Sunday, October 4, 2009

The Raid Begins

This series of encounters challenges one of the basic assumptions of 4th Edition adventure design: the short rest. With the entire raid originally designed to take place in the space of three minutes (the conversion won't hold itself to so rigid a timetable), there is no time for the party to spend catching their breath between combat encounters. They still need a way to recover their encounter powers and heal up after a fight, though. The DMG2 actually makes a number of suggestions for dealing with this situation.

Each encounter during the raid will include a number of PC objectives. Accomplishing one of these objectives will impart a benefit to the party as a whole. These boons will help the party deal with the attrition of this rapid-fire series of encounters. They will range from the relatively minor, such as regaining a single encounter power, to rewards comparable to a free short rest.

During these encounters, make extensive use of the map of Sandpoint provided in Burnt Offerings and the Rise of the Runelords Player's Guide when setting up the encounters. Each of them occurs in a different area of town, but there's no set precise location where the PCs must fight each group of raiders. The map will help a great deal with helping you visualize the terrain.

It's possible (perhaps even likely) for the raid to end without the PCs engaging in every encounter. The raid is called off if Teraktinus and Longtooth are defeated, or after Teraktinus completes his mission by retrieving a stone from the Old Light. If the PCs successfully force the giants to retreat, they receive experience for all the encounters in the raid. If the PCs are defeated or are unable to deal with all the threats before the giants pillage the town, do not reward them experience for missed encounters until they are able to track Teraktinus or Longtooth down later.

3 comments:

greywulf said...

I've run a few sessions before there the encounters just keep on coming without a break between them. In those I've allowed the players to use Second Wind. They still spend a Healing Surge, but regain use of an Encounter Power instead of regaining Hit Points. If they spend an Action Point too they regain a Daily.

As the PCs get another Action Point after 2 encounters without an Extended Rest, that worked pretty well.

anonynos said...

I just wanted to say that I really appreciate the work you've done on these. It's interesting to see them done up in 4E, and the conversions look really solid. After the Pathfinder beta I'd debated swapping to 4E, and opted to stay Pathfinder but these make me reconsider that for the continuation of the game.

Scott said...

greywulf,

I originally ran this set of encounters with an automatic (instant) short rest between each. It worked just fine. You can easily hand wave the recovery as being brought about by the cheers of the guards/townsfolk.

I like the DMG2's advice on objectives, though. It rewards the PCs for fighting effectively in ways not always encouraged by the rules.

anonynos,

If you do decide to run the 4e conversion, please let me know how it goes!