Strixhaven - A Curriculum of Chaos (D&D 5e) - PDFCOFFEE.COM (2024)

Cr e d it s Lead Designer Amanda Hamon Assistant Lead Designers: Jeremy Crawford, James Wyatt Art Director: Emi Tanji Designers: Bill Benham, Makenzie De Armas, Dan Dillon, Steve Kenson, T. Alexander Stangroom Assistant Designers: Sydney Adams, Taymoor Rehman Rules Developers: Jeremy Crawford, Ben Petrisor Editors: Judy Bauer, Michele Carter, Scott Fitzgerald Cray, lanara Natividad, Christopher Perkins, F. Wesley Schneider

Graphic Designers: Trystan Falcone, Emi Tanji, Trish Yochum Cover Illustrators: Hydro74, Magali Villeneuve Cartographers: Francesca Baerald, Sean Macdonald, Mike Schley Additional Art Directors: Ovidio Cartagena, Taylor Ingvarsson, Kate Irwin, Thomas Jenkot, Zack Stella, Sarah Wassell Interior Illustrators: Steve Argyle, Jinho Bae, Cristi Balanescu, Mike Bierek, Zoltan Boros, Alex Brock, Filip Burburan, Dmitry Burmak, Ekaterina Burmak, Paul Scott Canavan, Manuel Castanon, Jehan Choo, Billy Christian, Chris Cold, Justine Cruz, Alayna Danner, Jonas De Ro, Olga Drebas, Piotr Dura, Jesper Ejsing, Anna Fehr, Tony Foti, Caroline Gariba, Use Gort, Johan Grenier, YeongHao Han, Josh Hass, Hydro74, Izzy, Tomasz Jedruszek, Jihun, Jason Kang, Igor Kieryluk, Mathias Kollros, Yigit Koroglu, Kekai Kotaki, Andrey Kuzinskiy, Luiza Laffitte, Lius Lasahido, Ryan Alexander Lee, Lie Setiawan, Daniel Ljunggren, Lindsey Look, Titus Lunter, Howard Lyon, Slawomir Maniak, Antonio Jose Manzanedo, Joseph Meehan, Viko Menezes, Robson Michel, Francisco Miyara, Scott Murphy, Marta Nael, Hector Ortiz, Adam Paquette, Alessandra Pisano, Steve Prescott, Chris Rahn, Jason Rainville, Andreas Rocha, Denman Rooke, Sean Sevestre, Liiga Smilshkalne, Bryan Sola, Craig J Spearing, Raymond Swanland, YW Tang, Viktor Titov, Jokubas Uogintas, Randy Vargas, Svetlin Velinov, Raoul Vitale, Johannes Voss, Sara Winters, Bayard Wu, Kieran Yanner, Andreas Zafiratos

Strixhaven World Designers: Doug Beyer (creative lead), Taylor Ingvarsson (art director), Jess Lanzillo (creative director), Mens Mullaley (creative producer), Fox Allison, Annie Sardelis, Emily Teng, Andrew Valias, James Wyatt, Ari Zirulmk Project Engineer: Cynda Callaway Imaging Technicians: Kevin Yee Prepress Specialist: Jefferson Dunlap

D&D St u d io Executive Producer: Ray Winninger Came Design Architects: Jeremy Crawford, Christopher Perkins Design Manager: Steve Scott Design Department: Sydney Adams, Judy Bauer, Makenzie De Armas, Dan Dillon, Amanda Hamon, Ari Levitch, Ben Petrisor, Taymoor Rehman, F. Wesley Schneider, James Wyatt Art Department Manager: Richard Whitters Principal Art Director: Kate Irwin Art Department: Trystan Falcone, Emi Tanji, Shawn Wood, Trish Yochum Senior Producer: Dan Tovar Producers: Bill Benham, Robert Hawkey, Lea Heleotis Director of Product Management: Liz Schuh Product Managers: Natalie Egan, Chris Lindsay, Hilary Ross, Chris Tulach

Ma r k e t in g Director of Global Brand Marketing: Brian Perry Global Brand Manager: Shelly Mazzanoble Senior Marketing Communications Manager: Greg Tito Community Manager: Brandy Camel

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On t h e Co v e r Three Strixhaven students find distractions from their studies in Magali Villeneuve's cover illustration. On the back, a harried Biblioplex assistant tries to tidy the mess.

620D0148000001 EN ISBN: 978-0-78 69-6745-2 First Printing: November 2021

987654321

UK

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On t h e Al t -Co v e r Hydro74 shows off the Strixhaven star, a symbol of unity and magical fellowship. The sigils of each of Strixhaven’s five colleges adorn the back cover.

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Disclaimer: A degree from Strixhaven University does not provide protection from magic missiles, fireballs, freezing spheres, or any other deleterious effects spellcasters might generate Ifyou create deleterious effects, Strixhaven kindly requests you refrain from mvoking any names, symbols, or other references to the university should you find yourself in a confrontation. Strixhaven University does not take responsibility for any injury of any nature sustained in the course ofanything, magical or otherwise

DUNGEONS & DRAGONS, D&D. Wizards of the Coast, the dragon ampersand. Dungeon Master, Player's Handbook, Monster Manual, Dungeon Master's Guide, Strixhaven, Magic: The Gathering, the pianeswalker symbol, all other Wizards of the Coast product names, and their respective logos are trademarks of Wizards of the Coast in the USA and other countries. All characters and their distinctive likenesses are property of Wizards of the Coast. The materials described in this statement are protected under the copyright laws of the United States of America and around the world under international intellectual property treaties. Any reproduction or unauthorized use of the materials contained herein or artwork contained herein is prohibited without the express written permission of Wizards of the Coast. Printed in the USA. ©2021 Wizards of the Coast LLC, PO Box 707. Renton, WA 98057-0707, USA. Manufactured by: Hasbro SA, Rue EmilcBoifchat 31. 2800 Delemont. CH. Represented by: Hasbro. De Entree 240. 1101 EE Amsterdam. NL. Hasbro UK Ltd., P.O. Box 43 Newport, NP19 4YH, UK.

Co n t e n t s Welcome to Strixhaven About This Book............ Orientation...................... Strixhaven’s World.........

4 5 5 6

Ch. 1: Life on Campus........... Magical Study.......................... Campus Overview.................. . Lorchold College.................... Prismari College..................... Quandrix College................... Silverquill College.................. Witherbloom College.............

..8 ..9 11 13 16 19 22 25

Ch. 2: Character Options..... Race Option: Owlin................ Choosing a College................ Strixhaven Backgrounds....... Lorchold Student................ Prismari Student................ Quandrix Student............... Silverquill Student.............. Witherbloom Student......... Feats......................................... Strixhaven Initiate............. . Strixhaven Mascot............. Spells........................................ Borrowed Knowledge........ Kinetic Jaunt........................ Silvery Barbs....................... Vortex Warp......................... Witherand Bloom.............. Magic Items............................. Bottle of Boundless Coffee Cuddly Strixhaven Mascot Lorehold Primer................. Prismari Primer.................

28 29 30 31 31 32 .33 .35 .36 .36 .36 .37 .37 .37 .37 .38 .38 .38 .38 .38 .38 .39 .39 ..39 ..39 ..39 ..39

Quandrix Primer................

Silverquill Primer.............. Strixhaven Pennant.......... Witherbloom Primer.........

Ch. 3: School Is in Session............... Running the Adventures..................... Strixhaven Tracking Sheet................ Extracurriculars...................................

Jobs..................................................... Exams..................................................... Relationships........................................ Fellow Students................................... Aurora Luna Wynterstarr.............. . Bhedum Sooviij................................. Cadoras Damellawar...................... Drazhomir Yarnask......................... Grayson Wildemere......................... Greta Gorunn.................................... Javenesh Stoutclaw.......................... Larine Arneza................................... Melwythorne..................................... Mina Lee............................................ Nora Ann Wu.................................... Quentillius Antiphiun Mclentor 111 Rosimyffenbip Wuzfeddlims......... Rubina Larkingdale.........................

40 41 43 44 46 .47 .48 .50 .51 .51 .52 .52 .53 .53 .54 .54 .55 .55 .56 .56 ..57 ..57

Shuvadri Glintmantle..... Tilana Kapule.................. Urzmaktok Grojsh.......... Zanther Bowen............... Campus Kerfuffle............... Running This Adventure First Day on Campus..... Orientation Challenge.... Frog’s the Word.............. Magical Physiologies Exam: Slaadi................... Advance to 2nd Level!.... Work Hard, Play Harder Magical Physiologies Exam: Owibcars............. Campus Daredevils....... Advance to 3rd Level!.... Magical Physiologies Exam: Otyughs.............. All the World’s a StageSecrets in Sedgemoor... Advance to 4th Level!....

58 58

59 59 60

60 61 66 70 72 74 74

78 78 86

Ch. 6: A Reckoning in Ruins.............. 156 Running This Adventure..................... 157 A Sinister Shadow................................. 157 A Brief Distraction................................ 158 Arcane Herbology Exam: Vegetation Identification........ 159 Clue in the Bayou................................... 160 Advance to 9th Level!........................... 165 No Time to Lose.................................... 165 Into the Badlands.................................. 166 This Is Surreal, Isn't It?....................... 172 Ruins of Caerdoon................................. 173 Advance to 10th Level!......................... 178 Confronting Murgaxor......................... 178

Ch. 7: Friends and Foes..................... 182 Archaic................................................... 184 Art Elemental Mascot.......................... 185 Beledros Witherbloom........................ 186 86 Brackish Trudge................................... 187 86 Cogwork Archivist................................ 188 92 Daemogoth............................................. 189 95 Daemogoth Titan.................................. 190 96 First-Year Student................................ .191 Ch. 4: Hunt for Mage Tower 97 Fractal Mascot...................................... .192 Running This Adventure...... Back in Session...................... 98 Galazeth Prismari................................ .193 99 Groff........................................................ .194 Mascots Everywhere!............ Inkling Mascot..................................... . .195 Scrivening and Symbology Exam: Glyph of Warding.... 106 Lorehold Apprentice........................... .197 107 Lorehold Pledgemage........................ .197 Advance to 5th Level!............ Party at the Rose Stage........ 108 Lorehold Professor of Chaos............. .198 111 Lorehold Professor of Order.............. .198 Practice Makes Perfect......... Mage Hunter......................................... .199 Scrivening and Symbology 113 Oracle of Strixhaven........................... 200 Exam: Symbol Glyphs...... 114 Oriq Blood Mage.................................. .201 Getting Some Air................. . 116 Oriq Recruiter...................................... .202 Dangerous Knowledge......... Pest Mascot........................................... ..203 Scrivening and Symbology 118 Prismari Apprentice........................... ..205 Exam: Augury.................... 119 Prismari Pledgemage........................ ..205 Tell Us in Song!..................... 121 Prismari Professor of Expression.... .206 Battle of Strixhaven............. 123 Prismari Professor of Perfection..... .206 Advance to 6th Level!........... Ch. 5: The Magister's Masquerade... 124 Quandrix Apprentice.......................... ...208 Running This Adventure...................... 125 Quandrix Pledgemage...................... ...208 Quandrix Professor of Substance... ...209 Cordially Invited.................................... 126 Quandrix Professor of Theory........ ...209 Reception at Bow’s End........................ 127 ...210 Fate at Furygale..................................... 130 Relic Sloth........................................... Ruin Grinder....................................... ...211 Advanced Arcane History 134 Shadrix Silverquill............................. ...212 Exam: Relics...................... 135 Silverquill Apprentice........................ ...214 Dressing for Success........... 138 Silverquill Pledgemage..................... ....214 Party Preparations............... Silverquill Professor of Radiance ... ....215 Advanced Arcane History 139 Silverquill Professor of Shadow.... ....215 Exam: Devices.................. 140 Spirit Statue Mascot......................... ....216 Suspicions............................ 140 Strixhaven Campus Guide.............. ....217 Fancying Up Footwork........ 141 Tanazir Quandrix.............................. ....218 Preparing the Hall.............. 145 Velomachus Lorehold....................... . 219 Advance to 7th Level!........... Witherbloom Apprentice.................. . 221 Advanced Arcane History 145 Witherbloom Pledgemage............... . 222 Exam: Unearthed Arcana 146 Witherbloom Professor of Decay... . 223 A Starlit Night...................... 149 Witherbloom Professor of Growth . 223 Midnight at Lorehold.......... 224 154 Appendix: Campus Map................ Aftermath............................. 155 Advance to 8th Level!.........

