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More Than A Minion

Written by Scott - Published on January 29, 2010

Green Skins

Goblins are an RPG staple, they constantly harass small towns and travellers and wreak havoc in general. However goblins never really amount to anything more than being a dominated minion or some low priority threat. You very rarely see goblins involved in apocalyptic scenarios or great kingdom shaking threats. This green skinned menace is considered to be the lowest form of Goblinoid, often taking orders and commands from Orcs, Hobgoblins and the like, but what if Goblins could shake kingdoms or single-handedly threaten courageous heroes? Below are some sample goblin species that can provide a threat to higher level characters and maybe even end the world.

The Chosen

Throughout the world Goblins have begun worshiping an unknown deity. Through faith, prayer and blood rituals, some Goblins are becoming smarter and more cunning in their tactics for raiding and attacking farms and travelers. Hierarchies are being established within the caves of the Goblin hordes, while the clerics and paladins of the Goblin deity maintain order and peace between the usually savage goblins. While the goblins maintain their normal appearance they have begun wearing more armour and clothing, as well as taking some sort of pride in their appearance. Polished armour instead or rusted and dinted shields, and cleaned ceremonial robes adorn these zealous fanatics. Badges are made from human appendages to ascertain rank and standing in this ‘civilised’ Goblin community. Toes, fingers, ears and teeth are the most common badges of rank, with the highest ranked leaders and clerics adorning treated pieces of human organs to show their position of power.

This previously unknown god is called Krak’Tak by his followers. This newly worshiped deity rose to power through years of servitude in the ranks of a demonic god, slowly usurping power and artifacts until the creature was able to separate from the demon and rise to deity hood, gaining the power it had sought for it’s entire existence. Krak’Tak is still feeble compared to the other gods of the realm, yet his powers and divine presence has empowered his Goblins beyond their normal capabilities. Krak’Tak rewards his followers for acts of trickery and cunning, any that prove to be nefarious tricksters and vicious warriors earn his most praise, quickly becoming Paladins within the new divine order. Worshipers employ blood rituals and offerings of stolen objects of power to commune with Krak’Tak. The goblin deity enjoys watching his followers stealing power and information from others in an effort to emulate his ascension.

While known to other deities and scholars, Krak’Tak is currently viewed as a harmless and inconsequential pest. However as time goes on the Trickster Lord of the Goblins slowly accrues power through his followers and their actions. It has yet to be discovered, but when goblins within Krak’Tak’s fold have been raiding towns and farms, small hexes are being placed within churches and temples. These powerful blood hexes slowly siphon small amounts of faith away from worshipers within these holy shrines. Offerings and prayers directed to various gods are shared with Krak’Tak, empowering the Goblin deity. Once Krak’Tak has stolen enough divine power his presence will grow exponentially gaining dominion and influence over all goblins, using them as his personal army and ascending some of the vilest goblins to the state of Archons, to serve as his personal guard within the Astral Sea.

The Infected

An odd disease has begun infecting goblins, placing them in a constantly enraged state of vicious destruction. Strips of flesh and dried blood cover these wraith like Goblins. The little skin that is still attached is discolored in hues of a yellowish gray. Dark sickly green eyes flicker and roll as ragged breaths and blood curdling screams erupt from the broken fang filled mouths of the infected goblins.

The origins of the rabid and highly infectious disease has been identified to be within an old series of caves below the sheer limestone sea cliffs of the coast. The years of erosion has created an immense labyrinth of tunnels and caves that over time eventually connected to an already existing pocket of caves. As the seawater mixed with the newly aired caves, a small parasite was awoken by the water. This parasite quickly infected the goblins within the caves as a source of food. The parasites reproduce extremely fast and only hours after infection the host is completely occupied by the constantly feeding organisms. As the brain becomes infected the host acts upon the driving urge of the parasite, an unquenchable hunger. Hosts that feed, infect victims through saliva and other bodily fluids, which in turn spreads the infection. The ancient parasite has bonded with some of the goblins genetics and upon infecting other species they morph into goblin like hybrids. Bears, wolves and other wildlife scatter through trees and farms in odd goblinoid forms, hungrily feasting upon any flesh they can find. Civilized races are not immune in any way to the infection or accompanying metamorphosis. Any one infected with Goblin Rage has two hours before they turn and become incurable. Once the infection becomes complete they will survive without food for two days, at which time the parasites consume too much muscle mass to sustain the functions of the host body.

Magic and divine spells work on curing the Goblin Rage before the change and nothing has been found to reverse the infection after the metamorphosis. A sample of the pure parasite from deep within the sea caves could provide a cure, but nothing has returned from the caves since the infection begun. Within the caves the first goblins to be infected have further mutated to become hulking, bulging masses of bloated green skin, parasitical feelers and tentacles burst forth, ever touching and feeling for fresh food to consume.

The Perfect

From the depths of the Underdark, a kingdom of Goblins has erupted upon the surface. Covered in well-crafted chain mail and equipped with elegant weapons of mithral. The Thetrit Kingdom has amassed a powerful army and numbers in the thousands. Under the rule of the Goblin King Grazzlot, the goblins are unlike any seen before upon the surface world. Taller in stature and more muscular than an average Goblin, all Thetrit goblins have an intelligence that rivals great generals and wizened scholars. Many warriors and kings have underestimated these goblins and all have fallen in battle beneath their mithral blades.

