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DMG Intro Adventure - Big Spoiler!

Boco

First Post
No, it says "before the start of your next turn"... which means only in the round after you used your Divine Challenge.
This has been eratta'd by CustServ. The intent is that the challenge is reapplied every turn even without the minor action, unless you want to change targets or you break the challenge yourself by failing to engage. So the way to read it should be "the first time each turn" rather than "the first time before the start of your next turn".
 

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Tellerve

Registered User
If I am reading this correctly I think you or your DM works Divine Challenge incorrectly. It does damage each round that the target is marked and chooses to attack something besides the paladin ( and of course the paladin keeps engaging it )


First, I'm not doing it incorrectly, Archus is, which is why I put my question up there to try and have him explain it without outright telling him he was wrong. But then you quoted me, and still have it wrong.

It isn't each round, read the power again. It says the first attack it takes radiant damage before the start of your next turn.

Also, you can't cheese it by putting the Divine Challenge on round after round on the same creature as it explicitly says you can't put a DC on a creature that you've already put DC on.

EDIT: A'ight, well Boco, just informed me that CustSrv has said that it continues on preceeding rounds and allows the first attack of each round for the creature to be smacked by some radiant damage. News to me. Thanks :) Also, sorry Archus, you apparently are doing it correctly :D
 
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On Puget Sound

First Post
I'm running two parallel groups on alternate Mondays, and being a lazy GM I'm using the same adventures for both, at least to start. Group A has entered Kobold Hall and made it through Skull-Skull. Along the way they captured and interrogated a slinger, so they know there is a white dragon. It will be interesting to see whether foreknowledge is enough to make a difference. I don't see much of a consequence for taking an extended rest after the wyrmpriest; the dragon may wonder why no one has brought in food or tribute today, but I doubt he'll squeeze up the passageway to attack.

(Incidentally, I am adding a hole in the ceiling of his cave... he has to get in and out somehow!)

Group B spent their first session entirely on exploring Fallcrest, getting to know each other, and arranging to get every NPC in town, separately, to pay them for clearing out the kobolds. So they enter the Hall today.
 

samursus

Explorer
My group had 6 pc's, but they had an extended rest beforehand, as the Fighter had dided in the previous encounter, so they had to go back to Fallcrest to Raise him. They took out the dragon fairly easily if I remember correctly. The fighter and paladin engaged on one side while the rogue was on the other, stepping in and out for Combat Advantage. The Wizard didn't do much, and the Warlock and Ranged Ranger attacked from afar. The Dragon only recharged his breath once (on bloodied), and missed his attack on the only 2 within range.

They had a waaay easier time than I thought they would have. One thing I have noticed is how swingy this edition is, especially without a Leader in the group. Later on in KotS, there was almost a TPK at the Dragon Burial Site (extra Guardian Drake added for parity) and the 2 Defenders died.
 

KarinsDad

First Post
Our group crushed this adventure at first level. One PC fell unconscious in the third fight. One PC fell unconscious in the Dragon fight.

Dragonborn Paladin, Eladrin Warlock, Human Wizard, Dwarven Cleric, Elven Ranger

I think one key to 4E survival is to take advantage of situational rules. For example, have the Defender up front defending, but have lower AC non-melee PCs behind cover (including the cover of other higher AC PCs). In the case of the Dragon encounter, the PCs have to spread out all over the room to prevent too many of them from getting hit with the breathe weapon simultaneously.

Also, using up Daily powers too early results in them not being available later on. Dailies should be used in the first or second overwhelming fight of the day, but should rarely be used in a more typical fight. We probably had 3 Dailies stlll available for the Dragon fight.

But the main key to me for taking on a powerful encounter like the Dragon one is for all PCs to have an Action Point available for that encounter. I have discouraged my fellow players from using Action Points haphazardly or just when they feel like it, for example, just because they missed in an encounter with an attack (which was happening). Action Points should be used when it gives the group a significant advantage.

Course, I have to admit that the DM had some bad dice rolls with the Dragon. He missed on maybe 2/3rds of the Breathe Weapon attacks (he rolls to hit and damage rolls out in front of the group). So, we did have a better than average Action Enconomy in that fight than we typically would have (i.e. attacking instead of healing, attacking instead of helping an ally, etc.).
 

