther.

    Thanks in advance for the help!

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    Knaight's Avatar

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    Default Re: Statting Out Things That Don't Belong (4e)

    Sounds cool, and they are no where near odd enough to be that difficult(If I can make a being which exists in a different time stream in 3.5, this should be easy in 4e.)
    I would really like to see a game made by Obryn, Kurald Galain, and Knaight from these forums.

    I'm not joking one bit. I would buy the hell out of that.
    -- ChubbyRain

    Current Design Project: Legacy, a game of masters and apprentices for two players and a GM.

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    Orc in the Playground
     
    Fako's Avatar

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    Default Re: Statting Out Things That Don't Belong (4e)

    Not sure if 4e has it, but you could make them all under the effects of a Blur spell/ability to make it look like they're partially disconnected from this world...

    It won't be difficult to portray their "other worldliness" if you use them as a recurring plot point. Their speech patterns, as well as general lack of understanding of magic, would point them out to be "odd"...

    Are you planning on having them try to destroy your planet with its moon?
    Amazing Abjuration Avatar made by Serpentine.
    Quote Originally Posted by Gramarie IRC
    <Fako> Most of my contributions to the system have been in the form of taking a baseball bat to other homebrewer's works.
    <~sirpercival> haha
    <Fako> You laugh because it's true :P
    <~sirpercival> yes. yes i do.
    Skinshred Swarm (CR 9) / Reaper Wolf (CR 5) / Demonecris (CR 18)
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    RTGoodman's Avatar

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    Default Re: Statting Out Things That Don't Belong (4e)

    To me, it doesn't seem like there's anything there that warrants new crunch (except the amphistaff, which could be a two-handed superior melee weapon that deals 1d10 poison damage and can change between the two forms as a minor action). I'd just use fluff (descriptions, etc.) to make them seem "otherworldly," and otherwise just make a normal race. Or, heck, I don't know a lot about the SW universe, but it seems to me like their a more martial version of 4E's Shadar-Kai, so you could just use a "palate-swap" and be all set.
    The Playgrounder Formerly Known as rtg0922

    Homebrew:
    "Themes of Ansalon" - A 4E Dragonlance Supplement
    Homebrew Compendium

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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    MindFlayer

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    Default Re: Statting Out Things That Don't Belong (4e)

    Hrm. Nah, I guess I didn't explain this right - they are 100% in our reality now...

    But they don't exist in the Force. Anyone who knows a decent bit about Star Wars knows that that is a huge deal. Similar to being immune to magic in 3.5, except... on a more sinister level. They can't be alive... can they?

    Anyways, representing THAT is the hard part. Immunity to magic is no fun, though I guess immunity to rituals could be odd/interesting-ish, it's also kind of boring. No Scrying them.

    The Amphistaffs are easy (but awesome), damage, poison damage, some form of feint for form switching, and the Warriors leave behind a snake minion when they die.

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    Orc in the Playground
     
    Fako's Avatar

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    Default Re: Statting Out Things That Don't Belong (4e)

    Quote Originally Posted by SadisticFishing
    Hrm. Nah, I guess I didn't explain this right - they are 100% in our reality now...

    But they don't exist in the Force. Anyone who knows a decent bit about Star Wars knows that that is a huge deal. Similar to being immune to magic in 3.5, except... on a more sinister level. They can't be alive... can they?
    It is a big deal, but only to people who can manipulate the Force. To everyone else, they just look like aliens that hate technology. You'd have to find a means of manipulation (like you said, magic/rituals) that couldn't affect them in order to represent that... after all, it isn't like Farmer Fred will look at them and say "*gasp*! A hole in the Force!"... instead he'll say "*gasp*! InsaneLookingAlienWithSnakeStaffWhoWantsToKillME!! ! RUUUUN!"

    (Paraphrased) It's all about perspective...
    Amazing Abjuration Avatar made by Serpentine.
    Quote Originally Posted by Gramarie IRC
    <Fako> Most of my contributions to the system have been in the form of taking a baseball bat to other homebrewer's works.
    <~sirpercival> haha
    <Fako> You laugh because it's true :P
    <~sirpercival> yes. yes i do.
    Skinshred Swarm (CR 9) / Reaper Wolf (CR 5) / Demonecris (CR 18)
    Indomitable (Melee PrC [5 Lvl])

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    Default Re: Statting Out Things That Don't Belong (4e)

    It sounds like you want them to have resistance/immunity to Psychic damage.

    Perhaps also make it so that any powers with the Charm, Fear, or Illusion keywords don't produce any effects on them, as their mind is literally not there enough to affect them correctly. Such attacks would still deal damage as usual, they just wouldn't stun/mezmerize the race.

    I think that's a bit strong (and unintentionally messed up specific character designs) but it does come off as "outerworldly."

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    RTGoodman's Avatar

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    Default Re: Statting Out Things That Don't Belong (4e)

    Quote Originally Posted by erikun View Post
    It sounds like you want them to have resistance/immunity to Psychic damage.

    Perhaps also make it so that any powers with the Charm, Fear, or Illusion keywords don't produce any effects on them, as their mind is literally not there enough to affect them correctly. Such attacks would still deal damage as usual, they just wouldn't stun/mezmerize the race.

    I think that's a bit strong (and unintentionally messed up specific character designs) but it does come off as "outerworldly."
    Or maybe give them a +2 bonus to defenses and saving throws against powers and abilities with the Charm, Psychic, and/or Illusion powers.
    The Playgrounder Formerly Known as rtg0922

    Homebrew:
    "Themes of Ansalon" - A 4E Dragonlance Supplement
    Homebrew Compendium

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    KKL's Avatar

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    Default Re: Statting Out Things That Don't Belong (4e)

    Quote Originally Posted by Fako View Post
    Not sure if 4e has it, but you could make them all under the effects of a Blur spell/ability to make it look like they're partially disconnected from this world...
    Blur in 4e is disturbingly good, for a Wizard. +2 to all defenses, and things from more than 5 squares away can't attack you, basically.

    Slapping Blur on the Vong would be nice, but would make them very, VERY durable, to the point where each could be considered their own solo, because of the immunity to ranged attacks. A simple ability that gives constant concealment would be enough.

    Also, do what rtg suggests. The complete immunity would be better off stuck onto the more...epic tier ones.

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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    MindFlayer

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    Default Re: Statting Out Things That Don't Belong (4e)

    They're all epic tier (except for a solo insurgent or two). I was thinking about immunity to mind effecting stuff, but that doesn't really get across what the lack of Force really means - it's not that their mind isn't all there, it's that the universe doesn't consider them ALIVE.

    Immunity to all forms of Rituals, high psychic resist, + on saves against Charm, Fear, and Sleep... hrm. That may work.

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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Raven777's Avatar

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    Default Re: Statting Out Things That Don't Belong (4e)

    As fluff, make them not register anything on the alignement scale and completely unaffected by positive and negative energy or any alignement based spell. Make very clear to your players that they are not just "unaligned" (I hate this 4E change); they register no alignement at all.

    Since D&D's cosmology place so much emphasis on alignement, this should make them alien enough.

    Actually, make anything trying to cast divination magic on your Vong be shaken by the cold, empty void in reality they stumble on.

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