HE MISSION OF STRIXHAVEN UNIVERSITY IS TO

discover and preserve magical knowledge, to disseminate that knowledge from one generation to the next, to promote free and open study of magic in all its forms, and to enhance the lives of people throughout the world through the use of magic. —Strixhaven mission statement A magical world boasts many places where students can study magic and many sages who take eager learners under their wings. But being accepted to Strixhaven University is a special honor, the dream of many young students. Strixhaven is a place of enlightenment and learning, and both its graduates and its delegates are typically welcomed and respected wherever they go. Founded seven centuries ago by five ancient dragons, Strixhaven is the premier institution of magical learning, drawing promising young mages from all over. Each equipped with its own campus and faculty, Strixhaven’s five colleges—summarized in the Colleges of Strixhaven table-cover a vast array of academic and magical specialties.

4

WELCOME TO STRIXHAVEN

As a Strixhaven student, you start with a wellrounded education in a rigorous first-year program. In your second year, you choose your preferred specialty at one of the five colleges. You can also partake in a vibrant campus life, with plenty of clubs and other activities. You might even play on one of Strixhaven’s prestigious Mage Tower teams and bask in the adoration of cheering crowds! Co l l e g e s o f St r ix h a v e n College

Lorehold

Description Explores the past and preserves its lessons

for future generations. Also called the College of Archaeomancy. Prismari

Uses the elements to practice the arts.

Also called the College of Elemental Arts.

Quandrix

Focuses on the mathematics of nature. Also called the College of Numeromancy.

Silverquill

Teaches the magic of rhetoric, poetry, oration, and writing. Also called the College of

Eloquence.

Witherbloom

Harnesses the forces of life and death.

Also called the College of Essence Studies.

!

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Ab o u t Th is Bo o k This book is your guide to life at Strixhaven in Du n g e o n s & Dr a g o n s —an introduction to the university, a guide to creating student characters there, a campaign, and a collection of friends and foes. Chapter 1 gives an overview of life and study at Strixhaven. It introduces the main features of the central campus and each of the five colleges. Chapter 2 is your guide to creating a student character. It introduces the owlin race and five backgrounds—one for each college—as well as a collection of feats, spells, and magic items. Chapters 3-6 provide a campaign meant to advance characters from 1st to 10th level as they progress through their magical studies. Each chapter covers a year’s worth of adventure, so characters begin chapter 3 as Ist-level characters and first-year students and begin chapter 6 at the start of their fourth year of studies (at around 8th level). Chapter 3 includes an overview of the adventures and the overall campaign arc as well as special rules for aspects of campus life: exams, relationships, extracurriculars, and jobs. Chapter 7 is a collection of stat blocks for students, faculty, and various creatures on and around the Strixhaven campus. Whether student adventurers get caught up in a duel with their rivals or face a dreaded mage hunter, the stat blocks in this chapter give you the information you need to resolve the situation.

Or ie n t a t io n The following subsections present three important facts to keep in mind as you explore these pages and prepare to play or run the book’s campaign.

St r ix h a v e n Is

a

Un iv e r

s it y

This book’s campaign assumes that the player characters are students at Strixhaven University. Even as they get caught up in the adventures, the characters have to continue going to class, doing homework, and studying for exams. Optional rules in chapter 3 reinforce the importance of study in the adventures. The characters are also subject to the authority of the university’s faculty and staff members. Circ*mstances will at times cause player characters to defy faculty authority—and even deans—during their adventures, and the threat of detention or even expulsion might hang over their head.

Finally, student characters are part of a school community. They live in university housing, eat in dining halls, and spend the majority of their time on campus. They eat, sleep, study, socialize, and adventure as part of a community of students, faculty, and staff. The school is like a town, where a relatively small cast of characters can play significant roles over the course of the campaign.

It ’s a n Ac a d e m y

of

Ma g e s

Study at Strixhaven isn’t about learning to be a wizard but about learning to be a historian, an artist, an orator, a scientist, or some other profession—while using magic to enhance one’s studies. The university’s understanding of magic is expansive. Characters of any class can study at Strixhaven, whether they’re full-fledged spellcasters like wizards, clerics, and druids; they manage a spell or two thanks to a subclass or feat; or they manifest magical abilities that aren’t even spells. (For example, a barbarian who follows the Path of the Ancestral Guardian, described in Xanathar’s Guide to Everything, can excel in studying history at Lorehold College by virtue of their connection to an ancestral spirit.) Magic is everywhere on campus. The campus culture encourages finding magical solutions to the most mundane problems, and if characters need access to a spell they can’t cast, they have a strong chance of finding someone who can cast it.

It ’s Co s m o po l it a n Strixhaven draws students and faculty from across the world and from other realms in the multiverse. The university’s students and faculty are united by a desire to learn and include humans, elves, dwarves, owlin (described in chapter 2), orcs, trolls, vampires, and studious folk of many other origins. In practical terms, for player characters, you can use the rules found in any D&D book to select a character’s race, if the DM approves. For nonplayer characters, you’re as likely to meet a pixie, a dryad, a giant, a treant, or another fantastical creature on campus as you are to meet a Humanoid. The faculty members mentioned in chapter 1 include genasi, tritons, and even a bipedal brown bear. To the faculty and students of Strixhaven, it is unremarkable to meet someone who hails from a faroff land, since almost everyone on campus is from somewhere else. Strixhaven has a place for anyone who is dedicated to magic-enhanced study.

WELCOME TO STRIXHAVEN

5

St r ix h a v e n ’s Wo r l d Strixhaven bills itself as "the premier institution of magical learning in the world,” but the question that raises for your campaign is this—which world? In the multiverse of the Ma g ic : Th e Ga t h e r in g Trading Card Game, Strixhaven is located on a world called Arcavios, which (according to legend) formed from the collision or merging of two other worlds. It is situated in the northeastern portion of a continent called Orrithia, also known as the Vastlands, which is populated by a tremendous variety of peoples. For the purposes of D&D, though, you can place Strixhaven wherever it best fits the needs of your campaign. It could be in a world of your own creation, in a published D&D setting (such as the Forgotten Realms or Eberron), in the planar Cosmopolis of Sigil, or in an interplanar nexus that allows it to draw students from across the Material Plane or the entire multiverse. Whatever world you decide to place Strixhaven in, three elements of the wider world of Arcavios might have some impact on adventures in the school.

Sn a r l s a n d St a r Ar c h e s As described in the Player’s Handbook, magic suffuses all existence in the worlds of D&D. In the Forgotten Realms, scholars describe the fabric of magic as a Weave that allows spellcasters to interact with the world’s underlying magical reality. In Arcavios, that fabric is knotted and tangled in some locations, creating a phenomenon called snarls. At these places, spells can be amplified or distorted in unpredictable ways. This phenomenon matters for Strixhaven because a luminous snarl is situated at the very heart of campus, located in the Hall of Oracles in the university’s monumental library, the Biblioplex. Similarly, gravity-defying arch shapes appear throughout the world of Arcavios and, in particular, tower over the Biblioplex. These star arches are made from spokes of natural materials that float in an arch shape, with a precise inner curve and a rough and irregular outer arch. They can stand straight or lie at an angle, and they can be small or enormous, whole or broken, grown over or mysteriously clean. Their irregular spokes evoke the radiating lines of a shining star. The star arches are a mystery left over from the birth of the world. In most cases, the arches simply float inexplicably—silent, immovable, and inert. But many people report seeing an arch appear to them at a critical juncture in their lives, helping them understand a lesson or answer a burning question in their mind. Some scholars believe each arch marks

6

WELCOME TO STRIXHAVEN

a place of great magic, such as the site of a great mage’s birth or the location of a time-lost spell. Other folk believe these arches are connected with the archaics in some way (see "Archaics and the Oracle” below). Some students have even seen an arch come to life with magic in an archaic’s presence. Both snarls and star arches are subjects of magical research for students and faculty at Strixhaven, who also study wild and dead magic zones, floating earth motes, and other weird locales.

Fo u n d e r Dr a g o n s ___ Strixhaven University was founded by five ancient dragons who, according to legend, hatched from the magical energy of the newborn world of Arcavios. These Founder Dragons were among the first to master magic, and they realized that only through disciplined study would magic be safe in the hands of other peoples. They founded Strixhaven to facilitate that study and established the five colleges based on the magic that each dragon mastered, as summarized in the Founder Dragons table. To this day, the Founder Dragons roam the world. They no longer associate directly with Strixhaven. preferring to let the deans of the colleges speak in their stead. The dragons’ knowledge is vast, but their tempers can prove short. Mages seek them out only to learn the most elusive secrets. The dragons’ stat blocks are presented in chapter 7. Fo u n d e r Dr a g o n s College Founder Lorehold Velomachus

Lorehold

Prismari

Galazeth Prismari

Quandrix

Tanazir Quandrix

Silverquill

Shadrix Silverquill

Witherbloom

Beledros Witherbloom

Ar c h a ic s a n d t h e Or a c l e The Oracle of Strixhaven is the wisest and most accomplished mage in the world of Arcavios, selected by the Founder Dragons. The Oracle’s lifelong task is to ensure that magic is used to help people and not twisted to evil ends. To be the Oracle, one must understand fundamental truths about the nature of magic, know and wield hundreds of spells, and possess impeccable judgment and virtue. Mysteriously linked to the Oracle, archaics are wise, giant, long-lived beings with an innate talent for magic. They can be seen striding through the wilds, exploring sources of magic with their many arms or contemplating existence through their “eye,” which functions as a magical focus of some

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kind. Scholars seek out archaics for their vast knowledge of history and magic, but archaics tend to communicate in obscure allusions and cryptic metaphors. Few know that archaics’ existence is linked to a time-warping phenomenon involving the Oracle. When an Oracle dies, their mind and spirit is swept off to the distant past, drawn backward through time toward the intense magical power that brought the world into being. Splinters of that Oracle’s

soul and its fragmented memories coalesce into a creature—a newborn archaic. Every archaic alive today was born at the dawn of time from the mind of someone who has lived and died (or who will one day live and die) as an Oracle. Archaics speak in cryptic allegories not only to tease and test the eager minds of young mages, but also to cleverly sidestep time paradoxes. Stat blocks for archaics appear in chapter 7, alongside that of the current Oracle, whose name isjadzi.

WELCOME TO STRIXHAVEN

7

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Ha l l

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Or a c l e s ,

STUDENT TRANSFORMS HER OPPONENT INTO A GOAT, WHO IS HELD BACK BY A FRIEND

CHAPTER I

Lif e a t St r ix h a v e n Un iv e r s it y s pa r k l e s w it h the enthusiasm of its students and faculty, p* j as they study, debate about, and experimenl with magic in its varied forms. This chapter offers an overview of life and studies on the university’s campus, as well as a look at each of the five colleges where students explore different modes of magical study. 7^

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CHAPTER 6 I A RECKONING IN RUINS

1 square = 5 feet

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T3A.So u t h e a s t En t

r a nce

T3E.Ea s t En t r a n c e

The floor of this open cave is strewn with the bones of

Ineptly painted portraits of Murgaxor hang on the

small birds, reptiles, and wild dogs.

walls of this shadowy cave. Stairs cut into the north

wall lead down to a lower level.

