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    Thursday, 18th October, 2018, 07:28 AM
    Last session was mainly RP (yay) but we ended on a fight (which I try to do if possible). The fight was a single CR9 Glabrezu. It gave them real problems - it has some really neat abilities. I'd say I've seen them more easily handle 3 or 4 stone giants. CR is a funny old thing ;) However, I normally use Kobold Fight Club to calculate XP budgets etc. Of course what they don't know, since we...
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  • biktin's Avatar
    Thursday, 18th October, 2018, 07:02 AM
    I took on milestone-ish levelling once they reached level 5. At first I kept a rough tally but now I don't at all (particularly as the campaign gained momentum), and I can't imagine ever doing the other way again. Anyway, I expect that's another thread entirely!
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    Wednesday, 17th October, 2018, 01:19 PM
    That's really interesting, might try it on a "sub boss" to see how that pans out.
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  • biktin's Avatar
    Wednesday, 17th October, 2018, 07:12 AM
    I haven't but wrt 0.. it was a game of 13th age. The escalation die (a 1d6) hadn't come into play yet (first round). The player argued that since it hadn't got to 1 it must be 0, and their ability triggered on an even escalation die number. But you're right, it is strictly speaking even. I'll try to look at that article. I find the authors style generally unreadable.
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  • biktin's Avatar
    Wednesday, 17th October, 2018, 07:00 AM
    My players would hate this. One or two enjoy engaging with NPC's, but generally speaking they are ass kickers. On the other hand, if I was playing, I would enjoy this. But I'm not!
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  • biktin's Avatar
    Monday, 15th October, 2018, 09:07 PM
    The wizard would argue that he would incant his spell before coming into view and then immediately cast it once he moved and had LOS, surprising them. Mind you, he has argued that the number 0 is an even number before, so I generally take him with a pinch of salt ;)
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  • biktin's Avatar
    Monday, 15th October, 2018, 09:01 PM
    I've used a few converters, but it takes a while and actually I've found re-skinning existing monsters to be fun and quick. For example the Wyverns in Fortress of the Stone Giants were swapped with elder shadow drakes from tome of beasts. I'm finding the AP a bit too combat-oriented for my taste but to be honest my players (mostly) prefer that.
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  • biktin's Avatar
    Sunday, 14th October, 2018, 05:30 PM
    So this has come up a few times so I thought I'd mention how it plays out - perhaps I'm doing it wrong. Roguish ranger stealths up to do some reconnaissance and spots the lay of the land from tunnel entrance/doorway. Party plan a "surprise" co-ordinated attack. The party stealth up to get into positions and then "jump out" into view to launch an attack. At this point, the melee will either...
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  • biktin's Avatar
    Sunday, 14th October, 2018, 04:55 PM
    I did that for the first couple of adventures, but after that I couldn't find anything available. Although it has been mentioned on this here forum ( http://www.enworld.org/forum/showthread.php?473344-Which-Pathfinder-APs-have-been-converted-to-5e&p=6770138#post6770138 ). However, I feel with the advice I've gotten here I could be more able to do a good job of it myself.
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  • biktin's Avatar
    Sunday, 14th October, 2018, 10:38 AM
    Wow.. what a response! Thank you for all your great suggestions and intelligent discussion. I'll try to cover as many as I can. Yes, this has happened when the party have had a full rest. The last time they had rested because they were so totally worn down - no spells, very low HP. They had spent time setting up and ensuring perimeters etc. To be honest, I could have disturbed their rest with...
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Thursday, 18th October, 2018

  • 08:03 PM - dave2008 quoted biktin in post DM advice needed - my party one-round BBEG's
    Last session was mainly RP (yay) but we ended on a fight (which I try to do if possible). The fight was a single CR9 Glabrezu. It gave them real problems - it has some really neat abilities. I'd say I've seen them more easily handle 3 or 4 stone giants. CR is a funny old thing ;) However, I normally use Kobold Fight Club to calculate XP budgets etc. Of course what they don't know, since we ran out of time for the session, is that they are only on wave one. Second wave is 3 x CR5, third is 3 x CR5 + CR15 legendary. But then they're done for that day, their next stop will be a few weeks travel (if they follow the clues, of course). Magic Using monsters can be tricky for PCs - if the DM's can use them effectively. Sounds like they will have a quite a ride ahead of them.

