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Gathering the Storm: The Lesser Evil ideas


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#1 Yepesnopes

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Posted 20 January 2013 - 08:54 PM

Hello all,

I am going to run the "Gathering the Storm" capaign to my group of players. In the first chapter of the adventure, The lesser evil, if events go as predicted, they will eventually trip to the beastman camp where they will try to get the Lighning Stone and may be kill Izka Madtooth.

The book says in the camp there are (2 Gors and 3 Ungors beastmen) times de number of player characters, plus Izka (plus reinforcments arriving at some rally step). This sounds to me a fair number of beastmen to guard a beastman camp, good.

The point is, definitely a front assault will just fail, only the 2 Gor per PC is too much, may be a group composed of only warriors would have a change, but hardly.

How have your groups of players tackle this scenario? (Diversion manoeuvers, stealth…)

 

Cheers,

Yepes


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#2 Roland the Red

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Posted 21 January 2013 - 07:57 AM

I thought it was "2 gors" and "3 ungor henchmen per character" rather than "2 gors and 3 ungor hunchmen" per character.

On a second read I am not sure which is correct.



#3 Yepesnopes

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Posted 21 January 2013 - 10:47 AM

Roland the Red said:

I thought it was "2 gors" and "3 ungor henchmen per character" rather than "2 gors and 3 ungor hunchmen" per character.

On a second read I am not sure which is correct.

"2 gors" and "3 ungor henchmen" x times the number of PCs sounds a low populated beastmen camp and /or a poor band of beastmen, especially if they haev to raze the farms and Stromdorf. But you can be right, english is not my mother lenguage, so I can have done a bad interpretation. Truth be told, (2 gor and 3 ungor henchmen) x PC sounds to me a beter number of beastmens to represent the herd.

Cheers,

Yepes


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#4 Tamhas

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Posted 23 January 2013 - 01:05 AM

although english is not my native language either, i fail to see the difference between "2gors" and "3 ungor henchmen" per character and "2 gors and 3 ungor henchmen" per character.

 

Mathematically speaking, does "2gors" and "3 ungor henchmen" per character = "2gors" x PC +  "3 ungor henchmen" x PC, and

"2 gors and 3 ungor henchmen" per character = "2 gors and 3 ungor henchmen" x PC? doesn´t this mean the same?

 

in a 4 player party, this would either 8 gors and 12 ungor henchmen. Or are you guys talking about 8 gor henchmen and 12 ungor henchment in the camp, alas, ((2 gors and 3 ungor) x henchmen ) x PC?

 

a 20 beastmen group sounds fair enough IMO as they can´t be too large or they would attract empire forces to them.



#5 Glorian Underhill

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Posted 23 January 2013 - 03:18 AM

I read it also that it is 8 Gors and 12 Ungors for 4 PCs.

 

Additionally there is Izak and Foaldeath. According to the Adventure book it says, that the Gors and Ungors are scattered around the Stone, and Izak ist standing/kneeling in front of it.

The PCs start in long range from the stone. So I will interpret 'scattered' around as 5-6 Gors + 6 Ungors between the Stone and the PCs. Izak is at the Stone and the rest of the Beastmen long-middle behind the stone. The PCs have so 2-3 Turns time to deal with the first group until they met Izak and the rest.

8 Gors and 12 Ungors are a too much of a fight for my 4 PC group even if they are good fighters. Slayer, Pitfighter, Grudgebearer and a Halfling Ratcatcher. They need 2 to 3 good hits an a Gor to take him down, while the others can attack them. Active Defence is used up quite fast. So if my 4 PCs fight 12 Different opponents then they are hit 3 times when they can attack themselves only one time.

 

Also this is not the whole Horde, the whole Horde will arive once the stone is taken or Itzak is dead. They are far more than 20 Beastmen in the Oberslecht. According to the book there are enought to even attack Stromdorf.



