AvocaD&D and Tabletop Gaming: Yig Snake Granddaddy, Part 15

Welcome back to the weekly D&D and Tabletop Gaming thread!  Here’s a place where we can talk about Dungeons & Dragons or any other tabletop games that you nerds might be into.  Tell us about the games you’re playing, speculate about future expansions, recruit your fellow Avocados into new groups, whatever you want.

Our discussion topic this week is the Cavalier Fighter subclass from Xanathar’s Guide to Everything. Though it’s meant to focus on mounted combat, many of the combat abilities that this subclass grants are just as good whether you’re fighting on foot or on horseback.

When you choose this subclass at level 3, you gain proficiency with a skill of your choice from the following list: Animal Handling, History, Insight, Performance, or Persuasion. Alternatively, you could choose to learn an additional language of your choice.

Also at 3rd level, you’ve already mastered riding, as you were Born to the Saddle. Mounting and dismounting takes only 5 feet of your movement instead of half your speed. You have advantage on saving throws made to avoid falling off your mount. If you do fall off, and don’t fall more than 10 feet, you can land on your feet.

In addition, starting at level 3, when you hit an enemy with an attack, you can also give them an Unwavering Mark. Until the end of your next turn, as long as it’s within 5 feet of you, the marked creature has disadvantage on attack rolls against creatures other than you. In addition, if a marked creature deals damage to a creature other than you, you can use bonus action on your next turn to make a special melee attack against the marked creature. You have advantage on the attack roll and deal extra damage equal to half your fighter level on a hit. Noe that you can only use this bonus action attack a number of times equal to your STR modifier per day.

At 7th level, you learn a Warding Maneuver, which you can use to defend yourself, your mount, or another creature nearby. If you are wielding a melee weapon or shield, when you or a creature within 5 feet of you are hit with an attack, you can use your reaction to add 1d8 to the targets AC, potentially causing the attack to miss. If the attack still hits after the bonus is added, the target has resistance to the damage from that attack (ie, they only take half damage). You can use this reaction a number of times equal to your CON modifier, regaining expended uses after a long rest.

When you reach level 10, you can Hold the Line to keep enemies locked down. Creatures provoke an opportunity attack from you when they move at least 5 feet while within your reach (ie, they can’t try to move around you within your reach to avoid opportunity attacks). In addition, any creature you hit with an attack of opportunity has its speed reduced to 0 for the rest of the turn.

At 15th level you are a Ferocious Charger, whether mounted or not. If you move at least 10 feet in a straight line before making an attack, the creature you hit must make a STR saving throw or be knocked prone. You can use this feature only once per turn.

Finally at level 18, you are a Vigilant Defender. On every creature’s turn, except your own, you can use a special reaction to make an attack of opportunity (remember, any creature that moves at least 5 feet while in your reach, or that tries to leave your reach provokes an opportunity attack). Note that you can’t use this special reaction on the same turn that you use your normal reaction.

Players and Characters

Wafflicious is in the DM’s seat for this 5e Cthulhu Mythos adventure. Our players include:

  • JosephusBrown as Anton Illinois (Human Inquisitive Rogue/Fighter), a disgraced archaeology professor who has turned to seeking arcane rituals
  • CleverGuy as Bastian Updelver (Deep Gnome Alchemist Artificer), an eccentric local potionmaker
  • TheHayesCode as Hazel Green (Dhampir Spirits Bard), a flapper, séance MC, and aspiring spiritualist
  • Spiny Creature as Ku (Kenku Twilight Cleric), a local priestess of Bastet, goddess of protection
  • The Wasp as Leah Zann (Tiefling Great Old One Warlock), a professor from Miskatonic University who accepted a deal with Yog Sothoth to get an advantage over her male colleagues
  • Otto as Minty Rocksmasher (Dwarf Berserker Barbarian), survivor of an eldritch accident which decimated her tribe

Thanks to Hayes for writing up this week’s recap!

Hazel's Diary

We’ve been holed up here in our cozy little makeshift camp for a few days now, and everything’s starting to look all neat and domestic, so a few of us decided to head out in the grasslands to look for more of those oh-so-evil statues we’ve been seeing and give ‘em the old one-two. We found some wild onions along the way, and ran into a travelling dragonborn named Talik who traded me a coupla quail for some onions. He was heading to that elven city and we had to give him the bad news that the place is probably stomped flat by now… but at least he was able to point us towards another nasty statue, which, if he’s tellin’ the truth, is the last one in this direction.

It was a real tough nut to crack (I tried these pointy choppers of mine on it when no-one was lookin’ and all I got was a toothache) but a little acid softened it up, and that nutty tiefling finally blew it apart.

On the way back, we ran into a bunch of goblinny skeletons in the middle of the plains. Now, it just so happens that I recently cracked the secret of doin’ a seance for real, accessin’ the dark powers, and all that rhubarb, and I figured we could interrogate one of ‘em and figure out what they knew about the lay of the land and those screwy snakes and all that. So I pulled one of the nicer skulls off and schlepped it back to camp. We even found some blackberries along the way, so we had a pretty good dinner.

And after dinner, it was time for the seance. Leah, Ku, and Anton helped me invoke the forces of creepiness and we conjured up the ghost of that gacked goblin. And then I realized I made a little mistake, ‘cause I don’t speak goblin-talk, and neither did anyone else… and the spell that coulda let us took so long to cast, the seance would be over! How was I supposed to ask questions, or answer ‘em?

Well, I kinda had to improvise but I managed to get some-kinda questions across using shaped water and my very flexible and expressive eyebrows, and Ku was able to record the answers in Gobbish and repeat ‘em back to us once we had the translator in place. I managed to get that our fractured friend was Grigg of the Low Mountains goblins, he hadn’t seen any of the red statues, the river was a good place to get food, he didn’t like the idea of snake people any more than we did, and that… he was dead, which wasn’t all that helpful. I just about had a nervous breakdown trying to get even that much! I miss the old days, when I could just fake it by stickin’ a little cheesecloth in my cheek and hittin’ the table with my knee.

That night while I was on watch everyone else had some kinda nightmare about giant monster stomperoo lizards, and the next morning our mummy cat friend showed up to warn us that it was more than just a dream – the snakes were on the march! (Er, on the slither?) We had to form a team to go stop ‘em from toting some monster skulls back to their home city, or they’d have a couple of necro-nightmares on their side, and nobody wants that.

On their trail, we ran into a few snakes on patrol, ridin’ on some very unpleasant looking crocs… so I put a little tickle in one of those big ugly future handbags’ minds and made it thing everyone around it was an enemy. It just about flipped its teeny tiny brain and took off like a shot! We charged in on the others and made pretty quick work of ‘em. I ended up gettin’ just a little bit carried away and biting the last one to death, but I’m sure nobody noticed. These extra pointy pearly whites do come in handy once in a while…

Not much else to report, diary! Oh, me and Ku fell in a sinkhole, but we were fine. And now we’re camping for the night, and there’s something real big with a real long neck off in the distance…