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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    Scorponok's Avatar

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    Thumbs up How Would GitP players handle this?

    A spellcaster of some sort appears in the sky one day, and takes 6 rounds and casts a bunch of fireballs into a major city. The fireballs kill a lot of people. Just as soon as they appeared, they vanished. There were some witnesses who said they might have seen a person dressed all in black appear in the sky, but did not see them shoot any fireballs.

    Assuming that you can make a character no higher than level 8, using 3.5 core rules, with the Complete series, Book of 9 Swords, and Miniatures Handbook as sources, how would you go finding out who was responsible for this atrocity?

    Note: This didn't actually happen exactly like this, but something close.

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Troll in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: How Would GitP players handle this?

    Quote Originally Posted by Scorponok View Post
    A spellcaster of some sort appears in the sky one day, and takes 6 rounds and casts a bunch of fireballs into a major city. The fireballs kill a lot of people. Just as soon as they appeared, they vanished. There were some witnesses who said they might have seen a person dressed all in black appear in the sky, but did not see them shoot any fireballs.

    Assuming that you can make a character no higher than level 8, using 3.5 core rules, with the Complete series, Book of 9 Swords, and Miniatures Handbook as sources, how would you go finding out who was responsible for this atrocity?

    Note: This didn't actually happen exactly like this, but something close.
    Druid, Cleric, Wizard, Sorcerer, Archivist, or Erudite 8.

    I spam-cast Scrying till the fire balling person fails a will save. With what I see of their surroundings I spam cast Commune to find out just where their location is.

    EDIT: scratch the Archivist and Erudite. I just realized they're on your no fly list.
    Last edited by (Un)Inspired; 2015-01-26 at 03:03 AM.
    amazing avatar of my favorite character, Gheera, by Pesimismrocks

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    Default Re: How Would GitP players handle this?

    Quote Originally Posted by (Un)Inspired View Post
    Druid, Cleric, Wizard, Sorcerer, Archivist, or Erudite 8.

    I spam-cast Scrying till the fire balling person fails a will save. With what I see of their surroundings I spam cast Commune to find out just where their location is.
    .
    That was my first thought as well, but I'm not sure if Scrying would work. Don't you need to have some connection to the person? I guess if there were none, they would get a +10 to their Will Save, but enough level 8 investigator Clerics and Sorcerers doing it and the culprit will probably roll a low save eventually.

  4. - Top - End - #4
    Troll in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: How Would GitP players handle this?

    Quote Originally Posted by Scorponok View Post
    That was my first thought as well, but I'm not sure if Scrying would work. Don't you need to have some connection to the person? I guess if there were none, they would get a +10 to their Will Save, but enough level 8 investigator Clerics and Sorcerers doing it and the culprit will probably roll a low save eventually.
    I believe they only get a +5 if you've heard of them. If witnesses are talking about him then you've heard of him. As you said, he's gonna fail that will save sooner or later.
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  5. - Top - End - #5
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    Default Re: How Would GitP players handle this?

    From the SRD
    Spoiler: Scrying
    Show

    Scrying
    Divination (Scrying)

    Level: Brd 3, Clr 5, Drd 4, Sor/Wiz 4
    Components: V, S, M/DF, F
    Casting Time: 1 hour
    Range: See text
    Effect: Magical sensor
    Duration: 1 min./level
    Saving Throw: Will negates
    Spell Resistance: Yes

    You can see and hear some creature, which may be at any distance. If the subject succeeds on a Will save, the scrying attempt simply fails. The difficulty of the save depends on how well you know the subject and what sort of physical connection (if any) you have to that creature. Furthermore, if the subject is on another plane, it gets a +5 bonus on its Will save.

    Knowledge Will Save Modifier
    None +10
    Secondhand (you have heard of the subject) +5
    Firsthand (you have met the subject) +0
    Familiar (you know the subject well) -5
    Connection Will Save Modifier
    Likeness or picture -2
    Possession or garment -2
    Body part, lock of hair, bit of nail, etc. -10

    If the save fails, you can see and hear the subject and the subjectís immediate surroundings (approximately 10 feet in all directions of the subject). If the subject moves, the sensor follows at a speed of up to 150 feet.

