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Posted on January 4, 2013
The Acts of the Lords of Rannick, LXXXVI
Okay, so the alarm had been raised. This worked to condense quite a lot of giant-fights into two sessions, as they came looking for the party. Hopefully next week, you’ll be able to actually explore this dungeon somewhat. Assuming no more alarms are raised.
I’m kind of surprised no-one took Silence, but I don’t recall it ever being cast. Silence + a semi-competent archer is a great way to shut spellcasters and alarm-raisers down, so I’m kind of surprised I’ve never done that to you too… not a lot of Bard spells are mime based. No Darkness spells either, hmm. I kind of like that… I like that this group has had a non-traditional element – buff/debuff Sorceror, Bard, Monk, Druid, Ranger, wacky niche spells, interesting feats – although I think Pathfinder relies less heavily on the core-Core classes than 2nd and 3rd edition did. The message boards over at Paizo occasionally claim some class is “broken/op” but with such fitful irregularity that I think they’re mostly ex-WoW players, grasping at things that once comforted them. “X class is broken” is the recovering WoW addict’s “Rosebud”.
Discreet dungeons like Runeforge spoiled the party on reactive guardians, so they never had to worry too much about accidentally pulling mobs (My name is David and I’ve been WoW-free for five years). This dungeon, on the other hand, is not unguarded and a giant raising the alarm has consequences.
The party hadn’t had time to loot the Cloud Giant sentries or search the second doorway in the circular entryway before they decided to hustle away from the scene of their combat. They hustled to the right, away from the magnificent pair of gold doors to their left and around a corner, where they came to a curved hallway that led to another set of magnificent golden doors. As they approached the doors, they heard slamming and heard/felt heavy booted feet pounding their way towards them. Kerplak examined the doors ahead of him, but after some examination and testing found them neither trapped, locked or openable. They budged not a jot when Ron and Arradin tried pushing them open.
Three Storm Giants rounded the narrow passage at the corner and immediately lit into the party with Chain Lightning. Ron failed to get out of the way and the lightning forked out to everyone else around him. Shortfang was similarly frazzled. Albedon countered with an electricity spell of his own, but that just proved that they were really Storm Giants because they didn’t care.
Never one to stand around while having spells cast at her Arradin rushed forward. Haste was still up from the last encounter, although Kerplak had been excluded from that, which led to him playing very little part in the last combat. He persisted with fiddling with his wand – hey-o – and finally cast Haste on himself from the comfort of his Invisibility ring’s spell. There were nice party buffs from Torgor (who had been in this hallway since the last time he was here, just waiting; painted gold and standing motionless in front of the doors, I guess); Dagfinn, who sang and Tersplink who Mass Bears Endurance’d everyone.
Torgor didn’t have a whole lot of luck against such heavily armed opponents, although he did get arrows through eventually. Ron and Dagfinn followed Arradin into the fray, Ron taken down in combat with the greatsword swinging Storm Giants. Storm Giants are pretty much the tippy-top of the Giant Tree, with only Volcano Giants of comparable power. So don’t feel too bad about all the beating it did on Ron and Dagfinn.
A door that wouldn’t open: it made people surprisingly annoyed.
Albedon lashed out with some fire spells, Fire Snake then Empowered Fire Snake, which did what they typically do. Arradin opened the critical bank early, dropping the lead giant prone and then following up with some very respectable numbers and staggering the giants as she did so. At 4d6+24 damage per successful attack, reducing them to one attack isn’t bad at all. In that respect Staggering gets better and better as your opponents get more powerful as you remove one of the key features of being high level – lots of attacks. In return, the giants struck back hard at Arradin, but a timely Displacement from Tersplink kept all of her bits attached the the other bits. Dagfinn’d Displacement bought him some time, but as a more fragile sort a few hits put him down. Torgor went forward, slipping on his Ring of Invisibility and healing the fallen. Ron, revived scooted backwards on the floor out of the way of the far reaching Giants.
Awkward Family Photos are the worst.
By this point, with Arradin’s big hits, Albedon’s long range support (at the expense of a small brain hemorrhage), the sudden arrival of Kerplak’s sneak attacks and an appalling amount of Bleeds, the Giants began falling, polished off by Magic Missile spells. Fortunately they began falling fast enough that Arradin didn’t have time to critically fumble too often.
After the last fell, Dagfinn sang his healing song, and Ron cast a bunch of heal spells to get everyone up to good. The Storm Giants had little in the way of magic stuff, the Full Plate they were wearing was magical, but nobody fancied it. They all wore Sihedron Rings too and those were pilfered.
Now back to the golden door. Tersplink cast Stone to Flesh on the wall beside the golden doors and in a way he swore he’d never even thought of – much less ever done in the privacy of his own home, all the time – carved a hole into the Flesh wall. Once he had burrowed 9″ more than he usually did, he could see through the hole a Rune Giant’s black skin and armour. The Giant had simply sat down in front of the doors and was resting his back against the doors, preventing entry. There was a brief and hushed discussion of what to do, while Tersplink plugged the hole. It was decided that everyone would get ready and Kerplak would sneak attack the giant through the flesh hole. Ugh, this post is going to show up in some weird google searches.
RIDE THE SNAKE!
He did so, which made the Giant stand up, open the door and explode a rune at the party, blinding no-one. Then all the readied attacks went off. Stinking Cloud didn’t seem to do much, other than stank the place up and make it harder to hit and Ring of the Ram didn’t seem to do much either. And then the slicing and the Staggering and the hand chopping. The Rune Giant did manage to shower the party in electricity/fire one time, but went down with remarkable speed otherwise. It also had a Sihedron Ring and its armour is a +5 Full Plate set, which is pretty boss. +14 Armour bonus? That tank is fight.
And so we finished with them standing victorious in the open golden doorway, with a brand new room ahead of them and no further giants in sight.
Don’t go in Tersplink’s bedroom. That place is creepy.