Archive for December, 2014


I sit down with Rudy Basso, Alex Basso, Allison Rossi, and John Fischer to talk about the recently launched Kickstarter for Codename: Morningstar, formerly DungeonScape, formerly Codename: Morningstar. This podcast was recorded on December 7, 2014.


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If you like what you’re reading please follow me on Twitter, check out my other podcasts, Bonus Action and Gamer to Gamer, tell your friends, and/or leave me a comment and let me know you think. Thanks!

I dare say Perception is the most used skill in many D&D games. It’s used to find secret doors, treasures, traps, hidden foes, read lips, smell distant fires, listen through doors… you get the idea. Heck, it’s the skill which inspired the passive ability check, allowing DMs to know the result of a PC’s Perception roll without the player ever knowing it occurred.

For all its uses, Perception checks do slow down game play. How many dungeon crawls have been turned into dungeon complete stops because players wanted to pour over every room and find the secret doors and treasure hidden by a crafty DM, only to find that there really is NOTHING in that one room with the gray ooze. This isn’t the players’ faults! There’s fun in finding something hidden and sort of the point of many a dungeon crawl.

Still, this method of play becomes monotonous after a time, because players will search a room and find nothing. Even in your favorite published adventures there’s usually a room or three per dungeon that’s monsterless, treasureless, secret-doorless with the words “nothing of interest” attached to the description.

I understand this plight. There’s only so much treasure to go around. It’s not like the DM can put objects and areas of interest in every room, right? I mean that’d be a butt ton of work. Right?!?

Say Nay to the Pile

Now let me say that I LOVE big old pile of treasure. I love a sleeping dragon buried beneath a hill of gold that would make even Scrooge McDuck drown. I love a lich hiding her loot in a secret vault, guarded by devious traps and constructs. Who doesn’t want a moment where adventurers run into a glittering cavern of ornate treasures a la Aladdin‘s Cave of Wonders or The Mummy?

But does every freakin’ lair need all its valuables centralized in one place? Wouldn’t the bandits be more likely to split up their booty immediately after a highway robbery rather than hoard it in one room in their cave? Doesn’t the bandit leader have to pay his goons in order to stop a revolt? Why would an evil cult keep all their artifacts under lock and key? Wouldn’t they hire guards and put the pieces on display as a show of power to remind followers their deity is strong?

Think about your own house. Most of us don’t have a wall safe behind a comically large, hinged self-portrait above our office desk. Your most valuable possessions are spread out all over. The functional things are in the place where you need them most, your art is on display, and your money could be in different places (for instance my wallet is on my person, rolls of quarters are kept next to the laundry detergent in the closet, loose change is thrown into a tin next to the TV, gift cards are on the fridge, and my check book is in a filing cabinet). I don’t hide all my valuables and I’m guessing you don’t either, because you believe the security measures you have in place (door locks, a dog, a doorman, an alarm system, etc.) are more than enough to deter thieves and murderers. You wouldn’t then also hide all your valuables because it’d be inconvenient to find them when you need them. Wouldn’t it be the same for most fantasy baddies who have henchmen, locks, alarms, and traps of their own?

Next time you make a treasure hoard, think about spreading it out in every room. Here are the steps I normally take.

