Saha Ra and Ohases

Saha Ra is a neutral deity who provides clerics with access to the Sun and Earth domains. His wife Ohases provides his cool complement, Moon and Water.

He is concerned with the role of light and heat, and she with the role of shadow and cold. They are both favored by cultures which live in or near deserts.

His symbol is a the sun with the earth below, represented by a horizon line. A simplified version of the symbol is a circle with a horizontal line under it. Hers is a crescent with a wavy line below.

Tales of their troubled romance peppers the mythologies of those who worship them, as well as those whose religious practices allow for them in their larger pantheons.

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Flying V

These are nasty bat-like creatures that drift along the stratosphere until dark, when they swoop down to the surface to feed.

Flying V
Size/Type: Huge Magical Beast (extraplanar)
Hit Dice: 8d8+20 (60 hp)
Initiative: +8
Speed: fly 60 ft.
Armor Class: 23 (-2 size, +8 Dex, +7 natural), touch 16, flat-footed 15
Base Attack/Grapple: +7/+26
Attack: Bite +10 melee (1d8+6)
Full Attack: 2 Bites +10 melee (1d8+6)
Space/Reach: 15 ft./20 ft.
Special Attacks: Fly-by Attack
Special Qualities: Darkvision (200′), Low-light Vision (500′)
Saves: Fort +11, Ref +15, Will +8
Abilities: Str 20, Dex 26, Con 18, Int 2, Wis 14, Cha 6
Skills: Hide +12, Listen +18*, Move Silently +18, Spot +14*
Feats: Alertness, Stealthy, Fly-by Attack
Environment: Lofty Peaks, Night Sky
Organization: Colony (5-8)
Challenge Rating: 5
Treasure: None
Alignment: Always neutral
Advancement: 9-16 HD (Gargantuan)
Level Adjustment: —

A flying V has a wingspan of 25 feet and weighs about 400 pounds. They have hands near the ends of their wings that allows them to grip their prey.


Scouting the night sky with their strong nightvision and low-light vision, flying Vs swoop down upon unsuspecting prey from above, using a fly-by attack to either grapple or simply attack their unsuspecting prey.


Flying Vs have a +4 racial bonus on Spot and Listen checks.

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Khadiya Umberbær

Khadiya was born and raised by the Bær tribe on the edge of a vast desert. From his upbringing, he has learned to worship Saha Ra, god of sun and sand, and live off the fruits of this deity. As he’s moved into more urban environments, he’s taken up various rogues skills to survive.

Khadiya Underbær
Medium-size Male Human
Rogue 5 Ranger 2
Hit Dice: (5d6)+(2d8)+14
Hit Points: 54
Initiative: +4
Speed: Walk 30 ft.
AC: 18 (flatfooted 18, touch 14)
Attacks: *Shortbow +1 +10;Sword (Short/Masterwork) +7;
Damage: *Shortbow +1 1d6+1;Sword (Short/Masterwork) 1d6+1;
Face / Reach: 5 ft. / 5 ft.
Special Qualities: Archery Combat Style, Evasion (Ex), Favored Enemy (Humanoid (Reptilian)) +2, Sneak Attack +3d6, Trap Sense (Ex) +1, Trapfinding, Uncanny Dodge (Dex bonus to AC), Wild Empathy (Ex) +3
Saves: Fortitude: +6, Reflex: +11, Will: -1
Abilities: Str 13, Dex 18, Con 15, Int 13, Wis 7, Cha 12
Skills: Appraise 2; Balance 16; Bluff 1; Climb 6; Concentration 5; Craft (Untrained) 1; Decipher Script 2; Diplomacy 1; Disable Device 7; Disguise 1; Escape Artist 10; Forgery 3; Gather Information 4; Heal -2; Hide 10; Intimidate 1; Jump 6; Listen 4; Move Silently 14; Ride 8; Search 5; Sense Motive 0; Sleight of Hand 9; Spot 1; Survival -1; Swim 2; Tumble 10; Use Magic Device 4;
Feats: Armor Proficiency (Light), Dodge, Martial Weapon Proficiency, Mobility, Point Blank Shot, Rapid Shot, Shield Proficiency, Simple Weapon Proficiency, Track
Challenge Rating: 7
Alignment: Chaotic Good

