More witcher inspired spells! I like the quen sign. Can I make this in DnD?
Casting Time: 1 bonus action Range: Self Components: V, S Duration: concentration, up to 1 minute
A translucent shimmering shield of force envelops you. This shield has 10 hit points, and will take damage first from melee or weapon attacks. When exhausted, it emits a flash of light causing blindness for one round on the attacker if the attacker is with in 10 feet and fails a Constitution saving throw.
At Higher Levels: When you cast this spell using a spell slot of 2nd level or higher, the hit points of the aegis increase by 5 for each slot level above 1st.
This helmet is made from bashed together metal plates from the scraps of other helmets of those who were the last to survive a battle. While wearing this helm, you gain a +1 bonus to AC and increase your maximum hit points by one hit point per level. In addition, while wearing this helmet, you will always be the last one to survive the battle. If you would be killed, you teleport to the last safe bed you slept in and are at one hit point waking up the next morning . If the last safe place you slept is not safe, the magic of the helm will continue to find the previous place until it finds a place where you are safe to wake up.
Basics– What horrors lurk under Farzeen? This is the first part of an epic heroic fantasy campaign from Sandy Petersen. This adventure starts off with mutiny aboard a ship, involves the crew being battered by horrible dreams, losing the crew, finding the city of Farzeen, and eventually finding the crew after they flee to a temple below the island. Along the way the players meet monstrous deep ones, less monstrous ghouls, and an ancient evil long forgotten below this island.
Mechanics or Crunch-This is a solid adventure. The math checks out as it’s just applying the basic 5e rules for the crunch. It uses Sandy Petersen’s dread rules, so you will need the Cthulhu Mythos book for that. Overall, a solidly put together adventure full of fun fights and exploration for low level characters. 5/5
Theme or Fluff-This part is where expectations have to be set early. I honestly think the best way to play Call of Cthulhu is a one shot. People in a normal world, thrown into a crazy situation, damaged beyond repair, then left to deal with the horror for the rest of their lives. That’s good cosmic horror. This isn’t that, and the book is VERY up front with that. This is heroic fantasy with horror thrown in. This adventure isn’t written to be 20 levels of just sheer cosmic horror. You get to be awesome stomping a deep one. Also, some of the main characters are ghouls. Some players are going to miss this, but Lovecraft ghouls are not DnD ghouls. They are more dog men really. It’s things like that that will require your players and you to adjust expectations. Nothing is bad, but you have to read this and see exactly what the author intends. 4.5/5
Execution– PDF? YEP! Hyperlinked? no…That’s honestly my only gripe here. The layout is good. Text size is good. Art is well done. There is even a separate book that is the Farzeen Gazetteer that gives you background on the town and island. That’s an amazing value for 15 bucks considering this is a full length adventure and a whole small book on the island itself! Just hyperlink and this would be one of the best products this year. 4.75/5
Summary-Sandy Petersen’s team put out another top notch product here. It has solid crunch for the adventure. The story is good, but you HAVE to read what it is and what it is not. I also love the pieces of this thing. My gripes are small-I always want PDFs with hyperlinks now, and I went in expecting only cosmic horror all day long. If you can get past those small issues, then you have an incredible start to what is shaping up to be an amazing campaign with the resources you need to make a fun, in depth game for your players. 95%
Been playing the witcher lately, and this is a potion that comes comes in pretty handy.
Potion of Escalating Assault
When you drink this potion, you feel the anger build in you.
For the next hour, when you enter a fight, after each melee hit, increase your melee damage by 1, up to double your proficiency bonus. The bonus to melee damage is reduced to zero if you miss an attack or do not make an attack in turn.
TL; DR-How the mythos is meant to be played in 5e! 99%
Basics– Ia Ia Cthulhu Fhtagn! The grand cleric of the elder gods is writing for DnD 5e! Sandy Pertersen’s Cthulhu Mythos for 5e is a MASSIVE book with new races, class options, feats, spells, monsters, and mechanics that you can throw into your 5e game. Let’s break down the pieces to see what’s in here.
