Time travel and uncontrollable bloodrage


Homebrew and House Rules

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So I have a human bloodrager with the draconic bloodline and his backstory is he's from an ancient dragon cult from before earthfall. Before the event happened the cult sent him forward in time because he had the purest and strongest dragon blood of them all.

I'm pretty loosey-goosey with rules and allow the players to do what they want (or let them attempt to) but should this type of time travel be allowed? Like it's a huge leap forward in time from earthfall to the current time. Also this dude has something about his bloodrage where he losses control and goes on a killing spree. He told me he wants to keep from bloodraging as a role-playing thing. I enjoy role-playing a bunch and like the idea but he also told me in his bloodrage he becomes a different person. "The Dragon inside" I guess I can let this happen. Would you?


Check with the other players. I don't like it when one character gets too fancy or important. I like less Harry Potter, and more Lord of the Rings. Everyone is for the most part balances, and Aragorn is humble enough we don't care so much about the royalty. Only the other players can explain how they feel. You could have everyone with equally important back stories, but that's a little intense for some.

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MageHunter wrote:
Check with the other players. I don't like it when one character gets too fancy or important. I like less Harry Potter, and more Lord of the Rings. Everyone is for the most part balances, and Aragorn is humble enough we don't care so much about the royalty. Only the other players can explain how they feel. You could have everyone with equally important back stories, but that's a little intense for some.

We went over it yesterday and I said I'll think about it. They all have interesting stories from a simple baker's daughter to former hobgoblin commander to a anarchist catfolk sorcerer.

I mean it's a little out there with the man-out-of-time thing but his character is shy and introverted.

I guess it's the time travel thing I need convincing on. Would you allow that big of a time jump? From earthfall to present day?


Polynesian Pathfinder wrote:

So I have a human bloodrager with the draconic bloodline and his backstory is he's from an ancient dragon cult from before earthfall. Before the event happened the cult sent him forward in time because he had the purest and strongest dragon blood of them all.

I'm pretty loosey-goosey with rules and allow the players to do what they want (or let them attempt to) but should this type of time travel be allowed? Like it's a huge leap forward in time from earthfall to the current time. Also this dude has something about his bloodrage where he losses control and goes on a killing spree. He told me he wants to keep from bloodraging as a role-playing thing. I enjoy role-playing a bunch and like the idea but he also told me in his bloodrage he becomes a different person. "The Dragon inside" I guess I can let this happen. Would you?

While I agree with MageHunter, I think a good option might be to work a less defined PC into the backstory of that Bloodrager (also from the same time period caught up in the spell, or sent back intentionally) and make the concept of that background somehow matter as a subplot or something.


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Polynesian Pathfinder wrote:
MageHunter wrote:
Check with the other players. I don't like it when one character gets too fancy or important. I like less Harry Potter, and more Lord of the Rings. Everyone is for the most part balances, and Aragorn is humble enough we don't care so much about the royalty. Only the other players can explain how they feel. You could have everyone with equally important back stories, but that's a little intense for some.

We went over it yesterday and I said I'll think about it. They all have interesting stories from a simple baker's daughter to former hobgoblin commander to a anarchist catfolk sorcerer.

I mean it's a little out there with the man-out-of-time thing but his character is shy and introverted.

I guess it's the time travel thing I need convincing on. Would you allow that big of a time jump? From earthfall to present day?

I mean, if the method used to propel him forward in time was ancient Azlanti supermagic which was lost after the cataclysm that was Earthfall, I don't see why not. I'd say it's something that the magic of Old Azlant could possibly do.


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Forward moving Time Travel doesn't need to be actual "Time Travel". Look at the Runelords, apparently all of them(that we know of) managed to escape Earthfall and travel forward in time. Some ideas;
- Petrify him, put the statue in a secure place and unpetrify him in the future.
- Imprisonment/Temporal Stasis spells.
- A properly worded Miracle or wish.
- Another plane where a day is 1000 years on Golarion.

I'm sure there are lots of others. The man-out-of-time thing wouldn't concern me.


Valandil Ancalime wrote:

Forward moving Time Travel doesn't need to be actual "Time Travel". Look at the Runelords, apparently all of them(that we know of) managed to escape Earthfall and travel forward in time. Some ideas;

- Petrify him, put the statue in a secure place and unpetrify him in the future.
- Imprisonment/Temporal Stasis spells.
- A properly worded Miracle or wish.
- Another plane where a day is 1000 years on Golarion.

I'm sure there are lots of others. The man-out-of-time thing wouldn't concern me.

Yeah, beat me to it.

