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Davae Breon Jaxon (DBJ)
109 followers -
Contributing writer to Critical Hit Publishing and self appointed 3rd Pillar-ist in all things Cinematic and RPG related.
Contributing writer to Critical Hit Publishing and self appointed 3rd Pillar-ist in all things Cinematic and RPG related.

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An Idea You Can Steal!

using the three pics, create a social, exploration and combat encounter.

Is the veiled woman sick, corrupted, a half-orc, a hag? Does she have a familial relationship with any of the others? What is her goal? Is she fearful, angry, filled with hate or ready to get married?

Why is the human leading this army of goblinoids? Was he a former soldier, a bandit, a noble? Does he have a half-orc relative in this group or elsewhere? What does he want? Gold, land, revenge, justice?

Is the woman on the throne asleep, injured, dead? What is her title? Is she a queen, general, cardinal or a knight? What role do those giant wolves play? Are they under her control? Are they real or imaginary? Where do the come from? What power do they possess? Are they intelligent and talk or bestial and animal-like?

Would a confrontation happen in a throne room, courtyard, open field, or an encampment? Maybe during a celebration, coronation or election?

This idea belongs to the https://www.facebook.com/RollUpandDie/ podcast crew.

Check me out over at https://www.youtube.com/davaebreonjaxon and as a contributing writer on the Cinematic Environs series at http://www.drivethrurpg.com/browse/pub/4531/Critical-Hit-Publishing
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11/19/17
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An Idea You Can Steal!

Using the three pics below create an encounter. Use an NPC, adversary and location. Try to create a social, exploration and combat encounter.

Who are the two figures and what do they want? Can they be trusted? Are they filled with knowledge or searching for information?

Why is the tribe on the move in massive numbers? Are they running from or towards a destination? Are they friendly or filled with hate?

Who is the mage and what creature is it summoning? Why? Is this apparent destructive monstrosity under control or does it have free will?

This was sparked by the https://www.facebook.com/RollUpandDie/ podcast

https://www.youtube.com/davaebreonjaxon
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11/17/17
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SWAMPY SOCIETIES (3rd pillar thoughts for 5e)

Swamps are humid, with murky water and thick foliage everywhere. Heavy armor and packs, as well those four legged mounts will have an especially difficult time traveling over land. Insect bites, poison plants and an overwhelming amount of wildlife rounds out some common hazards. Maybe torrential rain, muddy paths and flooding are hazards as well.

What are some of the dangers you see the people must encounter every day? What types of creatures? Diseases or poisons? The weather?

Why do they live in these locations? Is it a need or desire?

What are you favorite creatures or monsters you would place in a swamp? What about uncommon ones not considered?

https://www.youtube.com/davaebreonjaxon

http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/208668/Cinematic-Environs--Survival?term=survival+cine&test_epoch=0

https://www.facebook.com/groups/criticalhitpublishing/
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11/13/17
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An idea you can steal! Below are three pics: an npc, a location and monster. We need you to post your idea for an encounter! (Sparked the Roll Up and Die podcast)

Who is this ally of the PC's? Why do they need help or assistance?

Who is the adversary and why? What do they want? How do they plan on getting it? Why do they use violence to achieve a goal?

Where is this place? Why will the conflict take place here? What hazards await those who come to this location?

What is the story here?

Create names, use stat blocks, special items, or anything else! Remember, this is for other to use as well. Those of you with a creative mental block, use this!

https://www.facebook.com/RollUpandDie/
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11/12/17
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WTF? (3rd pillar confusion)

Can the hive mind help me out, please?

What do you see here? What is going on in these locations? Would you add this to your setting? How dangerous or beneficial are these elements? Are they an omen? A sign of much worst? What is your explanation for such 'unnatural' occurrences?

https://www.youtube.com/davaebreonjaxon

https://www.facebook.com/groups/criticalhitpublishing/

http://www.drivethrurpg.com/browse/pub/4531/Critical-Hit-Publishing?term=crit&test_epoch=0
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11/11/17
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ARCTIC AFTERMATH (3rd pillar thoughts for 5e)

Your opponent slain, the frigid air and falling snow smothers the heat from pooling blood. You realize the danger is not over, even as the cold air infiltrates your open pores.

There are aspects from a slain enemy that can be used to add drama and tension. Let's explore some of these details below.

Blood frenzy. Is it possible for predators to track the scent of blood? Will this send these animals or monsters into a killing frenzy with such a lack of food in this desolate locale? Will the slaying grant Advantage on scent, even if temporary after snow fall?

