After a long period of inactivity and the eventual deletion of this blog due to random real life troubles, I have returned yet again to try my hand at this here blogging thing. Hopefully I can muster a bit more effort this time around.
Last night was the third session in my current D&D 3.5 game and man was it a good one! On deck we have Tom the gnomish cleric of Lamashtu, Lori the elven rogue, Dilly the human ranger, Rachael the halfling barbarian, and sometimes Jeff the elven sorcerer (I don't have their character sheets in front of me, otherwise I'd toss out their character names as well). The first thing I should tell you about the group is that they are predominantly evil. This is a first for me, as I usually tend to discourage evil characters, but I figured "what the heck". Let me tell you, they are a salty bunch. In one of the previous sessions they rescued some lumberjacks from a vicious harpy, only to more-or-less rob the poor men for all their hard earned coin!
This week they continued to explore the ruins of a dwarven monastery located near a small lumber town. Having cleared the upper level, they charged headlong down the stairs into the darkness, coming face-to-face with a band of kobolds! The kobolds were a mix of warriors and slaves, and Lori had the bright idea to bribe the slaves into switching sides using a bit of food as bait. Tom threw in some prestidigitation to make the food savory and delicious to sweeten the deal while Rachael and Dilly make short work of the warriors. Lori is now the happy master of two scrawny, cowardly kobold slaves, who take great delight in cheering for her victory and scolding the other party members for not being as heroic, regardless of their actual role in combat. Now I get to make crazy kobold voices all night, so I consider it a victory for all.
The most surprising part of that fight was when Rachael decided to grapple a kobold! No one ever wants to grapple, yet I can't blame her after spending the 50 gold on armor spikes! So there she is, squeezing the life out of this poor kobold warrior, rolling and punching and twisting limbs, all the while the kobold is screaming at his slaves to stop taking food from the pink-skins and help him out. As if that weren't humorous enough, Dilly decided to join in the struggle, and soon the poor kobold found himself repeatedly crushed and kicked and smashed into armor spikes until his life was wrenched from his frail bones as the combined might of a human and a halfling smashed away his meager 4 hit points. Man what a way to go!
One of the encounters in the dungeon is a pretty fun trick: a gelatinous cube with a suit of drarven armor inside, appearing to be some sort of ghost as it floats down the halls. Lori and Tom already knew the gag, either from playing this adventure previously or reading about it here when I last ran it, but they kept their mouths shut so as not to ruin it for the rest. Bravo! Of course it didn't take long for the truth to come out, and only poor Dilly got a taste of the cube's wrath before it was reduced to liquidy pools of goo. Had the group been less cautious it could have turned ugly for them, but they've learned quickly that rushing into a fight isn't always the best course of action.
Later in the evening things took a turn for the worse for our brave adventures, as Lori failed to disarm a vicious trap, setting it off in the process. The trap is designed to lock you in a room and possibly hold you in place while some vargouilles swoop in for the kill. Poor Lori found herself trapped in a small room with two of the fiends, and despite her best efforts she could not defend against their vile kiss. Having failed the saving throw, she now has 24 hours, at most, before her head sprouts wings and flies away! Of course the condition can be cured, but it will require hiring a spellcaster from town, which happens to be a few days away from the dungeon. Now it gets interesting, as the group tries to find a way to reach town before Lori is doomed. It will be interesting to see if they can make it in time, and if not, how they'll deal with a member of their team suddenly becoming a horrible monster overnight. Man I love the suspense of it!
So far I've really been enjoying myself with this game, which I'm trying to run as a mini-sandbox campaign using some premade adventures from Paizo that all take place within the same area. Basically I've gutted the dungeons, which all fit together nicely, and just gave the group enough rumors to take them there without forcing them into the actual plot of the adventures. I tried that, at first, with the mission of saving the town from a horrid plague, but as soon as they heard "plague" they high-tailed it outta town and headed for the hills! Like I said, these guys and gals are a salty bunch, and the plight of a few hundred commoners didn't interest them in the least. Villains, one and all!
Next week: can Lori be saved? Will Dilly have his vengeance on the vermin he hates so much? Will Tom's demon queen bless him with foul nightmares? Will Rachael get to impale more suckers with her spikey hugs of doom? With Jeff be able to make it to the game, and if so, will he come as close to death as he usually does? Tune in the next time and find out!