Drow and Radiant Damage

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Simple question.  New to 4e rules.  Playing Encounters on Wednesdays.

My DM tells me that all the Drow we are fighting lately are immune to my Paladin's Radiant damage - Holy Smite and Righteous Radiance.  That's fine but I can't find this in the rules anywhere and that always bothers me when I can't figure out a rule.

Anyone that can help with this?

Thank you.

Stephen
There is no general rule that Drown have any resistance or immunity to Radiant damage; however, this might not be true for the specific monsters in the Encounters packet - I don't know.
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.
There is no general rule that Drown have any resistance or immunity to Radiant damage; however, this might not be true for the specific monsters in the Encounters packet - I don't know.



Strangely enough, I had a new player in my Encounter table ask the same question when he wanted to use his Theme power against a Drow. Not quite sure where the notion comes from, though. Drow in 4E in general (and the module in particular) are not resistant, immune or vulnerable to Radiant damage.

In previous editions, Drow have taken attack and AC penalties while in birghtly lit areas. They have never been vulnerable to Radiant damage. You are getting "Drow" confused with "Undead." Drow have never been immune or resistant to Radiant damage, either.

Unless there's something REALLY weird going on with the adventure (and I doubt it because something like this would impact too many characters in a major and negative way), the only thing that I can think of is that you may be dealing with a new/inexperienced DM who has somehow concluded either that radiant damage is only supposed to affect undead, or that the zone-of-darkness abilities possessed by some of them negate radiant damage in their areas, neither of which is the case.

That said, you might want to ask about this over in the relevant Encounters forum, since they'll have a better idea whether there's anything special about the creatures or situations in play: community.wizards.com/dungeonsanddragons...
Or, the DM has made special enemies and there's a reason why they're immune.  A drag, but certainly possible.  OP, what you need to do is just ask your DM whether these monsters are from an encounter or are they something he's homebrewed for your game.  Once you know you'll be able to better look into it.  Right now it could be either way so if they're from the Encounter, the DM could be misreading the monsters or else it's a part of the Encounter.  If he's just homebrewing them for whatever reason, then it's his choice.

But yeah, as others have said the standard drow does not have any immunity or resistance to radiant damage. 
Or, the DM has made special enemies and there's a reason why they're immune.  A drag, but certainly possible.  OP, what you need to do is just ask your DM whether these monsters are from an encounter or are they something he's homebrewed for your game.  Once you know you'll be able to better look into it.  Right now it could be either way so if they're from the Encounter, the DM could be misreading the monsters or else it's a part of the Encounter.  If he's just homebrewing them for whatever reason, then it's his choice.

But yeah, as others have said the standard drow does not have any immunity or resistance to radiant damage. 



He specified in the OP that this was an Encounters game. No homebrew allowed, run as written.
FWIW your DM is running the Encounter incorrectly (i.e., not by the rules of the module). Tell him to stop failing.
As a DM running this season's Encounters, the stat blocks as written do not give the drow radiant resistances. That said, I have sometimes added elements to the story as presented to make it fit into our long-term "theme". So, it would be impossible for someone here to say that he is out of order... Always the DM's call...
As a DM running this season's Encounters, the stat blocks as written do not give the drow radiant resistances. That said, I have sometimes added elements to the story as presented to make it fit into our long-term "theme". So, it would be impossible for someone here to say that he is out of order... Always the DM's call...



Except when it explicitly violates the rules of the D&D encounters program. Those sessions are to be run as written.
As a DM running this season's Encounters, the stat blocks as written do not give the drow radiant resistances. That said, I have sometimes added elements to the story as presented to make it fit into our long-term "theme". So, it would be impossible for someone here to say that he is out of order... Always the DM's call...

No. Encounters and Lair Assault are to be run as written. Period.
Harumphh...


While I certainly agree in this instance that, by appearance, the DM's added "power" to the drow appears unfair to the player in a way that seems hard to reconcile (and I would not condone anything that takes the players fun and power away), I still maintain that the DM has to be the final authority.


It is very easy to say that the Encounters program is to be run as written, period, but any DM who has run one of the games and has never ever fudged on hit points, been forced to invent new PCs, changed hits to misses and vice-versa to prolong or shorten a fight, not allowed the PCs to wander even a little off the tracks to explore, changed dialogue as written in response to something a player has said, adjusted skill-challenges to new circumstances, recharged powers that were dead so the players can see how cool it is, given more or less treasure and items, given extra healing potions when the party is dying, etc, etc, etc and a hundred other things that can cause you to deviate from the module is lying.  Period.


