Are these proposed effects of consecrated ground suitable for Curse of Strahd?

I believe that existing rules imply the existence of consecrated ground not created by the hallow spell (see Are there published effects of Consecrated (not Hallowed) Ground?)

I am currently running Curse of Strahd, and would like to have some of the churches be merely consecrated ground, and others be hallowed (which would be a stronger effect).

In particular,

Since there does not appear to be at present a rules description of the effects of consecrated (but not hallowed) ground, for the purposes of my game I would like to treat consecrated ground as

Undead standing on consecrated ground have disadvantage on all saving throws

(to mirror the effects of desecrated ground in the DMG) and

Undead standing on consecrated ground take d6 radiant damage at the start of their turn

(to mirror the DMG description of holy water purifying desecrated ground, to provide a cinematic effect of Strahd zombies bursting into flame as they attack a church, and to provide PC’s a safer zone where they may be attacked by vampires and vampire spawn but at least their foes can’t regenerate)

To balance this second effect I would add the following to the effects of desecrated ground as described in the DMG:

Celestials who use their Healing Touch while on desecrated ground have it count as two uses toward their daily limit.

Would providing these benefits to the consecrated ground at the various holy sites within Barovia disrupt any plot points or unbalance any encounters within Curse of Strahd?

Arcane Adept: is this proposed Warlock feat balanced as compared to PHB feats?

While discussing Warlocks and the new Uneartherd Arcana at GiTP forums, we were kicking around the idea of a class only feat (versus the Xanather’s race based feats) and I arrived at the following homebrew Arcane Adept feat.

Purpose – support the Warlock design goal of customizability.

I quite frankly find that as I go through the invocation allocation from levels 1-20 that there are too few to support the “no two Warlocks are alike” design theme that choosing invocations offers. Yes, it is important to have to make choices.

What I want to know is if this proposed feat is balanced with respect to PHB feats. (Balance with Xanathar’s feats is not of any interest to me).

Secondary Objective: offer one more incentive to play a full-up Warlock, and not “take a dip” in the class for Multiclassing.

Feat: Arcane Adept
Prerequisite: Warlock level 4
1. Increase your Charisma score by 1, to a maximum of 20.
2. Gain one invocation of choice from those available to the Warlock and for which you qualify. {eg, Pact of the Blade can’t take invocations restricted to Pact of the Chain with this feat}
3. Gain one additional cantrip from the Warlock spell list.

Notes:

  1. Why level 4? That’s the first time one is eligible, and it prevents the vHuman feat-at-level 1 (which also would not make sense since pact boon is a level 3 featue anyway).

  2. Why add a Cantrip? Because only two features in the feat seemed underpowered. If that is what tips the balance scales, it can be pulled.

Is this balanced vis-a-vis PHB feats?
Repeated for emphasis: feats in any UA, in the recently published Eberron campaign setting, and in Xanathar’s Guide to Everything are not considered relevant for this question. (But if after answering the question you want to add a comment, as a coda, in re a Xanathar’s feat, then that’s fine).

Is this proposed change to the Transmutation Wizard’s Master Transmuter class feature balanced for a setting without resurrection? [Version 2]

In my previous iteration of this question, I proposed a replacement for the Master Transmuter option Restore Life. the feedback I received identified that it was too powerful, so I have a new, much simpler proposal. The brief description below outlines the problem; see my other question for a more detailed explanation.


The School of Transmutation wizard archetype has a feature at level 14 called Master Transmuter. It can allow such a wizard to, once per long rest, destroy their transmuter’s stone and do one of a handful of options, one of which is:

Restore Life. You cast the raise dead spell on a creature you touch with the transmuter’s stone, without expending a spell slot or needing to have the spell in your spellbook.

Unfortunately, in my homebrew universe, there is no resurrection magic, so I’m looking into replacing this option with something homebrew that is not related to resurrection, but still at least broadly fits the theme of “Restore Life“.


Still considering greater restoration, I wonder if it would be balanced to simply allow Restore Life to cast it instead of raise dead, a direct trade with no other additions (i.e. not a “super charged” version like I proposed before)?

Restore Life. You cast the greater restoration spell on a creature you touch with the transmuter’s stone, without expending a spell slot or needing to have the spell in your spellbook.

My reasoning behind believing that this might be balanced, in light of the feedback, is a) it’s a 5th level cleric spell like raise dead, and b) it is not usually available to wizards, same as raise dead.

