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Fighting Trolls? Remember What Your Parents Told You

It’s surprising that I have to bring this up, but you’d be amazed at how many people – let alone adventurers – somehow missed critical pieces of monster lore while they were growing up. Yes, there is a reason many bedtime stories feature trolls being defeated by fire! It’s one of the primary reasons you bring torches with you in addition to lamps and oil. Trolls, like many other creatures of darkness, are afraid of fire. In the case of trolls, there’s a good reason: they’re extremely vulnerable to fire and acid over other forms of attack.

I won’t forget one of the first creature encounters I had after leaving my burrow and beginning a career in adventuring. A troll was snarling at us while we were camped near a swampy area. Instead of retreating to the fire and fending it off there, several members of my adventuring group proceeded to rush into the swamp after it with only their swords in hand. Luckily, thanks to our quick thinking sorcerer, who lobbed fire in its direction, we managed to drive it away without any casualties.

Afterwards, we asked the two who ran off after it what they were thinking and why they had rushed a troll of all things with only swords. “How were we supposed to know to use fire against it?” was our only response. The sorcerer and I looked at each other in amazement. Looking back, that was when I first began to realize that generations of oral tradition had already begun to fail. Self-proclaimed adventurers are rushing off into battle without even the most basic bit of knowledge. What good are stories if we never pass them down? They’re more than just fun little tales – it’s imparting vital information on our youth!

If you’re reading this and you’re an adventurer, I sincerely hope that you were brought up on tales of adventure and legend. You’ll need them in your travels. If not, travel to your nearest sage and inquire about a book of tales. I personally recommend The Golden Book of Legendary Tales, which you can usually find a copy of from most larger booksellers.

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