View Full Version : CRs for gestalts?

2011-11-06, 08:26 PM
Hey. I plan on running a fairly long campaign in about 2 months, and I'm going with gestalt for the players. I've run gestalt before, and basically everyone has a lot more fun because they have a lot more options.

The thing is, my "old" gestalt game was a parody of D&D (they were superheroes for hire in Sigil...) and I never actually tried to make the fights challenging. They would either be a puzzle fight, an "I don't actually know how you'll deal with this but it's not dangerous so, given the theoretically infinite time you have, you'll find a way eventually" scenario, or a fight they were intended to rofflestomp quickly enough to not pose a threat.

I understand that I can't just increase CRs for a "real" challenging encounter, because suddenly you're looking at ACs, saves, and attack bonuses (and damage dealt) too high for the lower levels to deal with, even if they have a LOT more power than expected. Just putting forth regular CRs, though, won't stop them at all - especially since I plan on giving them a very high point buy and even Mutants & Masterminds power points on occasion (bhaalspawn game).

I've been thinking that I will continuously give them level-appropriate CRs that have unfair and unaccounted for advantages in things like terrain, action advantages (20 level 1 crusaders + 1 CR9 whatever = a lot harder than 1 CR11 whatever), environmental hazards, etc. etc. Or, when other bhaalspawn are involved, it can just be a fair fight with the similarly elevated level of power. And the occasional "sure, just steamroll these" encounters could be fine, too.

I just thought I'd ask other people who presumably have experience in this issue on other ways to deal with gestalt parties and CRs. The players aren't really optimizers, and I often help them optimize while they're building their characters, so I tend to have a *very* good idea of what they're mechanically capable of - but not so much what the encounters I'm pitting against them are mechanically capable of. I just happen to have a lot more experience with PC power than monster power.

TLDR: gestalts. How you CR?!

2011-11-07, 05:54 AM
As a rule of thumb, a gestalt character should get a 1.5 multiplier to his actual level when calculating appropriate challenges. A level 4 gestalt party should be able to handle CR 6 encounters, for instance.

2011-11-07, 05:57 AM
I'm currently playing a gestalt game which has so far been mostly a steamroll. However outnumbering the PCs seems to be the right way to go. Use creatures 2 - 3 CR higher if they're not outnumbered (depending on their optimization level) and about the same CR if they're outnumbered

2011-11-07, 09:46 AM
However outnumbering the PCs seems to be the right way to go.

This. Increase the number of enemies in any given encounter to offset the PCs increase abilities if you're worried about over CR'd monsters having too much AC/SR/Etc. to touch.