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LizardfolkLich
2010-12-23, 01:26 PM
I'm trying to think up some crazy ingenious ideas that gnomes are known for that they can use to defend themselves against your generic forces of darkness, including siege engines. I'm open to anything at all (minus cheese) so throw them at me!

The gnomes in question are actually a moderately sized trading town that is predominantly gnomes but with a healthy cosmopolitan population of humans, elves, dwarves, etc. The standing army is almost entirely gnomish however. The city is surrounded by a good wall that is about 10-15 feet wide and 20 feet tall. The town also has an extensive undercity/tunnel network that also extends outside the walls into the hilly countryside.

All this information is right off the top of my head so I can provide more as necessary. Any ideas, playgrounders?

megabyter5
2010-12-23, 01:45 PM
Is it a completely above-ground settlement? Are their enemies mindless hordes, or a well-coordinated army? Gnomes are natural illusionists, so one tactic is to just hide the city under an imaginary mountain. Then there's the old burning oil trick, which never fails to impress... But I don't think gnomes, who are known for alchemy, would limit themselves to just oil. How about a pot of Alchemist's Fire to throw on them? Even better, load it into a catapult.

Yeah, that sounds good... Have them shoot some Alchemist's Fire out of a catapult.

randomhero00
2010-12-23, 01:56 PM
Gnomes are known for trickery.

Ever fought against good/hard mode kobolds at low level with all their traps? Basically do something similar with gnomes on a grander scale.

The place you enter can be callapsed into a huge pit of spikes. Their weakness in their town is actually their strength (whatever that might be). If its a wall for instance, then the wall is designed to come down....and filled with explosives. And of course add some permanceied illusions that would really confuse a hostile army.

Just think trickery and illusion with some alchemical stuff thrown in.

edit: and that includes the offensive propaganda game. Make up a legend (which would be an illusion provided by only a few high ranking gnomes) that an invincible monster guards their town. Something collosal.

Make the enemies so paranoid and scared that they wouldn't even want to touch the town.

Hyfigh
2010-12-23, 02:03 PM
Really small shields? :smalltongue:

Ravens_cry
2010-12-23, 02:03 PM
Is it a completely above-ground settlement? Are their enemies mindless hordes, or a well-coordinated army? Gnomes are natural illusionists, so one tactic is to just hide the city under an imaginary mountain. Then there's the old burning oil trick, which never fails to impress... But I don't think gnomes, who are known for alchemy, would limit themselves to just oil. How about a pot of Alchemist's Fire to throw on them? Even better, load it into a catapult.

Yeah, that sounds good... Have them shoot some Alchemist's Fire out of a catapult.
I do not believe one shoots ANYTHING "out" of a catapult, except maybe ballista and related siege engines.

molten_dragon
2010-12-23, 02:21 PM
I do not believe one shoots ANYTHING "out" of a catapult, except maybe ballista and related siege engines.

Hmmm, a catapult that shoots ballistas...

megabyter5
2010-12-23, 02:51 PM
I do not believe one shoots ANYTHING "out" of a catapult, except maybe ballista and related siege engines.

If it's a semantics war you want, I'll be happy to retaliate. If you launched siege weaponry from a catapult, it would break. And then your enemies would fix it and use it against you. Congratulations, you've now supplied your attackers with a trebuchet.

Ravens_cry
2010-12-23, 02:55 PM
If it's a semantics war you want, I'll be happy to retaliate. If you launched siege weaponry from a catapult, it would break. And then your enemies would fix it and use it against you. Congratulations, you've now supplied your attackers with a trebuchet.
It's not a semantics war, though if that's how you want to see it, it's completely a different way of launching a projectile at an enemy. One is like throwing something, the other is akin to spitting. Rather different methods.

Greenish
2010-12-23, 03:00 PM
Hmmm, a catapult that shoots ballistas...…and said ballistae launch a rain of heavy crossbows midair.

Tyndmyr
2010-12-23, 03:13 PM
Hmmm, a catapult that shoots ballistas...

I approve of this idea. With gnomish battle teams aboard the ballistas, frantically firing downward into battle, before engaging some half-baked pre-crash "safety" device.

