Mittwoch, 21. Mai 2014

Session 8: A New Entrance


The party moves into the mountains to cure the cursed dwarf. His trials - being made feverish and then jumping into a cool mountain lake - yield additionally, albeit quickly degrading saving throws. He lives. On their way to the Barrowmaze the party encounters and secretly follows others  tomb raiders who are doing excavation work on another mound. Back underground, the party discovers a staircase leading to the surface -- another entrance to the Barrowmaze! A fight with skeletons turns ugly when one the party's fighter fumbles on the first round, killing the dwarf. Critical hits by the skeletons take another life. Armed with two new magic weapons the party leaves via the newly discovered entrance, narrowly evading another group that apparently uses it on a regular basis. They cut a deal with the village witch to help with identifying one of the new weapons.

Observations
  • CD and KT cook up a new maneuver between sessions - enter the flaming tennis ball (lint and tinder, really) to light up long passages and prevent monsters from advancing to just beyond the party's torchlight.
  • There have been very few fumbles and critical hits until this evening. DCC's tables can be very dangerous indeed. 
  • There is an interesting debate on whether to sell magic items for XP (to level up) or to keep them in the party. (XP is only awarded for wasting hard-won gold on boozing and wenching etc.)
An intense session with tons of interesting encounters and discoveries!

Mittwoch, 14. Mai 2014

Session 7: A Tragic Death


The party moves its supply depot deeper into the dungeon. The witch charms the deluded ghost encountered in the last session who then reveals the creatures and treasures in the immediate surroundings. A fight with a mysterious skeleton puts the fear into the players' hearts but their characters prevail. Ladden with magic items they return to the surface. With the exit less than 100 feet away, the party is attacked by robed skeletons. Bhain the Dwarf, carrying enough gold to level up, dies and Thorin the Dwarf is cursed and - pending another save next week - may very well die, too. The party vanquishes the skeletons and chops off Bhain's arms to retrieve his magical chainshirt (as Dwarves turn to stone upon death).

Observations
  • CD suggests a contract among the adventurers to deal with various money issues (e.g. buying healing potions together, handling the property of dead characters etc.). I never saw much point in founding 'adventuring companies' before but now - given the high death rates - this makes perfect sense! Another revelation regarding old school social dynamics.
  • The party gathers information about certain monsters rumored to prowl the dungeon and buys silver weapons and ammunition. Knowledge = Power.
  • In DCC, it's possible to charm un-dead (with a penalty). I like that because they have unusual points of view and information.
  • When a mysterious skeleton reduces GB's character from 10 to 1 hp with one hit, he almost panics and wants his character to flee the scene. Massive pressure from the other players - "Our guys are as just as dead as yours if that skeleton hits any of them" - and even death threats convince him to stay and fight from the second rank. He's in a bad mood after that.
  • CD saves the witch's life by preventing her from entering a tomb with a green slime. After the fight with the skeleton everyone but CD seemed to have forgotten about the party's suspicions regarding that tomb. It's one of several close calls, not all of which the players involved are aware of.
  • The death of CD's dwarf continues his streak of bad luck. He is a cautious yet proactive player but the dice have been against him for many sessions now. Here's hoping his luck will change!
In a nutshell
A succesful delve that ended on a grim note.

Donnerstag, 8. Mai 2014

Session 6: Traps & Treasure


During downtime, one PC tames a wolf and another arranges a marriage for the village crone. Also, the party is invited by Hirot's ruler for a chat. Back in the Barrowmaze, the party discovers a heavily trapped cul-de-sac with a mysterious key in a silver casket. Careful maneuvering neutralizes all threats. Later, they find the richly decorated remains of a beastman recently sacrificed on a dark altar...

Observations
  • CD notes that wandering monsters rarely carry any treasure.
  • KT styles his rogue as a ranger (with skills like Survial, Stealth and Beast Mastery and a tame wolf).
  • A random encounter indicates a graffiti and leads to a lot of soul searching for the DM. More about this when I find the time to sort my thoughts.
A nice session. The players expertly navigated the cul-de-sac situation.

Freitag, 2. Mai 2014

Session 5: Victory!


The party encounters another group of tomb raiders in the Barrowmaze. They manage to steal their clueless rivals' gold but then help them against a skeleton attack. The party's two new dwarf characters sniff out some gems and the party returns to the surface, fighting a series of small battles (with giant rats, mysterious skeletons and a lone skeleton, respectively). For the first time, they return from their adventures without casualties. Three PCs reach level 2.

Observations
  • KT had studied the combat rules and led the way setting up flanking positions, using Luck and reminding other players of their characters' special powers. 
  • When KT began to describe his new character at the beginning of the session, cries of "One line of background only!" erupted. KT, known for writing pages and pages of backstory, continued unperturbed -- he is used to friendly ribbing in this matter.
  • Players got more cocky with 1st level characters, particularly ones with poor stats.
  • The way back to the exit was again a tense affair but also took up quite a bit of time. I wonder if we should double the movement rate in known and mapped territory...
  • The players were very pleased with their success (and rightly so, I might add).
  • I keep 'revealing' rules from D&D 3.5e that are second nature to me but which I never bothered explaining. This is a bit irritating to the players but I'm not sure if a huge infodump at the beginning would have been better. Ask me about charging enemies, for instance, and you shall be rewarded!
In a nutshell
A very satisfying session - the characters' success nicely counterbalances the bloodbaths behind (and most likely ahead of) them!