Interestingly, magic jar is neither enchantment nor evil. So you can't dispel evil a Magic Jar'd Shadow demon, because you can't touch the demon either.
Dispel Evil wrote:
Third, with a touch you can automatically dispel any one enchantment spell cast by an evil creature or any one evil spell
Ignoring her pleas for help is one thing. Not nice, but not evil.
Dangling a living person as 'bait' I'd immediate drop all Good aligned players to neutral with Good tendencies, and warn the already neutral players that they're now trending Evil.
On top of that, either have the now dead cleric come back as a revenant of some type, or have the body eventually found by the Pharasman church. One Speak with Dead later to discover what killed them, and the spirit is pointing the fingers at the players.
Note, that the Smite bonus to AC is deflection and doesn't stack with other deflection bonuses. Also, it's only against their Smite target.
Magus, archmage/trickster; he's got mirror dodge along with the player is a munchkin, plus (recently) the highest AC in the party. He will be a genuine problem.
Unhallow with Dimensional Anchor for all non CE people.
Fighter, champion/guardian; this player plays a troxx (the only large-sized race players can be), and hits like a freight train. Also has a ring of blinking, so anything without true seeing has a 50% chance to miss her. It's very, very annoying.
Mingaho should have True Seeing already.
Oracle, heirophant; loves mythic holy smite, holy word, all of that stuff. He's also got reflexive counterspell, which is one of the most BS and broken things in mythic if you ask me.
Do note two things. One, Reflexive Counterspell is an immediate action. Two, SLAs CANNOT BE COUNTERED. Second paragraph, last sentence.
Gunslinger, trickster/champion; he's got all kinds of silly things that he can accomplish with his gunshots. He can ricochet bullets around corners and off of flat surfaces, and shoot in a line and curve it. Also pretty much never misses due to almost limitless range.
I truly dislike gunslingers, so I don't have much to help on this one.
Any ideas of what I can give Minagho so they don't just curb stomp this whole encounter?
Minions and anything to give her extra action economy. You've got five players with at least one NPC and a hilarious amount of action economy on their side. If you don't balance it out, she'll be a throw away fight. Have Nezz playing both sides to weaken them both. Minagho knows they're coming and is already waiting with a Projected Image and a few Balors or your choice of nastiness.
The cleric of my group took that trait, along with Toughness and Mythic Toughness. I couldn't reasonably drop the cleric except the one time I almost got him with negative levels.
Once the cleric had the divine reach ability, my challenge became needing to one round someone or else the cleric fixed it up immediately.
Once the cleric had Mythic Shield Other on the entire party, I ended up dropping 500+ points of damage in a single round at the end of book 4 to drop JUST the cleric.
Good fight though. Hepzamirah burned through like 8 Mythic Points in a single round to do that.
Mythic iconic Seelah will still one-shot most evil CR appropiate mythic evil enemies, if she takes the expected mythic feats/ path abilities.
What we expect and what James/devs expect are likely two separate things, as far as I can tell. Which is why I'd like to see what their expected builds at book end are for this AP.
I'm looking that Baphomet and it looks like tough fight. I think the suggested tactics in the book make him and easy kill though. Time stop is better than imprisonment. The PCs have too high of saves with mythic powers. Better maximize the damage out put. Use Time stop to get 3 balors on his side. Let them go first while he makes use of Shape change to become a huge giant then power attack like crazy, make good use of Combat Reflexes to dish out the AOO. The party might be him quick but not before he take one or two of them with him.
By the book Baphomet has an init modifier of 23. Before I gave up running this, I had a couple of players that forecasted matching or exceeding that, with Mythic Improved Init, one of which was a hasted, foe-biting Radiance wielding paladin.
By the book, Baphomet likely wouldn't get an action (especially if he's supposed to kill off his allies before turning on the PCs!) before being smited, Amazing Init to move up, and five attacks on Baphomet, each attack damn near guaranteed to hit. God forbid the paladin manage to get a crit on his first swing as the mythic power attack multiplier/first hit extra damage smite/foe bite would likely end up to be 300 or so damage. On the first swing.
Matt Thomason wrote:
I do, however, concede that if a product isn't designed to run out of the box, it should state that clearly. Then at least there's no room for claims that it isn't suitable for its expected function. In fact, some kind of indicator on APs and modules of the amount of work a GM is expected to put in could be a nice feature.
