Page 1197 - Wild Style

21st Mar 2019, 6:00 AM in School Raze
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Wild Style
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Author Notes:

Newbiespud 21st Mar 2019, 6:00 AM edit delete
The map of Mane 6 to Student 6 went through a few iterations before I landed on this one. Pinkie Pie was my lazy first pick for Yona. Rainbow Dash playing Smolder. Fluttershy for Ocellus. But Gallus, Silverstream, and Sandbar required more thought, and so the map changed.

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FanOfMostEverything 21st Mar 2019, 6:11 AM edit delete reply
Ah, shapeshifting. The solution to slightly more problems than it causes.
Guest 21st Mar 2019, 6:15 AM edit delete reply
Also a good summary of Duck Dodgers's career.
Digo 22nd Mar 2019, 7:33 AM edit delete reply
"The house is on fire, but whatever you do, don't call the fire department!"
ANW 21st Mar 2019, 6:25 AM edit delete reply
Last time around, we had an unanimous decision.
Ocellus was the best of the young 6.
I never had a poll where this happen.
I can't help but feel that the other 5 didn't get much love.

So for today, your favorite of the young 6.
You can not pick Ocellus.

What can I say, I like the beauty of the ocean.
She is like Gabby combined with an underwater Pinkie.
DragonGeek 21st Mar 2019, 7:52 AM DragonGeek edit delete reply
I'm completely torn between Ocellus and Silverstream. But, since Ocellus isn't allowed this time, that means my vote is clear! Silverstream it is.
CharginChuck 21st Mar 2019, 8:13 AM edit delete reply
I also have to vote for Silverstream here. Apart from her and Ocellus, I generally find the rest of the young 6 to be pretty boring and generic (especially Saladbar. Seriously, they could remove him from the show entirely and nothing would change).
Guest 22nd Mar 2019, 3:04 AM edit delete reply
I am actually going Sandbar here

I dont know why but I loved him from the first time I saw him, this little earth pony dude being totally chill with all these new creatures around going I am gonna be their best friend and help guide them in pony ways
albedoequals1 21st Mar 2019, 8:26 AM edit delete reply
The reason the Young 6 don't get much love is that they are terribly written.

Ocellus is the generic anime nerdy character. It's not a complicated character, but at least she has one.
Silverstream is a copy of Pinkie Pie.
Gallus and Smolder are both copies of Rainbow Dash.
Yona is a generic stupid person joke, who goes to school and somehow doesn't learn to speak properly.
And Sandbar has no personality whatsoever.


The question was who is the second best of the usurpers, so my answer would have to be Silverstream. I hate that she has a hippogryph mode. A true seapony would have a ton more environmental difficulty and therefore be a better character. But in spite of being based on Pinkie, she is somehow less annoying than the rest.
Borg 21st Mar 2019, 9:33 AM edit delete reply
It's going to be unanimous Silverstream today.

I mean, have you seen her try to smash a bucket? It's adorable.
Hariman 21st Mar 2019, 9:45 AM edit delete reply
Classic Steve 21st Mar 2019, 12:37 PM edit delete reply
I choose Smolder. She's cute in spite of herself, and she helps Spike feel less alone.
Rastaba 21st Mar 2019, 5:47 PM edit delete reply
Silverstream like most of the others. She's so adorably manic! And SPOILERS-SPOILERS-SPOILERS also terribly sweetly traumatized by the Storm King's memory that he represents her darkest fear that I just wanna hug her!
Dakkath 21st Mar 2019, 7:22 PM edit delete reply
Smolder. Dragons are the best.
zimmerwald1915 22nd Mar 2019, 5:13 PM edit delete reply
I'm going with Smolder, on the basis of her having two episodes where she interacts with someone outside the Young Six circle. Granted, it's Spike - both times - but he's better than the nothing everyone else gets.
Mr_Some1 22nd Mar 2019, 11:12 PM edit delete reply
Don't know why no one likes the yaks. I think they're hilarious, so I'm voting Yona. Not a huge student 6 fan in general, but I like her better than the rest.
Guest 21st Mar 2019, 6:48 AM edit delete reply
Anyone has any idea what Twilight want to accomplish with that combo?

As the DM said, the changeling's power changes the appearance. Even if the DM rules that you can use it while in Wildshape (since it's supposed to only give you Medium-sized quadruped forms), the only thing you'd get would be different appearances, no stat changes.

Given the starry eyes she has in that panel, I somehow doubt Twilight just want the capacity of cosmetic alteration that Change Appearance would be.
Guest 21st Mar 2019, 6:50 AM edit delete reply
'course it could be a setup for a "Twilight breaks a tooth not knowing how the 5e beast has to be eaten" joke, but given the last arc I'd feel weird if it was.
Dreok Crushedthroat 21st Mar 2019, 7:26 PM edit delete reply
That might be what she's going for. A rabbit with the stats of a bear would be terrifying in combat.
Cedric13sai 21st Mar 2019, 9:08 PM edit delete reply
Isn't that what Angel Bunny is in this comic?
Guest 22nd Mar 2019, 12:55 AM edit delete reply
There's a size limitation.
Gamemaster80 21st Mar 2019, 6:49 AM edit delete reply
Twi's player is such a wild card. I love her attention to detail and the way she role plays. However, there's moments like her way of handling Nightmare Moon by doing the old "but what if this, and what if that and therefore I/we can do this..." (therefore killing a whole arc's worth of notes for the GM) and moments like this. She saw a limitation being made by the GM to control balance, and she saw the loop-hole, brought up the loop-hole, and leaped through it like a Dolphin wanting the fish on the other end.

