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Author Topic: Mystery of the Druids  (Read 7854 times)

Smitehammer

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Mystery of the Druids
« on: January 21, 2013, 03:17:04 AM »
Druids are powerful.  I know that.  They get some snazzy spells, yes.  They're a viable class, and can be very handy in a party.  I am not here to invite a listing of all the things that make a druid 'neat'.  I'm here to point out a few easily rectifiable issues in need of a good rectifying.

Druids, for some reason, don't get all the animal attribute spells.  And they're DRUIDS.  Clerics with the animal domain get 'Cat's Grace' to round out all the animal attribute buffs, because 'animal domain'.  Druids?  Bull's strength and... nothing else.  Good luck buffing any pet besides a bear, or maybe a dire wolf.    You don't just have a dex-based pet, but are yourself dex-based?  Then good luck buffing yourself, even.  Oh, an elven druid using a bow with zen archery - good idea!  Pity you can't owl's wisdom yourself.  Oh, but you can 'awaken' your pet, and give HIM a wisdom buff, I guess.  That's... useful?  Popping into the .2da I'm imagining could easily grant druids access to these spells, which they should really have anyway.

Companions.  Who here has a bear?  I'm not the Sesame Street Count, but I'm going to go ahead and estimate 'lots'.  Why?  Well, these days using companions in a fight doesn't come up much, but when they DID (and if they ever do again in the future) people will often take the bear because it is simply the best.  It has strength, and it has con.  That makes sense - it's a bear.  Sure, some folks take the hawk, or the cat, or even the badger.  But what, aside from roleplay value, does the badger bring to the table which the bear couldn't bring in much larger, gruntier ways?  Nothing.  Nothing at all.  But that could change!  Each animal could have their own equally useful abilities!  I'm not talking 'howl', here.  Howl's useless.  I'm talking things like what you currently see in wizard's familiars.  Damage reduction for the boars, because go out and TRY to hurt a boar.  I'll wait.  I'm talking greater barbarian rage and regen for badgers, because Honey Badger was bitten on the face by an ASP after stealing its food, and after a brief nap woke up to EAT THE ASP.  I'm talking a natural ability concealment for panthers to go with a sneak attack because there's a black panther behind your monitor right now - he's been there all along, and you've just never noticed him because he's that good.  I'm talking about a hawk having permanent freedom of movement because it's ~flying~ and dealing 'wound' because there's bloodhawks in the game already and those things are scary as hell for a low-level and I want one.

And if, by some crazy miracle of scriipting or magical science, pets could be possessed to be used as scouts like the familiars of wizards today?  Awesome.  Awesome to the max.  That cat has a decent hide score - and NEVER USES IT.

Magicky weapony thing.  Druids don't get it.  Now, this makes sense in PnP or in NWN 2, where they get magic fang, and natural spell, and (I'm assuming) they can magic their teeth or claws or something with that.  But here, they can't do that.  Actually, the way this spell works is a bit wonky, as you cast it - not on your animal - but on yourself, when your animal is out and about.  Then it affects your animal.  What if it was cast on target, so you ~could~ use it to buff your animal, or another ranger's/druid's animal, ~or~ cast it on yourself, so that upon going all Grizzly Adams your bearish fangs are now 'magicked'.  Or have it that if your pet has magic fang, it also counts your shifted form as having magic fang.  Or at least you can eat through DR ala the bizarro 'stoneskin-then-polymorph' thing.  Only, you know, in a way that actually makes sense.  Natural spell may be out of the question unless we have a script wizard. Still, having some way for a druid to damage a Maddened Corpse - by using magical abilities granted by gods who hate the undead and really should give them the means to in some fashion - seems like a step in the right direction.