The animal bones are the remains of Murgaxor’s and Y’demi's past meals.

T3B. So u t h w e s t En t r a n c e Books and scroll cases are tucked in nooks along the west wall of this open cave. Many of the book spines and scroll cases bear the Strixhaven star.

Items bearing the Strixhaven star were stolen from the university. A character who succeeds on a DC 12 Intelligence (Investigation) check while searching the collection finds several annotated books about the Caerdoon region, located a few miles from the badlands. The annotations, sloppily written in Common, deal with locating sites of large battles and how best to explore those locations. Treasure. Characters who spend at least 10 minutes searching this area find a spell scroll of fear and a spell scroll of false life.

T3C. Em pt y Ch a m b e r This empty chamber has short tunnels connecting it to area T3B to the south, area T3D to the north, and area T3E to the east. T3D. No r t h w e s t En t r a n c e This open cave and its walls hold racks of weapons and spellcasting foci, including orbs, animal fetishes,

carved stones, and the like.

The spellcasting foci stored here aren’t magical, but one is an obsidian orb cut in the motif of an ancient troll civilization. This orb would fetch 300 gp from a collector. Secret Door. A character who searches the east wall and succeeds on a DC 15 Wisdom (Perception) check finds a door disguised to blend in with the surrounding stone. This 5-foot-wide, 10-foot-tall stone door opens into a smaller secret room. Treasure. The secret room is unlit and once held Murgaxor’s most prized arcane texts, most of which went with him to the Ruins of Caerdoon when he recently relocated there. The remaining texts—of which there are twelve stacked in two piles of sixare still valuable. The university would pay 500 gp for their safe return.

Four shadow demons hide in the shadows of this cave. They attack visitors who aren’t accompanied by Murgaxor or Y'demi. Characters who have a passive Wisdom (Perception) score of 17 or higher spot the shadow demons before they attack and aren’t surprised by them. The stairs in the north wall lead down to areas U1 through U4, detailed later in the “Underground Cave” section. T4. Su ppl y Ro o m A jumbled pile of supplies lies on the floor of this

open cave and spills into a narrow hallway beyond.

This cave holds what remains of the supplies Murgaxor used to explore the Ruins of Caerdoon. located just a few miles away. A character who spends at least 1 hour sifting through the tools can assemble one set of mason’s tools, two explorer’s packs, one dungeoneer’s pack, and one scholar’s pack. Secret Door. A character who searches the northernmost end of the cave and succeeds on a DC 15 Wisdom (Perception) check finds a door disguised to blend with the surrounding stone. This 5-foot-wide. 10-foot-tall stone door swings into a small chamber. Secret Room. Murgaxor kept alchemical supplies in this unlit secret chamber. Most of the supplies have been removed except for two flasks of acid and three flasks of alchemist’s fire. T5. La b The pungent odors of sweet potpourri and chemical

preservatives waft from this cave. Carved into the walls are shelves bearing specimen jars, notebooks,

the middle of the cave rests a smooth stone slab covered in a rusty stain.

Murgaxor conducted horrific experiments here. Primarily, he worked on transferring life from one creature to another. A character who spends at least 30 minutes skimming the notebooks can make a DC 15 Intelligence (Arcana) check, piecing together the nature of

CHAPTER 6 | A RECKONING IN RUINS

169

Murgaxor’s work on a success. What Murgaxor describes in his notebooks lines up with the maladies that plagued Strixhaven last year. Harmless samples of flesh are stored here in jars. However, Murgaxor’s experiments created a few unfortunate Undead, which are described below. Box ofHelping Hands. This unmarked, 2-footby-3-foot metal box has a simple latch keeping it closed. The box contains a dozen crawling claws. If the lid is opened, the crawling claws quickly skitter out. A character who immediately tries to close the lid can make a DC 15 Dexterity check; if the check succeeds, 1 d6 crawling claws escape before the lid shuts; the others are trapped in the box, unable to escape until it is opened again. On their first turn in combat, crawling claws that escaped from the box scurry about the cave, knocking over jars of chemical supplies and creating a chemical mixture that fills the cave with noxious gas for 1 minute. When a creature enters the gas-filled cave for the first time on a turn or starts its turn there, that creature must make a DC 13 Constitution saving throw, taking 22 (5d8) poison damage on a failed save, or half as much damage on a successful one. Creatures that don’t need to breathe are immune to the gas, as are the crawling claws, \gust of wind spell or similar magic disperses the gas.

)

CHAPTER 6 I A RECKONING IN RUINS

Skull in a Jug. Vargas Kancia was a Prismari student; he was researching elemental nodes in the badlands when he was abducted by Murgaxor, whose experiments transformed Vargas into a flameskull. Vargas rests in an unsealed, straightsided glass jar filled with clear goo. If another creature comes within 5 feet of the jug, Vargas awakens, flies out of the jug covered in goo, and erupts in emerald flames. Vargas is confused and enraged, attacking whichever creature awakened him. A character can use an action to try to persuade Vargas to cease his attacks, doing so with a successful DC 15 Charisma (Persuasion) check. Once he is talked down, Vargas realizes his anger is unjustified, apologizes for his outburst, and offers to help the characters for the remainder of the adventure. Vargas’s priorities are to see Murgaxor brought to justice and to resume his studies at Strixhaven. Secret Door. A character who searches the northwest wall of the cave and succeeds on a DC 15 Wisdom (Perception) check finds a door disguised to blend with the surrounding stone. This 5-footwide, 10-foot-tall stone door opens into a cramped secret chamber. Treasure. The secret chamber is unlit and contains a set of alchemist’s supplies along with two potions of healing (greater) and one potion ofpoison.

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T6. Mu s h r o o m Ca v e Characters who approach this cave without first exploring area T7 attract the attention of the gorgon lairing there, causing the creature to charge out of area T7 and attack them.

Un d e r g r o un d Ca v e

The stench of decay wafts from this unlit cave. Inside,

rows of wooden planters mounted on the walls hold

a variety of fungi. A large purple mushroom grows in the northwest corner.

The large, purple mushroom growing in the northwest corner is a shrieker, which commences shrieking when any creature that’s not Murgaxor or Y’demi approaches more than 10 feet inside the cave. The shriek is loud enough to alert the spectator in area T1, the shadow demons in area T3E, and the gorgon in area T7. The fungi here are used in Murgaxor’s alchemical concoctions and poisons. Creatures foolish enough to eat the fungi must succeed on a DC 12 Constitution saving throw or become poisoned for 1 hour. Secret Door. A character who searches the north wall of the cave and succeeds on a DC 15 Wisdom (Perception) check finds a door disguised to blend with the surrounding stone. This 5-foot-wide, 10-foot-tall stone door pulls open to reveal an unlit room containing a pair of hostile black puddings. The puddings spill out and attack as soon as the secret door is opened. Unless the characters were able to see into the room (with the aid of a clairvoyance spell or similar magic) before opening the door, they are surprised at the start of this encounter.

T7. Go r g o n ’s Ca v e A gorgon occupies this otherwise empty cave. Characters who come into view of the grumpy gorgon provoke its anger, causing it to attack them.

Un d e r g r o u n d Ca v e The underground cave was Murgaxor’s (and is now Y’demi’s) private chambers. It contains space for rituals, research, and quiet contemplation. It is depicted on map 6.3 and has the following features:

I £

Bare Stone. This cave looks naturally formed, but the stone has been shaped and smoothed by magic. The cave walls have shelves built into them. Ceilings. The ceilings are 10 feet high and gently curved and smoothed like the walls. Light. All areas are lit by continual flame spells cast on wall sconces. Scry-Proof. Any attempt to magically scry on a creature, object, or location within the underground cave fails automatically.

1 square = 5 feet

Ma p 6.3: Un d e r

g r o und

Ul. Me d it a t

io n

Ca v e

Al c o v e

Just after a three-way intersection, the tunnel widens into an alcove. Gooey mud covers the alcove's floor, and the air is oppressively muggy.

Murgaxor came here to meditate and used magic to transform this alcove into a humid bog suited to his tastes. Protective Muck. Any creature that bathes in the mud for 1 minute gains ld4 + 1 temporary hit points for 1 hour. If any temporary hit points remain when the effect expires, the affected creature takes 5 necrotic damage.

U2. Rit

ual

Ar e a

Ritual circles drawn in fine, chalky powder cover the floor. Notebooks, scrolls, and brass braziers sit on

shelves carved into the walls.

Murgaxor used this area to perfect his rituals. Characters who spend 5 minutes or more reading the notebooks and who succeed on a DC 14 Intelligence

CHAPTER 6 | A RECKONING IN RUINS

171

(Investigation) check piece together that Murgaxor is conducting his life-draining ritual in the basem*nt of the Ruins of Caerdoon, which is just a few miles to the north of the Fortress Badlands. They also learn that the ritual will be complete in about a week. Secret Door. A character who searches the area and succeeds on a DC 15 Wisdom (Perception) check finds a door disguised to blend with the surrounding stone. This 5-foot-wide, 10-foot-tall stone door opens into a hallway that ends at another secret door, beyond which is area U4. From inside the hallway, characters can spot either secret door without having to make a check.

U3. Gu a r d Ch a m b e r Two mud-caked, human-sized creatures stand inert

in front of the northern exit to this chamber. Crude, articulated skulls of badlands wolves are attached to their heads. Both guards reek of death.

Y’demi created these horrifying Undead to guard her sleeping area. Both use the ghast stat block and start combat with 5 temporary hit points, having recently bathed in area Ul. The creatures attack without mercy. Combat here alerts Y’demi in area U4, and she investigates.

U4. Liv in g Ar e a A copper basin on a wrought-iron stand rests on the

floor in the middle of this cave. A pool of smelly water fills the cave’s northwest corner.

Murgaxor lived here before decamping to the Ruins of Caerdoon for his ritual. Y’demi (neutral evil human Oriq blood mage; see chapter 7) resides here now, waiting for Murgaxor’s imminent call to join him. Copper Basin. The copper basin contains a gallon of fresh blood. So long as she can see the basin and there’s a gallon or more of blood in it, Y’demi can use the following bonus action: Sanguine Tentacles (1/Day). The blood in the copper basin disappears as tentacles of congealed blood fill a 10-foot cube centered at a point on the ground that Y’demi can see within 15 feet of her. The effect lasts for 1 minute, during which time that area is difficult terrain. Any creature entering that area for the first time on a turn or starting its turn there must succeed on a DC 13 Dexterity saving throw or be restrained by the tentacles. A creature that starts its turn restrained by the tentacles takes 10 (3d6) bludgeoning damage. A creature restrained by the tentacles can use its action to make either a DC 13 Strength (Athletics) check or a DC 13 Dexterity (Acrobatics) check, ending the restrained condition on itself on a success.

172

CHAPTER 6 I A RECKONING IN RUINS

Roleplaying Y’demi. Y’demi works with Murgaxor because she’s fascinated with his magic, but she isn’t willing to die for him. Y’demi fights until she loses half or more of her hit points, then makes a cutting remark as she tries to escape. Y’demi is patient and cunning. If captured, she tells the students about Murgaxor’s setup in Caerdoon, if she thinks doing so will help keep her alive. She informs the characters that Murgaxor’s ritual will take about a week to complete. She won’t help the party thwart the ritual, but if a character succeeds on a DC 18 Charisma (Intimidation) check, she gives short, honest answers to the characters’ questions. Secret Door. \ character who searches the southeast wall and succeeds on a DC 15 Wisdom (Perception) check finds a door disguised to blend with the surrounding stone. This 5-foot-wide, 10-foot-tall stone door opens to a hallway that ends at another secret door, beyond which is area U2. From inside the hallway, characters can spot either secret door without having to make a check. Smelly Pool of Water. The smelly water in the northwest pool is drinkable.

