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Thread: I am a Dragon.

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    Halfling in the Playground
     
    DGB's Avatar

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    Thumbs up I am a Dragon.

    I have a hoard. And I want to protect it.
    For clarification: I (the Dragon) know that a party of adventurers roam this land and many of my kind have already lost their hoard or lives in the last, Let's say hundreds of Years.

    What would be reasonable investions any intelligent Dragon would take against being stolen from, in your opinion?

    My thoughts were:
    Protection against scrying Inside the cave (wards?),
    Possibly even protection against teleporting?
    A way to avoid ability Drain / Level Drain?( shivering Touch...)
    Fire resistance to resist DFB time stop shenanigans
    An escape option in case things turn dire.

    Thanks for your help.

    What would you reccomend for such a Dragon?

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    Dwarf in the Playground
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    Default Re: I am a Dragon.

    1) Protection against scrying
    -permanent private sanctum, no scrying period
    2) protection against teleporting?
    -delay teleport is a good one, makes an ambush very doable, remember they have to visit the location first to even know where they're going so you've already met everyone that can teleport in.
    3) A way to avoid ability Drain / Level Drain?( shivering Touch...)
    -permanent sheltered vitality, you don't take ability damage or drain, ever.
    4)Fire resistance to resist DFB time stop shenanigans
    -immunity to element, permanent ideally
    5)An escape option in case things turn dire.
    -contingent teleport

    also your actual hoard should be stored at your super secret unknown to anyone else cave that can only be accessed by teleporting that has all the same protections, your contingent teleport leads you there, the fake horde consists of only cursed items and illusionary gold =P

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    Kobold

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    Default Re: I am a Dragon.

    Yea, and also, don't generally fight anywhere that you can't, you know, use your fly/burrow/swim/etc. to maximum tactical effect.

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    Default Re: I am a Dragon.

    You want scintillating scales, a spell from the spell compendium. It turns your natural armor into a deflection bonus. Good vs. touch attacks.

    You also want to get your caster level up. Loredrake gets you +2 sorc levels, and practiced spellcaster gets you +4 CL, up to your HD. Should look into getting a ring of enduring arcana and bead of karma. That will boost your CL so adventurers will have a hard time dispelling your spells.

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    Default Re: I am a Dragon.

    Quote Originally Posted by aquaticrna View Post
    also your actual hoard should be stored at your super secret unknown to anyone else cave that can only be accessed by teleporting that has all the same protections, your contingent teleport leads you there, the fake horde consists of only cursed items and illusionary gold =P
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    Default Re: I am a Dragon.

    Have the Ray Deflection spell continually active so you're immune to ranged touch attacks, such as Enervation, Orb spells, etc. Superior Resistance, Mind Blank, and Energy Immunity (multiple times) are also good to have. Get Craft Wondrous Item and make an automatic reset trap to cast those spells on yourself. Blanket your lair with Permanency + Mage's Private Sanctum. Check this list for acquiring various immunities, the grafts in particular are exceptional because they cannot be stolen. Use Permanency with Arcane Sight so you can better dispel opponents' buffs.

    Make a few Simulacra each with a Permanent Image of a treasure horde to distract would-be adventurers, they can also use your buffing trap every day and leave them the responsibility of activating Private Sanctum. Include traps and pitfalls where the adventurers would be fighting. Have a few (Un)Hallows active to affect creatures of your faith and alignment with Freedom of Movement so long as they remain within. Have permanent Dimensional Lock effects so adventurers cannot teleport, access extradimensional storage such as Bags of Holding, and cannot use Rope Trick; it should be projected by a custom magic item, and individuals who possess a special key can bypass its effect. There should be permanent Walls of Greater Dispel Magic between every room to run adventurers out of buffs.

    Powerful creatures have minions, and lesser creatures who tag along looking for table scraps. Several dozen Ethereal Filchers prowl around outside the lair. They hide ethereally within the rocks so even See Invisibility cannot detect them. They can move out and jaunt to the material plane, Slight of Hand an object, and jaunt back ethereal as a free action, then drop prone as another free action to pass beneath the ground and be once again undetectable. They've been at this for so long that they know what adventurers are up to, they can recognize if someone has a readied action, and they will never put themselves in harm's way. Note that if it makes the DC 20 Slight of Hand check it gets the item, regardless of whether it was noticed, and there's nothing anyone can do about it. They're particularly fond of necklaces, and will take holy symbols, spellbooks, and spell component pouches because the dragon will trade them highly desirable baubles for any of those things they steal. They won't go into the lair due to the Dimensional Lock effect.

