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So, IO really didn't want to bother anyone with this, but it's bugging me; the statblock for the Tome Dragon in issue #343 mentions it gains a "Precognition" ability at hatching, but nowhere does its combat statblock mention what this ability actually does! Can anyone clue me in on how this works?

Okay, blasted forum spasmed on me: when I made my previous post, I could only see Mordo's post, so sorry about that, SmiloDan, Dale McCoy.

I tried to avoid situation bonuses, because that's always been just a bloody pain in the ass. So, even if it is stepping on a class thing, I don't know if "+1 to unarmored AC" is a better choice.

I was basically trying to make it that Green Haglings are better at Enchantment spells, to the tune of "your victims are at Disadvantage to resist your Enchantment spells". I don't know how to properly state that?

Yeah, Storm Hags giving Lightning Resistance makes sense, I just wasn't sure that wouldn't be making them too strong.

Sea Hags are kind of specialized, yeah, but really they've always been the weakest and most gimmicky of hags. PF Sea Hags get an Evil Eye attack and are so ugly that they cause Strength damage just by being seen. 5e Sea Hags horrify with their appearance and have a lethal gaze attack. So I really wasn't sure what to do with 'em.

@Dale McCoy:
I wasn't aware of the publication of yours, which is why I started homebrewing.

The Blood/Mute/Storm/Winter Hag powers I published came from the Changeling racial statblock writeup in the back of Inner Sea Races, which may be why you don't recognize them. I'd never even heard of your PF Changeling additions until I took a look at the http://www.d20pfsrd.com/ page on them.

I went with Inner Sea Races because it's what I had, what I knew about, and as Paizo's official book... well. Incidentally, according to Paizo, "Night Hag Changelings" aren't a thing, since "Night Hags are Evil Outsiders, so their kids are Half-Fiends".

Which is absurd, because PF's Changeling lore is basically built on the reproductive lore that Paizo gave Night Hags in Ecology of the Night Hag for Dragon Magazine...

Anyway, will Heroic Races 2 include the 5e Lamia writeup? I recall you posting to my Lamia conversion topic with the possibility.

Yeah, I have a copy of that UE, thanks for the reminder.

Althrough really one of the trickier parts in balancing all this is that, really, changelings in Pathfinder are actually kind of pathetic in terms of their power set.

All PF changelings are Medium Sized Humanoids who have Normal base speed (30 feet per round), with a +1 Natural Armor bonus, two 1D4 damage Claw attacks, and Darkvision 60 feet. After that, they get one power based on their ancestry, from the following list.

Annis Hag Changelings can have either Hulking Changeling (+1 racial bonus on melee damage rolls) or Mist Child (+5% to miss chance of attacks made against her whilst she has concealment or total concealment).

Green Hag Changelings can have either Green Widow (+2 racial bonus on Bluff checks if the target is sexually attracted to her) or Object of Desire (+1 to caster level for Charm Person and Charm Monster).

Sea Hag Changelings can have either Sea Lungs (can hold breath for (three times Constitution) rounds before starting to drown) or Ocean's Daughter (+1 trait bonus on Swim checks, automatically succeeds at Swim checks made to avoid nonlethal damage from swimming).

Blood Hag Changelings receive Crawling Skin, which gives them a +2 racial bonus to Disguise checks made to imitate a specific individual.

Mute Hag Changelings receive Dead Eyes, which gives them one eye that is a solid dead black in color but which also gives them a +2 bonus on all saves against gaze attacks and visual illusions.

Winter Hag Changelings receive Frostlaced Flesh, which gives them a +2 racial bonus on all saving throws versus cold effects and means they leave no tracks when moving through snow.

Storm Hag Changelings receive Into The Wind, a +1 racial bonus on ranged damage rolls.

It might just be me, but in contrast to 5e's racial design, these powers feel kind of underwhelming.

No offense intended to any fans of the Eberron setting, but, I really like the Pathfinder take on the Changeling, as a species of hag-born witch-girls, and I'd really like to add them to my 5e games.

However, I'm quite a rookie when it comes to homebrewing, even for a game as mechanically simple as 5e, so I'd really appreciate it if folks could give me their feedback on my efforts here and make any suggestions for a better, more balanced Changeling.

I took inspiration to add Blood, Mute, Storm and Winter Hag changelings to the subraces here because Inner Sea Races includes rules for such, although I don't know if or where they might have originally appeared. I also don't know if there's any Pathfinder rules for Dreamthief, Sand or Flue Hag Changelings, so I've left them out.

Inspired by the Svirfneblin and its racial feat, I considered something like a "Hag Magic" changeling feat that gives a changeling access to spell-like abilities based on its haggish progenitor. Anyone have any opinions on this?

Changeling: Core Racial Rules
Ability Score Increase: +2 Wisdom
Size: Medium
Speed: 30 feet
Talons. You are proficient with your unarmed strikes, which deal 1d4 slashing damage on a hit.
Subraces: You must choose one of the following Hag lineages below, receiving additional attributes based on your lineage.

Annis Hag Changeling:
Ability Score Increase: +1 Strength
Iron Talons: Your Talons do 1D6 damage instead of 1d4 damage.
Armored Hide: You have Resistance against Slashing, Piercing and Bludgeoning damage.

Blood Hag Changeling:
Ability Score Increase: +1 Dexterity
Fire Resistance
Crawling Skin: You have Advantage on Charisma (Deception) checks.

Green Hag Changeling:
Ability Score Increase: +1 Charisma
Object of Desire: When you use an Enchantment spell, targets are at Disadvantage.
Green Widow: You have Advantage on Charisma (Persuasion) checks and Charisma checks relating to seduction and gossip.

Mute Hag Changeling:
Ability Score Increase: +1 Intelligence
Dead Eyes: You have Advantage on saving throws against gaze attacks and Illusions.
Heightened Senses: You have Advantage on Wisdom (Perception)checks.

Sea Hag Changeling:
Ability Score Increase: +1 Constitution
Amphibious: You can breathe air and water.
Swim: You have a Swimming Speed of 30 feet.

Storm Hag Changeling:
Ability Score Increase: +1 Strength
Electricity Resistance
Whipping Winds: You may cast the Gust of Winds spell once once with this trait, requiring no material components, and you regain the ability to cast it this way when you finish a long rest. Wisdom is your spellcasting ability for this spell.

Winter Hag Changeling:
Ability Score Increase: +1 Charisma
Cold Resistance
Snow-walker: You are not affected by difficult terrain caused by ice or snow. You do not leave tracks in snow unless you wish to.

Alright, I'll keep this quick and simple: Kobold Press, as part of its myriad Pathfinder races, did up a racial version of the Lamia, in its more "culturally familiar" identity as a tauric half-human half-snake. I'm very fond of the Lamia and I really like the 5e mechanical ruleset, so I'd love to play one in 5e.

Only problem is, I have no real knowledge when it comes to homebrewing, so I was wondering if anyone would be willing to share their advice or ideas for the conversion process?

I can post the Pathfinder stats for the Lamia here, but I don't know if that's legal, so I haven't done so in this opening post.

Like the title says, I'm curious. I've played several of FF's earlier, more "DND-inspired" titles, and I've long had a soft spot in my heart for the series' resident master of blasting, the Black Mage.

So, in 5e, how would you do a character based on the Black Mage class?

Just take an Evoker and maybe give it some customised fluff and/or new spells?

Or make it a whole new Wizard Tradition?

Alternatively, perhaps a custom Sorcerer "Soul" (whatever their multi-faceted class option is, I don't know) would be best, since FF Black mages have a lot less flexibility in terms of power than D&D Evokers do?

I'm curious, so I thought I'd poke around here and get peoples' opinions.

Having read the Unearthed Arcana: Eberron article, and been quite impressed with WotC's efforts at making the Artificer effective by folding it into the Wizard class-umbrella, I began to wonder.

As we all know, in 2e, Dark Sun's Defiler were basically treated as their own "wizard, yet not" class, with Preservers getting much the same. In 4e, they went with the simple, elegant methodology of making Preservation the default form, with Defiling being an option that gave greater power at a price.

So, what do folks think are the likely odds that, when 5e swings itself Dark Sun way, the Preserver will again become the "vanilla" mage, whilst the Defiler will become a Tradition, and thus adding new crunch to the Wizard class-umbrella?

And if that happens, how do you think WoTC might pull it off?

