View Full Version : Tomb of Horrors

Lord Denyuar
2009-10-15, 04:56 PM
Warning, this thread may contain spoilers.

Hey guys, I am soon to start a one shot dungeon of the ToH for my group since none of them have even heard of it!!! I got the download from wizards and after looking through it, I have a hard time believing anyone could survive it, individually or as a team, (esp at level 9) with no fore-warning. I want them to have fun and enjoy and very deadly dungeon, but I am just looking for some advice on how to run it or what I should let them set up as a party. There will be 4-6 characters and I was thinking level 9 with 10th lvl wbl. My group is not optimizers. Thanks ahead for any advice.

2009-10-15, 05:13 PM
You're running this as a one shot which is good. I'd tell your friends to bring a stack of spare character sheets or if you don't intend to allow them a way to replace dead party members, have something else for everyone to do, in a different room, far enough away that the noise won't be a distraction.

I ran for my friends once, and i got a tpk, and killed most of the second group. i failed to kill them due to the combination of alternative paladin class features and an iron kingdoms quickplate (the one that grants lay on hands).

Count Dravda
2009-10-15, 05:40 PM
Yeah, I highly recommend running it as a one-shot. Furthermore, it seems like a lot of abilities in 3.5 were not in the original edition, and were thus not accounted for. My creative players bypassed a lot of the hazards by employing methods such as:

1) Getting that rod of rope thing that fires a grappling hook rope from either end. Since it can exert a TON of force, they used it to pry doors open from a safe distance.

2) Using magic items to stay climbing the walls. There are a LOT of floor-based pressure plates and such.

3) Using magic to tunnel straight through the map, exiting at an entirely different part of the dungeon and thus bypassing a lot of traps.

Despite these measures, there were a couple casualties, and the final battle against the demilich construct was a near-TPK. Anyways, it's a dangerous dungeon. Tell your players to be on the alert and to be cautious. I allowed my players to find out a TON of horrific tales ahead of time, so they knew they were up against a paranoid and slightly sadistic trap-setting lich.

(My favorite room was the counterbalanced marble hall that dumps the party into lava. FIENDISHLY evil.)

-Count Dravda

2009-10-15, 05:46 PM
when I ran this thing my party was all optimizers. I responded by making some traps more deadly. Like for the Pit Traps I created a suction type effect then added spikes onto the bottoms of all the pits. Then when the devil face with the sphere o death I against created another suction affect towards the gaping maw :D. For the arch that leads to the small room I put an anti magic field in the room and down the pit so that they couldn't teleport out. I did a bit more but I think these are enough ideas :D. I ended up killing about half the party one way or another.

2009-10-16, 10:44 AM
Yeah, I tried to run this dungeon for my group thinking it would be fun, they didn't even make it through the first hallway before having to stop and heal. They ended up using the druids companion to trigger a lot of the traps, but even still they failed pretty epically. Definately recommend letting them make back up characters because unless they are very creative and smart, there will be a lot of deaths.

Guinea Anubis
2009-10-16, 11:18 AM
When I did a one shot of this with my friends, they used about 17 level 8 guys. when the old one died the new one got ported in (think game show)

Besure to have everyone make at lest 1 spare guy.

2009-10-16, 11:20 AM
If you want them to survive, make sure they get some at-will magic sources, such as Warlock or Reserve feats. Emphasize that a 'party face' is not needed for this dungeon(read: if someone asks twice, hit player with a book). Have a traveling salesman selling 12 foot poles just before they reach the dungeon. Have them recite this (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?p=6162513#post6162513). Have a party malconvoker, with the summon elemental reserve feat, who uses liberal applications of Summon Trapspringer and Summon 30' Scout. If you have someone with precision damage(rogue/scout), make sure they grab swift tracker(scout) or the weapon crystals that allow SA against undead/constructs. Belts of healing are a must. Require someone grabs Draconic Aura -Vigor as a 3rd level feat or have them have another source of 'free' healing. Rope trick, Rope trick, Rope trick. Recommend someone with at-will detect magic(DFA comes to mind). Consider giving them Gestalt and other bonuses(such as max HP for all HD). That's all I can think of offhand, and I'd do at least that much before delving into ToH personally.

2009-10-16, 11:23 AM
My party's going through Return to the Tomb of Horrors. Right now they're in the tomb itself, for which I'm using the 3.5 conversion available on wizards.com. There are five APL 13 characters, which means they're a bit overpowered, but they'll need it for the later parts of the adventure. There's been one character fatality, but that was partly due to serious bad luck.

It won't be easy getting through the whole tomb in one session. You may need to omit some rooms, or make secret doors non-secret.

2009-10-16, 11:31 AM
If your party hasn't heard of Tomb of Horrors the chances are quite high that unless they have an immense history of dungeon crawl with each other then you won't even need one of the iconic traps to TPK them. If someone makes a character out of humor or trying some gimmick, chances are they are the first to go. =P

Lord Denyuar
2009-10-16, 11:51 AM
Yeah, they have never heard of this dungeon before and I have appraised them of its lethality. They are not optimizers and love trying out new stuff, but I will be having them bring a min. of one back up. I hope it goes well, I will be running it next Thursday(s). Wish me luck...Wish them luck (what was I thinking, I don't need luck, I got traps!)

2009-10-16, 02:04 PM
Dude my favorite dungeon of all time:D Ive ran it about 5 times the best chance of surviving through the first parts of it without dieing to an noniconic trap is just let them be lvl 10-11 escpecialy if the're nonoptomizers they might realy need the extra saves.

2009-10-16, 02:10 PM
Someone has to be a rogue and someone has to be a cleric and someone better tank but they will all die to the lich at the end because he is a ******. Worse comes to worse if there is a long string of them having genuine fun and one of the traps will quite clearly TPW, adjust its DCs for the sake of their fun. The dungeon is a beast but one or two fudges that kept people happy and engaged never hurt anyone.

2009-10-16, 02:34 PM
Make sure that there's a cleric in the party.

Hand him the spell compendium with the "Revivify" spell highlighted and circled.

Other than that, there isn't much that I can tell you, having never made it to the end.