Of significance is the fact that I've run a character who experienced the "out of time" thing: in our case, a young girl who was frozen via temporal stasis (with a contingent freedom spell put on her by her mother*). She was discovered and brought to a monastery of Iomedae, where her presence was hailed as a miracle of the faith, and she was prayed at for many years, before (at a seemingly arbitrary point) she just "thawed" at seemingly random. I did this to tie her backstory directly into three different modules, and intimately to the history of one person, one country, and one city (as well as to instill an unbridled hatred of dragons**) and explain how she became a paladin (via the monastery she "woke up" within).

I mean, throwing a guy frozen in time next to a Rovagug cult-site (or, perhaps even better for dragon-theme, a Dahak cult-site) could clearly give the dude issues - the spell may indicate time stops, but you've noted you're pretty okay with bending for flavor. I'd suggest that madness or destructive impulses, in a powerful temple of evil magic, could have hypothetically "influenced" the dude.

Alternatively, a sepia snake sigil and a permanent timeless demiplane would work. One dispel or disjunction later, and suddenly the spell ends. How it's destroyed could be incidental.

As a side-story, guy could have been in this demiplane, and part of the favored horde of a Dahak-worshipping dragon who'd found and kept the place. Some adventurers burst in, epic battle ensues, a barbarian spell sunders the place as part of a last-minute desperate attempt at something, and everything gets scattered as a result, while bloodrage dude gets lost in the surrounding environment (maybe by being shoved back into local reality but in some caves hidden from the adventurers. He wakes up 1d4+CL days later, with a tiny fragment of the horde that was shoved there with him (specifically 3d6 x 10 gold-value worth), and voila, backstory for a first-level dude surviving to now.

(As an aside, it could be that the story is that the entire cult - or many - were going; he was just the first, and, apparently, the cult started too late to save the others. Or not. Plenty of other ways to take this - especially after he's "frozen" the cult could have done absolutely anything and he'd have no way of knowing.)

Polynesian Pathfinder wrote:
Also this dude has something about his bloodrage where he losses control and goes on a killing spree. He told me he wants to keep from bloodraging as a role-playing thing. I enjoy role-playing a bunch and like the idea but he also told me in his bloodrage he becomes a different person. "The Dragon inside" I guess I can let this happen. Would you?

And ttthhhhiiiisssss is where I get all leery. This just screams "problem" right from the off - any time a PC has an uncontrollable murder issue, that's going to be a really big problem with the other PCs in the party. Because, you know, he's got an uncontrollable murder issue.

While avoiding blood rage for RP reasons is fine, the issue is that any time a character isn't in control of themselves, bad things happen.

The thing is, though, you lose a lot of stuff without your bloodrage abilities.

Basically, you're left with claws, and resistances that are weaker than spells you'd otherwise have access to (if a more powerful caster than bloodrager).
(Eventually, of course, he'd hypothetically gain the 20th level capstone... but, uh... 20th is a long way off.)

But having a deadly alternate self is... horrible. The brute vigilante is well-known for the badness it brings to a party (though, fortunately, not as bad as 3.5's Frenzied Berserker).

I'd be very wary of allowing such a thing, or of allowing it without RP. Another take on the "different character" concept is the master chymist - perhaps when bloodraging, instead, the guy is "controlled" by this chaotic evil dragon spirit, but one who shares the guy's wants, desires, and expectations - still plenty of reason to avoid the bloodrage, but less likely to flip out and kill friends or innocent bystanders, if that would harm the 'rager's goals.

Either, way, I'm out of time today... hope your game goes well! :D

* The spell itself doesn't allow for this; this was actually done by a one-shot magic item that went off at a predetermined time. The player didn't know that her mother had done this until much, much later. The spell itself and the girl were both obscured against divination during this time, meaning those who discovered her, later, didn't have the ability to learn much.
** It was a three-arc mini-campaign with all three stand-alone modules Paizo's published dealing with dragonkind (though, not always, strictly, as foes). Unfortunately, one of those has been deemed "non-canon" but it was still a great module. There were a few other additions.

EDIT: Code fixing.


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Maybe he needs to reflavor the rage bit. It is a central class feature after all. It's not like a ranger who doesn't track, it's like a rogue who doesn't sneak attack. So for the party's sake at least he should change it to something he can use without mindlessly murdering people.


Ciaran Barnes wrote:
Maybe he needs to reflavor the rage bit. It is a central class feature after all. It's not like a ranger who doesn't track, it's like a rogue who doesn't sneak attack. So for the party's sake at least he should change it to something he can use without mindlessly murdering people.

That's why I suggested the concept of the Master Chymist class. Having the bloodrage transfer his mind into that of an evil dragon-like essence or spirit is certainly more than enough reason to loathe going into that state, but making it so that it's not a mindless killing machine with no ability to stop or think is pretty important.


