Bonekeep 1: What's the big deal? (stories from Bonekeep) (SPOILERS)


GM Discussion

Silver Crusade 5/5

After having a pretty interesting experience playing through Bonekeep level one this past weekend I thought it might be neat to have a place where people could share some of the neat parties and/or tactics they've seen people undertake the first level of Bonekeep with. Due to the more spoilery nature of the thread, it seemed to be a more appropriate thread for the GM discussion forum, so my apologies if this is mispaced.

This past weekend, I played through this with a pair of friends during a local convention with our trio of characters that were designed to work together from character creation. About ten minutes before the table was set to begin, the three of us and our fourth discovered that players five and six had crossed their names off at the last minute to do something else, so we were left to face the prospect of playing level one of Bonekeep in the high tier with only four people. Now, our trio of characters have a pretty unique schtick, where we get to turn one of the things that frustrate players the most and turn it against the scenario. Going in, we checked with our fourth about our use of this tactic, and he was cool with it if the situation demanded it.

The party composition is fighter, fighter of Tanagaar, sorcereress of Tanagaar, and bard/paladin of Tanagaar. We complete the first room pretty easily, some damaged weapons, but nothing terrible, it helped that I picked up an adamantine weapon because it seemed reasonable that we might encounter constructs. I loaned out my spare scimitars for our next fight, with the undead, during which we enacted our first try at our special tactic, successfully, after our fourth had to pull back to avoid going down to damage that his AC in the low 30's couldn't help him avoid. We do our thing and we get healed up and move into the next room, with the crystal and the mirror, we only have two gems, so we keep moving, and encounter the elementals. Our fourth, the fighter, bottlenecks the hallway from the previous room and we try to hold out until earth comes up, at which point we do our thing, they enter our room with the mirror, and we start making progress on them. Water eventually comes back up and our fourth dies hard to a lucky bull rush into the mirror by the elemental because he no longer has his dodge bonus to AC/CMD, and he dies hard. We eventually finish the fight, mainly because the bad guys can't hit us because of our tactic, and I'm using spring attack so they can't get a bearing on me. We encounter the Golem next, I come within a hair's breadth of death, but get lucky on concealment and don't take a crit that would have taken to about negative 30. We remember we got something useful in the previous room, wrap that fight up pretty quick, and run out of time as we encounter the BBEG. The scenario was super fun, especially since this was the first time we were actually able to put out Tiefling Deeper Darkness Murder Squad to use. Spring attacking in Deeper Darkness is super good, the fourth got some help with the raise dead, levelled and picked up Blindfight, so we inducted him as an honorary Tiefling.

Anyone else got any stories from runthroughs that they've seen/participated in?

The Exchange 4/5 5/5

First, congratulations on making it that far with only 4. Sorry you didn't get the last piece of the key (and the cool item on the chronicle).

Two questions from reading your account:
1) How did the other player feel about your deeper darkness trick? It sounds like he died because of it.
2) How were you casting deeper darkness? From scrolls?

Grand Lodge 4/5

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Pathfinder Card Game Subscriber

3 rogues, a wizard, and a bard walk into Bonekeep...

They are never heard from again.

Silver Crusade 5/5

Belafon:
1: We checked with the fourth before we even started playing and we only cast it with his consent, we wouldn't have done so otherwise.
2: Our sorc with a +24 UMD ate the 11k and picked up a wand of Deeper Darkness.

Yeah, the unique thing would have been neat, but I don't know that it would have even been something I would have purchased, so I'm not going to lose any sleep about it, save for the chance I missed to put the ranks of DD I got at seven to use. All told, I really enjoyed Bonekeep, but I have the feeling if we had gone up to the room with the pit as our second room we would have TPK'd in that room.

Grand Lodge 4/5 Venture-Lieutenant, Arizona—Phoenix

2 positive channeling clerics, one with favored class boosts to get Channeled Revival.
1 druid with animal companion.
1 summoner with eidolon.
1 paladin with Covering Defense and Missile Shield.

Everyone sprang for a casting of heroes feast and life bubble, which made a lot of the diseases a non-issue.