    As with all divination (scrying) spells, the sensor has your full visual acuity, including any magical effects. In addition, the following spells have a 5% chance per caster level of operating through the sensor: detect chaos, detect evil, detect good, detect law, detect magic, and message.

    If the save succeeds, you canít attempt to scry on that subject again for at least 24 hours.

    Arcane Material Component

    The eye of a hawk, an eagle, or a roc, plus nitric acid, copper, and zinc.

    Wizard, Sorcerer, or Bard Focus

    A mirror of finely wrought and highly polished silver costing not less than 1,000 gp. The mirror must be at least 2 feet by 4 feet.

    Cleric Focus

    A holy water font costing not less than 100 gp.

    Druid Focus

    A natural pool of water.
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    Troll in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: How Would GitP players handle this?

    Quote Originally Posted by WeaselGuy View Post
    From the SRD
    Spoiler: Scrying
    Show

    Scrying
    Divination (Scrying)

    Level: Brd 3, Clr 5, Drd 4, Sor/Wiz 4
    Components: V, S, M/DF, F
    Casting Time: 1 hour
    Range: See text
    Effect: Magical sensor
    Duration: 1 min./level
    Saving Throw: Will negates
    Spell Resistance: Yes

    You can see and hear some creature, which may be at any distance. If the subject succeeds on a Will save, the scrying attempt simply fails. The difficulty of the save depends on how well you know the subject and what sort of physical connection (if any) you have to that creature. Furthermore, if the subject is on another plane, it gets a +5 bonus on its Will save.

    Knowledge Will Save Modifier
    None +10
    Secondhand (you have heard of the subject) +5
    Firsthand (you have met the subject) +0
    Familiar (you know the subject well) -5
    Connection Will Save Modifier
    Likeness or picture -2
    Possession or garment -2
    Body part, lock of hair, bit of nail, etc. -10

    If the save fails, you can see and hear the subject and the subjectís immediate surroundings (approximately 10 feet in all directions of the subject). If the subject moves, the sensor follows at a speed of up to 150 feet.

    As with all divination (scrying) spells, the sensor has your full visual acuity, including any magical effects. In addition, the following spells have a 5% chance per caster level of operating through the sensor: detect chaos, detect evil, detect good, detect law, detect magic, and message.

    If the save succeeds, you canít attempt to scry on that subject again for at least 24 hours.

    Arcane Material Component

    The eye of a hawk, an eagle, or a roc, plus nitric acid, copper, and zinc.

    Wizard, Sorcerer, or Bard Focus

    A mirror of finely wrought and highly polished silver costing not less than 1,000 gp. The mirror must be at least 2 feet by 4 feet.

    Cleric Focus

    A holy water font costing not less than 100 gp.

    Druid Focus

    A natural pool of water.
    Yay, I was right!
    amazing avatar of my favorite character, Gheera, by Pesimismrocks

  7. - Top - End - #7
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Kobold

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    Default Re: How Would GitP players handle this?

    Quote Originally Posted by (Un)Inspired View Post
    I believe they only get a +5 if you've heard of them. If witnesses are talking about him then you've heard of him. As you said, he's gonna fail that will save sooner or later.

    Unless they have a method of avoiding failure on 1.

    Circle Dance would be a good method to locate the blaster (if they are on the same plane). You would need witnesses to cast the spell. Easiest way to do this would be to craft single-use items. Which is easiest to do as Artificer 8.

    Or cast Commune / Contact Other Plane to learn if they'll attempt this again if so learn location and time of next attempt and preempt them then (again easiest as an Artificer).

    EDIT: I forgot to explain why I included second plan. First one has many failure modes (DM not allowing custom items, suspect being able to teleport after I locate them, being far enough to make triangulation useles,...). When the second plan doesn't work I still have Commune /COP which gives me a good chance to locate the blaster (unless they are Vecna-blooded or Mindblank blocks my divinations).
    Last edited by ahenobarbi; 2015-01-26 at 04:16 AM.

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    Barbarian in the Playground
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    Default Re: How Would GitP players handle this?

    I don't think being told about "A person wearing all black that possibly appeared in the sky and may or may not be associated with the fireballs" actually counts as second hand information. Considering the amount of bad guys wearing black and using bad tactics (blasting), you might end up scrying on a thousand different people.

