Category: Creative

Roleplaying An Alien in D&D

This post is part of a series of everyday posts for Blaugust. If you’d like to know more, click here.


I enjoy imagining new D&D characters to try. Recently, I have wanted to try the Horizon Walker subclass for the Ranger in 5th Edition’s Xanathar’s Guide to Everything. I have always loved the planes, so multiverse Legolas sounds fantastic.

From the guide:

Horizon Walkers guard the world against threats that originate from other planes or that seek to ravage the mortal realm with otherworldly magic. They seek out planar portals and keep watch over them, venturing to the Inner Planes and the Outer Planes as needed to pursue their foes. These rangers are also friends to any forces in the multiverse — especially benevolent dragons, fey, and elementals — that work to preserve life and the order of the planes.

We aren’t starting a plane-based campaign anytime soon, so all the characters I have been thinking of lately have to have local reasons for taking local actions. However, that does not mean they have to be local characters.

I am imagining a faction of Horizon Walkers that operate primarily in the planes themselves, only visiting mortal realms to infiltrate various cults before they can open up portals or rifts. Sort of like a team of Doctor Whos or time cops, though maybe with a bit of Guardians of the Galaxy thrown in to the mix too.

Our next campaign will take place in the Forgotten Realms, but I thought this faction would be a wonderful excuse to play a Changeling, a race native and limited to the Eberron setting, in the Forgotten Realms. Changelings are known for having to the ability to change their appearance to other humanoids and their base form looks like a fantasy version of a stereotypical science fiction alien.

At an early age, this faction (I am calling them the Greeters until I think of something else), stopped a breach in Eberron, found an orphaned Changeling, and thought they could train him up to be their master spy for infiltrating cults on other worlds.

Unfortunately, despite having an amazing ability to mimic others, my Changeling is terrible at roleplaying. Unless given an exact script, he doesn’t do well with improving his way through a cult to actually function as a spy.

Still, he is a decent soldier.

He was recently left abandoned in the Forgotten Realms along with another rookie to infiltrate a cult. It was intended to be a training exercise for the two younger members. Unfortunately, it goes south quickly and he ends up losing his partner and is limited/too rage blind to find a way to inform or request the assistance of the other Greeters still off-world.*

*This origin is subject to revision depending on campaign specific details.

Stuck in a world he barely knows or understands, he is about as alien as it is possible to be in a fantasy setting. Better yet, people do not believe he is an alien since his strange appearance, strange customs, and strange knowledge seem acceptable in a world filled with so much magic and mystery already.

It plays loose and fast with D&D metaphysics and is a bit meta (I am not that great at roleplaying either), but there are a lot of great alien tropes in science fiction that I think would be enjoyable to adapt to a strictly fantasy setting, especially when you are unique yet cannot convince anyone else of that fact.

If I do end up playing this character, then maybe I could do a series of “Mission Log” blog posts summarizing our adventures!

The Short Tale of Roldoon the Bard #D&D

I have always wanted an Irish accent. There’s just something especially lovely about it. In a way, I’ve always heard an Irish accent as being a Southern (US) accent with all the charm and none of the baggage. All that baggage largely comes from my “fish out of water” upbringing in the rural South and my total ignorance of most things Irish, but let’s move on.

On a recent evening out to a bar, Diane and I decided to have a few drinks. I am a lightweight. I also do not eat much during the day. Combining those two factors with an especially strong and tasty hard cider, plus it being the end of a long work day, and I was soon feeling pretty good about life.

After the meal, she and I walked around the local shopping area and I entertained her with a sing-song-slurry-slur-a-long. She laughed – her mistake – and I persisted. With an upcoming Dungeons & Dragons one-shot coming up, the evening gave birth to my first D&D bard: Roldoon the Dwarf Bard.

In written form, I’d say Roldoon’s voice is explained best as soft, melodic way of saying every word without using any of the vowels, at an extreme enough tilt that no one knows when one word has ended and another begun, without ever going so fast as to seem like you are trying to rap badly. Oh and lots of swearing.

I was nervous to “do a voice” for what turned out to be a two-shot instead, but it ended up great.  My party consisted of a Barbarian named Korg (pronounced Krrrrg), a Fighter named Karlus who went by ‘Carl’ (pronounced like ‘curl’ if you forced into a sudden single syllable). There was also a lot of “O! feck uee ahcurse I speak c’mmmm’n. Ime a brd fer cryn ootlowd” (Translated: Oh fuck you. Of course I speak common. I am a bard for crying out loud!) since the DM had no idea what I was saying most of the time – nor did my party, though they let me speak for them frequently.

In the adventure, the three of us arrived at a port city besieged by disease in desperate need for a rare sentient mushroom in a nearby jungle. Our quest was to brave the dangers of the jungle, find this incredibly rare creature, and bring it back.

I got in a lot of taunting, but I mostly failed to land any spells while hiding behind trees. The other two cleaned up.

I am unsure I’d try to do another voice again, but it was a nice change of pace. It really helped me get into the character, even if I was torturing everyone with a bad Irish/Scottish/still somehow Southern voice. It went over well though, so I am imagining a whole line of dwarves: maybe Doldoon the Shepard Druid or Woldoon the Warlock!

For my next single use character though, I am running a Bugbear Kensai Monk whip master named Calibos. I am excited for 15ft stunning strikes!

Drabble: Christmas Lights

Winter Lights

The Christmas lights glowed ethereal, calling out to lost spirits in search of a home on the loneliest day at the loneliest hour when you have nowhere else to go.

Two such ghosts gathered there, each strangers, each lost.

The younger ghost broke the ice first. “Cold night, isn’t it?”

“Wouldn’t know. I have no body.”

“I don’t have anybody either!” They hugged by occupying the same physical space, though they could not touch one another. They cried, and for a moment, a floating snowflake made one ghost appear to have produced actual tears.

They decided to pass eternity together.


I originally wrote this after challenging Diane to give me a topic to compose a drabble. She chose “Christmas lights” – the first thing she saw.

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