Coidzor
2010-12-23, 03:20 PM
Decoy settlements which are staffed by a small team of illusionists that cycles out, probably in a sort of 'reservist' situation and serve as waystations for their scout patrols and double as monitoring stations of the surrounding countryside. As well as actually completely camouflaged and separate from the main tunnels systems of redoubts and tunnels used by the scouts who also double as guerillas when any coherent force marches on the city.

So, they provide both an early warning system and a death trap for enemy vanguards/foragers, and serve to prepare a system of guerilla harassment/sabotage to an enemy force.

Also, you said that there are tunnels leading from the undercity into the surrounding countryside. Those are both vulnerabilities and assets. 1. anything other than small-sized creatures would have to squeeze to get into them, 2. imagine Tuckers' Kobolds with a proper budget and you can imagine how painful and expensive in material it would be to try to take one of those tunnels, only to have it collapsed and sealed with the force inside of it buried/crushed.

Zergrusheddie
2010-12-23, 03:27 PM
…and said ballistae launch a rain of heavy crossbows midair.

Gnomish Air-burst Technology at it's finest.

I'll give another hit at Illusions. Illusions are pretty much the bread and butter of Gnomes and what they are most know for. Considering they are Gnomes, you could also have them focus on Underfoot Combat + Confound the big folk with a Mass Reduce Person. "Beware of the Gnomish Infantry in the hills. They are masters of bringing a man down to their level!" Maybe have them know the good ol' combo of Iaijutsu Focus + Gnomish Quick Razor.

Toliudar
2010-12-23, 03:35 PM
Illusions are definitely a big part of a potential gnomish defense.

Individual illusionists, sneaking out through the tunnels behind the approaching army, create illusions of whole squads of gnomes popping up among the existing troops, so that at best they waste time diverting their energy attacking nothing, and at worst end up shooting each other.

Illusionary fog clouds over enemy archers and seige weaponry. The defenders know that they're illusions and can see through them, but a large number of the opponents can't.

Illusionary walls on top of the real parapets mean that defending troops have total concealment from opponents until they get into melee range, but can see out just fine.

Dancing lights and ghost sound mean never REALLY knowing whether there are gnomish death squads approaching from the other side of that hill.

Illusionary summoned monsters sent in among the opponents get them used to ignoring such things...and then the gnomes send in the real summons.

Gnome bards disguised as the invading race infiltrate in advance and use fascinate/suggestion to make many of them think they're going to lose (or that they're scared of baby-eating gnomes, or whatever). Gnome bards in the defense, of course, boost the defenders into long-nosed killing machines with Inspire Courage.

Coidzor
2010-12-23, 03:36 PM
Hmmm... Gnome Fighter Substitution Levels that capitalize on such synergy... :smallamused:

Ilmryn
2010-12-23, 03:42 PM
Gnomes are good at alchemy, right? Smokepowder+alchemist's fire= fire cannons!

Coidzor
2010-12-23, 03:48 PM
Gnomes are good at alchemy, right? Smokepowder+alchemist's fire= fire cannons!

Ooo, that reminds me, illusion-covered punji stick pits and areas of the battlefield covered with caltrops...

Slipperychicken
2010-12-23, 03:49 PM
With the whole trickery/illusions thing going on...
[Okay, this isn't so much for a settlement as strategy in general]

Make illusions of things that would make armies stall (forts, towers, walls, etc.). Also, you could pull a fake-out on them: make an illusion that looks a *lot* like the gnomish army, keep marching it into the enemy, do this for a very long time until they realize that these armies are just illusions. If they stop reacting to the fake army(s), bring out the real one and catch them with their pants down. If they respond to every one as a legitimate threat, keep at it and wear their morale down as far as it can go. Make them doubt their maps (random forests, mountains, deserts, change the roads up): medieval armies had pretty unreliable maps as it was, but that would just make it hell. Good luck managing supply caravans when the road to stops 30 miles away from camp. Hide your real forts and settlements and put up fake ones where you think the army's marching. Also, if you can, put things up to psyche them out like in 'Nam (mutilated corpses, screaming women, images of the commander being murdered).

TLDR: Abuse illusions, guerrilla tactics all the way. Works even better if the gnomes have a lot of land/illusionists to work with.

EDIT: Didn't read the part with the tunnel network... have guys pop up through holes in the ground, let a few shots/spells off, and go back in before anyone notices.

