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    Ettin in the Playground
     
    Sporeegg's Avatar

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    Default 1001 stereotypical yet absolutely epic things to have in a setting or boss fight

    1) Have an Eclipse of the Sun. Especially foreboding if your setting does not feature a moon.

    2) Chanting cultists with candles. Like, many of them. Improved with a reddish or black portal forming above them, adding to the urgency.

    3) Have airships. I don't know any setting that isn't improved by airships. Bonus points for using sails that are able to catch the astral winds.

    4) Villain monologues. But don't do the boring one where they give the PCs vital information into how to stop them. Have them use their actions during the fight phase with the impossibly high AC and damage reduction to gloat over the PC's silly attempts to hurt them.

    5) Have phases in your boss battle. Nothing shouts 'main baddie' like having three combat forms. I like something like a) Defensive and mocking duelist. b) Aggressive ticked off humanoid sword's master. c) Eldritch abomination that gives in to its monstrosity to kill and maim the heroes.

    6) Henchmen, sent out to deal with the heroes. Starting from moderately competent with terribly unskilled underlings (hired thugs etc.) going alone middle ranked cultists, ending with the villain's right hand man. Bonus points for having them return later as undead, infected with parasites or sacrificed to demons.

    7) Plans to take over/end the world. Real villains don't stop taking over local monarchy or simply establishing a new evil religion. If you think your villain does that, he probably has an even more ambitious boss.
    Quote Originally Posted by Psyren View Post
    "Dammit man, I said to use the MORALLY GREY flaming catapults!"
    DMing and recruiting - [PF/e6] Rebellion in Iberis, 2nd level - apply here
    __________playing_____________
    Wilfred Springgauge - Tinker Gnome Wizard - Henchmen!
    Kriv, the Boastful - Dragonborn Fighter//Bard - Calm before the Storm

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    Orc in the Playground
     
    Daemon

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    Default Re: 1001 stereotypical yet absolutely epic things to have in a setting or boss fight

    ...I'm not sure how I feel that my campaign has 6/7 of those so far...
    The Romanov Incident A 3.5 campaign journal, complete. Magic! Mystery! Mind control! Murderous Demon Apes!

    The Curse of Artaith A 3.5 campaign journal, complete. Heavily influenced by the Dark Souls and Bloodborne games. Featuring lots and lots of death, player (character) and otherwise!

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    Troll in the Playground
     
    Wraith's Avatar

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    Default Re: 1001 stereotypical yet absolutely epic things to have in a setting or boss fight

    8) The fight takes place in an enormous, Cathedral-like throne room. Immense chandeliers loom overhead, coloured light spills in through stained-glass windows taller than 3 men, and the throne itself is atop a dozen-metres-high pedestal of steps.

    9) The bleeding body of your mentor, slumped in one corner. He got there just in time to take a sword through the back to protect you, then utter some final words of encouragement before you're forced to fight on alone.

    10) Everything is on fire. The curtains, the chairs, the wallpaper... Everything but a conveniently-sized open space upon which to fight in the middle of the floor.

    11) There's a huge window/screen set into one wall, in which there's a view of a single planet hanging in space. There's a countdown timer superimposed over it, ominously tracking down to 00:00:00.

    12) Princess (it could be Prince of course, but for us specifically wanting stereotypes ) locked into what appears to be a large bird cage, hanging near the throne and watching helplessly. For some reason she's now wearing a wedding dress.

    13) The route to the throne is a long bridge over a tank of sharks and/or piranhas.

  4. - Top - End - #4
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    Gallade's Avatar

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    Default Re: 1001 stereotypical yet absolutely epic things to have in a setting or boss fight

    14) The antagonist survives for a few more turns after they should have died, because they're just that dedicated to take you down.

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    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Default Re: 1001 stereotypical yet absolutely epic things to have in a setting or boss fight

    15) The head cultist raving about how the players will be destroyed, only to become the first victim of the abomination he summoned.

    16) A massive battle with thousands of NPCs dying left and right is finally decided by a single sword fight between opposing leaders.

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    Halfling in the Playground
     
    HalflingRogueGuy

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    Default Re: 1001 stereotypical yet absolutely epic things to have in a setting or boss fight

    17) Hero on their knees, and the villain goes for the killing blow. The villain winds-up way too far, leaving himself exposed. The hero then picks up a sword, or hidden dagger, and stabs the villain in the stomach.

