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Triple Advantage
Triple Advantage

Season 2, Episode 12 · 1 year ago

Bonus Action - The Fires Below

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

The Fires Below is a 3-5 hour long one shot adventure meant for characters of level 10. This Bonus Action is all about this new module made by the Royal City Society. We ask Braeden, the lead writer, some questions regarding the initial play-testing and inspiration of the module. The Fires Below is available now on DM's Guild.

Hello, everyone and welcome back toanother triple advantage bonus action. Now I know what you're thinkingCarlos's voice got a little bit higher, pitched and more annoying lhat's. No,you got Braden today, sorry and advanced, I'm Sil Hegot. Those gotthose base tones to level out, but for now we are going to be talking about. Our new module are due one shot at thefires below which released today, Thursday. Ah, let me start by reading, for youguys the setting the background for the suspentom set in the town of penshawonce a busy mining town o supplied iron ore to much of the rounding area.However, some weeks ago a fire broke out in the mines below the town.Misfortune has been followed by rampant destruction as the fire spread,unchecked bursting forth from the ground explosively and destroying homesand Lighes. While many consider this to be an unfortunate byproduct ofexcessive mining, the fires are actually due to a rift betweendimensions caused by a portal to the nine hells open far below the town.Will Your party be able to encover the reality of the situation before thedevils? The portal brought take to the world above gripping- hmm very grop. I weewait thisbook is by Braiden Hills. You flip it over brilliant ideas. Breaden millswait. Yes, all my accolades are me just underdifferent PIN NAMES: Don't list don't put stock in anything that people sayabout me, but let's talk about this module alittle bit. It's been in the works for some time. I believe we started this last year as a creator process andwe've just kind of dusted. It OFAN, given it the old roal city society, treatment, HMMJordan, you've been takin a lot of lead on a lot of he the changes in the editsthat have gone into this. What do you...

...think? What's your what's going on here,yeah? Well, it's very well! Well ill done. You got maps in there, which isfantastic super hard to actually like create maps. I think personally and you've got very well written sections regardingdifferent what you find in each of the areas, and you got really cool like Easter eggs that you can find and different little tidbits that are perfect for this particular setting itwas. It was really fun to actually like go through and edit it as well as to run it. It was phenomenalphenomenally done. Yes, you and I both did a little run,rocession recently, hmm with very, not very different, but different enoughparty compositions, and we definitely got some differentresults. Yeah. Well, you know at least none of us gota TPK, so yhats Tra a that is good. That is like step. One don't kill yourparty, so did you guys run this at tenth level?FOR EVERYBODY ES? That's, I think the highest level, some of t av like haveon going campaigns with. How was that? How di You guys find demming a higherlevel, and especially with this sort of new endcounter new mechanics? It's it's a bit of a mind, trip to runat tenth level because, like you said, I don't think, like my party, I think,is sitting at sixth level. I believe your murdy Carlos is sitting at sevent. I thinkthey both seven, no seven yeah.Oh right! Sorry, yes, wort o the brain queen is a seven yeah, but a high levelplay is definitely something that's. None of us are used to as much as the level play we've allkind of experimented and done our things done at below levels and a lotof our one shouts reflect that...

...and that was kind of a big reason why I set this one atlevel. Ten was to kind of, as kind of like a challenge, O myself to Kond ofrate different things and to rate somethingelse that we're not used to to kind of like remove, remove us from the comfortzone but running it's a different story, becauseit's one thing to check it and go yeah that looks balanced, but it's anotherthing to deal with, like fifty two damage in one term to one character andYo. Just think. Oh, my like, oh, my God, that's Goin to kill them. No hanwere aTEMT lovel, an theyre barbarian. That's fine! They it's a scratch. They walkedit off. Yeah everything US crutch, yeah, it'severything, half damaged is out of ICHWOUND, so strong. It's very. It's very strangeto go from almost no high level experience to just got o jump raightinto it and not kind of gradually worked yourself up, but I think it wentwell Jordan, thoughts yeah, I think the the biggest I guess challenge in this in this particular one shot wasactually environmental challenge, which was awesome. I love having the addedeffects of you know. Oh, if your walk, if you're going through you know acrazy, you know place you're going to have some other effects, theyre goingto start happening to you so like you can't expect to go through at fullstrength all the time which was awesome, I loved, I don't know. I guess I took a littlebit of pleasure in seeing the the players start to be like. Oh, this isactually affecting me. Wait a second. What do we do now? It was it was. It was good just becauseit adds an extra the little flavor to a one shot. You know most most most oneshots. You know it's like. Okay, here's your little questline and it leads youto a little combat and then you're done...

