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arguskos
2010-10-13, 07:21 PM
Ok, so, I've made Illithids (stat block much changed, obviously; I can post it if wanted/needed) a player race in my personal campaign setting, and in the creation of their society came to war and weaponry. They're very scientifically and magically advanced, but still have to wage war the old fashioned way: with sharp things breaking soft squishy people.

Each race in this world has their own little quirks in warfare, and the illithids of Orlyndol should be no exception. Still, I've having issues figuring out unique weapons and armor for the race. Humanity has magitek firearms, elvenkind use steam-powered swords and weapons, the trepek (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?p=8244752#post8244752) (renamed from Silentium) are their own weaponry, the goblinoids are traditional D&D weapons/armor, the illithids are the last big faction and need something unique.

Thoughts? I'm at a HUGE mental roadblock and need some help here, since I'm trying to get this setting squared out by Christmas so I can run a game in early 2011.

unosarta
2010-10-13, 07:26 PM
My first thought is that they wouldn't need any weapons, enslaving and abusing other races for power, but one way to take it might be to have a rod of command. Basically, it is a great club that allows the illithid to make it's "mind crush" esque attack against a single target with a melee roll, and giving it a +3 to the DC.

Maybe even ranged attacks could use it. Possibly it could be a weapon enhancement.

Chrono22
2010-10-13, 07:34 PM
Try biological warfare.. here are some ideas:

Whenever the illithid conquer a territory, they infect any bodies of water with larva. These larva in turn seek out hosts in the local fauna.
The illithid produce augmented or modified versions of larva, to produce specialty forms. So, you have a combat form illithid, a scout form, etc.
They'd also have a weaker "fodder" form, which is essentially just a larva that's attached itself to a normal humanoid.

arguskos
2010-10-13, 07:36 PM
My first thought is that they wouldn't need any weapons, enslaving and abusing other races for power, but one way to take it might be to have a rod of command. Basically, it is a great club that allows the illithid to make it's "mind crush" esque attack against a single target with a melee roll, and giving it a +3 to the DC.

Maybe even ranged attacks could use it. Possibly it could be a weapon enhancement.
Well, like I said, they have a VERY different stat block, since they're a player race. They have no innate psionic powers now, including no Mind Blast. That changes things, since by default they have to kill people with the normal "STABTODEATH" method. :smallwink:

The culture is also vastly different. They are not evil by default, no longer enslave intelligent creatures, etc. They're more like a race of Leonardo da Vinci's than anything else. The world isn't very nice though, so they frequently have to fight people off who would covet their achievements and technologies.

Here's their current (non-final, if you have suggestions, go ahead) stat block:
Illithid Racial Statistics:
Stats: +4 Int, -2 Con, -2 Str
Size/Speed: Medium, 30 ft
Special: telepathy 100 ft; 4 slams (1d4+.5 Str); extract; 1/day charm person (CL= character level, DC=11+Int mod)
Languages: Common, Qualith (spoken language of the illithids)
Bonus Languages: Dwarven, Elven, Intolian (spoken language of humanity), Goblin, Orog


EDIT: Chrono, that's a pretty good thought. Biological warfare makes a lot of sense. I'll look into that further. Any thoughts on the more personal gear level?

zenanarchist
2010-10-13, 07:44 PM
Well, like I said, they have a VERY different stat block, since they're a player race. They have no innate psionic powers now, including no Mind Blast. That changes things, since by default they have to kill people with the normal "STABTODEATH" method. :smallwink:

The culture is also vastly different. They are not evil by default, no longer enslave intelligent creatures, etc. They're more like a race of Leonardo da Vinci's than anything else. The world isn't very nice though, so they frequently have to fight people off who would covet their achievements and technologies.

Here's their current (non-final, if you have suggestions, go ahead) stat block:
Illithid Racial Statistics:
Stats: +4 Int, -2 Con, -2 Str
Size/Speed: Medium, 30 ft
Special: telepathy 100 ft; 4 slams (1d4+.5 Str); extract; 1/day charm person (CL= character level, DC=11+Int mod)
Languages: Common, Qualith (spoken language of the illithids)
Bonus Languages: Dwarven, Elven, Intolian (spoken language of humanity), Goblin, Orog


EDIT: Chrono, that's a pretty good thought. Biological warfare makes a lot of sense. I'll look into that further. Any thoughts on the more personal gear level?


Is this for the campaign me, Tem and PM were helping you with?

unosarta
2010-10-13, 07:45 PM
That does change it some. Do they still have tentacles on their face? I can imagine some mindflayers wearing giant partially bionic suits that elongate their tentacles, allowing them to use improved grab and other such grappley abilities.

For a high intelligence, savant type race, something that allows for personal appearance more, or "style" of the fighting would be one way to put it. Really any Taiqi weapon would work here, the Rope Dart being my first thought.

This video provides some good examples of Taiqi weaponry. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uq2Iel9wLPw)

Here is the Rope Dart. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tn3DYSegW2c)

arguskos
2010-10-13, 07:46 PM
Is this for the campaign me, Tem and PM were helping you with?
Yeah, it is. I've moved on to another race now, since we have the goblinoids pretty well squared out.

EDIT: unosarta, they look EXACTLY the same. Appearance didn't change. I'll check out those videos though, thanks!

unosarta
2010-10-13, 07:49 PM
EDIT: unosarta, they look EXACTLY the same. Appearance didn't change. I'll check out those videos though, thanks!

Then the tentacle suits might not be a bad idea. I would still stick with some of the Taiqi weapons, though.

arguskos
2010-10-13, 07:52 PM
Then the tentacle suits might not be a bad idea. I would still stick with some of the Taiqi weapons, though.
Liking the rope weaponry more, actually. Much more artistic in nature. I was also wondering how to make use of their tentacles during combat and/or any special weaponry I could invent for them to use that makes use of the fact that they've got a good 6 prehensile limbs to work with here.

Temotei
2010-10-13, 07:54 PM
Liking the rope weaponry more, actually. Much more artistic in nature. I was also wondering how to make use of their tentacles during combat and/or any special weaponry I could invent for them to use that makes use of the fact that they've got a good 6 prehensile limbs to work with here.

Tentacle barrier! Spin them around really fast! :smallbiggrin:

arguskos
2010-10-13, 07:55 PM
Tentacle barrier! Spin them around really fast! :smallbiggrin:
...I like this idea and wish to subscribe to your newsletter (ie. tell me more, that doesn't say much).

Fable Wright
2010-10-13, 07:57 PM
Here's food for thought: Perhaps have the illithids use symbiotic weaponry. For example, armor that is made out of a carapace that fuses with the illithid's skin that grants armor, as well as DR and the ability to heal itself (Basically, make it full plate, with less or an armor check penalty, give it the armor as DR (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/variant/adventuring/armorAsDamageReduction.htm) variant, and allow it to also function as a healing belt (MIC). Alot of little things, but it adds up), and maybe the illithid's weapons are tentacle-like creatures that can channel the illithid's mind blast attack; they have their own strength attack bonus, overcoming the illithid's combat weakness, and when it strikes a foe, they either inflict a paralysis poison, or affect the foe as if they were hit by a mind blast. Add alot of similar organic weapons, and these guys would be terrifying.

EDIT: Ninja'd FOUR TIMES. :smallfurious::smalltongue:

unosarta
2010-10-13, 08:08 PM
...Wow, I can't believe that I didn't think of using the Tentacles as holders for the Rope Dart. That is awesome.

Another weapon might be the Meteor Hammer. It can be really powerful as a weapon, although it's most common use is as entertainment.

This is an example of both Rope Dart and Meteor Hammer. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uhW67MBO8M8)

Temotei
2010-10-13, 08:53 PM
...I like this idea and wish to subscribe to your newsletter (ie. tell me more, that doesn't say much).

There are plenty of options. You could have a multi-bladed weapon with segments for each tentacle to hold, or a huge bow built on a similar concept...or have three tentacles hold illithid-made giant arrows (so, two giant arrows) and maybe include parts for the hands to hold and shoot normal arrows.

Illithids would be excellent jugglers...hmm...:smallamused:

Make a ball weapon that, upon impact (or upon reaching a certain speed (i.e. throwing speed)), releases poison/spikes/a mind blast-like effect (or a combination).

