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!

Spoiler in "Curse of the Crimson Throne" - Should it have died that easy?


Curse of the Crimson Throne

Silver Crusade

So, this last Saturday, the group I'm running met the Demilich in Curse of the Crimson Throne. It looked like someone was going to die while I was planning. However, according to the Adventure Path, the Demilich takes one round to manifest. Now, the characters were all Level 12 in Pathfinder, so this should have been at least somewhat challenging. Well, the demilich lost initiative and was hit with all sorts of attacks before it could form. However, one well-placed fireball and a failed saving throw and it was down before the first round! I was appalled! No one had to make a single saving throw! Should have used the updated PRD demilich with doublish hit points.


First yes, you definitely should have gone with the demilich presented on the PRD. The version in CotCT uses the 3.5 rule set, and Pathfinder characters are considerably stronger than 3.5 characters.

Second, a demilich is immune to any spell or spell-like ability that allows spell resistance. The fireball should have inflicted no damage whatsoever. In fact most energy effects are going to be neutralized in this way, leaving many players with physical attacks that must overcome the creature's DR 20 every time an attack is made.

It sounds as if you overlooked several of the creature's primary defensive abilities. Doing so would render it much less of a threat than it is supposed to be, especially since those defenses are not the type that most players prepare to face.


Yeah, it should not have died anywhere near that easy.
Immune to almost all spells, DR 20 that can't be bypassed, and undead traits (among other things) means there are not a lot of practical ways of killing it fast (at that level)

THAT SAID...
When we ran through the part of the AP, we killed it on the second action...
The Oracle cast Disrupting Weapon on another party member's weapon, who charged and attacked... Disrupting Weapon doesn't allow spell-resistance so the Demilich is not immune to the effect, and it managed to roll a 2 on the save. (it only needed a 3 or higher, so very much a case of dumb-luck)
Bam dead.

But yeah, that's a corner case.

Andoran

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Card Game, Companion, Modules, Pawns, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Next time use spoilers.

Taldor

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Modules, Tales Subscriber

Aaargh!

I am playing this at the moment and do not need to see spoilers!

1. The title is a spoiler - never do that.
2. This is in the wrong forum, I have the CotCT sub-forum shut so that I can't peak at it.
3. Use

Spoiler:
Spoilers!
when talking about adventure content.

So frustrating!

Paizo Employee Creative Director

5 people marked this as a favorite.

I changed the forum and spoilered the title.

(swoops off into the night to save other threads from danger!)


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Modules Subscriber
Interzone wrote:

Yeah, it should not have died anywhere near that easy.

Immune to almost all spells, DR 20 that can't be bypassed, and undead traits (among other things) means there are not a lot of practical ways of killing it fast (at that level)

.

.
Ah, if only that were true.

May I introduce you to the tried and trusted 'Shove your DR, any DR, up your bony ass' technique employed by Sir Smite-a-lot and his friends?

Yes, smite evil bypasses DR/- quite handily. And yes, at the group's estimated level, by virtue of Aura of Justice, everybody smites.

Paladins. Turning evil solo encounters into cakewalks since 2008.

(Yes, I am so going of granting that Demilich a maxed out Corruption Resistance)

And thanks for changing that title, James.


James Jacobs wrote:

I changed the forum and spoilered the title.

(swoops off into the night to save other threads from danger!)

Is there a button to hit to send a beam of light with a T-Rex silhouette into the air with a link the the thread.

Taldor

My group had an easy time with this encounter as well, just a few weeks ago. And without even a single paladin in the group!

Here is the link if you want to see how it went.


Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
Midnight_Angel wrote:


May I introduce you to the tried and trusted 'Shove your DR, any DR, up your bony ass' technique employed by Sir Smite-a-lot and his friends?

Yes, smite evil bypasses DR/- quite handily. And yes, at the group's estimated level, by virtue of Aura of Justice, everybody smites.

I had a paladin in my group. I ruled that DR/vorpal was stronger than DR/- and his smite didn't automatically overcome it. It didn't matter. The +12 damage from smite had almost the same effect. What really did the demilich in was the warhammer fighter getting off a crit for 60+ damage. Between the two of them, the demilich lasted 3 rounds - he only got off one attempt at Trap the Soul (on the paladin, good luck with that Mr. Baddie).


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Pawns Subscriber

Almost everything I'd have wanted to say has already been said, but a key point is that the fight HAS to be short if you don't want a TPK or at least some really-hard-to-resurrect party members.

