This adventure is posted and available for download at http://livingforgottenrealms.com/
Why did you racelock the Reaver theme? It's totally unnecessary and restricts the number of players who can use this not-particularly-powerful game element.
Didn't want Barbarians to be tempted to be anything other than Sohei, I guess?
This was a great conclusion to chapter 1 of the Desolation Series. I played it three times, at AL's 6, 8, and 10.
Difficulty of the first encounter was rather party dependent. First time we played (AL10), we rocked the encounter. We had 4 different leaders, an archer ranger and an elementalist. One of the leaders could walk on water. Two of us started on shore. It was fun dealing with the mobility challenges in various ways. But with good mix of melee and range, and plenty of healing, saves, and leader bonuses to atack, damage, extra attacks, etc, this group worked together amazingly well. The other two times I played it, this encounter was a bit harder. One time we couldn't really do much about the Siren, killed everything else, and the Siren just fled. On a side note for this encounter, I think DM's should be encouraged to improvise some small benefit, when a PC decides to interact with the ship crew in some manner.
The skill challenge was great. I like the progressively increasing difficulty, the moral dilemmas, the descriptions on some of the failures were awesomely gruesome. The way the rewards tie into this skill challenge also makes it pretty unique.
For those of us who played through the rest of the series, finding out Deskyr Thentrim was kidnapped *again* invoked a few grunts, groans, and sighs. We figure his normal mode of transportation at this point is being bagged and thrown over someone's shoulder. The fight to save him went pretty well each time I played it, I think it was meant to be a quick fight, and it was indeed quick.
The last encounter had a lot of cool elements, though after playing it 3 times, I still have no idea what the shadow balls do. Minions manning the balistae, and the necromancer raising minions was a pretty good combo.
In the conclusion, I'm still a little fuzzy as to what happened, and why the Cormyrians stepping out of the gate were patting each other in the back for a job well done. Maybe we'll find out in Chapter 2.
Which adventures form part of the "Trouble in Urmlaspyr" Major Quest?
Um, I'm pretty sure that "Trouble in Urmlaspy" is just a different (more descriptive name) for Chapter 1 of the desolation series.
Played this at a local con at AL 10 this weekend. Party was Blackguard of Domination 9, INT-Invoker 10, STR-Paladin 8-10, Artificer 8-10. Near TPK (1 character ran away).
Close Burst 3 Dominate (save ends) on an easily rechargable power is Not Fun(TM). Dominate in a 4 player party is Not Fun(TM) (was this noticed in playtest?). Paladin was the only one without Silt Striders (thanks SPEC 4-5!) so he took an extra round to get out onto the water. Invoker and Blackguard (me) had them and strode out from shore, while the Artificer abandoned ship. Without a lot of range, the Zombie Seaweed was just too much to handle on the open water, so it's "balance factor" of super-low speed was mitigated. DM rolled below 14 maybe twice for the whole encounter and drained our HP and ability to spend them very quickly. If I had known the difference between swim and land speeds, I probably would have stayed on land where the PCs have the mobility advantage.
I also wonder whether dropping the Ghoul was a sufficient scaling - I think lowered defenses on the dangerous elites might have been warranted. I didn't mind losing this character - he was due to retire anyway.
I also think there was a single instance of accidiental DM mistake - I think he applied dominate on one of the Zombie Seaweed's double-basics, which might have bought the Artificer an extra turn.
Hard to say... it is close burst 3, and it can use the dominate only once every other round in which case it will not do anything for 1 round (except for the 1st round in which it might use an action point to do this immediately). I have not yet heard complaints about that aspect of the fight, so I suspect most DMs never spend a 1 turn doing nothing...
On retrospect, it might have been better with a 4 PC table to do something about the hard control power, which is always worse for 4 PC tables. It would certainly have been good advice in the tactics section in case the PCs are having trouble. In that regards, my appologies. It is btw good advice in general to the DMs out there: if you have a 4 PC table, be careful with hard control like daze and dominate. It is likely to have a disproporsionate effect on the difficulty.
In an earlier version of the adventure, the ghouls had hard control too. So, adding or removing one was also decreasing the hard control
Dominate in particular is swingy for a group of 4, especially if the right PC gets hit.
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