Help me kill Darmanicus & Friends!




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  1. #1
    The Guvnor
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    Help me kill Darmanicus & Friends!

    Ha! So Darmanicus and Company think they'll get an advantage by asking you guys for advice on how to deal with an upcoming encounter, do they? Well, two can play at that game! Now it's my turn to ask you all for advice on how to handle the whole encounter.

    Rather than repeat the description, I recommend that you read Darmanicus' first post. I've read that much, so I know it summarises the situation fairly accurately; I didn't read any further posts, though, and don't want anybody to tell me what's in that thread.

    Conversely, to my group - don't let me catch you reading this thread!

    So, folks, please help me. Unlike my group, I'm not looking to "win" the encounter (I'm the DM and don't actually want to end the campaign quite yet!), but I do want it to be challenging, fun and memorable. Setups, strategies, ideas, stats and so forth.

    For the record - the players seem to be harping on about Githyanki in that thread. The bad guys are actually Githzerai. The Queen herself has been statted out, but nobody else has as yet. So, I don't know any more about the encounter than the players do at this point in time - I described what it looked like to them and figured I had a week to work it all out.

    Thanks in advance for your help! I hope we can make this a really.... memorable... evening. And I won't cry too much if one or two characters die - I just don't want a TPK happening here.

 

  • #2
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    Ignore diaglo
    ethreal filchers. a swarm of them. use the swarm template and steal all the party's items.


    oops... looks like i channelled Hyp too much.


    expect the party to advance on the queen and only the queen. take off the head and the body will die tactic.

    so place traps in between. to prevent charges by the fighter types.

    and shield or globe on invulnerable vs the magic types.

    or even illusions to make them think she is in one place. major creation with sound and such.
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    If I was faced with that situation, I'd try a divide and conquer tactic. Beware of walls, charm spells, any attempt to get the two enemies ahead to battle each other. Similarly, a divide and conquer tactic may work against the players, especially if the negative energy columns can be moved. Try to shepherd the PCs around, keeping them away from the Queen whom I agree (with Diaglo), is likely to present an appealing target.

    As an interesting take, make the Queen an almost minor nobody! She is powerful because of who she is, not what she is: All that fighting to take down the Queen reveals she is pathetically weak, or she is being skin-ridden by a demon or such like. Finding all their hard work killing her was almost unwarranted will set them off on a tangent!

    Perhaps also you could create a new kind of Slaadi for the King? Some kind of chaos powers that allow him to cause unpredictable events during the combat, say a wall of force that moves randomly at the start of each round or random blip teleportation like the Blink Dog?

    Watch out for the cleric, as a decent Banishment spell could bring this all down really quickly. An area dispel magic might affect the outcome as well.

  • #4
    The Guvnor
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gothic_Demon

    Perhaps also you could create a new kind of Slaadi for the King? Some kind of chaos powers that allow him to cause unpredictable events during the combat, say a wall of force that moves randomly at the start of each round or random blip teleportation like the Blink Dog?
    Ah, yes - I should have mentioned the Slaadi. I have deliberately been describing the King and his bodyguards as being a new type of Slaad - about 15 feet tall, jet black, but that's all the info I have so far. They are intended to be more powerful than the usual Slaad types.

    Watch out for the cleric, as a decent Banishment spell could bring this all down really quickly.
    Not a problem on this particular plane, due to properties of the plane itself.

    Also, I have a teleport redirect in place. So players attempting dimension doors and the like will find themselves in dire straits. Not entirely sure how dire yet - that's somehting to figure out!

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    I Defended The Walls!

    Ignore coriolis
    For the record - the players seem to be harping on about Githyanki in that thread. The bad guys are actually Githzerai.
    I know this goes in favor of the party rather than the enemy, but considering their level and their background, I'm guessing the diviner has a pretty good Knowledge (the planes) score. I would allow him to make a check to correct their mistake -- githzerais are rather different from githyankis, especially their innate powers.

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    Quote Originally Posted by coriolis
    I know this goes in favor of the party rather than the enemy, but considering their level and their background, I'm guessing the diviner has a pretty good Knowledge (the planes) score. I would allow him to make a check to correct their mistake -- githzerais are rather different from githyankis, especially their innate powers.
    Oh, they know - they're just mistyping in their thread. I only pointed it out because it's likely to make a difference to strategies in this thread. I don't want their hasty typing to mislead anyone here!

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    I Defended The Walls!

