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[D&D 5E] Nothing is true, everything is permitted.

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Posts

  • DarkPrimusDarkPrimus Registered User regular
    Tomb of Annihilation should be run without sticking to RAW, for example rolling for jungle events is great but it's probably a better idea to preroll and create an outline of each day's adventures

    Chult is also an ideal playground to dump stuff, I've got a half dozen "mini dungeons" that are basically a room or two and a thing, like a Breath of the Wild dungeon, aimed at one hour in length, spread around. Also given my party's acceptance of any and all allies, I have (from Tomb of Annihilation companion) a lost frost giant they'll find laying on a rock, who will ask them dejectedly if they know Artus Cimber and then sigh and offer to come with them because she's 5000% lost. Combat difficulty gets easier, unless they actually run into artus, at which point she'll try to literally grab him and take off into the jungle ( I know by raw a giant moves at half movement while absconding with a person but, eh? that seems wrong, humans are papillon sized to them)

    I mean, from what I can tell there are a number of other adventuring companies that the GM created out of whole cloth in addition to whatever factions are present in the actual module, and based on how we chose to go around the island we encountered them, or found signs of their passing.

    Also, Artus Climber has been renamed to Aleksander Calen, which I'm gonna come out and say, is a much cooler name.

    But last night's session was in the temple proper, and it involved a lot of mindfuckery and the party wizard and I'm pretty sure some of that stuff ain't in the book.

    wpyz0Y5.png
    Gamertag: PrimusD | Rock Band DLC | GW:OttW - arrcd | WLD - Thortar
  • override367override367 ALL minions Registered User regular
    edited June 5
    since the party in my game is dragging Rosavalda from Dead House around with them (she's a dragon now after a long series of being used as a magical experiment by the party), they want to go to Barovia and unseat strahd after they're done with Tomb of Annihilation (assuming they don't TPK at any point, I'm not pulling punches and I've increased the campaign's difficulty)

    I don't really want to uplevel that campaign so fuck it, I'ma dump a group of level 10-11 adventurers (and a dragon) into Barovia and there's little stopping them from just burning Strahd's house down, the thought of a Curse of Strahd where the party are just bullies that are breaking all of Strahd's stuff satisfies me

    override367 on
    webguy20never die
  • RiemannLivesRiemannLives Registered User regular
    I just think its pretty integral to how people (or at least that subset of them that play tabletop RPGs) work that in any given group there's going to be at least one - if not all - who really want their character to stand out from the norm. To be special.

    If you have a low magic setting they will want to be one of the really rare magic users. If the party is all Crusaders they will want to be the party thief (with a sufficiently elaborate backstory or excuse for why). If everyone agrees to play a party of all Barbiarians then goes home to create a character they'll come back with a Bard and a really good reason why. It just gets silly when every single person at the table is the exception to the rule.

    I ran a game in a setting with a generally Migration Era level of technology where literacy was almost nonexistent. Every single player individually came up with a reason why their character was one of those few who were literate.

    SmrtnikAldoSleepJustTee
  • CarnarvonCarnarvon Registered User regular
    Speaking of ToA, remember the bard who cast a spell on the mercenary camp leader and got hanged? He made a cleric and, with me wanting him to have cool moments, I let him lead the party as we went to (light spoilers) Firefinger. He decided it would be best to lure out all the inhabitants and fight them at once, on our own terms, rather than going through a trap filled tower.

    We all died. Well, I didn't because I had 20AC and literally ran back to the boat with half my health and took off down the river. But the rest of those shmucks totally died.

    override367DarkPrimusLindRhesus PositiveNyhtJustTeenever die
  • SmrtnikSmrtnik job boli zub Registered User regular
    since the party in my game is dragging Rosavalda from Dead House around with them (she's a dragon now after a long series of being used as a magical experiment by the party), they want to go to Barovia and unseat strahd after they're done with Tomb of Annihilation (assuming they don't TPK at any point, I'm not pulling punches and I've increased the campaign's difficulty)

    I don't really want to uplevel that campaign so fuck it, I'ma dump a group of level 10-11 adventurers (and a dragon) into Barovia and there's little stopping them from just burning Strahd's house down, the thought of a Curse of Strahd where the party are just bullies that are breaking all of Strahd's stuff satisfies me

    How did they leave Barovia in the first place with Strahd still around?

    steam_sig.png
  • AldoAldo Hippo Hooray the swamp, always the swampRegistered User regular
    I just think its pretty integral to how people (or at least that subset of them that play tabletop RPGs) work that in any given group there's going to be at least one - if not all - who really want their character to stand out from the norm. To be special.

    If you have a low magic setting they will want to be one of the really rare magic users. If the party is all Crusaders they will want to be the party thief (with a sufficiently elaborate backstory or excuse for why). If everyone agrees to play a party of all Barbiarians then goes home to create a character they'll come back with a Bard and a really good reason why. It just gets silly when every single person at the table is the exception to the rule.

    I ran a game in a setting with a generally Migration Era level of technology where literacy was almost nonexistent. Every single player individually came up with a reason why their character was one of those few who were literate.

    Yeah, I dislike that. It's a way of storytelling or improv, not Mary Sue, The Board Game.

    Elendil wrote: »
    said Aldo hazily, before clop-clop-clopping out of the room
    Steelhawk
  • Moridin889Moridin889 Registered User regular
    Smrtnik wrote: »
    since the party in my game is dragging Rosavalda from Dead House around with them (she's a dragon now after a long series of being used as a magical experiment by the party), they want to go to Barovia and unseat strahd after they're done with Tomb of Annihilation (assuming they don't TPK at any point, I'm not pulling punches and I've increased the campaign's difficulty)

    I don't really want to uplevel that campaign so fuck it, I'ma dump a group of level 10-11 adventurers (and a dragon) into Barovia and there's little stopping them from just burning Strahd's house down, the thought of a Curse of Strahd where the party are just bullies that are breaking all of Strahd's stuff satisfies me

    How did they leave Barovia in the first place with Strahd still around?

    Part of Curse of Strahd is the fact that
    Strahd always comes back. Any slaying of him is just a temporary respite from his tyranny

    override367SmrtnikJustTee
  • override367override367 ALL minions Registered User regular
    edited June 5
    Smrtnik wrote: »
    since the party in my game is dragging Rosavalda from Dead House around with them (she's a dragon now after a long series of being used as a magical experiment by the party), they want to go to Barovia and unseat strahd after they're done with Tomb of Annihilation (assuming they don't TPK at any point, I'm not pulling punches and I've increased the campaign's difficulty)

    I don't really want to uplevel that campaign so fuck it, I'ma dump a group of level 10-11 adventurers (and a dragon) into Barovia and there's little stopping them from just burning Strahd's house down, the thought of a Curse of Strahd where the party are just bullies that are breaking all of Strahd's stuff satisfies me

    How did they leave Barovia in the first place with Strahd still around?

    I just wanted to run Death House as their introductory adventure so as the house collapsed there was a portal they could escape through (and out of game me telling the party, this was their decision point if they wanted to run Tomb or Curse of Strahd). Rosavalda was possessing one of them at the time when they jumped through the portal

    I have lots of nonsense in my campaigns and them using her as an undead bomb disposal robot has ultimately led to her being a living dragon through a very long and convoluted series of events

    override367 on
  • GaddezGaddez Registered User regular
    So I've learned a bit about the upcoming modules and after hearing the premise for dragon heist I gotta say: thank fucking christ for a module that isn't another straight up nostalgia romp.

