Dungeons & Dragons Online

The Plane of Ash: We Are Not Shadows

Content of the article: "The Plane of Ash: We Are Not Shadows"




Introduction

Welcome!

This post is part of the "Atlas of the Planes" Project. Come and stop by our announcement page here to view the full list of planes, the sign up sheet, and links to other posts of the project.



“Wrath is a natural reaction. It commands ‘change’ in roaring defiance of that which time hath delivered.”

Death, as herself

“Ash is the antithesis to Art.All tablets, arches, scrolls, scribbles, and stages fear the flames. Of that soot-tipped eraser. The greedy flames had a tendency to eat , you see, not only words and deeds, but those who would remember both.Perhaps this is why literature and other art forms shy from depiction and description of Ash. Sure, they embrace the fire, an analogy for will, or love, or knowledge; but to grip the hard truth of a handful of soot? The after ashes destined for an urn, or a scattering unto the wind? This is a greater talisman of the taboo. Search the libraries, the galleries, the temples, and you will see many vehicles of stories centered round the fire, the furnaces, the fuel, the soldiers… but to the Ash, the soot, the cinders left behind? ‘Tis a rare recognition, indeed.The dragon in the room boils down to one’s belief, which one carries at will or at heart, and it is this: do you consider Ash to only ever be a symbol of death? Of nothingness? The end of a great blaze, the last rotten chunks of skin to a carbon skeleton, adrift in the wind?Or…Do embers remain, perhaps even still lit and floating in the air?”

  • Essay on Ash, by Warlock Hiros’ma Nagasi

Table of Contents


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DISCOVERY 5

Exposition 5

Cast: 6

SURVIVAL 8

Flora Table 9

THE LOCALS 11

Sports 11

Cannon Monster Table 11

Fauna Rebrew, Monster Manual Table 12

Fauna Rebrew — An Ecosystem of Smoke based Prey 13

NPCs Combat Encounters 14

MYSTERIES 17

POLITICS / FACTIONS / RELIGION / CULTURE 22

Factions 22

City-States, Towns, and Villages 23

Sports Rivalries 30

Agendas, NPC Table of Personality Traits 34

TRAVEL 38

Prominent Locations 39

Generic, frequent locations 41

Planar Escapes 42

Flight — Four Final Defog-mations 42

Additional Notes 44

Artifacts 44

Relics 46

Homebrew Class Paths 47

Druid — Circle of Smoky Horizons 47

Ranger — Scorched Earth Archer 49

Rogue — Harbinger of Arson 51

Fin — Dedication and Thanks 53


DISCOVERY

“When an adventuring party wipes, who's to say the BBEG didn’t whip out a molotov cocktail or Fireball spell at the last minute?”

Death, tapping her nose, or lack thereof

Exposition

  • Except for Archmage Zythor’s Compendium of the Planes

The place of Ash borders the Planes of Radiance, Dust, Ice, Magma, and indirectly, the Plane of Fire. While this plane is not an eternal resting place, it does transition the souls of the burnt to their next plane of existence. Reaching this plane can be achieved semi-permanently through death by fire, either through arson, cremation, civilian war crimes, natural disaster, or martyrdom, be it holy or a witch-hunt. Travel can be temporarily reached during the vigil and process of cremation, as well as a variety of botched attempts to travel to Elysium.

Objects and beings are not born on the plane of Ash. Instead, they are smoky reflections of what once existed on the Prime Material World. Permanent structures are uncommon throughout the grey wasteland, though settlements and ruins exist, usually through the replication and reconstruction of former buildings reforged with blocks of cinder ash, or cinderblocks. Additionally, many objects such as books, furniture, and relics destroyed by fire are found to have approximate mirrored replications within the Plane of Ash.

When speaking of structures, it is vital to discuss the layers of the Plane of Ash. The foundation of the plane rests on a bed of either ever-burning, smoldering, and / or dormant embers. While rarely in close enough proximity to the surface to provide light or heat, persistent shovelers may easily uncover the ore of living fire — even finding embers the size of boulders, mammoths, or giants. This is the UMBERLAND, the under-embers, and footsteps echo like soft crunches in the snow, as footwear treads on the scorched and fragmented remains of old tree rings.

