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Here for a while
(3/14/03 1:45 pm)
Survey on Levels and more in RttToEE
I'm interested in collecting some data on how your parties levelled up during RttToEE. I'm interested in hearing at which level your parties arrived at the following key-points:


Crater Ridge Mines (Entrance)

Outer Fane

Inner Fane

Recovered Temple

In addition, please mention important details like:

Starting level (if different than 4th)
Number of party members
Any kind of level-penalising you may be employing (eg. in the event of character death)
Heavy/Medium/light or no usage of random encounters
Number of character deaths (and circumstances)

As for myself it looks like this:

Starting level: 6th instead of 4th as I started out with just 3 players which has since increased.

Average Party Size: 5 (4 players, 1 NPC)

Use of Random Encounters: Quite heavy I must admit :)

Character Deaths: 1 and 1 NPC. Sun Elf Evoker killed by Wyvern in random encounter - party used most of their funds to true resurrect him which I allowed since the player wasn't there. Xaod got decapitated by an Stone Scorpion creature from Dragon Mag :) . 13 times characters have been in negative hit points (I use a statistics and point spreadsheet).


Moathouse - 6th level (Xaod was part of the group)

Crater Ridge Mines (entrance) 8th level (currently 9th after defeating the Main Gate, the Earth Temple, Vranthis and the Ettin).

The party has already cleared out Nulb and the Ruined Temple as well as all the cultists in Hommlet except Jaroo. As my party hasn't progressed further that's it for now. We played 11 sessions so far with each session lasting 6-7 hours.


Edited by: Zarrock at: 3/15/03 2:35:02 am
Here to stay
(3/14/03 2:00 pm)
Re: Survey on Levels and more in RttToEE
Well, let's see . . .

Starting 4 characters, all 4th level.

Moathouse: Started at 4, ended at 5.

Nulb: 5th

Ruined Temple: 5th level. I haven't given them experience for it yet, but they should all be 6th now that it's over. There may be one at 7th . . .

We had 4 players for all of the Moathouse, with 5 in Nulb and the Ruined Temple. That fifth has had to drop out, since gas is high and his road is long. So, we'll be 4 going to Rastor and the Mines with just a little below the XP they should be.

I think we're at 5 sessions.

There's no business like gnoll business

Here for a while
(3/14/03 3:10 pm)
Re: Survey on Levels and more in RttToEE
Starting level: 1st.

Average Party Size: 5 (4 players, 1 is playing 2 with the intent of that one becoming a villian planned in advance)

Use of Random Encounters: Heavy. We played through several adventures before starting this one.

Character Deaths: 5, Big U got one. The Howler got another. Air Elemental got one. Destrachan got another. Gray Render killed the latest. (had another in negatives).


Moathouse - 4th level

Nulb nearly killed the party. The cleric couldn't turn to save his life - literally. They had little trouble with the tribe in the ruined Temple.

Crater Ridge Mines (entrance) 6th level, currently avg 9 with the reincarnated Wizard.

Currently they are prepping for an assault on the Water Temple. I'm bringing back D'Gran for this, he escaped before.

We're probably at 15 sessions. They're normally 3 hours or less.

"You must not Ph34r, Ph34r leads to anger, anger leads to hate. Hate leads to beatdowns, and B34td0wnz Sux0r."

Cordo Crowfoot
Here for a while
(3/15/03 12:07 am)
Re: Survey on Levels and more in RttToEE
Moathouse: Started here (and the module) at just above 4th level, around 6600 xp average.

Crater Ridge Mines (Entrance): My group explored Nulb and the Old Temple thoroughly so were level 6 at this point

In addition, please mention important details like:

Number of party members: 5 players with 1 PC each, 1 NPC (Terjon)

Any kind of level-penalising you may be employing: Shared experience loss on character death. Experience loss is calculated normally for the character who died, but it is then shared between all party members.

Heavy/Medium/light or no usage of random encounters: Light, only 3 or 4 combat random encounters outside of Nulb

Number of character deaths (and circumstances):
1 PC Chatrilon assassination
2 PCs, 2 NPCs Old Temple (Hobgoblins)
2 PCs, Howler
1 PC, Western Bridge Complex, D'Gran and Slaazh

"They were immediately and absolutely recognizable as adventurers. They were hardy and dangerous, lawless, stripped of allegiance or morality, living off their wits, stealing and killing, hiring themselves out to whoever and whatever came... They were scum who died violent deaths, hanging on to a certain cachet among the impressionable through their undeniable bravery and their occasionally impressive exploits" China Mieville, Perdido Street Station

Here for a while
(3/15/03 1:52 am)
Re: Survey on Levels and more in RttToEE
2 PCs starting at 6th level.

Moathouse: Finished the Moathouse and Hommlet at 7th level.

