View Full Version : Tips on Pleasing My Warlord

Human Paragon 3
2008-02-06, 03:23 PM
OK, that sounded weird.

Here's the scoop: In the near future, I'm going to be running a campaign set in a futuristic, demon-plagued post apocalypse. It will be exactly five sessions and take the party from level 16 to level 20, with exactly one level up at the end of each session.

The party will consist of a Battle Sorcerer, a Mystery Person (most likely a multiclassed bard), and a Warlord. By Warlord, I mean a barbarian with leadership. And his cohort has leadership. And HIS cohort has leadership, so at level 20, he will have 18 cohorts and a whole slew of followers.

My question is twofold:

First: Please, give me tips on how to run an effective arc at this level. I have a fair idea, but I've never actually done it before.

Second: Any tips on how to handle the warlord and his army? I'm thinking of developing a system that abstracts them a bit so they can do combat with an army of demons. Suggestions on how to do this, how to run combats with 20+ participents, and how to otherwise occupy the 18 cohorts are requested.


2008-02-06, 03:43 PM
"Pleasing my Warlord"?

Is that what the kids are calling it nowadays?

Human Paragon 3
2008-02-06, 03:45 PM
Better than "flogging the bishop."

2008-02-06, 03:47 PM
Yeah I must admit the title was.................misleading.

I believe there are rules for larger battles in the Tome of Battle but I don't own the book.

Can anyone confirm/deny this?

2008-02-06, 03:50 PM
Did you forget about the mass armies at his command?!?! A few high level cohorts are the least of your concern...

I'll have some ideas for you later.

2008-02-06, 03:51 PM
I would suggjest banning cohorts from having leadership, as that is just silly.
That said DnD sucks in terms of big combat, Heroes of Battle sounds like your best bet

Magnor Criol
2008-02-06, 03:54 PM
ToB, I don't know about. I know Heroes of Battle has large-scale rules, as well as additional stuff for leadership and cohorts and, well, armies - all of which could be very pleasing to your warlord, if you get my drift. Wink wink nudge nudge.

On the other hand, DnD's large-scale battle rules are widely considered to be clunky at best, so that may not be your best choice.

...but on the other other hand, if you're looking to abstract the large battles and make them more background noise than the focus, then HoB's stuff might be good for you. (I'm afraid I don't recall the gist of most of them off the top of my head, but if I remember aright, they abstracted a lot of things.)

-e- Ninja'd!

Human Paragon 3
2008-02-06, 04:00 PM
The followers will just, basically, be storm troopers. Maybe i'll get a Big Battle At The End that involves them all, but the cohorts are what i'm concerned with. I'm thinking The PCs (including the warlord) plus 5-6 cohorts are in a battle with demons. I don't want to have to resolve every roll in a combat that big, so I might have the cohorts fighting a hord of lesser demons. The solution could be a quick way to resolve the cohorts vs. lesser demons, say, roll a d20 and add modifiers for each, if the result is equal, its no change, if it favors one or the other, the 'loser' gets KO points equal to the difference yada yada. Not sure if this is workable or even favorable. I want to know how to make these combats fun, have the cohorts matter, but not bog it down.

2008-02-06, 05:29 PM
well, the massive number of troops under the command of your warlord is the real issue. He made himself into a warlord andwould be mildly annoyed if he is unable to do things with his troops. You have to know that he just wasn't after a bunch of cohorts...he wants to use those thousands to do...something. Leaving them on the sidelines will be very disappointing. You will need to figure a way to use the armies to do things...

Also...do note that leadership does not guarentee followers...it means that you have the potential to attract that many followers/cohorts. A great mission would be for him as a warlord and a string of trusted allies(string of cohorts) are trying their best to assemble an army. The purpose of the campaign could be focused on finding suitable locations to gather and then to fight.

As far as cohorts in combat...you should really never have more NPC's accompanying your party than absolutely necessary. Try to find ways to separate them. The needs of recruiting and training a massive amount of followers are quite demanding...consider a sort of strategic 'minigame' in which cohorts are dispatched with some followers to recruit/perform some mission and get a d20/percentile roll to see if they succeeed. When on secure missions, cohorts can guard at night, defend the rear to make sure that other things don't interfere, protect the 'wagon' or whatnot...they don't need to be in combat to make a difference.

If they are in combat, or allowed to intervene in any way, you will have your hands full, not with mass numbers of troops, but with all the buff/debuff spells and effects available. If in combat, just DM rule what is most likely or appropriate if you don't wanna roll it out. Quite simple. Normally, if there are things like guards and PC's in a mass combat, I have all NPC's more or less the same and on the same init acting however. Or, just rule that x many die, y many take damage, and tie up/defeat z many enemies while the PC's take care of the encounter. Modified if the PC's take time to assist the NPC's. If you aren't gonna roll it all out, just wing it. otherwise, you are gonna get bogged down.

2008-02-06, 05:38 PM
Chainmail Bikinis and lots of mead...

*Goes and actually reads OP*

ohhh :smallredface: load the minions up with bows so you dont have to position them as much. Just use volleys of ranged attacks.

2008-02-06, 05:46 PM
If you wanna play large scale battles, use Warhammer rules and if you don't want to spend a slew of money on models and paint, use some dice or paper counters to represent troops.

2008-02-06, 06:03 PM
If you wanna play large scale battles, use Warhammer rules and if you don't want to spend a slew of money on models and paint, use some dice or paper counters to represent troops.

That is something we did for largescale battles in 2nd ed. We used the Battlemaster game and had all the units represented by whatever, modified rules a bit and bang...huge battles. It was alot of fun though. Switching to another game system for large scale battles might be alot of fun. And, it gives other players something to do instead of just sit around and wait for the DM to finish playing with themselves. They can command the army sections.

Much fun to be had.

If you can get copies of the warhammer rules or some other ancient/fantasy miniature thing, then I would say scale it down just a hair (as far as size goes) and play it out on a table top with slips of paper in the formation shape you need marking casualties and such with pencil. You'll need to figure some rules for mass buffs and such.