Sunday, June 26, 2011

And Now for More of the Same (Sort of...)

Greetings!  You will be pleased to know that I am indeed not dead, but was simply on vacation.  However, this week I wanted to elaborate on League of Legends (LoL) and how it relates to D&D. 
            As Endos described last week, LoL is a game full of playable champions that all have unique abilities, affinities, and back stories.  When I was doing some pondering over LoL, I had the revelation that many of these champions would make excellent NPCs/characters for a D&D campaign.  Quite literally, you could make up whole parties of NPCs/characters that are based on LoL Champions.
            So to demonstrate this, I will show you a “custom” NPC that I have constructed for my current favorite Champion, Vladimir the Crimson Reaper.  Hope you can use this and come up with your own adaptations to LoL Champions for your own gaming pleasure.  Enjoy!

(Quick note: I made this character build with the idea that it would be 3 to 5 players against him.  If ever he had a partner… well, it would be challenging to say the least.)

NPC Class: Vladimir

Alignment: Neutral Evil

Level: 18          Hit Dye: d8      HP: 150            AC: 19 (+3 Dex, +3 natural Armor, +3 Blood Aura)

Base Attack Bonus: +10/+5                 Attack: Blood Spike (1d6+3) Crit: (18-20/x2) Range: 30 feet

Base Land Speed: 30ft


Base Save
Ability Modifier

Escape Artist
Knowledge (arcana)
Sense Motive

Special/Spell-Like Abilities

Transfusion: Vladimir drains the blood from a single target dealing 6d6 damage and heals Vladimir for half the damage dealt. Range: 60 feet.  Counts as an attack rather than a spell. As a full round action, Vladimir can use Transfusion and make his secondary standard attack.

Sanguine Pool: Vladimir melts into a 10 foot radius pool of blood, making him invulnerable for 2 rounds except against spells that involve freezing (as in ice) of any kind.  Any enemy that is standing in the pool takes 4d4 damage and heals Vladimir for one fourth of the total damage dealt.  In addition, Vladimir’s base land speed doubles to 60 feet for the duration of the spell.  Vladimir cannot use this ability again for 1d6+1 rounds. This Ability costs 20% of Vladimir’s current HP.

Tides of Blood: Vladimir throws blades of blood at all surrounding enemies within 20 feet of him dealing 4d6 damage (costing 1d4 HP).  If used in succession, the damage is increased to 4d8 (costing 2d4 HP), then 4d10 (costing 3d4 HP), then 4d12 max (costing 4d4 HP).  As a full round action, he may cast this ability twice.

Hemoplague: Vladimir infects his opponents within a 40 foot diameter of himself with a deadly virus that causes all enemies infected to take an additional 20% damage (rounding down) from all sources.  The affects last for 5 rounds and at the end of the 5th round, it deals an additional 4d6 damage to all those infected. This ability cannot be used again for 2d4+5 rounds.

Blood Aura: Passive. An aura of blood surrounds Vladimir that gives him +3 AC and allows him to slowly siphon the life energy of living things around him.  This gives him the unique ability to heal himself for 1d8 each round.  In addition, if an enemy(s) fighting Vladimir is in combat with him for more than 10 rounds, the enemy(s) will become fatigued.  If they spend 20 rounds in combat with Vladimir they will become exhausted, and if a fight lasts for 30 rounds, the player must make a fortitude save (DC 22) each round or become immediately reduced to -1 HP.

Until next week!


P.S. The reason for no DM or Player tips recently is due to a few factors, but mostly because of the summer break and the fact that I have not had the chance to play D&D recently.  As game play picks up, expect the tips to start coming again.

P.P.S. Expect a post from Zedd sometime in the near future.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

And Now for Something Entirely Different…

 Greetings, readers of Do A Spot Check! I am Endos, summoner of centipedes, frequenter of the evil axis, co-creator of alignment charts, editor for the site, and mayor of a little village up the coast(very scenic in the springtime. You should visit sometime). Raz is currently occupied/on vacation/dead so I’ll be writing this week’s post.
Raz got me involved in D&D about a year ago, and I’ve been an enthusiast of the game since then, but this year I’m going to try my hand at DMing for the first time. Now, as any typical first-time DM might do, I’ll be borrowing many of my ideas from D&D related comics and videos like Order of the Stick and Unforgotten Realms, but I’m also taking ideas from the readers of Do A Spot Check. That’s right! If you have fantastic and epic ideas and want to share them, now’s your opportunity! If you have suggestions for things to pit Raz and his teammates up against, please leave them in the comments section and I’ll be sure to include them in some fashion in the next campaign. The more outlandish and ridiculous the premise, the better!
Second item on the agenda: League of Legends. You may have heard of this game before, but if you have not, allow me to explain. League of Legends (LoL) is a free online game created by the same people who constructed DotA Allstars. League of Legends (and DotA, by extension) is a game where there are two teams with a Nexus at the center of each base, which each team is attempting to destroy. Teams are usually comprised of 5 “Champions” that all stem from the basic fantasy classes in D&D. There are mage and fighter and cleric-like heroes, but some heroes embody the class exactly. Tryndamere is a Barbarian through and through, Akali is rogue/assassin, and Lee-Sin is a monk, and just as kick-ass as the ones in D&D. The paths to each base are guarded by periodic towers that require large amounts of firepower to bring down. The game is centered around PVP combat, but you can play with teammates against the a computer team if you wish. Raz and I have been spending a fair amount of time honing our skills in this game. The entire game is online and free to download in an hour.  The trailer for the game is here:

If you try it and like it, feel free to add Raz and I to your in-game friends list and we’ll be happy to give you tips or play cooperatively with you. Our in-game names are Innersist and Randomocity132, respectively. To download the game visit LoL’s main page here.

