D&D Encounters: Beyond the Crystal Cave

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Season 7 of D&D Encounters begins on Wednesday, November 16. To get an early look at what's coming up next season, see D&D Encounters: Beyond the Crystal Cave – Preview at Dungeon's Master.com.

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Awesome. Thanks for the preview! Will have to restrain myself from rereading the original module in advance...

How did everyone fare on the Nov 30 session?  Both tables TPK'd in short time, here. 


How did everyone fare on the Nov 30 session?  Both tables TPK'd in short time, here. 


Two unconscious PCs (temporarily) but no deaths.  My hat goes off to my players ... excellent teamwork and smart use of monster knowledge checks, etc.  And not one PC or monster scored a single critical hit, that's weird.

OD&D, 1E and 2E challenged the player. 3E challenged the character, not the player. Now 4E takes it a step further by challenging a GROUP OF PLAYERS to work together as a TEAM. That's why I love 4E.

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"Challenge" is overrated.  "Immersion" is usually just a more pretentious way of saying "having fun playing D&D."

"Falling down is how you grow.  Staying down is how you die.  It's not what happens to you, it's what you do after it happens.”

I very nearly wiped the floor with my party, with every PC bloodied at least once, a couple of them went below zero (one even did so twice). And this was before they damaged the Ochre Jelly enough for it to split.
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Another TPK at my table, though we were rolling real bad and the DM was hitting us hard right off the bat. I think the first two rounds nobody rolled higher than a 5, while we all got hit in a burst attack, including a crit that killed an animal companion. Both of the heals from my skald aura were used in the first two rounds, which was good because I dropped the next round, and due to the slides and minions cutting me off, nobody got in a good position to ever try to heal me again.

Once the jelly showed up it made things real hard to stay up. We had two different people get healed after dropping, then get dropped again their next turn due to the ongoing damage from the jelly or auto damage from the echoes.
At my FLGS, the other table tpked.  At my table, one player and myself died.  My death was due to lack of surges.
I only managed to knock one player unconscious, but he barely had time to hit the floor before he was revived.  Finished with all 5 of my players bloodied but successful.  Surges are holding out, but the only defender (a berserker)will be a bit low going into session 3

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What did you guys face in the encounter?

 Any Edition

Field report for D&D Encounters: Beyond the Crystal Cave (Week 2) on Dungeon's Master.com. It was a really tough week for the PCs.

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At my FLGS, the other table tpked.  At my table, one player and myself died.  My death was due to lack of surges.



lack of surges ? in session 2 ?? how ???

on topic, at my FLGS, we had 3 tables:
table1: 1 actual death, 5 KOs, 1 PC standing (out of 6 PCs)
table2: 3 KOs, 3 PCs standing (out of 6)
table3: 8 KOs, 4 PCs standing (out of 7)

afterword, us 3 DMs conferred and exchanged notes. we agreed, by far the toughest encounter since season 2. 
Bane of Gnomes. "An angel of snuggles is a bad match for evil gods." -Mike Mearls (Worlds&Monsters, p.72)
While a lot of people had problems with this encounter, all three tables at my FLGS managed to survive the battle.  Which is interesting, since two of those tables had barely managed to survive last week's encounter!

My table managed to clean up, despite not being a well-optimized bunch.  Our Defender got her 50 damage though, mostly due to a lack of focus-fire.  This kind of irritated me a little- my character was dealing out radiant damage every turn to the echo ghost (whatever it's actually called), which had proved it was serious threat.

But the instant the ooze showed up, most of the party suddenly ran over to attack it, which boggled my mind, leaving me and the Hexblade to deal with the ghost-thing.  We still won, but we could have burned less resources doing so (the Hexblade ended up using his Daily, Hellfire Blast, to finish off the ghost and it's copies).

Our group: 

Shade Chaos Sorcerer
Minotaur Brawler Fighter
Half-Elf Infernal Hexblade
Eladrin Inspiring Warlord (Lazy Build)
Eladrin Hybrid Blackguard/Binder
? Protector Druid (He just joined our group, so I didn't catch his race; I was too impressed by his pet Displacer Beast to notice!)                   
"You can always judge a man by the quality of his enemies." -The Doctor, Remembrance of the Daleks
My table TPKed and the other had at least one PC go down (I didn't get to see the end of their fight because we had to split so my wife could get to her third shift job). They finally managed to take out the spirit but only managed to do 12 damage to the flan before the last PC went down. The general consensus at the store was that it was not a level 1 encounter.

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WoW the party I was in managed to get through the cave without encountering the ghost. For us it was a really short session. I do know the other tables had problems though.
The group I was in had a similar "what the heck" experience with the ghost and jelly encounter. The DM eventually just had the jelly -go away- because the store was closing and it was taking that long to deal with it after finally offing the ghost. The party also got crammed into the entrance, and we quickly had no reason to actually stay in the room.
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      The only way to avoid the ghost is to bribe the DM.  Encounters are heavily railroad and the ghost was very much right on the tracks. 
     Now we have 3 tables I can report on, and all three won, not easily, but without great danger of their demise. 
      The only way to avoid the ghost is to bribe the DM.  Encounters are heavily railroad and the ghost was very much right on the tracks. 
     Now we have 3 tables I can report on, and all three won, not easily, but without great danger of their demise. 



Or do loads of checks be-fore you go into the cave, then check around as you progress. You enter a cave with bones and chewd up bits of bodies, and unatural echo's. What do you do, get outta there, so we did met an oracle and then the encounter ended. No bribery involved.

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Sorry, I didn't mean to offend.
      The only way to avoid the ghost is to bribe the DM.  Encounters are heavily railroad and the ghost was very much right on the tracks. 
     Now we have 3 tables I can report on, and all three won, not easily, but without great danger of their demise. 



Or do loads of checks be-fore you go into the cave, then check around as you progress. You enter a cave with bones and chewd up bits of bodies, and unatural echo's. What do you do, get outta there, so we did met an oracle and then the encounter ended. No bribery involved.


      GM charity or incompetence, whether caused by bribe, threat, or other factor remains the only explanation that makes any sense.  Getting out of there means abandoning the mission.  You had to go by the ghost to reach the next encounter.  Sneaking past is pretty much box texted out, and close to impossible anyway, and runs right into the ooze, at which point the combat would summons the ghost even if you had gotten past him some way. 
Field report for D&D Encounters: Beyond the Crystal Cave (Week 3) now available at Dungeon's Master.com. Check out our D&D Encoutners Archive for weekly write-ups, actual play podcasts and new pre-generated characters.

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Very close to a TPK here. The first burst bloodied my poor little Pixie Ranger. Ouch. This was not an easy encounter, but it was fun. I'm looking forward to next week.
You guys should really be posting these in the forums for the Encounters Season that you can find ..... HERE
You guys should really be posting these in the forums for the Encounters Season that you can find ..... HERE

Thanks for posting this link. I have reposted my comments there.


I've been running D&D Encounters for 7 seasons and never knew this forum existed. How would someone find this through navigation from the Wizards homepage? I tried working backwards, but without the link you provided I still have no idea how to get to the forum. I have bookmarked, but I'm wondering how many others (like me) could use this forum if only they knew it existed.

Visit Dungeon's Master.com – The D&D Resource Blog For DMs and Players.
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Follow me on Twitter @ameron_dm

It is the forums for the D&D group. The one you see at the top of the list if you click groups at the top of the forum page (also the one at the top if you click community from the main site).
Why can't I post in this thread, Session 4 Field Report: Soryth arrives!