Redone Black Dragon from GenCon

Benimoto

First Post
I just remembered this while I was reading through another thread on bad solos in MMI. Not that most dragons are too bad, but in the GenCon goodie bag there was a free preview of the D&D comic book, and on one of the pages, seemingly as a space-filler, there was a new stat block for a Young Black Dragon. The only real relevance it had to the rest of the book was that there was a black dragon in the comic, briefly.

A few things seemed interesting to me:
  • The Breath Weapon (and Shroud of Gloom) only affect enemies
  • The Shroud of Gloom is completely redone, to the point where I'm not completely sure what's about this dragon says "lurker"
  • Instinctive Devouring gives the dragon most of the benefits of two turns a round without most of the drawbacks
  • Action Recovery, and the effect of Instinctive Devouring gives the dragon nearly-assured actions without making daze/stun/dominate effects totally useless.

Anyhoo, since the comic was a con-exclusive, and the con is over, I thought I'd share the stat block. I hope it's readable. I don't have a scanner handy, so I ended up taking a picture with my digital camera.
 

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Herschel

Adventurer
The cover was a con exclusive. The comic itself is the same as the same as the one of alternating covers available in stores for a buck.
 

Klaus

First Post
The way I see it, Shroud in Gloom now seems to represent the dragon breathing forth a cloud of gaseous acid, making enemies more vulnerable to acid and obscuring their vision (hence the -2 to attacks). The Heal check represents some first aid-like action.

Acidic Blood: I don't remember the YBD having that.

Claw attack is now a double attack.
 

keterys

First Post
Solo lurkers are sort of an odd concept anyways. There's a lot of good things about it - the gloom is a big deal tactically without being the boredom fest of the old shroud.

I'm not so big on the acidic blood in implementation - I think I'd have preferred ongoing 5 acid instead. With shroud and a group of 5, an adjacent fighter might easily face 30 acid damage between turns of the dragon.

Which is a hell of a thing to deal with at 3rd level when you only have 42 hp and are taking a potential 23 damage twice per turn from its bite and claws.
 

Mengu

First Post
I didn't even pick up a goodie bag, as they typically are largely a waste.

But this tidbit is awesome. I'm inspired. The "stun" that doesn't really stun but forces you to spend a standard action to rid yourself of a potent debuff, is brilliant, especially since it gives options for different party members spending that standard action.

I just want to grab a first or second level dark sun party, fight this dragon, see how it goes.
 

SabreCat

First Post
an adjacent fighter might easily face 30 acid damage between turns of the dragon.

Which is a hell of a thing to deal with at 3rd level when you only have 42 hp and are taking a potential 23 damage twice per turn from its bite and claws.
Bring it, I say. Dragons being frickin' scary and dangerous, not to be messed with? I vote YES. Come prepared with healing and acid resistance, and act swiftly to make that Heal check if you can, or go down sizzling!
 

Mengu

First Post
I'm not so big on the acidic blood in implementation - I think I'd have preferred ongoing 5 acid instead. With shroud and a group of 5, an adjacent fighter might easily face 30 acid damage between turns of the dragon.

It's especially problematic with a ranger or something, but big chunks of single hit damage like from a barbarian or rogue should take the dragon from bloodied to dead after 5 or so hits, especially with the help of a buffing leader. And if the fighter has a shroud on him while the dragon is bloodied, someone should clear that off.

Also that ability makes the fight more mobile since no one wants to end their turn adjacent to the bloodied dragon, even the fighter, so he might Tide of Iron, and not move adjacent to it. Or a Bard may be sliding allies away from the bloodied dragon with his majestic words. A Barbarian can Pressing Strike the dragon away from himself and allies. I like the dimension that's added with the acidic blood when the dragon gets bloodied.
 

keterys

First Post
Yep, I like the basic concept, just not the execution. If it gave ongoing acid instead, then it could still do 5-10 damage, but it wouldn't double up for rangers and its upper bound of damage wouldn't be enough to drop people from full.

The dragon has more than enough ways to do that all on its own :) I could easily see later rounds turning into it shrouding and just moving next to people and them desperately telling people not to attack it ;)
 

Mentat55

First Post
I really like Instinctive Devouring. It gives the dragon an extra action or a way of ending stun or dominate, in a more interesting manner than I have devised on my own.
 


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