D&D 5E If you were the ulitharid, what would you do?

pukunui

Legend
BEWARE: DUNGEON OF THE MAD MAGE SPOILERS AWAIT BELOW!

My Dungeon of the Mad Mage group of four 15th level PCs recently made a deal with Extremiton, the ulitharid running the Alterdeep simulation on the 17th floor of Undermountain.

Having failed to defeat the githyanki twice, the PCs asked for help from the mind flayers. Extremiton agreed to provide assistance if the PCs first wiped out the githyanki besieging its front door. This the PCs did.

Now I need to figure out how much assistance Extremiton would be willing to provide. It can be difficult to role play a creature far more intelligent than yourself, and this is no exception.

I tweaked Extremiton's forces a bit, so this is what it currently has in play:

1 x neothelid
8 x orogs
10 x mind flayers
1 x mind flayer psion
4 x ettins
2 x scaladar
4 x duergar screamer
4 x duergar hammerer

Extremiton's ultimate goals are to a) transform into an elder brain and b) enslave all of Waterdeep. By assisting the PCs to defeat the githyanki, it is using one potential enemy force to defeat another. I think Extremiton would therefore want to commit enough resources to ensure a victory over the githyanki so they are no longer a threat. However, the ulitharid is smart enough (Int 21) not to over-commit, lest the PCs turn on it (which they will most likely do once the githyanki threat has been ended). It knows it needs enough troops guarding it to still pose a credible threat to the PCs.

If you were Extremiton, what would you do? Which of your minions would you consider to be expendable?
 
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aco175

Legend
The ettins and orogs are expendable since they are just meat shields. Maybe send 2-3 mind flayers with them to oversee your interests and not just waste the meat shields.
 

Zardnaar

Legend
If it's that smart maybe have it reveal information the DM knows. This can have a mechanical effect (eg advantage) or tactical (strike at dawn).

Alternatively add a portal/secret door/secret passage that's not in the adventure to reflect its tactical acumen.

How do you fail at level 16 lol?
 

pukunui

Legend
How do you fail at level 16 lol?
I've been playing the githyanki smart. I've also been using the MotM version of the githyanki gish. They pack a real punch with their 3 x 8d6 damage Telekinetic Bolts. I've also made some good use of some of the other MotM githyanki (I'm using the MotM version of the supreme commander for the githyanki leader). And the githyanki have multiple young red dragons and a big mama adult red with spells.
 

Zardnaar

Legend
I've been playing the githyanki smart. I've also been using the MotM version of the githyanki gish. They pack a real punch with their 3 x 8d6 damage Telekinetic Bolts. I've also made some good use of some of the other MotM githyanki (I'm using the MotM version of the supreme commander for the githyanki leader). And the githyanki have multiple young red dragons and a big mama adult red with spells.

"Scribbles notes"

Sounds like a variation of my pack of hell hounds trick (CR3 7d6 breath weapon) for mid levels PCs.
 


Stormonu

Legend
Send the meat shields, and no more than one Mind Flayer as an observer/overseer. The Mind Flayer provides oversight of the meat shields and can provide advice and non-combat aid to the party (unless pressed or its life is threatened). Secretly, that Mind Flayer has been given a jar or other object with illithid tadpoles (at least one per PC). If a PC falls in battle or is otherwise incapcitated, the Mind Flayer can stablize the PC and covertly slip a tadpole into them. It can attempt to coax the party into leaving the individual as dead, or that the only option to avoid death is to "upgrade" the individual into a Mind Flayer (passing it off as their version of the reincarnation spell), or use some covert means to conceal the individual's transformation into another Mind Flayer (perhaps the transformation causes a sort of cocoon to form, and the Mind Flayer attempts to convince the party the individual inside is regenerating their wounds). Once the party is covertly whittled down to half strength or less, the remainder can be ambushed and transformed.
 

TheSword

Legend
BEWARE: DUNGEON OF THE MAD MAGE SPOILERS AWAIT BELOW!

My Dungeon of the Mad Mage group of four 15th level PCs recently made a deal with Extremiton, the ulitharid running the Alterdeep simulation on the 17th floor of Undermountain.

Having failed to defeat the githyanki twice, the PCs asked for help from the mind flayers. Extremiton agreed to provide assistance if the PCs first wiped out the githyanki besieging its front door. This the PCs did.

Now I need to figure out how much assistance Extremiton would be willing to provide. It can be difficult to role play a creature far more intelligent than yourself, and this is no exception.

I tweaked Extremiton's forces a bit, so this is what it currently has in play:

1 x neothelid
8 x orogs
10 x mind flayers
1 x mind flayer psion
4 x ettins
2 x scaladar
4 x duergar screamer
4 x duergar hammerer

Extremiton's ultimate goals are to a) transform into an elder brain and b) enslave all of Waterdeep. By assisting the PCs to defeat the githyanki, it is using one potential enemy force to defeat another. I think Extremiton would therefore want to commit enough resources to ensure a victory over the githyanki so they are no longer a threat. However, the ulitharid is smart enough (Int 21) not to over-commit, lest the PCs turn on it (which they will most likely do once the githyanki threat has been ended). It knows it needs enough troops guarding it to still pose a credible threat to the PCs.

If you were Extremiton, what would you do? Which of your minions would you consider to be expendable?
You could have Extremiton accompany the PCs as a projected illusion and seemingly oversee the minions in person. He can advise comment but at no risk to himself. Spell lasts a day.
 

aco175

Legend
You could just tell the players that he will get aid to meet them there when it is needed. If it is not needed, then he betrayed the PCs and can just tell then that they did not need it and he will save aid for another time. If the PCs need the aid, you can send in something to reinforce them for the encounter and the players will think it is from him.

This way you get to scare the players with a TPK, but have an escape in your pocket in case.
 

J-H

Hero
I agree that he will generally commit up to half his meatshields to the battle.
He also has awareness of the location of all creatures within 2 miles, and should be able to vector his forces to kill any individual scouting githyanki and guide the party past any guard posts so they can make a surprise attack.

On top of that, he has Scrying, Dominate Monster, and Mass Suggestion. If there are any other factions or monsters available, he could probably peel off one or two strong but mentally weak creatures to send at the githyanki at no cost to himself.

He'd probably also try to grab an isolated dragon to convert into an illithidragon, or whatever they are called. Plenty of upside in getting some draconic minions.
 

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