No deaths as yet (close, though). No random encounters.

2 sessions.

I want to play more! ;)

Here for a while
(3/15/03 3:59 am)
Re: Survey on Levels and more in RttToEE
Okay, this will be long but here goes.

Moathouse - 4th level (started adventure here)
Crater Ridge Mines (Entrance) - 6th level, I believe
Currently at 9th level having taken out everything from the Fire Bridge Complex to the Northern Bridge Complex (except the dire apes).

Number of party members - we started with 5, have varied between 3 and 6 since including NPCs.

Any kind of level-penalising you may be employing (eg. in the event of character death) - the only thing that I can think of is that new characters that replace a deceased character start one level lower than that character or the party average, whichever is highest

Heavy/Medium/light or no usage of random encounters - very light, haven't used any since the first trip to and from Rastor

Number of character deaths (and circumstances) - this is a long list
1) Monk driven insave by staring at activated altar in ghoul caves, opted to leave (not officially a death, but close enough)
2) Wizard eating a third fruit from the obelisk room, failed save, disintegrated
3 & 4) Cleric and Paladin killed by trolls in random encounter (now you know why I don't use random encounters anymore).
5) Rogue killed by displacer beasts in another random encounter (same game night, even more reason to not use random encounters).
6, 7 & 8) Undead Master, Fighter, NPC Fighter killed in attack on Fire Bridge, bodies left behind when party retreated (Figher actually survived and serves the Fire Temple now).

I have no idea how many game sessions we have played but we have been playing infrequently since November 2001.

Still here? Wow.
(3/15/03 8:31 am)
Re: Survey on Levels and more in RttToEE
Anyone find the previous thread on this same topic? It'd be interesting to bump it and collect these somewhere. Maybe ZFC has it on page 21.

Number of party members: 7 PC's, 1 wolf animal companion, 1 tiny viper familiar

Starting level: 4th, halfway to 5th

Level penalizing: when a PC dies, if the player wants to start another he does so at 10% less of the lowest level PC that has not died (otherwise it might become a spiraling descension). I have to admit though that I am really intrigued by Cordo's method. That idea really promotes teamwork, which is very much needed in this adventure.

Random encounters: I choose them so they are never random. I insert them as I think they are needed and are very rarely ever deadly enough to potentially cause a death, and when they are they will seem like part of the story. E.g. I inserted a scrag cleric of the EEE in Nulb, which is technically a random encounter, and was potentially very deadly. His job was to protect Lareth's body, though the party thought of it as eating his body. Job accomplished! Hedrack will be pleased! :evil

Character deaths: 1 so far, a monk got killed technically by the grell in the moathouse, but really it was Garrik, gnolls, and Geynor Ton who captured him and threw him down to the obelisk.

Moathouse: They thoroughly explored moathouse, temple, and Nulb; 5 are 6th (druid,cleric,ftr,sorc,wiz/ftspnr), the other 2 are 7th (ftr/obi,rgr/rog/chosen)

The party will be on their way to Raster next session, probably not entering the CRM until the following session. So far it has been 15 sessions exactly, and we play for about 4-5 hours per session. We are rotating DM's atm though so we will not continue RttToEE for another month or so.

Here for a while
(3/15/03 9:11 am)
Starting Level: 3 (4500 XPs)

Party Strength (7, now 8 - PBeMs need some extra player'sso that illness/vacation/laziness don't slow you down so much)

Random Encounters: Very light

The Old Temple / Nulb (started there): Lv 3

The Moathouse: Lv 4

Character Deaths: 4. Wat got one, the Dire Ape at the old temple grappled another one to death. Master Dunrat coup de grace'd one with his dagger. He killed another with the Bead of Force.

Level-penalising: New Characters usually start 1 level lower than the average party level.

Looking around
(3/16/03 12:32 am)
Re: Survey
Starting level: 4th

Number of party members: 5 characters, two mountain cats (animal companions), and 1 pony. Have had 3 other characters come and go, but party size has always been 5.

Level Penalties: New characters come at a level equal to the lowest existing characters level.

Random Encounters: Medium - When things get slow usually.

Number of character deaths (and circumstances)
1. Not a death exactly - but party thief got stoned by the cockatrices in the moathouse.
2. The party thief got turned into a wight by the wraiths in Nulb - consequently cut down by the fighter, eaten by the ooze and then had his bead of force detonated from his remains. The most convoluted death I've ever presided over.
3. The party thief (notice a trend?) was cut down by kidnappers (Playing Cradle of Madness from Dungeon #87).
4. The party priest had a ceiling fall on him (also from Cradle of Madness).