Tellerve

Registered User
I'd say you got off lucky if the dragon was missing that often.

As for the hole in the roof of the cave, I'm totally going to have that as well. Glad I'm not the only one that thought it needed that. I also have been thinking about a skill challenge, or somehow set it up that perhaps they can figure out that the wyrmpriest and kobolds were about to take a offering to the dragon, and instead take it themselves. Do a little parley and maybe get the dragon convinced they'll bring back something good for them...like meat, as it says in the Monster Manual. Heck, kobold bodies! Although the dragon might not be so keen on that one.

In any case, just something to allow them an out perhaps so that they can leave and lick their wounds if they moved into that encounter not fully prepared.

Also thinking of having there be some sort of elemental cold rock or some hunk of magically cold something in the cave, which is one of the reasons the white dragon likes the places. And that is what Nimozaran is after, or something like that...still a work in progress.

EDIT: It has been mentioned, but the white dragon has 32 more hit points than the Monster Manual one, and its Reflex saving throw is 2 points too high, should be a Reflex 16, not 18.
 
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Old Gumphrey

First Post
TPK - the dragon beat everyone on initiative, flew up

Flew up where?

If he's close enough to attack with a reach 2, any fighter worth his salt could jump up and smack him with a weapon.

Plus, you can ready an action to attack the dragon when he attacks you. I mean, he's biting you, right? That means he's thrusting his own face toward you. If that's not a valid target, I don't know what is.
 

Flew up where?

If he's close enough to attack with a reach 2, any fighter worth his salt could jump up and smack him with a weapon.

Plus, you can ready an action to attack the dragon when he attacks you. I mean, he's biting you, right? That means he's thrusting his own face toward you. If that's not a valid target, I don't know what is.
I imagine he means "flew up to land right in front of the party." I think this can even happen during a surprise round if you haven't perceived the dragon is there (or maybe that was just my DM?). At any rate, it looks like it was first in initiative and did it's breath and fright abilities and burned action points to lay the smack down. With the breath weapon recharging fast, damage can be dealt pretty quickly, forcing people to use Second Wind instead of engaging.
 

Caliban

Rules Monkey
Flew up where?

If he's close enough to attack with a reach 2, any fighter worth his salt could jump up and smack him with a weapon.

Plus, you can ready an action to attack the dragon when he attacks you. I mean, he's biting you, right? That means he's thrusting his own face toward you. If that's not a valid target, I don't know what is.

It didn't fly "up" anywhere in a literal sense, more in the sense that you "run up to someone". It beat everyone on initiative. Then it moved from the center of the room to the 10' wide hallway where the party was standing, breathed on us for 15 points (hitting 5 out of 6 people), hit us with a free action Fear aura (stunning 3 out of 6 people), action surged, and then attacked the rogue 3 times (dropping him).

The fighter and the wizard was stunned and couldn't do anything on their turn. The ranger shot him, action surged, and missed with his daily power. The cleric and the warlord healed people, and the cleric missed with his daily, and the warlord got hit moving up to the dragon. The rogue was up at this point. The fighter and the rogue saved against the fear, weakness, and slow effects. The wizard did not.

The dragon breathed again (for 19 points, I don't remember exactly who got hit), moved away, and the rogue and the fighter moved to engage, the fighter action surges, and misses with his daily power, but is able to get into flank position with the rogue. He also spends a 2nd wind. The cleric and the warlord healed people (they are now out of minor action healing surge powers), and missed with their attack powers (a daily and an encounter). The wizard and the ranger did ranged attacks, doing signficant damage.

The dragon attempts to move away to go after the ranger, but the fighter hits him with his combat challenge attack, and then the OA-stopping his movement. The dragon then breathes again on the warlord, rogue, and cleric, and spends an action point to attack the fighter - hitting 3 times, an one of them a crit. A total of 30 points. The fighter drops, and the rogue is now unable to flank.

After that the dragon pretty much dropped 1-2 people a round, chasing down those who tried to flee.
 
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Dalzig

First Post
Fear Aura? The white dragon doesn't have a fear aura... He does have Frightful Prescence, which is a standard action.