  1. Roll up or decide the grand total of treasure you want to put in the lair. Get a grand total of loot for the adventure, it makes dividing it up a lot easier. I find this works best after you’ve already created and populated the dungeon you want to use.
  2. Assign any useful magic items in the hoard to NPCs. Magic weapons and armor would be worn by the person running the operation or by his or her most loyal henchmen. Don’t just leave it at items good for bonking adventurers. Monsters aren’t just waiting around for PCs to show up and kill them. They have just much use for a bag of holding or some dust of dryness as the PCs do. Simply make a note next to the NPC’s name to remind yourself it has the item.
  3. Display art. What good is a gold-framed painting, silver sculpture, or beautiful tapestry if it’s lying in a treasure heap or locked in a chest? Put them on display! Make a note next to the room’s description or read aloud text about any art object that might be on display (and possibly warrant extra guards, security, or traps).
  4. Hide gems. In my mind gems are the big daddies that baddies keep squirreled away for a big purchase or trade. That said there’s no reason why the dungeon’s big boss should hold every single gem. A lowly henchmen might hide one in his or her boot or under a mattress so their coworkers don’t steal it. The ogre mage might give them to his or her favored bodyguard to assure loyalty. A ruined temple’s former caretaker might have hidden a ruby away in an altar during the structure’s heyday. Again make notes next to the room about the type of gem, its worth, and where it might be hidden next to a room description or NPC.
  5. Divide coinage. Figure out where all the various copper, silver, gold, and platinum pieces should go in your dungeon. First question – are the dungeon’s henchmen being paid? If so, hand over some gold! Each henchman should have a little something tucked in a belt pouch or in a chest at the foot of a bed. Are their prisoners hiding away money? Did someone long ago hide a cache of coin beneath the floor? Is the ogre paid more than the orcs? Remember that most money a person would have on hand would be in a small amount in an easily reachable place (like a pocket or pouch). Large sums of money are more likely to be hidden, locked away, guarded, and/or trapped. Make your notes and you’re ready to rock.

This method assures that your players constant searching will be worth it. Rather than slowing down gameplay, it’s a major part of it.

But what if you really like the big treasure pile? Or your adventure calls for it. Or what if you don’t have time to parse out all the treasure in the way I listed above? Fear not! I have ideas below that can still make PCs’ constant searching and ransacking worth it and interesting.

Worldbuiling Through Searching

Players can find interesting stuff that isn’t treasure when they make a Wisdom (Perception) or Intelligence (Investigation) check. While moving through a ruin, players might find objects and hints about the former life of the structure. While moving through a dragon’s cave, players might evidence of what the dragon eats or the journal of a former adventurer who failed to storm the lair. While moving through an enemy’s castle they might find letters from their enemy’s allies, written plans for villainous schemes old and new, or games of strategy and chance the guards play in their downtime. All of these things may not be of direct monetary value to the PCs, but they tell the story of your world and that’s the reward for finding them.

You can stock a dungeon with these items or you could roll on a chart whenever a player searches a room and you decide there should be something of interest in it.

If you’re in a pinch, page 299 of the Dungeon Master’s Guide has two tables – General Features and General Furnishings and Appointments. These two randomized tables are a great place to roll for randomized objects. Just roll there until you get a result which makes sense when your players search. If you’re a quick improv, attach significance to the object (like a symbol, a note, a special crafting material, etc.) to make it relate to your story and your world. Alternatively you could use the trinkets table in the Player’s Handbook, but those are items are so specific it may be difficult to fit them into your story.

The tables above aren’t really meant for random Wisdom (Perception) checks. They are meant to help DMs create random dungeons. Large furniture is on those lists as well as piles of wood, which are things a player wouldn’t need to search for and in most cases be disappointed to find.

That’s why I’ve created the table below of random story objects players can find in a dungeon!