Possessions: Aquamarine; Rope (Silk/50 Ft.); Arrows (20); Arrows (20/Mithral); Backpack; Bedroll (Fine); Case (Map or Scroll); Elixir of Sneaking; Fishhook; Flint and Steel; Grappling Hook; Leather +2; Magnifying Glass; Onyx; Piton; Potion of Cure Moderate Wounds; Pouch (Belt); Rose Quartz; Sack (Large); Sack (Small); Sard; Shortbow +1; Signet Ring; Sword (Short/Masterwork); Thieves’ Tools; Torch; Waterskin (Filled); Whetstone;

Spells per Day: (0/0/0/0/0/0/0/0/0/ DC:8+spell level)
Ranger – Known:
Level 1: Alarm, Animal Messenger, Calm Animals, Charm Animal, Delay Poison, Detect Animals or Plants, Detect Poison, Detect Snares and Pits, Endure Elements, Entangle, Hide from Animals, Jump, Longstrider, Pass without Trace, Read Magic, Resist Energy, Speak with Animals, Summon Nature’s Ally I

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River Dragon

These cruel river dragons crawl from their wet shells an icy blue color highlighted by tiny white spines in rows along their backs and limbs. Their long sinuous bodies are powerfully muscled making them excellent swimmers. As they age and spend long periods lying amongst the rocks and mud at the bottoms of progressively deeper rivers their hides take on the coloration of the river they inhabit, be it mossy, muddy, or rocky as they become impregnated with those materials.

River dragons live in rivers; from cold mountain headwaters at young ages to wide deltas once older. They spend their long lives hiding underwater, controlling currents, overwhelming boats and capriciously drowning people. They tend to bury their hordes in caches and caves they dig at the bottom of their rivers and in cavernous aquifers.

Occasionally they will encounter another river dragon as they age and move slowly from their mountaintop springs to deeper waters. When these encounters take place they will generally fight for dominance and control of the river. Losers are slain if they cannot escape back upriver. On the occasions when they are of opposite sexes, mating may occur before or after the fight for dominance, and the victor will send the loser upriver to hide the eggs amongst the stones at the springs and headwaters of the river.

River Dragon, Young – Level 8 Controller
Large natural magical beast (dragon) – XP 350
Initiative + 7 Senses Perception +5; darkvision
HP 89; Bloodied 44
AC 22; Fortitude 20, Reflex 20, Will 20
Resist 5 cold
Speed 4, Swim 8

Bite(melee; standard; at-will)
+13 vs. AC; 2d6 + 5 damage, and the target is grabbed (until escape). Cannot make bite attacks while grabbing a creature this way.

Breath weapon (close blast 5; standard; recharge 5,6)
+12 vs. Reflex; 3d8 + 5 cold damage, and the target is pushed 3 squares.

Maelstrom (area burst 2 within 10; standard; encounter)
+10 vs Reflex; 1d8 + 5 cold damage, and all affected creatures are immobilized (save ends) in powerful eddies. Each round they start their turn in the eddy, they take ongoing 4 cold damage.

Change Shape (minor; at-will) * Polymorph
A river drake can alter its physical form to take on the appearance of any Medium humanoid, including a unique individual.

Alignment Evil – Languages Draconic, Common
Skills: Athletics +14, Bluff +12, Stealth +12
Str 20 (+9) Dex 17 (+7) Wis 12 (+5)
Con 17 (+7) Int 15 (+6) Cha 17 (+7)

Tactics: River dragons are rarely found out of their rivers, and use the water as cover from which to make quick strikes and then fade away.

River Dragon Lore: The following can be learned with an arcana check:
Arcana DC 10: These aquatic dragons are known to attack anything on their rivers without provocation.
Arcana DC 15: Highly adapted to the cold waters in which they are hatched, these dragons have some resistance to the cold. They can also control the waters of their rivers.
Arcana DC 20: These cruel dragons have the ability to mimic the shapes of people to trick their prey.

