Dnd 4E Campaign Setting for Gallidon

Member: 109
Joined: Mar 23 2009

DnD GSL rules:

  • can't define, redefine, or alter existing definition
  • can't copy any running text, tables, or statistics block from core book
  • can add functions to 4E references as long as its not redefining (ex: you can add a new use for a skill, because it doesn't redefine the skill)
  • can print the results of applied mechanics, but not the mechanics
  • can create new powers that resemble existing


Races:

  • I recommend human only, but I think we should provide text saying there could be others in 7th kingdom

Classes:

  • I think most martial classes (Barbarian, Fighter, Ranger, Rogue, Warlord) will work fine for the setting.
  • However, I think I will be excluding all divine and arcane in favor of a new Gallidon specific class: the Gallidon Noble.

I think that Warlord should be used to represent Imperial Guardsmen, since they've received more training than a typical fighter or militiamen. Since there's only a few Imperial Guardsmen remaining, I'm sure a few of them might have set up an Academy in one of the cities training new militiamen that should be able to become Warlords, but just not the title of "Imperial Guardsman". This could become a new Feat with prereqs to give a little more to those.

Classes/Builds:

  • Noble Builds: There will be a build for each Greater Noble House for the Gallidon Noble class. There will also be a new feat for Noble Knowledge that matches the build.

Feats:

  • Noble Knowledge: The new feat ("Noble Knowledge") is associated with each Greater Noble House that grants the character knowledge about that discipline. This class feature will require the the character undergo formal education or apprenticeship. Nobles will automatically receive the formal education requirement. This allows for non-nobles to learn Noble Knowledge via means other than formal/education.
  • Imperial Guardsman: requirements include official training at the Academy for Imperial Guardsmen on the Imperial Isle prior to Destruction.

Paragon Path:

  • Noble Heir - becomes head noble in house. takes more of diplomatic or administrative responsibilities, less focused on adventuring

Epic Destinies:

  • Noble Lord - becomes head of entire House. takes more of diplomatic and administrative responsibilities, much less focused on adventuring

Regional Benefits:

  • I like how the FR campaign guide gives out regional benefits, so I'm going to try to include these in the book. Each region will be a bit different and each major city within a region might be slightly different than the region's benefit. Example: If your character origin is the High Hills Kingdom then your character automatically adds Nature to your class skill list and gains a +2 bonus to Nature checks.

Magic:

  • I'll need to go through the list of spells and categorize them by disincline. I think this might take the longest. Maybe it would be better if we just came up with our own list of existing spells and new spells and rituals for each House. I think we should standardize on the spell and ritual names so the authors can be a little better integrated with the world.

Healing:

  • I think we need a healer, but I don't remember seeing any of the Houses specialize in this.

Any comments or ideas from fellow DnDers?

Member: 4
Joined: Sep 2 2008
Healing

Alteration, Celestial Forces, Alchemy and Necromancy all have methods of healing people. The tendency of the Lower Noble Houses is to mix and match the various greater disciplines to achieve new types of magic, some of which could be healing techniques.

Member: 109
Joined: Mar 23 2009
I started work on this and...

I started work on this and I think the martial classes and other setting items will be pretty easy. I went through and worked up a draft of a few sections of a few chapters and it seems okay so far.

But I'm having a bit of difficulty planning out the Noble class and magic aspects. I've always played the martial classes since I started in 1st ed, so arcane stuff has always been a chapter that I've just skimmed for info rather than studied.

I don't know if it will be easier to have 1 class with 17 builds (maybe 18 so there can be a mix-match build) or just have 17 distinct classes. After trying to fit everything into 1 class, I'm leaning now towards making multiple classes. This would also allow for multi-class builds where someone has mixed two different disciplines.

I am thinking that you'll need to be have the Greater Noble title to access some of the higher level spells of the Noble House. I think the problem here with the magic is that we don't have a specific spell list for each discipline. Building a rule book is hard to do when we have such an open and new world like this where anyone can just add a new spell or ritual.

