Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Lazy DM'ing 4: To Aid, Threaten, and Blow To Smithereens

When life gives you lemons, give it minions.  Aiding, Suicidal, and Arcane Threat Minions In Detail

Since we have discussed Bruiser, Abused, and Defender minions I figure we can move onto some more interesting minion types. However, 'minion' is a loaded term these days. Let us rather define Minion as 'leverage units'. Really, an enemy is an enemy, but a minion provides leverage for the Big Bad. Each minion should provide this leverage, and nothing else... no need for 1 HP, just serve as your own little unit of HP, AC, and effect.

Now, onto the three minions to discuss here:

Aiding: These minions are the healers and squealers. Defenders protect the Bad, Aides give some assistance to help the Bad protect itself. The negative-essenced undead which provide an aura of negative-energy healing for their lich? A mage who gives some buffs to the royal villain? Aides. Aides are usually 'quiet targets'; they can be some distance away, and their skills usually lend to being less-than-stellar warriors.

Arcane Threat: Magic Bruisers, Arcane Threats lay down a nice fat line of elemental (or other) damage. Not usually mages themselves, an Arcane Threat will break skull totems, UMD a wand, or just break open a sweet can of magic energy to cover. Arcane Threats are usually weaker than Bruisers, big ol' Glass Cannons.


Suicidal: Kamikaze Threats.  Think of the Bomb from the Final Fantasy Series.  While an Abused minion provides its benefit from being damaged by others, Suicidals are walking effects waiting to trigger themselves. Exploding poisonous constructs? Check. Suicidal creatures work well with manipulative masters, serving as fanatics which can be thrown about to do damage (or other negative effects) without PC targeting. 

The three minions can be used moderately and provide for some excellent spots of interest.  In our next article we will discuss the usage of minions of the various types in your next encounters.

As Always,

Good Gaming.