Heck, I read reviews of other stores Encounters sessions and every one of them has differences, some subtle, some not.  And if you have read them too (and/or listened to the podcasts), you also have heard different DMs run their games differently, reflecting the personalities of the DM and the players.  It can't be helped.  D&D is a game of improvisation even in the strict railroad of the Encounters program.  Otherwise, what's the point?


Again, I don't think that the DM made a good call on this one; sucking the fun out of a players strengths (and possibly just mis-reading a call)... but it's also possible that we don't know the whole story, just saying.         
Let me rephrase: If the DMs do not run Encounters as written, the store can lose priveleges to ever run encounters and the DM does, if anyone finds out about it. It is part of their agreement for getting the right to run Encounters at all. It isn't even about D&D. You're just flatly wrong. And, in the case of 4e, you happen to be wrong anyway.

That there is variation in narrative does not mean that the module is not run as written, it means the module has minor variations written in.
Well, yes and no. Encounters DMs aren't allowed to make changes simply because they feel like it, but they are empowered to make minor adjustments for the sake of improving game flow.

I can't imagine how "drow are immune to radiant damage" would fall under that stipulation, though. It doesn't qualify as a minor adjustment or as a game flow improvement in any circumstance that I can think of.
Well, I have agreed that the DM in this case has made a bad call and possibly misread the drows stats, even though I don't see how. There is one place in the stat block to find resistances and vulnerabilities and if it ain't there, it ain't there.  I'm with you on that and already said so.


Like I have said, I have listened to and read other Encounters sessions and our store sessions are run as close to the story as intended as anyone else's, but I don't think that a DM that makes any of the adjustments to the story/module that I mentioned in the previous post is breaking the Encounters program.


If you are a player in Encounters, I can almost guarantee that one of the above has already happened in one of your games.  Wink    
No, it hasn't. Because the one time anything like that happened, the DM was banned from ever DMing Encounters again. Any publically sanctioned game I play in sticks to the module and the rules or that game stops existing as sanctioned. Some people actually take the things they agree to seriously.
While I agree with Alcestis in this, I cannot imagine WotC stopping stores from running encounters because of this.

"What?  That game store that is selling our products is not running this Encounters module exactly as we wrote it?  BAN THEM FROM RUNNING ENCOUNTERS EVER AGAIN!"

"So, what about all the product they are selling for us?  Won't they stop selling it?"

"....."

Yeah, like WotC is going to do something which could threathen their profits.
It is a mutually beneficial arrangement and, frankly, the stores have more to lose then WotC does in terms of free promotions/products. Which is why stores will cheerfully ban a DM for violating WotC's terms for Encounters. One of which happens to be "Run the damn thing the way we wrote it."

I'm not aware of any store actually being forbidden to run Encounters... but I am also not aware of any stores which sided with the DM when the issue came up.
Please... take another look at the "adjustments" that I mentioned in the above post.  None of those are deal-breakers that change the intent of the game, but every DM worth his or her salt has probably altered the game in one of those ways without it hurting the Encounters game.

Perfect example:  We ran the Encounters program at our store tonight and had a brand new, first-time player to 4E who came in at starting time, sat down at the table, picked up a pre-gen character and started to play with our group of regulars.  We are a few sessions in to the new season... my regulars know what's going on in the story; the new guy doesn't.  I allowed my players and the new player a lot of time to roleplay why he was in Shadowdale and what he was doing roaming around as they approached the Underdark.  Not knowing the "sanctioned" story (how could they?), they came up with some crazy stuff, which everyone laughed at, had a great time embellishing and everyone is now enthusiastically onboard with this new character and his motivations, some of which I plan to address and drop in in future installments, along with some of my other players past plot hooks.


And you know what, it all happens within the body of the Encounters program at our store (where anybody can jump in and play, and they do) where I go from session to session as written, in order, and to the great fun of my table, drop in past plot hooks that they are interested in, things that absolutely keep the story intact, but include past references that the long-time players remember and love to revisit because it is in the over-all arc that the players have made an emotional investment.  The little added things from Encounters sessions two seasons back... they love to hear how they slew that dragon back in Neverwinter and that it still has repercussions still today in Shadowdale.


