In the DCC campaigns I have run PC attribute loss has been somewhat frequent. Whether through bleeding out, fumbling Spellburn, suffering the effects of a given module’s monster special attacks etc., I have found it commonplace for the PC’s to suffer permanent attribute loss.
So what, one might ask? Well, since I tend not to run DCC as an end in itself, but rather as the core for a homebrew “general brilliant d20 system”, I have in my omniscience decided to adopt certain game mechanics from e.g. D&D 5E (which seems suspiciously close to DCC…mere coincidence or a potenital lawsuit?). Yet, at the same time, I embrace the vanilla rules’ admonition for the PC’s to QUEST for desired attribute increasal.
However this, then, is my risibly simple system: upon attaining levels 2,4,6,8 and 10, the player may elect one of their character’s attributes to increase by one. An in-game reason for this should be provided, otherwise the attribute selection is up to Judge fiat.
Mechanically speaking, the afore-mentioned increasal is quite neglible. BUT it enables the players to feel good about themselves…
“Vile deeds mar the soul and even after the spirit has abandoned its mortal coil a stain remains within the corpse. A wily magician or a crafty sorcerer may coax out the power hidden in such a carcass to employ it in their ow misdeeds. The ritual is darkling and gruesome, and only a few thaumaturges are callous enough to ever try it.”
The Hand of Glory is a fascinating European folk belief, and I’ve had this piece sitting on the bench for a year or so. The coolest thing about this is that actual items can be found in museums! You can read more about the story here on Wikipedia.
Maybe I should do the nábrók from Iceland next…
DCC Magic Item – the Hand of Glory
“Tha’ stranger what rode through town last night weren’t all good! My Jason says ‘e saw the man spew a buncha live frogs outta ‘is mouth! I tells ya, we better pray ta Nimlurun that such disease won’t strike us down as well!”
Divinely sourced disease is a common event in old stories, and as DCC tends to often be fairly deity-centric, I ended up needing a set of pestilences strange and unpleasant enough to fit such a use in-game. Our cleric of Malotoch is off to the Purple Planet on a quest at the moment, to heal themselves of the dreaded flakeflesh…
DCC Rules – Divine Diseases
Illustration by the always wholesome Joni Kesti.
High in top of the dragonhome tree,
Sleeps a little dragon, a dragon like thee
When the wind blows the dragon will fly
Sleep little lordling, now don’t you cry
– a lullaby sung to Rilvac I, the New King
This week’s piece draws its inspiration from the real world: all of the strange and fantastical plants in the article are more or less based on real world flora. Most of the time I’ve taken very slight poetic license with the plants in question. Sometimes the world is just weird enough.
DCC Flora – Weird Trees
Illustrations by the always arboreal Joni Kesti.
“Druids are primal thaumaturgists, the scions of an age old tradition passed down from the early days of man’s sapience. They command magics wrested from the elemental skein holding all existence together, and wield them with brutal, iron-willed efficiency.”
Through fortune rather than design, this weeks piece runs in the same vein as last week’s class rules for the ranger: I present to you my version of the druid!
Again, there’s a little bit of divergence from the classic D&D approach to the class. Rather than creating rules for simple nature-flavoured clerics I tried to present druids more in the vein of those seen in the Sláine-comics and the Bronze Age descriptions in Robert Holdstock’s stories. I think the classic presentation of druids lacks some of the delicious brutality I associate with primitive nature magic, and I made an effort to bring some of that into my version.
DCC class – Druid
Illustration by the primally powerful Joni Kesti.
“Striding through the vast wildlands outside of civilization, rangers are masterful survivalists, hunters and scouts.”
This week’s piece contains the rules for rangers in DCC. Instead of relying heavily on modern Dungeons & Dragons definitions of the class I tried to go back to the roots, referencing appendix N sources and simplifying the class considerably. Both paladins and rangers are a little tricky for DCC in my opinion, as they traditionally combine martial capability with divine magic, but actually making a distinct class that is more than just a cleric with a deed die requires a little juggling.
Anyhow, enjoy the article, and let me know what you think!
DCC class – Ranger
Illustration by the always auspicious Joni Kesti.
“Did’ja see them bounty ‘unters what just walked inta town? Pallydings, they said, or summat like that. Looked mighty menacin’ wit’ those big swords a’theirs. I wonder who they after…”
My players recently expressed a desire for more urban adventures this season, and of course I’m more than happy to oblige. To prepare for spending a little more time among civilization, I decided to draft up an urban encounter table to match the wilderness one I’ve been using for our campaign (available here).
Again, rules references are given for DCC, but the content should be easy enough to port to any fantasy RPG. The article contains a few new monsters and magic items as well, along with a whole bunch of events and quest hooks. Enjoy!
DCC supplement – Urban Encounters
Illustration by the urban explorer Joni Kesti.