    Richy wrote: »
    But I think the resistance I’m getting more has to do with “rawr! Loklar said it! Rage!” than anything else.

    No, it has to do with the fact that you're done nothing but throw lies, blatant flasehoods, and downright dumb statements at us so far.
    JustTee
  • SteelhawkSteelhawk Registered User regular
    I don't know anything other than the title, but the Undermountain one isn't a nostalgia romp?

    Moridin889
  • SniperGuySniperGuy Also known as Dohaeris Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited June 6
    My streamed 5e Campaign, The House Always Wins, finally got into the meat of the adventure last week.

    The party is engaged in a race for a mysterious patron who has offered them lots of riches and personal tidbits of info if they can win the race. To get a ticket for the race, they had to find a shining token. They did, after a few upsets, and were transported toooo
    *wait!*
    During transport they were whisked away to somewhere else!
    Each party member had to get their level 3 from somewhere, right? So
    The adolescent girl warlock who's patron is the Queen of Air and Darkness was transported to the Winter Court. There, the queen was pretty harsh and made her sweep with a spiky broom made of ice. After a while of this she was sent to a cell and forced to work for about three months. During this, they chained her familiar to her. At the end of the three months the chain disappeared and the familiar stopped being quite so raving mad like it had, now just being kind of a conniving jerk while still obeying the warlock. The Queen instructed her pawn to keep an eye on any dealings that might be encountered by those of the Summer Court and then sent her back.

    The cleric of Urgolan, god of the earth and death, found herself covered in warm, comforting dirt, and had a message of support and a sense that she was on the right path passed to her.

    The Monk who was raised in a family of Wizards saw the weave for a moment, the magical energy that flows through all things. The monk noticed parts of the weave seemed to be damaged and sparking (Spellplague leftovers) including the part that went through him. It bulged and surged into him and instead of magical energy, contorted into muscles. (He's a punch wizard!)

    Our Rogue, who is writing a travel guide, was contacted by his wizarding pal. They update the guide, wizard pal does some stuff to send that info out to all the other guides, keeping them all up to date. Was able to communicate briefly with the rogue, said all the sending spells he had tried failed but this one summoning spell sorta worked. They were able to exchange a few brief pleasentries and the wizard, acting as sort of a Q for the rogue, swapped out his rapier for two shortswords. He of course made sure to tell the rogue that to activate the special abilities of these swords, the rogue would need to aaaand then he was zapped back along his travelling path.
    THEN they were transported to:
    A large indoor room, decorated in casino style where they all arrived at the exact same time. Green velvet and swirling gold decorations on the walls and such. One side of the room has 6 large tables. One of those tables has a satyr sitting on it. Underneath and behind that table are piles and piles of general goods of various types. (he's a general store) On the north wall, a window has been carved and a man is learning in the window bored, next to a door. (This is the Inn)

    On the south side of the room there are rows of shelves, quite tall and absolutely packed to the brim with a massive number of tiny objects. The objects are of all various different types, little figurines, geometric shapes, all that sort of stuff. The party did notice that no weapon figurines are present. Each and everyone of these objects is a dull gray stone.

    There's no south exit. The east exit door is open and a massive amount of those knick knacks are flowing out through the door. The north door is closed, but seems to function as the Inn (the party didn't actually go check last session). The east doorway has no door, and another room full of those shelves can be seen beyond. Above this door in the stone is engraved "THE RACE BEGINS". Painted over this engraving and all around the door are various messaged proclaiming that everyone is doomed, none shall leave, turn back, etc. etc.

    The party finds themselves standing in the center of a circle, around a pedestal in the center of the room. The pedastal has a bowl on top of it and on the bottom there are 5 diamond shaped slots.

    Their patron in the race, a woman named Chora, flickers into view in the open doorway. One party member immediately went up to poke at her to discover that this was a projection, instead of her actually being here. She announced, seemingly to all the teams, that the rules are as follows:

    5 gems have gone missing in the collection. Teams need to find the gems, hidden inside the various knick knacks. When all 5 gems are found, the team that found the most is the winner! To see if an item contains a gem, have your team stand in the circle and place an item inside the bowl! This is the 43rd round, hopefully someone will win this time! (Que groans from the party) Good luck!

    And then she vanished! The party quickly glanced over the shelves in the room with them, not seeing any numbering system or anything to make the special objects stand out. One member went to talk to the Satyr and asked them for help. The satyr eagerly produced a stone feather and told them it might be a good first start.

    The party did not ask many questions about this and plopped the feather in the bowl. They are then whisked away to go inside the object. For this particular one I turned the map sideways and put a bunch of rings in the air. As they fell, they had to maneuver through the rings. If they missed one, it would make a loud error noise, potentially rousing the Roc that was slumbering below. The rings were also different colors, so they assumed each person had to stick to a color, which I hadn't thought of but hey what a neat idea. Overall this was very easy for them and a little time consuming so probably something to trim down if ever done again, but the general idea was fun.

    They plunge into a portal that returns them back to the Pedastal. The task completed, the feather is now a regular looking feather but they can tell it seems magical. One side of the ring around the pedastal lights up on their return and they assume this is some sort of direction for them. They put the feather in again (!!) hoping to get more directions. They had to do the roc run again with a few more rings and the feather feels even MORE magical now, but the ring on the ground did not glow again. (The party didn't notice the MORE magical bit, I think.)

    The team moved forward into the next room to see it filled with the same tiny objects, wall to wall. Other doors led out of this room, but the team tried another object. This time they found a small tree figurine and tossed that in the bowl and were transported to a spooky forest.

    The spooky forest is one of Dan Coleman's modules, An Axe to Grind, that I think is pretty good. They're still in there now for our session tonight but should be able to complete it during our time, I think.

    So now they've got a map of the "Collection" they are filling out as they go and a billion one shot dungeons to try out, which also result in a magic item at the end!
    I also contacted roll20 and got them to confirm that it is okay for me to buy the monster manual on their site and then use it during my stream so I may just do that because having all those tokens get pre filled for me sounds reaaaaaally nice. Having a blast with this game so that investment seems like it might be worth it, saves me a lot of prep time each week for sure.



    edit 3: And in other news, I really like Halaster and am super excited Undermountain is back.

    SniperGuy on
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    Me on Steam
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    FryJPantsNyhtJustTeenever die
  • tinwhiskerstinwhiskers Registered User regular
    Had one of those Fuck you DM rounds last night. Exploring a tomb and wake up some evil dead guy we could have avoided but wanted the lootz for. Should have been a bit of a fight, Instead my lvl 5 GWM battle master went off for 80 points of damage at the end of round 1, without burning action surge. Attack, attack that crits,Bonus action attack on crit, that crits. Burn through superiority dice on both attacks. So 10d6 +4d8 +12 damage. Also my character is a pompus douche, so the tables reaction was fantastic mix of "holy shit" and "God damn is he going to be insufferable".

