Elementalist

The Elementalist was introduced to the Dragon Warriors* world - for some, belatedly as they struggled to get their hands on Book 5 - in that Book and explained a little further in Book 6.

Source Information on the Profession

Refer to Book 5.

Non-Humans which may become Elementalists

None, only humans are able to harness the elements in this manner. To Elves* all elements of the world are of equal importance and to dedicate oneself to only one is anathema.
Dwarves* and Halflings* do not possess the mystical connections to become Elementalists. Amongst other races there are occasional Sorcerers* who dedicate themselves to a single elemental god, but they are not Elementalists.

Further Information from the Gamebooks

  • Specific Background table rolls in Book 6 p154.

Customisation by GMs

  • Extrakun has proposed an additional counter-class to the Darkness Elementalist, the Light Elementalist.
  • Christopher Loh has made his own modifications for his DRAGONWARRIORSRPG play-by-email campaign.
  • Wayne Imlach has proposed a revision for the Raw Power rules that were first published in DWR.
  • RJ Lambert has created the following customisation, though it is not the only customisation to the profession by many GMs dissatisfied with the relative weakness of the Elementalist as an adventuring profession:

Modified Elementalist Profession

(RJ Lambert)

Due to the universal belief (in my experience) that the Book 5 Elementalists were too weak, I have improved them in my house rules as below.

E1. Ritual Recovery Reform
The Ritual Recovery takes 10 minutes to perform, and must not be interrupted - if so, the Elementalist must start again. If interrupted a second time, she has lost the chance to regenerate and must wait until next time. The upshot is that it can be done regardless of whether all MP have been used up or not.

E2. Secial Items for Doin Thar Thang
I will give to the elementalist whatever item they need to do what they do - e.g. the Air Elementalist has their harp and need not save up to buy it. If they lose the item, the double-MP rule applies. I might add here that IMO the Earth Elementalist's vine-root staff is not their combat staff, but a second 'medicine-pouch' item.

E3. Combat Bonuses
I think a placatory reform is to give minor combat bonuses for Elementalists. I see them as more closely akin to mystics/druids than Sorcerers* (at worst, shamans) so I expect them to play a part in combat, however perhaps less so than Mystics*. The arms they begin with suggest I am right. Therefore I make these house rules:

  • E3A: Air Elementalist
The Air Elementalist gains +1 ATTACK to all missile fire as she uses her control of the winds to guide her missile to its target. This does not apply to heavy projectiles over 3kg. The Air Elementalist can sacrifice the +1 ATTACK bonus in favour of increased range for a missile shot - a long-range shot becomes medium range, and medium-range becomes short range. A short range shot can not be made shorter, the +1 ATTACK should suffice. If the PC is an Elf* they do not receive these bonuses.

  • E3F: Fire Elementalist
The Fire Elementalist causes any metal weapon to glow with fire that adds +1 to ABR and +1 damage. No ATTACK bonus is conferred. Non- metal weapons do not receive this bonus.

  • E3E: Earth Elementalist
The Earth Elementalist causes any crushing weapons to have greater strength and therefore also +1 ABR and +1 damage. Again, no ATTACK bonus is conferred. No bonus is conferred upon any edged weapon. Wooden, stone or biological weapons (including the Elementalist's own fists) are affected.

  • E3W: Water Elementalist
Having mastery over water, including in their own bodies, the Water Elementalist is able to manipulate their own biological fluids to deal with injury and stress. To minimise my administration of how this works, and for simplicity and consequently, they start with 1d6+6, not +4, HP.

Footnote E3FN1: The ATTACK/DEFENCE scores will still go up with rank at Sorcerer* rates.

Footnote E3FN2: Magical weapons bonuses are overlaid with any bonuses conferred above. So for instance an Air Elementalist using a +2 Bow gets +3 ATTACK.

E4. Weapons Modification
Due to House Rule E3, above:

  • E4A: Air Elementalist
Air starts with a bow instead of a sword, with 10 arrows

  • E4F: Fire Elementalist
No modification for Fire, they get a sword to start with.

  • E4E: Earth Elementalist
Earth starts with a war-hammer with stone head, d6,5 (in his hands, d6+1,6 but no ATTACK bonus), instead of a sword.

  • E4W: Water Elementalist
No modification.

E5. Cheap Tricks
If you think I am referring to their spells, you are wrong. Each has a cheap trick they can do which just means their mastery of the elements makes life easy for them.

  • E5A: Air Elementalist
They are never hot or cold, despite the prevailing conditions - they exist in perennial comfort, having their own 'air conditioning' if you will.

  • E5F: Fire Elementalist
They can start a fire with a click of their fingers, rather thanneeding flint-and-tinder.

  • E5E: Earth Elementalist
They never need a bedroll when in open ground - the soil breaks up and shifts to cushion and accomodate them in total comfort, wherever they are. This does not apply within buildings, though it would do so in earthen floors of dungeons (but why would you sleep there?).