The middle layer is a swirling vortex of smoke and soot, named ASPHYXIC. Wielders of higher intellects and temperaments are able to fly at will to, from, and within this layer, without flap or engine, simply by pointing their gaze in the direction they wish to persist. While largely free of structures, travelers must beware the sudden spire, cliff-face, or scorched husk and trunk of towering redwoods. Some regions have also reported strange black wires in the sky, though these legends of some sort of steampunk or spectral sky-spider are largely considered ridiculous by scholars. The weather of this layer remains plagued by updrafts, downdrafts, tornados, and oceanless-hurricanes, though never with precipitation. A unique bio-arcane lifeform in this layer, whose association thus far escapes explanation to scholars, is the appearance of sharks in the ashen sky, prowling between the smoke clouds.

The uppermost layer is mostly theoretical. Loss of direction is common in the layer of Asphysic, and external guidance is required to reach the horizon above the smoke. Portrayed as serene and filled with the dim glow of stars at twilight, the layer is conjectured to border a higher plane. Suggestions include Mount Celeste, a likely contender; the plane of dust, a realistic probability; the planes of steam or lightning, according to the world axis of light and heat as proposed by the Sorcerer Dejo Lee; and as an underdog theory, perhaps the intoxicating plane of Elysium. This layer is referred to as SHO ’ EL.


SURVIVAL

“Hey, hey, easy. You must be dead, for you to be crying out loud, carrying about like this. What did you expect, orientation? Get a hold of yourself. Take a walk. You might find another fallout spirit willing to listen for a spell. But really now, I must be going. As you can hear, someone else has just burnt to a crisp.”

Death, as herself

“Thank the Moon for Darkvision, that’s a start. The spells GoodBerry, Light, and Daylight saw immediate use. Once, we came upon a traveling warlock, whose daemon companion possessed true sight. Pandjed saw this as ingenious, and pursued study of the spell.”

Damakos, Tief. Druid

“Breathing was difficult, even through my helmet’s visor. We tore some cloth from our spare clothes, and fastened them around our mouths and faces. I had to take off my helmet, and in the two minutes it was off, my face was covered in grime, and I felt the layer coat my skin like plaque against my tongue along the metal. The air tasted like a dirty piece.”

Naeris Nailo, half-elf Paladin

“We mistranslated the word apocalypse. It is not the end of the world or plane. It is a great unveiling, a revelation. The world continues.”

Seraphina Hilltopple, halfling translator

“In Brave New Colony, there were many abandoned shops and houses. As we reached closer to the center, we began to see other people among the falling ash. Their very skin seemed made of ash, though they maintained their race and complexion from whence they originated. Some neon graffiti could be seen in the alleyways. One of them spelt “FREE HK,” and it was flanked by two animated suits of scorched armor. I asked a shopkeep about it. Apparently baffled by my ignorance, the racist, he explained they were the initials of the Ashman, that he was imprisoned, and would say no more.

Therai, Teif. Rogue

“COULDN’T SEE A THING!”

Pandjed, Db Bard


Flora Table

Name Region Abundance (1 low – 5 high) Use
Awakened Redwood RF 2 Sages of Lore, Forest Guardians, Mildly acidic / poisonous bark
Fallout Fern RF, SD 4 Bioluminescent, including underwater
Creeping Spaniard Ivy SD, SB 3 Used in high quality rope, as well as quipo accounting systems
White Ash Cyprus DV 3 It’s bark is said to prolong life among mortals, as well as produce a calming buzz to entities of ash
Conifers of Cinder SC, W 5 Lumber, durable
Black Pine SD 5 Lumber, brittle
Singed Elm SD, SB 3 Makes durable bows, sacred drums, and remains the de facto lumber used in airship construction
Anleaf Bush G, SD, W 4 A long burning wood favored in incense production, highly insect and disease resistant. Mild acidity yields a light pesticide, often dissolved with body fat to produce caulking.
Scorched Shrub SC, DV, W 4 It’s berries come in several spice varieties, and are used as paint. Subspecies include caffeine, cocoa, nutmeg, and hazelnut.
Hollow Oak G, W 2 Acidic to livestock, favored in fences guarding gardens. Makes durable weapon hilts and bows. Favored wood for storing alcohol.
Withered Willow SD, RF 2 Painkiller Bark, Prevent Soil Erosion
Ash Rose SB 1 A rare herb used in many jealously guarded alchemical recipes. It’s use is underplayed to the uninitiated.
Twilight Coral (3-5 sub-species) G, DV 3 A general herb used in alchemy, often as a bonding agent, especially key when combined with acidic ingredients.
Fallen Leaves (mutated flora-insectoid hybrids) G, W 5 Pests of mild nutritional value. Flavors are surprisingly varied, and are a favorite of culinary experts.
Whitecap W, RF 2 A mushroom capable of bio-degrading calcium. It’s known in alchemy to increase one’s resistance to Ice and cold.
Bark-Clingers RF, SD 5 A mushroom mostly used for its edible flavor and nutrition. Many specimens grow to be quite large, some growing as long as forearms.
Snowshroom G 4 A mushroom containing many anti-oxidants. Used in alchemy to soothe nausea, reduce headaches, cramping, muscle bruising and tension. Mild hallucigan.
Needleshroom SD, SC, W 3 Extreme Hallucigan. Mildly toxic to many races. Used in Alchemy for manic insight. Also used by some local religions.
Blackcap DV, SB 1 A mushroom capable of boring through chitan. An extreme pesticide. It is known in alchemy to increase one’s resistance to Fire and Heat.

