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4E Underneath the Undeath [DM: Voda Vosa; Judge: ?]

Dekana

Villager
Ilse walks to Alek and kneels down to speak to him. She speaks softly to his corpse, her face melancholy.

"I'm sorry... I wish we could take you back with us, but we need to hurry out before the skeletons return. At least we can give you a burial here, thanks to the explosives. ... Farewell."

She then prepares to light the explosives once everyone is ready to run.
 

Voda Vosa

Villager
The group sets the charges on the pillars, and takes cover behind the turn in the mine.
The explosion shakes the whole mine, mortar falling from the ceiling, and a couple of rocks sliding to the floor. A cloud of dust envelopes the party a split second later, making it impossible to see and almost breath. As the dust settles down, the group moves to the room again. The above portion of the room had collapsed, and a golden bounty of gold and treasures is scattered among the rubble. The group moves to capitalize their deeds, but as they gather a few items, the mine shudders again. Seems like the structure won't hold for long. Almost immediately, part of the roof of the corridor starts collapsing!
The group must make a swift escape before they get buried alive!

Still-from-Iron-Maidens-F-005.jpg

The final skill challenge: Greedy escape!

This will be a bit complicated:
Your goal is to escape alive, for that you must run for your lives and get out of the mine before it collapses on your head. You can use either athletic, acrobatic or endurance each round to see how much you run, how much rocks you dodge, or how do you endure the rocks that fall on your head! Additional skills can grant you bonuses if you explain their use good.
The greedy part is this: You had time to grab 3 items and your share of gold (time gold+reward gold) before the mine started shaking. These items impose no penalty, however, you can choose to grab more items and gold, but that will not only delay your escape, but also will weight you down, imposing a penalty to your main rolls. Each additional item you grab will be a -1, each 500 gp you grab will be a -1 as well, and they are cumulative and affect all your main rolls.
Main DC are 16, you need to get 6 successes. For each failure on a main skill roll, you loose one item or 200 gp, determined by you.
 

WEContact

Villager
OOC: So wait, even if we don't try to get any bonus treasure we have to pass 6 consecutive moderate/hard skill checks just to keep the adventure's base gold reward? Or will we be getting the expected gold per level at the end of the adventure when Vermitrax gives us our cut of the treasure from the lich's mausoleum? If the latter is the case that's fine, but if not then this skill challenge needs to be way easier. A moderate DC for a L1 PC is 12, none of us are going to make 6 in a row, and few of us will make more than half of them. Poor Ilse.

That said there's one other thing I don't understand: How much is (time gold+reward gold)? When you say items, do you mean magic items? Can we choose which magic items we grab? I assume they can't be over our level+4?
 

jbear

Villager
[sblock=OOC]I have a slight problem with this. But first a question:

Do you mean each of us need to make six separate skill rolls each? Or 1 each as a group?

As written it makes more sense that you are asking us to make 6 rolls each, otherwise this would only last 1 round as there are 6 characters left in the game (although only 4 players).

So assuming you mean for this to last 6 rounds with each of us making a roll each round lets look at the maths:

1) Each of us would be engaging in an individual complexity 2 skill challenge (6 successes needed).
2) The typical DCs for this type of challenge FOR A GROUP is 5 moderate; 1 difficult
3) DC 16 is a MODERATE DC for level 7 & 8 characters
4) So each of us is basically engaging in a Level 7 complexity 2 challenge which would be worth 600 xp each
5) My character has training in one of those main skills giving him +7 endurance; No other skills make sense in helping out this bonus. So we are talking about a 55% chance of rolling a success each turn; Which means a 45% chance to fail, greater if I take extra loot. Even if I take no loot I have a very high chance of losing treasure which by L4W rules is due to my character no matter what happens.
6) My character is level 3, so I am better off than everyone else, and I am not looking too good.
7) Pg. 26 of Rules Compendium: "In group checks or when every adventurer in the party is expected to attempt a given skill check, particularly when no one necessarily has training, an easy DC is the standard choice for the scenario."
8) If there was danger Boris would left before the explosion, never seeing the fallen treasure. He would have made it out safely easily. He would expect treasure from Vermitrax upon his return. I would expect the same amount of treasure we could potentially lose at the end of the adventure with NO RISK of losing it.
9) If following the Rules Compendiums guidelines, Easy DC 16 would be a lvl 16 skill challenge...

So I guess it is more than a slight problem.

