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9

NPC wizards don't have to be foes One way spells are distributed in such a game-world is by "horse trading" -- friendly wizards would swap spells in the same way you'd swap recipes with your friends IRL. Have them do some favors for a NPC wizard, or just hang out around one for a while. Abandoned spellbooks can be a thing Another possibility is that the ...


7

If there is already potential conflict between the city and the forest (as you suggest) then the evil plan practically writes itself. Have the queen hire/force mercenaries (or thugs of any stripe) to attack one side leaving evidence incriminating the other side. So for example, she could hire some thugs to attack the druids, maybe steal something from them ...


3

Certain worlds might have organizations for just this type of thing. In Forgotten Realms, for example, the Red Wizards of Thay sell Scrolls, just like they do other minor consumable magic items. I would say up to level 3. Of course, in that world the Red Wizards are morally questionable. Most adventurous will not ask questions however because the discounts ...


3

You might give out the spells as a reward for some deed, or they could be found forgotten into a dusty tome in an unrelated location. Rummaging through the belongings of a mage while he's away from the dungeon he's working in might also provide plot hooks later.


2

Have you considered the Queen might have done the same thing with the druids, and now the druids think the PCs are the most dangerous enemies of balance around? When you plan to put two factions against each other, you have each become unreasonably angry at the other, so that everything they say might be mistaken for excuses and the will to convince ...


1

Per the rules, the DM has quite a bit of leeway in assigning mods to the die roll for any check. That's the key (and has always been the key) to the matter of making an ability check for something "outside the box" of codified skills and abilities. Since no standard penalty for non proficiency is listed in the section on that optional rule, it is worth ...



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