Twas the week before Christmas, and all through the game,
The players could tell it just wasn’t the same.
The GM was testing a new monster template,
And every PC there had already felt it.
They tossed their best spells, they hacked at it plenty.
They started to wonder “is it CR 20?”
The fighter’s HP put him just above dead.
The rogue and the wizard were both in the red.
The cleric was frantic, the bard was off-key,
The druid had lost his whole menagerie.
Yet still the beast lingered, a towering drake,
That somehow left ninth-level spells in its wake.
Its hide was like kevlar, its teeth carbon steel,
Its breath weapon DC was simply unreal.
When all of a sudden there arose such a clatter,
As up went the dice, and how they did scatter!
“Enough!” said the ranger, her temper inflamed,
“This isn’t the reason I come here to game!
“I’m fresh out of ammo, and patience, and time,
Just tell us the trick to get rid of this guy!”
The GM stood breathless, his heart in his throat,
Stunned by the ire at the creature he wrote.
He glanced at the numbers, he thought on the fight,
He soon saw the player was painfully right.
“Okay,” he said quickly, consulting his charts,
“You have what you need now to take him apart.”
“Its weakness,” he fibbed, “is tricky to find,
“I should have been clearer – the mistake is all mine.”
“You see,” he continued, watching eyes start to roll,
“This dragon you’re fighting is a lot like a troll.”
“You’ve done loads of damage, but it grows it right back,
“You just have to find the right kind of attack.”
The group seemed mistrustful, but slowly agreed,
And climbed back astride the proverbial steed.
Now potions, now buff spells, now items galore!
On flanking, on raging, on 15d4!
And this time it lasted, the damage they slung,
Until at long last, the great battle was won.
The players rejoiced, their hands in the air!
The GM collapsed, with a smile, to his chair.
They left there with laughter, good feelings and cheer,
But to the GM, only one thing was clear:
He’d narrowly sidestepped a gaming disaster,
And all for his high-level dragon-troll caster!
The spirit of gaming, he reminded himself,
Was fun for the group above anything else.
So good GMs know when the numbers should budge,
Because, in the end, we all love Christmas fudge.