    SmrtnikDizzy DFryPowerpuppiesElvenshaeAnialosAldoZonugalwebguy20NyhtMoridin889GONG-00Rhesus Positiveoverride367JustTeenever die
  • JPantsJPants Registered User regular
    SniperGuy wrote: »
    My streamed 5e Campaign, The House Always Wins, finally got into the meat of the adventure last week.

    The party is engaged in a race for a mysterious patron who has offered them lots of riches and personal tidbits of info if they can win the race. To get a ticket for the race, they had to find a shining token. They did, after a few upsets, and were transported toooo
    *wait!*
    During transport they were whisked away to somewhere else!
    Each party member had to get their level 3 from somewhere, right? So
    The adolescent girl warlock who's patron is the Queen of Air and Darkness was transported to the Winter Court. There, the queen was pretty harsh and made her sweep with a spiky broom made of ice. After a while of this she was sent to a cell and forced to work for about three months. During this, they chained her familiar to her. At the end of the three months the chain disappeared and the familiar stopped being quite so raving mad like it had, now just being kind of a conniving jerk while still obeying the warlock. The Queen instructed her pawn to keep an eye on any dealings that might be encountered by those of the Summer Court and then sent her back.

    The cleric of Urgolan, god of the earth and death, found herself covered in warm, comforting dirt, and had a message of support and a sense that she was on the right path passed to her.

    The Monk who was raised in a family of Wizards saw the weave for a moment, the magical energy that flows through all things. The monk noticed parts of the weave seemed to be damaged and sparking (Spellplague leftovers) including the part that went through him. It bulged and surged into him and instead of magical energy, contorted into muscles. (He's a punch wizard!)

    Our Rogue, who is writing a travel guide, was contacted by his wizarding pal. They update the guide, wizard pal does some stuff to send that info out to all the other guides, keeping them all up to date. Was able to communicate briefly with the rogue, said all the sending spells he had tried failed but this one summoning spell sorta worked. They were able to exchange a few brief pleasentries and the wizard, acting as sort of a Q for the rogue, swapped out his rapier for two shortswords. He of course made sure to tell the rogue that to activate the special abilities of these swords, the rogue would need to aaaand then he was zapped back along his travelling path.
    THEN they were transported to:
    A large indoor room, decorated in casino style where they all arrived at the exact same time. Green velvet and swirling gold decorations on the walls and such. One side of the room has 6 large tables. One of those tables has a satyr sitting on it. Underneath and behind that table are piles and piles of general goods of various types. (he's a general store) On the north wall, a window has been carved and a man is learning in the window bored, next to a door. (This is the Inn)

    On the south side of the room there are rows of shelves, quite tall and absolutely packed to the brim with a massive number of tiny objects. The objects are of all various different types, little figurines, geometric shapes, all that sort of stuff. The party did notice that no weapon figurines are present. Each and everyone of these objects is a dull gray stone.

    There's no south exit. The east exit door is open and a massive amount of those knick knacks are flowing out through the door. The north door is closed, but seems to function as the Inn (the party didn't actually go check last session). The east doorway has no door, and another room full of those shelves can be seen beyond. Above this door in the stone is engraved "THE RACE BEGINS". Painted over this engraving and all around the door are various messaged proclaiming that everyone is doomed, none shall leave, turn back, etc. etc.

    The party finds themselves standing in the center of a circle, around a pedestal in the center of the room. The pedastal has a bowl on top of it and on the bottom there are 5 diamond shaped slots.

    Their patron in the race, a woman named Chora, flickers into view in the open doorway. One party member immediately went up to poke at her to discover that this was a projection, instead of her actually being here. She announced, seemingly to all the teams, that the rules are as follows:

    5 gems have gone missing in the collection. Teams need to find the gems, hidden inside the various knick knacks. When all 5 gems are found, the team that found the most is the winner! To see if an item contains a gem, have your team stand in the circle and place an item inside the bowl! This is the 43rd round, hopefully someone will win this time! (Que groans from the party) Good luck!

    And then she vanished! The party quickly glanced over the shelves in the room with them, not seeing any numbering system or anything to make the special objects stand out. One member went to talk to the Satyr and asked them for help. The satyr eagerly produced a stone feather and told them it might be a good first start.

    The party did not ask many questions about this and plopped the feather in the bowl. They are then whisked away to go inside the object. For this particular one I turned the map sideways and put a bunch of rings in the air. As they fell, they had to maneuver through the rings. If they missed one, it would make a loud error noise, potentially rousing the Roc that was slumbering below. The rings were also different colors, so they assumed each person had to stick to a color, which I hadn't thought of but hey what a neat idea. Overall this was very easy for them and a little time consuming so probably something to trim down if ever done again, but the general idea was fun.

    They plunge into a portal that returns them back to the Pedastal. The task completed, the feather is now a regular looking feather but they can tell it seems magical. One side of the ring around the pedastal lights up on their return and they assume this is some sort of direction for them. They put the feather in again (!!) hoping to get more directions. They had to do the roc run again with a few more rings and the feather feels even MORE magical now, but the ring on the ground did not glow again. (The party didn't notice the MORE magical bit, I think.)

    The team moved forward into the next room to see it filled with the same tiny objects, wall to wall. Other doors led out of this room, but the team tried another object. This time they found a small tree figurine and tossed that in the bowl and were transported to a spooky forest.

    The spooky forest is one of Dan Coleman's modules, An Axe to Grind, that I think is pretty good. They're still in there now for our session tonight but should be able to complete it during our time, I think.

    So now they've got a map of the "Collection" they are filling out as they go and a billion one shot dungeons to try out, which also result in a magic item at the end!
    I also contacted roll20 and got them to confirm that it is okay for me to buy the monster manual on their site and then use it during my stream so I may just do that because having all those tokens get pre filled for me sounds reaaaaaally nice. Having a blast with this game so that investment seems like it might be worth it, saves me a lot of prep time each week for sure.



    edit 3: And in other news, I really like Halaster and am super excited Undermountain is back.

    Is this streamed somewhere that it can be watched after the fact? Sounds awesome!

  • SniperGuySniperGuy Also known as Dohaeris Registered User, ClubPA regular
    JPants wrote: »
    SniperGuy wrote: »
    My streamed 5e Campaign, The House Always Wins, finally got into the meat of the adventure last week.

    The party is engaged in a race for a mysterious patron who has offered them lots of riches and personal tidbits of info if they can win the race. To get a ticket for the race, they had to find a shining token. They did, after a few upsets, and were transported toooo
    *wait!*
    During transport they were whisked away to somewhere else!
    Each party member had to get their level 3 from somewhere, right? So
    The adolescent girl warlock who's patron is the Queen of Air and Darkness was transported to the Winter Court. There, the queen was pretty harsh and made her sweep with a spiky broom made of ice. After a while of this she was sent to a cell and forced to work for about three months. During this, they chained her familiar to her. At the end of the three months the chain disappeared and the familiar stopped being quite so raving mad like it had, now just being kind of a conniving jerk while still obeying the warlock. The Queen instructed her pawn to keep an eye on any dealings that might be encountered by those of the Summer Court and then sent her back.

    The cleric of Urgolan, god of the earth and death, found herself covered in warm, comforting dirt, and had a message of support and a sense that she was on the right path passed to her.

