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PFS 3-25: Storming The Diamond Gate (SPOILERS)


Pathfinder Society GM Discussion

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Shadow Lodge ***** Venture-Captain, Michigan—Alma

Hmmm... where does my wife keep her circle punches, and does she have any larger than 1"...

:D Nice tip CRobledo

***** Venture-Lieutenant, Georgia—Atlanta aka CRobledo

1" would work as well, but when doing them by hand...

2" I found to be the perfect balance between portability and practicality. 1" circles fly everywhere if someone at the table sighs a bit too enthusiastically, and then you have paper flying everywhere. The host store might not like that :D

Shadow Lodge ***** Venture-Captain, Michigan—Alma

I might do 1", but I already dulled her punch when I punched out about ~130 plastic circles...

Andoran **

CRobledo wrote:
Silverhand wrote:

A few notes from our game session:

** spoiler omitted **

** spoiler omitted **

I have seen this done before in the past: take black construction paper and cut out a bunch of circles, maybe 2 inches in diameter each. In an hour you should end up with dozens of them, at least. After you draw the map for an adventure, dump these black circles on top of the map and spread them out with your hands. Then as your party explores the map, simply push aside with your hands the circles as their field of vision extends.

It's kinda like fog of war in computer RTS games, and it's a great addition to atmosphere. Pretty easy to cleanup too, just dump in a plastic bag after the session.

Superb idea! That works for any map, now that I think about it. This is among the best GM suggestions I've read. Thank you! :)

That said, in the specific case of the Undershrine, it may not work becasue the depth is 100 and 200 feet (beyond normal vision range).

I think your idea of lining the floor with contoured construction paper may be best in this case.

Thanks again.

***** Venture-Lieutenant, Georgia—Atlanta aka CRobledo

Silverhand wrote:
That said, in the specific case of the Undershrine, it may not work becasue the depth is 100 and 200 feet (beyond normal vision range).

For the Undershrine, I made 3D terrain for the plateaus that I put over the map (I am sure mine is WAY less impressive that a certain other someone's who frequents these boards and may or may not be called Myron).

I draw the bottom floor on my gaming mat, then place the plateaus on top. Then finally fill in the bottom with the black circles. The plateaus are "visible" but the bottom floor is not. As for the chasms, I just draw them in the mat. It's not that common players end up in there. Happens, but not as often.

Lantern Lodge *

Pathfinder Tales Subscriber

I ran this yesterday to prep for Gen-con with my home group. The party consisted of all 3rd level characters in the Tian faction; an Urban Ranger, Samurai Musketeer, Churgeon Internal Alchemist and a Summoner.

On the 1st encounter, the party tried to hide in various spots to ambush the patrol when they came out. The patrol was not as sneaky as they could be, so on the surprise round only the Churgeon Internal Alchemist was able to act and he nailed one guard with a bomb and did splash damage to the others. The patrol had the highest inits and got to arrows into the Samurai Musketeer. Party finished off the two other guards before the end of the 1st round.

The party successfully located the maps for thier faction prestige point.

The Summoner sent his snakelike eidelon in to scope things out and dismissed it when the 3rd guard trying to hide saw the poorly stealthed pet at the same time as it saw her. The Urban Ranger and Musketeer charged in (not a literal charge)and shot her up.

The party did not have anyone that knew Abyssal nor the Linguistics skill. The Urban Ranger did not locate the trap and the party did not try to read anything (thus bypassing).

The party took the amulets off the guards and from the peg, and thus did not encounter the statues. (Everyone was wearing them, but no bard to claim more than one at the same time...)

The Urban Ranger snuck/spied the guards playing cards and the party made short work of the battle and freed the spy.

The party did not check for magic or traps and set off the alarm on the way down the stairs.

The final battle was fairly quick, as the summoner had two celestial eagles on each enemy and the wizard did not get all his concentration checks to get all his. However, as the Urban Ranger was the only one to cross the first bridge to get a vantage point to them, he also took the brunt from the enemy archer until expired.

Due to the varied nature of how the party went through the adventure, the demon's attitude kept shifting back and forth and she did not appear until after the final battle.

