Tactics 101:When the door opens, who to kill first

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Ok, this is a super basic question but is there a general rule of thumb for targeting/elimination of monsters by role?

I could see controllers generally having a strategy like:
1) Deny movement to monsters entering combat
2) Kill minions
3) status effects on biggest/baddest monster left

And everyone else something: like kill in the following order:
1) Artillery
2) Leaders 
3) Lurkers/Soldiers

Our group usually goes after whoever drops AoE's on us and then focuses on getting flanks on, but we could definitely be more strategic...  Interested also in any comments on how to prioritize Elites in certain roles, especially in a mixed group with artillery and an Elite who plays a different role.

thanks! 
A typical encounter for my group is:

Wizard goes for the minions first. (his deny movement spells tend to be dailys) then soften up targets as we call them.

Rouge goes for the nearest mob and works for the kill, unless the Paladin gets into trouble, then we go for the flank while the bard and wizard work traffic control.

Bard provides artilary support with some deny movement and penalties for extra flavor. Also keeps the Paladin and Rouge in fighting shape if things get tough.

Paldin (me) Almost always intially target the closest for a (hopefully) quick takedown. Then focus on distracting the biggest problem, usually the leader or artillery untill the the rest of the party can help out.  
For my group, priority is:

Obvious leader-y looking thing > controller > artillery > soldiers/brutes.

Minions are the controllers specialty, and he takes care of them almost exclusively, so they're pretty much separate.

Your friendly neighborhood Revenant Minotaur Half-Blooded Dragonborn Fighter Hybrid Barbarian Multiclassing into Warlord

IMAGE(http://pwp.wizards.com/1223957875/Scorecards/Landscape.png)

Usually, kill the elites/solos last, if we can figure out which they are, but this isn't always the best way to go if they're particularly leadery elites/solos.
Harrying your Prey, the Easy Way: A Hunter's Handbook - the first of what will hopefully be many CharOp efforts on my part. The Blinker - teleport everywhere. An Eladrin Knight/Eldritch Knight. CB != rules source.
"Foolsss...kill the one in the dress!"  -  Lord Victor Nefarius
D&D Next = D&D: Quantum Edition
Strikers -> Low HP people first (excluding minions).
Contollers -> Whoever they can stall most effectivly, or minons if they can get a few.
Defenders -> Who ever isn't stalled.
Leaders -> Just let other's do their jobs.

guides
List of no-action attacks.
Dynamic vs Static Bonuses
Phalanx tactics and builds
Crivens! A Pictsies Guide Good
Power
s to intentionally miss with
Mr. Cellophane: How to be unnoticed
Way's to fire around corners
Crits: what their really worth
Retroactive bonus vs Static bonus.
Runepriest handbook & discussion thread
Holy Symbols to hang around your neck
Ways to Gain or Downgrade Actions
List of bonuses to saving throws
The Ghost with the Most (revenant handbook)
my builds
F-111 Interdictor Long (200+ squares) distance ally teleporter. With some warlord stuff. Broken in a plot way, not a power way.

Thought Switch Higher level build that grants upto 14 attacks on turn 1. If your allies play along, it's broken.

Elven Critters Crit op with crit generation. 5 of these will end anything. Broken.

King Fisher Optimized net user.  Moderate.

Boominator Fun catch-22 booming blade build with either strong or completely broken damage depending on your reading.

Very Distracting Warlock Lot's of dazing and major penalties to hit. Overpowered.

Pocket Protector Pixie Stealth Knight. Maximizing the defender's aura by being in an ally's/enemy's square.

Yakuza NinjIntimiAdin: Perma-stealth Striker that offers a little protection for ally's, and can intimidate bloodied enemies. Very Strong.

Chargeburgler with cheese Ranged attacks at the end of a charge along with perma-stealth. Solid, could be overpowered if tweaked.

Void Defender Defends giving a penalty to hit anyone but him, then removing himself from play. Can get somewhat broken in epic.