The druid and pets mulched the constructs in the opening room.
We avoided the oozes with good perception checks.
Ate the lightning trap without a problem.
The summoner blocked avenues of approach for most of the rat demons with earth elementals but we lost a lot of time thanks to their cloud ability.
My paladin tanked the golem with the clerics backing him up on healing and beat it down thanks to the nice item found earlier.
Then all hell broke loose as the BBEG joined in.
One of the casters dropped an ice spell to slow the enemy approach and break line of sight. When she took to the air, my paladin got buffed with fly and the chase was on. I began harrying her with smite evil and kept her full attention, using Missile Shield to negate one hit a round.
The summoner went neg Con only to be Channeled Revival back in the game.
The clerics were both down only for one to be wanded back to consciousness and kick off a chained channel that brought the party back.
We finished off the BBEG and had just enough time to go mop up the undead in the other room before time was called.

Sad that I missed the one item I wanted, but it was a pretty epic dungeon crawl with no losses.

5/5 *** Venture-Agent, California—San Francisco Bay Area North & East

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Playing Bonekeep 1, with 2 minutes left on the clock as we take down the golem.

I'm enlarged (embiggened?), hasted etc. I run up the stairs, dodging a hit from the rat demon and use the disarm maneuver to take the boss's dagger. The rest of the party follows up by running up and attempting the steal maneuver to grab loot from the boss before time runs out. (We got the skull and the cloak I think.)

Shadow Lodge 4/5

That's friggin' hilarious.

Lantern Lodge 4/5

Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path, Rulebook, Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
TriOmegaZero wrote:

2 positive channeling clerics, one with favored class boosts to get Channeled Revival.

1 druid with animal companion.
1 summoner with eidolon.
1 paladin with Covering Defense and Missile Shield.

Everyone sprang for a casting of heroes feast and life bubble, which made a lot of the diseases a non-issue.

.

How can you get channeled revival during bonekeep?? That requires 11th level cleric access, and there is no favored class bonus that boosts channel dice as far as I can find. So if it is possible for society play, would love to find out How.

5/5 *** Venture-Agent, California—San Francisco Bay Area North & East

7th level cleric with a phylactory of positive channeling channels 6d6, Aasimar Oracle's of Life can takes the FC bonus for an extra half level although that doesn't get them to 6d6 at 7.

The Exchange 4/5 5/5

I bet he meant oracle of life with the Aasimar favored class bonus to increase his revelation.

Either way you need a phylactery of positive channeling as well to get Channeled Revival before level 8. (A 7th level cleric with the phylactery would have 6d6 channel.)

Edit: Ninja'd!

Grand Lodge 4/5 Venture-Lieutenant, Arizona—Phoenix

I didn't get a look at his sheet, so I can't say for sure.

5/5

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The first time I ran Bonekeep, Iammars led the rest of his group on an increasingly drunken rampage through the dungeon while everyone was covered in yeti fur. As I recall, they did pretty well. It was definitely one of my Origins highlights.

Lantern Lodge 5/5

As the Bard/Paladin in the OP's party, I can safely say we would not have made it anywhere near as far as we did if we started every combat by throwing up deeper darkness and stranding the fourth player. Bonekeep is a timed event, and having four people contributing to combat is strictly superior to only three.

The darkness went up when it became clear that he needed a break from being the "bottleneck"- -and it was pretty grindy from that point.

As an awesome aside:

AAfter the fight, which leveled the human to level 7, he comes up to us afterward and says "You guys inspired my feat choice! Now I've got Blind-Fight!"

So now he's an 'honorary tiefling.'

1/5

Played Parts 1 & 2 at CrispyCon last year, with a lot of the players wearing the convention t-shirt.

The convention t-shirt was red...

Knowing when to run away (particularly in part 2) was probably the major reason I survived Bonekeep as a red shirt :-)

Silver Crusade 2/5

I played Bonekeep slot zero, run by our friendly VC, who tried mightily to kill my poor Paladin.

The first room goes well...until the barbarian/ranger leaps in front, after my Paladin had carefully explained that she was to go first. The sorceress opens up on the columns...only to watch her spells go "fizzle". She spends the rest of the fight staying out of the way and aiding occasionally. The rest of us put down the baddies, and we march on to the room with the well.