“What do you mean, there isn't any vegetation on the Plane of Ash? Have you seen all the things we smoke and burn?”

Damakos


THE LOCALS

“When a soul incarnated in ash dies, it disintegrates in a cloud of ash. It reincarnates near a token of its identity on the plane, such as it’s home base of operations, it’s most prized possession, or it’s most treasured loved one. An important distinction to make, in understanding this reincarnation, is that the Plane of Ash seems to be a transitional plane from a minor afterlife to a greater afterlife, perhaps only accessible through passing the barrier of Sho’El.”

  • Conrad Ungin, wizard of the bio-arcane

Sports

Please refer to P / R / F / C for sporting rivalries and descriptions.

  1. Ballcourt (PMW Meso-Americana)
  2. Ash Polo (Sludge Water Polo)
  3. Aerial Lacrosse (held in ASPHYXIC layer)
  4. Improv Bowl (Intellectual, Artists)
  5. Cinder Disc Golf

Cannon Monster Table (see doc).

Fauna Rebrew, Monster Manual Table (see doc)

Fauna Rebrew — An Ecosystem of Smoke based Prey Table (see doc) (covers Appendix A, pg. 317-341)

NPCs Combat EncountersTable (see doc)

MYSTERIES

For a table on Locations*, see Travel. Some of these locations are given expanded descriptions in this section.*

Disclaimer: No Ash was harmed in the making of this text. Much, however, was produced in the process of.

Prominent

Key: (Q): Quest; (E) Explore; (SQ) Sidequest

  1. Black Pyramid (SQ)

“It’s full splendor stays veiled behind smoke clouds. Hints of it’s dark majesty are mirrored in the interior, though even the spirits of the dead dare not study it, for in the near infinite dungeon like depths, that which eternal lies, and it is said that some abominations can not truly die, even by the cosmic inferno that set this plane asunder. What remains of the victims of these abominations is only the anti-matter of the void, conveniently beyond my own jurisdiction.”

  • Death
  1. Grey Lake (E)

“It is a dead sea. A truly, truly, intentionally dead body of water. Oxygen and light do not penetrate it’s depths. And freed of thirst, the beings of ash will find little incentive for either venture or adventure along it’s shores. This is perhaps less true in the present, with the recent discovery of the Grey Lake Scrolls, and the book of San Waking.”

  • Seraphina Hilltopple

  1. The Tarred River (E)

“Here you will find no Charon, no ferry. One might say it is a pale reminder of what water was, is, could be, were it not for the singed sentiments polluting it’s purity. Such a reclamation would require legions of druids. And those — thankfully, I suppose — are rare indeed on this plane. For now.”

  • Damakos

  1. Sheldon Theater (Q)

“The fiery hearts of actors — I’ve stopped saying actresses — are often found in unlikely places. Most of us are actors, in our own way, behaving according to how our ancestors wrote the lines of the great cosmic play we find ourselves in. This theater itself is in the middle of nowhere, and yet it somehow draws a full house for every show, even though both the audience and actors are a bunch of perceived hill-billies, nomads, and vagabonds. How spectacular; and how tragic, in its fall to the flames of bigotry and hate.”

  • Pandjed, Db Bard

  1. Throne of the Second Wind (Q)

“It was here that San Waking (San’Wa King), lord of the monkeys, was pinned under a mountain for five hundred years by the Jade Emperor. Following his pilgrimage of redemption with a mortal monk in his Journey to the West, the immortal ape returns to the plane of Ash to judge wanderers he deems commendable. He has been rumored to advise the living on how to return to the Prime Material Plane.”

