13 True Ways – Druid

So due to a change in plans, I didn’t get to play Werewolf 20A as planned. Which is sad because I’m really, really looking forward to starting that game. But we still got some game time in as my boyfriend took the opportunity to gather the players that could still make it for a 13th Age one shot. (As an aside, I’ve really marveled at just how well both 13th Age and Numenera have worked out for setting up quick one shots. There’s something to be said for simpler character creation rules, as well as easier session planning.)

I took the opportunity to give the Druid class from 13 True Ways a try. Now this was interesting for a number of reasons. For one, I haven’t gotten to see any of these classes in action just yet, and the other two players gravitated to other new classes. (Necromancer and Monk in particular.) Just having read over them though, I’ve had the feeling that by and large all of these classes are more experimental. They had a longer play testing period for a reason. They don’t play by even remotely the same mechanics are the original set of classes, and it shows. The Druid stands out possibly most of all. In order to capture the sheer variety the D&D Druid has had over the ages, they let you choose your class talents from several options, which very much determine what KIND of druid you are. Letting you be an Adept in one type, and an Initiate in another. Basically meaning you’ll get the best of being one kind, and a bit of another. Your choices being elemental magic, terrain casting, healing, shape shifting, animal companion, and warrior. (I THINK that’s all of them, might have left one out. Typing from memory.) With this much variety, it’s very likely you could play half a dozen druids and none feel all that similar at all.

I made my Druid a Terrain Caster Adept, and a Wild Healer Initiate. Meaning I got access to a set of spells based on my location, as well as a bit of healing ability.

The Terrain Caster Adept gets a number of Daily spells they can use, but their spell list is dependent on the type of terrain they’re in. This is left fairly broad, for example if on a forested mountain, you’d have access to daily spells in both the Forest and Mountain categories. In fact a number of staple Druid spells found their way into this list, including Call Lightening. Each terrain also has a number of feats associated with it, that will unlock At-Will and Per Battle spells. (Awesome note, Koru Behemoth IS a terrain. In fact I pulled the Whoomph spell from it’s Adventurer feat. It does about what you’d expect!) I was a little worried about having too few spells to pull, but we started at level 5 for this one shot, and I used three of my feats to have two At-Will and one Per-Battle spell to fall back on.

The Druid’s healing style ends up feeling very distinct from the Cleric. Where as the Cleric can simply use Heal to let a PC spend a Recovery, the Druid can cast regeneration as an interrupt on an ally (or quick action on themselves.) On the target’s next turn, they spend a Recovery, but only gain half of the HP they would normally receive. On the beginning of their next turn however, they would gain the other half, and have the chance to keep the Regeneration going. This is a normal save (11+) or a hard save (16+) depending on if they have made it to max HP or not. Meaning it’s possible to get a lot of mileage out of a Druid’s heals. As an Initiate however, I only had one use of Regeneration Per Battle, and a second one I could use Daily.

The short version is, I had a lot of fun! The other players seemed to really enjoy their classes as well. This was the first higher level game I’ve played in rather than ran, and the system continues to be fun, even as the abilities and damage gear up. Though I did find myself taking average on the bulk of my dice rolls. (Which by the time your basic attacks entail rolling 5 dice, it just makes sense in the name of time to do so.)

In fact my favorite thing about my current gaming group(s) is that I’m getting a lot of time sitting down as a player as well as a GM and it’s pretty refreshing.

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