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Darth_Nergal
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PostSubject: Best survival equipment in felarya   Sun Jul 01, 2012 12:00 am

Now I don't think I have seen a thread like this yet. What equipment would you deem to be absolutely necessary for surviving in Felarya. Now please note, there can't be any major weapons here. Only things that your average citizen might find in the market place of Negav or pretty much any other major city from a different universe.

Personally, I would always bring a Portable Hole and Bag of Holding. Both of those items are easy to make and would be common objects in a city with magic. Also, a ring of invisibility would be useful. Again, easy and common enough to find in a large city like negav. Finally, some assorted potions.

For weapons, I would go for some kind of handgun to deal with human sized threats. For predators, I would say a very potent potion designed to make a predator throw up. Also, some kind of energy based sword. Like a plasma sword or something. Seeing as Negav is both technologically and magically advanced, and they seem to deal with traders from all over the place, I would not be surprised to see some kind of plasma or laser based blades on the market. And since plasma weapons tend to deal damage the same way a lightsaber would, namely burning/melting skin, they should work.
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PostSubject: Re: Best survival equipment in felarya   Sun Jul 01, 2012 6:16 am

Aaaaand you'd be wrong on... pretty much every account that you brought up.

First of all, you're using a lot of D&D equipment, which already makes your claim that said "best equipment" is actually common in Negav less than solid. Second, I would like to remind you that one of the themes of Felarya is survival. Humans and such have the odds stacked against them for a reason. Can you imagine Felarya where traversing half the region on foot is no big deal, and still think it feels the same? Third, the idea of such magic items and weapons, especially the energy sword, is laughable, because such things couldn't possibly be affordable to the common citizens, let alone outsider adventurers.

If you want proof, the Ring of Invisibility is priced at 20 000 gold pieces. If we are to assume that skevols are worth about as much as gp in D&D, then that's 20 000 skevols down the drain for one item. I don't think your common citizen could afford this. The portable hole is also priced at 20 000 gp, so that's another thing you wouldn't easily acquire. The cheapest Bag of Holding is priced at 2500 gp, which is somewhat affordable, but it doesn't store that many items, at most 250 lbs or 30 cubic ft worth of content. In total, you are expecting a common citizen easily afford 42 500 skevol worth of magic items. That's simply not gonna happen.

About weapons, handguns are good as a sidearm, but you may want to bring melee weapons with you like a machete or kukri. Why? Well a lot of smaller animals employ ambush tactics, and while pistols are nice, in tight formation, they have this annoying habit to cause friendly fire. Plus, you need to conserve ammunition. Felarya is massive, and unless you have an ammo supplier in your group, it's next to impossible to come by outside any city. The laser sword is ridiculous because, for one, it'd be a military grade weapon, thus not available to common citizens, two, it'd require a lot of maintenance in the unforgiving wilderness, and three, the primary purpose you've brought up immediately undermines the theme of survival. The potion is more sensible, but you need to keep in mind that giant hybrids are actually a rare encounter, and quite literally the worst case scenario. Deaths in the wild are likely to be caused by poison, large animals who would often rather chew you up, carnivorous plants, and the elements even. While it's nice to have it for this worst case scenario, you shouldn't bank on it too much.

You seem to be under the impression that because Negav houses a lot of high technology, it's commonly available to the citizens, and that because the currently ruling party is injecting a lot of spellcraft, that D&D style magic items are also common. While it is certainly more true for the latter, magic items require time, effort, uncommon resources, and very precise skills to craft, which is why they're so expensive. As for technology, keep in mind that a lot of it in Negav is property of the Vishmitals, who make no effort to hide the fact they're very egocentric and keep most of it for Vishmital citizens. While Negav do some trades with other worlds, it wouldn't be surprising if most high-tech equipment they get is for city defense.

Hope that wasn't too mean-spirited.
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PostSubject: Re: Best survival equipment in felarya   Sun Jul 01, 2012 7:48 am

Darth_Nergal wrote:
Personally, I would always bring a Portable Hole and Bag of Holding.
Aren't those the two objects that can't be used together? Kinda stupid to carry both around if you can't use the hole due to the bag.
Aside from that, I don't like my chars having anything too flashy like total invisibility, a huge object capacity, a hole that can take you out of a stomach and those kinds of convenient things. Also, keep in mind that you are inside the stomach, so if the potion is strong enough to make a giant throw up, just imagine what would it do to you or your clothes...