De v e l o pm e n t s The information in areas T5, U2, and U4 gives a clear picture of the ritual Murgaxor is conducting, where he’s conducting it, and when it will be completed. The characters can rush to confront Murgaxor in the Ruins of Caerdoon right away. However, since they have some time before the ritual finishes, encourage them to return to campus to make any final preparations—not to mention have one final visit with their Friends, Rivals, and Beloveds—before heading into this adventure’s final areas.

Th is Is Su r

r ea l

, Is n ’t It ?

If the characters return to campus before heading to the Ruins of Caerdoon, a fellow student approaches them before they leave the campus and embark on their next journey. This student should be a character’s Friend, Rival, or Beloved. The student looks at the characters with trepidation before giving the character they know best a hug, a pat on the shoulder, or another indication of affection. The student tells the characters they have something to show them and leads the party into Bow's End Tavern (map 3.3 in chapter 3 shows the building’s layout). Once you’re ready to begin this event, read or paraphrase the following:

Inside the normally raucous Bow's End Tavern, the mood is somber. Your peers are here, and they've

heard about your dire mission to head into the Ruins

of Caerdoon. They have organized a fete, or something like it, to send you off. Banners that read "We Believe in You!” and "Heroes of Strixhaven!" hang all about the tavern. Friends tearfully wish you luck.

Everyone knows what’s at stake, and they're all counting on you.

In addition to the characters’ Friends, Rivals, and Beloveds, this gathering includes faculty members such as Professor Verelda Lang, Instructor Arkin Minexes, Professor Brenneth Blackstone, Professor Mavinda Sharpbeak, and others at your discretion.

RELATIONSIII PS: BEFORE We Go ____

This scene is the final opportunity for the characters to interact with their fellow students on campus before this adventure’s climax and conclusion. As such, this Relationship encounter is more free-form than others. Since this is the last such encounter before the adventure’s finale, this scene should be of personal importance to each character. If a player wishes to cement a Beloved Relationship when they normally couldn’t or gain a Friend even if they don’t have enough Relationship Points, allow them to do so to reflect the poignant nature of this moment. For example, a character who wishes to have a final moment with a deeply romantic Beloved might sneak up onto the roof of the Biblioplex to have a heart-to-heart under the stars. Another character might want to share a deeply personal story from their childhood with their Friend or Beloved before giving that individual a treasured keepsake.

Tim e

to

St o p Mu r g a x o r !

Once the characters are ready to embark on their mission to stop Murgaxor once and for all, they can head through the badlands again and into the Ruins of Caerdoon.

Ru in s

5I

o

I

6

2

of

Ca e r d o o n

Murgaxor learned that his ritual must take place in a location where a massacre has occurred. The Ruins of Caerdoon is the perfect location since an ancient battle once took place here. By harnessing the site’s latent necromantic energy, Murgaxor plans to draw life energy from the scholars at Strixhaven into his own body. When the ritual is complete, he'll become immortal. Two hundred years of preparation have led Murgaxor to this moment, and he’s taking no chances

in seeing it through. Aside from his own formidable magical abilities, Murgaxor has enlisted the Oriq as allies—and even a daemogoth. (See chapter 7 for more information about the Oriq and daemogoths.)

Re g io n a l Ef f e c t s Murgaxor’s ritual wreaks havoc on the equilibrium of life and death, creating the following regional effects in the Ruins of Caerdoon and the fortress, which is detailed in a later section. These effects end ld6 days after the ritual ends or is interrupted: Clinging to Life. Death saving throws are made with advantage. Grievous Wounds. Any creature that scores a critical hit rolls one additional damage die to determine damage. Withered Vegetation. Vegetation within 1 mile of the fortress appears withered and sickly.

CHAPTER 6 | A RECKONING IN RUINS

173

Fe a t

u r es of t h e

Ru in s

Although members of Lorehold College have been known to visit the Ruins of Caerdoon on archaeology expeditions, the area is far from safe or well explored. Most of the fortress has fallen to ruin, but potent magic and sturdy construction have left enough stone standing to make it defensible. Notable features are summarized below:

Desecrated Earth. The area is awash in necrotic energy. Undead here have advantage on saving throws against being turned. Fortress Walls. The fortress looks like a blast of energy blew the top two-thirds of it away. The walls are roughly 10 feet high and 2 feet thick unless otherwise specified. Illumination. No light sources are present in the ruins, which are illuminated by sunlight during the day and moonlight at night. Trees. The trees here are gnarled and have discolored leaves.

Ru in s Lo c a t

io n s

The following areas are keyed to map 6.4.

Nl. Ha u n t e d Wa t c h t o w e r The fortress used to have multiple watchtowers covering all approaches but now has only one battered tower near the south road. A wraith—the tormented remnant of a long-dead garrison commanderstands watch. When it detects visitors, the wraith lets out a shriek that puts the ruins on alert and activates the necromantic barrier described in area N2. A character who wants to sneak past the watchtower or climb its ladder undetected must succeed on a DC 13 Dexterity (Stealth) check. If multiple party members attempt the same task, have them make a group check instead.

N2. Wa il

in g

Mo a t

Hundreds of voices wail in rage and frustration from a moat of viscid slime that surrounds the crumbling

When the dome appears, read the following: A wall of writhing darkness climbs forty feet in the air,

forming an opaque dome around the ruins.

Any creature in or above the moat when the dome appears must make a DC 13 Dexterity saving throw, taking 22 (5d8) necrotic damage on a failed save, or half as much damage on a successful one. The creature chooses if it’s inside or outside the dome. The dome deals 22 (5d8) necrotic damage to any creature that touches it. A creature takes this damage only once per turn. Nothing can physically pass through the dome unless certain conditions are met, as explained below. However, the dome doesn’t block ethereal creatures or prevent the use of spells such as dimension door or teleport. The dome is impervious to most damage. However, a character who examines the dome and succeeds on a DC 15 Intelligence (Arcana) check ascertains that it's possible to make a temporary hole in the dome by dealing radiant damage to it, and that a skilled arcanist can manipulate the dome’s magical harmonics to make it susceptible to other damage types, as well (as described below). Dealing at least 25 radiant damage to the dome with an attack or a spell creates a 10-foot-diameter hole in it. Appearing at the point where the attack or spell made first contact with the dome, this hole remains open for 1 minute. A character can try to manipulate the dome’s arcane harmonics by using an action to make a DC 15 Intelligence (Arcana) check. If the check succeeds, the character can switch the requisite damage type from radiant to another type chosen from the following list: acid, bludgeoning, cold, fire, force, lightning, piercing, slashing, or thunder. The change in requisite damage type lasts until the end of the character’s next turn.

N3. Wr

eck a g e

ruins. At the fortress’s southern tip, a shattered bridge

droops over the sludge, a ten-foot-wide hole smashed

The twisted wreckage of siege weapons litters the

through its center.

area. Ballistas, catapults, and even a trebuchet lie together in a tangled pile.

Hundreds of soldiers died in ages past assaulting the walls of Caerdoon, and their moss-covered bones rest at the bottom of the fortress’s moat. Shield ofthe Fallen. When a creature not approved by Murgaxor moves within 10 feet of the moat, a 40-foot-high, 1-inch-thick dome of opaque necrotic energy erupts from the middle of the moat to enclose the ruined fortress (area N6).

174

CHAPTER 6 I A RECKONING IN RUINS

The broken siege weapons form a 10-foot-high, 40-foot-long barricade. Catapult Munition. A character who searches the area and succeeds on a DC 15 Wisdom (Perception) check finds a catapult munition roughly the size and weight of a cannonball amid the wreckage. A successful DC 13 Intelligence (Arcana) check reveals that the munition is powerful enough to damage the

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Tiny Monstrosity, Unaligned

Armor Class 13 (natural armor) Hit Points 22 (4d4 + 12) Speed 30 ft. STR 11 (+0)

DEX 14 (+2)

CON

17 (+3)

INT 5 (-3)

WIS 13 (+1)

CHA 4 (-3)

Skills Perception +3 Senses darkvision 60 ft., passive Perception 13 Languages — Proficiency Bonus +2 Challenge 1/4 (50 XP)

Regeneration. The pest regains 5 hit points at the start of its turn if it has at least 1 hit point. If it takes fire damage, this trait doesn’t function at the start of the pest’s next turn.

Pe s t Ma s c o t

Spiny Hide. At the start of each of its turns, the pest deals 2 (1 d4) piercing damage to any creature grappling it or that it is

grappling.

Ac t Ct

O vi

io n s _______________________________

Bite. Melee Weapon Attack: +4 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. i Hit: 4 (ld4 + 2) piercing damage.

Grumpy, spiky, and generally irritating, pest mascots inhabit the muggy bayou of Sedgemoor. However, these ferret-sized swamp creatures hold deep wells of life essence, making them convenient fuel sources for the magic of Witherbloom mages. As such, many Witherbloom students have adopted pests from the bayou as pets, and pests, in all their spiny glory, have become the mascots of the college. CHAPTER 7 I FRIENDS AND FOES

203

Pr is m a r i Sc h o l a r s The scholars of Prismari College believe that art is the truest form of spellcraft. They use magic to make splendid art. and they employ artistry to make their magic spectacular.

Pr is m a r i St

u d en t s

The students of Prismari College—first as apprentices and then as pledgemages—see no distinction between magic and art. No two Prismari students have the same style of spellcasting; each wields the elemental magic taught by the college in a way that expresses their personality. In the hands of Prismari students, spells that conjure fire or bend water to one’s will become vibrant and expressive showcases, thrumming with creative energy. Harnessing the elemental forces of their magic requires precision and grace, and some students dedicate themselves to chasing the ideal of perfect control, hoping that by doing so, they can accurately express what is churning within their minds.

Pr is m a r i Pr

o f esso r o f

Ex pr e s s io n

Professors of expression embody the flare of Prismari magic. Using continuous motion, fluid grace, and interweaving steps, these teachers channel the 204

CHAPTER 7 I FRIENDS AND FOES

elements of wind, flame, and lightning to accompany them. Their magic is fast and beautiful, which becomes swift death in battle, mesmerizing in its energetic flow. Devastating lightning strikes and searing lashes of flame meet the professors’ foes head on. Professors who embrace the Prismari philosophy of expression focus on magic becoming art in the moment. Whether to create a spectacle that an audience will never forget or to strike down their foes in a flash, these teachers impress upon their students the beauty of creation.

Pr is m a r i Pr q f e s s o r

of

Pe r f e c t

io n

Professors of perfection combine elemental magic with precise, forceful physical motion. Their sweeping gestures and dance-like steps gather the power of crashing waves, conjure the protection of unyielding stone, and shape great structures of ice. Binding and channeling these natural elements allow the professors to mold their environment to their needs, both for breathtaking performances and to control the fabric of a battlefield against their foes. These teachers stress attention to fine details, drilling their students on the most minuscule points. The perfect foundation ultimately leads to a flawless work of art, and the professors of perfection produce sculptural and architectural marvels.

JA

Pr is m a r i Pl e d g e m a g e

Medium or Small Humanoid (Sorcerer), Any Alignment I

Armor Class 12 (15 with mage armor) Hit Points 66 (12d8 +12) Speed 35 ft. STR 10 (+0)

' ai

Medium or Small Humanoid (Sorcerer), Any Alignment

Armor Class 12 (15 with mage armor) Hit Points 44 (8d8 + 8) Speed 35 ft. DEX 14 (+2)

CON 13 (+1)

INT 12 (+1)

WIS 13 (+1)

CHA 15 (+2)

io n s _________________________________

Elemental Strike. Melee or Ranged Spell Attack: +4 to hit, reach 5 ft. or range 60 ft., one target. Hit: 10 (3d6) fire or cold damage (the apprentice's choice).