    Although being realistic, what the playground would ACTUALLY do is find the guy, then explain to him how fireballs are suboptimal and help him pick more optimal spells for terrorizing people. And we'd probably argue over what alignment his terrorizing was.
    Spoiler: How to fix T1 classes:
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    There are more posts on the forums about how to nerf T1, than there are posts about T1 characters ruining games. I would say the problem is solved!


    Quote Originally Posted by Red Fel View Post
    This? This isn't a slice of brilliance. This is the whole freaking pie.

    When you play the game of pwns, you're either w1n or n00b. There is no middle ground.

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    Troll in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: How Would GitP players handle this?

    Quote Originally Posted by Sam K View Post
    Although being realistic, what the playground would ACTUALLY do is find the guy, then explain to him how fireballs are suboptimal and help him pick more optimal spells for terrorizing people. And we'd probably argue over what alignment his terrorizing was.
    I kinda want to sig that.
    Last edited by georgie_leech; 2015-01-26 at 05:20 AM.
    Quote Originally Posted by Grod_The_Giant View Post
    We should try to make that a thing; I think it might help civility. Hey, GitP, let's try to make this a thing: when you're arguing optimization strategies, RAW-logic, and similar such things that you'd never actually use in a game, tag your post [THEORETICAL] and/or use green text
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  10. - Top - End - #10
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: How Would GitP players handle this?

    Quote Originally Posted by georgie_leech View Post
    I kinda want to sig that.
    bwahahaha... so spot on accurate too... "Look, I can see the value in wanting a fireball that looks cool, but really what you should do is switch to being a Whisper Gnome Illusionist, and go into Shadow Adept and then into Shadowcraft Mage, then cast Shadow Evocation Fireballs..."
    Quote Originally Posted by Snowbluff View Post
    Regardless of what happened, I welcome WeaselGuy's Weasel into our little community.
    Quote Originally Posted by ComaVision View Post
    My ten foot pole and I are going to go prod less dangerous traps.
    Quote Originally Posted by Laserlight View Post
    Your hexblade turns out to be a holy sword imbued with the spirit of R Lee Ermey. "Stand up straight, maggot! Shoulders back, chin up, eyes front, and suck in that gut! I'm going to make a man out of you, maggot, even if it kills you!"
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  11. - Top - End - #11
    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Default Re: How Would GitP players handle this?

    Quote Originally Posted by WeaselGuy View Post
    bwahahaha... so spot on accurate too... "Look, I can see the value in wanting a fireball that looks cool, but really what you should do is switch to being a Whisper Gnome Illusionist, and go into Shadow Adept and then into Shadowcraft Mage, then cast Shadow Evocation Fireballs..."
    Nah, you gotta go with Wings of Flurry for the much higher damage cap and better damage type, and then use Spell Thematics to get that good ol' fireball look.
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    Barbarian in the Playground
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    Default Re: How Would GitP players handle this?

    Quote Originally Posted by georgie_leech View Post
    I kinda want to sig that.
    You are most welcome to (not that you were asking for my permission or anything )

    I can actually imagine a bunch of playground regulars sitting in a fortress, monitoring events like the one the OP describede, and launching a quick-response optimization team when when the bad guy shows himself. When the bad guy tries to teleport out, he ends up in a conference room where Tippy is looking over his build and Red Fel is drawing a chart showing how he could increase terror inflicted by 128% by using the same amount of spell slots he's using now.

    Half reality TV show, half intervention, all optimized!
    Spoiler: How to fix T1 classes:
    Show
    There are more posts on the forums about how to nerf T1, than there are posts about T1 characters ruining games. I would say the problem is solved!


    Quote Originally Posted by Red Fel View Post
    This? This isn't a slice of brilliance. This is the whole freaking pie.

    When you play the game of pwns, you're either w1n or n00b. There is no middle ground.

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    NecromancerGuy

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    Default Re: How Would GitP players handle this?

