Paizo Top Nav Branding
  • Hello, Guest! |
  • Sign In |
  • My Account |
  • Shopping Cart |
  • Help/FAQ
About Paizo Messageboards News Paizo Blog Help/FAQ
Pathfinder Roleplaying Game
Pathfinder Society

Pathfinder Beginner Box

Pathfinder Adventure Card Game

Pathfinder Comics

Pathfinder Legends

PaizoCon 2014!

KILLER GM's 2011 Return to the Tomb of Horrors Pathfinder Campaign!


Campaign Journals

51 to 100 of 122 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | next > last >>

Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

That's actually my second biggest disagreement with PathFinder. I don't like the static XP. Because I don't issue XP out by the APL, but rather I hand it out by dividing it up according to the levels of the individual players, dividing the amount of XP by the number of the party. I'll continue doing this too.


Turin the Mad wrote:
Horror on the Orient Express racked up a single-sessioln body count of 15 with appalling ease. By the time it was concluded, the only survivors were from the train's crew and stewards. Dozens and dozens of dead and/or permanently insane. Good times!

Holy Cow. I've never heard of this Turin. Where can I pick it up?!


1 person marked this as a favorite.
Dennis Harry wrote:

I have become soft in my old age but recently my players made the mistake of drawing from a deck of many things. Two PC deaths just from drawing cards, they gave me that "can't you fix this DM" puppy dog look. I let them know it was not gonna happen, they tempted fate - and lost.

Looking forward to the next ToH session KGM, though I forsee less death this time around I mean how do you top 11 kills in one session!? I have run Cthulhu games with less character death.

Wonderful Dennis. Glad you held firm on the consequences from the Deck. You are absolutely correct on the 'puppy dog' look from your players, and I'm glad you mention it, because other GM's need first hand examples of the lame crap that spoiled players try and pull to get out of consequences.

And you still went easy on them. I'd have probably removed HALF of the beneficial cards from the deck before the players even started drawing the cards!:D


Killer_GM wrote:
Turin the Mad wrote:
Horror on the Orient Express racked up a single-sessioln body count of 15 with appalling ease. By the time it was concluded, the only survivors were from the train's crew and stewards. Dozens and dozens of dead and/or permanently insane. Good times!
Holy Cow. I've never heard of this Turin. Where can I pick it up?!

It is made for Call of +Cthulhu, IIRC. Converting it to a D20 system might be worth it though.


Call of Cthulhu is a great game. Once I am done with D&D (which won't be for a while) I hope to run In the Mountains of Madness a 450 page superadventure for this game.

Actually Turin Horro on the Orient Express could be adapted for an Eberron Homebrew, wish I had thought of it when my players Worldwalked there. That would have been amazing.

LOL KGM, I thought the same thing about pulling some cards from the Deck except I thought about it afterwards!


Horror on the Orient Express is a Call of Cthulhu adventure set in the Roaring '20's aboard the European train of the same name. It came chocked full of pregenerated NPC's that are available to replace the messily dispatched.

Adapting it to Eberron CoC d20 would be the only worthwhile use I would have for that setting. A train wreck of epic proportions to be sure. :)

KGM, it is my impression that HotOE is long out of print. Believe me, I would hang my PF Charter Subscription for six months to set aside the money if I knew that Chaosium was going to reprint that monster in all of its character killing glory. If memory serves, the playtest groups died in droves, garnering Chaosium's "stamp of approval".

It had *tons* of handouts and props built into it too, representing the characters' gathered information. As well as a cardboard cut out for a key prop element that the players could literally piece together.

The Mountains of Madness I have long contemplated acquiring, holding off due to a combination of the price tag and the realization that most players I know couldn't or wouldn't stomach getting driven insane and/or horribly killed in droves.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Turin, I would almost move to your area, just to play in that campaign. I am a huge fan of CoC. If I was still stationed in Norfolk, I would drive all the way up to where you game, every week, just to play in it. Driving players insane, that is my way of GM'ing! I don't kill your characters. My goal is to drive you to insanity, destroying your sense of the world, without your PC knowing what was going on. Lord Allen, You can keep the body count, I plan on going for the minds and souls.


Turin the Mad wrote:


KGM, it is my impression that HotOE is long out of print. Believe me, I would hang my PF Charter Subscription for six months to set aside the money if I knew that Chaosium was going to reprint that monster in all of its character killing glory. If memory serves, the playtest groups died in droves, garnering Chaosium's "stamp of approval".

It had *tons* of handouts and props built into it too, representing the characters' gathered information. As well as a cardboard cut out for a key prop element that the players could literally piece together.

The Mountains of Madness I have long contemplated acquiring, holding off due to a combination of the price tag and the realization that most players I know couldn't or wouldn't stomach getting driven insane and/or horribly killed in droves.

Well, if you ever do pick up either one, sign me up as a victim/player immediately. I'd enjoy being a player in such an atrosity, almost as much as being the GM.


Chaosium's underlying "game framework" is what they call the Basic Roleplaying system (BRP). It is almost as much fun to GM as GURPS (for me). The CoC rules add the Sanity & Cthulhu Mythos Skill. The more percentile points a character has in the Cthulhu Mythos skill, the SAN score is directly reduced 1 for 1. (Yes, skills are on a percentile roll basis. No, new meat cannot start with any points in the skill.) SAN fluctuates as there is permanent / maximum SAN and current / temporary SAN.

Typically, SAN erodes far faster than it is recovered. In typical CoC adventures (if you survive) you'll probably acquire a temporary insanity at least once per session. More likely, you'll lose 10 - 20 points of SAN and recover ... 4.

In a fast-paced beast like HotOE, you lose SAN at least as fast as you lose HP. Gibbering in mind-shattered fear, fleeing at top speed out the train car door is pretty rough when you bail out from the aforementioned train car as it is crossing a trestle bridge in the Alps ... can you fly, Bobby? *splat*

Should your courageous investigator somehow survive an adventure, extended stay in a Roaring 20's asylum is your best method of replenishing your remaining current SAN.