Make lightweight plates for their tentacles, allowing them to quickly deflect arrows and blows from smaller weapons more easily. Alternatively, create a "tentacle glove." This would also allow them to kind of spin their tentacles back and forth really fast to attack, possibly, or it could just provide a shield bonus to AC or something.

In fact, the tentacles themselves could be a good defense. When an illithid matures, its tentacles harden without losing flexibility, in a way similar to cartilage and bone for humans.

Also, you should totally make the rope dart in The Measure of a Man. :smallbiggrin:

unosarta
2010-10-13, 08:56 PM
Also, you should totally make the rope dart in The Measure of a Man. :smallbiggrin:

Yes.

Everything else Temotei said works as well. I see the illithid more as intelligent finesse fighters, rather than ZOMG Magic fighters like the humans, or steampunk like the elves, or whatever that other one is.

They could also bring a possibly needed Asian theme to the campaign setting.

Temotei
2010-10-13, 10:18 PM
By the way, what prompted the name change from silentium to trepek?

arguskos
2010-10-13, 11:47 PM
There are plenty of options. You could have a multi-bladed weapon with segments for each tentacle to hold, or a huge bow built on a similar concept...or have three tentacles hold illithid-made giant arrows (so, two giant arrows) and maybe include parts for the hands to hold and shoot normal arrows.
Thought about a super-bow, but size is an issue. Their tentacles aren't that long. I then thought about a multibow, and that might work.


Illithids would be excellent jugglers...hmm...:smallamused:
They have access to some feat trees that are...exceptional. :smallamused:


Make a ball weapon that, upon impact (or upon reaching a certain speed (i.e. throwing speed)), releases poison/spikes/a mind blast-like effect (or a combination).
Huh, interesting. Any reason why?


Make lightweight plates for their tentacles, allowing them to quickly deflect arrows and blows from smaller weapons more easily. Alternatively, create a "tentacle glove." This would also allow them to kind of spin their tentacles back and forth really fast to attack, possibly, or it could just provide a shield bonus to AC or something.
Tentacle plating makes sense. Their armor comes with it, of course. I was thinking they would make armor from lightweight ceramics and other such advanced materials instead of plain steel or iron. Thoughts on a possible "illithid plating" material?


In fact, the tentacles themselves could be a good defense. When an illithid matures, its tentacles harden without losing flexibility, in a way similar to cartilage and bone for humans.
Considering that they are natural attacks for illithids, I figure this is already done.


Also, you should totally make the rope dart in The Measure of a Man. :smallbiggrin:
Need a picture from Tetsubo first. :smallfrown:


Yes.

Everything else Temotei said works as well. I see the illithid more as intelligent finesse fighters, rather than ZOMG Magic fighters like the humans, or steampunk like the elves, or whatever that other one is.

They could also bring a possibly needed Asian theme to the campaign setting.
The illithids are going to be more smarts-based warriors. Their unique base class (did I mention the racial base classes? Oh, right, there are race-specific base classes, since racism is a big theme in this setting) is going to be like Illithid Body Tamer++.

Also, the society is already set, and it's decidedly non-Asian in theme. I don't care much for asian themes personally, and since I can get that in lots of other games, I didn't see a need to include it here. *shrug*


Here's food for thought: Perhaps have the illithids use symbiotic weaponry. For example, armor that is made out of a carapace that fuses with the illithid's skin that grants armor, as well as DR and the ability to heal itself (Basically, make it full plate, with less or an armor check penalty, give it the armor as DR (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/variant/adventuring/armorAsDamageReduction.htm) variant, and allow it to also function as a healing belt (MIC). Alot of little things, but it adds up), and maybe the illithid's weapons are tentacle-like creatures that can channel the illithid's mind blast attack; they have their own strength attack bonus, overcoming the illithid's combat weakness, and when it strikes a foe, they either inflict a paralysis poison, or affect the foe as if they were hit by a mind blast. Add alot of similar organic weapons, and these guys would be terrifying.

EDIT: Ninja'd FOUR TIMES. :smallfurious::smalltongue:
Huh. Bioarmor/weapons. Thoughts on how bioweapons might look? Perhaps Tyranid-style?


...Wow, I can't believe that I didn't think of using the Tentacles as holders for the Rope Dart. That is awesome.

Another weapon might be the Meteor Hammer. It can be really powerful as a weapon, although it's most common use is as entertainment.

This is an example of both Rope Dart and Meteor Hammer. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uhW67MBO8M8)
Meteor Hammers are pretty nice, and already included in the setting, though not tied to anyone in specific (currently, the only example of their use is a trepek who has 5 different chain weapons built into his form, one in each arm, and uses them as he likes during battle).


By the way, what prompted the name change from silentium to trepek?
I like Trepek more than Silentium. Silentium sounds a bit too future-y for my liking.

Fable Wright
2010-10-14, 12:55 AM
Actually, I was more envisioning tightly fitted leather-like armor with chitinous plates over vital areas, with displacer beast-like tentacles with huge reach coming out of the upper arms and back. The hooks at the end would be ideal for dispersing toxins to weaken wills and cause unconsciousness, as the illithids need thralls and food. In addition, the hands on the ends of the bio-suits would be chuul claws; this way, you can grapple foes while you manifest powers and eat foes in your claws (Which also contain paralyzing tentacles); these weapons and armor would also have sensory organs allowing them to react to foes the illithid can't, and operate with their own strength and dexterity over the illithid's.

The illithids would probably use biological materials for weapons/armor, as biological materials repair themselves, have specialized sensory organs to respond to threats faster than the illithid could, and power themselves by feeding on corpses the illithids have already extracted the brains from. All advantages, with the added plus that non-illithids donning the suit get eaten. :smallamused:

Drakevarg
2010-10-14, 01:17 AM
Illithid weaponry should never be what it seems at first glance. Give every weapon a secondary function. Like an arrow that, once fired, splits it's arrowhead into a rain of needle-y death. :smallamused: Or a warhammer that has spinning blades unfold from the head, to give the effect of smacking someone with a lawnmower.

Edit: An Ivy-style chain sword. A dagger whose blade can shoot off like a dart. A bow that can snap in half in the middle and become sword-chucks. :smallcool:

Snowfire
2010-10-14, 07:54 AM
Illithid weaponry should never be what it seems at first glance. Give every weapon a secondary function. Like an arrow that, once fired, splits it's arrowhead into a rain of needle-y death. :smallamused: Or a warhammer that has spinning blades unfold from the head, to give the effect of smacking someone with a lawnmower.

Edit: An Ivy-style chain sword. A dagger whose blade can shoot off like a dart. A bow that can snap in half in the middle and become sword-chucks. :smallcool:

This.

If you're going with a very intelligent race (who fight hand to hand), then one of the greatest advantages you can give them is combat misinformation. Force the enemy to prepare for one thing and then throw something completely different at them. It's the sort of thing you'd expect from such a race, but even then you're never going to know what the weapon the Illithid in front of you is holding actually is and that could make things very, very interesting in combat.

arguskos
2010-10-14, 09:27 AM
Actually, I was more envisioning tightly fitted leather-like armor with chitinous plates over vital areas, with displacer beast-like tentacles with huge reach coming out of the upper arms and back. The hooks at the end would be ideal for dispersing toxins to weaken wills and cause unconsciousness, as the illithids need thralls and food. In addition, the hands on the ends of the bio-suits would be chuul claws; this way, you can grapple foes while you manifest powers and eat foes in your claws (Which also contain paralyzing tentacles); these weapons and armor would also have sensory organs allowing them to react to foes the illithid can't, and operate with their own strength and dexterity over the illithid's.
Hmm, I like that suit idea. However, as stated above, these illithids no longer need thralls or food. :smallwink: Great weapon though.


The illithids would probably use biological materials for weapons/armor, as biological materials repair themselves, have specialized sensory organs to respond to threats faster than the illithid could, and power themselves by feeding on corpses the illithids have already extracted the brains from. All advantages, with the added plus that non-illithids donning the suit get eaten. :smallamused:
I definitely like the idea of bioweapons/armor. I need to play with this further.


Illithid weaponry should never be what it seems at first glance. Give every weapon a secondary function. Like an arrow that, once fired, splits it's arrowhead into a rain of needle-y death. :smallamused: Or a warhammer that has spinning blades unfold from the head, to give the effect of smacking someone with a lawnmower.

Edit: An Ivy-style chain sword. A dagger whose blade can shoot off like a dart. A bow that can snap in half in the middle and become sword-chucks. :smallcool:
Multisplit arrows, chain blades, dagger darts, bladed bows, lots of hidden weapons, sounds good. I like these ideas too.


