Author Topic: Something of a Campaign Journal  (Read 899 times)

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Sinfire Titan

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Something of a Campaign Journal
« on: December 10, 2010, 02:40:17 PM »
My old playgroup decided to get another game running, but asked me to DM this time around. I agreed, and we got started up. The stats are 4d6, drop lowest, reroll any number lower than 12. Three sets of stats. Each player is level 5, and they have to pick classes from a list of 12 (Bard, Ranger, Factotum, Warblade, Swordsage, Crusader, Totemist, Incarnate, Beguiler, Dragonfire Adept, Duskblade, and Binder).

As part of this campaign, I thought I'd try a different approach to the WBL: The recommended amount of GP is cumulative/level, starting with 5th level's GP value. This is to compensate for the lack of Tier 2's and up.

Initial Group:
[spoiler]Human Binder 5, using Paimon and dual wielding rapiers (one of which is Supernal Clarity). Somewhat sub-par, but his equipment selection made up a good bit of ground.

Human Ranger 5, using Mounted Archery. He has 50 Fountainhead Arrows, and 50 Biting Arrows (both in the MIC), and he's able to recover them after an encounter so they may as well be unlimited use (they can break on occasion). Has the lowest ability scores out of the entire party. His animal companion is a riding dog, but he's put his height so low that he's effectively a Small character with Powerful Build.

Dragonborn Duskling Dragonfire Adept (Midge). Thankfully, he's no longer a member of the party for several OOC reasons.[/spoiler]

Late Arrivals:
[spoiler]Dwarf Barbarian 5, uses a Greataxe and has Pounce. He's a fairly new player, but I'm steering him towards a Charger build.

Human Swordsage 5, spreading his maneuvers fairly thin (mostly Desert Wind). The newest player, but an OOTS reader. He's catching on quickly, though his maneuver selection leaves much to be desired.[/spoiler]

NPC Ally:
[spoiler]Enril Draos, Human Warblade 5. I'm gunning for Stormguard Warrior combos, and have the lowest AC out of the part (lower than the Dwarf unless he uses Shock Trooper).

Please note: Enril doesn't count towards the party's head count when determining XP, but they still share treasure with him (I make up for that by providing the party with miscellaneous goods like a Daern's Instant Tent and Survival Pouch every so often). He also has no plot significance: He was initially there to shore up the party's head count (since there were only three PCs otherwise).[/spoiler]

Anyways, session 1:
[spoiler]The party opens up in a bar with Midge drawing some attention (in addition to being new in town, he's a Dragonborn). Both the Binder and the Ranger question what the hell he is, seeing as he looks half-dragon. I apply appropriate stigma to the racial misconception, then introduce Enril with a minor plot hook: Gathering the Nine Swords (seeing as the Binder has Supernal Clarity all ready).

They decline the hook, so I let it pass and let them get a little interaction time with each other and Enril before kicking off the first encounter: Goblins. At this level, they are't much of a threat, so I was setting up for a real battle later on.

Quote from: Encounter 1
[spoiler]A lone Goblin wearing Steel Breastplate, well over-equipped for his CR, but still outmatched by the party. This encounter ends in short order: The Ranger has Favored Enemy: Goblins and Evil Outsiders. One arrow and the little bugger is down, but he's brought the guards into the bar.[/spoiler]

The guards inform the players that there's been a rash of arson cases, 5 total with 7 attempted. The two failed attempts produced evidence of a tribe of goblins who lived where the city currently stands. The guards inform the players that there's probably still goblins out there, and that the Baron will be issuing a bounty for each goblin killed: 5 silver/head.

It isn't much, but this is just to incite the commoners and tell the players that they need to take the goblins out before someone gets killed. The Ranger starts tracking the goblins, eventually finding a small group at an abandoned theater by a creek.

Quote from: Encounter 2
[spoiler]This time I up the ante a little by throwing 5 more goblins (again, overequipped but still out of their league) at the party.

