Gold Community Okay -- Your Turn
    > Return to the Temple of Elemental Evil
        > Sending the assasin
New Topic    Add Reply

<< Prev Topic | Next Topic >>
Author Comment
Here for a while
(3/22/03 3:59 pm)
Sending the assasin
Just wanted some quick input...

My PCs have taken out two temples now. They have been scried on for about two weeks now. The first week or so it was Varachan, but since the fall of the fire temple about 5 days ago, Hedrack has been having varachan report on the party. Anyway, the party holes up in the dwarven bolthole in the earth bridge complex every night. The having been progressing towards the Air temple (just encountered the water bridge) during the day and hole up at night.

How would one of the assasins go about striking them while they are holed up? Does the Outer fane know about the bolt hole or can they find it? I have ruled that the elevator stays at the top of the bolt hole during the night. How should I use the assassin?

Thanks in advance,

Boden Blagden
Here for a while
(3/22/03 4:16 pm)
Re: Sending the assasin
Which ever assassin you use do death attacks with a crossbow and always make it hit and run. Constantly have him use the wand of invisibility and his hide and move silently skills. I did use my assassins right and they died. If I would have used them this way they would have been a major thorn in my PCs side. Of course I don't know how your PCs handle things so it might be different for you.

Still here? Wow.
(3/22/03 4:56 pm)
Re: Sending the assasin
Death attacks with crossbow don't work, unfortunately. A death attack must be a melee attack. Though the idea of a "hit and run" is still a very good one.

Remember that Hedrack has Greater Scrying and so it's very likely he'll actually see the group enter the bolthole. It might be better for the assassin to hide and stalk the party rather than trying to enter the bolt hole. He/she can strike when and if any of the party members separate (a lone target would be ideal), from behind when they engage with other powerful foes, or perhaps as they are returning to the bolthole when presumably they'll be low on spells and hitpoints.

I like the idea of sending an invisible stalker along, too, to help track the party if need be (the assassin can stay further back and be less likely to be detected) and to provide a flanker to help make sure the assassin can get that death attack off. (Though Hedrack would probably send the assassin, alone, on the first try.)

As for escaping, the assassins can rely on their own spellcasting - Obscuring Mist or Darkness are the obvious choices; Spider Climb can be of some help too. Additionally, check out the Imbue Spell Ability spell - Hedrack could give the assassin some nice spells including Sanctuary. It's a little ambiguous, but I believe the DC for an imbued spell is calculated as if it were cast by Hedrack himself. Thus, IIRC Hedrack's stats properly, the DC for an imbued Sanctuary would be DC 20 Will save, and duration 14 rounds. The assassin might even just hang around a couple of rounds to stick his tongue out and laugh before slipping away!

Here for a while
(3/23/03 10:25 am)
Re: Sending the assassin
Imbue with spell ability.... that is a great idea. Hedrack has a good idea of where the party is... Earth bridge complex somewhere. But not the exact point. It also helps that Eredick is currently a member of the outer fane, having been chased off by the party and retreating there. He knows that there is a secret room in his complex but has never figured out the elevator.

Anyway, Victor first went in to check out the remainder of the fire temple (the war4 elf and his guards), shortly after the destruction of the main part of the fire temple. The party took about 4 days exploring the crypts before finishing of the fire temple guards. Victor was sent in to use them as a distraction and then take out a PC. Unfortunately, the battle didn't last the 3 rounds necessary to get in a death attack. I managed a sneak attack for 18 damage and then a great hide check to get away.

So the questions I have for using the assassin now would be...

How many spot/listen checks do the party get when being followed? Only a matter of time before he is found out....

How do you hide after an attack? or is it even possible. Surprise round, attack, roll init, if you win, hide again. Any penalties to such an action? Should I just go with darkness or obscuring mists? Unfortunately my party has lots of high initiatives and good mobility.

In general how do you execute the hiding and sneaking aspect fairly for the PCs and the assassin?


Cordo Crowfoot
Here to stay
(3/23/03 5:44 pm)
Re: Sending the assassin
The use of spot and listen is a bit vague.

I would be interested in hearing how other people choose to run it. I use only the best spot and listen from a single group, be it the party or a group of NPCs, if someone is trying to sneak around, or if I am trying to decide if two groups see one another. This might not always be the same person, if the rogue is scouting up front, the person in the rear might have a better chance at hearing someone following behind depending on distance.

