Look at you hacker, pathetic
creature of meat and bo- no, sorry
Greetings, listener. I have
survived my transgression. I am
full of dice again. My belly
rumbles with chance and
probability, but anyway, I want to
thank our patrons mario, hedwig and
matt, and our new patron,
ancelline. Thank you all!
Hello and welcome to the probably
bad podcast, a podcast which is
definitely bad. I’m pencil.
And I’m paper. Today’s probably bad
rpg idea is…
A warlock’s patron is actually a
wizard that did an elaborate scam
that got in way too deep. He’s
really just following them around
doing an invisibility enchantment
and casting spells as needed. That
was submitted by rubikscube60.
Before anyone says it, I know
critical role has a god who
spoilers is actually a fay being
doing all sorts of weird shit, but
I feel this is sufficiently
different and I want to talk about
And I don’t listen to critical role
so nothing I say can be considered
I think my first thought on seeing
this you know there’s a lot of
stuff that only one of those two
groups can have – I’m imagining a
warlock tries to cast eldritch
blast and they’re just there like
oh shit oh shit magic missile.
I was just thinking of it as like
the warlock – the patron’s like you
get a special deal where you can
cast all these extra spells and all
you need to do is not look too
MOD PENCIL (cont’d)
closely into where the spells are
I still like the idea they get the
warlock number of spell slots, just
the wizard’s really lazy.
You have half the number of spell
slots cause it takes me a while to
get out of bed.
I used the rest of my spell slots
to stay invisible.
That’s a point how long does
invisibility last? Cause I know
like it’s possibly like going into
too much detail but I think it’s a
Just a second… Concentration up
to an hour.
So yeah that’s why warlocks have so
few spell slots, the wizard has to
cast all of them they need to save
some for themselves.
You’re a special kind of warlock
who can’t use second level spells
I’m using those slots.
You’re a special kind of warlock
who’s less good as a bargain.
It’s so they get third level slots
early. Oh you want to summon a
ghost horse to ride around? That’s
fine, but you can’t use rope trick.
That’s too much.
To be fair has anyone ever used
rope trick? Genuinely interested
has anyone ever used rope trick?
Must have done, but didn’t
technically use it.
Ok so there we go for the first
time in d&D someone has used rope
trick. I do like all the very minor
Yeah they do have their moments
they’re just very specific moments.
Going back to the actual idea
rather than the rope trick, cause I
don’t know anything about it, one
player is the warlock and the other
three player characters are the
wizard who are trying to keep up
the bizarre pretense that the
player’s a warlock.
So it’s basically a farce.
mm. The warlock has level 1
With the warlock as an npc this
could be a fun one shot of trying
not to get caught.
or Give the warlock player like I
was going to say give the warlock
player a fake character sheet and
make them sit on their own in a
They might pick some things up if
you put them in a different room.
This is a normal D&D game but do
you mind sitting in this soundproof
room while we slip notes under the
Playing a game of D&D just through
passing notes would be interesting.
I’m now wondering cause you know so
many classes are online still, just
like running a text based D&D game
in a maths class.
It’s all the fun of slipping notes
in maths class but now you get to
You take damage if the teacher
suspects something. Ok so the
teacher you’re trying to convince
the teacher they’re all warlocks
and all of you are passing notes to
I feel like we’ve gotten away from
the idea but it sounds fun.
Every time the teacher gets annoyed
at something you cover the camera
like there’s no-one there, I think
what I’ve invented is a new form of
psychological torture, butPAPER
We’re two steps away from gaslight
your maths teacher which we do not
It’s no steps away, so don’t do
that. There’s some good advice. I
think there’s an RPG around texting
- only done over text. I think it’s
one of the ones that’s on my list
to play so I can’t tell you if it’s
good or not, but it seems
To get back to the actual idea…
To get back to the actual idea,
which I think is gaslight your
Yeah, um… I mean just thinking
about some of the warlock patron
options it’s not far off some of
them, all that a warlock is really
is someone who gets someone else’s
powers to do the work.
Yeah all they are is they have a
magic sugar daddy. Like… I
definitely think that an arch mage
would work as a patron idea. Idk if
it’s an official one but it would
It definitely would.
That’s an interesting class, arch
mage patron, or arch warlock patron
who is now like being a patron to a
new generation of warlocks. It’s
warlocks all the way down.
It’s unearthed arcana, but there’s
a seeker patron which is someone
that travels around searching for
knowledge and is that not a wizard?