This.

If you're going with a very intelligent race (who fight hand to hand), then one of the greatest advantages you can give them is combat misinformation. Force the enemy to prepare for one thing and then throw something completely different at them. It's the sort of thing you'd expect from such a race, but even then you're never going to know what the weapon the Illithid in front of you is holding actually is and that could make things very, very interesting in combat.
Interesting. Perhaps some feats akin to Neraph Charge/Neraph Throw are in order for the illithids, racial feats that play to the deceptive powers of the illithid fighters?

unosarta
2010-10-14, 12:18 PM
Interesting. Perhaps some feats akin to Neraph Charge/Neraph Throw are in order for the illithids, racial feats that play to the deceptive powers of the illithid fighters?
Maybe a racial feat that allows them to make a feint attempt with Intelligence instead of Charisma?

arguskos
2010-10-14, 03:44 PM
Maybe a racial feat that allows them to make a feint attempt with Intelligence instead of Charisma?
Feinting is a mechanic I've meant to improve anyways,since it's so pathetic currently. That's a nice start, as are the Circle Student/Master feats I rebuilt from Dragon Compendium to actually be good.

Any other thoughts? I came up with biological grenades called secretion spheres last night. I need to post stuff up, maybe I'll do that tomorrow after class when I've got some free time.

Fable Wright
2010-10-14, 05:03 PM
It could also be possible to just give all of the weapons a biological field. One more thing to note is that illithids would favor reach weapons like the spiked chain; that gives greater battlefield control. Following in the biological/multifunction weapons/armor idea, it might be cool to have a primary weapon be something similar to a very long tsochar strand (LoM) with alot of spikes at the end; the spikes could simultaneously function at sensory organs, and with a little pseudo-intelligence and telepathy added, they could function as basic scouts for an illithid, as well as a chain-like weapon. For the splitting arrows, a bunch of chitin plates could unfold around the forearm into an x-like bow centered around the hand, that would shoot very thick manticore-like spines that would split near the peak of their flight; thus, it's an AoE effect, and they might be able to add in an airborne disease that they are immune to in the effect, to kill off some survivors after the battle if the illithids somehow lost. In addition, the plates could over-extend to form a sharp sword-like object around the illithid's hand, giving the benefits of grafted weapon, and perhaps also a contagion effect on any airborne diseases they put in the manticore shots. Dagger-darts might serve a third use in that they might be a parasite, and when they hit someone, they begin burrowing into their flesh in a manner similar to a burrowing scarab (Cursed item, DMG). There are so many uses for so few things... it really gives you a sense of how much they can kill you.

Analysis
2010-10-14, 05:43 PM
You probably won't want to include it, but I now get visions of Incarnum-using illithid warriors, specifically in the form of Totemists refluffed as using bio-weaponry...

Temotei
2010-10-15, 12:11 AM
Huh, interesting. Any reason why?

Not really. I just went off the juggling thought that sprung up. :smallamused:

arguskos
2010-10-15, 12:23 AM
It could also be possible to just give all of the weapons a biological field. One more thing to note is that illithids would favor reach weapons like the spiked chain; that gives greater battlefield control.
Yeah, I'm really getting that vibe here.


Following in the biological/multifunction weapons/armor idea, it might be cool to have a primary weapon be something similar to a very long tsochar strand (LoM) with alot of spikes at the end; the spikes could simultaneously function at sensory organs, and with a little pseudo-intelligence and telepathy added, they could function as basic scouts for an illithid, as well as a chain-like weapon.
...woah. Like... WOAH. I LIKEY THIS I LIKEY SO MUCH AUGH. :smalleek:


For the splitting arrows, a bunch of chitin plates could unfold around the forearm into an x-like bow centered around the hand, that would shoot very thick manticore-like spines that would split near the peak of their flight; thus, it's an AoE effect, and they might be able to add in an airborne disease that they are immune to in the effect, to kill off some survivors after the battle if the illithids somehow lost. In addition, the plates could over-extend to form a sharp sword-like object around the illithid's hand, giving the benefits of grafted weapon, and perhaps also a contagion effect on any airborne diseases they put in the manticore shots. Dagger-darts might serve a third use in that they might be a parasite, and when they hit someone, they begin burrowing into their flesh in a manner similar to a burrowing scarab (Cursed item, DMG). There are so many uses for so few things... it really gives you a sense of how much they can kill you.
...:eek: It feels like they are morphing into a biological Iron Man of sorts. WHICH IS AWESOME.

I did draw up what I'm calling a clawsuit, which is a basic exotic bioarmor with some 10-ft claw-tentacles built in. I'll be posting stats up tomorrow, if folks are interested.


You probably won't want to include it, but I now get visions of Incarnum-using illithid warriors, specifically in the form of Totemists refluffed as using bio-weaponry...
You're right, I don't want to use it, but not for the reason you think. Ya see, I've nothing against Incarnum, but when I was crawling through the mechanics for this world and deciding which systems had a place and which didn't, Incarnum came down on the "no" side, simply because their role as the "soul food" of power sources has been replaced by binding (which has had fluff altered somewhat).


Not really. I just went off the juggling thought that sprung up. :smallamused:
XD I incorporated the sphere idea anyways. :smallamused:

Also, hey, I realized I hadn't said this yet, but wow, thanks a crapload guys! This is really great stuff. Keep it coming (if you're interested, of course)!

Xefas
2010-10-15, 12:35 AM
Well, with all this talk of ceramics and bioweapons and such, why not just go full Mind Flayer Space Marine?

This is a race with +4 Int and -2 Str/Con. You've already said that they're more a race of Leonardo Da Vincis than anything else. And, there's a reason that artists and scientists aren't typically the first line of defense on the battlefield. They stay at home while the guys who've spent their time lifting weights and training their instincts for combat go forth and do the dirty work.

The problem is that such a race is going to have a few soldier-types and more pasty nerd-types. So why not use the pasty nerds to *make* soldier types?

The Mind Flayers could have a program. If one of their own commits some sort of heinous crime (murder, mayhem, treading where Man Ought Not To Go with science, talking in the movie theater), instead of sending them to prison, or having them executed, you conscript them into service.

Once you've been conscripted, the Mind Flayers mess with your brain. They still have Telepathy and Charm Person as racial abilities, so this seems to represent some sort of natural aptitude for messing with folks' brains. So, they mess with your brain - turn you into a frothing-at-the-tentacles patriot. We're talking religious zealot of the worst kind, but towards the government, rather than a deity.

Then, they use their biotech to beef you up into a 10' slab of muscle, with double (and possibly triple) redundant organs. Lose a lung? No problem, you have six. Poison? I have eight livers - no poison for me. Don't forget the constant aggressive hormone emitters that leave you an inch from discarding all pretenses at self-preservation and just tearing bare-handed through the closest living thing that looks at you funny.

On top of that, you have ceramic fullplate with tiny biosymbiotes wired into them that mesh directly with the implants that got stuck all over your body. I'm thinking -0 Armor Check Penalty.

Then, that's when you bust out the chainsaw hammers and the crossbows-that-are-actually-ballistae-but-they're-so-strong-it-doesn't-matter that also shoot chainsaw hammers.

Whereas every other race on the planet fields an army, the Illithids field a squad or two. That way, everyone else can stay home and work on their marble sculptures and frankenstein monsters and whatnot.

EDIT: Aw man, just graft some wings onto a few, and you have the Cthulhu Chapter.

arguskos
2010-10-15, 12:59 AM
Xefas, I really hate to do this... but I beat you to it already. Humanity in this world is basically the Imperium in temperament, society, and military force.

I do like the extreme emphasis that is being suggested towards bioweapons and genetic engineering. It entirely fits the race's proclivities, is highly distinct from every other race, and is endlessly interesting.

Xefas
2010-10-15, 01:27 AM
Xefas, I really hate to do this... but I beat you to it already. Humanity in this world is basically the Imperium in temperament, society, and military force.

I do like the extreme emphasis that is being suggested towards bioweapons and genetic engineering. It entirely fits the race's proclivities, is highly distinct from every other race, and is endlessly interesting.

Oh. Well then...ummm...errr...

Orks! Mind Flayers work like Orks! Their mild natural psionics pool together when they gather in large numbers and...and...yeah, I got nothin'.