Sounds .... fun? ^__^


Turin the Mad wrote:


Sounds .... fun? ^__^

Actually, it does. It would be a blast to play in. If you are ever up for a once per 6-8 week CoC game, just say the word.


We're scheduled to play in 1 hour from now. We'll see if the lads have revolted 'en masse against me, or if they're glutton for more punishment and show up today.


Well, they showed:) In today’s 3rd session of the 2011-12 Return to the Tomb of Horrors campaign, there were a paltry FOUR (4*) character fatalities. That brings us to a total of 21 for the campaign thus far through 3 sessions. I regret the low casualty count for today. The action got bogged down mid-way through the afternoon.

The characters present were:
Meathead #8 (8th level paladin PC)
Bates/Red Shirt #8 (8th level rogue PC)
Duke Nuk’em #4 (8th level sorcerer PC)
Doofus da Fighter # 5 (4th level fighter/4th level paladin PC)
Once the characters reached the actual entrance of the tomb,
Layin’ on Hands Lenny (9th level cleric PC) arrived to join the group

We picked up where we left off last month, with the group barreling into Ferranifer’s Crypt. Ferranifer was statted up as an 11th level Vampire Wizard (CR 12 with NPC value equipment), down from an Archmage in the 2nd Edition game write up. The Burning Skull gave Ferranifer some advanced warning that the group was entering her crypt. The group spent the next round dealing with the skull; and the following round figuring out how they were going to try to dispatch her and getting into position to do so. During those rounds, Ferranifer cast spells from within her coffin (Improved Invisibility and then Dimension Door). By the time the lads doused her coffin with burning oil (an odd choice), she was already back down the hallway, near the door to her library, courtesy of the Dimension Door.
On her action, Ferranifer cast Ice Storm on the group. This did relatively minor damage, but the negative modifier to perception (-4) and difficult terrain created caused all sorts of problems for the player characters. The PC’s spent their next round trying to get out of the ice storm affected area, only to be on the receiving end of a Cone of Cold by Ferranifer on her 2nd round action. She moved up into where she could escape out into the catacombs. One of the players ran around her, willing to risk an attack of opportunity (I’m convinced the player did not know that a hit from a vampire gives a 2 Negative level penalty, or else he never would have tried it). I rolled a Nat’ 4 and missed on the Attacks of Opportunity (A.O.O.) By my 3rd round action, I was boxed in by Meathead #8 and Doofus #5, and couldn’t move unless I wanted to eat an AOO’s by both combatants. I didn’t, so I had Ferranifer blast her way out, by successfully casting defensively, and hitting Meathead #8 with a Disintegrate Spell. Meathead blew his saving throw, ate about 85 or 90 HP of damage, and promptly assumed the consistency of dandruff on the floor [CASUALTY #1]. Doofus however then hit on both swings, and dropped Ferranifer on the second shot. Thus she fell, valiantly defending her benevolent school of necromancy against the marauding player characters…

On the next round, New character Meathead #9 arrived, and the group searched for loot. The player of Doofus the Fighter #5 later retroactively informed me that he was spending this time healing up with a wand of cure light wounds (using the Use Magic Device skill, that he strangely never informed me he was attempting to make skill checks for…). Two rounds later, Leon, who is the bodyguard and ‘pal’ of Ferranifer arrived to deal with whoever was attacking his friend. I statted ‘Leon’ up using one of my re-occurring NPCs, ‘Scorn the Cowardly Lion’, who is an 11th level Fighter, in the role of Leon. With the group mostly healed up; Leon came around the corner under the effects of a Greater/Improved Invisibility (as well as a number of other buff spells already cast). Bates/Red Shirt heard him, and went out in the catacombs to look for him, but didn’t successfully figure out where he was. As I couldn’t see Bates’ 43 Stealth check to spot his sorry ass either, I had Leon quietly move into position near the other three player characters, that I could see. On my eventual surprise action, I proceeded to have Leon stab Doofus the Fighter for around 37 HP of damage. Initiatives were rolled. I went first. Leon took a Five foot step, and emptied a full round attack action (including a Hasted attack) into Meathead #9. I didn’t even need the final swing from my Falchion, before Meathead #9 was a pile of steaming lasagna all over the floor [CASUALTY #2]. About this time, the players were crapping a sailboat and beginning to meep mightily, particularly the player of Meathead. I guess I can understand why, though I still didn’t feel bad for him… Duke Nuk'em cast Glitterdust, and scragged Leon's Invisibility. The player of Doofus the Fighter actually debated with the others present whether to take a five foot step and unload a full round attack action into Leon (which would have been sensible), or TO TRY TO GRAPPLE LEON INSTEAD!!! And the poor player actually chose to try and grapple knowing he had less than 40 HP remaining. @#$%&! Unbelievable. I gladly took my A.O.O, hit Doofus #5 for about 42 HP of damage, and dropped him to Negative 3 HP. Duke Nuk’em used his action to put up an illusionary wall, for reasons I cannot understand, hoping to fool Leon that he (Leon) now couldn’t reach the sorcerer. Leon used his next standard action to probe the wall, and learning it was fake, then stepped through it and said hello to Duke. Duke Nuk’em did NOT have Dimension Door amongst his available spells, and thus was relegated to casting Invisibility and trying to make a run for it. He tried to run past Leon, who successfully rolled 51% or higher on his miss chance to hit an invisible (but not silent) opponent, and successfully hit Duke for 40-some HP of damage, and carved his ass in two [CASUALTY #3]. By this point, Bates/Red Shirt#8 was peeing his pants, and ran away. Leon stepped back into the hallway, and stabbed the (already at Negative HP and helpless) Doofus the Fighter #5 and finished his tail off as well [CASUALTY #4].

Shortly thereafter, Bates/Red Shirt returned with new characters, Meathead #10, Duke Nuk’em #5, and Doofus the Fighter #6. They managed to get to the entrance of the real Tomb of Horrors without dying again.