...the session kind of thing, but addingin all that extra little flavor really adds to the whole environment of it. With regards to running ten levelpeople I mean I have, I had a regular campaign that was running at that level,so I'm a little bit more used to that with regards to how much damage theycan take in that kind of thing, but it is, it does mean that you have awhole lot more abilities that the players can do that. You should beaware of. You know ahead of time, so I like getting the character sheets andbeing like okay. They have these spells sure how dod these work. Okay, now Ican kind of like see how this might come into play and make a little bit ofa guess ahead of time. You don't always know everything, of course, but you can.You can kind of see okay, I know what this does. I know when he does thisfell. I can kind of tell him. Yes, you do this and then you do that and yeah yeah it was. It was fun, a lot of fun. I loverunning stuff at higher levels. Yeah and like I guess this leads intothe balance aspect of it. Seeing that I iguess Jordan n, you just said thatyou're a little bit more used to it, but have you written one shots at this level? How did youbalance encounters at this because at this point, you're introducing thingslike world bending spells all right and you're adding like? I guess I don'tknow: If did you guys introduce magic items into the mix when you ran this because most things like mess withbalance a lot, I've found II've run it twice now, the first time I did, I allowed themeach one magic item of their choice within reason. Nothing, nothing stupid,but I'm just going to use my lute to wishthis all the way. Thank yeah...

...think nothing ridiculous, but I didallow them EUC especially T S. it's balance most optimately for four people. Theycan be run with anywhere between three and five, I believe, but most optemelyfor four people and this party had three people, so I figured yeah there'sno arm in allowing them a little bit of magic items and I tailord theexperience a bit more towards three people and they absolutely steam olled.It mm like there was no contest versus the session that I just ran for it totest all the new changes that we made party of four no magic items prettypretty decent comp in terms of well roundedness. I think maybe alittle bit heavy towards the mely side, but definitely definitely I think it was balanced. I think that Ilike they succeeded, but it was definitely a hard fot one that I thinkthat they got a good sense of sense of accomplishment from yeah. I ran it with with magic items init. Originally, I was going to run it on aslightly more difficult setting just to see what would happen so by giving certain creatures theirfull amounts of hell for by adding, in a couple of other creatures, just tosee what would happen, but I started to get tight for time, so I cut that out. But again it came down really to the environment. The environment waswhat was really adding to that balancing issue, because you don't wantto make it like you can't. If you have anenvironmental issue that is going to affect your players, then you can't usethe highest level CR ratings with your with your enemies, because ifyou do then they're running that...

...essentially at a disadvantage all thetime- and that is that's not going to work out very well. So you I applaud like what you've done thereBraden with that, because it, even though they took more points ofexhaustion than they were anticipating they still made it through Migt y. The magic items probably helpeda lot to, but yeah pus plus my crew had healing. Soyou know that always helps to just kind of expand on the theenvironment. The DOMANS refeencing, one of the things that we played aroundwith here was exhaustion and introducing exaustion to the party, because the idea is that you're down onthis mind, that's perpetually on fire and it's obviously it's going to bechoked with smoke. It's been burning for a week, they're going to bestruggling to breathe, they're going O be struggling to get through and it waslike Wellw Wal. What could we do with that? What can we? How do we impose some kind of a penaltyfor spending long amounts of time, so we played around with the idea ofdamage. Now that's a little harsh how about exhaustion? You know exhaustionat at initial levels. It's obviously a barricade, but itdoesn't really screw up a party to have one level of exhaustion, but it doeskind of start to put a little put a little pep in yourstep, to get it on and finish, maybe more quickly and realizethe sense of urgency, which I think is something that what we were reallytrying to instill with this module was like yeah. You've got like a day to dothis before the town burns down, and also let let's further that along by making you suffer essentially thelonger you spend in thes mine, and it's it's one of those things where,if you look at, I think Jordan's right.

If you look at the monsters and the theopponents that are presented for them, it's maybe like you're tilting yourhead going like this is level ten like this is. This is what they're facing itseems a little and then, when you start to realize that it would be nearimpossible to get to the end without these disabilitiesstacked on top yeah. It really starts to balance out and to add new layers tostrategy both on the part of the DM and an the part of the on the MARTOF, the players. I thinkJordan point when we were designing a Laura. The final, the final villain tothis fight. You had mentioned a spell that would be possible to add extrasickeing adigans. I Really Wad, I was Goinna, do it I was, and then I decidedto I'm very glad that that was not something we did because my players, myplayers, enterd the final fight with two levels of exhaustion, so of which Ithink is probably I think that that's probably going to be the average yeah.My players kind of made a be line and then decided to long rest and longresting in this place does heal you but also adds exhaustion. It doesn't cureyour exaution, it actually stacks it. Ah, so they walked in with too ultimately,and it really, it really affected the pacing of the funal fight not beingable to really get where they wanted in this relatively relatively smallchamber. For the final fights to be honest compared to the scale of whatthey end, beed dealing within this mind, but when you're reduced to movingfifteen feet at a time- and everybody else has a fly speed of thirty it really, it really starts to changeyour perspective of what you can do in that fight. I, like that. I like that that BalanceFo Mykinnecg did you. How did you think about introducingthat, though? What were your considerations? Did you think, is thisbased on how many hours they spend? Is it Li? How did you come to theconclusion on how you introduce the the exhaustion? It was another one of thosethings where I was like I'm already doing stuff, that's way out of mycomfort zone. I might as well throw in a bunch more crapt than I have no ideaHo. Don't bout right, real and rely on...

