After defeating the gnolls at the crossroads, the girls camped and got a good night's rest. The next day passed uneventfully and around nightfall they came to a farmhouse by the side of the road. They decided to stop and ask for a place to stay the night and were greeted warmly by a halfling farmer and his wife. I think I named her Maude right off the top of my head and was horrified when I heard myself call him Harold. I think that movie scarred me and I haven't even seen it in years.
Anyway, the paladin sensed unease in the couple and over dinner the party found out that their crops had been ravaged by some unknown creature that came in the night. The girls offered to stand sentry duty over the last remaining plants overnight. The elves kept watch from up in some trees while the others slept on the ground beneath. Sure enough, two large bugs with three mouths appeared in the middle of the night and tried to eat more of the farmer's crops. The eladrin woke everyone, the wizard threw a scorching burst at them, and the fight was on.
2 trimandibular praying mantelopes (level 3 brute, 300 xp)
2 saeggan dreamcasters (level 3 controller, 300 xp)
3 saeggan genesi (level 1 soldier, 300 xp)
Map: Farmhouse, road and some fields built using D&D Dungeon Tiles IV: Ruins of the Wild
You might notice that this is simply the sample encounter group from my trimandibular praying mantelope writeup.
As the fight started, the saeggans were using their vanish abilities to stay invisible. That didn't stop the wizard's area spells from charring them a bit anyway. The monsters' high fly speed let them close quickly and the mantelopes started biting the wizard while the dreamcasters tried to daze everyone with whispers of dreams and bite at the wizard to give the mantelopes extra attacks with their combined attack. The eladrin resisted the effects of the whispers and managed to make out the phrase "the stony black heart of the fetid swamp" in the babbling. The three genesi all flew at the ranger, who was still up in a tree.
The warlord managed to extricate the wizard with a steel monsoon attack, then she and the paladin concentrated on keeping the mantelopes and dreamcasters busy while the wizard blasted away. Up in the tree, the ranger and the three genesi were having no luck hitting each other. Both the warlord and the paladin were rolling way better on their attacks than usual and the wizard managed to set both mantelopes and a dreamcaster on fire with a fire shroud, so the fight on the ground was wrapped up in short order. Once that was finished, the wizard quickly eliminated the genesi with a couple of scorching bursts (one of which also hit the ranger, but she's getting used to that).
The saeggan dreamcaster's ability to daze everybody isn't all that useful because none of their allies can really take advantage of it. I should probably add a level 2 skirmisher build to the saeggan writeup that gets extra damage when it has combat advantage against the target.
THE ONLINE EDITION: GROUP SIZE
1 hour ago