Like the title says, I'm interested in trying to create deities based on the Chaos Gods of Warhammer Fantasy to my homebrew game.

Specifically, I'm interested in using their oldest fluff, when they were more Chaotic Neutral and it's simply the fact that they're in such a crapsack universe that everyone overindulges and descends into Chaotic Evil madness.

Looking at the online archive for domains references, this would be my opinion on the domains each of the Dark Brothers would offer their worshippers.


Khorne: God of all things relating to Battle and Killing
- Chaos
- Entropy
- Death
- Murder
- Destruction
- Catastrophe
- Hatred
- Rage
- Fire + all Fire Subdomains
- Glory + all Glory Subdomains
- Protection
- Defense
- Strength + all Strength Subdomains
- War + all War Subdomains

Nurgle: God of Life, Death, Decay and Rebirth
- Chaos
- Entropy
- Community
- Family
- Loss
- Death
- Undead
- Healing + all Healing Subdomains
- Plant + all Plant Subdomains
- Earth

Tzeentch: God of Magic and Change
- Chaos
- Whimsy
- Knowledge + all Knowledge Subdomains
- Air
- Fire
- Revolution
- Luck + all Luck Subdomains
- Madness
- Insanity
- Magic + all Magic Subdomains
- Rune + all Rune Subdomains
- Trickery + all Trickery Subdomains
- Tactics

Slaanesh: God of Excess
- Chaos
- Revelry
- Charm + all Charm Subdomains
- Torture
- Cannibalism
- Corruption
- Glory
- Heroism
- Freedom
- Nobility
- Aristocracy
- Leadership
- Resolve
- Greed
- Tactices
- Water + all Water Subdomains

Alright, I thought I'd go ahead and put my thoughts on the translations here. I decided to go with the idea of "spell-mimicking" chaos weapons taking inspiration from the Magic Staves in the DMG, though I made them immune to the chance of destruction if the last charge is expended.

Universal Chaos Weapon Charge Rules:
* Chaos Weapons have 10 charges.
* A Chaos Weapon regains 1D6+4 charges daily at dawn.
* A Chaos Weapon reduced to 0 charges loses all magical properties and becomes an ordinary weapon of its type until it recharges.

Animation - This is just the Dancing Sword, except any kind of weapon can be an Animated Chaos Weapon.

Banishment - This Chaos Weapon can cast Dispel Magic for 2 charges. This Dispel is cast as a 3rd level spell; for each charge the caster is willing to spend, its spell level increases by +1

Breathe - Wielder is immune to gas attacks and can breathe liquids.

Chill Blast - This Chaos Weapon deals +1D6 Cold damage on a successful strike. It can also cast Ray of Frost (caster level 1) at will. By spending a charge, the bearer may increase the Ray of Frost's caster level; one charge for 5th level, two charges for 11th level, and four charges for 17th level. The bearer can also spend 5 charges to cast Cone of Cold.

Command - Allies within range gain Advantage on all Will saves.

Cool - This Chaos Weapon grants the bearer Advantage on all Will saves.

Creature - Is randomly endowed with the powers of a Cockatrice, Dragon, Minotaur, Skeleton, Spider, Troll or Wraith.

* Cockatrice: On a successful strike, the victim must make a DC (11+ Bearer's Character Level) Constitution saving throw. On a failure, they are magically restrained and must repeat the saving throw at the end of the round. On a success they are freed, on a failure they are turned to stone for 24 hours. Bearer has the Frightful Presence trait. Bearer can spend 3 charges to cast Fly as a 3rd level spell and can spend +1 charge for each additional spell level

* Dragon: Bearer can the breath weapon of a randomly determined (when the weapon is created) Young Dragon. By spending 2 charges per category, this breath weapon may increase its age category. The bearer also has the Flight ability. Bearer gains the Frightful Presence trait.

* Skeleton: Bearer gains the Frightful Presence trait and Immunity to Poison and Exhaustion.

* Spider: The weapon deals +1D6 Poison damage and the bearer gains the Climb speed of a Giant Spider.

* Troll: Bearer has the benefit of the Regeneration trait. Legendary variants also grant the bearer the Loathsome Limbs trait. The bearer can spend 5 charges to cast Cone of Acid (as Cone of Cold, but does Acid damage).

Deathlust - The weapon's damage is increased by one die type (so D4 to D6, D6 to D8), maximising at D20.

Deflection - The bearer gains the Deflect Missile ability as if they were a Monk of equivalent character level.

Degeneration - Strikes from this weapon inflict ongoing physical damage.

I could probably go on, but I'll go with these first few draft ideas, to not overload folks with stuff to critique/comment upon.

Well, I don't know if I have any major ideas here, but I'll try and give a basic summary of the powers here - leaving out the "cursed" ones like Bewitched (can temporarily take control of the wielder) or Coward (will refuse to strike unless master can pass a Will Power test), for obvious reasons.

Animation - The weapon can fight on its own. This is basically the Dancing enchantment, which I think already exists in the DMG.

Banishment - Can cast Dispel once per day.

Breathe - Wielder is immune to gas attacks and can breathe liquids.

Chainsword - Can destroy armor, hits are always Strength 4 (that's about a 13-14 in D&D), inflicts 1 wound on a successful strike, -1 penalty to opponent's armor saving throws.

Chill Blast - Can project a bolt of cold (D3 S3 hits, S2 against Undead) against one target each shooting phase.

Command - Allows allies within 4D6 yards to use bearer's Leadership.

Cool - Increases bearer's Cool stat.

Creature - Is randomly endowed with the powers of a Cockatrice, Dragon, Minotaur, Skeleton, Spider, Troll or Wraith.
* Cockatrice: Petrifies victim on a hit, bearer causes Fear, rare variant grants flight.
* Dragon: Can launch blasts of flame, bearer can fly.
* Minotaur: Penetrates armor easily, bearer suffers from Blood-Greed.
* Skeleton: Bearer causes Fear, is Immune to Psychology, and Immune to Poison.
* Spider: Attacks are poisoned, bearer Fears fire.
* Troll: Can spray corrosive slime once per day.
* Wraith: Wounds automatically, drains strength, bearer causes Fear.

Damage - Ignores armor, inflicts D4 Wounds.

Deathdealer - Instantly slays creatures of a single specific type, randomly determined when the weapon was fashioned.

Deathlust - Increased damage inflicted on a successful strike.

Deflection - Can be used to negate missile attacks on the wielder.

Degeneration - Inflicts lingering damage.

Disenchantment - Drains mana points from victims struck.

Double Damage - Inflicts twice the normal amount of damage.

Enchanted - No special properties, beyond counting as a magical weapon.

Enfeeble - Drains Toughness from victims struck.

Entrancing - Enemies nearby are affected by Stupidity unless they pass a Willpower test.

Fade - Victims statistics continually drop after being wounded until they hit 0 and they are destroyed.

Ferocity - Grants +1 Attack.

Fiery Blast - As per Chill Blast, but fire instead of cold.

Flames - Weapon bursts into flames when readied for battle, allowing it to ignite flammable targets, inflict extra fire damage, and panic opponents scared of fire.

Flight - Grants bearer the ability to fly.

Freeze - Victims wounded by this weapon are killed outright, as they freeze solid.

Frenetic - Weapon Skill replaces Attacks for number of attacks per round.

Glittering - Lowers enemy Weapon Skill.

Hacking - Inflicts D6 wounds on a strike.

Hate - Bearer gains the benefit of Hatred against a specific form of enemy, randomly determined at creation.

Howling - Bearer causes Fear.

Hurling - Weapon can be used as a throwing weapon, returning to its wielder's hand after being thrown.

Illusion - Bearer can disguise self.

Immunity - Bearer's Toughness is increased.

Impunity - Bearer's Wounds are increased.

Intelligence - Bearer's Intelligence is increased.

Lashing - Weapon can be used to attack from up to 4D6 yards away.

Leadership - Bearer's Leadership is increased.

Levitation - Bearer can levitate at will.

Magic Absorption - Nullifies the first spell cast on the bearer whilst they hold it; the bearer can then cast the spell themselves from the blade, after which it can absorb a new spell. Bearer can choose to absorb a spell cast whilst they have one stored, but this overwrites the stored spell with the new one.

Magic Destroyer - Can destroy magical items held by a struck enemy.