I will wait for your reply before engaging in the challenge.
[/sblock]
 

WEContact

Villager
OOC: I want to add, and I think @jbear would agree, (we always seem to agree on things anyways) that we're by no means unhappy with your DMing, and this is a cool idea that could be a lot more fun than "the party leaves here is your gold/exp." Skill challenges are hard to put together well, though, and in this case things turned out pretty unfair for us PCs. We don't want you to scrap it, just lower the stakes and tweak it so that there's a better chance to succeed. Maybe set a hard minimum for how much treasure we come out with (perhaps by having this challenge just be for bonus gold, and pay out the time gold+adventure reward when we meet up with Vermitrax), lower the amount of treasure we can take, and lower the DC to 10 or 12?

We can divide the treasure we carry out evenly amongst ourselves afterwards so that player disparities don't matter so much, ie so Ilse doesn't wind up getting way less treasure than Boris. :)
 

Voda Vosa

Villager
Or will we be getting the expected gold per level at the end of the adventure when Vermitrax gives us our cut of the treasure from the lich's mausoleum?
This, you will only loose additional gold or magic items.
That said there's one other thing I don't understand: How much is (time gold+reward gold)? When you say items, do you mean magic items? Can we choose which magic items we grab? I assume they can't be over our level+4?
Yes you can choose from any magic item on your wishlist.

Do you mean each of us need to make six separate skill rolls each?
This


4) So each of us is basically engaging in a Level 7 complexity 2 challenge which would be worth 600 xp each Aha
5) My character has training in one of those main skills giving him +7 endurance; No other skills make sense in helping out this bonus.
You can use whatever skill to aid yourself or the party, just be creative and you can get a free +2 bonus, there is no penalty for a failed aid roll. I forgot to add this to the skill challenge description, but if you want to aid the whole party, increase the DC from 10 to 12.
6) My character is level 3, so I am better off than everyone else, and I am not looking too good.
No, because you don't have a main trained skill for the challenge. But with a +2 from aid rolls you'll do good.
7) Pg. 26 of Rules Compendium: "In group checks or when every adventurer in the party is expected to attempt a given skill check, particularly when no one necessarily has training, an easy DC is the standard choice for the scenario." Well, this is by no means a standard scenario.
8) If there was danger Boris would left before the explosion, never seeing the fallen treasure. He would have made it out safely easily. He would expect treasure from Vermitrax upon his return. I would expect the same amount of treasure we could potentially lose at the end of the adventure with NO RISK of losing it.
I disagree, even if you didn't collect treasure, you would have save yourself one roll at best, and would get no magic items. You can if you want leave the others setting the charge as you make your way out, you would still get gold.



OOC: I want to add, and I think @jbear would agree, (we always seem to agree on things anyways) that we're by no means unhappy with your DMing, and this is a cool idea that could be a lot more fun than "the party leaves here is your gold/exp." Skill challenges are hard to put together well, though, and in this case things turned out pretty unfair for us PCs. We don't want you to scrap it, just lower the stakes and tweak it so that there's a better chance to succeed. Maybe set a hard minimum for how much treasure we come out with (perhaps by having this challenge just be for bonus gold, and pay out the time gold+adventure reward when we meet up with Vermitrax), lower the amount of treasure we can take, and lower the DC to 10 or 12?

We can divide the treasure we carry out evenly amongst ourselves afterwards so that player disparities don't matter so much, ie so Ilse doesn't wind up getting way less treasure than Boris. :)
I appreciate the compliment, I was never good at being constrained by rules, and love skill challenges since they give a lot of creative alternatives for cinematic scenes. There are several options for this encounter, so I will not lower the difficulty. Mainly, you can use the gold you grab for safety reasons, remember they impose a -1 for each 500 stack you grab, but you can save yourself from a fail roll with a 200 stack. Supporting cast (Zaroch and Kurnos) will be trying to aid the group, providing +2 bonuses. Unless everyone rolls horribly, I think you can capitalize and get a huge amount of magic items of your choice.
 

WEContact

Villager
This, you will only loose additional gold or magic items.
OOC: Well that's totally fine then


Chambers spends a few extra moments gathering likely looking booty, and makes for the exit. He and Kurnos lead the way, keeping a sharp eye out for warning signs of additional cave-ins, while Zaroch relies on his recollection of this mine and his knowledge of its construction to keep the party from making wrong turns or finding dead ends.

OOC: Group Aid Anothers DC 12:
Kurnos, Perception 15
Zaroch, History 18

Chambers, Perception 15

Chambers Round 1 Athletics Check (-4 extra items): 21, PASS
 
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jbear

Villager
Unable to resist the temptation of the treasure horde, Boris had also snatched a stack of gold and a pair of magical trinkets. "Keep your heads. Stick together. Fear is your worst enemy, Panic is a step towards death. A calm mind is your only true ally when death stalks near" roars Boris, intoning one of the mantras of the Crimson Legion over the terrible noise of the groaning stone behind them his voice a river over tranquillity that washes over his companions.