...people like Jordan and our friend Matt,who have por experience with this, to do the like work for me, but ultimately it came down to theinitial idea was just to have it affect them if they'relong resting, because the ideas at that point they're spending about eighthours in the Minei's going to really start to set in and then that didn't really it didn'thave the same, especially because at level ten, if you're not facing the theexhaustion, then you're probably going to get through some encounters relativelyeasily and you're, maybe not going to have the need to long rest and you'renot going to hit the exhaustion at all so that changed it. Okay, well, they'respending time we should hit like a time limit m every eight hours same is thelong worse. That makes sense. What's what's eight hours like? How are wegoing to track that, so we essentially concluded that between walking aroundthe mines and just the time spent down there,approximately every two rooms visited in the visited and cleared in the mineswould be about eight hours. So, the idea of being that, like theycould potentially end up with three, I think if I yeah bath right, if they, if theydidn't long rrest, they could potentially end up with three but- andI think that we both Sawid once the the kind of looming threat of this set init, was more like. Oh No, we're GOINNA WE'RE GOINNA get the main stuff done and once that's done, then we'll goback and solve maybe some of the some of the side problems but like we don'thave time to really like screw round down here, so mycro actually ended upgoing outside of the town in order or outside of the mines.In order to long rest, I'm interested did you did you kind ofinstill? The sense that, like time was of the essence, just like that's allwell and good, I tried but the characters themselves in thisparticular campaign. Weren't. Exactly like you know, we want to save this townkind of thing. It was more like...

...there's money, sure I'll do things formoney likes okay, and I know that that's something ourfriend match. Who is helping us with the balancing? He mentioned that the initial imiplication of long resting in theminds giving exhaution wasn't enough because, like who's going along rest ofthe minds, you can just long rest outside of the mine so like Ou'veyou'venever played with, like an archaleptic party? Have you mess like? I was Iknowt people they can sleep anywhere, yeah, indnd and sure enough. The party that Ijust ran this for took it took a long rest of the minds, because why not you don't know it's a bad thing untilyou do it and realize it's a very bad thing well see I kind of gave them theimpression that it was a bad thing to be in the minds themselves because theywould start to cough more and more as they got like once they went throughtwo rooms and they got a point of exhaustion and they started to realize.Oh I'm, coughing and choking on this smoke. You know they didn't think. Oh,I should just sleep here now they were like. Oh, we got to getout and we got a rest in fresh air so that we can, you know, come back inthat's clever and get ready for the next thing. So that's a good way ofdoing it. Yeah it's an exciting little encounter. Ithink this is also one of the first introductions thatwe've had with infernal monster types. You know, Ibelieve so as in the room of our oneshout writing for sure, which is it's fun to see. It's wont to see the group starting to Expan. It Odifferent areas, and I think we're going to see more of that as we as wekeep read. We've kind of LME R EATO be honest. As your friend I was honestlyjust waiting for when you were going to start writing about infernal. Don't...

...the only thing missing is a love,crafty and horinfernals with a noarthem Ewhat I meant was. I think that, likenow that we've kind of found our footing as as the ruyral Siy Society, as kind of we've gotten out a couple modules nowand we've kind of done. Everybody's initial first thing that we reallywanted to work on as a group now that we are more comfortable as kind of awriting collective. I think we're going to start seeing ideas being brought forward that arekind of really more outside the box, really more outside of just typical level. Five two hour, one shotsthat people are used to, maybe more than the. I think that we saw it firstwith that Ar Khinglay that we just released yes, Radley Helmming, that Ithink that he brought some really cool new ideas to the table yeah, and Ithink that I think that now, like the flood gates, are kind of open. For that.I know I'm looking ahead to something that mats cooking up, something orfriend, Alex is Cookeng up. That' will hopefully be in the works very soon,but ther they're different they're not really standard to what we've releasedit for and I'm excited to see what those turn into. So if you guys want to keep keeping check us, Tho Hon release thosethings you got to make sure you hit that fellow, but an instagram page andmake sure you check this new module, the fires below out on DM skilledsearch, either brean mills or Royal City Society. For the author to findthis great piece of work and tell us if you run this, how did it go? If there's any comments critique, wewelcome at all, and I don't know what else Britten anythingyou want to know specifically from people if theywere on this. I wouldvery much like to know how this goes good or bad. I think that wwe spent thelast fifteen minutes or so just talking up how good this module is, but I thinkthat there's always room for improvement, so I think, with with anyof our modules, if you, if you have...

...something you like, if you havesomething you don't like drop us Aligne at rosy's society on Instagram or leaveus a review or acomment on our DM skild Nice echode branded spots, l o work forForpros it this. I all right guys catch you guys in thenext episode.

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