Alrighty, now that that’s taken care of, this is usually the part where Raz posts tips for players and DM’s, so let’s get to it.

Player Tip of the Week

Don’t be afraid to find others who play D&D in the networks of people you know.  A lot of the reason that people don’t go out and try to find others who also play D&D is because of the stigma that the name “Dungeons and Dragons” carries. People are sometimes worried of what others will think of them when they find out that they play D&D, but you don’t need to be super-secretive about it. Raz and I played D&D with a group of friends at our college for months without realizing that there were actually nearly two dozen veteran players on campus, many of which we already knew personally. Several of them have graduated now, and we would have had a chance to play with them, had we told them earlier in the year that we played. You don’t have to shout it at people, but let it be known, you never know who else might be a player.

DM Tip of the Week

Be flexible playing with new players you don’t already know.  This goes along with the above tip. If you do happen to find others who are interested in the game, find a way to incorporate them in your campaign. You can start them off at a higher level if it’s been going on for a while.

Alrighty then. That just about wraps up this week’s post. I hope you enjoyed it. This is Endos, signing out.

P.S. (But seriously, do leave suggestions in the comments)

P.P.S. Centipedes.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Oriental Adventures First Impressions

Greetings! So as you know, I’ve been playing an Oriental Adventures campaign and I figured now would be a good time to give my first impressions of the game thus far. 
First off, let’s talk about the Classes.  Oriental Adventures adds 5 unique primary classes which vary from tanks to spell casters.  While many of these are interesting I don’t find anything particularly “inspiring” about them.  Yes, they are unique and some classes like the Shugenja address issues with classic classes like the Bard in that they have the same function, but aren’t pathetically underpowered.  However, from a purely “aesthetic” perspective, I don’t find them particularly special.
The real value of the classes in Oriental Adventures comes from the new Prestige Classes it provides.  Have you ever played a rogue and thought to yourself “I’m totally like a ninja!”  Well now you actually can be an actual ninja.  Many of the Prestige classes are similarly interesting and unique making it ok to play some less than interesting ones for a while until you become the BA ninja you want to be.
Next let’s talk spells.  Oriental Adventures has added many new spells to the already extensive list and some of them are pretty fantastic, but are unfortunately not available until later casting levels. For instance, there is a spell called Fire Wings that turns your arms into Wings of Fire and allows you to fly and do damage.
Then there are the skills.  The skills list is a bit longer in Oriental Adventures and I can’t say that I really like it.  Many of the skills are almost useless and others are basic copies of each other (“Alchemy” is the same as “Craft Brewing”).  Other skills are so obscure that it makes you wonder why it is a skill (Ex: Animal Empathy, Innuendo, or Scry).  Oh and in case you were wondering, they do not explain how these skills work.
Monsters are a subject of hilarity in Oriental adventures.  In the short time that I’ve played, we’ve encountered a One Legged Vampire, a monster that dies by using Flare on it, and a giant centipede with a human face and a ridiculous mustache.  I could say more, but you get the idea; monsters in Oriental Adventures are just silly (but not push-over’s).
Overall, Oriental adventures I would say is indeed fun.  It’s different from the normal adventure and might be a nice change of pace for some.  However, for me, I enjoy D&D 3.5 more (at least thus far).  Oriental Adventures has just too many vague mechanics in it and leaves a lot of blank space for a DM to make up rules that’s not written in any book.  Anything with range is a joke.  Quite literally the ONLY ranged weapon is the blow dart gun which always does 1 damage and that’s it (plus the range is only 10 feet!).  While there are many new races, there is no reason to be anything but a human since humans are now more powerful than ever with the addition of Clan specific abilities that all humans have.
Yup, this is the ONLY ranged weapon...

            If I had one tip for a DM or Player when it comes to playing Oriental Adventures I’d say don’t take it too seriously.  The people who made it certainly didn’t.

Until next week.


P.S. In coming weeks, Endos and/or Zedd may be writing up some guest posts for Do A Spot Check so be sure to look forward to that.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

It Is Done...

We did it.  After almost 5 hours of thought and work on this 5 by 5 alignment we have finally competed this monster of an alignment chart.  We put a lot of thought into it and while we are sure that there are other characters to fit these roles, these are the best we could come up with.  It was a project and we likely will not make another one anytime soon.


Player and DM Tip of the Week

Look at the chart.