Is There a Swarm Druid in D&D 3.5?

I am most familiar with 4e D&D, but might be playing in a 3.5 game starting in a couple months and I need to nail down a character. I have been drawn to the idea of a swarm druid in 4e rules and wondered if there is anything like that in 3.5?

Top uses I like about the swarm are not locked into attacks, but more just the over all feel of the character being kinda sneaky and creepy. I like the though of being able to send one or two insects from my swarm out to do reconnaissance (I think that’s possible in the rules). Other than that I like the thought of the insect swarm engulfing my opponents and “eating them alive” and I am also inclined to utilize the controller aspects of the class.

The character I have created as a possibility is a loner from the jungles who always seems like his mind is always preoccupied by a hundred different thoughts, he is very fidgety and if you catch a glance of him out of the corner of your eyes he might look like he has bugs crawling around under his skin. So if there is anything like that in 3.5 for druids, or any other class I would really like to know.

Other info that might be helpful is I plan on playing an elf or half elf, probably neutral aligned(tho willing to explore other alignments), and probably starting at level 1. (Just guessing about the level as the GM is going to be new to GMing)

Should I replace the swarm with the individual creature after enough damage?

So one thing I found odd in the DM’s Basic Rules v0.1pdf was a large list of animals that seemed so insignificant as to wonder why it was included in the PDF. For example, the “Rat” monster, has 1 hitpoint, and a CR of 0, it can hit for only 1 point of damage with a +0 to hit.

However, I then noticed that there are swarm creatures, such as a “Swarm of Rats” which has 24 hit points, +2 to hit, 7 damage or 3 damage when it has less than half it’s hitpoints, and is listed as “Medium swarm of Tiny beasts”. Swarms also have the following trait:

The swarm can’t regain hit points or gain temporary hit points.

This made me think that this was very neat. A swarm is made up of indidvual creatures, and each hitpoint means each creature died. So for a swarm of rats, I might think this means that there are 24 rats in the swarm.

But is this actually the case? When a swarm is reduced to 1 or 2 hitpoints, should I switch those out for actual rat creatures? (This would basically cause the swarm to lose the damage resistances, immunities and reduce the amount of damage it can do.)

If someone attacks a swarm with a single-target spell while it’s in a character’s space, is that character also affected by the spell?

My players have walked into a Spider Lair and fought their first group of Spiderlings, or effectively a Swarm of Spiders from the MM. I didn’t realize until after the encounter that they have a reach of 0 for their attack and that they can move through and stay on a space taken up by another creature (which occurred to me is the only way it can actually make its attack.) The party’s going to fight more next session.

What happens when a swarm is in a character’s space attacking them, and someone casts a single-target spell against that swarm such as Hellish Rebuke or Fire Bolt?
Since the swarm is invading that character’s space (we assume because they are swarming around them or over them), is the character also potentially affected by the spell?

Does a non-magical character have any options to fight a swarm without fire?

In a session with a witch, a wizard and me, a rogue with a knife and crossbow, I found my character to be astonishingly useless against swarms. There was a swarm of Hellwasps and I quite literally just hid behind the magic users. The mages were rather absurdly effective (my contribution to the session was nil), and after looking up the general mechanics for swarms, it appears you have three options:

  • Area affect magic (I don’t even have Minor Magic and don’t plan on acquiring it)
  • A torch/fire swung as an improvised weapon
  • A lantern/fire source as an improvised thrown weapon

My character is a halfling who of course travels light, and I try not to carry anything that emits visible auras or significant magic auras, so I really do just have my crossbow, knife and armor for the most part. I have 4 pathfinder pouches to hide small magic items though so I’m not opposed to carrying anything that can fit in those pouches; I just don’t want to be caught with a giant glowing quarterstaff; my character often has to pass as an innocent little (human) girl.

Is there any option for dealing with swarms like that? Are there items I could use or preferably tactics I could use to actually damage a swarm (or cause damage to them)? Or is running my only option when faced with a swarm when alone?

Can one Wild Shape into a Swarm?

My gut feeling is that wildshaping into a swarm is not RAI, but I’ve had such feelings at times and been wrong, so it feels worth asking.

When it comes to RAW, so far I cannot find anything that says you could not.

At 4th level, a druid gains the ability to turn herself into any Small or Medium animal and back again once per day. Her options for new forms include all creatures with the animal type.

Wild Shape includes any and all creatures of the Animal type, and while swarms are their own subtype, they are a subtype of Animal, which should be inclusive of the “parent type”, right? Or is my programmer’s thinking messing this up?

One could say that a swarm is many creatures, but…

Swarm Subtype: A swarm is a collection of Fine, Diminutive, or Tiny creatures that acts as a single creature.

The best I can come up with to counter this is that it says “acts as” and not “is a”.

Finally, there’s the issue of size for lower level druids, but my question is not restricted to early levels. So, if the druid can turn into fine or tiny creatures, are swarms okay?

There is some monster that works like a swarm of bodies?

I want to ask if someboday have design a monster that works like a swarm of bodies. Not undead but simply human, dwarf, etc bodies that are corrupted or something similar. I want that this monster works like a swarm in such a way can move like a flow until push and destroy windows or doors of a house (example).

Something without Intelligence, like an horde that kill everithing. The monster must be easy to hit for player, but after have killed one bodies, another is ready. In my mind this swarm if made of singular bodies with someone that is able to fuse with another to create a terrifing tangle.

Can you suggest a monsetr like this or do you have a character sheet for a monster like this?

Secure Communication between Swarm Worker Nodes

I have a Swarm Cluster and want to communicate securely between Windows Worker Nodes. The official Docker Documentation (https://docs.docker.com/engine/swarm/how-swarm-mode-works/pki/) states:

The nodes in a swarm use mutual Transport Layer Security (TLS) to authenticate, authorize, and encrypt the communications with other nodes in the swarm.

Looking at the image below I suspect that actually only management plane communication

  • between Manager Nodes themselves and
  • between Manager Nodes and Worker Nodes

is secured. This would mean that I have to secure my communication by other means. Other sources (https://medium.com/lucjuggery/create-a-swarm-cluster-with-docker-1-12-swarm-mode-541449114c27, https://www.dasher.com/containers-os-virtualization-to-workload-virtualization/, https://collabnix.com/docker-1-12-swarm-mode-under-the-hood/, https://upcloud.com/community/tutorials/docker-swarm-orchestration/) say that communication between Worker Nodes is mutual TLS secured by default too. However, I can’t see where these sources base this information on. To me it appears unfounded.

This leads me to the following questions: Is mutual TLS between nodes

  1. limited to management plane communication or
  2. is all communication between Worker Nodes secured too?

If 1., are there other means to easily secure my communication except building mutual TLS into my containers by myself?

Swarm Concealment power issues

I’m trying to use a swarm of insects as a Concealment effect, making the insects flying around the enemies and not let them see or hear (due to the buzz sound). but I faced some issues.

Concealment has a Personal range, so it will only work on me. To affect others, I should use Affect Others or Attack. Affect Others make it possible for others to disable the effect at will, which is not what I have in mind. Attack is imposing, but it has a problem: the power does not work on me anymore. I would need to buy Concealment again and maybe link it to use both versions of Concealment at the same time. A ranged or perception range should adjust the power to not need to touch in close range the others.

But here is the issue: Concealment controls who’s been concealed, but not who’s gonna have their senses affected. The concept of a swarm to block senses lies on this premise, that you choose who is going to be affected by the swarm and not who is going to be concealed. In other words, Concealment concealed some people from everyone, but my effect seems to be the opposite: you blind the senses of some people to prevent them from sensing everyone.

How can I build such power effect?