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TomCosta
Forgotten Realms Designer

USA
449 Posts

Posted - 09 Mar 2017 :  16:56:40  Show Profile Send TomCosta a Private Message  Reply with Quote  Delete Topic
Hi all, I've posted my DM's Guild title, Forgotten Characters of the Realms.

http://www.dmsguild.com/product/207031/Forgotten-Characters-of-the-Realms?src=newest_in_dmg

Its 101 pages of 5e characters options based grounded in the lore of earlier editions of the Realms. The table of contents is available in the preview. Here's the intro....

A reincarnated avenger, having lived a hundred lives, returns again to battle the wicked assassins of Set among the Plains of Purple Dust. A lone wolf scout in the Forest of Tethir tracks down his marauding prey among the dark boughs. In the Underdark, an ooze takes on humanoid form to converse with a marble-skinned human woman, who is not quite… human. A cleric of Sune frolics, while a warlock of Cyric plots. A High Old One of Dumathoin's body starts to calcify as he begins his transformation into a deathless thorsamsonn. All while the Jordain bodyguard disrupts the magical bolt of force launched at his elder Halruaan lord. A dwarven berserker, a lewd song on her lips, flips over the tail of a hydra while smashing her greatsword into the monstrosity’s flank. All of these characters have a home in the Forgotten Realms of Faerûn. This ancient world has come out of a century of upheaval, but is still in dire need of heroes like you.

Well met fellow boldblades. This supplement offers several new character options for the 5th edition of Dungeons & Dragons, grounded in earlier editions of the Forgotten Realms, but useable in almost any setting. In addition to the Player's Handbook (PH), Dungeon Master's Guide (DMG), and Monster Manual (MM), this supplement references material in free Wizards of the Coast “Unearthed Arcana” website articles and free DM’s Guild products such as Elemental Evil Player's Companion (EE), and though the following are not needed, Sword Coast Adventurer’s Guide (SCAD) and Volo’s Guide to Monsters (VGtM). Some spells noted below are known by different names and have a corresponding change in their description as indicated in parentheses following the spell's PH name. These descriptive differences have no effect on the spells mechanics unless noted. I hope you enjoy these new options. Please send any constructive feedback to THOMASC148@aol.com, so I can continue to improve on what I've started. Thank you for your interest.

Thomas M. Costa has been an avid fan of Dungeons & Dragons and other roleplaying games from the age of 7 when his big brother introduced him to the first edition of Advanced Dungeons & Dragons. From 1998 through 2008, Thomas was a regular contributor to and game designer for the Forgotten Realms and other Dungeons & Dragons products, with credits that included: Demihuman Deities (1998), Races of Faerûn (2003), Dragons of Faerûn (2006), Grand History of the Realms (2007), and 10 other game products; 13 Wizards of the Coast website articles; 12 Dragon Magazine articles; and 3 fan-based Forgotten Realms supplements co-written with Eric L. Boyd. From 1999-2001, Thomas also created several fan-based supplements for the Marvel Super Heroes “SAGA” Adventure Game.

Edited by - TomCosta on 09 Mar 2017 16:57:25

Brimstone
Great Reader

USA
2905 Posts

Posted - 09 Mar 2017 :  17:40:47  Show Profile Send Brimstone a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Sword Coast Adventurer’s Guide (SCAD)

Shouldn't that D be a G?

Looks fantastic.

"These things also I have observed: that knowledge of our world is
to be nurtured like a precious flower, for it is the most precious
thing we have. Wherefore guard the word written and heed
words unwritten and set them down ere they fade . . . Learn
then, well, the arts of reading, writing, and listening true, and they
will lead you to the greatest art of all: understanding."
Alaundo of Candlekeep
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TomCosta
Forgotten Realms Designer

USA
449 Posts

Posted - 09 Mar 2017 :  17:47:32  Show Profile Send TomCosta a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Why yes, yes it should. Thanks for the catch. I'll make that edit in the next iteration.
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TomCosta
Forgotten Realms Designer

