Daily Punch 12-25-14 Specialist Wizard Feat for DnD 5e

Well Yesterday was a Generalist wizard.  How about a feat for the specialist wizards out there?

 

Specialist Wizard

Prerequisite: Wizard, Arcane Tradition focusing in one school of magic

Gain the following benefits:

  • Gain a +1 bonus to intelligence to a maximum of 20.
  • When you gain this feat, choose one school of magic to specialize in and two schools of magic to ignore.  When you prepare spells for the day, gain one extra spell slot per level of magic spells you know if you do not prepare magic spells from the schools of magic you ignore.  This extra slot can only be used to cast spells of your specialized school.

 

 

Thoughts?

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Ring Side Report- RPG Review of PFS Scenario #6-08: the Segang Expedition

Product– Pathfinder Society Scenario #6–08: The Segang Expedition

System– Pathfinder

Producer– Paizo

Price– ~$ 4 here http://paizo.com/products/btpy9a1w?Pathfinder-Society-Scenario-6-08-The-Segang-Expedition

TL; DR– A good mix of combat and roleplay. 90%

 

Basics-Time to hitch a ride!  Funds for the Pathfinder Society are low after the adventures in the Worldwound.  Now Pathfinders are working with new allies to find old archeological sites.  Can you find and explore a new site while working with and befriending some new patrons?

 

Theme or Fluff-This is an interesting one.  It’s two separate missions.  Befriending one of two patrons while still finding what you want in an island Jungle.  As a dungeon crawl alone, it’s not that best one I’ve played.  As a pure roleplaying experience, it’s not complete either.  But this one combines the two well and really does have something for the combat monkey and the thespian in your groups.  It’s not perfect in either, but it does a good job balancing the fun. 4.5/5

 

Mechanics or Crunch– The adventure provides a new mechanic for how to befriend one of two wealthy backers.  My players constantly tried to keep finding ways to secretly befriend both.  You will have to think on your feet with this one.  The combats are quick, and the adventure does give some extra mechanics fun for allowing players to go hunting from a hunting lodge.  For its fights and non-combat encounters, it’s reasonably well done experience. 4.5/5

 

Execution– My main problem with this PFS scenario is the same problems I have with all of them.  Paizo only publishes PDF adventures for the society.  Paizo try to keep all the adventures a set length, but honestly, the PDFs could be infinite length providing all the rules I need to run the adventure from how the spells work to basic random dice rolls.  This adventure lists a bunch of different creatures, and I have to have the books to look them up.  Why not just give me the full stats?  It won’t hurt to expand a few extra pages and give me those stats, since I know more and more people are now running adventures as PDFs off tablets.  It’s just a pain to have to dig up all my books to get one stat for from one book and another stat from another book.  Otherwise, the text if sized fine, the art is good, and generally, I have what I need to run this adventure. 4.5/5

 

Summary– I liked this one.  A father and a son-in-law are off hunting and the players act as guards while still trying to be Pathfinders.  I can see repercussions from last year’s Pathfinder’s affecting the future, and I like it.  The adventure itself is fun, has roleplaying and combat well done, and fits neatly within the time frame for a PFS game.  I had a blast and so did my players.  Well worth running at your tables.  90%

 

Daily Punch 12-24-14 Universalist Wizard for DnD 5e

How about a Universalist Wizard Arcane Tradition for DnD 5e?

 

Universalist Wizard

Instead of focusing, you choose to study longer and harder then your fellows examining all the schools of magic.  This has given you powers over all magic, but you have mastered none.

Broad Studies

You know a little about all magic.  At level 2 for every spell level of magic you know, you gain one extra spell slot.  This continues as you learn higher level spell slots.

 

Surprising Recall

You can often recall a spell from just your memory based on your studies instead of your daily preparations.  At level 6 increase the number of spell you you can prepare daily by your intelligence modifier.