I don't know if this is a great idea now after I've started on it. It feels like too much of a rewrite. I was hoping that we could use a lot of the core books, but it looks like only the martial classes fit into the setting without a lot of adjustments (and you can't adjust here, just make new stuff).

Member: 43
Joined: Dec 8 2008
Perhaps a different perspective?

Hi Shurijo,

My hat is off to you for attempting the monumental task of adapting RoG to 4th Edition D&D. That's a lot of information to crossbreed and I'm very interested to see what you come up with.

Regarding your decisions on what constitutes an Imperial Guardsman or a Noble, I am struck by the idea that defining these roles by character class might be a case of reinventing a wheel that a lot of game designers spent a crazy amount of time to develop. Why not let their work stand instead of starting from scratch?

Let's start with the Imperial Guardsman "archetype". Based on what we know about them so far, I can see the inital urge towards going with the 4th Edition Warlord class. But Warlords are not, by definition, the best trained or most effective warriors around...that honor goes to the plain old Fighter class. I'd imagine that most Imperial Guardsmen begin as Fighters and then multi-class into the Warlord class to develop their crucial leadership skills...or perhaps those who come to the Emperor's service with more education start as Warlords who multi-class into Fighters as their weapon skills improve. My point here is that, design-wise, it can be very frustrating to say "Imperial Guardsmen are X" when "X" can be a nebulous entity. What about a ne'er-do-well urchin taken in by one of the Imperial Houses who matures into a candidate? He'd probably be best represented as a Brawny Rogue who multi-classes into the Warlord or Fighter class.

Regarding the Noble, I am at a loss as to understand what is missing from the multitude of classes, feats, and builds in 4th Edition that won't let you emulate a noble. Again, it seems to be an archetype concept ripe for discussion and flexibility, so dropping every Arcane and Divine based character class could be a very broad and wasteful stroke.

I've always been a fan of working backwards with character creation, moving from effect back to cause. Why not decide just what it is that nobles do and how it fits into the current scheme of the 4th Edition "Striker/Defender/Controller/Leader" and work backwards from there until you have something that blends the campaign specific elements of RoG with the standing rules of 4th Edition? Perhaps developing new builds to define these setting-specific archetypes is more productive than reinventing entire classes. It also allows folks playing in such a game to decide for themselves just what exactly an Imperial Guardsman or a Noble should be.

Nevertheless, please don't take anything implied here as disapproval of your creativity. Again, my hat is off to you for taking up the task. I'd be happy to discuss any specific points with you here on the forums and look forward to your next update.

Member: 109
Joined: Mar 23 2009
Thanks for the comments.

Thanks for the comments. After a bit of review, I'm now leaning towards your ideas.

I had originally wanted the Noble class to give the specialized arcane training and skills associated with the RoG magic. Now, I've thrown away the Classes chapter and started over. Just an hour ago or so, I went through what I have so far, and now I'm trying out class recommendations.

For example: If you play a druid, then it's recommend you choose House Lucan (and vice versa). It wouldn't make much sense having a druid from any other house, but it shouldn't restrict players from unique histories (being of one house's bloodline but raised as a Lucan could bestow the knowledge of shape-change, a Lucan trait).

In this instance, I'd like to develop a specific build and paragon path for the House Lucan for Druid. The other arcane classes (bard, sorc, wiz, warlock) might be too much to develop builds and paragon paths for each House for each class, so I was thinking of going the feat route for the other Houses.

The magic part has shown to be the toughest aspect so far, so I'm going to leave that until last... The races is pretty easy, just humans with option open for 7th kingdom.

I'd like to add at least 3 feats per House. Think of it as feats they can take that are unique knowledge of the House and require special training. Maybe a Lesser House feat, Greater House feat, and Master House feat. (each would prereq the previous)

I've also changed my mind about Imperial Guardsman. I think I want to make this as a feat too. The feat would bestow something special to the character that is integrated into the world and give a real benefit somehow due to their training regiment (something like the house feats).

Another feat that I've been thinking about is Imperial Rune-Weaving. That would need a lot of prereqs and a "DM approval" req, since there's so few (if any...) remaining after the Destruction. I'm sure a few escaped, and probably a few have been taught by those who escaped or maybe even a House has been hiding one.