Basic equipment for me would be pre-cooked food in inodour packaging, a way to make water or find some, cooking utensils that reduce smell, need of fire or cooking time, ropes, weapons for human-sized threats and hunting, some sort of basic camouflage, and then specific equipment for the place you want to go to.

Trying to fight a pred is pretty useless unless you have Isolon-Fist-level magic or badass military equipment, so maybe the basics for it would be encantments or magic objetcs that make escape easier, like illusions, speed enhancers or even barriers that prevent the predator from picking you up.


Edit: Now that I read Shady's post, I have to agree with him. Tech and magic is common, but just like in real life, it's mostly for day-to-day living. The biggest and coolest things would be military use only or high price in the black market.

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PostSubject: Re: Best survival equipment in felarya   Sun Jul 01, 2012 3:03 pm

Ah, Nergal! Reminds me of my first post in this forum! I was a bit D&D obsessed too, you know? Shady's right, though. He just doesn't know yet how right he is.

I was more obsessed than you, given you didn't check out the item creation rules. The creation of a bag of holding takes 3 days- for a 9th level wizard. And the Portable Hole requires not just a 12th level wizard to make, but 20 days of his time.

If you've observed the demographic rules in the DMG, you'll see that a metropolis (let's assume Negav is one) has up to 4 wizards of level 1d4+12, so we can assume there's a 13th, a 14th, a 15th, and a 16th level wizard. For each of them, there's twice the number of characters of half that level- so the Wiz-13/14 generate 4 Wiz-7, the Wiz-15/16 generate 4 Wiz-8, and those 8 wizards generate 16 Wiz-4, 32 Wiz-2, and 64 Wiz-1.

Now I dunno about you, but I think that these wizards have better things to do than make magical items. I'll even guess they're prolly governing the city.

======

I've went through this problem a li'l myself, Nergal. Don't look at the DMG yet- look at the PHB. Chapter 7. Yes, you read that right. Player's Fucking Handbook. And don't think of going masterwork yet! Hell, even alchemy's more than you might be able to afford.

Only weapon you could really use there is either a dagger/club or a spear. The spear's not very useful if you're ambushed, but at least you'll have a club or dagger to fall back on. Spear has a little reach- it'll keep your hands away from anything too big, and it might e'en be good for throwing. Combat knives might work a little better than daggers if you know how to kill bears with 'em.

Armor... well, I dinnae much about armor meself. I'd recommend to bring a shield instead, a buckler- you probably can make do with it, and it won't be as damaging to your stealth. Protects only against one attack per round, but you're not expecting to be flanked, are you? And you WILL need an explorer's outfit here, or something similar.

Now, if you've been doing the maths, you'll see we've already worked up quite a mass of equipment here. 8 pounds for the explorer's outfit, 5 pounds for a buckler, 4 pounds for a spear, 1 pound for a dagger. Even if we make do without a spear, this is 14 pounds! You should avoid carrying more than 25 pounds per capita, for obvious reasons.

Now adventuring equipment... we'd be talking about a backpack, a waterskin, and three days' worth of trail rations. That amounts to 9 more pounds, and we haven't planned for anything- even spending the night! You don't want to make a fire in the night, 'cause that'll bring stuff to you. So you're going to need either a shovel for a Dakota fire, or a winter blanket in addition to your bedroll.

Them rations arr gonna last ye but three days, and the water even less, ye scurvy dog. Yer gonna need to hunt something. I recommend small birds- you can do that with a slingshot (weight 0, price 0), but if you're exquisite you'll want either rope (10 pounds per 50 feet) to make a snare, or a fishing net (5 pounds) for when you find water. If you're going to take notes, arr gonna need a blank book (15 gp, 3 pounds).

We'll ignore the buckler and the dagger for the time being. A backpack, a waterskin, three days of rations, an explorer's outfit, a winter blanket and a bedroll take up already 27 pounds- and calculate weapons again, this time using guns.

