Thursday, April 28, 2011

The Draconic Archeologist: Where All the Women At? (in The Dragon #3)

There are times I truly wonder how women ever entered this hobby.  Hell, I know they are a minority, but articles like Notes on Women & Magic - Bringing the Distaff Gamer into D&D weren't doing the hobby any favors.

Lets see, we'll make women roll Strength Scores on a d8 and a d6 - giving them a range of 2-14.  Why?  Why change the dice?  Oh, and females don't have a Charisma score, they get Beauty instead.  Roll that at 2d10.  Unless of course, they are lawful or neutral clerics - in which case they can't use Beauty.  Do they get a Charisma score instead?

So, wimin' get their own expo tables and HD tables that differ from the norm.  That's okay tho', because wimin' with high beauty scores get to cast special spells:  "Fighting Women (warriors) may incorporate the spells of Seduction, Charm Men or Charm Humanoid Monster depending on their level and beauty scores (see spells of seduction, et al)."  

Look at this ditty:  Horrid Beauty
This may be cast by any witches regardless of their beauty score but
beauty will affect how the spell will act. Direct sight of the witch within
16” is required to have an effect.
Grotesque witches — beauty score 2-5
Ugly Witches — beauty score 6-9
Ordinary witches — beauty score 10-12
Beautiful witches — 13-16
Gorgeous witches — 17+
Grotesque Witches will scare the victim! Those with 3 or fewer hit
dice will be scared to death! 3+1 or more hit dice will flee as from a fear
spell with morale lowered by 2 points for 4+(1-6) turns.
Ugly Witches will scare those with 2 or fewer hit dice to death.
Others will flee as from a fear spell with morale lowered by 1 point for 2-
(1-4) turns. Beautiful Witches will Seduce all with 4 or fewer hit dice as
with a 6th level seduction spell, no saving throw. 4+1 hit dice figures
may have a saving throw. Gorgeous Witches will seduce all with 5 or
fewer hit dice as with a 7th level seduction spell no saving throw. 5+1
may have a saving throw at -1.
Ordinary witches may have either effect on a 50/50 basis. Cast dice
for every figure individually. Duration — 6 turns (longer in the case of
seduction spells).

There's 4 pages of this crap.  From Len Lakofka no less.  I know it's a sign of the times it was written in but I still find it offensive.

Maybe the Birth Tables for D&D will have some redeeming features... hmmm, two pages of endless and convoluted tables.  I like tables.  I don't like these tables.  Ah well.

The Finieous Fingers strip holds up over time.  Thankfully.

The Healer class is interesting, but as a class that wears no armor and doesn't get it's first cure wounds spell until 3rd level (and has no damage wielding  spells) I see it's survivability to be near nil.

The Scribe is an interesting Specialist.  Not the least of which is because he has "the ability to read and copy magical writing from Scrolls and Books of Spells into the Spell Books of Magic-Users and Clerics. Only Scribes may do this, for there exists a curse upon all magical writing which causes any but Scribes, who know the counter-spell, to go permanently and incurably insane (Remove Curse not-withstanding). Scribes may belong to any of two vocations; either they transcribe magical spells or clerical spells." I never knew clerics had sell books.  Go figure.

Cool.  A Samurai class.  Eww, critical hits with their special weapons.  Dexterity increases at certain expo totals.  Why?  Why does every new class variant break the rules in bizarre ways?

A New View on Dwarves.  Hmm, this article actually works.  Cleric and Thief Dwarves.  Expanded abilities and penalties for the race.  Doesn't seem to break anything.

A New D&D Subclass:  The Berzerker.  Uhm, at higher level these berserkers change into Wererats or Werebears.  Why?  Really, why?

Hmm, now we get the Idiot Class and Jesters.  Maybe this was an April Fools issue.

In any case, I'm tapping out.  Some gems, lots of garbage, even for the time in question.

1 comment:

  1. This reminds me of how in HeroWars Orlanthi men started out as warriors and women as healers.

    Sure, that game was when Glorantha went Anthropology class 101, but it was also the moment went it died for me.

    I have had women players in my group since my teens and the idea that females should be limited to the non-combat types is just bizarre to me.


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