    The Monk who was raised in a family of Wizards saw the weave for a moment, the magical energy that flows through all things. The monk noticed parts of the weave seemed to be damaged and sparking (Spellplague leftovers) including the part that went through him. It bulged and surged into him and instead of magical energy, contorted into muscles. (He's a punch wizard!)

    Our Rogue, who is writing a travel guide, was contacted by his wizarding pal. They update the guide, wizard pal does some stuff to send that info out to all the other guides, keeping them all up to date. Was able to communicate briefly with the rogue, said all the sending spells he had tried failed but this one summoning spell sorta worked. They were able to exchange a few brief pleasentries and the wizard, acting as sort of a Q for the rogue, swapped out his rapier for two shortswords. He of course made sure to tell the rogue that to activate the special abilities of these swords, the rogue would need to aaaand then he was zapped back along his travelling path.
    THEN they were transported to:
    A large indoor room, decorated in casino style where they all arrived at the exact same time. Green velvet and swirling gold decorations on the walls and such. One side of the room has 6 large tables. One of those tables has a satyr sitting on it. Underneath and behind that table are piles and piles of general goods of various types. (he's a general store) On the north wall, a window has been carved and a man is learning in the window bored, next to a door. (This is the Inn)

    On the south side of the room there are rows of shelves, quite tall and absolutely packed to the brim with a massive number of tiny objects. The objects are of all various different types, little figurines, geometric shapes, all that sort of stuff. The party did notice that no weapon figurines are present. Each and everyone of these objects is a dull gray stone.

    There's no south exit. The east exit door is open and a massive amount of those knick knacks are flowing out through the door. The north door is closed, but seems to function as the Inn (the party didn't actually go check last session). The east doorway has no door, and another room full of those shelves can be seen beyond. Above this door in the stone is engraved "THE RACE BEGINS". Painted over this engraving and all around the door are various messaged proclaiming that everyone is doomed, none shall leave, turn back, etc. etc.

    The party finds themselves standing in the center of a circle, around a pedestal in the center of the room. The pedastal has a bowl on top of it and on the bottom there are 5 diamond shaped slots.

    Their patron in the race, a woman named Chora, flickers into view in the open doorway. One party member immediately went up to poke at her to discover that this was a projection, instead of her actually being here. She announced, seemingly to all the teams, that the rules are as follows:

    5 gems have gone missing in the collection. Teams need to find the gems, hidden inside the various knick knacks. When all 5 gems are found, the team that found the most is the winner! To see if an item contains a gem, have your team stand in the circle and place an item inside the bowl! This is the 43rd round, hopefully someone will win this time! (Que groans from the party) Good luck!

    And then she vanished! The party quickly glanced over the shelves in the room with them, not seeing any numbering system or anything to make the special objects stand out. One member went to talk to the Satyr and asked them for help. The satyr eagerly produced a stone feather and told them it might be a good first start.

    The party did not ask many questions about this and plopped the feather in the bowl. They are then whisked away to go inside the object. For this particular one I turned the map sideways and put a bunch of rings in the air. As they fell, they had to maneuver through the rings. If they missed one, it would make a loud error noise, potentially rousing the Roc that was slumbering below. The rings were also different colors, so they assumed each person had to stick to a color, which I hadn't thought of but hey what a neat idea. Overall this was very easy for them and a little time consuming so probably something to trim down if ever done again, but the general idea was fun.

    They plunge into a portal that returns them back to the Pedastal. The task completed, the feather is now a regular looking feather but they can tell it seems magical. One side of the ring around the pedastal lights up on their return and they assume this is some sort of direction for them. They put the feather in again (!!) hoping to get more directions. They had to do the roc run again with a few more rings and the feather feels even MORE magical now, but the ring on the ground did not glow again. (The party didn't notice the MORE magical bit, I think.)

    The team moved forward into the next room to see it filled with the same tiny objects, wall to wall. Other doors led out of this room, but the team tried another object. This time they found a small tree figurine and tossed that in the bowl and were transported to a spooky forest.

    The spooky forest is one of Dan Coleman's modules, An Axe to Grind, that I think is pretty good. They're still in there now for our session tonight but should be able to complete it during our time, I think.

    So now they've got a map of the "Collection" they are filling out as they go and a billion one shot dungeons to try out, which also result in a magic item at the end!
    I also contacted roll20 and got them to confirm that it is okay for me to buy the monster manual on their site and then use it during my stream so I may just do that because having all those tokens get pre filled for me sounds reaaaaaally nice. Having a blast with this game so that investment seems like it might be worth it, saves me a lot of prep time each week for sure.



    edit 3: And in other news, I really like Halaster and am super excited Undermountain is back.

    Is this streamed somewhere that it can be watched after the fact? Sounds awesome!

    I'm trying to keep them uploaded to YouTube as we go, but I am a little behind there, working on catching up though! (Also I goofed and muted half of one episode but that luckily wasn't anything too important so I need to recap that and edit that video before it goes up)
    Playlist should be here:



    They should also be showing up in the twitch archive, link to my channel is in my sig!

    Also I bought the roll20 monster manual and maaaan it made me change our character sheets to the OGL one to work properly. Gonna be a hassle for my players.

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  • GaddezGaddez Registered User regular
    Steelhawk wrote: »
    I don't know anything other than the title, but the Undermountain one isn't a nostalgia romp?

    Dragon heist is the precursor and from what I've heard it seems really refreshing in that it doesn't seem to be a 30 year old module that they're emulating for a new generation (tm).

    Sure it's got some major dramatis persona flitting about but the crux of the adventure (players find a giant pile of loot and need to keep it out of the hands of 4 very dangerous individuals) seems remarkably fresh.

    Richy wrote: »
    But I think the resistance I’m getting more has to do with “rawr! Loklar said it! Rage!” than anything else.

    No, it has to do with the fact that you're done nothing but throw lies, blatant flasehoods, and downright dumb statements at us so far.
  • SmrtnikSmrtnik job boli zub Registered User regular
    Heh one of my players bought and ate a pastry from a nice old lady in Village of Barovia. I'm sure that will work out great for her.

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  • KadokenKadoken I'm an adult I am going to shoot this mystery with my pistol of deduction -Sherlock Holmes (Scott Benson)Registered User regular
    Was it blood pudding stuffed

  • SmrtnikSmrtnik job boli zub Registered User regular
    Kadoken wrote: »
    Was it blood pudding stuffed

    Curse of Strahd spoiler
    The old lady is a night hag who sells addictive pastries to townies that make them dream of a pleasant place instead of their dreary existence. Once you have a taste all you want is more. If you don't have money to pay her with, she will gladly accept your child as payment. The pies are made of those children, ground up into paste, plus magic. Mechanically its a CON save DC 16 to have the dream/become addicted.

    The party is lvl 3 and they split in half (people who wanted to go to Ismark's house and those that wanted to talk to the interesting looking ladies back at the bar. The later group were their cleric and rogue. As they are leaving the bar they see the nice old lady selling pies (and dragging a kid by the wrist) and decide to support a local business. They buy one pie, split it in quarters (so everyone in party can try), the rogue eats her piece immediately (she was "hungry"), fails CON save, passes out on the street. The priest tells the lady they don't have any more money (true actually, or mostly true) so the lady walks away with the kid. The priest shakes her friend away. Friend has new flaw "addicted to dream pies".

