D&D 5E Using updated Exhaustion rules in Halloween 1-shot

aco175

Legend
I'm going to run a Halloween 1-shot with some undead and such but wanted to give the final encounter some more drama. I was thinking a disease, but need it to mean something in the moment and not in 1d4 days or such. I was thinking of using the new, proposed Exhaustion rules where you get a -1 to all your crap until you get 10, then you die. I also thought -5ft movement for each odd level you have.

My current idea was having a spooky green light coming from the final area which is a crypt. I have a deathlock wight, a copper snake, and a air elemental in the room as some sort of old mage crypt for some 5th level PCs. I was thinking of having the green light come from the mage/wight crystal heart still in the coffin. Each round in the light the PCs make a save or 1 level exhaustion. I was thinking of having a way to destroy the heart and the green light stopping the penalty other than closing the lid of the coffin. I was thinking of killing the wight would end it as well. Maybe regeneration on the wight until the heart was destroyed. Direct damage to the heart?

Finally, any ideas on curing the negative levels with heal spells. The Pc spends his spell healing HP or exhaustion levels. Thoughts on the -1 penalties starting to snowball into a TPK? I can see the encounter steadily getting harder if people get to -2 or -4 to all their crap and -10ft movement.

Thank you
 

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iserith

Magic Wordsmith
My concern with this would be that missing is not as fun as hitting, so incurring an increasing penalty to attack rolls might ratchet up tension, but potentially make it less fun. It would certainly change my tactics to dealing with the gem first though, which may be the design goal of the challenge. If that's the case, I'd build some kind of exploration challenge around getting to and disabling the gem, possibly placing it up high where it's hard to reach it without flying or climbing and needing more finesse than brute force to neutralize. The monsters do their best to keep the PCs away from the gem for whatever reason makes sense.

In truth, depending on you design the challenge, the PCs might not even incur many penalties since they get a save and the combat is likely to be over before it gets into deep penalty territory. So I'm not sure you even need a way to remove the exhaustion penalties, particularly as this is a one-shot. If you think you do, consider making it a combat action to Invigorate an ally to remove one level of exhaustion by making a successful DC 15 Wisdom (Medicine) or Intelligence (Religion) check. Or something like that.
 

aco175

Legend
If you think you do, consider making it a combat action to Invigorate an ally to remove one level of exhaustion by making a successful DC 15 Wisdom (Medicine) or Intelligence (Religion) check. Or something like that.
I like this idea, thank you. I was not sure about using healing for this.
 

Rabulias

the Incomparably Shrewd and Clever
Finally, any ideas on curing the negative levels with heal spells. The Pc spends his spell healing HP or exhaustion levels. Thoughts on the -1 penalties starting to snowball into a TPK? I can see the encounter steadily getting harder if people get to -2 or -4 to all their crap and -10ft movement.
I have not thought about this much, so it might need some more thought/playtest, but maybe 1 level of exhaustion removed per level of the spell slot? Lesser restoration would remove two levels, and greater restoration would remove five levels. Maybe the restoration spells should be better than goodberry or cure wounds? Like lesser restoration removes three levels and greater restoration removes six?
 

DND_Reborn

The High Aldwin
I have not thought about this much, so it might need some more thought/playtest, but maybe 1 level of exhaustion removed per level of the spell slot? Lesser restoration would remove two levels, and greater restoration would remove five levels. Maybe the restoration spells should be better than goodberry or cure wounds? Like lesser restoration removes three levels and greater restoration removes six?
This is something we do on our 5E mod. The restoration spells restore 1 level of exhaustion per spell level, but only the highest level is removed, not multiple levels.

For example: Suppose you have 4 levels of exhaustion. A lesser restoration upcast at 4th level would remove 1 level, reducing you to 3 levels. A greater restoration (as a 5th level spell) would remove the top (4th) level of exhaustion as well, but only 1 level.

So, if you have 5 levels, it would take 5 spells to remove all 5 levels. This is meant to be a stop gap, not a cure all.
 


DND_Reborn

The High Aldwin
Do you have 10 levels of exhaustion in your game?
No, we have seven instead of six. We added 6 = Unconscious, 7 = death.

CON mod grants endurance, which is used to ignore the effects of exhaustion up to that level, but after it all effects compound. For example, if you had CON 14 (+2), you would be unaffected by the first two levels of exhaustion (dis on abil checks, half speed), but if you gained a third level (dis on attack/save), you would suffer the other prior effects as well (dis on abil checks, half speed).
 

aco175

Legend
Being a 1-shot I might not allow the exhaustion to be taken away by healing. I might just make the Con save DC a 10 which is easier for the fighters, but 50/50 for some of the others. I think once they take one or two points of exhaustion they will react to the light somehow. I will likely take any good idea on how to defeat/destroy the crystal depending on how beat up the group is.
 

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