Magic Force - Bearer can spend magic points to increase Strength when striking with this weapon.

Magic Reflection - By passing a Weapon Skill check, the bearer can deflect a spell back at the caster.

Magic Thief - The blade can absorb the properties of a magical item held by a victim struck, rendering that item powerless and letting the blade mimic those powers for the next 24 hours.

Might - Bearer gains +3 Strength.

Mighty Strike - Bearer can deliver a S10 hit once per day.

Mind Eater - Inflicts no physical damage, but victim loses all mental stats and is affected by Stupidity.

Non-Flammability - Bearer is immune to all Fire damage.

Parry - Bearer can sacrifice Attacks to negate strikes made against them.

Piercing - The weapon's strikes ignore armor.

Plague - Victims struck are infected with a plague, determined randomly when the weapon is created.

Poisonous - Attacks with this weapon are poisoned.

Powersword - Ignores armor, attacks are S5, -1 penalty to armor saving throw.

Protection - Bearer can select one kind of creature every 24 hours; neither the bearer nor that kind of creature can physically approach one another.

Random - Weapon has six powers, randomly determined at creature, and randomly cycles between them every turn.

Relic - Only usable by Good aligned creatures, either an increased bonus to hit or increased damage against either undead or daemons.

Resilience - Increases bearer's Toughness.

Riposte - Can nullify enemy attacks against the bearer.

Sanctity - Undead that get too close are automatically destroyed or take automatic damage depending on power, bearer can sense the undead.

Savagery - Grants the bearer +D3 Attacks.

Screaming - Bearer inflicts Terror.

Shrieking - Bearer's presence causes Panic tests.

Singing - Enemies who get too close must pass a Willpower test or be paralysed.

Skeleton Horde - Enemies slain become skeletons, which serve the bearer for 24 hours before being destroyed.

Skeleton Summoning - Bearer may summon 2D6 skeletons to fight for him once per day.

Slacken - Drains Initiative rather than inflicting damage, victim reduced to zero Initiative is paralyzed permanently.

Sleep - Bearer can attempt to force a victim within 8 yards to fall asleep for D6 turns.

Spell - Holds 1D4 randomly determined spells, each of which can be cast once per day.

Stealing - Can drain ability score points from victims and bestow the stolen points upon the bearer; the effect is undone after 24 hours.

Strength - Bearer gains +1 Strength.

Swiftness - Increases bearer's Initiative.

Warp - Mutates a victim with each stroke.

Warrior Summoning - Bearer may summon a troop of D6 Chaos Warriors wielding basic Magic Weapons to fight for him once per day.

Weaken - Drains Strength from those struck.

Will - Increases bearer's Willpower.

Wounding - Inflicts D3 Wounds with each strike.

Vampyre - Automatically wounds on subsequent attacks, but bearer cannot attack another target until the "marked" victim is dead.

I apologise for the title, but I wasn't really sure how else to call this.

Way, way back in the 1980s, Games Workshop released a pair of splatbooks for their then-new Warhammer, Warhammer Roleplay and Rogue Trader settings called "Realms of Chaos". In one of those was a huge array of magical weapons that Chaos Champions could potentially get for their loyal service.

Now, I'm a pretty big fan of this older Chaos fluff, and I've been tinkering around with a setting based off of it for a while. However, as part of that, I'd like to be able to replicate all of the various Chaos Weapons that were part of that fluff. Some are obvious enough - the Animation property clearly equates to the Dancing property in 5e - but others are harder to figure.

So, I thought I'd ask here and see if anyone was interested in helping me translate those old Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay properties into D&D 5e powers.

I'd like to point out, Ulric's portfolio is bigger than Winter - he's also very firmly established as the Empire's God of War. So a mixture of War and Winter related spells would be quite appropriate, in my opinion. Looking back at Storm of Chaos, Priests of Ulric got Prayers about boosting movement (Battle Howl), inflicting damage (Destruction), chilling enemies (Winter's Chill) and bolstering morale to grant immunity to fear/terror/panic (Fury of Ulric).

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The Alignment 9-grid. We all know it. Law to Chaos. Good to Evil. So simple, on paper, yet a source of endless debate in practice. And well know why: It's because everyone seems to have their own interpretation of what actually defines a given alignment. Whether Lawfulness means personal discipline or respect for the existing laws of the land, for example.

So, out of curiosity, I thought I'd start this topic as a place for people to share their own personal interpretations of the alignments. Of course, I wouldn't be so crude as to not start with my own perspectives.

Lawful Good - The Two Pillars
A character of this alignment, as the creedo suggests, recognizes the existence of two pillars of morality - lawfulness and good - and considers them to be mutually supportive. Good exists to promote law and order. But law and order exist only to support and promote goodness. Law does NOT equate to Good; laws can be corrupt, can be defiled, can be WRONG. A law that is wrong must be swept aside and replaced with one that is right. A Lawful Good character prefers to attempt methods of reform that are not disruptive first, then to try more extreme methods. When a Lawful Good aids a village that has been attacked by raiders, after the initial threat is finished, he or she spends time to help the village prepare to defend itself by establishing training regimes for defenders, evacuation plans, and other orderly methods to ensure they can survive on their own when the character leaves.

Neutral Good - For the Greater Good
Spread good as far and as wide as you can. That is the creedo of the Neutral Good character. Law and order can have their place in supporting or promoting goodness, but they are not essential to it. A Neutral Good character is concerned only with doing as much good as they can, however they can, and what methods they use or forms it take matters not in the end.

Chaotic Good - Benevolent Whimsy
Liberty and freedom are all-important to the Chaotic Good character, but so is happiness, joy and good. These characters are driven entirely by their own wants and whims, but their wants and whims are fundamentally positive. These characters want others to be happy and do good things simply because it feels good to be good. Impulse and benevolence are the two driving forces of such a character's life. A Chaotic Good character is suspicious of law and order because they know how easy it can be corrupted into a force of oppression. They do not inherently oppose law - "do what thou wilt, if it harm none" - but they are always watchful for its abuse and quick to act to oppose law that stifles and oppresses.

Lawful Neutral- The Law Is All
Law Equals Good. That is the perspective of the Lawful Neutral character. Actual morality is a meaningless distinction. The laws are inherently right and must be obeyed, and those who do not obey the laws are wrong. Evil comes from rebellion and discord, good comes from obeying the law as they are written. The spirit of the law matters not, only the letter. That does not mean that laws cannot change or be revised, only that they should be considered carefully; is the problem truly with the Law, or with fallible mortals who do not adhere to the Law's purity?

True Neutral - I Don't Care
The True Neutral character is apathy, plain and simple. Not malice, for they have not that level of meanness in them. They don't want to hurt anyone, really, but they don't care enough to try and help, either. A True Neutral lives a fundamentally self-focused existence; they care about their comforts, but not enough to disrupt the existences of others in their pursuit. They just want to live their lives, and extend the same courtesy to others.

Chaotic Neutral - I Do What I Want
Selfish desire rules the heart of the Chaotic Neutral character. These individuals care only about one thing: satisfying their own personal wants and whims. They don't necessarily want to hurt anyone, and hurting people certainly isn't the goal, but if they have to hurt someone, or break a promise, or do something wrong, well, then they'll do it. A Chaotic Neutral is selfish, NOT stupid. They want to get what they want, but that doesn't mean they can't be thoughtful or patient.

Lawful Evil - Evil For A Purpose
A character of the Lawful Evil type lives by the creedo "the end justifies the means". They have a Purpose, a goal they want to achieve, and whether they view it as ultimately noble or a self-admittedly selfish one doesn't matter. All that matters is that they will do ANYthing it takes to achieve that goal. A Lawful Evil character is pragmatism incarnate. They keep their darker urges shackled to their command; they may enjoy the torturing of innocents, but they will not do so without a cause. To give in to their desires is to lose sight of their goal, to allow their means to become the ends in and of themselves.

Neutral Evil - Because It Benefits Me
Selfishness taken to its darkest interpretation is the Neutral Evil character. Such a character is out for himself (or herself, or itself) above and before all else. They do whatever they feel they can get away with and may benefit them, whether that benefit is a pragmatic one (assassinating or framing a superior to usurp their place, betraying a friend to gain a physical reward) or a personal one (raping a woman desired simply because they have coveted them), but recognize that some measure of self-control is warranted. Their goal is to state their desires, but evil is a tool to that end, not an end in and of itself.

