Thursday, July 25, 2013

A Loser's Guide To Boss Murder

Ok, so, thanks to the wonders of old school random spell generation you got:

A dwarf missing a foot.

A second level elf with a 4 Dex, Unseen Servant, and Tenser's Floating Disc

A second level wizard with 4 hit points, Read LanguagesMending, and, on account of a run-in with the Death & Dismemberment Table, no penis.

How do you kill a giant flaming boss monster cobra with more hit points than the whole party put together?


Step One: Purchase 20 pigs.

Step Two: Tie pigs together.

Step Three: Survive random encounters triggered by noise pigs make going down into dungeon.

Step Four: Have dwarf use stonecunning to figure out how to crack 1000 lb statue in antechamber to Giant Flaming Cobra Room in half.

Step Five: Have elf cast Tenser's Floating Disc twice.

Step Six: Have dwarf and henchmen lever each 500 lb half of statue onto a Disc. Remember: Discs  float 3 feet above the ground but otherwise can be moved around by elf (at least in Labyrinth Lord).

Step Seven: Maneuver Discs onto either side of door to Giant Flaming Cobra Room.

Step Eight: Open door, send in hogs.

Step Nine: Wait for cobra to surge toward hogs.

Step Ten: As cobra moves between statues, have elf move Discs as close together as possible while have wizard casts Mending on statue, thus crushing the snake between the two mating halves of statue.

Step Eleven: Remind DM that even if cobra makes save, it will have a 1000 lb labret piercing.

Step Twelve: Watch cobra fail save.

Step Three: Mock fleeing necromancer whose god you just killed.
It's true, this man has no dick. And killed a giant cobra with Mending


  1. Aint mending got a cap on how heavy/large the object can be? Pretty sure it also only allows minor damage to be repaired too - attaching two halves of a massive statue together probably aint minor. I'd also say the spell shouldn't work if the damage that is meant to be repaired is being obstructed, or at least be delayed until the obstruction is removed.

    However, not my game, whatever the GM rules is final - and I'm sure you had fun doing it.

    Personally I'd have just used the stonecunning skill find a load bearing point within the structure - then pinned the snake with the statue at that point, and buried it alive by using the pigs fat (alive or dead, doesn't matter) as an accelerant that can rapidly melt the rock.
    Of cause, I'm sure there are players and GMs who would count that as a cheap and non-viable solution too! =D

    1. Check the Labyrinth Lord rules. They're free.

    2. Checked 'em, similar to what I thought, no mention of size, however it appears to be implied by my reading.

      "Mending repairs small breaks or tears in objects. It will weld broken metallic objects such as a ring, a chain link, a medallion, or a slender dagger, providing but one break exists. Ceramic or wooden objects with multiple breaks can be invisibly rejoined to be as strong as new. A hole in a leather sack or a wineskin is completely healed over by mending."

      I still think I'd have not allowed a 1000lb stone statue be repaired using this, as cleaving it into two equally sized parts is hardly a 'small break' imo.

      Also, there was a save offered, but the rules also state that "a successful roll will typically reduce or eliminate a spell effect, depending on the spell description." so as there *is* no save normally for Mending (what with it being a non-combat spell), a successful save could well have just negated the mending from completing... rather than resulting in an immobilising piercing.

      I again reiterate though that it wasn't my game, and you clearly had fun, so who cares (not me). It's more of an academic assessment of how the rules work rather than a criticism of your "bad-wrong-fun" play-style and interpretation of them.

      Overall I doubt you'll find many more 1000lb statues to pull the trick off again in future anyway, and there were enough hurdles that even if you do it'll still be far from an I-Win tactic - so *shrug*, good story either way!

    3. I would argue that it wouldn't be hard, with a huge shattered statue, to find a place where a given _break itself_ between 2 pieces was small but the 2 pieces concerned were larger. Simply chip and crack until you had a Panama Canal connecting 2 Americas

  2. I got to "tie pigs together", started laughing and couldn't stop for a while.

    1. Yep. Forget about quibbling if Mending works this way - try tieing 20 pigs together and herding them down an underground passageway. I can only assume that the Dwarf is a level 6 swineherd.

    2. Actually it's established that the PCs own a pig farm

  3. Great creativity, great story, great fun reading it! Thank you, Zak!

  4. Bonus for including Ghostbusters dick joke.

  5. For me the key isn't "does Mending work that way". I am not rules lawyering re:spell descriptions with players, especially during a big fight. What's important is - 1) is this fun? 2) are these pc monkeyshines awesome/creative/plausible? If it's a good plan give it a chance as long as it make some sense. Heck snake got a save. Pig encounter checks were rolled. Seems fair.

  6. It never ceases to amaze me that your serious games are as hilarious as my comedy games are serious.

    1. Comedy games are rarely funny, I find, humor depending so much on the element of surprise

  7. The Rube Goldberg school of dungeoneering.

  8. This entire description made me happy. That's good enough for me.

  9. Replies
    1. Having no flippin' idea what's going on is the other half.

    2. "Surprise is half the battle.
      Many things are half the battle.
      Losing is half the battle.

      Let's think about what is all the battle."

      -Mr Ness

  10. I always reward ingenuity. If the players have come up with any thing that is not an attack roll when faced with an enemy, they will probably succeeded (in my game). Then again, I come from the Adam West Batman school of tactics. I had a PC blatently punch himself in the face when approached by a powerful foe. I let it stun the opponent with bemusement long enough for another to get the bonus for suprise rear attack they needed to stand a chance of getting a hit. If they made a chr save and pointed to the sky saying 'look, an angel', I would have caved aswell and also given the stun effect.

    1. Yeah, I have heard of people with not-very-ingenious players adopting that attitude.

      The problem with that in our games is the players _always_ have a clever idea. You use the rules to push them to come up not just with a clever idea but _the cleverest idea they can_

      For example, our original plan was just to throw a broken spear in the snake's mouth and mend that--but this is so much better.