My Monk just tanked a Draco-lich
It’s been a while since I’ve played in a pick-up game of Dungeons and Dragons. I’ve never played one with fifth edition. It used to be easy enough to just jump in a game of third with a character you had pre-made, ready and waiting – of exactly the right level – to just game hardcore. Fifth has me a bit confused some times, but generally speaking it seems to be pretty easy to make characters and build to a standard that the DM is enforcing. Last night, I was invited to a local game of Dungeons and Dragons by a guy I recently met at my Friendly Local Game Store. He’s a DM for a few games here in the Inland Empire, but he mentioned that he played in a Wednesday game and that they were missing people – he wanted to know if I’d like to come – like to? Please. I’m all over that shit.
|You know... I hadn't gone in with this concept.|
Damn if she don't look good though...
I was told to bring a level 13 character (got to the game and actually got to level up right from the get-go), but not really given ability/item info. I’m currently playing a Druid in one my games (I DM the other), so I wanted something non-druid that was relatively easy to build. I’m not much for spellcasting because it’s too much paperwork. I’m also not much for fighters anymore. There was a time in my life when a simple sword and board was enough for me. I could have a good time back then tanking with a paladin, or laying the schoolyard beat down with a fighter. However, I think my life craves more variety now. Secretly, I also really want to be a ninja.
I decided on a Monk for this game. If we were going to be starting at reasonably high levels, then getting into a class that really has some quality stuff it can do it at later levels just makes me so happy. I dipped into Warlock for the multi-class, because that’s something monks can do now in fifth edition (who knew right?). Thus, my character Gracedove Swordfist was born. I’ll post later about her; I’m still working on her backstory, but I will say this: any resemblance of her to Gambit is purely coincidental, but possibly driven by a dark X-men loving portion of my subconscious. Why is that guy so murderously awesome??
Making a character has really never been easier, thanks to the apps and tools they have online. ForgedAnvil is a damn fine character creation tool which uses Excel. I think it took me about two hours to build my character, going through and making some silly, but fun choices for flavor. After arriving at the game about thirty minutes before everyone else, the DM took one look at my character – said, we’re fighting Demons and shit, your ability scores suck, re-roll them – and then gave me my magic item buying options. 2 Very Rare, 1 Rare, 2 Uncommon. Cool beans. That makes life easy. No pesky gold to worry about is such a plus. I wish that they had that kind of system way back when. 3rd Edition would have been much more friendly with that kind of thing attached to the gear. Having gold on them is nice too, but sorting it by rarity is streamlined to perfection.
We had quite a party of adventurers. They ranged in level from 11 to 17; the game exists on somewhat of a rotation with players coming and going as they please each week, but the game always goes on regardless of who shows up. We had a shade rogue, a sky-pirate sorcerer, a dwarf cleric devoted to a mystery god, a wizard with an attitude and a dragon arm, a wonderfully saucy bard, and a bird-man ranger. My monk-warlock rounded out the party. You can check the size of the game from the picture below, which has us half way through our first fight.
|That's one hell of a table.|
My character showed up late to the battle, so the Big Bad Evil had already showed up and had begun laying the beat down on the party. As hard as my monk tried, dimension dooring behind him for a flanking flurry of blows attack, my magical staff of power couldn’t even land a scratch on the big nasty. Immune to all but radiant damage, he shrugged off almost everything we threw at him. However, the Dracolich descended in the middle of the fight. Without an ability to deal with the boss, I charged the dragon from the sky – my winged boots carrying me right to him – and tanked the Dracolich. It was a beautiful fight. He only landed two blows on me thanks to my insane armor class.
|Encounter number 1... a Dracolich is the "minion" here. I tanked it. Boo yas.|
We had very little downtime between encounters. The bard set up his portable shelter and we took a long rest. The other guys took this resting opportunity to teach me all about the adventures that they’ve had so far. It was a good time listening to all the epic adventures they’d had.
|Encounter number 2 was a load of drow and friends... we wrecked them.|
The Final encounter of the night occurred after we woke up and proceeded down a long hallway descending into the Underdark. We were confronted by a pair of Drow and their lurking minions in the shadows. We made short work of them; I stunned the male Drow, a wizard, in the surprise round bringing him down to nearly half of his hit points with my stunning attack and flurry of blows. Our bard was able to force cage the leader Drow so we could deal with the minions – 4 Bulettes ambushed us from all sides. I took down one with a MASSIVE flurry attack from above. The others fell in like fashion. In the end, our wizard, immune to force, stuck his head and hands through the force cage and set off a fireball inside it, baking the Drow in their magical prison. That combo, newly discovered, became a table favorite.
The night was eventful and highly enjoyable. I walked home with a bunch of loot, a mad load of experience, some new friends, and some damn fine RPG memories. I can’t wait until next week. I’ll be getting my custom built home-brewed legendary items next week. That’s going to be awesome!