Chaotic Evil - Because I Can
This is the darker counterpart of Chaotic Neutral. This is a character who not only lives by the creedo of doing whatever they want to do, but whose desires actively encompass wrongness. They kill and torment and defile and destroy for no greater purpose or rationale than because it is what gives them pleasure. This is a character who will burn the world, if he thinks the flames will be pretty enough. Their desires are all they live for, and their desires are inherently sick and twisted. Other Evil characters may have similar sickness in them - a love of inflicting pain, a joy in slaughter - but they do not let it rule them the way a Chaotic Evil character does.

I've always been a homebrewer when it comes to settings, yet, at the same design, I'm a fairly shameless cribber of ideas, too.

I have a setting in development, for which I plan to use an idea I've been tossing around on-off ever since 4e got released in 2008; tieflings not as cursed mortals, but as ascended fiends, denizens of the hell-pits who have forsaken the darkness and tried to escape what they were by becoming more like mortals, in a black and gray sort of setting.

Between this, and my own admiration of Pathfinder's fiend-strain tieflings (shackleborn from kytons, beastbrood from rakshasi, etc), it's only natural I'd want to try and figure out what a 5e version of each might look like under 5e stats.

Thing is, I always worry about my own efforts at homebrewing, so I was wondering if anyone would be interested in brainstorming functional versions here?

I have to ask; isn't the Blackguard kind of obsolete now? Paladins are about Oaths rather than alignment, and we have an Oathbreaker in the DMG.

Likewise, can't you be a Bear Warrior already by taking the Bear spirit benefits to the Totem Warrior Barbarian?

Not meaning to be rude, I certainly want to hear what people want to see as new class options, but these two just leave me personally feeling kind of "huh" or "eh".

So, as we all know, the big "thing" for classes in 5e is that they rely on the PC taking a specific "path" (or archetype, or whatever you want to call it) at around level 3. Fighters becoming Champions or Eldritch Knights, Monks adopting one of the Ways, Wizards becoming Specialists, etcetera.

Naturally, this clearly indicates that a big focus for the future of class-related splatbooks (PHB2, Complete X, whatever) will be the unveiling of new paths for the various existing classes.

But I'm curious; for the existing classes, what new paths are you hoping WoTC will eventually officially write up and release for the players to use?

Myself? Well...

The first thing that immediately hits my mind is a Monk path based on the Iron Soul or, especially, the Soaring Blade from back in 4e. It's great that the monk can actually be decent with just their naked fists, but since the monk ate the (always rather unnecessary, in my opinion) ninja via the Way of Shadow path, I'd like to see them do the same to the samurai. At least, the kensai/swordsaint interpretation of the samurai. There's room in D&D 5e for a "naked swordmaster", if you will, a character that relies on swiftness, agility and mastery of body and weapon to slay and defend themselves rather than armor. And I think it works expertly as a Monk path.

Yeah, honestly, I've often felt that necromancers tend to get kinda shafted in D&D, except maybe after the company brings out a new necromancy/undead focused splatbook - The Complete Necromancer for 2e, or Libris Mortis + Heroes of Horror for 3.5. And even then, wizard necromancers tend to really get the shaft compared to cleric necromancers - at least the 5e necromancer finally gets the Command Undead class feature.

Myself, I'm a fairly shameless spell homebrewer to populate my lists. I may worry about balance sometimes (for example, a handful of level 3 spells of mine are basically fireball with the school changed to Necromancy and doing more necromancy-focused damage [necrotic, ice, poison or thunder), but I still feel there's a lot of potential for necromancer wizards that D&D often doesn't tend to tap.

Everyone knows the half-elf and the half-orc, but for some reason, despite their long role as a member of the playable races and their traditional alliances with humanity, the dwarves have never been able to get mainstream support for crossbreeding with humans.

So, I was curious to see if anyone A: would also like to see an option to play as a half-dwarf character in Pathfinder, or B: would have suggestions on what thye might look like?

If it helps at all, there were 3.5 stats for half-dwarfs in the "Races of Anasalon" splatbook for Dragonlance, which for reference looked like this:

Half-dwarves may pass as dwarves with a +8 bonus to Disguise checks, but they are usually too tall and human-like to fool their dwarven kin. Half-dwarf characters possess the following racial traits.
• Humanoid (dwarf): Half-dwarves are humanoids with the dwarf subtype.
• A half-dwarf’s base land speed is 30 feet.
• Darkvision out to 60 feet.
• Weapon Familiarity: Half-dwarves have the same weapon familiarity as dwarves.
• +2 racial bonus on Craft and Appraise checks. Half- dwarves inherit the dwarf’s keen eye for craftsmanship, and their human heritage expands this to more than just stone and metal.
• Stability: A half-dwarf gains a +2 bonus on ability checks made to resist being bull rushed or tripped when standing firmly on the ground. Though not as stocky as their dwarf parents, half-dwarves still have a lower center of gravity than humans.
• +1 racial bonus on saving throws against poison.
• +1 racial bonus on saving throws against spells and spell-like effects.
• Automatic Languages: Common, Dwarven. Bonus Languages: Any. Half-dwarves often take up their human parent’s regional language as a bonus language.
• Favored Class: Any. When determining whether a multiclass half-dwarf takes an experience penalty, his highest-level class does not count.

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I apologise if this topic has already been started, but I didn't think it was a bad one to open.

I have something of a personal interest in Greta, from the 2nd adventure module of this path, due to my previous interest in Undrella the Harpy, and I was curious what various actual players did when presented with the possibility of a flirtatious (and even, optionally, "redeemable by love" type) winter she-wolf taking an interest in them.

Mostly I'm interested in seeing if anyone actually "took it up" with her after she invited them out for coffee, and how far it went.

Weirdo wrote:
But what makes LG more important or meaningful as a specific form of good than CG? That's why I describe LG in 4E as "Good Plus" - not that it's necessarily "gooder than good," but that it's "Good plus Order" without a corresponding "Good plus Liberty."

Firstly, saying simply "Good Plus" will generally prompt the assumption that you mean "better than Good".

Secondly, it's rather pointless to sum up an alignment as "Good plus Liberty" since a respect for liberty and the rights of all beings to have it is an inherent part of BEING good in the first place. There is a reason why slavery and tyranny have been considered inherently evil since the very earliest days of the game.

Finally, why is "lawful good" worthy of being considered separate from "good"? Because of the simple fact that there's an inherent difference between those who want simply "liberty and justice" and those who want "liberty, justice AND order". Neutral Good and Chaotic Good have always been very similar, unless you really play up the Order vs. Chaos angle. Lawful Good, meanwhile, has always stood alone for its placing equal emphasis on the importance of both law and good. There's a reason why there's a trope about being lawful or good, but not one about being chaotic or good.

Really, look at the actual write-ups for Good and Lawful Good from the 4e PHB, they probably make a much more eloquent argument as to the difference than I ever will.


Character Alignment: Good
Moral Stance: Freedom & Kindness
Summary Quote: Protecting the weak from those who would dominate or kill them is just the right thing to do.

If you’re a good character, you believe it is right to aid and protect those in need. You’re not required to sacrifice yourself to help others or to completely ignore your own needs, but you might be asked to place others’ needs above your own.... in some cases, even if that means putting yourself in harm’s way. In many ways, that’s the essence of being a heroic adventurer:

The people of the town can’t defend themselves from the marauding goblins, so you descend into the dungeon—at significant personal risk—to put an end to the goblin raids.

You can follow rules and respect authority, but you’re keenly aware that power tends to corrupt those who wield it, too often leading them to exploit their power for selfish or evil ends. When that happens, you feel no obligation to follow the law blindly.

It’s better for authority to rest in the members of a community rather than the hands of any individual or social class. When law becomes exploitation, it crosses into evil territory, and good characters feel compelled to fight it.

Good and evil represent fundamentally different viewpoints, cosmically opposed and unable to coexist in peace. Good and lawful good characters, though, get along fine—even if a good character thinks a lawful good companion might be a little too focused on following the law, rather than simply doing the right thing.


Character Alignment: Lawful Good
Moral Stance: Civilization and Order
Summary Quote: An ordered society protects us from evil.