Another example:  The new guy, not being very familiar with his role or even the rules of 4E, found himself quickly in a pickle and I could have killed him DEAD in round 2, where he would have been enjoying his first session of Encounters sitting at the table watching everyone else have fun and wondering why he thought he could walk in and play this game.  But you know what... I ignored the rules as written when I fudged a roll behind the screen and kept him in the game.  He says he had so much fun, he's coming back next week.  He wants to build his own character too so he bought a book on the way out.  The store made money and WOTC made money.  The Encounters program worked and I didn't follow the rules as written.  Tell me that I'm doing it wrong.

I know that WOTC desires for the Encounters program to be consistant from store to store.  I get that.  And like I said, our sessions are very open, easy to drop in and the story/session would be recognizable to someone who had played in a different store last week.  But if you were to walk by my table and watch for a while and as my players were laughing, role-playing, being creative and inventive and then you told us that we were doing it wrong becuase that's not in the story, we would wait for you to leave and when you were out of earshot, we would glance at each other, stifle laughter and start back in on having fun at the D&D Encounters session. 
Perfect example:  We ran the Encounters program at our store tonight and had a brand new, first-time player to 4E who came in at starting time, sat down at the table, picked up a pre-gen character and started to play with our group of regulars.  We are a few sessions in to the new season... my regulars know what's going on in the story; the new guy doesn't.  I allowed my players and the new player a lot of time to roleplay why he was in Shadowdale and what he was doing roaming around as they approached the Underdark.  Not knowing the "sanctioned" story (how could they?), they came up with some crazy stuff, which everyone laughed at, had a great time embellishing and everyone is now enthusiastically onboard with this new character and his motivations, some of which I plan to address and drop in in future installments, along with some of my other players past plot hooks.



So long as the players are the ones remembering and not their characters (since they are supposed to be running brand-new level 1 characters at the start of each Encounter session.)  How the players perceive the game has nothing to do with what we are talking about.

And you know what, it all happens within the body of the Encounters program at our store (where anybody can jump in and play, and they do) where I go from session to session as written, in order, and to the great fun of my table, drop in past plot hooks that they are interested in, things that absolutely keep the story intact, but include past references that the long-time players remember and love to revisit because it is in the over-all arc that the players have made an emotional investment.  The little added things from Encounters sessions two seasons back... they love to hear how they slew that dragon back in Neverwinter and that it still has repercussions still today in Shadowdale.



Again, then hearing stories about their past character's deeds in Encounters is fine.  That's story and fluff.  What we are talking about is making Drow be immune to radiant damage or adding bugbears to an encounter when there are no bugbears to be found ordinarily.

Another example:  The new guy, not being very familiar with his role or even the rules of 4E, found himself quickly in a pickle and I could have killed him DEAD in round 2, where he would have been enjoying his first session of Encounters sitting at the table watching everyone else have fun and wondering why he thought he could walk in and play this game.  But you know what... I ignored the rules as written when I fudged a roll behind the screen and kept him in the game.  He says he had so much fun, he's coming back next week.  He wants to build his own character too so he bought a book on the way out.  The store made money and WOTC made money.  The Encounters program worked and I didn't follow the rules as written.  Tell me that I'm doing it wrong.



Did you read Alcestis' post?  This is well within the purview of being a DM.  Fudging die rolls is fine if it helps the game remain fun.  This has nothing to do with the rules as written.  In fact, I think the Encounters packet might even talk about fudging die rolls.  I know that it talks about making adjustments to the combat encounters based on the strength of the party... this meaning the level of knowledge the players have with the rules and their characters as well as the overall strength of the PCs.  If no one picked up to play a Defender, I might consider taking a monster out of the combat.

I know that WOTC desires for the Encounters program to be consistant from store to store.  I get that.  And like I said, our sessions are very open, easy to drop in and the story/session would be recognizable to someone who had played in a different store last week.  But if you were to walk by my table and watch for a while and as my players were laughing, role-playing, being creative and inventive and then you told us that we were doing it wrong becuase that's not in the story, we would wait for you to leave and when you were out of earshot, we would glance at each other, stifle laughter and start back in on having fun at the D&D Encounters session. 



And this is why people play Pathfinder.  That attitude of "I'm doing it my way and you can just go suck an egg."  Instead of explaining to the newcomer about *why* you have made some adjustments and how those adjustments are helping another new player to enjoy the game or whatever.