Wednesday, 17th October, 2018

  • 11:25 PM - Bupp quoted biktin in post DM advice needed - my party one-round BBEG's
    I've used a few converters, but it takes a while and actually I've found re-skinning existing monsters to be fun and quick. For example the Wyverns in Fortress of the Stone Giants were swapped with elder shadow drakes from tome of beasts. I'm finding the AP a bit too combat-oriented for my taste but to be honest my players (mostly) prefer that. I love throwing in new monsters that are just different enough to confound the players. A lot of the APs have this problem. You needed fights to gain the XP to level up to the appropriate level for the next adventure. Milestone leveling solves this problem, as well as making a lot less bookkeeping for you. If you don't want it to seem hand-wavy, or your players like counting XP, just assign XP to get them where they need to be.
  • 01:24 PM - Yunru quoted biktin in post DM advice needed - my party one-round BBEG's
    That's really interesting, might try it on a "sub boss" to see how that pans out. Best bit is, they don't even have to be exactly the same. Nor does the number of attacks have to equal the number of health bars left. One of my bosses is a Vampire noble, who fights very calmly and collectedly. Once you deplete is first (of two) health bars, his armour's shorn off and he transforms into a raging barbarian with two goes per round. EDIT: Just remember to calculate the encounter budget and whatnot as if they were separate creatures. For instance, an encounter with two level 20 creatures, is the same adjusted Exp as one level 25 creature.
  • 01:07 PM - Yunru quoted biktin in post DM advice needed - my party one-round BBEG's
    I'll try to look at that article. I find the authors style generally unreadable. To summarise: Solo monsters are very poorly done. So get four monsters (what the encounter system is roughly based around), and make them one monster. So four health bars, one turn in the Initiative order per Health Bar, no bleed over damage between health bars, and recovering from all inflictions when a health bar is fully depleted (and no healing depleted health bars).
  • 11:14 AM - dave2008 quoted biktin in post DM advice needed - my party one-round BBEG's
    I haven't but wrt 0.. it was a game of 13th age. The escalation die (a 1d6) hadn't come into play yet (first round). The player argued that since it hadn't got to 1 it must be 0, and their ability triggered on an even escalation die number. But you're right, it is strictly speaking even. I'll try to look at that article. I find the authors style generally unreadable. It is basically using two creatures as one. I still think you are best served with: max hit points, increase damage (as I noted before), and improved action economy (legendary or 2 turns) w/ movement options. Depending on how your group works you may want to increase AC, but I prefer more HP. Also, if stealth is an issue throw some blindsight or tremorsense at them every once and awhile: FYI, I have a thread of improved 5e monsters here: 5e Hardcore Monster Manual They are only drafts, but generally the "elite" monsters there follow my suggestions and should help.