#6 Yepesnopes

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Posted 23 January 2013 - 04:54 AM

Glorian Underhill said:

8 Gors and 12 Ungors are a too much of a fight for my 4 PC group even if they are good fighters. Slayer, Pitfighter, Grudgebearer and a Halfling Ratcatcher. They need 2 to 3 good hits an a Gor to take him down, while the others can attack them. Active Defence is used up quite fast. So if my 4 PCs fight 12 Different opponents then they are hit 3 times when they can attack themselves only one time.

Thanks, actually this is my point for this post.

How have groups of players deal with this encounter?

Front assault? distraction? stealth?

 

Cheers,

Yepes


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#7 Roland the Red

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Posted 23 January 2013 - 01:27 PM

the other possibility I mentioned is

2 gors + 3 ungor henchmen/pc x 4 PCs = 2 gors and 12 ungor henchmen plus Izka, of course.

 

I think that is plenty for the "average" group. For a combat-optimized group, this might be easier, but remember too, there are reinforcement waves.

 

It could be either way. Apparently the writers/editors of the adventure have English as a second language as well :P



#8 Slysher

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Posted 23 January 2013 - 09:22 PM

I have taken to running this adventure whenever I have a new group of players to WHRP. A few groups have had interestingly evil ways of dealing with the beast men threat once they found out about them. 

What one group did was to take the family of inbred farmers that had been sacrificing people at the hag tree and tie them to it.  Then they put a lovely amount of tar, blackpowder kegs, and kerosine on that very convenient cart and threw a bit of canvas over it all to keep it from getting wet.  Then the dwarf engineer of the party tried to guess roughly how long it would take for the beast men to get from thier camp to said tree, if say, they were attracted by the sounds of horns.  Cut fuse to length, sound horn, light fuse, go to edge of camp in round-a-bout way.  Justice served, evil tree and family relocated to morrslieb along with a few beast men.  And perfect distraction to begin an assault with.  Mind you getting out of there with the stone proved a… shocking experience.

A different group that had a celestial wizard in it went with a more obtuse assault path with the beast man shaman.  They had the celestial wizard doing "cantrip" to pull lightning bolts down on the beast men around the stone from hiding.  Pretty much playing sniper with lightning… until an unfortunate mis-cast.  At that point it changed from zap them from afar to, the jig is up kill everything while we get this stupid stone down.

As is it boils down to this: your players will always surprise you, be ready for anything.  Have fun!



#9 dvang

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 08:37 AM

Roland the Red said:

the other possibility I mentioned is

2 gors + 3 ungor henchmen/pc x 4 PCs = 2 gors and 12 ungor henchmen plus Izka, of course.

 

I think that is plenty for the "average" group. For a combat-optimized group, this might be easier, but remember too, there are reinforcement waves.

 

It could be either way. Apparently the writers/editors of the adventure have English as a second language as well :P

This is the correct interpretation, I believe. Only the henchmen are based per character.  Of course, it is easily modified depending on your group. Personally, I never use henchmen, so I used 1x ungor per character.

My group that recently went through this consisted of three initiates; Sigmar, Morr, and Verena.  The Morr priestess trained BS (non career) and the Verena priestess trained WS (non career), so the group wasn't too hampered. In addition, they convinced the town's priest of sigmar, Magnus, to join them in fighting the chaos in the forest.

That said, they managed to sneak their way into the camp.  In addition, they had Foaldeath convince the other beastmen that there were invaders elsewhere in the forest, so that "fewer" were in the clearing.  When all was said and done, the thing that really saved the group was the lightning, which managed to strike and stun several beastmen (based on excellent maneuvering by the PCs to get the beastmen to move close to the stone, and some 'lucky' rolling by me). They still all got very beat up, but managed to take out Izka and recover the stone.



#10 valvorik

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Posted 25 January 2013 - 08:57 AM

It has been noted that this is a potential TPK if players just saunter in thinking they are D&D heroes.