But I guess the GM should have saw that too. Druids are a base class, shapeshifting is their thing, and such a limitation would only apply to NPCs, not characters with class levels.

I guess what I'm saying is, as a GM I would love a player like Twi's, but at the same time I would be tearing my hair out.
Guest 21st Mar 2019, 7:06 AM edit delete reply
She didn't see any loophole, though. I honestly have no idea what she's trying to accomplish, but she's certainly not going to succeed at exploiting a loophole by doing that.

Plus it's D&D 5e. There is no exact-wording your way into power, or trying to avoid a DM-chosen limitation by pointing at the rulebook, especially when it's something the DM did to control balance. "Rulings over rules" is a key element of this edition

Also, no, the limitation applies to both PCs and NPCs.
albedoequals1 21st Mar 2019, 8:14 AM edit delete reply
5e druids have really weak shape-shifting. In a one-shot game like this is supposed to be, they may not even get high enough in level to get much shape-shifting ability from druid. You get a CR 1/4 animal at level 2, a CR 1/2 at level 4, and a CR 1 animal at level 8. And no flying until level 8. On the whole, it's closer to useless than it is to game-breaking.
Gamemaster80 21st Mar 2019, 8:42 AM edit delete reply
That's a shame about 5E druids. I have 5E books, but haven't had a chance to look up all the classes yet. I'm still running a Rise of the Runelords Pathfinder campaign before I make a permanent switch.
Guest 21st Mar 2019, 11:45 AM edit delete reply
Well, the Moon Circle Druid is the one with the good Wild Shape.
albedoequals1 21st Mar 2019, 1:40 PM edit delete reply
Oh, I see. That is a lot better. Level/3 CR instead of just 1.
Forum Explorer 21st Mar 2019, 1:52 PM edit delete reply
Moon Druids have pretty good shapeshifting and a massive power spike in the early game when their shapeshifting really comes on line. They rapidly become the most durable member of the party.

Late game it's almost impossible to kill them without some serious fire power, since you have to burn through multiple health bars to actually kill them. At level 20 they effectively regenerate over a hundred hp a turn.
HappyEevee 21st Mar 2019, 2:21 PM edit delete reply
Moon Circle Druids are amazing tanks. At low levels, they're kind of OP; Wild Shape, use up all your HP, stand up as your normal form - with full HP. Wild Shape again next turn - full HP again. Use up HP, stand up as normal form with full HP. Our GM finally had to petrify our Druid because he couldn't kill him. (But he got better)
Guest 21st Mar 2019, 8:01 AM edit delete reply
Going over what shenanigans Twilight's player *could* get up to with wild shape and change appearance, assuming they don't "stack"...

First thing that jumps out, any character familiar with changelings would expect the appearance of another creature, but without the actual capabilities. They'd grab the bull thinking they can hold it by the horns, and instead the bull's jaw unhinges as it barfs a black ooze at them. To use an analogy that fits the scenario.

Change appearance to look like one thing, then wild shape under that to become something completely different. Looks like a duck, walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, but is actually a basilisk. Roll vs petrification.

Spells and tricks that detect change appearance aren't going to detect wild shape, letting her slip past defenses specifically meant to catch changelings.

Just a few off the top of my head. Having a character with two different modes of transformation that aren't mutually exclusive is options squared. Having your cake, and eating it too.
Guest 21st Mar 2019, 11:47 AM edit delete reply
Except Wild Shape cannot do stuff like basilisk or a ooze-barfing monster. And spells and tricks that detect Change Appearance would work on Wild Shape as well.

The best she could do is turn into a bear or the like... and then look like another being of the same size.
Guest 21st Mar 2019, 3:44 PM edit delete reply
The analogy kind of got away from me, there. The gist was that they'd be expecting one thing, then getting something else.

Anyways, either the comic text was updated or I glossed over this part on the first read:
"but yes, you would potentially be able to transform into many people AND beasts with that combo."

Sounds like Twilight is looking to take what the race is good at and expand on that. Which, fair: shapeshifting is so strictly limited because it becomes a bottomless toolbox otherwise. Adding more options for shapeshifting gives some of that toolbox back.

Considering most of Twilight player's shenanigans up to this point, her fishing for more tools is not surprising.
Guest 21st Mar 2019, 4:34 PM edit delete reply
Unless the DM made so Change Appearance changes stats and not just appearance, it really wouldn't give more tools.

