dnd 5e – Does Hexblade’s Curse extra damage affect every die rolled?

The relevant part of Hexblade’s Curse states (XGtE p.55):

Starting at 1st level, you gain the ability to place a baleful curse on someone. As a bonus action, choose one creature you can see within 30 feet of you. The target is cursed for 1 minute. The curse ends early if the target dies, you die, or you are incapacitated. Until the curse ends, you gain the following benefits:

  • You gain a bonus to damage rolls against the cursed target. The bonus equals your proficiency bonus.
  • (…)

Typically when features add extra damage they clarify that the extra damage only applies to one damage roll, or the added damage just applies to the damage as a whole, like the various cleric subclasses’ Potent Spellcasting:

Starting at 8th level, you add your wisdom modifier to the damage you deal with any cleric cantrip.

Or the Evocation Wizard’s Empowered Evocation (PHB p.117):

…you can add your Intelligence modifier to one damage roll of any wizard evocation spell you cast.

Does this mean the wording of the Hexblade’s Curse would apply to all of the dice rolled for the attack? If when the warlock gains Pact of the Blade at 3rd level, could they pick a great sword as there pact weapon, which deals 2d6 damage, and add their proficiency bonus twice to the damage?

dnd 5e – Curse of Strahd for 2 Players, How to work with ressurection from a Story perspective

I plan rn with 2 of my best friends to play Curse of Strahd, 2 of them as players and me obviously as the DM.

I know that the Game is intendet to have 4-6 Players and not 2. I let them start at lvl 3 and max level will me 12 to 14.

But they will die probably since i don’t want to make it a cakewalk obviously, and i want to use a “either you let your character die and must make a new one, or you ressurect yourself and have to roll to recieve either a random dark gift or a madness you roll.” every time they die.

But i am not sure yet how to make in RP, my first idea is that i let them wake up as Ghosts on a misty field where Strahd shows up and gives them a deal to ressurect them so they could die in the future for his amusement, but i also don’t want to reveal Strahd to fast, so i thought that maybe like a ghostly figur or some type of demon makes these ressurection deals, or this could be Strahd but in disguise to fool them, or not to reveal his intendity to fast. But i am not sure if that would be in character for Strahd because i want this “Ressurection dealer” be really cocky to the Characters.

Can someone give me some advice?

dnd 5e – Why would this NPC in Curse of Strahd ever attack Strahd?

In Curse of Strahd, there is an NPC the PC’s may encounter whose weapon explicitly does more damage when he uses it to attack Strahd.

Vladamir Horngaard: +2 Greatsword. Damage: 4d6+4 slashing; Against Strahd, Vladimir deals an extra 14 (4d6) slashing damage with this weapon.

However, said NPC states explicitly that he will not attack Strahd (emphasis mine):

“If you have come to free this land from the creature that feasts on the blood of the innocent, know this: There is no monster I hate more than Strahd von Zarovich. He slew Argynvost, broke the life of the knight I loved, and destroyed the valiant order to which I devoted my life, but Strahd has already died once. He can’t be allowed to die again. Instead, he must suffer eternally in a hell of his own creation, from which he can never escape. Whatever can be done to bring him misery and unrest, I will do, but I will destroy anyone who tries to end his torment.”

The module says that the players may want to take his weapon; but its description explicitly states that the damage bonus applies when he is wielding it.

The players might try to persuade him to ally against Strahd, but he will refuse.

Vladimir fights in self-defense. He also rises from his throne and attacks if the characters fail to heed his warning and press him for help destroying Strahd.

They might try magical compulsion, but

As an “undead”, Vladimir is not affected by spells that target “humanoids”. He also has Condition Immunity: Charm.

None of Strahd’s three goals give him a reason to go to the NPC’s location. Unless the players visit the NPC’s location, he will not leave. I suppose players could get him to venture to Strahd’s castle…

If the players destroy Vladamir’s current body, his spirit will find another body to inhabit. A normal revenant would then seek out its killers, but the module states that the revenants in Barovia are kept trapped there regardless, so it is not clear whether Vladimir’s newest incarnation would seek the PC’s out or would return to his original location to brood on his hatred for them and Strahd. If a DM ruled that Vladimir’s new incarnation seeks out the PC’s, clever players might slay him and then enter Castle Ravenloft to force him to enter as well and confront Strahd…

but even if the two are brought together, neither has a reason to attack the other.

The only event that will remove the thing preventing him from attacking Strahd,

lighting the beacon to end the hate that keeps him bound to Barovia,

will also end his life.

Any way I look at it, I can’t see a way that this NPC would ever attack Strahd, so what is the relevance of his weapon doing extra damage to Strahd when he wields it?

magic items – What level Curse does Lycanthropy count as?

I’m reworking some of my older campaigns in Pathfinder 1e and transferring them into Pathfinder 2e. One of the custom items I had in an original dungeon was a supposed “Wand of Wish” that was actually a “Wand of Aberrations”; functionally, it was a 1 charge wand that would apply a random +0 lvl Template onto either the character using it or the character the user indicates (depending on the intent and situation). That being said, I’ve decided to rework this mechanic into an “Idol of Lamashtu”.