Forms.  Who shifts into anything but bear - show of hands?  Yes, yes.  Lucadia, you can put your paw down.  Well the rest of us know that the same rationale to having a bear as a pet applies to shifting as well.  You shift into a bear for the strength.  You shift to break down a door after bull's strengthing yourself.  You shift into a bear to haul corpses of compions after bull's strengthing yourself.  You shift into a bear to mate with that ancient dire she-bear in the Balinoks - you sick, demented furry.  You NEVER turn into anything else, because nothing else gives you any reason to.  Other than roleplay, sure.  Same thing that could be done with animal companions could be done with the different forms.  Cat-form could give you a bonus to hide/ms and/or sneak attack.  Wolf could give you a permanent expeditious retreat-type effect - wolves are fast after all!  Badger could give you near-mystical powers of not-caring about ANYTHING because ~seriously~, have you seen that video?  Glorious.

Of course, having access to other companion templates would be amazing - as goes without saying.  While I don't fully understand why this is off the table... I think it's off the table.  Regardless, most (or at least some) of these suggestions should be relatively easy to implement.  They'd make druids ever so fun.  More fun, I mean.  And by fun, I mean kick-ass.  And by kick-ass, I mean rending undead asunder with fiendish badger-claws.
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airengale

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Re: Mystery of the Druids
« Reply #1 on: January 21, 2013, 03:53:16 AM »
I agree with you with adding all the animal spells to the druid's spell list. I believe even in 3rd edition, that druids have those spells; so I don't understand why it was never implemented in NWN.

In response to the other issues, I think that may take a lot of time and devotion to devs that would take on the hassle of beefing up summons. What I see on other servers is to increase the selection of what you can summon, but I personally think this is a better way of handling the issue that the druid class has in terms of balancing out the interest of what they can already summon.

Anywho +1 to encouraging this to be put on the devs list of things to do.

I play a Zen Archery based druid who enjoys taking on the aspect of a wolf, and I have a hawk familiar for some excellent Rp; in terms of combat, I'm lacking drastically. This would really encourage other types of druid and selection of role-playing--not just for combat.
« Last Edit: January 21, 2013, 04:40:17 AM by airengale »


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Lucadia

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Re: Mystery of the Druids
« Reply #2 on: January 21, 2013, 04:23:12 AM »
Quote
Yes, yes.  Lucadia, you can put your paw down

Oh hai!

 No unfortunate druids here dont have the 3 or 3.5 spell list they get in the handbook. No owls wisdom is even stranger if not most of the status buffs, Only upside is owls insight for a zen based archer.

If there was going be a fix for animal companions , it be have them naturally increase in power with your level. More hp pool, more ac to survive taking a few hits to compensate for the AI, natural damage reduction for the thick fur, hide and what ever else. Iv seen this done quite well on my home server. Not enough make them tanks but enough to make them stop being a liability to have out for more then a few moments. Rather troublesome with low ac your companion suddenly takes several criticals faster then you could cast a cure spell on them to stop them from dying.

Shape shifting could really use with the skill bonuses they are supposed to get of the creature to add some utility

and if you had natural spell..may never known a druid was a druid if you never seen them come out of their form *shifty eyes look*


Zhernebog

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Re: Mystery of the Druids
« Reply #3 on: January 21, 2013, 10:19:53 AM »
It's a shame druids aren't very high on the list of travelling companions. I mean they get the car seat over you worthless rangers hahah filthy rangers.

Also yeah can we fix this? Druids aren't very good.
As statistical reference, Lucadia(stupidly high level druid) jumped my then lvl 8 barbarian in the ml crypts...and he couldnt do a damn thing to.stop me. My 10% move speed beat all eighteen lvls of druid. Not bragging, just saying druids could use some love, especially in making sense.

Elfric

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Re: Mystery of the Druids
« Reply #4 on: January 21, 2013, 11:40:59 AM »
It's a shame druids aren't very high on the list of travelling companions. I mean they get the car seat over you worthless rangers hahah filthy rangers.

[Shakes fist] That was suppose to be our car seat! Now we gotta be in the trunk, again.

But yeah anyone else realize how screwed over nature divine classes are?

