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Like many Dungeons & Dragons campaign, homebrewed and customised items/changes are often implemented in the campaign to enhance the gameplay. In High Rollers D&D, such changes are implemented by Mark Hulmes who runs the campaign as the dungeon master. Common implementation examples include introducing dungeon master-/player-made items, race or class, and modification of certain game mechanics.

Lightfall Campaign[]

Aksul[]

Reynard wields a magic scimitar called named Aksul[spelling?] which, when called by its name, animates and attacks upon commanded. TBA

Crownrend[]

Mark Hulmes publicly released most information about Crownrend via his Twitter account.[1]

Crownrend is a legendary sentient weapon of Chaotic Evil alignment introduced in Episode 21.[2] It is a dark iron bracer forged around a large fire-red ruby gemstone that glows with malice and intensity when caught in firelight. To wear it, the creature of non-lawful and non-good alignment must bind its soul to it.[1][3]

Being a sentient weapon, Crownrend can communicate telepathically with anyone, particularly to its wielder, and can extend into a powerful claw should the wielder chooses it to. The wielder can also activate Crownrend, allowing it to transform into two known forms of transformation to become a more powerful weapon, though at the cost of the wielder's vitality.

Personality[]

Crownrend's only goal is to topple all tyrants, leaders and people of authority. As such, it will growl and rumble should the wielder speak to such people. Crownrend will also tell the wielder that such people cannot be trusted. Though Crownrend encourages its wielder to pursue their own goals, it manipulates those goals to align with its own whenever possible.

Crownrend hates to be referred to as a weapon or tool, as it only serves as a reminder that it is not capable of pursuing its goals alone. It actively tries to tell the wielder that it is an ally by offering advice and kinship at first. Over time, however, Crownrend will corrupt the wielder by claiming that he or she will be weak without it, so as to make sure that the wielder will not part it.

Due to Crownrend's corrupting nature, after the fifth time activation, the wielder will develop a flaw that he or she will struggle to repress bloodthirsty and violent feelings. After the tenth activation, the wielder will develop a bond with Crownrend and will not give it up for anyone or anything since it needs its power to survive. However, should the wielder successfully removes Crownrend by this point, any corrupting effects on the wielder will cease.[4]

If conflict occurs, Crownrend grows hot to the touch and causes discomfort to the wielder.

History[]

Prior to the events in Episode 21, those that heard tales about Crownrend believes that it is a myth or legend. Salah Balah is one of the few who had heard about it, so he is taken by surprise when he is made known about it in Episode 37. As the tale generally goes, a demon commander forged Crownrend to topple his tyrannical master Asmodeus but, as he eventually becomes a tyrant with his newfound power, Crownrend rejects him by killing him.[5]

The history behind Crownrend follows closely to the tale. The demon commander is Mephistopheles, who wants to kill his master Asmodeus. In order to have the power to do so, Mephistopheles forged Crownrend in the Nine Hells of Baator and infuses it with all the hatred he can muster against tyrants and leaders. After wielding it and killing his master, however, Mephistopheles eventually becomes a tyrant himself with his new power, which forces Crownrend to kill him.[5] Crownrend then somehow have an underling to steal it from Mephistopheles so it can be moved about.[6]

Crownrend is brought to the Surface by pure coincidence as the underling happens to be summoned into a drow enclave in the Garden of Stones by Kalex, the matron of the house. However, the underling was already terribly injured and dies almost immediately, turning into ashes as it returns back to the Nine Hells of Baator. This results in the underling leaving the bracer behind. Kalex tries to use it but Crownrend, knowing that she is a tyrant, refuses to respond to her command. As such, Kalex kept it enclosed inside a glass container on top of a pedestal in her study. Kalex was eventually killed during a ritual, leaving Crownrend locked up for centuries until Jiǔtóu comes along and becomes the new owner.[7]

The adventurers come across Crownrend encased in a glass container in the study of the drow enclave. Everyone felt an uncomfortable aura surrounding it, except for Jiǔtóu who feels the welcoming warmth. Sensing that it seems to be reaching out to her, Jiǔtóu lifts the glass cover and intends to wear it. Before she touches it, Crownrend speaks in Jiǔtóu's mind through telepathy, eventually telling her of its background and its purpose. However, it does not tells her what it can do until she decides to make a bond with it, which Jiǔtóu eventually does and becoming its new master. Throughout this exchange, Jiǔtóu makes known to her companions that Crownrend have sentience, which makes all of them uneasy. Crownrend also speaks telepathically to Cam, which spooks him. Nonetheless, Crownrend assures everyone that he will be their ally as long as they fight against tyranny together with Jiǔtóu.[8][9][10][11][12]

