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Old 05-11-2018, 04:26 PM   #31
Anthony
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
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Default Re: Making dragons slightly tougher

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Originally Posted by Tom H. View Post
Interesting.

Where does the dragon prefer to fight intruders?
That would depend on where they're coming from and how they're armed. For people climbing up the cliff, taking them out as they climb is optimal. For people entering at the back, I'd assume there's a corner so people can't just hang out in a tube firing off missile attacks.
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Did you intend for its lair to be a tight diameter roughly the length of its own body?
It's flexible. Most lizards are actually pretty comfortable in spaces smaller than that.
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Old 05-15-2018, 07:55 AM   #32
Dalin
 
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Default Re: Making dragons slightly tougher

Lachimba's recent thread, Where do you target a cone attack?, got me thinking about draconic breath weapons. Currently dragons have two broad types of breath: areas and cones. Area attacks are used for acid and poison, and cones apply to fire and cold. The cones are currently 10 yards long and a single yard wide, making them more like a beam than a cone. This works well for a dragon with a tightly targeted breath. But if you wanted a dragon that fires out a great billowing gout of flame that widens as it extends, you could expand the width of the cone. A five hex width, for example, targets about 36 hexes rather than just 10, and makes it much less likely that targets can dodge out of the area (assuming they can step only one hex). This would make even a mundane (non-spell-casting) dragon significantly more dangerous.
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Old 05-15-2018, 08:45 AM   #33
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Default Re: Making dragons slightly tougher

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Did you intend for its lair to be a tight diameter roughly the length of its own body?
I imagine the lair size is function of the treasure size, so as to insure full coverage of the ground ?
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Old 05-16-2018, 08:59 AM   #34
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Default Re: Making dragons slightly tougher

Dragon's breath can be tinkered with to heart's content. You can make damage dice whatever you like. You can make damage type almost anything, with almost any special effects. You can make it a bigger cone or bigger area effect, or even an explosion originating at the dragon's mouth. You can decide that it's persistent.

The breath of "default" dragons is designed to strike a balance between scariness and giving well-prepared parties a fighting chance, between vastness and fitting on a sensible combat map. If your needs are different, there's no requirement to hold back. You could, if you wanted, simply rule that a dragon can twist its head around like a lawn sprinkler and engulf all targets within x yards of itself, no defense allowed.

This isn't even getting into "tricks": Don't like scouts? Let dragons roll vs. 3 + (Innate Attack/2) for "point defense," with success burning projectiles out of the air – destroying even expensive ones, like magical arrows and fine spears – and failure still allowing a Dodge roll. Party hanging back too far? Let dragons roll vs. DX to flap wings and blow acid or poison breath clouds (Air Move) yards toward cowering foes. Let dragons spend extra FP for higher damage or more range. And so on.
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Old 05-16-2018, 01:05 PM   #35
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Default Re: Making dragons slightly tougher

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Dragon's breath can be tinkered with to heart's content. You can make damage dice whatever you like.
I also like to make the floor of their lair into incredibly bad terrain. What is intolerable for SM 0 folks isn't even a nuisance for something SM +3 or more (or that's immune to the hazard, or has enough DR to ignore it). Sudden 2 foot elevation changes, 2-3 foot wide cracks, pools/dripping streams of water, grease, flammable liquids, acids, magma, loose stone/sand*, bones of the dead, zombie body parts that are still mobile, etc.
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Old 05-16-2018, 02:54 PM   #36
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Default Re: Making dragons slightly tougher

Minor, to dragons at least, parasites or lair cleaners.
Dragon fleas may not be so minor to adventurers.

Some spiders "keep" frogs that eat dangers to spider young but aren't really dangerous to spiders.
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Old 05-16-2018, 03:01 PM   #37
b-dog
 
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Default Re: Making dragons slightly tougher

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Originally Posted by Kromm View Post
Dragon's breath can be tinkered with to heart's content. You can make damage dice whatever you like. You can make damage type almost anything, with almost any special effects. You can make it a bigger cone or bigger area effect, or even an explosion originating at the dragon's mouth. You can decide that it's persistent.

The breath of "default" dragons is designed to strike a balance between scariness and giving well-prepared parties a fighting chance, between vastness and fitting on a sensible combat map. If your needs are different, there's no requirement to hold back. You could, if you wanted, simply rule that a dragon can twist its head around like a lawn sprinkler and engulf all targets within x yards of itself, no defense allowed.

This isn't even getting into "tricks": Don't like scouts? Let dragons roll vs. 3 + (Innate Attack/2) for "point defense," with success burning projectiles out of the air – destroying even expensive ones, like magical arrows and fine spears – and failure still allowing a Dodge roll. Party hanging back too far? Let dragons roll vs. DX to flap wings and blow acid or poison breath clouds (Air Move) yards toward cowering foes. Let dragons spend extra FP for higher damage or more range. And so on.
I think that when you write monster books you should have a bunch of variant monster powers included with the regular monster stats. DF PCs have lots more abilities and powers than old school D&D so the monsters should have a lot of cool powers to choose from. Maybe even a way to roll randomly for what powers the monster gets.
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Old 05-16-2018, 05:21 PM   #38
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Default Re: Making dragons slightly tougher

See Cloverfield for more.
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Originally Posted by Flyndaran View Post
Minor, to dragons at least, parasites or lair cleaners.
Dragon fleas may not be so minor to adventurers.

Some spiders "keep" frogs that eat dangers to spider young but aren't really dangerous to spiders.
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Old 05-23-2018, 09:59 PM   #39
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Default Re: Making dragons slightly tougher

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Is there a reason the Dragon isn't casting Gloom (Starlight) or Darkness (followed by Darkvision) and then just owning the adventurers?

Or slapping Blur and Armor on itself if it wants to go Claw/Claw/Tail/Breath Weapon all up in melee? (Or honestly leading with Darkness, then Dark Vision, then Armor, then Blur just in case)
I'm a fan of Mystic Mist. Most of the PCs won't be able to see more than 2 yards, a medium dragon's claws have a reach of 3 yards. Thus they'll be taking attacks from an invisible attacker until they close (and who's to say there wasn't something nasty in the intervening hexes?). Its long duration means that it is something a dragon could potentially have running constantly, too.
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Old 05-24-2018, 07:48 AM   #40
Dalin
 
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I also like to make the floor of their lair into incredibly bad terrain. What is intolerable for SM 0 folks isn't even a nuisance for something SM +3 or more (or that's immune to the hazard, or has enough DR to ignore it). Sudden 2 foot elevation changes, 2-3 foot wide cracks, pools/dripping streams of water, grease, flammable liquids, acids, magma, loose stone/sand*, bones of the dead, zombie body parts that are still mobile, etc.
This. I love the idea of doing battle on a floor that is riddled with deep fissures. Not hard to leap across, perhaps, but it slows movement, limits the ability to retreat, and provides an interesting knockback hazard for those wing and tail attacks. (And it would be fun to draw the tactical map.)
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