    There should be several Simulacra lairs, each of which should have some sort of overlook with tiny windows. The only way between this overlook and your inner sanctum is through another tiny window. When adventurers engage a Simulacrum, you go to the tiny window viewing the overlook, cast Project Image, and use the image to cast spells through the windows of the overlook as the adventurers are fighting your Simulacrum. Focus on dispelling their buffs, inflicting lasting effects like Exhaustion and ability damage/drain on them, and herding them into pit traps and deadfalls. There could be multiple Simulacra in a given room, perhaps three, who speak well-rehearsed lines in unison such as, "Which of us is the real one?!" Adventurers would likely try to focus on one of them at a time, so they should use Benign Transposition, Mislead, etc. to confuse them and force them to switch targets as much as possible.

    A lair could have a foot of murky water on the floor, with pits hundreds of feet deep hidden beneath, and creatures like Hydras with Snatch, Improved Snatch, and Multisnatch, or advanced Monstrous Crabs lurking below. There should be more permanent Wall of Dispel Magic across the top of each pit and a Permanency Stinking Cloud just below, making it difficult for someone to escape or be rescued. There could also be basic pit traps on the floor, hidden by Permanent Image illusions, and nobody would even get a saving throw until someone had fallen in; they won't be searching for traps during a fight with a Simulacrum that they believe to be the primary inhabitant of the lair. There could be several 15 ft. square holes, 15 ft. deep, with an Advanced Gelatinous Cube in each one, hidden by a Permanent Image of the floor. Anyone who walks onto a cube would automatically be engulfed as per walking into it, thus it makes an effective way to take someone out of the fight, plus the cubes can be used for waste disposal.

    Lots of traps, lots of minions, and lots of ways to use up adventurers' spells and other limited resources, and ways to prevent them from resting via teleporting out or using Rope Trick. Make them think they're at the final encounter so they use their best stuff multiple times; the first Simulacrum fight should do that regardless of appearance, the second should look much more grand and pose a greater threat, the third can be multiple Simulacra, etc. If they do leave to rest, scry them out and send summoned/called creatures, disposable minions, etc. to keep them from resting, or inform the Ethereal Filchers of their location.

  7. - Top - End - #7
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    OldWizardGuy

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    Default Re: I am a Dragon.

    Yarr Harr Fiddle de dee,
    Being a Dragon is alright with me!
    Do what you want 'cause a Dragon is free
    You are a Dragon!~

    Your most obvious horde (The one you sleep on) is actually a Permanent Image set on top of say, a comfy dragon-sized mattress. This mattress is trapped with persisted Lesser Vigor.
    If your dragon wants some extra AC, pick up a Monk's Belt. They're cheap.
    the feat Lingering Breath combined with Maximize breath weapon can make things very uncomfortable for anyone not immune to your element. What colour is this dragon? if it's one with the shapechange or alter self abilities, pretending to be another colour of dragon to fool adventurers into taking the wrong precautions will help.

    Also, secret backdoor tunnel that is actually a trap. Or rather, a series of traps. First trap: Obscuring Mist (Triggered when any creature opens the secret door) Second trap: Teleport (Triggered when any [your size category] creature moves 20' into the tunnel, to a preset destination [propably also where your horde really is. No dragon should be far from it ;)])
    Third trap: Stinking cloud (Triggered when any creature smaller than your size category moves 20' into the tunnel)
    Fourth Trap: Ghost sound (Of a dragon running further down the tunnel)(Triggered when a Teleport is activated within the tunnel)
    and finally, a delay-trigger autohit mechanical trap for tons of damage, plus poison (Think dropping poisoned ceiling spikes) with a mechanical reset, triggered when a creature steps on a pressure plate. 5 round delay should do it.