This is where I learn that the players screwed up on their equipment: Each of them has a +2 Weapon (+1 with an additional ability). After about 10 minutes of talking to them, they correct their sheets and the encounter resumes. The Binder now has Supernal Clarity and a MWK Rapier, while the Ranger has forgone his +1 Armor in favor of his bow.

A Fountainhead Arrow from the Ranger takes out three of the five goblins, while Midge manages to use his Breath Weapon to neuter a fourth. The Binder uses his 1/5 rounds ability to get a mini-Dervish Dance off, and chooses to render one of the goblins unconcious with Nonlethal damage. I finish off the currently entangled goblin (for once Midge shows some optimization tact), and we end the encounter with a captive goblin.[/spoiler]

The Binder and Ranger can both speak with it, so they interrogate the little bastard.

They find out that a small horde of goblins has been tricked into thinking the grounds this city stands on are a goblinoid holy ground. They've been trying to burn the city to the ground in order to reclaim the territory, and have been equiped with specialized armor (the Steel Breastplate).

The one controlling the goblins is a Crystal Troll sent by a rivaling City-State in order to try and provoke a war that's been sitting cold for a while now. The party spares the goblin's life, correcting the misconception, and prepare to fight a troll.


Quote from: Encounter 3
[spoiler]This time there were six goblins, each equiped with Steel Breastplate.

But those weren't the threat. The real threat was the troll. None of us had a way of killing it (Sonic instead of Acid or Fire), so we had to improvise.


The Ranger takes out as many of the Goblins as one Fountainhead Arrow can hit, and the Binder mops up the others while moving adjacent to the Troll. Meanwhile, Enril moves up straight into the troll's face and whiffs a Mountain Hammer (Level 5=Low Attack Bonuses). And Midge does something useful: Entangles the troll with Fire breath. The troll attacks randomly (hitting me), so a Wall of Blades prevent any serious damage.

And then Midge has a literal genius moment: Slow Breath has a save for Half (not Negates). He ended up giving us a decent chance of hitting the damn thing, since being Entangled and Slowed dropped its AC to Crap.

In other words, this encounter was over in short order.[/spoiler]

We just had to make sure the damn thing stayed dead. To do so, we cut the body up until it's Nonlethal Damage was well into the 5000's, put the damn thing in a burlap sac filled with rocks, and then threw it into a body of water to let the Drowning Rules keep it from being a threat.

We reported back to the Baron, and informed him that the troll had been sent by a rivaling city-state to try and incite a war. The Baron sets the party up for their next quest, and their second Legacy Item (not one of the Nine).

He asks the party to deliver a peace-offering (a building in a bottle about the size of your average bedside nightstand) masterfully crafted to resemble a religious location of the rival's church. A fairly expensive piece, and its our job to get it there safely. The three accept on two terms: High paychecks and the deed to the Theater where the second group of goblins were.

I inform the party that the payment they've asked for is a bit steep for this city (3000 people), but that's something I'll handwave later.
[/spoiler]


All in all, not too shabby for such a small party with so many gaps.

Session 2
[spoiler]The party sets out for the rivaling city-state, a 9 day journey even with the horses they have been provided.

Well, my luck is such that they don't get a random encounter until day 8. And when it happens, they get a big one.

Quote from: Encounter 1
[spoiler]A small group of Bugbears (IIRC, 3 or 4).

Not a threat, seeing as the party's Ranger still gets FE against them. A couple of Biting Arrows and they are down and out.[/spoiler]
Quote from: Encounter 2
[spoiler]This time they had to deal with 2 Dire Wolerines and 4 regulars.

And to be honest, this encounter was just dull. The Frenzy ability just made them more durable, not more dangerous. The most damage was dealt to a horse (which the animals wisely believed to be the weakest creatures there).[/spoiler]
[/spoiler]

Well, we end up having to call Session 2 short (the Binder's player got an emergency call from his job, and needed to pull a closing shift).
« Last Edit: December 11, 2010, 05:28:11 PM by Sinfire Titan »


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