DMfromTheAbyss
2010-12-23, 03:52 PM
Lots of illusions, traps and misdirection, mixed with enough actual siege equipment and legitimate hit and run assaults to keep the enemy guessing. Invisible sapping teams and alchemy based explosives. Small enclosed tunnels filled with badgers/dire badgers and or gnomish infantry formations. Throw in illusionary towns and or making illusions of your own forces over the forces of your enemy while having your own forces illusioned to look like your enemy.. mass confusion for the enemy, easy pickings for the gnomes. Until the enemy whips out something to see through all the illusionary fun.

And when the enemy goes for something to see through the illusions.. two words..

INVISIBLE DARKNESS A darkness 15 foot radius type spell, metamagicked/changed to make the spell invisible. So if you don't have true sight or a way of seeing past illusions you can see just fine, if you do you are effectively blinded. Liberally spread out over the field of operations to make the opponent blind or so paranoid they leave.

kieza
2010-12-23, 03:59 PM
I'm going to go with illusions too, but instead of using them to confuse and confound the enemy, use them to scare them. Illusions of horrible ghosts and geists, reanimated soldiers, etc. Break the enemy's morale directly, rather than doing so via fatigue.

Also, if you can figure out a way to make the illusion only visible to certain people, make one officer see one threat, another something different, and so on...and leave the troops unaffected. Instant mutiny as the troops lose faith in their leadership.

Rasman
2010-12-23, 04:07 PM
Gnome Commandos.

They were...a little crazy...but pretty hardcore. They used Gillie suits and other types of sneaky sneaky to launch ambushes on the main roads headed in the direction of their settlement.

They're the most interesting Gnomes I've ever run into that didn't make me want to drop kick them into a river.

Escheton
2010-12-23, 05:24 PM
Earth Ele's
Alchemist Fire Golems
Catapults that shoot hang-glider-trebuchets that swing soft-landing-balistae that shoot heavy-crossbow-golems(homunculi)
Badgers, lots and lots of badgers.
Dire badgers, bunches
Maze tunnel tactics, no gnome city can openly be approached.

Skorj
2010-12-23, 05:47 PM
Fluff-wise, Gnomes need to be significantly different from Tucker's Kobolds. I personally like them as Tucker's Kobolds + long term planning = elegance. Gnomish trickery should be strategic (and not require constant reflex saves just to go to the pub), not tactical and improvised.

For example, any scenario in which you lay siege to the town, have a hard fought battle, finally break in, and only then realize you've lost: because the whole town was an illusion, because the whole town was a trap, because meanwhile the Gnomes sold your home city to the highest bidder, something like that.

Coidzor
2010-12-23, 05:53 PM
For example, any scenario in which you lay siege to the town, have a hard fought battle, finally break in, and only then realize you've lost: because the whole town was an illusion, because the whole town was a trap, because meanwhile the Gnomes sold your home city to the highest bidder, something like that.

And in Zilargo, Eberron: All of the above. :smallamused:

ericgrau
2010-12-23, 05:58 PM
Combat
Gnomes prefer misdirection and deception over direct confrontation.

They would rather befuddle or embarrass foes (other than goblinoids or kobolds) than kill them.

Gnomes make heavy use of illusion magic and carefully prepared ambushes and traps whenever they can.

:smallbiggrin:

Yeah, traps, illusions, humiliation, ambushes, etc. What everyone said. I'll add passageways (e.g., through or between city walls) with arrow slits (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/dungeons.htm#specialWalls) and murder-holes (basically melee slits), with false walls (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/spells/illusoryWall.htm) permanent illusions (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/spells/permanentImage.htm) and other tricks to confuse those trying to pass through them.

The nearby dwarves could provide professional stonework while the elves provide some minor magic items (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/magicItems/wondrousItems.htm): elixirs of hiding and sneaking. Along with alchemical items and potions from the gnomes. Most low level grunt soldiers will only have one or two per battle due to cost but you can still go a long way with that. The 1-2% captains and other elites will probably be around level 5 and have more permanent magic items like hats of disguise (I'm a goblin!), rings of feather fall (wall elite paratrooper corps go!), lesser rods of extend spell and 2nd level wands of spells like invisibility.