One the other hand, I’m concerned that this might be a bit weaker than the RAW raise dead version of Restore Life (after all, once you’re dead, greater restoration can’t help at all), so if that is true, I’m also considering waiving the costly material component of the greater restoration spell if cast in this way, since it seems you do need it for the raise dead version. If this is not weaker (or waiving the material component would make this vastly more powerful), then I won’t do that.


So my question is, in a setting where there is no resurrection magic, does my new proposed replacement of the Restore Life option of the Master Transmuter class feature seem balanced?
Ideally contrasting with and without my “waive the material costs” suggestion.

Is this proposed tweak to the Transmutation Wizard’s Master Transmuter class feature balanced for a setting without resurrection?

The School of Transmutation wizard archetype has a feature at level 14 called Master Transmuter. It can allow such a wizard to, once per long rest, destroy their transmuter’s stone and do the following:

Restore Life. You cast the raise dead spell on a creature you touch with the transmuter’s stone, without expending a spell slot or needing to have the spell in your spellbook.

Unfortunately, in my homebrew universe, there is no resurrection magic, so I’m looking into replacing this option with something homebrew that is not related to resurrection, but still at least broadly fits the theme of “Restore Life“.

Unlike in my similar question about replacing resurrection related class features, I do actually have a player who has a transmutation wizard (they are currently “retired”, but the player is strongly considering “unretiring” them in the near future, so this character will almost definitely come back at some point and isn’t far off level 14); this player is also strongly in the camp of “resurrection magic cheapens death”, so they are definitely up for replacing this option of the class feature.


Given that it is called “Restore Life“, I considered replacing it with some kind of healing (say, the heal spell), but then noticed another option that the Master Transmuter feature offers:

Panacea. You remove all curses, diseases, and poisons affecting a creature that you touch with the transmuter’s stone. The creature also regains all its hit points.

So healing would look a bit redundant and underwhelming compared to that option.


Finally, I looked towards greater restoration, since a) it’s a 5th level cleric spell like raise dead, and b) Panacea is kind of like a super charged lesser restoration, plus healing. So I have come up with the following (a “super charged greater restoration“):

Restore Life. You end all reductions to all of the target’s ability scores and hit point maximum, and end one effect that imposes the petrified condition on the target.

I’ve not included the greater restoration spell’s removing curses (since I didn’t want overlap with Panacea) or ending charmed effects (because it doesn’t really fit the theme of restoring life). I also haven’t included regaining any hit points because I thought that might be too powerful compared with Panacea if it also healed the target (although I could have it at least restore hit points equal to the reduction of their hit point maximum, if it was reduced at all).


So my question is, in a setting where there is no resurrection magic, does my proposed replacement of the Restore Life option of the Master Transmuter class feature seem balanced, primarily comparing it to the raise dead spell and the Panacea option?

Is this proposed weapon balanced against the Holy Avenger

In a game I’m involved in, we’ve been offered the opportunity to request certain magic items that we’d like to encounter, including custom items. Taking the offer, I’m interested in something along the lines of a Holy Avenger, but intended for a Barbarian.

Comparing it to the source, is this proposed item balanced for a Legendary item?

Brutal Destroyer, legendary (requires attunement by a Barbarian)

You gain a +3 bonus to attack and damage rolls made with this magic weapon. When you hit a fiend or a celestial with it, that creature takes an extra 2d10 necrotic damage.

While you hold the drawn weapon, it creates an aura in a 10-foot radius around you. All creatures hostile to you in the aura or who enter the aura for the first time on their turn must make a Charisma saving throw (DC=8+Prof Mod+Con Mod) or have disadvantage on saving throws against spells and other magical effects. On a success, the aura does not affect the creature until the start of it’s next turn when it must save again. If you have 17 or more levels in the Barbarian class, the radius of the aura increases to 30 feet.

Referenced materials when considering the design of this included:

  • The Holy Avenger;
  • Stinking Cloud and other spell effects which require ongoing saves regardless of previous successes or failures;
  • Bestow Curse and Bane.

Compared to the effects of the Holy Avenger on it’s ability to sway a fight, is this proposed weapon balanced?

Need feedback on proposed git flow

We just migrated to git from svn and are trying to define a process which would help us achieve the following 1. Deployment to dev env without requiring code review. 2. Have a pull request / code review process when merging into the release branch.

Environment: 1. We have a small team of 3 developers. 2. There are 3 envs – Dev, Test and Prod.