We halted the game here awhile to allow the group to level their characters to 9th level, add Layin’ on Hands Lenny the Cleric, and teleport back to civilization to buy new magic items, as the group was sorely in need of some help, and I generously (uncharacteristically) allowed them to do so…

Upon return arrival to the entrance tunnels to the tomb, they found themselves looking at FOUR different entrance tunnels! I know some of you experienced and knowledgable readers will accurately recall that there are only three entrance tunnels into the Tomb of Horrors. Well I added a new extra tunnel to throw off any players who knew anything about this adventure. The group picked two incorrect tunnels before picking the correct tunnel on the third try. Neither trap in the false entrance tunnels killed any characters, but did soften them up fairly well in the case of the falling ceiling trap in area #1. Upon arriving in the correct tunnel, the group did not fall into the pit trap controlled by the rod-inside-the-box, that is held by the two jackals at the beginning of the main entry hall. However, Meathead #10 foolishly strolled ahead, and fell into one of the standard 10 foot deep pit traps, and got pierced by all Eight poisoned spikes to the tune of 60 HP damage (at the time, I mistakenly only rolled the spike damage for the spikes that Meathead #10 failed his saving throws for (3 of them), and neglected to give him the damage for the other 5 spikes, and due to the failed Fortitude saves for the poison, Meathead #10 additionally lost 13 out of 16 CON points, which caused another 54 HP of damage. The total damage actually should have killed* Meathead #10, but I didn’t catch the missed damage from the 5 spikes that he made his saves for until after the game was over, or else he would have been Casualty #5 for the day. I’ll break the news to the player next game, and then we’ll make it an official demise for Meathead #10*.

Following that experience, the PC rogue Bates searched EVERY MISERABLE 5 foot square in the entire entry hall. This took a lot of time, but I couldn’t fault the player for wishing to avoid a similar experience as Meathead had just endured. When we finished for the day, the group had arrived at the end of the Main Hallway, and Meathead #10 (or #11), Bates/Red Shirt #8 and Layin’ on Hands Lenny opted to go through the archway (while still clouded, and will end up in the Forsaken prison as a result), as they didn’t think to mess with the colored stones, and didn’t agree with Duke Nuk’em #5 and Doofus #6, who are keen on messing with the Green Devil’s Face. Duke actually put a rope inside the Fiend’s mouth, saw that the end of the rope is gone, and is contemplating how he can get inside the mouth when we resume next month!@#$%&!

So join me in March, dear friends, when Duke Nuk’em may give a new meaning to the term “Lightening your Load.” See you next month… ~KGM

Qadira RPG Superstar 2010 Top 32

Wow - that was nice! Well done, Sir Allen :-)
I'm already drooling at the thought of what's to come.

Speaking of the ToH - have you read "Ready Player One"?


Hi Carborundum. Hoe gaat het?
I have not read "Ready Player One," but I already like the sound of it. Do tell.

ToH is intended to be harsh on players & characters, so I really haven't accomplished much. It is merely my hope to share a few laughs with like-minded players who see the humor in my game. Good to hear from you.

On an unrelated subject, I sincerely hope that Wesley Sneijder, Dirk Kuyt and the rest of Het Nederlandse Nationale Voetbal Team do a number on Spain this summer in Poland & Ukraine (Euro).

Regards, KGM

Qadira RPG Superstar 2010 Top 32

Je spreekt Nederlands? Stoer!
Het gaat goed :-) (Behalve dat onze baby al vijf maanden geen nacht geen doorgeslapen :-D)

Anyhoo - Ready Player One is an SF book and my favourite book of last year - including Dance With Dragons and Reamde. A futuristic supernerd who invented an AR internet has died and left clues to his immense fortune hidden as Easter Eggs in the system. Some kids get on the trail, one Key is in an instance of the Tomb of Horrors, where he ... lets just say he encounters Acererak and the challenge os not what you'd expect.

It is wonderful and fantastic. If you like TOH, old 80s and 90s games (Zork etc), the band Rush, geek references and fun... you'll love it!


I trust there will be plenty of wandering monsters in the tomb, if the rogue is going to insist on searching every five foot square... :)
Hmm, every how many minutes is the recommended wandering monster check (i.e. to see if one shows) roll?


Traditionally, wandering monster checks occur maybe about once an hour. If memory serves, the ToH does not have such a chart. Given that a rogue can check 10 5 ft squaers in a minute or two - the disabling is what takes all of the time up - it is the amount of *real* time that exceeds the amount of time in-game.

Now, if enough in-game time passes (a day or two), those who survived the heroic invasion may be awaiting them at the "real" entrance to slaughter the survivors and take their stuff before animating shiny new scroll caddies...

So, KGM, by all means feel free to permit them to take 20 on search checks - at 2 minutes per 5 ft square, being sure to include each square of wall and ceiling in addition to the floor, game time will fly lickity-split!

The heroes may well find themselves fleeing for their miserable lives at top speed only to run face-first into Ngese and Friends... :D


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I thought taking twenty was 1 minute?

Edit:
Ok. Taking 20 takes 20 times the length of time it would normally take. So searching for traps would be 20 rounds, adding up to 2 minutes.


carborundum wrote:

Je spreekt Nederlands? Stoer!

Het gaat goed :-) (Behalve dat onze baby al vijf maanden geen nacht geen doorgeslapen :-D)

Anyhoo - Ready Player One is an SF book and my favourite book of last year - including Dance With Dragons and Reamde. A futuristic supernerd who invented an AR internet has died and left clues to his immense fortune hidden as Easter Eggs in the system. Some kids get on the trail, one Key is in an instance of the Tomb of Horrors, where he ... lets just say he encounters Acererak and the challenge os not what you'd expect.

It is wonderful and fantastic. If you like TOH, old 80s and 90s games (Zork etc), the band Rush, geek references and fun... you'll love it!

Indien ik u correct begreep, slaapt niet uw kind goed of door de nacht.

Mijn kinderen waren zeven maanden oud voor zij door de nacht zonder het wekken sliepen.