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Traveler’s Tables

Traveler’s tables are nice little elements to add some spice (and encounter locations) to your worlds. Placed outside the city walls, though often in view of the town guard, these are simple tables set up so that merchants and travelers can regroup, take in a meal, and generally rest up before heading into the hustle and bustle of town and city centers.

The construction of the tables varies per region, with some city-states erecting magnificent stone tables, complete with moderate shelter, horse ties and posts, working wells and shrines. Other, less well-to-do locales offer more meager accommodations, but all municipalities consider it their duty to accommodate the weary traveler, and this is one such gesture of welcome.

These locations are often named for famous adventurers who hail from the towns in which they are placed.

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History: Barael has lived a long life of adventure. Born near the Linglew Wood to a woman who had traveled there to learn elven magic, he was a young man when Soguer fell. After many years wandering across the world, in and out of groups of companions, he found himself at the Temple of the Stars in the north of the Middle Kingdoms, where he fell in love with one of the priestesses there. In the years that followed he defended that place against the Anmagus Crusade and became a bitter enemy of the Shan’n’nur Inquisition.

Level 19 Fighter (Kensei)
Medium natural humanoid (half-elf) XP 2,400

Initiative +10 Senses Perception +11, low-light vision
HP 136; Bloodied 68; Healing Surge 34; Healing Surges: 11
AC 34; Fortitude 30, Reflex 28, Will 27
Resist 5 fire and necrotic
Speed 6
Action Points 1


Basic Melee ✦ At-Will ✦ Martial, Weapon
Barael’s Blade +23 vs. AC; 1d10 + 14

At-Will Powers
Magic Missile ✦ At-Will ✦ Martial, Weapon
+17 vs. Reflex, 2d4 + 8,
Precise Strike ✦ At-Will ✦ Martial, Weapon

Encounter Powers
Ray of Frost ✦ Encounter ✦ Martial, Weapon
Thunderwave ✦ Encounter ✦ Martial, Weapon
Griffon’s Wrath ✦ Encounter ✦ Standard, Melee
Spectral Ram ✦ Encounter ✦ Standard, Ranged 10
Storm of Blows ✦ Encounter ✦ Standard, Melee
Force Volley ✦ Encounter ✦ Standard, Ranged 20

Daily Powers
Victorious Surge ✦ Daily ✦ Standard, Melee
Dragon’s Fangs ✦ Daily ✦ Standard, Melee
Disintegrate ✦ Daily ✦ Standard Ranged 10

Utility Powers
Boundless Endurance ✦ Daily ✦ Minor, Stance
Unbreakable ✦ Daily ✦ Immediate Reaction, Personal
Into the Fray ✦ Daily ✦ Minor, Personal
Blur ✦ Daily ✦ Minor, Personal
Stoneskin ✦ Daily ✦ Standard, Touch

Alignment Neutral Languages Common, Elven, Dwarven
Feats Arcane Initiate, Ritual Caster, Novice Power, Acolyte Power, Adept Power, Expanded Spellbook, Weapon Proficiency Bastard Sword, Weapon Focus Heavy Blades, Inescapable Force, Armor Specilization (Scale), Iron Will
Skills Arcana +18, Athletics +18, Diplomacy +12, Endurance +16, Insight +13, Streetwise +16
Str 20 (+14) Dex 13 (+10) Wis 14 (+11)
Con 14 (+11) Int 20 (+14) Cha 13 (+10)

Equipment: Barael’s Blade (+3 Witchblade), Black Iron Wyrmscale Armor +4, Orb of Reversed Polarities +3, Bracers of Defense (level 7), Winged Boots, Elven Cloak +4, Spellbook, Holy Symbol of Boccob, Adventurer’s Backpack.