    Rogue says "oh we have those other quarters" attempts to shove some in her mouth. Priest slaps it out of her hand. I make them roll atletics/acrobatics opposing checks, priest wins, pie sails into the mud. The rogue takes out another piece, same thing happens. A local addict (commoner NPC) from a nearby house sees this free pie being thrown in mud, runs out of the house and lunges for a piece. The rogue lunges too. He punches her for 2 dmg. She punches him for 1 dmg. He crits her for 2 dmg. She knocks him out with nonlethal dagger dmg his remaining 3 hp.

    Meanwhile the dragonborn Priest is burning the 2 pie pieces in the mud with her breath weapon. She heals the commoner and props him up to sleep it off against a house.

    The rogue is like "wait a second, didn't you have a piece?" and the priest say "err.. i ate i already". I make her role deception opposed by rogue insight. Pries rolls a 3, rogue nat 20. So they start walking off and rogue pickpockets for pie. I make her role slight of hand and priest perception, rogue wins, stuffs pie in mouth, makes the CON save. But now all she wants us more pie.

    At no point did either of them say a peep about the kid.

    When they reunite with the party and tell them the story the barbarian (with like 7 int) goes "i bet the pies get their power from the kids". I had to fight hard to suppress a grin. Meanwhile the rogue is jonesing for pie. Which i intend to make full use of if they end up going by the Old Bonegrinder where the hag and her daughter's bake.

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  • SniperGuySniperGuy Also known as Dohaeris Registered User, ClubPA regular
    The House Always Wins continued last night. Party is still inside a spooky forest.
    They discovered a tree stump that had a huge notch in it when they arrived along with a corpse that had been bashed into a pulp right next to it. While looking over the stump a dryad emerged and questioned them about their motives in this forest. They wanted to leave and she agreed that she would help them, if they would agree to help try and make the loggers move to a new forest. Everyone agreed and she explained that an evil spirit had been trapped here via an axe in the wood, but one of the loggers released it. It was now doing terrible things to the forest, including draining the loggers for their power. In order to defeat it, they'd need to save the loggers and then hopefully make them leave.

    They walked around for a bit, encountering more plant monsters here and there, and eventually ran into a Druid they had met before out in the regular world.

    Previously, this druid had been a drunk and had been crying because his grove had been corrupted. How did it get corrupted? Well he was off trying to make ale out of Goodberries and not paying attention like he should have. They saved the grove and were more or less friendly towards the guy, though they quickly separated from his drunken antics.

    Except now the druid isn't looking like a washed up guy, he's looking like a corrupted, angry guy, flanked by a giant toad. (this is changed from the module as written, in module Druid is brand new but I thought this was a fun addition) The party was able to handle the toad and the plant monsters but the druid scampered off into the woods. The party freed a logger from this area who tagged along with them to a river bank in the forest, where they swam out and rescued another logger, almost getting devoured by the Quippers in the water.

    They continued through the woods and ran into a nobleman and his retinue who have been lost in the forest for a bit. He was very snooty and demanded the party help them get out of the woods, all while holding a big fancy curved axe. The party asked about the axe and found that he did indeed snatch it up from one of the loggers after it got pulled from the stump. He offered to sell it to them for 300 gold and they declined, going further into the forest.

    They found the third logger suspended in some vines high up in some trees and tried to blast the vines to get him down, angering the Awakened Trees that were holding him up. They had a pretty tough fight against the trees but thanks to the Cloak of Daggers spell the warlock kept tossing out, they were able to chop 'em up and rescue the logger. They attempted to return the logger back to the camp and get a rest in but had to navigate the forest paths for a bit before they could get back, as the dark and spooky forest didn't always lead where they thought they were going.

    In the morning they continued on and ran into the druid again, also refreshed from a night's sleep. They surrounded him and the cleric cast Silence, pretty effectively nullifying his most dangerous stuff. The druid had been screaming about the source of his new power, Omnu, during the fight, as well as yelling at the party for abandoning him to the kobolds that roped him into some sort of race and forced him into this forest alone. Still, the party knew this druid and knew he wasn't quite so evil the last time and resolved to try and capture him nonlethally, eventually knocking him out and tying him up. (Cue me rifling through all his spells to check and see which ones have only verbal components)

    So they wake him up (by pouring whiskey down his throat, they're real friendly) and he sputters awake and immediately begins casting a spell. So..they hit him unconscious again. Then pour more booze into him and try again. He's weaker this time and sputtering out calls for Omnu. The dryad showed up and suggested they should kill him, as he's been corrupted by Omnu, the evil forest spirit. The party is conflicted about this but ultimately agree to keep him alive. He does manage to get off a spell (Faerie Fire, yay?) but they gag him and drag him along.
    We ended about to start one more fight with some plant monsters guarding some type of nest (OoooOooooOOo!) and hopefully next session they'll get outta the forest and get back to the main game!

    The monster manual was pretty cool and very useful for a lot of stuff but my players are very cross with me for having to redo their sheets in a new format since the roll20 monster manual requires a certain sheet. But hey, it'll be way better in the long run!

    And I have most of the videos being uploaded or edited now! Accidentally crashed the stream during our break last night so I have a part 1 and part 2 of ep 8 I need to merge but eps 1-7 should be up and working properly by the end of the day. Hurray learning to edit with 4 hour long videos.

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  • DelzhandDelzhand Noxalas! Registered User regular
    Because I don't have any players for my campaign yet and I don't want to run it with less than 3, I've been putting together a "boss rush" that can be run with 1-2 people. As a rule I never use anything from the Monster Manual, everything is customized, plus I'm making heavy use of reactions, summoned enemies/objects/minions, and enemies that "ready" powerful actions with descriptive tells. The campaign I play on Thursdays has a lot of enemies that are just stationary bags of HP, and as a rogue I'm always just standing in the same spot sneak attacking, and I wanted to design encounters that aren't like that at all.

    So a lot of this stuff ends up being inspired by games like Monster Hunter and FFXIV. I think this ends up being mostly rules compliant, although I am using a homebrew "facing" rule instead of flanking. You only get advantage when you're behind an enemy, and shields only provide AC bonuses to the front and side they're worn on.

    I also don't want enemies to be afraid of moving around the battlefield, so I've beefed up HP to accommodate attacks of opportunity.

    Here's my CR 2 creature:
    m8wyicujx84e.png

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  • Dizzy DDizzy D NetherlandsRegistered User regular
    Second session D&D:

    Two new players joined, so our party is at 6 now; new members are a doomsaying Tiefling sorceress and a human cleric (who might be an imposter). The seventh member wanted to join, but she had the early shift (we play at our office after closing time) and didn't want to spend 4 hours waiting around, so I can't blame her.
    Both new players were far more experienced than most of us at D&D 5E, so they needed a little bit to adapt to our light-on-rules gameplay, but I think everybody enjoined themselves.
    After our fight with the wolves last time, we ran into some goblins (and a direboar), but frankly they were not much of a threat (the half-orc fighter took out most of them by herself with a bit of support fire from the two clerics. I barely got my mirror image up).
    Really happy that my druid was able to save the lives of enemy creatures in both our encounters (a wolf last time, one of the goblins this time) and our ranger, who speaks Goblin, managed to negotiate some peace with the surviving goblin. My druid did feed the body of one of the dead goblins to that wolf from last time (cause that was the deal. And my druid does not care much what happens to creatures once they are dead. Feeding them to wolves is just the circle of life.)
    Taking the last goblin captive and healing and feeding them, lead us to the next threat (some giants/ogre type creatures that we encountered before, but were out of our reach while they took potshots at us).

