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  1. #1
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    I wonder why the monsters don't have any character classes. Especially the awnshegliens should have some.

    Character classes are an important element of the 3. Edition, even gods have some.
    So e.g. the Gorgon should have at least some fighter class.

    Consider also the new sourcebook "Savage species", where monster and character levels are totally mixed.

    I like the rest of the awnsheglien conversion.
    my purpose is now to lead you into the Pallace where you shall have a clear and delightful view of all those various objects, and scattered excellencies, that lye up and down upon the face of creation, which are only seen by those that go down into the Seas, and by no other....

  2. #2
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    Character classes are integral to the awnsheghlien; however, they're presented as a pure stat block, and the classes are not noted. I suppose this could be adjusted in upcoming versions.

    To note, awnsheghlien advance as both character classes and monster "classes;" to wit,
    the Gorgon is a fighter 20/wizard 16/monstrous humanoid 10
    the Ogre is a fighter 6/giant 6
    the Ghoul is a rogue 5/assassin 3/humanoid 2

    The Gorgon, in addition to his accumulated monster abilities, class levels, and abilities derived from items, is also a true scion - which for mechanical purposes was treated as being near equivalent of a Divine Rank 0 (this is also a "hidden feature"); this is reflected in his immunities, as well as values such as armor class, damage reduction, and spell resistance. In terms of raw combat ability, this Gorgon should be able to reasonably lay the smack - however, the exact CR is hard to determine; 28 was arrived at by comparing the Gorgon to several other creatures, notably dragons and fiend lords from the Book of Vile Darkness; the Epic-Level Handbook was looked at, but the CRs within that book seem to not mirror core D&D as well as the Book of the Vile Darkness. Also, the Gorgon's 25 fighter levels were not retained for the sole reason of core D&D fighter progression being limited to 20 levels. The monstrous humanoid levels should be sufficient compensation. If you have the Epic-Level Handbook, and wish to advance the Gorgon accordingly, I suggest giving him the following feats: Epic Weapon Focus, Epic Weapon Specialization, Overwhelming Critical - all with the greatsword, and advancing his strength by 1. Advancing the Gorgon thusly should change his stats as follows: hp 1026; attack Lifender +65/60/55/50, kick +57; dmg Lifender 2d6+28 (15-20/x2, +1d6) +2d6 unholy damage, kick 2d6+25 (19-20/x3); fort +44, ref +31, will +34; Str 44. This *might* be overkill, and would certainly adjust his CR upwards by 1-3 points.

    In fact, when looking at the material that is now being presented for Savage Species, it seems pretty similar to the way we've done awnsheghlien here, I think - simply extrapolating monster types into classes, though in the case of awnsheghlien, the monster type comes out at the other end, so to speak, and as an open progression, rather than a definite class-based one.

    I am anxious for further feedback on this section; please critique as you will.
    Jan E. Juvstad.

  3. #3
    Site Moderator Ariadne's Avatar
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    First thing: Really good work!!!

    O.K., but why don't the classes appear with the monster? Is there an "update" waiting (something like "blood enemies" for 3rd Edition)?
    What is with the awnsheglien template? If you want to become one (or an Ersheglien), where are those "bonuses" listed? Up to DM? I think, not every awnsheglien gets the same bonuses, but how is determined, what they get?

    The next thind, I want to point out: I don't like the alignment restriction for Ershegliens. An Ersheglen should always be LG, NG, or CG, not one step away from the god of their blood. This would mean, there are almost no CG Ersheglien (Masela is the only, who would grant it), but many LN, N, or CN... An Ergheglien is the opposite of an awnsheglien (if I'm informed right), so he should be ANY GOOD...
    May Khirdai always bless your sword and his lightning struck your enemies!

  4. #4
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    The only reason I didn't really include the class levels is because of the way the monster stat block works - all the information about the monster's abilities are found in the stat block and the description of their special abilities, so I deemed the background info on it unnecessary to begin with; I think I'll add a line showing what each level an awnshegh has is, though, for completeness' sake. More awnsheghlien will be converted later; some were taken out of this manual during editing. There's a project for converting awnsheghlien, NPCs and scions to these rules underway as well.