Spellcasting. The apprentice casts one of the following spells, requiring no material components and using Charisma as the spellcasting ability (spell save DC 12):

I

INT 12 (+1)

WIS 14 (+2)

CHA 17 (+3)

Saving Throws Dex +4, Cha +5 Skills Acrobatics +4, Athletics +4, Performance +7 I Senses passive Perception 12 1 Languages Common plus any two languages ' Challenge 4 (1,100 XP) Proficiency Bonus+2

Ac t io n s

Saving Throws Dex +4, Cha +4 Skills Acrobatics +4, Athletics +4, Performance +6 Senses passive Perception 11 Languages Common plus any two languages Challenge 2 (450 XP) Proficiency Bonus +2

Ac t

CON 13 (+1)

Evasion. If the pledgemage is subjected to an effect that allows it to make a Dexterity saving throw to take only half damage, the pledgemage instead takes no damage if it succeeds on the saving throw and only half damage if it fails, provided it isn't incapacitated.

' Pr is m a r i Appr e n t ic e

STR 10 (+0)

DEX 15 (+2)

Multiattack. The pledgemage makes two Elemental Strike attacks.

Elemental Strike. Melee or Ranged Spell Attack: +5 to hit, reach 5 ft. or range 60 ft., one target. Hit: 12 (3d6 + 2) fire or cold damage (the pledgemage's choice).

Showstopper (1/Day). The pledgemage shines with elemental The target must make a DC 13 Wisdom saving throw. On a failed save, the target takes 28 (8d6) fire or cold damage (the pledgemage's choice) and is stunned until the start of the pledgemage's next turn. On a successful save, the target takes half as much damage and isn't stunned. Spellcasting. The pledgemage casts one of the following spells, requiring no material components and using Charisma as the spellcasting ability (spell save DC 13):

At will: minor illusion 1/day each: gust of wind, mage armor, silent image

At will: minor illusion 2/day each: gust of wind, silent image 1/day each: mage armor, water walk

Bo n u s Ac t

Bo n u s Ac t io n s

io n s __________________________

Surge ofArtistry (Recharge 4-6). The apprentice moves up to its speed, surrounding itselfwith elemental magic as it moves. Until the end of its turn, the apprentice can move through the space of other creatures. The first time the apprentice enters a creature’s space on a turn, that creature must succeed on a DC 12 Dexterity saving throw or be knocked prone. If the apprentice ends its turn in another creature's space, the apprentice takes 5 (IdlO) force damage and is pushed into the nearest unoccupied space.

Surge ofArtistry (Recharge 4-6). The pledgemage moves up to its speed, surrounding itselfwith elemental magic as it moves. Until the end of its turn, the pledgemage can move through the space of other creatures. The first time the pledgemage enters a creature’s space on a turn, that creature must succeed on a DC 13 Dexterity saving throw or be knocked prone. If the pledgemage ends its turn in another creature's space, the pledgemage takes 5 (IdlO) force damage and is pushed into the nearest unoccupied space.

j ■

8 CHAPTER 7 | FRIENDS AND FOES

205

j IF 75 X*

Pr

is m a r i

Pr

of, of

Ex pr e s s io n

Pr

Medium or Small Humanoid (Sorcerer), Any Alignment Armor Class 13 (16 with mage armor) Hit Points 97 (15d8+ 30) Speed 40 ft.

STR 14 (+2)

DEX 16 (+3)

CON 15 (+2)

INT 15 (+2)

Pr

of, of

Pe r

f e c t io n

Armor Class 13 (16 with mage armor) Hit Points 97 (15d8 +30) Speed 30 ft. WIS 13 (+1)

CHA 19 (-4)

I

STR 14 (+2)

DEX 16 (+3)

CON 15 (+2)

INT 15 (+2)

WIS 13 (+1)

CHA 19 (+4)

Saving Throws Dex +6, Int +5, Wis +4, Cha +7 Skills Acrobatics +6, Arcana +5, Athletics +5, Perception +4, Performance +10 Damage Resistances fire, lightning Senses passive Perception 14 Languages Common plus any four languages Challenge 7 (2,900 XP) Proficiency Bonus +3

Saving Throws Dex +6, Int +5, Wis +4, Cha +7 Skills Acrobatics +6, Arcana +5, Athletics +5, Perception +4, Performance +10 Damage Resistances cold Senses passive Perception 14 Languages Common plus any four languages Challenge 7 (2,900 XP) Proficiency Bonus +3

Ac t io n s

Water Walking. The professor can walk across water and other liquids as if they were solid ground.

Multiattack. The professor makes three Cinder Strike attacks.

Cinder Strike. Melee Spell Attack: +7 to hit, reach 15 ft., one target. Hit: 13 (2d8 + 4) fire damage. Lightning Flourish (Recharge 6). The professor unleashes arcs of magical lightning at up to two creatures it can see within 60 feet of itself. Each target must make a DC 15 Dexterity saving throw, taking 35 (10d6) lightning damage on a failed save, or half as much damage on a successful one.

Spellcasting. The professor casts one of the following spells, requiring no material components and using Charisma as the spellcasting ability (spell save DC 15):

At will: minor illusion 2/day each: fog cloud, gust of wind, mage armor

Bo n u s Ac t io n s _________________________ Flaming Leap. The professor is wreathed in flames and jumps up to 30 feet in any direction. When the professor lands, the flames erupt in a 10-foot radius around the professor and then vanish. Each creature of the professor’s choice in that area must succeed on a DC 15 Dexterity saving throw or take 7 (2d6) fire damage.

206

is m a r i

Medium or Small Humanoid (Sorcerer), Any Alignment

CHAPTER 7 I FRIENDS AND FOES

Ac t io n s _________________________________ Multiattack. The professor makes three Tidal Strike attacks. Tidal Strike. Melee or Ranged Spell Attack: +7 to hit, reach 5 ft. or range 60 ft., one target. Hit: 13 (2d8 + 4) cold damage.

Spellcasting. The professor casts one of the following spells, requiring no material components and using Charisma as the spellcasting ability (spell save DC 15): At will: minor illusion 2/day each: control water, create or destroy water, mage armor, stone shape 1/day: wall of ice

Bo n u s Ac t

io n s __________________________

Rushing Wave. The professor is momentarily surrounded by a swirling wave of water and moves up to 30 feet. When the professor moves within 5 feet of any other creature during this bonus action, that creature must succeed on a DC 15 Strength saving throw, or the creature is knocked prone and it can't take reactions until the start of its next turn. A creature can suffer this effect only once during a turn.

g o

Qu a n d r ix Sc h o l

ars

The scholars of Quandrix College focus on the mathematical principles that govern reality. Through these formulas, they can manipulate properties of matter and space, as well as abstract and conceptual space such as the mind, probability, and the flow of magic itself.

Qu a n d r

ix

St u d e n t s ______________

The students of Quandrix College—first as apprentices and then as pledgemages—immerse themselves in the magic of geometry and metaphysics. Their ultimate goal isn’t mastery, however. Rather, in their projects they explore and expand knowledge without expecting concrete answers. Whether students are extrapolating mathematical patterns in nature or engaging in speculative dives into topological formulas that bend reality, their studies blur the line between abstract numerical theory and natural reality.

Qu a n d r ix Pr

I s 5

o f esso r o f

Su b s t a n c e

Professors of substance specialize in the concrete side of Quandrix philosophy, manipulating physical dimensions and properties of growth. Their magic alters and replaces the equations that describe the natural world, including creatures, space, and

substance. Through these manipulations, the professors change their size and the physical form of others, manipulate nature into rapid growth, travel instantaneously, and even fold space into deadly edges. These professors teach that numbers and mathematics aren’t merely intellectual concepts, but that they exist physically in all things. Professors of substance teach their students to wield magic practically, creating tangible change in the world around them.

Qu a n d r ix Pr

o f esso r o f

Th e o r

y

Professors of theory advance the Quandrix philosophy that math-magical manipulation is most powerful in the abstract dimension of minds, probability, and the fabric of magic itself. Their equations shift perceptions in profound ways, alter probability, and interfere with the formation of other magic. In battle, the professors tweak probability to impede attacks and strike at the minds of their foes with lancing equations that disrupt the opponent’s resolve. Professors of theory hold that altering the way a person interacts with the world can change the world. They impress upon their students to use magic as a tool to shape the overall experience of reality, and in turn make the world a better place. CHAPTER I | FRIENDS AND FOES

I

1

*

*5*5

Qu a n d r

ix

Pl

e d g e ma g e

i

Medium or Small Humanoid (Wizard), Any Alignment Armor Class 12 (15 with mage armor) Hit Points 66 (12d8 + 12) Speed 30 ft.

STR 10 (+0)

Qu a n d r

ix

Appr e n t ic e

Armor Class 11 (14 with mage armor) Hit Points 44 (8d8 + 8) Speed 30 ft.

DEX 12 (+1)

CON 13 (+1)

INT 15 (+2)

Ac t WIS 14 (+2)

CHA 11 (+0)

Saving Throws Int +4, Wis +4 Skills Arcana +6, Investigation +6, Nature +4 Senses passive Perception 12 Languages Common plus any two languages Challenge 2 (450 XP) Proficiency Bonus +2

Ac t io n s _________________________________ Multiattack. The apprentice makes two Exponential Lash attacks.

Exponential Lash. Melee or Ranged Spell Attack: +4 to hit, reach 5 ft. or range 60 ft., one target. Hit: 5 (ld6 + 2) force damage, and the apprentice can cause one creature it can see within 30 feet of the target to take 9 (2d6 + 2) force damage. Spellcasting. The apprentice casts one of the following spells, requiring no material components and using Intelligence as the spellcasting ability (spell save DC 12): At will: guidance, mage hand 1/day each: enlarge/reduce, mage armor

CON 13 (+1)

INT 17 (+3)

WIS 14 (+2)

CHA 11 (+0)

Saving Throws Int +5, Wis +4 Skills Arcana +7, Investigation +7, Nature +5 Senses passive Perception 12 Languages Common plus any two languages Challenge 4 (1,100 XP) Proficiency Bonus +2

Medium or Small Humanoid (Wizard), Any Alignment

STR 10 (+0)

DEX 14 (+2)

io n s

Multiattack. The pledgemage makes two Exponential Lash attacks. Exponential Lash. Melee or Ranged Spell Attack: +5 to hit, reach 5 ft. or range 60 ft., one target. Hit: 6 (1 d6 +3) force damage, and the pledgemage can cause one creature it can see within 30 feet of the target to take 10 (2d6 + 3) force damage. Spellcasting. The pledgemage casts one of the following spells, requiring no material components and using Intelligence as the spellcasting ability (spell save DC 13):

At will: guidance, mage hand 1/day each: dimension door, enlarge/reduce, mage armor, plant growth

Bo n u s Ac t

io n s

Vortex Calculus (Recharge 4-6). The pledgemage teleports, along with any equipment it is wearing or carrying, to an unoccupied space it can see within 60 feet of itself. Immediately after it teleports, each creature within 20 feet of the space it left must make a DC 13 Constitution saving throw. On a failed save, a creature takes 7 (2d6) force damage and is moved 10 feet in a random horizontal direction. On a successful save, a creature takes half as much damage and isn’t moved.

i

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CHAPTER 7 I FRIENDS AND FOES

Qu a n d r ix Pr o f ,

-

of

.

_~i

Su b s t a n c e

Medium or Small Humanoid (Wizard), Any Alignment

Armor Class 12 (15 with mage armor) Hit Points 104 (16d8 + 32) Speed 30 ft. STR 11 (+0)

DEX 14 (+2)

CON 14 (+2)

INT 19 (+4)

Qu a n d r

WIS 14 (+2)

CHA 13 (+1)

Saving Throws Con +5, Int +7, Wis +5, Cha +4 Skills Arcana +10, Investigation +10, Nature +7, Perception +5 Damage Resistances force Senses passive Perception 15 Languages Common plus any four languages Challenge 7 (2,900 XP) Proficiency Bonus +3

Ac t

io n s _________________________________

Multiattack. The professor makes two Spatial Blade attacks. Spatial Blade. Melee or Ranged Spell Attack: +7 to hit (the target can't benefit from cover less than total cover), reach 5 ft. or range 120 ft., one target. Hit: 13 (2d8 + 4) force damage, or 22 (4d8 + 4) force damage if the professor is Large or larger, and the professor can push the target horizontally up to 10 feet away.

