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6 SWEET Suggestions for D&D from GoT Season 5 (Part One)

Written by MythicParty - Published on July 12, 2015

imagesIt’s no secret that we’re all huge Game of Thrones fans here.  This year we’ve done posts about the premiere and then the finale.  In between we also wrote about the 2nd episode because it had a bunch of ideas for your D&D games. However there are still 7 other shows in this batch, all with some solid suggestions for fantasy RPGs.  So from those here are 6  SWEET suggestions from Season 5, albeit separated into two parts to allow more discussion.  And as this opening Melisandre meme image specifies, ‘spoilers’ all over the place.

kids-1433171598Zombies = Zombie kids  One of the terrible truths in an undead outbreak is that they would soon be able to surround and then either eat or zombify two particularly vulnerable groups: elderly and children, as neither is really known for their cardio abilities.  (Nor for carrying a change of underwear)  So kudos to Martin and/or the writers for including a bunch of little wights in the Hardhome battle in S5E8, as that’s simply realistic.  But it’s also incredibly troubling to witness, as expressed by one of the defenders  SUGGESTION:  where there are zombies, there could be zombie youngsters.  To make a quick template, change their size to Small, take off a few HP, but increase the Dex and their AC.  If your edition has rules for monsters that function well together in conjunction, apply those, as rabid rug rats would be decidedly pack like.  While not technically a swarm per se, they are ankle biter material which could manifest itself rule-wise as having the equivalent of various Teamwork Feats such as Horde Charge.

thrones-02Death can be done ‘off screen’  In S5E10Stannis’ army is routed and he’s the sole survivor. He has a brief fight with 2 enemy soldiers, then, wounded, is cornered by Brienne of Tarth with a magic sword named Oathkeeper.  We see her swinging this Valyrian steel but the camera cuts away before it connects.  Now, often in TV this can mean that the implied death really isn’t a death after all.  However the director made it (Dark) crystal clear that yes, Stannis isn’t surviving and that the actual strike wasn’t seen because doing so would have been “gratuitous.”  SUGGESTION: if an NPC or PC for that matter is facing overwhelming odds, rather than play out the inevitable with doing a round-by-round, it can be more appropriate- not to mention save a ton of time- to instead handle the obvious ending narratively.  i.e. “You kill scores from the undead horde, but eventually, their numbers simply prove to be just too much and they drag you down.  Screaming.”  Feel free to rule that an ending via descriptive story telling is more appropriate than running a hopeless situation with a bunch of dice + math.

hqdefaultDragons can just Fly away    Surrounded in an arena by the Sons of the Harpy, things are grim for Daenerys. Luckily for our Meereen cast, a Dragon Ex Machina appears in the form of Drogon the largest of the 3 hatchlings.  He chews, crushes, and incinerates batches of her enemies.  Yet the apparent victory is only a brief respite as dozens of spears eventually hit home; hey, some people still play that a 20 is a 20.  Daenerys saddles up and she and her new steed fly the frak out of there.

SUGGESTION: Ah, Dragons.  A staple of our hobby as much as oddly shaped rooms containing a wacky assortment of monsters waiting for murder hobos to take away their treasure.  But all too often, they can fall into the Breath/Claw/Claw routine and boringly become a big angry land lizard.  Yet the most effective draconic tactic can be the most forgotten ability: using their wings, not with a buffet attack but to keep them out of range of groundlings. So have Dragons fly as much as possible, dive bombing the party with rocks/wagons/horses from the beginning, soaring around to strafe with breath powers, or at least flapping away after 50% HP.  Basically, all dragons should be ready to simply take off whenever a battle looks bad for them- bailing is how they can live to grow to Smaug proportions.

Ok, that’s the first half of D&D ideas from the 5th Season of GoT.  Any guesses on the 3 others coming up?  Think of points we missed on these ones? Let us know in the comments.

Written by MythicParty

Dog-loving, movie-watching, pizza aficionado. Content Editor for DMing.com, Project Manager for AvatarArt.com, & player of the coolest characters in a weekly D&D game. Halflings are the real heroes.

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Thanks for reading.

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4 Responses to “6 SWEET Suggestions for D&D from GoT Season 5 (Part One)”
  1. chando says:

    Fisrt, the email sent to subcribers is wrong, linking and providing info about the “Lessons for D&D from the GoT season 5 finale” article.

    Seccond, I beleive the Dragons can fly could be expanded a little bit. Yes, they can, but flying away at 50% would be really unrealistic if they are on their lair, protecting their hoard (that took hundreds of years to colect), maybe even their eggs, but ok if they are attacking “the village” and the PC’s start to get the better of them. Plus, they are (at leat in D&D) viewed as egotiscal prideful creatures. The ones in the species with Int <15 might very well think no mortal group of humanoids could defeat them and fight until the very end or until really close to it (say, one strike away from death, so that the provoking AoO might kill them but its their last chance to escape).the ones with Int 22+ could very well not get into the fight in the fisrt place if they don't think they are going to win, and the pride might kick to curb the idea that they might have subestimated their enemies middle fight and think about fleeing for their life.
    Just saying, D&D dragons might not think about running away all that often. Especially if only about 1% of the world has PC classes and even less so could pose a threat to them. Tey don't know that the DM has put them there especifically to lose to those especific PC's. If you bur villages with hundredes of humans everyday, you are less likel to be afraid when 5 of them walk up to your lair to challenge you.

  2. chando says:

    Oh, and the Death Off Screen and the Child Zombies its really cool, never realy though about it, even watching GoT! :D

  3. Michael says:

    Good write up, what got you started on this topic?

  4. MythicParty says:

    Hi Michael, this is a recurring series of pieces:
    http://www.dungeonmastering.com/?s=game+of+thrones
    …largely to justify my HBO subscription but also hopefully to help show DMs that there are many other sources of ideas out there besides the usual gaming books or even traditional fantasy novels.

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