Blood trails? Even after leaving the area, blood can leave a lasting trail. Animals and monsters can track these blood droplets, a normal act from predatory carnivores.

Arctic Winds. Throwing of launching items into may have disadvantage to hit due to the crosswinds.

Blizzard conditions. Limited visibility and reduced range are possible. Dark vision has no effect piercing snowfall.

Cold. Hypothermia, frostbite and freezing liquids are all possible. Loss of STR, DEX, and levels of Exhaustion can be results of failed CON saves each hour. Critical failure can lead to loss of fingers and toes! Numb hands, dropping items, unable to cast somatic magic, or open a bottle are side effects as well.

Pushing though deep snow is difficult and can increase Exhaustion levels over time. The slain targets may disappear under layers of snow and ice.

Would you increase the DC of resisting the effects of cold by +5 due to adrenaline and open pores? Would this only be used in a gritty or realistic setting, ignored for a cinematic feeling? What other hazards can you think of?

http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/173908/Cinematic-Environs--Arctic-Lands?src=hottest_filtered&coverSizeTestPhase2=true&word-variants=true

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC9SXLowwmU4FEBNCStdFCtw/videos?view_as=public
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11/10/17
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AIRSHIPS and EXOTIC CITES (3rd pillar thoughts)

Towers reaching to the sky, impossible construction, and gravity defying vehicles. An absolute favorite of mine, and yours too!

Man-made locations can have just as a dynamic effect on the environment as natural regions.

Traps and lairs can easily be ported over to a city location. The reason for their existence can be for civil defense, private security, or the purview of magical entities. A re-skin of monsters into humanoids can expand the imagination. Can we say polymorphed dragons?

Would a place like these exist in your setting? Why or why not? What is the history of these locations? What type of government? The underbelly? Criminal organizations?

What type of exploration would you use here? Delving into the sewers? A chase on the city streets? Rooftop running?

I'm such a fan of this type of exotic locale. Yet I'm also a fan of lower magic settings. Can the two mix? Can you see a reason for having powerful magics supporting flying ships and ancient cities with limited arcane access? Just a thought.

http://www.drivethrurpg.com/browse/pub/4531/Critical-Hit-Publishing

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC9SXLowwmU4FEBNCStdFCtw/playlists?disable_polymer=1
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11/9/17
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MOLTEN MADNESS (3rd pillar thoughts for 5e)

Rivers of lava run past your feet. Liquid rock, aglow with lethal heat, pours from hidden alcoves. Your eyes and flesh sting from embers flung from this hellish forge.

Why not use a location like this as a lair, puzzle and trap, all in one! Try making the room or environment another element, a character, a hazard, used to build tension and force dramatic choices.

Of course the lava or molten metal is hot. Therefore, the PC's must watch their step in this place. Attacks that push or shove can knock targets into the fire, causing damage. Another idea is to force a DEX save if the target takes force or bludgeoning damage. Or any attack the rolls 5 or more above the DC forces a save is another option, due to the well-placed a strike.

Ambient heat can cause Exhaustion. Maybe instead cause loss of STR or CON from the heat. Random sparks, ash, or molten rock can also be a hazard. Each round, the targets Even the Odds (roll a die, Even is good, Odd is bad). An Odd result means that round that target has molten rock flung at them, forcing a Dodge action or DEX save, spoiling an attack or spell casting.

Fumbles (rolling a natural 1 on a d20) are perfect for tumbling onto the lava, or dropping an item into the same. May be temporary blindness, stun or burning clothing is possible as well.

Escalation can increase the damage, or other hazards, being caused to those in the room. A timer, open to the PC's, makes yet another reason, other than just hitting the enemy, to find a solution before further harm. Maybe a giant boulder can be pushed to jam up the lava? Maybe a magic stone dropped into the flow will do the same?

If this location is man-made, who built it? Why? Is there clothing or tools to handle this blazing material? How about an unfinished item being forged? Do creatures live in the lava? Which types? What is the history of this place?

Note that the environment does not need to be controlled by an npc or monster. It is its own thing, acting as a hazard to all. You can have the environment act on, say, Initiative 10, for all effects.

The environment can hard enemies just as well as the PC's, allowing for a triangle of terror the PC's can use to their advantage. Or the monsters or humanoids can be adapted the to region, increasing the danger.

