5e, Game Mechanics, Subclasses

Otherworldly Patron: The Great Pumpkin

by Anna G.

Well friends, it’s pumpkin season once again, and we all know what that means.

No, wait! Put away those scythes and trowels. What I meant was, it’s Fall! Halloween, specifically. And as we all know, Halloween comes bundled with a variety of treats, tricks, and festivities including hay rides, pumpkin carving, and haunted houses! But of course, the most important event occurs after nightfall. A grand event, eagerly anticipated by people of all ages, most of them dressed in clothing that is interesting, to say the least. The atmosphere is heavy with arcane mystery and dripping with magical potential.

I’m speaking, of course, about the coming of the Great Pumpkin.

Yes, soon the Good Gourd himself will arise from his chosen pumpkin patch and travel around the world, bestowing his gifts upon those who are worthy. But perhaps you are asking yourself, “Am I worthy?” and “What gifts does the Great Pumpkin bestow?” and “A flying pumpkin? I hope it’s more maneuverable than Rudolph…or at least has better liability insurance.”

Well friends, good news. I have devoted my life to the study of the Great Pumpkin, and have compiled my knowledge into an easily digestible format. Read on to discover how the Great Pumpkin can benefit you!***

***If he so chooses. Blessing by the Great Pumpkin is not guaranteed. Further terms and conditions may apply.

The Great Pumpkin
wants YOU

In order to enter an accord with the Great Pumpkin and receive his blessings, you must be a Warlock. The Goodly Gourd himself will be your patron, bestowing upon you many arcane and wondrous powers that bear his squash-like mark. These include an expanded spell list and unique powers that other warlocks can only be jealous of.

Perhaps the most unique aspect of becoming a Great Pumpkin warlock is the battlefield control. A class feature you gain immediately is Patch Walker, a seemingly impotent ability that allows you to travel unimpeded through difficult terrain caused by pumpkin patches. But, you might be thinking, how often does one run into pumpkin patches over the course of an adventure? Less frequently than quicksand, probably.

However! This is not the case for Great Pumpkin warlocks. Many of the spells on your expanded spell list produce pumpkin patches that function as difficult terrain for everyone…except you! You can wall off your enemies and phase through the tangle of vines, or ensnare them from below while you caper about, just out of range.

In addition to physically changing the terrain around you, you’ll be able to summon scions of the Great Pumpkin in battle, perform Pumpkin Carols, and even fly! But perhaps your greatest ability is turning your enemy’s attack into their downfall. When you are damaged by a spell or physical attack, you’ll be able to use your reaction to try and transmogrify your opponent into a harmless little pumpkin! Take that, Big Bad Evil Guy!

So you wish to walk the Pumpkin Path yourself now, eh? Well good news! A full PDF of all you need to know about the Great Pumpkin is now available here! Give it a try and let us know what you think.

5e, Game Mechanics, Spells, Subclasses

Sorcerous Origin: Pandamancer

by Timothy G

Welcome to the Bamboo Digest!

For our first entry, in honor of the founding of Pandamancer Games, we are excited to present our eponymous sorcerer subclass for 5e: the Pandamancer! Give it a try with your gaming group, and let us know what you think in the comments!

Sorcerous Origin: Pandamancer

Powerful panda magic flows through your veins.  Perhaps you descend from a druid who was only willing to befriend panda bears, or maybe your forebear fell into a hot spring and transformed into a panda.  Maybe your mother was blessed by a panda spirit as thanks for saving his sacred grove.  In any case, for better or for worse, you’ve known from a young age that it was your destiny to be a Pandamancer.

Wild Resilience

At 1st level, you may cast Bamboo Growth (see below) at will as a cantrip.  Additionally, you gain advantage on Constitution saves.


At 6th level, you gain the ability to speak to pandas as per Speak with Animals.  Additionally, you can spend 1 sorcery point to summon a panda companion as per Conjure Animals.  This panda uses the stats of a Brown Bear.

Take no Jutsu

At 14th level, when an enemy hits you with an attack, you may spend 2 sorcery points as a reaction to swap places with any bamboo stalk within 120 ft.  The bamboo stalk takes the damage from the attack instead.

Heavenly Panda Form

Beginning at 18th level, you can spend 5 sorcery points to transform into the Heavenly Panda (use the stats of a Brown Bear).  This functions as the druid’s wild shape class feature, except that while in Heavenly Panda form you may still speak and cast spells.  In addition, you shed a benevolent blue light in a 20 ft. radius as per the light spell.  This effect may be dismissed or activated as an action.  While in Heavenly Panda Form, you gain resistance to all non-magical damage and your natural attacks function as +3 weapons that deal radiant damage.

There it is!  The Pandamancer.  Let’s look at each feature.

Wild Resilience: Infinite bamboo, and advantage on one of the most common types of saving throw.  What’s not to like?

Bear-Speech: A panda bear friend you can talk to?  It’s a nature enthusiast’s dream.  In addition to being a great conversationalist, he’s also pretty decent in a fight.  And your new friend will greatly appreciate your ability to create infinite bamboo.

Take no Jutsu: This is my favorite part.  Not only is it an excellent defensive ability, it rewards battlefield strategy (smart bamboo placement!) and will leave your enemies extremely confused.  It works against any attack, so spell attacks and ranged attacks are fair game.  You could even save it for when your enemy scores a critical, and then laugh as his perfect swing goes *thunk* into a big piece of bamboo.  Beyond its defensive utility, Take no Jutsu gives you an excellent retreat strategy: place a bamboo stalk in a safe spot before combat, and if things go badly, you can disappear without having to use an action or a spell slot for dimension door.

Heavenly Panda Form: It’s a delightful image.  A gently glowing celestial panda, wandering the forest and giving sage advice to travelers.  Wise and placid, but fierce and deadly in a confrontation.  And if for any reason you want to be stealthy, you can turn off the glow.

Special bonus!  A new spell to complement the Pandamancer.  Check it out!

Bamboo Growth

1st-level transmutation
Casting Time: 1 action
Range: 30 feet
Components: V, S, M (a pinch of soil)
Duration: Concentration, up to 1 minute

This spell causes a bamboo shoot to sprout on one patch of soil or sand within range.  The shoot grows at a rate of 1 foot per round as long as you maintain concentration.  Once the spell ends, the plant becomes a mundane bamboo plant and grows as usual, requiring water, light, and fertile soil.

Now, growing a single stalk of bamboo may seem situational, but it actually has a lot of utility.  Bamboo is an extremely versatile plant.  In addition to all of its traditional uses, I hear it can be used to construct crude but effective vehicles.

Seriously, though, it could have a lot of uses, especially if you’re a Pandamancer and can cast it as a cantrip.  Need to lever up a big rock?  Grow some bamboo right under its edge.  Need an improvised weapon to fight the guy you just hit with that boulder?  Good news!  There’s a bamboo stalk right there where the boulder used to be.  Need a ladder to get away from the guy you just beaned with that bamboo pole?  Grow a second stalk, lash them together, and climb to safety!  See?  The uses are endless.

I love this spell because it’s possible to invent a vast array of creative uses for it.  Try out the Pandamancer and bamboo growth in your own 5e game and let us know what you think!