Today i started my first ACKS campaing after three months of prep work, and i love it.
The war against the chaotic empire of the Ven (hibrids between humans and the elder lovercraftian races) ended 50 years ago, and now the Kingdom of Caelum, is finding that without and external enemy the aliances bouth internal and external are breaking.
The king Aurac II, son of the great King Aurac that unified Caelum and defeated the Ven, has to much trust in the gods, and pay little atention to politics. His eldest son fears that the other dinasties will turn against his father and prepares for civil war. The Conquered Ven Territories on the other side of the mediterranean sea know as “the Dog´s Mouth” are left under garrisoned. Whit only half its army the nobles of the conquered territories have to fend against barbarians, monsters and the beastman remanants of the Ven armies.
The conquered territories are also full of ruins of Ven and dwarfs, monster lairs, worshipers of the ancient gods, scholars of lore best left alone and other problems. ideal place for glory/money/danger hungry adventurers.
We start character creation and the players get really lucky, all have positive Con modifiers, and one gets Con 16 Wis 18 Cha 16, he makes a female cleric. The other players have all around avarage scores (with a some 13s and a 6) and make a mage and an elven ranger.
Victoria: female cleric of the sol invictus in a mission to make the conquered territories a better place.
Notes: takes righteous turning and diplomacy proficencies.
Horatius: male mage hungry for knowledge, specialy of the Ven and their magic.
Note: has mistyc aura, bargaining, and colligiate wizardy proficencies.
Zarariel: a directionless male elven ranger following Victoria to find meaning to his life.
Note: has ambushing, Naturalism and trapping proficencies.
The group gathers in the Three frog´s quarrel inn on the town of Old River, in the conuty of Via Vuori, to discuss how to begin their journey.
They know that close to Old river there are some dwarven ruins taken by beastman, legends of a corrupted church in which a dark priest keep a secret treasure and a plea for help by the inhabitants of the viallage of Servator a week away.
They decide to investigate the legend of the corrupted church. And unlucky money roll force them to buy only armor for the cleric, and leaves them whit little extra money.
Following the vage lead that the church was a day south of Old River the party starts its journey. i Bealived that their plan was to locate the church, then go back, hire henchmen and then go to the church. They found the church with the help of a raven convinced by the elf… And they got inside.
I check my notes (taken from the one page dungeon “church of the wiked generation”) and i realise that the big boss is a 7th level cleric, without any armor, but with 30hp, a charm spell. chosing to be honest with miself and the players i carry on.
Upon entering the church the elf hears creatures about to attack them and prevents an ambush by 4 child skeletons. Victoria easily turns the skeletons and the party breakes their bones. They examine the church and find a drainage under the altar used posible for the blood of sacrifices. Investigating further they found a door leading to the room of the dark priest that they found in deep meditation, the priest rolls for surprise and sees the party coming for him, not knowing that the enemies are way below his weight he follows his usual tactic: charm the big guy (in this case Victoria) and run to gather some zombies in the cementery begind the church to have the upper hand.
Victoria falls under the spell, and i give my group as good as dead, only two, unarmored, agaist a far superior oponent and the best armored of their own.
Yet they chose to fight, the mage summons 4 berserkers to attack the dark priest while the elf shoots an acurate arrow at him. Victoria attacks the berserkers while the dark priest tries to run but fails his petrification save when passing his secret scape door. When the second berserker falls in the hands of victoria and the dark priest realises that the mage is out of spells he turns around and pass to the offensive, killing two berserkers in one blow.
But the berserkers have allready make a sum of 17 damage.
The mage starts to run, and the elf hides preparing to atempt a desparate ambush. it succed, and when the d8 of damage rolls an 8 the battle ends in an unespected victory.
Serching the church the group finds part of the treasure (3 potions of healing) in a cellar just before being ambushed by 6 more skeleton children. this time they get to take down the mage and almost the ranger before being turned by Victoria. Luckily they have a potin of healing to use on Horatius, who wakes up with only some minor muscle damage tanks to a very lucky roll in the mortal wound table.
Some more searching and they found the secret entrance to the place where the treasure of 1000gp was hidden. luckily again the cleric avoids trigering the poisoned needle trap in the chest, even as he took it without any precautions. They search and take real care when taking the gold and avoid the other posioned needle inside the chest beetwen the gold pieces.
after that the party head back to Old River having hopefully learned that the world is a dangerous place, full of traps and not balaced encounters.
in town they buy much needed armor for the ranger and a couple of other things.
Victoria gives away more than half her share to the homeless and opens the first xp reserv of the party (the players really love the xp reserve as reward for useless expending idea)
Finaly the decide to get some followers. I roll in my pre made followers table and they only find a young boy, bastard grandson of a semi famous Somen (viking) ship captain, and a naive but willfull girl daughter of a shoopkeeper. They take the couple of teenagers and equipe them (the somen boy only had a sword, and the girl came with 40gp that she use to buy a leather armor and a crossbow)
End of session:
Killed: 10 skeletons and a 7th lvl cleric
treasure found: 1000gp, three potions of healing, and three scrolls: detect magic, purify food and water and one of cure light wounds.
Mortal wounds: 1
And two new henchmen:
Serjen the Somen and Vita the Caelit