Monday, November 16, 2009

AP: Double Teamed to Death (nearly)

Arashi - Genasi Swordmage
Paulic - Elven Ranger
Senzamei - Eladrin Wizard
Phaedra - Elven Cleric
Jasper - Gnome Warlock/Wizard
Hogorth - Eladrin Fighter/Warlord

We soldiered onward this session, towards the castle and our goal of ultimate understanding. . .

Unfortunately, because we are just *that* lucky, we triggered two encounters, so the session was one, long, painful fight. I am getting a tad ahead of myself, though.

We got within sight of the castle and saw 11 or so guards gathered outside. Presumably, they knew we were coming and this was their response. We also saw Captain Regal there, and Senzamei remembered that he is familiar to her. He is a character in a children's book, or series of books. Not only does he engage in a series of daring exploits, but he has a pet dragon.

Suddenly a little less cocksure, we discussed some other options. Waiting until dark, or trying to find another way in were the two best options, until Jasper thought it would be a good idea to try and bluff our way in. Senzamei recalled that the nemesis of Captain Regal was the Dread Pirate Roberts (yes, that one?!) and we tried bluffing the Captain, telling him the Dread Pirate was after the Prince.

Captain Regal apparently believed us, and led us into the castle. Once in the courtyard, the trap closed and we were ambushed from all sides. Smart, eh? We bluffed our way into the trap, and past one encounter to take both on at the same time! Hurrah!
So the dragon in the corner is Flamey, Captain Regal's wingless dragon. . .until it sprouts wings of flame. Nice. The large enemy in the other corner is the wolf that we saw the prince riding. Yes, there are archers on the walls.
This is midway through the first round. We had some amount of leeway, since without the first encounter outside to alert them, the dragon and the wolf are still sleeping when we enter the courtyard. At Captain Regal's signal we are attacked, and our retaliation is swift and. . .unfocused. Hogorth and Arashi are both in the lead and take on Captain Regal, since he has a huge target on his back by virtue of being the captain. Jasper blasts a chunk of enemies out of the way and makes a patch of difficult terrain. Now the heavies are up front with the Captain (good) and the soft centered party members are in the back surrounded by solders and about to be attacked by wolves (bad):
- Senzamei is in good form, actually hitting fairly often. These hits are punctuated by a crit even, which is awesome!
- Lead the Attack on Captain Regal felt right, and may have actually been the right call, but he went down pretty quickly to the focused fire. Things did not get noticeably easier when he died.
- The rear of the party was attacked by a Wolfmaster and his two wolves. They did repeated high damage to our softies.
- A round or two in, Flamey and The Wolf both entered the fray. This was BAD. We had two big enemies and two defenders, which is fine, but we were fighting on basically three fronts, without someone sturdy to hold off the eight or so soldiers and their two wolves.
- Things get a bit worse when the Dragon uses a mobility power to shift back and create some zones of damage. With all the melee fighters involved, it is tough for us to keep or stay out of these. Senzamei Fey Steps out, which is good in the short term but leaves her exposed. The Wolf predictably goes for her.
- A slight misread of Senzamei's Guardian Blades power puts a serious dent in the wolf when he makes a series of attacks against her and Arashi, and is dealt Int*4 damage (16) in response. We cheer.
- Phaedra is flanked by wolves and gets beaten down to less than 0. She falls.
- Inspiring Word brings her to positives, but she is hit again before her turn and must make her first death save. She fails.
- A cunning plan involving Hogorth Fey Stepping adjacent to her and Paulic tossing a Healing Potion goes off without a problem, and she is able to roll out of the way while Hogorth holds off her attackers. A shift granted to the entire party puts most of us within range of her healing powers, and she unloads her big guns. Healing is dispensed and appreciated. The two tanks were in single digit hit points for most of the fight to this point.
- Tired of the constant (yet surprisingly ineffective) sniping, Jasper uses Otherwind Stride to pop up on top of the wall. He proceeds with the business of tossing the archers off with Thunderwave. We cheer.
- Things still seem grim, since at this point we have killed only the Captain, but bloodied almost everyone else. A lesson to be learned about focusing fire? To make matters worse, all of these solders grant their allies Temp HP when they are bloodied. Stacking Temp HP.
- Arashi takes on The Wolf, and Paulic disengages from melee. The recently healed Hogorth incurs several OA's (to Phaedra's disapproval) and uses the daily magic item power of his sword to immobilize the dragon. With it marked and unable to move, the most powerful attack available to it seems to be a basic claw attack.
- The Wolf dies.
- In a freak event, one of the wolves draws an Opportunity Attack from Paulic, and he crits. He crit with his boot. Max damage. 5 damage. It kills the wolf. His ego is forever inflated. He states "I am a God."
Better. This is about an encounter's work. They are all bloodied though, so we power through this.
- Jasper crits on the final archer, flinging him off the edge to his death.
- Phaedra pulls out all her healing mojo, granting Temp HP and healing to Hogorth. He takes enough damage to kill him, but does not die due to this. Even though she is upset that nobody told her how *dead* they were, she continues to heal. What a champ.
- Following this, a few members of the party use second winds. With no more real healing triggers to spend, and almost everyone bloodied, it was needed.
- Jesse is frustrated to find several of his attacks over the next round miss by less than two, indicating that the Second Wind's defense bonus saved them from harm.
- Like dominoes, the enemies begin to fall, and we are victorious.


Horrible note taking. Mostly consisted of writing down the bizarre things spoken by the party:
- One plan for destroying the castle was to concoct the AIDS virus and spread it to the troops. This was predictably suggested by the bloodthirsty Valenar Elf.
- The Wolfmaster sounded like a bad 80's movie. While I initially thought 'bad beastmaster clone', Paulic thought 'bad Die Hard or other action movie clone'. We ended up fleshing out a Road House-like movie, where the protagonist was the Wolfmaster. With Patrick Swayze dead, we would just have to settle for photoshopping wolves into the fight scenes.
- XXY, the genetic condition, was mentioned as causing one to be covered in floppy penises.
- Since everything we kill disappears, and it is looking more and more like the Prince is at the heart of this, a parallel was made to the movie "The Neverending Story". We are the Nothing. The prince is Bastian. How sad.
- Jesse mentioned that this was a "Custom Dragon". We were derailed for a moment describing his hydraulic tricks. There was a cholo standing a few feet away with the control pad for him.
- And finally, splintery wooden cocks of death...

I don't remember where that came from. Jesse was telling us that originally we would have only needed to fight the Captain and his men, and that the fight with the Dragon and the Wolf were the second encounter. It also included some wooden toy soldier minions that could only be killed with fire, so I imagine that is where that last one came from...

This session, denouement. Well, following some final battle against an eight year old or his pet wizard. Or both. Or neither.


1 comment:

Jesse said...

One small correction - the temp HP don't stack. This is why it was really bad to not focus fire.