'Null' for Damage?

Discussion in 'The Temple of Elemental Evil' started by Quaid, Aug 27, 2008.

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  1. Quaid

    Quaid Troika Fanboi

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    Like the game but it seems to be a real challenge. I'm not sure if I know all the details about the way I can attack and defend just yet.

    My characters are level 5 and I've made my way to the northwest where there is a Bear and Hill Giant encounter. Holy cow! This encounter keeps kicking my butt - though I did beat it once, but lost a few characters and restarted (is there any way to have them resurrected, like at a church?)

    I have a party of three: Fighter (dual wielder), Cleric, and Mage. My mage is really starting to deal some decent damage, but my fighter seems to miss more often than not. He has all the dual wield feats I could get, and also long sword specialty - and I have him dual wielding longswords! I even just put one sword in his hand (and not the other) to boost his 'to hit' number and he still misses!

    My cleric is pretty much useless in a fight (but can heal real well), but gets pummelled even when sanctuary is cast?!

    I found a level 6 bard on the road so he's joined my party.

    Two major questions:

    1) I did 95 damage to the hill giant and his life was red and said 'near death'. Then I damaged him to 107 and it went white and had (null) in parenthesis! WTF?

    2) Any suggestions or tips? Is my party too weak to be at this stage? I got here at level 4 and then adventured around for random encounters until they reached level 5. Do I need to do this again to get them to level 6?

    P.S. I don't like hiring people just to beef my party up for a fight. I don't mind having the bard as an extra because he acutally has some type of story to play out in the game.

    Any help would be appreciated. Thanks in advance!
     
  2. Incarnadine

    Incarnadine Member

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    A three-person party's going to be pretty tough, yeah. No idea what's going on with the 'null health', but some general observations:

    Dual-wielding longswords is a bad idea, as you take massive penalties for it. You'll want a light weapon in your off-hand. There are still penalties, but they're less severe.

    Lowish level characters are going to miss a lot no matter what, though. You can boost attack rolls with some cleric spells, and your bard should help things significantly too. Also, make sure your fighter is as strong as (in)humanly possible.

    Sanctuary isn't an absolute protection against being attacked; if the monster succeeds on a will save, it can attack you. It also goes away if the cleric with it cast attacks (including with a spell), though I expect you already knew that.

    This is more of a subjective point, but I find that wizards are more effective at screwing enemies over in more subtle ways than at doing straight damage. Spells like Grease, Glitterdust, Web, and Tasha's Hideous Laughter are your particular friends in a battle like that one. It *is* a tough encounter, though, and it's meant to be.
     
  3. Zebedee

    Zebedee Veteran Member Veteran

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    I'll leave that to better players than me to explain ;)

    Go and see Terjon at the church in Hommlet or Jaroo in his grove at Hommlet.

    What is the rulebooks version of what it should do and what does it actually do in the game?

    Zero concussion damage?

    I'd suggest having a play with the combat commands and considering which spells you are using and whether they are right for all circumstances...

    That's the choice you have to make. Although I do have to say that the game is really for a larger party - playing with fewer and no NPCs makes you level faster, which is good in some senses but means that you either get less of a challenge or more of a challenge depending on which encounters you attempt at which stage...
     
  4. Shiningted

    Shiningted I want my goat back Administrator

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    I have a recollection this has been mentioned before - yeah, I think its when the monster is on exactly 0 hit points. Not sure why it doesn't just say 'disabled' like normal. Maybe he has the Diehard feat and the game is struggling to know what to do with him on -5 (or whatever) hp but still going? :shrug:

    Btw, thats a tough enough encounter - he should NOT have the diehard feat ;) Web and Grease are indeed the way to go, or charm the bear. Or all of the above.
     
  5. Basil the Timid

    Basil the Timid Dont Mention the War

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    Defensive Options:
    Fight Defesively - p. 112 of ToEE Manual
    Total Defense -p. 109
    Casting Defensively - (not explained well in the Manual) - Casting spells normally provokes Attacks of Opportunity from those who threaten your square. You can cast defensively - safely! - by making a (DC15 + the spell level being cast) concentration check. High Constitution and Combat Casting help. However, beware that enemy combatants do use the Ready: Spell action, which allows them to shoot, move, or charge when your man starts casting.
     
