View Full Version : Bad Dudes vs. Dragon Shaman

2007-10-19, 01:51 PM
My friends and I have recently started a campaign based on gladiator type combatants, warriors we've put together to fight against one another. It makes for a really fun kind of pick-up game of D&D, since few of us have any time for a regular once-a-week 6 or 7 hour game like we used to back before we were out of college or married and such.

Anyway, we've been having a ton of fun with this - just three people necessary, and you can get in a match under an hour. Everyone's True Rezzed and healed after the fights and we keep track of each charcter's record and experience. Recently, we started to test adding a mission every once in a while for multiple characters, and that's quite a success! Just a quick one-shot mission that can be finished in under three hours.

The really interesting part about this kind of scenario so far is how different these gladiators work in an encounter that has multiple enemies. Since we've all made our characters for dueling against one other character at a time, almost no one has any area-of-effect spells, no one has cleave, and all defenses are prepped against someone who thinks like another PC. As such, a couple of our 7th level characters nearly got TPKed in an encounter with an ogre, a 7th level shaman and about forty orc warriors. It was pretty hilarious, just by the amount of natural 20s that were getting through our defenses, while we had to take each foe down one at a time.

Aaaaanyway, I told you that story to tell you this one. It's my turn to run a mission event, so I thought I'd pick Kobolds for my Monster du Jour. I don't really want to force a TPK, so I'm not going for a Tucker's Kobolds type scenario. Instead, I want a sold challenge, where the 3-5 7-8th level PCs will feel like they might perish or be forced to flee if they don't play smart and make use of very solid tactics.

Here's the hook:

Celebrating your most recent gladiatorial battles, you are sought out by a black-clad ranger with strange, reflective goggles. He is from the near-by city of White Hovel, and brings a desperate request for aid. Mayor Ronnie Raysling has been kidnapped... by kobolds!

White Hovel needs help, and is willing to pay dearly for your services. It seems that the Dragon Clan kobolds in the hills near White Hovel demand a ransom of 4000 gold and the release of a number of kobold prisoners from the city. While easily affordable to White Hovel, the city council absolutely refuses to bow to the Dragon Kobolds' demands. "We will never negotiate with kobolds," says the grim ranger, "to do so would only encourage similar actions from other monsters in the area. What's next? Hobgoblins demanding ransom for our daughters? Ogres making off with our cattle? No! The line must be drawn, and it must be drawn here!"

The agent wants you to seek out the Dragon Clan kobolds (he provides a map), rescue Mayor Ronie (alive), and destroy the Dragon Clan.

In return for rescuing the mayor, White Hovel will reward your group with 4,000 gold. In addition, they offer 10 gold for each kobold skull, and a thousand gold for the head of the leader of the Dragon Kobolds, a dragon-witch named Pinta.

Certain older and/or cultured members of the audience may recognize a horribly blatant reference to a certain Data East video game from the late 80's (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bad_Dudes). Cookies for you! I'm hoping to turn this one into something like that classic side-scroller, complete with healing potions in round metal cans, and health-ups from eating turkey legs.

For the leader of the kobolds, I plan on using a Dragon Shaman of high level (10th, I'm thinking, just to make it a challenge), supported by a pair of kobold 6th level Knights mounted on dire weasels. The rest of the kobold clan combatants will be either level 1 warriors and experts (about 10 of each), level 3 Ninjas (10) and level 3 sorcerers (5). All others will be non-combatants back in the caves tending to eggs and young.

I plan on forcing the character to travel through an area of rocky hills and scrub trees, before they hit the kobold warren, comprised of 3 major caverns, with a few smaller ones branching out to the sides.

The entrace to the cave should be trapped, as should some areas of the first and second caverns.

Now... any suggestions on feats for the Dragon Shaman, and traps that are scary but not instant death?

How can I make this more entertaining and memorable?

2007-10-19, 01:55 PM
Don't give them the gold, man. A hamburger with the Mayor is reward enough.

2007-10-19, 01:56 PM
The question is, are you a bad enough dude to rescue the mayor?

2007-10-19, 02:01 PM
I'd just like to say : rename that Dragon Shaman. Pinta, the current name, will very quickly (in at least ONE person's mind) become punta. Which, if I'm not mistaken, is ... less than appropriate.

2007-10-19, 02:07 PM
Thanks guys! :smallbiggrin:
I'm highly open to a rename for the dragon shaman - Any ideas? We don't have any fluent Spanish speakers in the main group, but it's probably best to be on the safe side. I don't currently have access to Races of the Dragon. Anything good in there?

2007-10-19, 02:12 PM
I'd just like to say : rename that Dragon Shaman. Pinta, the current name, will very quickly (in at least ONE person's mind) become punta. Which, if I'm not mistaken, is ... less than appropriate.

You are mistaken.
The word you are looking for is "puta".

2007-10-19, 02:16 PM
Scenario aside ... Kobolds aside ...

A Level 10 Dragon Shaman BBEG with 2 Knight bodyguards on Dire Weasels is a fantastic boss battle for a low-level party. Style!

2007-10-19, 02:35 PM
Well, with a main leader and a bunch of followers, I wouldn't focus overly on the Breath Weapon. You can pick up Draconic Aura for an extra Aura, but instead I'd take a few Marshall levels, for even more aura-ie goodness. Marshall 3 / Dragon Shaman 7 is pretty good. Make Cha very high.

Marshall Auras:
Motivate Dexterity (to keep the ranged kobolds hitting)*
Motivate Wisdom (to see them coming before they attack)
Motivate Attack (to hit 'em good)*

Dragon Shaman Auras:
Vigor (to keep 'em in the fight)
Senses (again, to see the party before they get there)
Power (to hit 'em good)*

So, you've got 3 auras boosting your little dudes, and the ability to heal up to (assuming 18 Cha) 56 damage per day, plus a lot of your guys have fast healing on top of that.

Now, if you can make your Dragon Shaman CN, you can give him the Copper Dragon totem, meaning he can use Spider Climb to get out of melee range whenever he wants: imagine that, a Kobold, healing and boosting from the ceiling, and breaths down a breath weapon on his foes every once in a while! Seems pretty memorable to me! Use Entangling Exhalation w/ the Dragon Shaman to mess up the party, too!

The Kobolds should be mixed up between ranged characters and melee, REACH weapon characters (longspears, in particular). Never give the party too much of one type or another; mix it up! Nothings funnier than a Kobold trying to trip a Barbarian, btw!

Anyways, it seems like one helluvah fight!

2007-10-19, 10:52 PM
You are mistaken.
The word you are looking for is "puta".

Close enough to make the connection.

As for name suggestions, I apologize, I'm horrible with coming up with names. For dragons I tend to bastardize words from the "pidgin draconic" of the Draconomicon, not sure how much that'll help you.