Part 2: The Patternist
“The Weaver Witches” Part 2
By: Jesse C Cohoon
Class Concepts are a multi-part series on ideas that seem to have escaped many of the game designer’s ideologies when figuring out classes. This series is not meant to give rules or the breakdown of the progression of the classes that are being presented here per se, but ideas by which GMs can flesh out these concepts for their own games. Because my background is in D&D 3.x & higher, the concepts, terminology will be mainly from such games. With a bit of work, these concepts can be ported to other systems as well.
Last time we started looking at Patternists, or as they’re often called the Weaver Witch. This will finish the discussion on the topic
Spells work as per normal, except with the following changes to them:
Sleep: Unlike the “standard” version of the spell, this is not reliant on HD/ level, though the target will get a save, as per normal. If the pattern/ weaving is removed they will be able to awaken.
Charm Person/ Monster: Unlike the spell, the pattern may still subtly influence the person even after the effects were to normally have worn off.
Symbol/ Ward (Protection): as per the spell, except the following: all symbols is automatically reset every 24 hours until the weaving is destroyed. Furthermore, unlike a traditional Symbol, the Weaver Witch can weave a separate item when worn that will deactivate the symbols in its presence. If there are several such woven symbols scattered throughout a site, one item can be keyed to turn all of the symbols off.
Entangle/ Evard’s Black Tentacles: as per the spell, but number of targets is limited by the amount of yarn/ rope the witch has access to.
Special Materials/ Equipment for the Weaver Witch to Use
Giant Spider Silk: This silk can be used for anything the Weaver Witch is weaving with the added benefit that it has a hardness of 10, 6 HP, 25 DC to break. The drawback is that anything made with it is quite flamable. There are also spider silks from spiders that ingest adamatine which greatly increases the strength of the webbing to a hardness of 30, HP 18 and 40 DC to break. Phase spiders silk has the added benefit of affecting eteral creatures.
Portable loom: allows the character to do their work wherever they happen to be. Loom can be set up or broken down in as little as 10 minutes, and a compartment inside stores whatever project(s) the Weaver Witch is working on at present. Weight 10 lbs for a basic extendable 5X10 frame.
D6 Ways Weaver Witches might get their powers
- Natural Talent: this could be simply a natural gift that the person has to recognize and manipulate patterns, and nothing specific brought it about, except maybe hard work
- Unusual Ancestry: Maybe they had a Weaver Witch, a dragon, a demon or fortune teller in their family tree.
- Visit to an unnatural realm: maybe they traveled to or were abducted by an extra-planar, astral or demonic entities and in order to survive their minds had to assimilate the patterns
- Ability came through magic: maybe they were exposed to magic in the womb and were able to see and manipulate the patterns from an early age
- Divine Favor: maybe this is was child who was gifted by the gods
- Divine punishment: Maybe the Witch did something to anger the gods and these powers were the result of their curse.
Items a Weaver Witch Might Make
Weaver Witches are well-known for their weaving ability, so it’s no small wonder that they have perfected the making of various magic items. The following is among the types of items that she might have in her repertoire (Roll a 1d10):
- Cloaks/ Robes/ Capes
- Shirts/ Pants
- Hats/ headbands/ Tiaras, etc.
- Gloves/ mittens/ Potholders/ etc
- Rope based items (nets, ropes, “rope trick,” etc)
- Slippers/ shoes/ Boots
- Bags/ Storage Items
- Belts / Suspenders/ Bandoleers
- Misc Items (portable holes, cursed items, etc)
If you want specific items look here.
Next week sometime, I’ll be posting a list of custom magic items on my blog, located here. and will update this posting when I do.
With all these advantages, there are a number of drawbacks for these casters.
- Weaver Witches are quite “squishy;” they’re not meant to be on the front lines of battle.
- VERY few weapons
- Their spells take time to cast; the larger, the more complex the pattern, the longer the casting time.
- They need to be close enough to their victims to get them to see (or be affected) by the patterns.