Proposed Process: 1. We have 3 git branches. – dev: Used to merge all features and deploy to Dev env. – release: Used to merge all features and deploy to Test and Prod envs – master: Merged from release

  1. Developers work on individual feature branches off created off dev branch
  2. Developers cannot test their changes locally and hence are required to move their code to Dev env to test. So they merge their changes into the dev branch when they want to test.
  3. There are frequent such merges to dev branch from different feature branches as everyone tests out their features and fix the bugs.
  4. A week before prod release date, developers create Pull requests to merge individual features into the Release branch for features which are ready to go live to Prod.
  5. There pull requests will be reviewed by peers and merged into the release branch.
  6. After all PR are merged, the artifact is tested by QA team in Test env.
  7. Assuming all is well this artifact will be deployed to Prod and the release branch will be merged into master. Marking end of release

I would like to get feedback on the proposed process. Also I have below concerns around this process: In point 6 of Proposed process – would developers need to rebase / merge their feature branches with release branch and again push the changes in the feature branch inorder to be able to merge? And would it matter in what order the peers review each feature branch and merge into the release branch?

What are some proposed privacy features coming to the bitcoin lightning network?

If I’m correct, a bitcoin sent into a lightning channel technically looks like any Bitcoin transaction. From there if the channel never closes, the Bitcoins can essentially stay in a “locked” state in that channel which can give it some interesting properties such as the most needed feature in Bitcoin, privacy & fungibility.

What are some projects that are currently implementing privacy features into the Bitcoin lightning network? If there aren’t any, what has been discussed that could be possible?

Does Lawful Interception of 4G / the proposed 5G provide a back door for hackers as well?

A common saying among people in the field of cryptography and security is that when providing a back door to law enforcement, you also provide a back door for hackers.

I was trying to examine the implementation of Lawful Interception from 4G and the proposed implementation in 5G and to me it looks secure. The only way for a hacker to gain information that they shouldn’t would be if they knew the private key of the base station.

If we assume that the private key of the base station is secure, what could a hacker do that they could not have done without Lawful Interception being implemented?

What uses have been proposed for overlaid skewed associativity?

In “Concurrent Support of Multiple Page Sizes On a Skewed Associative TLB” (2004; PDF), AndrĂ© Seznec proposed using overlaid ways with different indexing functions with guaranteed avoidance of bank conflicts. This mechanism allows TLB look-ups for multiple page sizes to be done in parallel without the overheads of CAM-based TLBs or the capacity mis-match issues of a separate TLB for each size. (TANSTAAFL: This comes at the cost of reduced associativity for each page size and does not work well with a wide range of page sizes where less significant bits can not be used by all page sizes to determine the bank.)

I have termed multiple indexing functions sharing a single memory array “overlaying”, though there might be a better name.

Mohsen Sharifi and Behrouz Zolfaghari proposed using multiple indexing functions with a single bank to reduce conflict misses (“YAARC: yet another approach to further reducing the rate of conflict misses”, 2007, PDF)

“Skewed Compressed Caches” (Somayeh Sardashti et al., 2014; PDF) exploits unified storage to avoid conflict misses when a superblock of memory has variable compressibility.

(The merged-associative TLB proposed in Arkaprava Basu’s PhD dissertation “Revisiting Virtual Memory” (2013; PDF 6.5MB) allows the OS to specify a page size by virtual address ranges that exclusively use that page size so that all banks of the TLB can be indexed in parallel. This does not overlay the banks, though it could be trivially extended to do so; similarly page-size prediction could be used (as probably presented in “Prediction-based superpage-friendly TLB designs”, Misel-Myrto Papadopoulou et al., 2015, showing the similarity to hash-rehash).)

Despite the fact that Seznec proposed the idea over a decade ago, I have not found other explorations of its utility. Are there any other proposed uses for this mechanism of overlaying ways?

What is the current Status of major proposed BTC upgrades like Taproot, MAST, Submarine Swaps?

I have read during the last year about some very interesting BIPs or initiatives. I am not asking for their explanations, just would be great if anyone would know about their simple status as of now, whether they are still considered to be implemented at some point (do you know when?), or whether they have been removed from consideration…

1) MAST

2) TAPROOT

3) SCHNORR

4) Submarine Swaps

5) Consumer Lightning-based applications (desktop+mobile by Jack Mallers)

6) Drivechain Sidechain, by Paul Sztorc

7) Lightning over NFC, by Igor Cota

I just dont know where to track those initiatives .

Thanks!!