Jammerlijk spreek ik heel klein Nederlands. I do however have family members who currently live in (and are from) Austria, Germany, Switzerland, Italy, Belgium, Norway and Sweeden. Though I don't have any family from or living in Holland, I am an unappologetic fan of the "Oranje." Likewise, I'm with you on the old 80's games, and the band Rush.

Neem zorg.


Charles Evans 25 wrote:

I trust there will be plenty of wandering monsters in the tomb, if the rogue is going to insist on searching every five foot square... :)

Hmm, every how many minutes is the recommended wandering monster check (i.e. to see if one shows) roll?

Actually, the tomb normally doesn't have any wandering monsters, unless the characters go astral or ethereal. Unfortunately for my players, there will be a slight modification from the standard script, and one WILL show up at the least opportune moment... :) Probably in areas #16 & 21.


Turin the Mad wrote:

Traditionally, wandering monster checks occur maybe about once an hour. If memory serves, the ToH does not have such a chart. Given that a rogue can check 10 5 ft squaers in a minute or two - the disabling is what takes all of the time up - it is the amount of *real* time that exceeds the amount of time in-game.

Now, if enough in-game time passes (a day or two), those who survived the heroic invasion may be awaiting them at the "real" entrance to slaughter the survivors and take their stuff before animating shiny new scroll caddies...

So, KGM, by all means feel free to permit them to take 20 on search checks - at 2 minutes per 5 ft square, being sure to include each square of wall and ceiling in addition to the floor, game time will fly lickity-split!

The heroes may well find themselves fleeing for their miserable lives at top speed only to run face-first into Ngese and Friends... :D

I'm totally with you on that. One or two of the bad guys will likely be following the PCs into the tomb to shellack them at a less-than-opportune moment. As the PCs have been so brave and helpful in deactivating the traps along the way, it will be all the easier for the bad guys, who already have some experience in the tomb.


They couldn't have too much experience in there or they'd be just another dessicated husk ... :P


I agree. The Return to the Tomb adventure indicates that Ferranifer and the senior instructors have spent time exploring and researching the tomb. Drake had penetrated Acererak's crypt and made off with some of his bone dust, allowing Drake the unwitting trip to Moil. I'm merely hoping to get the villains out of some traps in the 1st half of the tomb...


The next game is scheduled for Saturday March 24. ~KGM


Killer_GM wrote:
The next game is scheduled for Saturday March 24. ~KGM

Kill zem, kill zem all.


Brother Faust the Elder wrote:
Killer_GM wrote:
The next game is scheduled for Saturday March 24. ~KGM
Kill zem, kill zem all.

I approve, although technically, if you're thinking of the Raiders quote, it was, "Kill them both."

In the spirit of GM mayhem, I'll let it slide ;-p


CapnVan wrote:
Brother Faust the Elder wrote:
Killer_GM wrote:
The next game is scheduled for Saturday March 24. ~KGM
Kill zem, kill zem all.

I approve, although technically, if you're thinking of the Raiders quote, it was, "Kill them both."

In the spirit of GM mayhem, I'll let it slide ;-p

When there's one protagonist grappling with a mook, "both" is accurate. When there's an entire group of mewling babes begging to be slaughtered mercilessly, "all" is the word of choice.

Whether they are grappling with mooks is immaterial. ^__^

I'm trying to recall other quotable quotes that I've butchered for use at the game table.

"When does the hurting stop?" comes to mind ...


I was always a fan of your "Help me, I'm burning, I'm burning..." you did at the table in your high pitched voice:)


Killer_GM wrote:
I was always a fan of your "Help me, I'm burning, I'm burning..." you did at the table in your high pitched voice:)

Gauntlet parodies are always a fun one to drop in. "Red Elf is about to die. Red Elf needs food badly..."

"Frawress Victory," or any of the other MK one-liners.

"DANCE M[redacted]R, DAAANCE!!" *This is from Mobsters, specifically the psycho nut-job dual-wielding Tommy guns.*

"Boot to the Head" *shooop!* *THWACK!!* <-- you know I'm throwing down with a monk / unarmed fighter type. Bonus points if I can get some kind of one-shot nasty magic effect tacked onto it via Improvised Weapon Mastery. Perhaps a pair of 1-use masterwork boots packing clenched fist or something ... although a Ring of the Ram can do in a pinch.

"Poke!" *PC is staggered, no save, swift action* *Standard action spell dropped on nearest sucker(s)* "OOH! OOH! MY TURN!! - Poke!" *PC is asleep, no save, swift action* "WEEEE!!!" *coup de grace via heavy pick to the brain* "GO TEAM CLERIC!!"

And of course where would we be without Lord Vader:

"All too easy ... " *raspy breathing*
"I find your lack of faith disturbing." *vicious choking death ensues*

Our good standby Conan has a few great ones courtesy of Vader's voice actor, especially the 'Riddle of Steel' parts.

The spaghetti westerns are littered with great one-liners.

"I go, kill him, be right back."
"The note says 'idiot'." *passes note to Ugly* "It's for you."

*Without looking at who is trying to quietly draw a knife from a belt sheath behind him* "Finish clearing the leather, I'll jam that blade in your ear." (Or words to that effect, it's been a LOOOONG time since I watched High Plains Drifter.)


Out with it man - player character deaths await!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


A slight miscount Turin. Today in the fourth session of the Return to the Tomb of Horrors campaign, there were NINE(9) player character fatalities, and when we concluded, 3 more characters were covered in Green Slime, so effectively it is probably 12 PC fatalities on the day.

The characters present in today’s session were:
Meathead #11 (9th level paladin PC)
Bates/Red Shirt #8 (9th level rogue PC)
Duke Nuk’em #5 (9th level sorcerer PC)
Doofus da Fighter # 6 (4th level fighter/5th level paladin PC)
Layin’ on Hands Lenny (9th level cleric PC)

Also briefly seeing action before their previously-hinted demises were: Bates/Red Shirt #7 and Meathead #10.