======

I'd recommend a revolver or shotgun (Lupara or coach gun) for their serious unlikeliness to jam and big bores; revolvers are specially good because their ammo is pretty light for its punch. A coach shotgun weighs 6 pounds, a magnum revolver weighs 2 and a half pounds, a good pound of rounds might hold anywhere from 20 shells to 50 bullets.

If you're more concerned than that about stealth, bring something you can silence: a pistol or rifle. Hunting calibers should be enough, unless you're going up against an African Buffalo or something (they've got bulletproof horn crests); big game rifles, though, may be too heavy- consider running away. Note that you'll need some serious skillz yo to maintain anything other than a single-action revolver or a break-action shotgun!

======

Now for the giant predators, well, first of all you'd like not to be found. If you are, distract them (I recommend a flashbang), put some distance, and hide. (You might realize that no matter how you throw the grenade, it's not going to go 100 foot up in the air; it's more likely than not that you take the worst of the bang. DO IT FROM AROUND A TREE IF YOU CAN.)

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PostSubject: Re: Best survival equipment in felarya   Sun Jul 01, 2012 7:44 pm

The best survival equipment in Felarya is knowledge. Be-all, end-all piece, although you're going to want multiple types of knowledge to really make use of it.

Weapon-wise, there is no "perfect" weapon, at least unless you start getting into some sci-fi stuff. Don't get me wrong, if you can somehow get your hands on a man-portable minigun (or better yet, something like a Schlock Mercenary plasma gun) then you're pretty much set... provided nothing gets the drop on you and nothing ethereal comes after you. But while these things are good, they aren't common. At this point you might as well say "I'm giving everyone Schlock Mercenary Soldier Nannies, Strike Legion standard augments and weapons, and a Phase suit from Hyperion Cantos." You have someone who most probably wouldn't die if they stood still for what they perceived as a few months in front of the Giant Tree, and could very probably solo anything that wasn't a Guardian in terms of power (and arguably, possibly, the avatars of them). But you aren't going to get your hands on it.

Weapons you in general want to focus on man-sized enemies. Giant Predators are generally rare, and if in a group you can afford to have anti-Giant Predator weapons at a one-in-three, one-in-five, or so-on ratio. There you want a mix of magical and mundane stuff. On-off flaming weapons would probably be helpful, since many animals still fear fire by nature. Standard firearms - preferably with a magazine or two enchanted to have magical ammunition - should suffice, if low-tech go with something like a bow or crossbow (or even a spear thrower, just take something with ranged attack potential). Area-effect throwing items would be helpful, personal choice of whether lethal or non-lethal.

Armor... I can't really make any good suggestions there besides "something", since so many different things react so different to armor. A shield would probably be a good investment however: Many people underestimate how much a shield changes how fighting works. It's also rather easy to cast aside if it's bogging you down.
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PostSubject: Re: Best survival equipment in felarya   Sun Jul 01, 2012 11:28 pm

Shady Knight wrote:
Aaaaand you'd be wrong on... pretty much every account that you brought up.

First of all, you're using a lot of D&D equipment, which already makes your claim that said "best equipment" is actually common in Negav less than solid. Second, I would like to remind you that one of the themes of Felarya is survival. Humans and such have the odds stacked against them for a reason. Can you imagine Felarya where traversing half the region on foot is no big deal, and still think it feels the same? Third, the idea of such magic items and weapons, especially the energy sword, is laughable, because such things couldn't possibly be affordable to the common citizens, let alone outsider adventurers.

If you want proof, the Ring of Invisibility is priced at 20 000 gold pieces. If we are to assume that skevols are worth about as much as gp in D&D, then that's 20 000 skevols down the drain for one item. I don't think your common citizen could afford this. The portable hole is also priced at 20 000 gp, so that's another thing you wouldn't easily acquire. The cheapest Bag of Holding is priced at 2500 gp, which is somewhat affordable, but it doesn't store that many items, at most 250 lbs or 30 cubic ft worth of content. In total, you are expecting a common citizen easily afford 42 500 skevol worth of magic items. That's simply not gonna happen.