d100 Object
1 Prayer book to a resident’s diety
2 Vial of herbs used to soothe joint pain
3 Map of an inhabitant’s hometown
4 Notes on an inhabitant’s current scheme
5 Notes on an inhabitant’s old scheme
6 Notes on an inhabitant’s future scheme
7 Bag of local candy
8 Bottle of local alcohol
9 Map of an inhabitant’s dream retirement location
10 Letter to an inhabitant from a loved one
11 Book of the local government’s laws
12 Book of fairy tales for children
13 Book of scary stories
14 Local herbs used in tea
15 Pipe-weed from an exotic location far off
16 Bag of bones used to predict the future
17 Spell component pouch full of sulfur and guano
18 Letter opener with an inhabitant’s family crest
19 Fancy undergarments from a nearby city shop
20 Board game favored by the locals
21 Card game favored by the locals
22 Dice game favored by the locals
23 Drawing of a local legendary monster done by a child
24 Poem written to an inhabitant by a lover
25 Small musical intrument wrapped in sheet music of a classic song
26 Copper coins from a fallen empire
27 Blanket knit with the symbol of a local government or organization
28 Darkened glasses used by an inhabitant with a light sensitivity
29 Ear trumpet used by an inhabitant with hearing impairment
30 Invitation to a party thrown by a local noble
31 Signet ring of a local authority
32 Coffee grounds from an exotic location
33 Sack made out of a local monstrosity’s hide
34 Mask made in the likeness of a legendary monster
35 Pen and stationary set from an institution of learning
36 Text book about the specific ecology of a monster by a well-known sage
37 Brass holy symbol of an inhabitant’s deity
38 Stuffed doll made in the likeness of local dog breed or pack animal
39 Stuffed doll made in the likeness of local monster
40 Recipe for an inhabitant’s grandmother’s famous pie
41 Recipe for an exotic dish
42 Recipe for a local dish
43 Tankard from a local tavern or inn
44 Preserved corpse of an inhabitant’s pet
45 Beast’s preserved head as a hunting trophy
46 Floor plan of the closest blacksmith’s shop
47 Flask emblazoned with a mercenary group’s symbol
48 Pen knife with initials carved in Undercommon
49 Stone arrowheads from a nearby primitive civilization
50 Hidden engraving of an evil god or cult
51 Hidden closet or trapdoor meant for hiding runaway slaves
52 Petrified pet rat
53 Sword sheath with the crest of a noble family on the other side of the world
54 Iron manacles with the preserved hands of a humanoid locked in them
55 Dagger with the crest of a city guard on the other side of the world
56 Wood box displaying the corpse of extinct insects
57 Hit list left behind by an international assassin
58 Dull straight razor made for a Huge creature
59 White gloves made for a Tiny creature
60 Monster training manual written by a now dead eccentric explorer
61 Journal of an inhabitant
62 Music box which plays an off-beat tune
63 Waterskin filled with blood for a ritual
64 Calendar with every holy day of a religion circled
65 Sundial bearing the name of a long-forgotten sun god
66 Saddle for a flying beast of burden
67 Notches in the wall noting the passage of time
68 Small booties meant for a baby
69 Broken miner’s pick bearing the sigil of an Underdark king
70 Tiny set of antlers, too small for a deer or moose
71 Directions to an inhabitant’s best friend’s house
72 Cipher for a secret code which is no longer used
73 Bowl made from the wood of an extinct plant
74 Belt buckle bearing the symbol of a knightly order
75 Set of brass knuckles with a criminal’s initials raised on the points of contact
76 Magnifying glass carved with the initials of a dead police inspector
77 Work gloves covered in the blood of an aberrant creature
78 Iron pot full of humanoid bones
79 Small flask full of an inhabitant’s favorite condiment
80 Voodoo doll of an inhabitant’s employer
81 Paper target with a perfect hole through the bullseye
82 Stone statuette of a beast found on the other side of the world
83 Wax candle carved into the image of a god
84 Map of the world
85 Map of a mysterious island
86 Notes from an inhabitant’s trip to another plane
87 I.O.U. written to an inhabitant
88 Notice of debt written to an inhabitant
89 Collar and tag made to fit a Large animal
90 Sock for a Huge creature
91 Scarf bearing the crest of a local artisan guild
92 Small wooden box with a secret compartment
93 Yo-yo bearing a child’s name
94 Wooden halfling skeleton
95 Common to <insert language of your choice here> dictionary
96 Set of finger puppets resembling a legendary band of heroes
97 Steel box containing the leaves of plants from an exotic location
98 Homemade political cartoon commenting on local affairs
99 Copy of the local news publication
100 Warrant for the arrest of a person on the other side of the world

After rolling on the table above, the rest of the object’s story is up to you!

Variant: Ruin Rule

If the PCs are making their way through a ruin that was formerly inhabited by people other than the current occupants, roll a d10 before rolling on the Randomized Story Objects table. A roll of 4 or below indicates the object found is older and pertains to the previous occupants, a roll of 5 or higher indicates the object is related to the current occupants.