Scry and Die Attacking from around corners, while staying hidden. Moderate to broken, depending on the situation.

Skimisher Fly in, attack, and fly away. Also prevents enemies from coming close. Moderate to Broken depending on the enemy, but shouldn't make the game un-fun, as the rest of your team is at risk, and you have enough weaknesses.

Indestructible Simply won't die, even if you sleep though combat.  One of THE most abusive character in 4e.

Sir Robin (Bravely Charge Away) He automatically slows and pushes an enemy (5 squares), while charging away. Hard to rate it's power level, since it's terrain dependent.

Death's Gatekeeper A fun twist on a healic, making your party "unkillable". Overpowered to Broken, but shouldn't actually make the game un-fun, just TPK proof.

Death's Gatekeeper mk2, (Stealth Edition) Make your party "unkillable", and you hidden, while doing solid damage. Stronger then the above, but also easier for a DM to shut down. Broken, until your DM get's enough of it.

Domination and Death Dominate everything then kill them quickly. Only works @ 30, but is broken multiple ways.

Battlemind Mc Prone-Daze Protecting your allies by keeping enemies away. Quite powerful.

The Retaliator Getting hit deals more damage to the enemy then you receive yourself, and you can take plenty of hits. Heavy item dependency, Broken.

Dead Kobold Transit Teleports 98 squares a turn, and can bring someone along for the ride. Not fully built, so i can't judge the power.

Psilent Guardian Protect your allies, while being invisible. Overpowered, possibly broken.

Rune of Vengance Do lot's of damage while boosting your teams. Strong to slightly overpowered.

Charedent BarrageA charging ardent. Fine in a normal team, overpowered if there are 2 together, and easily broken in teams of 5.

Super Knight A tough, sticky, high damage knight. Strong.

Super Duper Knight Basically the same as super knight with items, making it far more broken.

Mora, the unkillable avenger Solid damage, while being neigh indestuctable. Overpowered, but not broken.

Swordburst Maximus At-Will Close Burst 3 that slide and prones. Protects allies with off actions. Strong, possibly over powered with the right party.

is there a general rule of thumb for targeting/elimination of monsters by role?

Minions: get rid of quick via area attacks (mostly to speed up the game).

Elites: stun and take down fast to disallow them their action point and encounter powers.

My dancer (damage slightly below an optimized melee ranger, defenses like a fighter, good initiative) has a straightforward strategy.

1) primary target selection: the boss. The only issue is identification. So I pick a likely candidate that I can get to quickly, and go after him. (Quite often there's only one decent candidate.)
2) route selection: along walls or equivalent. This way I have the wall effectively guarding one flank, and leave the center clear for my buddies including the controller. If they take care of my other flank, I don't get mobbed. Not that I mind mobs overly much; I just move slightly more slowly and have more secondary targets - and if it gets too bad I can teleport occasionally.
3) secondary target selection: anything that's in my way. But getting past them is more important than killing them.

My bard is entirely different. When the door opens, I normally try to be in the back and let my allies go first. My damage isn't great, my control is limited and spotty. I have to weigh my ability to get allies into melee with the enemy, against my own need to hide behind someone; Disney Princesses (and this character literally is one) are not front-line troops, even after they become Dashing Heroes. However, I still have the attitude of going after the prime target as soon as feasible, and have provoked opportunity attacks to do so. 
"The world does not work the way you have been taught it does. We are not real as such; we exist within The Story. Unfortunately for you, you have inherited a condition from your mother known as Primary Protagonist Syndrome, which means The Story is interested in you. It will find you, and if you are not ready for the narrative strands it will throw at you..." - from Footloose
It does depend on roles, in my mind:

Controller:
1. Control effects on big bad or heavies, if damage centric, be sure to splash damage minions
2. Target minions, or if damage based target next big bad

Striker:
1. Hit the big bad
2. Hit the big bad some more
3. If multi-target, try to splash some minions or heavies

Defender:
1: Engage big bad
2: If multi-marking mark nearest heavy or a minion

Leader:
1. Buff allies / Debuff enemies: Focus on allies main target
2. Enable attacks
3. Heal
Thanks, some very good comments about basic strategy and adapting to terrain and character/party specific capabilities.

