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Siobharek 
Orc
(11/21/02 11:57 pm)
Reply
Re: approaching the CRM at last
If you roll enough random encounters, the PCs WILL get ahead. However, if you use the errata'd Howler, the Main entrance battle will still be vicious. I'd lay off on the RE's though. It amounts to throwing more xp at them, and that won't exactly break the curve. Of course, after a while, the encounters will be so easy as to be almost ridiculous, but that'll still be a while. And with only 2 out of 6 having darkvision, the trogs in the Earth Temple will have a field day with them.

Siobharek
...it is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing.

HeresDaryl
Pie
(12/2/02 5:21 am)
Reply
A change of Cast!
Well, unfortunately one of the random encounters turned out to be more than just an XP feast...

Severens player couldn't make it last night, so I had him on horse-sitting duty while Druss, Rock, Valdar & Dan (all 6th level) pushed ahead through hilly terrain. I rolled for an encounter and turned up a stone giant (CR8) . It looked tough, but certainly not beyond their abilities as a group.

That was the problem though...they didn't fight as a group! Dan spotted it first as it approached them rather aggressively (I decided that it was from the same clan as those working in the recovered temple, allied with the CRM and tasked with keeping pesky adventurers away). Dan fired his shortbow and called for help. Straight away, Druss drew his great axe and charged??? I couldn't believe it...his movement is so much higher than the dwarves that he was gonna be isolated against the thing for a couple of rounds at least!! He got smacked with an AoO due to reach then fumbled his attack and tripped! The giant went next in initiative and swung twice. SPLAT! SPLAT! Druss was dead, just like that!

Rock went next in initiative and ran his full move, which left him 20' short of the giant. Valdar stayed back and started buffing himself. Dan continued shooting arrows - to little effect - and it was back to the bad guy. He moved to 10' from Rock and swung once and hit, hard. Rock moved to attack and got caught by the AoO before scratching the thing. Valdar continued buffing.

Dan fired again before the giant unloaded on Rock. Once more he hit twice and another frontline PC was mashed...Druss and Rock both killed in the space of a few heartbeats! At this point I decided that Severen had caught up and I had him pitch in with his wand of Magic Missile. Eventually, while Severen and Dan kept peppering it from cover (until dan got clipped by a thrown boulder and severen had to scramble with potions to save him), Valdar got his AC up to 33 and moved to engage the badly wounded giant. It hit him once but missed its second attack. Valdar ducked under the AoO and moved in close to swing his battle axe...rolled a 20, followed by a 17! critted for 30 damage and dropped it.

Well Druss & Rocks players both decided to make new characters instead of getting raised, so the other 3 took any salvagable goods off them and burried them with rocks. They returned to Yartar to restock and recruit. After a tenday or so a couple of wood-elves rode into town looking for the band of sellswords who were fighting monsters in the region, wanting to join up...so, heading back out to the CRM again the new party is:

Valdar - Gold Dwarf Clr6
Daniel - Halfling Rog4/Rgr1/Ftr1
Severen - Human Sor4
Ellandir & Isildur (hrmmm, sounds vaguely familiar) - Wood Elf Rgr1/Ftr3 (one swordsman and one archer)
and occasionally Mylan - Moon Elf Drd3

So, barring any similar disasters, they should reach the CRM during wednesdays session...I'll update Thusrday.

Siobharek 
Orc
(12/2/02 5:25 am)
Reply
Re: A change of Cast!
Bummer! That was actually an aspect of Random Encounters I hadn't considered: PCs sometimes get killed. Ah well, another reason to go light on them. Good thing that the players were game for rolling up new PCs and get on with it.

Did they learn a lesson, then? Think they'll act more like a group next time?

Siobharek
...it is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing.

HeresDaryl
Pie
(12/2/02 5:44 am)
Reply
Re: A change of Cast!
I think I'll fluff the RE's until the CRM this time, and yes they did learn a lesson (though I think they knew it before hand anyway - Druss' player just said he was playing the character, charging in straight away was always the way Druss did things, and much the same for Rock).