    Here's how it works: If you are taken under half HP, run for your secret tunnel. Obscuring Mist happens. Intentionally fail your reflex save and trigger the pressure plate while moving forward. You end your turn teleported to your secret location, propably a sealed vault underground which has another teleport trap geared to teleport you back to your cave somewhere inside it. Lesser Vigor means you can just hang out there and regain HP, while back in your lair, the adventurers hear the dragon running further down the tunnel. Anyone who chases you will set off the Stinking Cloud, which will hopefully keep the reckless adventurers occupied in the trap area until the ceiling spikes come down for massive damage.

    This is actually fairly inexpensive, the most expensive part being the Teleport trap. The downside is that it only works on foolhardy adventurers who would chase after a retreating dragon in his own lair. The upside is that this accounts for some 90% of adventurers.

  8. - Top - End - #8
    Ogre in the Playground
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    Default Re: I am a Dragon.

    Honestly an anti magic field, plus anti-scrying ect, seems reasonable...
    You lose your breath weapon, but then PCs lose their main advantage: spells.
    Oh, and their martial characters also lose the benefits of their magic items. You should occasionally withdraw the anti-magic field ahead of time, to use divination to warn of incoming adventurers.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Biffoniacus_Furiou View Post
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    Have the Ray Deflection spell continually active so you're immune to ranged touch attacks, such as Enervation, Orb spells, etc. Superior Resistance, Mind Blank, and Energy Immunity (multiple times) are also good to have. Get Craft Wondrous Item and make an automatic reset trap to cast those spells on yourself. Blanket your lair with Permanency + Mage's Private Sanctum. Check this list for acquiring various immunities, the grafts in particular are exceptional because they cannot be stolen. Use Permanency with Arcane Sight so you can better dispel opponents' buffs.

    Make a few Simulacra each with a Permanent Image of a treasure horde to distract would-be adventurers, they can also use your buffing trap every day and leave them the responsibility of activating Private Sanctum. Include traps and pitfalls where the adventurers would be fighting. Have a few (Un)Hallows active to affect creatures of your faith and alignment with Freedom of Movement so long as they remain within. Have permanent Dimensional Lock effects so adventurers cannot teleport, access extradimensional storage such as Bags of Holding, and cannot use Rope Trick; it should be projected by a custom magic item, and individuals who possess a special key can bypass its effect. There should be permanent Walls of Greater Dispel Magic between every room to run adventurers out of buffs.

    Powerful creatures have minions, and lesser creatures who tag along looking for table scraps. Several dozen Ethereal Filchers prowl around outside the lair. They hide ethereally within the rocks so even See Invisibility cannot detect them. They can move out and jaunt to the material plane, Slight of Hand an object, and jaunt back ethereal as a free action, then drop prone as another free action to pass beneath the ground and be once again undetectable. They've been at this for so long that they know what adventurers are up to, they can recognize if someone has a readied action, and they will never put themselves in harm's way. Note that if it makes the DC 20 Slight of Hand check it gets the item, regardless of whether it was noticed, and there's nothing anyone can do about it. They're particularly fond of necklaces, and will take holy symbols, spellbooks, and spell component pouches because the dragon will trade them highly desirable baubles for any of those things they steal. They won't go into the lair due to the Dimensional Lock effect.

    There should be several Simulacra lairs, each of which should have some sort of overlook with tiny windows. The only way between this overlook and your inner sanctum is through another tiny window. When adventurers engage a Simulacrum, you go to the tiny window viewing the overlook, cast Project Image, and use the image to cast spells through the windows of the overlook as the adventurers are fighting your Simulacrum. Focus on dispelling their buffs, inflicting lasting effects like Exhaustion and ability damage/drain on them, and herding them into pit traps and deadfalls. There could be multiple Simulacra in a given room, perhaps three, who speak well-rehearsed lines in unison such as, "Which of us is the real one?!" Adventurers would likely try to focus on one of them at a time, so they should use Benign Transposition, Mislead, etc. to confuse them and force them to switch targets as much as possible.

