The Big Bad...and I do mean Bad
Well, I’ve finished reading through the adventure and my study of the evil monster at the end of it, along with some reading of forum topics on it, leads me to believe that it’s kind of like a dragon: if you come upon it with little knowledge of its capabilities or without some planning, you’re in a whole world of trouble.
Well, I’d hate to see the whole party get squicked due to bad surprises (If you’re going to die, it will be due to my fiendish cleverness!), so here’s the deal: I’m going to post in this thread the stat block for the final monster fight. No fluff and few details on where or how this fight takes place but you get what it can do and what it can take. This gives you two weeks and a chance to talk amongst yourselves and develop some tactics.
Here you go…by the way, it’s CR 10 :)
Init: +6; Senses: Darkvision 60 ft; Perception +14
AC 26 Touch 16, Flat-footed 16 (+1 Armor, +1 Deflection, +6 Dex, +9 Natural, -1 Size)
HP 142 (12d8+2d4+48)
Fort +11 (+13 vs Poison), Ref +15, Will +16
Immune Mind-affecting effects; SR 18
Speed 40, Climb 40, Swim 40
Melee Impaler of Thorns +20/+15/+10 (2d6+9/x3 and 1 Wis Drain) or Touch +18 (2d4 Wis Drain)
Space 10 ft, Reach 5 ft
Spell-Like Abilities (CL 10th)
At will – Charm Monster (DC 21), Ventriloquism (DC 18)
3/day – Deep Slumber (DC 20), Dream, Major Image (DC 20), Mirror Image, Suggestion (DC 20)
Spells Known (CL 8th, +18 Ranged Touch)
4th (4/day) – Dimension Door
3rd (3/day) – Fly, Haste
2nd(8/day) – Invisibility, Scorching Ray, Silence (DC 19)
1st(8/day) – Cure Light Wounds, Divine Favor, Mage Armor, Magic Missile, Shield
STR 22, DEX 23, INT 16, WIS 14, CHA 25
Base Atk +13, CMB +23
Feats Extend Spell, Improved Critical (Spear), Power Attack, Silent Spell, Weapon Focus (Spear)
Skills Acrobatics +15, Bluff +19, Knowledge (Arcana) +15, Knowledge (Local) +14, Perception +14, Spellcraft +19, Use Magic Device +24
I think that’s enough to get you started. See you in two weeks!
Seriously, I think the best option for us is RUN! Or just leave him be to do whatever he wants.
Second best option is to find some side quests to do so we can get more gold and xp, to hopefully be able to combat him.
If we are forced to fight him, we’ll all die, unless Rich decides we really shouldn’t. But that just leaves us up to his “mercy.”
From a logical standpoint, we’re kinda screwed. But I’m going to make a few posts to look at our options.
Looking at his stats, I notice that he doesn’t have any damage reduction or energy resistance. That’s good for us. The problem is his AC. I have a +10 to hit with my blade, which means before he actually casts mage armor and shield, I need a 16 to hit him. If he casts those spells, we need 20’s to hit him. Our only option is to beat him at initiative and counterspell him with a readied action. If that fails, we’re pretty much screwed. Well, not totally. I do know True Strike which gives me +20 to hit for one attack. At least I coudl damage him.
Our best bet is to hit and run. Greg may be able to overcome his spell resistance, as he’d only need an 11, since has has spell penetration, so that gives us a 50/50 chance.
Rich, is he evil? I’m assuming he is, but wanted to check.
Okay, not to be the engineering nerd here, but I ran some numbers on the average damage we’d take from a full attack from this guy at different ACs. Here’s what I came up with:
- AC – Average Damage
- 15 – 43.2
- 16 – 42.4
- 17 – 41.6
- 18 – 40
- 19 – 38.4
- 20 – 36.8
- 21 – 35.2
- 22 – 33.6
- 23 – 31.2
- 24 – 28.8
- 25 – 26.4
Basically, if he can get three attacks off at any one of us, there is a good chance that person will die. If he does it twice in a row, the target’s death is pretty much assured. Even awesome ACs aren’t gonna help, I’m just going to have to heal through it. But that means that if he targets me that the healing goes away. Combat casting isn’t likely given the new DCs in pathfinder. I can channel energy, but that ain’t gonna save us at 2d6 a round.
Anybody else got any ideas?
Well, I hadn’t gotten to the AC thing yet. I can, with proper preparation, get to a stupid high AC myself. Here’s the thoughts:
Dex +4 Mage ARmor +4 Shield +4
That gives me 22. If i use combat expertise, I can get another +4, and sacrifice that to my attack bonus (forget hitting him then).
If we coudl find a potion of cat’s grace, I’d get another +2.
I can’t remember what kind of bonus shield of faith gives. If it’s a deflection bonus, then that woudl help as well. If it’s a shield bonus, then oh well.
And a potion of bark skin would give me a +2 I think. Even then, I don’t know how long I’d be able to tank him, and it still raises the question of damaging him.
OUr best bet is to find a way to catch him flat-footed or touch (which usually involves spells), as his AC is much more manageable that way.
Without giving too much away, would you expect us to come across this thing next session? Like, “Hey Magnimar, what up? Oh crap, evil incarnate on my brain!” Or should we be looking like two or three sessions from now (giving us at least the chance of gaining a level and getting some crazy gear).
Seriously, that wisdom drain thing is worrying me. If he hits Redgar with his spear then my bonus spells go poof. At least the amount I heal is not based on my wisdom (though my concentration checks are.)
I’ve also got magic circle against evil at 3rd level. That gives everyone in 10 feet a +2 to AC, but it basically nixes hit and run tactics. But then again, the stupid slow dwarf is not really a runner to begin with.
So this morning it hit me that if we CAN do hit and run tactics, we potentially have one option open to us: Alchemist’s fire. It’s a touch to hit and does fire damage. AT least 3 of us in the party have good dexs for throwing things. If I throw up an expeditious retreat, I can move 60, but it wont’ last very long.
One thing I wanted to tell you guys is that I am going to learn energy resistance for this level. It absorbs 72 points of one energy so if we know what kind of dragon and when we are going to encounter it, it could be exceedingly useful. I believe I can memorize if 4 times a day if I drop all of my other 3rd level spells.
On second thought I just assumed it would be a dragon and on closer examination looks like is not. Oh well. Energy resistance will prove useful someday.
Right, let’s answer some queries:
Rich, is he evil? I’m assuming he is, but wanted to check. Like Dr. Evil-levels of evil.
Without giving too much away, would you expect us to come across this thing next session? Well, I have to answer this one “It depends.” It is in a particular location. If you go to said location, you will meet it there.
Not to worry, Aramil, you will get to use energy resistance someday. I promise >:)
Guys (and gals),
What do you think about returning to Thistletop to finish the job? I think we left a lot of loot down there in the basement (along with a nasty crab thing). If we can get that stuff we might use it to buy some decent protective gear, scrolls, and potions for the fight to come.
To that end, what kind of armor are you wearing right now Trevor? Have you upgraded since the start of the game? And Greg, are you missing anything that would superpower Aramil? Personally, I’m not above buying ourselves into a better chance against this thing.
Lord knows, we’re going to need everything we’ve got.