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Subject: Beating the Siren (or other dungeons for that matter) rss

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Hi,

I'm currently the overlord in our campaign and my heroes find themselves completely outmatched by my recently upgraded Silver Eldritch monsters. They have very good copper treasures and some have added power dice. They haven't gained skills or secret trained, but their ship is pretty strong and has lots of cannons.

Basically, my question is this: the consensus I am seeing seems to be that the problem with lieutenants is that they will run away too much. However, in our recent siren fight (and the dungeon before it) my silver skeletons were WAY more than the heroes could handle. We're using some house rules about lieutenants fleeing fights that we found on the internet, but the notion of the siren fleeing a fight any time soon is laughable, and the heroes have to find a way to contain her soon or she'll effortlessly scoop up all 3 keys.

What are we missing? What strategic advice would you give the heroes to stand a chance against them? I don't want to take it easy on them, but if there's some insight that would be helpful they should know it. Our last dungeon involved 2/3 floors being massacres that changed the conquest score from a tie to nearly double for the OL, and both involved skeletons. The Siren fight ended with 3/4 dead heroes and the last fleeing, again because of those skeletons.

They know about blitzing, and employed it very effectively for a while. Eventually though, I got silver eldritch anyway and things went South for them.

The party, as well as Dungeon info, etc. (we've kept good records):
http://www.descentcampaigntracker.com/campaigns/view/1378

Basically, none of this matters because the heroes roll over and die to Silver Skeletons. So the Siren just sat in the back with an army of skeletons between her and the heroes.

The problem is not that they lost; that will happen. The problem is that they're losing so crushingly that it seems unfathomable that they could possibly beat her (OR SCARE HER AWAY...with our house rules, this is good enough) before it's too late.
 
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Corbon Loughnan
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ignorantpenguin wrote:

Basically, my question is this: the consensus I am seeing seems to be that the problem with lieutenants is that they will run away too much. However, in our recent siren fight (and the dungeon before it) my silver skeletons were WAY more than the heroes could handle.


Not quite. That is best case scenario for the Heroes. Ie if the heroes are good enough, the Lts can just run away with negligible penalties.
At the moment your problem is that your heroes aren't good enough. The problem discussed is that even if your heroes are good enough, you'll still make no progress.

Quote:
We're using some house rules about lieutenants fleeing fights that we found on the internet, but the notion of the siren fleeing a fight any time soon is laughable, and the heroes have to find a way to contain her soon or she'll effortlessly scoop up all 3 keys.

What are we missing? What strategic advice would you give the heroes to stand a chance against them? I don't want to take it easy on them, but if there's some insight that would be helpful they should know it. Our last dungeon involved 2/3 floors being massacres, and both involved skeletons. The Siren fight ended with 3/4 dead heroes and the last fleeing, again because of those skeletons.

The party:
Mordrog, with Cleaving, The Axe+Pierce 2 copper treasure, platemail
Runewitch, with Alchemist, Cone of Fire, Hard Leather Armor, Ring of Protection
Grey Ker, with Master Archer, the Web copper treasure, Chainmail
Jaes, with Mage Cloak, Crystalize, Ghost Armor, Mana Weave, Chainmail

The Revenge has Elven Sails, Galley, 1 Coldsteel, 1 Hawkeye, 1 Runeblast


Basically, none of this matters because the heroes roll over and die to Silver Skeletons. So the Siren just sat in the back with an army of skeletons between her and the heroes.


There are times when the heroes are outmatched at sea, especially early in copper when the OL gets a silver monster upgrade.
But really, the point is here that the OL has spent 30CT already. The heroes should have extra skills or dice by now, or be very close to doing so.

Get some training, focusing on combat. What use exactly do you get out of your cannons? are not your normal attacks better 99% of the time? The resources spent on canon have been wasted IMO - you need to be able to deal with silver eldritch ASAP.

Unfortunately your mages are weak - neither has a combat boosting special ability, nor a combat boosting skill, and Jaes is down a dice. Sure, he is exceptionally tough with that skill, and Alchemist is a wonderful skill for Astarra as a secondary, but the fact remains, you have to kill shit before it kills you. And you can't. Melee heroes don't cut it at sea (you need one for maneouvering the boat and that is about it for their use).
Grey Kerr at least has Master Archer, but that doesn't work on cannons and although the Web weapon is a great thing (and a near must-have at certain stages), it simply doesn't work against skeletons - as often as not they'll outrange you and they can still fight well enough webbed. He is better off with a solid green dice ranged weapon, preferably with a good surge conversion rate.

Basically I would very much aim for better combat capability in my party - especially ranged and especially especially magic.
The sad fact is that your party looks like a 'cool things' party, not a battle-hardened bunch of killers. Next time go for the killers.
Having said all that, I understand that sometimes you have to take what you can get.
But a lot of players get sucked into the cool things their heroes can do. And die from it. Damage dealing is very nearly the only early consideration IMO.

Its an Advanced Campaign. That means that sometimes the fight is uphill.
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This all seems like pretty reasonable advice; Mordrog is the only killing machine in the group and he's all but useless at sea. Jaes is awesome vs. things with lots of armor but his actual damage output is less than stellar against less armored foes. Runewitch has the AOE but doesn't do much damage and Ker...well thank god for Master Archer is all.

Are there any skills or upgrades in particular that might help the party at this point, given their earlier failures? We're quite far in at this point and it would be sad to see the heroes in a hopeless situation. We specifically added all the Lt. house rules so that they couldn't just get massacred on the overland board.
 
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Corbon Loughnan
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ignorantpenguin wrote:
This all seems like pretty reasonable advice; Mordrog is the only killing machine in the group and he's all but useless at sea. Jaes is awesome vs. things with lots of armor but his actual damage output is less than stellar against less armored foes. Runewitch has the AOE but doesn't do much damage and Ker...well thank god for Master Archer is all.

Are there any skills or upgrades in particular that might help the party at this point, given their earlier failures? We're quite far in at this point and it would be sad to see the heroes in a hopeless situation. We specifically added all the Lt. house rules so that they couldn't just get massacred on the overland board.

Well, you've lost the primary combat city, so that hurts.

Dead Eye, Keen Sight and Blessing are all worth while skills for Grey Ker (Blessing for Mordrog is actually quite useful too).
And the Marks are the most broken things in Descent, so they could help - Saj's and/or Koll's for the Mages and Ran's Mark for Mordrog to heal the others.
Upgrading to a Galley was probably a waste (it helps if you are trying to chase down and kill the Siren, as you start 2 spaces closer, but not just to survive), but a foc'stle (IIRC) is more worthwhile - extra range and damage from elevation.
 
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corbon wrote:
Well, you've lost the primary combat city, so that hurts.

Dead Eye, Keen Sight and Blessing are all worth while skills for Grey Ker (Blessing for Mordrog is actually quite useful too).
And the Marks are the most broken things in Descent, so they could help - Saj's and/or Koll's for the Mages and Ran's Mark for Mordrog to heal the others.
Upgrading to a Galley was probably a waste (it helps if you are trying to chase down and kill the Siren, as you start 2 spaces closer, but not just to survive), but a foc'stle (IIRC) is more worthwhile - extra range and damage from elevation.


This was great advice. After tossing Saj's and Koll's into the party (and Tiger Tattoo; the party deemed Blessing too out of the way) the campaign immediately feels on track again.

http://www.descentcampaigntracker.com/campaigns/view/1378
 
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