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Thread: Adurian Faq

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    Birthright Developer Raesene Andu's Avatar
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    ADURIA FAQ

    Part 0: Introduction


    Will this expansion use the d20 Birthright rules?
    · Yes… and no.
    · The Adurian Campaign Setting draws on the d20 Birthright Rulebook as its source, but in the case of a rule in the ACS overriding one in the BRCS, always use the Adurian rule instead.
    · Several sections of the BRCS are no longer used or have been changed for Aduria (especially the bloodline, magic, characters, and religion chapters). In these cases, alternative rules will be given. Most of these changes are highlighted in this FAQ.

    Part 1: Characters

    What standard PC races will be included?
    · Humans (15+ sub-types)
    · Halflings

    What new PC races will be included?
    · Asla, Quala, Ssarak

    Why all the new races?
    · The Adurian Campaign Setting is an attempt to move away from the standard D&D settings with elves, dwarves, half-elves, half-orcs and so on. To this ends, the new PC races will be very different from the norm.
    · There are also several setting specific reasons for the inclusion of these new races over the traditional ones.

    What standard PC classes are available?
    · All, although the wizard will face some restrictions (see below).

    What new PC classes will be included?
    · The Shadow Mage replaces the wizard in all regions except the Anuirean Colonies and even there Shadow Mages control vast regions, especially in Oeried and surrounding kingdoms.

    What is the Shadow Mage?
    · A darker, tainted version of the wizard, corrupted by the influence of Azrai.
    · More powerful than the standard wizard, but also cursed due to his closeness to the Shadow World, the Shadow Mage sacrifices his soul to the darkness in order to boost his power.
    · Like the wizard, is restricted only to those characters possessing bloodlines.
    · A Shadow Mage can cast realm spells (drawn from a new list of such spells), but can only tap the Shadow World to power his magic.

    Are there any other restrictions on classes?
    · Yes, the Monk class will only be common in the southern regions of Aduria, not in the north or the central regions. Wandering monk may be encountered in these other regions, but organised societies of Monk are only common in the south.

    What about the other new classes from the BRCS?
    · The noble will be revamped somewhat for the ACS to reflect the setting.

    Will there be any new skills and feats in the ACS?
    · Yes
    · Several new regional feats will be presented, some of these may be previewed before the release of the ACS
    · Also in the interest of creating differences between the races, Humans will choose their bonus feats and skills from a list of background feats & skills. This list will be different for each race.

    Any changes to the Equipment tables?
    · Yes, several new racial weapons (some are renamed version of standard weapons, some completely new) will be looked at.
    · Primitive firearms and cannon may also be featured. This is still being considered.
    · Other new equipment specific to the setting

    Part 2: Bloodlines

    Will there be any changes to the bloodline rules?
    · Possibly, depending on the final version of the bloodline rules in the BRCS
    · Any rules presented in the ACS will be provided as an option only, so either the BRCS or ACS rules could be used depending on your preference.

    Will there be any new blood abilities?
    · Yes, although not a large number, just a few setting specific ones.

    Will there be any change to the Usurpation rules & Bloodtheft?
    · Possibly, again this depends on the final rules presented in the BRCS and again all the ACS will do is provide an option to using the official rules.

    Part 3: Magic

    Will there be any changes to the magic rules?
    · Yes, the introduction of Shadow Magic will mean significant changes.
    · Arcane spellcasters will now be faced with a choice between Mebhaighl, or the darker but more powerful shadow magic, which draws on Awnmebhaighl, the energy of the Shadow World.
    · These two types of magic do not mix, so that if a region has a lot of shadow mages (for example Oeried) then normal wizard will find their spells weakened and likewise Shadow Mages are weaker in regions where Mebhaighl magic is prevalent (e.g. Zaynani).

    Will there be any new spells or clerical domains?
    · Large numbers of new spells are planned, including more than fifty that are available solely to Shadow Mages.
    · Several new domains for Adurian clerics are also planned, with most using more unique spells in an attempt to bring a BR feeling the spell lists.

    Are there any new realm spells?
    · Again, there will be a large number of new realm spells for both priests and wizards.
    · The realm magic system will also be revamped somewhat for the ACS.