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    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    Randuir's Avatar

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    Default Re: 1001 stereotypical yet absolutely epic things to have in a setting or boss fight

    18) floating islands. Either in mid-air or on the back of some massive sea-creature.
    Jasnah avatar by Zea Mays

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    Ogre in the Playground
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    Default Re: 1001 stereotypical yet absolutely epic things to have in a setting or boss fight

    19) Volcanos, or even better erupting volcanos. You can be on/in a volcano or they can simply be nearby. With ominous

    20) The battlefield is collapsing/blowing up/being torn apart/falling/rigged with explosives. Bonus points if this effects the mechanics of the battle.

  9. - Top - End - #9
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    ElfRogueGirl

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    Default Re: 1001 stereotypical yet absolutely epic things to have in a setting or boss fight

    I actually did #5 in my first campaign ever (a Warcraft RPG campaign, specifically). Rather than build the Lich final boss the way you'd build a spellcaster, I gave it a crapton of HP (2000), the ability to spam a couple of attacks every turn (one that always hits, the other requires a save) and the ability to summon increasingly powerful creatures. There were three phases, the boss became invulnerable between each phases as he charged up an attack that would destroy the crypt he was in at every third of his HP and the players had to find a hiding place to avoid it. First time he did it, he opened a huge space in which the characters could fight rather than the cramped corridor they were in before. Second time, the entire crypt collapsed and they ended up in the open air, with the clouds above them swirling ominously, streaked by green lightning.

  10. - Top - End - #10
    Orc in the Playground
     
    Daemon

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    Default Re: 1001 stereotypical yet absolutely epic things to have in a setting or boss fight

    21) After the villain is defeated his fortress begins to collapse into itself, until finally exploding moments after the characters escape.
    l have a very specific preference when it comes to TTRPGs. If you have a different preference, that's fine, but I just want you to know you're having fun wrong.

  11. - Top - End - #11
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    SamuraiGuy

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    Default Re: 1001 stereotypical yet absolutely epic things to have in a setting or boss fight

    Quote Originally Posted by comk59 View Post
    21) After the villain is defeated his fortress begins to collapse into itself, until finally exploding moments after the characters escape.
    Ah, the "Load Bearing Boss Monster" a classic trope, but one rarely seen in TT games.


    22)Ominous Fight music. Bonus points if it's choral.
    23)Multiple Locations. The action is taking place in several places with a split party. Hard to achieve, but glorious when it works.

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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    Stelio Kontos's Avatar

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    Default Re: 1001 stereotypical yet absolutely epic things to have in a setting or boss fight

    24) The bookshelf that hides the secret escape route. (Even, or especially, if a bookshelf makes no sense in the room.)
    Currently DMing: Ruins of Azlant IC OOC

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    Ettin in the Playground
     
    Sporeegg's Avatar

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    Default Re: 1001 stereotypical yet absolutely epic things to have in a setting or boss fight

    25) The Lich King somehow keeps a diary that both allow you to read about his troubled past and how his actions are ultimatively justified in his own - flawed - mind.

    26) Said journal has a few passages thrown in to explain the bosses' weak points.

    27) Final boss battle happening way too soon only to reveal that the villain was actually working with the group the whole time and the REAL villain is ten times the size and hundre times the strength.

    28) With the real final boss being dispatched way too easily and his trusty vizier or jester revealing that they have helped the heroes and plotted the villain's demise all the time.

    29) Vizier absorbs the bosses' power and becomes a horrible eldritch abomination in order for the game to stay childfriendly.

    30) Create a own race of (possibly evil) long forgotten super beings. Either to justify the villains many overpowered attacks or just to allow for casual racism towards a race that no longer exists.
    Last edited by Sporeegg; 2018-07-12 at 05:23 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by Psyren View Post
    "Dammit man, I said to use the MORALLY GREY flaming catapults!"
    DMing and recruiting - [PF/e6] Rebellion in Iberis, 2nd level - apply here
    __________playing_____________
    Wilfred Springgauge - Tinker Gnome Wizard - Henchmen!
    Kriv, the Boastful - Dragonborn Fighter//Bard - Calm before the Storm

  14. - Top - End - #14
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    BarbarianGuy

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    Default Re: 1001 stereotypical yet absolutely epic things to have in a setting or boss fight

    31) The final boss can only be defeated by a magical weapon that requires several quests to obtain. Bonus points if you have to assemble it piece by piece.
    Check out my setting, the Solstone Islands! Any advice is appreciated.