The tcho-tcho in the room-Ah Lovecraft…I love his work, but MAN he would not fly today. From mental illness to racism, Lovecraft in his original form isn’t post #METOO or #BLM friendly. So, how do you handle the insanity and cosmic horror with the subtext or just text of Lovecraft? Sandy Peterson walks this line extremely well with sidebars dealing with handling mental illness to just dropping the racist parts of the mythos monsters and human acolytes. We can go mad with terror from learning the true history of the universe without having to go to HR!
New Eldritch Toys- This book is a BEAST of content. This book features THREE new races with race specific class options. The old standards of 5e all get some toys as well with feats for everyone, class options for all the core classes, books of unholy lore, and a boat load of new spells. There are also several new items that all cover the fan favorites of star mead to things I haven’t heard of before.
New Mythos Monsters-A hero is only as good as the monster is bad. Then let’s make your heroes LEGENDARY! This book has everything from simple monsters you can throw into your game just because you want something weird to freak out the power gamer who memorized the monster manual to GAME ENDING TITANS who would be the final bad guy in your campaign. Again, you have the fan favorites here like cthulhu to some of the more esoteric, even for the Lovecraft alicionadio, like Byatis. This book also adds in new options for you to throw onto worshipers so your bland cultists into true harbingers of the mythos even at low levels.
New Mythology Mechanics-This book isn’t just a highlight reel of Lovecraft’s old toys. This book adds new crunch to 5e. There is a whole revamped madness and dread system. All characters can now learn how to cast some spells called formulas. There is even a whole new skill dedicated to understanding the cthulhu mythos. The final boss of a campaign now has a solid progression system where the fight becomes epic tales you will tell for years to come.
Ok, now my thoughts.
Mechanics or Crunch– Sandy Peterson is one of the foremost game developers in the Lovecraft mythos, and it shows. This book isn’t just a reskin book where you take a scary monster and now it’s cthulhu. The crunch here is truly Lovecraftian. Monsters feel like they are beyond human ken. There are DEEP dives into the mythos, and not just into the new stuff from people writing in Lovecraft’s shadow. Stuff that gets a small mention that even I forgot like the gnorri get a full race write up. The stuff that is in the base DnD 5e book gets revamped well. I don’t like the madness system in DnD 5e, but this book provides an amazing system that has a great write up that you can drop into a non-cthulhu campaign. I like most of what’s here, but there are a couple of things I have some minor quibbles with. The new mythos skill is called yog-sothothery. I just want it called mythos lore or even to borrow from Call of Cthulhu- cthulhu mythos. Also, I want stat bonuses you get from eldritch tomes to be permanent. But honestly, those are pretty small issues. This book is a solid addition to the Dungeons and Dragons 5e crunch regardless of if you want to run a Cthulhu based campaign or not. 4.9/5
Theme or Fluff-Sandy Peterson is one of the foremost Lovecraft scholars today, and it shows here too. This isn’t just a pile of reskins with tentacles so Lovecraft. This is a well crafted library of Lovecraft eldritch lore. I MYSELF learned stuff about the Lovecraft world from this book. This will teach you not only how to run a solid horror game but also about the world of Lovecraft. But, let’s say you just want a splat book to draw some scary stuff from? This has you covered too. This book is a solid addition to my collection as both a DnD DM and a someone who love the mythos. 5/5
Execution– PDF? YEP! Hyperlinked? YEP! AND IT NEEDS IT! This is a BEAST for 20 bucks. It’s over 400 pages. The base DnD books are not that long and cost twice as much! It’s easy to read but still feels familiar with the font and backgrounds looking like the base books with a decidedly eldritch flare. Monsters have TONS of pictures, so I can throw pictures to my players quickly without having to do a google image search. This book is a solid example of how to produce a 3rd party book. 5/5
Summary– I love Lovecraft. Any idiot can stab me, so that’s not scary. Any punk rogue can sneak attack my character and kill him-not scary. But learning the horrible history of my family and what cost I too have to pay to keep the thing in the basement “pleased” so my family prospers? That’s horror. This book will help you do that. I can’t heap enough praise on this book. I have my minor issues, but those are so minor it almost doesn’t matter. For the amount of content alone for 20 bucks, you can’t go wrong. If you want some monsters to throw at your bored players? Done. You want a book that will be the key and the gate to a world of horror you might never have known existed? This is that book! 99%
How about a gift the party might receive from some monks after a good ol’ fashioned training montage?