Tuesday, 16th October, 2018

  • 09:19 PM - 5ekyu quoted biktin in post DM advice needed - my party one-round BBEG's
    The wizard would argue that he would incant his spell before coming into view and then immediately cast it once he moved and had LOS, surprising them. Mind you, he has argued that the number 0 is an even number before, so I generally take him with a pinch of salt ;)A few points under 5e... The gm determines when there is surprise when two groups encounter. If therevis no stealth or hiding involved, there is no surprise. Hidden is not just unseen, but also unheard - and hidden requires a hide action. Spells can be ready and used as reactions to triggers for one round. The spell is cast during your turn (materials, components, slots, etc then) and the effect held by concentrstion wsiting for a trigger but it goes away at the start of your next turn. So the only way for casting a spell and ready it then move in and release is even,posdibly a surprise is is the point of casting did not in itself give up the ghost. Verbal components, not taking hide action (action) while casting **and** approac...
  • 06:14 PM - AndrĂ© Soares quoted biktin in post DM advice needed - my party one-round BBEG's
    The wizard would argue that he would incant his spell before coming into view and then immediately cast it once he moved and had LOS, surprising them. Mind you, he has argued that the number 0 is an even number before, so I generally take him with a pinch of salt ;) for him to prepare his spell he has tu use an action to prepare the spell, hold concentration on it and cast it before his next turn, using his reaction to do so, if all these requirements are not fulfilled, or the concentration is lost, the spell fizzles out. disrupt him once and he will think twice to use that argument again
  • 06:05 PM - DMMike quoted biktin in post DM advice needed - my party one-round BBEG's
    I'm having issues making fights memorable for my players because they're just a bit too efficient at killing...Has anyone got any tips to provide the challenge and entertainment without negating/nerfing their tactics? Don't put them up against BBEGs. Use BBWs instead. Bossy Beautiful Wimp These are your typical lords, ladies, or merchants with lots of influence. Your PCs can fight their way up to them, so you can still use a dungeon or a lair for them to fight through. But all of their damage-dealing skill is for naught, because killing a BBW doesn't accomplish your mission; it just lands you in legal trouble or installs the BBW's successor. Let the PCs use their worst stats - their social skills - to try and win over the BBW. The challenge will seem immense since they're not rolling their highest numbers for it. You carefully step over the graveyard of bodies you've just created to reach the red-glowing, evil door. Before you cast Break Enchantment, the glow goes away a...
  • 04:43 PM - Blue quoted biktin in post DM advice needed - my party one-round BBEG's
    The wizard would argue that he would incant his spell before coming into view and then immediately cast it once he moved and had LOS, surprising them. Mind you, he has argued that the number 0 is an even number before, so I generally take him with a pinch of salt ;) This makes sense. Knowing they are there, having the spell prepped ahead so they pop their head out and use their reaction to cast. Same thing as an invisible character stabbing with a dagger. While the attack makes them visible, but they still have advantage for that attack. Same here.
  • 09:14 AM - Nailen quoted biktin in post DM advice needed - my party one-round BBEG's
    I'm having issues making fights memorable for my players because they're just a bit too efficient at killing... The party:- 5x level 10 characters , an evoker wizard, war cleric, paladin, ranger/rogue, monk. They don't really min/max (except the cleric). The issue: The party have figured out a combination of "stealth & focus fire" tactic. So if they feel they are about to meet a BBEG the ranger will cast Pass Without Trace and the party will attempt to stealth. They are generally pretty good at this, with just the cleric and pally letting the team down on occasion with their clanky armour. Once they stealth in, they tip toe into the BBEG's room/lair and initiative is rolled (the it's not-a-surprise-round round). They are generally rather well DEX based and can often do pretty well in initiative. But that's almost besides the point (I think) because:- they can deal A LOT of damage in that round. They focus on the BBEG and unleash armageddon. Silence or Spiritual Guardians might get laid d...
  • 07:52 AM - Quickleaf quoted biktin in post DM advice needed - my party one-round BBEG's
    I'm having issues making fights memorable for my players because they're just a bit too efficient at killing... The party:- 5x level 10 characters , an evoker wizard, war cleric, paladin, ranger/rogue, monk. They don't really min/max (except the cleric). The issue: The party have figured out a combination of "stealth & focus fire" tactic. So if they feel they are about to meet a BBEG the ranger will cast Pass Without Trace and the party will attempt to stealth. They are generally pretty good at this, with just the cleric and pally letting the team down on occasion with their clanky armour. Once they stealth in, they tip toe into the BBEG's room/lair and initiative is rolled (the it's not-a-surprise-round round). They are generally rather well DEX based and can often do pretty well in initiative. But that's almost besides the point (I think) because:- they can deal A LOT of damage in that round. They focus on the BBEG and unleash armageddon. Silence or Spiritual Guardians might ...

Monday, 15th October, 2018

  • 09:24 PM - Saelorn quoted biktin in post DM advice needed - my party one-round BBEG's
    The wizard would argue that he would incant his spell before coming into view and then immediately cast it once he moved and had LOS, surprising them. Mind you, he has argued that the number 0 is an even number before, so I generally take him with a pinch of salt ;)Unless the wizard's head is invisible, anyone looking through the door will see him before he has line of sight. If he sticks a mirror around the corner, and tries to aim with that, then they'll be alerted as soon as the mirror comes into their view. If he can see them, then they can see him, unless he's invisible or they are not looking in that direction.
  • 08:03 PM - Saelorn quoted biktin in post DM advice needed - my party one-round BBEG's
    One thing that I might be doing wrong is allowing a "surprise round" (e.g the monsters can't act that round) when they have plainly come into view?There's some debate on it. To the best of my interpretation, it should be impossible to sneak past someone who is looking at the open space you are trying to pass through. If the BBEG is in a room that only has one entrance, and someone is looking at that entrance, then surprise is ruined when anyone tries to enter the room. Out of combat, the rules for surprise are supposed to model sneaking up behind someone who isn't looking in your direction, which is up to DM discretion since there's no rule for facing in this game. It should be basically impossible for anyone alert to their surroundings, unless you're invisible or something.