  • E5W: Water Elementalist
E5W1: They take longer to dehydrate. Though they must drink, they can survive for longer-than-natural periods without a great deal of water.
E5W2: They can drink polluted water, separating in their mouth the pollution from the pure water and spitting out the remainder. This is not pleasant and not therefore a means to filter water for other PCs (eww, if you think what I'm thinking). It also does not apply to poisons - they will affect the drinker.

E6. Skills of the Mighty
These are now settled, not negotiable Skills that accrue after Rank 7 for Elementalists.

  • E6SM1: Kinship
From Rank 7 the Elementalist gains the ability to communicate with creatures as follows:

EARTH: Trees, Plants and Burrowing Animals.
AIR: All naturally flying creatures, particular birds and flying insects
WATER: All water-dwelling and amphibious species. Fish need not 'pop up' from the water to speak, the Water Elementalist need only dip their hand in the water to speak with them.
FIRE: All insects. Don't ask me why, its just an idea. I don't care that this crosses over with Air.
DARKNESS: Well, things that are creatures of darkness. Not nocturnal mammals, but creatures from nether-realms. You don't want to go there.

* All of these are within the GM's discretion as to how much information can be gleaned, but suffice it to say that as rank increases the ability improves - the higher the rank, the smaller the creature that can be communicated with, the more information can be gleaned and the more that can be listened to at once. For instance, an Earth elementalist at 7th rank might be able to glean basic descriptions of prey from a rodent, but at 12th rank might glean the same, plus what conversation they were having, from a group of worms to whom he can speak in unison!

  • E6SM2. Assimilation
At 7th rank the Elementalist can assimilate with their element (yes this applies to Darkness Elementalists too). They fade (Air) /sink (Water,Earth) / wisp (Fire,Darkness). As rank increases the duration improves. At 7th rank it is 2 minutes, 8th: 5 minutes; 9th: 20 minutes; 10th: 40 minutes; 11th: 3 hours; 12th: as long as they wish, but at the end of each day spent in the element a roll of 20 on d20 means the assimilation is irreversible and their soul will wail from that element.

In the case of Fire Elementalists, their spirit will keep the fire burning such that nothing, even Dispel Magic* (or similar) will put it out.

Water Elementalists need to be careful - if, say, the body of water they are assimilated with moves (eg a dam breaks), they will move with it unless they dissimilate. Assimilation/dissimilation with fast-moving water is done seamlessly (i.e. without rolls for difficulty).

Earth Elementalists can not assimilate with processed earth (e.g. cobblestone roads, marble floors) but only unprocessed earth - however, so long as a nett 30 sq. cm opening is available, they can assimilate into it.

As an aside, an Air Elementalist could not travel into outer space as there is no air to be assimilated with there.

Darkness Elementalists, however, could - but who would think to do such a thing when a flat square world is still assumed? I add that for Darkness Elementalists, they can obviously assimilate into darkness quite fine such as in the dark of a dungeon, or during the night. If there is lantern light or in daytime with shadows present, the Darkness Elementalist can move from shadow to shadow but within the GM's discretion may need to make a Stealth Roll so as not to be noticed. If, say, a Darkness Elementalist was assimilated and then blinding light was generated, he would instantly dissimilate unless he finds his way in 1 CR to a shadow, in which he is 'trapped' unless the light fades or he dissimilates. Whilst assimilated, Elementalists can move within their element at walking pace. The exception is Water Elementalists, who can make a day's journey in open sea as if they were a large ship (this, of course, suggests that only a 12th rank Elementalist would dare attempt a 'sea voyage' in this way).

At 7th rank, only clothing will be assimilated with the Elementalist.
At 9th rank, clothing, non-magical equipment, armour and non-magical weapons are assimilated.
At 11th rank, all possessions are assimilated.
If the Elementalist 'expires' in their element, their possessions reform and can be claimed.

  • E6SM3: Elemental Empathy (hat tip to Rumtap)

At 8th rank and above an elemental of their main category will not attack the Elementalist unless they try to harm it first, even if the elemental is under control of another being. The characters comrades are still fair game however.

Darkness: The Darkness Elementalist and the Shadow Gaunt* feel no empathy for other living things so the above rule does not apply to them.

E7. Self-Healing
This power can be cast at any level that does not exceed the casters rank. For each magic point used the Elementalist can heal them self of 2 health points damage. This power does not take health points above their normal level nor does it raise the dead.

E.g. A 5th rank Elementalist could spend up to 5 magic points from their main category and heal a 10 health point wound. They could also use this power at a lower level such as at the 2nd level and spend 2 magic points to heal a 4 health point wound.

Healing can not occur unless the elementalist can find the presence of their own element in raw form, other than that which they carry / can generate themselves. So:

  • A Fire Elementalist must find a fire that he has not started and hold his hand over it (it will not burn) to be replenished in this way.
  • A Water Elementalist could not spit and use that to heal himself, but rather must find a puddle or stream.
  • An Earth Elementalists are perhaps advantaged here, as any old earth will do! Processed earth (e.g. bricks) will not do but tilled earth is fine.
  • Likewise an Air Elementalist is well placed, but it must be fresh - not stale air. In a dungeon, therefore, there must be airflow from the surface for the healing to occur.
  • Darkness Elementalists must cover the wounded part of their body in darkness.