    Quote Originally Posted by Sam K View Post
    You are most welcome to (not that you were asking for my permission or anything )

    I can actually imagine a bunch of playground regulars sitting in a fortress, monitoring events like the one the OP describede, and launching a quick-response optimization team when when the bad guy shows himself. When the bad guy tries to teleport out, he ends up in a conference room where Tippy is looking over his build and Red Fel is drawing a chart showing how he could increase terror inflicted by 128% by using the same amount of spell slots he's using now.

    Half reality TV show, half intervention, all optimized!
    I would totally watch that.

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    Default Re: How Would GitP players handle this?

    1. Play a kobold psion.
    2. You know the rest.
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    Default Re: How Would GitP players handle this?

    Quote Originally Posted by Sam K View Post
    .
    Although being realistic, what the playground would ACTUALLY do is find the guy, then explain to him how fireballs are suboptimal and help him pick more optimal spells for terrorizing people. And we'd probably argue over what alignment his terrorizing was.
    Sam K wins this thread.
    Quote Originally Posted by danielxcutter View Post
    This. This sooooo much. I wasn't expecting *two* thread wins from you.
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    Default Re: How Would GitP players handle this?

    Quote Originally Posted by Larrx View Post
    I would totally watch that.
    Tonight at 8e/7c, our new hit reality series, "Intervention, Optimized"! See such controversial topics as Travel Devotion versus Spirit Lion Totem, Psion versus Wizard, and finally, an interview with the all powerful Pun-Pun, with guest commentary by Madness McTarrasquekiller! All coming up tonight, after "Mythbusters"!

    Because, you know, it would totally be on Discovery Channel
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    Regardless of what happened, I welcome WeaselGuy's Weasel into our little community.
    Quote Originally Posted by ComaVision View Post
    My ten foot pole and I are going to go prod less dangerous traps.
    Quote Originally Posted by Laserlight View Post
    Your hexblade turns out to be a holy sword imbued with the spirit of R Lee Ermey. "Stand up straight, maggot! Shoulders back, chin up, eyes front, and suck in that gut! I'm going to make a man out of you, maggot, even if it kills you!"
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    Default Re: How Would GitP players handle this?

    "See, how you destroy a city is using snowcasting flash frost fell drain Locate City. Not with Fireballs. Don't you know anything?"
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    Titan in the Playground
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    Default Re: How Would GitP players handle this?

    OK, first off, the OP seems inconsistent:
    A spellcaster of some sort appears in the sky one day, and takes 6 rounds and casts a bunch of fireballs into a major city.
    How do we know this, when all any witness saw was a mysterious figure, not the fireballs?

    But anyway, to investigate this, I'd start by making Gather Information checks about the victims, to try to find one who was known for being friendly, cooperative, and observant (in the process, I'd also try to find some connection between the victims, in case they weren't just random targets of opportunity, but that's a just-in-case). Then, I'd cast Speak with Dead on that victim. That should give me a much better description of the perp, as well as possibly some information on his MO. Repeat for as many other victims as I have spell slots available, to corroborate the information and fill in details.

    I'd also contact any wizard's guilds, academies, etc. on the continent, and ask them if any of their members have recently become more reclusive than usual, or malcontent for some reason, or the like. Then I'd toss in some more Gather Information checks in the city, asking about people matching the caster's rough description who have disappeared recently, or around whom strange things have been happening lately, or possibly if someone matching that description has a relationship (possibly one recently gone sour) with anyone in the city.

    I realize that I'm using abilities from two different classes here (Speak with Dead is a cleric-only spell, and they don't have Gather Information as a class skill). If we're allowed a party, make it a bard and a cleric. If it has to be a single character, then it's a cloistered cleric with a one-level dip in something with Gather Information. Take the dip on a later level, so we can dump all that level's skill points into Gather Information, and cut down on the number of cross-class ranks needed.
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    Barbarian in the Playground
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    Default Re: How Would GitP players handle this?

    Quote Originally Posted by WeaselGuy View Post
    Tonight at 8e/7c, our new hit reality series, "Intervention, Optimized"! See such controversial topics as Travel Devotion versus Spirit Lion Totem, Psion versus Wizard, and finally, an interview with the all powerful Pun-Pun, with guest commentary by Madness McTarrasquekiller! All coming up tonight, after "Mythbusters"!

