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View Full Version : [4e Race] "Who shall dance with a pixie?"



Starsinger
2008-12-19, 12:02 AM
There needs to be more playable fey, so I thought I'd start with pixies, and not just because I have that damned sound clip from Warlords Battlecry in my head.

Please critique this as harshly as possible, I'm not sure how I feel about it and I want my pixie to be wonderful.

Pixie
Average Height 30 - 36
Average Weight 36 50 lbs

Ability Scores: +2 Dexterity, +2 Charisma
Size: Small
Speed: 5 Squares
Vision: Low-Light

Languages: Common, Elven
Skill Bonuses: +2 Nature, +2 Acrobatics
Fey Magic: You can use Wizard cantrips as at-will powers.

Limos
2008-12-19, 12:20 AM
Is it normal for a race to have only bonuses with no balancing penalties? I suppose they are small. But they have dex and cha bonuses, and that Wizard cantrip thing.

I really think they should have a Con penalty. Pixie frailty or somesuch.

Alteran
2008-12-19, 12:22 AM
It seems underpowered to me. You get small size and speed 5, all of which are disadvantages. Cantrips are nice, but to be honest they're not very useful in combat. I don't know a whole lot about pixies in D&D, but I'm sure I can come up with a few suggestions. Here are a few off the top of my head.

Undeniable Innocence - Racial Power
Your enemy prepares to let his axe fall, but a quick glimpse into your eyes makes him second-guess himself. The short pause is enough time for you to get out of the way.
Encounter
Immediate Interrupt Personal
Effect: When an attack hits you, roll a d20 and add your charisma modifier to the result. If the result exceeds the natural roll of the attack that hit you, it misses and you can shift one square

This seems better than second chance to me, but there aren't as many other features compared to Halflings. A couple of other features that seem appropriate, based on what I know:

Pixie Glitter: You gain a +3 racial bonus to saving throws against being dazed or stunned.

Pixie Charm: You gain a +1 racial bonus to bluff and diplomacy chekcs.

You also need to give them fey origin, but that's not really a useful feature. It's just necessary because they're from the Feywild. Some racial feats are also useful if you want to play it, but they're not necessary for an initial writeup.

I like the idea of playable Pixies, and I find it odd that they were left out even from the MM. I tried to find a way for them to fly, but that would be too much as a racial feature. May some high-tier feats, or series of feats? Good work so far, this has the potential to be a really fun race.

Edit for Limos: In 4e, racial penalties have effectively been eliminated. No published race so far has one. Same goes for LA.

JackMage666
2008-12-19, 12:25 AM
Is it normal for a race to have only bonuses with no balancing penalties? I suppose they are small. But they have dex and cha bonuses, and that Wizard cantrip thing.

I really think they should have a Con penalty. Pixie frailty or somesuch.

4e races don't usually have penalties. I don't mean to sound like a jerk, but if you don't know the system, it's kinda hard to evaluate it.

It's, well, boring. I'd go with the changes above. Also, if you're set on giving them Wizard Cantrips, I'd just give them Prestidigitation, not all the others.

Shades of Gray
2008-12-19, 12:26 AM
Flight may be useful, as an encounter power. Looking at the pixie stats in 3.5, you may want to add feats or natural abilities for the confusion, entangle, and detect X spells.

Alteran
2008-12-19, 12:35 AM
The problem with flight as an encounter power is that it doesn't make much sense if pixies have wings. It seems to me that it should be an all-or-nothing deal in that case. I can accept it with Windsoul Genasi, since they are merely in tune with the element of wind, but if something has wings it should be able to use them.

Grey Watcher
2008-12-19, 12:37 AM
Is it normal for a race to have only bonuses with no balancing penalties? I suppose they are small. But they have dex and cha bonuses, and that Wizard cantrip thing.

I really think they should have a Con penalty. Pixie frailty or somesuch.

Racial penalties are not part of 4E. All the core races, except Humans, has +2 to two abilities. (Humans get a +2 to any one ability score of their choice, and a whole bunch of free stuff).