[sblock=OOC] I had understood that the NPC's would have to beat the challenge as well. If base wealth isn't in danger it's all good. Let's see how it plays out. Group Aid option makes it very feasible.

Round 1
Boris takes 1 x 500 stack and 2 x extra Magic items accepting a -3 penalty to rolls.

3 Group aids so far this round = +6 bonus
Boris will use Diplomacy to calm panic and clear heads as his aid group roll: 12 vs DC 12 = Success
Group bonus now at +8; -3 Treasure, so Endurance +7+8-3 = 1d20+12= 18=Success
[/sblock]
 

Dekana

Villager
Ilse has a hard enough time dodging the falling rocks as it is; she doesn't try to scoop up any extra treasure. As she dashes toward the exit, she tries to lift the group's spirits. "The undead couldn't stop us, and these boulders aren't going to either!" (Well, perhaps Alek would disagree.)

OOC: Group aid: Diplomacy 28 succeeds. (1d20+10)

Main roll 1: Athletics 29 succeeds. (1d20+5+8 aid)
 

facusm

Villager
"Impo took a lot of risk to get the Amut treasure, Impo is not going to rush" Impo takes money and a lot of objects. "All of you, if you want to live follow Impo, Impo has his own path and knows pretty well this cave" Impo starts to run.


OOC: Impo took 1 x 500 stack and 3 x extra Magic items. So -4 penalty to rolls.



[sblock=Action]
Group Aid: Nature (12) succeeds. (LinK://invisiblecastle.com/roller/view/4194725/)

Main Roll: Athletics (22) succeeds. (LinK://invisiblecastle.com/roller/view/4194728/)
[/sblock]
 

Voda Vosa

Villager
The group manages to avoid the worst of the collapse. They turn a corridor before it collapses after them, showering them in a cloud of dust and rock particles! The adventurers, weighted down by the loot keep running and taking the shortest turns. The ceiling above their heads starts to dislodge again and they have to press on again!

[sblock=OOC]
Everyone pass this time! A new round of rolls. Remember Group aid another last for the round they are rolled.
Facusm, is Impo speaking about the tunnel he came from?
I like this peace people, lets keep it up so we can warp this out.
[/sblock]
 

WEContact

Villager
OOC: So since I went first, do everyone's Aid Another bonuses affect me this round, or affect my check last round retroactively?


Chambers glances back to see how the others are doing. So far their luck was holding: Zaroch's recollection of the mine had led them to no dead ends, and he and Kurnos had successfully spotted every sinkhole and impending cave-in that might otherwise have caught the others. Chambers himself wasn't particularly hale or hearty, but he possessed a wiry strength that this far had served to keep his legs pumping. He grits his teeth and hefts his heavy pack of riches.

OOC: Group Aid Anothers DC 12:
Kurnos, Perception 28
Zaroch, History 1
6
Chambers, Perception 16

Chambers Round 1 Athletics Check (-4 extra items): 27, PASS
 
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Voda Vosa

Villager
They affect retroactively. So if anyone seems to fail a check, wait to see the results of the aid another. Did you just copy paste your reply from last round? I won't allow any aid another bonus with that kind of attitude =P I hope you are planing on editing.
 

WEContact

Villager
They affect retroactively. So if anyone seems to fail a check, wait to see the results of the aid another. Did you just copy paste your reply from last round? I won't allow any aid another bonus with that kind of attitude =P I hope you are planing on editing.
OOC: I copied and pasted the post, but linked to new rolls and changed the results to match those new rolls. Oh I did forget to rewrite the description part, whoops!
 

jbear

Villager
Sensing the necrotic energies from above seeping through and befuddling his mind, confusing his movements, Boris called upon his training in the ways of Ioun to clear his thoughts. Sensing the others were feeling the same cold grip, he projected that magical calm out towards his companions as he followed the minotaur through the maze.

[sblock=Actions]
Aid group 25 vs DC 12 Success
Endurance 23 vs DC 16 Success (Group bonuses not needed this round)
[/sblock]
 

Dekana

Villager
Ilse realizes that if anyone loses focus at a time like this, it could be the end of them. She tries to soothe peoples nerves: "This isn't so hard after all... Nothing to worry about, eh?"

Just at that moment, a rock dislodges from the ceiling a few paces in front of Ilse. She doesn't notice it coming!


OOC: Group aid: Diplomacy 20 succeeds. (1d20+10)


Main roll 2: Athletics 14 fails, but will pass if one more person makes an aid another check this round. (1d20+5+4 aid)
 

WEContact

Villager
OOC: Aid bonus so far is +8 (Kurnos, Zaroch, Chambers, Boris) so unless you picked up a lot of treasure you're good!
 

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