When All Else Fails… They Gotta Eat!

Maybe you don’t want to give your players treasure, but you don’t want to overload them with story objects either. Maybe you’re the kind of DM who asks players to track their use of food, water, and ammunition. Well if that’s the case, when your PCs search, roll on the table below to see what they might find. In certain campaigns, food and water are worth more than gold! For that sort of thing roll a d100 and adjust the rarity of these items based on how often you want them to show up.

d12 Items
1 1 full waterskin
2 1d2 days of rations
3 1 bag of ball bearings
4 1 bag of caltrops
5 1d6 pieces of chalk
6 10d6 feet of hempen rope
7 1d4 flasks of oil
8 1d10 torches
9 1d20 arrows
10 1d20 crossbow bolts
11 1d20 sling bullets
12 1d10 iron spikes

Tables as PDFs

Hey if you like the tables above and want to use them in your game below is a PDF for you. This document will live on the Free Game Resources section of this site!

Alternative Search Tables

If you like what you’re reading, please check out my podcasts on The Tome Show, follow me on Twitter, tell your friends, share this blog post, and/or leave me a comment and let me know you think. Thanks!

I’m co-hosting a new podcast with Sam Dillon called Bonus Action. The first episode is up on The Tome Show’s website.


It’s the inaugural episode of the Bonus Action podcast. This show is about the rules of the 5th edition of Dungeons and Dragons and we plan to explore those rules one by one. In this episode Sam and I discuss the Advantage/Disadvantage mechanic. You can find an explanation of this rule in the Basic D&D PDF on page 57 or in the 5e D&D Player’s Handbook on page 173.

Nerdin' out to the max!

Chart provided by Andrew Timmes.


Links:

RPGMusings.com

Eric Michaels Music


If you like what you’re reading please follow me on Twitter, check out my other podcasts, The Round Table and Gamer to Gamer, tell your friends, and/or leave me a comment and let me know you think. Thanks!

UPDATE: The statistics for these catastrophic dragons have been moved, but fear not! You can now grab them in a totally awesome Pay What You Want PDF on the DMs Guild.

Thank you for all the feedback. Catastrophic dragons have been revised and added in full PDF glory to the Free Game Resources page on this site. You are all awesome! I really need to thank John Four over at Roleplaying Tips for the inspiration. He picked the theme of races for last month’s RPG Blog Carnival. Killer stuff that got me thinking about how much I loved fourth edition’s catastrophic dragons and if there was a way to bring them into fifth edition. Here we are a month later and I’ve brought the blizzard, earthquake, tornado, typhoon, and volcanic dragons fifth edition ruleset.

ef477-blizzarddragon

But Wait… There’s More!

A dragon who cannot cast spells is like French onion soup with cheese. Yes, technically it is indeed the thing it claims to be, but I’m pretty disappointed with the result. Catastrophic dragons, like their chromatic and metallic counterparts, can cast spells. Instead of relying on Charisma, their spells use Intelligence. Why? Well, mechanically it’s because catastrophic dragons have lower Charisma scores and higher Intelligence scores than other dragon types. Also, everyone (including me) loves a good story reason for game mechanics so here’s mine.

Much of a catastrophic dragon’s innate magical ability is used in holding its new raging elemental body stable. To keep from exploding, catastrophic dragons must focus their natural magical energies on controlling their chaotic forms.

This does not mean a catastrophic dragon cannot learn to cast spells. Many pour over ancient tomes and texts, learning magic long forgotten, and some even create their own spells which they are eager to show off.

Because these spells are learned and not innate abilities of catastrophic dragons they use the following variant rule.