Since they made up their new characters together, they made them brothers, and very complimentary. Isildur is the grunt, with a higher Strength & Con and Ellandir is the recon & fire support, with higher dex & Wis and a pretty low con...he also took point-blank-shot & precise shot to back up his brother in close combat!

Basically they min-maxed as best they could, but at least they have a good back story to support it (and I'm glad to see it actually...don't want any more mass deaths).

Siobharek 
Orc
(12/2/02 6:11 am)
Reply
Re: A change of Cast!
Yeah, I think I know how you feel. I get this sinking feeling every time one of my PCs go under. What will the player do? What will he choose to play? And I've just looked over 8th level cleric spells for my boosted Hedrack. Ouie...

Siobharek
...it is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing.

HeresDaryl
Pie
(12/5/02 3:54 am)
Reply
The CRM...at last!!
Okay, so the newly reinforced party left Yartar, heading into the Dessarin hills...in the direction of the old abandoned Dwarven mine complex. They believe (correctly) that this is the source of the orc & ogre raiders that they fought previously. I have a good turnout for this session, so Severen, Dan, Valdar, Isildur & Ellandir are all present.

They spent a couple of days travelling and I decided not to cut the random encounters, but they got off pretty light anyway. On the first day they were harassed by a couple of Griffons, but Ellandir the archer showed his worth as they handled them easily. The following day they ran into a couple of Dire Wolverines, which were tough & nasty but dispatched with no serious casualties except to Isildurs horse, which Valdar healed.

Finally they were within sight of mount stalagos, reaching it just as the sun was setting and the snow was falling thicker. They came at the mountain from the North West, and if they had found it during the day, they would have seen the main entrance. However, since they arrived in the dark they missed it and had to wander around looking for a way in.
Unfortunately, they went to their left, and spent an hour trudging through the freezing cold. They had another encounter while they walked, with a lone displacer beast. They got some very good rolls however, and killed it quickly.

I had them all make Fort saves earlier in the day against DC 12 to avoid the ill effects of the cold, and Ellandir had failed then. Now I got them to make another, at DC 15 due to the sub-zero night temperature and Ellandir failed again, and collapsed...when they were only 500ft from the south entrance!! They found the best shelter they could, huddled together for warmth and spent the night out there.

The following morning everyone made their Fort saves and for the sake of expediency I said that they just felt crappy, but had no penalties. So they continued around the outside of the crater, in a clockwise direction and after only a few minutes of walking discovered the south entrance. They spent some time scouting the area outside and took a good look at the outer cave, noting the arrow-slits. They had recovered 2 amulets of the Elder Elemental Eye from the clerics in the moathouse, so the elven brothers decided to take these and approach the gates.

The other 3 positioned themselves nearby, Dan just outside the cave, and Valdar & Severen farther back with the horses. The brothers got to the doors and swung them open. They stepped in and took a quick scan, noticing the sniper just as he opened fire. From here things deteriorated quickly. We rolled initiative and the brothers acted, Ellandir firing at the sniper and Isildur looking for the stairs up to the ledge. They also called out to Dan. The Sniper reloaded and fired...and started shouting for help. I rolled to see how long it would take the reinforcements to mobilise...the gnolls would be there in 3 rounds and the group in 78 a round after that.

Ellandir made a couple of great attack rolls to hit the sniper twice in the next two rounds (AC of 27 due to cover) and killed him. Meanwhile Isildur checked the door into the arrow slits and had a scan up the west corridor before moving back to the rest of the guys, who were all readying actions, except Ellandir who was climbing (again with some good rolls) up to the perch.

NOTE At this point they knew that they had lost the elements of stealth & surprise, and they had no idea what scale of forces were defending this area. They also had 2 clear rounds to jump on their horses (which were right outside the gate) and gallop away. Yet, they chose to stay and fight. Bear this in mind as I unload the gate forces at them =0)

HeresDaryl
Pie
(12/5/02 5:54 am)
Reply
The CRM...at last!!
The 8 gnolls used their full run to get into the main hall. Severen threw a vial of alchemical sleeping gas at one, but it made its save. Dan shot one and hit it for good damage. Valdar cast Random action on one, but it saved. Isildur ran forward and engaged one, landing a good shot. Then the gnolls started hacking with their battle-axes. They engaged pretty much at random, ganging up heaviest on Severen, (3 of them!) who got badly hurt. Ellandir started firing into the melee from above the next round, while Dan and Isildur engaged in melee, Severen cast shield (no @#%$!) and Valdar commanded a gnoll to flee.