 

General Focus

You’ve learned a little bit about how to maximize or minimize every school you’ve studied.  At level 10, once per day per school of magic, before the target rolls a saving throw you can grant advantage or disadvantage to its saving throw against a spell you cast.

 

Student of the Many Ways

You have a unique knowledge of how magic flows.  Instead of learning just how one type of spell moves, you see the flow of them all. At level 14, you can choose one effect per day.  You can gain advantage on all saving throws against magic and magic effects or you can choose to have disadvantage on saving throws against magic effects to impart disadvantage on all saving throws against spells you cast and advantage on all spells you cast that require an attack roll.  This choice is mad when you prepare spells for the day.

 

Book Bout-Book Review of Rise of the King

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Book-Rise of the King- The Companions Codex #2

Author– R. A. Salvatore

Voice- Victor Bevine

Book- ~$14 here http://www.amazon.com/Rise-King-Companions-Codex-II/dp/0786965150/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1419984295&sr=8-1&keywords=rise+of+the+king

Audiobook- ~$20 here http://www.audible.com/pd/Sci-Fi-Fantasy/Rise-of-the-King-Audiobook/B00NFO4TH8

TL; DR-Best Drizzit Book so far! 93%

 

Basics-The orcs are on the move!  Can Drizzit stop the orc hoards with their drow puppeteers and grapple with the moral implications of orc right and wrong?  Can Drizzit save the Silver Marshes or will the world fall into the clutches of Loth?

 

Characters-I’ve written about Drizzit before.  He’s not my favorite fantasy character, but this one doesn’t just focus on him.  He’s here in this book, and he’s in the spot light just the right amount.  This book is truly an ensemble cast with both enemy drow and distant humans all taking a turn in the spot light.  It’s a well done book with lots of different characters.  A character might only get five pages of screen time, but you do feel like that person is a whole.  It’s not perfect, but it’s done really well. 4.5/5

 

Setting-It’s R. A. Salvatore and Drizzit.  Of course the Realms gets a great treatment.  The Silver Marshes and Sword Coast are being dragged through the mud, but it’s still well done Forgotten Realms. 5/5

 

Story– Here’s where everything comes together.  Salvatore is using lots of different characters to tell lots of different perspectives on the same story.  He’s using the best show don’t tell I’ve seen from him in a while.  Instead of letting Drizzit monologue about “Can orcs be good?” he’s got lots of people running around as a giant plan is coming together.  What hamstring all this is that the book is set in the past.  Drizzit and his creator Salvatore are both telling another side of the history to a DnD encounters season.  It’s well done, but you know Drizzit will win, the Sword Coast is ok, and his friends will be fine.  But, it’s still a fun ride.  4.5/5

 

Summary-Honestly, it’s taken me a bit to love the Drizzit story.  I stared reading Salvatore because he writes for the realms.  I love the Forgotten Realms, and to know what’s going on, I had to read his stuff.  But, now after books like this one, I have to say, I’m pretty happy I stuck it out.  This might not be the best place to start reading Drizzit books, being the middle of a series and all, but this book made me the happiest to read.  I’m now on board with this series and Salvatore’s writing.  I can only hope the next one is just like this one!  93%.

 

Audiobook Extra- Victor Bevine has to cover a ton of ground for this one.  If a book only has one character, then a reader only has to cover one voice.  Salvatore wrote a bunch of different characters, and Victor rose to the challenge.  Well done!  5 /5

 

Daily Punch 12-23-14 Gravity Spell for Shadowrun 5e

If there’ is gravity in 5e, there really needs to be gravity spell in Shadowrun!

 

Gravity

(Physical)_____

Type: P         Range:LOS

Duration:S  Drain: F-1

Gravity allows you to increase the mass of a person or object.  You have to beat a threshold of the subjects new intended mass divided by 200 kilograms, rounded up.  The subject of the spell instantly acquires the new mass, but does not change is current size or shape.  If the subject has an Agility or Strength strength score, it takes a penalty to all Agility and Strength checks equal the the threshold that the spell caster had to beat to cast the spell.  However, it gains a bonus to Body equal to the same threshold.

