Thursday, 17 March 2011

Creating a great Tunnels and Trolls monster

Fashioning a creature for Tunnels and Trolls is as easy as making a consceous decision to not travel back in time and jump into a volcano. In essence, you need two things: a name and a monster rating. Here's an example:

Burger Golem
MR 24

This is a perfectly acceptable monster. You know that it will roll 3 dice and plus 12 to the total. However, a Burger Golem on its own is going to be incredibly boring, like an old man reciting bible passages while doing his tax return. The Burger Golem needs some pazzazz - some flavour, so let's add some special damage. I usually give mine a couple at lower levels, but 3 or 4 special attacks make higher level creatures unpredictable to the delvers:

Burger Golem
MR 24
Special Abilities:
Spite 2/Hamburger Hop - When 2 sixes are rolled, the Burger Golem is able to bound out of the way of oncoming attacks. Halve and damage done to it this round.
Spite 3/Greased Lightning - When 3 sixes are rolled Burger Golem fires a TTYF with 13 INT. The target must also make a level 1 saving roll on DEX or fall on their faces, putting them out of the next round of combat.

As you can see, the little ham-bugger is taking shape with its new spite-triggered attacks. Now we must give him a special ability, positive or negative (preferably a bit of both), to further flesh him out.

Burger Golem
MR 24
Special Damage:
Spite 2/Hamburger Hop - When 2 sixes are rolled, the Burger Golem is able to bound out of the way of oncoming attacks. Halve and damage done to it this round.
Spite 3/Greased Lightning - When 3 sixes are rolled Burger Golem fires a TTYF with 13 INT. The target must also make a level 1 saving roll on DEX or fall on their faces, putting them out of the next round of combat.

Special Ability:
Sizzling skin - the Burger Golem takes half damage from ice weapons or magic. However, it take double damage from water weapons or magic.

Now Burger Golem has a strength and weakness, he's pretty much done. All that's left if to give him a little bit of flavour:

Burger Golems are created from the fastest of fast food by wizards with too much time on their hands. Their hot greasy skin makes them difficult to get close to, but damn do they smell good. In fact, you can usually smell a Burger Golem from 10 meters away.

So there we have it. A method to flesh out your Tunnels and Trolls monsters to make them more fun to play.