Then the double doors opened and Kellial surveyed the scene. He ordered the ogres forward into the hall and sent the 3 humans up the stairs to the perch. Back to Ellandir, and he fired at a gnoll engaging Isildur, killing it. Isildur swung but missed another gnoll. Dan dropped his gnoll opponent, but had an ogre looming in on him. Valdar successfully cast Blindness on the Ogre menacing him and Severen tried a Tasha's Hideous laughter on one of his gnoll attackers, but it saved.

The gnolls on Severen swung, but couldn't penetrate his shield. However, the two still fighting Isildur both hit, but didn't do too much damage - it was starting to mount up though. The Blind ogre flailed about to no effect and the other ogre missed Dan. Kellial strolled casually to the fringe of the battle, watching, and the 3 human warriors got to the stairwell just short of the perch.

Ellandir fired off 2 rapid shots into the lead warrior, but only hit with one, failing to drop him. Isildur had a good round, dropping one injured gnoll with his longsword and then critting another with his handaxe, killing him cleanly. Valdar called up a spiritual battle axe to harass the blind ogre and dan managed to feint his ogre opponent and damage him badly. Severen (who had not taken any offensive, violent action on two of the gnolls engaging him) chanced a Charm Person on one of them...and it worked (even with a circumstance bonus to its save). So one of the 3 gnolls attacked another and the last one backed away, confused.

The remaining gnoll on Severen kept swinging futilely, while the other joined its last comrade and attacked Isildur, but both missed. Kellial didn't miss though, and did 12 damage to Isildur, clobbering him. The ogre on Dan missed again, as did the blind ogre swinging at Valdar. The injured warrior stepped aside and the other two rushed Ellandir, but only one hit.

At this stage the guys were starting to get pretty worried. They especially didn't like the look of Kellial. Isildur, Dan & Ellandir were all getting low on hits and facing nasty situations. Ellandir seriously considered jumping off the platform - which may have been a good idea, at only 3d6 damage??

Anyway, he decided against it and just stepped back 5 feet and shot at the injured warrior, but rolled a one (talk about lousy timing!). Isildur attacked one of the gnolls with his sword (since he was clobbered he couldn't attack with both weapons) and hit it solidly, but not enough to put it down. Valdar finally engaged in melee on the ogre, supported by the spirit axe, and hit it for alot of damage. Dan hit his ogre again, leaving it on very low hits and Severen tried a big gamble, he cast charm person on Kellial. It worked too!

The uncharmed gnoll still tried to hit Severen, and was in turn attacked by the friendly gnoll. Both missed. The other two gnolls swung at Isildur and this time both connected, dropping him to -2 hits (oh no, not again!). The two ogres continued swinging, with the blind one missing again, but the other finally connecting on Dan, for alot of damage. Kellial charged down the hall and swung at the uncharmed gnoll for attacking his 'friend' Severen.

NOTE Yes, I have a very loose interpretation of the effects of charm spells, but thats the way I like them, and thats the way they work against the PCs too!

All three human warriors closed on Ellandir and swung, but again only 1 hit. Still, he was running out of room! He took his last 5ft step back and could feel air beneath his heels. He shot again at the injured warrior and finally dropped him.

Dan attacked the ogre swinging at him but missed, so Valdar decided to aid his companion and cast a searing light at the ogre...but rolled a 1 on the touch attack! Very Bad! Since he doesn't have precise shot I had him roll an attack on Dan (who was on 2 hits). He hit - almost crit in fact - and did 15 damage! Seared a big Predator-like hole in Dans chest, killing him outright =0(

Severen tried to tell his new 'friends' that he and his comrades just want to leave now...and he also fired a 'launch bolt' at one of the ogres, doing a bit of damage. The spirit axe continued striking the blind ogre and damaged it some more. Both ogres were now swinging at Valdar, but with his 28 AC Vs giants they weren't doing anything. The last 2 non-charmed gnolls, were confused by Kellials behaviour, so they run to the temple to get more help. Kellial and the charmed gnoll finished the last gnoll attacking Severen. The two remaining humans wail on Ellandir, dropping him to unconscious.