The encounter involves a devout Bugbear using one of these items to attain a boon from Lamashtu, the bugbear fighting the party and at least one identical idol for the party to loot. While it’d be easy to just have the idol apply one of Lamashtu’s Divine Curses, I think it’d be more interesting and perfectly thematic to give the user a random kind of Lycanthropy (see the bottom of the page); this comes with the added bonus of having a solid item level to calculate treasure with. However, when I look up Lycanthropy between the Bestiary and Archives of Nethys, they never say what level the curse is, such as when they talk about a Curse of Nightmares being Curse 2 and Sellsword’s Folly being Curse 9.

All that being said What Level Curse is Lycanthropy? Or better yet, what level would a cursed item that inflicts Lycanthropy be?

dnd 5e – Is the Adult Gold Dragon’s Weakening Breath considered a curse, disease, or poison?

Weakening Breath is not curable by Panacea

The 5th edition version of the Weakening Breath breath weapon is not labeled as a curse, disease, or poison. As such, it can’t be cured by Panacea, which says:

You remove all curses, diseases, and poisons affecting a creature that you touch with the transmuter’s stone.

In addition, spells like lesser restoration:

You touch a creature and can end either one disease or one condition afflicting it. The condition can be blinded, deafened, paralyzed, or poisoned.

…and greater restoration:

You imbue a creature you touch with positive energy to undo a debilitating effect. You can reduce the target’s exhaustion level by one, or end one of the following effects on the target:

  • One effect that charmed or petrified the target
  • One curse, including the target’s attunement to a cursed magic item
  • Any reduction to one of the target’s ability scores
  • One effect reducing the target’s hit point maximum

…which can remove most conditions between themselves, can’t remove it either.

Past editions

This is a marked change from past editions, where the Weakening Breath was easier to handle.

AD&D 1e:

The attack of a gold dragon can be a claw/claw/bite routine or one of two breath weapons — fire in a 9” x 3” cone, or chlorine gas in a 5” x 4” x 3” cloud.

Chlorine gas is just a poison that the neutralize poison spell could handle:

AD&D 2e:

A gold dragon has two breath weapons: a cone of fire 90′ long, 5′ wide, at the dragon’s mouth, and 30′ wide at the end or a cloud of potent chlorine gas 50′ long, 40′ wide, and 30′ high.

Very little changes for the gold dragon in this edition, and the same spell helps here once more.

D&D 3.x:

A gold dragon has two types of breath weapon, a cone of fire and a cone of weakening gas. Creatures within a cone of weakening gas must succeed on a Fortitude save or take 1 point of Strength damage per age category of the dragon.

We finally have the term “weakening”, but in this case it is ability damage (something that doesn’t exist in the same magnitude anymore). The move away from ability damage in 5e extended to the gold dragon’s breath weapon. Back in 3.x, though, it was more common, and both lesser restoration and restoration spells could help with the effects.

D&D 4e:

Close blast 5; +19 vs. Reflex; 2d8 + 7 fire damage, and the target is weakened (save ends). Miss: Half damage

In 4e, this recharge power combines both breath weapons, making the fire breath include the weakened condition. You can use First Aid to allow an ally to make a saving throw against the condition, but there may also be powers (though I couldn’t find one) that can end the effect immediately.


As you can see, past editions made the gold dragon’s alternate breath weapon easier to counteract at least to some extent, while 5th edition’s version must simply be waited out.

spells – Is adjusting damage type an appropriate power level for bestow curse?

  • −6 decrease to an ability score (minimum 1).
  • −4 penalty on attack rolls, saves, ability checks, and skill checks.
  • Each turn, the target has a 50% chance to act normally; otherwise, it takes no action.

These are the default, written effects of bestow curse. And any of them are “immediately stop whatever you were doing and find someone who can cast remove curse before proceeding to attempt anything else,” at least assuming the penalized ability score is one you rely on. Those are large penalties, and the third option is even worse than those are.

And in that light, this is… not that, honestly. A lot of targets won’t actually be affected—the default, after all, is that a creature doesn’t have any protections against or vulnerabilities to particular types of damage. All damage is bad damage and this doesn’t change that. For some targets, this is brutal, but even then, not necessarily something that needs to be dealt with immediately. There are plenty of things you can do without risking damage—e.g. anything outside of combat—and you could do those fine. That isn’t the case with the default curses.

On the other hand, this effect could potentially allow you to get past some ridiculous defenses. And in situations where it’s meaningful, and damage is a real risk, it probably represents a more-immediate threat to your life than the default effects. But when you consider all the other things a 3rd-level spell can do on a failed Will save, even that doesn’t seem like a problem to me. For a regular target I was just trying to kill, I probably wouldn’t bother, and for a target that needs to be debilitated in a serious way, that 50% chance of failure on everything you do is far more likely to be my choice.

But against that target with one crucial weakness, that we were having trouble targeting, I could see wanting it. And as a DM, wouldn’t mind it at all. Again, bestow curse can usually do worse.

dnd 5e – A PC in Curse of Strahd is cursed by Mother Night and eats a dream pastry. What happens?