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  • IvelliusIvellius Registered User regular
    Haven't noticed people discussing the UA stuff here much, but the Giant Soul Sorcerer is up.

    In general, I think I like it pretty well, though the last couple of features ("grow a bunch") seem odd with the flavor. I have a feeling new sorcerer origins will generally get spells given to them. I'm not 100% sold on the level 6 features activating through cantrips, but there's nothing that stands out as obviously too strong.

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  • see317see317 Registered User regular
    Ivellius wrote: »
    Haven't noticed people discussing the UA stuff here much, but the Giant Soul Sorcerer is up.

    In general, I think I like it pretty well, though the last couple of features ("grow a bunch") seem odd with the flavor. I have a feeling new sorcerer origins will generally get spells given to them. I'm not 100% sold on the level 6 features activating through cantrips, but there's nothing that stands out as obviously too strong.

    The wording on the Fire Giants Mark of the Ordning could use some work, I think.
    By ignoring what is intended, you could read that the effect triggers on each cast of one of the Mark spells, and the Fire Giants ability doesn't have any end condition, it's just a straight damage boost to those spells.

    So, by reading in this way, each time you cast one of the spells, you gain a damage boost to those spells equal to your Con modifier.
    Soul of Lost Ostoria
    Starting at 6th level, you gain a benefit whenever
    you cast one of the spells granted by your Mark
    of the Ordning Feature.
    Fire Giant. You gain a bonus to the damage
    rolls of your Mark of the Ordning spells. The
    bonus equals your Constitution modifier
    (minimum of +1)
    If you were to ignore the rules as intended and go for what's written, you could calculate how many firebolts your sorcerer can cast over the course of a day and have a hell of a death ray.
    But that would require you to ignore what's pretty obviously intended.

    Ringo wrote: »
    Well except what see317 said. That guy's always wrong.
    Smrtnik
  • override367override367 ALL minions Registered User regular
    edited June 11
    My game got cancelled from illnesses boo

    However, the game I'm playing in as a pixie sorcerer ended lost shrine of tamoachan after 6 long dungeon crawling sessions. We made it to the big city and my character found out that pixies are basically spell components to wizards here so after evading capture I alter selfed into a human and had the familiar cut my wings off (they grow back at will after a long rest in the homebrew race I'm using) and threw on an Illithid robe (the only normal sized outfit I got), my character was arrested by a half dozen guards with weapons drawn (brought by panicked screams of commoners) but they couldn't actually find any crime associated with that other than public indecency, which I paid the 5 gold fine for. Wandered into a clothing shop where I promptly paid for a few new outfits with a ruby worth 1000 gold pieces, the party's druid rolled well enough on her perception check to realize bad decisions were happening, barged in and tossed a few platinum on the counter and took the ruby.

    The druid managed to get me to empty my bag of holding (except for the items that prove I'm actually the serial killer the party is hunting) by buying me a bag of shiny ball bearings and a jar of colorful glass beads, in exchange for the 8650 gold worth of gems. The party wasn't sure how to handle me being so bad with money, but once in human form the dwarf had the bright idea to tell me to pretend I'm a responsible person, at which point I stopped acting like an aloof fey creature entirely and put my enormous charisma score to work haggling deals and buying responsible things for responsible prices; even tricking the DM himself by inquiring about buying a wand of lightning bolts, him having the shopkeeper give exaggerated explanations of how hard one of those is to make, and how INSANE the demand for them is, and then me withdrawing my wand of lightning bolts (that he forgot I had) and saying "now that we've established what they're worth, lets talk about what kind of profit margin you'd need to buy this one from me"

    I tried to sell a dozen goblins frozen in suspended animation as tiny wooden figurines to a local magic shop and the guy couldn't figure out if that was technically slavery or not so he passed, but subtly mentioned that a buddy of his might be interested - which led to us finding a goddamn pokemon fighting league in the slums, except instead of pokemon it was ogres and stuff.

    I also ended up leaving a haunted mirror that contained the soul of a trapped child at the inn, nothing bad will happen the DM assured us, but the barmaids are looking increasingly gaunt and coughing a bunch...

    A cool down session after a long dungeon still ended up with lots of hijinx, and the DM had to think on his feet because he completely forgot about those damned goblin figurines

    *The DM encouraged the ridiculous idea to play a pixie, but changed alter self so that as long as I'm not in combat, it can do medium humanoids and last as long as I want, I basically just have to cross off a third level spell slot (it's basically upcast). This gets over a lot of the "ahhh! what is that!" from peasants

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  • KhildithKhildith Registered User regular
    The party I DM unexpectedly fought an Oni last session! He got away but I vastly underestimated a party of 4 level 4s, they very nearly killed a CR 7 solo monster who just was trying to get away. Oni have so many interesting powers so I have no idea if the party is going to catch up to it, at-will invisibility, fly speed, being able to shapechange into any small, medium, or large humanoid, those kinds of things make tracking and hunting one nearly impossible! We'll see if the party comes up with an interesting way to go about it, or if they decide its too much trouble and let it lick its wounds and come back for revenge later. :biggrin:

  • IvelliusIvellius Registered User regular
    Khildith wrote: »
    The party I DM unexpectedly fought an Oni last session! He got away but I vastly underestimated a party of 4 level 4s, they very nearly killed a CR 7 solo monster who just was trying to get away. Oni have so many interesting powers so I have no idea if the party is going to catch up to it, at-will invisibility, fly speed, being able to shapechange into any small, medium, or large humanoid, those kinds of things make tracking and hunting one nearly impossible! We'll see if the party comes up with an interesting way to go about it, or if they decide its too much trouble and let it lick its wounds and come back for revenge later. :biggrin:

    How do you DM a group unexpectedly? That's the real thing that confuses me about this.

    But yeah, CR in this edition is answering "If a party fought 6-8 of these things in a day, would it deplete most of their resources?" "Bounded accuracy" is kind of a buzzword, but it does mean things on either side of your CR can be pretty threatening. In 3e, I believe, a monster's effectiveness was supposed to roughly double for every 2 CR it gained.

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  • AbbalahAbbalah Registered User regular
    I would imagine that the unexpected thing was the fight, not the DMing

    CR in this edition is supposed to be answering "Could a party of 4 characters at level X expect to defeat this thing without any deaths?" but in practice it does not answer much of anything at all and there are both CR X creatures that can reliably kill a player in a fight against a party of level X+2, and CR X creatures that can barely muster even a token degree of challenge for a party of level X-3. Eyeballing encounter difficulty will be much more reliable than trying to glean meaningful information from a monster's CR.

    That said an oni should absolutely wipe the floor with a level 4 party - it's got 110 HP, regens 10 per round, and puts out 30 damage/turn, while a level 4 character is only gonna have around 30 hp total, on average, and doesn't have 3rd level spells or their 2nd attack per turn yet.

    The cone of cold alone stands a pretty decent chance of one-shotting the entire party, at an average of 36 damage to everyone with a con save for half.

