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(10/30/02 12:01:52 pm)
Approaching CRM
I haven't posted much on this board, but I have gleaned lots of helpful information since starting the adventure.
My group includes:
Heimdall 7th level Monk(half-elf)
Roscoe 7th level Rogue(halfling)
Simon 1st cleric/2nd Monk/4th Wizard(elf)
Fat Frank 6th Barbarian/1st Cleric(human).
They refer themselves as 3 gnats and a Buzz Saw.

They cleared out the moathouse, visited Nulb and cleared out many of the cultists in Hommlet, set fire to the Mill with Franks Flameburst Axe when opening up the treasure chest(oops) and set up an arrangement with the Temple of St. Cuthbert to report what they find out on the cultists.

The group spent a whole 2 hours in Rastor before splitting for the Stalagos. Heard a rumor from a drunk dwarf about the mines--past glory, hidden treasures, evil from digging to deep and weirdos in purple robes--followed by question,"so what color is ochre any way".

I think they would be in a lot of trouble with a frontal assault(which they maybe tempted to do). I thinking about having a supply wagon leading to the Howler entrance--that they could follow or use for disguises. Though they have decent stealth abilities--they tend to act like they are in platemail.

3 of the 4 are rookies at rpgs and we are all learning the 3rd edition rules. Any ideas on setting up a few clues for utilizing stealth and trickery before the Howler wipes the walls with them?

(10/30/02 12:57:35 pm)
Re: Approaching CRM
Well personally, I warned them all out of game that things would get tough. I also used Andoraax's idea and made the Howler make a huge amount of noise - and really impress the party that this one was mean mofo. I also expected the party to go in weapons first - and I also expected them to die.

However, despite all my warnings, they still went in - a la full frontal attack. While in a difficult fight - my party won thru and killed all the gate guardians. They then rested up (in a rope trick) and headed into the earth temple. They never tried to be quiet - they never tried to question anyone.

It ended up with the 2 main warriors dying (Boy those Trog clerics are nasty. Some very nice ACs). Thats when they seemed to learn that they werent going to be able to storm the whole complex, and they retreated - carrying their fallen with them.

The upshot of this reply is that sometimes, despite the best of warnings, the party will only learn from mistakes.


"Sometimes the only way to learn fire is hot ... is to get burnt."

Roland Delacroix
(10/30/02 3:23:43 pm)
Not to bad
The Howler.....wasn't too bad. The paladin got hit initially for like 40 points, after that downing the Howler became priority 1. It dropped in two rounds. Before that the mooks ALL got dropped in the first 2 rounds (before Mereclar's entrance) by the paladin and the fighter (wielding 2 axes). I think she dropped 5 warriors in one round with her Great Cleave. We stopped at the end of round 4 with the Howler dropped, and only Mereclar, Wormspike and Terry (et al.) arriving, just ready to step up.

Mereclar and Wormspike don't look too nasty, I expect them to go down quick. Terry looks haaaard, that'll be a titanic battle. There are a few stop-gaps here you can use depending on how tough it's going for the party. I had two Howlers prepared on the same card, the regular and the errated (actually 3, I had a Pseudonatural too, but my party has 6 players). Asses how the party is doing and use the approprate Howler. Terry's zombies can be difficult to turn, he would have Bolstered them (rolled a 20 too) plus they are already in a profane area. My party cleric felt a sense of 'Crushing evil', the negative energy he was fighting against. If your party is having a hard time of it though you could make it easier to turn them.

The encounter will be a LOT harder if your group doesnt have someone with either Great Cleave or Fireball (Lightning Bolt?) to clear away the chaff. One mistake my party made was getting split up by the intersecting hallway when the mooks rushed in to fill the place. this almost caused a few deaths since the two groups couldn't support each other. You might wanna have the warriors and Gnolls rush in a little early to prevent spliting up. That way the party can fall back to the Main gate.

Get the CRM main gate reaction chain from that yahoo site. It was incredibly helpfull.

Cordo Crowfoot
(10/30/02 5:29:37 pm)
Re: Not to bad
A couple of ideas on how to drop hints about using stealth.

* At the beginning of next session, ask them how many EEE/Obex holy symbols they have, who has them, and how many ochre/EEE robes they have.

* If they are the type that at least scouts areas out, you could have an outside force dressed in black with EEE symbols clearly visible enter the gates (also showing the party the gates aren't locked). If they have a scout going in invisibly, you could even have the outside force reenter while the scout is inside, and clearly show the scout that the guards aren't hostile to anyone with EEE symbols. You could also have the scout overhear the outside forces telling the gate guards where they are coming from, thus increasing the party's chances of a plausible bluff.

(10/31/02 6:30:32 am)
Thanks everyone
Thanks for all the advice. I especially like Roland's ideas for multiple Howler options and the guards' tactics and Cordo's clues should work great to get the party through the door.

I'll post the results of the next session.


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