The game started off on a bad note for the characters. First, Meathead #10 did in fact buy the farm last week on the pit trap, so that gave us [CASUALTY #1], and character Bates/Red Shirt #7, who had previously been Imprisoned via a trap in the 2nd session of this campaign, was released from his imprisonment by Vampire Archmage Ferranifer and an accomplice of hers, and then promptly Greased [CASUALTY #2], as were two other imprisoned characters who had been there since my 2001 campaign, and I’d been needing to finally put an end to those two also. (I did NOT list their demises amongst the 9/12 for the day, since they were not characters in the current campaign. Otherwise, it would be 14 PCKs for the day…).

When the action got started, the group did Not (sadly) opt to jump in the Green Fiend’s mouth and end their existence. Instead, all five of them tried the archway, and ended up in for Forsaken Prison, as they did not “de-mist” the corridor by using the colored magical stones to do so. They managed to pull the levers the correct direction in the Prison, and were able to escape without incident. They ended up back in the first main entry hall (room #3), and at long length (painfully long…) figured out that there was a concealed door behind the plaster and they broke through it and made their way into room #8.

I elected to omit the standard 4-armed gargoyle and instead had them fight a Degenerate Serpentfolk 10th level Monk with the advanced template (total of a CR 10) that I’d been wanting to try out on them. I named him ‘Odd Job‘ after the villain in the James Bond movie Goldfinger. While Monks aren’t usually spectactular, this guy had a 34 Str/ 38 with Bulls Strength (Degenerate Serpentfolk get a +10 racial bonus to their strength score, and another +4 for the advanced template. The serpent folk also had over 300 HP (I’ll post the stats when I can, and their totally legit). The serpent folk didn’t attack them initially, and the group moved in close to him (idiots). Doofus #6 moved to within five feet, and drew his weapon. At that point, initiative rolls were made, and the serpent folk Monk went first. I used a Ki Point to get an extra attack. I hit Doofus #6 on 5 of 5 hit rolls using a Full Attack Flurry of Blows, (1 of them was a Confirmed Critical), and I did 171 HP of damage, and literally beat his sorry ass into the floor in one round [CASUALTY #3].

For the remainder of the first round, the characters fumbled about trying to figure out what they were dealing with and wrapping their brains around what just happened to Doofus #6. The only damage done to the serpent folk was by Bates #8 the Rogue, who used 1 sneak attack and then moved out with Spring Attack, doing about 40 HP of damage. On the Serpentfolk’s action in Round 2, as no one was within 5 feet of him, he flew (potion of Flying previously drank when the Characters were smashing through the plaster wall) over several characters over to Duke Nuk’em #5 and Hit Duke with a Stunning Fist. Duke made his save and was not stunned. In hindsight, I should have gone after the cleric… On their 2nd round action, the PC cleric used Dimensional Hop to take Meathead the Paladin next to Odd Job. The paladin then hit the serpent man twice, critting him once with both Smite and Power Attack, doing over 120 HP of damage. The players probably thought they had this one in the bag. Not quite. Before the end of Round 2, Duke used Dimension Door to get away from Odd Job, which I had really hoped he wouldn’t, but I couldn’t stop him.

At the beginning of Round 3, I used a full attack action (Flurry of Blows) against Meathead the Paladin, and did about 160 HP of damage (one critical hit included), and destroyed his repeatedly deceased tail yet again [CASUALTY #4]. At this point, the Players were highly pissed at me, and merping about how unfair I am. I pointed out that they likely handed the encounter to me by Doofus standing right next to the Serpentfolk and getting greased straight out of the gate.

At this point, Bates the Rogue was hidden on a DC 50’ something; and the two spell casters were running away. I elected to let the encounter end here, as the gang was clearly not up for fighting this guy further, so the encounter ended here. Odd Job took 218 HP of damage during the fight.

Next, entered Meathead #12 and Doofus #7. The group then made their way through the secret door complex and emerged in the 2nd great hall (area #10). Bates the Rogue has a total of +20 Perception and Disable Device, so he avoided most of the traps today (with 1 very notable exception I’ll mention shortly). In the 2nd great hall, the group eventually found the correct sphere with no significant problems and made it into the Chapel area (#15). Unfortunately, the gang did not have another try with the Archway of Mist (this one would have changed their gender AND alignment, but they opted to skip it. They couldn’t resist messing with the altar not once, but twice, and got electrocuted and the then baked for 60 HP damage each, half for those who saved. No PC croaked here. The characters dropped a magic ring in the slot, and moved on.

The group went through the three pit traps after the doors, and did not think to search the 3rd pit, and ended up way down the hallway at area #16. The group, after some effort got through the door, and then started off down the trapped hallway after the illusionary voices. Bates the Rogue made his 1 significant (and VERY significant) Failed Perception/Search check for the day on the Third ten foot square in the hallway, (rolling a Natural 1) and then when the group continued further, they set off the “Teeter-Totter-into-the-Lava” Trap.

Simply Amazing. ALL Five characters Failed their Reflex Saves. The players present whined mightily, and I opted for Charity, and gave them a chance to ‘take an action’ as they were falling down into the lava, which they shouldn’t have under the rules. I had them role their initiative rolls, and I rolled a straight d20 roll, and if the respective player character beat my roll (the lava), then they got to pull off a standard action before they hit the lava. Four of the Five PC’s couldn’t beat my roll, even with their DEX and Improved Initiative Bonuses. The only PC who beat me was Duke Nuk’em the Sorcerer. The player of Duke smiled and appeared confident. He proudly stated that he was casting Summon Monster, and that the Summoned Dire Bats would stop their fall, and help them back out of the corridor to safety. I congratuled the Player of Duke, before I then informed him that Summon Monster requires a FULL round, and that his Dire Bats arrived after him and his four friends plummeted into the Lava and were incinerated, [CASUALTY #5, #6, #7, #8, and #9] and a TPK. A moment later, the two summoned Dire Bats arrived and looked in confusion for a moment until their summoner perished, thereby releasing/dismissing them back to wherever they came from.