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    Assuming:

    a) The Queen is a high-level psion with a psicrystal
    b) Psionic effects can affect magic (and vice-versa) in your campaign

    Have her psicrystal discreetly advance towards the party (I believe psicrystals can walk on ceilings, so that would be a good way to do it). Once it's within 10 feet, have the Queen channel a Null Psionics Field through it: the guards and slaadi can now surround the party and go pure melee to soften them up for a few rounds. Keep the psicrystal around for two or three rounds at most, and then move it away while the party is still scrambling to cope with their nonfunctioning magic; you can surprise them with a sudden barrage of magical/psionic effects from you once the psicrystal's away. Repeat a few times to keep them guessing: they'll probably think it's some kind of random effect of the room or from the King/Queen, but strangely enough, the Queen and her minions always seem to know exactly where and when the 'dead magic zone' will disappear...

  • #8
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    That's a great idea. Coriolis. Unfortunately, we don't use the psionic-magic can affect each other rule; that's part of the plot, and part of the reason they were dealing with the Githzerai in the first place -- without going into too much detail on the larger plot, their psionics can get around certain restrictions placed on magic in the area, and these magical restrictions are preventing the PCs from adopting certain courses of action. Thus, they needed the help of psions (which are new to them - these are the only psionic creatures they've ever met).

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    Ignore Navar
    OK, lets focus on the slaad then shal we? I have some ideas that we can work out. To beging with lets list what slad we know of

    Mud Slad CR6 w/ 6HD, Fiend Foilo Page 157
    It is CR 6 and it has soom good abilities, I think Feign Death may be the best abilty to note here (as you can use it to make the king return from the "dead") he also has Cringe (that doesn't really fit a CR 18 Slaad type though), Disease, Summon Slaad, and Sonic Screech with Fast Healing 3.

    Red Slaad CR7 w/ 7HD, Monster Manual, Page 228
    It has Pounch (full attack at the end of a charge (a great ability for the Bodyguards), and Stunning Croak (another great ability for the bodyguards to have) Save is Fort 10 + 1/2 hit die +Con, Implant (an abilty you likley won't use), and Summon Slad, with fast healing 5.

    Blue Sladd CR8 w/ 8HD, Monster Manual, Page 229
    Abilities: Spell like abilities Hold person at will and Chaos Hammer 1/day are both abilities you may want to give the king (maybe a better spell than Chaos Hammer) Saves are 10+spell level + Cha, slaad feaver (Won't help you in this fight, more of a plot device) and Summon Slaad, with Fast Healing 5.

    Green Slaad, CR9 w/ 9HD Monster Manual, Page 230
    Abilities: Several spell like abilities (among them some of the best are Shatter at will, Protection from law at will, and a CL 9 Fireball 3/day. All good for the bodyguards to have as well), Change shape, and Summon Slaad with Fast healing 5.

    Gray Slaad, CR10 w/ 10HD Monster Manual, Page 231
    Abilities: Several spell like abilities (among them some of the best are Shatter at will, Magic Circle against law at will, Dispel Law 3/day, and Power Word Stun 1/day. More goodies for the bodyguards to have), Change shape, and Summon Slaad with Fast healing 5 and DR 10/Lawful.

    Death Slaad, CR13 w/ 15HD Monster Manual, Page 231
    Abilities: Several spell like abilities (among them some of the best are Dispel Law at will, a CL 15 Fireball at will, Word of Chaos 3/day, and Power Word Blind 1/day. All good for the bodyguards to have as well), Stun, Change shape, and Summon Slaad with Fast healing 5 and DR 10/Lawful.

    So these are the Slaad from the monster books I have access to now. I will post this and work on a "black Slaad" for the Bodyguards. I am thining CR 15 and 5 of them. Any other thoughts would be helpful.
    Last edited by Navar; Thursday, 10th March, 2005 at 03:10 PM. Reason: Formating and Added CR/HD
    Have a good night

  • #10
    What seldom happens in a D&D combat is a good feint (and I don't mean the "using the Bluff skill" kind).

    It requires a lot of decent enough acting, but perhaps you could make it seem like the alliance between the slaad and the Gith is failing. Then actually have the Slaad and Gith turn on eachother if the players take the bait and actively encourage the alliance to break. When the Gith move angainst the slaad and vice versa, suddenly reunite them when it is tactically convenient and take out a character or two (like, I dunno, the Archer who'd probably stay in the back, isolated).

    If you do this, and it works, tell me whose character you killed so I can offer a gift to make amends when I'm next in the neighbourhood.

    Rav
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