Anyway, it looks find to me. I think I'd tone it down to any one Wizard cantrip of their choice. Giving pixies all of them is a little bit more versatility than the other racial At-Wills (Doppleganger, I'm looking at you). Plus, as you have it written, it makes being a Pixie Wizard a little sucky in that one of your class features is rendered redundant.

Yakk
2008-12-19, 12:18 PM
Fey Magic: You may use one Wizard cantrip as an at-will power. Starting at level 2, you may use one Arcane Utility power of your level or less. This may be retrained to a current utility power at any level.

LurkerInPlayground
2008-12-19, 12:22 PM
Is it normal for a race to have only bonuses with no balancing penalties? I suppose they are small. But they have dex and cha bonuses, and that Wizard cantrip thing.

I really think they should have a Con penalty. Pixie frailty or somesuch.
It's the 4e convention to make all the races have nothing but bonuses. Your penalties really just stem from running the risk of being less-than-optimized.

However, I'd probably make an exception for pixies because I don't think 4e was really geared to creatures of less-than-medium size.

Of course, you could just rework them into faeries that are closer to the size of halfings, if somewhat svelte by comparison.

Dublock
2008-12-19, 12:55 PM
It's the 4e convention to make all the races have nothing but bonuses. Your penalties really just stem from running the risk of being less-than-optimized.

However, I'd probably make an exception for pixies because I don't think 4e was really geared to creatures of less-than-medium size.

Of course, you could just rework them into faeries that are closer to the size of halfings, if somewhat svelte by comparison.

Theres the halfing which is small and in the PHB so that may be true however WoTC already published player races that are small.

Ninetail
2008-12-19, 03:26 PM
Please critique this as harshly as possible, I'm not sure how I feel about it and I want my pixie to be wonderful.


Mmkay.



Pixie
Average Height 30 - 36
Average Weight 36 50 lbs

Ability Scores: +2 Dexterity, +2 Charisma
Size: Small
Speed: 5 Squares
Vision: Low-Light


The ability modifiers are exactly identical to the halfling's. This might not be a good idea, because you now have two small PC races which share the exact same roles.

If you're trying to emphasize the pixie's magical nature, as it seems you are with the racial power, then +2 INT/+2 CHA might be better. +2 WIS/+2 CHA could also be an option, though that will tilt them more toward clerics and (I believe) druids than toward wizards and sorcerers.

They trade one square of movement for low-light vision, which is probably fair. (Might be another reason to ditch the DEX, though -- with slow movement, they'll be disadvantaged as rogues anyway.)



Languages: Common, Elven
Skill Bonuses: +2 Nature, +2 Acrobatics
Fey Magic: You can use Wizard cantrips as at-will powers.

An Acrobatics bonus seems inappropriate with reduced movement. I'd go with either Bluff (for a mischievous nature) or Insight (for mystic awareness) instead, though I could also see a bonus to Stealth. Nature seems good as the second bonus.

Fey Magic has some problems. For one, a pixie who becomes a wizard loses out on some racial powers because of the doubling-up. Also, they're just not that powerful, leaving this race somewhat underpowered in comparison to the core ones.

Most core races have at least three special abilities, so let's start there.

Fey Magic: You can use the Wizard cantrip Prestidigitation at will. If you are a wizard, you can do so as a minor action.

Cuts down on the overlap a bit, and now it's not obsolete for wizards.

Then maybe something like:

Quick Reactions: You gain a +1 racial bonus to initiative rolls.

That's a more substantial racial power, in line with the bonuses to defenses or attacks others get.

To wrap it up, maybe:

Elusive Nature: Encounter Power; Minor Action; You gain concealment until the start of your next turn.

Perhaps with a racial feat at later tiers that upgrades the effect to invisibility rather than concealment.

I'd also give them Fey Origin, like elves, although as far as I'm aware this doesn't do particularly much yet.

Reverent-One
2008-12-19, 05:36 PM
A pixie has wings does it not? And for any pixie NPC's, they would be able to fly, yes? Then I think if a player is a pixie, they should be able to fly, it just makes no sense otherwise.

