2012-10-16, 12:45 PM (ISO 8601)
Halfling in the Playground
Re: Encounter mechanics help!
I would vote against using the mob temple. First off, it doesn't really fit with what you're trying to represent. It's supposed to be for large groups of angry people who want your PCs dead, not a wave a panicked civilians. Second, mobs as written are tough. They've got lots of health, and a grapple modifier that is pretty much an instant win against low-level PCs.
Instead, I would just whip up some rules that treat the crowds more like terrain. Maybe PCs stuck in a panicked crowd automatically suffer a bullrush attempt. If you're feeling cruel, the crowd automatically gets a trip attempt against PCs who are pushed backwards. Those who fall down are trampled for some (nonlethal?) damage. In addition to that, you could consider applying movement penalties on people trying to move through them, or automatic spell failure chances, or whatever.
In addition, you could include larger objects like runaway carts as separate objects. Maybe they just get an attack roll against anyone standing in their path. Trample rules?
Either way, I'd definitely run this as more of a free form roleplaying skill encounter than a real combat encounter. Sure, you'll probably go by initiative order, you'll use a good deal of combat rules, and they may actually fight some sort of monster, but I'd imagine most of the fun would be in the interesting use of skills to deal with the crowd (intimidate to stop or turn around fleeing civilians, climbing onto buildings to avoid them, jump/balance to try to walk on top of people, tumble to skillfully navigate the stampede, creative spell usage, whatever). Instead of a codifying every possibility, I'd just play it by ear. Let the PCs try to roll whatever they want to, so long as they can sort of justify the action. It's a good chance for them to get creative and feel like badasses.
Edit: so this is pretty much what the guy above me said, but using 10 times as many words.
Last edited by Adam...?; 2012-10-16 at 12:47 PM.