USA
449 Posts

Posted - 09 Mar 2017 :  17:48:40  Show Profile Send TomCosta a Private Message  Reply with Quote
And thanks. Hope you all like it.
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TomCosta
Forgotten Realms Designer

USA
449 Posts

Posted - 09 Mar 2017 :  18:05:49  Show Profile Send TomCosta a Private Message  Reply with Quote
One last thing, any comments are welcome.
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sleyvas
Great Reader

USA
5945 Posts

Posted - 11 Mar 2017 :  15:36:05  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I like what I see in the preview file. $10 is a big hit though for just a PDF though, especially when I may only want portions of it. Not saying it isn't good work and that its not huge (this is actually the kind of supplement I like, something with enough rules that I can point to players and say "you can use that book"). Also, not saying that I myself am not a cheapskate. There's only been one guy though that I've been impressed enough by his work that I was willing to drop more than $5 on his stuff and that's the guys doing all the "bestiary of " stuff, and that's only because the first couple books were really good. I may not be the norm though.... hell, I'm the idiot that made a 100+ page supplement of rules and stuck it up as pay what you want such that hundreds have downloaded it for free. Personally, though, I'd wonder if you might not make more money by dropping it to $4 and getting more people willing to buy it. But then, for all I know, there's a ton of folks pirating this stuff or something.

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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TomCosta
Forgotten Realms Designer

USA
449 Posts

Posted - 11 Mar 2017 :  17:05:38  Show Profile Send TomCosta a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Thanks for the comments. I figured $10 is about 10 cents/page, way less than what I'd get from writing a magazine article or contract and also much cheaper per page than most DM's Guild stuff, so I figured it's a fair rate. We'll see.
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Arivia
Great Reader

Canada
2879 Posts

Posted - 11 Mar 2017 :  19:58:14  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Sweet Tom! I don't even play 5e but I'll definitely be picking this up.
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TomCosta
Forgotten Realms Designer

USA
449 Posts

Posted - 11 Mar 2017 :  22:04:00  Show Profile Send TomCosta a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Thanks. Fair warning though that while I've reiterated much and added some lore, since it's focused on character options (races and classes mostly), it is very much a 5E product.
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idilippy
Senior Scribe

USA
405 Posts

Posted - 11 Mar 2017 :  22:52:23  Show Profile Send idilippy a Private Message  Reply with Quote
$10 is more than I'd usually pay for a product on DMs Guild but I've given this one a chance. At 101 pdf pages it's a pretty good sized product for the price. No bookmarks, and the first page seems to have a slight text error as the phrase "A reincarnated avenger" is bold, and slightly larger font, than the rest of the paragraphs on the page which are italicized.

The table of contents is linked, nice! No bookmarks but this really makes it easier to flip through a product. Looks like it has 21 races, 2 classes, a bunch of subclasses, and even a prestige class: the Spellfire channeler. Cool to see the Incantrix and all the Cleric domains.

I'll have to dig in deeper to see if the mechanics seem to line up, I don't know 5e that well so I can't tell at a glance if something looks too powerful or weak. So far so good though, I'm sure I'll use this pdf if I'm able to convince a group to do a game in the Realms using 5e rules.
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TomCosta
Forgotten Realms Designer

USA
449 Posts

Posted - 12 Mar 2017 :  01:23:54  Show Profile Send TomCosta a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Thanks so much idilippy. I hope it meets your expectations and you find it useful. Please let me know what you think. I'm always willing to consider changes to make it better.

There are 21 new races and subraces, 41 new subclass options, 3 new classes and prestige classes, 5 backgrounds, 7 feats, 18 new spells, and other bits (like a few new monsters, equipment, magic items, etc.).

The intro font was on purpose--meant to be an artistic flourish similar to the intro to the PH's Preface.

I'm not sure how to create bookmarks, but that's why I went nuts with the table of contents and the hyperlinks within the document. Hopefully that makes up for it. :-)
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KanzenAU
Senior Scribe

Australia
742 Posts

Posted - 14 Mar 2017 :  00:45:58  Show Profile Send KanzenAU a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Congrats on making it into the Top 10 Hottest on DM's Guild Tom!

