Wednesday, May 05, 2010

A 4e Vacation - Smoky Mountain Terrain Powers

Greetings, Everyone!

Yesterday was my first day back at work, so that means the echoes of our wonderful vacation are going to start to slip away.  Before the images fade completely, I want to cover a few Terrain Powers inspired by Smoky Mountain National Park.
I've never been to any part of the Appalachians, so it was a real treat to see the beautiful scenery.  One of the things that really struck me, though, was that everything was on a slope.  I know that sounds like an obvious observation, but to a flat-lander like me, it was an odd sensation and it stuck with me.  As a result, most of the powers you'll read about below, are only useful on sloping terrain.  

So the next time you're creating an encounter reminiscent of the Smoky Mountains, consider these Terrain Powers:

Invoke Avalanche
Single-Use Terrain
With the directed use of a thunderous power, you provoke an avalanche that sweeps your enemies away.
Standard Action                     Area Blast 5 within 10 squares
Requirement: This terrain power can only be activated by a power using the thunder key word.
Target: Varies based on power used.  You target the slope above your enemies with the thunder power of your choice.
Check: Arcane check (hard DC) to target slope above enemies
Effect: As a standard action you use a power that has the thunder key word to target the slope above your enemies.  As a free action, the slope gives way, tumbling down upon your enemies below.

Attack: Level +3 vs. Reflex
Hit: 1d10 + 1/2 level damage.  Target is pushed 3 squares and knocked prone.
Miss: No effect.

Mountaineer's Advantage
At-Will Terrain
With the skill of a seasoned mountaineer, you manuever on the slope to gain the upper hand over your opponent.
Move Action                     Personal
Check: Acrobatics check (moderate DC) to successfully activate the power.
Success: You gain combat advantage against your enemy until the end of your next turn.
Failure: Your enemy gains combat advantage against you until the end of his next turn.

 *Your terrain may or may not include a wooden fence and parking lot.

Shift Stone
Single-Use Terrain
With a quick shove or kick, you dislodge a slab of rock that cascades down onto your enemy.
Standard Action                     Ranged 2
Attack: Strength vs. AC
Special: Your target must be below you.  This is a single use terrain power.  Multiple squares of this type of terrain may be available.
Check: Athletics check (hard DC) to successfully dislodge the stone.
Hit: 2d10 + one half level damage.
Miss: No Effect

I hope you're enjoying these terrain powers.  I'm new at designing these, so I'd appreciate any feedback you'd like to give.  For my final post in this series, we'll look at some terrain powers usable in the Underdark.

Until next time...

Game excellently with one another.


  1. Swordgleam9:17 AM

    The first one confuses me. How can it be a standard action that's triggered by a thunder power? Can you only use it if you're using an action point to get extra actions? Maybe it should be an immediate reaction that's less powerful, or state that you must use the power to target the terrain (and thus use up the thunder power without dealing damage, but only take on standard action).

  2. R.M. Walker10:55 AM

    @Swordgleam. You know, you're right. The text on that is a bit confusing. It's a standard action to use a power with the thunder key word, targeting the slope. The actual terrain power is a free action that results. I'll edit the text of the power to make that a bit clearer. Thank you!