|They left their home barony of Walden once as a group; the entire campaign might take place in this one duchy. Such a change of pace from the continent roaming campaign I last ran in Eberron.|
...which makes me think back to this awesome campaign concept I'd like to try out:
A RACE ACROSS EBERRON IN 80 DAYS
...get in line though, because I also have Bronze and Sand, Star Wars, Dark Sun, Call of Cthulhu and a Piratecrawl prepped.
THE BANDStill nameless, although spectators at the Devil's Ring now know and recognize them as the Winter's Children.
- TILBØRD MIVEN BJORNSSON, deal making, silvertongued cleric/bard of the Authority from the Vaeringjar Isles, warlock of the Radiant Maiden ("this cleric does NOT heal"; port to 5e Warlock patron coming up!), boss of two spined devils, chatter-up of nature spirits peaceful and bloodhungry, and friend to ghouls everywhere.
- SHAMS METALGROG, dwarf knight from the Principality of Wild Stone, blazer of a new trade route to the Belswick and sometimes spellcaster. Proud and sometimes confused master of an imp called Ricky, who seems quite unlike other devils.
- GUY, diviner wizard from southern Arrayne, survivor of childhood drama at the hands of a Cult that called him the Messenger.
- LOMIN MOR, rogue and glorious bastard, formerly a noble son of Arrayne, now sometimes posing as Lady Olga of Culfield. Getting married in that disguise come Spring. Also pestered by his contacts in the Violet Cloud.
- MORTI FIZLELOT, gnome Artificer with seriously wonky stats (d18 down the line; his wisdom 4 is a glory to behold). Traveled from neighbouring duchy Thynne via the highest, cruelest mountain he could find. Rides a steampunk pony-sized rhino called Unicorn.
- AJU, shark cursed to walk the land as a fishling barbarian. (Player stepped out of the game.)
- MIKE, druid and fast friend to all animals however ravenous, survivor of a childhood attack on his home village by freaky cultists to The Messenger. (Mike died in session 18.)
- Shams and Lomin pay Lionel the Raven to finish their cool magical stat-boosting tattoos. It hurts like hell, but now they have arcane circuits out of gem dust and dubious ink adorning their chakras.
- Guy can't cast spells anymore. He can, however, talk without opening his mouth and moves things with his mind. He tells Tilbord that Last time this happened, people tried to restrain him and his ancestral castle of Loupe Pierre did not survive the resulting fire.
- The players really take the time to talk to Guy about this sudden change; great roleplaying.
- Ricky FREAKS THE FUCK OUT when he sees Guy practising mental powers and turns invisible. "OUTSIDER! RUN FOR YOUR LIVES!" Ricky's nightly inspection of Guy's bedroom ends with wet, tentacly sounds and a bedraggled, beslimed imp sneaking back to Shams. Guy sleeps the sweet dreams of the innocents.
- Shams has decided to site her trade house in the neighbouring estate of Witmarrow, which will be ruled by the group's patron Lady Liselle and her husband Peter, the son of baron Walden.
- The group owes a debt to Sir Haine Kerjules of Crossroads to finish clearing a snake-themed dungeon on the southern road to the mine at Copperfield. Also there's the matter of the missing novice; Brent, a former bandit has run away months ago. Has he taken up a life of crime again?
- The party regroups, restock and head down there. On the way they spot a big oak on a hill, about a mile off and unmoving in the wind.
- Heading for the entrance of the Tomb of the Serpent Kings, bandits try to ambush the party! Guy is still out of spells but that doesn't really matter. He reaches out with his mind, bandits float up into the air or step off tree branches, mesmerized. Morti unleashes a gear-winged axe as Shams shoots blasts of fire and Lomin downs six in a row with five arrows. (Rogues and places to hide, man.)
- The bandits are all Brent. The ones in the trees; the ones sneaking up with shortswords and axes, the ones with the longbows. All look and sound like Brent - or at least a slightly unfinished version of him.
- As Tilly interrogates the last survivor ("Brent, hold up! It's me, Brent!") I get scorching glares from the group. But hey, it's not MY fault they left a fully operational cloning machine down there last time they explored the Tomb!
Can't wait for next game. Maybe finally, after 20 sessions, they'll meet the sentient inhabitants of the TOMB OF THE SERPENT KINGS. The party cleared out the goblins and stopped the cloning machine from making more, but that doesn't mean the dungeon goes into stasis. Oh no my pretties, I've had time to restock!
PLAYERS' HIGHLIGHTSAfter each session, I ask the players for their highlights from the game. Makes for good feedback and cool summary!
- Lomin shooting straight from all possible angles, nice killshots 🤘🏻
- Tilly: try to spare a Brent and they still get shot down. Points for imitating one of these guys 👏🏻
- Guy, just everything. Brutal and nasty powers, but the opportunities! And the debuffs he's handing out! 😱
- Shamms/Ricky, for that well-placed imp stinger in the kidneys ☠️
- DM, loved how you played the Brents and kept a nice tempo
- oh cool, his psychic powers are expanding
- oh, hmm, something seems off
- OH, we better treat him nicely for now
(and OF COURSE Tilly asks 'but did you try talking with it?')
- of course the Gnome has a mechanical mount
- of course it's a pimped out rhinoceros...on roller blades
- of course the rhino is sad it can't sleep indoors
- wait, his axe does /what/?!
- Shams the silent dwarf, seemingly the one hardest hit by Mike's demise
- A hidden Lomin is the perfect anti-Brent artillery. Deliciously heartless.
- Ricky is a great single target hunter. Being attacked right back = big nope
- Brent and the Brentshrooms...oh man.
"I'm Brent", "No I'm Brent", "I'm Brent too!" *facepalm*
(oh the pain I wish on him...👿)
Tilly: Oh, no worries. Darkness and tormentation shall be his lot.)
- Guy: wtf, the most disturbing part is that he doesn't seem to notice the changes himself. Interesting to see him fluently using those new powers in combat. Painful that it seems to have be caused by Mike dying.
- Morti: fucken awesome mount, weapon and distracting sound system
- Brent and Brent and Brent? What the hell am I getting myself into, what did this group do before I joined them...
- Kick-ass move by Ricky, but I'll save him for invisible scouting in the future.
Ricky killed a Brent with one poisonous sting, then almost died on the riposte from another Brent. Damage resistance only takes you so far with 10 hp...
- Good to see my dwarves again.
- Morti with rhine. A weird team became a lot weirder :-)
- Brentlings as far as the eye can see. Handy if you want to start a cult :-)
- Tilly with a plan for Brent, Lomin with another plan :-)
- There I am quietly testing out my powers, when people suddenly feel the urge to start kill stealing. I'm taking notes!
In random order
- "We're all Brent" The realization that Litvar’s tomb had a new occupant...
- Guy spuugt zuur!? Holy Authority!
- Morty’s bijl does what!?
- One shot, one kill. The entire evening. Except for NPCs that had been spared by Tilly, that guy took two shots😋
- In general; How, surrounded by bandits, there’s never a moment we consider surrender. Mindset: Bring it on if you really want to, we’ll totally slay. And then doing just that. Awed by our awesomeness.