If you are trying to cast gravity on an unwilling living being or an item held by an unwilling living being, that being can defend against the Spellcasting test with Strength + Body.  You can use this spell on yourself if you need to sing like a rock quickly in Lake Michigan.

Ring Side Report-Board Game Review of Legendary Encounters: An Alien Deck Building Game

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Product– Legendary Encounters: An Alien Deck Building Game

Producer– Upper Deck

Price– ~$60 here http://www.amazon.com/Legendary-Encounters-Alien-Deck-Building/dp/B00MU2DQAW/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1419960129&sr=8-1&keywords=Legendary+Encounters%3A+An+Alien+Deck+Building+Game

Set-up/Play/Clean-up– 30 to 60 minutes (1 to 5 players)

TL; DR– A fun, story fueled kick in the teeth!  90%

 

Basics-Let’s stick our faces over that strangely egg like thing!  Nothing bad can happen!  Legendary Encounters: An Alien Deck Building Game follows the deck building strategy of games like Shadowrun Crossfire from its common buy area of cards to its mind boggling difficulty.  All players start out with a deck mostly comprised of one point attack cards as well as one point money cards.  From here, each player chooses a role card that gives them their hit points and a specific card associated with their roll.  Then, there are the main board’s decks to set up.  First, the players choose a location and objectives.  Players can choose to follow the movies, or make their own scenarios.  For ease of description, I’m just going to describe the basic scenarios from the first movie Alien.  The first deck to set up the main deck called a hive deck.  This deck is actually three separate decks all added into one.  Depending on the scenario/movie/location you’re playing through you will take cards for three scenarios( for the Alien movie, players get The S.O.S. #1, No One Can Hear You Scream #2, and the Perfect organism#3).  The cards for these sub decks are all listed with the sub deck name on them.  To each sub deck you add one card from the drone/enemy deck per player.  These are random xenomorphs you encounter and help the game scale for one to five players.  You then mix each sub deck, place deck three down, deck two on top of three, and finally deck one on top of decks two and three.  Players choose the character cards they want in the to buy deck called the barracks.  The game provides four different characters from each of the four Alien movies to keep building the different theme of the movies.  These cards all say the name of the character from that movie below the card’s real name.  Each character has several different cards that provide different bonuses.  After the character for barracks deck have been chosen, you mix those characters together and reveal five cards that can be bought for the HQ (buying area with visible cards).  To the left of HQ is a deck of Sergeant Cards.  Sergeant Cards all have different symbols, but all are worth two points to buy cards and can be used on other players’ turns to help them buy cards.  With all that set up, the game if finally ready to be played!  Turns are quick and easy.  First you add a hive deck card to the complex face down.  The complex is five spaces that cards move through.  When a card would push a sixth face down card out of the complex, the oldest card played is instead moved to the combat zone.  This card is then revealed.  You can scan cards in the complex using strikes on cards and then these cards can be attacked or if they are objects, events, or hazards different things might occur.  Next the player can spend money from cards to buy as many cards as able, use strikes to reveal face down cards card as possible or attack enemy cards, and play cards for other abilities.  Enemy cards all have a strike value, and if you play enough strikes at them, the enemy card is defeated and will not attack you.  You can only strike face up cards, so revealing cards in the complex is an import part of the game!  Also important is the order in which cards are played.  All cards have symbols on them, and some cards state that if a card with a symbol was previously played, then you can gain an extra effect.  This reflects the deck building aspect of the game and must be mastered to even stand a chance of beating this game.  Next every card in the combat zone that is an enemy will cause the player to draw wound cards from the wound deck.  These wound cards vary from close calls of no damage to five damage at a crack!  Play health varies from nine to 11 hit points, so five at a time can take a player out quite quickly.  After damage, the play discards all cards they didn’t play, draws up to six cards, and the next player does the above steps.  Play continues like this until each objective is completed.  When the third and final objective is completed, the players win.  Odds are though, they won’t!  Not all the players have to survive the game, but at least one of them does.