My poor paladin phenomenally missed her perception check to notice the oozes. They began to use their ability to mind punch me, causing 1d4 Int damage. Normally, this isn't a problem, but with Int of 5, she doesn't exactly have a lot of brains she can afford to lose. Thankfully, she just gets headaches and not damaged. The sorceress starts to unload some spells, and these monsters are immune to her energy type. She's getting pretty "unhappy". This room gets handled eventually, but it took awhile.

Next stop...a room with an obviously trapped box. Unfortunately, Vati doesn't think that, and walks up, confirms the box isn't evil, and asks someone to open it. We disarm the first trap, feel pleased with ourselves, and start walking towards the room with the Rats. And then it all hits the fan. The rats come towards us, and we move to fight...only to get zapped. Two of us go down immediately from the trap (the friendly GM rolled high), and I'm 1 hp from negative con. The cleric heals me up, and Vati then proceeds to start doing what she does best: preventing everyone else from dying.

I start pumping out Bastions of Good, pump my shield's AC with my bond, and get the warrior of the holy light bit up. My AC was in the mid 30s at this point, and the party was barely getting hurt. We try to fight the monsters off, at which point one character gets isolated and ground down. The other two surviving members and I decide that it's high time to run. The other two make like track stars for the exit, and Vati fight's defensively, holding the line. The other survivors make it clear, leaving just me against all the horrors of Bonekeep. I work my way into a hallway, and start my way out. And then some of the rats dissappear. Well, I find them standing around the exit, physically blocking my path. Long story short, I slowly carved my way through the weaker rats, and escape Bonekeep at single digit hitpoints, no more lay on hands, no special abilities left. We did slightly better than break even, after we chipped in the Raise Dead castings, but we had quite a tale to tell.

I *really* enjoyed this, as it was *exactly* what this character's personality was all about, and performed exactly as hoped.

Sovereign Court 4/5 5/5 *** Venture-Lieutenant, Conventions—Gen Con

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zefig wrote:
The first time I ran Bonekeep, Iammars led the rest of his group on an increasingly drunken rampage through the dungeon while everyone was covered in yeti fur. As I recall, they did pretty well. It was definitely one of my Origins highlights.

Oh god, that was your first time running Bonekeep? I'm now a little bit sorry you had to deal with the stupidness of my drunk. But only a little bit.

And remember, the lights from the ceiling - they're out to kill us. They're in league with the space ghouls! *takes a swig* Your mother said that you were fat last night. Get your stupid balls of fire out of here. No, I'm fine... Look, I'm just splaining to this rat how she can't touch me cause she's ugly. phbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbt. Magic Missile!

5/5

James McTeague wrote:
zefig wrote:
The first time I ran Bonekeep, Iammars led the rest of his group on an increasingly drunken rampage through the dungeon while everyone was covered in yeti fur. As I recall, they did pretty well. It was definitely one of my Origins highlights.

Oh god, that was your first time running Bonekeep? I'm now a little bit sorry you had to deal with the stupidness of my drunk. But only a little bit.

And remember, the lights from the ceiling - they're out to kill us. They're in league with the space ghouls! *takes a swig* Your mother said that you were fat last night. Get your stupid balls of fire out of here. No, I'm fine... Look, I'm just splaining to this rat how she can't touch me cause she's ugly. phbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbt. Magic Missile!

Haha, no worries. I look back on it pretty fondly, because of all the ridiculousness. Those are the sorts of games people remember.

4/5 *

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I played this at PaizoCon with a pick-up party at the low subtier, including 3 pregens. Went right at the bottom of the stairs after defeating the columns. Thus began a long fighting withdrawal, which ended for my dhampir archer when I was dropped to negative hit points covering the retreat. The folks who I was covering then went back for my body. The gnome with a goat familiar tied my still-bleeding corpse to the goat (which had ant haul on it) and sent it out of the dungeon with a slap. She didn't make it out, and neither did anyone else. I stabilized 1 hit point from death, not by stabilizing, but by rolling my numerological magic number (a dhampir racial trait) which let me count the roll as a 20. Woke up being dragged by a goat through the brush.

The character has now taken a level of witch, so he can have the goat (Tertius) as a familiar. Was too good of a story to not have it change the character's path!

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