When your people spend their days scurrying around dungeons, subservient to a dragon, and acting as primary fodder for adventuring heroes, it can be tough rising about your nature and becoming more than what you were seemingly destined to be. Some Kobolds rise above being Knuckleheads, and learn darker means of inflicting stabby doom on heroes. Others dedicate themselves to working even closer with Starfire’s brood. Then there are the Wyrm Claw Templars, of whom Ser Snapjaw was renowned as their greatest warrior… but we’re not here today to talk about that reprehensible fiend. No, we’re turning the mirror around to the heroic version of the Wyrm Claw Templars…
Ladies and Gentlelost, the Wyrm Claw Exemplar.
As heroes go, the Exemplar is made to be a speedy little tank. Speed 7 makes him faster than average, despite the bulk of his armour.
- 3B Strength. A respectable melee base for our little kobold hero.
- 1R2B Armour. This is already above the curve, and we can make it a little higher in just a minute.
- 1R1B Will. Average… I imagine he’d be more but I think he’s preoccupied keeping the heroes from discovering that he’s a kobold.
- 1R1B Dexterity. No ranged abilities, no issue.
- Blue Crystal Affinity
- Immunity to Knockdown. Low center of gravity, mayhap?
- 5 hearts, 1 potion.
The strength in his stats is in his armour, which should immediately tell you what sort of role he’s destined for, but let’s go through his abilities too.
For 2 actions he can push a red attack button for Burning Blade, which is, frankly, nifty. A melee attack, it grants the Exemplar +1R, so you’re swinging at 1R3B, Sweeping the three squares in front of you, and setting everything on fire just for good measure. Very solid.
On the other side of the coin we see the defensive prowess of the Exemplars, when for 2 more actions the Exemplar can enact Hightower. A friendly buff, every hero within 3 squares of the Exemplar gains +1 Auto Armour and immunity to knockdown. Even if he’s not your primary tank, the Exemplar can earn his place in the front lines as a bulwark through this ability alone.
Finally, there’s his Portcullis Potion, which is an unusual draught since it doesn’t so much affect the Exemplar as it does the board. You pick any doorway and place a token next to it. The next mob that walks through the doorway takes a hit equal to the current STR of the Exemplar. This means (1) the potion is a situational trap rather than an instantaneous benefit for the party, and (2) the more Loot and Treasure you’ve equipped to the Exemplar that increases his Strength, the stronger the trap. In other works, as a heroic player you’ve got the potential to scale the potion up to make it much more dangerous than it initially seems.
Now, the beauty of the Wyrm Claw Exemplar – aside from his being a generally solid little tank – is that you can pick him up as an individual purchase from Soda Pop or your FLGS, without having to pick up a larger expansion if you don’t want to. The added joy there is that you also get the Ser Snapjaw cards to use him as a miniboss in both Arcade and Classic modes, and you get the Exemplar Shield to add to your treasure deck… +2 Auto Arm and Immunity to Knockdown. It’s a thing.
Next time: Glimmerwing…