Killer DM

12 posts / 0 new
Last post
Last night we had a fight against a solo that had 600 hp at least. Our party of 3 consists in lvl 13 avenger, lvl 13 cleric, lvl 12 rogue. The creature was a floating skull-like monster with it's spine as a tail to attack and some other powers. Our players guessed that it had 600HP, because the cleric sneak peaked at the DMs notes when he scribbled down 300 damage and said, now it is bloodied. For armor it had around 30 and defenses were around 28.  We had no idea which monster it was, but we thought it was way too strong for our party. Fortunately we had some crit's at the end of the combat and the creature escaped when it was 400 HP down, we only had the loss of the rogue at the end.

Do you guys know which monster it could be? Is it possible to face such a creature at those levels?


Our DM is fond of using mostly soldiers and sometimes brutes and controllers, no minions and playing all combats in open spaces like football fields without walls, elevations and other features what makes combat more challenging. Thus he needs to use monsters that are high on HP and armor and mostly 3-4 levels higher than the party's average. His out of combat stories are good and keeps us interested, but when it comes to combat we start to roll our eyes, go to bathroom and bring some snack before it begins. We know we will be at least 2 hours grinding hit points. We suggested him to change encounter configuration, adding other monster roles and adding features to the terrain, making a better combat experience. But after 2 of such encounters he reverts to his boring HP grinding sessions. As we see it, he uses the "encounters for the lazy DM" manual. So what would you recommend me to tell him in making better combats?
Name of the monster doesn't jump out at me, but those HP and defense stats sound about dead-on for a level-appropriate Solo.

Well, a hard encounter with a Solo in it anyway, like 14-15th level critter

INSIDE SCOOP, GAMERS: In the new version of D&D, it will no longer be "Edition Wars." It will be "Edition Lair Assault." - dungeonbastard

Keep telling him what you've told him.  If he keeps throwing boring combats at you, run away.  Don't play along.

BTW, what optimization level are you guys at? 

Cry Havoc!  And let slip the hogs of war!

We are around levels 12-13, and only 3 PCs. We looked into the optimization threat and took some hints, if that is what you meant.
We are around levels 12-13, and only 3 PCs. We looked into the optimization threat and took some hints, if that is what you meant.


Yeah, I meant how optimized your group is.  If the cleric is the pacificist-type, he's not really helping speed up combats.  If he's a face-smashing-Paragon of Victory-type, then that's better.  The two strikers, if optimized decently, should be dropping stuff in pretty short order. 

But your DM seriously needs to fix his encounters up some.  He could try shamelessly stealing (the #1 way to DM) from some published adventures.

Cry Havoc!  And let slip the hogs of war!

But your DM seriously needs to fix his encounters up some.  He could try shamelessly stealing (the #1 way to DM) from some published adventures.


"If it works, reuse it" is a valid approach to DMing, after all. Frees up more time to make a memorable plot and characters, too! (And I'm being sincere, since I really do agree with you. Even though I  haven't used anything from published adventures in years.)

Let him know - gently and politely - that the story is great but the combat is dull. Maybe point him towards the What's a DM to Do forum. Encourage some more variety in his encounter designs. A bit of cover, say some wide pillars, and Artillery monster support can really make an encounter stand out from a plain melee slogfest. (Just to name one of many possibilities!)
Gunmage, a homebrew arcane striker. (Heroic Tier playtest ready.) GDocs link. (More up to date.)
Sounds like a totally legit level 16 solo. A very hard encounter for a group of 3 level 13 characters, but absolutely doable.

About the boring combats thing...being a DM myself, i can say that boring combats are often the results of a lack of prep time on the DM's part. Building breath-taking, interesting combats takes much more time than building grinds on flat plains. DM experience may also be a factor, if he's new, cut him some slack. He'll get better.
Thanks for the replies. I will take a look into the What's a DM to Do forum. For published adeventures, the last i've played was The Marco Volo trilogy of 2nd edition adventures, over 10 years ago. So unfortunately we don't have access to new ones.
unfortunately we don't have access to new ones.

Here

Jackpot, I'm not going to tell anything to my DM, I'm keeping this for me and self-proclaim me DM for the next year. Thanks for this treasure vault.
Jackpot, I'm not going to tell anything to my DM, I'm keeping this for me and self-proclaim me DM for the next year. Thanks for this treasure vault.


LOL, you selfish bastard!

(kidding)  
If the roleplay is good, soften up the hint-dropping with reminding him that you like playing with him, and he does great stories, but the long, draawn out slug fests aren't as good as the rest of his game.
If you got to feel a bit more like a hero in fights, and were able to battle a good variety of things, he'd run the perfect game.
Sign In to post comments