When it gets to the final potential surprise round, then I finally have everyone make spot and listen rolls to see if the character is surprised.

As for how often on the checks, I usually do one of two things, check every 10 minutes or when distance changes significantly, OR use the difference between the move silently and listen to determine when the listener will hear the potential assassin. For example, if the listen check was 32 and the move silent check 30, the assassin would not be heard until he got within 20', but then the person with the highest listen would hear him.

As for Victor following a group of PCs, I would guess that he could follow quite a distance behind as long as they are using some sort of light source. Then, when he hears combat, he sneaks forward to watch and start observing. If he couldn't get a death attack I probably wouldn't have him attack at all.

At the same time, I kind of consider invisibility equipment, along with poison, definite requirements for an assassin. I'll probably switch some of Bethe and Victor's equipment out for Invis potions or wands and poison.

Hiding after an attack. Unless you are a shadow dancer you can't hide while being directly observed (unless you make a bluff check, probably not a good chance of that against multiple high level opponents) so the assassin would have to move somewhere they had cover, and then hide, or move into a shadow zone and hide.

The difficulty of gettting away with hide is why I think having invisibility is so important, a wand is better as there is no AoO for using it.

"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

Still here? Wow.
(3/23/03 6:06 pm)
Re: Sending the assassin
Yeah, I don't have hard and fast procedures for the Listen and Spot checks vs. the shadowing assassin. Luckily for me, the party tends to keep their most observant types up front (probably a pretty common thing to do), so I just roll some checks for the back rank. Basically I make this check just once, then again if the situation (essentially, distance) changes.

It may not be totally fair to the PC's this way... but if they took any special precautions (like having someone hide and wait while the rest of the group went forward) they'd certainly get another bite at the apple.

I also assume that the assassin gets a lightning-tower sorceror to cast Darkvision on him on the way out of the Fane, since otherwise he's stuck using a light source which will totally give him away.

Having an invisible stalker along also helps me feel better about the fudging of Listen and Spot checks. I figure the assassin can stay very comfortably behind while the stalker darts ahead and back, using its excellent tracking ability if necessary to stay in contact with the party. (This is perhaps fudging a bit about how the two communicate, but it doesn't bother me much.)

Regarding invisibility: sure, it can be incredibly useful to make a getway or to prepare a strike; switch out items if you like. But I don't think it's absolutely required. With their cloaks of elvenkind, the assassins have excellent hide checks. An obscuring mist or darkness can be used simply to "break contact", allowing the assassin a chance to get someplace unobserved where he can hide. This has worked once so far IMC - the party assumed the assassin must have gone invisible to escape, when actually he was only 40' away, holding still. Of course, a simple detect magic would blow this strategy if the caster concentrates long enough to find individual auras, but not all parties are going to figure that out... if they do, then bully for them!

I do agree about the poison - it's just too "assassinish" not to give them some; they get the poison use class feature, for Tharizdun's sake! I'm giving them some of the drow guests' giant wasp poison or whatever it is.

Finally, don't forget that in addition to scrying, the Fane clerics can use the Divination spell to get extra clues about the mission. Assuming they make the % roll, I think it's fair to give the assassin one specific spell or piece of equipment that will be useful, and you can do this retroactively.

For example, IMC it turned out that the wizard got left behind on his own for a while, a perfect time for the assassin to strike. If I get a success on Hedrack's Divination check, I'll probably give the assassin a pair of dimensional shackles to use so he can try to paralyze and then capture the wizard (the Fane forces definitely know that he can teleport and dim door!). This is even though I didn't know in advance that this situation would occur - I can pretend that the Divination spell revealed that there'd be a chance to capture the wizard.

<< Prev Topic | Next Topic >>

Add Reply

Email This To a Friend Email This To a Friend
Topic Control Image Topic Commands
Click to receive email notification of replies Click to receive email notification of replies
Click to stop receiving email notification of replies Click to stop receiving email notification of replies
jump to:

- Okay -- Your Turn - Return to the Temple of Elemental Evil - Home -

Powered By ezboard® Ver. 7.246
Copyright ©1999-2003 ezboard, Inc.