D&D Miniatures05/29/2008

Against the Giants Preview 4
Death from Above and Below

This week we present two winged enemies: one from the Astral Sea, the other from the Abyss. Both of these creatures have effects that revolve around the bloodied state. One is easier to finish off when it is bloodied, while the other gets a huge damage boost against bloodied creatures.

From a game design perspective, the bloodied state is a progress tracker. By having the game state change as creatures become bloodied, the game designer adds a powerful tactic a player can exploit. In the old rules, this was done with morale, but failing a morale save could cost a player the game. Abilities that grant advantages against bloodied creatures help retain some of the tactics that people utilized to take advantage of morale in the old rules but not to the extent that morale did.

Angel of Retribution

In Desert of Desolation, you found the fiery Angel of Vengeance. From the other end of the temperature spectrum comes the Angel of Retribution. At first glance, miniature battle players may dismiss this creature as being less accurate and easier to hit than other creatures of similar cost. The actual attack and defense numbers deserve a closer look.

This Angel's basic attack is actually a bit more accurate than most. The ability to reroll a missed attack can be a huge advantage. Against a creature of approximately the same level, the angel should hit about 75% of the time, whereas without the reroll, the attack would connect only about half the time.

Players using this creature should be careful to maintain it in an unbloodied state, because its defenses change with the bloodied condition. While this creature is not bloodied, enemies not immune to fear effects have a -2 penalty when attacking it.

Click to display stat card

Gnaw Demon

Click to display stat card

Demons are driven to destroy. Some, like the Bar-lgura, choose to tear apart foes with their bare hands. Others use slightly more sophisticated methods such as the Balor's fiery whip or the slashing scimitars of a Marilith. The only desire for the Gnaw Demon is to consume.

This low-level demon is a decent fighter at the beginning of a battle, but if you can protect him for a short time, his offensive potential skyrockets. A 17-point creature teleporting adjacent to a bloodied target and striking for 25 damage should turn anyone's head.

Speaking of demons, my parting tidbit for this week: three creatures in this set have the Orcus keyword.

See us next week when I drag Shoe away from his work to give his thoughts on two miniatures in the set.

About the Author

Peter Lee is the newest member of the RPG R&D Design team and the new Lead Designer for theD&D Miniatures game.

For the insatiably curious among you, here are the silhouettes of the 16 creatures that will be previewed here. Go ahead and try to figure out what they are. We dare you. (Clicking on any revealed image takes you to its preview.)

Dwarf Warsword
Earth Titan
Angel of Retribution
Gnaw Demon
Dragonborn Defender
Elder White Dragon
Dragonborn Myrmidon
Feybound Halfling
Yuan-Ti Anathema
Chain Golem
Eladrin Pyromancer
Blazing Skeleton
Shadow Hulk
Lurking Wraith
Fire Bat
Efreeti Flamestrider
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