The action begins with Ookla wearing a funny hat and running from humans. Wait, what? That’s not Ookla, that’s Oblach, the Mok chieftain. And those aren’t any humans, they’re river pirates led by the beautiful and loud Captain Kordon, Queen of the River Pirates.
So she’s not a wizard? There’s no wizard in this one? Kordon better have some crazy magic on her side to face down Thundarr and Ariel…
Sure enough, this episode has the highest weapons-slashed-by-Thundarr ratio. The pirates just keep lifting up their weapons uselessly so Thundarr can destroy them. Worse, some of the pirates appear to be in SCUBA-diving gear, which they never actually use. Kordon’s ship, a converted carrier turned into a giant river barge fortress, is like a Pirates of the Caribbean ride: there’s the scary captain swinging from a rope, the one-eyed pirate with his cutlass, and SCUBA Steve!
Finally, the pirates get smart and hurl Hee-Cheen at our heroes, mutant killer bees that can kill with one sting.
- Hee-Cheen (CR 8, HD 12d10+24)
- N Diminutive Magical Beast (Swarm)
- Init +10 Spd 5 or Fly, Perfect 40
- Senses Darkvision (Ex): 60 ft.; Low-light Vision (Ex); | Listen +9, Spot +9
- AC 20 (FF 14, Touch 20)
- hp 93 (Disabled -2/Dying -14/Injury 14)
- Saves: Fort +10, Ref +14, Will +6
- Immunity: Weapon Damage (Ex), Vulnerability: Energy Damage Weapons (Ex), Vulnerability: Swung Torches (Ex), Vulnerability: Thrown Lanterns (Ex)
- Atk +11/+6/+1 base melee, +22/+17/+12 base ranged; Grapple -5; Face 10’x10′; Reach 0′;
- +11 Melee (Swarm 3d6/crit 20/x2);
- SA: Distraction (Ex) , Poison (Ex)
- SQ: Hive Mind (Ex), Subtype: Swarm,
- Abilities STR 1, DEX 22, CON 14, INT 6, WIS 11, CHA 9
- Feats: Ability Focus, Alertness, Improved Initiative, Iron Will, Toughness.
- Skills: Hide + 19, Listen + 9, Spot + 9.
- Distraction (Ex): Any living creature that begins its turn with a hee-cheen swarm in its space must succeed on a DC 18 Fortitude save or be nauseated for 1 round. The save DC is Constitution-based.
- Poison (Ex): Injury, Fortitude DC 18, initial and secondary damage 1d6 Dex. The save DC is Constitution-based.
- Hive Mind (Ex): Any hee-cheen swarm with at least 1 hit point per Hit Die (or 12 hit points, for a standard hee-cheen swarm) forms a hive mind, giving it an Intelligence of 6. When a hee-cheen swarm is reduced below this hit point threshold, it becomes mindless.
Thundarr, who seems quite educated about bees, uses smoke and fire to drive them out. Oblach, it turns out, has treasure in his village that Kordon wants. She decides the Fire Lances of the Ancients will get her what she needs, presumably by bombing the living crap out of the Mok village. And she’s not kidding, because the lances are actually torpedoes.
The pirates don’t have any magic – no wizard, remember? – so everything is run by hand cranks and people power. It’s a bit like the Flintstones on the high seas. The crane is powered by a single guy turning a hand crank (which lifts a gigantic torpedo, good work pirate guy!). The next battle takes place in a ship graveyard, where Kordon’s men begin unloading the torpedoes from nuclear subs. Thundarr cuts the cord on one of the cranes and KAPLOW! It blows up, knocking our three heroes conveniently unconscious. Good thing Kordon wasn’t anywhere near the blast…
Heroes unconscious? Ariel reclining in an attractive pose of serene tranquility? A villain realizing she can’t use Thundarr’s sword and throwing it after him into the sub? You know what that means: GIANT MONSTER FIGHT.
With a blow of her whistle, Kordon summons a Brakt. What is a Brakt, you ask? It’s what an artist who’s never seen a lobster draws. The Brakt has big pincers, a big maw, and a slappy tail.
- Brakt (CR 7, HD 11d8+44)
- N Large Aberration (Aquatic)
- Init +7 Spd Swim 20 or 30
- Senses Darkvision (Ex): 60 ft. | Listen +11, Spot +11
- AC 22 (FF 19, Touch 12)
- hp 93 (Disabled -4/Dying -18/Injury 18)
- Saves: Fort +7, Ref +6, Will +9
- Immunity: Poison (Ex), SR 21
- Atk +12/+7 base melee, +10/+5 base ranged; Grapple +17; Face 10’x10′;
- +12 Melee (2 Claw 2d6+5/crit 20/x2);
- SA: Improved Grab (Ex) , Constrict (Ex)
- SQ: Amphibious (Ex),
- Abilities STR 20, DEX 16, CON 18, INT 5, WIS 14, CHA 5
- Feats: Alertness, Blind-Fight, Combat Reflexes, Improved Initiative.
- Skills: Hide + 13, Listen + 11, Spot + 11, Swim + 13.
- Improved Grab (Ex): To use this ability, the brakt must hit with a claw attack.
- Squeeze (Ex): A brakt that gets a hold automatically deals claw damage, with an additional 1d6 points of bludgeoning damage from the crushing force, each round the hold is maintained.
Ariel decides her magic can’t defeat it, so they flee in torpedo tubes – or at least, that was her plan until Thundarr decides to fire her out of one. He then drops half the submarine on the Brakt, carves his way out of the side, and the sub blows up. Now THAT’S the Thundarr we know and love!
Meanwhile, Kordon attacks the Moks with her fire lances. She makes it all the way to the treasure mound, only to discover there’s no treasure inside. Like so many episodes, this is the traditional Thundarr “fate worse than death.” Greedy Kordon went through all that trouble to find the Mok treasure without realizing the mound itself IS the treasure – it’s made of gold and she’s imprisoned inside. Ironic damage!
Kordon wields a rapier and never once does Thundarr get to cut it and half. Also, this episode makes it quite clear that Ariel has a thing for Thundarr and that Thundarr doesn’t seem interested. The true course of love in the Thundarr-verse never did run smooth.
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