View Full Version : Interesting Desert encounters

2009-11-20, 04:22 AM
We currently have a party consisting of:

Ork Paladin - level 7
Dwarf Cleric - level 7
Genasi Wujen - level 6
Halfling monk - level 7
Kender monk/drunken master - level 7
Human Ranger - level 7

I'd like to have them fight a interesting/memorable encounter while they are in the desert. I've pitted them against some Massive scorpions (3 of them) and the party really enjoyed the to and from in combat. What can you guys and gals suggest can I let them battle, either a single enemy or a group of 2-3. This is a low magic campaign, so everyone is still using stuff like bucklers, chainmail etc.

I was thinking a young adult blue dragon, but that's a bit overkill and would probably result in a wipe. Any ideas ?

2009-11-20, 04:39 AM
If you're okay going crazy with the templates, hit them with a half-blue dragon Lamia who boasts about "inheriting the legacy of the ultimate predator." Being able to fly does well for the traditional Lamian tactic of strafing.

If you like to add some decision-making and potential for a future favor, hit them with a pair of hieracosphinxes arguing over who gets an unconcious gynosphinx. Best way to represent this is to have the arguing pair make Intimidate checks against each other until one of them yields, the party interrupts, or a Nat20 on Intimidate wouldn't overcome the cumulative bonuses and they fight each other.

If you want pure hack-and-slash, hit them with an evil cleric who wanders the desert, killing indiscriminately with summoned vermin and skeletons warriors that pull themselves from the sand if any enemies get into melee. "Arise!"

2009-11-20, 04:44 AM
Rick has a stated candycane golem I believe. I personally am found of a chef with a fondness of pie making pies out of contact poisons, and throwing them at people. Splash assassin to get the bonus to DCs.

Oh wait, you meant desert.

Pick through sandstorm, lots of great stuff there.

2009-11-20, 05:40 AM
My last desert campaign i ran the party (around the same level) against some mummies in a tomb, a younger sand dragon, scarab swarms, and a bunch of other stuff from Sandstorm.

Remember to make them account for heat

Roc Ness
2009-11-20, 05:47 AM
Something along the lines of a sand elemental(s) of sorts... maybe just earth elemental

Fight the Desert itself! :smallwink:

Mercenary Pen
2009-11-20, 05:51 AM
Alternatively, if you fancy placing a plot hook, maybe go for something completely out of the ordinary for a desert and use the oddity of the situation to insert some potentially useful situation...

For example, encouraging your PC's to wonder exactly why they were attacked by a group of Winter Wolves in the desert...

2009-11-20, 07:02 AM
How would you guys use basilisks ? I see their terrain is desert.

2009-11-20, 08:55 AM
How would you guys use basilisks ? I see their terrain is desert.
A basilisk relies on its gaze attack, biting only when opponents come within reach. Though it has eight legs, its slow metabolism renders it relatively sluggish, so it does not expend energy unnecessarily. Intruders who flee a basilisk rather than fight can expect, at best, a halfhearted pursuit. These creatures tend to spend most of their time lying in wait for prey, which includes small mammals, birds, reptiles, and similar creatures.

Sand storm + a providential cavern on the side of a cliff.
The party explores to be sure nothing scary is in there.
TADAAAAM !! Basilisk colony !!

Lot's of staring ensue.
The Basilisks would probably try to grab the physically weakest member, since he'll look like a tasty snack but since they feed mainly on small preys, they could consider the adventurers as a real threat and just stone everyone.
And once one of them is killed, the rest will do so.
They'll get slaughtered eventually, since a Fortitude DC 13 isn't a big deal for 7th level paladin. Cleric, monks and ranger shoudn't find it too hard either. I don't know the Wujen but I guess he could just close his eyes if necessary.

To be fair, I would rather oppose your group to a single Abyssal Greater Basilisk.

A lot more battle effective.
The picture is a lot scarier/awesome.