 

Mechanics– This game is hard!  I never felt like I had enough time to deal with all the enemies that were coming through to the combat zone, scan rooms, or buy enough cards.  Also, I felt most of the costs were a bit too high to kill an enemy, reveal a card, or buy more cards.  It’s fun, and easy to play, but the difficulty curve is extremely high.  If you can stand a beating, you’re in for a good time. For me, it’s a bit too much. 4/5

 

Theme- I love this game for its stories.  The hive deck does feel like the movies they are part of.  I have to say the different sub decks really do put enough movie scenes in this one to keep you enraptured.  I remember playing and hearing the music scores from the movies pop up in my head.  That’s excellent game design.  Also, you will really enjoy the way different events fall of the deck, and the occasional ally that pops up over the course of the game.  These different sub decks require some upfront work, but the payout is well worth it.  5/5

 

Instructions– The instructions are done well, but some of the words are pretty small especially on the cards used to build the different sub decks.  It will take a read through or two to make sure you figure out how each of the decks is constructed.  It’s not bad, but some bigger type face would really help.  Also, some zoom in shots of the cards they are showing off would really help.  A few minor changes would really knock this one out of the park.  4.5/5

 

Execution– I like this one, but I the game box is a kind of a pain.  The game box has a sturdy construction.  But, the box is basically empty save for a simple cardboard divider that moves a little bit too much.  This game takes a bunch of sorting, and if your cards get mixed up, you’re going to have a really crappy night!  The card art isn’t bad, but I would have preferred shots from the movies.  If you have the license, why not get photos!?  All the art is scenes from the movies anyway.  But, this is pretty excusable when you see the main board.  The main board is the amazing mouse pad material that is excellently detailed and laid out.  Honestly, I thought that cost extra the first time I saw the game, but that comes standard!  That right there raises this game to a 4.5.  4.5/5

 

Summary– Starting high, if you want a game that has more theme that any other co-op card game out there, here it is.  You can follow every movie with some of your favorite characters.  However, get ready for a kick in the teeth.  The game beats you down quite quickly.  Unlike the easy starting scenarios for the Lord of the Rings Card Game, Shadowrun: Crossfire, or even the Pathfinder Adventure Card Game, the first scenario for Alien will stomp you down in under four turns!  Keep the difficulty options in mind on your first play through.  A turn or two without enemies might keep the players alive long enough to stand a chance of winning.  It’s a fun game, but not for the faint of heart.  90%

Daily Punch 12-22-14 Gravity Spell for DnD 5e

I had a dream about walking on the ceiling.  Maybe I should stop watching bad 80’s music videos before bed….  But, this spell came out of that!

 

Gravity

1st level Transmutation

Casting Time: 1 action

Range: one target in 60 ft., must way less then 1 ton at normal gravity

Components: V, S, M (a piece of lead and a glass of air)

Duration:concentration, up to 1 hour

You alter the attraction of another or an object  to the ground.  You can either make a creature more attracted to the ground or less.  This choice is chosen at the time of casting and can not be changed.  If you make the creature or object more attracted to the ground, it moves at 1/2 speed, weights twice as much, makes all jump, acrobatics, and swim checks with disadvantage, but makes all climb checks and checks to avoid being moved without wanting to with advantage (it climbs at the normal half its regular speed).  If you make the creature less attracted to the ground, it moves at 1 1/2 is land speed, weight half as much it usually does, makes all jump, acrobatics, and swim checks with advantage, but makes all climb and checks to avoid being moved with disadvantage.

Casting at higher level: For every level cast above one add one ton to the maximum weight of the target, and add one target to the spell.

 

Thoughts?