Milskidasith
2010-10-15, 08:24 AM
I have to play in this campaign.

Snowfire
2010-10-15, 09:23 AM
Leonardo Da Vincis sounds more Eldar to me than Space Marine. Taking that to the extreme, go the Aspect pathway and add a few tweaks. This is going into culture far more than warfare - hope you don't mind - but here goes.

Most Illithids are more focused on advancing their knowledge of things around them, creating things just for the joy of creation etc. And then there are those few 'madmen' who want to learn of war. So you get Aspects within Illithid society. Art, science, what have you and war. Every Illithid is trained in how to use basic weaponry (ala Eldar Guardians) but the ones who actually do most of the fighting are the few dozen in every generation (ok, that may be on the low side but you get the idea) that choose and stick to the Aspect of War. They get paired with specially made, semi-aware biosuits. These suits are the apotheosis of Illithid science, a bio-layer facilitating seamless movement beneath the ceramic shell that's seeded with bio-engineered psionic bugs (for lack of a better term) that are used by the suit to create what is essentially a shield around the armor. And then you have the weapons that have been mentioned already. Bows that grow out of the suit to fire bio-weapon spreading projectiles, parasite darts that can burrow through armor and flesh, etc.

I mean, from how we're working this the Illithid will never engage in a pitched battle (unless it is unavoidable or they hold all the cards) and prefer to strike from ambush and vanish before the enemy can respond effectively. Maybe some sort of chameleon effect 'stealth mode' that the psionic bugs can project. You lose the shield while it's on but you effectively cease to exist to everything around you. Oh, magic and other psionics can detect you - but it's difficult. The psionic barrier creates some sort of effect that makes people get out of your way. They don't realise it's happening (unless they're a psion themselves) as it's a subconscious effect. They just move out of your path as you walk along it.

They way I'm looking at this is that there are rarely more than a hundred (maybe two hundred) fully trained warriors within the entire Illithid society but with the way they work it doesn't actually matter. The Illithid play the other races off against each other, without letting any one side get powerful enough to defeat the other. When 'persuasion' is required, they use the networks of cells they have all over the planet and where 'extreme persuasion' is required they send a few of these people in. These aren't your usual warriors however, they get continually trained in all aspects of war. Logistics, espionage, everything from grand strategy to urban warfare. They are very, very good at what they do.

Thoughts?

arguskos
2010-10-15, 12:37 PM
Oh. Well then...ummm...errr...

Orks! Mind Flayers work like Orks! Their mild natural psionics pool together when they gather in large numbers and...and...yeah, I got nothin'.
Yeah, while entertaining to think about... another race already sorta works this way (they've not been mentioned yet, since they're not PC-usable). :smalltongue:


I have to play in this campaign.
That's high praise coming from you. I'm impressed.


Leonardo Da Vincis sounds more Eldar to me than Space Marine. Taking that to the extreme, go the Aspect pathway and add a few tweaks. This is going into culture far more than warfare - hope you don't mind - but here goes.

Most Illithids are more focused on advancing their knowledge of things around them, creating things just for the joy of creation etc. And then there are those few 'madmen' who want to learn of war. So you get Aspects within Illithid society. Art, science, what have you and war. Every Illithid is trained in how to use basic weaponry (ala Eldar Guardians) but the ones who actually do most of the fighting are the few dozen in every generation (ok, that may be on the low side but you get the idea) that choose and stick to the Aspect of War. They get paired with specially made, semi-aware biosuits. These suits are the apotheosis of Illithid science, a bio-layer facilitating seamless movement beneath the ceramic shell that's seeded with bio-engineered psionic bugs (for lack of a better term) that are used by the suit to create what is essentially a shield around the armor. And then you have the weapons that have been mentioned already. Bows that grow out of the suit to fire bio-weapon spreading projectiles, parasite darts that can burrow through armor and flesh, etc.
Amusingly enough, that's already sorta how their society functions. Illithids each choose a topic when they reach adulthood, and they dedicate the next 100 years of their life (they live for 123 years exactly) to the study and exploration of their subject. They're quite dedicated to the concept of perfection through hard work.


Thoughts?
The concept of a small fighting force is actually one I disagree with, simply because humanity treats the illithids as heretic scum and want to wipe them off the face of the planet. There's no one to play them against really, and if it came down to a straight-up fight, the Illithids are at a severe disadvantage. More likely, there are two kinds of illithid warrior. The stealthed biosuit warriors you posited, and a more front-line kind of warrior who gets in there and mixes it up in a much more deliberate fashion.

I do like the idea of the illithid biosuit saboteurs though, it fits well with the already established human Spectre Corps (same thing, but highly psionic and more akin to assassination).

Realms of Chaos
2010-10-15, 01:43 PM
Hmmm... Mindflayer Intellectuals pressed into their own unique form of combat, eh?

One thing here that I don't think has been mentioned directly (though I likely overlooked it) is the thought of grafts. We already have a few mindflayer grafts out there and any race could hypothetically attach silthilar grafts so we have another potential way to include the biological aspect to them. Picture, for example, a community of mindflayers paying off mercenaries with grafts to help them fight enemies.

Similarly, raising symbionts to help in combat would be totally awesome and would make the various fights with mind flayers seem more varied on a mechanical level (and a fight against a mindflayer with a winter cyst would feel different from another against a mindflayer with a cerebral hood and mind leech). That's not mentioning the difficulty/impossibility of seeing some symbionts ahead of time making it impossible for enemy forces to know just how to react.

As mentioned before, telepathy is a huge asset here, allowing for stealthy ambush tactics coordinated by large numbers of foes. Even more creepy, however, is the thought of mindflayers wordlessly coordinating themselves on the battlefield, seemingly acting irrationally due to orders from their leaders that nobody else is hearing. Though other armies can make secret plans ahead of time, Mindflayers can do this constantly, even making secret adjustments to the plans.

I for one support the idea of utterly modular biological components, typically usable only by the mindflayers. For example, consider the three items below...
1. A large, throbbing fleshy object about the size of a human head (and roughly the shape of an endotherm heart.)
2. A smallish, hemispherical polymer covered in grooves and with faint flashes of light visible from deep within (kind of like a brain).
3. A set of four scorpion-like legs joint together around a single focal point and ending with sharp points, filled with muscles and tendons.

These three items would have different effects when used individually, fused in pairs, or completely joined together (joining or splitting such items is a move action that only mindflayers know how to perform).

Individually:
The heart: When pressed up against the flesh of a mindflayer, the heart immediately starts pumping its curative contents within, granting the mindflayer fast healing 1. The heart is built with 10 charges and loses one with each round of use in this way, becoming worthless when the charges run out. If pressed agianst the flesh of another creature, it is instead sickened for the same duration, unused to its contents (draining charges at the same rate).

The brain: When inserted into a specialized slot in their biosuit, this item allows other creatures to communicate with the mindflayer telepathically from up to twice as far as normal. This communication only works one way, however, unless the other mindflayer possesses one in their suit as well.

The "Legs": Inserting their tentacles into specialized holes, a mindflayer can use the piercing legs in place of their normal attacks, giving them additional 5 feet of reach and increasing the damage dealt with each attack to 1d6 piercing damage. Unfortunately, the extra weight imposes a -1 penalty to attack rolls and a -5 foot penalty to speed when in use.

In Pairs:

Heart+Brain: After combining the polymer and flesh sack together, joining them with a mindflayer's skin pumps the liquid of the heart through the brain before it returns to the mindflayer, empowering their sight. Such a mindflayer can see the location of all creatures within range of their telepathy, as if they had the mindsight feat. Stuck to the flesh of another creature, it dazes that creature unless they succeed on a DC 14 Will save as the energies of the brain overtake their own mind. Even if they fail on their saving throw, they may make a new saving throw each round to end the effect. Whether attached to a mindflayer or not, each round of using this effect drains one charge from the heart.

Heart+Legs: Fusing the heart into the legs and the throat of a mindflayer, it gains the ability to muster some psionic energy. As a standard action, you can force a creature within 20 feet to make a DC 14 Will save or be stunned for 1 round. Each such attack drains one charge from the heart.