    As for the question on monster abilities, that's a tricky one - creating a full-blown system that would cover every conceivable ability and be balanced and internally consistent, would require a substantially larger section on this - possibly an entire book of its own. The guidelines as they are, are basically that the abilities should be similar to what existing characters or creatures of similar level/CR get; you might wish to apply the same principle as when designing a prestige class here - what a character should get for taking a level of awnshegh should be similar to, or better than, what that character would get for advancing a "normal" level. Once more awnsheghlien are out there with this system, it'll probably be clearer.

    As for ehrsheghlien, the reasoning here goes like this: They're the "blood of light," but only by comparison to the "blood of darkness" - i.e. you don't have to be "good" to oppose "evil;" I certainly don't think that all the old gods were good (they were given the equivalent alignment of their successors; if someone can come up with good arguments for why they're different, I'm all ears). I can see a couple of holes in the system as it stands, though - for instance, chaotic evil "ehrsheghs" of Brenna - does not compute. I guess the best change to make here is to change the system "one step;" i.e. characters beyond one alignment step get the multiclassing penalty, and there can't be any evil ehrsheghlien at all. If there's any other suggestions, or better fixes, I'm eager to hear them.

    Finally, an issue for the future in regards to awnsheghlien - I'd like to know if people think that a straight conversion, or a redesign works best for awnsheghlien. I can personally imagine arguments either way. The path that has been followed so far, has been more in line with a redesign than a straight conversion. I.e. the Gorgon has had some changes done to match the system that's in place, and has been beefed up considerably, to follow suit for high-level 3e play. This is pretty necessary IMO; a straight conversion of the Gorgon would be much weaker than he is portrayed as being - same with most other awnsheghlien. Also, 3e has a lot of mechanical aspects to it that 2e didn't have, so it makes sense to apply those standardized rules to awnsheghlien as well.

    In order to illustrate, let me use an example of things that's changed. Let's take Rhuobhe Manslayer. Statistically, in 2e, he was pretty similar to a "mini-Gorgon" (and also the Raven and the Serpent, for instance - the typical 2e "path to power," I suppose) -a fighter/mage. There were limited mechanics available for characterization. In 3e, should he be a ranger instead? Rangers couldn't be evil in 2e - evil rangers became fighters. Ranger makes somewhat more sense for Rhuobhe in a couple of ways - specifically the favored enemy thing. There's other things that can be argued as making less sense, like divine spells as well - of course, good elves could be rangers and get those spells in 2e anyway. Next, would he be a wizard, or a sorcerer? - again an option that didn't exist before. Finally, let's say we have a prestige class that's geared towards the Gheallie Sidhe-type elves - would it make sense for Rhuobhe to exchange some levels in other classes for this? All this depends on how you look at Rhuobhe's character as well, of course - shining elf knight gone bad, sneaky manhunter, a mix of the two, etc. Now, does it make sense to change around some of Rhuobhe's levels a bit, in order to better fit him mechanically into the new system? I think, from the way I ask, it's clear what I think, but I'd like to see if there's substantial different opionions on this.
    Jan E. Juvstad.

  5. #5
    Site Moderator Ariadne's Avatar
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    Generally I think, creating awnsheglien as a template is a good idea. Something, that doesn't fit completely with templates is the suggestion, that awnshelien must "choose" to advance in level. Templates like the "Half-celestial" or "Half-elemental" get additional powers by level, but they needn't to choose to become one. If I read it right, you get any power too, if you advance in a character level.

    So IMO the Gorgon or the Manslayer needn't to start a new class as "monstrous humanoid", but can freely choose a (or more) character class(es). I think the awnsheglien should be converted completely to 3rd edition: If the Manslayer fits to a ranger and a sorcerer, he should have those classes (including PrC's). Your idea to convert him in this manner is good I think. Maybe he is better a sorcerer than a wizard, because he might have a more "inner strenght" and is a little bit "hot tempered".

    Alignment penalties for "curious" ersheglien isn't bad. I feared, that they can't exist at all (for a creature can't choose it's heritage [o.k. a PC can] but still may "feel the call" to become one). I think there are the same "problems" as listed with awnsheglien?

    It was always a riddle to me, what the ability bloodtrait has to do with other abilities. Blood trait is the altering of his body to strenghten another blood ability. What if you have none special, what you can alter yourself (as hightened ability, invulneralility, protection from evil, long life or something), but rolled (or chosen) blood trait. Will you get completely different abilities? How is this to handle...
    May Khirdai always bless your sword and his lightning struck your enemies!