If you’re lawful good, you respect the authority of personal codes of conduct, laws, and leaders, and you believe that those codes are the best way of achieving your ideals. Just authority promotes the well-being of its subjects and prevents them from harming one another. Lawful good characters believe just as strongly as good ones do in the value of life, and they put even more emphasis on the need for the powerful to protect the weak and lift up the downtrodden. The exemplars of the lawful good alignment are shining champions of what’s right, honorable, and true, risking or even sacrificing their lives to stop the spread of evil in the world.

When leaders exploit their authority for personal gain, when laws grant privileged status to some citizens and reduce others to slavery or untouchable status, law has given in to evil and just authority becomes tyranny. You are not only capable of challenging such injustice, but morally bound to do so.

However, you would prefer to work within the system to right such problems rather than resorting to more rebellious and lawless methods.

Weirdo wrote:

Plus, 4E actually has an alignment system that is more friendly to the LG-only paladin than 3E/PF.

Namely, that LG actually is "Good Plus." There is no CG - chaos can be a particular vice in an evil creature, but never a particular virtue. Since LG actually has an extra-special status compared to ordinary good in 4E, it would make more sense that LG also has an extra-special class associated with it.

It doesn't.

...Ugh. How many times have I seen this misconception? It still ticks me off.

I hate to spell this out, but 4e Lawful Good is NOT "Good Plus". I don't know, people seem to see the fact it makes for one single row and make this assumption... As the corebook spells out, and as WoTC publically stated on their website, Lawful Good is the alignment of "Good AND Order, working together in harmony, are best". Lawful Good is the alignment of people who believe that order is an integral part of goodness, that systems should be changed from within where possible and that once evil is toppled, a new and righteous orderly reign should be established to take its place.

Good people are the kind who sweep into a village, stomp the nearby orcs harassing the place, then move on. Lawful Good people are the ones who show up, defeat the orcs, then try to organize a militia or evacuation procedures or other such things to ensure that people can fend for themselves before leaving.

Arguably, Chaotic Evil can be seen as an "Evil Plus" alignment in 4e, since the difference between the two is "Evil alignment is evil for a cause - even if that cause is conquering the universe and ruling it with a brutal iron fist, whereas Chaotic Evil alignment is evil of the I just want to watch the world burn variety". I'll concede that fact. But Lawful Good has been described in 4e all along as being a very specific form of Good, not "Gooder than Good".

That people keep misconstructing it otherwise really irks me, especially when there are other, more legitimate reasons to disapprove of the things 4e did.

To get back on topic, as I said much earlier, I'm of the camp that Paladins having to be Lawful Good is basically a sacred cow that has become increasingly pointless as the rules have grown far less brutally byzantine. The idea of a knight in shining armor can be handled by any sufficiently noble combat-focused class, from Fighter to Paladin, Ranger to Cavalier. The Paladin would be far better off if it actually embraced its potential fluff as a divinely empowered warrior-champion, dumped the alignment restrictions, and focused on its potential in that far more necessary concept niche.

Players who want the old holy-magic-using knight in shining armor can still play it via the paladin, and players who want to be a holy warrior fighting on behalf of any god, especially those of good alignments, can get what they want as well.

It's honestly a win-win scenario in my eyes, so the only real reason I can see not to change it is sheer grognardia.

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Like folks say, though the fluff tends to describe the Paladins as tied to the gods, their underlying motif hasn't ever really been "champion of the divine", but the "knight in shining armor", inspired by the Arthurian mythos, tales of knightly chivalry, and romanticized visions of the medieval Crusaders - don't forget, it was the 80s, and Gary Gygax was a pretty devout Christian.

The whole hiccup got started in 1e, became more muddled in 2e, and since then it's basically been a sacred cow; everyone expected Paladins to be Lawful Good *and* divine champions at the same time.

Honestly, OP, one of the things I thought WoTC did right with 4th edition was giving that sacred cow the chop and just making Paladins the holy warriors of any and all faiths. Removes the need for classes like the Blackguard or Antipaladin, which have always been kind of ridiculous.

Besides, if I want to be a "knight in shining armor", I can spin that out of any armor-wearing Lawful Good character - fighters, cavaliers, rangers... I don't need a specific class to fit that archetype.

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Let's not forget; if Pathfinder leans towards any aspect of the Cthulhu Mythos, it's the branch that Robert E. Howard developed. There are "horrors in the outer dark", and they are much more powerful than humans, but they are not inherently unstoppable. Conan has gone up against creatures that would be "Great Old Ones" himself, like Yag Kosha or Khostrel Khel, and been involved in killing them.

Lovecraft's personal characters tend to die and/or go insane because of meeting the various horrors of the Mythos because they are quite explicitly normal people. Something that cannot be said to apply to any decent Pathfinder character.

Really, your average PC is doing things that would be inconceivable to Lovecraft's "rational, civilized men" pretty much at first level, where clerics can mend wounds with a touch and wizards can hurl bolts. Goblins and orcs and magical beasts would, to one of Lovecraft's heroes, be terrifying things that should not be - to a Pathfinder, they're literally part of the scenery. Dangerous, yes, but hardly something to go crazy over.

One simply cannot cross a fantasy setting that actually allows players to achieve the heights they can in D&D or Pathfinder with the Cthulhu Mythos without inevitably sinking into Lovecraft Lite territory. A level 20 wizard is at the least as dangerous and powerful in a pure Lovecraft setting as a Starspawn of Cthulhu.

Personally, I feel that both characters are walking very fine lines between Neutral and Evil; they manage to cling to Neutral, but they haven't fallen into Evil just yet.

Alain I see as a definite "Lawful Neutral leaning towards Lawful Evil" type. Ordinarily, I'd just dismiss him as a self-absorbed Lawful Neutral douchebag, but some of the things he's stated as doing, such as seducing women and then abandoning them with his bastard children should they fall pregnant, do push him towards the Lawful Evil type.

Damiel, meanwhile, I see as essentially a junkie who is clinging onto some sanity by his fingernails, and is almost certainly going to end up as Chaotic Evil if he doesn't start pulling his act together and kick his mutagen addiction soon.

So, out of curiosity, what times have folks here included monstrous interspecies romance in their Pathfinder campaigns, and how did you use it? NPC flavor? Source for a side quest? Or even taking the hooks offered in Legacy of Fire and Reign of Winter, that I know of, and having "monster" type NPCs as romance options for your players?

On a semi-related topic; if your "vision" of Golarion includes room for love between "monsters" and humanoids, has that ever turned to procreation? The possibility of new races emerging from such a union, or setting up new directions for your world, or even as a source for quests?

I've done all three myself, but only in homebrew settings - a jorogumo witch seeking out a magical way to have children with her human lover that didn't require either of them to die by incubating the eggs, harpies that "evolved" from chaotic evil to chaotic neutral as a race because of their need for human partners, etc - so I guess that kind of makes that invalid to discuss here.

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I don't know if this has been mentioned, but the Demons Revisited section entry for the Shadow Demon has the Iconic Paladin having been possessed by a shadow demon and/or having been shot in the head by the Iconic Gunslinger, who in turn looks like she's either been possessed by a shadow demon or is about to be pounced on from behind by one.

To sum up what most of the people have said on this topic, the reason that the paladin gets so much attention paid to its falling in spite of other classes being alignment tied is the following:

* Lawful Good alignment is one of the more "headcanon-prone" branches of the alignment tree. You have people who state it's about being good and staying true to your own personal code of law, people who say it's about being good and obeying all lawful authorities, people who say it's about promoting good by way of law, and probably a dozen other variants I can't be bothered to think of. Needless to say, if the player has one interpretation of lawful good and the DM has another, conflict happens. This is especially problematic because of people having a tendency to conflate Lawful Good with Lawful Neutral, and thusly have supposedly lawful good characters believe simply "Law = Good".

* Other classes with alignment ties are usually more broad in aspect. Being Lawful or Chaotic is a lot broader and easier to define, more or less, than Lawful Good is. The one other class that had similar amounts of alignment pain, the Druid, actually underwent a revision from 2e (where it HAD to be True Neutral - and True Neutral was defined in the most *ridiculous* fashion) because WoTC realized just how stupid its original alignment ties were.

* Players of Paladins are well-aware that their grasp on their powers, and thus their ability to not be sub-par fighters, depends on cleaving to their alignment. Thusly, many players over-emphasise in order to avoid falling... and tend to take it into directions that just tick off the DM and/or the rest of the party. Hence the "Paladins Suck!" meme that keeps bubbling around D&D and, to an extent, Pathfinder.