Okay, thinking this over a bit more, here's an idea that I've come up with for the concept of "Uncontrollable Bloodrage" - not exactly the way the Player envisioned, but it works for the gist of what the player was going for, I think: his bloodrage being an unstable and uncontrolled element of his character that may well cause more harm than good (... maybe).

I built this using a badger's bloodrage, Brute Vigilante, the haunted one template, and (mostly) the Master Chymest; oh, and, of course, Bloodrager.

The archetype (such as it is) is called "Psychosis Bloodrager" and the ability is "Bloodrage Persona" - feel free to come up with different names.

Psychosis Bloodrager wrote:


Bloodrage Persona (Ex)
Some bloodragers refuse the call of their ancestral power - it frightens them, and pains them, and represents something they hate - and so they shove it down, deep inside, repressing its rage, where it lingers, waiting, like a covered volcano, to erupt in a violent and terrible fashion. While it slowly grows in pressure, the festering fury of ancient arcana ignites and reaches back, forging a deeper connection to its past, and the spirit that powered the bloodrager's line in the first place. A psychosis bloodrager harbors a deep secret - their ancestor still lives on... within them.

A psychosis bloodrager’s bloodrage persona represents an alter ego that has a different personality than her normal one - an outgrowth of the mental and spiritual changes caused by the arcane power stemming from his ancient ancestry; the spirit of its ancestor once again incarnate. The psychosis bloodrage persona shares most memories and basic goals with the bloodrager’s normal personality but goes about meeting those goals in a different manner; it is a kind of reincarnation of an ancient ancestor of the bloodrager's. The psychosis bloodrager's bloodrage persona seeks to keep its host alive - after all, its host is one of its own descendants, and heir to its living legacy and glory - and acts in the "best interests" of the psychosis bloodrager... even if the psychosis bloodrager disagrees with the methodology; beyond that, the psychosis bloodrager is the method by which the ancestral spirit gets to "live" again and interact in the world - it wants to live as much as possible, and thus keeps its host alive and able to act.

Whenever the psychosis bloodrager takes damage, it must make a will save (DC 10+1/2 psychosis bloodrager level) or enter his persona bloodrage. Entering the bloodrage in this way is a horrifying and painful process that generally allows its enemies to see it do so. It takes one full round, during which the psychosis bloodrager is flat-footed, to enter its bloodrager persona. A psychosis bloodrager may take a full-round action to attempt to leave a bloodrage, by succeeding at the same will save. A psychosis bloodrager may always voluntarily choose to fail the save, and some even deal damage to themselves (usually with a dagger or even a large or sharp splinter or similar improvised self-damaging tool) in order to summon their bloodrage persona. They cannot otherwise normally enter their bloodrage.

The psychosis bloodrager often undergoes even more exaggerated physiological changes during their bloodrage than normal, and thus has a monstrous appearance, even closer to the bloodrager's progenitor than other similar bloodragers, and may even appear to be a different gender than his normal form; in extreme cases, they may look as different as two entirely unrelated creatures. Indeed, the persona generally has his or her own name, and may attempt to maintain independent relationships and strongholds or rekindle ancient pacts and associations long-forgotten (though the limited time in existence and simmering fury often makes this effectively impossible). The persona even has his or her own alignment (which is selected by the player, but must be different from the bloodrager's normal alignment). The change in alignment only affects the bloodrager while in his psychosis bloodrage.

The persona speaks an additional ancient language associate with its ancient form (matching the ancestor's style; abyssal for abyssal, celestial for celestial, dragonic for draconic, and so on; if no language is obvious, presume Aklo, or the GM chooses); and gains one additional bloodline ability, noted below.

  • Visions of Past Lore (Sp): Once per day per five levels, while within a bloodrage, the psychosis bloodrager's bloodrage presona can tempt its host into tapping into its ancient mostly-lost memories to shed light on a subject. The psychosis bloodrager may either make a single knowledge check with a +20 insight bonus, or the effect of a vision spell (GM's choice), and the bloodrage ends and the psychosis bloodrager is immediately fatigued (no save); this fatigue persists for one minute per bloodrager level; tireless bloodrage does not negate this fatigue. Doing so is dangerous, however, beyond the fatigue; if the psychosis bloodrager accepts the ancestral aid, he must later obey his ancestor, or risk the consequences. For each visions of past lore the bloodrager uses in a day, within the next twenty-four hours, the bloodrage persona may attempt to force the psychosis bloodrager to do things its own way. The psychosis bloodrager must make a will save or obey a suggestion (as the spell) created by his ancestor (the GM creates this suggestion); if the bloodrager chooses to attempt a will save (successful or not), the persona may deal up to 1d6 non-lethal damage per level to the bloodrager and may force the psychosis bloodrager to make a will save or be affected by confusion effect for one round per level.