With her help the party finished and let her go through the portal...

Cheliax *** Venture-Captain, Virginia—Richmond

Where we had a problem was with the constructs. We weren't sure what we were supposed to do with the amulets based on the Quasit encounter (which went down amusingly with it being grappled by the monk and then cleaved in half by a greatsword). Those things hit hard and we had a hard time damaging them. Part of our problem was the way we got set up. We had to retreat and come back at it.

Grand Lodge

Does Fireball REALLY destroy the bridges if it does 20 damage? Because if so, the final boss can easily auto-kill any level 3 to 4 player standing on the bridges above one of the 200 foot drops...

Grand Lodge ***

zean wrote:
Does Fireball REALLY destroy the bridges if it does 20 damage? Because if so, the final boss can easily auto-kill any level 3 to 4 player standing on the bridges above one of the 200 foot drops...

If you rule that thick wood/rope doesn't have time to burn through from an instantaneous fireball and apply the half energy damage rule for objects - then no it doesn't.

Expect table variation.

PRD: "Energy Attacks: Energy attacks deal half damage to most objects. Divide the damage by 2 before applying the object's hardness. Some energy types might be particularly effective against certain objects, subject to GM discretion. For example, fire might do full damage against parchment, cloth, and other objects that burn easily. Sonic might do full damage against glass and crystal objects."

PRD: "Spells with an instantaneous duration don't normally set a character on fire, since the heat and flame from these come and go in a flash."

The bridges are rated at hardness 5, HP 15 (therefore 1.5 inches thick wood).

If you apply the half damage rule then you need a 40 point fireball to destroy a bridge in one hit. At tier 3-4 this is not possible. At tier 6-7 there is a 4% chance you roll 40+.

Cheliax **

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Pathfinder Modules Subscriber
Fighting Fantasy GM wrote:
zean wrote:
Does Fireball REALLY destroy the bridges if it does 20 damage? Because if so, the final boss can easily auto-kill any level 3 to 4 player standing on the bridges above one of the 200 foot drops...

If you rule that thick wood/rope doesn't have time to burn through from an instantaneous fireball and apply the half energy damage rule for objects - then no it doesn't.

Expect table variation.

PRD: "Energy Attacks: Energy attacks deal half damage to most objects. Divide the damage by 2 before applying the object's hardness. Some energy types might be particularly effective against certain objects, subject to GM discretion. For example, fire might do full damage against parchment, cloth, and other objects that burn easily. Sonic might do full damage against glass and crystal objects."

PRD: "Spells with an instantaneous duration don't normally set a character on fire, since the heat and flame from these come and go in a flash."

The bridges are rated at hardness 5, HP 15 (therefore 1.5 inches thick wood).

If you apply the half damage rule then you need a 40 point fireball to destroy a bridge in one hit. At tier 3-4 this is not possible. At tier 6-7 there is a 4% chance you roll 40+.

You're missing the real issue here, it's a ROPE bridge. A sizable majority of people will accept that the ropes will take full damage from the fireball and since they have hardness 0 and 2HP's/inch the average fireball will automatically destroy them.

It does give you the cool cinematic of the burning bridge falling into the darkness though, so points for coolness do apply.

Taldor ***** Venture-Lieutenant, Pennsylvania—Philadelphia aka Iammars

I'm all for the fireball burning through the bridge, with two notes:

1. I emphasize to the players at the beginning that the rope bridges look old and unstable. I mention the difficult terrain, but also that they're barely hanging on.
2. In all 3 times I've taken part in this (2 times running, 1 time playing), someone's gotten to the wizard before he got to the summoning fireballs on bridges plan.

Cheliax **

Pathfinder Modules Subscriber
Iammars wrote:

I'm all for the fireball burning through the bridge, with two notes:

1. I emphasize to the players at the beginning that the rope bridges look old and unstable. I mention the difficult terrain, but also that they're barely hanging on.
2. In all 3 times I've taken part in this (2 times running, 1 time playing), someone's gotten to the wizard before he got to the summoning fireballs on bridges plan.

