Friday, September 20, 2013

Day 20 - Favorite Fey (D&D 30 Day Challenge)

[HackMaster Edition]

The Barbarian Brownies

For this part of the challenge I will (mostly) review some of my favorite HackMaster monster variants. HackMaster 4E did an excellent job in providing all the AD&D monsters a DM could probably need (and then some). We're talking more than 1600 monsters in 8 "Hacklopedia of Beasts" volumes here, with aliases and ideas for the use of special monster parts in addition to a description and the stats. And it's funny.

Here's about the Barbarian Brownies.
The Willow Brownies.

This goes back a while. When I saw the movie Willow for the first time, I didn't care that much for the little guy, but I loved the Fighter and the brave brownies. I was young and didn't know better (didn't see that film for a long time now, but my appreciation for anything George Lucas has been faded for some time now...). But yeah, those guys were fantastic. Fighting and drinking, always at a disadvantage, but not really that aware of it. Perfect.

But it wasn't before I had read the Wee Free Men by Terry Pratchett and saw the entry for the Barbarian Brownies (aka Savage Fairies or Pictsies) in the Hacklopedia of Beasts, Vol. 1 that I started to connect the dots. At the time the group was exploring the town Tharp (which some of you might know under the name Hommlet) and I had to breathe some life into the village. The reasonable thing to do was to put a brewery in there. The beer had to come from somewhere (an often neglected fact...).
Rob Anybody, Big Man of the Nac Mac Feegles.

So the local brewery had some problems. Beer was gone missing and some rumors made the rounds that the brewery was cursed (accidents had happened, too). It was a classic plot. It took the players some time to find out that some savage fey had come down from the mountains and discovered the brewery as their holy land (it all became a bit clearer when the characters found a dead drunk blue fairy with red hair and a kilt, of course).

They had a regular occurrence as comic relief after that*. Loved those guys.

As far as stats go, HackMaster was pretty generous to the Barbarian Brownies, they got 2 HD +2, they only eat meat and love a good fight (count as fearless, fear spells don't affect them). They live in barren lands, have to fight for their survival and are quite strong (four Nac Mac Feegles could steal a sheep, each of them grabbing one leg). They save as fighters level 9, love to use traps to get an advantage and do 1d5 damage. If they have 2 rounds time to prepare, they can invoke a berserk rage, dealing 1d6 points of damage for 3 rounds. These small warriors know how to blend with their surroundings (surprise an enemy 9 in 10 times).

They don't like other fairies that much and are an intimidating enemy.

Need to do a character class some time in the future...


*The Nac Mac Feegles speak sort of a Scottish dialect, which is hilarious. Took me half a book to understand what they were saying (not being a native speaker and all that). For our game switched that to Bavarian, which worked just as well.

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