    A lair could have a foot of murky water on the floor, with pits hundreds of feet deep hidden beneath, and creatures like Hydras with Snatch, Improved Snatch, and Multisnatch, or advanced Monstrous Crabs lurking below. There should be more permanent Wall of Dispel Magic across the top of each pit and a Permanency Stinking Cloud just below, making it difficult for someone to escape or be rescued. There could also be basic pit traps on the floor, hidden by Permanent Image illusions, and nobody would even get a saving throw until someone had fallen in; they won't be searching for traps during a fight with a Simulacrum that they believe to be the primary inhabitant of the lair. There could be several 15 ft. square holes, 15 ft. deep, with an Advanced Gelatinous Cube in each one, hidden by a Permanent Image of the floor. Anyone who walks onto a cube would automatically be engulfed as per walking into it, thus it makes an effective way to take someone out of the fight, plus the cubes can be used for waste disposal.

    Lots of traps, lots of minions, and lots of ways to use up adventurers' spells and other limited resources, and ways to prevent them from resting via teleporting out or using Rope Trick. Make them think they're at the final encounter so they use their best stuff multiple times; the first Simulacrum fight should do that regardless of appearance, the second should look much more grand and pose a greater threat, the third can be multiple Simulacra, etc. If they do leave to rest, scry them out and send summoned/called creatures, disposable minions, etc. to keep them from resting, or inform the Ethereal Filchers of their location.
    WOW. That was...impressive. Well played, you just destroyed anyone foolish enough to challenge you for your hoard...ever.

  10. - Top - End - #10
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    ElfRangerGuy

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    Default Re: I am a Dragon.

    Well,

    I remember one of my first dragon fights, we were all buffed and ready to go, and our fighter charged it, and fell into a 100ft pit trap, and didn't get out for the whole encounter. So not so much ward traps as much as things that can take people out of combat.

    That is my advice

  11. - Top - End - #11
    Ettin in the Playground
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    Default Re: I am a Dragon.

    Quote Originally Posted by Delcor View Post
    Well,

    I remember one of my first dragon fights, we were all buffed and ready to go, and our fighter charged it, and fell into a 100ft pit trap, and didn't get out for the whole encounter. So not so much ward traps as much as things that can take people out of combat.

    That is my advice
    Solid Illusion Wall of Force so the mages fall through the floor that the fighter just walked over. >:D

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    OldWizardGuy

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    Default Re: I am a Dragon.

    oooh, I like that idea. It's crafty. Where is Solid Illusion? Is it a feat or a spell itself?

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    Ettin in the Playground
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    Default Re: I am a Dragon.

    http://www.d20srd.org/srd/spells/sha...ionGreater.htm

    Lets you cast any Evocation up to 7th level, including none combat ones. Wall of Force versus high will save=death trap.

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    OldWizardGuy

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    Ahh, shadow Evocation. Gotcha. I thought there might be some kind of actual "Solid Illusion" spell, which would have been even more awesome.

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    Flumph

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    Default Re: I am a Dragon.

    A trick from another thread, 1sts and cantrips easily (ab)usable for Dragons; Have at least one pile of near-worthless items, Arcane Mark most of them at various CLs so they light up under detect magic. An addition I just thought up: Prestidigitation them to appear to be valuable (most of them magic) items. Then watch the look on your adventurers faces when they start burning 100gp Identifies. Also, this is yet another good time for Explosive Runes: Dragons have hundreds of years to spam them all over items/pieces of paper Arcane Marked and Prestidigitation'd to appear to be magic scrolls, wands, magic weapons, doors, signposts, especially in the first "fake" stash so these adventurers quickly die and/or learn not to f*ck with Dragons. Cursed Items are yet another thing to consider.



    EDIT: 1+ Minions polymorphed into a dragon so the adventurers waste their nova on it/them. The real dragon is actually a sparrow just waiting to blow *its* nova. For extra cruelty, a twice-polymorphed minion with high CHA and Bluff, after the first, turns from a sparrow into a dragon and starts a monologue. You bumrush them/flee as they waste ever more of their resources and attention on it. And you make them afraid of small birds. And they'll never be sure if you're dead.
    Last edited by Slipperychicken; 2011-07-27 at 08:43 PM.

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    RedWizardGuy

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    Default Re: I am a Dragon.

    If you read Races of the Dragon (?) (the one with all the broken kobold crap), it talks about how the Kobolds deal with needing to guard _their_ gold which _they_ dug up from the ground.

    Their solution is to give it to the nearest dragon...