And I'm not seeing how anyone can get to the wizard before he's gotten all of those spells off. Even if you have characters capable of flight it will still take them at least 3 rounds to find him and get to him.

He's at least 75 feet away from the rooms entrance (at the top of the stairs), hiding in the dark well outside of anyone's range to see him (with a flat +7/+8 to the DC to even hear him casting from that distance).

Assuming the move out far enough to see him (1 move action spent for an elf a full round for everyone else) they'll still need to traverse 4 bridges to get to him (about 600 ft with difficult terrain, 400ish if they can ignore it) so that's 6-10 rounds minimum to reach him. If they try to jump the chasms they'll need to make DC 20 acrobatics checks (at least, and since it's 20ft jumps in the dark they should add +2/+5 to the DC) which is not easy to do, especially when getting pelted by arrows from the dark.

Finally, if someone has the ability to fly it'll take a minimum of 2 rounds to get to him (probably 3 since it'll take a round to be able to find him) which is enough time for him to get all 3 summons done and get off a dispel magic or fireball depending on circumstances.

I don't see how anyone can do it without giving him enough time to drop at least one bridge.

Cheliax ***** Owner - Enchanted Grounds

There is something else that everyone is missing, specific to the fireball spell:

PRD wrote:
The fireball sets fire to combustibles and damages objects in the area. It can melt metals with low melting points, such as lead, gold, copper, silver, and bronze. If the damage caused to an interposing barrier shatters or breaks through it, the fireball may continue beyond the barrier if the area permits; otherwise it stops at the barrier just as any other spell effect does.

Most other fire based damage spells do not have that specific line in them.

I have run this scenario four times. Every time I've only nailed one guy crossing in the middle of the bridge, because everyone else is too nervous to be "caught in the middle all together." Nearly every time it's a rogue with evasion who makes his save only to watch the bridge disappear beneath him. It drew a laugh every time it happened, as the rogue was Matrixing through the waves of fire and left with nothing to stand on.

Most importantly, I give them another reflex save to grab the remnants of the bridge that fall away to either side. Only one guy has failed that, and he ended up unconscious at the bottom (100 feet of falling only averages out to 35 damage). His party was able to get to him and heal him. I will admit, however, that I've consumed an awful lot of players' rerolls (via shirt, portfolio or boon) with this setup.

It is a tense, fun, dangerous fight every time I've run it, and players have truly enjoyed it - even those who died.

Grand Lodge *

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Maps Subscriber
Drogon wrote:

There is something else that everyone is missing, specific to the fireball spell:

Most importantly, I give them another reflex save to grab the remnants of the bridge that fall away to either side. Only one guy has failed that, and he ended up unconscious at the bottom (100 feet of falling only averages out to 35 damage). His party was able to get to him and heal him. I will admit, however, that I've consumed an awful lot of players' rerolls (via shirt, portfolio or boon) with this setup.

It is a tense, fun, dangerous fight every time I've run it, and players have truly enjoyed it - even those who died.

I think you are overlooking the fact that the fireball and the 100 foot drop are also in the low tier version. A 3rd level PC who fails their saving throw versus the fireball could be dead even before the body hits the ground. A low tier party doesn't have the options to survive the consequences of the bridge collapse and is unlikely to be able to make it into the chasm to stabilize the fallen PC, even if he manages to survive the fall.

Taldor ***** Venture-Lieutenant, Pennsylvania—Philadelphia aka Iammars

From what I remember, there was a flying witch with the prehensile hair hex responsible for two people flying. He tried to dispel the fly (which didn't work. Stupid witch and everything they do being supernatural).

The time I played it, a haste happened which got everyone over the bridge if I recall correctly.

Besides, who walks on the bridges (EDIT: after the first one)? I started to do that, and then I realized it was faster to fall 100 feet to get to him. 10d6 falling and a going through a wall of fire later, I was grappling him.

Shadow Lodge ***** Venture-Captain, Michigan—Alma

I've run this a couple of times, and each time they jump from the middle platform to the last bridge. There is enough room to run, and its only a dc 10 acrobatics check. Also, the cavern isn't dark. Its filled with dim light from the walls. So its not that difficult to spot a shadowy figure on the other side of the room, especially one that is casting spells.