  • Tsenu Odiwun

  1. Burnout Dugout (SQ or E)

“Some monks and clerics perpetuate that it is faith before action that guides one’s path to the Light. If that’s true, these addicts are some of the most holy do-nothings in all the planes. Light it up, I guess, in our so-called den of hippies and thieves.”

  • Therai

  1. Silverwing Bat Colony (E)

“The tribal shaman kindly requests that nothing be burned in the cavern, so as not to disturb their neighbors on the ceiling. Their guano turns rather fiery when they’re annoyed. Best leave the sleeping bats lie.”

  • Eagin Sungarain, meteorologist

  1. The Library of Lex Andrea (Q)

“Little is known of the Lex Andrea Empire, other than their hieroglyphic depictions of the Clockwork Gate, contact with the Netherese, and the Plane of Steam. The Empire fell midway through the second age to an apocalyptic catastrophe, which turned their lands to blackened swamps and radiated deserts. At least, that is what is known to Prime Material Worlders. The location of this legendary library is not yet known, but accounting for the historical records, and the laws governing the plane, its existence is all but confirmed.”

  • Conrad Ungin, wizard of the bio-arcane

  1. Dragon Graveyard (SQ)

“Leave sleeping Dragons lie. This goes double for a Dracolich.”

  • various

  1. Monastery of Ash (E or Q)

“As the cavalry of conquerors crossed the western sea, the ninjas of Torii looked to their grandmaster for guidance. The monastery had heard the news of these wars in years past, and of their exponential, disproportionate violence. Grandmaster Lee brandished a torch, and held it to the walls of his own domain, he said ‘they have not burned their own ships, yet they will not hesitate to burn our own homes — and so we must outdo their determination.’ As the blaze spread, it is known that some monks chose to reenter, and perish among the flames. So began the Great Conqueror's War to maintain our newfound appreciation of independence.”

  • Therai

  1. Circle of the Witch-Hunt (SQ)

“Led by the cries of ‘It’s all just a witch hunt, It’s all just a witch hunt,’ cults of inquisitors form around many a demagogue. At first glance, it’s perhaps ironic that they too fall to the flames. But you must remember, the plane of Ash is not a refuge for the moral or informed, that is, enlightened, but for all who burn. At best, it’s a timeless refuge where one may still attain these traits. At worst, it is akin to Carceri, or Tartarus, where a riot has broken the peace between guard and detainee. On this hilltop, their political ring of stones is occasionally assaulted by specters of these hags derived from their own personal, psionic paranoia.”

  • Seraphina Hilltopple



  1. Coven of the Wyrd Sisters (SQ) (Terry Pratchet, full animated video available online for free.)

“The Wise Woman Ny’alana Moore taught me several lessons, a few of which I even remember. The first was that the older one got, the less magic they tended to use. The second lesson was that there comes a point where rules must be broken. And that there was a kind of spell that triumphed over magic in a different way, and that was the way of words. She also divined the location of my teenage journal reincarnated on the plane of ash, which my mother the dragon-queen Tethis burned in my youth.”

  • Pandjed

  1. Vaporized Facades of Wrath (VFW) Post 451 (E)

“If only laying the dead to rest /was as easy as cremation.”“If only peace could replace this battle fatigue /my only sacrifice — a single burnt offering /Charred bones spread among the ash /Could they, would they, if only, reignite”

  • Panjed

  1. Slaughterhouse Six — (E)

“Near an abandoned city lies this building within a meat shipping center. Notable spirits have been disappearing around here for weeks, and unless there’s been some sort of second wave of religion I don’t know about, I don’t think they’ve ascended. I passed a wandering Pilgrim raving about the Cult of the Djinni. Can’t say I’ve heard of them”

  • Damakos

  1. Brave New Colony (E or Q)

“BNC is the main hub of the Ashen wasteland — both the Geechago Central School and Sheldon Theater are landmarks there. As far as landmarks can go in a plane of smoke. The citizens there are largely of a decent alignment, with notable outliers. A small faction broke away to form the New Richmond suburb, though recent reports indicate that it’s been pretty much destroyed.”

  • Tsenu Odiwun

  1. Redwood Maze (E)

Vermin is a broad term. Many imagine them as only rodents, but it encompasses almost all wild animals, including insects, worms, and parasites. In many societies, the term may refer to people.”