Starsinger
2008-12-19, 06:23 PM
Okay, here we go, version 2 of the pixie. I added a limited flight, made note of the speed issue, changed the acrobatics check to Arcana, and changed Fey magic to simply be prestidigitation.

Pixie
Average Height 30 - 36
Average Weight 36 50 lbs

Ability Scores: +2 Int, +2 Charisma
Size: Small
Speed: 4 Fly 6 (Hover; Altitude Limit 1)
Vision: Low-Light

Languages: Common, Elven
Skill Bonuses: +2 Nature, +2 Arcana
Faerie Wings: Pixies can hover up to 1 square off the ground, allowing them to see face to face with medium creatures, but no further. If some effect, such as a pit opening below the pixie causes the pixie to be more than 1 square above the ground, the pixie drops down to 1 square above the new ground level, the pixie does not take damage from this fall.
Gossamer Wings: When dazed or slowed, they observe difficult terrain as normal. When slowed, prone, dazed, stunned, helpless or immobilized, a Pixie that falls any distance takes falling damage as normal, and is also considered on the ground for the purpose of any effect to which that is relevant. When moving over hazardous terrain, such as lava or bubbling acid, a pixie is affected as normal. Powers that push or slide a pixie push or slide it an additional square.
Fey Magic: You may use Prestidigitation as an at-will power.

Edit: Added Gossamer Wings, take directly from Shadow Elf's suggestion.

LurkerInPlayground
2008-12-19, 07:08 PM
A minor nitpick:
But the word "Pixie" brings to mind a miniscule pinpoint of a creature. It doesn't exactly conjure up the image of something the size of a midget.

Starsinger
2008-12-19, 07:16 PM
A minor nitpick:
But the word "Pixie" brings to mind a miniscule pinpoint of a creature. It doesn't exactly conjure up the image of something the size of a midget.

Pixies are small in 3.5 as well.. but I agree with you.

CarpeGuitarrem
2008-12-19, 09:45 PM
That's a pretty good version, and I like the limit you put on the flight. However, this still allows a pixie to ignore difficult terrain. That's a pretty hefty benefit. You might want to look into that.

Ceiling009
2008-12-19, 11:07 PM
Flight, quite frankly is the almost taboo of 4e. It can happen in short bursts, at low levels, or better controlled at higher levels, and basically by epic, it comes standard. A level 1 PC that automatically bypasses difficult terrain (all the time), chasms and the like... I think it's a little much.

At best, I would give something like Hover 1 as a mode of movement (maybe with a sustain minor), with possible racial feats to up the hover and possibly turn it to flight.

Shadow_Elf
2008-12-19, 11:22 PM
Flight, quite frankly is the almost taboo of 4e. It can happen in short bursts, at low levels, or better controlled at higher levels, and basically by epic, it comes standard. A level 1 PC that automatically bypasses difficult terrain (all the time), chasms and the like... I think it's a little much.

At best, I would give something like Hover 1 as a mode of movement (maybe with a sustain minor), with possible racial feats to up the hover and possibly turn it to flight.

It doesn't bypass chasms. It falls in, but stays a few feet above the bottom, so it doesn't take falling damage.

So basically:
A Pixie ignores the effects of difficult terrain, (which is a big ++), and doesn't take falling damage (another big ++) all of the time. Even with the altitude maximum, its a little too good. I think a few limits and/or penalties are in order:

When dazed or slowed, they observe difficult terrain as normal. When slowed, prone, dazed, stunned, helpless or immobilized, a Pixie that falls any distance takes falling damage as normal, and is also considered on the ground for the purpose of any effect to which that is relevant. When moving over hazardous terrain, such as lava or bubbling acid, a pixie is affected as normal. Powers that push or slide a pixie push or slide it an additional square.

Thoughts?

Alteran
2008-12-19, 11:43 PM
Those changes seem fair to me. Perhaps they ramp down the power enough for the pixie to get another feature?

It seems to me that this would be a perfect feylock race, in both stats and fluff.

Starsinger
2008-12-19, 11:51 PM
Updated Pixie 2 with Shadow Elf's suggestion.