I actually had one PC use the scrolls and circle to summon a devil. He was a summoner, and we rolled it all out. None of us could believe that it actually worked. Of course, the deal he made wasn't fully thought out and I was able to twist it enough that the devil really didn't do a whole lot in the fight, except make Aglorn use up his dimensional steps.

Cheliax ***** Owner - Enchanted Grounds

sieylianna wrote:
I think you are overlooking the fact that the fireball and the 100 foot drop are also in the low tier version. A 3rd level PC who fails their saving throw versus the fireball could be dead even before the body hits the ground. A low tier party doesn't have the options to survive the consequences of the bridge collapse and is unlikely to be able to make it into the chasm to stabilize the fallen PC, even if he manages to survive the fall.

Fair enough. I guess the other thing that is being overlooked then is that this is not a tactic that has to be followed. I don't recall it being written into the scenario that he would blow up bridges under PCs; instead, it says he "tries to catch as many PCs as possible in a fireball." That can pretty easily be interpreted as "not the one guy on the bridge." Frankly, that tactic just seemed like what an evil spellcaster would do, when charged with defending that room. In other words: if you think you have a party (or bridge-crossing PC) that can't handle it, don't do it.

For the record, three of my groups were high tier, one was low. I did it to all of them, and no one died as a result of the fireball-bridge tactic. Deaths were all due to wall of fire or summoned creatures, or a readied fireball when the group was all about to rush around the corner at the same time.

[Edit] I even tried to lure one group all onto the bridge by attacking the crossing PC with wasps. They didn't bite and left that guy by himself while they all figured out a way around.

**

Pathfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Unless I'm missing something, according to the mod, the final chamber is actually dimly illuminated, not dark.

Qadira ***

bugleyman wrote:
Unless I'm missing something, according to the mod, the final chamber is actually dimly illuminated, not dark.

Yeah, I thought so too. I wanted to just hang out in at the base of the stairs in front of the first bridge and let our overpowered Ranger/Archer shoot the bad guys down. Lob a couple light spells down there (on arrows or sling bullets) and shot anything that moved. Then maybe drop a few summons of our own. But we had a couple melee guys in our party that just HAD to close (why do experienced PC fighters NOT carry a missile weapon?).

Cheliax **

Pathfinder Modules Subscriber
Iammars wrote:

From what I remember, there was a flying witch with the prehensile hair hex responsible for two people flying. He tried to dispel the fly (which didn't work. Stupid witch and everything they do being supernatural).

The time I played it, a haste happened which got everyone over the bridge if I recall correctly.

Besides, who walks on the bridges (EDIT: after the first one)? I started to do that, and then I realized it was faster to fall 100 feet to get to him. 10d6 falling and a going through a wall of fire later, I was grappling him.

I know, I'm that witch (had a lot of fun too that's why I went and bought the module after you ran it) this is just a few things I discovered as I was prepping it for my players.

@Eric Clingpeel You might want to re-check the rules on dim lighting. It only allows a player to see out to 20 feet (40 with low light) and anything in that range has 20% concealment. Anything past that range is effectively in darkness so you can't see them at all.

As for the jump I don't see any spot on the map where it's less then 15' to land on the bridge and since the bridge has concealment and is flagged as difficult terrain and the cavern is flagged as Natural and Stone the penalties should keep every jump at DC 20 and above.

First:

Quote:

Natural Stone

The floor of a natural cave is as uneven as the walls. Caves rarely have flat surfaces of any great size. Rather, their floors have many levels. Some adjacent floor surfaces might vary in elevation by only a foot, so that moving from one to the other is no more difficult than negotiating a stair step, but in other places the floor might suddenly drop off or rise up several feet or more, requiring Climb checks to get from one surface to the other. Unless a path has been worn and well marked in the floor of a natural cave, it takes 2 squares of movement to enter a square with a natural stone floor, and the DC of Acrobatics checks increases by 5. Running and charging are impossible, except along paths.

