5E Princes of the Apocalypse campaign recaps

Nebulous

Adventurer
Ok, so I added a Con save at the smoke portals or gain a level of Exhaustion. This is one of the few times I've used 5e Exhaustion rules, and they can be quite devastating. Unfortunately, the smoke routed the PCs any direction that DIDN'T have smoke. Well, i won't say unfortunately, it's fine, but they're about to get into a spot where they can't avoid the smoke and will be forced to pass through it. I'm considering that multiple frequent passages through smoke will instigate stacking Exhaustion penalties. Assuming they fail the save which is fairly low, but a bad roll will do it.

Yeah, they hate the Fane. In a good way.
 

Nebulous

Adventurer
ALSO...and this is a big change from the campaign as written, and something touched on with others in this thread months ago, the Fane of the Eye also (IMC) has the 5th secret Cult of the Eye, a triad of undead drow.

And they're sons of bitches. WAY out of the PCs level range to combat.
 

andrew

Villager
Ok, so I added a Con save at the smoke portals or gain a level of Exhaustion. This is one of the few times I've used 5e Exhaustion rules, and they can be quite devastating.
We're using exhaustion to supplement the death rules. Anytime someone drops unconscious, it adds a level of exhaustion. So when the front-line fighter is dropped to 0 hp and the cleric heals him, the fighter suffers some from the brush with death.

I like your use of exhaustion in the Fane. That really adds to the creepiness of the place.
 

andrew

Villager
ALSO...and this is a big change from the campaign as written, and something touched on with others in this thread months ago, the Fane of the Eye also (IMC) has the 5th secret Cult of the Eye, a triad of undead drow.

And they're sons of bitches. WAY out of the PCs level range to combat.
Have you replaced the prophet in the Fane with the Cult of the Eye or will the PCs still encounter the 2nd prophet there as written?

I also have a 5th cult (really an overcult) and have struggled with how to handle them after the defeat of the 1st prophet.

My current thinking is that after the 1st prophet is defeated, the 3 remaining prophets head to their respective portals. The PCs will have an opportunity to stop one mid-ritual (as written), stop another after summoning a prince (as written), while the final prophet successfully summons a prince who proceeds to the Fane and the Temple of the Elder Elemental Eye.

The PCs will then have an opportunity to prevent the final prince from completing his own summoning ritual at the stone ziggurat.
 

Nebulous

Adventurer
Have you replaced the prophet in the Fane with the Cult of the Eye or will the PCs still encounter the 2nd prophet there as written?

I also have a 5th cult (really an overcult) and have struggled with how to handle them after the defeat of the 1st prophet.

My current thinking is that after the 1st prophet is defeated, the 3 remaining prophets head to their respective portals. The PCs will have an opportunity to stop one mid-ritual (as written), stop another after summoning a prince (as written), while the final prophet successfully summons a prince who proceeds to the Fane and the Temple of the Elder Elemental Eye.

The PCs will then have an opportunity to prevent the final prince from completing his own summoning ritual at the stone ziggurat.
I will probably replace the prophet with the 5th cult of the Eye trio.
 

Uller

Explorer
So this happened last night. Four 9th level PCs vs Bronzefume. I gave her some lair actions, 2 uses of legendary resistance and 253 hp. The monk got washed out into the lake but that whole running on water thing made that not a big deal. The paladin couldn't be moved because he looted armor with the unyielding trait. They summoned an earth elemental to help out. With a 20 AC it was a tough nut to crack. Storm sphere was practically useless (since it requires attack rolls and str saves). The monk did a whopping 8 damage the entire fight. The paladin did most of the damage but half of that was after the wizard polymorphed him into a t-rex because one more round of pummeling from bronzefume would have put him down. The next most damage was probably the warlock, mainly through his summoned earth elemental. The wizard, after stormsphere, Polymorph and cone of cold had to resort to magic missiles to do some damage. Bronzefume's breath weapon never recharged and I was nice. Really she should have breathed, backed into the lake, wait for recharge, repeat but I decided she probably had never met humans that could really hurt her. So I decided she would attack until they blooded her. Once she was badly hurt I was going to have her retreat but she lost initiative (we use an alternate init rule and roll new initiative every round)...one round of good rolls and they finished her off.