Valdar and his spirit weapon put the blind ogre out of its misery, and Severen puts another bolt into the other ogre, also dropping it. Kellial tells Severen that it would be best if he takes his colleagues and leaves, quickly and orders the 2 humans to carry Ellandir's body down. Severen & Valdar gather up all their friends bodies and, after stabilising the brothers pile everyone across their saddles and get out of there, before another wave arrives. It suited the campaign not to have temple forces arrive too soon, the PCs were hurtin' and running, so that was enough for me, for now.

I'll post more after next Sundays game =0)

HeresDaryl
Orc
(12/8/02 6:24 pm)
Reply
Beliard (Rastor) and back again
After fleeing the south gate, the party made for Beliard (substituting for Rastor in my game) to heal up and recruit again. They met Rerrid and made a hefty donation to have Dan buried honorably. They were a little surprised to see so many orcs about the village, acting so peacably and there was some good roleplaying, particularly from Isildur.

For this session Ellandir's player was working, so Ellandir went looking for a branch of the order of the bow, to learn something of their ways. Mylan's player however was available, so there was a good group. Dan's player also introduced his new character, Cairn Chaingrim, a Dwarf from Citadel Adbar (a cousin of the late Rock).

In my campaign, Maridosen fled to Beliard when she left Yartar, and got a job in the towns Inn. She spun a story of being harassed in Yartar by some dwarven freebooters, forcing her to leave. Mylan & Valdar remembered her part in Chatrilon's assassination attempt on them and knew she had come this way, so they started asking questions about her. Unfortunately she got wind of them before they caught up with her, so she ran for the CRM (I'll probably shack her up with Kellial at the South Gate).

The PC's did hear however that she had been 'friendly' with a herbalist called Tal Chammish. They went to see him for a polite word (yeah, right!). But he managed to bluff them that he was just an innocent patsy who had been duped by her womanly wiles. They sorta slapped him around a little, but nothing serious and then they headed back to the mines.

They had one RE on the road with a dire bear, which looked a little bad for isildur for a round or two, but they got through it alright. Then they ran into a mounted patrol from the mines, and after a long battle they killed them all, and stopped them from sending any runners back! (very important).

Next Wednesdays session should see them scouting the rest of the exterior of the crater, so they'll hopefully have the choice of attacking the (much weakened) south gate again or trying the main gate (which is still at full strength). You'll find out on Thursday!

A reminder of the cast...

Mylan - Moon Elf Drd4
Severen - Human Sor5
Isildur - Wood Elf Rgr1/Ftr4
Valdar - Gold Dwarf Clr7
Ellandir - Wood Elf Rgr1/Ftr3
Cairn - Shield Dwarf Ftr4

Yep, thats right...not a single level of rogue between them!

HeresDaryl
Orc
(12/12/02 5:37 am)
Reply
Attack on the Main Gate
For last nights session Mylan's player was unavailable again, so I had him watching camp and making sure horses were ready for a quick getaway. In the aftermath of the last battle, Ellandir caught up with his comrades again, after his brief visit to the High Forest to present himself to the masters of the order of the bow.

The group spent a couple of hours scouting out the rest of the exterior of the crater and eventually discovered the winding path, leading up to the Main Gate. This time they all wore captured Air Temple symbols as they approached the entrance cave (Doh!). Once again, Isildur & Ellandir entered the cave stealthily and tried to determine if there was any activity behind the arrow slits. Unfortunately Ellandir was being all furtive on one side of the cave but was blatantly obvious from the other side. The Gnoll sentries shouted a challenge and Ellandir responded by shooting in through one of the arrow slits!

As per usual, before getting very far, all hell broke loose. The archers opened fire while Isildur tried to shoulder charge the doors. He didn't make the break DC and bounced off, getting hit with a couple of arrows in the process. The other 3 PCs started running towards the cave from their hiding place at this point.