Seraphina Hilltopple

  1. New Richmond Town Hall (SQ)

“They called us what? Dead? Honey, not only has that ship sailed, it was burned by savages on another world. Sure we’re dead, but the jury’s still out on where we’re at.”

  • A reply to Therai

  1. Dridma Royal Palace (E)

“No señor cook, you don’t quit, you’re fired! What’s that? The Chief of Staff resigned? But that’s the tenth one in three years! Well get an acting employee to fill the position for now. What’s that? A crystal ball call for me? Oh, hey . Hey, you had my back with that testimony, right? Oh yeah? Well you too, you Sonderland!”

  • Anonymous Noble

  1. Geechago Central School (E)

“‘Who conceived of the attack?’ I bellowed, my bow’s length pinning him to the wall outside. ‘No, fuck that. Who said to torch the place?’ And the little twit had the nerve to roll his eyes. ‘You cannot judge us,’ he self-righteously replied, before looking skywards and somehow slipping from my grasp, as he rapidly launched upwards. With hardly a twitch of effort, he ascended with such speed and precision, on such a straight trajectory, the likes of which I'd never witnessed before.”

  • Naeris Nailo

  1. Ocean Avenue (E or Q)

“Bartender, another round. Bard, another song. Friends, another hug. Tonight, we feast like it’s Valhalla.”

  • Veteran

POLITICS / FACTIONS / RELIGION / CULTURE

Factions

Professional and Belief-Oriented Factions

Materialist’s Haven

  1. Cinderblock Concrete Alchemists
  2. Artifact Accountants
  3. Newground Engineers
  4. Big D Construction
  5. Bull Market Stock Trade Guild

Academy of Manifests

  1. Circle of Many Pantheons
  2. Alt-left Archaeologists
  3. Theater Troupe Union
  4. Cinderblock Artists of Inscription
  5. Word of Mouth Writer’s Guild

Governing Bodies

(KS) Keepers of the Soot (imperial bureaucrats)

(GD) Grey Deji (grey jedi)

(MCC) Mushroom Cloud Confederacy (indegenous)

(RBC) Raiders of the Burnout Crusade (pastoral nomadic pirates)

City-States, Towns, and Villages Table (see doc)

Sports Rivalries

  • Ballcourt (PMW Meso-Americana)
    • One Hoop in center of the ballcourt, fixated 15 feet from ground along wall
    • Special cinder block flooring for ground stability
    • Foam-like mats along the walls to prevent injury, slows down ball movement
    • Very difficult to bounce the heavily weighted ball, esp. off of mat rebounds
    • Universally favored sport across the plane
    • Relevant Stats: STR, DEX, CON

  • Ash Polo (Sludge Water Polo)
    • Central Net across playing field
    • Primarily held in towns and villages boasting docks
    • Some locations boast artificial urban “pools” in landlocked regions
    • Primarily favorite sport of mid or upper socio-economic class
    • Relevant Stats: CON, DEX, STR, as well as capital investment

  • Aerial Lacrosse (held in ASPHYXIC layer)
    • J.K Rowling wasn’t that original — no broomsticks needed
    • Favorite sports of races bearing a short stature (gnomes, halflings, dwarves)
    • Arenas are filled with boiler-powered fans to defog field of view
    • Beams of light mark hoops, upper and lower limits, and horizontal out-of-bounds
    • Relevant Stats: INT, CON, STR

  • Improv Bowl (Intellectual, Artists)
    • Trivia games (history, theory)
    • Favorite sport of academics and performers
    • Timed rounds, generally 3 teams per round, up to 18 teams in a gauntlet (9 standard)
    • Known as Knowledge Bowl in PMW
    • Relevant Stats: INT, WIS, CHA

  • Cinder Disc Golf
    • Calling the sport “Frolf” will result in lifetime ban in many settlements and courses
    • Favorite sport of the impoverished classes, despite mild investment and equipment turnover (losing discs)
    • A highly scenic sport, with spectators welcome to view in the ASPHYXIC layer with minimal exhaustion
    • One of the more weather prone sports, with allowances of gusts and debris to impede “athletes”
    • Relevant Stats: WIS, STR, DEX (tee off)

Rivalry Table (see doc)

“Riots fill the streets. Arson be the smoke signals of the mobs' parades. The Playoffs must be over. Now, once more, the Plane of Ash is filled with Fire — Walk with Me.”