Brain+Legs: Pressing the polymer into the spaces where your tentacles would go, you provide the legs with a bit of animation. They are small constructs that possess a Strength score of 12, Dex score of 10, Charisma and Wisdom scores of 1, and no Intelligence or Constitution score at all. They gain a speed of 20 feet and may attack with a +2 bonus to the attack roll (using 1 leg or up to 2 with a full attack). The legs have an AC of 14 (Touch 10) and 15 hit points and automatically fail all saving throws. The legs can remain animated indefinitely in this way and automatically obey any telepathic instructions (which it can recieve as if it possessed an intelligence score).

All Together:

Brain+Legs+Heart: A more empowered version of the walking legs is created when all three items are forced together, at least in the short term. The construct gains a +4 bonus to Strength and Dexterity, a +10 foot bonus to speed, and gain fast healing 1. Each round of use in this way drains one charge from the heart.

With these items (or items like these) a group of mindflayers might, for example, turn their extended tentacles into a stun blaster for a few rounds before trading the extended tentacles and the telepathy booster found in the biosuit of a fallen ally to make a new soldier. Total modularity. :smallbiggrin:

Snowfire
2010-10-15, 02:30 PM
Ah, I wasn't sure if there were other sides to the force equation. As there aren't...well. Remember I said there are generally only a few hundred fully trained warriors within Illithid society? That's only a small percentage of the full Illithid fighting force. Every partially trained warrior is still very dangerous in their own right, it's just the few hundred at the top are very closely connected to their suits and have had seventy to eighty years of constant training in the art of warfare. Due to natural attrition, only a few hundred of every generation of the War Aspect would ever survive to this level, but that leaves thousands of less-trained soldiers. Basically the entire focus of the War Aspect is to learn all you can about warfare. In doing so, naturally, parts of every generation are going to die.

So you have the survivors of the previous generations who are basically the command echelon/spec ops/whatever they need to be for the war effort and then you have the thousands of War Aspect followers who are working towards that. These would make up the rank and file of the Illithid army - backed up when necessary by the general populace - commanded by the upper echelons.

And I, showing my total idiocy as usual - completely forgot about the telepathy factor. That on its own gives them a degree of tactical flexibility that no force can match. And then there's also the amount of mindscrew you can pull off with it :smallbiggrin:

PersonMan
2010-10-15, 04:12 PM
Hmmm. You mention that they're all highly specialized-maybe this means that there would mostly be specialists? Illithids who master [weapon], and hardly(if at all) train with others?

About the tentacles, I was thinking that some might have special sleeve-like devices that sort of...increase the length of the tentacles, to allow them to hold additional weapons with them.

Additionally, I'd imagine that they'd also have some pretty odd weapons/soldiers. Think of what would happen if a group of specialized biologist illithids and specialized weapon/armor illithids go together. I'm thinking that there'd be war-beasts of some sort.

Personal weaponry, I'm thinking that small symbiotic things that latch onto, say, arms or tentacles. With specific muscle commands they flex(or whatever), and engineer/biologist illithids put in blades of that they can be used as switch-blade-esque weapons.

Also, if they'd mainly fight to defend their stuff, I'm thinking that they'd have plenty of traps and/or ambush creatures. Bio-engineer ceiling-hang things, living alarms, etc. to protect illithid settlements. I'm also thinking that they'd have huge, twisting, confusing tunnels leading to several choke points around their settlement, allowing them to easily defend their territory and force enemies to exhaust themselves running around dark, dank and dangerous areas.

If you're going to be using indestructium, I'm thinking that illithid super-engineers might have set up some things with it to help protect against the humans' metal-gun things.

Those are my thoughts for now.

EDIT: Throw telepathy into the mix and...well.

Small, twisting tunnels and side-paths that are nearly impossible to find your way through, with small forces of illithids unerringly guided by specialized tunnel-units or trackers, striking at enemies and leading them off from the main areas...

In addition, I'm thinking that illithid compounds would be built very close together, to allow for maximum communication between individuals. This means lots of small rooms, once again making it difficult for enemies to make their way anywhere.

Oh, more bio-engineering stuff. Perhaps most(or all) doors function with small, nearly-mindless animals in them? They get fed, and trained to open the doors when they receive a certain command?

arguskos
2010-10-15, 04:23 PM
Hmmm... Mindflayer Intellectuals pressed into their own unique form of combat, eh?

One thing here that I don't think has been mentioned directly (though I likely overlooked it) is the thought of grafts. We already have a few mindflayer grafts out there and any race could hypothetically attach silthilar grafts so we have another potential way to include the biological aspect to them. Picture, for example, a community of mindflayers paying off mercenaries with grafts to help them fight enemies.
Hmm. Grafts, that's something I'd not thought about, good thought there dude. Thanks for that. Anyone know where every published graft is?


Similarly, raising symbionts to help in combat would be totally awesome and would make the various fights with mind flayers seem more varied on a mechanical level (and a fight against a mindflayer with a winter cyst would feel different from another against a mindflayer with a cerebral hood and mind leech). That's not mentioning the difficulty/impossibility of seeing some symbionts ahead of time making it impossible for enemy forces to know just how to react.
I like the psychological aspect you're shooting for here. Very clever, something I'd never considered.


As mentioned before, telepathy is a huge asset here, allowing for stealthy ambush tactics coordinated by large numbers of foes. Even more creepy, however, is the thought of mindflayers wordlessly coordinating themselves on the battlefield, seemingly acting irrationally due to orders from their leaders that nobody else is hearing. Though other armies can make secret plans ahead of time, Mindflayers can do this constantly, even making secret adjustments to the plans.
Yeah, I figure that most other nations that war with Orlyndol would work on ways to "hack" into illithid telepathy, just so they can try and keep abreast of what the illithids are planning. For their part, the illithids likely have telepathy extenders and communicate in old-fashioned codes and ciphers to keep opponents with hacks on their toes.


I for one support the idea of utterly modular biological components, typically usable only by the mindflayers. For example, consider the three items below...
1. A large, throbbing fleshy object about the size of a human head (and roughly the shape of an endotherm heart.)
2. A smallish, hemispherical polymer covered in grooves and with faint flashes of light visible from deep within (kind of like a brain).
3. A set of four scorpion-like legs joint together around a single focal point and ending with sharp points, filled with muscles and tendons.

These three items would have different effects when used individually, fused in pairs, or completely joined together (joining or splitting such items is a move action that only mindflayers know how to perform).

Individually:
The heart: When pressed up against the flesh of a mindflayer, the heart immediately starts pumping its curative contents within, granting the mindflayer fast healing 1. The heart is built with 10 charges and loses one with each round of use in this way, becoming worthless when the charges run out. If pressed agianst the flesh of another creature, it is instead sickened for the same duration, unused to its contents (draining charges at the same rate).

The brain: When inserted into a specialized slot in their biosuit, this item allows other creatures to communicate with the mindflayer telepathically from up to twice as far as normal. This communication only works one way, however, unless the other mindflayer possesses one in their suit as well.

The "Legs": Inserting their tentacles into specialized holes, a mindflayer can use the piercing legs in place of their normal attacks, giving them additional 5 feet of reach and increasing the damage dealt with each attack to 1d6 piercing damage. Unfortunately, the extra weight imposes a -1 penalty to attack rolls and a -5 foot penalty to speed when in use.

In Pairs:

Heart+Brain: After combining the polymer and flesh sack together, joining them with a mindflayer's skin pumps the liquid of the heart through the brain before it returns to the mindflayer, empowering their sight. Such a mindflayer can see the location of all creatures within range of their telepathy, as if they had the mindsight feat. Stuck to the flesh of another creature, it dazes that creature unless they succeed on a DC 14 Will save as the energies of the brain overtake their own mind. Even if they fail on their saving throw, they may make a new saving throw each round to end the effect. Whether attached to a mindflayer or not, each round of using this effect drains one charge from the heart.

Heart+Legs: Fusing the heart into the legs and the throat of a mindflayer, it gains the ability to muster some psionic energy. As a standard action, you can force a creature within 20 feet to make a DC 14 Will save or be stunned for 1 round. Each such attack drains one charge from the heart.

Brain+Legs: Pressing the polymer into the spaces where your tentacles would go, you provide the legs with a bit of animation. They are small constructs that possess a Strength score of 12, Dex score of 10, Charisma and Wisdom scores of 1, and no Intelligence or Constitution score at all. They gain a speed of 20 feet and may attack with a +2 bonus to the attack roll (using 1 leg or up to 2 with a full attack). The legs have an AC of 14 (Touch 10) and 15 hit points and automatically fail all saving throws. The legs can remain animated indefinitely in this way and automatically obey any telepathic instructions (which it can recieve as if it possessed an intelligence score).