Second: The bridges sway with every movement so either Slightly Unsteady +2 or Moderately Unsteady +5 and with the concealment penalty).

I feel comfortable putting it at Moderately unsteady since you can't see where you are landing and it's a moving target you are trying to jump on plus you are off the path and trying to jump from difficult terrain (without a running start) onto that moving target.

Qadira ***

Mathwei ap Niall wrote:

...snipping good stuff....

@Eric Clingpeel You might want to re-check the rules on dim lighting. It only allows a player to see out to 20 feet (40 with low light) and anything in that range has 20% concealment. Anything past that range is effectively in darkness so you can't see them at all.
...snipping...

actually Mathwei - the above statement is not true.

you may see anything lit by dim lighting (such as the floor of a forrest during the day) and anything in dim lighting has 20% concealment.

so for some examples:
1) a bullseye lantern gives 60' of normal light and 60 more feet of dim light (not 20'). Low light vision doubles these distances. Lowlight doubles that to 120' of light and another 120' of dim light. Yes, elves can see 240' with a bullseye lantern (the last 120' with concealment).
2) a darkness spell will lower the light from normal to dim in an area 40' in diameter - and you can see normally in all that (20% miss chance) and outside it (no miss chance).
3) a candle sheds 5' of dim light (I think).
4) Forrest floor during the day is normally all dim light. and if it's not blocked by vegitation you could see for miles... dimly.
5) heavy overcast skies could put everything in dim light, and everything would be in twilight. Kind of like under storm clouds, before the rain.

** RPG Superstar 2014 Top 16, RPG Superstar 2013 Top 16

Mathwei ap Niall wrote:


And I'm not seeing how anyone can get to the wizard before he's gotten all of those spells off. Even if you have characters capable of flight it will still take them at least 3 rounds to find him and get to him.

For what it's worth, when I played this with my level 6 monk, I spent a ki point to get to 60 ft. move speed, then did a double move to run across the first rope bridge to the central plateau, turn, and jump across the 15' gap to land right between the wizard and one of the archers.

Cheliax **

Pathfinder Modules Subscriber
RainyDayNinja wrote:
Mathwei ap Niall wrote:


And I'm not seeing how anyone can get to the wizard before he's gotten all of those spells off. Even if you have characters capable of flight it will still take them at least 3 rounds to find him and get to him.
For what it's worth, when I played this with my level 6 monk, I spent a ki point to get to 60 ft. move speed, then did a double move to run across the first rope bridge to the central plateau, turn, and jump across the 15' gap to land right between the wizard and one of the archers.

Yeah, and since it's all flagged as difficult terrain that drops you down to your normal speed (30ft)and a double move should get you just over the bridge and 40 ft away from the edge. The following round if you burn another ki point and succeed on 2 separate acrobatics checks could get you onto the bridge. On round 3 if you burn ANOTHER ki point it gets you to where he's standing with a standard action left.

3 rounds and 2 chances for him to blast you with that fireball or finish all of his summons and drop them in your way.

No way to get to him in time to stop him from getting all of his critters out.

Cheliax ***** Owner - Enchanted Grounds

3 people marked this as a favorite.

After being inspired by Myron Pauls' own 3D terrain, I decided to give in a whirl. I posted a whole album on my Facebook page and, hopefully, this link will get you there. It's the overall picture for the cavern. If you hit the "back to album" link at the top, you can see more views. I posted it all for store fans, and it should be public, so even if you don't have a Facebook account you should be able to see it.

Final cavern in Storming the Diamond Gate

I'm not particularly tech-savvy, so if this didn't work, let me know. I'll try to figure out the whole Fickr thing.

Grand Lodge ****

Drogon wrote:

After being inspired by Myron Pauls' own 3D terrain, I decided to give in a whirl. I posted a whole album on my Facebook page and, hopefully, this link will get you there. It's the overall picture for the cavern. If you hit the "back to album" link at the top, you can see more views. I posted it all for store fans, and it should be public, so even if you don't have a Facebook account you should be able to see it.

Final cavern in Storming the Diamond Gate

I'm not particularly tech-savvy, so if this didn't work, let me know. I'll try to figure out the whole Fickr thing.