Seems like a little difference of opinion on whether to take down elites first or last.  We haven't had a consistent approach, many times the encounters are designed to make it hard to focus fire on the elites.  My guess is that mathematically one is better off trying to kill the elites vs. wiping out the standard monsters first.  thoughts? 
TO some extent, it usually depends on the elite.  Our reason for generally leaving them (unless they do things like Dominate) is that they tend to take a lot longer than standards to kill, during which time the standards are whaling on you.  You take a lot more damage from the mob of 4 standards that's whaling on you, than you would from the single elite.

The elite is usually the big control target though.  If the controllers can keep it locked down, then you can nova the smeg out of it once you've tidied up.
Harrying your Prey, the Easy Way: A Hunter's Handbook - the first of what will hopefully be many CharOp efforts on my part. The Blinker - teleport everywhere. An Eladrin Knight/Eldritch Knight. CB != rules source.
Leader, always. If there is an enemy on the field that assists other enemies on the field they are number one on my list. Now a leader could be minions. For example the minions fuel the fire of a solo beast.

 
Ant Farm
Strikers -> Low HP people first (excluding minions).
Contollers -> Whoever they can stall most effectivly, or minons if they can get a few.
Defenders -> Who ever isn't stalled.
Leaders -> Just let other's do their jobs.


So you'll note that this has each roll going after someone else. (I'll also note that this is roughly how our own party does it.)
So how do you reconcile this advice with the universally given advice of "focus fire"? Our party has not figured this out yet. But we have gotten consistent at dropping all of the monsters on the same round now. So I guess we've perfected unfocused fire, for whatever that's worth.
Strikers -> Low HP people first (excluding minions).
Contollers -> Whoever they can stall most effectivly, or minons if they can get a few.
Defenders -> Who ever isn't stalled.
Leaders -> Just let other's do their jobs.


So you'll note that this has each roll going after someone else. (I'll also note that this is roughly how our own party does it.)
So how do you reconcile this advice with the universally given advice of "focus fire"? Our party has not figured this out yet. But we have gotten consistent at dropping all of the monsters on the same round now. So I guess we've perfected unfocused fire, for whatever that's worth.

Most of the time, striker+leader+5th hit the same creature.  With the contoller/defender trying to stall everyone else.  And if someone is effectivly stalled, (say.. immobilized (save ends) a few squares away), then the controller/defender should join the focus fire.

Also, roles blend alot.  So...
If the controller stalls 3/5 creatures, and the fighter and leader attack 1, the 2-handed fighter might want to join in and just leave the last creature do it's thing for a turn..
Or if the pyromancer can't effectivly stall (i.e. immobilize teleporters do nothing), dropping some pure damage isn't a bad choice.
The cleric can uses turn undead to stall a few creatures, before joining the beatdown on the necromancer.
The persuit avenger might need to oath a skirmisher to punish him for running around, rather then join in the controler killing.
The vampire might push a creature into a well, or tank the brute... kinda not strikers either...
ect... 

guides
List of no-action attacks.
Dynamic vs Static Bonuses
Phalanx tactics and builds
Crivens! A Pictsies Guide Good
Power
s to intentionally miss with
Mr. Cellophane: How to be unnoticed
Way's to fire around corners
Crits: what their really worth
Retroactive bonus vs Static bonus.
Runepriest handbook & discussion thread
Holy Symbols to hang around your neck
Ways to Gain or Downgrade Actions
List of bonuses to saving throws
The Ghost with the Most (revenant handbook)
my builds
F-111 Interdictor Long (200+ squares) distance ally teleporter. With some warlord stuff. Broken in a plot way, not a power way.