But if I walked by your table (and somehow already know the encounter you were running) and saw that you had added monsters to the combat or whatever, then I would be well within my rights to report you to the store manager that you were not running that session of Encounters correctly.

That brings up something though: how do you know if the DM has made changes?  These are new encounters each week.  The people running them know what's coming up, sure.  But the people playing them shouldn't.  So, if I am DMing an Encounters session and a player says "No!  That monster is supposed to have 15 AC!", how would I get to handle that situation?
But if I walked by your table (and somehow already know the encounter you were running) and saw that you had added monsters to the combat or whatever, then I would be well within my rights to report you to the store manager that you were not running that session of Encounters correctly.

You can't be serious.

On this week's exciting episode of ... GAME POLICE!! a DM changes the encounter as written!  Tonight's episode ... "A DANGEROUS GAME!!!" (dramatic music stab)  
     

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.

"Your ability to summon a horde of celestial superbeings at will is making my ... BMX skills look a bit redundant."

"People treat their lack of imagination as if it's the measure of what's silly. Which is silly." - Noon

"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.”

But if I walked by your table (and somehow already know the encounter you were running) and saw that you had added monsters to the combat or whatever, then I would be well within my rights to report you to the store manager that you were not running that session of Encounters correctly.

You can't be serious.

On this week's exciting episode of ... GAME POLICE!! a DM changes the encounter as written!  Tonight's episode ... "A DANGEROUS GAME!!!" (dramatic music stab)  
     




Quite serious.

Do you not take rules seriously?
But if I walked by your table (and somehow already know the encounter you were running) and saw that you had added monsters to the combat or whatever, then I would be well within my rights to report you to the store manager that you were not running that session of Encounters correctly.

You can't be serious.

On this week's exciting episode of ... GAME POLICE!! a DM changes the encounter as written!  Tonight's episode ... "A DANGEROUS GAME!!!" (dramatic music stab)  
     





When the consequences are "the store in which you're running the game loses its privileges to run Encounters by letting you change things" I'd say it is rather serious.
D&D Next = D&D: Quantum Edition
As the DM and his party enter the store, game and dice in hand, they are met with peering eyes over wire glasses.  Whispers can be heard from the dark corners.  "It's them."


One of my players says, "There's an empty table over there." and he starts to make his way across the room.  "No wait," the DM says as he puts his hand up to stop the young players progression.  "Something's not right... something..."


Just then, a man and a woman emerge from behind the curtain at the back of the store; crisp uniforms, chins raised as they walk slowly between the tables, looking over the shoulders of the players at the tables.  One of them stops and hovers over a DM, pulls out a calculator and as his eyes widen and then turn to narrow slits, the DM begins to quiver.  Small beads of persperation form on his furrowed forehead.  The uniformed man takes the module from behind the DM screen and scans it, then flings it back at the hapless DM.


"I'm sorry...  instead of scaling it up with another goblin, I thought it would be nice to add a ravenous wolf... you know... maybe one of the goblins had a pet...  I don't know what I was thinking."  He buries his head in his hands.


The DM and the players at the front of the store turn and look at each other and slowly begin to back towards the door.  "This is no place for us my friends.  We will have to keep moving."        
But if I walked by your table (and somehow already know the encounter you were running) and saw that you had added monsters to the combat or whatever, then I would be well within my rights to report you to the store manager that you were not running that session of Encounters correctly.

You can't be serious.

On this week's exciting episode of ... GAME POLICE!! a DM changes the encounter as written!  Tonight's episode ... "A DANGEROUS GAME!!!" (dramatic music stab)  
     




Quite serious.

Do you not take rules seriously?

Okay, you had me going there for a minute.  Good one!

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.

"Your ability to summon a horde of celestial superbeings at will is making my ... BMX skills look a bit redundant."

"People treat their lack of imagination as if it's the measure of what's silly. Which is silly." - Noon

"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.”

Are people really unclear as to what the point of organized play is, or how it works?
D&D Next = D&D: Quantum Edition
Are people really unclear as to what the point of organized play is, or how it works?



I hear rumors that there are some places where the Living Forgotten Realms CCG is actually *read* and *followed*.  Not in my neck of the woods, usually. 

"Who cares?" they all say.  "Why bother when it's not even really sanctioned anymore?"  :: Sigh ::

As for Encounters, I haven't actually played any Encounters seasons since the Dark Sun one came and went.
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