How did the Warlord get hit moving up to the dragon? Only creatures with Threatening Reach get ranged OAs.

Did the player's wait until the -2 to attacks was gone before using their dailies?

And really, breathing every round is slightly evil as a DM. :p

On a side note: I'm really thinking about letting action points either give a reroll or bonus (ala 3.5).
 

Caliban

Rules Monkey
Fear Aura? The white dragon doesn't have a fear aura... He does have Frightful Prescence, which is a standard action.

How did the Warlord get hit moving up to the dragon? Only creatures with Threatening Reach get ranged OAs.

Did the player's wait until the -2 to attacks was gone before using their dailies?

And really, breathing every round is slightly evil as a DM. :p

On a side note: I'm really thinking about letting action points either give a reroll or bonus (ala 3.5).

I may have remembered the first round incorrectly then. I know he spent an action point in the first round, so he probably used it for that instead of attacking. Either that or the DM played it wrong.

He was definitely having it take OA's whenever anyone closed with it.
 

Dalzig

First Post
I may have remembered the first round incorrectly then. I know he spent an action point in the first round, so he probably used it for that instead of attacking. Either that or the DM played it wrong.

He was definitely having it take OAs whenever anyone closed with it.

That might have been a big problem. If it was taking OAs it shouldn't be taking then it would be near impossible for the rogue to get behind it to flank. That alone would have probably let the melee characters hit with their daily powers. Not to mention the dragon does a lot of damage on OAs.

You might want to ask your DM how it was taking OAs. In 4e, you only threaten the squares right next to you, no matter your reach*. So the thing would only get OAs as you ran away, not moved to engage it.

*: If the creature has threatening reach, they threaten out to their reach range. These are rare though.
 

Caliban

Rules Monkey
That might have been a big problem. If it was taking OAs it shouldn't be taking then it would be near impossible for the rogue to get behind it to flank. That alone would have probably let the melee characters hit with their daily powers. Not to mention the dragon does a lot of damage on OAs.

You might want to ask your DM how it was taking OAs. In 4e, you only threaten the squares right next to you, no matter your reach*. So the thing would only get OAs as you ran away, not moved to engage it.

*: If the creature has threatening reach, they threaten out to their reach range. These are rare though.

Yeah, I realize that now. We were all experienced 3e players, and that was our first 4e session. So we all "knew" that large creatures with reach can make OA's when you close, and no one thought to question it.

I'll let him know for the next time we play. That was a big part of the TPK (it took a lot of effort to get a flank even momentarily), but a bigger part was the DM rolling very high in the first few rounds, and almost all the PC's rolling low at the same time. We didn't miss our daily's by a little, we missed by a wide margin. :(
 

KarinsDad

First Post
I may have remembered the first round incorrectly then. I know he spent an action point in the first round, so he probably used it for that instead of attacking. Either that or the DM played it wrong.

He was definitely having it take OA's whenever anyone closed with it.

If you are remembering correctly, it sounds like your DM screwed you (accidentally maybe) a bit and bad dice rolls screwed you the rest of the way.


DM screw:

1) The Dragon gets one standard action plus up to one Action Point standard action. That's Breath Weapon and Frightful Presence. The Dragon should not have dropped the Rogue on round one which means that nobody should have had to heal him.

2) The Dragon does not get to OA approaching foes.


Dice screw:

1) The Dragon won initiative.

2) On round two, the odds of getting the Breath Weapon back are one in three. So, the DM beat the odds there as well.

3) The PCs were missing with their Dailies.

4) The DM dropped the Rogue with the Breath Weapon combined with Dragon's Fury and the odds of doing that are only 14% with an AC 16 Reflex 16 Rogue (which I assume your Rogue is if he is first level).


Note: That Dragon gets two Action Points (both usable within an encounter), so he could have done two Breath Weapons, Frightful Presence and Dragon's Fury on rounds one and two legally. He just could not do three standard actions on round one.