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    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Doorhandle's Avatar

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    Default Re: 1001 stereotypical yet absolutely epic things to have in a setting or boss fight

    32) That NPC you thought was your friend was playing you all for fools the whole time!

    33) Barrels of explosives

    34)Barrels of acid

    35)Barrels of monkeys.

    36)Turns out the BBEG was a dragon the whole time.

    37) BBEG's one weakness is kept in the same room as the one where he fights the party.

    38) BBEG is invincible except for one attack exposing his weakpoint.

    39)...Bosses with a weak point in general count, actually.

    40)Boss is invisible, except for the trail of footprints it leaves in the snow.
    Last edited by Doorhandle; 2018-07-13 at 07:16 AM.
    Can't write. Can't plan. Can draw a little.
    Quote Originally Posted by Craft (Cheese) View Post
    "In his free time, he gates in Balors just so he can kill and eat them later!"

  16. - Top - End - #16
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    GreenSorcererElf

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    Default Re: 1001 stereotypical yet absolutely epic things to have in a setting or boss fight

    41: Boss riding a dragon.

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    Barbarian in the Playground
     
    SleepyShadow's Avatar

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    Default Re: 1001 stereotypical yet absolutely epic things to have in a setting or boss fight

    42) Princess disguises herself in order to help the heroes fight the boss without them learning it's her until a dramatic reveal is appropriate.

  18. - Top - End - #18
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Doorhandle's Avatar

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    Default Re: 1001 stereotypical yet absolutely epic things to have in a setting or boss fight

    43) Princess was the real BBEG all along, and transforms into her hideous true form for the final battle.

    44)Final battle occurs in flaming room

    45)Final battle occurs in space.

    46)Final battle occurs outside of normal space, in a technicolor version of the astral sea.

    47) Boss arena is in a colosseum or boxing ring, surrounded by cheering crowds.
    Can't write. Can't plan. Can draw a little.
    Quote Originally Posted by Craft (Cheese) View Post
    "In his free time, he gates in Balors just so he can kill and eat them later!"

  19. - Top - End - #19
    Ettin in the Playground
     
    Sporeegg's Avatar

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    Default Re: 1001 stereotypical yet absolutely epic things to have in a setting or boss fight

    Quote Originally Posted by Doorhandle View Post
    36)Turns out the BBEG was a dragon the whole time.
    Quote Originally Posted by Calthropstu View Post
    41: Boss riding a dragon.
    48) To show he is evil, the boss usually abuses his henchmen and/or mounts.

    49) For some reason his dragon mount cannot talk nor has any magical abilities, yet is of the same type of dragon.

    50) The dragon is a sorcerer. The dragon is always a sorcerer.

    51) The sorcerer is not always a dragon. But he always has a monstrous form to fight in. Killing an old man with a sword that completely relies on magic to defend himself is just plain boring.

    Quote Originally Posted by SleepyShadow View Post
    42) Princess disguises herself in order to help the heroes fight the boss without them learning it's her until a dramatic reveal is appropriate.
    52) Her disguise is imperfect enough only for the hero who loves her to know the magical ninja is actually her. Well, him and the audience.
    Quote Originally Posted by Psyren View Post
    "Dammit man, I said to use the MORALLY GREY flaming catapults!"
    DMing and recruiting - [PF/e6] Rebellion in Iberis, 2nd level - apply here
    __________playing_____________
    Wilfred Springgauge - Tinker Gnome Wizard - Henchmen!
    Kriv, the Boastful - Dragonborn Fighter//Bard - Calm before the Storm

  20. - Top - End - #20
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    GreenSorcererElf

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    Default Re: 1001 stereotypical yet absolutely epic things to have in a setting or boss fight

    53: Boss is an intangible entity that jumps from person to person and requires something special to finally put down. (Seen it a few times... Final Fantasy 10,The Emperor in pre disney Star Wars, one of the Cadderly novels by RA Salvatore)

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    Ettin in the Playground
     
    Sporeegg's Avatar

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    Default Re: 1001 stereotypical yet absolutely epic things to have in a setting or boss fight