I had the pleasure of having an early look at this for editing purposes (though due to time I was unfortunately little help), and I can speak to the huge amount of effort that Tom must have put into this. It's a massive document with a tonne of fun stuff in it, and well worth the money in my opinion.

Regional maps for Waterdeep, Triboar, Ardeep Forest, and Cormyr on DM's Guild, plus a campaign sized map for the North
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TomCosta
Forgotten Realms Designer

USA
449 Posts

Posted - 14 Mar 2017 :  15:25:41  Show Profile Send TomCosta a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Thanks. On the one hand I'm shocked by how few units one needs to sell to make the top 10. ;-) On the other and more sincerely, I'm very grateful to all those who have expressed an interest and given it a chance. Thank you everyone.

And KanzenAU thanks for all your help. You helped make it more balance, more readable, and just a better product. I really appreciate all your help.

Edited by - TomCosta on 14 Mar 2017 15:30:55
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George Krashos
Master of Realmslore

Australia
4906 Posts

Posted - 15 Mar 2017 :  02:17:15  Show Profile Send George Krashos a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Not to burst your balloon Tom, but their "Top 10" algorithm is based on time as well as sales. As time goes on, unless your sales keep pace, you'll drop out. But I hope you don;t as your work is awesome.

-- George Krashos

"Because only we, contrary to the barbarians, never count the enemy in battle." -- Aeschylus
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TomCosta
Forgotten Realms Designer

USA
449 Posts

Posted - 15 Mar 2017 :  18:52:23  Show Profile Send TomCosta a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Thanks George. I appreciate the support, and good to know on the algorithm.
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TomCosta
Forgotten Realms Designer

USA
449 Posts

Posted - 21 Mar 2017 :  00:00:05  Show Profile Send TomCosta a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Hey all, just wanted to say thanks again and say I'd love some more feedback or even a review on DMs Guild. Thanks, Tom
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Diffan
Great Reader

USA
3414 Posts

Posted - 21 Mar 2017 :  15:27:48  Show Profile Send Diffan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Consider it purchased! I'm reading through and I have to say that I really like what I'm reading so far. The distinction between those born of Shadow (Shadar-kai and Shades) is really intriguing. Going through the Class section and I haven't come across anything glaring overpowered and the designers notes (and suggestions based on power) is really appreciative.

4E Realms = Great Taste, Less Filling.

"If WotC were to put out a box of free money, people would still complain how it was folded."
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TomCosta
Forgotten Realms Designer

USA
449 Posts

Posted - 21 Mar 2017 :  22:09:49  Show Profile Send TomCosta a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Thanks so much. I appreciate you taking a look. I realized that despite the changes to the shadar-kai across editions (also looking at the shadowswyfts and krinth) that mechanically they actually had a lot in common with the shades, so then it became an exercise in figuring what was common to the shadowborn races versus the two subraces and then focusing on how each dealt with living in shadow -- the shadar-kai constantly fighting against the enervating shadow while the shades embraced it as the nature of life. It's definitely one of the things I'm happiest with.
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Diffan
Great Reader

USA
3414 Posts

Posted - 22 Mar 2017 :  17:22:54  Show Profile Send Diffan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by TomCosta

Thanks so much. I appreciate you taking a look. I realized that despite the changes to the shadar-kai across editions (also looking at the shadowswyfts and krinth) that mechanically they actually had a lot in common with the shades, so then it became an exercise in figuring what was common to the shadowborn races versus the two subraces and then focusing on how each dealt with living in shadow -- the shadar-kai constantly fighting against the enervating shadow while the shades embraced it as the nature of life. It's definitely one of the things I'm happiest with.



Well I think you did a great job. One of the things that 4E sort of missed with the Shadar-Kai was their extremism in regards to their feelings. It's a reason why many of them are tattooed and have piercings, not just as decorative art but because it's painful and something you're constantly aware of.