– Therai, Harbinger of Arson Rogue subclass (homebrew)


Agendas), NPC Table of Personality Traits (see doc)

Inspired by Sid Meyer’s Civilization 6, and DLCs

TRAVEL

The geography of the plane resembles a crossroads. A misconception of the plane is that the place remains incarnated as pure ash, pure darkness. Not even death wishes life as so easily snuffed out. Are not the planes of lightning and steam at their darkest a dim grey?

As such, the travelers and inhabitants either live a nomadic,diasporic lifestyle, or live subterranean lives akin to hibernation below the smoldering ruins of once great cities. The four regions are as follows:

  1. (U) Umberlands — Default, including four subregions, as follows:
  • (U-RF) Redwood Forest (leafless)
  • (U-SB) Sediment Basin
  • (U-W)) The Whitecaps, a mountain range
  • (U-SD) Sludge Delta, where the Tarred River forms an Ashen Marshland
  1. (SC) Sunset Canyon — Borders Plane of Radiance
  2. (G) Greywaste — Borders Plane of Ice
  3. (DV) Duerma Volcana, aka, Ridge of Craters — Borders Plane of Magma

Prominent Locations Table (see doc)

Generic, frequent locations Table

Name Location Category: RPG, Dungeon
Scorched Towers of Lore all both
Razed Theaters SD, SB, RF, G Dungeons, small
Blackstone Amphitheaters DV, W, SB RPG, events, encounters
Netherese Greenhouses SB, G, DV, SC RPG
Firewatch Towers (Stations) (shelters) SB, W, RF, G both
Watchtowers SB, RF, G, DV Dungeons, small
Whitepaint Mineshafts SC, W Dungeons
Ruined Temples all both
Toppled Steeples all both
Singed Sepulchers all both
Ghost Town all Dungeon, surface
Mostly Abandoned City all both


Planar Escapes

“Regardless of how the information is gleaned, there are four logical directions of escape from the Plane of Ash: through the three planar border regions of Sunset Canyon (Radiance), Greywaste (Ice), and Duerma Volcana (Magma); a fourth is thought to exist about the Whitecaps, in the upper atmospheric layer of Sho’El. Of these routes, only two seem survivable to living entities existing on the Plane: travel to the Greywaste by means of expedition, and travel to the Sunset Canyon in hopes of divine intervention. The puzzle of it boils down to one’s thermal resistance to ice and fire. Travel to the Plane of Fire or Magma usually leads to one’s incineration, unless in a spectral form or under powerful Magiks. And travel to the Plane of Ice is often as equally deadly. If there is a fourth escape above the Whitecaps, it seems reserved for the dead.”

  • Conrad Ungin

“The only escape we knew was through the Greywaste.”

  • Therai, Damakos, Naeris Nailo, and Panjed


Flight — Four Final Defog-mations

Exhaustion: “All living and spectral entities suffer 1 level of exhaustion for every ten miles they travel this way, refreshing upon a long rest.” <Hardmode: refreshing only 1 level of exhaustion per day.>

Conrad Ungin

Skill Check: “…Comparable to those required to cast Fly. I.e. 5th level wizard, 6th level sorcerer, 13th level rogue, 9th Ranger, etc. Note: fly does not require specific classes to access on this plane. Only “Wielders of higher intellects and temperaments are able to fly at will,” eg. spellcasting modifier (CHA, WIS, INT). Specialists of the modifiers STR, DEX, and CON may still cast flight with approximately a +2 modifier. Final homebrew ruling.”

Eagin Sungerain

Survival: “The largest threats to the living include atmospheric inhalation and encounters. Those, and sudden cliffs or towers. Pay attention, and don’t daydream.”

Death

Encounters: “By the sound of those screams, it seems that little runaway twit forgot about the Ash Sharks and Sky Spiders.”

Naeris Nailo


Additional Notes

Cannon materials from the 5e DMG and Player’s Handbook, with their currently rumored resting spots.

Artifacts (Table) (see doc)

Relics (Table) (see doc)


Homebrew Class Paths (3) Druid, Ranger, Rogue


Druid — Circle of Smoky Horizons

Druids of the Circle of the Smoky Horizon are active conservationists. While other circles may favor a certain environment, or bend to the whims and needs of a species or apex predator, this circle actively attempts to preserve all ecosystems as they are, despite the inevitable change brought by cycles of the natural order. In doing so, they strive for harmony and negotiation before all other recourses.