Honestly, you know what would be an interesting thought experiment?
The end of book stat build outs for what the devs consider to be the 'baseline' for that AP.
Alright, I gave up.
We started book 5 tonight and we got through the Iomedae encounter. Did the arrival encounter.
Then I started poking at the random encounters with a high percent chance every hour, multiple days in each realm.
I used Book 5's random encounter table in book 4. I don't want to use Book 6's encounter table for Book 5.
I did run them through a few CR 21+ encounters. Which they trounced and laughed at.
So yeah. I just gave them a run down of what happened.
I'm glad everyone had a great time, as that's probably the only requirement when you get down to it.
Though I do have to ask, did you use all original stats or upgrade anything for the last two books?
Yeah, but the bane special ability has a caveat for that.
Against a designated foe, the weapon's enhancement bonus is +2 better than its actual bonus.
So it is automatically a +3 weapon with regards to bypassing DR.
All it takes is one bad critical. And save the double death that happened to my cleric recently, no one has stayed dead more than a Breath of Life or similar effect could fix.
Even for what you're trying to do, there's a difference between Breath of Life/Relentless Healing and the Raise spells.
Let them do Relentless healing, as it's still tied to one or two rounds after death. The soul hasn't completely left the body so when you heal it enough that the body can work again, the soul doesn't actually hit the Boneyard.
Death longer than the few seconds it takes to do Breath of Life stuff the soul has finally moved on.
About mid-end Book 4, no one in the party will be on the same character. At least one person will be on character 3. Maybe 4.
By the end of Book 4, as a DM I am counting successes in one of two ways. How quickly I can force the party cleric to burn through his Mythic Points, and if I can cause a death, even temporarily. Much joy was had in killing the party cleric twice in thirty minutes. He was true rezzed the first time, then raise dead/greater restoration'd the second.
There's a few treasures you'll have to change out, as scrolls and oils of rez/true rez become fairly common.
What is your thought on Breath of Life/Relentless Healing resurrections? You'll have to made a ruling on those as well.
Eh, it's a good for the goose, good for the gander situation magnus. I've got a Worldwound walker and a player with Beyond Morality. If they take it, it's open for the enemies to use it as well.
Though, I'd normally save it for a mythic enemy that got away. "Good, evil, I don't care. I'm just going to KILL those a!#%#**s!"
Yes. And I keep coming to the conclusion that all worthwhile challenges require at least 3 enemies. Otherwise, what could be an interesting encounter is quickly overwhelmed by the action economy.
Melazmera was easy because the Omox warned them it was coming. They had a chance to prep. If Melazmera would have know, I would have abused project image. Also, I forgot to mention that I'd had Melazmera quick breath as a sign of things to come. I don't think they caught my reference though. :P
- For the harvester I'll do some upgrades, like increasing its reach. Again, it should be an easy encounter, I don't count on it being more than a speedbump.
Yeah, I expected an easy encounter there and it was. If I ever run it again, I'll at least fluff it a bit more by letting the harvester reach through it's portals at the PCs inside of it's reach. To give them a bit more scare. Doesn't help that I used Hastur as the image for my online game.
- It seems the minotaurs miners can be nasty if they score some good hits! the rest of the monsters should be easy at this point. I was thinking about introducing some powerful minions, like the special glabrezu antipaladin mentioned in the Baphomet article.
Yeah, the miners are crazy powerful if they crit. Again, I learned here though that it was the combination of a whole lot of enemies that caused problems. The most devestating of the little enemies actually turned out to be the Kalavakus because they hasted the Minotaurs.
- Glad to see that Hepzamirah can devastate a party if she can get some spells off. The only thing I would have done is give her more minions after the party went to rest (an entire horde). Or even make Hepzamirah flee, and give the party the tier even if they don't see the fight between the two demon lords. The whole "hepzamirah must die" scenario as suggested in the adventure seems a little railroady to me.
Yeah, they didn't build Hepzamirah up enough. If she had been built up as one of the very few entities capable of stabilizing the crystals or something else (The party didn't even really realize she was Baphomet's daughter until he popped out of her.) Also, I'd promptly forgot what I'd just learned by only throwing the one marilith at them.
Do you think it will be necessary to give the enemies more HP?