Thought Switch Higher level build that grants upto 14 attacks on turn 1. If your allies play along, it's broken.

Elven Critters Crit op with crit generation. 5 of these will end anything. Broken.

King Fisher Optimized net user.  Moderate.

Boominator Fun catch-22 booming blade build with either strong or completely broken damage depending on your reading.

Very Distracting Warlock Lot's of dazing and major penalties to hit. Overpowered.

Pocket Protector Pixie Stealth Knight. Maximizing the defender's aura by being in an ally's/enemy's square.

Yakuza NinjIntimiAdin: Perma-stealth Striker that offers a little protection for ally's, and can intimidate bloodied enemies. Very Strong.

Chargeburgler with cheese Ranged attacks at the end of a charge along with perma-stealth. Solid, could be overpowered if tweaked.

Void Defender Defends giving a penalty to hit anyone but him, then removing himself from play. Can get somewhat broken in epic.

Scry and Die Attacking from around corners, while staying hidden. Moderate to broken, depending on the situation.

Skimisher Fly in, attack, and fly away. Also prevents enemies from coming close. Moderate to Broken depending on the enemy, but shouldn't make the game un-fun, as the rest of your team is at risk, and you have enough weaknesses.

Indestructible Simply won't die, even if you sleep though combat.  One of THE most abusive character in 4e.

Sir Robin (Bravely Charge Away) He automatically slows and pushes an enemy (5 squares), while charging away. Hard to rate it's power level, since it's terrain dependent.

Death's Gatekeeper A fun twist on a healic, making your party "unkillable". Overpowered to Broken, but shouldn't actually make the game un-fun, just TPK proof.

Death's Gatekeeper mk2, (Stealth Edition) Make your party "unkillable", and you hidden, while doing solid damage. Stronger then the above, but also easier for a DM to shut down. Broken, until your DM get's enough of it.

Domination and Death Dominate everything then kill them quickly. Only works @ 30, but is broken multiple ways.

Battlemind Mc Prone-Daze Protecting your allies by keeping enemies away. Quite powerful.

The Retaliator Getting hit deals more damage to the enemy then you receive yourself, and you can take plenty of hits. Heavy item dependency, Broken.

Dead Kobold Transit Teleports 98 squares a turn, and can bring someone along for the ride. Not fully built, so i can't judge the power.

Psilent Guardian Protect your allies, while being invisible. Overpowered, possibly broken.

Rune of Vengance Do lot's of damage while boosting your teams. Strong to slightly overpowered.

Charedent BarrageA charging ardent. Fine in a normal team, overpowered if there are 2 together, and easily broken in teams of 5.

Super Knight A tough, sticky, high damage knight. Strong.

Super Duper Knight Basically the same as super knight with items, making it far more broken.

Mora, the unkillable avenger Solid damage, while being neigh indestuctable. Overpowered, but not broken.

Swordburst Maximus At-Will Close Burst 3 that slide and prones. Protects allies with off actions. Strong, possibly over powered with the right party.

My group usually takes the enemies in this order:

1: Minions, because they're annoying. The Controller takes those on his first turn.
2: Obvious Leader gets targeted by a Stun/Sleep/Hypnosis effect.
3: Melee-enemies, while closing in on ranged ones.
4: Melee-enemies, while cornering one ranged one at a time (for Opportunity Attacks)
5: Obvious Completely Ineffectual Leader (remember that he was stunned/unconcious/charmed).

If there are several enemies of the same type that aren't minions (Human Guards, Kobold Dragonshields, Rage Drakes or other nasties), we like to reduce the numbers of each type to at most 2 with the same name to ease the DM's burden.
I usually play at conventions, no permanent group.  So we have to improvise a lot; good thing I can do some small-l leading.