    Now where this gets interesting is what happens if the kobolds need that armour for something? Like... I dunno, the Kobold King wants a pair of dual Vorpal (un)Holy Keen scimitars, or a mith/mantium suit of all the optional extras (or all of the above?).

    Or maybe the dragon decides that the best way to keep the money safe is to give it to a bank (Eberron has a stable continent wide banking system, which is more than can be said for _some_ modern countries *cough* America *cough*).

    Or maybe the Dragon becomes an art collector.

    So... the kobolds come to make a withdrawal one day from "their" hoard which they are "letting" the dragon "borrow"... discover that it's all been spent on lousy art, and lose their gnome-hating reptilian tempers.... :D

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    Default Re: I am a Dragon.

    Regardless of your alignment, stay on good terms with any important nearby governments (Depending on the morality and power of said governments, this can involve anything from helping repress any rebellions against the king, insinuating yourself as an adviser to the rulers, or merely hiring out services in times of war.) This makes it far less likely for the adventurers to go after you in the first place, gives you a chance to pick up allies, and provides a steady income stream.

    Don't keep your valuables in a nice neat pile, no matter how tempting that may be - keep them off site, well warded, and ideally in a location only accessible through teleportation (hollow out an area in a mountain with stone shape, line the walls with lead to stop scrying, and now the only way to get there is to Teleport while knowing the location).

    Play nice with the Kobolds, and they'll set up hideously efficient traps in your front room, all the while worshiping you as a god (and if you forbid them from raiding the aforementioned city states, more free good publicity!).

    Exercise smart battle tactics (I'm sure you'll get plenty of suggestions). Be sure to shore up typical dragon weaknesses (Especially Touch AC).
    Last edited by Redshirt Army; 2011-07-27 at 11:17 PM.
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    Default Re: I am a Dragon.

    Quote Originally Posted by Redshirt Army View Post
    Don't keep your valuables in a nice neat pile, no matter how tempting that may be - keep them off site, well warded, and ideally in a location only accessible through teleportation (hollow out an area in a mountain with stone shape, line the walls with lead to stop scrying, and now the only way to get there is to Teleport while knowing the location).
    No no, you're thinking too small.

    Learn Ghostform, Greater Teleport, and Disintegrate, and put your real hoard in the core of the moon.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Claudius Maximus View Post
    No no, you're thinking too small.

    Learn Ghostform, Greater Teleport, and Disintegrate, and put your real hoard in the core of the moon.
    That's still too small.

    Pick up the Genesis spell somehow (even as a scroll). Use it. Create a demiplane with the features that best assist you in keeping it secret. Or move your entire lair to another plane somewhere. I think Dragon #308 has a spell that can do it.
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    Dwarf in the Playground
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    Default Re: I am a Dragon.

    Breaking the "too small, let's get more extreme" chain, Stone Shape out a tunnel and cavern, keep the really important treasure in there. Possibly throw an Antimagic Field up in there, in the cavern part but not extending into the tunnel. Then Stone Shape the tunnel closed again. Hollow chamber of antimagic stuff that should be undetectable (not sure if that'd stop scrying admittedly), with no signs of its location; unless they tear the mountain down, they aren't finding it.

    Alternatively, cast Hoard Gullet on yourself two or three times a day and just eat all your treasure. You should be reasonably sure at all times that no one is stealing it. Unless you're a heavy sleeper and happen to be the victim of insane/suicidal adventurers during your slumber.

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    Default Re: I am a Dragon.

    Presumably, the idea of having a horde is to be able to enjoy the horde. No self-respecting dragon will willingly divide up or hide his horde far away from him. Devising the ultimate lair trap is well and good, but you have to keep human nature (er, "dragon nature" in this case I suppose) in mind.

    I do like the simulacra/fake real dragons strategy though.
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    RedWizardGuy

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    Default Re: I am a Dragon.

    A 60ft wide moat of lava.

    An anti-magic field in the middle.

    PCs fly across. PCs die. Also: built-in alarm system (their screaming lavaey deaths)

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    Default Re: I am a Dragon.