All Together:

Brain+Legs+Heart: A more empowered version of the walking legs is created when all three items are forced together, at least in the short term. The construct gains a +4 bonus to Strength and Dexterity, a +10 foot bonus to speed, and gain fast healing 1. Each round of use in this way drains one charge from the heart.

With these items (or items like these) a group of mindflayers might, for example, turn their extended tentacles into a stun blaster for a few rounds before trading the extended tentacles and the telepathy booster found in the biosuit of a fallen ally to make a new soldier. Total modularity. :smallbiggrin:
Ok, woah, lots of stuff there. :smalleek: Way way more than I can handle at this second. Damn fine ideas though. I really like the concept of modular components of a sort.


Ah, I wasn't sure if there were other sides to the force equation. As there aren't...well. Remember I said there are generally only a few hundred fully trained warriors within Illithid society? That's only a small percentage of the full Illithid fighting force. Every partially trained warrior is still very dangerous in their own right, it's just the few hundred at the top are very closely connected to their suits and have had seventy to eighty years of constant training in the art of warfare. Due to natural attrition, only a few hundred of every generation of the War Aspect would ever survive to this level, but that leaves thousands of less-trained soldiers. Basically the entire focus of the War Aspect is to learn all you can about warfare. In doing so, naturally, parts of every generation are going to die.
Compared to the other races, such as the Khavghotani goblinoids, where EVERY SINGLE LiVING SOUL is a battle-hardened warrior, or the Intolian Empire, where every human has a stint in the military and (like several Scandinavian countries) has a suit of armor and a rifle in their house), the "illithids have some training" is pretty weak. Of course, that's the POINT. I want the illithids to have smaller armies but better trained. Still, not at the "they have 100 guys" level. Consider that their nation has a population of around 2 million and is the size of China (give or take a bit), only 100-200 hardened soldiers seems... low. :smalltongue:


So you have the survivors of the previous generations who are basically the command echelon/spec ops/whatever they need to be for the war effort and then you have the thousands of War Aspect followers who are working towards that. These would make up the rank and file of the Illithid army - backed up when necessary by the general populace - commanded by the upper echelons.
Hmm. I dunno, that sounds suspiciously like "well, there's a lot of crappy dudes who are actually experts elsewhere but know how to use a chainblade, and there's like 20 crazy super dudes", which isn't what I'm looking for.


And I, showing my total idiocy as usual - completely forgot about the telepathy factor. That on its own gives them a degree of tactical flexibility that no force can match. And then there's also the amount of mindscrew you can pull off with it :smallbiggrin:
Mindscrew=good times, right? Right. :smallamused:

Milskidasith
2010-10-15, 04:35 PM
No seriously, this campaign needs to be online and I need to play it now.

arguskos
2010-10-15, 04:39 PM
No seriously, this campaign needs to be online and I need to play it now.
Sadly, it's not complete yet. The setting has a long way to go. Hell, I've not even gotten into the details of trepek society, haven't looked at the elves with more than a cursory glance (either subrace, for there are two), or thought about the hivemind dwarves with any level of detail.

Hopefully, it'll be ready by Christmas so I can run something in January, and if it is ready, I'll be sure to invite you, Mils. :smallwink:

EDIT: Cause I fail at noticing posts, I missed this one.

Hmmm. You mention that they're all highly specialized-maybe this means that there would mostly be specialists? Illithids who master [weapon], and hardly(if at all) train with others?
That was kinda what I was thinking, yeah.


About the tentacles, I was thinking that some might have special sleeve-like devices that sort of...increase the length of the tentacles, to allow them to hold additional weapons with them.
Well, they're limbs like any others, so I figure with a bit of an extension they'd be able to take Multiweapon Fighting and go from there.


Additionally, I'd imagine that they'd also have some pretty odd weapons/soldiers. Think of what would happen if a group of specialized biologist illithids and specialized weapon/armor illithids go together. I'm thinking that there'd be war-beasts of some sort.
Oh boy there we go opening up Pandora's Armory.


Personal weaponry, I'm thinking that small symbiotic things that latch onto, say, arms or tentacles. With specific muscle commands they flex(or whatever), and engineer/biologist illithids put in blades of that they can be used as switch-blade-esque weapons.
The graft/symbiotic thing is strong. Definitely a thought worth looking into. *makes note*


Also, if they'd mainly fight to defend their stuff, I'm thinking that they'd have plenty of traps and/or ambush creatures. Bio-engineer ceiling-hang things, living alarms, etc. to protect illithid settlements. I'm also thinking that they'd have huge, twisting, confusing tunnels leading to several choke points around their settlement, allowing them to easily defend their territory and force enemies to exhaust themselves running around dark, dank and dangerous areas.
Most of Orlyndol is uninhabited and left to grow wild. The local wildlife is... unpleasant. That covers most of it. As for their settlements, the entire illithid race lives in gigantic spire cities made from glassteel that rise up out of the jungle of their homeland and spread out for miles underground in caverns they grow their servitor race (bioengineered from their own stock) in and raise their food in. I could add some alarm systems at long range around each city to warn of approaching enemy forces.


If you're going to be using indestructium, I'm thinking that illithid super-engineers might have set up some things with it to help protect against the humans' metal-gun things.
Likely won't be. It's not a common material, though I've yet to decide how prevalent it is.


EDIT: Throw telepathy into the mix and...well.

Small, twisting tunnels and side-paths that are nearly impossible to find your way through, with small forces of illithids unerringly guided by specialized tunnel-units or trackers, striking at enemies and leading them off from the main areas...
Telepathy is often used by the spire-cities internally, since each city is sentient in nature. I figure that each city may also have a "sensor net" around it that it uses to coordinate with other cities and with any illithids outside the city itself.


In addition, I'm thinking that illithid compounds would be built very close together, to allow for maximum communication between individuals. This means lots of small rooms, once again making it difficult for enemies to make their way anywhere.
Thanks to extenders, that's not the case. Each city is veeeeeeery far from the others (like, one per hundred miles or so).


Oh, more bio-engineering stuff. Perhaps most(or all) doors function with small, nearly-mindless animals in them? They get fed, and trained to open the doors when they receive a certain command?
Why not automate the doors with magic? No reason to have critters do it when magic does it better with less resource use.

PersonMan
2010-10-15, 04:54 PM
No seriously, this campaign needs to be online and I need to play it now.

+1.

It only gets better the more info you have.


Sadly, it's not complete yet. The setting has a long way to go. Hell, I've not even gotten into the details of trepek society, haven't looked at the elves with more than a cursory glance (either subrace, for there are two), or thought about the hivemind dwarves with any level of detail.

Hopefully, it'll be ready by Christmas so I can run something in January, and if it is ready, I'll be sure to invite you, Mils. :smallwink:

EDIT: Cause I fail at noticing posts, I missed this one.

That was kinda what I was thinking, yeah.


Well, they're limbs like any others, so I figure with a bit of an extension they'd be able to take Multiweapon Fighting and go from there.


Oh boy there we go opening up Pandora's Armory.

Did you expect not to?

The graft/symbiotic thing is strong. Definitely a thought worth looking into. *makes note*

Yep.

Most of Orlyndol is uninhabited and left to grow wild. The local wildlife is... unpleasant. That covers most of it. As for their settlements, the entire illithid race lives in gigantic spire cities made from glassteel that rise up out of the jungle of their homeland and spread out for miles underground in caverns they grow their servitor race (bioengineered from their own stock) in and raise their food in. I could add some alarm systems at long range around each city to warn of approaching enemy forces.

Hmmm. Since they seem do be doing a bunch of bioengineering, maybe they modify wildlife near their cities? Sleeper gene-type things that, at a certain signal, cause the animals to go crazy/[positive outcome for illithids]?

Likely won't be. It's not a common material, though I've yet to decide how prevalent it is.


Telepathy is often used by the spire-cities internally, since each city is sentient in nature. I figure that each city may also have a "sensor net" around it that it uses to coordinate with other cities and with any illithids outside the city itself.

Sounds cool.

Thanks to extenders, that's not the case. Each city is veeeeeeery far from the others (like, one per hundred miles or so).

You did it again. You take apart a central assumption of some of my stuff, making most of it useless. You...fiend.

Why not automate the doors with magic? No reason to have critters do it when magic does it better with less resource use.