The demilich's main attacks are both out-and-out "save or die" effects, and given 3-4 rounds, it's going to obliterate an unprepared party. Check out the CotCT obituaries to see what happens to parties that delay or don't manage to do enough damage quickly enough.

Unfortunately, well-prepared parties can dish out scads of damage, so that invulnerable-looking DR20 seems pretty weak when 4-5 buffed melee attackers get in a couple of rounds on it. I used Steevo's conversion to give the demilich something like 125 HP, and he still got single-rounded because the party took one look into the room and said, "Oooh -- there's something beyond evil in there!" and spent several rounds buffing up before even thinking about going in. (AND I had a paladin with Aura of Justice, and that just made it ugly).

In short, it's got to be a 2-3 round fight (or less) or you're going to be sitting on a stack of dead characters.

Andoran

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Card Game, Companion, Modules, Pawns, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

My group played this adventure with the 3.5 rules.
Taking the hints and peering before disturbing the demilich remains, a lot of gaming experience and knowledge, a cleric and the Death ward spell and the poor demilich wasn't a problem.
Immunity from death effects was a "bit" powerful.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Modules Subscriber
NobodysHome wrote:
Almost everything I'd have wanted to say has already been said, but a key point is that the fight HAS to be short if you don't want a TPK or at least some really-hard-to-resurrect party members.

Of course. The fight should be short and intense.

However, effortlessly one-rounding the BBEG (preferrably before he even gets to act) is not exactly my definition of a short and intense fight.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Pawns Subscriber
Midnight_Angel wrote:
NobodysHome wrote:
Almost everything I'd have wanted to say has already been said, but a key point is that the fight HAS to be short if you don't want a TPK or at least some really-hard-to-resurrect party members.

Of course. The fight should be short and intense.

However, effortlessly one-rounding the BBEG (preferrably before he even gets to act) is not exactly my definition of a short and intense fight.

Absolutely true. In spite of everything, mine got off a Wail of the Banshee and the party got to watch the Warlord's Scarab of Protection take a hit (not enough Death Wards to go around), and the panic was palpable. "This thing has to die NOW!!!!"


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Honestly, because of the comments on the boards about this particular little nasty nasty, and because I will have a lvl 12 Paladin in my party, I'm going to forgo the whole 1 rd formation thing. I think it will give my group too big an advantage. Not that I WANT to kill my party, but they are already pretty tough and they will likely wipe it before it gets an action if I don't.


Ha ha, this guy wiped out half of my party. Would have been three quarters if my GM hadn't (very leniently) backtracked when I realized I was wearing the scarab.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I'm going to ask this question, then promptly find it myself I'm sure, but where does the party get the Scarab of Protection?

Taldor

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Honestly, if the players don't metagame and/or really don't know it's limitations/weaknesses it can be freaking deadly.

Spoiler:
Initially we sent the summoner's eidelon to go scout as we were near the end of the day, and it found this thing first. It then caught the eidelon's soul, almost pulling in the summoner in the process (since their souls are interwoven) ... which kept the summoner from being able to recall his eidelon ... this was a table call as it is not exactly clear what would happen in this kind of situation, but it made sense to the group.

Retreat, regroup and rest.

We returned the following morning by heading straight to the baddie's room and started off with the spell casters launching spell attacks once the door opened, followed by the two fighter types heading in. I asked the GM if I could get a Knowledge Arcana or Religion check to figure out what this was as well as any weaknesses. I identified it successfully but did not get a good enough roll to know anything more than "spells do not work so well against them", which my PC took to mean a heavy resistance to magic. I spent three disintegrate spells, the first two with crappy SR checks and the last with a natural 20 on the SR check before my PC 'realized' that magic was not going to work pretty much at all. The Wail did some serious damage on the fighter types and killed the rogue outright.

By the end of the third round, it was toast, but it put the hurt on us pretty badly.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Pawns Subscriber
CaroRose wrote:
I'm going to ask this question, then promptly find it myself I'm sure, but where does the party get the Scarab of Protection?

My recollection is that it's with that mummy cleric elsewhere in the temple, but it's been quite a while. It's definitely there in Scarwall, just to make sure at least one PC can escape if things get too nasty...


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Awesome, I didn't find it yet, but I kinda got distracted during the read-through again. Will keep my eye out for a certain mummy then.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Found it! It's in Kazavon's bedroom (31). So they are assuming, and it seems so by the boards, that the adventurers will likely end up there before they head into the Castle Donjon. Good to know.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Pawns Subscriber
CaroRose wrote:
Found it! It's in Kazavon's bedroom (31). So they are assuming, and it seems so by the boards, that the adventurers will likely end up there before they head into the Castle Donjon. Good to know.