Not all attempts at pacification are successful — in combat, a CotSH druid prevents environmental harm and sacrifices healing utility in order to end a conflict swiftly. They may invoke spells to repair the landscape and their party outside of combat, though while in the thick of it, they create temporary spectral mutations to their original or wild shape form. They may still wish to cast earth, magma, or root-based spellcasting, though their mutations lend aid to their desires of self-harm before external harm.

DISCLAIMER: This homebrew attempts to compete with the Circle of the Moon and Circle of the Shepherd in terms of tier list rankings covered by Youtubers “Dungeon Dudes.”

Leveling

Peace Pipe: At the 2nd level — as your party and opposing humanoids roll for combat, you attempt to renegotiate, passing a peace pipe of tobacco to all members of the encounter. You gain a bonus of +5 to your initiative roll, and all non-undead entities within a 120ft radius sheathe their weapons upon a lower initiative roll than your own. Opposing enemies may likewise attempt to coerce their aggressive allies into compliance, or choose to exit the encounter individually. Shapeshifters, such as metallic dragons, may attempt to revert to their humanoid form, based on the DM’s interpretation of compliance.

Spectral Claws: At the 2nd level, you learn to mutate your forearms to replace your fingernails or similar appendage to grow spectral claws, adding 1d5 damage die to successful melee attack rolls. You gain 1d6 die at the 6th, 10th, and 14th level. Spectral claws are only considered magical by DM discretion.

Thick Skin: Beginning at the 6th level, you gain the passive ability to mutate your skin with a scaly, earthly (mud, rock), or crystalline substance. You gain an AC rating of +3. Additionally, surprise attacks against you are made with disadvantage.

Horns: Beginning at the 10th level, you learn to mutate your head with ashen horns or tusks, which vanish outside of combat. You gain 2d12 damage die, which you make seperate attack rolls for, as an additional double-swipe free melee attack. These horns are considered magical weapons.

Wings: Beginning at the 14th level, you learn how to mutate wings, which are granted 20 temporary hit points and can only be targeted with magical weapons. As a bonus action, you may attempt to grapple a target, lifting them up between 5 to 25 feet. Grappled targets may only be subject to successful attempts on targets equal to or smaller than your original or wild shape form.

Circle of Land Update — Table

Environment: Volcanic (Umberlands)
Druid Level Circle Spells
3rd Gust of Wind, Feign Death
5th Scorching Ray, Gaseous Form
7th Dominate Beast, Polymorph
9th Counter Spell, Leomund’s Tiny Hut


Ranger — Scorched Earth Archer

Description: The Scorched Earth Archer hears the sacred drums of war and shoulder their spears, javelins, and polearms to answer the call. These rangers have a predisposition against mages, save for druids and clerics, often seeking justice or vengeance against a sorcerer, warlock, or wizard for a past spellcast gone wrong. As such, they are sometimes nicknamed “mage hunters” by the common folk of the PMW.

In combat, a scorched earth ranger utilizes their proficiencies with long handled ranged weapons, as well as drawing their blade tipped staves as melee weapons. Polearms may become a necessity in situations where a mage successfully calls a barrier or ward to discourage their missiled shots. While refusing to cast direct damage spells, a ranger may still cast spells of utility from the Driudiac schools of magic to gain an advantage. This subclass of ranger additionally draws upon Psionic energies in their secular crusade against harmful magics, though perhaps guided by — or swearing fealty to — a deity of the wild or natural order.

Leveling

Psionic Missile: At the 3rd level, rangers gain a variant of the Magic Missile spell, retyped as Psionic energy. In opposition to gaining additional darts per expended spell slots, an additional dart is added at the 7th, 9th, 13th, and 17th levels. The number of times a SE ranger may cast Psionic Missile is congruent to the number of 1st level spell slots they currently have available at their level, per long rest.

Psionic Enchantments: Beginning at the 7th level, your non-magical weapons may be imbued with the choice of 1 out of 4 augmentations, which you may switch upon a long rest, requiring a 1 hour ritual. Your spears, javelins, and polearms are now considered magical weapons once they are enchanted in this way. Alternatively, you may choose to retype this damage as a sacred fire, causing fire damage against non-magical creatures and humanoids.

