Plants in your game

So last week I talked a bit about how to make plants important and relevant in your story, but now let's look at what you can actually DO with them. This is, how to use Plants in your campaign.

Plants in narrative: As I eluded to last week, there are a ton of ways to use plants from a narrative perspective. They can of course be symbolic, using the plant as a narrative shorthand, as a representation of a concept or ideal. A certain event or place or character becomes linked with that plant, andit allows you to say so much with few words. Of course a plant can also be much more directly relevant to the plot. A small town's survival may hinge on recovering a rare herb, a sprig of mistletoe may be the only weakness of a corrupted god, or perhaps a gigantic network of mushrooms is threatening all of the world.

Plants and their mechanics. All it takes is adding a few basic spell effects to rare wild plants and you can create some fascinating foliage. Imagine wild Goodberry bushes, or lotus blossoms that when brewed into a tea make one invisible. Of course there are plenty of other ways to get creative with plants. Magic vines that serve as enchanted rope, mundane herbs that provide bonuses to skill checks when used properly, and of course there's good old fashioned cover and concealment. There are a limitless number of ways you can use plants and tie them to mechanical benefits to help make them stand out to your players.

Plants as obstacles. Of course as helpful as plants can be, they can also make fantastic foils. From classic plant based monsters, to overgrown brambles too thick to pass, right to massive treetop fortresses that must be besieged or scaled. Plants can also serve as opposition in less conventional ways, such as a thieves guild trading in opiates or other naturally derived narcotics. And one of my personal favourites, is to convert mechanical traps into organic ones. A scythe trap becomes a snapping man eating flytrap and a dart trap becomes a blossom that ejects deadly thistles without needing to modify the rules much at all.

And all of these above options are very simple to implement, taking very little extra work. All you need is to give the new plant a name, a tidbit of lore about it, and what it does. Just make sure you keep a record of your plants because they become more potent and make your world more immersive with repeated usage.