And advancing evil glacier....damn you Nekron! To the Dragonhawks!
I think for an epic death, you have to have a character that PCs really want to kill. A guy with a lot hit points, floating weapons, and 3-D combat home is obnoxious and challenging, but they will never learn his name. This character has no personality-his brain is rotting. His shield is smarter than he is, and based on the write up I think the personality of the encounter will be dominated by his shield no matter how many weapons this guy may literally pull out of his ass. He has no back story, and it wouldn't matter if he did have a back story because the only facts you see relevant to him are those that relate to the combat grid. Yeah he was one of three Troll Kings of Cloudtseeth, but that only suggests something: it promises a narrative this doesn't deliver. How is this a story telling tool?
There is a lot of information, but no mechanism to transmit those ideas to the player. If this is a really cool boss than how are you going to get your character interested in fighting him before the fight? Are you going to give them the chance to prepare and plan for this battle? Unless some dying Uronothi whispers "You may have won this round, but you will never get past Ghorion the weapon master" or some other heavy handed crap: the players need never learn his name. The structure of the post is really haphazard and reads more like pre-story notes.
To be fair, every one else seems to think this is pretty awesome and I don't need to down vote you. Let us know how Ghorion went over with you players, and if you had to break the 4th wall to unpack the character. Go to Comment
I've tried to answer most of those. The Scenario Background section should help, as should the DM's Note's section. I've also clarified a few other sentences in order to make it more usable. Go to Comment
In the summary, you mention undeath. And then in the rest of the sub, you simply call Ghorion a troll. So is he a troll, or an undead troll?
Also, what's the point? Yes, he would be a challenge for high level PCs, but what is the point? Why does he exist? Why is he an enemy? Has he been slaughtering peasants or living peacefully by himself without interfering with anyone? Why, in short, should the PCs kill him?
Also, you say that he has protection from metal and stone weaponry while touching the ground. Does this protection extend to buildings? Do the PCs have to bodily get him hovering in mid air to stab him? That might be a little difficult to do. And if he isn't protected in buildings, why does he bother with a fort besides the coolness factor? If you couldn't be harmed with weapons on the ground, why would you ever stop touching the ground?
I think Ghorion has some potential, but could use some clean-up. Go to Comment
I love the whole 'Beyond the threshhold' idea, especially when it entails a satanic knowledge of what lies beyond that which humans can experience. That Humans, physically, mentally and spiritually are stuck in cotton wadding, and that they really know absolutely nothing about the disturbing world just beyond their perception is intriguing to me, and it's great to pull that wadding away for a while, sometimes.
I also love the imagery behind the Awakened who beat his way through a guards helmet, while destroying his own hands in the process. This kind of strength is something which humans can actually achieve in real life if the brain overrides its 'safety-switch' (so to speak). A classic example everyone has heard about is the whole "Mother gaining super-strength to lift the car off her pinned son" deal. The idea being that we are actually able to do much more with the muscles we have, but doing so can cause severe damage to you - in moments of adrenaline (e.g. the mother/car thing), the brain can switch this off, but the cost could be damage to yourself. I like the idea that the Awakened have been able to remove this restriction, and I like the fact that they hit hard, but they still have a frail human body, so their own body suffers for it.
I can see practical uses for the Awakened in a roleplay. For example the PC's may have collected a prisoner from some dank dungeon/cave/whatever who has been obviously drug-laden and tortured, and clearly hasn't had any sleep for some weeks! Their journey back to town takes several days and the poor prisoner still suffers insomnia! One night, just a single day away from town, one of the PC's awaken to find that the prisoner has another PC in a stranglehold on the ground, choking the life out of her and speaking arrogantly to her, "You look through those eyes yet you have never truly seen! You want Mercy!? Hahah... If you only knew. The dark on the other side beckons. Can you not hear it? WAKE UP!!"
One small issue I have is that 3-4 weeks seems a little short to me; even though the official record for longest time without sleep is about 18 days, I still feel it would take a few months to reach a point where a person becomes 'Awakened'. But this just my personal thought.
There are people who apparently have gone without sleep for over 30 years, too - but it's thought that they still have 'microsleeps'. Go to Comment
That's a really good roleplaying use. I hadn't thought of that.
Another idea: the PCs are imprisoned, and the next room over is a man who is one day away from turning into an Awakened. After he converts, he spends a night whispering at the PCs before breaking out of his cell.
And yeah, 3-4 weeks does seem short. Feel free to adjust it in your campaign if you ever use this. I only wrote 3-4 weeks because that seemed like the minimum, and the shorter onset times were more menacing. Go to Comment
I love these two subs. Both are well-written, and make a very difficult subject (that we all seem to love the concept of) accessible and usable to average GMs. I love that you include lots of solid examples of ways that these concepts can be used.