Next, entered Meathead #13, Doofus #8, Bates/Red Shirt #9, Duke Nuk’em #6, and Layin’ on Hands Lenny #2. The new group did not go down the same ill-fated hallway, instead finding the secret door, and avoiding the Pseudo Lich area, went down into the lab. The group defeated the Ochre Jelly and got the First Key.

The group then went into Room #21, and I remember laughing as the players placed their miniatures, knowing that depending on where each was placed, would likely determine their demise. After they began their search, an invisible Elf Wizard elected not to wait for the room to shake and potentially tear the tapestries, and she fired off a spell, destroying both tapestries, which then immediately reverted to Green Slime. Reflex saves were made, and Bates/Red Shirt #9, Duke Nuk’em #6, and Layin’ on hands Lenny #2 were covered from head to toe in green slime. That was where we ended the game. I wanted to talk to Turin the Mad (friend of 30 years, former GM and Paizo poster) before I declared these three CASUALTIES # 10, 11 and 12].


green slime here should answer any questions regarding the hazard in question.


Do these people just show up with 2 or 3 backup character sheets? If I died that much I would.


Turin the Mad wrote:
green slime here should answer any questions regarding the hazard in question.

Actually, I don't think the reference does answer this question. How can a player character conceivably scrape off slime all over his entire body in one round. The gang didn't just get a few drops on them, it's all over them. The player of Duke Nuk'em wants to cast a fireball in the room and fry both the other two slimed characters, as well as himself, in hopes of stopping the slime. I initially told him that, assuming he even could cast the spell (with green slime covering his face), that he would have to make a spellcraft check (factoring in the damage from losing HP due to the loss of 1d6 Constitution) in order to pull off the spell.

On an unrelated note, we're now up to 30 character demises in only game 4 sessions, and it becomes 33 character demises if the lads do indeed perish from the green slime. Even I never expected this many casualties.

I also should mention that the Serpent Folk Monk in the above post used Power Attack on all of his attack rolls, to help him deliver his adjusted 1d10+22 damage per open hand attack:)


Killer_GM wrote:
Turin the Mad wrote:
green slime here should answer any questions regarding the hazard in question.

Actually, I don't think the reference does answer this question. How can a player character conceivably scrape off slime all over his entire body in one round. The gang didn't just get a few drops on them, it's all over them. The player of Duke Nuk'em wants to cast a fireball in the room and fry both the other two slimed characters, as well as himself, in hopes of stopping the slime. I initially told him that, assuming he even could cast the spell (with green slime covering his face), that he would have to make a spellcraft check (factoring in the damage from losing HP due to the loss of 1d6 Constitution) in order to pull off the spell.

On an unrelated note, we're now up to 30 character demises in only game 4 sessions, and it becomes 33 character demises if the lads do indeed perish from the green slime. Even I never expected this many casualties.

I also should mention that the Serpent Folk Monk in the above post used Power Attack on all of his attack rolls, to help him deliver his adjusted 1d10+22 damage per open hand attack:)

Each 5 ft aquare of green slime is treated the same, whether you're bathing in it or not. My beloved dwarf cleric in AoW passed through 30+ feet of the stuff, ending his existence poste-haste.

Concentration check is what he would need [continuing damage, DC based on hit points lost from the CON damage, so a check of 28+?], not Spellcraft. Considering that he's throwing (9+ INT bonus +2 trait if he took it +nothing else) at best a +15 or +16, he's not favored to pull off the fireball.

I'd be all for letting him fireball himself and his allies. Between the CON damage and the fireball - which has to do damage to burn off the slime, no evasion allowed for any monk/rogue types - they should be in really rough shape...


Good glavin! I love Doofus. It's like a work of perverted genius, sauntering up to a hulking snake-dude and basically going, "Come at me, bro!"

And, or course, ending up a smashed can of tomato soup.


CapnVan wrote:

Good glavin! I love Doofus. It's like a work of perverted genius, sauntering up to a hulking snake-dude and basically going, "Come at me, bro!"

And, or course, ending up a smashed can of tomato soup.

Yep. He's great. Towards the end of this last game session, the player actually asked me about GM'ing a Call of Cthulu game, knowing full well it meant dozens of PC demises...


Turin the Mad wrote:

Each 5 ft aquare of green slime is treated the same, whether you're bathing in it or not. My beloved dwarf cleric in AoW passed through 30+ feet of the stuff, ending his existence poste-haste.

Concentration check is what he would need [continuing damage, DC based on hit points lost from the CON damage, so a check of 28+?], not Spellcraft. Considering that he's throwing (9+ INT bonus +2 trait if he took it +nothing else) at best a +15 or +16, he's not favored to pull off the fireball.

I'd be all for letting him fireball himself and his allies. Between the CON damage and the fireball - which has to do damage to burn off the slime, no evasion allowed for any monk/rogue types - they should be in really rough shape...

I can agree with this, though I'm going to say that he fell through Two (2) five foot squares, as he was standing directly next to the 10' tall curtain when it converted to slime, and hence, he'll be eating Two (2) d6 of CON damage. Does that sound unreasonable?


Killer_GM wrote:
Turin the Mad wrote:

Each 5 ft aquare of green slime is treated the same, whether you're bathing in it or not. My beloved dwarf cleric in AoW passed through 30+ feet of the stuff, ending his existence poste-haste.

Concentration check is what he would need [continuing damage, DC based on hit points lost from the CON damage, so a check of 28+?], not Spellcraft. Considering that he's throwing (9+ INT bonus +2 trait if he took it +nothing else) at best a +15 or +16, he's not favored to pull off the fireball.

I'd be all for letting him fireball himself and his allies. Between the CON damage and the fireball - which has to do damage to burn off the slime, no evasion allowed for any monk/rogue types - they should be in really rough shape...

I can agree with this, though I'm going to say that he fell through Two (2) five foot squares, as he was standing directly next to the 10' tall curtain when it converted to slime, and hence, he'll be eating Two (2) d6 of CON damage. Does that sound unreasonable?

Give him the save for each square, sure - this (a) allows a chance to not suck on (2d6) CON damage, (b) allows to you cackle even more gleefully when the saves are inevitably blown, and (c) gives them a reason to perhaps voluntarily fail their save against the fireball.