Well, I find that D&D based equipment is very versitle, and tends to work well in most situations that involve magic. From what I can see of Felarya's magic and magical items, Felarya is in the 90%. And yes, it's all about survival, which means that you would want the best chance to survive. Personally, if I were in Felarya, I'd prefer to survive then get eaten. And even if I was eaten I would want to bring down the predator who ate me. I'll admit that the Ring of Invisibility was a poor choice, though it wouldn't sell for that price on the market...I've yet to see a Ring of Invisibility sell for that much. I mean, you'd only have to be a caster level 3 to make one. =/ Plus the price tends to flux depending on where you go to buy an item. In a city with fewer wizards, it will be higher priced, in a city with a mage's college, along with plenty of magic users passing through, it would cost less.

Now for energy/plasma based weapons. Unless I made a huge miscalculation as to how much tech Negav has, and how much tech it's trading partners provide, then why would an energy based weapon be off limits? I can see major plasma/energy based weapons being off limits. But a small energy based weapon, like a sword or dagger, doesn't seem like it would be off limits. Of course, if Negav's tech hasn't reached the point where they can create an energy based weapon, then yeah, no can do on that. But if it has, then small arms should be available, more expensive then normal metal weapons, but available.

Stabs wrote:
If you've observed the demographic rules in the DMG, you'll see that a metropolis (let's assume Negav is one) has up to 4 wizards of level 1d4+12, so we can assume there's a 13th, a 14th, a 15th, and a 16th level wizard. For each of them, there's twice the number of characters of half that level- so the Wiz-13/14 generate 4 Wiz-7, the Wiz-15/16 generate 4 Wiz-8, and those 8 wizards generate 16 Wiz-4, 32 Wiz-2, and 64 Wiz-1.

Actually, and correct me if I'm wrong here, I was under the impression Negav had some kind of Wizard/Mages College. One that trained both civilian and military wizards. Also, keep in mind that Felarya is already a mid to high level world. The stats in the book are for your average, run of the mill world. It even states that in a world where there is constant danger, like Felarya, your average levels are going to be higher, and in a metropolis with a wizards guild/college/whatever, there are going to be more wizards then normal. Finally, don't forget the foot traffic in Negav. Yes, mostly it's people who don't use magic, but I think we can safely assume that there's a good amount of random wizards and sorcerers wandering around, and I'll bet that a few have even decided to stay and opened up their own shops. I can also safely assume that the wizard's college itself probably has it's own shop to make some extra money on the side, and to give new apprentices and students a bit of work. While the shop wouldn't have major artifacts, I can see the shop having things like a few bag's of holding, scrolls, rings, potions, wands, and other such items.

And yeah, it is best not to be seen. If you run into a giant pred, none of the items I mentioned would help in a fight. Heck, none of the items you would find as a civilian in Negav would really help in a fight like that. The portable hole and plasma/energy blade provides a means of escape...or if you are sick, twisted, and totally crazy, a possible route to the predator's heart and/or other organs...As for armor, I'd personally go for something very light. At the most, a chain shirt or studded leather. The handgun is there for when you run into more Human sized threats.

Ilceren wrote:
Aren't those the two objects that can't be used together? Kinda stupid to carry both around if you can't use the hole due to the bag. Aside from that, I don't like my chars having anything too flashy like total invisibility, a huge object capacity, a hole that can take you out of a stomach and those kinds of convenient things. Also, keep in mind that you are inside the stomach, so if the potion is strong enough to make a giant throw up, just imagine what would it do to you or your clothes...

Yes, yes they are. ^_^ Though to be honest, most people don't know that happens. Really, the only ones who knows what would happen if a bag of holding and portable hole were mixed would be wizards who have been taught in a college/guild/ect., those who have had the misfortune of accidentally mixing the two, those who study magic in depth, and possibly Canopy Fairies (considering their teleporting magic revolves around the principals that cause the rift to open). And there normally isn't a warning label. Your average person, be they adventurer or head of state, wouldn't know how dangerous the two are when combined. And yeah, a potion like that would ruin a set of clothes, and would probably hurt you too...but which is better? Being digested alive, or losing a set of clothes? Razz And yes, I wouldn't give a character any of this stuff, unless they were one of those characters that are supposed to be super strong for some reason or another. But this is for you. Like if you were to go to Negav, what equipment would you want to bring that you could find in Negav's markets?
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PostSubject: Re: Best survival equipment in felarya   Mon Jul 02, 2012 5:30 am

