So this summer I am running a tournament for our entire circle of gamers. We have 16 players expected to show up and will be using two DMs. We will be splitting the players into groups of 8 (competing guilds) and they will be entering a recently found dwarven mine at separate entrances. They will have 1-4 group encounters a piece before both teams converge (hopefully) in the same large room. Just before things escalate to much the thought is to create a challenge(s) they will all need to work together to get past. Has anyone ever tried anything like this? I am looking for any suggestions or ideas. Thanks!
several twist ideas...
1) have a series of levers, levers on one side open/close doors on the other...will add hilarity and frustration...you could tie in some way that, with lights above the levers, they know where the other party is in the dungeon...kinda like pressure plates or something like that. Perhaps it's a 2 level dungeon where they can see/talk but can't get to each other, so they have to figure out how to solve the puzzle...one guild up top, one on bottom.
(my personal favorite is #2)
2) This sounds like a perfect oppotunity to incorporate a skill challenge into an encounter fight. My suggestion, make things really hectic, chaotic, and frantic...have them meet in the main room. Have the big boss guy be warded by some spell/contraption...basically he resists any and all damage done to him. Have him surrounded by lots of minions that are easy to kill, but who are also warded in that they rise back up after 1-2 turns...Have a set of levers and/or puzzle/and or skill challenge that they must complete to disable the warding...Have the minions focus on those who are trying to solve the problem...Have the big boss guy just stir up trouble...this will require them to work together to defend the problem solvers while fighting off the big guy...If you want to be a total jerk, dont tell them anything about the warding, let them figure out that after 300 hp of dmg, the boss isn't bloodied...Obviously this puts a timelimit on them...eventually they'll burn through healing and other spells holding him off, so it'll add a sense of panic to the people solving the problem...To ensure that it lasts longer, make the skill challenge be 1 skill check per turn....or use a % based success rate...One last thing...this could easily lead to a party wipe for those who don't work well together...
A twist you can throw in would be this: when a PC drops to negative health, they are automatically teleported to a glass tower overlooking the room. Upon entering this room, they are restored to full health and get all dailies/etc back like they took an extended rest...the cavet is that they are stuck there until they are freed (i.e. either the warding is sucessfully removed or have some lever system somewhere else in the dungeon which will free them...this will allow the rogues to sneak back into the dungeon in an attempt to free their friends)...once the lever is pulled or the warding solved, they get to come back into the room guns a-blazing to save the day... (most likely the ones that die will be the tanks and/or weak wizards trying to solve the warding, they shouldn't be punished for missing out on the fight).
As for the % based success rate: start at 0, when they get to 100, it's successfully over...Have them roll on a skill check, if the DC is 20 and they roll a 25, they just added 5% to their completion...if the DC is 20 and they roll 35, then 15%...similarily, if it's DC 20 and they roll a 15, then they just lost 5%. They can't go below 0%. If you only allow one skill/turn, this will slow it down considerably. If you want to allow as many checks per turn as they want, then simply up the 100 to 300. I like this better than the X times before 3 failures route
Almost sounds like an X-Crawl dungeon.
If you don't know X-Crawl its was awesome concept for 3.0
Give them small globes along the way if a party member uses one have them switch places with a party member in the other group. You can do this at random or give each player a number 1-8.
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