For about the next 3 rnds Ellandir & Isildur played arrow-tag with the guard archers...Isildur taking an awful beating. When Severen arrived he provided them some cover by throwing vials of alchemist fire at a couple of the slits, slowing down the bombardment somewhat. Cairn & Valdar both ran across the cave and barged the door, and although Valdar used his strength feat, he only got 25, and the doors stood. The entire group was now being peppered by arrows. At this point I had also determined that the extra guards from 2 & 3 had formed up at the intersection in the main hall in two ranks with bows readied.

On his next action Valdar came up with a plan...he used his stone shape spell to peel back the stone that the iron doorpost was sunk into! This allowed Cairn to make a strength check to grab the bottom of the right-hand door and drag it out, making a crawl space inside. Ellandir scurried through the door first into the main hall...and a hail or arrows. Out of the 8 fired, only one hit him, but it critted for 18 damage so he was hurt bad! Eventually the rest of the PCs poured through and Isildur and Cairn engaged the archers in melee. Needless to say the guards quickly unslung shields and drew swords or axes. While this was happening the party could hear the pounding of booted feet converging on their location.

Note: Again, they were outnumbered and injured, and had plenty of opportunity to escape but chose to fight on.

Isildur hugged the right hand wall while Cairn took up a central position in the hall which allowed him AoOs on any guard that tried to get past him to attack his comrades (combat reflexes and spiked chain is just dirty!). They were making good progress through these 8 guards when the first wave of reinforcements arrived from the arrow-slits. This stirred things up a bit more, but between Isildurs 2-weapon fighting, Cairns attacks of opportunity, Ellandir having precise shot and and Severen and Valdar having heavily boosted ACs they were still holding their own and then some.

Things started to turn when a Gnoll finally got through the spiked chain hell and engaged Ellandir in melee. Ellandir was getting a whooping and had to duck out through the door. That gnoll then turned his attention to Severen, and with a 19 roll hit him too. Around this time, the doors from 6 opened and the Mereclar & Wormspike stalked forwards. The remainder of the gnoll & human garrisons also arrived from the side tunnels and started taking pot shots into the melee, not worried about their colleagues. The fresh humans held their positions as the gnolls split up and ran to the arrow-slits, covering any escape route.

Severen was the next to make a break for it, though he found himself under heavy arrow fire once outside and had to run across to the outside of the entrance cave, joining Ellandir who had also fled the archers. At this point Isildur also ran for the door but unfortunately got picked off by a waiting human archer and slumped in the gap leading outside, unconscious and bleeding. Ellandir ran through the gauntlet of archers to his brother, taking a hit, to stabilize Isildur with a wand before dragging him back out of the cave.

Most of the first two waves of guards were down and Valdar & Cairn were also thinking of falling back. Now Wormspike joined the fray, moving in on Valdar with several fresh human guards while several more moved to block Cairn from helping. Valdar straight away cast Divine Power on himself and went toe-to-toe with Wormspike and his lackeys. Even with his impressive attack and a flanking bonus and several AoOs due to reach, the ogre only hit Valdar once and finally the Cleric ended up cornering his opponent and hacked him down, despite the attention of 3 human warriors. Cairn was also making his attackers suffer, but through sheer weight of numbers 2 of them land nasty blows with their bastard swords...Cairn dropped unconscious aswell!

Finally, frustrated at the way things were going with his forces, Mereclar set the howler on Valdar. Despite landing some clean shots on the creature, this was one fight too far for the Cleric and he finally succumbed.

So the state of play was...Severen and the 2 elves outside healing themselves frantically and the 2 dwarves lying unconscious inside. Mereclar called out through the gate to the survivors

'show yourselves with empty hands and your friends shall live'

...In response Isildur ducked at the door and loosed an arrow at the commander, but barely scratched him. The gnoll archers again peppered the two elves, hitting both and they had to run. In the meantime, Terrenygit stabilized the dwarves and had them carted off to the Earth Temple.

Mereclar was preparing to pursue the other 3 PCs but they were making plans of their own. Using 3 of the few remaining charges on his wand of invisibility, Severen made them invisible and they crept back to the entrance with the intention of finding their friends and freeing them, then using the last few charges to all escape invisibly. When they got to the entrance however, Severen bottled it and stayed outside, with the oblivious elves going in themselves. They saw the surviving guards cart the many corpses off to the north (to the earth temple, where they will serve as zombie fodder, or possibly food??) so they followed, wandering through the entire Troglodyte complex to the temple itself.

