As some of you have heard, Underdark introduces a new method of handling extremely powerful creatures. We want to publish legendary creatures like the Balor and Elminster, but we don't want to produce creatures that could only be used in high-power skirmish games. Therefore we've started making two different skirmish cards for selected creatures in the set. One stat card is for standard 200-point games where no creature costs more than 140 points. The other stats are for Epic games played at 500 points.
This week we'll look at two of Underdark's nine Epic creatures, the Chaotic Good Aspect of Kord and the Chaotic Evil Death Slaad. Like all our Epic minis, these two are rares.
Aspect of Kord
Kord, Chaotic Good god of strength, sends splinters of his power to aid his worshippers. This photo may not do justice to the finer details of this mini, such as white dragonskin gloves and blue dragonskin boots. If you're roleplaying and don't want to use the mini as a divine aspect, it makes a great giant commander, giant mercenary, or even a human barbarian benefiting from the enlarge person spell.
Aspect of Kord is a lot of fun to play in the skirmish game. Compared to other aspects and most of the other Epic creatures, Aspect of Kord doesn't have much in the way of AC. His plan is to hit so hard that the enemy doesn't have time to hit him back. Kord caroms around the battlefield at Speed 10 while swinging for 30 magic damage in his standard version. At the Epic level, he hits even harder. Both the standard and Epic stats play off of Kord's insistence on taking the initiative, hence the following ability: Aggression +10 (On its turn, this creature gets damage +10 whenever it is the first to activate in a round).
Summon the Slaad army, we've found its commander! Both versions of the Death Slaad have the Slaadmaster 20 ability, allowing them to command Giants of Legend's Blue Slaad as if it was a normal creature. The Death Slaad isn't a great commander -- it's not going to win you many initiative rolls -- but when it starts cutting loose with its Deadly Rend, you won't care: Deadly Rend (An enemy hit by 2 of this creature's attacks on the same turn is eliminated; DC 17).
Both versions fly, both versions regenerate, both versions cast spells. The standard version casts chaos hammer, the Epic version throws in fireball and power word kill. I'm not telling precisely how power word kill works in the skirmish game, but I assure you that it works.
That does it for our first on-line Epic previews. Avoid all power word kill encounters until next week, when we'll go exploring with a trio of "Tunnel Dwellers."
About the Author
Rob Heinsoo is the lead designer of D&D Miniatures. He's also the designer of Three-Dragon Ante, the card game played by D&D characters in taverns everywhere. WotC will publish Three-Dragon Ante in November as a noncollectible, 72-card deck.