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  • ArthilArthil Registered User regular
    Venom Troll is a great example.

    CR7, but because every time it takes an attack it gushes out poison onto anyone in melee range, it can rapidly down most of a party. Especially if you've got casters understandably using things like Scorching Ray, or even just Eldritch Blast.

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  • KhildithKhildith Registered User regular
    I never intended them to fight the Oni! It was going to be some kind of murder mystery but things got out of hand and the party found a solid way to ambush an invisible predator and keep it from fleeing.

    They did get lucky that when it finally took them seriously and used cone of cold all of them made their saves, and I rolled low so the half damage wasn't so bad. No longer invisible or in magical darkness everyone got attacks off, except the person who Commanded it to grovel, leading to another turn of beatdown, this time with advantage to the party. Rogue crits sneak attack, fighter action surges, death cleric does his thing with spiritual weapon+chill touch to end regen. Paladin smites.

    The oni finally got a multi-attack off, knocking someone to 0, but was less than 30 hp by that point and while it may have taken the party out if it stuck around the creature wasn't convinced it could win and took the opportunity to flee while the party tried to save the dying member.

  • override367override367 ALL minions Registered User regular
    edited June 12
    the oni should flee and recover, and then track the party, become the hunter

    maybe if they frequent a shop, the oni murders the shopkeeper and takes their place, offering a good deal on potions or something and asking one of them downstairs to help carry them up

    down the party member in one round if possible, and disguise as them, run upstairs and yell "the shopkeeper is that fuckin oni!", if they don't metagame they run downstairs, once they're filed in a tiny space: cone of cold

    *starts plotting more ways to murder his own players*

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  • GoumindongGoumindong Registered User regular
    Abbalah wrote: »
    I would imagine that the unexpected thing was the fight, not the DMing

    CR in this edition is supposed to be answering "Could a party of 4 characters at level X expect to defeat this thing without any deaths?" but in practice it does not answer much of anything at all and there are both CR X creatures that can reliably kill a player in a fight against a party of level X+2, and CR X creatures that can barely muster even a token degree of challenge for a party of level X-3. Eyeballing encounter difficulty will be much more reliable than trying to glean meaningful information from a monster's CR.

    That said an oni should absolutely wipe the floor with a level 4 party - it's got 110 HP, regens 10 per round, and puts out 30 damage/turn, while a level 4 character is only gonna have around 30 hp total, on average, and doesn't have 3rd level spells or their 2nd attack per turn yet.

    The cone of cold alone stands a pretty decent chance of one-shotting the entire party, at an average of 36 damage to everyone with a con save for half.

    CR is supposed to be answering "about how much, on average, resource will this fight expend in fought by even level parties"

    In my experience it is doing a decent job. An Oni does stand a decent chance of wiping a level 4 party if it can CoC everyone. But like, 110 HP with 10 regen is barely a blip on the radar for a level 4 party and even less for a party of level 5.

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  • DarkPrimusDarkPrimus Registered User regular
    Last night there was combat on a stairwell by a large pit.

    I'm playing a Halfing Drunken Master Monk. I punched a zombie, spent a point of Ki to activate Flurry of Blows which gives me +10 feet of movement and the benefit of the Disengage action, ran along the banister and into a hallway, slid under the large monstrous beast that was with the zombies, punched the beast so hard it flew forward and almost fell to its death into the pit (and also almost knocking another zombie into the pit), then I move up and attacked the beast two more times.

    Then on the beasts' turn, it lets out a shrieking howl that makes all my allies and the other zombies nearby all become frightened, but my advantage against checks to be frightened pays off.

    Then the beast leaps across the entire fucking pit over to the other side of the stairwell to attack our squishy magic-users, except that it doesn't because it provoked an attack of opportunity from me.

    Oh, but I rolled a 1. But wait, I'm a Halfling, so I get to re-roll.... into a 20! I spend a point of ki to Stunning Strike and instead of it leaping to nom on the wizard it freezes up and falls to its death.

    I fucking love my monk.

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  • webguy20webguy20 Registered User regular
    Fucking halflings! :)

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  • AbbalahAbbalah Registered User regular
    Goumindong wrote: »
    Abbalah wrote: »
    I would imagine that the unexpected thing was the fight, not the DMing

    CR in this edition is supposed to be answering "Could a party of 4 characters at level X expect to defeat this thing without any deaths?" but in practice it does not answer much of anything at all and there are both CR X creatures that can reliably kill a player in a fight against a party of level X+2, and CR X creatures that can barely muster even a token degree of challenge for a party of level X-3. Eyeballing encounter difficulty will be much more reliable than trying to glean meaningful information from a monster's CR.

    That said an oni should absolutely wipe the floor with a level 4 party - it's got 110 HP, regens 10 per round, and puts out 30 damage/turn, while a level 4 character is only gonna have around 30 hp total, on average, and doesn't have 3rd level spells or their 2nd attack per turn yet.

    The cone of cold alone stands a pretty decent chance of one-shotting the entire party, at an average of 36 damage to everyone with a con save for half.

    CR is supposed to be answering "about how much, on average, resource will this fight expend in fought by even level parties"

    In my experience it is doing a decent job. An Oni does stand a decent chance of wiping a level 4 party if it can CoC everyone. But like, 110 HP with 10 regen is barely a blip on the radar for a level 4 party and even less for a party of level 5.

    From the MM:

    "A monster's challenge rating tells you how great a threat the monster is. An appropriately equipped and well-rested party of four adventurers should be able to defeat a monster that has a challenge rating equal to its level without suffering any deaths. For example, a party of four 3rd-level characters should find a monster with a challenge rating of 3 to be a worthy challenge, but not a deadly one."

    Nothing about resource consumption, and indeed this explanation explicitly assumes a fresh, well-rested party.

    From the DMG:

    A single monster with CR equal to party level is a Medium-difficulty encounter according to the chart. The explanation for what 'medium difficulty' means is: "A medium encounter usually has one or two scary moments for the players, but the characters should emerge victorious with no casualties. One or more of them might need to use healing resources."

    Brief mention that you might need to heal, but aside from that it again focuses on whether or not a player can be expected to die in the fight (especially as compared to the harder difficulty categories, which also focus on lethality - hard is 'there's a slim chance that one or more characters might die" and deadly is - in addition to being literally named after its lethality - "could be lethal for one more player characters. Survival often requires good tactics and quick thinking, and the party risks defeat." The only time resource consumption is mentioned at all is in the distinction between an easy and medium encounter, where it's suggested the party might need use 'some healing' after a medium encounter but not after an easy one.

    If CR is supposed to be measuring resource consumption and not lethality, that's at odds with the explanations put forth in the books, and is itself also something that CR is demonstrably not great at since all the unusually-lethal or unusually-nonlethal monsters whose lethality it is bad at measuring will by definition also require more or fewer resources to deal with/recover from, rendering it pretty poor as a measure of resource expenditure as well.


    I'd also contest the idea of 110 hp/regen 10 being 'barely a blip on the radar' for a low-level party - 110 hp is pretty bulky already, on top of which it's got 16 AC, and most importantly the regen has a huge impact at that level. Average damage output per character at that level is going to be in the vicinity of ~10 before accounting for accuracy. Which would mean that the party can burn through 110 hp in 3 turns, but the regen basically undoes 25% of that damage, which would extend the fight by about a round, except party damage output goes down substantially when you account for accuracy and the regen doesn't. At 16 AC/+4-6 saves, level 4 players are only going to be hitting slightly more than half the time, which is going to cut the expected party damage output down from ~40 to ~20-25, which means the regen is actually going to negate 40-50% of their damage, giving them a net output of around 10-15 damage per round.