The real power of Dragons is the Breath Weapon. That can make a Dragon encounter swingy. If the DM is rolling well, the Dragon gets it back many rounds and smokes PCs. If not, then the Dragon is considerably less of a threat (although still real challenging).
 

ff6shadow

First Post
This is probably my favorite thing about dragons in 4th. They actually scare parties. They aren't just big bags af meaty XP waiting to be killed with large piles of loot hidden nearby. They're an actual threat.
 

angiloth

First Post
I did this dungeon far differently...didn't feel it was adventury enough =)

In the skull skull room, I turned it into more of a gladiatorial arena
with pillars that kobolds could stand on. The 'skull skulll game' objective
was to get the skulls stuck on the rock, while the pillar kobolds tried
to knock eachother off and the rock away. I left a balcony for a kobold
announcer.

The party intruded in the middle of a game, and the objective then changed,
naturally. There was more sticky ooze everywhere (that our wizard set aflame). After the fight, the party apprehended the announcer, who declared the party the gladiatorial champions. They partied in the next room all night, and then for their 'prize' he took them to the dragon altar.

In this room, the floor beneath the dragon statue opened and the kobold announcer zipped down to become dragon food. The party opted to not follow--and violently protested when the other kobolds pulled out their spears to force them into the hole!

The adventure started off with the party retrieving a relic from Nightsong temple in Fallcrest--one prophecized to bring ruin to the town. It hatched in the middle of their intrusion---turning into a dragon-like form and flying away.

Turns out, it was a necromantically altered dragon egg, and the final
boss of my dungeon was an undead white dragon =P

Because of my extra quests and one or two extra fights, they
entered the boss fight higher level. I gave the dragon 100 extra hp, and
a 20% health insta-breath. Oh, and when he died, he blew up in purplish energy! I made the whole cavern ice-coated, so it was difficult terrain. The dragon made use of flying breath weapons, out of the parties range (the warrior countered this with mark, so he couldn't easily move/shift out of the party's range anymore).

The fight was very even, and a thrill to run and play. The party made extremely good use of tactics on our battle grid, and all used their powers
in a strategic manner. If they didn't use the 4e rules to their advantage, there was no way they could have survived. I dropped 2 or 3 pc's during the fight, but the healer was spot on.

That was my experience!
 

wujenta

First Post
My group played this as well, and we managed to beat the dragon, but at the end, only 2 of us were left standing and 2 were unconscious ... we could revive one of them, but the other died.

Party of four: a dragonborn pally, an orc fighter, a elf ranger archer and a doppleganger warlord. The dragon did not surprise us, and acted last because a very bad initiative roll. The Pally and the fighter surrounded him, one in each side, so he cant take both with the breath and the warlord in front of him, with the ranger far away (he came close one time to get the bonus from the warlord and his lead the attack and get his share of bretah weapon...so he stayed at 7 or 8 squares the rest of the fight) The orc and the dragonborn hadent used his dailys and hit with them.
The first to fall was the warlord, then the dragonborn got hit with a critical with his third breath weapon only recharged one time, the other one was when he got bloodied) and was nearly killed right there... went to -10 hp, and the orc had to use his second wind and hit with his orc racial power to survive until the end...was a close battle but we managed to beat him.
 

dbm

Adventurer
Thanks for the replies everyone. It's good to hear that some people managed to beat the dragon.

I think I was playing Threatening Reach on the creature, but to be honest it didn't make any difference as only once did the party come that close to the creature - after that they just bugged out!

I think I will arrange for them to go back with help (a new PC to replace the lost one) and recover their friend's remains. That way they should be fresher to the fight and have more of a chance. I will also correct the stats to those in the Monster Manual.

Cheers,
Dan
 

Pielorinho

Iron Fist of Pelor
That reach thing is excellent to know--I would've misplayed it also.

I did a test-run of this adventure with 5 PCs awhile ago. Nobody dropped during it: the sword-and-board fighter got off a daily that gave him +3/+3 to each attack, and marked the dragon. The dragon had to choose between attacking the fighter (who was very difficult for him to hit), or attacking someone else and suffering a whack from the fighter (who was hitting really hard). I think that fighter did more than 50% of the damage.

Other test PCs--especially the area-effect wizard--sucked during the fight. THey did almost nothing.

Angiloth, your changes sound really cool! I'm making some changes to it myself (the "dungeon" becomes an abandoned manor house with a courtyard and a few more encounter rooms; the dragon's lair is an old wine cellar in a cavern beneath the manor; and so on), but I really like what you did.

Daniel
 


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