STATS as a 19th level NPC
19th level Fighter, Half-elf

Initiative +10 Senses Perception +11, low-light vision
HP 165; Bloodied 82; Healing Surge 41; Healing Surges: 11
AC 36; Fortitude 33, Reflex 30, Will 28
Speed 5
Action Points 1

Combat Challenge


Basic Melee: witchblade + 21 vs AC, 1d10+12
Magic Missile: +20 vs Reflex, 2d4 + 11

Force Volley

Greater Invisibility

Skills: Arcana +18, Streetwise +15
Str 21 (+14) Dex 12 (+10) Wis 14 (+11)
Con 13 (+10) Int 19 (+13) Cha 11 (+10)
Gear: Scale Mail, +3 Witchblade, holy symbol of Boccob, spellbook

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Barael’s Blade

Witchblade – Level 9+
This sword is infused with arcane energy, and can cut the very fabric of magic.

Lvl 9 +2 4,200gp
Lvl 14 +3 21,000gp
Lvl 19 +4 105,000gp
Lvl 24 +5 525,000gp
Lvl 29 +6 2,625,000gp

Weapon: Light or heavy blade
Enhancement: Attack rolls and damage rolls
Critical: +1d6 force damage per plus

Power- Eldrich Parry (Encounter): Immediate Interrupt. When targeted by a power with the arcane keyword, use your melee basic attack bonus with the witchblade + 10 as your defense against the attack.

Power – Sever Spell (Daily): Standard. Intelligence vs. the Will defense of the creator of a conjuration or zone.
Hit: The conjuration or zone is destroyed. All its effects end, including those that normally last until a target saves.

History: Forged by the Crow Mage from shards of darkness, infused with the finest dwarven steel, and honed by his half-breed apprentice to near-vorpal sharpness, this blade was wielded by Barael, the famous bastard child of King Elespor Galdius.

It is said that it takes a warrior’s hand and a wizard’s mind to wield this blade and those crafted in it’s image. The original Witch-blade has many special properties, and is a hand-and-a-half sword. It has the same dispelling and counterspelling properties that all witch-blades share. In addition, Barael’s blade has a deadly thirst for the blood of those who lead the worship of abominations, such as the Spider Priests of the Shona’qua dark elves whom Barael repelled from the mountains of Abernath.

As its fame grew, the cultists of Shan’n’nur attempted to wrest this blade from Barael’s possession in order to learn the secrets of it’s construction. For many years the cult hounded him and would send agents after him whenever his travels brought him to the middle kingdoms.

The cult was never successful in subduing Barael or eliciting his cooperation, though they nearly succeeded once, when he was seduced by one of their agents. Eventually the leaders of the Shan’n’nur decided to abandon their efforts, as it was too great a drain on the organization’s mediocre resources.

Years of research later, the Shan’n’nur duplicated the witch-blade effect with the help of Barael’s old foe Faduardo Gantonín and began enchanting their long knives and swords with the property.

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Tablas of Persuasion

These portable drums appear normal until played by someone who succeeds at a DC 15 Perform (drums/percussion) check. At this point the rhythm of the drums causes all who are within earshot (typically 60′) to make a DC 15 Will save or be at a -10 on all Will saves while the drums are played. This makes them more susceptible to persuasion, charm, and command effects originating from the player or those aligned with her.

Faint enchantment; CL 8th; Craft Wondrous Item, creator must have the bardic music class feature, charm person; Price: 15,000gp; Weight 5 lb.

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Ale Break: Immediacy in Storytelling

Here is a problem that plagues many role playing campaigns. The story isn’t driven enough by the need to move. Think of many classic fantasy stories that inspired the creation of dnd and have been written since then – Lord of the Rings, Golden Compass, the novels of Jack Vance, etc. time and time again, these stories move from location to location because the protagonists aren’t allowed to idle. There are no two-month periods where they sit around spending loot in bars and brothels. Sadly, too many dnd games devolve into this, with players playing out their adolescent fantasies in the campaign world. This is also the pacing of games like World of Warcraft, where the goal is to level your characters without ever actually role playing. This too has become too often the norm. Sure, players love shouting one-liners across the table, and this should be encouraged, especially when it’s done in character. But in too many games, real role playing is often the afterthought.

Unfortunately, World of Warcraft has made its snickering (and highly profitable) way into the latest edition of the rules, which are written to entice players to want to level up to get that next encounter power, and making that the focus, rather than actual role playing. This perversion of the rules (huh… why’s everyone able to heal themselves fully ~10 times a day?!?! and where’s spellcasting gone?!? it feels like fighters wield as much magic as mages…) More reasons why 4th ed is subpar compared to other, more realistic, though perhaps more loop-hole-ridden systems to follow in a later opinion post.