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RedwizardD

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Re: Mystery of the Druids
« Reply #5 on: January 21, 2013, 01:29:13 PM »
It would be nice to see more love for druids. I've like to roll up a new druid (The old one is level 5 and can't afford the raise for the animal companion) But I can't seem to find a good build at doesn't revolved around " bull's strength, turn into a bear".

The cost to raise animal companions is also hard of druids because they don't get crazy bonus pets here that the wizards did. Their pets are supposed to be viable combatants but seem entirely too fragile on this server to be worth the cost to keep raising them then they inevitably die. Not to mention you can lose the corpse and just not get to have a companion anymore.

All that said this is such a glorious class in pen and paper. You get also of options with forms anything from a tiny asp to a polar bear, to a T-Rex depending on what is "familiar" in your setting. With natural spell you can still be viable at supporting your team even if you want to say..turn into a falcon. It would be nice to be able to play one in NWN without having to splash monk to make them strong enough(which is not actually possible in this module anyway).

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Re: Mystery of the Druids
« Reply #6 on: January 21, 2013, 02:56:31 PM »
Mystery of the druids? Ah... I love that meme, why don't we take a moment to post it so everyone can laugh at it. Cause it actually is funny, it's a favorite of my younger brothers.



There we go...


anyway, I sort of agree with the initial post. Druids really don't do much. There is more builds you can do apart from 20 Druid and bull strength bear. Druids are also very powerful on the server... I remember my friend able to Animal Empathy an ancient dire bear at a rather low level and almost killed a player vampire twice his level... not to mention it being a vampire and all.

I have found one other build that I tested out and enjoyed when I wanted to play around with druid...

Pretty much druid has only a few uses: Wildshaping, and Prereq for shifter.

So maybe more options would be kind of cool... but i'll tell you about my rather unusual build with a posted stat...

Introducing: Charisma Druid.

now before you go "whaaaat" take a look at what I managed here:



This first one is shown stats for a level 20 Druid/Torm hybrid.

I am in understanding there is a Torm VS Divine Champion thread. Frankly, I could totally see someone playing a "Champion of The Forests" so to speak.

It would appear after checking through my folders I don't have the black guard version... question may be "Why do this"

Reason I figured was wisdom actually wasn't too important. Druids really aren't casters as much as they are melee's with some spells to help them out. So you really don't need an obscene amount of wisdom, and physical stats actually aren't too important (except for the beginning) because as a druid you gain new stats from shapes of animals that you take. Now the thing with Charisma is that it is a multi useful stat that druid can apparently take fairly good use of.

Helps boost animal empathy skills can benefit and you can use a high influence to preach your ideals of nature. I came up with two versions of this, one is evil (which I found to be more potent), and the other is good/neutral. The Evil one uses Blackguard. Evil druids I suppose would be ones that want to slaughter society, and return it to the woods. while a good druid simply wishes to preserve and respect nature in all of it's endeavors.

The things that really helped these are the divine might and divine shield class features while in the animal forms... +35 ab is nothing to scoff at... you are practically guaranteed a hit. Divine shield is also rather nice to go with it. On champion of torm the dr buff can be very nice as well...

Overall I felt it did pretty good, maybe for pvp it is actually a bit stronger. Not so much for enviorment or multiple opponents altough if these guys were on arcane buffs they might be a bit scarier.

Anywhoo that's just something very different I tried with druid and actually liked.

Sidhel

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Re: Mystery of the Druids
« Reply #7 on: January 21, 2013, 10:44:27 PM »
Stuff about druids and blackguards

There are several class features for blackguards that would make even an evil druid unable to make use of them. Summoning Undead and Demons.. Bad.
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Snowflame

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Re: Mystery of the Druids
« Reply #8 on: January 21, 2013, 10:46:01 PM »
Stuff about druids and blackguards

There are several class features for blackguards that would make even an evil druid unable to make use of them. Summoning Undead and Demons.. Bad.

