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JRedGiant
Faen
(7/3/03 10:48 am)
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Revenge of Jaroo?
Wanted to run this by the fine minds of the board to see if this idea has any holes. IMC, the salient points to this are:

1) Jaroo was exposed and humiliated by the party, but he was able to escape.
2) Dunrat and company was killed off by the PC's, but the Stalwart Eye was not discovered.
3) I assume Jaroo knew about the Eye.

Anyways, here's my thinking. Jaroo, independant from the orders of the cultists, wants revenge. He sneaks back into Homlett in the guise of an ordinary traveler and stops in a the Welcome Wench for a few brews. From what he can get from local gossip and from Maridosen, who is still under cover, he gathers that the PC's are in Neverwinter recovering from a vicious fight in Nulb, but will investigate the ruined temple next.

So Jaroo recovers the Eye and heads for the temple. He shifts to a mean looking hobgoblin and gets an audience with Rarkus. He warns him that powerful adventurers are coming, and he wants to use his magic to help defeat them. Rarkus agrees.

So now Jaroo sets up the eye in a good spot and watches for the approaching PC's. When he spots them, the hobs will turtle at the temple entrance and make preperations. (Exact strategy to be determined.) Jaroo will hang back and if things go sour, slink away and assume the form of a female goblin slave...hoping to be released by the PC's. He'll recover the Eye and head for the CRM.

Sound feasable?

deafdungeonmasterRIT
Litorian
(7/3/03 11:23 am)
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hmm
Sounds good.. but wouldn't Jaroo know more and more about the cults? Why are you calling him Jaroo if he is already expose?

If Jaroo know more and more about the cults, do you think Jaroo will be happy to work for the cults in the first place? Assuming Jaroo alignment (neutral), I doubt he will want to contributes more to the cult causes.

All for all, great ideas.

deafdungeonmasterRIT
Litorian
(7/3/03 11:28 am)
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hmm
Sounds good.. but wouldn't Jaroo know more and more about the cults? Why are you calling him Jaroo if he is already expose?

If Jaroo know more and more about the cults, do you think Jaroo will be happy to work for the cults in the first place? Assuming Jaroo alignment (neutral), I doubt he will want to contributes more to the cult causes.

All for all, great ideas.

BTW, this doppelganger have WAYY too many free times on its hand!

Offgall Fizziwigg
Faen
(7/3/03 11:34 am)
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I think it's great.
I think you have a great idea. I don't see any holes in the plan, and I think it will make the Temple a tougher battle than it is. When I ran it, it was a very tough battle, and I forgot to beef up my hobgob elites! Darn! The ape is nasty, especially with an invisible cleric with a CLW wand. It will be especially now that the hobs will be prepared for battle, with a doppleganger in its ranks. You might be able to invite the group that resides in the tower and the trio in the shack. The goblins with alchemist fire perched on the rafters would be a tough addition to the ranks.

JRedGiant
Faen
(7/3/03 12:24 pm)
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Oooh...
...invisible cleric with a CLW want? Me like!!!:evil

Jaroo doesn't give a hoot and a holler about the hobgoblins or the cultists, but he wants to give the PC's a good what-for for humiliating him. Being a doppleganger, he'd prefer to do it with the tried and true tactic of "Lets you and you have a fight."

I'm not going to boost any of the hobs, although I'll probably redo spell selection to include some nasty BoVD stuff (Entice Gift looks fun!) The real threat is that Jaroo will be giving out lots of intel on the party, so the hobgoblins will have a strategy geared towards the PC's.

Offgall Fizziwigg
Faen
(7/3/03 12:37 pm)
Reply
Re: Oooh...
I would remember to let the elites hobgobs quaff their bull's strength potions. I forgot they had them when I ran the battle.

deafdungeonmasterRIT
Litorian
(7/3/03 10:26 pm)
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hmm
If you want Jaroo to be a match, upgrade him to monk

JRedGiant
Faen
(7/4/03 2:17 am)
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re:hmm
Actually, I'm more interested in Jaroo escaping yet again to pull this trick again in the CRM...maybe with Vranthis.

Thrommel
Runechild (mod)
Council of Magisters

(7/4/03 1:09 pm)
Reply
Re: re:hmm
Remember that any time you pre-plan and strategize against the party, you're upping the CR of the encounter significantly. A prepared hobgoblin force is much tougher that what's written.

Some quick questions -- why should the hobs believe Jaroo at all?? How do they know that this isn't some trick by a rival hobgob tribe to get them all to hunker down in one place?

I would think they would at least send out a scouting party to check the rumor, if not plan an ambush away from the temple.

I like the idea, but it assumes a level of trust that probably isn't there. And truth be told -- I think you're setting them up for a TPK. A prepared temple is pretty nasty.

Plus, you want the party to know that the doppelganger is doing this -- you need to set him up as a rival. So figure out a way to reveal him.

Maybe he comes to Rarkus posing as a party member. He offers to join forces with the hobs and swears fealty to Rarkus, promising to help on a big raid against a coming merchant caravan. ("We raid it ourselves, but it's too big and heavily guarded.") Jaroo takes off under the guise of finding out when the caravan is coming through.

Then, when the real party shows up, the hobs all take the party in like they're allies and Rarkus demands to know what the status of the caravan is. Confusion will reign, but one thing's for certain -- Rarkus isn't going to like being made a fool of.

This makes the whole encounter much more of an RP event, rather than a 'storm the Alamo' type of scenario. And your party is pretty quickly going to figure out a doppelganger is involved. Best of all, the scenario is extremely low-risk for Jaroo (which is how I figure most ALL doppelgangers operate) so he can be used later for further hijinks.

Just my two coppers.

-Thrommel, who notes if there are no coppers, there are no robbers.

~Council of Magisters~
~ Arcana Unearthed ~

JRedGiant
Faen
(7/6/03 6:47 am)
Reply
re:hmm
At this point it's set to go...

The temple is prepared, however, I did not use any resources the hobgoblins didn't have access to. This includes the construction of rafters/platforms for bombing alchemists fire, which a number of people recommend. Also, I ruled that since IMC the Book of Vile Darkness is the sole property of Tharizdun/EEE worshippers, there will be no BoVD spells for the adepts.

Thrommel, I appreciate your concerns and suggestions, but this is a case where I know my players, their PCs and their capabilities. I expect zero full deaths and maybe one to two PC's in the negatives, tops. Probably not that much.

The hobgoblins will trust Jaroo because "the creatures ability to detect thoughts allows it to manipulate people very effectively - it knows when they believe what it is saying and when it has gone too far." (RttToEE, 16).

As far as letting on that faux-Jaroo has escaped, I've decided that if the party lets the youths go, they'll find eight dead hobgoblin youths and a message written in blood in Druidic. "Be seeing you..." That should be a clue bomb.

As per the book, I'm giving an "ad-hoc XP adjustment" of 110% for everything in the temple, except the rats.

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