Wednesday, 20 January 2010

War on Scales 3

After a decent rest, we set out across the way where we have been told there were sounds of a young boy. Yet more corridors and doors awaited us (TOO MANY DOORS AND CORRIDORS!), and while we saw zombies further down, we decided to make sure the doors along the way were safe. One room was in darkness, the other... hey, look there's a boy!

While the assassin went to free him, we were surprised by zombies up behind us. Wah! I am attacked! There is some maneuvering, but soon I am out of the way and the others are in the way. Doesn't stop a ghoul eventually getting past to attack me, once the other monsters are down, but I give it a firm gaze and down it goes.

One of the corridors away is suddenly filled with pillars! By which I mean, we are deep in this crypt, bare walls all the way, and yet we have pillars here! We head down the corridor and enter the Throne Room, in which a wight announces "get them" and a bunch on skeletons arise to do so. Amusingly, although the assassin is immobilized, that doesn't stop him from popping across the room and punking the wight in one go. Ha! I stop us from being worried about small damages, and so the fight isn't really that much of a problem.

Continuing on through the dungeon (with the DM removing some encounters because this really is a slog of a crawl), we find some of the loot items, and swing around to find the zombie room, with a pool that is monitoring the rest of the place. We see rooms we have been in and some places we need to visit, including the main bad guy who has other items we need. Unfortunately, we have no idea where any of this is.

Finally with some place of this mapped out, we start back to check out a corridor we skipped and walk through to find Sinrith, the head bad guy! With barely a pause, we get stuck in and start beating up on him as he beats up on us. Although it goes on a while, we win! Of course. As if there was any doubt.

[Have to say, although there is only three of us (and tonight only two of us with the other on a very basic play), we haven't had any real problems with this. (Note: as there is only three, we are playing a level above what a larger party would be at.) One fight put the assassin down to dying a few times, but otherwise bloodied is the worst we've had, and I'm the healer so that isn't really a problem. That said, any harder would just make the fights longer, not more challenging. Still, fun is had!]

However, no rest for us, we need to find the rest of the prisoner...



Dale Freya said...

I'm not a big fan of the insane durability of characters in 4th edition (when the party has a competent healer). But I'm stuck DMing it so I have to find ways to challenge the players and keep it interesting for me. Recently I've been reducing monster hit points and increasing damage to shorten the fights and make them more intense and challenging. With 3 players or less this probably isn't as necessary but the game is too easy for an experienced group of 4 or more players. With 5 or 6 characters you can really pump the difficulty.

One thing to avoid is upping the level of the monsters to increase difficulty. That just has the effect of drawing out the encounters as the monsters become frustratingly hard to hit and have loads of hit points. Instead, using more monsters of around the party's level is generally more satisfying for players.

There is a good article about running D&D on Hard Mode which has helped. Although as a player you may not want to point this out to your DM :)

But then I don't like the modules that have been released for 4th edition. They just fill each and every encounter area up with level appropriate (aka easy) monster fights to slowly wear the party down over the course of around 5-6 encounters before the climax encounter (which may or may not be challenging). My group gets fatigued if I run two combat encounters in a row, never mind five or six.

Jamas Enright said...

Yeah, when you hit Paragon and then Epic, you really feel the pain of tougher monster just meaning longer fights.

Considering how easy the dungeon currently is, Hard Mode might at least make it interesting.