Still got Divine Champion

RigorMortis

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Re: Mystery of the Druids
« Reply #9 on: January 21, 2013, 11:21:35 PM »
At Level 20 with AC like that, if you are even looked at by any melee class you are dead.

A weapon master would hit you four to five times and have that big pool of HP down in moments, Your saves are good, but are no match for an empowered Fireball casted by a competant sorcerer. Your also showing you class completely buffed, A Cleric could easily make your AB and double the AC. Your spell list is still shy, other then the saves and AB, your rocking Even cross class about 15 Discipline unless you completely dump stat into it, which I find very cheesy. You would be managing around 30, A Knockdown would make food of you, A Bigby's would exploit your reflex safe.

Your strengths include a High AB, you are not hasted, so you cannot close distance with a Wizard/Sorc, A Crazy strong repetoire of High saves is excellent, but they will just exploit your low Discipline, with your AC, anyone could KD you even as a sorcerer.

Rangers and rogue could sneak past your detection, once more exploiting your AC with sneak attacks and their High AB. It's KD or be KD'd.

A Rogue with a haste potion and a bow is your nemesis if they rapid shot you, Your big pool of HP means nothing if they are hitting you for 50's.

Your lack of DR makes it easy to Shoot your legs with Called shot, ruining your ability to mobilize, and you can be kited easier then any class I have ever seen.

Even Bards can Knock you down. Literally that feat tears your class apart.

I suppose you would be good against enemies that fight with no strategy such as PvE Monsters, your damage output would be nasty. Your an excellent flanker, but even PoTM monsters Knock down.

Each class is strong in a certain situation, but the problem is druids lack situational bonuses in NwN due to the poor spell selection, weak animal companions and the AC on those forms is just. .  Terrible. . .

Even without knockdown, a Basic joe shmoe fighter that goes Let's say sterotypical Longsword and Tower shield with fullplate.

With 22 Str if your a complete Str Build. Your looking at without any weapon enhancements:

+28/+23/+18/+13, With no enchanted weapons or anything, your AC will be looking around 30-35.

The Fighter hits you garunteed twice, You hit him garunteed twice. It's pretty even, you may win (Barring insane amounts of 17-20 Criticals from the sword) Your HP will have you winning.

Let's give him a +2 Longsword, a +2 Towershield, +1 Fullplate, +1 AC Boots, +1 AC Helm and A Belt of intertial barrier. Pretty standard fighter gear.

He's now swinging at:

+30/+25/+20/+15, With around 35-37 AC

You garunteed to hit him once. He is GARUNTEED to hit you Three times. Statistically, he will win. With the number of shots. You have even less of a chance if he activates Improved Expertise.  This is just against a fighter, but you begin to see how the class really starts to drag behind other level 20's.
« Last Edit: January 21, 2013, 11:40:21 PM by RigorMortis »

dutchy

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Re: Mystery of the Druids
« Reply #10 on: January 21, 2013, 11:36:07 PM »
druids are not weak far from it even rigor.  unless i got your post wrong in that case i said nothing.

but il take my chances fighting a melee class, hell even a cleric over a druid.

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RigorMortis

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Re: Mystery of the Druids
« Reply #11 on: January 21, 2013, 11:41:58 PM »
druids are not weak far from it even rigor.  unless i got your post wrong in that case i said nothing.

but il take my chances fighting a melee class, hell even a cleric over a druid.

Druids lack their spell list, they are far from weak and completely underpowered. Yet they lack the advantages they are supposed to have. I'm not saying they are a joke class with no power, they just have some minor fixes that could bring them to balance with the other classes, much like the Ranger.

As you see above they are falling just barely short. Like an inch.

