View Full Version : Glyph of Warding + Earth Reaver = Blasting

2007-12-29, 04:40 PM
I've just been running a scenario of a Drow settlement in the cavernous Underdark versus a group of refugee Dwarves, and I've hit upon an interesting concept.

If we apply Greater Glyph of Warding (6th Cleric, 400 GP material component) to a regular piece of paper (But be certain to make the paper the location of the glyph within it's area, effectively so it can be moved, you can just apply it straight to the cavern ceiling if you can get there), make it a spell glyph with Earth Reaver and set the conditions to target any creature that doesn't speak a certain password (Let's say, "Ooh that tickles").

We then apply 20 of them to the cavern ceiling (We could do more, but this should be enough, if not overkill). Stick them close together over a 15 ft. area on the cave ceiling.

Now to light our match. We use Enlarged Summon Monster I (Though any will work as long as you can cast them) and put our summoned creature in the range of the glyphs (19 ft. away maximum because of Earth Reaver's 20 ft. area). Obviously, don't tell the summoned creature what the password is.

The result is that the entire selection of glyphs over that area goes off, causing 4d6 untyped damage abd 3d6 points of fire damage per glyph to our unfortunate creature and, more importantly, the ceiling because it's in the area affected by Earth Reaver.

That's a subtotal of 160d6+60d6 (Due to half damage to objects with fire) or a grand total of 220d6 (MAM 220/770/1320), easily enough to blast through the ceiling.

This causes a distinct structural issue in the ceiling, causing it (As any good DM will tell you) to collapse. Obviously, this is something an 11th level Cleric can pull off, alone if necessary. This still seems a distinct theory for "Why [Name of underground species] settlements shouldn't exist"

2007-12-29, 04:49 PM
Why is this an argument for [underground species] shouldn't exist?

Congratulations. The ceiling falls in. Well, part of it. so you have a 20ft pile of debris, and the roof of the cavern is suddenly much higher. This doesn't wreck anything else, really. It doesn't cause massive structural collapse on a settlement scale.

And this is basically an expensive and elaborate mantrap. You can build things like this up on the surface too. Explosive runes cheese comes to mind. A big hole comes up too.

Also, depending on the setting, an 11th level cleric can be rare. Heroes of Battle says your average 11th level fighter is commanding 5000+ soldiers.

2007-12-29, 05:11 PM
Explosive Runes doesn't affect the object it's on (Technically neither does this, but by virtue of being in the area of the effect).

The thing about the ceiling is that it's essentially an arch. Every piece is being supported by the pieces around it, which is why it is generally very strong. The instant you take a massive chunk out of it like this, the whole thing starts collapsing in a chain reaction. The entire cave (And, if you're quite unlucky, the system it's connected to) caves in entirely.

The reason this is an argument for that underground species shouldn't exist, assuming they live in these caves we're collapsing, is because, well, they're collapsing. An Overland Flight and a Ring of Invisibility and we've got a pretty effective way of causing mass devastation underground. If you happen to be above a cavern on the surface you can use the same thing (Though I imagine any cavern roof strong enough to support a settlement of significant size is probably a bit too strong for 20 glyphs).

Go even further: Apply this to a caldera or some other kind of magma pocket. Instant volcano!

2007-12-31, 07:00 AM
Any thoughts? :smallconfused:

2007-12-31, 08:31 AM
So you mean that if someone wanted too they could drive X underground species to extinction. If you're at 11th level then you could pretty much drive any species to extinction though magic.

If you're arguing that no underground race should exist because of it, life as a whole should cease to exist because of this (not my own devising, I saw on a thread regarding genocide on the forums):

Locate City genocide
I saw this trick on the D&D CharOps boards once, and repost it every time someone asks about destroying the world.

1. Take the Locate City spell (from Cityscape, I believe) and apply Snowcasting (FB) to it. This gives it the [cold] descriptor.
2. Now that it is [cold], apply Flash Frost (FB). This makes it do 2 cold damage to everything in the area, which is ten miles per CL.
3. Apply Energy Substitution (Comp.Arc). This turns the cold damage into electricity.
4. Now that it does elecricity damage, it is a valid target for Born of the Three Thunders (PHBII). This makes it do half electricity and half sonic damage, but more importantly, it also allows a Reflex save for half damage, which allows you to...
5. ...apply Explosive Spell (Comp.Arc) to this mess. This makes anyone who fails an additional save be pushed back to the edge of the radius and take 1d6 per ten feet travelled.

*deep breath*

End Result: Snowcasting Flash Frost Energy Substitution (Electricity) Born of the Three Thunders Explosive Locate City. With all the metamagic, this is a 4th level spell (assume level 7). When you cast this, anyone within seventy miles must make a Reflex save or be blown back to the extreme of the area and take 1d6 per ten feet travelled. They are travelling seventy miles.

Congratulations, you are now dealing (5280 / 10 x 70) 36,960d6 at level seven, with an additional 5,280d6 per level, to everyone and everything within seventy miles. That's an average of 129,360 damage (untyped, too).

Best of all, since this spell is only fourth level, you can make wands of it. Hand them out to your fanatical cultist followers, space them out in stratagetic locations and major cities, and let lose.

2007-12-31, 09:24 AM
Ah yes, I'm well aware of the Explosive AftS devastation, but you need a 20th level character for that. I'm just noting something remarkably destructive for an 11th level character.

2007-12-31, 09:31 AM
Ah yes, I'm well aware of the Explosive AftS devastation, but you need a 20th level character for that. I'm just noting something remarkably destructive for an 11th level character.

Read Ryuuk's post again. It's a 4th level spell.

2007-12-31, 09:55 AM
I know the spell, the Explosive LC nets 70 miles of destruction, the Explosive AftS 200 miles (That's 185% increase). If nothing else, it's another addition to the ways you can cause mass destruction. The difference is that the Explosive spells are way less effective if the target whacks against an object, in this case the object is what's whacking against the target.