[Note from Tinkergoth: Sorry for the long silence. Jimbles has had this post and another one ready to go for almost two weeks now, just waiting for me to go over them before publishing. Unfortunately I’ve been letting things slide, haven’t been feeling great physically or otherwise, so it’s been a struggle to do anything other than curl up on the couch of an evening and binge on anime (on the plus side, I’ve been catching up on series I’ve owned for ages and hadn’t got around to watching), haven’t even really felt like gaming recently. Anyway, finally not feeling so ill anymore, and the other stuff will sort itself out sooner or later, so starting today I’m forcing myself back into the blog. I’ll publish this and Jimbles’ other post first, and then get back to work on my own stuff. I now return you to your scheduled ramblings from Professor Jimbles.]
I’m beginning to think it’s something personal, and maybe stacking resistances and AC would be better for me.
Now, where was I?
Learned the hard way that Black Puddings are not delicious.
Felled by the Orc Hireling in a single strike.
Crushed by a brainwashed dragon after a Sudden Maximized disintegrate missed.
Oh, right. I’m going to leave out the Elemental Plane of Fire, it’s pretty obvious, and has little in storytelling value, despite the gales of laughter from the table when it happened.
I’m playing in a World’s Largest Dungeon game specifically designed to let the players experience as much as possible from the tortuous place. We are on a 32 point buy gestalt (any, not base only) with all of 3.5 available subject to approval. I can imagine hundreds of monocles popping from outraged eyes, but in defense of the game I raise two points.
- Action Economy (Paizo Forums has information, but it’s not a perfect description.)
- I’m really bad at optimizing.
So I’ve got nearly countless options ahead of me. I make a fighter-ranger who wielded light maces in the lightning hammer style, giving me another attack whenever I threat. I planned to take adaptable scimitars eventually, and score additional attacks about a fifth of the time. His name was Parker. He was a part-time novelist. He made the decision to become a wererat once it became clear the party was trapped in the dungeon. His answer to fiendish troglodytes is to draw and charge. Technically, if the party leader didn’t tell him to hold off, his default reaction to anything threatening was to draw and charge. It lasted about 7 levels, until our crack team broke past a incredibly difficult lock on huge marble doors. Inside was a HUGE black pudding. It had scoured its prison for all life, and was desperately hungry for fighter/ranger flesh. Reasoning that dessert never hurt anyone, Parker charged with both maces drawn.
This was ill-advised.
The magical +1 light hammer bit into the pudding, Parker’s strength driving it deep into the creature and clearly hurting it. The regular hammer in his off-hand? It was less successful. It also slammed into the creature, where a disastrously powerful acid ate it away to nothing. Suddenly, Parker felt fear. His style was more than useless now. At least three feats designed to make this work are now nothing. An arrow flew overhead to slam into the pudding. It jiggled. It split and engulfed Parker. I printed some new sheets.
Actually, now that I think about it, that Orc hireling was also World’s Largest Dungeon. Our Scholar/Factotum was paying him a pittance to follow us around and do our bidding. Once we all got were-ratted, he became one of our pack-mates. He was the one to shoot the blasted arrow that split the pudding onto Parker. He also killed my next character, but that was entirely my fault.
Later, we were exploring long, tight corridors. (Shush) We found a locked door, so the skill monkey set up his tools and told us we were in for a short break. I had rolled up a Lawful Evil Paladin of Tyranny/Monk. I could smite good on a fly kick, and even do an unarmed whirlwind attack! I was excited. MAD be damned, we were on a 32 point allowance! The character worked perfectly in a previous fight against a giant. Our cleric/fighter Enlarged me, and I fly kicked the giant across the room, felling him in a turn. I was excited. I felt like I was really throwing out the damage in a way Parker couldn’t. Don’t get me wrong, he was awesome, but it was chipping away sections of health. I was smashing them now.
There we were, waiting the twenty minutes it took to open the lock, when the GM rolled on the random encounter table. Black pudding. Big one. Not as big as the last though. It comes sliding past the corridor… And stops. Something makes it quiver in expectation. Everyone but the Factotum/Scribe drew weapons.
I don’t want to bore you with the specifics of the fight (And I don’t remember it, it’s over a year ago now. Still in the damned dungeon.) but it involved the pudding splitting about eight times, our wizard being engulfed but promptly freed by my grapple check to pull him from the beast. The Orc hireling had been loosing arrow after arrow and hiding away from the melee like a coward, despite his +2 Battleaxe. Of course, these arrows kept splitting the pudding! I nearly died three times. (Doesn’t count!) but we brought it down by a fireball and a lucky reflex roll.
I’m new to playing truly evil characters. I guess I reasoned that if I was Lawful evil, and a hireling, CRONIE! was endangering my life with his stupidity, I should teach him a lesson. A lesson with fists. I yelled “You imbecile!” And started the running leap for my fly kick. The GM stared at me, and allowed me a surprise round. I rolled a 18 on my jump check, and did great! Flew through the air like an eagle. I also rolled a 1 on my attack. So I was soaring past when we entered regular initiative. Turag the Orc simply quick-drew his Battleaxe and rolled to attack. 19. Total of 27. He SLAMMED the axe into my chest as I flew past, and it tore through my vest. My already acid-wrecked body simple collapsed under the blow, and I bled out. Turag shrugged. “Self Defense.”
I don’t even remember that Monk/Paladin’s name. He lasted one session and two fights.
We’re going to stay with the World’s Largest Dungeon. My next character was an experiment in casting. Melee had lead to nothing but horrible death. Having no good ideas aside from possibly making a Rogue/Warlock and cackling like a madman, I thought it would be time to hang back and sling fire. So I made a Sorcerer/Favoured Soul/Mystic Theurge/Dragon Disciple. He worked fairly well, with a huge number of spells per day. He was Teris the Star Elf, trapped in this place for near millennia, meditating and learning. Hooray for starting at level 11.
Anyway, we come across a lady standing on a balcony, her dress fluttering in the breeze. I walked forward and rolled a diplomacy. “What ho? Could you tell us the way out, if you know of one?” The GM stares at me and reads a piece of box text.
Her eyes are crazed and have a manic glint. Clearly she has lost her mind, and cannot be reasoned with.
Oh no. I take a step back and cast Greater Mage Armor. She takes a flying leap from the balcony and shifts to a true form… A Adult green dragon with wicked claws and a dusky red tinge to her scales. Fiendish, great!
My armour spell goes off. Her initiative is blessedly low, but she slams her great bulk into me, raking claws and biting teeth the whole time. My squishy magus goes down in a death-from-massive-damage in the second round of combat after I decide that if I run; I’d just die tired. As a last-ditch effort, SUDDEN MAXIMIZE DISINTEGRATE.
Spell resistance check failure. Star elf death.
listening to: Parabelle, the new band by old Evans Blue singer Kevin Matisyn. He was the best part of Evans Blue anyway.