It does not sound difficult to add spells to their repetoire, but then again, I am not a scriptor and ours are currently hard at work on Sithicus.
« Last Edit: January 21, 2013, 11:54:26 PM by RigorMortis »

dark_majico

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Re: Mystery of the Druids
« Reply #12 on: January 22, 2013, 08:47:28 AM »
I don't play any druids, but I plan to do so now because of this thread. If we had a good wand crafting system in place what are everyones thoughts on Druids co operating with Wizards to create Wands of Cats Grace, and other needed spells? As a Wizard player it would be a nice addition to a Wizards repertoire.
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Re: Mystery of the Druids
« Reply #13 on: January 22, 2013, 11:18:01 AM »
Druids get a nice spell list full of crazy attacks no one else gets.
Problem is that is all they have next to their bear form and companion that dies a lot and is very expensive.

Lucadia

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Re: Mystery of the Druids
« Reply #14 on: January 22, 2013, 11:39:57 AM »
Yes I dont know what druid is going take necromancy focus just for infestation of maggots

and just about every time theres a druid in the party, they are the healer, they dont have any spell slot gear like what is available to clerics to let them have some fun and be able take care of the party.

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Re: Mystery of the Druids
« Reply #15 on: January 22, 2013, 12:08:44 PM »
Talonite druids (one of my fave) would use natural diseases and plagues to spread their message (infestation of maggots and creeping doom are pretty perfect for that) and Malarite ones be more feral and savage with a suvival of the fittest mentality (and is a god worshipped by druids that tolerates lycanthropes and sees them as the evolution of natural hunters). Some more evil druids of otherwise neutral gods (those that allow evil worshippers) would have their own take on how to use nature vs civilisation but demons and negative energy necromancy (necromancy spells do feature in various druidic repetoires) would go beyond most druidic creeds regardless of how evil a druid is. A Shadowier (Mielikki forest knights) fits that Druid/Divine Champion concept perfectly but there's not as great a scope for druids in the Ravenloft setting besides Halans and Forlorn types and a dusting of other mentions here and there. The class itself seems vague and underdeveloped in it compared to other settings.
« Last Edit: January 22, 2013, 12:18:19 PM by Badelaire »

Dobian

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Re: Mystery of the Druids
« Reply #16 on: January 22, 2013, 12:47:28 PM »
It's true that the Ravenloft setting doesn't seem to favor druids.  My druid would be much more at home on my old server where you have a whole pile of forests to run around in.  I don't think druids are underpowered if you play them right, and you do get owl's insight to use with zen mastery.  Mine has that and is wisdom-based.  The rest is rp.  I am always open to other druids working with mine to come up with some interesting druid play.


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Re: Mystery of the Druids
« Reply #17 on: January 22, 2013, 01:04:12 PM »
I suspect that the lack of love that Ravenloft as a setting has for Druids, is because they don't really tie in well with traditional gothic horror.

Ravenloft is, at it's core, pitched at the "everyman hero", the guy that knows a bit of swordplay and a few useful skills, no?

Probably the only reason Clerics and Wizards get setting consideration is how popular they are / the deliberate engineering of Wizards to be superior, and casters in general.

I'm not sure of all the details as I personally abhor playing a Druid unless it's entirely OOC, which is rather redundant on an RP server.

But then, I hate nature, having spent my life in the backwater countryside.
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Dobian

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Re: Mystery of the Druids
« Reply #18 on: January 22, 2013, 01:09:57 PM »
I suspect that the lack of love that Ravenloft as a setting has for Druids, is because they don't really tie in well with traditional gothic horror.

That's pretty much it.  When you think Ravenloft you think necromancers, or paladins on the good side.  But I think you can incorporate druids by bringing gothic horror into the forests more, with dark moonlit rituals, animal sacrifices, black hooded figures flitting through the trees, etc.


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Zhernebog

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Re: Mystery of the Druids
« Reply #19 on: January 22, 2013, 01:15:37 PM »
I suspect that the lack of love that Ravenloft as a setting has for Druids, is because they don't really tie in well with traditional gothic horror.