That is awesome! So great. Was debating doing this myself since I like this scenario so much. This gives me inspiration.

Shadow Lodge ***** Venture-Captain, Michigan—Alma

Very cool Drogon!


Pathfinder Adventure Path Charter Subscriber

Soooo cool! I love seeing this stuff done for things I write! Much appreciation!
Larry Wilhelm

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Lieutenant, Canada—Winnipeg aka NoStrings

Drogon, it looks like I've been one-upped! That is seriously fantastic. I love the literal fog of war, and the rune gate looks great.

Andoran *** Venture-Lieutenant, Washington—Seattle aka The Great Rinaldo!

That is seriously amazing! I have to ask, how do you store this? It seems like it would take up a lot of space between uses.

***** Venture-Lieutenant, Georgia—Atlanta aka CRobledo

The Great Rinaldo! wrote:
That is seriously amazing! I have to ask, how do you store this? It seems like it would take up a lot of space between uses.

Owning a game store helps :P

Cheliax ***** Owner - Enchanted Grounds

Thanks for the kudos, guys. And thanks for the inspiration, Myron. I wouldn't have done it without the pictures you posted and the templates you sent me. Speaking of which, I completely forgot to take pictures of the actual gate. I'll have to remedy that. It worked like a charm, by the way, and made the puzzle a lot more fun.

@ The Great Rinaldo! - CRobledo is right: it helps to own a game store. I have a handy-dandy stock room in the back with plenty of shelving. (-:

Taldor *****

Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

I have ran this twice now.

High Tier:
The first time was with a 5 human ranger, 6 humand urban barabarian, 7 human barbarian, 4 human alchemist, and 4 pregen gunslinger. Group was it through the first encounter easliy. They didn't set off the trap in the hall wall. They had difficulty with the gaurdians. Toke down both barbarians multiple times. Alchemist ran away with one chasing him. Ranger mostly healed barabarians. Gunslinger toke care of one of the leftover rogues that retreated to the room after the first fight. Easily figured out the fake gate. They were able to take care of the mooks in the holding cell room easily. In the cavern, alarm is set off. Aglorn cast Black tentacles on the entrance and first bridge. All, but the alchemist, were able to eventually get out. 1 wasp and 2 badgers weree summoned. After those summons, alchemist died (I don't think he was fully healed). Then fireball was cast killing the gunslinger and the urban barbarian. The ranger stepped back into his eddy and the barbarian grabbed the other barbarian and did the same. (At that point I was under the impression your eddy travlled with, someone else later informed me that it stays where you entered the tapestry.) I would have been a tpk had they not done that.

Low Tier:
The second time was with a 3 dhampir neg channel cleric, 3 dhampir oracle of flame, 5 human fighter, 4 human fighter, 4 pregen wizard. Made it through the first mooks INCREDIBLY quickiily. Set of the trap in the hall, hitting the wizard and oracle. Befriended Teenoch and she suggested they all wear the amulets so the walked right by the gaurdians. The easily figured out the rune alignment, but needed help from Teenoch to put the amulet in the podium. Heard the mooks, so cleric cast darkness on a rock and through it in the room. (I forgot darkenss only drops it 1 step so instead playing it as dim light, there was darkness. Either way they walked through that encounter. They set off the alarm. Summoned 2 spiders and 1 rat, forgot about the wolverines. Got first bridge and all but the lame oracle in breastplate in fireball. Archers shot at 2 fighters and cleric. Dropped cleric. One fighter continued onto next bridge. Acid arrow the wizard. Round two of acid arrow dropped wizard. Magic missled the oracle. Magic missled the fighter range attcking the archers, dropped the fighter. Eventually after using all the spells and arcane bonding fireball. Aglorn was killed and everyone was unconsious at least once and Ezren pregen was killed.

My only complaint is that Aglorn runs out of spells to quickly on the low tier. This fight often drags out to 10+ rnds.

I will be running this again this weekend a Flatcon for a couple of 5 star GMs. Hope everything goes well.