They witnessed a sacrafice from a side tunnel and decided to investigate the chamber that the victim was brought from. Inside they found their comrades as well as the elf and the 2 humans. Thats where we stopped, though Severen planned on charming a sentry and being guided to the captives. So hopefully they will all end up together early on in the next session.

The party as it stands...
Severen - Human Sor5
Mylan - Moon Elf Drd4
Cairn - Shield Dwarf Ftr4
Isildur - Wood Elf Rgr1/Ftr4
Valdar - Gold Dwarf Clr7
Ellandir - Wood Elf Rgr1/Ftr4

Edited by: HeresDaryl at: 12/12/02 6:24:41 am
HeresDaryl
Orc
(12/15/02 4:59 pm)
Reply
Dammit...TPK at last!
Well it finally happened - the rescue attempt didn't go well and it broke down into a scrambling battle, Severen only arriving very late in the piece, too late to help much. Most of the defences of the Earth Temple were up in arms against them in a piecemeal fashion, though I never even got to introduce Greshta, Miikolak, Swordmaster or Uskathoth to the fray. Snearak, the Xorn, the troglodyte guards, and especially the Mephits were the main players...and when Severen tried to flee invisibly he was cut off by Terrenygit and his Zombies.

The whole bunch are making up new characters, so I'm starting them at 4th and gonna have them hired to investigate the old temple first...and I'll come up with some clues to lead them to Nulb and then back to the CRM.

It looks like the new party will be...

Human Ftr4 (2-bladed sword)
Human Ftr3/Forsaker1 (interested to see how this one pans out)
Aasimar Clr3 (of Tyr)
Tiefling Rog3
Svirfneblin Rog1

HeresDaryl
Here for a while
(12/16/02 3:06 am)
Reply
Re: Dammit...TPK at last! - not quite.
I forgot to mention, Mylan again wasn't there last night, so his character wasn't involved in the bungled rescue and is still alive, though on his own outside the main gate, wondering what has become of his friends and where he could find another band of adventurers to go look for them??

Zagig
Here for a while
(12/16/02 4:09 am)
Reply
Re: Dammit...TPK at last! - not quite.
Ouch!! Hope they had fun, even though they TPKed. IIRC, Andorax had a similar thing happen in his campaign. Lyssa was the only survivor, I think, and had to recruit new members. Maybe check it out to see how Mylan could do this.

HeresDaryl
Here for a while
(12/16/02 5:02 am)
Reply
Not fun, at all
It wasn't even a fun session...it was badly planned to start with, then Severen chickened out of the plan and left the others high and dry, so they were all blaming him for leaving them - and he blamed them for launching a frontal assault, which got them into this situation (and they all blamed me I'm pretty sure - they felt that the situation was beyond their powers to deal with. Well, yes, it was...but it was of their making!)

I'll have to try to soothe their egos and ease them back in gently. =0)

Siobharek 
Still here? Wow.
(12/16/02 5:39 am)
Reply
Re: Not fun, at all
With this break, you might want to ask yourself whether there are some things that should be changed, house rules-wise. The clobbered rule... That's about if you take a lot of damage, you'll only get partial actions, right? Given the fact that your PCs will always fight superior numbers, they'll get clobbered a lot more than the bad guys will. I'd also seriously rethink my RE strategy, but I've already been there ;) . And finally, you seem to suffer a lot from players not showing up. Is that right? Because that will hurt the group as a whole, especially if you don't let the other players run the absent player's PC.

Hmm... I meant the ramble above as advice in the best possible way. I hope you don't mind... :)

Siobharek
...it is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing.

HeresDaryl
Here for a while
(12/16/02 6:51 am)
Reply
Re: Not fun, at all
No not at all!

As for the missing players...well its really only Mylans player who is part time - out of the other 5...one player works late every other week, so he misses half the sessions, but I almost never have less than 4 PCs, so it shouldn't be too big a drag.

I've already decided to cut the RE's to a minimum...I'll roll the % chance once for every day they are out in the wilds.

