WIR S1 Tomb of Horrors [SPOILERS!! SPOILERS EVERYWHERE!!]‏ - Page 6
  1. #51
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    "GODS was that hard!...but look how rich we are now!!!"
    This prompted me to go through the Tomb of Horrors like I did for other classic adventure modules.

    You can see my data here: Treasure and Experience in Classic D&D Adventures Total Bullgrit -- ToH is the last entry at the bottom of the page.

    The short version is: 305,790 gp total haul. Relatively low in comparison to other published modules of the same level.

    Bullgrit

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bullgrit View Post
    This prompted me to go through the Tomb of Horrors like I did for other classic adventure modules. [snip]
    The short version is: 305,790 gp total haul. Relatively low in comparison to other published modules of the same level.
    Sure, but that looks a lot better when you're only splitting it two or three ways, with the other battered and scarred survivors

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    Last edited by Raven Crowking; Wednesday, 20th July, 2011 at 03:43 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Raven Crowking View Post
    Bullgrit also misses that, in the other published modules, it is not expected that the PCs can recover all of the treasure. (It is actually stated in module B1 that the PCs will not get all the treasure in a good dungeon.) In ToH, though, the majority of the treasure is found in one area; if the PCs succeed, they should get it all.
    Also, G1-3 are part of an adventure path. In order to ensure that the characters will be ready for the challenges of the next episode, you have to cram enough XP and magical items into each module for what might have been extended adventures otherwise. There is absolutely no evidence that the books - the DMG, the MM, etc. - ever encouraged DMs to distribute loot on such a massive scale outside of competive tournament modules, adventure paths and the like.

    Additionally, Giants and Dragons are some of the wealthiest foes you might face, so anything that features them will result in comparitively massive amounts of treasure but its hardly to be assumed that they are normally the sum total of all encounters you will have.

    Actual treasure distribution in 1st edition following the rules per monster you face looks something like this:

    Aerial Servant: -
    Ankheg: 371 cp, 300 sp, 71 ep, 25% chance of 1 gem, 11% chance of 1 piece of jewelry, 6% chance of one magic item.
    Giant Ant: 3% chance of one gem, 1.6% chance of one potion
    Ape, Gorilla: -
    Ape, Carniverous: 260 cp, 210 sp, 50 ep, 18% chance of 1 gem, 8% chance of 1 piece of jewelry, 4% chance of 1 magic item
    Axebeak: -
    Baboon: -
    Badger: -
    Barracuda: -
    Baluchitherium: -
    Basilisk: 420 sp, 390 ep, 880 gp, ~2 gems, 22% chance of 1 piece of jewelry, 60% chance of 1 magic item (no weapons)
    Bear: -
    Beaver, Giant: -
    Beetle, Giant: -
    Beholder: 315 pp, ~ 6 gems, ~3 pieces of jewelry, 15% of 1 magic item, 2 potions, ~1 scroll
    Black Pudding: -
    Blink Dog: 130 cp, 105 sp, 25 ep, 9% chance of 1 gem, 4% of 1 piece of jewelry, 2% chance of 1 magic item
    Boar: -
    Brain Mole: -
    Brownie: 63 cp, 135 sp, 38 ep, 13% chance of 1 gem
    Buffalo: -
    Bugbear: 120 cp, 52 sp, 37 ep, 29 gp, 6% chance of 1 gem, 2.4% chance of 1 jewelry, 0.5% chance of 1 magic armor or weapon
    Bullette: -
    Bull: -
    Camel: -
    Carrion Crawler: 643 cp, 250 sp, 179 ep, 107 gp, 39% chance of 1 gem, 14% chance of 1 jewelry, 2.8% chance of 1 magic item (no weapons)
    Catapolus: 519 cp, 294 sp, 99 ep, 35% chance of 1 gem, 20% chance of 1 jewelry, 8% chance of 1 magic item
    Cattle, Wild: -
    Centaur: 32 cp, 70 sp, 48 ep, 130 gp, 23 pp, ~2 gems, 29% chance of 1 jewelry, 9% chance of 1 scroll, 1% chance of 1 potion, 3% chance of 1 magic item
    Centipede, Giant: -
    Cerebral Parasite: -
    Chimera: 420 sp, 390 ep, 880 gp, ~2 gems, 22% chance of 1 piece of jewelry, 60% chance of 1 magic item (no weapons)
    Crayfish, giant: -
    Crocodile: -
    Demogorgon: 2000 gp, 1750 pp, 10 gems, 3 jewelry, 2 potions, ~1 scroll, ~2 magic items (not potions or scrolls)
    Jubilex: 2100 sp, 750 ep, 4000 gp, 3500 pp, 20 gems, 5 jewelry
    Manes: -
    Orcus: 1050 sp, 375 ep, 2 potions, 40 gems, 14 pieces of jewelry, 2 potions, ~1 scroll, 70% chance of 1 magic item (not potions or scrolls)
    Succubus: 315 pp, 7 gems, ~3 pieces of jewelry, 15% chance of 1 magic item
    Dinosaur: -
    Djinn: -
    Dog: -
    Dolphin: -
    Doppleganger: 37 cp, 217 sp, 117 ep, 150 gp, 13% of one gem, 6% chance of one jewelry, 10% chance of 1 magic item, 3.3% chance of 1 scroll
    Dragonne: 2250 cp, 875 sp, 625 ep, 500 gp, ~1 gem, 50% chance of 1 jewelry, 10% chance of 1 magic weapon, 2 potions, ~1 scroll
    Dragon Turtle: 2250 cp, 875 sp, 625 ep, 2500 gp, 1750 pp, ~11 gems, ~4 jewelry, ~2 magic items (not potions or scrolls), 2 potions, ~1 scroll
    Dryad: 500 gp, ~7 gems
    Dwarf: 91 gp, 10 pp, 17% chance of a gem, 2% chance of 1 jewelry, 2.5% chance of 1 magic item, 3.2% chance of 1 magic weapon or armor, 0.2% chance of 1 scroll
    Ear Seeker: -
    Eel: -
    Elemental: -
    Elephant: -
    Ettin: 1145 cp, 820 sp, 100 ep, 1960 gp, 35% chance of 1 gem, 16% chance of 1 jewelry, 8% chance of 1 magic item
    Eye, Floating: -
    Flightless Bird: -
    Frog: -
    Fungi, Violet: -
    Gar, Giant: -
    Gargoyle: 144 cp, 117 sp, 28 ep, 25 gp, 10% chance of 1 gem, 4% chance of 1jewelry, 2.2% chance of 1 magic item
    Gas Spore: -
    Gelatinous Cube: 14 cp, 11 sp, 7 ep, 5 gp, 4 pp, ~1 gem
    Ghast: 643 cp, 250 sp, 179 ep, 678 gp, 500 pp, ~4 gems, ~1 jewelry, 2.8% chance of 1 magic item (no weapons), 57% chance of 1 potion, 36% chance of 1 scroll
    Ghost: 275 cp, 1625 sp, 875 ep, 1125 gp, 98% chance of 1 gem, 45% chance of 1 jewelry, 2 potions, 75% chance of 1 magic item, 25% chance of 1 scroll
    Ghoul: 173 cp, 67 sp, 48 ep, 38 gp, 10% chance of 1 gem, 4% chance of 1 jewelry, 0.7% chance of 1 magic weapon, 9.6% chance of 1 scroll
    Giant, Cloud: 78 cp, 464 sp, 250 ep, 3821 gp, 143 pp, ~1 gem, 7.5% chance of 1 jewelry, 21% chance of 1 magic item, 7% chance of 1 scroll

