I am a sad DM

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The Skill challenge thing went off pretty well – my inventive players even figured out how to use a Bluff check to help them in their race to the city before the army of undead got there.

I let them burn a surge to make an Endurance or Athletics check remove a failure, but I didn’t make everybody burn one, largely because the party’s Sorcerer had only 2 surges remaining after last session’s fight. I didn’t  think it would be fair or right to make him use up his last ones, knowing that there may well be a fight after their long chase. So the Warden blew 2 of his many surges and scarcely noticed. Not satisfactory.

What makes me sad is that the undead got to the city in question but there was sufficient advance notice to seal the place up and get everyone inside the 60′ foot high wall. The collection of zombies, ghouls and skeletons were notably missing ranged attacks and for story purposes I couldn’t justify any Rotwing Zombies. So instead they just piled up (there were hundreds of them) until some Lasher Zombies could reach up and start pulling redshirts down off the wall (complete with Wilhelm screams, of course).  I even managed to get a couple of the Lashers up onto the wall itself to go mano-a-mano with the PCs.  Each round that I had one of the PCs grappled I rolled againt their Int (not wasy with a -1 penalty) to see if they’d be smart enough to just hop over the wall, dragging a hapless PC into the 40 foot deep pile of undead. Finally one got the idea and jumped, but the Warden made his save and instead was prone at the very edge, grabbing on for dear life. The other PCs concentrated their fire on the grabbing Lasher and obliterated it that turn.

It was a nicely dramatic scene so I suppose I should be happy. But man, the thought of dragging a character down into a 40 foot pile of zombies just makes my toes tingle!

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4 Responses to “I am a sad DM”

  1. Moth Says:

    A truly evil DM would have would have had the ledge fail a saving throw versus crumbling. 🙂

  2. Bill White Says:

    Well, as long as the players were at least a little scared I suppose you can’t be too gloomy. It was a neatly executed idea, anyway.

  3. Bryant Says:

    Have you seen the zombie swarm rules in Open Grave?

    • Christopher Tatro Says:

      I hadn’t, but now that I look at them it’s not too far off from what I’d have done if a PC had been pulled into the big pile of undead. I probably would have been a lot harsher actually than the Zombie Throng as written would be.

      As it was they just had to hold out through the one encounter (which I said represented hours of defending the wall) until the Imperial army, led by the local Bishop, arrived, popping the miniony 75% of the undead horde and driving the remaining 25% into the ocean where they could never ever conceivably bother anyone ever again.

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