Today's word was salad days (a phrase I'd never heard before), but two days ago it was
choleric \KOL-uh-rik; kuh-LAIR-ik\, adjective:1. Easily irritated; inclined to anger; bad-tempered.2. Angry; indicating or expressing anger; excited by anger.
At his trial, Ferrars argued that he had always been of such choleric disposition that, at times when his blood was up, he knew not right from wrong.
Which instantly had me thinking about a encounter with a very hostile and irritable ogre.
If you dropped him into the world's largest dungeon, the encounter might look something like this:
Room A54 (just picked a number at random).
Initial Attitude: Choleric
Encounter: Angry (hp XX), the ogre, is arguing (in a mishmash of the Giant and Orc languages) with another ogre over the fact that Longtail has gotten them lost in this stupid region. Frankly, it sucks. Angry is just looking for an excuse to punch someone in the head over it, so the first guy to argue with him is going to lose some teeth. But unless the PCs understand Giant or Orc, they won't understand a word he's saying. Three sullen orcs sit uncomfortably in the corner, avoiding Angry's gaze and hoping he'll shut up soon... or leave for a potty break.
They haven't eaten in four days now and one of the orcs is holding out a waterskin that he runs to Room AXXX (pick one that has a water supply) to refill from time to time. Angry doesn't know about this, and if he did, he's probably just kill the orc. He's likely to do that anyone in a few more days if they don't find food soon.
Encounter Condition: Tremors 15, Unstable Ground
Tactics: Angry is quick to turn anything into a fight. If anyone opposes him, he smashes them in the mouth. He's tough and strong (even for an ogre), possessing Strength two points higher than a normal ogre. He also has two levels of Barbarian. Go ahead and make the stat block for him, I'm not going to. He should have Improved Unarmed Strike, though.
Angry will not attack the PCs immediately, unless they interrupt him when he's talking or begin some kind of arguement with him. And even then, he'll just bust them in the mouth for doing so. But if the PCs brandish weapons, he'll grab his spiked greatclub and start swinging.
Smart PCs may realize that Angry isn't liked, so if they manage to subdue him, the others in the room will join their party. They desperate want out of the dungeon and will work with anyone that seems to have a better plan than Angry (who wants to do nothing but complain). Angry, however, will only join the PCs if they respect him as an authority figure or leader.
CL: I don't have my books with me. Looks like a 4. Right?
Scaling: Add or remove two orcs.