An unusually sociable wizard.
The one wizard who can hold a
conversation with someone for more
than two minutes. That’s how they
became a patron. Also going back to
the original idea, cause you could
do it with other classes I like the
idea of a druid who is constantly a
tree near a warlock…
How would you explain there’s trees
everywhere we’re in this terrible
dungeon and that tree that grew
outside my house is also here.
There’s the mystery of the campaign
is where this tree keeps coming
from – whether you were chosen by
nature spirits or there’s a dryad
and then we go to the stupidest
possible explanation where there’s
a druid disguised as a tree
following you making you look cool.
A druid that occasionally casts
command and says ignore the tree.
Wait can druids cast command?
They can do all kinds of things but
I don’t think they can cast
command, they can hit you with
Do a geese – you will notice it but
you are not physically capable of
Druid invisibility is just
summoning a goose into your face
and while you’re distracted by it
they walk into place.
I meant gas, but yes.
Aah yes, that does make more sense
than summoning geese. But also…
If there are geese flying in your
face are you really going to notice
a vaguely familiar tree?
The warlock must solve the mystery
why geese keep manifesting in their
face. You’ve got the warlock who’s
convinced they have magic powers by
the wizard but the wizard isn’t a
wizard they’re being convinced they
have magical powers by the warlock
and it’s an endless cycle.
Where does the magic actually come
from? The druid. This mysterious
I do like this game that’s full of
twists and secrets but they’re all
incredibly dumb. You put up a
bunnch of intriguing mysteries to
begin with and every layer you
uncover the players just get worse
and worse answers.
The person who asked on the patron
exclusive server about good secrets
for character creation, enjoy these
Yeah it turns out you don’t have
magic there’s just a tree behind
Shall we move onto questiQuestion music
Maybe we should… Our first
question comes from b-deh- our
first question is anonymous rather
than the ubiquitous be flexible, do
you have any dm tips for a first
time DM? Yes I am aware what blog I
asked for gm tips, bring your
Eat the D20 in front of your
players to assert your dominance.
To be honest, I’m not sure that’s
better than lock your player in a
soundproof room and only pass them
messages through the door like in
terms of actual advice, the best
sort of system I’ve found is from
monster of the week which is the
mystery tracker which essentially
you write down what would happen if
the players did absolutely nothing,
and you can extrapolate how people
react to what they do. This is what
the villain would be doing if
no-one stopped them, so you have a
good grasp of their overall plans,
and then it’s much easier to see
how plans change around that.
While your players are the
protagonists, they aren’t the only
people doing things and things will
continue without them.
And onto terrible ideas.
I’d say use your characters
backstories against them like side
quests surprising stuff that pops
up, connections to whoever is doing
the bad stuff, it’s fun.
Backstories are a useful source of
character or plot things, which is
what paper said but better. But bad
advice, eat the dice of dominance.
Don’t like how one of your players
plays their character maybe they’re
one of the ones that refuses to go
along with any plot hooks? Just
slowly shred their character sheet
until they agree to play the
Eat their character sheet for
dominance. Cause the player’s like
oh yeah I’m taking this disruptive
spell, and you eat their character
sheet while maintaining eye
Find out what food the players like
and then only bring snacks they
don’t like to assert your
Just like eat everyone else’s copy
of the player’s handbook, and now
only you know the rules.
When planning your campaign be sure
to include at least six background
clowns. Your characters will be
convinced they’ll lead to something
but they never will.
At the start of the campaign
challenge your biggest strongest
player to a fight to show that
you’re not to be fucked with.
Unfortunately if you lose they do
become the dm so just watch out for
Ideal D&D game, there’s no dm at
the start but all the players just
have a cage match at the beginning
and whoever wins has to DM but
that’s fallen out of favour these
days. Though you can attract
D&Daniel if you have a cage fight
at the beginning.
He lives in a cage so it’s a homing
Any cage you have D&Daniel might be
there. It’s not so much a D&D fact
but it’s an important warning.
If you ever see a cage in the woods
throw some dice in just in case to
I hope this helps with your first
Our second question is also
anonymous, you’ve mentioned just
making rincewind as a character,
but what are your thoughts on the
discworld ttrpg, general thoughts
on rpgs based on established
worlds? I don’t like them. I feel
too much pressure to stick to
established lore, especially if
it’s an established world your
players are into so I don’t do it.