* As part of the "Killer DM" school of thought, some DMs enjoy puzzling out ways to cause Paladins to fall, either as a punishment for a bad paladin player, as a way of generating a backstory for a fallen/anti-paladin villain, or just for the fun of it.

* The existence of a whole other class that exists to be defined as "evil counterpart of the paladin" gives further fuel for the falling. Monks, Barbarians and Druids don't have antithesis classes, so their ability to fall is further ignored by comparison.

...Looking over this, and over all the other topics about falling paladins, makes me realize just how much I appreciate 4e for A: making far more succinct alignment descriptions (for example: Lawful Good is *explicitly* "believes that law and order are valuable, vital tools in the promotion and support of good, and laws that do not promote/support good must be changed"), B: removing the ridiculous idea of classes depending on character alignment to function in the first place, and C: peeled away that drek about paladins being Arthurian "knights in shining armor" and gave them a far more nuanced, viable role as "armored warrior-champions of the gods".

I mean, seriously. If I wanted to play a knight in shining armor in Pathfinder, I would play a cavalier - or, hells, even a Lawful Good fighter or magus - and never even look at the paladin.

If it helps, I found the hags of Pathfinder all here:


Thanks for that, Nighttree; I googled the SRD and it mentioned that. Also, there's a Mute Hag in the "The Harrowing" adventure and a Storm Hag in Adventure Path #72 (aka "Reign of Winter Part 6"): "The Witch Queen's Revenge".

What sourcebook does the Blood Hag appear in, SwnyNerdgasm? I can't recall ever seeing that creature before.

But thanks to both of you for the comments; I think the pilfered Dreamspeaker trait from your Nightspawn, Nighttree, and SwynNerdgasm's Fire in the Blood and Hyperboreal Witchcraft both make a fair amount of sense as default Hag Racial Traits.

Does anyone have any alternatives? After all, Changelings do have those optional hag trait variations for the Annis/Green/Sea Hag in the Advanced Race Guide...

I probably could give some more information, but I don't really know how much I can give without breaking the laws here. In essence, Calibans are an all-male, sterile race of Monstrous Humanoids created by hags used twisted alchemic rituals, essentially as homunculi-variants. They are universally deformed, can temporarily mutate those they touch, and can issue a scream that disorientates those who succumb to them, off the top of my head. They're not always evil, but because they are created by hags as thuggish minions, and look like monsters, even those who escape hag control tend to become hermits who try to uphold a live and let live policy towards other races.

Though I quite like the Changeling race, for various reasons, it hasn't escaped my notice that their Hag Racial Traits race feature only accounts for the three most common kinds of hag; Annis, Green, and Sea. Thing is, there's a number of other different kinds of hags, and I'm sure they produce changeling daughters as well.

Hell, in Dragon Magazine's ecology article for Night Hags, the species is described as using a process almost *exactly* like the changeling procedure of Pathfinder's hags - the night hag births perfectly human (if prone to being magically talented and/or odd) human daughters, who must then be magically converted into new night hags by their mother.

So, the Bestiary 1 gives us the Night Hag (anyone else find it odd that Night Hags were in the first bestiary, but Annis Hags didn't show up until the third?) and the Bestiary 4 gives us the Winter Hag; does anyone have any suggestions what the Hag Racial Traits for those two kinds could possibly be?

I have a fondness for the Changeling race, one fuelled by fond memories of Planescape: Torment and my own interests in monster-based interspecies romance. However, I'm very much not a fan of the gender restrictions on the race, especially since Classic Horrors Revisted does state that hags can have male offspring - they just don't usually let them live.

Furthermore, I remember Forgotten Realms introducing the idea of the male children of hags, creatures known as Hagspawn, one of whom was even a playable character in the second Neverwinter Nights game. Add this to the entry on Calibans - artificial "hag sons" - in the adventure module "Tears at Bitter Manor" and, well, I was wondering two things:

Would anyone here allow hagspawn or calibans or whatever you want to call them as a playable race alongside their changeling sisters?

If the answer is yes, how would you handle them? Just use the changeling stats? Or something else?

A part of me, if I'm honest, kind of leans towards the idea of using the Tiefling race, with the optional variant racial abilities from Blood of Fiends as a necessity, as hagspawn/calibans. I can kind of see Shacklespawn and Hungerseeds making excellent Annis Hag calibans, Beastbroods as Green Hag calibans, and Motherless make very fitting sons of the nightmare-spreading Night Hags.

But what's other peoples' opinions?

Gotta agree with just about everyone here; Erastil is pretty much a perfect ringer for St. Cuthbert. Even their differences on the moral axis aren't that bad - personally, I always figured Cuthbert as being a Lawful Neutral Leaning Towards Good myself; he means well, but he has certain character flaws (stubborn self-righteousness, hard-headedness, placing emphasis on tradition even to the point it can impact goodness) that mean he tends to go a bit too far to keep his Good alignment.

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James Jacobs wrote:
Adjule wrote:

I definitely understand. My biggest gripe with portraying only the Chaotic Evil orc society is a half-breed of them is an available core race. I can understand having creatures with CE societies, even if I don't like it at all. But that's the biggest reason I dislike having that for the orcs.


Half orcs breed true, so that's a way to get more half orcs out there.

...Which does absolutely nothing to alleviate the actual complaint here, which is that half-orcs have no real cultural background besides being shunned and bullied to draw upon, whether they are first-generation hybrids or the latest in a long line of half-orcs.

Even the Advanced Race Guide openly states (page 51) that half-orcs brought up in the rare ghettoes and hamlets of their own kind tend to be no better off than the ones raised amongst humans or orcs, as "bullying and physical confrontation comes easy to a people who have been raised with few other examples of behavior".

That's the thing that people keep complaining about; there may be token lines hinting at the existence of half-orcs who can't be pigeonholed as victims of prejudice and abuse, token evil teammembers or Drizz't style cultural rebels, but the bulk of all official media on actually playing a half-orc focuses pretty much exclusively on those options.

I mean, orc-raised half-orcs *have* to be either token evil teammates, very dark anti-heroes, or Drizz't style rebels, since all detailed orc societies are Chaotic Evil cesspits of hatred, violence and abuse. Human-raised half-orcs come from a background as being shunned and hated and "unable even to hold normal jobs" (ARG, page 51) in many places. And even if they were raised by half-orc parents themselves? They're still really no better off than if they were raised by humans. They maybe had a bit more love and affection growing up, but their background is still predominantly one of bullying and violence.

Quite a lot of agreement feedback here; I had always felt odd for thinking about the matter the way I do, so it's really quite a pleasant surprise to see other people being okay with it.

Out of curiosity, what do folks generally prefer when this more monstrous form of interspecies romance occurs in their game? A Love Redeems type backstory? A Villainous Love type backstory? Or do you use it to highlight the oddness/multiculturalism/depravity of a given city/region - after all, one would expect to see this kind of thing a lot more in, say, Sigil than in a random village.

I only got into Pathfinder recently, and being Australian, it's hard to get ahold of here. I'm trying to increase my collection, but so far it's fairly pitiful:

Core Rulebook
Bestiaries 1-4
Rise of the Runelords Anniversary Edition
Mythic Adventures
Advanced Player's Guide
Advanced Race Guide
Ultimate Campaign
Ultimate Magic
Ultimate Equipment
NPC Codex
Demons Revisited
Fey Revisited
Mysterious Monsters Revealed
Inner Sea Bestiary
Inner Sea Magic
Mythic Realms
Chronicles of the Righteous
Champions of Balance
Fangwood Keep
Tears at Bitter Manor
Reign of Winter parts 2-5 (still looking for part 1, part 6 isn't out yet here)
Jade Regent part 6
Shattered Star part 6

I want to thank folks for their opinions here; I'm of the personal opinion that only a very few archetypes from the guide are truly "unique to" their given race, and I was worried that I was thinking it through wrongly as a result.

Just to share, these are the archetypes from the book that I would personally either restrict exclusively to their race, or be hesitant about sharing.

Underfoot Adept - Technically this would work for any Small race, at the least, but I could also easily see Dwarf or Human ones who trained in this art to be capable of fighting Large or bigger opponents, such as Giants.

Order of the Paw - For non Smalls, I'd personally require them to take the Beast Rider archetype, which should open up the ability to take Dire Wolves, Winter Wolves, and other suitably sized canines.

