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A song from the sixties
(5/27/03 4:04 pm)
Another game close to the end; advice please
My group has infiltrated the Recovered Temple for the first time and caused a decent amount of damage in their first foray. Not nearly enough to cripple the cult, but enough to cause some worries for them.

Everything up to and including the stone giants on the first level has been met and destroyed. Falrinth, Smigmal & Dugart the cleric have not yet been encountered. Neither has Kex the beholder. The group has not entered the lower level as of yet.

I know it was just a first exposure for the PCs. They went in hard and took out everything they encountered. They met stiff resistance, especially from the earth elemental, but perservered. And along the way came up with a pretty brutal tactic. Mix one blade barrier and one wall of force together and then add a floor covered in spike stones and you've got some mince-meat stone giants. But that's beside the point.

The PCs have retreated and holed up in the secret room off the entrance chamber that has not yet been discovered. I can't remember the room number & I'm not at home, but it is Falrinth's old workroom.

Anyway. They are holed up there for the night to rest and regain spells. They will not have light sources out for fear being scried upon and finding them out. So scrying will reveal that they are in an underground chamber, but not where. Falrinth may recognize it, but he will not be the one scrying, so there's a small break for them. I do not foresee them being bothered during their rest.

The help I'm looking for, though (finally), is with the cult's defenses. I figure they may relinquish control of the upper level and seal the lower level off with wall of stone or something similar. Kex can always get them out later if they need to.

And I'm not sure that Falrinth and Smigmal will stick around. They've done their job in locating the temple for the Doomdreamers. It seems that they're just hanging around now to see what's going on and pick up a few nice trinkets here and there. But I've not decided one way or another on that.

So in summary. The entire roster of the lower level is intact, as well as Kex the beholder, Falrinth, Dugart & Smigmal from the upper level. The cult does not have a good idea of who they are facing. The PCs are aware that there is a beholder about as well as more highly trained ogre guards and at least one iron golem, maybe more. They of course know that there are a number of priests below, as well as the Second. I am using the 1/2 Water Elemental/ 1/2 Grell Second instead of the aboleth. The PCs suspect it is a grell, but do not know it's capabilities. Here is the group the cult is up against.

Torque--Paladin/Cleric/Divine Hammer (from Quintessential Cleric
Dorak--Fighter/Weapon Master
[/b]Jac[/b]--Ranger/Cleric/Windwalker (from Faiths of Faerun)
Lycos--Rogue/Guild Thief/Shadowdancer

PC levels range from 10th to 12th level...with most falling in at 11th. A large group, and they can handle a lot.

What will the cult do? What defenses will they adopt? Or will they take offensive action right away? I have a number of ideas, of course, but am very interested to hear what the rest of you have to say.

I have taken pointers from the other campaign threads that have ended recently and look forward to adding my own within the next month or so. Thanks for any and all ideas!

Edited by: SSShadowcat7 at: 5/27/03 4:08:20 pm
A song from the sixties
(5/27/03 6:21 pm)
end game advice
The BoB has a few good ending threads available if you haven't looked there already. My campaign ended a little bit different from the module and is one of the threads covered there.

I staged a huge battle in the greater temple area that involved (my memory may be hazy) 4 doomdreamers, Falrinth, and a summoned planar ally. It was a massive slugfest that ended as a draw more or less with the party retreating without inflicting any casualties. They returned however and claimed the victory before moving onto the Fire Node.

I still have the Word files I created to prepare for this battle if you'd like them. I can email them, or we could use a messenger program to do a file transfer. You may not use them as I did but they could spark an idea or two.

Good luck in winding down what should be a great campaign.


A song from the sixties
(5/28/03 7:46 pm)
Re: end game advice
I still have the Word files I created to prepare for this battle if you'd like them. I can email them, or we could use a messenger program to do a file transfer. You may not use them as I did but they could spark an idea or two.

That would be cool. Thanks.

Just a Word document would be fine if that's what you have.

Thanks again.

PS--Anyone else have any suggestions?

A boxing glove
(5/29/03 3:14 am)
Re: end game advice
My group took out the same amount of forces in one strike (plus the Beholder) when they got to the Recovered Temple -

I had Falrinth place a silent Alarm spell in the long corridor and had Dugart extracting as much info as possible from Falrinth and Smigmal before they left...the PCs got to fight them, but they were already planning to leave.

Downstairs the Second moved the Golems onto the stairs with orders to attack any humanoid they saw and to move forward if they heard battle - this led to a running fight with the ropers, golems, plus the elite ogres who were positioned further down the stairs and moved up (after an arbitrary few rounds of prep-time) to join the fight.

In the Greater Temple, Susain started the sacrificial ritual - the Eye played a major part in the challenge here, as the PCs were racing to stop the ritual (fearing that it might 'end the world') and failed Will saves took out a tank (and Kella in Ogre form) for the entire fight almost.

I had the other doomdreamers on stand-by - the two were off battling the purple worm and Dugart (who escaped from the PCs upstairs) had gone to bring them to help hold the temple. They arrived once the fighting in the temple was going cold - the Second was still alive, barely, but Susain was already slain.
This made for an epic 50-round running battle that my players were genuinely surprised to have won.

They then camped out after some divinations revealed that Lareth was coming back to the temple via the Fire Gate and dug in, hoping to prevent Lareth from doing any mischief (he returned with Imix and others to 'end the world').
The epic fight that ensued is in the thread The Final Battle!

Only you can gauge the strength of your group, but I threw a lot at mine and they got through it - just :)

The recovered temple was a blast - hard-fought victories and a real nail-biting finish to a long campaign. Make 'em work for it! :)


Edited by: Grumgarr at: 5/29/03 3:17:24 am
A guitar
(5/29/03 5:45 am)
Re: end game advice
I don't have any great strategies for you at the moment, sorry, but I just wanted to point out that you might want to consider a motivation for having Falrinth stick around for at least a confrontation or the beginnings of a battle. Of course, he would leave if he was actually in trouble, but he is the only chance for the players to fight a high level wizard in the entire module. Everyone else is a cleric. It might help alleviate the repetitiveness of fighting clerics. It might also make things interesting if Falrinth were to 'pretend' to be a doomdreamer, then suddenly (while hasted) whip out a quickened lightning bolt, etc.

A song from the sixties
(5/31/03 2:22 pm)
Re: end game advice
I also only have a small thought, which is the Doomdreamers might think it worthwhile to cough up the $ for Falrinth and Smigmal to have a quick spin around to see if the PCs are nearby to be assassinated - it would seem to be exactly the sort of work they specialise in...

A cup of coffee
(6/1/03 2:42 am)
Re: Another game close to the end; advice please
When I came close to finishing the game with my group of 8 or so I found myself asking myself, how can you finish something so important in the history of Greyhawk so (and I use this world loosely) 'easily'?

The thing is it isn't the finish, it's the beginning.

I found myself seeing the players as warming up to become representatives of deities in the power struggle against Tharizdun. With a plot that moved across to the Duchy of Geoff (and the dozens of Tharizdun references within the old modules their) and on to prevent another potential disaster.

Afterwards I began to see all the various references in the various old modules and reference books to Tharizdun and the build up of power over the years, eventually his influence will seep so deeply into Oerth that only the gods themselves will be able to stop him. Very Cthulhu-esque.

And as a Cthulhu GM what is the first rule? Once you've opened the door to madness and unspeakable horrors, there is no closing it.

Build on your campaign, make them think it is the end. But really it's the beginning of the end. Eventually another cataclysm will be upon us, much like the Tharizdun-inspired Rain of Colourless Fire that ended the Suel Imperium and the Demonic Armies that crushed the Baklunish Lands.

With Tharizdun power said to rival that of several of the greatest of gods, why finish the story as such?

Go beserk, and remember, if Tharizdun has Eclavdra as a worshipper, there aint nothing that he can't do.

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