Tuesday, December 22, 2015

CER: Mirror of the Fire Demon

The second picture never stops being hilarious.
In Pyramid 3/77, an article was published that introduced Combat Effectiveness Rating, CER, a concept to begin objectively defining combat difficulty (with an aside on traps and social encounters). As a helpful reference, it gives the CER of many enemies in the Dungeon Fantasy series. For some reason, it seems to have skipped over Mirror of the Fire Demon, so I decided to attempt to rectify that below.

This article has almost no editorial content. It is simply meant to be a reference of the CER values of the monsters from the back of the book. Maybe in a later article, I'll go over the NPCs as well. This article may somewhat be spoilerish if you are a player who might play this adventure, but not that much. Just a few numbers and names.

Basic Archer20828
Basic Barbarian221436
Basic Dwarven Warrior221436
Karateka (Nunchaku)141529
Karateka (Staff)151934
Artillery Mage (Earth)20929
Artillery Mage (Fire)17926
Artillery Mage (Ice)21930
Healing Cleric111829
Support Cleric18826
Support Mage13720
Basic Thief15722
Pixie Thief17118
Angry Sands202545
Bounding Turtle, Greater374885
Bounding Turtle, Lesser91221
Burrowing Serpent182442
Dehydrated Horde Zombie42226
Dire Vulture18523
Flame Servant Demon433578
Flame Wasp (10 HP swarm)141428
Nest Scorpion (11 HP swarm)201535
Ogre (Great Axe)322254
Ogre (Maul)272249
Orc Sergeant (Axe)322254
Orc Sergeant (Shortsword)272249
Orc Shaman (Support Only)191231
Orc Shaman (With Projectile Package)271239
Orc Soldier, Common (Axe)181129
Orc Soldier, Common (Shortsword)151126
Orc Soldier, Tough (Axe)241438
Orc Soldier, Tough (Shortsword)211435
Skeleton, Large252348
Speeding Blade332356

Editorial Anyways

That took longer than I expected. Much longer. So, looking at this list we have encounters in one campaign that range in difficulty from 18 like the Pixie Thief on the low end, to the Greater Bounding Turtle at 85. Interestingly, when looking at these numbers, I feel like they don't tell the whole story. While the demons and the turtle are far and away the strongest enemies in the entire adventure, and their numbers show that, I think force multipliers like the Support clerics, mages, and shamans are undervalued. By themselves, they *might* be weak-ish, but there is no accounting for increasing DR and ST of brutes protecting them. Ah well, even the original article recommends that one shouldn't place metrics above common sense when choosing encounters.


  1. I had forgotten that I figured the NPCs from this adventure not long after Pyramid 3/77 came out. I'm sure I made a few mistakes; I was still getting the hang of the calculation.

    The Aristocrat 47 30 17
    The Dark Artist 42 17 25
    The Exceptional Thief 31 13 18
    The High Priestess 37 16 21
    The Holy Warrior 49 23 24
    The Lizard King 56 35 21
    The Mage 48 36 12
    The Master of Elements 38 26 12
    The Master of the Empty Hand 29 20 9
    The Mechanic 38 28 10
    The Noble Knight 46 22 24
    The Outdoorsman 44 27 17

    1. At a glance, those are all feel like fair values, if not slightly low, but I of course haven't memorized the stats.
      I might have made mistakes with mine as well, but I'll see to merging these numbers with the numbers I have.


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