Cruoromancer - The fluff of it ties it a bit closely to Dhampires, but I wouldn't personally object to reskinning it to be more about general "the power of blood augmenting necromantic magic" and using it with other races.

Dusk Stalker - It'd be tricky to justify this Shadow Plane-specialist Ranger with anyone who isn't a Fetchling or a Wayang, but if the story was good enough, I could allow it.

Deep Bomber - It's best suited to races that are known to spend much of their time underground, but nothing particularly ties this to the Svirfneblins.

Ancient Lorekeeper - The theme and fluff are just too tied into Elves history to work anywhere else, though I suppose a Half-Elf or perhaps even a Drow with this class could work.

Kinslayer - The fluff of this Inquisitor archetype simply ties it too closely to the Dhampir, and the existence of the Vampire Hunter archetype means I'm happy to leave this variant to Dhampires.

Cavern Sniper - It fuels itself from the Drow's spell-like abilities, so it'd be useless for anyone who doesn't have Darkness *and* Faerie Fire spell-like abilities.

Kobold Bloodline - Perhaps the only case of a Bloodline so far where I cannot see it existing across members of different races.

Fiend Flayer - Based on the idea of using self-mutilation to use one's fiend-ichor tainted blood as magical fuel, I can't see this working for anyone other than a tiefling. Or maybe a multiclassed Sorcerer with the Abyssal or Infernal bloodlines.

Gray Disciple - Like the Cavern Sniper, it's based on utilizing the Duergar's racial powers and expanding upon them. Useless for any other race.

Wave Warden - Though I'd allow this to any aquatic/amphibious race (so Undines, Gillfolk and Grippli as well as Merfolk), it just doesn't work for any other race.

Airborne Ambusher - Requires the ability to fly in order to function.

Elemental Knight - Same deal as the Cavern Sniper and Gray Disciple.

I rather enjoyed the many inventive class archetypes and expansions added in the Advanced Race Guide, but as I flick through it, I cannot help but feel that many of them, whilst certainly most iconic for their particular race, aren't necessarily exclusive to that race.

I mean, the Fiend Flayer and Kinslayer are certainly very hard to work for non-Tieflings and non-Dhampirs, at best, I would be very hard-pressed to envision a non-Kobold sorcerer with the Kobold bloodline, and the Elemental Knight is openly tied into the Suli's racial power.

But for most of the rest of them? Why couldn't there be an Orc Redeemer Paladin, or a human Bushwhacker Gunslinger, or an elven Shigenjo Oracle, or whatever?

So, I was curious: has anyone else ever allowed races other than their associated races to take advantage of archetypes from the ARG?

Bestiary 4 has a "Spawn of Yog-Sothoth" entry, so it's canon that Yog-sothoth will breed with mortals (mention is also made in the Dark Tapestry Cults entry in Carrion Crown #4 of Shub-Niggurath and Xhamen-Do as actual blood-heritage for Aberrant Sorcerers). It also mentions that some such Spawn don't manifest as Large Aberrations, but as humanoid-sized and roughly shaped (if typically deformed), and that these Spawn are typically blessed with levels in Oracle (Dark Tapestry Mystery) and/or Sorcerer (Aberrant Bloodline) as well, so your character is technically legit.

I don't know if this is any help to you, but, the module "Tears at Bitter Manor" introduces stats for creatures called "Calibans", which are Monstrous Humanoids that are essentially created as male counterparts to Changelings. Perhaps Young Meddy could be a unique, more magically adept variant of the Caliban?

The opening post reminds me of the first Baldur's Gate game. Specifically, one of the generic NPCs you can talk to who comments on how he asked a wizard why they don't just magic up "walls of iron" and use that to make stuff, since all the mundane iron is rusting away, only to have the wizard look him in the eye and ask how comfortable he'd feel with soldiers armed with weapons & armor that would vanish into nothingness if hit with Dispel Magic.

Just wanted to mention that.

Deadmanwalking wrote:

A few points I would like to make about 'Always Evil' Orcs:

First, they aren't. Their culture is, and there are no large groups that aren't, but non-Evil Orc individuals are canonical. So, there's that.

Second, and at least as importantly, who said Evil equals rape? Evil makes rape more possible, and more likely, but it doesn't necessitate it in any way.

An Evil person (or Orc) can fall in love and care for people, or cold-bloodedly seduce them for advantage, or have sex and children in a million ways that aren't rape. Orcs may not be the greatest charmers in the world, but then, they don't need to be, just good enough to get someone into bed.

Indeed, Orcs worship Rovagug, not Lamashtu. Rape is more likely to be the exception than the rule (though I admit they are noted as doing it sometimes in order to produce half-orcs, who are useful).

I think you are not understanding the problem that the OP (and those who support the OP) are having.

The complaint here is not "all Orcs are evil!", nor is it "all half-orcs have to be born from rape!".

The complaint here is "the limited nature of Orc culture hinders the ability to give diverse origins to half-orc player characters".

That is the problem. If one wants to play a half-orc in Pathfinder, then one can draw almost nothing from their orc parentage, unless they want to play either a token evil teammate or a Drizz't style cultural rebel. At the same time, the stated nature of orc culture is such that it is very difficult to justify how half-orcs could exist without having been born from rape. Orcs don't trade, don't bargain, don't ally with others - they have no peaceful interactions at all, according to all Paizo material. They don't even love each other, never mind other races.

Even if there are canonical "Drizz't equivalent Orcs", they exist in a vacuum; we know pretty much nothing about them or what caused them to desert the barbarity of orc society.

As for even Evil beings having loved ones? The description of orcs is that, in this case, they near universally don't, and even if they did fall in love with a human, what on Golarion would cause that human to reciprocate? Orc culture is described as being so barbaric and destructive that there is no reason for even evil humans to bother keeping them around besides to serve as convenient cannon-fodder.

This pigeonholes half-orcs into being born of violence and cruelty.

To be brutally honest, I've seen the blog-post or messageboard post or whatever it was where one of the authors justified that coming from such brutal, savage backgrounds made heroic half-orcs all the more unique. Be that as it may, it makes the race extremely one-dimensional - even goblin PCs have more cultural quirks and flavoring to call upon than half-orcs do.

You can't really compare halflings to half-orcs. Halflings you can actually *do* something with, and they at least have a justification for their limited cultural mores. You play a Halfling, you can be anything from a nomad to an escaped slave to a simple unnoticed aspect of the background. Half-orcs? You're pretty much pigeonholed into the child by rape background.

See, it's all well and good to make an Always Evil race to fill the "obvious bad guys" quota. The thing is, you can't then make one of your core playable races the half-breed spawn OF said Always Evil race. 1-dimensional villains are well and good, but as has been said, they make pretty lousy progenitors for a core race.

Half-orcs are that pigeonholed into a very small niche - the outcasts, the children by rape, the breeding experiments - that, in the end, you may as well not have included them at all. Even if they do technically breed true amongst themselves, there is no real half-orc culture in its own right, since they never manage to be anything more than ghettoized sub-cultures of human society.

Which is the opening poster's complaint. Half-elves, at least, can draw upon a variety of human and elven cultural backgrounds to be something unique. Half-orcs? Either they were bullied and abused by humans, or they were subjected to similarly brutal treatment at the hands of their own kind - as the Advanced Race Guide notes, even in their own communes, half-orcs tend to be little better off than they are amongst their blood-kin. As for orc-reared half-orcs... don't make me laugh! The same culture for orcs that makes them natural fits as "the usual bad guys" means there's basically nothing to draw upon unless you want to play either "the token evil teammate" or "Drizz't with green skin and tusks".

The Advanced Race Guide tries, but it really just reiterates the same thing as in the Core Rulebook and the Inner Sea World Guide. Half-orcs are outcasts and drifters, clinging to the fringes of society, or else part of the same ravening hordes as their full-blooded orc kin.

Seriously, looking at this topic, I can actually see *why* 4e dropped half-orcs from the first Player's Handbook, and when they were brought back in the second, gave them much more ambiguous origins. Hell, I've drawn up campaigns under that ruleset that just went for full-blooded orcs, represented by half-orc stats, as a PC race.

Mojorat wrote:

Given there are multiple game examples of her worshippers impregnating men I can't see why she'd oppose homosexuality.

