Wednesday, June 15, 2016

The Zylarthen Drow

Actual Size

This is a follow-up to yesterday's post, showing what I came up with.

Most obviously, I call them "Dark Elves" not "Drow." If I thought I could do it without offending too many people, I would consider calling them "Black Elves" to make them slightly stranger sounding and to further distinguish them from the AD&D version.

It's mainly a simplified AD&D Drow--but in miniature, like the Seven Voyages of Zylarthen Gnome (which I have included for comparison). Their spells are Zylarthen Witch spells, which I thought would be appropriate:

GNOMES: Hit Dice: ½. Armor Class: 5. Move: 6/3. Alignment: 50% chance of Law, 50% chance of Neutrality. Languages: Type E. Number Appearing: 40-400. % In Lair: 60%. Treasure: Class 1. Description: Gnomes are barely over 1 foot in height and can move through solid earth (though not necessarily stone) as easily as men move through air. They will only be encountered far beneath “the sunlit lands” in deep dungeons or caverns. Missiles: die 1 = none, die 2-4 = spear, die 5 = sling, die 6 = bow.

DARK ELVES: Hit Dice: ½. Attacks: 1-6 - poisoned bolts - spells. Armor Class: 4. Move: 12. Alignment: Chaos. Languages: Type E. Number Appearing: 5-50. % In Lair: 0%. Treasure: Class 10, plus 5-30 G.P. and 50%: 2-12 gems ea. Description: Dark Elves are the counterparts to Gnomes but unfortunately are much more dangerous. Like Gnomes they are barely over one foot in height. Also like Gnomes, they will only be encountered far beneath “the sunlit lands.” Dark Elves do not have the ability to burrow through the earth, but they may move silently and near-invisibly so as to suddenly appear virtually anywhere (surprising on a 1-4). Due to their small size and use of enchanted weapons and armors, Dark Elves always have a +4 bonus to hit and impose a -4 penalty on those trying to hit them. They fight with a variety of weapons but most also carry a small crossbow that can be operated with one hand—the bolts being envenomed and causing sleep (save at -4). All Dark Elves may use these spells once per day: Clairvoyance, Dancing Lights, Darkness, 5’ Radius, Detect Lie, Detect Magic, Dispel Magic, Faerie Fire, Levitate and Suggestion. In addition, for every 10 Dark Elves, there will be a Diabolist. For every 20 Dark Elves there will be an Haruspex. And for every 50 Dark Elves there will be a Prince or Sorceress (each equivalent to a 12th level Wizard). Dark Elf Magic-Users use the same spell lists as Witches. All Dark Elves are 50% resistant to spells.

New Spells:

Dancing Lights: At a range of up to 100’ the caster may create either: a) 1-4 lights that look in the darkness like bobbing torches or lanterns, b) glowing or blinking “will-o-wisp” like spheres or c) a faintly glowing man-like shape. These shapes may move as desired within the range of the spell. Duration: 10 melee turns. 

Faerie Fire: This spell allows the caster to draw an outline of blue “Faerie Fire” around one or more objects or creatures. The Faerie Fire will be visible for 80’ in the dark and 40’ in bright light and may even make invisible creatures visible. An outline of to 60’ length may be drawn—equivalent to four man-sized creatures, spaced fairly closely together. Being outlined in such a way is not in and of itself harmful but it will give opponents a +2 bonus to hit. Duration: 20 melee turns, Range: 80’.

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