3-05 Issue in Tide of Twilight [Spoiler]


GM Discussion

Grand Lodge 3/5 Venture-Lieutenant, France—Lyon aka Arp Upramis

Hello everyone,

There is a something that I don't really understand in Tide of Twilight. When the PCs are fighting to save Falbin, his house and his garden, they have to extinguish the fire. But I have a few questions :

1) Can the fire spread diagonally ?

2) Can the fire affect the whole area drawn in the scenario ?

3) The secondary success condition is : "The PCs prevented more than 20 squares of Falbin's garden and house from catching fire." Is it "20 squares of each" or "a total of 20 squares" ?

4) In what area is the garden ? Is it the 40 square rectangle surrounded by a fence ?

4) If you've already played this scenario, how challenging is this success condition ?

Thanks for your answers !

Arp


Played it a few nights ago, it seems each fire effects each adjacent square. So I think it was 3 at the start so the DM had to make 24 rolls. It is possible to fail very quickly. Our group hit 20 on the nose, we got lucky. If you have a caster with creat water that can put one out before it spreads that should help alot, but if nothing is done on round 1 or 2 they will probably not complete that part with success.

Grand Lodge 4/5

1) If it can't, it should specify, since by default diagonal squares are still "adjacent"

2) Yes.

3) I read it as 20 squares total, although I could be wrong.

4) The garden is the entire right half of the map.

5) Depending on dice rolls it can either be stupidly difficult or really easy, unless the party completely ignores obviously hostile people to go put out the fires before fighting, in which case it's easier. I'm not a fan, since the group I ran through it finished combat in one round and immediately went about putting out the fire and still almost failed. As Ashe said, they hit 20 squares on the nose.

Dark Archive 3/5

Thanks for your answers ! It helped me a lot.

Grand Lodge 4/5 Venture-Captain, California—Sacramento aka FLite

We treated it as roll once for each square on fire, on a spread, roll 1d8 as per missed splash weapon and that square catches fire.

At that rate, the fire spreads something like: 3,5,7,10,15,22 meaning they have like 6 rounds to fight the bad guys and put it out. (My alchemist lobbed a liquid ice into one on the way to rescue fabian, and the rest was pretty easy.

Grand Lodge 4/5

While that's certainly more fair, that's not what the scenario says to do.

Tide of Twilight wrote:
At the beginning of each round after the first, each square that is adjacent to a square that's on fire has a 50% chance of catching fire as well.

Shadow Lodge 5/5

Yeah, there are quite a few scenarios that have spreading fire, and I have yet to see two that are the same. :)

Grand Lodge 4/5 Venture-Captain, California—Sacramento aka FLite

Ah. I didn't have the scenario, so I was just relaying what the GM did.

Grand Lodge 4/5 Venture-Agent, Nevada—Las Vegas aka kinevon

Last time I ran it, which was before the SSC was released, I just rolled for orthagonal squares, not diagonal squares.

Even that relies on the luck of the dice. I know there was a lot of burning terrain before the PCs managed to get it under control.

Sovereign Court 4/5 Venture-Lieutenant, Netherlands—Leiden aka Ascalaphus

We played this yesterday and only did orthogonal squares. I started putting out fires on the first round with Create Water, and after the combat the rest of the party started helping out. We managed to keep control at 18 squares, but it was pretty close.

Surrounding the fire with water-doused borders looked a lot like playing Go, that was quite funny.

The Exchange 5/5

Thread Necro:
Ok, I'm looking at running this and I honestly don't see a way for the players to "win" this...
It's been a LONG TIME sense I played this, so I don't remember how my judge ran it... but here's some of the problems I see...

The Fire Spreads - If I roll for ALL squares adjacent (as the scenario says), that gives at least 8 squares for each patch of fire each round. So, with a 50% chance of spread, that gives 4 "new" fire squares each round (on average). 3 starting areas means 12 "new" fire squares each round (on average). If I just roll for orthagonal squares, not diagonal squares, that still gives at least 6 "new" fire squares each round (even more on rounds after the first). There are at most 6 PCs... so, unless the PCs can put out more than one square a round (which takes more than one standard action), they will not be able to keep up with the rate of spread of the fire.

Broken down in a round for round timeline, best case would work something like this (I think).

End of Round One: Fire Sources A, B, & C roll for spread. Average rolls result in:
A - 5 squares on fire.
B - 5 squares on fire.
C - 5 squares on fire. (15 total)

Round Two: the PCs realize they have a problem and ALL of them move to put out a fire square. They also realize that they need to totally put out a source for it to actually stop the spread of that source... so - 5 PCs move and put out all squares on C, and the sixth PC puts a square in B out.

End of Round Two - roll for spread: Average rolls result in:
A - 9 squares on fire (at least!).
B - 8 squares on fire (at least!).
C - 0 fire here is out. (17 total)

Round Three, all PCs move and put out squares on B.
End of Round Three - roll for spread: Average rolls result in:
A - 13 squares on fire (at least!).
B - 6 squares on fire (at least!).
C - 0 fire here is out. (19 total)
all PCs move and put out squares on B.