Variant: Catastrophic Dragons as Spellcasters

Some catastrophic dragons keep spellbooks, just like wizards. A young or older catastrophic dragon can cast and prepare a number of spells per day from its spellbook equal to its Intelligence modifier, requiring material components as usual. The spell’s level can be no higher than one-third the dragon’s challenge rating (rounded down). The dragon’s bonus to hit with spell attacks is equal to its proficiency bonus + its Intelligence bonus. The dragon’s spell save DC equals 8 + its proficiency bonus + its Intelligence modifier.

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Screen Shot 2014-12-03 at 12.38.07 PM

If you like what you’re reading, please check out my podcasts on The Tome Show, follow me on Twitter, tell your friends, share this blog post, and/or leave me a comment and let me know you think. Thanks!


I sit down with Hal Greenberg, Steven Long, and Rachel Ventura, who are all on the board of RPG Creator’s Relief Fund. We discuss this new charity which sells RPG bundles and uses the money to support freelance game designers and artists who have suffered a sudden tragedy. This podcast was recorded on November 16, 2014.
They just released their first bundle and you can buy it here.


If you like what you’re reading please follow me on Twitter, check out my other podcast Gamer to Gamer, tell your friends, and/or leave me a comment and let me know you think. Thanks!

 

UPDATE: The statistics for these catastrophic dragons have been moved, but fear not! You can now grab them in a totally awesome Pay What You Want PDF on the DMs Guild.

Few disasters work as quickly and devastatingly as a tornado. The terror of these catastrophes can be seen in movies like Twister and The Wizard of Oz, but the true horror is even worse as seen in real life articles and news reels. When it comes to disasters, tornadoes strike fast and without warning. The same happens when a tornado dragon rolls through town. It isn’t looking to chat or for treasure. It’s looking to kill.

Quick Recap

If you haven’t been following the blog, I’ve been busy converting the fourth edition D&D catastrophic dragons to fifth edition mechanics. So far I’ve done the typhoon, blizzard, earthquake, and volcanic dragons. I’m hoping to get feedback on these baddies from you all and then I’ll add them to the Free Game Resources section of this site. Anyway here’s my story for catastrophic dragons in fifth edition, pulled from earlier posts.

Catastrophic dragons were once chromatic dragons who desired more than a hoard and a lair. For while others stole and hid from the humanoids over whom they claimed superiority, these dragons knew that all other life in the multiverse should be bowing to their will. Power is a far greater reward than any material possession and as the smartest and strongest in the land, dragons deserved to be in charge. Any thought other than this was impractical and stupid. These dragons tried to convince their brethren to leave their caves and make the humanoids submit to their will.

The other chromatic dragons did not like this sudden interest in the affairs of lesser beings and so with greater numbers they did come together. They banished their radical kin to the elemental planes. For hundreds of years these rebellious chromatic dragons were locked in seas of fire, ice, wind, and stone. Those who did not die were shaped by elemental forces and remade into catastrophic dragons.

Each trapped catastrophic dragon has its imprisonment tied to the soul of a chromatic dragon on the material plane. If one of these gatekeeper chromatic dragon should die before it can pass the responsibility onto another, the catastrophic dragon can leave the plane of its imprisonment and wreak havoc on the world.

Catastrophic dragons once wanted to dominate all life in the multiverse. After years of suffering the harsh terrain of the elemental planes, their minds are warped and they desire only to kill all those inferior to them, especially chromatic dragons whom they hate above all others.Their memories are long and catastrophic dragons do not forget their betrayal at the hands of their kin. If they escape their bonds, they may keep a hoard, but usually only for the purpose of attracting other dragons and killing them.

Tornado Dragons

Screen Shot 2014-12-03 at 12.38.07 PM A solid mass of tearing, howling wind creates the body of the tornado dragon. Its form is constantly moving, and the dragon itself can barely sit still. If one comes across a calm tornado dragon, be wary indeed! For surely their rage is approaching a boiling point which cannot be contained.

Restless Rage. Tornado dragons are constantly on the move in search of something new to destroy. Being idle gives them time to reflect on their pain and suffering in the elemental planes, and they distract themselves with their labor of devastating all life. Tornado dragons use every ounce of energy they have wreaking havoc on the world and then retire to their lairs for long periods of time to rebuild their energy and heal their wounds. During these rests, the rage boils in tornado dragons’ hearts and it is only a matter of time before they explode forth, eager to ravage the land once again.

