[AP] Into the Shieldlands

For lack of a better name…

Had our first session last night. Started people off with 4000 XP and 3200 in the reserve fund; they were robbed by bandits and left with the standard starting 3d6*10 and no henchmen as justification for this (didn’t want to deal with levelled henchmen during the first session with a new system). We had a paladin, bladedancer, and nightblade as PCs, and the paladin recruited a 0-level henchman for the first expedition. They entered an abandoned dwarven fortress by way of the arrow slits / windows (merciful? Perhaps. But it seemed like a good idea at the time) and explored a bit before the nightblade, while scouting, was ambushed by a giant crab spider. The bladedancer rushed to his aid while the paladin was confused by a swarm of bats that the ruckus had awakened and the henchman hid. The nightblade and bladedancer did manage to put down the spider, but the bladedancer was poisoned and died shortly thereafter. The remainder of the party poked around a bit, examining an old stable (and avoiding the rot grubs), then killing four giant toads with the judicious application of the sleep spell and taking the 4000 ep scattered about their lair in an old cistern. With their greed thus satisfied, they took the bladedancer back to town and buried her properly. The henchman levelled, becoming a 1st level fighter, and the paladin picked up some banded mail and a warhammer for her, though her primary duty remains mapping. The nightblade sought out an animal trainer to purchase a war dog, and the bladedancer’s player reentered the game with a cleric.

So reinforced, they embarked on a second expedition to the same ruins, determined to finish mapping the first level. They found a treasure room, and the paladin rashly grabbed a cursed sword before being engaged by a pack of skeletal hounds. The cleric managed to turn them all and only minor injuries were sustained. They investigated a control room but chose not to open the main gate before finding a secret door concealing a sloped hall with a stairwell at the end. While traversing this hall, the cleric stepped on a pressure plate, dropping him into a pit trap containing a gelatinous cube. He was paralyzed, and while the paladin managed to pull him out with a rope, he died of shock and blood loss from the stumps where his lower legs had been. The nightblade feathered the cube with arrows, and they were able to recover a magic short sword from the dead mass of protoplasm before continuing down to the second level.

There, they lifted some portcullises and nailed them open with iron spikes before meeting some blind cave ogres who were drinking and rather friendly, though they didn’t share a common language. They were subsequently introduced to a group of troglodytes allied with the ogres, also friendly, who provided them some information about the area and the Beast in the Pipes. They retreated from a group of morlocks in the old chapel, then found a secret room off a large bedroom containing a pentagram and some black-bound books in a long-forgotten language. Decided that that was enough exploring of the lower levels for now, they made for the surface and handily dispatched a group of roving giant shrews before returning to town to squander their take on ale, wenches, trouble, and hiring a new henchman, a dwarven vaultguard. The nightblade levelled to 3rd, and managed to score a treasure map on the carousing table, so I have a lovely hook in place for next session.

Two pieces of feedback struck me:
“I like this system; it’s more fun than 3.5,” from the nightblade’s player, and “This was more terrifying than that OD&D game I played on the internet once,” from the cleric’s player. So, overall I think it was a success.


Have you played again since last week - is the bladedancer/cleric’s player any luckier?



The bladedancer’s player actually passed up returning, but I believe it was largely due to logistics issues; he was about an hour and a half out from our location, and the commute was not going to be viable on a regular basis. We tossed around ideas about skype, but haven’t heard from him in a while :.

One of our players who was out of town that week has been playing with us as planned, though, and we’ve had four more expeditions into the dungeon. Tracking XP and henchmen and whatnot was getting to be a bit much, so we’ve begun constructing an Obsidian Portal for the game here.

Well, it’s been a while, and my documentation has been spotty, but here’s a report of our most recent session. For the record are also that time the gryphons ate all the horses and that time I almost killed everyone.

And a brief recap of the last session for this summer; I may pick this back up next semester depending on how heavy my courseload is, and definitely intend to in the spring, but for now, taking a hiatus of at least a month.

o politically secured, the Company ventured into the temple to slay the Great Crocodile, which was in fact a juvenile crocodilian dragon with breath most foul, which killed outright the Albanian and Carcophan's newest henchwoman, Myu the Nightblade.  Carcophan himself was laid low by it, suffering permanent injuries to his lungs, while Fjalkov's henchman Okayu lit himself afire with military oil and broke his neck while spasming (he survived, but was paralyzed from the neck down).  Meanwhile, Garwyn attempted to use Carcophan's potion of dragon control, but to no avail.  Before dying, however, the Albanian had landed an excellent shot at the dragon's eye, and Corinth hit it with a desperate throw using the Bullseye Sword.  The dragon tore at Hulst, whose spear glanced off its hide, before Garwyn used his ring of spell storing to slay it with a lightning bolt.

Now THAT is an epic ACKS finale!!!!!

It’s not a proper campaign finale without a dragon and at least one PC death. :stuck_out_tongue:

We’re back up and running, but what with travel for job-hunting and coursework we’ve only had two sessions (I think?) and I haven’t written anything up yet. Fortunately, one of my players posted a very sketchy summary of last night’s session on our wiki: http://www.obsidianportal.com/campaign/for-a-few-gp-more/adventure-log/10-22-12-year-2-month-3-blood-begets-catapults . They learned that vampires are hard to kill, and that siege weapons are useful when your enemy burns in sunlight and is unliving beneath an artificial roof. Also that rattlesnakes are fast as lightning and yellow mold is bad for one’s health.

Finally! The party bard has decided to take up writing propagandized accounts of their adventures in exchange for bonus XP! http://www.obsidianportal.com/campaign/for-a-few-gp-more/adventure-log/the-blades-of-dawn-of-ankhegs-and-boarmen is the first such announcement, recently postered across Opportunity for all to read (well, all those literate in the common tongue).