Thursday, September 24, 2009


Michael Kane, a new contributor to Claw/Claw/Bite, came up with this new skill that gives DMs and players a fun way to introduce some cinematic action and daring-do into their games.

If you wish to use it in your game, you could make it available as a class skill to rogues, bards, and other quick martial characters.

Cunning (Wis+Int) - Take the average of the two scores.

You are a quick thinker. You can quickly survey a area and see cause and effect. A decorative rug on the floor looks nice to everyone else but to you its a trip attempt, or an elaborate pulley system on a boat is complex, but you know which rope to cut that could pull you to safety and possibly collapse the sails on its crew.

Check- A successful check lets you spot out situations that could come to be. Once in a area you scan the room paying more attention to detail then everyone else. Dms can use this skill in their game, either to place fun and creative situations on the pre-existing maps or make it up from the hip during gameplay.

DC: All check DC will be determined by the DM. A handy rule of thumb - DCs can be set at 10 + Encounter Level for easy tasks, +5 to spot harder situations, or +10 for really tough longshot situations.

Task: Example: Nadira the crafty little Rouge walks into the Thirsty Throat Saloon. The bar is full of patrons all having too much of a good old time. She could make a Cunning check to notice a simple rope holding up a chandler made of antlers, wooden barrels of ale sitting at the the top of a stairway, or a floor plank that is loose and that could be shot up with a solid stomp - causing damage or tripping someone over.

Example: Nadira is on top of a moving carriage being chased by bandits. A standing dead tree on the side of the road just needs a good yank to come tumbling down, stopping the bandits from their chase. Dms can use multiple skills together making a situation have a possible out come good or bad. Here's a round-by round example of how it could be played out:

1st round: While on-top of the carriage Nidira notices the dead tree ahead and quickly pulls out some rope.
2nd: Attempting to make a lasso Use rope DC 12, if its a success she will be granted a +2 circumstance to lasso the tree, if failed Nadira can another attempt next round
3rd: Lasso in hand Nadira will spend the round setting up for the touch attack on the dead tree (+2), rope in hand Use Rope DC 12, if fail situation is missed
4th: Nadira make touch attack to lasso tree AC 11, if failed situation is missed
5th: Rope is lassoed to tree and rope is beginning to tighten (this is where the good or bad situation occurs) Nadira makes a Wis DC 12-14 if successful she'll notice that she doesn't have enough weight to pull the dead tree down and can attempt to tie the rope to the railing of the carriage, if failed Nadira will hold on to rope.
6th: The rope will tighten on the railing and dead tree will come toppling down on the bandits, or if she is still holding on to the rope Nadira is yanked from the carriage and is swung towards the bandits. Nadira makes a swinging kick attack at the surprised bandit knocking him off of his mount. They both tumble to the ground. Nadira may use the downed bandits horse to catch up with the party.

This skill is optional for a player and a DM to use in the game. There is no limit to the creativity of craftiness.

-Michael Kane

No comments: