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Pitting Players Against High Damaging Monsters


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#1 fishnchipz19

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Posted 17 May 2013 - 07:54 PM

Hi there, new BC GM here and had a simple question.

So a friend and I were talking about BC and were looking through the bestiary and saw the profiles for many powerful creatures such as Canoptek Spyders and Greater Daemons which caused us to beg the question: "How am I supposed to implement these monsters into a campaign without having them one shot even a late-game party?

We discussed the fact that purchasing the talent "Sound Constitution" is the only way to increase your wounds and even then you can only raise up to your toughness bonus, which means that even a Chaos Space Marine Chosen with 21 wounds and 50- 59 toughnes would only be able to buy enough to raise him up to 30 wounds. A Necron Destroyer equipped witha Heavy Gauss Cannon hits for a maximum of 50 damage before mitigation and even then, it has penetration 10 which means that only Terminator Armour could stand up against it with it's AP of 14. If the Destroyer rolled a 9 on all four dice (therefore not generating Zealous Hatred), it would still deal 46 damage before mitigation to a Chaos Space Marine and since it has a penetration of 10, their Power Armour would mean zip. All they would get would be a toughness reduction of 9 since they have 50-59 toughness and would bring the damage down to 37, which would instantly put him in critical condition.

These mobs are really interesting and would make for awesome battles, but my friend and I were trying to figure out how even a full party of Chaos Space Marines could stand against something that can put them in critical condition in one hit.

What do you guys think?



#2 Brother Orpheo

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Posted 18 May 2013 - 06:18 AM

You must consider more than stats.

There are rules for ranged and close combat, Cover, Fields, various Actions, Surprise, combat-specific Talents, Psychic Powers, etc. All of these things, and more, define combat encounters.
One does not simply…ugh…did I just…?
There is far more to a RPG combat encounter than just "a foe appears, kill it or be killed."

If you have GMed RPGs in the past you will find there is no difference at their basic level regarding this aspect of the game.


=][=


#3 fishnchipz19

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Posted 18 May 2013 - 11:12 AM

Force fields can only get you so far though, plus they will always have a chance of overloading. Even getting a best quality refractor field puts the acquistion test to a -40 penalty to obtain it. As for cover, I'll put it this way. Using the Destroyer example I used last time, Gauss weaponry can pierce Adamantine, with a pen of 10. Even hiding behind a steel wall will only block maybe one shot before that cover is obliterated and even then, that's only if the attack hits the part of the body being concealed. As for surprise rounds, even the books state that there are very few  combats where the enemy is surprised. Still using the Destroyer example, they have to destroy the Destroyer (Irony!) within that surprise round.

What I'm saying is that at late game, you pretty much have to have a force field, Terminator Armour (Which comes with a force field granted), amazing cover, make a gamble on a surprise round, or spec heavily into protective psychic powers. Those can help give players an edge in the combat sure, but overall it still doesn't take away from the leathality of said monsters. There are far, far scarier enemies than the Necron Destroyer.



#4 Terraneaux

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Posted 18 May 2013 - 07:23 PM

Protip: Evasion tests are your friend.



#5 fishnchipz19

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Posted 18 May 2013 - 08:16 PM

Haha, we actually brought that up! My friend was like: "By the time our party gets to late-game I'm just going to max out my dodge skill and start going for agility boosts! 



#6 Terraneaux

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Posted 19 May 2013 - 10:01 PM

If you really want to survive things, though, a marine with the Mark of Nurgle and True Grit can survive hits from things like Tachyon Arrows and then spend an infamy point and be back up to 10 wounds immediately.  



#7 Adversius Bael

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Posted 20 May 2013 - 06:09 AM

Additionally, it's rare that a party would be ambushed by big foes like that, and at high level when such things are likely, the party should have the sense to be using auspex, recon, divination, stummers/screamers, etc to avoid ambushes and plan for ambushes of their own.