Spellcasting. The professor casts one of the following spells, requiring no material components and using Intelligence as the spellcasting ability (spell save DC 15):

At will: guidance, mage hand, mending (as an action) 1/day each: creation (as an action), dimension door, mage armor, plant growth, polymorph

Bo n u s Ac t io n s __________________________ _ Dilation (Recharge 5-6). The professor magically alters its physical form until it uses this bonus action again, until it is incapacitated or dies, or until it dismisses the effect (no action required). Choose one of the following options:

Expand. The professor becomes Large if there is sufficient room for it to grow. It has advantage on attack rolls and on ability checks and saving throws that rely on Strength. Contract. The professor becomes Small. Its walking speed increases to 60 feet, attack rolls against it have disadvantage, and it has advantage on ability checks and saving throws that rely on Dexterity.

Re a c t

io n s _______________________________

Avoidant Translation (2/Day). When the professor is hit by an attack roll, it can increase its AC by 3 against that attack, potentially causing it to miss. The professor can then teleport, along with any equipment it is wearing or carrying, up to 30 feet to an unoccupied space it can see.

ix

Pr

of, of

Th e o r y

Medium or Small Humanoid (Wizard), Any Alignment Armor Class 12 (15 with mage armor) Hit Points 97 (15d8 + 30) Speed 30 ft. STR 11 (+0)

DEX 14 (+2)

CON 14 (+2)

INT 19 (+4)

WIS 15 (+2)

CHA 13 (+1)

Saving Throws Con +5, I nt +7, Wis +5, Cha +4 Skills Arcana +10, Insight +5, Investigation +10, Perception +5 Damage Resistances psychic Condition Immunities charmed, frightened Senses passive Perception 15 Languages Common plus any four languages Challenge 7 (2,900 XP) Proficiency Bonus +3

Ac t

io n s ________________________________

Multiattack. The professor makes two Heuristic Lance attacks. It can also use Overriding Theorem, if available. Heuristic Lance. Melee or Ranged Spell Attack: +7 to hit, reach 5 ft. or range 60 ft., one creature. Hit: 13 (2d8 + 4) psychic damage, and the target is poisoned until the end of its next turn.

Overriding Theorem (Recharge 4-6). The professor magically influences the mind of up to two creatures it can see within 60 feet of itself. Each target must succeed on a DC 15 Intelligence saving throw or become charmed by the professor until the start of the professor's next turn. The charmed creature must immediately use its reaction, if available, to move up its speed toward another creature of the professor’s choice and make one melee attack against that other creature.

Spellcasting. The professor casts one of the following spells, requiring no material components and using Intelligence as the spellcasting ability (spell save DC 15): At will: guidance, mage hand, minor illusion 1/day each: mage armor, major image, mirage arcane (as an action), Rary's telepathic bond

Re a c t

io n s ________________________________

Divide by Zero (2/Day). When the professor sees another creature within 60 feet of itself casting a spell, the professor can try to nullify the spell’s formation. The creature must succeed on a > DC 15 saving throw using the spell’s spellcasting ability, or the spell fails and is wasted.

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Armor Class 13 (natural armor) Hit Points 76 (8dl2 + 24) Speed 20 ft., climb 20 ft.

STR 20 (+5)

Re l ic Sl

ot h

For long expeditions, Lorehold mages often employ relic sloths to haul adventuring equipment and excavated artifacts—so long as their study isn’t in any particular hurry. Relic sloths travel at an excruciatingly slow pace, deliberating every step and moving only when necessary. But this caution makes these hulking creatures perfect for traversing treacherous and crumbling ruins, where other beasts of burden would falter. The distinctive sickle-shaped claws on a relic sloth’s forelimbs are primarily used for climbing, though they can fend off a hungry predator in a pinch. 210

CHAPTER 7 | FRIENDS AND FOES

DEX

9(-l)

CON 17 (+3)

Skills Perception +3 Senses passive Perception 13 Languages — Challenge 2 (450 XP)

INT

2 H)

WIS 12 (+1)

CHA 8(-l)

Proficiency Bonus +2

Ac t io n s Claws. Melee Weapon Attack: +7 to hit, reach 10 ft., one target. Hit: 14 (2d8 + 5) slashing damage, and the target is grappled (escape DC 15). The relic sloth can grapple no more than two targets at a time.

Re a c t io n s Slow but Sturdy. When the relic sloth is subjected to an effect that would move it out of its current space or knock it prone, it is neither moved nor knocked prone.

I

§

Ru in Gr

in d e r

Large Construct, Unaligned

Armor Class 16 (natural armor) Hit Points 82 (IldlO + 22) Speed 30 ft., burrow 30 ft.

STR 22 (+6)

DEX 13 (+1)

CON 15 (+2)

INT 3 (-4)

WIS 10 (+0)

CHA 1 (-5)

Damage Immunities fire, poison Condition Immunities charmed, exhaustion, frightened, petrified, poisoned Senses blindsight 60 ft. (blind beyond this radius), passive Perception 10 Languages understands the languages of its creator but can’t speak Challenge 5 (1,800 XP) Proficiency Bonus +3 Fire Absorption. Whenever the ruin grinder is subjected to fire damage, it regains a number of hit points equal to half the fire damage dealt. Siege Monster. The ruin grinder deals double damage to objects and structures.

Tunneler. The ruin grinder can burrow through solid rock at half its burrowing speed and leaves a 10-foot-diameter tunnel in its wake.

Ac t

io n s

Multiattack. The ruin grinder makes two Excavator attacks.

N

g V X

Excavator. Melee Weapon Attack: +9 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 13 (2d6 + 6) force damage. If the target is a Huge or smaller creature, it must succeed on a DC 17 Strength saving throw or be pushed up to 10 feet away and knocked prone.

Ru in Gr in d e r Created by the archaeomancers of Lorehold College, ruin grinders are mighty automatons built to excavate ancient ruins and artifacts. The massive toothed shovels attached to a ruin grinder's arms tear through millennia-old bedrock with ease, leading some Lorehold mages to fear that the grinders destroy more history than they unearth. CHAPTER 7 I FRIENDS AND FOES

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Sh a d r ix Sil v e r q u il l Centuries ago, the dragon Shadrix Silverquill mastered the magic of light and shadow, and he focused that magic through communication. Shadrix’s words thrummed with power, inspiring his allies and demoralizing his enemies. He established Silverquill College on the principles of eloquence and leadership, seeking to produce leaders who would go forth to guide others.

Sh a d r

ix

Sil v e r q u il l

21 Constitution saving throw. On a failed save, a creature takes 31 (7d8) radiant damage and 31 (7d8) psychic damage and is blinded until the start of Shadrix’s next turn. On a successful save, a creature takes half as much damage and isn't blinded.

Gargantuan Dragon (Bard), Neutral Armor Class 21 (natural armor) Hit Points 363 (22d2O+ 132) Speed 40 ft., fly 80 ft. STR 25 (+7)

DEX 14 (+2)

CON 23 (+6)

Spellcasting. Shadrix casts one of the following spells, requiring no material components and using Charisma as the spellcasting ability (spell save DC 23): INT 18 (+4)

WIS 18 (+4)

CHA 26 (+8)

Saving Throws Dex +9, Con +13, Wis +11, Cha +15 Skills Arcana +18, Deception +15, Perception +11, Persuasion +15 Damage Immunities psychic, radiant Senses blindsight 120 ft., passive Perception 21 Languages all Proficiency Bonus +7 Challenge 22 (41.000XP)

Legendary Resistance (3/Day). If Shadrix fails a saving throw, he can choose to succeed instead.

Ac t

io n s

Multiattack. Shadrix makes one Bite attack and two Claw attacks.

Bite. Melee Weapon Attack: +14 to hit, reach 15 ft., one target. Hit: 12 (IdlO + 7) piercing damage plus 4 (1 d8) radiant damage. Claw. Melee Weapon Attack: +14 to hit, reach 10 ft., one target. Hit: 10 (1 d6 + 7) slashing damage. If the target is a creature, it is wracked with despair and has disadvantage on attack rolls

until the end of its next turn.

Illuminating Shadow Breath (Recharge 5-6). Shadrix exhales an entwined burst of blinding radiance and unnerving shadow in a 90-foot cone. Each creature in that area must make a DC

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CHAPTER 7 I FRIENDS AND FOES

1/day each: darkness, daylight, hypnotic pattern, sending, suggestion

Le g e n d a r

y

Ac t

io n s

Shadrix can take 3 legendary actions, choosing from the options below. Only one legendary action option can be used at a time and only at the end of another creature’s turn. Shadrix regains spent legendary actions at the start of his turn.

Claw. Shadrix makes one Claw attack. Shadow Slip (Costs 2 Actions). Shadrix becomes an inky cloud of shadow and can move up to half his flying speed without provoking opportunity attacks, then resumes his true form. During this movement, he can move through creatures and objects as if they were difficult terrain. If he moves through a creature, it must succeed on a DC 21 Constitution saving throw or become blinded until the end of its next turn. If Shadrix ends this move inside an object, he takes 5 (IdlO) force damage and is shunted to the nearest unoccupied space. Flash of Inspiration (Costs 3 Actions). Shadrix magically summons 1 d4 inkling mascots (in this chapter) in unoccupied spaces he can see within 60 feet of himself. The inklings obey his commands and take their turns immediately after his. While any of these inklings live, Shadrix has advantage on attack rolls and saving throws. These inklings disappear after 10 minutes, when Shadrix dies, or when he uses this action again.

I 3

Sil

v e r q u il l

Sc h o l

ars

The scholars of Silverquill College study the power of magic shaped through spoken and written words. They use that power either to illuminate and guide or to obscure and demoralize.

Sil v e r q u il l St u d e n t s Stylish and driven, the students of Silverquill College—first as apprentices and then as pledgemages—cut imposing figures on campus. Dressed in smartly trimmed black-and-white uniforms, these budding mages practice bolstering speeches and wield inky blades. Some Silverquill students prefer the benevolent side of language, using their words to uplift their friends and illuminate harsh truths about those in power. Others, though, choose to wield words more ruthlessly and master the art of insults and discouragement (and in some cases, petty trash talk). Regardless, nearly all members of Silverquill College carry themselves with a fearsome, never-second-place attitude—because in the art of wielding words, confidence is key.

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Sil v e r q u il l Pr o f e s s o r o f Ra d ia n c e Professors of radiance call up magic through spoken words and glyphs formed of magically shaped

ink and light. The professors channel radiance to illuminate their allies, bolstering them with encouragement and inspiring any who witness their orations. Professors of radiance can turn their words into potent assets in battle or strike at their foes with searing radiance. These Silverquill teachers seek to inspire greatness in all that they do. pushing their students to look for the good in all things and bring that into the light.

Sil

v e r q u il l

Pr o f e s s o r o f Sh a d o w

Professors of shadow wield the linguistic magic of Silverquill College through slicing wit and debilitating inky shadow. Whether weaving their magic through spoken incantations and scathing insults or through shadows, these teachers break down the resolve of their foes. The professors strive to carry themselves as immaculately as possible, seeking to overawe and wrong-foot anyone who would stand against them in debate or in battle. In teaching their students, professors of shadow focus on words that find the tiniest, most invisible cracks in an opponent’s defenses and break them. CHAPTER 7 | FRIENDS AND FOES

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SlLVERQUILL PLEDGEMAGE Medium or Small Humanoid (Bard), Any Alignment

Armor Class 13 (16 with mage armor) Hit Points 66 (12d8+ 12) Speed 30 ft.