  6. #6
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    Calling the awnsheghlien advancement, as it stands, a template, is probably a misnomer in a way - it's more of an appended way of advancing monsters. Will be addressed.

    As for the bloodtrait issue, the original ability was a bit unclear as to what it actually did - at least in terms of mechanical bonuses. The current ability is a straightforward key to ehrshegh advancement. Improved blood abilities can be emulated either by taking monster abilities that compliment blood abilities, or by taking the bloodline prodigy feat.
    Jan E. Juvstad.

  7. #7
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    Ariadne wrote:

    >This post was generated by the Birthright.net message forum.
    > You can view the entire thread at: http://www.birthright.net/read.php?TID=1265
    >
    > Ariadne wrote:
    >
    >The next thind, I want to point out: I don`t like the alignment restriction for Ershegliens. An Ersheglen should always be LG, NG, or CG, not one step away from the god of their blood. This would mean, there are almost no CG Ersheglien (Masela is the only, who would grant it), but many LN, N, or CN... An Ergheglien is the opposite of an awnsheglien (if I`m informed right), so he should be ANY GOOD...
    >
    In the novel Greatheart the "Stag of the Sielwode" is mentioned, a
    blooded animal. Even if the stag became more intelligent after becoming
    blooded, it is still an animal and perhaps simply neutral and not good
    or evil. Would this be an ersheglien as well, despite not being good?

    Have Awnsheglien to be evil? The name Awnsheglien meant "blood of
    darkness" and means those of Azrais blood - however if even a lawful
    good paladin can become a scion of Azrai simply by defeating an evil
    scion of Azrai in a just battle and having his bloodline corrupted - and
    if this new scion of Azrai continues to slay scions of Azrai - then he
    could possibly become an Awnsheglien as well, or not?

    Is not Awnsheglien simply = monster of Azrais blood and Ehrsheglien =
    monster of other bloodlines? (Monster is perhaps the wrong word, but
    both are clearly no longer human). Does alignment really matter?
    bye
    Michael Romes

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  8. #8
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    I'd expect to see a lot more on Awnshegh and Ershegh in the coming weeks. In the mean time let me share my thoughts. I don't think Awnshegh HAVE to be evil, but after taking some frightning or monsterous form, if you were an intelligent creature (ie human half-elf, dwarf) the hatred most creatures would have for you might very well start to spin your hatred evil-kind for the normal people. Those of animal intelligence getting bumped to just human-like intelligence are still animals. Their ability to set traps, ambushes and even avoid such things would increase, but there's no need to change alignment because of it.

    There's also nothing that should restrict a character from becoming an Awnshegh. If your paladin of Haelyn uses Azrai's divine gifts, that's not a good thing.....

    Mike Spehar

  9. #9
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    Awnsheghlien most definitely don`t have to be evil. 2 examples straight out
    of the BR books are the Seadrake (N) and Maalvar the Minotaur (CN).

    At 10:59 PM 2/6/2003 +0100, you wrote:
    >This post was generated by the Birthright.net message forum.
    > You can view the entire thread at:
    http://www.birthright.net/read.php?TID=1265
    >
    > spehar wrote:
    > I`d expect to see a lot more on Awnshegh and Ershegh in the coming
    weeks. In the mean time let me share my thoughts. I don`t think Awnshegh
    HAVE to be evil, but after taking some frightning or monsterous form, if
    you were an intelligent creature (ie human half-elf, dwarf) the hatred most
    creatures would have for you might very well start to spin your hatred
    evil-kind for the normal people. Those of animal intelligence getting
    bumped to just human-like intelligence are still animals. Their ability to
    set traps, ambushes and even avoid such things would increase, but there`s
    no need to change alignment because of it.
    >
    >There`s also nothing that should restrict a character from becoming an
    Awnshegh. If your paladin of Haelyn uses Azrai`s divine gifts, that`s not
    a good thing.....
    >
    >Mike Spehar
    >
    >
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  10. #10
    Site Moderator Ariadne's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Shade

    Awnsheghlien most definitely don`t have to be evil. 2 examples straight out of the BR books are the Seadrake (N) and Maalvar the Minotaur (CN).
    No, but they are on the path of evil. A neutral awnsheglien has only made his save until now...
    May Khirdai always bless your sword and his lightning struck your enemies!

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