Terrycloth (terrycloth) wrote,

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To Infinity and Beyond!

Friday night we played some Pathfinder. The party went in what was obviously and clearly marked as the wrong way, because they thought there would be treasure.

After the necromancer's demise, the party proceeded into his lair to explore it a bit before the mine flooded. Two of the elven archers had gone in ahead, and they found them in a back room (well, back cave) busily burning the necromancer's library. "Shabra's work was pure evil, and must be destroyed!"

The party pretended to help while searching for hidden treasure. They found a hidden journal, a 'feather', and a bone earring, and kept the last two while pitching the first onto the fire unread. When the elves turned to the alchemy lab and started pitching pitchers of unknown chemicals onto the fire, they decided that they didn't want to be in the room for that. Which was probably wise. The elves managed to do various horrible things to themselves, followed by a wonderful thing which left them basically stoned.

The party decided to take advantage of that by convincing them to help the party through the rest of the dungeon. The explicit reasoning was 'something is bound to kill them, and then we can take their stuff'.

There were two exits from the necromancer's lair, each of which guarded by a ring of blue runes and an invisible force field. The runes were in elven, and Lilia was able to read them: "Level 11, Shabra the Necromancer. No unauthorized personnel. This way up to exit. Password is 'Mellon'." The other ring of runes was identical, except that it said 'down to armory' and the password was different.

Lilia spoke the password, and the party was scanned. The runes flashed red briefly, and the words "Alignment Error" popped up in midair. Once Ironhoof and his pet were taken out of sight, they were able to open it, though, since everyone else was good.

Unfortunately, stepping through as a non-elf activated a bunch of traps. The elves were able to walk down the hall and back safely as long as no non-elves were in the corridor, but otherwise -- as they found out when they went back to get one of the duergar corpses to toss onto the pressure plates (discovering in the process that mine was, in fact, flooding) -- it filled with whirling blades, activated by pressure plates, and vampiric mist came out of a vent in the wall to attack. They managed to trigger the mist twice, and a couple people got slightly drained, but a single mist at a time wasn't a problem for them -- they'd fought six at once before, after all.

It took a while, but Alex was able to disarm the traps as they went, and even managed to spot the much trickier summon monster trap in the middle of the corridor, so they moved on. The next level said 'Level 12: Leonel'. Peeking around the corner showed that it was guarded by a pair of spectral lions, in the middle of a ring of six gem-studded tubes like they'd seen in Shabra's lair -- no doubt the Leonel were inside. They decided to walk past, since the lions didn't attack as long as they didn't actually enter the cave.

The surviving duergar, now -- they attacked. They'd intended to sneak up behind the party (who'd left the force fields open and traps disarmed behind them the whole way) and kill them one by one, but they weren't quite stealthy enough, and in an open melee, they were no match for the dragonne and eidolon, especially with the rest of the party aiding with arrows. Not to mention, the wounds they'd suffered fighting Shabra and his pets.

After they'd finished off (and looted) the duergar, Alex managed to get the next summon monster trap as well, and they arrived at 'Level 13: Banshee'. This time, the guardian of the stasis tubes was a strange, shifting creature that claimed to be 'The Dream of Freedom', and asked them to step into its parlor for some tea. They declined, and continued on, bypassing yet another summon monster trap -- should I just go ahead and say that Alex somehow managed to find and disarm every single one they came across? -- and coming to 'Level 14: Silvanis'.

Apparently, Silvanis was a dragon. A huge silver dragon. The elves were in awe -- "Silvanis is HERE? In the armory?!" Apparently, they knew of her. The dragon was sleeping on top of a huge pile of gold coins, but the party talked the elves out of stealing any of her hoard ("We would never!") or otherwise waking her up, which they might have otherwise. They stayed behind to bask in her glory as the party moved on to level 15, though.

Beyond the final force field was a door, with a barred window through which they could see a room full of golems. The ring of runes, in addition to the normal warnings, proclaimed that this was 'level 15: Armory' and that 'unauthorized access will be punished by death'. It also explained that in the event of the collapse of elven civilization, various entities would be able to provide authorization; the list included both Shabra and Silvanis.

So they decided to try to trick the golems into taking the tokens they'd taken from Shabra's lair as authorization. Unfortunately, the golem who asked for their authorization was not tricked. In stood there blocking their way, and eventually went back to its place, closing and re-locking the door behind it.

Then they got an idea -- what if they repaired the traps, and lured the golems through them all? Surely even a golem couldn't survive running through two dozen blade traps -- and they could close the force field behind the first one to come through to make sure they only fought one at a time. Or, they could lure all eight into the hallway, and block the first one to keep the ones behind from getting to them, letting the blades chop up the whole line at once.

It seemed like a terrible idea, but how else would they get into the armory? Waking up Silvanis seemed far more dangerous.

So they went with it, Ironhoof using a magic missle from Shabra's wand to taunt the golems from halfway down the corridor... except... they ignored it, being completely unaffected by magic. So he summoned a dire rat, and had *it* attack. And that worked -- the golem killed the rat, and then as the druid hoofed it down the tunnel at hasted speed -- the whole line of golems was right behind. Alex triggered the trap with a guisarme she'd looted somewhere, and the eidolon and a stoneskinned dragonne (Lilia knew stoneskin now, but had cast her first on herself instead of her eidolon and only had one left, and Ironhoof convinced her that the dragonne was less expendable) blocked the passage, in case the golems survived the run through all the spinning blades.

Which they did. The golems had enough damage resistance to *almost* completely ignore the blades, and even running through two dozen of them only hurt them about 1/4 to 1/2 way. The dragonne was also basically ineffective... the eidolon had cold damage with each attack, though, which got through since while the golems were 'immune to magic', they were not immune to elemental damage per se. Between that, some lucky critical hits, and alchemist's fire from Alex's pack, they managed to take down the first golem... and it was obvious that they were not going to win the fight. The dragonne and eidolon were almost dead, and the golems standing still in the spinning blades were taking basically no damage, even though they were too large to actually stand between the blades like human-sized creatures could.

So Alex risked stepping into Silvanis' lair to hide and make sneak attacks. This did not immediately wake the dragon, and the sneak attacks were pretty effective. Once the eidolon was dead, they tried backing out of the hallway and closing the force field, but if no one but the golems were inside, the traps deactivated because the golems were authorized. So Lilia summoned a hound archon, which could teleport at will, and had it teleport into the tunnel to set off the traps.

...it also did a good job of luring the golems through the traps. Back and forth through the traps. It took a few hits in the process, but thanks in part to a sleet storm from Ironhoof that made it hard for the golems to move around, it managed to survive long enough until between the blades and the sneak attacks, there were only three golems left -- one readying to hit the party when they opened the force field to fire (which was slowly bleeding to death from Alex's sneak attack bleed ability, because of all the ridiculous list of things that golems were immune to, 'bleeding' was not one of them) and two chasing the archon back and forth but never catching it because it now had enough room to teleport out of charge range.

And at that point, the party couldn't lose. Eventually, all the golems were dead, and they prepared to move on into the armory to claim their reward for defeating the unbeatable foe.

Alex: "I'll use a wand of cure light on the dragonne to heal it, since it got really pounded, even through the stoneskin."
GM: "Nothing happens. Wounds inflicted by clay golems don't heal. You'll need a high level cleric to heal it, or cast remove curse or something."

last session | next session

I did remind them that since this was the hidden armory where the elves stored things too dangerous to keep more accessible, the weapons inside probably wouldn't be very usable. But ARGH, I didn't expect to have to *actually generate them*.
Tags: pathfinder game summary
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