Jiǔtóu actively uses Crownrend to aid in the adventurers' journey through the Underdark. She first uses it to see through the succubus claiming to be Kalex's daughter in Episode 22. Also during the same episode, her next use of Crownrend is during the coup d'état against Queen Sharisa, which happens to be the first time she activates it during a combat. In Episode 24 and later in 25, Crownrend cannot sense Granamyr's presence, causing Trellimar to be upset in both instances.

Jiǔtóu continues to use Crownrend actively during certain combats on the Surface. During the ambush against members of the Broken Sky in Episodes 25 and 26, Crownrend is activated once again and consumes the heart of Varesh. It is also activated during the second and third encounters against Dimitriv's revenant in Episodes 27 and 28, also consuming a heart of a nightmare.

The first conflict between Jiǔtóu and Crownrend happens in Episode 25 over her new friend Korak Real name: Adrik, since he is the champion of the Dawn Republic. Their conflict grew as Crownrend gets exposed to more city officials working for the Government of the Dawn Republic since Episode 27. Since Episode 28, the conflict now involves Elora and the Council of Elves after he is made known that Elora is a princess. Ever since then, Crownrend constantly tells Jiǔtóu that Elora will eventually become tyrannical, in which she had to retort back by telling him not to speak ill of her.[13] She also have to remind herself that Elora, together with the rest, helped to bring her back to life. At one point, Jiǔtóu even tells Crownrend that had it be not for Elora's action, Crownrend would still be left alone in the Underdark.

The longer Jiǔtóu wears Crownrend, the more manipulative he becomes. The first sign of this appears in Episode 30 when Crownrend tries to manipulate Jiǔtóu in burning the captured bandits alive following the raid on Redcrop. Jiǔtóu instead scars one of the bandits. Her action horrify everyone who witnessed it, including her companions and the elven royals she is travelling with. In Episode 31, Crownrend prevents Jiǔtóu from escaping despite having low health as Crownrend successfully urges her to stay and fight to her death.[14] Crownrend expresses his desire to kill more people despite the end of combat in Episode 32.[15] The first sign of defiance from Crownrend happened in Episode 34, where Crownrend deactivates itself after Jiǔtóu refuses to kill Sheriff Macklin.[16] By now, Jiǔtóu becomes increasingly conflicted between herself and Crownrend.

The tipping point comes in Episode 36 when Crownrend almost made Jiǔtóu kill Queen Shalana, who had become a winter werewolf after being affected by the curse given by King Selandris. Queen Shalana is one of the key people who helped the adventurers to revive Jiǔtóu. Cam sees the conflict with Crownrend up close, so he advises Jiǔtóu to keep in control. His advice did help in some way for Jiǔtóu to resist Crownrend's manipulation, who then removes herself from the combat and, through remembering what Master Guanyin taught her during her death, effectively blocks all of Crownrend's attempt to talk to her. Both of them eventually agree on a compromise, in which Jiǔtóu will have control over his strength in exchange for the heart of King Selandris.

Following the defeat of King Selandris in Episode 36, Jiǔtóu excuses herself and goes into meditation in Episodes 37 and 38. After the battle of the Winter Spire has ended, Cam and Trellimar return back to Jiǔtóu to have a chat regarding Crownrend. It is during this conversation that Jiǔtóu reveals that she feels hopeless and had to rely on Crownrend for strength. Cam argues that Jiǔtóu is strong without Crownrend, though Crownrend argues that Jiǔtóu will be weak without it. Eventually, Jiǔtóu decides to sever her bond with Crownrend and successfully removes it.

As Crownrend knows that he is useless without a master, he momentarily tries to convince Trellimar to be his master. Instead, Trellimar tries to destroy it, knowing how it affected Jiǔtóu negatively. However, he is unable to destroy. Elora later rejoins them and fires an arrow at Crownrend with her Moonbow. The impact of the arrow, however, is strong enough to fling Crownrend over the platform and down to the ground, landing within the Winter Spire complex. A Winter Spire soldier sees Crownrend and picks it up. Crownrend then engulfs the soldier in flames and teleports both the soldier and itself back into the Nine Hells of Baator.