This encounter did provide my campaign's first PC death, though admitedly the player did something that had the other players all saying "you do what?"

They tried to use tactics, misdirection etc.

From my summary:

When shall we five meet again, in thunder, lightning or in rain (first PC death).

The heroes passed safely through the Oberslecht (acing the progress tracker and keeping the element of surprise - metagame this was easier for because they're 5 PC's to try things rather than the 3 the designers assumed as PC number, I could have adjusted for that but decided not to, they really needed surprise to have a shot at things). The party decided to forgo the cart as being too much trouble perhaps in the terrain.

Coming up on slumbering, restless beastmen including Izka the group split with Findulas and Anselm to draw foe with missile fire, and then Krieger, Matthias and Guy to get in after the stone. The Beastmen were suprised but after initial surprise scented the waiting trio and the scenario played out with two gangs of hornless beastmen being drawn after the two and more weight of the Beastmen falling on the trio - including Izka. 

The beastmen had to add a challenge die to their initiative reflecting surprise and all acted after PC's, PC attacks before the beastmen acted gained a fortune die each.

I extrapolated the "3 player" written version and made it Izka, two Gors and 3 gangs of 5 ungor henchmen types, Izka at stone, the others all medium to long range from it - scattered about clearing.

Findulas and Anselm dispose of the two gangs with little risk to themselves though this kept them from aiding their comrades.  I rule that with missile weapons, taking down multiple foes with one shot means striking off that many arrows or whatever.

Matthias was badly wounded (even after using a healing draught), with he and Krieger suffering additional critical wounds. The three decided to fall back and the beastmen were lead a chase around to the waiting two (a roll is made to see how well they manage this, they do it well, even recovering some fatigue). Then Krieger's immobilizing shot slowed down Izka and another beastman (during this there was a Rally Step).

Matthias bravely engaged the beastmen, even though comrades called upon him to stay back so they could strike with ranged weapons alone longer, but was felled by their savage blows - dying under the beastman's savage strikes. Izka has suffered half a dozen wounds and a minor critical wound making him less agile at this point.

The four remaining comrades faced Izka, a wounded wargor and an unwounded wargor. Izka's fearsomeness (Fear 2 test) was resisted and the fight carried on. Guy suffered two criticals, Guy and Anselm both suffered many wounds (Guy being 1 wound from falling), but eventually the foes were defeated and Izka slain. Accounts differ, perhaps Findulas' arrows struck again and again piercing makeshift beastman armour, until the beastman was ready to topple and perhaps the elf's arrows but annoyed the mighty creature until Senor Bitey lept forward and fastened onto the beastman's throat, tearing back and forth as the creature dropped to its knees and then toppled.

I forgot the Fear test when Izka first emerged but recalled it, it actually worked out well narratively having it come out when he dropped a PC.

The group got the "lighting stone" from atop the herdstone - though lightning struck as they did so leaving Anselm Thunderstruck for rest of act. Their escape from the Oberslecht, carrying it and Matthias' body, was carried out well and before its inhabitants were able to marshal against them, Krieger's strength bearing the stone and his Athletics making good time, Findulas' Observation avoiding threats.

I added being Thunderstruck for the lightning hit to give it more oomph since it happened after combat.



#11 Yepesnopes

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Posted 28 January 2013 - 02:09 AM

This weekend we played through the adventure and I was forced to change the amount of beastmen.

We were playing the final part of the Edge of Night. The masquerade event was a lot of fun, it was a great roleplaying moment for my players, the did great and we laugh a lot.

Then the skaven chase started and they managed to track the skavens to their lair. It was a total disaster! It would have been a TPK if the scout and the gambler wouldn't have managed to flee and a find a Dwarf tunnel fighter patrol, after the rest of the party (troll slayer, ironbreaker, HE envoy, HE mage and Roadwarden) fell uncouncious under the blows of the enemy skavens.