"Multiple examples of Lamashtu worshippers impregnating men"? Really? Where are they? As I mentioned in my opening post, the only case of this in Golarion that I'm aware of is the story of Multh's attempt to create a new Spawn of Rovagug, from Mythic Realms.

I would like to point out that I am aware of Greta and Undrella - I mentioned them in my first post. I was asking if folks here think the idea of relationships between humanoids and monsters "fits the setting", since Pathfinder is the Darker & Edgier setting.

It's fairly obvious that the writers seem to think so, given the Adventure Path evidence that has been presented, I was just curious if anyone disagreed with it or agreed with it or simply didn't care either way.

I must say, I've been pleasantly surprised by the responses I've been getting here.

Also: Dudemeister? I thought Nagaji were descended from humans artificially transformed by naga, not literal human/naga crossbreeds?

First up, a disclaimer: I do not think that homosexuality and transsexuality are the same thing. Nor do I, or would I ever, advocate the forcible gender reassignment of homosexuals.

The reason I wanted to get that out of the way is because I've been thinking about Lamashtu, the Chaotic Evil goddess of fertility and miscegenation, and it seems uncomfortably likely that she does not approve of worshippers coupling with the same sex, or with attempting to play the role of the opposite sex whilst lacking the equipment to successfully breed in that role.

Does anyone else get the feeling that this would be the case?

After all, Lamashtu's worship, at its core, is all about producing an endless array of new spawn to fight, bleed, breed and die in turn. It is nature at its most perverse and rampant, essentially. Thusly, as much as I find the idea abhorrent - but then, this *is* a Religion of Evil - it seems logical that Lamashtu would abhor those whose sexuality or gender dysphoria leads to them not doing their part and breeding. Especially since infertility is seen as a sign of severe disfavor from Lamashtu.

Similarly, it makes unpleasant sense that Lamashtan priests would be quick to use various torments to "enlighten" the faithful as to their proper place. Additionally, or alternatively, the more merciful-feeling priests - or those confronted when otherwise highly valuable servants of the cult have improper attitudes - might use magic to "correct" the problem. Forcibly gender-shifting the homosexual, for example.

On a divergent strain of thought...

* Does anyone else think that a functional hermaphrodite gender, capable of simultaneously bearing and fathering offspring, would be the equivalent of the holy grail to a Lamashtan cult?

* In the Mythic Realms splat, mention is made of male pregnancy, as part of Multh's attempt to breed a new Spawn of Rovagug. Given Lamashtu's interests can be summed up as madness, mutation and corrupt fertility, does anyone think it likely that spells, artefacts or whatever allowing men to be impregnated would be something Lamashtu's faithful would either seek or possess?

* Finally, would a Lamashtu cult make use of gender modifying and/or male impregnation spells/effects/etc as a way of striking against the cult's enemies? I don't know, something like luring the city's gender dysphorics into their arms by promising to remake them into what they should have been, or striking chaos into the heart of the city's defenders when the Lord Mayor suddenly and dramatically balloons with child in the middle of a meeting and messily (if not fatally) gives birth to a monstrous child, seems weirdly appropriate to a demonic fertility/pleasure cult.

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Actually, Mikaze, there's two of those human man on female thri-kreen stories up now, that I know of. The famous one from /tg/ on the 1D4chan wiki, and a newer one on a website called SoFurry.

The only problem with a "safe" jorogumo/man relationship in Pathfinder, Odraude, is that Pathfinder Jorogumos differ from their mythological variants by having a parasitic reproduction system. Mythological jorogumos simply chose to eat humans or feed humans to their offspring; Pathfinder's ones reproduce by being inseminated, paralyzing the father, and then laying their eggs into the father's paralysed body, out of which the hatchlings will fatally eat their way upon hatching. Rather puts a kink in the relationship.

Not to say I couldn't see, say, a tragic Romeo & Juliet type scenario (the man is willing to die to father his lover's children, the jorogumo doesn't want to have children if it means killing her lover), or a murder-mystery type scenario where the jorogumo is instead killing other men and/or women to serve as broodhosts in place of her lover, but it's still a rather limited setup.

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Now, I know that Character Alignment is a highly subjective affair in D&D. I apologize for writing this, but I just had to get this off of my chest after reading some topics on here about Paladins vs. Lawful Evil settlements or encounters.

I just never understand why Lawful Good vs. Lawful Evil seems to be so hard to figure out. Why? Because of this:

The essence of Lawful Good is "laws are important, in so far as they support, protect or promote goodness". It is not "law equals goodness". That is the essence of Lawful Neutral, where one prizes the letter of the law above all things and does not concern oneself with the morality of the law.

If the above statement can be taken as the essence of Lawful Good, then, the obvious addendum is that "if a law actively harms or oppresses others, or otherwise promotes the cause of evil, then it is a bad law, and should be opposed".

In other words, a Lawful Good character is not obligated by their alignment to obey laws that directly serve or benefit evil. Such laws breach the purpose of law in so far as the Lawful Good alignment recognizes it (to whit, promoting the greater good of the community) and thusly are inherently worthless. Paladins serving gods devoted more to Law may wrestle with it, but ultimately their calling is to be a force for Good, which means they are empowered to ignore laws that purposefully aid or empower Evil.

That said, alignment should be tempered by common sense. A Paladin, or any Lawful Good character, does not walk into the middle of Chelish slavemarket and start attacking the slavers -- not because it breaches their alignment, but because common sense dictates that such an action will not help the cause of good, may result in the innocent being harmed by accident, and almost certainly result in their dying having accomplished nothing.

A Lawful Good character always tries to work so that they promote Good with the minimal amount of social unrest. This means they are very procedural and attempt to keep disruption to a minimum. And once they have achieved the Good they set out to do, they should strive to smooth over the disruption they caused and get things smoothly organized again.

Ultimately, the primary goal of a Lawful Good character is to uphold and promote Good. The Lawful part comes in their procedural, organized methodology to doing so. Take, for example, a town that has just been saved from a rampaging goblin tribe: the proper course of action, for a Lawful Good character, is to not only drive off or kill the goblins, but to remain in the village and organize it so that such tragedies do not happen again. Be responsible for initiating the construction of defenses, organize a militia, set up safehouses and plans of action - only when the town has been organized such that they should be able to defend themselves against a subsequent attack will a Lawful Good character move on. Simply killing the creatures and then moving on is a Chaotic Good action, and even then you'd expect them to stick around long enough to see to patching up any injuries or otherwise helping out individuals.

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From what few of your posts I have seen in my short time here, Mikaze, I rather expected that you would have a positive answer to my questions. I must confess I never expected you to actually post here, though.

As for your stance on half-orcs, I must confess a preference for that sort of mutual consensual origin myself. Honestly? I can't help but feel that Paizo sticks to emphasizing the "half-orcs are children of rape" thing more to emphasize their status as Darker & Edgier than D&D, for all their talk about it emphasizing the heroicness of the half-orc adventurer. In theory that may be true, in practice... can anyone name an important major Paizo-written half-orc who actually *was* a rape-brat? The only three I can immediately recall off the top of my head are Irimjka (whose earliest origins are "found as a mysteriously abandoned baby in a graveyard"), Irabeth Tirablade (orc father chose to give up his tribe and evil viewpoint because he fell in love with a human woman) and Tsadok Goldtooth (human father befriended orc mother while they were slaves together on a pirate ship, she helped him escape, they fell in love).

Anyway, to answer my own question, I obviously believe the first two questions deserve a "yes" answer. Ultimately, I think the idea adds a lot more to the setting, and offer a lot of potential for story-hooks and character concepts. It can be played for comedy or grotesquery, yes, but it can also be played for other things.

The reclusive spellcaster/librarin and his gynosphinx companion becomes instantly memorable when the subtle hints of them being a couple are recognized. Killing a Jadwiga warlock, only for his winter wolf ally to scream in heartbreak and go berserk at the sight of her lover's death adds a definite element to the encounter. The hag who lives in tenuous peace with the nearby village so long as her lover and their changeling daughter is left alone, the medusa terrorizing a village because she's in love with a local youth or maiden and demands they give him/her up to be her concubine, the thria queen sending the party to track down the renegade soldier who fell in love with and stole away her latest consort, the "kidnapped" prince who refuses to leave his siren lover...

But then, I'm more than slightly mad, so maybe these scenarios that keep popping up in my head really don't work and aren't meant to be.

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