Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Roll20 ToEE Play Report: The Battle Against Lareth, part 2

Last time, the characters were locked in a life-and-death struggle with the evil cleric Lareth. Long story short, the battle took far longer to play out than I expected. The players had a difficult time hitting Lareth's high AC. But on the other hand, I as the DM was rolling incredibly unlucky on Lareth's behalf. Despite all his advantages, he simply could not consistently hit any single opponent. When he did hit, it was devastating. But most of his attacks just simply missed the mark. As I mentioned last time, I do all my rolls out in the open, so his attacks were there for all to see. Even the players themselves could not believe their good fortune.

At any rate, here are some screenshots to illustrate the highlights of the battle:

Prior to this screenshot, Lareth had taken down the party Cleric, who was now lying on the table and bleeding out (I have house rules for negative HPs before a character is truly dead). With the Cleric down, Lareth turned his attention to the Halfing. The Dwarf and the Magic-User have run up to help, after murdering Spugnoir for his recent betrayal... the Mage to try and save the Cleric (he was carrying a Potion of Healing), and the Dwarf to help the Halfling battle Lareth.

In this screenshot, the Dwarf has landed a critical hit on Lareth. In my game, whenever a combatant rolls a natural "20", he also gets to roll on a random table which describes special damage inflicted, according to weapon type. Here you can see the dice results, and the Dwarf has inflicted 24 points of damage on Lareth in a single attack.

In this next screenshot, the Cleric is back on his feet after been given the Potion of Healing and then casting Cure Light Wounds on himself. He has now moved over to heal the Dwarf if necessary. Meanwhile, the Halfling has landed his own critical hit on Lareth, as illustrated here:

Although he has suffered two critical hits in a row, Lareth is still hanging on. He made another offer to bring the PCs into his ranks. But they, sensing the end was near, were having none of it. So Lareth demonstrated that he still had some fight left in him, and next landed two hits on the Dwarf. Total damage inflicted is 18 points, which is unfortunate because the Dwarf had only 5 HPs left at this point. In the span of a single 10 second round, the Dwarf has gone from being a combatant to knocking on the doors of Valhalla.

The Dwarf is now at -13 hit points, which is dead as dead can be. However, there's still hope! Last December, I ran a one-off Christmas-themed adventure in which the PCs each received a gift which they could bring back into the "real" campaign. Thus, the Dwarf happened to be carrying an item called "Fruitcake of the Gods", which when consumed restores a being to full hit points and can even restore the dead back to life if given to them within 3 rounds. The Cleric, knowing the Dwarf had this item, quickly dug it out of his backpack and crammed it down his throat.

In the meantime, it was up to the Halfling to keep Lareth occupied while the Cleric was saving the Dwarf. This he did with incredible luck because on his turn to attack the Halfling scored another Critical Hit against Lareth. This screenshot shows the results of that round of combat:

Unfortunately for Lareth, he could not weather this last critical hit... The damage inflicted pushed him into the negative range, and he died with his intestines spilled out on the floor in front of him. However, we decided that was not dramatic enough, given the extraordinary circumstances and dice rolls. Instead, we decided that the Halfling disemboweled Lareth, then choked him to death by strangling him with his own intestines. The Halfling's player, being something of a doodler, later posted an illustration to commemorate the event:

I can't figure out how to rotate pics in Blogger...

The defeat of Lareth brought us close to the end of the game session. The party quickly looted the dead inhabitants and were inspecting the fine furnishings of Lareth's personal quarters when we stopped for the night. And a clue has been uncovered which could lead the PCs to the next stage of the quest!

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