Moathouse: 4th
Nulb & Recovered Temple (hobgoblins): ~5th-6th
Crater Ridge Mines (Entrance - 1st time): ~7th
After a month doing other things the party is heading back to the temple and is 9th level.

edited for tags

Edited by: Seravin at: 3/16/03 12:36:15 am
Here for a while
(3/16/03 7:26 am)
Start: 6 4th's

Party gained 5th level sometime in the Moathouse

Party is now about to either go to the Ruined Temple or to Rastor, after having cleared Nulb and most of the Hommlet cultists. They are just on the edge of 6th (some have levelled, some have not.)

Random encounters: Light to moderate (a few hobgoblins, two ankhegs, badgers, two shadows which killed the bard)

Here for a while
(3/16/03 9:49 pm)
Re: Survey
Starting Level: 3rd

Number of party members: 5 PCs, 1 toad familiar, had Xaod and Chat for short times.

Level Penalties: Still haven't fully decided.

Depending on the level of PC development and the feelings of the players, I may go with a modified Game Mechanics ruling (see here). Cordo's idea is very cool, but I'm not sure if my players would like it as much since it might impinge on their ability to have character's make stupid decisions, which can be great for RP, but bad for XP :)

Here's another idea I'm toying with: I haven't been giving RP XP out because I don't want to upset the progression too much. What I may do is apply the XP loss BTB (or regen at that same point), but apply an accumulated RP XP for that player to that starting point.

Random Encounters: BTB, so far, but I attempt to roll them beforehand and work them into the story.

Deaths: PCs, none; 4-5 negative HP. Xaod was killed by Big U.

Levels: 4th was gained during the moathouse exploration, 5th was gained after the encounters in the Hostel. They are 1/5 of the way to 6th with only Lareth, Jaroo, and all of the Ruined Temple remaining in the Hommlet area.

Group Editing & Authoring Support
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Here for a while
(3/18/03 1:35 pm)
Re: Survey
Most interesting. Keep it coming... :)


Here for a while
(3/18/03 8:53 pm)
Re: Survey on Levels and more in RttToEE
Party Members: 5 PCs (only the cleric and fighter/rogue are original founding members)
- Dwarven cleric of Moradin
- Half-elven fighter/rogue
- Aasimarr/halfling paladin/rogue of Yondalla
- Human barbarian/fighter
- Human mage (transmuter)
- 1 NPC (a human monk). Xaod joined the group briefly, but was slain by big U.
- My group started at first level and worked their way through portions of The Wizard's Amulet, The Crucible of Freya, Ever-Changing Fortunes, Stormdancers, The Forge of Fury, and several homebrew sidetreks. We've completed The Speaker in Dreams and other various sidetrek adventures while playing RttToEE.
Character levels:
- Hommlet and the moathouse -- 5th
- CRM -- 7th
- The group is now 9th level with two temples down. Two characters will level up to 10th soon.
Character Death: In the event of character death or retirement, the new character starts one level back from the average character level. While there have been MANY very close calls, the only death was Xaod the NPC. I'm anticipating casualties when the group enters the outer fane.
Random encounters: None. I occasionally select an encounter off the random encounter list if the party camps in the CRM.

Edited by: blakwind at: 3/18/03 8:57:35 pm
Here for a while
(3/19/03 7:47 am)
Level Survey
Played SC, FoF prior to RttToEE
Moathouse - 4 5th level characters, plus Chat for Big U.

Crater Ridge Mines (Entrance) - approaching now, 2 6th level, 3 5th level, 1 4th level

On characters being raised from the dead, they incur and XP debt in the amount proportionate to the amount they were to the next level. He retains his level, and pays off the EP debt with half his earned EP, adding to his original total with the other half. For example, if a character has 14000 XP and dies, he is raised with 14000 XP and a debt of 4800 XP. If he earns 2000 XP, his new totals are 15K and 3800 for the debt. And yes, that character would advance to 6th level.

No random encounters.

Deaths: Clr5 was mauled by Big U. Ftr4/Brb1 was eaten by ghouls. Rog1/Wiz4 was killed and turned into a ghast. Mnk4/Clr1 was killed by the wizard-ghast.

Here for a while
(3/19/03 9:25 am)
Re: Level Survey
{On characters being raised from the dead, they incur and XP debt in the amount proportionate to the amount they were to the next level.}

Woah, that is a very nice idea: slow progression for a while. Where does the 4800 XP debt come from though? Or did you mean 4000K (14000-10000)? If I read this right, this has a bit of a strange behavior that if you get killed right after leveling, you have little penalty, right? More to muse on, though... thanks :)

Two other random q's:

What do you do if they would rather play a new character?

What if they die again with a debt in place? Do you just add it up?

Group Editing & Authoring Support
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Here for a while
(3/19/03 9:55 am)
Character death XP debt
I had the math in my post and took it out :D Here goes.