As the Thetrit Empire rapidly overruns the surface world, the massive king Grazzlot rules from his throne in the sprawling subterranean city of Thetrit. Upon his head the crown and relic that has empowered these once normal goblins into the global threat they now are. The Crown of Perfection is a sentient relic of immeasurable power and ability. Crafted by a demon prince twelve millennia ago, the gods first attempted to destroy the relic, but after many attempts and wars the gods believed the crown indestructible. In one final assault upon the demon’s realm, the armies of the unified gods managed to steal the crown after suffering nearly total annihilation against the perfect demonic armies. The gods sent the crown to the material plane, buried deep within the molten core. The ever-shifting magma eventually moved the relic into a subterranean volcano, where it erupted in an empty cavern to be found by the now mighty goblin Grazzlot. Once the crown is worn it empowers and evolves the bearer to the most perfect state of intelligence and physical prowess possible. The bearer can then ascend any he wishes into a slightly less perfect form. Stealing the crown from the king’s head would be an epic task, as adventurers would have to venture past the armies of Thetrit and into the immense Underdark city. Within the city all citizens are artisans, mages or mighty warriors as no goblin is left unperfected, with such intelligence and abilities intruders are easily found and dealt with. There are some murmurs of goblins that covet the power of Grazzlot, and promises and deals could be made with the right goblins for some minor assistance. Once the crown is removed by another from Grazzlot’s head, a rushing wave of power instantly bursts forth, restoring the goblins to their old form. However the crown calls out constantly, willing those near it to experience the demonic perfection for themselves.

What Minion monsters to you hold a soft spot for? Do you use versions of stronger monsters in your campaign? Could a Dire Bear kill a Dragon? Ever? Tell us your thoughts in the comments section!

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Written by Scott

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8 Responses to “More Than A Minion”
  1. Elderon The Dragon says:

    Could a Dire Bear kill a Dragon? Well mabey the dragon would have to be small or at least weakend in some way. Or mabey, the bear along with being the dire verson may have some other more powerfull abilitys. But, I don’t think it would happen very offten. Oh, and I got first Comment

    To my fellow dragons. Nomag wer darastrix ithquent tiichi wux.

  2. kocho says:

    I could see a dire bear killing a dragon
    the dragon would have to have scale rot though

  3. James says:

    Actually I am using a variant form of a goblin to pose a greater threat to the world at large.

    The Quarry goblin.

    In recent memory, Goblins have never posed much of a threat until mortified and beleagured merchants burst into town shouting and wailing about a large goblinoid covered in stone dust who cleave their horses as the ran past, single handedly toppled the caravan and made mincemeat of the guards without so much as a scratch made upon them. These goblins have suddenly spawned from the local quarry (which has always been a typical goblin breeding ground) through an ancient doorway long forgotten. On the otherside of this doorway lies a small plane created by a wizard long before to be allowed to perform his magical experiments in peace. His efforts created an artifact that could imbue living creatures with magical properties, however the wizards unethical methods did not go unpunished and was himself placed into the artifact with one of the goblins he experimented on, morphing the two into a mighty (and somewhat diminished in comparison to the human counterpart) goblin wizard who started creating his own army to wreak havoc on those who didn’t appreciate the wizard’s intentions. These quarry goblins stand almost one and a half times taller than a “normal” goblin and are unmatched in strength and toughness. The skin is part of the key to their reputation; its covered in a dust that doesn’t brush or wash away, even by magical means. Its a byproduct of the quarry dust carried into the artifact with the goblin to be morphed. The dust gives the skin a hardness equivalent to magically imbued weapons, along with no discernable end to their lifespan for they act as living intelligent magical weapons. The wizard, who is worshipped like he is an aspect, commands all the region’s goblins, quarry and otherwise to subdue every civilized population

  4. Scott says:

    @John, Great goblins. Don’t you just love the freedom of dnd and how you can do whatever you want with the game. Keep enjoying those Magical weapon goblins.

    Scott

  5. kocho says:

    Who’s John?
    Is he James?

  6. Scott says:

    @Kocho, Hmm, good call, Yes John was meant to be James. The dangers of replying to comments at 5.30 in the morning.

    @James, sorry about that Joh… i mean James. Was kind of on auto pilot this morning. All the same, yout Quarry Goblins are still awesome.

    Scott

  7. TheWhite says:

    Super minions work great for surprising players who have been around the block a few times. A campaign I’m running at the moment started out with the PCs being informed of a dragon rampaging around a town, cliche I know but honestly, if the get to level 7 or 8 and kill the dragon, well, fantastic, that’s a good start but so far they have run into the same kobold sorc twice now with him running off the players once and escaping by the skin of his teeth the next. Point is, during the dungeon leading up to the second encounter I rolled up a random encounter of a low level demon, the players decided to assume that the demon was working with or for the kobolds… guess what, enter the super kobods as a main villain for after the dragon. Hmm, kobold summoning a balor, works for me.

  8. Thomar says:

    In my current homebrewed campaign, there’s a war machine composed of most of the evil races. Orcs are the footsoldiers, hobgoblins are the leadership, trolls are heavy infantry, kobolds are miners and sappers, etc. However, goblins are unique as the mechanics and inventors. They craft airships, weapons, and some of the highest-ranking ones have large suits of steam-pow. PCs won’t fight them much, but if they do get put in a battle of wits with a goblin they might just lose…

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