    Because, you know, it would totally be on Discovery Channel
    Are they allowed to have shows that's not about building cars? Maybe warforged counts?

    I was actually thinking more along the lines of "Pimp my ride" or "Queer eye...": "Tonight, our crack team of evil optimization experts meet their toughest challenge yet: a BBEG who just can't get it together!"

    Quote Originally Posted by CoDzilla the holy, PC party leader
    "Look, our BBEG is really trying to challenge us, but he's just not figuring it out. He has a MAD build, using TWF and power attacking with finesse weapons. I could solo him with the rest of the party sitting the fight out. We've even tried spending our WBL on thematic items and picking 'RP appropriate' spells from core only, but he's still not able to put up a fight, and it's getting embarassing for everyone involved. The guy needs help!"
    Quote Originally Posted by Mook #385, minion
    "Last week, my boss tried to execute me to intimidate one of his captains who wasn't performing. You know, standard 'This is what happends to those who disapoint me' BBEG villany? He missed! With every attack of his full-action iterative! I wasn't even wearing armor, he had just stacked up too many to-hit penalties! I felt so bad for him...

    I don't think he realizes how bad it has gotten, he hasn't even attempted to waste a few of us on a meaningless suicide mission just to prove how little our lives mean to him. Someone has to help set him straight!"
    Quote Originally Posted by Batelf, PC wizard
    "When I tried to divine what magic items he was using, you know what I found out? He has a +6 offhand weapon! He only has basic two weapon fighting, so it's one attack on an iterative. His main weapon is a masterwork, so he has a overpriced offhand and a mundane mainhand that's not even an exotic material. And he gets his flight from potions."
    Quote Originally Posted by Lord McEvilzors, BBEG
    "Look, I just don't see what the big deal is! When I full-attack I can make five attacks. You get it? FIVE! Most people my level can only make 4! And look, everyone is expecting the main weapon to be the big damage dealer, right? So that's why I have the +6 dagger, see! I stab with the +6 dagger and just the enchantment bonus is MORE DAMAGE THAN A DAGGER CAN NORMALLY DO! And the hit bonus helps when I'm power attacking! This is an awesome fighter build, I just had some bad luck with my rolls recently!
    "Can the team help this aspiring overlord get back on track? Find out at 8!"
    Spoiler: How to fix T1 classes:
    Show
    There are more posts on the forums about how to nerf T1, than there are posts about T1 characters ruining games. I would say the problem is solved!


    Quote Originally Posted by Red Fel View Post
    This? This isn't a slice of brilliance. This is the whole freaking pie.

    When you play the game of pwns, you're either w1n or n00b. There is no middle ground.

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    Orc in the Playground
     
    Beholder

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    Default Re: How Would GitP players handle this?

    I would start by assuming the person flying was an illusion, then begin hunting down and killing the wizards at the local school. Once the GM gets tired of 1st level wizard fights I'll start asking them questions.

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    Dwarf in the Playground
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    Default Re: How Would GitP players handle this?

    Quote Originally Posted by Sam K View Post
    Although being realistic, what the playground would ACTUALLY do is find the guy, then explain to him how fireballs are suboptimal and help him pick more optimal spells for terrorizing people. And we'd probably argue over what alignment his terrorizing was.
    1) May I sig this?

    2) Bard 8. Max Diplomacy and Perform. Spam Perform checks until you attract the attention of an extraplanar being, then Diplomancer them into finding the guy. Then go to the guy and Diplomancer him into not doing it any more.

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    Barbarian in the Playground
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    Default Re: How Would GitP players handle this?

    Quote Originally Posted by LooseCannoneer View Post
    1) May I sig this?

    2) Bard 8. Max Diplomacy and Perform. Spam Perform checks until you attract the attention of an extraplanar being, then Diplomancer them into finding the guy. Then go to the guy and Diplomancer him into not doing it any more.
    1) Yes.

    2) Bonus points if you do this with Perform: slapstick comedy. You have attracted the attention of Giggles the Clown!
    Spoiler: How to fix T1 classes:
    Show
    There are more posts on the forums about how to nerf T1, than there are posts about T1 characters ruining games. I would say the problem is solved!


    Quote Originally Posted by Red Fel View Post
    This? This isn't a slice of brilliance. This is the whole freaking pie.

