4 comments on “Fresh Meat: Coin-Operated

  1. editorial standpoint:
    Platinum horde has a LOS requirement, allowing 4 or more if one can manage to escape LOS.

    Gameplay standpoint:
    Goldstorm was awesome, but combined with Ocean of coin it was brutal to morale at the table. After a couple tries, I think most players would give up on escaping it. Stacked with the Transference buzzkill, this is a lot of anti-fun.

    There was a lot of good anticipation built up but wing buffet was a little anti-climatic.

    I think it is a point toward good design that this fight required a collaborated effort to defeat the biggest of it’s clever devices (kill the minions fast, then give it one or two good hits)

    The exploding minions were cool, but turned into more of a primary weapon than I think they were ever designed to be.

    That resist 25 on the tail of Drowning in money would have pissed a player off had he been looking forward to the triumphant burst forth and attack, but having it there supports the idea that a healer is the wrong target for such a thing. I’m glad that little ‘gotcha’ didn’t come up.

    Had I been a shielding runepriest instead of a rogue, I might have been thankful that this caused the entire party standing on top of itself. In fact, everything about this fight would have made for a happy rune priest.

    I’m a fan of a big ‘screw you’ mechanic to work around instead of a lot of little ones. I’ve sat quiet through more than a few anti- fights, because they were still manageable. This was just barely better than slogging through mud. I have no right to complain because of my personal luck and a brilliant play on the part of the Cleric, but had I been the initial target instead of the warlock, this would have bad.

    Overall, i give it a 6/10

    I liked the scene and theory, but in practice I got most of my fun out of my own luck, not the fight mechanics.

    • Thank you, George. That’s some of the best feedback I’ve gotten in a while.

      I looked through the Essentials rules on status effects today as part of a separate project and realized that “removed from play” – which is the essence of Drowning in Money – comes with a *cannot take actions* component. I wish that Wizards had explained more of the Essentials changes and the reasons behind them in DDI articles, as I completely missed that and I’m a bit embarrassed. The Resist all on the back end of Drowning in Money has to go away if that template is used.

      Do you think that Ocean of Coin can be changed to make it less grindy and more exciting? Perhaps make it a d3 instead of 3? Also, notice that I pulled the 15 damage off it and increased the explosion on the minions. I also moved the knockdown to the minions’ primary attack instead of the explosion.

      • correction: Anti-(my character concept here) fights.

        I love the idea of waves in the coins. I imagine the scene to be like the rolling seas: unstable, but manageable. I understand it represents the majority of the GM’s utility in this fight. For exciting, What if it counted as rough terrain for any movement over 4 squares? D3 +1 might be more useful and still have the random component. You could even add a skill challenge component for players to acquaint themselves with how the coins move. Yeah, surfing on gold! (actually, surfing might give them some hope)

        I love the knockdown change. In our play through the minions could have been Totems for all intents and purposes. They were most useful by existing, and by positioning. I think the knockdown gives them their own private purpose in life. Also, gold is not light. Knockdown portrays a little more of that weight being thrown into the attacks. While our armor may hold against damage, the energy is still transferred. You might even add a push 1. (Dwarves are used to walking on gold, so it still jives)

        The knockdown also opens up an alternative tactic: put a player in a corner using Ocean of coin, then spawn a minion on him. The minion dies every time, but knocks down the player to keep them separated. There are pro’s and cons, sure, but this would allow the fight to not be limited to huddling in a ‘suck’ ball and being better at surviving. Separate out a healer and this fight could get scary without the players feeling like they are just going to get nickel and dimed to death.

        What scares players? Is it loss of hope when they realize they are already standing in a trap of screwed? Is it the inconvenience of slogging through a tedious win? Is it when they are scrambling to dodge heavy hits? Is it when a critical component of the team (healer) hits some bad luck and needs help that no-one can afford to give? Is it the moment that the party sees the healer say “Good luck, This heal has to go elsewhere”? I think a healthy amount of fear has to be present. The question is how to create that fear.

  2. Perhaps the Ocean of coin should have a total number of squares it can move targets on each use. Also if it was brutal to morale perhaps scale back it’s effectiveness by reducing the distance and making it not trigger every turn. Something like:

    Ocean of Coin
    At the start of Kalek’s turn, he can slide any number of targets he can see including himself. The total number of squares he slides targets must be 15 or less. If Kalek is Dazed or Stunned, he cannot use this power.

    That way he can still toss the party around a fair bit, and if he wants to take a slow enemy out of the fight for a turn he has that option. It makes it a great deal more dynamic. The other way to make him feel more dangerous and exciting (as well as draconic) is a breath weapon. I often find that the best way to keep the players jumping is a recharge power that comes up once or twice and can disrupt plans without absolutely wrecking them. Something like this with bloodied breath might work:

    Breath Weapon (Fire, Force) Recharge 5,6
    Attack: Close Blast 5 (Enemies in the Blase); +25 VS Fortitude
    Hit: 4d8+14 Fire and Force damage. Creatures hit by this attack are covered by molten gold (Save ends). While covered by molten gold, their speed is halved and they take ongoing 15 fire and force damage.
    Miss: Half Damage

    So you drop the Resist all, and then Drowning in money is a lot more fun. He’ll have a couple of tricks he can use to screw with people, an occasional burst and a mechanic to deal with conditions. The reason I’m posting a big pile of feedback is I plan to change the name and shamelessly steal him for my grand fight to end Paragon tier. My players have been killing their way through Devil princes and Greed is the only one left. You posting him here has dropped a way better monster in my lap then I was working with (a caster with fire and charm effects). If you’re interested I’ll let you know how my tweaks go over.

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