  6. nyarlathotep

    nyarlathotep Merry Murder Maniac

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    no idea either for why it does that "null" damage, although I also had that several times, but with the lamia, some bugbears and one of the heavy humans on lvl 4.

    As said, dual-wielding longswords is a very bad idea, take a light weapon in your off-hand (those are daggers, light hammers, light mace, handaxe, siangham).

    While spells of mass destruction are very efficient against large numbers of smaller enemies, against big guys like the giant & his bear, you really should try to immobilize him.
    I mostly let my druid cast entangle (that spell IS a lifesaver), but since you've got a wizard, you'll have to make do with web. Then you can take them out with ranged weapons. I usually go and slay those two when my party reaches lvl3, though my typical party consists of 5 characters.
     
  7. Basil the Timid

    Basil the Timid Dont Mention the War

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    If I understand correctly, the giant is in the Temple, right? Where? How do you get to the giant at only clvl 3? My party is level 7, still cleaning Temple level 2 and still haven't run into him.

    Seriously, how did you find the location of the Temple so early?
     
  8. Shiningted

    Shiningted I want my goat back Administrator

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    Giant + bear - none of them in the Temple, Basil ;)

    The lamia doesn't have Die Hard so thats my idea up in smoke :shrug:
     
  9. nyarlathotep

    nyarlathotep Merry Murder Maniac

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    No, he means the giant & the bear on Emready meadows. The one who's head you have to bring in the co8 version to get acces to the masterwork gear.
     
  10. GuardianAngel82

    GuardianAngel82 Senior Member

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    From what I've seen, white and null on damage shows up sometimes instead of a red "1". It doesn't seem to have anything to do with diehard. Rage perhaps? I haven't noticed a pattern, but I haven't been looking.

    Click on the little die in the lower right part of the screen during combat if you want to know what's going on.

    Per weapon, dual-wield just won't hit as often as a single weapon, nor do as much damage. My clerics do well in battle, but that is because they are dual-class, which means they aren't as good at being clerics. At low levels, I usually dispel undead using a mace.
     
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2008
  11. Quaid

    Quaid Troika Fanboi

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    Thanks for all the suggestions. I'll try some more manipulative spells from my mage, but the bard in my group has trouble casting sleep on the giant and the bear (I have tried that and the Laughter spell). It just seems like those spells seem to miss a lot.

    @Zebedee
    Sanctuary (per the manual): (Abjuration) Opponents cannot attack you and you cannot attack back.
     
  12. wraith_bones

    wraith_bones Member

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    The target of a sleep spell must be lvl 4 or lower( which the bear and giant are not ), but glitterdust and taasha's ha ha are effective throughout the game at any level
     
  13. ShadowDeth

    ShadowDeth Save Versus : Stupid

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    Sleep won't affect something with that high of hit dice. Deep slumber may be able to affect the giant but you may not have that yet.

    Sanctuary in the game only makes someone pass a dc14, IIRC, will save to attack you. It can stop dumb monsters, but I wouldn't really bank on it.

    Tasha's Hideous Uncontrollable laughter probably has a low chance to work on the Giant (Being DC10+Spell level + Caster level=DC like 16 or something), and I don't think it affects the Bear. I don't know his will save off hand, but it should be low. I would keep casting. I'm pretty sure the Laughter spell works on the giant.

    The traditional way of taking out the giant is to entangle/web/grease him and pound him with ranged attacks. When he's low on health, release the immobilzer and send in your party. Most parties can't handle more than a few rounds going toe to toe with him.
     
  14. Half Knight

    Half Knight Gibbering Mouther

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    Yup.
    Also, if you have a druid or ranger, you could try to charm the bear with a scroll.
    True strike comes handy too, more if your cleric or bard bless or sing your party.
    You could also hire Furnok for that battle, the potions and ring of invisibility are quite useful.

    I usually take out the giant at lvl 2 without a scratch, but i use a 6 or 7 party ( usually Meleny and Ronald, great backup there).
     
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2008
  15. Basil the Timid

    Basil the Timid Dont Mention the War

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    Bless and Bardic inspire should not stack as they are both morale bonuses.
     
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