STR 10 (+0)

DEX 16 (+3)

CON 13 (+1)

INT 12 (+1)

WIS 11 (+0)

CHA 17 (+3)

Saving Throws Dex +5, Wis +2, Cha +5 Skills Deception +5, Performance+7, Persuasion +7 Senses passive Perception 10 Languages Common plus any two languages Challenge 4 (1,100 XP) Proficiency Bonus +2

Ac t io n s _____________________ _ ________ _ 10 (+0)

14 (+2)

13 (+1)

INT 12 (+1)

WIS 11 (+0)

CHA 15 (+2)

Saving Throws Dex +4, Cha +4 Skills Deception +4, Performance +6, Persuasion +6 Senses passive Perception 10 Languages Common plus any two languages Challenge 2 (450 XP) Proficiency Bonus +2

Ac t

io n s _________________________________

Ink Blade. Melee or Ranged Spell Attack: +4 to hit, reach 5 ft. or range 60 ft., one target. Hit: 5 (1 d6 + 2) piercing damage plus 9 (2d8) psychic damage.

Spellcasting. The pledgemage casts one of the following spells, requiring no material components and using Charisma as the spellcasting ability (spell save DC 13): At will: dancing lights, friends 1/day each: command, confusion, mage armor, tongues

Bo n u s Ac t

io n s

At will: dancing lights, friends 1/day each: command, mage armor

Demotivate (2/Day). The pledgemage hurls magical insults at one creature it can see within 30 feet of itself. The target must succeed on a DC 13 Wisdom saving throw or become frightened of the pledgemage for 1 minute. While frightened in this way, the target can't take reactions, its speed is halved, and any hit the pledgemage scores against the creature is a critical hit. The target can repeat the saving throw at the end of each of its turns, ending the effect on itself on a success.

Re a c t

Re a c t

Spellcasting. The apprentice casts one of the following spells, requiring no material components and using Charisma as the spellcasting ability (spell save DC 12):

io n s ___________________________ ___

Rousing Verse. When a creature the apprentice can see within 30 feet of it fails a saving throw, the apprentice magically weaves together stirring prose, allowing the creature to reroll the saving throw and use the higher result.

214

Ink Blade. Melee or Ranged Spell Attack: +5 to hit, reach 5 ft. or range 60 ft., one target. Hit: 7 (1 d8 + 3) piercing damage plus 10 (3d6) psychic damage.

CHAPTER 7 | FRIENDS AND FOES

io n s

Rousing Verse. When a creature the pledgemage can see within 30 feet of it fails a saving throw, the pledgemage magically weaves together stirring prose, allowing the creature to reroll the saving throw and use the higher result.

£ £

SlLVERQUILL PROF. OF SHADOW Medium or Small Humanoid (Bard), Any Alignment

SlLVERQUILL PROF. OF RADIANCE Medium or Small Humanoid (Bard), Any Alignment

Armor Class 12(15 with mage armor) Hit Points 97 (15d8 + 30) Speed 30 ft.

STR

n (+0)

DEX 14 (+2)

CON 14 (+2)

INT 16 (+3)

STR 11 (+0) WIS 13 (+1)

CHA 19 (+4)

Saving Throws Dex +5, Int +6, Wis +4, Cha +7 Skills Arcana +6, Deception +7, Performance +10, Persuasion +10 Damage Resistances radiant Senses passive Perception 11 Languages Common plus any four languages Challenge 7 (2,900 XP) Proficiency Bonus +3

Ac t

I 1

Armor Class 12 (15 with mage armor) Hit Points 97 (15d8 + 30) Speed 30 ft.

io n s

DEX 14 (+2)

CON 14 (+2)

INT 16 (+3)

WIS 13 (+1)

CHA 19 (+4)

Saving Throws Dex +5, Int +6, Wis +4, Cha +7 Skills Arcana +6, Deception +10, Persuasion +7, Stealth +5 Damage Resistances necrotic Senses darkvision 300 ft., passive Perception 11 Languages Common plus any four languages Challenge 7 (2,900 XP) Proficiency Bonus +3

Devil's Sight. Magical darkness doesn't impede the professor’s darkvision.

Ac t io n s

Multiattack. The professor makes two Radiant Strike attacks. The professor can replace one of the attacks with a use of Spellcasting.

Multiattack. The professor makes two Ink Lance attacks. The professor can replace one of the attacks with a use of Spellcasting.

Radiant Strike. Melee or Ranged Spell Attack: +7 to hit, reach 5 ft. or range 120 ft., one target. Hit: 17 (3d8 + 4) radiant damage. If the target is a creature, it must succeed on a DC 15 Constitution saving throw be blinded until the end of its next turn.

Ink Lance. Melee or Ranged Spell Attack: +7 to hit, reach 5 ft., or range 120 ft., one target. Hit: 17 (3d8 + 4) necrotic damage. If the target is a creature, it must succeed on a DC 15 Constitution saving throw be blinded until the end of its next turn.

Spellcasting. The professor casts one of the following spells, requiring no material components and using Charisma as the spellcasting ability (spell save DC 15):

Spellcasting. The professor casts one of the following spells, requiring no material components and using Charisma as the spellcasting ability (spell save DC 15):

At will: dancing lights, friends 2/day each: bless, command, cure wounds, daylight, mage armor 1/day each: hypnotic pattern, tongues

At will: dancing lights,friends 2/day each: bane, command, darkness, mage armor 1/day: tongues

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Spir

it

St a t u e Ma s c o t

To enhance their studies of the past, Lorehold students often call upon the spirits of dead creatures. Mages seeking longer-term assistance from ancient spirits have learned to house these spirits in statues, giving them a more permanent residence from which to assist the living. Some of these spirit statues bond with and mentor a specific mage, but most serve in a variety of roles for numerous individuals, ranging from research colleagues to martial tacticians. Regardless, their appearance is so common around the Lorehold campus that they have become the college’s mascots. 216

CHAPTER 7 I FRIENDS AND FOES

Languages any languages it knew in life Challenge 1/4 (50 XP) Proficiency Bonus +2 Death Burst. When the spirit statue is reduced to 0 hit points, the statue crumbles, and the spirit returns to the afterlife in a burst of ghostly white flame. Each creature within 5 feet of it must succeed on a DC 12 Constitution saving throw or take 3 (1d6) radiant damage.

Ac t io n s ______ Slam. Melee Weapon Attack: +4 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 5 (1 d6 + 2) bludgeoning damage. Counsel of the Past (2/Day). The spirit statue touches one creature. Once within the next 10 minutes, that creature can roll a d4 and add the number rolled to one ability check of its choice, immediately after rolling the d20.

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'7 St r ix h a v e n Ca m pu s Gu id e With cheerful dispositions and a knack for walking backward, Strixhaven campus guides lead gaggles of prospective students on tours. The guides’ gold and silver chassis are built in shapes reminiscent of the star arches surrounding Strixhaven. Embedded in their chests are holographic maps of the university’s campuses, which the guides use to provide directions. However, it’s rare for a campus guide to need its own maps, as these gregarious automatons have a gift for finding things on campus, often popping up at the most inopportune times.

>

St r ix h a v e n Ca m pu s Gu id e

Small Construct, Typically Lawful Cood

Univocal Speech. When the guide speaks, any creature that knows at least one language and can hear the guide understands what it says.

Armor Class 17 (natural armor) Hit Points 31 (7d6 + 7) Speed 30 ft.

Unusual Nature. The guide doesn’t require air, food, drink, or sleep.

STR 15 (+2)

) I I

I

I

I

DEX 14 (+2)

CON 13 (+1)

Ac t io n s INT 10 (+0)

WIS 12 (+1)

CHA 12 (+1)

Saving Throws Dex +4 Skills Insight+3, Persuasion+3 Damage Immunities poison Condition Immunities blinded, deafened, exhaustion, paralyzed, petrified, poisoned Senses blindsight 60 ft., passive Perception 11 Languages Common plus any three languages Challenge 1 (200 XP) Proficiency Bonus +2

/ Campus Knowledge. While at Strixhaven, the guide can’t become lost by magical or nonmagical means. The guide also has ’ advantage on ability checks made to locate creatures or objects at Strixhaven.

Multiattack. The guide makes two Slam attacks. Slam. Melee Weapon Attack: +4 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 6 (Td8 + 2) bludgeoning damage. Smile and Wave. Each creature of the guide’s choice that is within 30 feet of the guide must succeed on a DC 11 Wisdom saving throw or be magically charmed by the guide for 1 hour. A charmed target must move on its turn toward the guide, trying to get within 5 feet of the guide. The target doesn't move into obviously dangerous ground, such as a fire or a pit. When- ■ ever the charmed target takes damage, it can repeat the saving ! throw, ending the effect on itself on a success. A target that successfully saves is immune to any guide's ■ Smile and Wave ability for the next 24 hours.

Bo n u s Ac t io n s

______________

Need Directions? The guide takes the Help action.

CHAPTER 7 I FRIENDS AND FOES

217

Ta n a z ir Qu a n d r ix The dragon Tanazir Quandrix is one of the most potent masters of the magic that governs physical reality and theoretical abstraction. Through this knowledge, she can alter the physical properties of existence, gain fundamental understanding, and manipulate the flow of thought. Tanazir founded Quandrix College to nurture the spark of curiosity in those who would pursue knowledge. The goal is to train mages who seek knowledge for its own sake, guided by the mathematical principles that describe and govern the nature of reality.

Ta n a z ir Qu a n d r ix

save, a creature takes 45 (13d6) force damage and 45 (13d6) psychic damage and is weakened until the start ofTanazir’s next turn. While weakened, it has disadvantage on the following rolls that rely on Strength: attack rolls, ability checks, and saving throws. On a successful save, a creature takes half as much damage and isn’t weakened.

Gargantuan Dragon (wizard), Lawful Neutral

Armor Class 21 (natural armor) Hit Points 444 (24d20+ 192) Speed 40 ft., fly 80 ft. (hover) STR 28 (+9)

DEX 14 (+2)

CON 27 (+8)

INT 28 (+9)

Tanazir’s spells, legendary actions, and breath weapon manifest luminous patterns of geometric light. These take various forms, such as an interlocking cage around the target of a spell or a wave of infinitely replicating fractal swirls in the area of her breath.

WIS 18 (+4)

CHA 17 (+3)

Spellcasting. Tanazir casts one of the following spells, requiring no material components and using Intelligence as the spellcasting ability (spell save DC 24): 1/day each: divination, enlarge/reduce, mirage arcane (as an action), polymorph, scrying (as an action), seeming

Saving Throws Dex+9, Con +15, Wis +11, Cha +10 Skills Arcana +23, Investigation +23, Nature +16, Perception +18 Damage Immunities force, psychic Senses blindsight 120 ft., passive Perception 28 Languages Common, Draconic, telepathy 120 ft. Challenge 24 (62,000 XP) Proficiency Bonus +7

Teleport. Tanazir teleports to an unoccupied space she can see within 100 feet of herself.

Legendary Resistance (3/Day). IfTanazir fails a saving throw, she can choose to succeed instead.

Tanazir can take 3 legendary actions, choosing from the options below. Only one legendary action option can be used at a time and only at the end of another creature’s turn. Tanazir regains spent legendary actions at the start of her turn.

Ac t

io n s

Multiattack. Tanazir makes one Bite attack and two Claw attacks.

Bite. Melee Weapon Attack: +16 to hit, reach 15 ft., one target. Hit: 14 (1 dl0 + 9) piercing damage plus 7 (2d6) force damage. Claw. Melee Weapon Attack: +16 to hit, reach 10 ft., one target. Hit: 16 (2d6 + 9) slashing damage. If the target is a creature, it is addled by recursive thoughts, reducing its speed to 0 until the start ofTanazir’s next turn.