A psychosis bloodrager is considered haunted. Thus, channeling energy to harm undead, a dispel evil (or similar effect, targeting the persona's alignment), or similar will suppress the bloodrage persona and all related effects (including the suggestion or confusion effects, or any other effect gained from bloodrage) for 1d4 rounds per level of the creature attempting to suppress or exorcise the persona; these rounds count against the total uses of bloodrage per day.

While the Player usually still controls the character in a bloodrage, a GM is free to inform the player that certain actions are "out of character" for the persona. Some players may wish to role play the slow redemption or corruption of their once-vile ancestors, or even the "main" PC itself via the ancestor's influence. Some groups may wish to place the bloodraging PC in the hands of a GM. Discuss how you wish to handle the character in their bloodrage form with your GM before you play.

  • Example: Tnobarad is a neutral good halfling psychosis bloodrager. His bloodrage persona is based on his ancient draconic ancestor, Rhekt'it'latchumka the Red (or "Rekt'it" to his friends), and is thus a red-scaled, fanged monstrocity. Rekt'it is chaotic evil, and more interested in seeing the world trembling before him than promoting the good of others. Rekt'it is aware he consciously exists only when Tnobarad is in a bloodrage, but seeks to find out what has happened in the intervening years since its somnolance. Rekt'it does not dislike Tnobarad, feels pride its descendants have lived for so many generations and still call upon the long-dead dragon, and seeks to keep his "child" living to continue to produce heirs; but he also feels his Halfing host is too foolish and stupid to survive in the harsh world the bloodrager lives in. As a result, Rekt'it seeks to subtly alter Tnobarad's relationships with his friends and the world at large by whispering subconsciously when the halfing isn't in bloodrage, and by acting directly and malevolently when he is. As Tnobarad, the character detects as good and is affected as a good character by spells with effects that vary by alignment; as Rekt'it, the same character is chaotic evil, is not revealed by a detect good spell, and is treated as chaotic evil for all spells and effects.

The bloodrage persona ability modifies bloodrage as noted above, but otherwise all rules remain the same for bloodrage.

The player, generally speaking, still controls the character while in bloodrage. Over-all, this gives a lot of narrative control and influence to the GM, and ensures the character doesn't simply show up, kill everything, and leave. It allows the player to retain their power and usefulness to the party, but also gives mechanics to make it both potentially quite dangerous and an unpleasant experience for the PC (though hopefully not the player themself).

The Persona Bloodrage ability is an additional ability added to the bloodrager; I did not remove anything, because Persona Bloodrage came with its own drawbacks, including penalties for utilizing it, and a weakness to certain effect.

So, the bloodrager's level-up chart looks kind of like this:

Psychosis Bloodrager wrote:


Level-Special
1st - bloodline, bloodline power, bloodrage, bloodrage persona, fast movement
<snip>
5th - improved uncanny dodge, visions of past lore
<etc.>

... and so on.

Hope that helps! Feel free not to use it - it was fun to create, and I just wanted to help balance everyone's desires, as much as possible. Let us know how your game goes!

EDIT: One more character idea!


Tacticslion wrote:

The thing is, though, you lose a lot of stuff without your bloodrage abilities.

Basically, you're left with claws, and resistances that are weaker than spells you'd otherwise have access to (if a more powerful caster than bloodrager).
(Eventually, of course, he'd hypothetically gain the 20th level capstone... but, uh... 20th is a long way off.)

I want to go on record and say, "I was wrong" - because I was wrong.

It's worse than I indicated.

Under bloodlines, it's noted,

Quote:
When a bloodrager enters a bloodrage, he often takes on a physical transformation influenced by his bloodline and powered by the magic that roils within him. Unless otherwise specified, he gains the effects of his bloodline powers only while in a bloodrage; once the bloodrage ends, all powers from his bloodline immediately cease, and any physical changes the bloodrager underwent revert, restoring him to normal.

What that means is that without bloodrage, the guy is left with almost nothing at all. Not even clase, not even resistances, and not even that 20th level capstone.

He's a best BAB, good fortitude, 4 skills, 4th-level spells.

That's like a worse-in-every-way ranger. Though a bloodrager's spell list is more directly aggressive than the ranger's, the ranger comes out substantially ahead, as it gets to keep all of its class abilities (including favored enemy, and instant enemy as a spell, making everything a "favored enemy" if only for a short time). That favored enemy stuff is pretty intense, and covers most of what you'd want the bloodrager spell list for (as you can get trick stuff to handle "attack multiple enemies" or other powerful affects the bloodrager could field). There are several things that bloodragers can do that ranger's can't... but that's easily solved by wands and scrolls.

I'd be very leery of allowing such a self-weakened condition.

(I think my archetype is a method of having it "both ways" as it were, but I don't know if it would appeal.)

Anyway, just wanted to correct my mistake! Peace!

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