I think that the clobbered rule works in the PCs favour by and large, since they usually have alot more Hits than most of their enemies...however it does require them to think about how they fight and what tactics they use...which most of them don't at the moment =0(

I'll say it to them anyway, and see what they think. They might already have enough of getting their asses kicked, and one of the other guys is planning on running a campaign, so we might take a break?

Siobharek 
Still here? Wow.
(12/16/02 6:59 am)
Reply
Re: Not fun, at all
Ha, found a quote that was nagging me when I wrote my previous reply:
Quote:
First of all, the most significant change in my game is a rules change...I like a darker, more lethal game than the standard, but I can't get my players into the Grim'n'Gritty system, so we run a compromise - everything is as per the core rules except hit points. They are calculated as follows. CON ability score + variable per hit die where a core rules d4=+1, d6=+2, d8=+3, d10=+4, d12=+5. This same method is applied to monsters, with Undead getting an effective CON 10, and Constructs getting an effective CON of 20. This tends to mean higher HPs at low levels with a less dramatic increase as the levels go up. It also appears to have made Toughness worth taking for the first time in any game I have run =0)

We're in about 9-10 sessions now, with 4 of the 5 PCs at level 4 and one at level 3, and to be honest it seems to be working pretty well, and so long as it goes both ways the players seem to like the extra risk element.


Have you asked your players if they still like the extra risk element...? Maybe a break would do your group good, but I certainly hope that 1) your campaign will at least go back to RttToEE and 2) you'll under all circumstances will stick around this forum. I, for one, value your input :)

Siobharek
...it is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing.

HeresDaryl
Here for a while
(12/16/02 9:20 am)
Reply
Re: Not fun, at all
I'll be sticking around...and the campaign got the vote of confidence - at least from the guy who was planning the other campaign, so it looks like I'll be continuing albeit with a new cast!

And even if I wasn't I'd be sticking around

PS, I'll ask them about the clobbered rule and the alternate HP method and see what they think.

HeresDaryl
Here for a while
(12/23/02 4:08 am)
Reply
Yay!! Fun again!!
Well the new party has set out from Waterdeep to investigate rumours of a diabolist cult in the Dessarin Hills. They were actually commissioned by a Justicar Edborn, of the church of Tyr who himself had been in that area recently and encountered an unusual concentration of coordinated monsters, many bearing a strange upturned triangle symbol??

The new party consists of...

Fendar - Aasimar Clr3 of Tyr
Erendil - Aasimar Pal3 of the Triad (Tyr, Torm & Ilmater)
Vesteel - Tiefling Rog3
Mortimer - Human Ftr4
Rend - Human Ftr1/Bbn2/Forsaker1

The Aasimar's are obviously involved for the glory of the church...and the others have been hired for the task, with offers of lands & titles if the task turns out to be as dangerous and vital as the church believes.

I decided that Hedrack would certainly guess that alot of potential opposition would likely come from Waterdeep, so he had hireling sellswords watching the road, looking out for any troops or adventurers with obvious ties to any of the good aligned faiths or to the Cities secular authorities. Needless to say, the Paladin & Cleric refused to travel incognito, so they were set upon one night at camp on their way to Yartar. It was a well organised and equipped group but the PCs handled them pretty easily (I have high hopes for this bunch!).

They made it to Yartar without much other incident and went about getting the lay of the land from Elmo. He told them of a previous bunch of freebooters who had cleared out the old moathouse and then headed south towards an abandoned mining complex. That group hadn't been heard from in a month though and Elmo feared the worst. They decided to investigate Nulb first and headed out the following day.

It took them two days to travel to the village, and they camped that night across the river, out of sight. Other than some wild dogs worrying their horses they had no problems, and they scared the dogs off easily. The following morning they all led their mounts across the river (IMC it was just a ford instead of a bridge) and up to the fringe of the town. I had rolled for the 30% chance of an encounter and come up with 3 shadows. Now I knew this would be tough...but with a Paladin with 20 Charisma and a 3rd level Cleric with a 16 Charisma I thought they should be okay. It didn't turn out that way. Out of the Paladins 8 turn attempts (he needed a 17 or better to affect the shadows) he turned one of them. Out of the 6 attempts the Cleric had (he only needed a 13 or better) he didn't affect them at all!! Four of the five PCs had been drained strength, some very seriously, before the paladin turned one then made a touch attack on another with his Lay on Hands ability, with his smite evil stacked on top of that to drive another away...the third one fled under attack from a Magic weaponed sword plus a spiritual weapon (which I allowed to strike them as a 'spirit of the rule' decision - plus I wanted to avoid another TPK).