OK. Now you're going to make me laugh.

Look at the treasure in Kazavon's bedroom.

Now calculate its weight and volume.

Now imagine the size of the "mattress" that holds all that stuff!

It's absolutely hilarious!

My party took one look at that room, went to the temple of Abadar in Korvosa, and offered them 10% of the total if they could move it. It took a couple of weeks, and the party had to stand guard, but they emptied that entire room.

Hilarious!


NobodysHome wrote:
CaroRose wrote:
Found it! It's in Kazavon's bedroom (31). So they are assuming, and it seems so by the boards, that the adventurers will likely end up there before they head into the Castle Donjon. Good to know.

OK. Now you're going to make me laugh.

Look at the treasure in Kazavon's bedroom.

Now calculate its weight and volume.

Now imagine the size of the "mattress" that holds all that stuff!

It's absolutely hilarious!

My party took one look at that room, went to the temple of Abadar in Korvosa, and offered them 10% of the total if they could move it. It took a couple of weeks, and the party had to stand guard, but they emptied that entire room.

Hilarious!

By that point in time, my group tends to purchase at least 2 portable holes for hauling around treasure.

However, can you imagine the look on the bank tellers face?

"Hi, I'd like to make a deposit."

"All right sir, and how much would you like to deposit?"

"Well... *opens Portable Hole* a lot..."

*Gasp*

"I should mention, I have two more of such holes that are equally filled."

"Abadar, I need your strength...


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Pawns Subscriber
Tels wrote:
NobodysHome wrote:
CaroRose wrote:
Found it! It's in Kazavon's bedroom (31). So they are assuming, and it seems so by the boards, that the adventurers will likely end up there before they head into the Castle Donjon. Good to know.

OK. Now you're going to make me laugh.

Look at the treasure in Kazavon's bedroom.

Now calculate its weight and volume.

Now imagine the size of the "mattress" that holds all that stuff!

It's absolutely hilarious!

My party took one look at that room, went to the temple of Abadar in Korvosa, and offered them 10% of the total if they could move it. It took a couple of weeks, and the party had to stand guard, but they emptied that entire room.

Hilarious!

By that point in time, my group tends to purchase at least 2 portable holes for hauling around treasure.

However, can you imagine the look on the bank tellers face?

"Hi, I'd like to make a deposit."

"All right sir, and how much would you like to deposit?"

"Well... *opens Portable Hole* a lot..."

*Gasp*

"I should mention, I have two more of such holes that are equally filled."

"Abadar, I need your strength...

Love it! But don't forget they have to have someone PUT it into the hole! I did a rough time estimate of how many coppers the PCs could shovel per hour, and it was a LOT of hours... It was 10 acolytes of Abadar working full-time for ten days, if memory serves...


It doesn't strike me as all that hard really. I mean, a Wizard, for example, could prepare all Unseen Servant spells and have them just start moving coins. A 10th level Wizard will have, at minimum, 4 first level, 4 second level, 3 third level, 3 fourth level, and 2 fifth level spells. It's more likely they have 5/5/4/4/3 instead due to a high Intelligence. So said Wizard could cast Unseen Servant 21 times, with each spell lasting 10 hours and each Unseen Servant capable of moving 20 pounds of coins a round.

There are 16,739.2 pounds of coins in his mattress. Each Servant can move 20 pounds of coins a round, and there are 21 Servants. That means 420 pounds of coins can be moved each round. So it would take approximately 40 rounds to move all the treasure. Each round is 6 seconds, so it would take 240 seconds, or 4 minutes, to move all the treasure.

Hell, you only actually need a single Unseen Servant. It moves 20 pounds of coins a round. That means it will take one Unseen Servant 836.96 rounds to move 16,739.2 pounds of coins. This will take 5.021.76 seconds, or 83.696 minutes, or 1.3949333 hours. So 1 Unsen Servant can move all the coins in an hour and a half.

Now that's looting!

Keep in mind, the Unseen Servant is "an invisible, mindless, shapeless force". So it can move anything that weighs 20 pounds, regardless of shape. One hell of a way of digging a hole, that's for sure.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

My group has the unseen servant capability, but has yet to buy a portable hole (or 3), so we'll see what they come up with! On a side note, Majenko may volunteer to stay and watch 'the goods' until they get back....


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Pawns Subscriber

Have I mentioned recently how fun it is discussing CotCT with you guys?

