During our last session, we were back at the underground water temple. This time, we were looking for the leader of the place. So we went off in the wrong direction, of course. Before wandering however, the table talked about how to approach the rest of the temple… which leads into my topic.
When faced with a dungeon location, it is pretty typical to go room-to-room and clear as you go. Hopefully this means you will not have enemies coming up from behind and maybe you can get clear an area without reinforcements. However, by the time you reach the big bad boss at the end, you have used up resources in the intervening encounters. You might have picked up useful stuff along the way, but you are just as likely to be drained. Conversely, you enter and go straight for the big bad, full and ready, then with diminished status, try to fight your way back out (or even run).
We faced this situation last session. After facing a two-stage encounter we were unprepared for (and nearly faced TPK if not for a lucky hypnotic pattern spell), we showed up in the boss room. That meant taking on the boss with less resources than we wanted to be at.
All things considered, the module is getting better. The challenges are starting to vary more and enemies are getting interesting. MORE LOOT! Heh.
I was going to mention the bag of unreliable holding and also a bit about Unearthed Arcana and playtesting, but as I am already late with this post… next time!
But… what do I know…?