Out of Character

"Has anyone seen my D20?"


November 2016

The Lamp Lighters

A while ago I mentioned we’d be making some changes to the podcast. Namely we would be focusing on 3 ongoing games for our campaigns. That doesn’t mean we’ll never upload or play anything else, but it does mean there will be a more consistent tighter series for people to enjoy. I realize it can be hard to stay invested when episodes are spread out so far.

One of the 3 games we’re going to be playing is our Lamp Lighters campaign set in The Forgotten Realms. Featuring Bastion Urd, Nyssa, and Umraetana. This campaign will be ongoing and we’ll be doing our very best to keep episodes coming on a regular basis. My hope is that we manage to put up at least one of these a month if not more.

The artwork for the game was created by Geoff Munn, a fantastic artist who does all of the art for our campaigns.

If you’re interested in catching up with Lamp Lighters here are links to the first 3 episodes. As of this moment that is all there are and you have plenty of time before we get down to business.

At the moment I am focusing on finishing up some older episodes we’d recorded and uploading them, as well as a few other games like our 2 part City of Mists game. As for what other ongoing games you can expect from us we have those planned out. We’ll be doing a supers campaign and a game set in Middle-Earth. More detail will be revealed about those projects as we solidify the details.


Episode 81: Spellwork

In this round of GM tips I offer some ideas for tackling spells such as summoning, scrying, teleporting, banishing, and resurrection.

Episode 80: City of Mist Part 1 of 2

A gunslinging antiques dealer, a mutant ex-boxer, and a prophetic hacker face off against the threats of the City. This is a fantastic game that is currently running a Kickstarter If you like this podcast you’ll love the full-game.

Muses D&D 5e

I was stricken by inspiration to create D&D 5e version of a Muse today, and I thought it turned out pretty well so I felt like sharing. This take on the Muse could definitely be tinkered with if you want to give the one you’re using in your campaign a bit of flavor. If you want one the is focused on say magic rather than other areas you could bump up the Intelligence a bit and provide her with a few more spells.

It is worth noting that I built the Muse to be something that avoids combat whenever possible. If someone summons and attempts to bind one they will use the spells at their disposal or their legendary action to slip away at the first opportunity.If it comes to it they can draw a sword and leap into the fray, but it would be an absolute last resort.

I do think you should always have multiple Muses in a game, and their should be some sort of familiar relationship there. I view them as goddesses/demi-goddesses/ lesser deities with power they choose to turn away from commanding the universe. They inspire the works of mortals, and so I see them walking among all races. The elf at the harp, the dwarf at the forge, the mage scribbling out a new spell, and the general looking for a brilliant strategy might all be visited by one. Maybe in your world each race has a unique pantheon of Muses all their own father by the chief deities of that race?

I hope you’ll find them fun!


Medium celestial, chaotic good

Armor Class 29

Hit Points 340

Speed 60 ft.

Str 24 (+7), Dex 30 (+10), Con 24 (+7), Int 24 (+7), Wis 24 (+7), Cha 30 (+10)

Saving Throws Dex +16, Int +13, Wis +13, Cha +16

Skills Acrobatics +17, Arcana +13, History +13, Insight +13, Performance +16, Persuasion +16

Damage Immunities bludgeoning, piercing, and slashing damage from non-magical weapons.

Senses Truesight 80 ft., passive Perception 16

Languages All

Challenge 18 (20,000)

Innate Spellcasting. The Muse’s innate spellcasting ability is Charisma (Spell Save DC 26 +16 to hit with spell attacks). It can innately cast the following spells requiring no material components.

At will: Charm Person, Dream, Enhance Ability, Freedom of Movement, Guidance, Heroism, Pass Without Trace

1/day each:  Beacon of Hope, Hallow (Courage), Plane Shift, Power Word Stun, Time Stop

Legendary Resistance (3/day). If the Muse fails a saving throw, it can choose to succeed instead.

Magic Resistance. The Muse has advantage on saving throws against spells and other magical effects.

Magic Weapons. The Muse’s weapon attacks are magical.

Divinity. If reduced to 0 hit points a Muse immediately reappears in the Astral Plane where she remains for 3d6 days until restored to her full hp.


Sword. Melee Weapon Attack: +13 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 24 (3d8 + 7) slashing damage.

 Legendary Actions

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

Dramatic Entrance: The Muse automatically goes first in the initiative order. The Muse disappears and reappears within 120 ft. of her current position (This is usually accompanied by sensory effects that are loud, flashy, or bright but otherwise harmless). Creatures within 60 ft. of the Muse’s position when she reappears and can see her are Stunned.

This action can be taken at any time, rather than at the end of another creature’s turn.