Diminution Breath (Recharge 5-6). Tanazir exhales a weakening equation in a 90-foot cone. Each creature in that area must make a DC 23 Constitution saving throw. On a failed

Le g e n d a r

y

Ac t io n s

Claw. Tanazir makes one Claw attack. Fold Space (Costs 2 Actions). Tanazir uses Teleport, and each other creature within 20 feet of the space she left must succeed on a DC 24 Strength saving throw or be pulled up to 30 feet closer to the center of that space and take 16 (3dl 0) force damage. Fractal Refraction (Costs 3 Actions). Tanazir magically summons 1 d4 fractal mascots (in this chapter) in unoccupied spaces she can see within 120 feet of herself. The fractals obey her commands and take their turns immediately after hers. While any of these fractals remain, attack rolls made against Tanazir have disadvantage. A summoned fractal disappears after 1 minute, when it or Tanazir dies, or when she uses this action again.

1I a.

218 Mi

CHAPTER 7 | FRIENDS AND FOES

Ve l

o ma c h u s

Lo r e h o l d

Velomachus Lorehold was the first dragon of Strixhaven to master the magic of order and chaos, the flow and prediction of events through time. Her magic encourages exploration and discovery through the lens of creating a direct conduit to the past. She founded Lorehold College to ensure mortals would never forget the lessons of the past. After living for centuries, Velomachus has grown tired of watching the same mistakes repeated continually. She hopes her college's teachings will foster the skills to either predict future pitfalls by taking lessons from those that came before or create flexible mindsets that allow people to shift their plans effectively when the unexpected occurs. Velomachus’s spells, legendary actions, and breath weapon are accompanied by visual effects resembling tomes and scrolls composed of golden light, perceptible distortions as time doubles back on itself, and thunderous sounds.

Ve l

o ma c h u s

Lo r

creature takes 45 (7dl2) force damage and 45 (7dl2) thunder damage and is pushed up to 20 feet in a horizontal direction of Velomachus' choice. On a success, the creature takes half as much damage and isn't pushed. Objects that aren’t being worn or carried take the damage and are pushed as if they were creatures that failed the saving throw.

eh o l d

Gargantuan Dragon (Wizard), Lawful Neutral

Armor Class 21 (natural armor) Hit Points 487 (25d20 + 225) Speed 40 ft., climb 40 ft., fly 80 ft.

STR 30 (+10)

DEX 14 (+2)

CON 29 (+9)

INT 30 (+10)

WIS 20 (+5)

CHA 18 (+4)

Saving Throws Dex +10, Con +17, Wis +13, Cha +12 Skills Arcana +18, History +18, Investigation +18, Perception +13 Damage Immunities thunder Senses blindsight 120 ft., passive Perception 23 Languages all Proficiency Bonus +8 Challenge 25 (75,000 XP)

Legendary Resistance (3/Day). If Velomachus fails a saving throw, she can choose to succeed instead.

Ac t

io n s

Multiattack. Velomachus makes one Bite attack and two Claw attacks. Bite. Melee Weapon Attack: +18 to hit, reach 15 ft., one target. Hit: 15 (IdlO + 10) piercing damage plus 6 (Idl2) thunder damage.

I

I

Claw. Melee Weapon Attack: +18 to hit, reach 10 ft., one target. Hit: 13 (1 d6 + 10) slashing damage. If the target is a Huge or smaller creature, it is knocked prone.

Battle Tide Breath (Recharge 5-6). Velomachus exhales thunderous sound in a 90-foot cone. Each creature in that area must make a DC 25 Constitution saving throw. On a failure, a

Spellcasting. Velomachus casts one of the following spells, requiring no material components and using Intelligence as the spellcasting ability: 1/day each: contact other plane (as an action, contacting a longdead spirit), divination, move earth, wall offorce

Le g e n d a r y Ac t

io n s

Velomachus can take 3 legendary actions, choosing from the options below. Only one legendary action option can be used at a time and only at the end of another creature’s turn. Velomachus regains spent legendary actions at the start of her turn.

Claw. Velomachus makes one Claw attack. Chaotic Flow (Costs 2 Actions). Velomachus moves up to half her flying speed. If a creature hits or misses her with an opportunity attack during this move, the attacker takes 19 (3dl2) thunder damage. Repeating History (Costs 3 Actions). Velomachus magically summons ld4 spirit statue mascots (in this chapter) in unoccupied spaces she can see within 60 feet of herself. The spirit statues obey her commands and take their turns immediately after hers. Any creature, other than a spirit statue or Velomachus, is restrained if it starts its turn within 5 feet of one or more of these spirit statues. This restrained condition lasts until the end of the creature’s turn. These spirit statues disappear after 10 minutes, when Velomachus dies, or when she uses this action again.

CHAPTER 7 | FRIENDS AND FOES

219

WlTHERBLOOM SCHOLARS Witherbloom College studies the magic inherent in the natural cycle of life and death. Witherbloom professors approach the philosophy from different directions, with one methodology focusing on decay and the other dealing with growth.

Wit h e r b l o o m St u d e n t s Deep in the fog and muck of the swamp, the students of Witherbloom College—first as apprentices and then as pledgemages—study the cycle of life and death. Their magic is fueled by what they call life essence: the ubiquitous energy that runs through living things. Witherbloom students learn how to concoct magical potions and talismans, in addition to their spellcasting studies. Their magic ranges from necrotic shadows and withering bursts of poison to flourishing bursts of plant life.

Wit h e r b l o o m Pr o f , o f De c a

y ___

Professors of decay wield magic that drains and twists the essence of the professors’ subjects. The professors use the gathered essence to feed their magic, snuffing the life and decaying the bodies of the living, entreating and commanding the dead 220

CHAPTER 7 I FRIENDS AND FOES

and Undead, and twisting curses around their foes. In battle, they steal the essence of their enemies to heal their own wounds and create spears of sickly green life-draining energy. Witherbloom teachers who espouse the decaying side of the natural cycle instruct their students to exploit the essence of life for their own needs. Professors of decay unravel the mysteries of death and the transition of decay, and they teach that any life’s end is an asset waiting to be tapped.

Wit h e r b l o o m Pr

of, of

Gr o w t h

Professors of growth nurture the essence of nature through their magic. They brew infusions of plants, fungi, and insects or other minuscule creatures that thrum with the essence of life, using these infusions to fuel their magic instead of using traditional material components. In battle, they flood their allies with vital essence, healing wounds and soothing ailments. Their foes face the wrath of nature itself, from grasping plants and conjured poisonous vines to avatars of nature’s wrath. These professors teach their students to focus on the growth side of the natural cycle of life and death and to avoid wasting resources. They espouse the philosophy that a thriving system benefits all.

i 1

another ritual to bestow another talisman. When the benefits expire, the talisman crumbles to dust.

Wit h e r b l o o m Appr e n t ic e Medium or Small Humanoid (Druid), Any Alignment

Ac t io n s

Armor Class 13 (leather armor) Hit Points 44 (8d8 + 8) Speed 30 ft.

STR 10 (+0)

Strixhaven - A Curriculum of Chaos (D&amp;D 5e) - PDFCOFFEE.COM (2024)

FAQs

What is the best spell in Strixhaven? ›

Silvery Barbs is definitely the most powerful spell introduced in Strixhaven, and if your DM allows it in their games, you should consider choosing this spell.

Is Strixhaven Curriculum of Chaos official? ›

Strixhaven: A Curriculum of Chaos is a sourcebook, published in December 2021, that details the Strixhaven campaign setting for the 5th edition of the Dungeons & Dragons fantasy role-playing game.

What level is a curriculum of chaos in Strixhaven? ›

Strixhaven: A Curriculum of Chaos is a series of D&D adventures that can be run individually or as a campaign taking characters from 1st to 10th level. Each adventure unfolds over the course of one academic year at Strixhaven—full of student rivalries, campus hijinks, and a sinister plot brewing beneath it all.

What are the subclasses in Strixhaven Curriculum of Chaos? ›

These Strixhaven subclasses were the Mage of Lorehold, Mage of Prismari, Mage of Quandrix, Mage of Silverquill, and Mage of Witherbloom. What made these Strixhaven classes unique is that they could be taken by multiple classes. The Mage of Lorehold, for example, could be taken by Bards, Warlocks, or Wizards.

What are the best draft colors in Strixhaven? ›

Strixhaven has five different key color combinations that can be drafted, and naturally some end up performing a bit better than others. Blue is the best color, and white is the worst. This leaves Prismari and Quandrix at the top, with Silverquill and Lorhold at the bottom, while Witherbloom is somewhere in between.

Is Strixhaven Commander worth it? ›

These cards generally take two to three years to really get going, but they can end up being worth $20+ if you're patient. Overall, however, you should feel safe buying Commander 2021 Strixhaven cards, either as complete decks or as singles.

What is the controversy with MTG Strixhaven? ›

Amidst a wave of hatred against Asians in the USA, Wizards of the Coast will release harmful Asian stereotypes in the Magic card set of Strixhaven. While tweeting support for the Asian community, the company reinforced the myth of the model minority and strengthened white supremacy.

Is Strixhaven a good campaign for beginners? ›

The book features mechanics for the school itself without intense structure to the lore and grounds, including plenty in the way of magic items, new spells and additional character options. This streamlined approach makes it great for busy Dungeon Masters and beginner players.

Is Strixhaven book worth it? ›

Strixhaven: A Curriculum of Chaos isn't a perfect book, but the new subsystems and whimsical adventures provide some really fun material, whether you're running the adventure as written or borrowing elements to slip into a homebrew campaign.

How old is Strixhaven? ›

Founded some 700 years ago by five spellcasting dragons, Strixhaven University is Arcavios's premier institution of magical learning, drawing promising young mages from all around the plane to study in its halls. Strixhaven is divided into five colleges, each with its own campus, faculty, and magical specialties.

Are there Planeswalkers in Strixhaven? ›

Both planeswalkers start at a high loyalty of five or six. Both planeswalkers have a first ability that provides a form of card advantage for +1. Both planeswalkers have a minus ability that puts them to two loyalty and deals with at least one creature. Both planeswalkers have a static ability.

Is Strixhaven balanced? ›

With the obviously exception of Lorehold's Ancient Companion (which is silly levels of broken) the Strixhaven subclasses are well balanced and clearly take account that classes get subclass feature at different levels as the majority of the early abilities either scale off of proficiency or effect spells (that are ...

Can you play a barbarian in Strixhaven? ›

While that might seem paradoxical, the way the colleges are laid out the writers have made it so that other classes can be a part of Strixhaven, given the right class selections. For instance, in the book they use the example that a Barbarian with the "Path of Ancestral Guardian" would work in the Lorehold college.

What realm is Strixhaven in? ›

Strixhaven is a school of magic located on the Orrithia continent of the plane Arcavios.

Is Strixhaven MTG or DND? ›

Strixhaven is a mage college. In Magic: The Gathering it is set on a particular plane, but that's entirely irrelevant for using the school in a D&D game.

What is the best Strixhaven school? ›

As if there were ever any doubt, Lorehold is the best Strixhaven college, and it's not close. There are a range of reasons for this, each more watertight than the last.

What is the most powerful spell in D&D lore? ›

The most famous of these spells is "wish", the most powerful spell within the game, which can duplicate spells from all schools. As universal spells are not a school, per se, no one can specialize in them.

Is Eldritch Blast a good spell? ›

Even so, Eldritch Blast has a few special properties that make it one of Dungeons and Dragons' best cantrips. In fact, the way that warlocks can change Eldritch Blast to their advantage makes it among the best spells in their entire spell list.

What is the best primer in Strixhaven? ›

The last primer, and arguably the best, is the Silverquill Primer. This textbook allows you to expand a charge and add 1d4 to your persuasion or intimidation checks.

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