Quote Originally Posted by gijoemike View Post
Longest fighting encounters I have ever played in were in 4th ed. I ( the GM ) added what seemed an appropriate # of minions for the guard duty for the structure the PC's were sneaking into. Sneaking turned to fighting. The party of 5 PCs fought 3 main Lieutenants who each had a 5 group minion squad. There was a choke point involved. They killed 3 things every round at first, they used various abilities. But it took 11 combat rounds to down everything. It took 3 full real life hours due to everyone choosing their powers and attacking multiple times. The HP of the lieutenants was too high. Each one had over 250 hp. So in total it was just over 750 hp for the party to chew through and they were not able to single target burn down the bad guys. By the end it was just i use the same at will again.

The GM took too long per turn because I had 18 things to move on a battle map. 12 attacks to make. Abilities on the LT to choose from, etc.
The fight turned into a boring repeat slug fest after round 4 because a bunch of powers were used up and at wills were being used.

Lots of modifies were never an issue. Bloodied/not was never an issue. It comes down to I hit it again with the same power.

To fix.
Lower HP on LT - avoid a boring slug fest. Huge box of HP with little ability isn't fun. And after 3 rounds of combat that is what the game turns into.
Fewer minions. GM moves faster and has less rolling to do.

Encounter 2 - purple wurm
I was a player this time. It was just a solo giant box of HP. When it was finally blooded it could swallow whole 1 person who is pretty much out of the fight. Other than that it was over 1000 hp of bite PC, PC turn, PC turn, PC turn, bite ( maybe move a bit), PCPCPC, bite, PCPCPC. Repeat that FOR LIKE 2 hours. There was no choice, no finesse, no tactics. We surrounded it in round 1 and beat it over the course of 2 hours. So boring.
The Purple Worm is also a banner case for the differences between early and late monster design. Taking for example the "Purple Worm" from MM1 (Level 16 Soldier Solo). It has its swallow trick, and a basic attack for 2d8+7 (that's an average of 16, by level 12 when you could start seeing this even a CON 10 Wizard PC will have 64 HP)

The Monster Vault version is a level 14 Brute Solo, bites for 4d8+8 (average of 26), has 2 minor action attack powers (that do real damage - 3d10+8 and 2d8+ongoing 15), and a triggered action attack (that can hit 2 targets for 3d12+5). Oh, and it frenzies and gets an extra minor action when its bloodied (see those minor action attack powers again). Oh, and half these powers shove enemies around pretty substantial distances.

Oh right, and 780 HP (MM version) vs 560 (MV).

I wonder which will be a more exciting fight?