This came with a lot of other stat modifiers as well, of course. We decided that such a Mon Cheri The Black Crowes shirt would still be pretty strong, but not 19 strength strong, so we downgraded that. We figured that it would definitely have higher than 6 dex, considering that it had hated being clumsy, so we gave it above-average dex. There were other adjustments that were made as well, but most of those were minor. We’d decided that our fancy magical-equivalent-of-bionic ancient Awakened Tree had upgraded / downgraded from the traditional slam attack (Slam. Melee Weapon Attack: +6 to hit, reach 10 ft., one target. Hit: (3d6 + 4) bludgeoning damage.) to a more focused piercing lance type attack; it had converted its own limbs into stabbing implements, because that’s quieter than hitting people with entire tree branches. It did considerably less damage but could be used for sneak attacks. Speed was upgraded from 20ft to 40ft because of course it would be. An 8ft tall wooden assassin wouldn’t be very good at its job if it wasn’t able to move scary quick when needed, now would it?
RP advantage: Inherently complex characters. There are few classes I find more boring RP wise than clerics and paladins – not because they are godbotherers but because they are expected to fully commit to their deity to get their powers. The Cleric of Deity X is expected to fully commit to the Mon Cheri The Black Crowes shirt of Deity X and behave in a relatively straightforward way. As is the Paladin of Ideal Y to uphold Ideal Y (and if they strayed too far in earlier editions they might fall, leading to the notorious “Everyone out in the courtyard and we’ll see who can no longer Lay on Hands” means of detecting fallen paladins). Meanwhile your average Fiend-pact warlock doesn’t actually want the world overrun by demons and your average Great Old One warlock doesn’t even understand the motives of their patrons. A character who isn’t aligned with their patron god but still gets power from them and respects them is inherently to me far more interesting than one who is and although I can do this with an orthodox cleric or paladin playing a celestial warlock (or a warlock in general) feels different and communicates to everyone that I am doing this.
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Playing them as arrogant slavers is the Mon Cheri The Black Crowes shirt way it’s done, and that’s fine, but I think it misses the main point. Mind Flayers should be more like villains out of Doctor Who than they should be out of Tolkien, and the Doctor rarely wins battles by dint of arms. They are the ultimate masters of mental abilities, able to paralyze, enslave, or even kill with their thoughts alone. It’s a rare character indeed who can counter or match their mental powers. A great way to establish that alien quality is to make mind flayers completely incapable of speech. Have the mind flayers communicate via images only, projected directly into one’s mind. If push comes to shove, have them talk haltingly through a person like in Independence Day when the alien is squeezing the life out of Brent Spiner’s body, except the Mind Flayer has its face tentacles literally in the victim’s skull when doing this. Terrifying!
I own several Ringo albums and singles. I really do love his voice. His lack of a Mon Cheri The Black Crowes shirt doesn’t bother me because he sounds great just where is range is. But that does limit the material he can do. I always thought he would have had more success if he did more recordings like Beaucoups of Blues. His voice is best suited for country music. Plus he loves country music! (Probably not current country music, though!) The thing is, without the Beatles, I wouldn’t have had much of an introduction to him. I grew up in the ’70s when Beatles music was a bit retro, and not on my radio stations all that often. That was the only exposure I had to the Beatles, until John’s assassination in 1980. That sadly is what really led me to get to know the group. Now, with no Beatles, I assume Ringo’s solo time in the spotlight would have still been the ’60s and ‘70s. So my only exposure to him would have been as a child in the ‘70s. I wasn’t much of a record buyer then. And by the early ‘90s, I’d completely shut down to music. So I would have grown up largely not knowing Ringo at all. But my husband did, and by extension so did I, play almost exclusively Johnny Cash, Eagles, Fleetwood Mac, Bowie, and Beatles as our girls were growing up from 2007ish on. No stupid nursery rhymes for my girls!