  • Binding Stake: Your ranged or melee attack forgoes damage in an attempt to mimic the spell Hold Person. The target must succeed on a Wisdom saving throw or be pinned in place for the duration. At the end of each of its turns, the target can make another Wisdom saving throw. On a success, the target breaks free of the stake pinning them or their clothing to the ground. The ranger may continue to make other attacks on rounds while the target is successfully staked in place, with the target remaining under the effect of the Restrained condition. Usable twice per short rest.
  • Psionic Rain: Your next 3 shots are made as wisdom saving throws in place of attack rolls. On a successful target of origin, a damage roll of 2d6 is made against enemies in a 10 feet radius. Upgrades to 2d8 at the 11th level and 2d12 at the 15th level. May trigger kinetic releases of energy on explodable or flammable environmental targets within range (i.e. gunpowder, HoA Rogue’s Flame Javelins). Usable twice per short rest.
  • Psionic Spears: The damage of the Psionic Missile ability is doubled to (x)d8s.
  • Concussive Shot: Rapidly fire 3 shots of blunted point tips against the target’s head as one action. Each shot has its own attack roll, and requires an additional +2 to succeed against a smaller subtarget of accuracy (e.g. you are no longer going for body shots). Each successful shot adds one level of exhaustion to the target, mimicking the effect of a concussion, up to a maximum exhaustion level of 4. Usable twice per short rest.

Spell Evader: Beginning at the 11th level, gain a passive bonus of +5 to all spellcasting based saving throws, but not against a creature’s legendary actions.

Conjure Shield Guardian: At the 15th level, once per long rest, gain the ability to conjure a shield guardian made of psionic energies, lasting for 5 rounds before dissipating.


Rogue — Harbinger of Arson

Description: The harbinger of Arson rogue specializes in civilian rioting, whether through the instigation, suppression, or prevention of said mob rule. The HoA rogue is not necessarily an anarchist, but rather a political or religious extremist. The leave negotiations to others as a whole, while still utilizing their charisma to recruit the like-minded to their cause. Assuming them to be a one-man army with or against a melee mob would be erroneous, as many policing forces deploy HoA rogues to assassinate the key targets of an embroiled riot, often attacking at a range in the shadows before leaping in to secure the mission.

In combat, HoA rogues observe from the shadowy outskirts and vantage points before announcing their attack with a Spear Banner, perhaps following after a decisive sneak attack. These banners rally or provoke a mob outbreak by the banner’s predetermined coat of arms, inciting others to join in on their political or religious cause. They may continue their attack from a distance or elevation with the Flame javelins, or leap into the battle fray relying on their dexterity. Additionally, they may use their flame javelins to mark or light flammable environmental hazards and boundaries, augmenting their encounter to their favor by means of zoning, smoke signals, direct or collateral damage through a successful arson spread.

Leveling

Spear Banner: Beginning at the 3rd level, the rogue plants a banner as a bonus action, or launches it from a range of up to 60 feet. While in it’s range, this banner adds 3d6 die to the rogue, which may be expended as a bonus to landing attack rolls. These die are treated similarly to the superiority die of the Fighter Battle Master’s subclass, where a rogue regains these die after a short rest.

Flame Javelin: Beginning at the 3rd level, gain 3 charges of a fire-typed ranged attack of javelins, causing 2d12 damage on successful attack rolls. Alternatively, you may attempt to use your javelins to hold a target in place, replacing your attack roll with a dexterity saving throw and forgoing damage to non-cloth AC ratings (leather, mail, scale, plate). Regain your charges of the flame javelin ability upon a short rest.

Riot Paver: At the 9th level, you ignore all melee attacks of opportunity by tiny, small, and medium humanoids, as well as domesticated creatures (DM’s discretion on the latter).

Mob Maker: Beginning at the 13th level, your Spear Banner forces all onlookers and bystanders within a 120ft. radius to make a wisdom saving throw against joining the fray with bloodlust. Targets of bloodlust gain a +5 bonus to their initiative rolls, and act as conjured minions for the purpose of control by the rogue. After 3 rounds, the minions make another wisdom saving throw, whereby they may break free of the rogue’s commands of control (and go off looting), choosing to flee, or continue to fight of their own volition. Usable once per long rest.

Fireball Finisher: At the 17th level, you may cast the spell Fireball as if you have 2 spell slots of the appropriate level, regaining these charges upon a long rest.


Fin — Dedication and Thanks

Thank you all so very, very much for reading. May we all play together some time in another life.

Source: reddit.com

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