Back to the topic at hand. One thing I’ve noticed (remember that this is an opinion piece) is that so many decent fantasies come from Britain, and so few from the U.S. It’s not to say that Americans (and I’m one of them) can’t create them, but why are we as a culture so stunted when it comes to deep storytelling? Maybe because there’s not much of an oral tradition anymore, or really any sense of history at all. More people my age can name all the thundercats and transformers than can name all the U.S. state capitals or the 44 presidents. And don’t dare utter the term Magna Carta unless you want to face blank stares.

In role playing sessions (and outside them as well), this bugs me, for without knowing your history you have no context for what you’re doing. History (though often confined to thick tomes and a certain not-so-aptly-named cable channel that shows more infomercials than actual history) is living… history provides context… history provides immediacy. And it’s this immediacy that makes role playing fun and exciting. Not all campaigns feature short people who travel the land to deliver an evil ring to its maker, but certainly any epic-scale campaign should include some reason for the characters doing what they’re doing.

Otherwise they’re just floundering around the world, a drunk gambler with a penchant for whores, like a gamer with no opposing alignment. And thus, no need to move!

So if you’re a DM, keep reading up on history (or make some up!), and introduce or maintain a sense of immediacy in your storytelling. Your players will thank you… maybe not today, but when they look back on your campaign through the lens of their future’s past.

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Rug Rats

Created by a mage who once sought world dominance through sales of a specially-tainted rug, rug rats are now relatively common in most lands.

Rug Rats
Size/Type: Tiny Magical Beast(Swarm)
Hit Dice: 8d8 (26 hp)
Initiative: +4
Speed: 20 ft. (4 squares), climb 20 ft.
Armor Class: 16 (+2 size, +4 Dex), touch 16, flat-footed 12
Base Attack/Grapple: +3/—
Attack: Swarm (1d6 plus disease)
Full Attack: Swarm (1d6 plus disease)
Space/Reach: 5 ft./0 ft.
Special Attacks: Disease, distraction
Special Qualities: Half damage from slashing and piercing, low-light vision, scent, swarm traits, meld with fabric
Saves: Fort +4, Ref +9, Will +6
Abilities: Str 2, Dex 18, Con 10, Int 2, Wis 16, Cha 2
Skills: Balance +16, Climb +16, Hide +16 +18, Listen +8, Move Silently +10, Spot +8, Swim +8
Feats: Alertness, Stealthy, Weapon FinesseB
Environment: Any
Organization: Pack (2–4 swarms), or infestation (7–12 swarms)
Challenge Rating: 4
Treasure: None
Alignment: Always neutral
Advancement: None
Level Adjustment: —


Rug rats seek to climb up from the rug they’re in and attack any warm-blooded prey they encounter. A rug rat swarm deals 1d6 points of damage to any creature whose space it occupies at the end of its move, 2d6 if they stand upon the rug they inhabit.

Disease (Ex): Filth fever—swarm attack, Fortitude DC 14, incubation period 1d3 days, damage 1d3 Dex and 1d3 Con. The save DC is Constitution-based.

Distraction (Ex): Any living creature that begins its turn with a rug rat swarm in its square must succeed on a DC 14 Fortitude save or be nauseated for 1 round. The save DC is Constitution-based.

Meld with Fabric (Su): A rug rat swam can meld with the rug it inhabits. This makes them unable to be attacked, though the rug can still be destroyed. If the rug is destroyed, they immediately meld back into their rat forms and scatter, at which point they are treated as normal rats.

Skills: A rug rat swarm has a +4 racial bonus on Hide and Move Silently checks, and a +8 racial bonus on Balance, Climb, and Swim checks. A rug rat swarm can always choose to take 10 on all Climb checks, even if rushed or threatened. A rug rat swarm uses its Dexterity modifier instead of its Strength modifier for Climb and Swim checks. A rug rat swarm has a +8 racial bonus on any Swim check to perform some special action or avoid a hazard.

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