Hello crew - As part of working on D@W and Lairs & Encounters, I'm drawing up a list of which monsters can be trained, and which must be magically controlled. I need your opinion on a few problem areas!!
Some animals: crocodiles, dinosaurs, fish, lizards, octopuses, rhinoceroses, shark, snakes, squids, toads
Some vermin: caecilian, giant ants, giant killer bees, giant beetles, giant crabs, carcass scavengers, purple worms, rhagodessa, giant scorpions, giant spiders
Certainly Trainable Creatures: These must be trained by an animal trainer.
Most animals: apes, rock baboons, bats, bears, boars, camels, cats, dogs, elephants, ferrets, hawks, herd animals, horses, mules, rats, shrews, weasels, whales, wolves
Certainly Sentient Creatures: These must be recruited as henchmen or hirelings, or enslaved. They may also require training for specific tasks that are not natural to them (e.g. serving as a mount).
All undead except skeletons and zombies
Most fantastic creatures: blink dogs, chimera, demon boars, doppelgangers, dragons, dragon turtles, harpies, hell hounds, lamia, lammasu, lycanthropes, manticores, medusas, minotaurs, pegasi, phase tigers, rocs, shadows, throghrin, treants, and unicorns
Certainly Untrainable Creatures: These could only be used if controlled via magic.
Some vermin: cavern locusts, giant centipedes, insect swarms, giant leeches, rot grubs, shriekers
Some undead: skeletons, zombies
So the question is "to what extent do we want to allow creatures which, in real life, are untrainable - such as lizards, spiders, snakes, and similar - to be trainable without magic in ACKS?" The arguments in favor of allowing them to be trained are:
1. Growth: For giant spiders and so on, their brains are much larger than that of their real-life versions that they might be smart enough
2. Cool Factor: Spider riders and beetle-pulled carts and triceratops war mounts seem awesome.
Let me know your thoughts on all of the above. Anything I mentioned above as smart that you think is supposed to be dumb, or dumb that you think is supposed to be smart?