D&D Miniatures05/04/2006


War of the Dragon Queen Preview 3
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Huge Fire Elemental

One of the new things brought into D&D Miniatures with the War of the Dragon Queen expansion is translucent plastic. We're using it to varying degrees, from the bow of the Storm Archer revealed a few weeks ago to the fully-translucent fire elementals. Yes, elementals, plural. For starters, though, let's look at the Bonded Fire Summoner, a spellcaster based on the bonded summoner prestige class from the Miniatures Handbook.

Bonded Fire SummonerBonded Fire Summoner

What better way is there to fight than to have someone else do the fighting for you? It's been a while since we've put a spellcaster with summoning abilities in a set, so now feels like the perfect time to introduce this special summon … er… someone. This guy is my new favorite wizard mini, based on the illustration of the bonded summoner from the Miniatures Handbook. No pointy hat, no shaved head or billowing beard, but instead a competent-looking spellcaster with staff and tome. I'm sure that the numerous pouches are filled with bat guano, although in this case he probably has a few candles on hand (which happen to be the arcane focus for summon monster spells).

The uncommon Bonded Fire Summoner is all about fire, particularly fire brought by fire elementals. His commander effect grants all elementals immunity to cold, countering the biggest weakness of fire elementals, and his warband building lets him bring into Chaotic Good any elemental with Immune Fire (which includes fire elementals of all sizes, plus the magmin and the ***** ****** from this set). Even better, he has a special ability called Fire Companions that gives all such elementals a +2 bonus on Attack rolls and Speed. His direct offensive capability is limited, so he really relies on the elementals he summons with his two summon monster IV spells (each allows up to three elementals with a total cost of 25 or less).

Fire Elementals

What good is a summoner without minions? We've had a couple of these elementals on the back burner for a while, waiting until we could implement them with clear plastics. War of the Dragon Queen gives you elementals at both ends of the size spectrum, from small to huge. Both the small and huge Fire Elementals are Uncommons in their respective slots, and while the Small Fire Elemental continues the fire element's association with Chaotic Evil, the Huge fills a dual role as a purely Chaotic Epic creature.

Small Fire ElementalThe Bonded Fire Summoner can conjure up a half-dozen Small Fire Elementals and could be included in a warband with a trio of huge Fire Elementals. That's a lot of 'firepower'. Like many elementals before them, the Small Fire Elemental requires a commander to be on the board, but the Huge Elemental is under no such restriction. Both Fire Elementals have the Fire Shield special ability, which scorches an opponent for 5 or 10 fire damage any time the elemental is hit in melee. Both are crazy fast with a base speed of 10. Of course, both are immune to fire and vulnerable to cold -- or immune to both if the Summoner is around. Epic battles with lots of elementals will be fun to watch because of the Huge Elemental's Enflamed ability -- adjacent allies with Immune or Resist Fire gain an extra +2 to attack and +5 fire damage. With the Huge and the Summoner around, even those Small Fire Elementals can get up to +9 to attack (when flanking) for 5 + 10 fire.

Overall, these guys can combine to immolate the competition, so long as that competition isn't immune to fire. Next week, we'll look at War of the Dragon Queen's contribution to the ranks of Uncommon giants. At least technically they're giants. In the meantime, check out the Leaked Images page for more pictures of minis fromWotDQ. See you next week!

About the Author

Stephen Schubert is a Developer with RPG/Minis R&D and is the lead developer for D&D Miniatures starting with next July's War of the Dragon Queen. He's also helped develop many exciting upcoming D&D products, including Player's Handbook II, Monster Manual IV, Tome of Magic, and Tome of Battle!

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