Round Four, all PCs continue to put out squares on B (source B extinguished).
End of Round Four - roll for spread: Average rolls result in:
A - 17 squares on fire (at least!).
B - 0 fire here is out.
C - 0 fire here is out. (17 total)
all PCs move and put out squares on A.

Round Four, all PCs move to A and put out fire squares there.
End of Round Four - roll for spread: Average rolls result in:
A - 15 squares on fire (at least!).
B - 0 fire here is out.
C - 0 fire here is out. (15 total)
all PCs continue to put out squares on A.

Round Five, all PCs move to A and put out fire squares there (9 still on fire).
End of Round Five - roll for spread: Average rolls result in:
A - 13 squares on fire (at least!).
B - 0 fire here is out.
C - 0 fire here is out. (13 total)
all PCs continue to put out squares on A.

It looks like it will take 5 more rounds to put the fire at A out...

This is the perfect case - with Max number of PCs and everyone realizing that the Fire needs to be put out right away...

But... what if there are only 5 PCS? or worse yet 4? I see no way for 4 PCs to beat this, and 5? it's going to be very hard. And that is assuming that the PCs defeat the hunters on the first round of combat.

SO... How the heck to the PCs beat the fire?

The Exchange 5/5

Wait, I just thought of something.

How long does a square burn for (only one round? or until put out?), and if a square was on fire and the PCs put it out, can it catch fire AGAIN?

If a square only burns for a limited time (1 round? d4 rounds? what?) and goes out on it's own, can it catch fire again? or is it "totally burned up"?

The Exchange 5/5

no one has any guidance for this?

I'm thinking of crafting 20 (or more) Fire Tokens, with a flame picture on one side and a brunt marker on the other. Then, as I roll for each square on fire (roll of each in-burned square adjacent to the Fire Token) I can drop new Fire Tokens and flip over the one I just rolled for.

That way, it should be fast and easy, and if I run out of Fire Tokens I know the PCs missed the secondary success condition.

But this assumes that each square on fire burns for only one round and cannot be re-ignited.

1/5

I have played this on Standard and Core, but I don't remember the fires raging out of control as you describe in any of the instances.

My recommendation would be to use common sense and try to keep it reasonable for the party, and if they're not even bothering, then let the Inferno begin?

The Exchange 5/5

I fear that the judge will have often not bothered to read the scenario for HOW the fire spreads or is put out. When I asked around my local circle of “old hands” the ones that remember playing it say that the fires spawned one square other square a round. Which ... is hard to understand, unless the Judge was doing it wrong.

By the end of the 2nd round, if the players have not moved to and put out at least one of the fire squares, there are 3 squares that are each adjacent to 8 (unburned) squares. For a total of 24 rolls each with a 50% chance of catching fire, Wow....

And with 3 squares already “burned” (the three the scenario starts with) that leaves 17 more to catch fire. If I’m rolling “hot” (see what I did there?) I could get 17 out of 24 - heck 16 is only 2/3s.... and 12 is average.

SO - how much information do I give the players for this encounter?
Do I tell the Players that the mechanics of how the fires work? That there is a 50% spread chance per adjacent (unburned) square? Or do I NOT tell them, and let them discover it on their own?

Do I tell them that it (only) takes a standard action (with some type of “tool”) to “put out” a fire square?

I guess I could pass this information out with a series of Knowledge/skill checks. Perhaps Knowledge (Local) for “Fire Fighting” to tell that putting out fire squares if a Standard Actionn that requires a tool (Blanket/cloak/waterskin/etc). A Knowledge (Arcane) or Spellcraft to know that Water/Cold spells might extinguish fires in their AOE. A Knowledge (Nature) to know the mechanics of the Spread (50% chance to adjacent squares).

I assume I DO NOT tell them that their PP depends on putting out the fire... but do I hint that it would be a “good idea” or a “good deed”? How about if some of them have the Boons from Confermation that let them know when an action is “in the interest of the Society” - (which they would normally have to ASK to use)?

Right now, I’m afraid I’m going to be a “hard-a$$ judge” and just let them fly blindly into the situation. Roll the fire spreads and sort it out at the end of the scenario. And it feels like I’m trying to pull a “gotcha” on my players.... something I HATE doing.

Sovereign Court 4/5 Venture-Lieutenant, Netherlands—Leiden aka Ascalaphus

I think you should be open with the players about much of the mechanics; this isn't something occult, brushfires is something medievalesque people are somewhat familiar with. Peasants burning fields after harvest and such.

So I'd tell them what actions can put out a fire, and that any squares adjacent to fire could catch on fire too. I wouldn't give them the odds, but would tell them what the general principles are.

This is compounded because almost no scenario I've seen is consistent with how fires work; every time it's something the writer cobbled together. While realistically, fire works more or less the same across the world. I don't think players should be the victim of vague rules.

As for hinting that putting out the fire is a good idea: you could emphasize that the garden appears to contain rare plants.