Tvtyrant
2010-12-23, 06:04 PM
Illusions that convince the enemy that different units are Gnomes, so they slaughter each other.

Mikeavelli
2010-12-23, 06:06 PM
Can you put Magitek-Mecha into the mix? I've always wanted to see Gnomes in Mecha.

Skorj
2010-12-23, 06:19 PM
Can you put Magitek-Mecha into the mix? I've always wanted to see Gnomes in Mecha.

Aren't those called Warforged?

Mikeavelli
2010-12-23, 06:23 PM
Do warforged have little compartments for their gnomish pilots to ride in?

AshDesert
2010-12-23, 06:31 PM
My suggestion would be this. First, you have every spellcaster in the town use their highest level illusion to put hundreds of identical mountain illusions on top of the town's real location. Every enemy should fail against at least one save to disbelieve should they interact with it, so they're unlikely to find the real location. Then, have your illusionists create a full-blown copy of the village. Set up all kinds of traps that trigger as soon as anything touches the walls (with a size limit of course, you don't want to have birds setting the traps off, after all). Really use your imagination here.

From there, I think it would probably follow fairly standard siege warfare, but with nonstandard ammunition, mostly involving alchemical stuff (acid, flaming oils, all sorts of stuff). I'd consider using ballistae or even cannons in place of catapults. Gnomes should have more advanced technology than the attackers at the very least.

EDIT: Definitely use illusions during the battle too. Gnomish battle units showing up in the middle of their units is a pretty good idea.

bladesmith
2010-12-23, 06:51 PM
Can you put Magitek-Mecha into the mix? I've always wanted to see Gnomes in Mecha.

I second this motion. Even my normally gnome-adverse group has agreed to play in a game with these, if we can ever figure out how to stat it. My personal suggestion would be gnomish artificers with modified golems that load various wand chambers and what not.

ericgrau
2010-12-23, 07:28 PM
A note on illusions since you'll be using a lot of them and the matter of saves has come up:

1. No save: If an illusion is not interacted with (shot at, studied closely, illusory sound is heard, etc.) then the enemy does not get a save. This is why, for example, it's best to put illusory walls on side passages rather than on dead ends.
2. Save: The illusion is interacted with.
3. +4 to save: An ally discovers the illusion and points it out.
4. Auto pass the save: The subject experiences proof that the illusion is fake. So once they touch the illusory mountain / wall, the illusion is hosed no matter how low their will save.

For illusory mountains try the spell hallucinatory terrain. And per rule #1, put it among several real mountains. A lone mountain is easy to test and overcome per #4. Shift the entire illusion randomly a few miles to a side each day so that enemy armies have a harder time getting directions.

Mercenary Pen
2010-12-23, 07:45 PM
Well, the way I'd set this up is that all visitor to the settlement get given a professional gnome guide for their journey in and out of the city, said guide able to set up illusions to prevent them from knowing the precise route over the last two maybe three miles of the journey.

Now the reason this is important is that, surrounding the city, there are about eight other structures that could be cities, made up of a mixture of actual stonework and illusions from skilled volunteers, allowing invading armies to get lost, besiege the wrong 'city' and walk into carefully designed deathtraps. And of course, to the casual onlooker, there is just one city, for all the rest are hidden away by illusions until they are needed.

Qwertystop
2010-12-23, 07:52 PM
For example, any scenario in which you lay siege to the town, have a hard fought battle, finally break in, and only then realize you've lost: because the whole town was an illusion, because the whole town was a trap, because meanwhile the Gnomes sold your home city to the highest bidder, something like that.

Sigging this!
also, how about putting illusions directly on their compases/maps/etc, or sound-related illusions covering up the commander's orders with fake ones?

BBJimmy
2010-12-24, 03:57 AM
We also have to take into consideration the fact that these are Gnomes: can anyone say Shadowcraft Mage? :smallbiggrin:

Use any illusionary techniques you want, and they won't fall apart when touched because they are real! Imagine the impact on battlefields when illusionary armies start causing actual wounds, not to mention the defences that weren't there a minute ago, but can still provide cover, if you are willing to believe that they can...

FelixG
2010-12-24, 05:46 AM
Even though I hate gnomes with a passion....