Because bio-engineering stuff sounds/is cooler. And it could be more easily taken apart by enemies.

Replies bolded.

Also, you people post too fast. And too slow.

arguskos
2010-10-15, 05:10 PM
+1.

It only gets better the more info you have.
Man, I never thought Z-R would get this level of reception. I mean, two people being all "this is awesome" is way more than I expected (ie. me being all "this is awesome" and everyone else being all "wtf man"). I need to finish this out. Also, courtesy of Zeta Kai, the world map!

http://i170.photobucket.com/albums/u250/bloodydoves/WorldMap.jpg?t=1287179908
Ignore the colors, it's mostly wrong.

Intolar: Home of the Most Holy Divine Empire of Humanity (that's the complete name, it's usually just called the Intolian Empire). Intolar is approx. the size of the United States. The environment is mostly plains and scrubland.
Khavghotan: Home of the goblinoid races (goblins, hobgoblins, bugbears, ogres, gnolls, kobolds, ibixians, varags). Khavghotan and Intolar are locked in a state of perpetual warfare through the Ironteeth Peaks, the mountain range separating them. Khavghotan is very very VERY cold, with an average summer temperature of around 55 F. Between them, Intolar and Khavghotan are around the size of North America.
Orlyndol: A heavily forested nation, Orlyndol is the homeland of the Illithids. We've discussed this quite a bit so far.
Alykandor: The elven nation consists of three islands connected by massive bridges that house entire cities on them. Each island serves a specific purpose (one is the military, one is the administration, one is the artistic), with the bridges serving as the blending mechanism for elven society.
Northwind: Not a true nation, more of a single city, Northwind exists as the only true bastion of the trepeks, a created race that lives ever in the shadow of Tharkrixghantix, home of their creators, the reclusive isolationist dragons. Northwind is bitterly cold and inhospitable, with the city itself as the only true livable area.
Xortal: Nothing is known about this isolated jungle continent. There appears to be only a single primitive native people, about which little is known, along with several ancient and crumbling ruins from a race still unknown. Otherwise, Xortal is unclaimed by any nation, and is the object of much contention.

World notes: This is only one half of the planet. The other half is uninhabitable. Zaaman-Rul (the planet's name) is a one-face world with magically regulated and maintained temperature zones (thus why Intolar is scrubland and Orlyndol is temperate jungle in the same general region of the globe, etcetcetc). It's mostly destroyed and ****ed up, but that makes it fun. This is obviously just a light overview of everything, but I guess if people are really interested, I can start a new thread and start expanding on it all.

unosarta
2010-10-15, 05:14 PM
-Awesomeness-

This is awesome. Did I mention how awesome it is?
Well, OK, anything heard while listening to Howl by Florence and the Machine (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JZweDwbJ_Ic&list=QL&playnext=7) sounds epic, but Daayum.

Strangely enough, the humans and elves both seem very lawful, and the Trepek and Illithid more Chaotic, although both seem to have a lawful tinge. Needs moar Chaotic. :smalltongue:

arguskos
2010-10-15, 05:17 PM
This is awesome. Did I mention how awesome it is?
Well, OK, anything heard while listening to Howl by Florence and the Machine (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JZweDwbJ_Ic&list=QL&playnext=7) sounds epic, but Daayum.
...dammit people. I have classes to do work for! This thing is like a second job, one I'm not getting payed for! Also, I've put almost three years of work into this setting now so I'm glad someone likes it! It's gone through like four total revisions, but I think this set up is the one I really like.


Strangely enough, the humans and elves both seem very lawful, and the Trepek and Illithid more Chaotic, although both seem to have a lawful tinge. Needs moar Chaotic. :smalltongue:
KHAVGHOTAN. Just trust me on this one, they're chaotic psychos down there. :smallwink:

Also, the orogs (a race I didn't mention, since they're pretty minor) are fairly Chaotic in nature. So are the tasloi (the natives in Xortal).

EDIT: @PM:

Hmmm. Since they seem do be doing a bunch of bioengineering, maybe they modify wildlife near their cities? Sleeper gene-type things that, at a certain signal, cause the animals to go crazy/[positive outcome for illithids]?
That's a good idea. I like that a great deal. I figure they're the only race around with even an inkling of what genetics are. They're not quite to our level of scientific advancement, but they're in the neighborhood.


You did it again. You take apart a central assumption of some of my stuff, making most of it useless. You...fiend.
That's how I roll. Also, I'd mentioned telepathic extenders prior to your post. :smallwink:

Fable Wright
2010-10-15, 05:35 PM
I'd like in on the game, too...

Back to more ideas: Grafts are, for the most part, in LoM and Fiend Folio. Other grafts are non-aberrational, like draconic or elemental grafts. Going into more equipment, I think a scouter would be appropriate. It indicates very weak foes (4+ CR less than the illithid), weak foes (2-3 CR less than the illithid), even foes (Within 1 CR of the illithid), strong foes (2-3 CR more than the illithid), and overwhelming foes (4+ CR less than the illithid). Also, they possibly create a metaconcert between illithids, and give them immunity to flanking. Also, possibly make it so that an illithid could use any other scouter within 500ft as the origin point for a power they manfest's range. I like the idea of on-the-go constructs, and think that in addition to the scout-staffs, they should be able to spawn guardians like with the Astral Construct power, with the suit granting them access to the astral construct feats... Also, consider illithid movement speeds. Illithids will want mobility. Perhaps crab leg-like apparatus, which grant a 40ft base land speed, and a 30ft swim speed, with a free water-breathing effect, and a 20ft climb and burrow speeds. Add on a flying apparatus, and the illithids have all movement types at their command. One last thought: a special node grafted into an illithid's brain, allowing for them to Mind Switch with a foe within 30ft right before they die. Consider, too, a similar Mind Seed node, although not only usable before the illithid's death; thus, secretly conscripted spies who have more reasons to aid the illithids than your standard mole. :smallamused:

unosarta
2010-10-15, 06:27 PM
...dammit people. I have classes to do work for! This thing is like a second job, one I'm not getting payed for! Also, I've put almost three years of work into this setting now so I'm glad someone likes it! It's gone through like four total revisions, but I think this set up is the one I really like.
That is what most campaign settings are like. And yeah, the premise for this campaign world is sort of not stated overtly, but it looks cool.


KHAVGHOTAN. Just trust me on this one, they're chaotic psychos down there. :smallwink:

Also, the orogs (a race I didn't mention, since they're pretty minor) are fairly Chaotic in nature. So are the tasloi (the natives in Xortal).

Explain, please. :smallwink:

arguskos
2010-10-15, 07:29 PM
That is what most campaign settings are like. And yeah, the premise for this campaign world is sort of not stated overtly, but it looks cool.
That was on purpose. I'm curious what people think it is, given what I've mentioned so far.


Explain, please. :smallwink:
Which part? Khavghotan? The tasloi? The orogs? Yes? :smalltongue:

Also, DMofDarkness, I'll get to that in a bit, and your interest is also noted. :smallwink:

Am I to just assume that my posting up a homebrew thread about this setting would be a desired thing?

unosarta
2010-10-15, 07:55 PM
That was on purpose. I'm curious what people think it is, given what I've mentioned so far.
I know it looks cool. I don't know whether it is accurate or anything, because I don't know what the premise is.

[/QUOTE]Which part? Khavghotan? The tasloi? The orogs? Yes? :smalltongue:

Also, DMofDarkness, I'll get to that in a bit, and your interest is also noted. :smallwink:

Am I to just assume that my posting up a homebrew thread about this setting would be a desired thing?[/QUOTE]
Yes?

As a note, consider me interested as well.

That would be good. :smallbiggrin:

Realms of Chaos
2010-10-15, 08:42 PM
No seriously, this campaign needs to be online and I need to play it now.

+2 (or is it +3 :smallconfused:). Seriously, it looks awesome.

Also, I have a great ideas both for coordination amongst the mindflayers and for spying on them as well.

Coordination:
Unity: This item, an oversized glob of grey matter cultivated by mindflayer bio-artisans (Yes, I have just coined the term bio-artisan. :smallbiggrin:), acts to enhance the telepathy of mindflayers within 500 feet. Such mindflayers double the range of their telepathy. Furthermore, no mindflayer within range is treated as being flat-footed or flanked unless they all are.