So the party quickly hightailed it out of there, and crawled back to Yartar. They spent several days there healing up, regaining their strength and buying holy water and scrolls of Lesser Restoration! Next session, which may not be for a while, should see them heading back to Nulb much better prepared.

Good to be back on track =0)

Edited by: HeresDaryl at: 12/23/02 4:17:10 am
HeresDaryl
Here for a while
(12/28/02 11:17 am)
Reply
Re: Yay!! Fun again!!
After resting up in Yartar for a couple of days, re-equipping and even recruiting a new party member (Human Rogue/Wizard...more on him later) they set out to investigate several sites, hoping to finish up back at Nulb. They went to the moathouse first, which had been scoured by the previous party. I had placed a Banelar (Monsters of Faerun) among the ruins and this gave them a seriously tough fight, eventually forcing them to retreat, with several unconscious. They retreated into the hills and found a sheltered creek where they rested up and recovered.

While hiding out here they had a few more run-ins, with a couple of Dragonkin (very tough fight) and later a few Phaerlin Giants (very easy fight). At last they felt fit enough to move on again and decided to investigate the old ruined temple before returning to either Nulb or the Moathouse, much to Erendils disgust (and shame - it really eats him up when he has to retreat!). The two rogues in the party did a pretty thorough scouting of the temple exterior and they decided on a plan of stealthy assault on the front gate.

As per usual it all went arseways! Galaeron, the new rogue, did just fine...getting to within a few feet of one Hobgoblin sentry, but Vesteel, the Tiefling blew his attempt to move silently and put the guards on alert. The guys sprung into action and put down the sentries pretty easy, but couldn't stop the door guards from raising the alarm. The guard dogs also joined the fight. The session ended with all of the dogs and most of the sentries from areas 1 & 5 dead, but the entire complex up in arms and the PCs standing in the open in front of the main steps...the next session will likely be one long, running battle.

Fendar the cleric wasn't involved in this session because his player was working, but we had a guest appearance from a former regular of ours who goes to college in the north now. He was playing the rogue-wizard (who is actually a Shade 'retriever' looking for powerful magic items to return to his masters) but he'll be disappearing in the middle of this battle - which fits his MO so far anyway! - since the player is going back to school...he may pop up again if he's home for the weekend sometime.

HeresDaryl
Here for a while
(12/29/02 6:15 pm)
Reply
Lack of a Mage!
So far this campaign has really taken its toll of PCs so it is likely that there will be more rotations of personnel as the sessions roll by (my players display a singular reluctance to any sort of raising, reincarnating or resurrection whatsoever??). At the moment the party has no arcane spellcasters of any type at all...so, I'm wondering should I strongly recommend that someone take one if the situation arises later?? Do you think its possible to progress through the module without a mage of some kind? So you've got the full info available, the regular party is as follows...

Fender - Aasimar Clr3 of Tyr (War & Knowledge domains - a very strong combo, I think)

Erendil - Aasimar Pal4 of the Triad...aiming for Templar and/or Divine Champion

Vesteel - Tiefling Rog3/Rgr1...a great B&E rogue, terrible face man!

Mort - Human Ftr4 (maybe looking at becoming a Cleric of Garagos sometime in the future??)

Rend - Human Bbn2/Ftr1/Forsaker1...can't really see this character multi-classing into wizard any time soon!

The (very) infrequent players are...

Mylan - Moon Elf Drd4 of Silvanus

Galaeron - Human (Shade) Rog2/Wiz1...I know he's got a level of Wiz but he is the most infrequent player of all and couldn't be relied upon to be there when they need a mage!

Edited by: HeresDaryl at: 12/30/02 12:34:51 pm
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