Aaaaand you are missing the point entirely. It doesn't matter if the weapon uses plasma or energy as its projectile or blade, the fact remains that it's miles stronger and than a bullet or metal blade. Such powerful weaponry would remain in the hands of the Vishmitals and maybe the Isolon Fist. You are under the impression that Negav citizens routinely leave the safety of the city. It may be true for certain trips, but 9/10 citizens would remain in the city because, as even you said it, it gives them the best chance to survive. In fact, most adventurers are not native to Felarya, and as such, aren't technically citizens, so the ruling parties don't see much investing in them. After all, they are out to find treasure and fame for their own personal agenda, and they are very likely to die trying.

As for giving yourself the best chance of survival, you misunderstand the point yet again. This is not to say that humans are puny and should always have a hard time, no, far from it. But instead, that they should overcome something that seems impossible. Which of those two seem the most interesting to read to you? The guy decked head to toe in magic gear that makes him borderline undetectable and possess weaponry that can take down 100 ft monstrosities with little effort in ideal scenarios, or the guy with the bow and arrow that meticulously avoid danger through knowledge of the wild life, cunning and determination?

Furthermore, as an addendum, going out in Felarya's wilderness is beyond suicidal. Even with the "best equipment", you'd only need to be pinned by one giant wolf-like monster, and you may as well be dead already. You need companions to keep watch on each other. Having a lot of great equipment is nice and all, but you still can't do everything, which is why having teammates with their own specialties will help you survive.

For example, if you have a tracker with you, he could tell you if a dangerous beast is nearby, something you alone wouldn't be able to to. If you have a healer, he'd keep the team healthy, as tending injuries wastes time and leaves you vulnerable. If you have an illusionist, he could keep you hidden, increasing the odds of escaping a serious threat. Getting all the magic items to do what they can do is fine and all, but you're most likely not a master at multitasking, and whatever those items do, your teammates can probably do more tricks that is much more effective in other scenarios. And furthermore, should one of them be in danger, then you have the possibility of rescue, as while one is pinned down, the others could be free, allowing them to save their buddy.



Reiteration: I realized I explained myself poorly on this case, so let me add another argument. Negav, for all intents and purposes, is a market town at the moment. Considering its placement, it's in an interdimensional hub, meaning they can easily trade with multiple worlds. Citizens are more likely to work for the sake of these trades than for the sake of adventurers, whom as I said before, are in Felarya for their own reasons. Is it possible for an adventurer to have a plasma rifle? Yes, but you're not gonna find any at Ye Olde Pawn Shop across the street. Rather it'd be weapon the guy was carrying with him at the time. Could you find some on the black market? Possibly, but that brings all the risks involving trades with the black market. A citizen won't bother with it, because s/he won't need it. That's not to say that no one would use adventurers for their income. Pretty much every Negavian in the Lower Tier does that. Magic items certainly would be present, but they'd be quite a lot more expensive than your assault rifle or shotgun (such thing would be purchasable after all), and again, you can't bank on them to get you out of every situation.

As for survival, I'm quite positive Karbo would prefer that Felarya remains highly dangerous for everyone, and that getting eaten is a serious situation (in-universe), something to be avoided at all cost with little chance get out of alive. The laser sword is fine, but if you bring it specifically as a "get out of gut free" card, then the implication that the authorial force is keeping the character alive becomes all the more blatant.
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PostSubject: Re: Best survival equipment in felarya   Tue Jul 03, 2012 8:07 am

Technically, most modern firearms would be enough to at least annoy a Giant Predator. I mean, a basic 9mm handgun wouldn't hurt much unless you shot them in the eye / exposed crotch (well, it WOULD hurt, but not enough to distract them), but if you and another guy took an AK-47 and started going full auto on their body / hand? Imagine someone taking a hot needle, sticking it in you, then swirling the tip. Now imagine that being done a couple dozen times in a few seconds. Size and healing aura mean you're unlikely to kill them, but you might very well be able to discourage the Giant Predator from chasing you (or at least from eating you alive).

Similarly, if using enchanted arrows from D&D or the like, you could probably get a comparable result. Recall that D&D has some very interesting magical bows: Those that shoot bolts of lightning, those that are specifically enchanted to do explodey goodness on Giants, etcetera. These and the above firearms would still be rather rare in Negav, but I imagine that - should funds not be a problem - you could at least feasibly acquire them.