A PC in Curse of Strahd has the opportunity to be cursed by Mother Night, at which point they are

haunted by horrible dreams every night lasting from dusk until dawn…A creature cursed in this way gains no benefit from finishing a short or long rest at night (resting during the day works normally, since the curse is dormant from dawn to dusk).

On the other hand, a PC who eats a dream pastry

must succeed on a DC 16 Constitution saving throw or fall into a trance that lasts for 1d4 + 4 hours, during which time the creature is incapacitated and has a speed of 0 feet. The trance ends if the affected creature takes any damage or if someone else uses an action to shake the creature out of its stupor.
While in the trance, the creature dreams of being in some joyous place, far removed from the evils of the world.

As luck would have it, one of the PCs in my current CoS campaign has been cursed, although he has not yet slept. He is also the only PC to have previously eaten a dream pastry. If he realizes the effects of the curse and decides to counteract it with a dream pastry, what would happen?

RAW are ideal, perhaps drawing on precedent for the power of curses vs. magic items, or divine magic vs. fiends. If no RAW answer is forthcoming, an answer can separate itself from mere opinion by relating experience (what happened in your campaign and how it was received), lore relationship between hags and Mother Night, or lore from the Ravenloft setting in any edition.

dnd 5e – What is the spell save DC for the spells gains via the dark gifts in Curse of Strahd?

In Curse of Strahd, in Amber Temple,

the player characters can interact with amber sarcophagi and make deals with the vestiges trapped within them to gain dark gifts. Some of these dark gifts allow you to cast spells (only those in the X33 areas, found on pp. 191-193; the dark gifts gained from area X42 are different in nature and are not relevant to this question).

The descriptions of these dark gifts do not make any mention of a spell save DC, should the dark gift allow the casting of a spell. For a player who has a spellcasting class, I guess you can just use their class’s spell save DC (that’s what I ruled when this came up the other day, although if they had different spell save DCs if they were multiclassed, which one?), but for non-spellcasting classes, clearly they have no spell save DC from their class.

For some of these spells, clearly a spell save DC isn’t relevant, such as:

mind blank (X33b; North Sarcophagus) or raise dead (X33a; East Sarcophagus)

but for others, it is, such as:

lightning bolt (X33a; South Sarcophagus) or suggestion (X33b; South Sarcophagus)

but it doesn’t seem to mention anything about a spell save DC for these spells anywhere, either in each specific dark gift’s description nor in the general information about dark gifts in the sidebar on p. 191.

Am I missing something, or is there another way to determine what these spell save DCs should be?

dnd 5e – How to permanently curse an item?

By permanently, I don’t mean ‘until dispelled’, which can be achieved by using upcast bestow curse . I want to make those items that cannot be unattuned, except by casting remove curse on the wielder. I want to make it unremovable by remove curse. In short, similar to your traditional cursed magic item.

Are there rule, guidance, or precedent to convince my DM?

Of course there are DM ruling, but it will be helpful if the process can be described mechanically or narratively.

dnd 5e – Dismissal, Banishment, and Curse of Strahd

Background

In Curse of Strahd, the NPC

Rictavio

has the spell Dispel Evil and Good. It has the following feature, similar to the spell Banishment:

Dismissal. As your action, make a melee spell attack against…an undead you can reach. On a hit, you attempt to drive the creature back to its home plane. The creature must succeed on a Charisma saving throw or be sent back to its home plane (if it isn’t there already). If they aren’t on their home plane, undead are sent to the Shadowfell…

Note that as written, this implies that there exist undead that aren’t native to the Shadowfell, but that they go there (rather than their home plane) if they are not on their home plane when they are Dismissed. (Otherwise it would say, “If they aren’t already there, undead are sent to the Shadowfell”)

However, note also that Barovia is part of the Domains of Dread, which are a demiplane within the Shadowfell.

As the NPC’s most powerful spell, it seems like this ought to be of some use to them (and other aspects of the spell do indeed make it useful). But the presence of Barovia within the Shadowfell may limit its effectiveness.

Questions

It is clear that for an undead native to Barovia, nothing would happen; the Dismissal would fail.

  1. For an undead not native to Barovia, would ‘sending it to the Shadowfell’ also result in failure, or could it be forced from the demiplane of Dread and deposited in the greater Shadowfell?

  2. What undead are not native to Barovia?

Zombies created by Strahd from Barovians seem likely to be natives of the demiplane itself.

Strahd himself was born on the Prime – but I would argue that his pact with the Dark Powers has made him a native of the Barovia. He is the Ancient, he is the Land.

There is a group of vampire spawn who are explicitly said to be former adventures Strahd lured to his realm and then made undead once they arrived. In this case, would Dismissal treat them as neither native to Barovia nor the Shadowfell? Is the home plane where the creature / soul is from, or where it became undead?

Related

What is the connection between the Shadowfell and Strahd/the plane of Barovia?

What does the Banishment spell do inside a Demiplane?

What determines a creature’s native plane for the Banishment spell?

If I cast the Banishment spell on myself while in a demiplane, where exactly do I exit?

Can you cast banishment on yourself?

Can I permanently banish a devil from one layer of the Hells to another using the Banishment spell?