Wednesday, March 8, 2023

Further Mysteries of the Forgotten Edition

 Let's look deeper into DRAGONFIST the forgotten editon of Dungeons and Dragons!

The 1st level Wizard spells


Charm Person

Cobra's Breath

Detect Magic

Elemental Charm

Give Me Face!

Iron Scarf

Light of Yang

Read Magic

Scales of the Lizard

Suppress Magic

c'mon... how cool are some of those names, and those are just 1st level spells ?!

Here's just one of them: 

Give Me Face! (Yang)


Range: touch

Components: V,M

Duration: 1 turn/level

Casting Time: Fa(6)

Area of Effect: Creature touched

Saving Throw: None

"Face" is a very important concept in Tianguo. "Giving face" means showing the proper respect, and denying a powerful figure his or her due is a grave error. This spell surrounds the recipient with an aura of power and prestige. While it is in effect, the recipient receives a +4 bonus to all Charm feats related to social position and power. This is most useful in social situations.

The reverse lose face, makes the recipient appear foolish and ill-mannered and confers a -4 penalty on his or her Charm feats. The material component for either version is a small porcelain mask.


There's some flavor and a lot that should be familiar to D&D players but "+4 bonus to all Charm feats"... excuse me what? That's right just a year before 3e there was a version of D&D where the term "feats" meant something different than it would in 3rd and later editions.

Now here was an editing problem in Dragonfist the rules seem to mention Stunts and Feats interchangeably as the same rule mechanic...some of the time. Stunts are actions you resolve in dramatic ways!  Really they are ability checks vs a Target Number. They are rolled with 1d20+ stunt bonus based on the related ability score. Might Feats... oh I mean Stunts are tied to Strength, Acrobatics to Dexterity, Fortitude to Constitution, Savvy to Intelligence, Insight to Wisdom, and Charm to Charisma.  Now here's what I find curious...why name each stunt type separate as each is tied to an ability and each ability only has one stunt type?   The stunt bonus granted by an ability score isn't a flat score however, it is a die range so a player will never be sure just how effective their bonus genuinely is. 

Oh even cooler you are seemingly supposed to narratively justify getting to use your stunt bonus. It's got to be cool to use it. But... in application it looks like they are pretty constant except of course you can only normally only apply one stunt a round! So it's effectively the Strength Bonus or the Dexterity Bonus during a round of combat depending on what type of Stunt a character is attempting in a round. A player has to work to involve all their ability score they aren't an automatic gimmie. You have to play the role to get the benefit of the numbers in play... c'mon how great is that!

Feats are task resolution of a stunt roll vs a target number... so really the same thing as a stunt.  

A character gets to boost 1 stunt every odd level including 1st level so this is where some of a character's mechanical advancement and customization will be. 

Interestingly enough your Hit Point bonus for high Constitution isn't permanent it only exists on rounds the character decided to tough it out with a fortitude stunt to give them extra HP that round.

Yang... it's up there in parens next to the spell name. That shows if the spell relates to Yin or Yang. Yin is the reactive power of the cosmos, Yang is the active power of the cosmos. The duality of yin/yang is important to the default (and assumed) setting. Surely this will be important at some point.

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