Angry Liberators. More so than any other catastrophic dragon tornado dragons are driven to find gatekeeper chromatic dragons and slay them to free their catastrophic brothers. Often while resting they perform divination rituals to find the closest gatekeeper chromatic dragons. These rituals determine which direction their next swath of destruction will travel.

A Tornado Dragon’s Lair

Tornado dragons prefer to be outside wreaking havoc and destruction as often as possible but they do claim lairs as sanctuaries where they can rest and heal. Usually a tornado dragon’s lair is great ruined structure, possibly destroyed by the dragon itself. Pyramids, arenas, castles, and palaces are the kind of enormous ruin a tornado dragon might claim. They prefer structures on wide open flat planes. The ruins are concealed with illusion magic, and guarded by elemental creatures.

The inside of a tornado dragon’s lair is littered with all manner of magic and mechanical alarms which can alert the dragon to an intruder’s presence. If the dragon is inclined, it will seek out the intruder itself to fight in the halls, or it may trigger one of its devious traps, which often involve the collapsing of a room, or the entire floor of a structure.

When the dragon does face foes in its lair, it prefers to confront them in an area with plenty of space, to make the most of its catastrophic aura. These open spaces often have flimsy barriers, made to look sturdy. Intruders may hide behind these barriers, thinking themselves safe right before the dragon’s wind rips it apart exposing them.

If you like what you’re reading, please check out my podcasts on The Tome Show, follow me on Twitter, tell your friends, share this blog post, and/or leave me a comment and let me know you think. Thanks!

As many of you already know, the Tiamat Takedown is tonight at 8:30PM Eastern. If you don’t know what that is, read on!

Mike Shea DMs Joe Lastowski, Chris DudleyTopher Kohan, Liz Theis, and me in a battle for the ages! We’re stress-testing high-level combat in the new edition of Dungeons and Dragons once again and this time we’re taking on the most powerful villain the game currently has to offer – Tiamat! Her statistics were recently revealed in the Rise of Tiamat adventure from Kobold Press.

Well, get ready to meet the PCs for tonight’s main event! Click this link to see the sheets! Here’s who is playing whom.

  • Joe Lastowski – Azaghal Broadbeam, mountain dwarf paladin
  • James Introcaso – Glandarang Broadbeam, hill dwarf cleric
  • Topher Kohan – Hank, mountain dwarf ranger
  • Christopher Dudley – Shikayo, human monk
  • Liz Theis – Umak, half-orc barbarian
  • Mike Shea – Tiamat, really big five-headed queen of chromatic dragons

So join us tonight! We’ll be living streaming the game on Google+ Hangout and on YouTube. We’ll release an edited version of the audio as a podcast on thetomeshow.com and have a follow-up conversation as part of The Round Table podcast I host.

If you like what you’re reading, please check out my podcasts on The Tome Show, follow me on Twitter, tell your friends, share this blog post, and/or leave me a comment and let me know you think. Thanks!

UPDATE: The statistics for these catastrophic dragons have been moved, but fear not! You can now grab them in a totally awesome Pay What You Want PDF on the DMs Guild.

First, a reminder. The Tiamat Takedown is tonight at 8:30 Eastern!

Many of you know typhoons by their other name – hurricane. Certainly the devastation and destruction these cyclonic storms have wrought is some of the worst we’ve seen in human history. Well the devastating typhoon dragons are the embodiment of that destructive power. Today the catastrophic dragon fourth edition to fifth edition conversion continues with these horrific monstrosities.

Quick Recap

If you’ve already read about the blizzard, earthquake, and volcanic dragons, feel free to skip ahead to the next section. If not, here’s an excerpt from those posts which explains my own original take on the origin and nature of catastrophic dragons. If you’ve already seen this, just skip ahead.