Divine Inspiration: The Muse inspires all nonhostile creatures with 80 ft. of it. Inspired creatures can’t be charmed or frightened, and they automatically succeed on their next attack roll, ability check, or saving throw before the Muse’s next turn.

Exit Stage Left: The Muse disappears reappearing back on her home plane in her own domain. This action may only be taken once each day, and the Muse must remain in her domain for a full day after using it.


Goddesses, demi-goddesses, divine spirits of inspiration, and proclaimers of heroes the Muses are the driving force behind creative expression in all forms.

Muses take no interest in doing battle, but they will bear witness to deeds of heroism and cunning carried out by adventurers. On more than one occasion a Muse has even gone so far as to appear on battlefields or in besieged fortresses inspiring warriors to greater heights that allowed them to seize the day.

Muses are fond of collecting magical objects that they can in turn give to those who will use them to perform. Magical instruments, books of lore, enchanted tools, and other such items may well find their way into a Muse’s collection.

Troglodyte Fouler

These little guys could make for a very unwelcome surprise in a Spelljammer encounter since one of the big threats your players can face happens to be running of of clean air to breathe. In other, more traditional games their chaotic monsters that can make the battlefield an utter nightmare for defenders. Imagine a few of these things popping out of a hole in the ground in the middle of a city. They are much smaller and less physically powerful than ordinary troglodytes, allowing them to be launched from catapults and other such devices.

You can find stats for siege equipment in the 5e Dungeon Master’s Guide on pages 255-256. Support the official release or whip up some of your own stats. Keep in mind troglodytes are brilliant, so they would probably have stolen or found such devices from others. If they did manage to build one it was probably cobbled together from giant bones and bits of string.

Troglodyte Fouler

Small humanoid (troglodyte), chaotic evil

Armor Class 14 (natural armor)

Hit Points 11

Speed 30 ft.

Str 10 (+0) Dex 16 (+3) Con 12 (+1) Int 8 (-1) Wis 10 (+0) Cha 6 (-2)

Skills Stealth +4

Senses darkvision 60 ft, passive Perception 10

Languages Common, Troglodyte, Undercommon

Challenge 1/4 (50 xp)

Chameleon Skin. The troglodyte fouler has advantage on Dexterity (Stealth) checks made to hide.

Stench. Any creature other than a troglodyte that starts its turn within 5 feet of the troglodyte must succeed on a DC 15 Constitution saving throw or be poisoned until the start of the creature’s next turn. On a successful saving throw, the creature is immune to the stench of all troglodytes for 1 hour.

Sunlight Sensitivity. While in sunlight, the troglodyte fouler has disadvantage on attack rolls, as well as Wisdom (Perception) checks that rely on sight.


Befoul: The troglodyte fouler releases a 15-foot-radious sphere of noxious, green gas centered on it, all creatures except troglodytes within the area of the cloud must make a DC 12 Constitution saving throw or be poisoned until the start of the creature’s next turn. On a successful saving throw, the creature is immune to the stench of all troglodytes for 1 hour. In an environment with a limited air supply (An underwater cavern system, a dwarf-made bathysphere, or a ship traveling through wildspace) this ability befouls 3d6 days of the remaining air supply. Wind disperses the cloud after 5 minutes, otherwise is remains for 1 hour. The area is lightly obscured.

Claw. Melee Weapon Attack: +2 to hit, reach 5 ft., one target. Hit: 4 (1d4) piercing damage.

Bred to exude a stench greater than other troglodytes these diminutive reptilians are sometimes launched between vessels to foul the air. They will seek to hide aboard vessels until the air supply is completely contaminated making it even easier for troglodytes to overtake crews. Troglodyte foulers have cleared out cavern networks making them homes unfit for anyone except their larger kin. Although they work with troglodytes these creatures often find themselves falling prey to troglodytes looking for an easy meal.

Ring of Rug

This is a somewhat silly, but possibly useful magical item I whipped up for Dungeons & Dragons 5e. It is untested but I think players could have a bit of fun with it.

Ring of Rug

Ring, uncommon

As an action the wearer of this ring can transform into a seemingly ordinary rug. You may choose the type of rug at the moment of transformation (ex: polar bear, tiger skin, threadbare, ornate, etc.). At any time you may transform back into your ordinary form as an action.

In your transformed state you have a +10 bonus to Stealth checks and advantage if used in a suitable location where a rug might be common. When transformed in the middle of a forest you gain no bonus and you have disadvantage on your Stealth check. Final determination on this ruling should be discussed with your Dungeon Master.

While transformed your movement is reduced to 0, and you take 1d4+1 bludgeoning damage each time a creature that is medium-sized or larger steps on you.

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