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Questions on a fight with a werewolf (in the Dark Ages)

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  • Questions on a fight with a werewolf (in the Dark Ages)

    I'd like some feedback on this. In the last session I ran, the coterie fought a werewolf. There were 6 Cainities and a ghoul (the ghoul was only temporarily effected by the delirium, not sure on how the fear that werewolves incite would effect a ghoul, I allowed him to spend a pint a point of willpower to regain his composure after one turn of running in terror).

    Five of the six cainites were armed and combat experienced, they had warning of the attack since a thaumaturgical ward gave them warning before the werewolf attempted to ambush them.

    The werewolf had second place in the initiative, the first person to act was a vampire (player character) who used dominate to 'stun' the werewolf (she commanded it to "freeze"), I allowed the werewolf to be stunned for one turn since the player scored 5 successes on her dominate roll. I didn't know if the werewolf would be vulnerable to dominate while in crinos (it's war form) but I ruled that one turn would be the maximum amount of time dominate would effect it considering that the werewolf was being attacked in combat and also has rage flowing through it.

    The coterie rolled well and the four Cainites who attacked the werewolf dished out about 20 points of damage in the first round of combat (with non silver melee weapons).

    The werewolf was soaking with six dice and can soak lethal damage at difficulty six since it was in its war form (Crinos: the wolf-man). In Crinos, the werewolf heals one lethal heals damage every turn but it must make a stamina roll to do so if taking other actions (dark ages werewolf page 102).

    The werewolf basically should have died after the first round were I to be following the rules, it suffered over 7 health levels of damage after soaking the first round of attacks.

    In round two, the werewolf summoned a spirit guardian to distract the Cainites and fled.

    For the sake of drama, I disregarded the rolls and ruled that the werewolf should survive this encounter and escape so as to keep the tension high and the fear of the creature on the character's minds. It had its arm lopped off but it survived and ran off into the night.

    Does anyone have any thoughts on this? Five battle hardened neonates faced down a werewolf and basically killed it in on round. Should dominate have been ruled ineffective? The werewolf being stunned led to it being severely wounded in the first round of combat.

    Just curious about what people think.

    Lastly, the werewolf is a starting character with the equivalent of fifty xp. It is a jack of all trades with a good number of dice for its combat rolls.

  • #2
    Reducing a werewolf to the point of death, in W:tA at least, results in a chance to roll Rage to recover. Each success brings the werewolf back one level from incapacitated, even against aggravated damage, but results in a berserk frenzy.

    Also a factor in W:tA, Create Element. You could have had the werewolf spark a large quantity of flammable materials sitting nearby.

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    • #3
      Six on one is all ways going to be bad odds, also unless the werewolf has delirium enhancing abilities (from a spirit they play pinochle with on Tuesdays or a talisman of munchkin bullshit that they all ways seem to have) a ghoul should not be affected by delirium.

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      • #4
        Well I guess my question would be is the werewolf an on going antagonist npc or just a plot device to show how dangerous it can be outside of a city?

        If it's an npc how much of that xp went towards gifts? What auspic is it? Tribe? Breed? Why was it alone?they usually travel in packs.

        If it's just a plot device I wouldn't stress out if it got whatever message you were trying to send.

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        • #5
          You can kill a werewolf with just one vampire. It involves making a beeline out the back until you get to the shed. Once there, you power on the hydraulic doors to the observatory. If you lure the werewolf in front of the door and pull the switch just as he's in the doorway, he'll be crushed by the door mechanism.


          I seem to have acquired a site for running play by post games. This is unexpected and frightening and come watch either the glorious play or the magnificent train wreck:

          The Malkavian Madness Network

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          • #6
            6 on one, with good rolls and good tactics? I'd have let them have the kill. (I'm a 'dice fall where they may" kind of ST, but even if you're not, I'd say they clearly earned it.) Werewolves are serious business, yes, but it's possible to take that too far and if five combat-hardened vampires (plus two) who effectively won initiative can't put away one werewolf, that's getting a bit ridiculous IMO. Combat in WoD is not D&D where 'you must be this high level to have a chance.'

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            • #7
              In general, the important thing to remember is that werewolves usually fight in packs and it would be really, really unusual for a single werewolf to intentionally challenge a group of vampires by himself unless he accidentally stumbled on them, or they accidentally stumbled onto him. This is what makes werewolves so dangerous. Sure three or four vampires might be able to defeat a single werewolf, but most often the werewolves travel in a group and you're not going to have three vampires for each werewolf - you'll be lucky to have two vampires to one werewolf.

              Finally a single werewolf is pretty powerful - even a Ragabash is dangerous as hell. But a battle hardened and prepared vampire is no joke either. So five experienced cainites vs one fairly young, overly cocky werewolf who tried to take them all down by himself? Yeah, I'd expect things to go down just like they did in your game.

              Next time that werewolf comes back, he'll be bringing his pack and maybe even an elder or two who are unhappy about what the PC's did to Jr.