Catastrophic dragons were once chromatic dragons who desired more than a hoard and a lair. For while others stole and hid from the humanoids over whom they claimed superiority, these dragons knew that all other life in the multiverse should be bowing to their will. Power is a far greater reward than any material possession and as the smartest and strongest in the land, dragons deserved to be in charge. Any thought other than this was impractical and stupid.

These dragons tried to convince their brethren to leave their caves and make the humanoids submit to their will. The other chromatic dragons did not like this sudden interest in the affairs of lesser beings and so with greater numbers they did come together. They banished their radical kin to the elemental planes. For hundreds of years these rebellious chromatic dragons were locked in seas of fire, ice, wind, and stone. Those who did not die were shaped by elemental forces and remade into catastrophic dragons.

Each trapped catastrophic dragon has its imprisonment tied to the soul of a chromatic dragon on the material plane. If one of these gatekeeper chromatic dragon should die before it can pass the responsibility onto another, the catastrophic dragon can leave the plane of its imprisonment and wreak havoc on the world.

Catastrophic dragons once wanted to dominate all life in the multiverse. After years of suffering the harsh terrain of the elemental planes, their minds are warped and they desire only to kill all those inferior to them, especially chromatic dragons whom they hate above all others.Their memories are long and catastrophic dragons do not forget their betrayal at the hands of their kin. If they escape their bonds, they may keep a hoard, but usually only for the purpose of attracting other dragons and killing them.

Typhoon Dragons

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Typhoon dragons are made of swirling winds and water. When they swim on the surface of the ocean, they almost appear to be an angry, dragon-shaped wave seeking a boat to destroy. On land they are a terrible, swirling, dragon-shaped rain storm which promises to drown any living creature in its random path of death.

Sadistic and Cruel. A typhoon dragon’s imprisonment and rage has twisted its mind beyond normal rage. Typhoon dragons desire worse than the death and destruction of their enemies. They wish to see the world tortured and suffering as they were for centuries in the chaotic elemental planes. These sadists take pleasure capturing live victims and torturing them with wind and water for weeks on end before actually ending their lives. Typhoon dragons will make other prisoners watch as they drown and wind whip a victim over and over until death is begged for.

Mortal Enemies of Black Dragons. When it comes to their hatred for all creatures, typhoon dragons hate black dragons more than any other. They see the black dragon’s choice of swamp habitat as the coward’s choice. Why take the putrid, stagnant waters of the swamp when one could live in the glorious, ever-changing tides of the sea? Black dragons hide in their holes, while typhoon dragons rage up and down the shoreline, leveling coastal cities and scouring swamps they come across for black dragon foes.

A Typhoon Dragon’s Lair

Typhoon dragons make their lairs under the waves, close to shorelines, but deep enough that land-dwelling creatures have a difficult time making their way there. The entrance to these lairs are often hidden by mud storms which form on the ocean floor around the lair, driven by the harsh wind magic of the dragon.

These lairs are twisting tunnels flooded with sea water, so traveling through it requires swimming. Some chambers might have areas where a non-water breathing creature could take a breath or even get out and walk around, but even areas that aren’t fully submerged are still salty and wet.

Typhoon dragons often take on intruders in chambers with craggy peaks sticking above the surface of the water. This allows the typhoon dragon to dive into the waves to make melee attacks, or fight above them, using its aura to the fullest advantage. It also makes life difficult for any non-aquatic enemies who enter the lair, since they have very few places to stand.

If you like what you’re reading, please check out my podcasts on The Tome Show, follow me on Twitter, tell your friends, share this blog post, and/or leave me a comment and let me know you think. Thanks!


I sit down with Rudy Basso, Alex Basso, and Vegas Lancaster to discuss the latest Dungeon Master’s Guide previews and the release of the Bahamut and Tiamat miniatures from Wiz Kids. This podcast was recorded on November 23, 2014.


If you like what you’re reading please follow me on Twitter, check out my other podcast Gamer to Gamer, tell your friends, and/or leave me a comment and let me know you think. Thanks!