Gondolin (Warlock): Shoot any obvious Boss type plus a maybe-Standard with Eldritch Rain (2 shots), action point, Encounter power again one of those two.  Obvious melee hulks coming my way get Dire Radiance (makes it walk through molasses) but usually spam Eldritch Blast on whoever until they are dead, then change target.  I'm not very disciplined about focussing fire unless somebody gets up in my face; then he's the biggest threat to ME and I do whatever I can to him.

Narvik (Druid): Swarms of identical foes - minions? - get first shot with Chill Wind, unless something that just screams out 'I am a Solo' is on the board.  Solos get one of my Daily zones because I punish their movement that way.  I have ignored assassins coming my way - that is what allies are for - to concentrate on ranged foes.  Ashes of Athas is melee-striker-heavy, so I could be the ONLY ranged combatant in the group; that makes it my job to keep artillery busy until the others can get to him.

If you get to set up an ambush, prepare!  Dailies, zones, blasts and bursts!  Have the striker druid get into beast form before the fight starts; shaman spirit companions can lurk behind a rock too.  Surprise rounds give you one action; how can you most hurt the enemy?  Think through action point combos.  But most especially: party cooperation.  Arrange what order you want to go in.  Assign targets (if you get enough information).  If you have something like Quick Formation, have that guy shift the melee types into position to charge.  If your Warlord has Direct the Strike, delay until after the barbarian is next to his target.  Ranged attacks do not get less powerful over distance, so your Wizard can stay at range = 10 from the designated 'NPCs Start Here' penalty box.

I know you asked about kicking in a door, but many of the principles are the same.

Best complements I have yet received

Making it up as I go along:

{BRJN} If I was writing the Tome of Lore, I would let Auppenser sleep. But I also would have him dream. In his dreaming he re-activates the innate powers of (some) mortal minds. Or his dreaming changes the nature of reality - currently very malleable thanks to Spellplague &c. Or whatever really cool flavor text and pseudo-science explanation people react positively to.

{Lord_Karsus} You know, I like that better than the explanations for the Spellplague.

 

{BRJN} If Bhaal approves of The Joker, does he approve of Jack Nicholson's portrayal or Heath Ledger's protrayal more?

{Stigger} That question is utterly classic, and completely on target.

 

Prepped ahead of time:

I started the 4e thread "1001 Failed Interrogation Results" (now lost in that great electronic goodnight, alas)

{ADHadh} These are all good and make sense! I just can't come up with something that's not covered here and is not completely ridiculous.

 

(News bulletin: Updated thread to be posted after I review the 5e DMG)

 

My 5e characters

Active:

Erevyn Meliamne, Wood Elf Rogue1/Monk2, AL, inspired by "Radar O'Reilly" from M*A*S*H: Perception(max)

Alavos of Kirauma, Half-elf Ancients Paladin8, HotDQ, Warlord themed

Characters Ready-to-go:

none at present; gotta work on somebody from below !

Concepts I'm kicking around:

Tiefling Bard - party "face", skillful, future business master (using 3e FRCS background material) and patron to beginning adventurers.

Barbarian w/Tough feat, to be nearly indestructible

"Truenamer" cleric - all spells are Verbal

"Buggy" Wizard - insect flavor on everything.  His DMPC / BBEG version is going to become a beetle version of a Worm That Walks.  (See the 4e MM picture of a Lamia.)  Because lichdom is so cliche.

 

My pyro has basicly a priority list.  It goes something like this, due to only have fire spells(and so mostly aoes) -

     Mutliple targets able to be hit at once->Small groups->Big bads->Anything left

My Crossbow rogue is different -

      Big bad->Anything granting CA->Bigest threat->Whatever is closest
Take out what looks like the biggest threat, and toast/squash whatever crosses my path/gets in the way.
I tend toward

Biggest Threat to me -> Minions -> Big Bad

I favor the minions as 1) they go down quickly 2) it stops their damage
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