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DMG Intro Adventure - Big Spoiler!

Xorn

First Post
re: Divine Challenge
I didn't need customer service to tell me to stop reading around the rules like a nimrod, but I'm glad they posted it.

re: Action Points
At paragon levels you can get re-rolls for spending action points, recharging encounter powers, etc.

re: Kobold/Scalegloom Hall
I ran it for four players, and forgot to scale the encounters down for them (meaning they leveled before KotS, oops), and they did great.

Dwarf Fighter (Scale & Maul)
Tiefling Warlord (Scale & Greataxe)
Halfling Rogue (Leather & Dagger)
Elf Ranger (Hide & Longbow)

The Sludge Pit: Both the fighter and warlord leaped over the pit and plowed into the skirmishers, while the rogue and ranger skirted the flank the fighter was obstructing and put ranged fire on the slingers. Between the warlord using Wolf Pack Tactics and Leaf on the Wind, he was manipulating the positioning badly, and the fight ended with the fighter and rogue flanking a slinger who was completely screwed. Suffer Sneak Attack or suffer Combat Superiority, but suffering is involved.

The Tomb:
The fighter and rogue both took darts as they tried to close into the room, but through brute force they managed to cross the room and engage the kobolds. The fighter and warlord formed a front line, while the rogue flanked and murdered them, and the ranger machine gunned the rest down with arrows from cover.

Skull-Skull!:
The fighter and warlord rushed across the room (the warlord took a nasty shot from the skull, then the fighter readied an action to hit it, shattering the stone), then crashed into the doors. They had some trouble breaking the door down with bad rolls, but the ranger and rogue (blowing action points) were tearing the minions on the walls apart and keeping the slingers occupied. The guard drakes were really nasty, but one the slingers were out of the fight the ranger applied fire to them while the rogue zipped past them, provoking OAs on purpose (granting the fighter swings at them), getting missed by the OAs (halfling with artful dodger!) then sneak attacking. It was brutal. This was probably the second hardest fight.

The Big Boss:
The boulder trap was a non-issue. It never came close to them. The drake was down by its second pass, because the ranger made it her mission to slay it. The fighter and warlord (quite the athletes) climbed the walls of the central room and dropped down among the slingers, chopping them to pieces, then climbed over the other side and dropped down to fight the wyrmpriest and dragonshields. Between the rogue and ranger doubleteaming one dragonshield, and the fighter and warlord sandwiching the wyrmpriest, this fight was over very quickly. They also blew dailies here, thinking it was the BBEG.

The True Threat:
The ranger and rogue's perception was a big help in making sure they weren't surprised. The dragon did poorly on initiative, and the fighter made a crazy dash across the room (nearly falling on the ice) to land his Steel Serpent Strike--pinning the dragon down so it couldn't move. The rogue and ranger took up cover positions on the opposite side and started ranged attacks, while the warlord charged into a flanking position. The fighter took some heavy punishment in retaliation, and the frightful presence caught both the warlord and rogue. There was an agonizing moment where the fighter almost went down, but after a second wind and inspiring word, he managed to hold on. The dragon tried to go after the rogue that was drilling him, but not only did he miss, but suffered that fighter's maul every time it did so. Unable to get away from the fighter, the ranger and rogue just delivered massive amounts of punishment.

The ranger was unscathed, but the warlord exhausted all healing, all three in melee blew their second wind, and given another round the dragon probably would have started dropping people. But they beat the dragon--said the whole game felt epic.

They started playing with 4E when the pre-release rules were put together after DDXP, and their experience with group synergy is apparent at the table. :)
 

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KarinsDad

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

My Wizard did fine with Flaming Sphere. 7-10 points of automatic damage each round (Int 20, +1 Staff) plus about a 50% chance for 8-18 more damage. That's an average of 15 points of damage per round. Even without the staff (which he had just acquired) and if he had an 18 Int instead (which many PC Wizards have), he would have averaged 11 points per round.

If all 5 PCs can average 11 points of damage per round, it would take just a bit more than 4 rounds to kill the dragon (after PCs come out of Stun from Frightful Presence).
 

Vempyre

First Post
They started playing with 4E when the pre-release rules were put together after DDXP, and their experience with group synergy is apparent at the table. :)

My thoughts exactly. Experience in how to play on each other's abilities will be what makes the difference in many fights in 4E.
 

underfoot007

First Post
You should be aware that this adventure ran as 'Scalegloom Hall' at D&DXP and a range of other preview events ... and there the true threat was a young black dragon :D

I ran it three times, no party got close to killing it (though we ran out of time with the PCs very much on the losing end of the battle on all occasions). Reports from D&DXP suggest that some parties did beat it, but I have a feeling that the encounter was written to show the range of encounter options, and that while PCs are hardy in 4e, they're far from invincible!

I think that with a little luck, a group of five 1st level characters would have a good chance of defeating a young white dragon, but it looks like luck was against your players in this battle!

I too ran "scalegloom hall" 5 times, 1 tpk and 1 table killed my black dragon. I rolled very poorly, and NEVER recharged my breath weapon. On my TPK table, i recharged often.

Also, the Dragon in "scalegloom hall" first tactic was to lead off with a "cloud of darkness". If the dragon started with a breath weapon before the PCs start to spread out, things would go much worse for the PCs.

I think APL + 2 solo monsters are tough and the dice with mean a lot in the outcome of such a combat. The white dragon is a little easier than the black from "scalegloom" .

Jon Mac
 

NeoNick

First Post
I don't know how and there must have been a lot of luck involved but our DM threw the white dragon unmodified on our group of four. We had no magic items but got lucky with our saves and the dragon's breath attack rolls. Dwarven fighter 2H axe, Hunam WIS priest, Eladrin rogue and me Elven ranger. In the end we all were down to few hitpoints but had managed to dish out the necessary 240 hp.
I still have the feeling that it easily could have gone the other way.
 

KarinsDad

First Post
I still have the feeling that it easily could have gone the other way.

And this is how tough encounters should feel.

Every tough encounter should make players feel apprehensive that it might just all go south real quick. That way if they win, it feels like they accomplished something major. If they lose, it feels like that should happen sometimes and it gives them a revenge motivation.
 

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