    And of course, according to the discussion in the DMG, most of that coin should be converted to tradable commodities, valuable goods, and the like rather than in an easily portable form.

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    If you guys want to start re-hashing Bullgrit/Quasqueton's treasure threads, would you kindly take it elsewhere. I don't want this thread to get derailed by a long discussion of B/Q's methodology.

    Moving on.

    Area 4. Fresco of the Wizardly Work Room

    Area 4 is a fresco painted on the the west wall of the entrance hall. The fresco depicts two jackal-headed creatures holding a box.

    http://www.wizards.com/dnd/images/To...HGraphic4m.jpg

    The box is real -- a small bronze chest stuck to the wall. The bottom of the box is hinged and will swing down when a catch on the top of the box is activated. The catch is trapped with an "easily detectable poison needle trap" that can be "avoided easily" through any number of means. Although the inside of the box looks empty, if you feel around inside, you can find a lever.

    [Nelson Muntz] Ha! Ha! [/Nelson Muntz]
    Pulling the lever opens a trap door immediately in front of the fresco and dumps you into a 30 foot deep pit filled with spikes! The module is careful to note that the trap door is three feet thick and cannot be detected by sounding or by any magic which detects traps. Even True Seeing will only show the outlines of the trap door. "[I]t will not show what it does."

    IMO: This is an elaborate trap from the "Why are you hitting yourself? Stop hitting yourself!" school. Somewhere Grimtooth the Troll is having a larf. Fooling around with Area 4 is a waste of time and a danger to life and limb. I don't see any clues or riddles that clever players could use to pick up on that. This pit trap is also a little more dangerous than the others in the Entrance Hall. It's deeper. It's harder to detect. And its design makes it much more likely to get multiple PC's at one time.

    On the other hand, I'm not convinced that any of these pits are that deadly. The falling damage won't kill anybody, and the poison spikes are less threatening than they appear. Frex, the 14th level Cleric has a base save vs. poison of 5 or better. As long as the Cleric lives, the party is going to be ok.

