Dungeons & Delvers: Mine Kobolds (Also White Book Preview)

Melissa and I alternate as GMs on Tuesdays, which is nice because it gives me a chance to play and gives her a chance to become a better GM. I also think its very useful for a game designer to actually play their own game.

For her campaign she's been doing The Heart of Hemskil, an adventure she originally intended to release for Dungeon World, I originally ran using the Dice Pool version of Dungeons & Delvers, but we never got around to finishing it so now she's doing it for Dungeons & Delvers: Black Book.

So far it's just been a little rough around the ages but still a lot of fun (as campaigns from new/fairly new GMs tend to be): we helped a lowly goblin thief assassinate a goblin king and take his thousands upon thousands of copper pieces, arrested a witch turning kids into gingerbread zombies, and killed a frost giant living in a magical cloud castle.

This was all on the way to a fae-infested forest, where time and space are in flux. We've explored it for who knows how long, killing faerie knights and getting tricked by and getting revenge on a talking fox, until we finally found the tree-fortress of a faerie king that we believe has a magical ruby heart stolen from the prince of a human kingdom.

Crazy times.

I rolled up a mine kobold fighter (pictured above) partly because I figured we'd need a fighter, but mostly I wanted to see if kobolds could be decent fighters and if their ability to see in the dark and phase through stone was "overpowered".

Four levels in and I gotta say it feels just fine. I've used stone-phasing mostly to scout and hide (when it's possible and I think of it), but really seeing in the dark has been more reliably useful, which I don't take to be a bad thing considering racial feature-wise kobolds don't get much else.

On the fighter's side of things, I've been sticking with the default Damage Bonuses, and I snagged Defender with my 2nd-level talent to bump up my AC. I'm due for another talent in a couple levels, though I'm not sure what I'm going to take: maybe Sweeping Strike or Trip Attack. This might sound bad but at 5th-level you get to make two attacks per round, and right now even my one attack is pretty sweet.

Curious how other mine kobold players are faring: do they suck? Have you been able to abuse either of their core racial abilities? Do they need more?

One of our upcoming standalone RPGs is something we're calling White Book. Basically it's Black Book but much bigger and waaay more "OSR" in tone and mechanics.

RPG Crawler thinks Black Book is OSR enough, and I'm inclined to agree, but White Book is going to have wizards with actually Vancian magic, no at-will magic (wizards will instead be able to convert prepped spells into something like a magic missile), race-as-class, random ability scores, WP, and VP as the norm, AC only, more saving throws, and monsters with save-or-die effects.

One of the racial classes is the kobold, which is very magic oriented. Unlike the elf, which uses the Black Book random Mana drain and some fighter stuff, and the wizard, which uses actually Vancian magic, the kobold will geared around the universal Recharge mechanic that some monsters use (like the bone devil). Here's how it works.

When you use a talent that requires a Recharge, at the start of your turn you roll a d6. If you get a 6 then you can use your Recharge talents again, otherwise you have to wait until your next turn. Thinking of giving them some ability to roll twice, or add +1 to the result. Maybe they can suffer WP damage to do a kind of blood magic thing.

As you level up the number you need to roll gets reduced, but many Recharge talents let you increase this value to make the talent do more. So at 5th-level you just need to roll a 5 or 6 to recharge. If you use a talent's Recharge +1 effect, you then need to roll a 6 for your powers to Recharge. You can't increase the number needed to Recharge above 6, so at 1st-level you can't boost anything.

Here's an example of what I'm talking about:

Burning Hands [Recharge]
Prerequisite: Hearth Spirit, Firebolt
You deal 1d6+Charisma fire damage to every creature in a 15-foot cone (Dexterity save for half).

  • Recharge +1: The damage is increased to 3d6+Charisma fire damage.
  • Recharge +2: The range is increased to 30 feet, and the damage is increased to 6d6+Charisma fire damage.
Otherwise the class is going to have some rogue elements, such as a reduced Sneak Attack and a few extra skills here and there.

You can now get a physical copy of Dungeons & Delvers: Black Book in whatever format you want! We've also released the first big supplement for it, Appendix D, so pick that up if you want more of everything.

Our latest Dungeon World class, The Apothecary, is now available.

Dwarven Vault is our sixth 10+ Treasures volume. If you're interested in thirty dwarven magic items (including an eye that lets you shoot lasers) and nearly a dozen new bits of dungeon gear, check it out!

Just released our second adventure for A Sundered World, The Golden Spiral. If a snail-themed dungeon crawl is your oddly-specific thing, check it out!

By fan demand, we've mashed all of our 10+ Treasure volumes into one big magic item book, making it cheaper and more convenient to buy in print (which you can now do).

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