uploadfromtaptalk1457616230545.jpg

Also down in the fane they sent the warlock's ferret to scout a room occupied by an air myrmidon. It asked the ferret "Whom do you serve?" The ferret answered "Zsolt!" (the name of its master) The myrmidon smashed it.
 

Uller

Explorer
My group met the Grell last night too. The monk noticed the foot path on the shelf fungi and she also noticed the grell's tentacles reaching down to grab the warlock...so she ran up the wall and punched it in its giant brain and knocked it out! After only doing 8 total damge to the dragonturtle, she was pleased.
 

Nebulous

Adventurer
I like that different people post their experiences in this thread and we can discuss options. Makes our games better
 

Rabbitbait

Explorer
Here's the latest update in my game: https://deathgrind.obsidianportal.com/adventure-log/making-a-splash

There's a missing bit which I added to the previous log where they manage to escape the water temple (just) and make their way down the river to Rivergard Keep.

After the events in this log, my players have their confidence that they can actually take on some of the baddies and win. They have also realised that they are now unlikely to get any assistance from the authorities and that if they don't take action then bad things will happen. I suspect a good part of the next session will be the players planning what to do next.
 

Rabbitbait

Explorer
Thanks for the idea [MENTION=31465]Nebulous[/MENTION]

I'm all ready for next week. They have been down this way once before. Things will be different this time - the enemy are prepared.

Capture.JPG
 

Rabbitbait

Explorer
And here is the adventure log from a few days ago:

https://deathgrind.obsidianportal.com/adventure-log/everybody-was-kung-fu-fighting

In this adventure, the group took on the Sacred Stone Monastery and won. In the party there is a monk, they were fighting monks, and the party member who had been taken by the earthcult and brainwashed was also there, and he was being trained as a monk.

Everybody was Kung-Fu fighting.

From utter paranoia before because every time they played a kick-in-the-door style of game they ended up being routed, the group are now being more careful about their tactics and finding they are winning. That's why I have upped the ante a bit, as now the temple dwellers are aware they are coming and have prepared for them. Of course they may choose not to go downstairs. I hope they do go downstairs though, it's always interesting watching how a party gets out of (or overcomes) a potentially unwinnable situation.
 

Nebulous

Adventurer
WELL, they did what I was afraid they'd do, they blew past all the side encounters in the Black Geode and made it to Marlos. We couldn't finish the fight, had to stop half way, but that goddamned sorcerer, her critting twinned Chromatic orbs is destroying just about everything...
 

Uller

Explorer
Don't forget that polymorph is a concentration spell. My group cast it on the monk to turn her into a t-rex when she gets low on hp but in one case the wizard got hit by a spear from an ogre and failed his concentration save leaving the monk with 10 hp right in the thick of it.
 

Nebulous

Adventurer
Don't forget that polymorph is a concentration spell. My group cast it on the monk to turn her into a t-rex when she gets low on hp but in one case the wizard got hit by a spear from an ogre and failed his concentration save leaving the monk with 10 hp right in the thick of it.
yes, we often use colored tabs to indicate which PCs and enemies are using concentration.
 

THEMNGMNT

Explorer
Awesome finale. I would suggest letting your players get an easy win in the Air Node to raise their morale. Earth Node seems to have been a bit of a grind. Then you can utterly crush them in the two remaining nodes.
 

Nebulous

Adventurer
Awesome finale. I would suggest letting your players get an easy win in the Air Node to raise their morale. Earth Node seems to have been a bit of a grind. Then you can utterly crush them in the two remaining nodes.
My friend, those were my thoughts EXACTLY :)
 

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