OR: Alana Gets Bored in a Volcano
We had just finished leveling up in town. GREM purchased a new bow that lets him ignore armor on one attack. Alana had Flow make a donation to the Sanctuary of the Great Oak (add two Blessings to your deck for the next dungeon). We then hit the road heading to the Burning Mountain and pulled an annoying road card that gave us each a Curse for NOT killing a harmless, smelly old man.
The Burning Mountain was… different.
This was the largest map that we had explored yet. (The target treasure chest was 15 hexes away from our starting positions!) It also only had a few monsters: six elite demons and golems.
Each time an elite is killed, a new door would unlock. We needed to unlock at least three doors to get the treasure chest loot and run out the front door. (suboptimal win condition) OR we needed to open at least five doors to get the treasure chest and then cast one of the fancy items INTO THE FIRES OF MOUNT DOOM. (optimal win condition)
The Flame Demons had four (!) armor, but luckily GREM had a new bow… So he was dead on the first turn.
Flow and GREM then pivoted to whittle down the Earth Demon and Stone Golem who had high pools of HP. Again, with these high HP/low movement monsters, we kited around doing ranged damage, setting up hookgun/trap combos, and using status effects.
Soon enough, we unlocked the door leading to the real prize…
When the door to the treasure room was unlocked, we had to hang back for a bit while the Earth Demon and Flame Demon inside walked down to greet us. Alana wasn’t happy about that.
GREM couldn’t use his bow again, so he waited until the second Elite Flame Demon was near a doorway and then hookgun/pulled him into a trap (3 damage, armor doesn’t apply to trap damage!) while Flow used Flame Strike to Wound him and the Earth Demon (1 damage per round, armor doesn’t apply to status effect damage!).
That poor second Elite Stone Golem spent the entire dungeon just walking around the board 1 or 2 hexes at a time to try and get to us. GREM continued to chip away at the Earth Demon while Alana looted the coins and gear: two items of the Savvas mountain people which must be destroyed to restore balance to the volcano! Or, at least one needed to be destroyed. The demons/golems are apparently OK with a compromise here.
The Stone Golem finally caught up juuuuust as Flow cast the Helm of the Mountain into the fire (would’ve immobilized an enemy whenever they melee attacked a character AND an Earth element could be consumed — seemed very niche and very melee). The Helm was removed from the game.
Alana kept the Hammer of the Mountain which lets her summon a Warrior Spirit buddy to keep her Mystic Ally company.
GREM once again had too much HP and too few monsters, so you’ll see here that he jumped into a pit trap right before Alana’s turn to seal his demise.
All Glory to the Blood God!!
With the Helm destroyed, peace was restored and we got a bonus Reputation to boot. We headed back to Gloomhaven and prepped ourselves for a refreshing trip to the CRYPTS OF THE DAMNED.
Rules We Struggled With:
- We had to consult the rulebook a few times to make sure we were interpreting Shield the right way. Having traps and status effects cut through shields seemed essential for this map.
- When a monster’s ability card for the turn has a Shield bonus, that bonus doesn’t start until the monster’s turn starts. It then ends at the end of the round. Instead, we applied the shield bonus to the monster’s entire turn. That meant that some of the monsters should have died a little quicker.
- We almost forgot to give ourselves the bonus XP for completing the scenario!