I'm planning on running a 5e conversion of White Plume Mountain (set in the Realms, though I'm not sure if it'll be due south of Iriaebor next to the Troll Mountains OR just south of Neverwinter next to the Sword Mountains) and I'm allowing my players to select options from the document. One player has expressed a desire to play a Cleric, which is great because so many Domains were added (thanks!) and the other is still up in the air.

4E Realms = Great Taste, Less Filling.

"If WotC were to put out a box of free money, people would still complain how it was folded."
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TomCosta
Forgotten Realms Designer

USA
449 Posts

Posted - 23 Mar 2017 :  02:07:10  Show Profile Send TomCosta a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Thanks. I'll be very interested in any feedback you all have after playtesting, especially if you have ideas on how to make anything better.
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TomCosta
Forgotten Realms Designer

USA
449 Posts

Posted - 04 Apr 2017 :  20:49:48  Show Profile Send TomCosta a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Hi all,
I'm hoping to post an update in the next few weeks (so far only editorial and minor tweaks) and would love to incorporate any feedback you might have. Thanks,
Tom
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TomCosta
Forgotten Realms Designer

USA
449 Posts

Posted - 16 Apr 2017 :  14:07:22  Show Profile Send TomCosta a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Update posted. Would really appreciate some more reviews and feedback. And thanks for your support. Tom
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Cards77
Senior Scribe

USA
550 Posts

Posted - 08 May 2017 :  02:58:32  Show Profile Send Cards77 a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Any interest in having someone convert these for use with 3.x and/or Pathfinder? I would be willing to do it for free. Would be a long term project obviously. I love this, I'm just not a 5e person. I think you would have a good base of players who are still in the 3.x rule set to use these.
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KnightErrantJR
Great Reader

USA
5402 Posts

Posted - 08 May 2017 :  04:20:43  Show Profile  Visit KnightErrantJR's Homepage Send KnightErrantJR a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Review and comments posted. It was an interesting look at translating 2nd, 3rd, and 4th edition materials to the current edition, and it was definitely worth the time it took to skim through it. Interested in introducing it in a campaign, although it feels like it will be of more use to people that are already interested in past versions of the Realms and might just contribute to "option lock" if I use it for groups that are more casually interested in the setting.

"Because philosophy arises from awe, a philosopher is bound in his way to be a lover of myths and poetic fables. Poets and philosophers are alike in being big with wonder."--Saint Thomas Aquinas

http://knighterrantjr.blogspot.com/

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Diffan
Great Reader

USA
3414 Posts

Posted - 08 May 2017 :  07:37:15  Show Profile Send Diffan a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Cards77

Any interest in having someone convert these for use with 3.x and/or Pathfinder? I would be willing to do it for free. Would be a long term project obviously. I love this, I'm just not a 5e person. I think you would have a good base of players who are still in the 3.x rule set to use these.



Looking at the content, a lot of it comes from 3.5/3e so Im not sure what would need updated?

4E Realms = Great Taste, Less Filling.

"If WotC were to put out a box of free money, people would still complain how it was folded."
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TomCosta
Forgotten Realms Designer

USA
449 Posts

Posted - 08 May 2017 :  15:04:32  Show Profile Send TomCosta a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Cards 77, Diffan is correct. A lot of it is updating material that already existed in previous editions. There might be some utility in converting back to 3.5E or PF, but probably not much if you have the original source material.

Knight Errant, thanks for the feedback. I really appreciate it. Hopefully, it doesn't lead to "option lock." My hope was to cover a few general gaps that I saw and add in appropriate Realms lore (but still keep it easy to use more generically). Aside from a few bits (star elves, deep Imaskari, windwalker domain, way of the jordain, and Harper's blessing feat -- which probably take up no more than 5 pages of the 101 pages), I hope most of it is not so setting specific that it can only be used in the Realms. For example, the lythari, incantatrix, and even spellfire can easily be moved into almost any campaign even though they all have long histories of being setting specific to the Realms, while things like a charm, luck, or moon domain or steadfast defender fighter are just gaps that happen to have Realms lore built into them. At least that was the goal.
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