RAW, the CON damage doesn't actually cause hit point damage, so the concentration check I would place at a DC of 18 (15+3rd level). This is one of those times you're hoping the wizard has an excellent Concentration bonus *AND* rolls a fistfull of hot d6s! ^__^


So to recap Turin, If I understand you correctly,

First, Each slimed character should make a 2nd saving throw against the 2nd Five-foot patch of green slime (as each of the 3 already failed the first). I'll also make the Paladin (who made his first save, roll a save against the 2nd patch).

Once those saving throws are rolled, then I roll 1d6 of CON damage for each patch that affects each character, and each character will then lose 9 HP, per point of CON lost (they're 9th level).

Finally, the PC sorcerer will need to make a Concentration check equal to 10+3(spell level of fireball)+the amount of damage taken from the CON loss.

Correct?


Killer_GM wrote:

So to recap Turin, If I understand you correctly,

First, Each slimed character should make a 2nd saving throw against the 2nd Five-foot patch of green slime (as each of the 3 already failed the first). I'll also make the Paladin (who made his first save, roll a save against the 2nd patch).

Once those saving throws are rolled, then I roll 1d6 of CON damage for each patch that affects each character, and each character will then lose 9 HP, per point of CON lost (they're 9th level).

Finally, the PC sorcerer will need to make a Concentration check equal to 10+3(spell level of fireball)+the amount of damage taken from the CON loss.

Correct?

They lose 1 hp per 2 CON lost, not per 1 CON lost. You're maybe thinking of per point of CON modifier lost?

The green slime is continuous damage, not an injury taken while casting.

Let us assume that Wizzy takes enough CON damage to drop his modifier 4 points [7 or 8 CON damage], costing him 36 hit points. Continuous damage will mean that his beloved fireball probably fails since the DC is 31 (10 +18 [half damage taken] +3) against a concentration bonus of +15 to +18 (9th level +6 or +7 INT & maybe a +2 trait).

Now, if you *want* them to have a good chance of dropping that fireball at their own feet, they're in a pretty pickle.

1.) They'll have to voluntarily fail their Reflex save against it. This is a *requirement* if they have Resist Fire 20 up. This is also a requirement for Bates (who has Evasion).
2.) The DC can be set as "extremely violent motion" from being eaten alive (23).


Turin the Mad wrote:


They lose 1 hp per 2 CON lost, not per 1 CON lost. You're maybe thinking of per point of CON modifier lost?

The green slime is continuous damage, not an injury taken while casting.

Let us assume that Wizzy takes enough CON damage to drop his modifier 4 points [7 or 8 CON damage], costing him 36 hit points. Continuous damage will mean that his beloved fireball probably fails since the DC is 31 (10 +18 [half damage taken] +3) against a concentration bonus of +15 to +18 (9th level +6 or +7 INT & maybe a +2 trait).

Now, if you *want* them to have a good chance of dropping that fireball at their own feet, they're in a pretty pickle.

1.) They'll have to voluntarily fail their Reflex save against it. This is a *requirement* if they have Resist Fire 20 up. This is also a requirement for Bates (who has Evasion).
2.) The DC can be set as "extremely violent motion" from being eaten alive (23).

You are correct, I did not clarify adequately when i referred to the CON damage per point of modifier lost. 1HP per 2 Points of Con lost, though in theory they could drop an odd number and get hosed for more (ex: 16 CON original -5=11, a net drop of 3 HP/character level). I'll remember that a spellcaster takes HALF of damage taken in determining the DC of the check, rather than all of it.

Realistically, I'll probably need a 7-8 point CON drop to stop the fireball. Though Duke Nuk'em doesn't have any feat to help, 9th level + 7 or 8 for ability modifier will likely require a DC of 30 or higher to give him decent chance of missing the check. they DON'T have Resist Fire in effect, so they'll eat any damage if they do get the fireball off. Naturally, Lenny the Cleric doesn't have Remove Disease prepared:)


Killer_GM wrote:
Naturally, Lenny the Cleric doesn't have Remove Disease prepared:)

How long has this particular player been in your group? I have a hard time believing they don't know better than to have Remove Disease prepared at least once.

Speaking of which, I really need to look into molds and such for my players in Haunting of Harrowstone... I gave them half a level's worth of xp in combat encounters last session, it's time to change things up a bit!


Macharius wrote:
Killer_GM wrote:
Naturally, Lenny the Cleric doesn't have Remove Disease prepared:)

How long has this particular player been in your group? I have a hard time believing they don't know better than to have Remove Disease prepared at least once.

Speaking of which, I really need to look into molds and such for my players in Haunting of Harrowstone... I gave them half a level's worth of xp in combat encounters last session, it's time to change things up a bit!

Poor Lenny is in the same pickle as Duke in terms of the DC for casting remove disease. ^__^

I also recommend haunts if they haven't already gotten their fill of them. CoT has a few really fun ones buried in Chapter 4 of that campaign if memory serves.


Macharius wrote:
Killer_GM wrote:
Naturally, Lenny the Cleric doesn't have Remove Disease prepared:)

How long has this particular player been in your group? I have a hard time believing they don't know better than to have Remove Disease prepared at least once.

Speaking of which, I really need to look into molds and such for my players in Haunting of Harrowstone... I gave them half a level's worth of xp in combat encounters last session, it's time to change things up a bit!

The players in the group have predominantly played fighter and rogue types over the years. Their experience at playing spellcasters is an issue. As the tomb of Horrors doesn't lend itself to allowing player characters a break, they have to learn the hard way.

Truthfully, I seldom have observed most players memorize that particular spell, as it is not frequently needed. There is however absolutely NO excuse for them not to have it on a scroll for the cleric to read off whenever he needs it, and need not have it prepared/memorized.

Were I a player in any sort of "tomb" type adventure, given the environment, I'd likely come prepared for poison, undead, and constructs (maybe a 1,500 g.p. value Scarab of Golembane). The tomb is a highly dangerous place, but the players simply don't think intelligently or creatively, and the character fatalities keep piling up...


