Monday, September 1, 2008

The Shards of the Gate of Darkness, Part 5

After the tough fight in the dragon's graveyard, the group fled back to the town to lick their wounds. After some debate, they elected to let their librarian contact hide the three shards they had recovered. After an extended rest, using a clue they found on the dead tiefling in the middle of the graveyard, they struck out to take the fight to the cabal's hideout.

I had two very similar encounters planned for the cabal's hideout:
1 tiefling heretic (level 6 artillery, 250 xp)
1 cambion hellsword (level 8 brute, 350 xp) wearing Gauntlets of Ogre Power
Map: Jungle Temple from D&D Miniatures Game Starter Set

1 tiefling darkblade (level 7 lurker, 300 xp)
1 tiefling heretic (level 6 artillery - 250 xp)
1 cambion hellsword (level 8 brute - 350 xp)
1 fire beetle (level 1 brute - 100 xp)
Map: Tomb of Queen Peregrine from Fantastic Locations: Fane of the Drow

As the group approached the jungle temple, the cambion and the party spotted each other and the cambion won initiative. He opened with his whirlwind charge and started hammering away at the paladin. The tiefling came out and started flinging balefire at the other party members. The party tried to focus attacks on the cambion but had a terrible time rolling high enough to hit him. The ranger eventually ran past the front line and tried to shut down the tiefling. When the tiefling retreated to the healing font and got back a bunch of hit points, the ranger did the same. The ranger and the wizard eventually chased the tiefling off the field. Then they all turned their attention to the cambion and managed to finish it off.

When the fight started, I hadn't decided whether to give the healing font the effect listed on the map (use a standard action to regain 20 hit points). As the fight wore on, and the party expended all their healing and daily powers (only hitting with one out of four), I realized the second encounter would destroy them without a place where they could heal up. Their die rolls throughout this fight were simply abominable. Meanwhile, the cambion was seemingly unable to miss the paladin's armor class of 22 and the tiefling pretty reliably hit whoever he aimed at. The cambion spent most of the fight feeling almost completely safe, so he didn't bother to use his Gauntlets of Ogre Power. Once the full party turned on him his luck fled and he was no longer able to hit anyone, so he was unable to use the gauntlets then.

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