There is a fire nozzle in the stormwrak book that is normally mounted on ships for ship to ship combat, you put reinforced bunkers along the mid section of the wall and have these stationed on a turret inside, in case of invasion a team activates and directs them, any battering rams or towers that get close can get a spray of fire right to the face, as well as lines and cones of approaching infantry

Chilingsworth
2010-12-25, 12:18 PM
How about cannon with grapeshot? Big 'ol shotguns for mowing down infantry. Gnomes in Faerun could do it, I'm sure. Maybe other gnomes could, too.

Keinnicht
2010-12-25, 12:45 PM
How about cannon with grapeshot? Big 'ol shotguns for mowing down infantry. Gnomes in Faerun could do it, I'm sure. Maybe other gnomes could, too.

The last (or second to last) adventure in the Age of Worms path had stats for a Force Missile Ballista. That seems like something gnomes would come up with.

Grendus
2010-12-25, 01:07 PM
Gnomes traditionally cover three major areas: Illusions, Alchemy, Mechanics.

Illusions: Illusions over trapdoors. Illusions of passages that don't exist, and illusory walls over the ones that do. Illusions of walls and floors over the regular traps to make them harder to see. Illusions of walls over exploding runes to make the trap-checkers terrified of penetrating the illusions. Illusions of traps that aren't there. Giant hallways filled with illusions of exploding runes, with a few that are real.

Alchemy: Contact poison on the locked doors and other areas that have to be touched. Catapults with alchemist fire or acid in them. Halls lined with flamable liquids that suddenly go up all at once. Acid sprayers. Alchemist fire hoses. Pressurized water sprayers.

Mechanics: Incredibly complicated traps. Pull a lever, and scything blades pop out of all the entrance tunnels. How about solid steel doors plated with adamantine that cycle, forcing the enemies to enter in small groups. Don't forget that gnomes are a small race, so you could make all the entrance tunnels three and a half feet high without slowing them down. Against goblins and kobolds this wouldn't help much, but if they're being sieged by tall folk this would severely cripple incoming soldiers. If the gnomes decide to engage in large tunnels, they could have traps set to hit everything four feet off the ground (scything blades, buzz saws, automatic crossbows, ballistas that fire over the heads of the gnomes, puffs of chemical agents that are lighter than air and float above their heads).

Just some rough ideas.

LizardfolkLich
2010-12-25, 09:08 PM
These are all some fantastic ideas that I would never have been able to come up with on my own. I'm especially liking all these different traps and illusions and the exploding runes just make it irresistible. I believe this just about covers everything there is to think about, and they'll likely have defenses for things the players won't even think about.

A little more information on the situation though in case you were wondering, this is an evil campaign where the players have enlisted the help of many different tribes, bands, and clans of nasties (minotaur, orcs, goblins, hobgoblins, and hill giants, maybe even more) to destroy those gnomes for the hill giants who have been unable to do so in the past.

The Glyphstone
2010-12-25, 09:29 PM
I wouldn't defend Gnomes at all.

The thread is full of good suggestions for Gnomes to defend themselves, though.:smallcool:

Mark Hall
2010-12-29, 12:23 PM
I'm trying to think up some crazy ingenious ideas that gnomes are known for that they can use to defend themselves against your generic forces of darkness, including siege engines. I'm open to anything at all (minus cheese) so throw them at me!

The gnomes in question are actually a moderately sized trading town that is predominantly gnomes but with a healthy cosmopolitan population of humans, elves, dwarves, etc. The standing army is almost entirely gnomish however. The city is surrounded by a good wall that is about 10-15 feet wide and 20 feet tall. The town also has an extensive undercity/tunnel network that also extends outside the walls into the hilly countryside.

All this information is right off the top of my head so I can provide more as necessary. Any ideas, playgrounders?

Start with the basics. Misdirection. Build a road that leads into a swamp, or around (and out of sight) of their town. If they lead into the territory of some territorial enemies of the gnomes, all the better. The suggestion to cover the town with the illusion of a hill or mountain is also a good one; it will take some time to break effectively. You might also throw up some other illusions... conceal the entrance to hostile wildlife's caves, or throw illusions over pit traps (or random pieces of ground to confuse things). Every soldier who falls to a pit trap or a bear is one more you don't have to fight.