Relationships[]

TBA

Abilities and Powers[]

Ability Scores
INT WIS CHA
14 10 18

Crownrend can speak, read and understand Common, Infernal and Abyssal languages. It can also hear and allows the wielder to have darkvision of a range of 60 feet. It can not only communicates telepathically with its wielder but also speak telepathically with anyone within 30 feet. Whenever Crownrend speaks, it produces a growling and deep voice.[1][17]

Crownrend allows the wielder to be resistant to fire and becoming immune if the wielder has fire resistance beforehand.[1][18]

The wielder can cause Crownrend to extend a powerful claw when performing an unarmed strike.[1]

Though not stated in the statistics that Mark Hulmes revealed on his Twitter account, Crownrend can prevent the wielder to escape from any situation should the wielder be on low health. Instead, Crownrend will urge the wielder to stand fir and fight to the death.[19]

Transformation
Crownrend can become a powerful weapon should the wielder activates it. In doing so, Crownrend feeds on the wielder's life force to transform into two known forms of Crownrend's transformation stage.[5]

The first form allows Crownrend to spread like liquid metal to cover the wielder's entire arm and upper shoulder, wreathing it in flames.[1] Crownrend's claw in this form will be more accurate, can potentially cause more damage and may push or pull the target away from its spot. This form also enhances the wielder's armour temporarily if he or she is not wielding a shield and not holding another weapon. However, this form can only be used for a short period of time before deactivating. Extending its use is only possible if the wielder have the constitution to do so. Once deactivated, Crownrend will return back into its original state and the wielder will become exhausted.

The following are instances when Jiǔtóu activates Crownrend to transform it into the first form:

  • Episode 22: activated during the 1346 Grimfang Keep coup d'état. Jiǔtóu punched a hole where Queen Sharisa's heart is and severely wounded Fandrel.
  • Episode 25 and 26: activated during the ruined watchtower ambush against members of the Broken Sky. Crownrend consumes Varesh's heart, injures the young green dragon Irathax and materialises a fire whip to restrain a bronze griffin.
  • Episode 27: activated during the second encounter of Dimitriv's revenant. Jiǔtóu uses it to free Cam from the revenant's grip.
  • Episode 28: activated during the third encounter of Dimitriv's revenant. Killed a nightmare and Crownrend absorbs its heart.
  • Episode 32: activated during the rescue mission in Melody. Killed the leader leading the hobgoblin operations in Hallow. Also injures the manticore.
  • Episode 34: activated during the Battle of Hallow. Jiǔtóu uses it to force Dulgrim to shoot himself.
  • Episode 36: activated it during the confrontation against King Alfadon and Queen Shalana, both who had become winter werewolves. Nearly killed Queen Shalana by resisting the urging from Crownrend.
  • Episode 36: activated during the confrontation against King Selandris and Queen Malisendal. She severely wounds Selandris with it and whips Sylval off the top platform of the Spire with a materialised flaming whip.

Crownrend's second form of transformation is currently not known, though it is suggested during the 2016 Christmas Special episode that it can become a full body suit with wings, allowing the wielder to fly.[5]

Lightborn[]

Main article: High Rollers D&D/Creatures and Races#Lightborn

TBA

Milestones[]

TBA

Moonbow[]

TBA

Resurrection[]

Mark creates his own system on how resurrection works should any of the main character dies in the campaign. Should a character requires resurrection, the character's player will make a dice roll. The number on the dice will correspond to the number on Mark's list of resurrection consequence. The type of dice the player needs to roll is determined by the circumstances that happened leading up to the resurrection. The consequence gets worse on higher dice roll.[20]

In Lightfall Episode 9, due to the type of sacrifices Jiǔtóu's companions made, Kim only needs to roll a D4, the best possible option. Kim rolls a 4, resulting in the consequence of her character becoming physically younger, which affected some of her stats. This consequence will not be available to other characters.

Mark's resurrection system only works if the character dies for the first time. If the character dies again, his or her resurrection will requires a spell that allows resurrection.

