October 11, 2010

Energy Shields

Gamma World has given us a great mechanic for energy shields. Recently, WotC put out a preview for an awesome Solo killer robot. The robot has regenerating shields, as seen below:

Force Field (while not bloodied)
The Eradicator gains 10 temporary hit points at the start of each of its turns.

This is very slick way of doing energy shields. I will be stealing this idea for anysessions of scifi games that I run in the future, such as StarCraft. I'm thinking this would be the big racial power for Protoss characters, called Shield of Adun. I'd like to have this as a scaling effect, so I'm thinking Temporary Hit Points equal to 2 + 1/2 level, which would be right in line with invigorating assault, a Cleric at-will attack that grants temporary hit points as an effect. Also, a feat that sets the scaling temporary hit points in line with standard racial resistances:

Improved Shield of Adun
Prerequisite: Protoss
Benefit: Your Shield of Adun provides +3 temporary hit points.

The monster has the (robot) keyword, clearly a renaming of the (construct) keyword. Something of note: in Gamma World, robots have immunity to poison only. In D&D 4E, constructs have immunity to disease and poison. I've got a feeling that disease is being eliminated from teh game entirely as a keyword, and these design decisions will filter thir way to D&D proper. Which is all good and well with me. I mean, when's the last time you saw a PC's power with the disease keyword? As of this posting, there are ZERO. (Unless there are some in Dark Sun?) So, effectively, every monster is immune to disease because PCs are incapable of giving them a disease.

Lastly, if you look at how this creature is put together, it becomes very obvious that it is a reskinned Beholder. I love that. I think what happened was that the designers saw a cool monster type in D&D that works well, the Solo Beholder, and ported it over to their new game system. What I think they probably didn't thinkof was how this teaches all the DM's out there how to do something similar for their games. This a wonderful example of how to reskin a monster to your personal theme.

No comments:

Post a Comment