Encounters also don't consist of a ton of destroyers and nothing else - a Necron force (and not just a quick encounter like a handful of wraiths) is likely going to include a bunch of Necron Warriors as the baseline troops with a handful of Destroyers or Tomb Spyders supporting it, plus maybe some Scarab Swarms. A loyalist marine force may have a squad of marines with a Rhino and a Dreadnought. And having thrown big stuff like that at my party (who are Rank 13 at this point), stuff like Destroyers and Tomb Spyders never get a shot off. The party is generally forewarned of encounters through use of reconnaissance, lore, intelligence, divination, stolen secret plans or troop deployments, etc, and several of them are able to either close distance with something big like that and wreck it on turn 1 before it acts, or block any major attacks from it for a turn or two via dodges/parries, fields, cover, psychic powers, and the like, long enough to blast it out of existence with The Fist of Khorne, a Reaper Autocannon, a demolition charge, or a Bolt of Change.

The key is that the players should develop some system mastery as they reach higher levels and layer on a combination of evasions, armour, fields, cover, human shields, haywire grenades, camouflage, outright treachery and/or just not being an attractive/viable target to make themselves harder to kill, while likewise developing more and more efficient ways to massacre enemy forces in the shortest possible time. Relying on one form of defence before all others will get you killed when it inevitably fails.

A devastator squad of loyalist marines carrying 4 heavy weapons is a scary opponent. 5d10+10 pen 10 from an enemy lascannon is no different from the Heavy Gauss Cannon you described above. However, that devastator squad is an ideal target for a haywire field to cripple all their guns, because the heretics most definitely do not want to be shot with a lascannon, a plasma cannon, two heavy bolters, and six bolters all in the same turn. It then forces the loyalists to spend a half action moving out of the haywire field, and another half action clearing the jams (Tech Knock), which is a full turn where they're not shooting at all, while most of the heretics are moving closer or shooting, all at the price of a couple haywire grenades or a specialized psychic using Objuration Mechanicum from Only War. That's all the time that the winged Khornate berserker needs to burst out of his hiding place, cover 216 metres (Flyer 12, sprint one turn, then preternatural speed), get into melee with the lascannon marine and pull his preomnor out through his throat (Hand of Khorne, several talents, hits for 4d10 plus about 30 on a charge, multiple times from Swift Attack). Meanwhile the Plaguemarine hammered at the plasma cannon marine with his combi-bolter hard enough to waste the marine's reaction and still get a few points through, leaving him with no way to avoid the Bolt of Change from the Tzeentch psyker that disintegrated him. The Slaaneshi manipulator has her two dozen mercenary armsmen position themselves behind cover where they're mostly safe from return fire and open fire with their lasguns on the remaining marines, and horde fire is enough to get through armour from some useful damage. Then the Iron Warrior activates the detonators and buries half the enemy troops in rubble. Admittedly the loyalists aren't killed by the demolition charge, but it takes some time to dig themselves out of the mess, and sets up easy shots at them where the Slaaneshi manipulator can stick her Velklir rapier into them while they're snared, or the Iron Warrior can gun them down with his Reaper Autocannon, etc. Then the plague marine uses his looted Reductor to pull out all their gene seed for later use in his experiments, or trade for services from legionnaire warbands.

See what I mean? One encounter involved a party of seven rival traitors (including an obliterator), 6 gun servitors, 60 armsmen, pillboxes surrounded with razor wire and land mines, and a pair of hydra flak guns, and it was decided inside of 2 turns, plus another turn worth of cleanup. Admittedly the group had 2 infamy burns and had all but three of their 60+ hirelings/minions slaughtered, but they came out on top and retrieved the chaos artefact they were after. And hirelings and minions are replaceable…



#8 fishnchipz19

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Posted 21 May 2013 - 07:37 PM

I think I see your point. I was actually with part of my campaign group as I read your post, and we all agreed that the best way to deal with it is to have the party find creative way to take down larger opponents, work in cohesion, and know when to and when not to fight. Thank you very much for your advice!