For a more lethal or realistic heat damage, have the lava cause direct CON damage, say 1d4 per hit. This can simulate that, no matter how tough a PC is, the body can not stop 3rd degree burns.

http://www.drivethrurpg.com/browse/pub/4531/Critical-Hit-Publishing. https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC9SXLowwmU4FEBNCStdFCtw/videos?disable_polymer=1
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11/8/17
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The DOCKS (3rd pillar thoughts for 5e)

You disembark at the city, a crossroads of the exotic. Busy longshoremen unload merchandise, locals sale wares to visitors, and the authorities collect tariffs from arriving ships.

The docks offer plenty of Cinematic Environs to play with.

Crowds can block paths of pursuit or escape. The use of Charisma (Persuasion or Intimidation) can get them to move, or use Performance to distract them from illicit activities.

Jumping from dock to boat to land can shorten the distance to give chase. But failure could dump the PC into the water.Hiding under water may be necessary to infiltrate those using a ship as safety from attack. Enemies or monsters can capsize a small craft. Or the PC's could do the same to targets using a skiff. Jumping into the water is a good idea if engulfed in flames. Or diving in can offer cover from ranged attacks. Maybe take a second look at the swimming rules?

Getting to a ship and leaving the docks may be a time challenge after saving an imprisoned party member. Pushing the city guard into the water is non-lethal and may be all that is needed instead of a protracted combat.

Trading goods, making deals, and earning coin with exotic goods can lead to other adventures.

Pickpockets, thugs and organized crime may patrol the docks. They may be a third party sticking their noses into the PC's business.

Don't forget the the weather. Rain limits vision range and douses fire. Hurricane force winds will limit or knock down anything thrown or flying. Debris can be thrown as well. Storm surge will dump waves of water on the docks, knocking unsecured objects and people down. Fog also limits vision, or blocks it completely based on distance.

Use of skills, such as Sleight of Hand (to steal or switch documents), Investigation (to uncover the destination of other ships), Insight (to read motivations), and Medicine (to spot symptoms of illness on sailors) can remove the dust from unused skills.

#CinematicEnvrons. http://www.drivethrurpg.com/browse/pub/4531/Critical-Hit-Publishing?term=crit&test_epoch=0
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11/7/17
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MOUNTS! (3rd pillar thoughts for 5e)

Why mounts?
Speed. A mount can travel fast and far. Those PC's unmounted may be at a sever disadvantage from hunters and other enemies.

Mobility. A mount may have the ability to run, jump, climb, fly, swim or even tunnel. This may not be easy, or even possible, for the PC's. Exploration with a mount can remove the host of problems for both the characters and the players.

Care. The PC's must feed, heal, comfort and defend a mount. Enemies may want to steal a mount for a host of reasons: food, equipment, another tool, or to harass the PC's. Mounts may run in fear, must be protected from the elements, and can become dependent.

Work. A mount can carry goods. Coin, survival gear and weapons can fit on the back of a mount. Injured PC's, npc's that need a ride, or moving fallen debris are other uses.

Skill Use. Some comment that DnD has skills that are underutilized. Change this by using the environment, including mounts. Animal Handling, Nature, Survival and Medicine are a few skills needed in the wilderness with a mount.

Tension. Will a mount stay quiet? What happens if one is injured? Twisted ankle? Hit by and arrow? What about extra equipment? What about predators that hunt the mount, ignoring the riders? What if a mount is ready to give birth? Raising a baby animal, training and post-natal care during downtime can add some RP opportunities.

Social Interactions. Tribes may judge the PC's based on the breeding or care of a mount. Buying or trading for a mount. Finding a place to rest both one's self and the mount.

Gifts. The DM can award unique mounts, with special gifts, to the PC's. Magic items and special equipment for the mount can be an adventuring goal.

Motivations. Would harming or healing a mount change an interaction with an enemy? An orc on a dinosaur may stop giving chase if his mount is hurt. Or become enraged. Maybe a xenophobic tribe opens up when the PC's show compassion for a lost herd.

Cover. A mount can be cover from ranged attacks. Or food. Or bait for monsters. Or distractions if sent running in another direction. Or a place to hide in a huge wandering herd. Or to cover one's scent or sound.

The mounted combat rules can be confusing and add additional complexity. It may seem a poor trade-off to have this additional problem without any benefit in the game. Let's explore some ideas to change that. Maybe a take a second look at those few pages, hmm?

#CinematicEnvirons. http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/208668/Cinematic-Environs--Survival?term=survival+cine&test_epoch=0
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11/6/17
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