My group never even thought of unseen servants, and I set the rate at which one person could sort, count, and shovel coins at something pretty small; around 50 pounds an hour. I can't imagine the Temple of Abadar NOT charging time for having to count and sort all those coins, so I included it in my calculations.

Anyway, we're WAAAAAY off the OP's topic, so I'm going to be quiet now...


A regular tactic of my witch was hitting the bad guys with flesh to stone straight out of the gate, so we ended up with a bunch of unobtainable loot. My answer to this, was summon an ettin, have him put our new statue in my portable hole. When we had collected a few, I would teleport to a good mason I knew in Katapesh (my character's birth city) and have him chisel the heads off of all of the statues in my menagerie. A couple stone to fleshes later and we had all of our loot and a bunch of dead bad dudes. It was also useful for when we realized someone may be important. "What's that Kressida? You say the bloatmage guy might've know useful information? Well, lets look through our pile of statues. Yep, there he is! I'll change him back and you can interrogate to your hearts desire!"

Edit: Sorry for the continued off topic!


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

My group just encountered the demilich tonight. Needless to say, I went ahead and let them beat on it for the entire round before declaring it a lost cause. As they hadn't disturbed the ashes, they got in flanking positions around it (go Outflank), cast Haste and Silence then the paladin activated his group smite ability. End result? They did 912 damage in the first round. The paladin near killed it himself. Zev didn't even get to wake up, poor guy.

Moral of the story? If I could do it again, I'd probably consider anyone getting within 10' as 'disturbing' him, so he can try to get into the initiative lineup. Then no 1-rd formation thing. Oh well, they had a lot of fun creaming it 2x over his maxed advanced hp.


Wait, so if Zev didn't even get a chance to wake up, why did the players attack an inanimate skull? What tipped them off? Unless it was something obvious, I'd call shenanigans. The room description simply mentions a human statue with a gem-studded skull-head.


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

The room description mentions a skull and chain headed statue and an altar covered in ash and bone with a gem studded skull. As soon as I read the room description, two of the players were like "Aw fu**, really? Crap we're all gonna die." And started buffing right then and there, because they figured they needed to roll initiative as soon as they opened the door.

In-character though, part of Zellara's song is "on a stone mid ash and bone the final dreams of death" they knew was one of the spirit anchors, so they rolled knowledge religions and got enough to know it was likely a demilich, just not much about it. I think they got enough to know one thing, asked for resistances, and I replied, "Everything". Which was nearly true! Except smiting, it wasn't immune to smiting. ;-)


Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber; Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Oh, and on the whole counting coins thing, I let the group use that new sift spell to get a count. Majenko did offer to sit and watch their stuff though.

For the prior battle, may I suggest something if it works out for your group this way: They went into that first area where the two barbed devils were, neither got away alive. But they can communicate telepathically with their mistress, Nihil. So by the time the group went into the lord's tower, she and the bone devils and imps were all invisible, and she had summoned a chain devil to hide in the corner (no invisibility for her). The group walks in cautiously, sees the chain devil, surrounds and beats on her, then *bam* comes the Blasphemy from Nihil. Was so cool.

Of course, she lasted long enough to cast Horrid Wilting, but not Chain Lightning. I did enjoy at least getting the drop on the party though.

Cheliax

James Jacobs wrote:

...

(swoops off into the night to save other threads from danger!)

James, I'm sorry to tell you this but you are now officially completely crazy :-D


CaroRose wrote:

The room description mentions a skull and chain headed statue and an altar covered in ash and bone with a gem studded skull. As soon as I read the room description, two of the players were like "Aw fu**, really? Crap we're all gonna die." And started buffing right then and there, because they figured they needed to roll initiative as soon as they opened the door.

In-character though, part of Zellara's song is "on a stone mid ash and bone the final dreams of death" they knew was one of the spirit anchors, so they rolled knowledge religions and got enough to know it was likely a demilich, just not much about it. I think they got enough to know one thing, asked for resistances, and I replied, "Everything". Which was nearly true! Except smiting, it wasn't immune to smiting. ;-)

That's fair I suppose. I would have been a little uneasy with the "We're all going to die so start buffing" bit, but that's just me. But I tend to be pretty strict with that sort of thing. It works for me and my group, but every group is different.

Paizo / Messageboards / Paizo Publishing / Pathfinder® / Pathfinder Adventure Path / Curse of the Crimson Throne / Spoiler in "Curse of the Crimson Throne" - Should it have died that easy? All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.
Recent threads in Curse of the Crimson Throne

©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.