Few outside the
dark environs of the dungeon are aware that the warlocks of that realm hold a
magic tournament every fifth year. The best and brightest warlocks and
overlords compete, demonstrating their prowess in the four elemental schools of
magic, their abilities to develop new potions and to create new creatures to
serve the dungeon hierarchy. In each category, only one contestant is awarded
the coveted Pendant of the Black Dragon--a badge of both prestige and power
within the warlock world.
One of the most renowned warlocks of this (or
any) age, Alamar, was the recipient of five such pendants--one each for earth,
air, water and fire magic expertise, and one more for his Potion of
Paralyzation, which he had distilled from the venom of a scorpicore. Yet, the
sixth and final Pendant of the Black Dragon, for the best new creature, eluded
him for many years.
year, his carefully bred mushroom-detecting troglodytes were beaten by Agar's
de-odorized harpies, while at the next contest, his porcupine/medusa mix took
second to Gunnar's manure-free manticores. So it went--always his creatures
were widely applauded but never quite good enough for the coveted pendant.
Alamar determined to expand his horizons--to blend non-native dungeon creatures
to create something truly unique. He traveled far, through the lands of the
elves, where he dabbled briefly with a dwarf/harpy mix (too heavy to fly), and
the lands of the barbarians where he had a brief success with crossing evil
eyes and cyclops until the other cyclops destroyed his prototype as an
abomination (Ugh! Many eyes! Ugh!), before finally reaching the sulfurous
swamps of the beastmasters. There he captured a young hydra before returning to
his dungeon lair to begin preparations. A grand design--the speed of a dragon,
with the many heads of the hydra. Multiple breathe attacks, and the ability to
fly--truly a beast to strike fear in the heart of the stoutest kanniggit.
for Alamar, crossbreeding dragons and hydras proved to be much more difficult
than he had imagined. His first attempt burned itself to death when one head
tried to talk to another, while his second smashed to the ground when it was
unable to fly and attack at the same time. The contest loomed and Alamar
finally settled on a compromise: the gorynych—a multi-headed beast that
attacked without retaliation, yet could fly and moved at least a little faster
than a chaos hydra. Alas, his run of bad luck continued--the gorynych was
showcased the same year that Jeddite developed his self-veiling medusas, and
once again the Pendant he so coveted was denied to Alamar. Out of frustration
and spite, Alamar released his prototype gorynyches into the wild, to snack on
the unsuspecting and those who are foolish enough to attempt to wrap their
tongues around the beasts' wholly unpronounceable name.
For long years, these zealots isolate themselves in
remote monasteries where the only visitors they have are travelers who have
lost their way, and even these seldom more than once a year. During this time
of isolation, the zealots practice their fighting skills and train their minds
to repel all magic.
Is protected by
penalty in hand-to-hand attack.
The sharpshooters, originally trained by Gelu, were so
popular because of their combat skills that all heroes desired to have them as
part of their army. And the prestige of being a sharpshooter was so strong that
the skills and training were passed on from father to son and mother to
course, it was possible to find sharpshooters in almost every part of Erathia,
and as you can expect, they tried to adapt to local conditions. So the arctic
sharpshooters have appeared. They have an improved attack and are also able to
hide in snow-covered places, which allows them to be better protected from
Snow Covered Position
Does not have
Another type of sharpshooter - the lava sharpshooter.
Their house is a vault. Their hard lives have tempered them, resulting in their
increased defensive ability. Lava sharpshooters get their name from the bottles
of fiery lava in which they dip the tips of the arrows. In close combat they
are able to use these flaming lava arrows to burn their assailants.
Rock Covered Position
Does not have
Necromancers aren't the most social of heroes. The lack
of living flesh and blood might be the problem, or maybe the weird clothes they
tend to wear. It could be the strange cackling they tend to emit when they
laugh, or perhaps it's just the constant stink of death that seems to surround
them. Whatever the reason, they generally aren't invited out to the most
fashionable of parties. Actually, they generally aren't invited out to ANY
parties--fashionable or not. So, they have a lot of time on their bony old
since they don't sleep. They know of dreams and they know of nightmares,
remembering vaguely as they do their time before undeath, though they no longer
have either. Not surprisingly, they prefer nightmares--especially for other
it was that Sandro, in a fit of jealousy over the livies ability to dream, took
a few of the undead steeds that were normally used by the black knights and
began "working" with them. He trained them to move on their own,
without the guidance of a rider, and he changed their appearance to make them
fiercer to gaze upon. Sandro also added his own personal scent of death to the
new creatures and concentrated it in their "breath".
amount of air freshener will help the hero who faces Sandro's nightmares, as he
so cleverly called them, as the strength of their breath rivals that of the
mighty gorgon, often bringing death instantly to even the mightiest of beasts.
Indeed, so strong is the stench that sometimes even those standing behind the
initial creature will be struck down, and no amount of breath mints will allay
the damage done.
finds this all to be a fine joke, of course, and he loves to regale his
acquaintances with his tale of creation. Not at parties, since the invites keep
not coming for those, but at the local necromancer's guild meetings, or, better
yet, at the Annual Deadies banquet. Everyone cackles with glee and tries not to
lose his or her jaw bone in the process, as that can be quite embarrassing,
even for one who already has no life, social or otherwise.