After seeing how this combat went, I was sure that the encounter of the beastmen in the Lesser EVirl in TGS, would go the same direction. I have linked EoN and GtS by using Alfred Karstad hiring the PCs to find the merchant Welcher, while in parallel the HE envoy and HE mage are looking for Lorith Silverleaf, who disapeared a week before the masquerade and there are clues pointing that she travelled o Stromdorf.

The TGS campaing could not start harder for the party. While the group was crossing the bridge over the Teufel river, the Ironbreaker died because he fell into the river, and he had forgoten to take out his Gromril plate! This player kept playing with a Sigmar initiate from Stromdorf.

For the set up of the encounter at the beastmen camp (after my experience with the skaven) I put the following for my 7 players:

Izka, 4 gor (two with reat weapons and two with twin weapons), and 21 Ungor henchmen armed with spears and shields.

The PCs diverted 2 Gors and 8 Ungors by some clever use of cantrip and then ambushed the remaining beastmen. Still, fighting the remaining enemies, the troll slayer died, the HE mage fell unconcious, many were critically wounded (the HE has permanently lost an ear, ahd the Roadwarden has now a permanint limping on her left leg due to a sever critical hit on her knee), and they had to flee with the horses after getting the lightning stone.

 

Cheers,

Yepes


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#12 Ceodryn

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 03:46 PM

Hi all,

I am bringing back this thread to life as I have a similar question regarding my party of adventurers. I am starting an online campaign, and TGS will be the main arc story. The party is composed of a dwarf engineer, initiate of sigmar, apprentice wizard of the light college, and a 'kind of' pistolier (he is specializing in melee mounted combat instead of ranged). 

I ran an intro adventure, Night of Blood, from WFRP1st edition. They pretty much exploded 2 gors and 4 ungors henchmen in their very first encounter, although the wizard got quite wounded (no crits). Then, they defeated 5 cultists, a Pink horror, and 2 Blue horrors henchmen, suffering two crits and many wounds (the initiate reached his wound treshold) but recover those crits and wounds that same night with blessings.

Thus, I am really almost believing they could take on the TGS beastmen.

- If it is 2 Gors + (3 Ungors hench/PC) = 2 gors + 12 Ungors hench, it may be a walk in the park, especially given the Pistolier and his horse will  control the field. What do you think?

- If it is (2 Gors +3 Ungors hench/PC) = 8 Gors + 12 Ungors hench, they will suffer greatly, and may have to fall back, rally, come back, and be creative … but do you think they could take them?

For now, I have settled on 2 gors + 3 x 3 Ungors hench + 3 Tuskgors hench + 3 Chaos Warhounds hench. I am hoping the warhounds swiftness will be able to occupy the pistolier and his horse, while the tuskgors may slow down the party due to their toughness.. 

Any thoughts overall? 

Cheers

Ceodryn

 



#13 Yepesnopes

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Posted 14 February 2013 - 07:25 PM

I was discussing with my players after the adventure. I was telling them that I removed enemies so it was doable for them. It was an interesting conversation. After it I kept two main ideas.

1) Too few enemies (beastmen in this case) at the base camp, seems unrealistic for a band that has the potential to destroy Stromdorf (actually my playeres, after all the doomsaying from Fooldeath, they laughed a bit when I described the camp and told them the amount of beastmens that were there).

2) By putting always the "right" amount of enemies for the party sends them the message that everything can be resolved by their force of arms. No allies are needed, not too clever thinking or stealthy tactics are needed…

I realised that is not the way I want to do the things.

After this reflexion and to give my opinion about your question.

You have 3 PCs. Well, I don't know which house rules do you use, but with only the 8 gors, you will wipe the PC party in one round (2 maximum)! So, if you want them to be able to solve the encounter with fire power, do not put more than 2 or 3 gors and 9 -12 few henchemam, remember that Izka is also there.

Cheers,

Yepes


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