Once they get to the walls, your best bets are arbalests and arc-launchers... trebuchets as opposed to onagers. You can set up a trebuchet behind your walls and launch fragmentation shot (head-sized chunks of rock; cheap-made clay pots full of alchemist fire) at groups of men or solid shot at equipment and emplacements; onagers are just a pain to aim, especially if you need to aim down. You're even going to have problems with ballista on that front; the more portable arbalest is by far your best bet. Magically, don't neglect summoned monsters... clerics and wizards can crouch on your wall (behind merlons and crenelations), summon monsters at the base of the wall, and have them attack the army (or undermine scaling ladders, or collapse tunnels).

Reinforce your tunnel system. While your medium-sized citizens will have some time to evacuate to the tunnels, your gnomes can move through it easily, and medium-sized or larger enemies will find fighting in there difficult. Having traps in medium tunnels (that are easily disabled from the inside) allows you to quickly get your people to the tunnels, funnel the attackers where you want them, and inflict casualties as they come upon you.

Gullintanni
2010-12-29, 01:11 PM
Animated Trash Cans.

Here's the breakdown:

Tin Golems (Dragon Magazine #341) built into the shape of trash cans are created to pick-up Gnomish trash and deliver it to landfills, or some other such refuse pile. Place a mid-high level gnomish wizard inside each of these contraptions. Beneath the lid of the trash-cans, a portable hole. So our wizards are not covered in trash. Put a small hole in the Tin-Golem's exterior.

Result:
-Wizards can not be targeted as opponents do not have line of effect.
-Wizards have total concealment, therefore are hidden.
-Wizards gain line of effect and sight via a small hole in the tin-golem's chassis. (This may allow a spot check to see our wizard. Prestidigitate or silent image to get around this. Or for more fun, designate the golems as a familiar with DM permission and use them to deliver touch attacks.)

Final Product: Magitek-Mecha with a gnomish twist.

Enjoy :)

Zen Master
2010-12-29, 03:07 PM
Hm ... my suggestions would include hot air balloons, elyctric power, alchemy, smoke bombs, illusions, ambushes, and traps.

Basically, anything that will allow the gnomes to attack without being attacked themselves.

Balloons would allow for scouting and bombardment.

Elyctric power could take the form of tesla coils, fences and primitive rail guns.

Alchemy ... I don't like the thought of just tossing greek fire. I'd much prefer soaking the enemies line of advance prior to attack with oil, then setting it on fire in the middle of their charge. All done from the balloons, naturally.

Also, there should be snipers in those balloons. Ballistas with telescopic sights. In underslung cupolas.

I think there should be strike teams of rogues, attacking using illusions and smoke bombs to distract and divide the enemies - gaining (hopefully) numeric advantage, and sneak attack.

And traps, traps, traps. Maybe more to discourage than kill.

erikun
2010-12-29, 05:06 PM
The first and most obvious question is: What kind of town is it? An open village on the plains next to a river - that is, most human villages - will be the worst option for gnomes, because most of their advantages are nullified and most of their weaknesses are pronounced. They will be forced to fight and defend an obvious, open area against opponents both stronger, larger, and faster than they are. A castle is a bit of a better option, as the gnomes can fight back with siege weaponry, which can be used just as well regardless of their size.

A town (even a sizable one) within a dense forest would probably be the best gnomish town to defend. Most of the natual abilities of the gnomes - small size, stealth, illusion, deception, magic, alchemy - can be put to great use in a forest. A lot of the defense from a gnome village would come before the enemy even arrives. A single gnome scout who can learn of an approaching army from local animals, can keep hidden as they come near, and can make the correct pathways vanish through illusions will keep a much larger force distracted and away from the main town. Traps, spells, thieves, poisons and alchemical items thrown at the invading force would be the most common defense. And if they do manage to get into town, the spread out nature of gnomish homes and bolt-holes into the forest would mean that most of the townsfolk can get away safely.

Of course, you can get more inventive with the gnomish villages. Gnomes are an inventive lot, and they aren't limited to the forest. I had one village that used to be a dwarven stronghold, until an earthquake opened a large crack in the side of the mountain. The dwarves moved out, but the gnomes moved in, building suspension bridges over the gaps and digging out new passageways. (They liked the open-air feel of the place.) Town defense involved alchemy/siege weapon use in narrow hallways, cutting the bridges, and using secret passageways for ambush and escape.