    When you play the game of pwns, you're either w1n or n00b. There is no middle ground.

  23. - Top - End - #23
    Dwarf in the Playground
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    Default Re: How Would GitP players handle this?

    Giggles the Clown: Arch-Diety of Comedy!

    My new 20th level Bard.

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    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Default Re: How Would GitP players handle this?

    I might be the outlier here for not pulling some spells as a first option, but the dude must have some kind of motive, so my character would start investigating who this could have been. Check the local historians, mage guild, taverns for rumors. Try to find out if he targetet specific people or places, or if he appeared at a location with some history.

    Basically, knowledge checks and social checks. Perhaps some bardic knowledge?
    Thanks for Zefir for the custom avatar.

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    NecromancerGuy

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    Default Re: How Would GitP players handle this?

    Fireballs? Why would he use Fireballs? If he wants to burn the town, he should wait two levels and throw blistering radiance. Sure, it isn't as much damage at once, but most people have neither the hp nor the fire resistane to survive it. And its radius is 250% that of fireball.

    Now, if you are unwilling to wait two levels (or maybe one), there are some other options to terrorize a city we could use. Personally, I would use a good old fashioned Fell Drain, followed by flying away, until the wights can no longer reach me. Sure, it's not as personal as evocation, but has the potential to be far more damaging to the economy, morale and population.

    Edit: And if you DO want Evoaction, it still doesn't have to be fireballs. In fact, I think you can have a Blistering Radiance look like a Fireball. I'm not sure where the passage is, but somewhere in the PHB or DMG it says that you can have a unique appearance for your spells.
    Last edited by Orderic; 2015-01-26 at 01:07 PM.
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    Default Re: How Would GitP players handle this?

    Quote Originally Posted by Sam K View Post
    Half reality TV show, half intervention, all optimized!
    This? This isn't a slice of brilliance. This is the whole freaking pie. (Admittedly, my specialization is more in thematics than spell mechanics, but I always appreciate the vote of confidence.)

    We need to have a "Pimp My BBEG" thread now. Or a series of them. You know, DMs present villain concepts, and the Playground chips in with how to make the villain more mechanically sound, more thematically intimidating, better backstory, sample dialogue and descriptions, updated motivation... The works.

    This is a thing that has to happen.

    And Sam K should have a cookie. Sam? Go out and get a cookie. You've earned it.
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    Default Re: How Would GitP players handle this?

    If you can get to the scene within a minute, a Psion with Trace Teleport is a good first step. Similarly, getting there within a few minutes could let you use Detect Magic to pick up on any lingering auras, and their schools.
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    Orc in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: How Would GitP players handle this?

    Quote Originally Posted by Red Fel View Post
    This? This isn't a slice of brilliance. This is the whole freaking pie. (Admittedly, my specialization is more in thematics than spell mechanics, but I always appreciate the vote of confidence.)

    We need to have a "Pimp My BBEG" thread now. Or a series of them. You know, DMs present villain concepts, and the Playground chips in with how to make the villain more mechanically sound, more thematically intimidating, better backstory, sample dialogue and descriptions, updated motivation... The works.

    This is a thing that has to happen.

    And Sam K should have a cookie. Sam? Go out and get a cookie. You've earned it.
    Do you think we could make a challenge thread like the Iron Chef Optimization Challenge thread, would that work? I could throw some sample villains together, and the playground could make several villains with a few caveats that have to stick, like must be true to this concept.

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    Default Re: How Would GitP players handle this?

    Quote Originally Posted by Gwachitallemall View Post
    Do you think we could make a challenge thread like the Iron Chef Optimization Challenge thread, would that work? I could throw some sample villains together, and the playground could make several villains with a few caveats that have to stick, like must be true to this concept.
    I've actually got a villain that I've been fiddling around with that I'm about to start a thread for now. I does sound fun to have a competition for it though.
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    Default Re: How Would GitP players handle this?

    Quote Originally Posted by (Un)Inspired View Post
    I've actually got a villain that I've been fiddling around with that I'm about to start a thread for now. I does sound fun to have a competition for it though.
    If we can get enough interest, I'll make a competition thread soon.

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