|5 people marked this as a favorite.|
The scenario in which I'd expect to see a perfectly reasonable and cooperative group of players end up fighting with Iomedae would go something like this:
The PCs are followers of Sarenrae, or at least of her philosophy. They have spent the previous four modules working extremely hard to redeem enemies and have been pretty successful. So, when Iomedae asks question #2 they answer immediately and with no trace of hesitation on anyone's part, because they have long ago settled this to their satisfaction.
They take a little damage and Iomedae appears angry.
They say to themselves (and to each other--in my experience parties of this level often have Mind Link)--"Oh my gosh, this is a demon lord pretending to be Iomedae!" The players roll initiative, planning to make a brave fight of it, or possibly Plane Shift away. In their minds they are not fighting Iomedae, they are fighting a demon lord pretending to be Iomedae, and doing the best they can with this very bad situation.
Frankly, if my players did this I would have to retcon that they were correct--I think it's the only way to save the campaign at this point. Certainly if I permanently maim them the game is over, even if they are somehow later healed.
I do have players who will generally try to cooperate with the scenario, but I submit that they have NO WAY to know that the situation isn't exactly as I outlined it, except for the one detail that the initial teleport was no-save. As a player I wouldn't want to use that information, since it's very meta, and I also might assume it was just a railroading device to avoid splitting the party.
I do not think players have to be stupid or uncooperative to provoke a disaster here. They just have to be different than expected, and the party above is different in a fatal way while still being honorable, good, and respectful.