The reason I was writing off Schlock stuff as a wet dream is, well, it's a wet dream. Your odds of getting your hands on someone with Soldier Nannies, Power Armor, and a Plasma Gun are slim-to-nil outside someone from Schlock-verse coming in person, and in that case you might as well just skip ahead to the plot point wherein said Schlock dude's retired in Negav from the fortune he made vaporizing everything that got in his way. This is from a mix of canonical reasons (not many people who come to Felarya are that advanced) and thematic reasons (as Shade mentioned: Felarya's often about survival, whether following demi-humans or Giant Predators. The mechanics of survival change, but the stories don't work as "[x] runs around being awesome").
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PostSubject: Re: Best survival equipment in felarya   Sat Jul 07, 2012 11:30 am

Hang on! I think we got it, Nergal.

But fiiiiIIiirst... [/TheMask]

Darth_Nergal wrote:
Actually, and correct me if I'm wrong here, I was under the impression Negav had some kind of Wizard/Mages College. One that trained both civilian and military wizards. Also, keep in mind that Felarya is already a mid to high level world. The stats in the book are for your average, run of the mill world. It even states that in a world where there is constant danger, like Felarya, your average levels are going to be higher, and in a metropolis with a wizards guild/college/whatever, there are going to be more wizards then normal. Finally, don't forget the foot traffic in Negav. Yes, mostly it's people who don't use magic, but I think we can safely assume that there's a good amount of random wizards and sorcerers wandering around, and I'll bet that a few have even decided to stay and opened up their own shops. I can also safely assume that the wizard's college itself probably has it's own shop to make some extra money on the side, and to give new apprentices and students a bit of work. While the shop wouldn't have major artifacts, I can see the shop having things like a few bag's of holding, scrolls, rings, potions, wands, and other such items.


Stand back, I'm going to do NOT SCIENCE!:
 

Seriously, though, don't count on rods or rings: at least one of the creators needs to waste a feat available at 9th level. You want to go for magical items, go for the Potions/Scrolls/Wondrous Items/Arms&Armor/Wands maybe. You want them to be publicly available, keep CL under 6th. Each of them takes 1 day per 1000 gp of market price- and don't make anything over 7000 gp.

Armor and weapons be tricky too. Nobody wants a padded armor +2 or a ranseur +1! Those things better be made to order only.

P.S: I used to play with the D&D rules meself a little- I remember when I created the Aether Slayer arrows. They're +1 incorporeal bane (if there is a Shifter's Sorrow, I can make incorporeal bane arrows) and ghost touch. 18000 gp... but houseruled that the ghost touch is implicit in the incorporeal bane; no point in dealing +2d6 damage 50% of the time, right lol? Wink Besides, that's the price for 50 arrows. Split 50 arrows between 10 people, and you get 5 rounds of 10 attacks with those arrows yo! Enhancement for projectile and launcher doesn't stack, so you're all good.

On the same subject, according to the Arms&Equipment guide, the most expensive mercenary equipment, barring magic, is 1671 gp. Which is interesting- supposedly, the 3.5 money system was meant to keep PC power under check while allowing them to be reasonably wealthy. Geez, I should probably stop thinking about them gps...

=====

So... speaking of energy weapons, Nergal, I think you're right in some roundabout way. I reviewed my notes- best weapon you could bring is an industrial strength taser. Touch 'em and finish them off with whatever suits your style. As long as you can retain the weapon and use it quickly enough, you'll be good: they're light, solid, fast to bring in, not usually maintenance-heavy. Stun 'em and slit 'em throats while they're down- or not.

Ilceren brought to my attention there's a weapon that can work as good as a flamethrower- a flaming weapon. I know what I said about 7000 gp being the limit, but thanks to the existence of the everburning tree, maybe you don't need a wizard to make yourself a burning weapon; just make a wooden sword with a steel edge, or a steel sword with wood grooves. Nothing likes fire either, so unsheathing the thing may get most animals to sod off.


You already mentioned you know that we're supposed to stay gritty, so I guess there's no need to keep drilling it about the point of survival horror.

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