    One way is, if you are a smart Dragon is to integrate yourself into the local Feudal system as a high ranking Lord or Lady, and having vassals to help with the protection as well as allies in the form of other peers. That way if some adventurers try to take you out, they basically just declared war on an entire country.
    Plus, I like the idea of a dragon who doesn't live in a dank cave, but in a specially designed keep and castle.
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    Quote Originally Posted by NecroRick View Post
    A 60ft wide moat of lava.

    An anti-magic field in the middle.

    PCs fly across. PCs die. Also: built-in alarm system (their screaming lavaey deaths)
    if the first one does this, subsequent ones will use nonmagical flight.
    Marut-2 Avatar by Serpentine

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    Default Re: I am a Dragon.

    For the superpost up there with all the permanent silent image spells, just use illisionary walls, they don't cost XP and are permanent.

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    Default Re: I am a Dragon.

    Short answer: Venture Capitalism.

    Long answer: Stop letting human lords and kings and innkeepers snatch up all the good talent. Become the top-dog patron for adventurers in the region, to the point of starting up guilds in most major cities and making sure you're a key reference as far as every wily innkeeper and plucky bard in the land is concerned. Once you've done that, stick to a couple of rules:

    1. Don't mix business with pleasure you're a freelance employer, not the owner of a private superhumanoid army. Never sic your boys on your rivals.
    2. Be generous if you act like Shylock, your adventurers are going to treat you like Shylock. If you act like a wise mentor, they'll treat you with reverence.
    3. Don't be afraid to act in a way that builds loyalty and co-dependence you ultimately want adventurers to value your power, wisdom and helpfulness, and even go out of their way to protect you.
    4. Create a competent bureaucracy as your influence grows, you won't be able to take care of everything yourself, so you'll want to carefully select the people who can represent you.
    5. Keep your eye open for talent actively scout for the best of the best, and be sure to mentor and administer your finest freelancers personally.

    Now your adventurer problems are gone because they all work for you.
    Last edited by gkathellar; 2011-07-28 at 08:39 AM.
    Quote Originally Posted by KKL
    D&D is its own momentum and does its own fantasy. It emulates itself in an incestuous mess.

    Play Legend. / Legend IRC.

  27. - Top - End - #27
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    Xanmyral's Avatar

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    Default Re: I am a Dragon.

    Quote Originally Posted by gkathellar View Post
    -Snip-
    This is brilliant, and I wont lie, I may steal this if I'm strapped for ideas.
    Last edited by Xanmyral; 2011-07-28 at 08:48 AM.
    Titles, Achievements, and Quotes of Honor
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    Infernal Teamworker - City of Shadows Wondering if anyone is still checking this...
    Ruler of the City - City of Shadows Hello? Anyone there? PM me if you want the Color Code.
    The Fallen Chessmaster - Center WW I don't really see a reason to get rid of this.
    The Manipulative/The Opaque - Demons WW Its kind of neat.

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    Ravens_cry's Avatar

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    Default Re: I am a Dragon.

    Quote Originally Posted by hamishspence View Post
    if the first one does this, subsequent ones will use nonmagical flight.
    Which Tanglefoot bag spam takes care of effectively.
    Quote Originally Posted by Calanon View Post
    Raven_Cry's comments often have the effects of a +5 Tome of Understanding

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    RedWizardGuy

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    Default Re: I am a Dragon.

    Quote Originally Posted by hamishspence View Post
    if the first one does this, subsequent ones will use nonmagical flight.
    Like what? Hang-gliders?

    Alter Self? Oh wait, that's a spell...

    ------

    With respect to the "integrate deeply into human(oid) society", I think that while some few dragons might do that, the rest wouldn't bother. I mean, you get all emotionally involved and after a couple of hundred years they're all dead and you have to start over. Plus all the whiney politicing... no thanks.

    If you're a massive dragon the easiest way to mechanically safeguard your treasure against puny humans is to recast it into 500 kilo (or more) ingots, and then pile them up in an anti-magic field. You can lug them around, but the puny mortals won't be able to move them. And you can still dive into them Scrooge McDuck Money Bin style.

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    Dwarf in the Playground
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    Default Re: I am a Dragon.

    Quote Originally Posted by NecroRick View Post
    Like what? Hang-gliders?
    you could rent a roc, or any other really big bird, or you could buy/rent an airship depending on setting, or you could just use a catapult! (that counts as flying right?)

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