It can be said that having the appearances of a different beast than the one you are may be useful, but then it's just futhering a bit the utility of one tool, but not much.

Funnily enough, though, there *is* a 5e combo that would make the Change Appearance ability much stronger (and would also fit the Changeling lore, incenditally). It's not with Druid, though. It's Lore Bard with the Friend cantrip.
Draxynnic 22nd Mar 2019, 3:15 AM edit delete reply
I get the feeling that part of PlayerTwilight's idea is that being a changeling druid means that she has justification to have a much wider range of options. A druid with druid-based shapeshifting could be argued to have more knowledge of animals and the ins and outs of different abilities, and thus probably be ahead of other changelings her age with transformation.

At the very least, it gives her a wide range of options - she can take the form of other ponies and pony-like beings from the changeling side, and animals from the druid side.
Guest 22nd Mar 2019, 8:18 PM edit delete reply
>A druid with druid-based shapeshifting could be argued to have more knowledge of animals and the ins and outs of different abilities, and thus probably be ahead of other changelings her age with transformation.

And that's how she goes from "is a student bug" to "here is a diagram explaining how to combine polar bear and bee anatomy, using only knowledge my character has demonstrated thus far".
Akouma 21st Mar 2019, 12:03 PM edit delete reply
I remember once I had a character in a superhero game who had the power "Shapeshifting: Any Male Humanoid."

Besides the fact that his appearance in that campaign was specifically a shapeshifted facade, I never once used it. Literally never once had a moment where I thought I needed a different face. I've talked about this character here before, but never really mentioned that tidbit since most of my stories of him are about the powers he DID use. He had a LOT of them.
LazerWulf 21st Mar 2019, 12:15 PM edit delete reply
One character I have dreamed up but not yet had the chance to implement is a Longtooth Shifter Druid with Weretiger Lycanthropy.

Maybe Multiclass Barbarian.
Guest 21st Mar 2019, 2:03 PM edit delete reply
I think Twilight is going to have a terrible time playing 5e, if she approaches it that way. Dashed expectations aren't enjoyable.
HappyEevee 21st Mar 2019, 2:26 PM edit delete reply
Yeah, 5e is not really meant for people who like getting into the nuts and bolts of being awesome through careful application of build/rules. That's what 3.5 is for.
Digo 22nd Mar 2019, 7:40 AM edit delete reply
I'll agree. Got out of 3.5 because I got tired of such applications. The power gap between casters and noncasters was also rediculously wide.

It's a bit better in 5e I feel, which is nice change of pace. Still has some power gaps, but not so bad by comparison. Unless you play a ranger. Poor class. Last time I ran a campaign I let the ranger PC use the reworked ranger class from the unearthed arcana stuff.
albedoequals1 22nd Mar 2019, 8:58 AM edit delete reply
Non-casters can keep up with casters in pathfinder, but only if you put a lot of work into your build. I made a barbarian/monk/ranger (yes, that's legal) that can fight invisible people and has evasion, uncanny dodge, reach, combat reflexes, three strong saves and a touch AC of 30. That's generally enough to survive several spells from a same-level caster, and it only takes one hit from my polearm to kill them.
Rastaba 21st Mar 2019, 5:50 PM edit delete reply
To be fair that MAY be why the GM is going along with this plan, figuring it'll be better to let her learn THIS lesson on her own.
Guest 22nd Mar 2019, 12:57 AM edit delete reply
Maybe, but right after the Discord session?
Newbiespud 22nd Mar 2019, 8:19 AM edit delete reply
Twilight just wants the maximum amount of options.
Dakkath 21st Mar 2019, 7:27 PM edit delete reply
Going to be interesting seeing what Twicellus comes up with for shapechanging shenanigans. Most of which will have to be from her racial ability, since 5e druids only get to wild shape twice per long rest.
albedoequals1 22nd Mar 2019, 8:59 AM edit delete reply
It says short or long rest, which effectively means twice per encounter.
Guest 22nd Mar 2019, 10:39 AM edit delete reply
Every two encounters, actually.

The game doesn't assume you have the time to wait one hour after each fights.
Loophole 22nd Mar 2019, 1:04 PM edit delete reply
"You can't do this because X reason" "But if I do this and this I could in theory do it, right?" "Errr... Yes"

And so... Any story of loopholes or ways to use things the DM did not want to be used?
Bed Head 22nd Mar 2019, 8:35 PM edit delete reply
Guess we have our line up then

RD is Gallus
Rarity is Smolder
Fluttershy is Yona
Pinkie Pie is Silverstream
Twilight is Ocellus
process of elimination leaves AJ as Sandbar
Mr_Some1 22nd Mar 2019, 11:21 PM edit delete reply
Kinda wished AJ would pick a different race so that things would be interesting, but I guess as long as she picks a different class things can still be fresh.
Mr_Some1 22nd Mar 2019, 11:07 PM edit delete reply
Ever since I was a kid, if you asked me what one superpower I would have if I could choose one, it would always be shapeshifting, and it still is.