For my next post in the A-Z Challenge, I will be posting a Sandbox Encounter focused on the bands of rogues and brigands that plague the Madlands. J is for Jackal Lords.
Brief Description: Life in the Madlands is hard and often fruitless. Many mercenaries, having crossed the Sovereign Chasm with high hopes of finding treasure and great wealth, find themselves unable to afford the return passage across the Skybridge back to Fellgorge. The less reputable of them band together as bandits, brigands and rogues, striking against returning expeditions in hopes of stealing any treasure for themselves. While these bands often identify themselves by various names, most adventurers call them Jackal Lords, after the most famous and successful of the bandits to employ this technique of acquiring "easy wealth."
Encounter Groups: These are common encounter groups for this type of encounter.
- Novice (levels 1-3): 5 Jackal Rogues, 1 Jackal Lord. 2d6x10 silver shillings. (I use a silver standard in my campaigns.)
- Seasoned (levels 4-6): 15 Jackal Rogues, 2 Jackal Lords, 1 Jackal Warlord. 2d4x1000 silver shillings, 1d3 gems, 1d3 jewelry, two consumable items (50% chance each), and one magic item (50% chance).
- Veteran (levels 7-10): 30 Jackal Rogues, 4 Jackal Lords, 2 Jackal Warlords. 2d6x1000 silver shillings, 2d4 gems, 1d4+1 jewelry, one magic weapon (50% chance), one magic armor (50% chance), two magic items (50% chance each), and two consumables (50% chance each).
Stat Blocks: The following stats are provided as examples for inspiration. Please adjust as needed to fit your preferred gaming system and style.
- Jackal Rogue: AC 8 ; HD 1d6+2 hp; Atk: by weapon (1d6); ST: 16; SP: Sneak attack (+2 attack, x2 damage with surprise); MV: 12; CL 1; XP: 15.
- Jackal Lord: AC 5 ; HD 4d6+8 hp; Atk: by weapon (1d8); ST: 13; SP: Sneak attack (+2 attack, x2 damage with surprise); MV: 9; CL 5; XP: 200.
- Jackal Warlord: AC 2 ; HD 8d6+16 hp; Atk: by weapon (1d8); ST: 9; SP: Improved sneak attack (+2 attack, x3 damage with surprise); MV: 9; CL 9; XP: 1,100.
Encounter Ideas: Here are six different scenarios related to this encounter type.
- The Jackal Lords lie in wait for a successful expedition to cross their path, and assume the party is likely to have treasure.
- A seemingly innocent campsite serves as the lure for an ambush by the Jackal Lords.
- The Jackal Lords are seeking new memberships after suffering recent losses, and will welcome the party into their ranks if they donate all of their accumulated wealth to the coffers of the band and accept the rule of the band's leader.
- The Jackal Lords are fleeing a divinely-warped aberration from the depths of the Madlands, and are more than willing to send the party in that direction to distract the beast.
- The Jackal Lords pose as an expedition, and seek to gain the trust of the party by attempting to travel with them "for protection" before attacking in the middle of the night.
- The leader of the Jackal Lords is an exiled noble who seeks to return to his native land and exact vengeance on those who exiled him.