    54. The actual villain is someone or something imprisoned in any form of artifact, often a crystal or gem. He just corrupted a rather inexperienced human to do his bidding.
    Quote Originally Posted by Psyren View Post
    "Dammit man, I said to use the MORALLY GREY flaming catapults!"
    DMing and recruiting - [PF/e6] Rebellion in Iberis, 2nd level - apply here
    __________playing_____________
    Wilfred Springgauge - Tinker Gnome Wizard - Henchmen!
    Kriv, the Boastful - Dragonborn Fighter//Bard - Calm before the Storm

  22. - Top - End - #22
    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Default Re: 1001 stereotypical yet absolutely epic things to have in a setting or boss fight

    55 The Big Bad absorbs the powers that corrupt him out of his humanity / actually fuses with something elderich, but instead of becoming a mass of tentacles, gains a (somewhat tainted) angelic appearance.

    56 Once his HP is depleted, the Big Bad dies not from the blow itself, but from being to weak to contain the power inside him, blowing him up spectacularly.

  23. - Top - End - #23
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    SolithKnightGuy

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    Default Re: 1001 stereotypical yet absolutely epic things to have in a setting or boss fight

    57: Fighting a colossal red dragon bathed in lava, in the heart of a volcano.

    58: "Fighting" the internal biology of a mountain-sized organism the heroes find themselves within.
    Quote Originally Posted by Quertus View Post
    I suspect it's because red and green are much more similar than red and penguin.

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    Pixie in the Playground
     
    RangerGuy

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    Default Re: 1001 stereotypical yet absolutely epic things to have in a setting or boss fight

    59: Have a confrontation in the Earth's core, or better...

    60: Have a confrontation in Moon's core, or even better...

    61: Have a confrontation with a negative energy entity in the Moon's core on a moon, where the light and dark sides of the moon are literally dark and light sides of the moon, cause they are made of crystallized positive and negative energy respectively and in the core there is a permanent storm of positive and negative energy crashing and annihilating one another constantly.

  25. - Top - End - #25
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    GreenSorcererElf

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    Default Re: 1001 stereotypical yet absolutely epic things to have in a setting or boss fight

    62: Have a pending doomsday device ticking away in the background.

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    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Doorhandle's Avatar

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    Default Re: 1001 stereotypical yet absolutely epic things to have in a setting or boss fight

    62: The room the battle takes place in is slowly filling with acid/lava/Balor Bile, and you have to scramble up a tower/floating platforms while fighting.

    63: Epic battle on stormy seas.

    64: Or while whitewater-rafting.

    65: Or atop a roller-coaster.

    66: Three words: Mirror of opposition.

    67:The mighty strikes of the boss damage the floor as you fight, leaving gaps you can fall into.

    68: The room is a fun house of traps the boss can launch you at, or vice-versa.

    69: Battle with the black knight atop a narrow bridge, with certain death on each side.

    70. Massive, ominous bridge is only the foreboding lead up to the epic battle to follow.

    70. Players are literally storming the castle.

    71. The castle is sick of being stormed, and gets up to punch the players.

    72. Players are fighting while falling from space, each trying to reach the last parachute.
    Can't write. Can't plan. Can draw a little.
    Quote Originally Posted by Craft (Cheese) View Post
    "In his free time, he gates in Balors just so he can kill and eat them later!"

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    Titan in the Playground
     
    MesiDoomstalker's Avatar

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    Default Re: 1001 stereotypical yet absolutely epic things to have in a setting or boss fight

    73a: Magic Trains
    73b: with Magic Robberies
    74: BBEG trouncing the PC's early on but leaving them alive due to arrogance or some desire to seek amusement out of their struggle to stop them
    75: a dramatically appropriate thunderstorm starts just as a climatic battle between bitter enemies starts. Bonus points for synchronized sword/lightning strikes
    Awesome Avvy by Sizlord!

  28. - Top - End - #28
    Orc in the Playground
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    Default Re: 1001 stereotypical yet absolutely epic things to have in a setting or boss fight

    76) Suitably impressive throne for the villain/antagonist.
    76a) The throne contributes significantly to the villain's power and the battle in general.

  29. - Top - End - #29
    Troll in the Playground
     
    Bohandas's Avatar

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    Default Re: 1001 stereotypical yet absolutely epic things to have in a setting or boss fight

    77.) Boschian hellscape

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    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Default Re: 1001 stereotypical yet absolutely epic things to have in a setting or boss fight

    78) Battle on a moving clockwork

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