Monastic Signet Ring
Ring, very rare (requires attunement)
Given to the worthy, who while not part of an order, have earned the orders respect through effort and training. While wearing this ring, your melee unarmed attacks do damage equal to a monk of 1/2 your level, minimum 1. Also, three times per day, you make a free action unarmed melee attack. This ability returns after a long rest.
I’ve been adding the fighter’s second wind to other games, so why can DnD have stamina points? How about an item that kind of makes them happen?
Lesser Health (Rare): When healed magically and you reach your maximum hit points, the additional healed hit points spill over into temporary hit points. You can gain a number of temporary hit points up to 1/4 your maximum hit points while this dull shiny sphere orbits your head. These temporary hit points are lost when you take a long rest.
Health (Very Rare): As per the ioun stone of lesser health, but you can have a number of temporary hit points equal to 1/2 your maximum hit points while this bright sphere orbits your head.
Greater Health(Legendary): As per the ioun stone of lesser health, but you can have a number of temporary hit points equal to your maximum hit points while this miniature star orbits your head.
Basics– Eberron? In MY 5e? OH YES! Let’s hope in and look at the new TWENTY adventure long story for Eberron The Oracle of War Storyline called The Night Land. You start by rolling into the town of Salvation on the Mournland border, and like all poor hungry souls, it’s time to find a job! What’s the job board got today?
Mechanics or Crunch– This adventure is pretty balanced for crunch. It is the same formula you’ve grown to love or maybe be annoyed with in this first adventure by Shawn. Three small quests with some time between to rest up. The party does some crazy stuff, rests, repeat. The players learn how to be their characters, get a bit of a challenge, and then 4.5/5
Theme or Fluff– Standard well done 1st level adventure! Shawn does 1st level adventure well. Small packages to not kill the party day one. It has a bit of Eberron feel, but like most things, it will require the DM to amp up the world feel. You do hang with some goblins, changelings, and some horrors of the mournlands, so you get a good intro of the horrible things that want to eat you! You can get a bit bored as your party might recognize a formula when they start. But its level one! You’re off to run errands and kill low level monsters, not take on the Lord of Blades day one! 4.5/5
Execution– PDF? Yep! Hyperlinked? No, but it doesn’t really matter (I’d still like it though). This product has THREE PDFs. One is the adventure in glorious color with lots of pictures that you run through the home printer. The second is a slimmed down black and white no frills product that you run through the home printer. Third is a newspaper to throw the players! That’s some awesome world world building! In addition, the adventure organizers have FULL PAGE sheets the players get after the adventure. The things they check off let them know some serious crap is up. Heck, I as a GM who isn’t fully aware of the campaign knows some crap is up, so I’m buying in too. I also like the authors’ use of the DMs Guild to full effect by putting lots of pictures in. These are pictures I’ve seen before, but it’s a nice touch to the other pictures that they throw in. I like the art deco style of everything. It honestly makes me feel more like we are between wars and I know something bad is coming…. 4.9/5
Summary-I like Eberron, and The Wife LOVES Eberron. This adventure brought her back to 5e and weekly gaming at the store. That’s the sales pitch that I can give. Now, is it perfect? No. It’s 1st level fare. Small tapas portions of adventures as your cleric might be able to roll out two cure wounds and a real bad round of two crits can completely wreck a party. Is that a problem? No. This is fun. I’ll equate this to my favorite above average hibachi restaurant. I know exactly what the chef is going to do there, but guess what? I’m going to show up and be happy I went! 93%