A particularly useful aspect of the fourth edition of the Dungeons & Dragons game is the assignment of roles, or tactical tendencies, to various monsters. The system even goes so far as assigning different roles to subtypes of monsters within a given monster species; the goblin warrior and goblin blackblade provide an example of how the same monster species can be employed as a skirmisher and lurker, respectively.
Since the Dungeon Master’s Guide recommends that the design of a combat encounter begin with a core of brute or soldier monsters, effectively deploying soldier monsters is important to creating exciting battles for your players. This post describes ways in which you can use the five paragraph order – a military method of communicating objectives to small units – to guide your placement of this type of monster within a dungeon setting, and to guide their behaviors when in combat with your heroes. Continue reading