And then, there is the illusionist's castle.

Benejeseret
2010-12-29, 09:45 PM
Rube Goldberg machine of Death

This would be highly overcomplicated and needlessly complicated series of traps, balls, magical effects.

However, it radiated a overcharged Fascinate/Hypnotize on the intended victims.

That cannot help but stand and stare as it slowly, slowly, gets into position, and it Suggests that they all group up within the target area.

Suggested Endings:
- a drawstring being pulled on a small cloth bag above their heads (Bag of Holding)
- with an Animal Growth bull elephant Benign Teleport above them and Flesh to Stone before falling

erikun
2010-12-29, 09:54 PM
Step 1: Cut some relatively valuable gemstones.
Step 2: Enchant them with a permanent Hypnotic Pattern, Rainbow Pattern, or Scintillating Pattern (whichever is most economical).
Step 3: Place them liberally throughout the well-labelled public treasury.
Step 4: Stop by daily with loops of rope at the end of 10-foot poles to gather up the hypnotized thieves. You can do so less frequently, but it tends to smell bad if you wait too long.

Grendus
2010-12-29, 10:11 PM
Scribe a symbol of insanity on one of those super bouncy balls and... wait, what? You say that's been done before?

Necrus Philius
2010-12-29, 10:56 PM
I have the best one to roleplay out I believe. Since the setting is an open town with a big wall and an extensive underground tunnel network.

Have all the buildings short, squat and resistant to force/fire. Defend the town and when the walls are breached retreat to the center where they can literally go to ground underground.

Then while the invading army is looting the place for any valuables (most should be underground) The gnomes then get inside their Hot air balloons outside of the city using their passages and underground network (preferably more extensive than the actual above ground city which should just be a trading hub really) and rain alchemists fire down on the now disorganised and trapped enemy army.

grimbold
2010-12-30, 07:31 AM
have the gnomes go out of their way to build as many traps as possible,
gnomes like pranks and traps and it would not be a hard step for them to make them lethal.
so the gnomes have fun and kill enemies!

Strife Warzeal
2010-12-30, 09:12 AM
If the enemy ever gets to the real town (I seriously doubt it with all the suggestions) make illusions of all doors 2 feet to the left and put illusions of walls over the actual doors. :smallbiggrin:

Grelna the Blue
2010-12-30, 11:42 AM
I really like the Magi-tech construct idea (I have something similar for my subterranean gnome city of Glitterhome), but for a similar and only slightly less deliciously cheesy effect you could give the gnomes one or more enclosed "polkawagons":


Trample ability, of course,
Spell-powered cannon (essentially a runestaff),
1x/round area effect Shocking Grasp effect to deter break-in attempts,
a decent hardness,
limited (1x/day) Spell Immunity to a couple different antitank spells, and
emitting loud battle-polka music granting bardic music bonuses to the troops.
Oughtta make a pretty good gnomish tank.

pilvento
2010-12-30, 04:03 PM
illusions and alchemy canons are the best ideas for the mindles hordes.

but u can also some wisper gnomes rougish elite to protect the city from intruders or spys

Seffbasilisk
2010-12-30, 06:34 PM
I would not defend gnomes.

I would tunnel, burrow, or Earthwalk my main contingent inside, and send hordes of undead to occupy them on the surface. Especially fear-inducing ones, as few things are as satisfying for my flying mounted long-range archers to practice their accuracy on, than a scurrying gnome.

Fire, and flechette launchers could be neutralized, or matched. Fasten tower shields around a few zombies. Perhaps fill the tower shields with explosive runes, so when the zombie inside died, it would lay an explosive as well.

chiasaur11
2010-12-30, 06:52 PM
I wouldn't defend Gnomes at all.

The thread is full of good suggestions for Gnomes to defend themselves, though.:smallcool:

Heh.

I'd cover the Gnomes in Worcestershire sauce and have them stand in the open surrounded by large predators.

But then, I'm not fond. If I liked the blighters, I suppose disguised traps would be common, as mentioned.

Also, fake enemy divisions who die incredibly horribly to "invincible" gnomes.

Jarawara
2010-12-30, 07:15 PM
How to defend a Gnomish settlement?

