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Thread: Lycanthropy

  1. #11
    Well, if it's a permanent effect it won't have a maintenance cost in mana. It also would make your soldiers werewolves which would be a generally bad idea in any army you were trying to control. But as we're making this all up we can define the lore however we like, lol.

    The thing is, how much werewolf lore do we stick with? Why would anyone turn one of their units into a group of mindless killers that are going to eat whatever peasant they can get their teeth on every full moon.

    How does a unit of werewolves act? Do they obey orders? Do they kill their allies? Do we track the moon?

    My thought on this was that the spell allowed the members of the effected unit to take "hybrid form" at will. They get all the benefits of being a werewolf, none of the detriments and there would be a maintenance cost in mana each turn.

    If we want more "realistic" (that makes me smile) werewolves how should we go about it? Should it change/remove this spell?

  2. #12
    Moderator Asmodai's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aaron View Post
    If we want more "realistic" (that makes me smile) werewolves how should we go about it? Should it change/remove this spell?
    Basic method:

    Casting the spell on a unit makes it permanently a werewolf in hybrid form only. As such the unit gets +2 to wisdom, +2 strength, +4 Dexterity, +4 Constitution, wolf empathy, low-light vision, scent, the extra wolf hit dice (including bab and saving throw boosts), wolf skills, Iron Will + possible bonus feats from wolf hit die, +2 natural armor class, damage reduction 5/silver, etc. (the stuff from the template)

    Units afflicted by lycanthropy continue to be controlled just as they were before afflicted. I.e. they do NOT become mindless killers. If you cast it on your own unit you continue to control that unit (with it's new abilities) just as before it was cast on it only now it's a werewolf instead of whatever it was before.

    Why would you NOT want to turn your units into werewolves: Werewolves don't use armor or weapons, nor can they cast spells. While they have +2 to the races base armor that's only the equivalent of leather armor, thus a unit in say chain mail has better armor (even if they lack the damage reduction). Their two claws (1d4) and bite (1d6) may also do less damage then attacks with the weapons the unit had prior to being afflicted (two attacks with a longsword for example has the potential for more damage). Werewolf units no longer advance/level. So while it may be a great thing to make your spearmen into werewolves it's not so great if higher tier units become them.

    As for maintenance cost they could have extra food cost or they could even have mana cost as werewolves the point with it not being temporary is just that you can't just decide to cancel the spell whenever you want. Likewise if you do go with a mana maintenance then if you can't pay it the effect doesn't just go away as I assume it would work with other spell effects (cast flaming swords on some unit and run out of mana the swords just stop flaming) but instead the unit would be lost just like if you don't have the food or money for a regular unit, the mana is part of the core maintenance not just an effect upkeep.

    Having werewolves could also effect army/city morale in some way. (for example werewolves stationed in a city could cause +1 unrest in that city for each werewolf unit)

    More advanced options (not necessary but depending on how much work they would take and how much time/effort you want to spend on it):

    Shape-changing - to wolf and original form. (depending on if the shapechange code is already there from druid?)
    Disease - bite attack makes target save or become a werewolf after combat (if they survive) (similar to the undead create spawn mechanic?)
    Removing Lycanthropy - Heal spell could remove it. If the disease version above is used then so could cure disease (if not being treated as a disease though then it shouldn't be removed by this spell). Remove curse and break enchantment give the unit a DC20 Will save to be cured (repeatable). Nightshade map resource could also optionally remove the affliction.

    Just a few ideas... I could go on.
    Last edited by Asmodai; 07-01-2013 at 07:33 PM.

  3. #13
    I like the base suggestion, but we'll leave the advanced options on the shelf for now.

    A few slight modifications: I think we could have a mana maintenance cost, but it's used to keep the werewolves sane. If it isn't paid the werewolves go nuts and become a rogue unit. Also, if we come at it from this angle I think they should be a set unit type based on their race. However, as they'll become level 1 "human werewolves" or whatever they'll be able to gain experience. We may even want slightly different artwork for each race. Undead doesn't get werewolves, so that saves us one race. Either way, it may end up being a DLC thing because of the art requirement.

    Also, we need a spell that turns werewolf units back to normal.

    What do you guys think?

    Anyone want to pitch the "change em back" spell?

  4. #14
    Moderator Asmodai's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aaron View Post
    A few slight modifications: I think we could have a mana maintenance cost, but it's used to keep the werewolves sane. If it isn't paid the werewolves go nuts and become a rogue unit.
    I like this.
    Quote Originally Posted by Aaron View Post
    Also, if we come at it from this angle I think they should be a set unit type based on their race. However, as they'll become level 1 "human werewolves" or whatever they'll be able to gain experience. We may even want slightly different artwork for each race. Undead doesn't get werewolves, so that saves us one race. Either way, it may end up being a DLC thing because of the art requirement.
    Personally I'd shy away from different artwork for each race. Possibly different artwork for different sizes but even then you could probably just scale the same model. A human (high men, etc.), elf (dark, high, sylvan, etc.), or orc werewolf I would imagine would look virtually identical in hybrid form. (though with slightly different stats) Maybe dwarf werewolves would look different. Halflings and Goblins would be smaller versions when the come into the game. Undead, Draconians, and Insectiod units would not be able to be turned into werewolves.

    All that being said I'd personally rather have a more complex version of werewolves come as a DLC then to limit them to a more simple version to make release. I'd really like to see the spread via bite and shapechange into wolf (assuming the code exists for shapechanging already due to druids).
    Quote Originally Posted by Aaron View Post
    Also, we need a spell that turns werewolf units back to normal.
    I wouldn't make a spell that does just that. Depending on what the higher level life spells are it could be whatever spells cures all status ailments on the selected unit (like Heal in D20).
    Again depending on what the life spells are if there is a lower level one that seems to apply (remove curse/disease?) as well then it could grant the unit another saving throw attempt.
    So you'd have two spells, one at lower level that has a CHANCE to work (but can be cast repeatedly) and one at higher level that automatically works. Neither are for JUST removing lycanthropy though.
    I also like being able to use the Nightshade map resource to cure it so if you are a wizard that has no access to life spells you can still remove the affliction.

    Other random thoughts:

    The spell could be castable on any unit. It might be a valid tactic to try to cast this spell on your opponents higher end units, especially spell casters, to make them werewolves so they can't cast. Of course higher end units have better saves so there would be a good chance it wouldn't work, not to mention an increased likelihood of having protection spells.

    If this save on bite or spread mechanic is added that will have to be another thing you weigh when deciding to turn your lower end units to werewolves. If you win a battle using werewolves you're probably good because lycanthropy doesn't bring you back from the dead and you killed all your opponents (unless you bit them and then they retreated.) If however you lose the battle then your werewolves might have bitten several of the surviving opposing units which makes them werewolves... giving your enemy werewolves could be a good or bad thing depending on what they were before they were bitten.

  5. #15
    OK, you make a good point about the werewolf models. One model appropriately scaled would be good enough.

    Also, several spells might cure lycanthropy I shouldn't have phrased it the way I did, lol. A better way to put it would be: What spell(s) might be used to "cure" lycanthropy?

    Casting it on enemy units could be a good tactic. We should certainly allow it.

    "Spreading" is going to have to wait. Needless to say it will require special mechanics.

  6. #16
    Caster of the Inner Tower
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    A few slight modifications: I think we could have a mana maintenance cost, but it's used to keep the werewolves sane. If it isn't paid the werewolves go nuts and become a rogue unit.
    I like that idea.

    Edit : a random idea : maybe there could be a spell to permanently or temporarily wrestle control of a summoned unit (with mechanics like Dispel Magic, except if you win the contest, you take control of the summoned unit), and then it could apply to werewolves too : you can wrestle the control of the werewolves, like any other unit magically controlled.

    Werewolves don't use armor or weapons, nor can they cast spells.
    I also like that one : when you turn a unit into a werewolf, you lose most of its special abilities (being replaced with the werewolves ones).
    Last edited by kilobug; 07-09-2013 at 11:12 AM.

  7. #17
    Wresting control of a summoned unit is interesting. I'm not sure it should apply to werewolves though.

  8. #18
    Archmage of the Inner Ring ampoliros's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Aaron View Post
    Wresting control of a summoned unit is interesting. I'm not sure it should apply to werewolves though.
    Are we talking Tactical control or Strategic control, or both? If it's Strategic, then I see 2 spells...
    1) Unbind - Remove the owner's control of 1 summoned unit. The unit becomes neutral.
    2) Compel - Compel one summoned unit to follow you. Use on a neutral summon, or wrest control from another Lord. It is easier to Compel a neutral unit.

    EDIT: Specifically about werewolves - these 2 spells would not affect werewolves because werewolves are not summons.
    Last edited by ampoliros; 07-09-2013 at 01:55 PM. Reason: about werewolves

  9. #19
    I can actually see this effect taking place on both the tactical and strategic levels. I think your strategic level spell suggestions are excellent. I think comparable tactical spells should be easy to come up with. For the moment I believe we should shelve this discussion however since the actual topic is lycanthropy. We can come back to these as new spell suggestions.

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