Grand Lodge ***** Venture-Lieutenant, Canada—Winnipeg aka NoStrings

Kristen, sounds like a couple of good games. One thing to remember is that fireball also affects objects - like wood & rope bridges! The terrain becomes much more dangerous if the bridges are falling under your feet.

Good luck with your game this weekend - those 5-star guys can be a challenge! :)

Taldor *****

Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

I did remember that fireball burns the rope bridges. High tier, burnt one completely through. No one was one the bridge. Low tier, one took quite a bit a damage, but not enough for it to collapse.

Grand Lodge ** RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Ever-so-slight chance I could end up GMing this on Sunday. Can anyone summarize the relevant pointers from this overly-long thread?

Silver Crusade **

Jiggy wrote:
Ever-so-slight chance I could end up GMing this on Sunday. Can anyone summarize the relevant pointers from this overly-long thread?

Decide in advance how the fireball in the final encounter will be used, especially with regards to the bridges (and whether or not they're flammable).

Other than that, decide if you care that the lower tier has tactics that rely on the final bad guy having a power that he doesn't qualify for, but he's listed as having anyway.

Also, remember that the final battle takes place in low light.

That's really most of what you need to know from this thread, IIRC.

*****

if you can .. make the fireball epic .. it's awesme

go overboard in your description of the gates ... they can be a good focal point of the scenario

Teenoch can be fun ... I tend to play her bit more fun loving as she really really needs the group to open the real gates she's trying to be nice and she's a good way to add a bit more of the background information.

Grand Lodge ****

Jiggy wrote:
Ever-so-slight chance I could end up GMing this on Sunday. Can anyone summarize the relevant pointers from this overly-long thread?

Drop me an email if you have any specific questions, Jiggy. I've run this twice and played it at Tier 6-7. Its one of my favorites.

Spoiler:
One tip, do not draw the part of the map after the gate. The amount of meta gaming you will witness is sweet sweet GM nectar.

Shadow Lodge ***** Venture-Captain, Michigan—Alma

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Jiggy wrote:
Ever-so-slight chance I could end up GMing this on Sunday. Can anyone summarize the relevant pointers from this overly-long thread?

Not really what you asked for, but I suggest watching some version of Star Gate while you prep... ;D

**

Am running this tonight, very helpful thread.

Why I checked for a thread before running is I noticed in the first encounter, we have guys who want to sneak attack the characters, but it's dim light, so they can't do that... right? Also, if they patrol once per hour, the route they travel is about 60 squares of movement, double moving means it takes 5 rounds or just half a minute to do the patrol, so there's only a 1/120 chance they'll be on patrol when the party arrives, and a 1/600 chance they'll randomly emerge each round the party stays outside.

Also, sun is setting, but oasis description notes palms to protect you from the blazing sun, and supposedly there's very high heat here, which doesn't make sense with a setting sun in the desert, it should already be cooling off... I think I'll change the description and call it roughly midday so they can sneak attack and it's hot and stuff.

May have more questions.

*

CRobledo wrote:

I was the GM running Belafon's game above and I would agree on the dimensional steps. It really keeps the party on their toes and is the only "out" the BBEG has (besides fly).

and Black Tentacles is awesome :)

We had a short discussion about this fight with a fellow GM. How do you (no CRobledo, in general) interpret the tactics described? Let's use the higher tier as an example.

I'm interested in question like:
- is it okay to start with Black Tentacles?
- is it okay to cast Black Tentacles (or other spells) at any point?
- is it okay to shoot a Fireball to deliberately to destroy a bridge a PC is standing on?
- is Aglorn supposed to do anything else than Fireballing and Summoning?

Etc.

*** Venture-Lieutenant, Georgia—Atlanta aka Yiroep

In my opinion, one thing I will point out is the fact that he's a wizard, a very, very intelligent opponent indeed. While he does have tactics, he probably would try to do smart things rather than what's printed. That being said, he would probably try to follow his tactics until he discovers that they aren't going to work (I stopped summoning as soon as a ranged character interrupted it).