#9 HappyDaze

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Posted 24 May 2013 - 04:19 PM

In the worst case, burning Infamy allows for survival under almost any circumstances. Sure, it's a cost, but being a badass Heretic has some risks attached.

Ignore, Ignore, you must learn Ignore!

 

Now Ignoring: Nobody.


#10 NytemareRhosyn

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Posted 27 May 2013 - 10:15 PM

Play a tzeentch charecter you will never get hit, golden eye of tzeentch make a free wp roll an for everydegree add +10 to all stealth and evasion rolls you make. why dont you get hit? simple they never see you coming

 

 

 

 

also a strixsis phase shifter plus the eye just makes u lol as u sneak up on stuff



#11 Cinix

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Posted 02 September 2013 - 03:34 PM

Honestly I have to say this was an easy one. If you're going to bring in more powerful enemies just keep the fallowing in mind.

1. The equipment of the players. Yes an enemy might be able to one shot a pc but sometimes the same is true in reverse especially if you're allowing legacy weapons.

2. The area that you'll put said creature in. If it's a narrow hall way and it's a hulking creature its movement will be limited or if it's a battlefield there will be cover, vantage points and other spots the players can use to gain the advantage.

3. The final and most important thing is. Creativity of the players. Creative players will often have their PCs seek out weak points, find clever work arounds or plans and can easily combat these opponets. The best example to this is one of the days in my Black Crusade game none of the other players showed up so it was just my character, (A pirate prince. So MORTAL and only in light power armor) was stuck having to fight a blood thirster. Most people see it's undodgeable attack and go 'well I'm boned' but I did not. Why? Because the attack may be able to kill my character in one hit (Character only had about 14 wounds I think at the time) it does not say the attack can't trigger other things or be countered in a manner that is not parrying or dodging. Key point the displacement field. Attack hits, triggers the field, PC is teleported out of the attack's way.

 

When you have players that know how to use their gear right and will think creatively you can send anything at them. ANYTHING! (My GM through Nurgle at our party. Not all of him just 1/7th of him. No PC deaths occured.)



#12 bogi_khaosa

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Posted 03 September 2013 - 08:13 AM

This isn't DnD. :) You're not supposed to be able to beat a Bloodthirster in single combat. That's why you acquire an army. :)



#13 K0balt

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Posted 03 September 2013 - 10:42 AM

(My GM through Nurgle at our party. Not all of him just 1/7th of him. No PC deaths occured.)

 

Ok I don't know exactly what "1/7th of Nurgle" is, since Nurgle isn't quantifiable, and you can't encounter him out of the Warp, but this is how it should have gone:

 

Roll for Toughness at -150 (just to be sure)!

You rot on your feet. All that is left is little puddles. Roll new characters.


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#14 BossTroll

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 08:01 AM



(My GM through Nurgle at our party. Not all of him just 1/7th of him. No PC deaths occured.)

 

Ok I don't know exactly what "1/7th of Nurgle" is, since Nurgle isn't quantifiable, and you can't encounter him out of the Warp, but this is how it should have gone:

Roll for Toughness at -150 (just to be sure)!
You rot on your feet. All that is left is little puddles. Roll new characters.





You forgot: While Nurgle hums a happy litle tune. :-)


@Op: Not every one of the adversaries in the book are intended to be used directly against characters. The Heavy Gauscannon is an anti tank weapon for example, ofcourse it will blow mere infantry (PCs) into confetti.
 

Edited by BossTroll, 05 September 2013 - 08:14 AM.

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- Paranoia is a comforting state of mind. If you think they're out to get you, it means you think you matter. - Gilbran Quail - Collected Essays -


#15 Ghaundan

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Posted 09 September 2013 - 04:59 AM

Agreeing with BossTroll, not every enemy should be a head on challenge. Some they'll need to simply run away from. Or find a way to stack the deck in their favour.