Likely not. Instead, I'll have to make sure the other PCs have targets as well. If they all had stacked HP it would turn into a game of 'Keep the paladin moving long enough to give him full attacks on things.' As it is now, the other PCs have slid fairly well into roles (even Rogar now that he has Greater Spell Pen and mythic of it). It allows them to disable/destroy the things giving the major enemies their support while the Paladin is the major face-damage dealer.
Alright, it's definitely an expectations issue.
Druids cast off of Wisdom.
There are zero animals in the world wound.
You get access to Charm animal anyways, which builds off of your casting ability, so DCs are Wisdom based, not Cha.
If you're not going to build towards Wisdom, build towards Str/Dex so you can be a fighting druid.
Otherwise, it's just going to be the same issue as your fighter except worse.
End of Book 4, rocket tag galore.
We started the night with the umbral dragon. I only got one Str drain breath weapon off before it was stomped.
The group then handled the harvester like the child it was.
They then descended down into the temple proper, after dropping a stone with Daylight to see how deep it was.
Since the stone was dropped, the demons down below knew they were coming.
Most of the Klavakus didn't last long, just long enough for the succubus and the glabrezu to show up.
Two of the succubus went off to warn the rest of the temple. One succubus woke up the two miners and the second warned all the demoniacs. The succubus teleported back in with the miners, while the demoniacs summoned more succubus.
Of a note, Brother Peter runs Mythic Shield Other on the entire party at all times.
After about six or seven rounds of combat, just about everything in the area was dead. One last klavakus demon (who was ignored as too weak to actually hurt them) teleported down to the mines proper and brought the last four miners up.
Rocket tag then reversed and three crits later with hasted miners had killed Brother Peter. It would have been a TPK except I ruled that the Shield Other was still in effect and destroying Peter's corpse. Which saved their ass when another crit went off again.
The party ended up using the oil of true rez from book 2 on Brother Peter, and then decided to rest an hour right there to get their spells back.
So I ruled it took Hepzamirah about an hour to get her crystal to a stable enough point to deal with the idiots outside her door.
She stepped out, outside their vision, and got a surprise round mythic flame strike.
Brother Peter ate most of that.
Mythic Init got her on the top of the init order. Mythic Augmented Blade Barrier as an immediate action on top of the party.
Inspired Spell Mythic Augmented Blade Barrier as a standard. (Augmented says may, not will cast).
Move action to swing one blade barrier around on them.
Amazing Init to get a standard action to use as a move action, to move the second barrier around as well.
By this point, Brother Peter has eaten 3 spells, plus the Shield Other for the rest of the party. He died again.
Party, nearly out of power, grabbed the body and teleported then planeshifted out.
When they returned the next day, I ruled that Hepzamirah had reached out to her father for a few new protectors and he gave her a mythic marilith.
When the party Mythic Planeshifted directly back in (automatically be on target), the ate the marilith in one round. Party paladin actually got his Righteous Medal of Agility due to this.
They then found Hepzamirah in her room after triggering off the mythic glyph. Tried the same trick as before, but the paladin managed his reflex saves this time and just inched further.
Hepzamirah died to a foe-biting, smiting Paladin in one round. They honestly probably could have taken Baphomet if Nocticula hadn't.
Second, Mind Blank + Invisibility really is a game changer. It gives the party a way to more or less take a "time out" from combat when things get hairy. Two well-timed Invisibility/Greater Invisibility spells on heavily wounded characters made a huge difference in this fight. (I guess I knew about this before, but I hadn't really seen the party take advantage of this before. I'm looking forward to having this tactic used against them, when they encounter the Son of Shax...)
Note to self. Have scrolls of invisibility purge (yay evocation!) handy...
Honestly, the easiest fix I can think of is to remove the damage from the attack roll.
A difference of 6-8 points on an attack roll should not be 6-8 points of damage as well.
Since armies are built of NPCs that are supposed to all be roughly the same, use their normal damage swing of 1d8+2 or whatever.
For every size an army is bigger than the army it is attacking, they get an iterative attack, complete with -5 penalty to each additional attack.
Matrix Dragon wrote:
It's not so much as inconsistent as it is trying not to out and out kill your PCs by over modifying. There's a very small sweet spot, even more so in Mythic, between 'curb stomp by PCs' and 'curb stomp by NPCs' and it's hard to hit.
Unless your table likes TPKs, a GM will usually swing closer to the curb stomp by PCs level.