I also want to avoid creating new classes, since there's so much more to the classes in 4E than 3x (re: powers, etc.). In 3x, it would have been easy to just define a class or PrC, but 4E we have all of those powers to include.

Member: 4
Joined: Sep 2 2008
Imperial Guardsmen

I'd strongly recommend some sort of Feat that enhances Will and Fortitude saves for Imperial Guardsmen. I would also suggest that an Imperial Guardsman Feat be Paragon or higher level.

How about both Lucan and Corvus for druids (dependent upon build)?
Or does Animal Mastery seem more of a ranger build?

I like the idea of 3 Feats per House/Magic Discipline - simple but provides a specific individual trait for the character.

Member: 109
Joined: Mar 23 2009
4E classes

The main difference (in my eyes) between a Corvus Druid and Corvus Ranger is that druids can shape-change. I didn't think that Corvus nobles had that ability (just Lucan), so that was why I was thinking they'd be the only Druids. I could definitely see a build for a Corvus Druid who couldn't shape-change.

I think there'll be lots of tweaks to it once I finally complete a draft version. Especially dealing with the Houses, magics, etc. I think this task merits a few reviews by others, just because it's less of a narrative and more of a rulebook. For it to work well, I think my idea of the setting converted to 4E will need to be checked against by a few others.

The only problem that I have with Paragon builds is that it is for lv 10+ (11, 13, 15, I think). So I could see an"Imperial Guardsman Commander" Paragon build, but if a player wanted to start as a Lv 2-3 fighter who had just completed the Imperial Guardsman training academy, then they wouldn't receive any benefit for that.

My vision had the "Imperial Guardsman Training" feat required to be taken at 1st level. Since I would assume the recruitment age would be about 17-18, since the training is so long (10 years I think) until they've acquired the title. I see the Imperial Guardsmen feats almost as rank structures. The first one would be in the lower levels (1-5) and show that they have completed most of the training. The second would be received when they finished their training (lv 5-10) and the others would be feats for commanding others (lv 10-20).

I don't have any problems with critiques and changes. I want to get the ball rolling and then manage/build the book. I hope to get lots of feedback as I progress.

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Joined: Sep 2 2008
RPG Magic

Magic systems are always the hardest part of any fantasy RPG system in my mind. Trying to build one from scratch involves a whole lot of time. Not sure it would be worth it to me with so many different systems already available to adapt from (including 4E).

From what I know of 4E, I would suggest keeping the various magic-using classes intact and not introducing much customization for RoG until characters reach the Paragon levels. At that point, if they choose a discipline (or a Greater House) to focus on, maybe they could get some special bonus, a unique at-will power, encounter-power, utility, daily, etc. Another set of specialized powers could become available at the Epic levels along with a big custom ritual or three at the highest levels.

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Joined: Sep 2 2008
4E Feedback

Sounds great. Looking forward to seeing RoG take shape in the 4E structure.

I suggest opening a new thread here in the forums featuring the Background chapter for review purposes. I can't think of an easier mechanism for gathering quick feedback here on the site.

Let us know if there is any House that is causing you particular problems - in regards to House/Class combos. I would encourage you to consider the idea of each Greater Noble House having multiple classes amongst its members (as opposed to a single class per House) and leave most - if not all - classes available for members of the Lower Noble Houses.

Member: 109
Joined: Mar 23 2009
Classes

Ok. I can see martial and arcane users for almost all classes. The druids is the only group that I see a almost specific towards a single house, due to the unique shape-changing ability.

I'll also keep the feats open to almost any class, except a few feats that might require arcane casting/knowledge or shape-changing ability, etc.

Member: 4
Joined: Sep 2 2008
Feats

That sounds good. Keeping the Lucan/druid group restriction makes a lot of sense. I took a quick look at the druid class and I think you're right - restrict it to the Lucan or their direct offshoots (Lower Noble Houses) due to the unique shape-changing ability.