That's pretty much it.  When you think Ravenloft you think necromancers, or paladins on the good side.  But I think you can incorporate druids by bringing gothic horror into the forests more, with dark moonlit rituals, animal sacrifices, black hooded figures flitting through the trees, etc.
After watching the wicker man for inspiration I now know all druids deserve all the hate they get in ravenloft.
Also using setting as an excuse is a poor one especially after the barrel of monkeys fiasco. Aside from the work required in giving druids these buffs, are there legitimate mechanical complaints against it? Not to downsize your argument, you make a good point, but I think these proposed changes are more along the lines of bringing druids mechanically in balance with other classes.
Also we have sword chucks. The gates to goofiness were open a long time ago :b

airengale

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Re: Mystery of the Druids
« Reply #20 on: January 22, 2013, 01:33:42 PM »
There is plenty of opportunity to have different types of druid RP even in this setting. I believe my druid serves the gothic horror atmosphere just fine, and I didn't need all the fixes that the OP of the thread was suggesting to fix.

The point wasn't that druids aren't already powerful, but that they're lacking where they shouldn't. Their Animal Companions should be viable allies, and the bear is. . . But what about the boar, or the hawk, or the wolf?

The point is, if you beef up these other animal companions, then people will use them, and if they use them then there is certainty that you will get a greater variety of Role Play. Give the incentive and platform to create a Role Play environment.

I can say right now that I did suffer combat wise by going support druid with a hawk. I'll never heal as well as a cleric, that is true, but I do have beautiful unique spell list that I love to cast. It would boost the support of the druid and further this type of role if you fix the issue with not having all the animal spells, which frankly still doesn't make sense to me why druids don't already have them.

Anywho, I think everything has been said that needs to be said.

« Last Edit: January 22, 2013, 07:16:23 PM by airengale »


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Re: Mystery of the Druids
« Reply #21 on: January 22, 2013, 01:52:06 PM »
Boars are unstoppable killing machines.
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Re: Mystery of the Druids
« Reply #22 on: January 22, 2013, 01:58:51 PM »
Druids have some of the best healing spells available, its only that they are preemptive rather than reactive

dark_majico

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Re: Mystery of the Druids
« Reply #23 on: January 22, 2013, 02:24:29 PM »
I suspect that the lack of love that Ravenloft as a setting has for Druids, is because they don't really tie in well with traditional gothic horror.

That's pretty much it.  When you think Ravenloft you think necromancers, or paladins on the good side.  But I think you can incorporate druids by bringing gothic horror into the forests more, with dark moonlit rituals, animal sacrifices, black hooded figures flitting through the trees, etc.
After watching the wicker man for inspiration I now know all druids deserve all the hate they get in ravenloft.
Also using setting as an excuse is a poor one especially after the barrel of monkeys fiasco. Aside from the work required in giving druids these buffs, are there legitimate mechanical complaints against it? Not to downsize your argument, you make a good point, but I think these proposed changes are more along the lines of bringing druids mechanically in balance with other classes.
Also we have sword chucks. The gates to goofiness were open a long time ago :b

The origional I hope, and not that god awful remake!
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Re: Mystery of the Druids
« Reply #24 on: January 22, 2013, 03:00:23 PM »
I suspect that the lack of love that Ravenloft as a setting has for Druids, is because they don't really tie in well with traditional gothic horror.

That's pretty much it.  When you think Ravenloft you think necromancers, or paladins on the good side.  But I think you can incorporate druids by bringing gothic horror into the forests more, with dark moonlit rituals, animal sacrifices, black hooded figures flitting through the trees, etc.
After watching the wicker man for inspiration I now know all druids deserve all the hate they get in ravenloft.
Also using setting as an excuse is a poor one especially after the barrel of monkeys fiasco. Aside from the work required in giving druids these buffs, are there legitimate mechanical complaints against it? Not to downsize your argument, you make a good point, but I think these proposed changes are more along the lines of bringing druids mechanically in balance with other classes.
Also we have sword chucks. The gates to goofiness were open a long time ago :b

sword-chucks! WOO! got now i gotta go re-reread 8bit theater again thanks alot! :P