The Imp

Ah the Imp, The little lawful Evil 2 foot tall Extra Planer master manipulators. They are wild little Devils of the least order often tasked as bonded companions to Warlocks or other beings that have made Pacts to greater power. They do their master’s bidding all the while searching out more souls to corrupt along the way. Most all imps are terrible cowards but that does not make them any less dangerous.

Bonded Imps will only attack if ordered by their master when alone they only attack as last resort unless they are confident that they can safely retreat or quickly overcome their foes. Imps have a scorpion-like tail that can deliver a powerful poisonous sting. They rely on this to quickly end any confrontation if they must fight. If their opponent proves too powerful to quickly overcome they will utilize their ability to become invisible and fly to escape without hesitation.

Back in 1st edition this stinger was ridiculously brutal as a Save or Die attack, Yikes!  Later in, 3.5 its was toned down but still very lethal with it being a Dex damaging attack.  In 4th it just became an ongoing poison effect. None the less deadly but far easier to get by then just falling over dead.  Now we see the Imp in its 5th incarnation and his sting deals a brutal 3D6 Damage Impressive!

Imps as Devils even very minor ones enjoy many supernatural perks of his fellow Devil kind.

  • Damage Resistance Cold; Bludgeoning, Piercing, And Slashing From Nonmagical/nonsilver Weapons
  • Damage Immunities Fire, Poison
  • Condition Immunities Poisoned
  • Devil’s Sight. Magical darkness doesn’t impede the imp’s darkvision.
  • Magic Resistance. The imp has advantage on saving throws against spells and other magical effects.

Imps have two very powerful abilities that make tracking the little devils down very hard if given the chance to strike and escape.

  • Shapechanger. The imp can use its action to polymorph into a beast form that resembles a rat (speed 20 ft.), a raven (20 ft., fly 60 ft.), or a spider (20 ft., climb 20 ft.), or back into its true form. Its statistics are the same in each form, except for the speed changes noted. Any equipment it is wearing or carrying isn’t transformed. It reverts to its true form if it dies.
  • Invisibility. The imp magically turns invisible until it attacks, or until its concentration ends (as if concentrating on a spell). Any equipment the imp wears or carries is invisible with it.

This gives the annoying little creature the chance the advantage of knowing that they can confidently strike and retreat. And if you don’t get him in that one swing you might get. He will probably get away to sting you another day.

Fun Plot Idea for a one-night session.

Best Seller:

The town of Kirkwall (or any name in your game) is looking for volunteers to look into a string of arson in the city. Three buildings have been set a fire in as many weeks. A library, a bookstore, and scribes home. What are the connections between the three?
A cult on the outside of town, based in a nearby mausoleum complex. Is in search of a lost tome containing a summoning scroll to call on more powerful demons.

The cult has made a pact with a greater power and they have been sending their imp to search for the tome. With instructions to cover its tracks to ensure it is not discovered the imp has been murdering the homeowners and setting the
buildings on fire to cover his tracks.

Run this game as a mystery and give your players 3 clues.

Clue 1> A torn scrap of paper with several partial book titles. The players can either determine with arcana or ask around to learn that these are arcane tomes.
Clue 2> This leads Lead them to a local Wizard who recently had dealings with two of the three owners of the burnt buildings. (His house is the next to burn and he will end up murdered. The Next night)
Clue 3>  The Players discover Moss that grows only near old graveyards near swamps. This can be discovered after the Wizards home burnt or if the players chase away the would-be assassin.

Imp tactics:
Rely on invisibility and shapeshift to keep the imp alive.. Poor imps will only take one swing to drop most likely. So begin engagements while invisible. Relying on the first round of combat to strike as surprised characters will not be able to attack nor react in the first round.
Strike with the poison stinger and quickly move away from the party relying on its 40-foot foot flight, shapechange and invisibility to escape. At low levels a even 1d4+3 plus 3D6 save for half poison is devastating.

Additionally, if the players do manage to defeat the imp that does not solve the problem as the cult will summon it again the next day. So the party will have to root out the cult to end terror that this imp is causing. Or this will continue until the imp finds the book and the cult is able to summon an
even more powerful Devil. Because of this putting off, this quest could prove to have very dire consequences eventually for the party.

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