View Full Version : Child of Winter line of feats from Eberron

2009-08-29, 07:05 AM
Is adding vermin to the SNA line of spells a good thing?

What about being able to WS into a vermin?

Finally, do vermin make good Animal Companions?

2009-08-29, 07:07 AM
Vermin Wild Shape is an Epic feat.

2009-08-29, 07:41 AM
Vermin Wild Shape is an Epic feat.

I don't have the book, but I think the Child of Winter line of feats in the title has something to do with it. A non-epic version of the feat, perhaps?

2009-08-29, 09:33 AM
Let's look at the pros and cons!

Adding anything on to a druid's wildshape ability/summon nature's ally spell: pro.

Con: the vermin are still effected by mind-effecting stuff when summoned by you, but who cares? You can wildshape into a spider and climb walls!

More important con: the feat line is for non-good characters only and the Children of Winter are violent nihilists who want to encase the world in a new ice age to purge it of impurities.

Vermin probably wouldn't be as good of companions as animals, this is because there are way more strong animals to select as companions in D&D books than there are strong vermin. They'd probably still be decent, since lots of vermin are poisonous, but at the same time a fleshraker (MM3) is 3x as poisonous and available for use without feats!

There are indeed two (http://realmshelps.dandello.net/cgi-bin/feats.pl?Vermin_Shape,all) forms (http://realmshelps.dandello.net/cgi-bin/feats.pl?Vermin_Wild_Shape,all) of vermin wildshape feats, by the way. One is epic and one isn't but requires more prerequisites and with more drawbacks.

2009-08-29, 09:54 AM
Other vermin-specific options for druids are the Urban Druid variant from the Dragon Magazine Compendium (wildshape, animal companion), Wasteland Druid from Sandstorm (wildshape), two levels in Cavestalker from Drow of the Underdark (wildshape, wild empathy), or the Verminkeeper prestige class from Underdark (everything, plus wildshape into a vermin swarm).

2009-08-30, 01:11 AM
Child of winter feats give up other wild shape to do vermin don't they??

Keld Denar
2009-08-30, 01:59 AM
There are some REALLY good vermin. Spiders have a web ability that is almost indescribably good. Its NON-SU snare that is pretty effective at any level. Also, Monstrous Centipedes are among the BEST grapple monsters in the game since they scale in size relatively quickly. Its really really really good.

And the whole affected by mind affecting spells just means your friendly bards bardsong actually buffs them, which is REALLY good. Most people aren't gonna take the time to Dominate a summon..

2009-08-30, 02:43 AM
Actual Child of Winter feat is decent, as in 'mildly better than not having anything at all, but not that good either' decent.

Vermin Companion's all right if you really like vermins. It's quite good as you can cast animal-only spells on the vermin companion as well.

Vermin Shape is just no. Although there may be some good vermins, it's not worth losing all animal shapes for it.

2009-08-30, 07:02 AM
You know, there's a magic item that I never noticed before. Look up the Robe of Verminshape (can't remember the exact name) in DMG II. For 20 000 gps you get the ability to wildshape into vermin, with the same size/hd restrictions as on other shapes.

2009-08-30, 07:33 AM
Don't know how well it would mesh with the CoW feats but there are a few Xendrik Drow Feats / Class variants that favor scorpions.

Sinfire Titan
2009-08-30, 08:46 AM
Child of winter feats give up other wild shape to do vermin don't they??

No, they don't. Neither does Dragon Wild Shape or Aberrant Wild Shape.

Tangent: I hate feats like that: Ok, you're gonna use one of 7 or 8 resources on an ability that further restricts you in exchange for a minor power boost. Combat Expertise is probably the best example here: In exchange for sucking some of your attack bonus you can get a +5 bonus to AC, but you can never go above +5 and random encounters can still overcome that +5 easily unless you've been optimizing your AC over everything else.

It's be like someone house ruling Weapon Finesse to reduce your damage by an equal amount that it boosts your attack rolls. For some abilities, it makes sense for the penalty to be there (Manyshot, Rapid Shot, Snap Kick). But those have a benefit that vastly outweighs the penalty (unlike VoP or Power Attack, which both require you to invest heavily abilities that boost their benefits, such as leap Attack or Shock Trooper, to be worth taking).