I would build a wall. A... Gnomish wall.

Stack up Gnomes, 20 feet high at least, mortar them in nice and tight. Make sure their faces are pointed outward so they can keep watch, and warn others from entering the town. Better make it double-wide, with a second row of Gnomes facing inward, to sound off alarms if anyone gets over the wall.

Hmmm... I think I'm gonna need more Gnomes.

Wardog
2010-12-30, 07:23 PM
How would I defend gnomes?

Clan of the Waist Down Fist...ATTACK!!!! (http://www.wtfcomics.com/archive.html?374_13)


GNOMISH POWERBOMB OF DOOM!! YAAAAAA!!! (http://www.wtfcomics.com/archive.html?374_53)

Fable Wright
2010-12-30, 08:56 PM
One idea might be to also turn literally everything the gnomes can get their hands on into a weapon.

There's a nifty spell called Animate Object, which can be made Permanent. Permanency is a second-level spell. There's a ring called the Ring of Spell Storing. It costs about 200 thousand gold, but let's assume that the gnomes saved up the money to craft it. So, you could store a Permanency spell heightened to 8th level in it (the ring casts it at the minimum level to cast the spell, and you need caster level 14th for my idea). Now, the gnome who is able to cast the 8th level spell in the village has a caster level of at least 15. Let's say, for the time being, that they have a caster level of 16. Now, over time, the gnome could go around the town and, a couple of times each day, cast the Animate Object spell on one house in the gnome village. Gnomes, being small, need less living space than the rest of us; in the Shackled City adventure path, the gnome city of Jzadirune has sleeping quarters for the inhabiting gnomes that are 20ft x 20ft x 10ft. You could, hypothetically, add a second story. This would be a 20cu ft building. Now,the caster level 16 gnome who uses the ring can animate one gargantuan object per casting, and then make it permanent. A 20cu ft building is a gargantuan object, as defined in the DMG. How awesome do you think it would be if, during the course of the battle, if, somehow, some of the invaders managed to storm the gates, and the buildings themselves attacked the invaders. Of course, all of the buildings would have wheels hidden inside of their walls, and the part of the wheel that extends below the building is currently resting in a groove made to fit it perfectly. Thus, the house can get out, and has a better movement speed, the wheels are not displayed, making the house attack unexpected, yet allowing the house to actually get out of the rut. This function of gnomish dwelling also has the fortunate side effect of increasing the quality of life for the gnomes within. It would be something like out of star trek; the gnomes would be able to ask the dwelling where their keys are, to wash their clothes, etc., and the house would be able to do so by means of small metal arms built into the frames of the houses. Finally, if push comes to shove, all of the gnomes in the village can flee into their homes, and the houses (who are immune to fatigue and have a faster movement speed than any land-bound invader) would be able to just flee out of the city itself, and the gnomes can just settle themselves a new village in no time. (Underground buildings could get out of the tunnels by just running, and have some hidden pickaxes and shovels in them. A tireless night of mining at full speed for the constructs and you have another underground matrix for the gnomes.) Other buildings around the town can be turned into slightly smaller animated dwellings, which gnomes could turn into moving battle stations where 4-8 gnomes inside could chuck alchemist's fire, arrows, rocks, and kitchen utensils outside of the windows at the invaders, while running over enemy troops, before entering the town once more for a couple of repair spells, courtesy of the local artificer. Some dwellings also might have other attachments built in by enterprising gnomes with free time, like hidden traps to fire arrows on command, caltrop throwers, and just a huge amount of things.

Additionally, you could have sections of the wall be animated, as well, which would be able to restrict the flow of people in and out of the city (for example, for a gnome exodus, the entire back of the city could open up for the buildings to flee), and the wall could also have wheels built into it at various intervals, allowing them to mow down intruders in need be. You could, optionally, animate some surrounding landscape features, such as boulders, shrubs, and trees. Additionally, the aforementioned mining buildings could tunnel under the enemy army's encampments, and then lead a massive gnomish attack on the encampment before once again fleeing down into the tunnels, collapsing them to prevent the tunnels from being used by the enemy, and rebuilding them when they're needed again.

Blas_de_Lezo
2010-12-30, 09:02 PM
By sending Hamanu of Urik to take care of them. :smalltongue: