A few people on the board have shared that the Big Bad for Tot12 is a decent challenge, but doesn't have the same Epic feel as other bosses in the AP.
I've been musing on this a bit, and have a few fun threads from the Castrovel lore that I think might weave together well.
*Players can't just pilot their ship to the temple because of a migration of some sort. The flight restriction should have a good reason.
*There are a ton of flying creatures on the planet. We haven't seen anything about the thakasa, the mounts of some of the planet's fierce Laubu Riders.
*There is some question about how to get back after the temple, either trekking back or getting an evacuation.
So, here are my thoughts. PC's hack the transponder for an immediate med-evac for the recently liberated NPC professor. A hover craft sets down a few hours later, but throws some smoke grenades to provide cover. As the rescue team comes to grab the PC's, a shadow falls over the smoke obscured clearing.
Thakasa!!!!! I'm thinking about the dragons from Avatar, and that seems to fit perfect with the space jungle feel of Castovel.
I'm imagining a fun battle, with wind blowing the smoke around as the beasts blast away at the party with whirlwinds or breath weapons. Something cinematic, either as a ground based skirmish with some of the beasts up close, or a vehicle chase with a pack of them.
I also really like the notion of a few whelps causing a ruckus, and then having an elder show up to be truly terrifying. Again, think the super badass red dragon from Avatar.
Different enough from the Yaruk stampede that it doesn't feel recycled, but adding a little urgency and fun for characters as a capstone for their time on the planet.
In terms of mechanics, I was thinking a large/huge wind elemental with an added breath weapon, or modifying a dragon so that it was a little lower CR.Any thoughts on rules/considerations/good template grafts, or creatures to model the Thakasa off of?
We almost got killed by the boss and his friends. It ended with a last ditch melee combat by our nearly dead solarion going head to head with the boss and getting a lucky hit off.
If he'd had another minion, that might have been more epic, but i think it was pretty good.
I listened to the Cosmic Crit playthrough of that section, and it was plenty epic. Explosives going off, the solarion nearly dying, lots of devastating misses and clutch hits. Everyone was on their last legs by the end.
Specific to their podcast:
We included an helicopter in this one, which was doing strafing runs. I also added another NPC (a drow weapon dealer, to tie in the background of one of the PCs), and he was trying to flee to the helicopter while Tahome charged. The drow flew with only a few HP left in the helicopter, so they had to chase him later to Apostatae, to discover the situation of the Cult of the Devourer's asteroid. It was fun, the straffing runs added some enviromental damage and forced people to run for cover from time to time.