Unfortunately, there are several limitations and downsides to using Unities within the battlefield. First, and most obvious, is the enormous cost in resources (20,000 gp?) required to make even one. Secondly, unities are exceedingly heavy (60 pounds), especially for the frail bodies of mindflayers (something that has caused them to store them on specialized carts or install them into the bio-suits of particularly sturdy mindflayers, beasts of burden, or [rarely] mercenaries). Lastly, unities are fully organic and rot away within a month of creation (time spent affected by a gentle repose spell does not count towards this maximum).

Spying:Mindspy: To spy on the telepathic messages of mindflayers, other species have reverse engineered the few unities taken in combat, giving rise to mind-spies. These small iron brains, while still expensive to create (5,000 gp), weigh only 2 pounds and are frequently used for reconnaissance.
Any creature holding a mindspy automatically "overhears" any telepathic message delivered to a creature within 250 feet. This does not allow the creature, however, to "hear" messages sent outside of this radius (even if the sender is within range).

There. A giant brain created by bio-artisans to link mindflayers and the small items reverse engineered from them by other races to overhear these links.

Edit: Also, as DMoD only mentioned grafts, symbionts can be found in the Fiend Folio, Eberron Campaign Setting, and Magic of Eberron.

Edit Edit: For some reason, I'm stuck thinking about the elves and mindflayers being stuck in an arms race, pitting the living items (as seen in complete scoundrel) of elves against the biological components of mindflayers as they race for biological superiority.

Tvtyrant
2010-10-15, 08:57 PM
I had an...odd idea. Say you were using symbiots, and had stealth troops with grafts and bio-mcguffins and the like. So what is to stop them from lobotomizing a monster and attaching the full sized Ithiliad to it? For example, take an elephant. Elephants look weird to us because they have a tentacle (trunk) and their faces don't look like ours. To an ithiliad and elephant is actually quite similar (like us to cows, not like two people) and by grafting extra trunks the ithiliad driver wouldn't have to learn how to control a whole new body and fighting style, just use the tentacle-knives on a giant elephant scale.

So take an elephant, graft three extra trunks onto it, lobo it and have the ithiliad connect to its brain. Then you can equip the trunk with oversized ithiliad weaponry and use it like a mech/tank.

Snowfire
2010-10-15, 09:24 PM
Stupid...words. I'm not explaining my thoughts correctly.

Ok, first things first I apologise if going further down this route annoys you. I also wasn't sure of the numbers (and I should have asked).

The way I'm seeing this is that the Illithid Aspect of War pulls in an eighth of every generation (or thereabouts). Members of the other Aspects are trained in how to use the defences of their homes, but that's about as far as it goes.

So we have a trained military force of about 250,000 (give or take a few thousand). Security forces (i.e. police etc.) would count as part of a different Aspect to me. So a quarter of a million soldiers, each with a persona-locked biosuit, with varying degrees of training. But as they have telepathy, mind to mind training becomes possible - whereby an experienced warrior effectively 'downloads' his skills into the minds of less experienced fighters. Training therefore takes much less time, more a case of ironing out any problems in suit-host compatibility and such. They don't have the experience of a crack warrior, but they have the skills and combined with the suits that gives them a very good chance for survival. Even then though, it isn't enough to stop attrition wearing them down over the decades.

In terms of numbers, this is how I see things. All titles are just to make things simpler.

~80,000 Apprentices

These are the least - and yet the most - important part of the Illithid military, telepathically trained warriors who, whilst far more dangerous on a one-for-one basis then the standard infantry of other nations, are relatively untrained by Aspect standards. Most Apprentices are only beginning to feel their way into a rapport with their bio-suit and as such are deployed with Master or Adept support to ensure survival to Journeyman.

-Read as highly trained, well equipped but inexperienced troops deployed into relatively safe situations to expose the to fire without letting them get badly burned.

~130,000 Journeymen

Journeymen are the core of the Illithid field forces, each one having a standing rapport with his or her bio-suit and as such are capable of multi-tasking to a greater degree then an Apprentice. They are the rank and file of the Illithid military. A substantial portion of the War Aspect never progresses beyond Journeyman, many dieing in action and others never reaching it. Journeymen are used in a variety of different positions, from the battle line to espionage.

-They have more experience than Apprentices (some considerably more so) and would probably make up the 'elite' section of any other army. And these are the Illithid foot troops.

~35,000 Masters

Masters are made up of the best of the Journeymen (and sometimes Apprentices), the proverbial best and brightest - at least in regards to war. About a third of all Masters never see much combat, natural spies, tacticians and strategists that work behind the scenes to obtain victory. When a Journeyman of the Aspect of War becomes a Master, they choose a field of warfare that both suits them and that they excel at and devote themselves to learning all they can about it.

- Effectively spec ops when it comes to combat, Masters have had decades to hone their skill on the battlefield. The few that effectively jump straight from Apprentice to Master are give telepathic skill dumps in combat from Adepts and one of the requirements to being a Master is that you have been under fire (and react well).

~5,000 Adepts

Those few Masters who learn - and prove - that they have learned all they can of their field of choice move on to become Adepts. Adepts are some of the most dangerous soldiers in all of existence and they work tirelessly to uphold the safety of their homes. An Adept is the master of his or her field and they work with others to orchestrate the defense of their homeland through every means available.

- If you know enough about the Eldar, take these people as the Exarchs of the Aspect of War. Their combat skill is to spec ops what spec ops is to rank and file. Of course there are the exceptions to this rule, the strategists and spymasters but the Adepts also learn from each other. A precious few ever manage it in every generation, but some Adepts achieve such skill both on and off the battlefield that they are named Master of War - read as Phoenix Lord.

I hope this doesn't go against what you wanted and I'm sorry if it does. I just latched onto the Eldar idea and ran with it. I'm trying to put them across as a vastly better trained and equipped force than the other nations within the gameworld, but that is offset by the fact that most of the Illithid population prefers to sit in high towers and contemplate the mysteries of the world and such (not quite true I know, but the best analogy I could give).

Edit:
No seriously, this campaign needs to be online and I need to play it now.

+4 (just going on the safe side here)

This campaign setting looks incredible. You've put a huge amount of work into it and it shows.

arguskos
2010-10-16, 12:01 AM
Wow holy crap. I've got waaaaaaaay more interest in this than I was expecting. :smalleek:

Ok, for the record: There will no be game in this world for the time being. I just don't have the time and the setting isn't done yet. However, if/when I finish (target date is end of 2010, start of 2011) I promise I will run a game on these here forums, and will inform you all as to that end.

Additionally, I am going to go ahead and start a new thread for this tomorrow. I'll probably nick the first seven posts for world information and whatnot, and I would LOVE any feedback, suggestions, advice, thoughts, praise, anything ya'll feel is justified. If people really like it so much, well, I'm happy to show it to them. :smallredface:

Also, to everyone who's posted recently: I'll get to your comments and everything in the morning. It's late, I'm tired, etcetcetc.

IcarusWings
2010-10-16, 01:18 AM
No seriously, this campaign needs to be online and I need to play it now.

+4. That is all.

arguskos
2010-10-16, 03:54 PM
I have to play in this campaign.

+1.

It only gets better the more info you have.


This is awesome. Did I mention how awesome it is?

I'd like in on the game, too...


+2 (or is it +3 :smallconfused:). Seriously, it looks awesome.

This campaign setting looks incredible. You've put a huge amount of work into it and it shows.

+4. That is all.
I have something for you. (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=172194) :smallamused: Also, I am so appreciative of your enthusiasm and interest, I really am. It means more to me than you know. If you're interested at all, please, do go to that thread and help me populate it with crunchy bits and thoughts about the fluffy bits I'm throwing down. I'll do my best to update it at least once at day, even if it's with something minor. Right now, it's pretty damn empty, but there IS some new info, if you're interested.

Mulletmanalive
2010-10-16, 04:19 PM
I'm sorry, I started out wanting to help but now i can't get over the idea of Trepak rogues teleporting into the enemy camp and using Mugger's Fist and Sticky Fingers units to steal their enemis' pants...

arguskos
2010-10-16, 04:23 PM
I'm sorry, I started out wanting to help but now i can't get over the idea of Trepak rogues teleporting into the enemy camp and using Mugger's Fist and Sticky Fingers units to steal their enemis' pants...
Can't teleport, actually, but go to the main thread to find out why (in about 30-45 minutes, when I update that bit of the first post). But yeah, trepek rogues being all "LOLPANTS" is pretty funny.