Regarding my earlier comment concerning House Corvus as druids; again you're on the right track - Corvus makes much more sense as ranger (something we're already working on in stories - self realization = DOH!) builds rather than a crippled (non-shape-changing) druid.

The more I think about it, the more I like using customized RoG Feats as a mechanism to distinguish the disciplines (Greater Noble Houses). This provides a quick way to customize characters without a massive re-write and new sub-set of rules for GMs & players to digest.

Member: 109
Joined: Mar 23 2009
illustrations

I understand how references work in regards to the CC license. How does illustrations work?

For example, I've included M'teoulin and Sand Devils in the "monsters" chapter and referenced the creators and original works as shown in the Submissions page.

If I wanted to include the associated illustrations (unmodified) in the RoG Player's Handbook, could I do that or would I need to produce new artworks or would I just need to contact the contributor?

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Joined: Sep 2 2008
Illustration attribution (and more)

To answer your question, you can technically take art from the Gallidon site and use it in your new RPG Module or Player's Guide without needing approval from Brain Candy or from the Artisan. We suggest you contact the Artisan as a courtesy to let them know, though.

The method for illustration attribution is this: "Illustration Artwork Title by Artisan Name.”

We structured the licensing of content in Gallidon so that anyone can use the materials found there (fiction, art, etc.) however they wanted, provided that: (a) they give proper attribution/credit to the Artisan(s) who made the Work and (b) they do not use the Work for commercial purposes (essentially, make money from someone else's Work). You can copy, remix, reuse, distribute, etc. someone else’s Gallidon work without needing permission (I cover commercial use below).

We sincerely hope that the creative community will do exactly what you are asking, which is to reuse and incorporate existing Works into new ones. It's one of the things that separate Gallidon from other sites.

One quick note: the Creative Commons license we use requires that everyone creating Gallidon Works license them under the same Creative Commons license. We use a BY-NC-SA 3.0 Unported CC license. So, in addition to giving attribution to other Artisans, your Work should also include the following text:

“This Work set in Runes of Gallidon – runesofgallidon.com.
Available under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.”

where “Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license” is preferably a hyperlink to http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0/

The revenue and licensing sharing can be tricky, so please email us or post questions if you have them. We suggest you review pages 3 and 4 of the Artisan Reference at http://runesofgallidon.com/sites/default/files/Artisan%20Quick%20Guide.pdf.

Member: 109
Joined: Mar 23 2009
thanks

Thanks for the info, Scott.

This particular work will be uploaded to you guys when I'm done - both for review and hopefully publication. I've got most of the work done and now I'm tidying up things and adding in the splashes of color and illustration.

The above text is a bit different than I remember seeing and copy/pasting from either the Artisan Guide or the Submissions page. I don't remember seeing the "Unported" part.

Also, I'm including the RoG map, who gets credit for that illustration?

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Joined: Sep 2 2008
Unported & Maps

Don't hesitate with any specific questions about this stuff - it's pretty dense (ye ole lawyers work that way).

We're looking forward to seeing the guide & tossing it to a few friends for some play-testing.

The "unported" aspect to the Creative Commons license is a new update - there was some confusion as to which version we use, so we wanted to make it clear as possible with all details included.

The RoG map on the site is the property of Brain Candy, LLC -- so the attribution for the world map (this particular version of it) would simply be: “This Work set in Runes of Gallidon – runesofgallidon.com." There is no specific Artisan who needs credit.

Member: 109
Joined: Mar 23 2009
playtesting

Would your friends mind playtesting the draft version? I'd like to get some feedback before official submission/publication.

Most of the details are done. I might add in a few more feats and I still need to write the "Magic" chapter - I've been holding off on that. I'm also writing up some info on some organizations (such as Black Cabal, Swordsmen, etc.) but that's just text stuff, the rules part should be nearing at least draft status now.

I'm going to add in "sample" persons such as a Imperial Guardsman, House member, Swordsman, etc.

I also made stats for the Mantid, so your RPG module might be a good test.

Member: 4
Joined: Sep 2 2008
Drafts & play-testing

I'd be happy to hand out a draft for some feedback & play-testing whenever you're ready.