Siege Rules[]

TBA

Shroud of Eyes[]

Shroud of Eyes is a relic mask bequeathed to Trellimar from his patron Dah'Mir in Episode 24. TBA

Way of the Elements[]

TBA

Aerois Campaign[]

Aetherium[]

TBA

Attunement & Upgrades[]

With the introduction of the Injury Table, Mark changed the game mechanic to allow the player to have more attuned equipment. Weapons will also have more upgrade slots, largely due to the availability of aetherium.[21]

Experience Upon Exploration[]

For the Aerois campaign, Mark will be experimenting a unique system for the EXP game mechanic. Being a sandbox campaign, Mark will reward EXP for exploration, finding treasures and improving oneself or organisation. EXP gained from encounters will also be drastically affected, only allowing the players to gain EXP from considerably challenging encounters. Mark states that he wants to encourage exploration, especially to uncover new places.[21]

Guardians[]

In the Aerois setting, Guardians are a race of self-aware constructs built by a civilization centuries ago. Mechanically they are a modified version of the Warforged race from the Eberron setting. They have wooden core structures with metal outer plating, and are immune to disease, but can still be affected by psychic abilities. They do not eat, drink, or breathe, and don't require sleep, but instead rest by going into a motionless, inactive state for 6 hours. Guardians depicted so far all have a companion construct that emerges from their body which resembles a small, flying sphere with a jeweled eye, which they can use to see through at a distance.

Injury and Healing[]

The Injury Table is Mark's variant of the lingering injuries optional rule suggested in the Dungeon Master's Guide.[22] As the name implies, the game mechanic introduce injuries that could be sustained during combat, especially when a player falls unconscious or receive a critical hit. A D20 is rolled to determine if the affected player will receive an injury or not. Passing the constitution saving throw (either above 10 or half the damage dealt, whichever is higher) results in no injury, while a fail requires the player to roll a second D20 to determine the type of injury sustained. Higher roll results in minor injuries, while lower roll results in major, sometimes life-threatening, injuries.[21]

The type of injury sustained determines the amount of resources needed to heal it. It can go away once the battle is over, after a rest or after advanced healing is administered. Advanced Healing comes in the form of two new spells, Heal Minor Injury and Heal Major Injury. The spells will be available to cleric and druid classes and comes with a material costs to use them. Other healing spells can be used but it will not be as effective as the new spells.[21]

Mark introduced the Injury Table into the Aerois campaign to encourage clever use of tactics and strategic healing because he felt that combats in the previous campaign, especially in high level combats, felt "like a whack-a-mole": a player gets knocked down, healer comes to revive, repeat. However, Mark has stated that the new rules is subjected to possible changes as he is aware that there is a lack of playtesting of the rule in his campaigns.[21] During the look-back and Q&A stream on December 30, 2018, Mark reiterated his thoughts on the injury rules, but stated he would no longer be applying them for critical hits. His reasoning was that critical hits rolled by him to represent an enemy attack are nothing but a 5% pure chance, and that this feels unfair to the players because it is completely outside their control, where as getting dropped to 0 HP is something that player choices and tactics can influence.

Subclasses[]

Mark introduced several new subclasses:

  • Arcane Chromat for Sorcerers — allows the sorcerer to draw magic and power from the colours around them. Lucius is a known arcane chromat sorcerer.
  • Song Domain for Clerics — using the majesty of song to uplift allies. It also provides a traditional support role option for clerics.

Thunderstone[]

Thunderstone is a rare resource required to use a firearm, which itself is adapted from Matthew Mercer's homebrewed material gunslinger. Thunderstone will be used as a projectile that, when fired through a firearm, will emit a large concussive force upon impact. Its shrapnel will then funnel into several directions. A change from the gunslinger archetype that Mark has made is that the firearm is unstable to use and consequences can occur when triggering a jammed firearm.[21]

Tiangong[]

Tiangong is variant of a Hexblade for the Aerois setting, which functions as a weapon, an arcane focus, and a pact patron. It is a mysterious blue and black sword strongly implied to be sentient or perhaps inhabited by a spirit, as it communicates though images and feelings with its bearer. It is eventually discovered that Tiangong is actually a powerful Eterna, part of the Eternal Triumvarate. He was broken into pieces by Calus Starbane to power more ships & weapons. There are at least 13 pieces of Tiangong: five in Nova's possession, and seven in Calus Starbane's possession.

Others[]

Vigilante[]

TBA

References[]

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