PF = (currentXP-min_cur_lvl)/(min_next_lvl - min_cur_lvl)
PLXP = min_cur_lvl - min_pre_lvl
PseudoXP = current - PF * PLXP
Debt = currentXP - PseudoXP

So for my 14K XP guy,

PF = (14000 - 10000)/(15000-10000) = 0.8
PLXP = 10000-6000 = 4000
PseudoXP = 6000 + 0.8 * 4000 = 9200
Debt = 14000 - 9200 = 4800 XP

If a player wants to play a new character, he may at any time retire his existing character, and bring in a new one with exactly the same XP and XP debt as the retiree.

If a character dies with an existing debt, the debt is cumulative.

We hope this will ameliorate some of the death penalty, while still preserving some negativity. It remains to be seen, as we haven't had a death since this idea came about.

Edited by: Surfal2001 at: 3/19/03 1:03:19 pm
Still here? Wow.
(3/19/03 11:40 am)
Re: Character death XP debt
That is really cool. Let us know how it works out. Being all computer scientists, I'll propose it to our group and see what they think. I believe you have an error in the equations for PF and PseudoXP though. If I follow it correctly, it should be:

PF = (currentXP - min_cur_lvl)/(amt_next_lvl - min_cur_lvl)
PseudoXP = min_cu_lvl + PF * PLXP

Looking around
(3/19/03 12:36 pm)
Re: Survey on Levels and more in RttToEE
Working from memory, which may be inaccurate:

Start: 4th level, 5 PCs
Moathouse: 4th level, 5 PCs
Nulb: 5th level, 5 PCs

Crater Ridge Mines:
Main Gate: 6th level, 5 PCs
Earth Temple: 6th level, 5 PCs
Air Bridge: 7th level, 5 PCs
Fire Bridge: 7th level, 5 PCs + 1 cohort
Air Temple: 8th level, 5 PCs + 1 cohort
Water Boat Landing: 8th level, 5 PCs + 1 cohort
Water Temple: 9th level, 5 PCs + 1 cohort
Bugbear Caves: 9th level, 6 PCs + 2 cohorts

Outer Fane:
First attack (through the water door turning westward towards the fire door): 10th level, 6 PCs + 2 cohorts

Crater Ridge Mines:
Fire Temple: 9th level (See below), 6 PCs + 1 cohort
Earth Bridge: 10th level, 6PCs (no cohorts)

PC deaths:
- Half-orc barbarian/fighter killed by Chatrilon Unosh (death attack) in the Moathouse
- 4 PCs and 1 cohort killed by Chymon in the Outer Fane:
* human fighter/paladin
* human fighter/rogue
* halfling rogue
* human fighter/ranger
* cohort: human fighter/templar
- dwarf cleric killed by Tessimon
- 2 PCs and 1 cohort killed by Tessimon and Eeridik (Tessimon had fled from the fire temple after the PCs killed everyone else there)
* half-orc fighter
* human paladin/sorcerer
* cohort: human fighter/templar
- dwarf fighter/rogue killed by a troll while under the effect of a Hold Person spell

Random Encounters: I would roll for these whenever the PCs rested in an unsafe location, not not otherwise. The dwarven temple was safe until the invisible stalkers from the Outer Fane tracked the PCs there recently.

Character Death: Raised characters would loose one level worth of XP (If the character was 1000XP away from 11th level before dying, he/she would now be 1000XP away from 10th level). New characters enter at this XP total or the XP total of the PC with the least amount of XP, whichever is less. Additionally, casting Raise Dead costs 500XP (but no gold)

-- Retan

Here for a while
(3/21/03 11:29 am)
My rote...

Moathouse: 4th

CRM Entrance: Probably 5th, maybe 6th

Starting level: 4th

Number of PCs: 4, 1 NPC/Cohort (Xaod)

Level-Penalizing: I'm very intrigued by the 'debt' and 'collective loss' methods mentioned, and will probably let the players decide which to use of the 3.

Random Encounters: Only when a large amount of game time happens between encounters (on way to CRM, sleeping in hostile territory, etc.)

Number of character deaths: None so far (though got close a couple of times).

Here for a while
(3/23/03 3:20 pm)
Re: My rote...
As an additional question I'd be interested in knowing hte levels of your parties when they faced Hedrack, the First and Imix/Lareth as well as the final level of you characters....


Here for a while
(3/24/03 12:26 pm)
Re: My rote...
4 PCs
Start at Lvl 5 w/ treasure for lvl 4

A few planned randoms on the wy to Rastor

South Entrance everyone is level 6.

XP penalty for Death: 1/2 diff between XP for last level and current level, this is an XP debt and you don't actually 'lose' any abilities, it just takes longer untill next level.

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