Sunday, 14th October, 2018

  • 05:52 PM - Sorcerers Apprentice quoted biktin in post DM advice needed - my party one-round BBEG's
    So this has come up a few times so I thought I'd mention how it plays out - perhaps I'm doing it wrong. Roguish ranger stealths up to do some reconnaissance and spots the lay of the land from tunnel entrance/doorway. Party plan a "surprise" co-ordinated attack. The party stealth up to get into positions and then "jump out" into view to launch an attack. At this point, the melee will either dash or complement with ranged attacks (bows etc), but the ranged specialists will unleash their strongest spells on a single target. If the boss lasts the round, the melee will be in range and finish them off. One thing that I might be doing wrong is allowing a "surprise round" (e.g the monsters can't act that round) when they have plainly come into view? You've got the rules correct, that's how surprise works in 5e as long as your stealth rolls are successful. The boss should protect himself by posting sentries that make it impossible for anyone to sneak close enough to pull that tactic off.
  • 03:23 PM - ad_hoc quoted biktin in post DM advice needed - my party one-round BBEG's
    Yes, this has happened when the party have had a full rest. The last time they had rested because they were so totally worn down - no spells, very low HP. They had spent time setting up and ensuring perimeters etc. That'll do it. If they have complete control then of course it will be easy. Taking a long rest releases the tension. The BBEG 'fight' isn't climactic because there is no rising action to it. They have no time constraints, the know the layout of where this monster is, and the monster isn't protecting itself. This is the sort of thing we would handle off camera at our table. You defeat so and so, okay let's move on. If they are too worn out from the fights before, well then, they will need to choose whether to push it and risk a TPK or run away and fail the objective.
  • 02:41 PM - Bupp quoted biktin in post DM advice needed - my party one-round BBEG's
    Some nice ideas there. I'm actually running a published adventure but as time has gone on I'm scrapping more and more of the encounters as they don't seem to suit the party (also it is a PF adventure path and so the encounters are not designed for 5e and I've generally added more creatures to each encounter to balance out). Seems like I might have to do a lot more legwork for the encounters! Save yourself some work, do a google search for 5e conversions of the adventure that you are running. Other DMs have done the work, find one that fits your groups style and use their conversions.
  • 09:05 AM - Quickleaf quoted biktin in post DM advice needed - my party one-round BBEG's
    I'm having issues making fights memorable for my players because they're just a bit too efficient at killing... The party:- 5x level 10 characters , an evoker wizard, war cleric, paladin, ranger/rogue, monk. They don't really min/max (except the cleric). The issue: The party have figured out a combination of "stealth & focus fire" tactic. So if they feel they are about to meet a BBEG the ranger will cast Pass Without Trace and the party will attempt to stealth. They are generally pretty good at this, with just the cleric and pally letting the team down on occasion with their clanky armour. Once they stealth in, they tip toe into the BBEG's room/lair and initiative is rolled (the it's not-a-surprise-round round). They are generally rather well DEX based and can often do pretty well in initiative. But that's almost besides the point (I think) because:- they can deal A LOT of damage in that round. They focus on the BBEG and unleash armageddon. Silence or Spiritual Guardians might ...

Saturday, 13th October, 2018

  • 01:13 AM - Blue quoted biktin in post DM advice needed - my party one-round BBEG's
    I'm having issues making fights memorable for my players because they're just a bit too efficient at killing... ... But that's almost besides the point (I think) because:- they can deal A LOT of damage in that round. ... It's really cool that the party can get to be bad-ass, but unfortunately it's also a total anti-climax for them. The party love it when they get through by the skin of their teeth - they talk about it for weeks afterwards. When they one-round the foe they've been chasing down for the past 3 months (human time), it's a forgettable and disappointing experience. Has anyone got any tips to provide the challenge and entertainment without negating/nerfing their tactics? My guess is that the DM isn't pushing 6-8 encounters a day. Or at least 4. Because thoses are the symptoms I see for that. Yes, a party of 10th level should be able to smoke a 200HP foe in a round if they focus fire and have full resources. If you want attrition battles, you need to have a good number of ...

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