My main problem is a lot of
fictional worlds are designed for a
particular story. They’re based
around those characters and their
arc, and it’s hard to sort of
disconnect it from them in an easy
What I’m saying is if your
characters aren’t relevant to
Yes what we’re saying is your
characters aren’t relevant to
harry’s journey and are thus
unlikely to get involved in lots of
big world things.
I think the discworld rpg might be
better because the whole world is
very developed so there’s more you
can do with it.
It helps that discworld doesn’t
have a main character or main plot
it’s a collection of short stories.
I’m running an rpg that’s set in
an, what’s the word, established
world, nickblake edit out my being
crap please – it’s in the magnus
archives I needed to essentially
put it on a different continent to
avoid repeatedly running into lore
to avoid conflicting with
It’s difficult with an ongoing
series because at what point have
you diverged from canon, and at
what point have you diverged from
canon enough that it’s no longer in
that setting, and can you do other
stuff with it or do you need ot
still stick close and it gets very
It’s easier if you are going to –
it’s easiest to say this is non
canon, this is an AU, because it
makes it easier if you mess up the
lore of it and it allows your
players more freedom or there’s the
possibility of saying you can’t do
that because it messes with episode
Yeah I feel unless it’s post canon
you either can’t do anything big or
it’s an AU.
I think the best way to do it is
simply if you want to do it in the
area the story happens, kill the
MOD PENCIL (cont’d)
main character and your characters
are now the main character.
That makes sense if you play in an
established place, what you want to
do a lot of the time is be the
protagonist of that setting.
Essentially the point of
established things is you want to
be luke skywalker or harry potter
or whoever you want to be.
Nobody plays a lotr game to hang
out in gondor.
Yeah you want to be the fellowship,
so you should just be the
I feel like we got ranty but I hope
we answered your question.
So, our final questino is from
blatella… If you nut in the
astral plane, do it push you
I’ve been thinking about that one
and looking at the actual
description of the astral plane in
the dungeon masters guide and it
sounds like more of an ocean than
sort of a void really so I feel it
wouldn’t push you backwards as make
the waters a bit murky.
So there’s no 5th ed manual for
planes yet, so I looked up a 3rd ed
manual for planes and it seems the
astral plane in that is more of a
psychic void, so my theory either
it would push you backwards if you
believed it would push you
MOD PENCIL (cont’d)
backwards it’s a mental realm so if
you believe it would push you
backwards it would push you
backwards or it pushes you like
psychologically backwards, like it
regresses your development every
time you nut in the astral plane.
What if you just can’t get yourself
there? There is a secondary
question to ask which is can you
nut in the astral plane?
Yeah in a lot of cases you’re not
in your actual body in the astral
plane you’re in an astral form, so
can astral forms nut?
Can god nut is the real question
you’re asking blatella.
Sorry, got the book of planes open,
astral forms, again all 3rd ed,
they don’t biologically heal and
they don’t die which implies
they’re not biological anymore…
Yeah if you can’t do the big death
you can’t do the little death.
And that is why…
That’s what I always say.
That’s true I did live with them
for a year and they did say that at
least once a day. Completely
unprompted. But yeah it seems like
ok it seems like if you go there in
astral form you can’t nut, and it
can’t push you forwards or
Aare we debating it pushing you
forwards now? What is the anatomy
of the astral form?
There’s a lot of weird biology in
D&D, I’m sure there’s a creature
with a dick growing out of its
We need to be inclusive.
Mmm but if you go there physically
it depends on whether or not you
think it’ll push you backwards. I
don’t think the astral plane has
enough physical matter, no that’s a
thing that pushes you backwards
cause there’s not a lot stopping
But there is homebrew settings – in
mine the astral plane is the void
between other planes. It would push
you backward in my personal astral
plane. So really consult with your
Ngl, nutting will push you
backwards in my personal astral
plane I can’t tell whether that
sounds like a pickup line or
shooting someone down, but it
sounds like something.
It feels like a threat. Oh buddy it
push you backwards.
But yes, in case you were wondering
that’s the first question I did
proper research for, so I’m glad we
have a semi official answer.
On that note, thank you for
listening, if you have a question
you can email
message probablybadrpgideas on
tumblr. If you want to support us
you can go to probablybadrpgideas
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when this episode goes up, the
other things that aren’t quite
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episodes, the most recent of which
is night at the ninja museum, where
I take my games group through being
ninjas trying to rob the ninja
It goes about as well as you’d
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