Saturday, August 10, 2013
Whitebox Undead, Energy Drain
I've always hated Energy Drain. Roleplaying as a youth, it ended up stripping our group of resources as we tried to afford Restoration Spells to get our "lost" EXP levels back. The whole point of D&D is leveling up, and if you can just be hit a couple of times by a wraith and end up at level 1, I think that is a pretty silly mechanic.
The swords and wizardry whitebox rules really made turning undead powerful, so as long as you had a party cleric, it is unlikely that fighting most wraiths or even spectres was going to happen once the cleric gets a few levels under him. However, I really nurfed the turning rules for my forgotten realms game.
So, I think I'm going to swap the normal level loss energy drain for constitution drain.
Wights: each hit deals 1d6 damage plus 1PT of CON drain. If CON reaches 0, the character dies and becomes a wight minutes later. All lost CON returns after 60 minutes.
Wraiths: each hit deals 1d6 damage plus 1PT of CON drain. If CON reaches 0, the character dies and becomes a wight thrall of the wraith minutes later. A single lost CON point returns every hour after the battle ends.
Spectre: each hit deals 1d6 damage plus 2PT of CON drain. If CON reaches 0, the character dies and becomes a spectre thrall. CON drain from a spectre returns at a rate of 1pt/day, but if drained over half then the character must make a successful CON check vs. their normal CON score or be permanently drained of 1pt of CON. In this case the touch of the spectre leaves a permanent wound on the soul of the individual.
Vampire: The bite of a vampire drains 2pts of CON/round. If the vampire is also biting savagely the creature takes 1d6 damage, although the vampire can bite carefully to keep a charmed individual alive, taking their blood for weeks or years as sustenance. CON drain from a vampire returns at a rate of 1pt/hour, but if drained over half then the character must make a successful CON check vs. their normal CON score or be permanently drained of 1pt of CON. This permanent CON drain may come with cosmetic changes in the characters appearance (white hair, weight loss, etc...).