    It's also noteworthy that the text specifically states this trap is undectable by magic. Presumably, that means other traps can be magically detected. At a minimum, this further lessens the threat from all those other pit traps in the Entrance Hall.

    But I got to get this off my chest. The fresco doesn't look anything like a wizardly work room. Want to see a wizardly work room? The cover of Unearthed Arcana looks like a wizardly work room. Area 4 does not look like a wizardly work room. It looks like some Egyptian tomb carving. It doesn't even look like a room! There's no perspective. There's no furniture. There's no wizardly apparatuses. Why call it a wizardly work room? Why?

    I don't know why, but that bugs me no end.

  6. #56
    Quote Originally Posted by Raven Crowking View Post
    The difference is not an illustration of how stingy the ToH is; it is an illustration of how off-base Bullgrit/Quasqueton's assumptions were about treasure recovery in other modules.


    RC
    All modules should contain the following disclaimer:
    "Warning: if your PCs discover most if not all the treasure in this module, you were Doing it Wrong (Doing it Wrong is (TM) by TSR, Inc. 1984). Please cf. DMG pg. 84 (heading "Bullgritting treasure and your campaign"). Many treasure items are only included so that the DM may cackle maniacally into his Horned Helmet when his players don't find them. These boots are made for walking, but these treasures are NOT ALL made for finding".

    [If you want to answer this part of my post, please fork a new thread]

    Keep it up stoat! I'm greatly enjoying your thread - especially in combination with the pictures. Looking forward to your next post!

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    Last edited by Raven Crowking; Wednesday, 20th July, 2011 at 03:44 AM. Reason: Added "the thread" 'cause I thought that might be misread!

  8. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by Keefe the Thief View Post
    Many treasure items are only included so that the DM may cackle maniacally into his Horned Helmet when his players don't find them. These boots are made for walking, but these treasures are NOT ALL made for finding.
    A few weeks ago, my players decided to burn down a small building rather than explore it. They were so unhappy when I told them the bright purple flames rising from one corner of the place meant they had accidentally incinerated some magic item!

    Anyway, on to the deathtraps!

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    Area 5. The Arch of Mist

    Located at the far end of the Entrance Hall is a stone archway filled with swirling mist. When the players get close, three stones in the arch will start to glow: the left stone glows yellow, ther right stone glows orange and the keystone glows blue. One branch of the red path leads directly into the arch.

    http://www.wizards.com/dnd/images/To...oHGraphic5.jpg.

    If the players press the stones in the correct sequence (yellow/left, blue/top, orange/right), the mists in the archway clear, and those who step through ON the path will be teleported to Area 11. The Three Armed Statute. Those who just tramp through will find themselves back at the beginning of the Entrance Hall. Anybody who walks through the arch before the mist clears gets a one-way ticket to Area 7. The Forsaken Prison.

    (Pro Tip: You do not want to go to The Forsaken Prison).

    IMO: Acererak's riddle explicitly tells you to go through the arch. That's not a clue; it's a direction. Do you need him to draw you a map? Well, he can't draw you a map. He doesn't have hands! Just follow the directions!

    A party that finds the riddle has no excuse if they don't at least fool around with the arch. The glowing stones (which only light up when you get near them) ought to encourage some investigation even if the riddle doesn't. As far as I can tell, there is no hint or clue as to how to clear up the mist. The players have to figure out by themselves that they need to poke the colored stones. But there's no penalty for touching the stones in the wrong order. Trial and error should eventually clear out the mist.

    That's assuming the players realize they need to clear the mist, which they might not. There's nothing in Acererak's riddle about that one way or the other. The Forsaken Prison is pretty sucky, but it's not a guaranteed deathtrap. Players who blunder into it have at least a chance to blunder back out.

    Get used to illustration #5. You'll be seeing it again.

    All told, this looks fairly simple to me. I'm guessing that most of the groups I've played with would figure it out. For those who have actually run the module, how did it work for you?

  10. #60
    Quote Originally Posted by Raven Crowking View Post
    You could have forked the thread yourself, Keefe. Needless to say, your response is a strawman, as no one is suggesting that unfound treasure is there so that the "DM may cackle maniacally into his Horned Helmet". But, thank you for playing. If you want to discuss the reasons that this design decision occurred in pre-WotC-D&D, feel free to fork the thread yourself. If you do so, I'll happily discuss.
    Oh, i think of your concept of "Bullgrit got the concept wrong" as a strawman, too. But i'm sure there will be another thread soon where this exact topic pops up and which allows for ample discussion. Treasure is, after all, always strongly contested...

    Quote Originally Posted by Stoat View Post
    A few weeks ago, my players decided to burn down a small building rather than explore it. They were so unhappy when I told them the bright purple flames rising from one corner of the place meant they had accidentally incinerated some magic item!
    My players react to this with reality-changing denial a la "bah, they were evil magic items anyway - see the purpble flames?"

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