    Part 4: Gods and Religion

    Are there any new gods in the ACS?
    · Yes, four new gods will be presented
    · Two of the gods are older human gods worshipped only in a single region of Aduria, the other two are new racial gods worshipped across the continent (or wherever their followers can be found).


    If you have an additional question not listed here, then please ask and I will do my best to answer it.
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    Senior Member Osprey's Avatar
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    The introduction of gunpowder marks a landmark advance in technology that will eventually (along with the advance of industrialization) dominate warfare. I know this isn't absolute fate, but it's pretty likely given real-world historical precedents.

    All I'm saying is consider VERY carefully before adding this to this (or any) world. Tech from Aduria will probably spill over into Cerilia sooner or later, and Aebrynis will never be the same...

    -Osprey

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    Birthright already has primitive gun powder in Khinasi and Anuire. Rich

    Baker wrote an article in Dragon Magazine that introduced it. Dragon #226

    if I remember correctly.



    -Anakin Miller



    > The introduction of gunpowder marks a landmark advance in technology

    that will eventually (along with the advance of industrialization) dominate

    warfare. I know this isn`t absolute fate, but it`s pretty likely given

    real-world historical precedents.

    >

    > All I`m saying is consider VERY carefully before adding this to this (or

    any) world. Tech from Aduria will probably spill over into Cerilia sooner

    or later, and Aebrynis will never be the same...

    >

    > -Osprey

    >

    >



    >

    > Birthright-l Archives:

    http://oracle.wizards.com/archives/birthright-l.html

    >

    >

    >

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    Birthright Developer Raesene Andu's Avatar
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    The Rich Baker article you mention is Weapons of the Waves from Dragon #232.

    One thing that is interesting to note is that if the history of Aebrynis is following our own history then Cerilia is still 50-100 years away from common and effective usage of cannon as navel weapons.

    Also, the prevelence of magic will most likely have prevented major technological advances in this field. After all, why bother with gunpowder weapons when you can hire a mage that can cast fireballs and similar spells.

    However, some regions of Aduria are slighly more advanced that Cerilia in certain fields. For example, ships built in Mor Atha are the next step up from Cerilian vessels and regularly prey on Anuirean vessels en-route from Cerilia to Oried, Lurech, and Alitaene. The introduction of gunpowder (or hellpowder as Rich calls it in his article) to Cerilian vessels could help protect slow trading ships from Mor Athan pirates.
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    Senior Member Osprey's Avatar
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    Since arcane magic is a rarity in Cerilia, I think the invention of gunpowder would be heartily welcomed and sought after by Cerilians. There simply aren't that many mages to be hired to throw fireballs, whereas cannons could [eventually] be mounted on every ship. And technology has always had the appeal of potential limited only by knowledge, craft, and natural resources - it doesn't require anything like a mage born with a divine bloodline.

    Also, I don't think a Dragon Magazine article need be considered BR canon [no pun intended ], even if Rich Baker wrote it. I've always considered stuff printed there to be optional material that can be added, but isn't core material. That's my take on it, anyways.
    -Osprey

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    Birthright Developer Raesene Andu's Avatar
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    The article itself wasn't really about cannons and gunpowder for BR, that was only a 1/2 page at the end of a 6 page article. Most of it was about the history of Cerilian shipbuilding, featuring 3 new (or rather old) ships that were once built and then there is some information about ramming, boarding, and so on.
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    On Fri, 26 Sep 2003, Raesene Andu wrote:

    > Also, the prevelence of magic will most likely have prevented major

    > technological advances in this field. After all, why bother with

    > gunpowder weapons when you can hire a mage that can cast fireballs and

    > similar spells.



    Because anyone can use a gun with a bit of training. You don`t have to

    put up with prima-donna attitudes from your gunners, because you can

    always hire more. Your guns can fire as many times a day as you can

    afford powder, while no amount of money will let a wizard memorize more

    fireballs. Your gun unit isn`t a single point of failure- if one gunner

    dies, the rest of the unit can pick up the slack and probably even hand

    the gun off to someone else, while if your wizard dies, his 2nd level

    apprentice isn`t much of a backup.