    All of which means the fight is likely to last anywhere from 7 to 11 rounds, a hugely long fight by 5e standards, with the regen effectively almost doubling the oni's HP. Even if you cut the oni's damage per round in half and took away all its spells, its bulk alone would make it likely to kill a player or two by sheer attrition before it went down. This is especially the case once you consider that with the regen blunting the party's damage so much, having a single player drop to 0 cuts the party's net damage per round almost in half, and having two players drop means they'd basically stop dealing any net damage at all. I mean, maybe they roll well, and going a couple round with no misses while dumping all their l2 spells/smites in would go a long way to limiting the impact of the regen, but the average result is not nearly as clean and the opposite end of the bell curve, where the party spends a couple rounds mostly missing while the regen ticks, is basically a guaranteed distaster.

    The swinginess regen creates in combats where everyone is still only rolling once per turn is a pretty strong reason not to apply something like regen 10 to anything that players under level 5 might fight. It's obviously much less of a problem for a level 5 party because they have twice the attacks per round and/or third-level spells to throw at it, which blunts both the power and the variance of the regen significantly.

    ElvenshaeJustTee
  • NarbusNarbus Registered User regular
    edited June 13
    There's also a table in the DMG that ties CR directly into xp gained, ie a CR5 is always 1,800 xp. There are also charts that lay out how much xp a party should gain over the course of an adventuring day. Four level 9 adventurers should gain ~30,000 xp before needing a long rest. That's three hard (6400 xp each) and one deadly (9600 xp each), or four medium (2200 xp each) and one hard, etc.

    D&D's combat is about resource attrition, and how hard a combat is gets measured by its CR, which means CR is also a measure of resource attrition. They're all tied together.

    All that said, CR is, at best, an educated guess about how hard a fight will be. It's a big game with a lot of moving parts and dwelling too hard on CR is a pretty shortsighted move.

    Narbus on
    SleepSteelhawkJustTeeSmrtnikZonugal14357
  • AldoAldo Hippo Hooray the swamp, always the swampRegistered User regular
    I'm mostly annoyed that there's no way to quantify how good the party is at dnd-ing. There's some easy encounters that are a lot harder when the party has no idea how to deal with certain mechanics or can't seem to compute just how difficult it is to reach certain places in the combat map.

    Example: an archer on a cliff with a melee fighter standing between the foot of the cliff and the party. How do you proceed? There are obvious solutions to deal with this, but it'll have people stumped. Especially if the players are unclear on how difficult it is to scale a cliff, how high they have to roll to knock the fighter prone or how difficult it is to hit an archer that is on higher ground. It takes some experience with 5e and some basic math to reduce this encounter from Hard to Easy.

    Elendil wrote: »
    said Aldo hazily, before clop-clop-clopping out of the room
    JustTee
  • NarbusNarbus Registered User regular
    "Figuring out how to solve open-ended problems as a group" is about as close as I can get to a "pure" definition of tabletop RPGs. If that's not something that sounds like fun to you then I don't know how you'd find D&D fun enough to justify the commitment it requires.

    If the problem is a bad DM who won't hand out context clues about the sheerness of rockfaces or the size and sturdiness of guards, well the DM is part of that collaborative effort and they aren't collaborating. That's a bad DM, which is a different problem.

  • DelzhandDelzhand Noxalas! Registered User regular
    I was typing up a post a lot like Narbus', but I think Aldo's comments make a lot more sense if you're thinking about the context of running players through an existing module. The module is always going to have the rules about climbing and guard AC because it's a solution that was "intended", for lack of a better term.

    My groups would probably all end up with the fighter and archer having a meal with the party, or with the DM deciding that "Wall of Wind" is a sufficiently clever/cool way to handle the problem.

    Final Fantasy XIV: Heavensward - November Elspeth (Sargatanas)
  • JustTeeJustTee Registered User regular
    Perfect example. In the previous campaign with the same 4 players, at level 5, playing Lost Mines of Phandelver, the party of 4 were able to take out a CR8 dragon. It was close, with a few members going down, but they had saved almost all the potions they had gotten to that point, spread out well to avoid getting multiple people hit by breath attacks, and waited until they were able to ground the dragon to go ham on it with a raging buffed up barbarian.

    That same party in our new campaign, at level 3, just fought 2 Vine Blights and 3 Needle Blights. They were fully rested, all spells/abilities available. According to CR/encounter math, this should be a medium encounter.

    Instead, the beefiest member of the group went down, almost everyone got dropped into single digit hit points, and the first encounter of the creepy forest they're exploring has them basically wondering if they should even continue or if they should bail completely.

    My intention was not to scare the shit out of the players, but to present to the druid of the party that there was something seriously wrong with the forest, as normally his presence would grant them *relatively* safe passage. Hence, medium encounter.

    Encounter math in D&D is super shitty, depends wildly on class make up, and does not at all account for things like custom magic items, terrain obstacles, or wildly variable abilities. Vine Blights, a CR 1/2 monster, can use an ability that has the potential to completely knock out a party of low level characters (restrain them in vines, DC12 strength saving throw to avoid, but DC12 strength check to break out). For the cost of 2 actions (one from each vine blight), the party had to spend 6 actions total to free themselves. Couple that with 5 actions, a *few* lucky rolls on my end, and the party almost gets wiped by nobodies.

    I remain convinced that 5E, while good in that it's initially approachable, and relatively easy to teach "how to play", running the game as intended by the book is an exercise in gradually driving yourself mad until you blow up the campaign somewhere around 10th or 12th level because it's increasingly more difficult to provide players effective challenges without running multi-hour combats or having them plow through a bunch of mooks until your big bad.

    Honestly, I'm not convinced that the "difficulty by attrition" and "incredibly variable difficulty even within the same CR rating" and "swingy dice roll" type systems all mesh well together at all. I honestly wish D&D was scaled around single encounters, where everyone was always at "full power", and your Hit Points / healing became the limiting factor for how long you could adventure for.

    Diagnosed with AML on 6/1/12. Read about it: www.effleukemia.com
    DelzhandSmrtnikMsAnthropy
  • SleepSleep Registered User regular
    edited June 13
    Yeah, there's a bunch of variables. A banshee and 4 will o wisps is a deadly hard CR 6 fight. However you've combined two abilities that can potentially wipe the party permanently at the beginning of the fight (banshee's wail, will o wisp consume life). Ever using the combo is ill advised regardless of the level of the party simply because the combination of powers is too strong.

    As well the terrain of your encounter can change the cr of the encounter massively. You have to consider your map, and in some cases the effects that will be laid over it in figuring out how difficult am encounter will be. For instance if all the players are stuck in mud, and moving at half speed you've got to consider how much melee damage that's going to prevent. That environmental aspect of the encounter could be adding a round or two of damage prevention that ups the cr of the encounter substantially by allowing the enemies free reign to either buff up or lob damage at the party.

    Sleep on
    JustTee
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