Eric was probably one of the least liked characters in the Dungeons & Dragons Cartoon mainly because he was a big mouthed coward. That’s probably because he was never really supposed to be a part of the show. Series developer Mark Evanier revealed that Eric’s contrary nature was mandated by parents groups and consultants to push the then-dominant pro-social moral for cartoons of “The group is always right; the complainer is always wrong.”
This was the message of way too many eighties’ cartoon shows. If all your friends want to go get pizza and you want a burger, you should bow to the will of the majority and go get pizza with them. There was even a show for one season on CBS called The Get-Along Gang, which was dedicated unabashedly to this principle. Each week, whichever member of the gang didn’t get along with the gang learned the error of his or her ways.
So Eric was added at the last minute to the cartoon to teach kids a simple lesson: “Don’t think outside the box. Go with the majority.”
Eric, the Cavalier (voiced by Don Most) was a fifteen year old spoiled child, originating from a rich home. On the surface, Eric is contrary to anything the group wishes to do and often fulfills the role of comic relief. Despite his egotism, selfishness, and snobbery, Eric is potentially also the most realistic character: complaining about the dire situations in which he is involved and voicing concerns which might be common to inhabitants of our world transplanted to the Realm. Despite his cowardice and reluctance, Eric has a well-hidden heroic core, and frequently saves his friends from danger with his magical shield, which can project a force field. And although it was written out of the story by the producers, the shield was also supposed to be able to grant the power of levitation, but it didn’t fit in as well for the shield metaphor.
Yeah, the shield was a metaphor. Eric is the kid who, no matter what you’re doing, it isn’t good enough for him. Nose in the stratosphere, Eric goes through life as snobby as they come. He comes from a family of wealth and breeding and, in the past, has never had to do much of anything himself. He occasionally likes to associate with the poorer folks — if only because it makes him feel like a bigger man — and that’s what he was doing with them at the amusement park, that fateful day. But, no matter what you say, Eric will top you. If you won a silver medal, he’ll tell you he won a gold medal. If you tell him you just got a new Corvette, he’ll tell you about the three BMWs he had custom-made. So, the shield was his ego, projected at the worl so nobody would see the real, vulnerable Eric.
Eric’s Griffon Shield
“This golden shield bears the emblem of a white griffon’s head on a black circle. It hums with power in your hands.”
In the Dungeons & Dragons game, the Griffon Shield is a +2 Bashing shield that can be wielded one or two-handed as an Improvised Weapon. If used for bashing it will impart 1d4 plus Strength Modifier Bludgeoning damage. When the wielder lands a successful hit, she can use a Bonus Action to try to shove a creature 5 feet away from you with your shield.
Also, the shield bestows the owner with a 19 in Constitution while it is being wielded as a shield or a weapon.
In addition, as an reaction the bearer can use the griffon shield to create a 10-foot diameter sphere of force like that produced by the Otiluke’s resilient sphere spell. This requires concentration. The sphere is not subject to damage of any sort except from a rod of cancellation, a rod of negation, a disintegrate spell, or a targeted dispel magic spell. These effects destroy the sphere without harm to the subject. Nothing can pass through the sphere, inside or out, though the subject can breathe normally. The sphere cannot be physically moved by people outside it, but can be moved by the bearer of the shield. The sphere effect must be centered on the bearer of the shield, and any creatures within the area except the bearer can make a DC 25 dexterity save, or be forced out to the nearest open square on a failure. This can be automatically saved if the bearer chooses to include other creatures inside the sphere. The sphere effect can be dismissed by the bearer as a bonus action, but otherwise it lasts until the duration elapses. The griffon shield effect can be created for up to 5 turns each day. They do not have to be consecutive, but each activation always counts as at least 1 turn.
Lastly, when carried by a humanoid of lawful alignment, the Griffon Shield imparts the abilities of a 7th level Fighter as long as you are attuned to the item. If a player has less than 7 levels, then the magic item will impart additional levels of this class to raise them to 7th level. If the player is 7th level or higher, then no additional class levels will be gained.