    --

    Daniel McSorley

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    Originally posted by DanMcSorley@Sep 26 2003, 05:43 PM
    Because anyone can use a gun with a bit of training. You don`t have to
    put up with prima-donna attitudes from your gunners, because you can
    always hire more. Your guns can fire as many times a day as you can
    afford powder, while no amount of money will let a wizard memorize more
    fireballs. Your gun unit isn`t a single point of failure- if one gunner
    dies, the rest of the unit can pick up the slack and probably even hand
    the gun off to someone else, while if your wizard dies, his 2nd level
    apprentice isn`t much of a backup.
    Yes and no - handgunners are all you say, but it took 60 years from basic artillery to basic handguns - and another generation before they were practically useful.

    And while artillery crews were easy to come by (just as battle-magic support forces used to be in 2ed) once you were talking about the masters necessary to utilize artillery effectively it was back to primadonna acting.

    The benefit of technology is that anyone can learn to master it though, so makers of gunpowder and master artillerists (casting guns, aiming them and training crews) will soon become more numerous than mages

    But artillery will certainly come to power in any case just as you say - or one might as well argue that swords and crossbows would never have been researched since mages can trump them too.

    But there is no reason why mages should be made to suffer just because gunpowder exists - all that you can do with gunpowder could be done before, with the exception of mines.

    I mean that magic and gunpowder are not opposed in any way. I would also like to point out that it took gunpowder until the 18th century to dominate warfare completely, some four centuries, so the inclusion of a few gunpowder weapons shouldn't kill any world..

    (Although the domination could go slightly faster if bayonets are invented earlier, but three centuries is probably the minimum )

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    True, in our own history the original cannon makers were bellsmiths. Weird huh? Makes sense though, when you consider the crafting it takes to make a bell and a cannon are the same.

    Until the Colt came around, people were still somewhat unfamiliar with firearms. Even the advent of rifles didn't make that much better. It was the industrial age, when we developed interchangable parts that firearms became more easy to learn because more people could afford them, easier to repair, etc.

    Just adding to the thought here. I recommend not adding anything but the most cumbersome and dangerous firearms, if any at all.

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    Senior Member Osprey's Avatar
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    If firearms are added, though, I strongly recommend ignoring the DMG conversion rules, 'cause those rules make firearms (flintlocks et al.) about as potent as bows or crossbows, thus ignoring the entire reason firearms DID come to dominate warfare. Firearms were so deadly because of their ability to practically ignore armor - i.e., vastly superior penetration and a great deal of tissue damge compared to an arrow or bolt.

    The problem with D&D is the way it handles armor - in an all or nothing fashion. Either the armor completely blocks an attack, or it is useless and the attack does just as much damage as if you were unarmored.

    So how to account for firearms? One way is to give them high damage stats, and unprecedented critical threat ranges and multipliers. That at least comes close to representing the the deadliness of firearms. On the other hand, earlier firearms (esp. before rifles are invented) should be pretty inaccurate at range, so they should have short range increments.

    Here's a possibility for flintlock-era weapons (ROF = Rate of Fire):
    Flintlock Pistol: 1d8 Damage (18-20/x3), 10' Range increment, ROF 1/3
    Flintlock Musket: 2d6 Damage (18-20/x3), 30' Range Increment, ROF 1/4

    Earlier versions (matchlocks, wheelocks, arquebuses) would have even shorter range increments and longer reload times: a matchlock might be something like 1 shot per minute (10 rounds, or ROF 1/10, and that's generous, really), a wheelock slightly better at perhaps ROF 1/8, with range increments at around 20' or so for musket-size guns. I reckon damage would remain more constant, though, as accuracy and reload times were the major improvements over the centuries of firearms development.

    An alternative system would allow firearms to make ranged touch attacks, thus ignoring armor bonuses (but not deflection/ force armor/ cover bonuses) to AC. This would be a kind of blanket system that says "normal armor is useless against firearms." In such a system, I'd get really restrictive with range increments and tone down the damage somewhat: perhaps 1d6 (19-20/x3), 5' Range for pistols; 1d8 (19-20/x3), 10' Range for muskets. Thus, there would be major penalties to hit at any significant distance (which is pretty accurate historically).

    What do the rest of you think?

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