Today we skip forward a couple of issues. Dragon #77 was dominated by an article on using tarot cards in your game. #78 was all about psionics. I love the idea of psionics, but have yet to find a system that I really like. I am eagerly awaiting to see what 5th Edition brings.
Which brings us to Dragon #79. A good issue mostly filled with advice and a Top Secret adventure set in an amusement park that I always thought looked like fun. We do get one monster, the gremlin! These aren't the ones from the movie, or from AMC. These draw inspiration from the WWII version of gremlins, as shown to us by Bugs Bunny.
I toned down their power from the article. They have some getting spell abilities up to being able to cast a couple 9th level spells. Feel free to add to their powers. No reason they can't have some more powerful members, but I'd keep them more mischievous than destructive.
Tiny fey,chaotic neutral
Armor Class 15
Hit Points 7 (3d4)
Speed 20 ft.
STR DEX CON INT WIS CHA
14 (+2) 14 (+2) 10 (+0) 14 (+2) 9 (-1) 7 (-2)
Skills acrobatics +2, sleight of hand +4, stealth +2
Senses darkvision 100 ft., passive Perception 9
Languages sylvan, common
Challenge ¼ (50 XP)
Magic Resistance: The gremlin has advantage on saving throws against magical effects.
Spellcasting: The gremlin is a 2nd level spellcaster that uses Intelligence as its magic ability (spell save DC 12). It has the following spells prepared:
Cantrips: dancing lights, mage hand, prestidigitation
Feather Fall: Gremlins can cast feather fall at will. They have one peculiarity in this respect: they like to keep their heads pointed downward (toward the ground) when feather falling. Frequently gremlins will form chains, linking arms and feather falling as a group, much the way skydivers form patterns as they fall.
Melee Attack-Claws: +4 to hit (reach 5 ft.; one creature).
Hit: 5 (1d4+3) slashing damage
Invisibility: The gremlin turns invisible until it attacks or ends the effect. It can end the effect at any time without using an action.
Gremlins find simple pranks to be the best. Some favorites are: tripping people at the top of a darkened stairwell; blowing out a party’s torches just before an encounter with a monster; giving false or inaccurate information by pretending to be the voice of a magic mirror or some other object; removing arrowheads from their shafts; and drinking up all the lantern oil a party may be carrying.
During times of war, siege, and other major human and humanoid undertakings, the entire gremlin force will be mobilized to harry both sides.
Gremlins are amazingly strong for their size, easily rivalling most humans. But they tend to avoid combat, preferring trickery instead.
Land gremlins live in underground burrows similar to those inhabited by halflings. The entrances are concealed or camouflaged to look like the entrance to a giant rat warren or some wild animalís burrow.
Marine gremlins have webbed feet with fins on the backs of their heels. They have a set of secondary gills which enable them to breathe underwater and live in grottos and undersea caverns.
The spandule is a species of gremlin which lives entirely in the upper reaches of the sky. Spandules either ride on the backs of large flying creatures such as rocs, or live on high mountain peaks.