Weaver Witches In the world
There aren’t any organizations that train Weaver Witches, though on occasion one will take a particularly gifted weaving student under her wing to teach her. On great occasion a group of Weaver Witches (sometimes called a Weaving Coven) will get together to work greater magics. Weaver Witches typically work behind the scenes, preferring to charm others into doing their bidding. If confronted directly, most of the time, they’ll attempt to delay their enemies with woven trap spells and escape.
Personality & Alignment
Weaver Witches are not restricted to their personality or alignment. They can be friends, foes, or something in-between. Should a Weaver Witch follow any sort of gods, she typically will follow ones that deal with weaving, textile making, spiders, and/ or fate. But not all of these gods are kindly or good.
D20 Adventures for the Weaver Witch
- A Weaver Witch pays the PCs to track down some expensive, rare of dangerous to obtain material for her weaving. She is willing to pay for them to do this
- A Weaver Witch is intent on finding a pattern that will help her complete a weaving and has put an advertisement out offering money for help finding it. Can the PCs help her?
- A Weaver Witch wants to join the party, lending her skills to be safely delivered to a location of her choosing. What they don’t realize is the path to where she wants to go is fraught with dangers
- A Weaver Witch has fallen ill and asks the PCs to deliver a missive for her to another Weaver Witch. Unfortunately the one to whom the letter is going to is dead. It’s up to the PCs to investigate what happened and report back to her.
- A group of Weaver Witches are traveling by boat and have figured out how to use their craft to affect the weather, but the ripple effect of their manipulations are far flung. Can the PCs talk them into stopping their manipulations before a worldwide catastrophe happens?
- A Weaver Witch has been commissioned to weave something for some royalty to protect them, and she dutifully does what she’s requested.
- Unfortunately due to a flaw in her weaving, members of the castle staff are getting sick and dying.
- Someone replaced her original weaving with one that was cursed or flawed to ruin her reputation
- A Weaver Witch has charmed a number of city officials into doing her bidding. It’s up to the PCs to find out what’s going on and why.
- The Weaver Witch has been paying for what some would call odd ingredients. The PCs are hired to investigate why.
- A Weaver Witch has created a cloth golem to protect her shop and wares. Thieves beware!
- A Weaver Witch is looking for a pupil. Are one of the PCs interested?
- A Weaver Witch has created the “hacky sack” game, infusing the knitted balls with patterns of addiction.
- A Weaver Witch has started to be known far and wide for her advice. The PCs come to her to ask them to foretell their future. Do they heed her warnings of doom?
- A Weaver Witch has become famous for her ability to win at chess (or other games of strategy). Some people think she’s cheating, but it’s simply her ability to discern patterns that is allowing her to repeatedly win.
- A Weaver Witch who hasn’t “come into her own” has been has been selling simple trinkets to shop owners to help them avoid bad luck. What she doesn’t fully know is that her weavings are really protecting them against dangers they can’t see by altering the fate of the shop owner for the better. What do the PCs do when they accidentally discover this?
- There’s an undercurrent of evil that the local Weaver Witch has discovered through examining the patterns and has started weaving patterns of protection, placing them in prominent places around town. But some people aren’t too happy with where she’s placing them. But if they’re removed a disaster will certainly strike the town. Can she get the PCs involved in time to save it before it’s too late?
- An evil Weaving Coven have gotten together for the purpose of weaving a planar gate for a demonic spider to come into the world and feast. Can the PCS find out what’s going on in time?
- A Weaver Witch has figured out a pattern to make herself immortal. As it is she is well over 300 years old (and doesn’t look a day over 30!) What she doesn’t realize is that her weaving in and of itself is a making of a phylactery. Can the PCs save her in time before she becomes a lich?
- The PCs find a lone Weaver Witch traveling. Is she friend or foe?
- A Weaver Witch has written the PCs because she is being harassed by the locals and asks them to take care of the situation so she doesn’t have to use her powers for evil on the local yokel. She asks that they
- A Weaver Witch has been wronged by a shopkeeper and has broken into his shop to curse him with a weaving of bad luck. The PCs catch her in there. Are they sympathetic to her cause or turn her over to the authorities?
With these ideas on the Weaver Witch, her abilities, and her adventures, why not try to create this class to use in your own game.