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              • #8
                I do not think that ghouls are protected from the delirium unless they have high Willpower (or some other form of protection, like being one of the Kinfolk or being a Sorcerer). Other than that, the primary issue that the Kindred should face is that they cannot hide what they have done from the Sept of the Garou. Under normal circumstances, a Garou who is not a Ronin will have a couple dozen friends they can bring to kill off Kindred (especially during a Dark Ages time period). There is little that can stop a couple dozen properly prepared Garou, especially if they have summoned a few dozen Jagglings to help in the fight (or, God help the Kindred because no one else will, a Celestine Avatar of Sun).

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                • #9
                  Ghouls are considered "supernaturally touched " enough to ignore the delirium just like kin folk and sleepwalkers, after all you willfully drink blood from an undead thing, what other "surprises" could the world hold for you.

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                  • #10
                    Dominate works fine on Garou, there is a high level gift that makes you immune to mind altering powers or ups your resistance against it, I forgot the specifics. But until then Dominate is a dangerous weapon against a Garou. Since Willpower is mostly around 5-7 because they have also gnosis and rage to dump points to.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by BurritoMage View Post
                      Ghouls are considered "supernaturally touched " enough to ignore the delirium just like kin folk and sleepwalkers, after all you willfully drink blood from an undead thing, what other "surprises" could the world hold for you.
                      Where does it say that?

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by AnubisXy View Post
                        In general, the important thing to remember is that werewolves usually fight in packs and it would be really, really unusual for a single werewolf to intentionally challenge a group of vampires by himself unless he accidentally stumbled on them, or they accidentally stumbled onto him. This is what makes werewolves so dangerous. Sure three or four vampires might be able to defeat a single werewolf, but most often the werewolves travel in a group and you're not going to have three vampires for each werewolf - you'll be lucky to have two vampires to one werewolf.

                        Finally a single werewolf is pretty powerful - even a Ragabash is dangerous as hell. But a battle hardened and prepared vampire is no joke either. So five experienced cainites vs one fairly young, overly cocky werewolf who tried to take them all down by himself? Yeah, I'd expect things to go down just like they did in your game.

                        Next time that werewolf comes back, he'll be bringing his pack and maybe even an elder or two who are unhappy about what the PC's did to Jr.
                        Of all the responses so far, I think I agree most with this one.
                        It is certainly possible (and expected) for a group or prepared combat Vampires to win.

                        Zennis, that being said, getting Dominate to work is kind of a tough one. You are assuming eye contact is possible against a raging werewolf in Crinos in the dark. I wouldn't say it is completely impossible, but it's a much harder sell to me than how the rest of the combat went. This also assumes they (the Dominating Vampire and the Garou) have a common language, which especially in the Dark Ages is actually decently unlikely.

                        In any case, the encounter ended fine and your players may or may not have a healthy fear of Lupines because of it (which they should, and that's a good thing). I wouldn't get too hung up on the details after the fact.


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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by idpersona View Post
                          In any case, the encounter ended fine and your players may or may not have a healthy fear of Lupines because of it (which they should, and that's a good thing). I wouldn't get too hung up on the details after the fact.
                          We have a problem of IC vs OOC knowledge going on. OOC the players may know perfectly well that werewolves are terrifying and they should avoid combat with them at all costs. IC, though, they steamrolled it and would have killed it had it not been for GM fiat. I say the characters have a perfectly sound argument for not being at all impressed by werewolves, unless it's the sheer amount of punishment they can take. And "Look how many times I can punch him in the face without him developing brain damage" isn't quite as scary as it first seems.


                          I seem to have acquired a site for running play by post games. This is unexpected and frightening and come watch either the glorious play or the magnificent train wreck:

                          The Malkavian Madness Network

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by BenjCano View Post
                            We have a problem of IC vs OOC knowledge going on. OOC the players may know perfectly well that werewolves are terrifying and they should avoid combat with them at all costs. IC, though, they steamrolled it and would have killed it had it not been for GM fiat. I say the characters have a perfectly sound argument for not being at all impressed by werewolves, unless it's the sheer amount of punishment they can take. And "Look how many times I can punch him in the face without him developing brain damage" isn't quite as scary as it first seems.
                            Worked for Rocky
                            Mind you I actually agree with this for the most part. But a monster who can run in on that many combat Vampires and take the beating and leave is something to be worried about if it comes back with a pack (having regenerated its arm).

                            And I think the ST fiat was tossed around liberally in this combat in any case. The entire encounter is a-typical. Not sure why a single werewolf would ever decide ambushing (and not realizing they failed to ambush) a group of 5 or 6 Vampires is a good idea. I think maybe the ST underestimated the PCs and was trying to save the thematic integrity of the encounter they had envisioned in their head.
                            /shrug
                            Either way, we've all made stuff up on the fly when encounters go unexpectedly. The only thing to do is build from there after the fact.


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                            • #15
                              Well, a good rule of thumb is that five Kindred are required for each Garou. Of course, the Dominate trick would probably not work against high Rage Garou because they should check for frenzy as soon as they realize that they are being mind controlled, but it is not a bad trick for one turn. Of course, it would not have been unreasonable for the Kindred to kill the Garou and then have to deal with the consequences as they are hunted to destruction by his grieving kin.

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