Just found the thread and back on board again. Please don't forget to post details of the Serpent Folk Monk with 300+ hit points, I might want to use him in my game.

Presently running Red Hand of Doom with 9 (nine!! good grief!) player-characters, and trying to find a happy medium between extreme lethality and keeping them happy. So far, nearest I've come to killing off a player was the Fighter/ Dragonslayer (5/2) falling 60' off the back of a flying manticore, but having the hp to suck it up darnit. Oh and the Dread Necromancer who only survived a claw/claw/bite combo from a lizard abomination because he'd previously taken out one with a Deadly spell and had gained two temporary levels in the process (otherwise he'd have been a Dead Necromancer).

I think the Ettin Druid and Barbarian Lizardfolk they are due to come up against this evening might prove more resolute, however...


Heh, I killed three cohorts and three party members last session with Wail of the Banshee, good spell...


meomwt wrote:

Just found the thread and back on board again. Please don't forget to post details of the Serpent Folk Monk with 300+ hit points, I might want to use him in my game.

Presently running Red Hand of Doom with 9 (nine!! good grief!) player-characters, and trying to find a happy medium between extreme lethality and keeping them happy. So far, nearest I've come to killing off a player was the Fighter/ Dragonslayer (5/2) falling 60' off the back of a flying manticore, but having the hp to suck it up darnit. Oh and the Dread Necromancer who only survived a claw/claw/bite combo from a lizard abomination because he'd previously taken out one with a Deadly spell and had gained two temporary levels in the process (otherwise he'd have been a Dead Necromancer).

I think the Ettin Druid and Barbarian Lizardfolk they are due to come up against this evening might prove more resolute, however...

Meomwt, I'll try and post the serpentfolk's stats this weekend. I will also try to think of some other ways you can make life rough on your player's characters. One thing that I am going to do soon, is have the 'villains' send a 1 HD minion with a Bag of Holding and a Portable Hold running at the group of PCs, and at the opportune moment, shove the Bag inside the Hole, and slurp off all PCs within TEN feet to the Astral Plane. There is NO saving throw allowed to resist going to the Astral (read the description of both items in the Core rulebook). My goal is to take HALF of the group, so that the villain(s) can then oblitterate the other HALF of the remaining PCs with relative impunity, before traveling to the Astral to finish off the first Half of the Player Characters that are there. When your characters are high enough level to potentially get back from the Astral, (or hell even before, go ahead and strand them there...), give this a try.


Dennis Harry wrote:
Heh, I killed three cohorts and three party members last session with Wail of the Banshee, good spell...

Outstanding Dennis. Even in its somewhat watered-down conversion in Pathfinder (it is no longer a Save-or-die spell, now doing damage instead, if memory serves), Wail of the Banshee is still a Hallmark spell that players fear universally; and you are doing credit to the tradition of the game by successfully greasing your player's characters with it:)

The last time I used that spell on my group, I had the villain in question ("Cardinal Devious") give one of the player characters a scroll, which he told them contained valuable information. I (myself) actually handed the player of the character in question a rolled up piece of paper. The player in question was a sucker for RP, and not terribly clever. He happily un-rolled the paper I had given him, only to read to his surprise, "SYMBOL OF DEATH." After failing his saving throw, his character promptly died on the spot:) The villain then proceeded to drop Wail of the Banshee and greased 3 more PCs on the spot as well.

Wonderful memories. Thanks for Sharing:D:D


Killer_GM wrote:
Dennis Harry wrote:
Heh, I killed three cohorts and three party members last session with Wail of the Banshee, good spell...

Outstanding Dennis. Even in its somewhat watered-down conversion in Pathfinder (it is no longer a Save-or-die spell, now doing damage instead, if memory serves), Wail of the Banshee is still a Hallmark spell that players fear universally; and you are doing credit to the tradition of the game by successfully greasing your player's characters with it:)

The last time I used that spell on my group, I had the villain in question ("Cardinal Devious") give one of the player characters a scroll, which he told them contained valuable information. I (myself) actually handed the player of the character in question a rolled up piece of paper. The player in question was a sucker for RP, and not terribly clever. He happily un-rolled the paper I had given him, only to read to his surprise, "SYMBOL OF DEATH." After failing his saving throw, his character promptly died on the spot:) The villain then proceeded to drop Wail of the Banshee and greased 3 more PCs on the spot as well.

Wonderful memories. Thanks for Sharing:D:D

As I recall, that particular scroll had numerous bits of flavor text and a warning all about the SYMBOL OF DEATH that snuffed his sorry character on the spot. :)

51 to 100 of 122 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | 3 | next > last >>
Paizo / Messageboards / Paizo Community / Gaming / Campaign Journals / KILLER GM's 2011 Return to the Tomb of Horrors Pathfinder Campaign! All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.

©2002–2014 Paizo Inc.®. Need help? Email customer.service@paizo.com or call 425-250-0800 during our business hours: Monday–Friday, 10 AM–5 PM Pacific Time. View our privacy policy. Paizo Inc., Paizo, the Paizo golem logo, Pathfinder, the Pathfinder logo, Pathfinder Society, GameMastery, and Planet Stories are registered trademarks of Paizo Inc., and Pathfinder Roleplaying Game, Pathfinder Campaign Setting, Pathfinder Adventure Path, Pathfinder Adventure Card Game, Pathfinder Player Companion, Pathfinder Modules, Pathfinder Tales, Pathfinder Battles, Pathfinder Online, PaizoCon, RPG Superstar, The Golem's Got It, Titanic Games, the Titanic logo, and the Planet Stories planet logo are trademarks of Paizo Inc. Dungeons & Dragons, Dragon, Dungeon, and Polyhedron are registered trademarks of Wizards of the Coast, Inc., a subsidiary of Hasbro, Inc., and have been used by Paizo Inc. under license. Most product names are trademarks owned or used under license by the companies that publish those products; use of such names without mention of trademark status should not be construed as a challenge to such status.