In general secondary prestige is often tied to doing good if the opportunity rears its head:
- If there's fires, put them out
- If there's prisoners, free them
- If there's slaves, liberate them
- If there's horrible monsters, end them
- If there's something that makes the Society look bad, fix it

etc. etc. ; After a while players should see the general pattern

4/5

Fire spread mechanics can be really annoying. I recall burning a scroll of evolution surge to stop a fire in a certain scenario. (An eidelon who suddenly has breath weapon : cold can be helpful for that)

Lantern Lodge 4/5

I seem to recall this is one of the scenarios that I have both failed to get 2nd prestige myself, and when GMing not been able to give it out.

What would be a reasonable way to do this would be for squares that don't have plants in them cannot catch fire. And squares already out cannot catch fire a second time.

Aside from that water or cold type spells could damped things down. Obscuring mist maybe helpful for "dampening" things to stop them catching fire for example.

Silver Crusade 5/5 Venture-Lieutenant, Pennsylvania—Pittsburgh aka Terminalmancer

I have in the past succeeded at earning the second prestige point with this one simply because
1. we started fighting the fire immediately, and
2. we summoned a water elemental, if I remember correctly

I haven't been able to give the second prestige point out lately as the players seem to be ignoring the fire until after it's spread. Checking for each square adjacent to a square that's on fire means it starts ramping up real fast. Even me allowing create water to cover one 5' square per CL wasn't enough.

(For what it's worth, I said that watered squares wouldn't catch fire, burned squares wouldn't catch fire, but any other square was potentially flammable.)

The Exchange 5/5

Alex Wreschnig wrote:

I have in the past succeeded at earning the second prestige point with this one simply because

1. we started fighting the fire immediately, and
2. we summoned a water elemental, if I remember correctly

I haven't been able to give the second prestige point out lately as the players seem to be ignoring the fire until after it's spread. Checking for each square adjacent to a square that's on fire means it starts ramping up real fast. Even me allowing create water to cover one 5' square per CL wasn't enough.

(For what it's worth, I said that watered squares wouldn't catch fire, burned squares wouldn't catch fire, but any other square was potentially flammable.)

What effect did you give the Water Elemental?

Normally summoned monsters attack the nearest enemy... so a summoned elemental would just move after the Hunters - wouldn’t it? Unless the caster were to tell the elemental to put out the fires. But as it takes an action to put out a fire square... unless we give the Elemental some special ability to douse fires by moving across them or something.

5/5 Venture-Agent, Canada—Alberta—Edmonton aka Artoo

2 people marked this as a favorite.

Water elementals have this ability:

Drench (Ex) wrote:


The elemental’s touch puts out non-magical flames of Large size or smaller. The creature can dispel magical fire it touches as dispel magic (caster level equals elemental’s HD).

So it's not unreasonable that it could just move into a square to extinguish it, or maybe even 4 squares at once. The caster would need to know aquan in order to ask it to do that, though.

The Exchange 5/5

Paul Holtom wrote:

Water elementals have this ability:

Drench (Ex) wrote:


The elemental’s touch puts out non-magical flames of Large size or smaller. The creature can dispel magical fire it touches as dispel magic (caster level equals elemental’s HD).
So it's not unreasonable that it could just move into a square to extinguish it, or maybe even 4 squares at once. The caster would need to know aquan in order to ask it to do that, though.

Missed that! great. Now, as long as the Players know Elemental abilities better than I did, this is going to be really simple. The party has a PC who does a lot of Summoning - and he's just leveled high enough to get Summon Monster II. So this is either going to be:

"Ha! No problem! Summon Waterhose!"
or
"Crud! If I had remembered Water Elementals have Drench, we could have beat that fire and got our 2nd PP!"

Silver Crusade 5/5 Venture-Lieutenant, Pennsylvania—Pittsburgh aka Terminalmancer

Paul Holtom wrote:

Water elementals have this ability:

Drench (Ex) wrote:


The elemental’s touch puts out non-magical flames of Large size or smaller. The creature can dispel magical fire it touches as dispel magic (caster level equals elemental’s HD).
So it's not unreasonable that it could just move into a square to extinguish it, or maybe even 4 squares at once. The caster would need to know aquan in order to ask it to do that, though.

Yup, that's it exactly.

nosig wrote:

Missed that! great. Now, as long as the Players know Elemental abilities better than I did, this is going to be really simple. The party has a PC who does a lot of Summoning - and he's just leveled high enough to get Summon Monster II. So this is either going to be:

"Ha! No problem! Summon Waterhose!"
or
"Crud! If I had remembered Water Elementals have Drench, we could have beat that fire and got our 2nd PP!"

Sorry if that came across as snide--I was just trying to explain how the one group I know of that got full prestige actually achieved the feat!

The ability to summon water elementals really does trivialize a whole bunch of "Everything's caught on fire!" challenges. (My wife realized it in our first playthrough of this scenario and since then, every time there's fire, out come the animate waves.)

It's probably not a good sign for the secondary success condition that trivializing the encounter might be the only reliable way to succeed at it.

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