NEW SPELL: Needle of the Sun

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Sorcerer/Wizard Spell (Evocation)

Also known as the arrow of Nergal, the caster of this spell gathers a mote of solar energy in their hand and hurls it with tremendous speed and penetrative power.

The projectile travels in a straight line and creatures in its path must succeed a Dexterity saving throw to avoid being struck. The spell inflicts 1d6 radiant damage per caster level to the first target, minus one die of damage for each subsequent creature or object the projectile passes through. The projectile also ignites any flammable object or material it strikes.

needle of the sun will continue travelling until it either passes through so many targets that its damage potential drops to zero or it reaches a maximum range of 100 feet, plus 10 feet per caster level.

This spell cannot be cast at night or whenever the sun is obscured.

CROOKED KILLERS

The wrack-glass is a dreadful artifact. It appears as a mirror, taller than a man, bound in a frame of tarnished silver. When one looks upon it, their reflection looks normal at first, but rapidly begins to twist and deform, taking on a malevolent aspect. Some scholars of the occult surmise that this vision represents the viewer’s darkest thoughts and impulses.

If one gazes into the wrack-glass too long, the grotesque image in the mirror is embodied in the viewer’s flesh and spirit. These warped beings are the custodians of the wrack-glass, and the crooked killers are the most militant of this cabal.

Despite their warped bodies and gnarled limbs, crooked killers are swift and lithe. They are cruel and cunning opponents, attacking from ambush to inflict maximum injury while minimizing their risk.

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CROOKED KILLER
Medium humanoid (human), neutral evil


Armor Class: 17
Hit Points: 28 (5d6+10)
Speed 35 ft.


Str 13 | Dex  17 | Con 15 | Int 14 | Wis 10 | Cha 6

Skills: Acrobatics +6, Intimidate +6, Stealth +8, Perception +5
Passive Perception 15


Twisted Anatomy A crooked killer has Advantage on ability checks to resist grapples and escape from bonds or confinement. As part of a move action, they can squeeze through spaces two size categories below their own.

Crooked Fighting A crooked killer deals an additional 2d6 damage against an opponent when attacking with Advantage.

Mirror Madness Crooked killer are compelled to smash or otherwise destroy any mirror in their vicinity. They will suffer Disadvantage on all rolls in the presence of an intact mirror. Should a crooked killer see their own reflection, they must succeed a DC 15 Wisdom saving throw or move away from the reflective surface as far as possible.


ACTIONS

Serrated blade +5 melee (1d6+2 slashing damage, can score a critical hit on 19-20)

Barbed dagger +5 melee/ranged (1d4+2 piercing damage, can score a critical hit on 19-20, 20 ft. range)

Multiattack A crooked killer makes one serrated blade and one barbed dagger attack.

Twisting Parry As a reaction to being hit with a melee attack, a crooked killer can substitute their armor class with an attack roll. If their roll is greater than their attacker’s, the crooked killer can redirect the attack to another creature adjacent to them.

Tortuous Gaze If a creature starts its turn within 15 feet of the crooked killer and the two of them can see each other, the killer can force the creature to make a DC 13 Constitution saving throw if the crooked killer isn’t incapacitated. On a failed save, the creature suffers painful muscle spasms that halves its movement speed and grants Disadvantage on Dexterity and Strength based rolls and checks. The creature can make another save at the start of its next turn to end the effect.

NEPHILIM

Is it just me, or is ‘aasimar’ a poor design choice?

I’m just talking about the word itself, which appears to have no connection to any real-world myth or legend, near as I can tell. Considering that the aasimar first appeared in Planescape, maybe it was part of the re-branding effort that saw devils and demons become ‘baatezu’ and ‘tanar’ri’ to divorce D&D from the Satanic Panic of 80s.

Ironically, a better term for the hybrid offspring of mortals and divine beings can be found in the Bible:

The Nephilim were on the earth in those days—and also afterward—when the sons of God went in to the daughters of humans, who bore children to them. These were the heroes that were of old, warriors of renown. Genesis 6:4 (NRSV)

There we saw the Nephilim (the Anakites come from the Nephilim); and to ourselves we seemed like grasshoppers, and so we seemed to them. Numbers 13:33 (NRSV)

Ability Score Increases: Nephilim gain a +2 bonus to their Wisdom score and a +1 bonus to their Strength score.

Alignment: Any.

Age: Nephilim reach maturity at same time as humans, but they have lifespans measured in centuries.

Size: Nephilim are Medium-sized creatures. 

Speed: Nephilim have a base walking speed of 30 feet.

Celestial Legacy: Nephilim know the resistance cantrip. At 3rd level, they can cast command once and regain the ability after completing a long rest. When they reach 5th level, a nephilim can cast fear once and regain the ability after completing a long rest.

Divine might: Nephilim count as Large-sized creatures for the purposes of calculating how much they can lift, carry, and push. They also count as Large-sized creatures when subjected to forced movement effects and when attempting a forced movement effect against another creature.

Giant Presence: Nephilim gain proficiency in Persuasion and Intimidation.

NEPHILIM WARRIOR OF RENOWN

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photograph by Annie Leibovitz

Adventurers might encounter an individual from an earlier generation of nephilim, with a closer connection to their divine forebears.

Large humanoid (celestial)

AC: 18 (heavy armor) | HP: 110 (10 Hit Dice) | Speed: 30 ft.

Str: 19 | Dex: 11 | Con: 16 | Int: 12 | Wis: 14 | Cha: 15

Actions

Multiattack: The nephilim makes two attacks with their broadsword.

Broadsword melee weapon attack +7, 10 ft. reach, 1d10+4 slashing damage.

Cast a Spell: The nephilim can cast spells as a 10th level paladin.

What’s this Nephilim’s Deal? (Roll 1d8):

1 – There is Only War: They want nothing more than to crush enemies, drive them before them, and hear the lamentations of somebody. (Neutral Evil)

2 – Mayhem: They just want to watch the world burn. (Chaotic Evil)

3 – Melancholia: They’ve seen it happen before, and they’ll probably see it happen again. (Chaotic Neutral)

4 – Word is Bond: They’re upholding an oath that was sworn long ago and remains undischarged. (Lawful Neutral)

5 – Gimme the Prize: They’re always on the search for a new challenge. (Chaotic Good)

6 – Enlightened: If they could change, then anyone can change. (Neutral Good)

7 – Service is Love: They’ll put everything on the line for a just cause. (Lawful Good)

8 – I am the Way: Only they know what is right for these foolish mortals. (Lawful Evil)

Witchskin (New Magic Item)

A close-fitting, full body garment made from the cured and tattooed hide of a magic-user.

Wearing a witchskin provides physical protection equivalent to leather/light armor. Also, it grants the wearer Advantage on saving throws to resist enchantments and curses.

However, the witchskin exudes a rancid stench that imposes Disadvantage on the wearer’s skill checks to hide. Depending on the circumstances, a character wearing a witchskin may also experience Disadvantage in social encounters since, you know, they’re wearing someone else’s skin.