#16 Night10194

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Posted 23 September 2013 - 01:54 PM

Evasion tests solve everything. We had a Renegade, a normal human, who was rolling something like a 98% Parry test with +1 DoS from Adroit who took on a Bloodthirster alone and killed the heck out of it. Admittedly, I wasn't activating its 'Spend 1 Charge, attack can't be blocked' ability, but that was a relatively minor handicap to the fact that no PC, no matter how tough or how much Sound Con, can possibly survive 3d10+25 Pen Lots. As you get up there, even armor will stop helping you at all and it really comes down to how good you are at dodging and blocking.



#17 bogi_khaosa

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Posted 24 September 2013 - 07:32 PM

The 'Spend 1 Charge, attack can't be blocked' ability is there specifically for this reason.

 

PCs are not supposed to be able to kill Bloodthirsters, so naturally so you had to artificially hamstring it to make it possible. :)


Edited by bogi_khaosa, 24 September 2013 - 07:33 PM.


#18 Bore

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Posted 22 November 2013 - 11:48 AM

I am new to the forums, but I have been playing BC for a while now. I have taken some high-damage attacks, and I am likely the toughest character in my party, but I have never been able to survive a strong hit from a really powerful monster or a heavy weapon; either a force field absorbs the hit, I dodge/block it, or I get smashed and put near-death.

 

I play the table-top game too, and I gotta say, whenever something really big/powerful shows up, the basic stratagem is to lay it low with heavy weaponry or my own big/powerful monster.

 

I have been holding a strategy in reserve actually on summoning an opposing daemon when/if my group is to ever cross paths with one [a daemon]. Otherwise, the only real strategy we could employ would be to level heavy weapons at the target.

 

I mean, we've come across lots of lesser daemons and the like, but the toughest thing we've fought was a tomb spyder; that thing laid the boots to us until we were able to make a counter-attack; we put it down in a single initiative round, but we used heavy weapons.

 

Basically, if you play the table-top, then you should already know how to deal with big monsters; heavy weapons and your own big monsters. And don't get hit; they will just kill you in a single blow most of the time.



#19 Annaamarth

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Posted 11 December 2013 - 04:33 PM

Night has the right idea.  Dodge charms.

 

Sorry, wrong game but the point stands.

 

@Bogi- I can actually see the Bloodthirster not using the charge ability- IF the players charged it first.  After all, if you're already in melee with it a true champion of Khorne won't be eager to use hit-and-run tactics... even though a Bloodthirster is almost built for them.  It's a tactical flaw that *may* exist in *some* Bloodthirsters depending on your groups interpretation of Khornate philosophy.

 

Of course, I prefer the 'Khorne as tactical genius as well as rapine psychopath' interpretation, so my Bloodthirster will be happy to fly away from the nimbly bimbly little bastard in order to do the 'splody charge.  Rationalized as a really, really HIGH jumping attack.  With wing assist.  (Skarbrand need not apply.)


RIP AND TEAR THROUGH THE TIDE OF BLOOD WITH BATTLESUIT PILOT. SUPLEX HIVE TYRANTS. DO WHATEVER, YOU'RE PILOTING A HUGE-ASS MECHA.

 -Errant, on how Rogue Trader ought to be played


#20 bogi_khaosa

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Posted 11 December 2013 - 06:55 PM

Night has the right idea.  Dodge charms.

 

Sorry, wrong game but the point stands.

 

@Bogi- I can actually see the Bloodthirster not using the charge ability- IF the players charged it first.  After all, if you're already in melee with it a true champion of Khorne won't be eager to use hit-and-run tactics... even though a Bloodthirster is almost built for them.  It's a tactical flaw that *may* exist in *some* Bloodthirsters depending on your groups interpretation of Khornate philosophy.

 

Of course, I prefer the 'Khorne as tactical genius as well as rapine psychopath' interpretation, so my Bloodthirster will be happy to fly away from the nimbly bimbly little bastard in order to do the 'splody charge.  Rationalized as a really, really HIGH jumping attack.  With wing assist.  (Skarbrand need not apply.)

 

Hit and run tactic? I'm not sure what you mean. It's a "you can't avoid my attacks" ability.


Edited by bogi_khaosa, 11 December 2013 - 06:56 PM.





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