I would interpret as if he can do black tentacles to try to get more summons off, he would do so. If they are on a bridge, a wizard would probably know what's going to happen (Remember, he has to deal 20 points of damage, because it has hardness 5 and 15 hit points, so average damage will not destroy the bridge in the 3-4 subtier).

I remember one game I was particularly evil. He did his last summon while he was flying around below the light level, casting it on a PC on the bridge, and then immediately cast black tentacles on the bridge. It was pretty much a death trap (Although the PC in question managed to escape....at like -11 with 12 con, as another PC saved him).

I would also make the argument that if all he could do is fireball and summon, then why did they even bother to give him other spells?

***** Venture-Lieutenant, Georgia—Atlanta aka CRobledo

Remember, he should be able to get 1-2 summons off before ANYONE even sees the guy. He is more than 120' down a cave from the entrance, and noone's darkvision is that good. Even to hear him casting you have a -12 to perception in distance alone.

Other than that, I'm with Yiroep. Tactics are more than a suggestion, yes. But still a suggestion nonetheless. Bad guys (this one in particular) are usually smart. If I cast black tentacles and everyone in the party either has freedom of movement or jaunt boots or boots of escape, you can bet that I will NOT cast it again and move to wall of fire, etc...

Shadow Lodge ***** Venture-Captain, Michigan—Alma

CRobledo, the whole top section of the area is dim light. They can see him, he might be shadowy, but they can see him and those with low-light can see him just fine.

Qadira ***

Eric Clingenpeel wrote:
CRobledo, the whole top section of the area is dim light. They can see him, he might be shadowy, but they can see him and those with low-light can see him just fine.

Eric, while I agree with you, why do you think that "...those with low-light can see him just fine."?

Low-light does not work that way, unless I am mistaken. it just means you can see twice as far with light sources... so Dim light is still Dim light (20% miss chance).

Shadow Lodge ***** Venture-Captain, Michigan—Alma

1 person marked this as a favorite.

Doh... Nothing to see here folks. Move along, Move along... ;)

Still remembering too much 2nd edition methinks...

*

So, would it make sense to assume that Aglorn does something like this?

- summon monster
- summon another monster until she sees at least 3 party members
- drop a fireball, if possible destroy the bridge at the same time
- improvise from that point onwards, using black tentacles, fireballing bridges with people on them, dimension stepping, what have you

Or, is it acceptable to start off with black tentacles, followed by stinking cloud? Or summon monster, then do BT+SC before fireballing?

*** Venture-Lieutenant, Georgia—Atlanta aka Yiroep

After summoning I usually have him do Overland Flight, go down, and give himself darkvision the next turn, dimension stepping if needed, and have him do whatever from underneath where some players have trouble seeing him. (I actually don't usually fireball personally because I hate the spell, and usually there will be someone with feather fall, at least in my local area. Wall of fire, black tentacles, and stinking cloud are much nastier spells. Fireball is good for dealing damage once you've established control and group them together, since unless he still has his archers he has a hard time dealing damage. It's even in his tactics to use fireball when they are grouped!) If they discover where he is, I usually have him dimensional steps away.

But yeah, come up with your own strategies as well. He's got a lot of intelligence, so he's probably smarter than any one of us.

*

Yiroep wrote:
After summoning I usually have him do Overland Flight,

Oh, that's a good point. Why doesn't he have Overland Flight going on already before the fight? He knows well what's coming, in advance.

Yiroep wrote:
But yeah, come up with your own strategies as well. He's got a lot of intelligence, so he's probably smarter than any one of us.

I guess my original question was, are we allowed to do that in PFS? :)

Silver Crusade **

Samuli wrote:
Yiroep wrote:
After summoning I usually have him do Overland Flight,

Oh, that's a good point. Why doesn't he have Overland Flight going on already before the fight? He knows well what's coming, in advance.

Yiroep wrote:
But yeah, come up with your own strategies as well. He's got a lot of intelligence, so he's probably smarter than any one of us.
I guess my original question was, are we allowed to do that in PFS? :)

You're required to follow the tactics given in the adventure, but in a fight like this, won't cover the entire battle. It'll last long enough that you'll be improvising what else he does during the rounds that he's not doing those exact things.

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