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An artwork showing the woody trunks of vines twisted and entwined together. This is meant to illustrate the way individual vines might twist together to form a Vine Collective’s body.


Overview: Vine Collectives are a sapient plant species. Each individual is a group of animated vines that entwine together to form a shared body and consciousness.

Physical Description: Most Vine Collectives have a roughly humanoid body covered in leaves. The vines, usually siblings, are unbranching. They are joined together at the feet and weave together as they go upward to form legs, a torso, arms, and a head. Each foot is an interconnected root web that allows the vines to share water, food, and other nutrients with each other. New shoots start in these root webs and grow quickly because they are nurtured by the adult vines.

In order for a Vine Collective’s roots to get water and nutrients from soil or mud, the ends of their roots temporarily extend out of the root web and sink down into the ground. Vine Collective roots can pull in water and nutrients quickly and store them in the base of the vine stems, allowing the collective to retract their roots and move on after only a short time of being rooted. This also gives their humanoid bodies big feet, thick legs, and a low center of gravity. Combined with strong roots, many Vine Collectives have the added benefit of being difficult to knock over.

Different vines in each collective perform specific tasks. At a minimum, most Vine Collectives have woody Structure Vines that hold the other vines up, leafy Energy Vines that make lots of food, and delicate Sensory Vines with organs that let the Vine Collective perceive the world around them. Many Vine Collectives also have tough Protector Vines that form an armor-like shell. A few have thorny Protector Vines instead. And some don’t have Protector Vines at all. There are many other variations and some individuals have vines that fulfill other tasks, like helping the collective endure extreme weather or repel insects.

Most Vine Collectives can reweave their structures as needed to take advantage of the functions of their different vines. For example, they can reweave to extend their Energy Vines and maximize food production, then tuck those Energy Vines underneath Protector Vines when a threat is near.

Gender: As with many sapient plants, most Vine Collectives are nonbinary, using they/them pronouns. There are few that have binary genders or more specific nonbinary genders.

Senses: The abilities of each Vine Collective’s Sensory Vines vary from individual to individual.

Diet: They get energy from photosynthesis and need a significant amount of time in the sun every day. Water and nutrients are absorbed through their roots as described above. Because Vine Collectives can store energy, water, and nutrients in the base of their stems, they can go a few days without sun, water, or other nutrients, but doing this will be increasingly uncomfortable over time.

Common Mental Characteristics: The consciousness of each individual vine in a Vine Collective joins with the others to form a collective consciousness. Usually this connection is facilitated by telepathy. The degree to which individual vine consciousnesses are subsumed into a Vine Collective’s group consciousness varies. Some Vine Collectives experience themselves as a single entity, using the pronoun “I” when talking about themself, but others experience themselves as a group of consciousness and use the pronoun “we” when talking about themselves.

Magical Affinities:

  • Plant Magic
  • Weather Magic
  • Earth Magic
  • Communication Magic

Common Species Traits:

  • Telepathy
  • Permanent Defense from the armor-like Protector Vines
  • Immunity to Being Knocked Over because they have a low center of gravity and strong roots in their feet
  • Immunity to Being Lifted Off the Ground because their strong roots can quickly grab onto any surface
  • Plant Talker
  • Regeneration

Common Vulnerabilities:

  • Cold Sensitivity
  • Specific Damage Vulnerability to Freezing and Fire
  • Moist Skin, or in this case, Moist Leaves
  • The importance of the root webs in their feet means that their feet can become a vulnerable point for some, especially those without Protector Vines
  • Sunlight Reactive Body due to having the large, easily-burned leaves of a shade plant that can’t tolerate direct sunlight

History: The chaotic magic of a Warped Magic Zone in a tropical rainforest created the first Vine Collectives. Being able to move to get nutrients and sunlight was a major advantage for them and they thrived inside the Warped Magic Zone. Like most of the creations of Warped Magic Zones, the first Vine Collectives required a lot of magic to sustain their existence, making them unable to leave the Warped Magic Zone, because they depended on its intense magic. Over time, however, the Vine Collectives developed and became more magic efficient until they finally emerged into the rest of Crossroads.

Prominent Cultures: Because each individual is a collective, communities that have many Vine Collectives in them tend toward a collective mindset. Also, being mobile sapient plants, the resources they need, like sunlight, are easily shared. As a result, communities with many Vine Collectives tend to value sharing, generosity, and cooperation.

Their origins in a tropical rainforest makes many Vine Collectives sensitive to cold and dryness. As a result, most Vine Collectives live in wet areas with a warm or mild climate. Only a few travel to places with extreme cold or dryness and fewer live there. It is similar for dark locations, such as underground caves. Naturally, there are a few intrepid individuals who do brave these conditions using specialized gear, such as crystals that absorb then emit sunlight.

Outside of protective gear for harsh conditions, Vine Collectives rarely wear clothing, as it interferes with photosynthesis. However, some Vine Collectives do wear jewelry, ribbons, or small pieces of fabric for ornamentation. Because of the importance of the root webs in their feet, a significant number of Vine Collectives wear sandals or boots protect their feat.

Inspiration: The ways that plant siblings in some species share resources and grow together. The way that cells divide and develop into different types of tissue. Superorganisms formed by social insects.

Respectful Portrayal Note: As a fictional being made up of multiple consciousnesses joined together, some portrayals of Vine Collectives may be associated with Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID). If you don’t have lived experience of DID, please take care when portraying anything associated with this much stigmatized condition and do the research needed to avoid myths and stereotypes.


Vine Collectives are part of the Crossroads Setting for the tabletop role-playing game, Magic Goes Awry. Click here to go to the list of vibrant and unique magical people from the Land of Crossroads.


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