I’ve been DMing and playing 4E D&D for six months now. Though I generally like the 4th edition and I think it’s the strongest, most cohesive edition so far of the game (I really can’t see myself going back to 3.5 now), I have some pet peeves in the new system. One of those peeves is about the minions. In short, they die too easily. Read more on how we solved this!
Now don’t get me wrong, minions are supposed to die easily and they are supposed to play easily. Not needing to track the HP and roll for damage can be a blessing when throwing 10-15 minions on the characters. But when none of these 15 live past their second round, engulfed in fire shrouds and knocked out by sweeping blows, they seem to be little more than window dressing.
So, we made a change a couple of nights ago, minions suddenly got some hit points. Not much, mind you, but enough to make them last a bit longer. We settled for giving them lvl x 2 HP, meaning a lvl 6 minion suddenly got 12 HP.
First I was afraid that this would lead to unbalanced encounters, but so far, this hasn’t become a problem. In my opinion, minions were underpowered before, they are more on par now. They still succumb to area attacks, but they take two hits to take down instead of one.
It’s a bit extra bookkeeping, but so far, I’ve felt that it’s very much worth it. How do you play your minions? Leave your thoughts in the comments!