Thursday, 25 January 2007

Return to Goblin Mine

Report from last nights game of D&D:

The battered party made its way swiftly back to town, pausing only briefly along the way so that Edgar could tend to Servila's wounds. He also spent some time cleaning his own injuries, but evidently did not do so well a job.

Reaching the town in the early evening, the four survivors were already planning their next expedition to the mines and lamenting their own lack of preparation. Edgar in particular, as the most responsible member of the party, was particularly harsh on himself and soon had a well planned shopping list with which to enter the fray.

However, not long after entering the inn, Edgar felt himself in need of a sudden yet extended trip to the privy. This was no doubt excellent timing, as Jaguar Paws ugly cousin choose this moment to approach the company regarding the fate of his cousin. He had arrived in town earlier that day, expecting to meet his kinsman in town and escort the party further into the wilderness only to learn that he had gone off goblin-hunting with two humans and a half-orc. Needless to say he was understandably suspicious to see three battered individuals matching their description with no . Jaguar Paw in sight, but the party successfully turned the elf warriors thoughts towards vengeance and the reclamation of his kinsman's body. ("Not that there'll be much left" Karl the idiot offered cheerfully).

The still somewhat suspicious elf refused to offer his name (in true 1970's D&D fashion, Andy hadn't figured out a name yet) and a weary Edgar retired from the table early, complaining of a headache.

The next morning the Paladin looked awful, but braved the dangers of a shopping expedition to purchase a crowbar, a small hammer, some nails (pitons actually, but they'll do the trick) rope, a lantern and some oil. He was heartily disappointed to find no evidence of a collapsible 10 ft pole salesman in town. Severa got to carry the rope and Karl elected to carry the lantern, the wizard helpfully offering to buy additional oil himself. By the time Edgar had purchased some travel rations (the others swiftly followed his example, although it was the elf's suggestion) the young warrior was now profoundly skint.

This was not, therefore, the best of all possible times to come down with an attack of Swamp Fever. Shaking and wracked with pains, Edgar sweated out the illness for three days. During this period, the young warrior;s favoured ravings unlocked some hidden potential and understanding of white magic, and he suddenly became a cleric.

{{{{{ Actually, about half way through the session, the three "elder" characters levelled up. By this point it was obvious we needed a cleric. John had bravely volunteered to take on the role of "White Wizard" and I even more bravely managed to avoid pissing myself at the hilarious thought of a wisdom 4 "white wizard" who couldn't even cast o lvl spells! Bless em.

Anyway, Bill quite rightly wondered where the character had had time to learn this stuff (I half-heartedly suggested he had learned the basics during his training as a Paladin) but offered to let us revise things so that Edgar was a cleric rather than a Paladin. After all, I hadn't even used any Paladin abilities and if I took the War domain, by base attack bonus with the sword (Edgar's main weapon) would not change due to the Weapon Focus feat that comes with the Domain. I happily agreed, briefly redesigned the character to take into account what skills he had used and which could be replaced and viola, a traumatic illness unlocks the hidden mastery of white magic within our earnest young adventurer. }}}}}

On the fourth day, the party set out for the Mines and adventure. The elf spots a goblin scouting party which is quickly taken down by a volley of sleep spells and some mad axe-swinging by Severa (what is that orcs name!). However, one escapes. Edgar, knowing that surprise has been lost, decides to interrogate the survivors in Goblin. He at first does not believe the goblins when they say they number in the hundreds but is somewhat relieved to discover the absence of any "females and cubs". He can now comfortably hack away secure in the knowledge that he is killing bandits and not depriving some young goblin family somewhere of their breadwinner. He is even more relieved by the thought that he will not be faced with the moral quandary of what to do with a horde of female and young goblin prisoners.

He earnestly suggests taking them back to town as a good public trial and hanging will help the locals to develop trust in authority. The others can't be bothered arguing with their young companion ("that illness has addled his head," "goblin-lover" etc) and simply set about slitting some throats.

Edgar is not chuffed at this cavalier treatment of the rules of war, but as there is not much he can do about it he carries on towards what will no doubt be an unpleasant welcome.

At the secret entrance to the hidden complex within the mine, the part stop and formulate a plan. Woreck will open the door and dive to the ground, Karl will sleep the no doubt ready occupants, Severa and Edgar will step inside and flank the open doorway which the Elf will then be able to shoot through.

Alas, it does not go to plan as the goblins win initiative. As the door swings open, Woreck dives to the ground as nearly a dozen thrown daggers whiz over his head towards Karl, whose mage-armour spell luckily gives him protection. The party are faced by no less than twenty goblins, arrayed in perfect, ordered ranks. The front rank kneels with their weapons held in preparation to receive a charge. The rear rank has just fired.

Severa and Edgar bound in to their planned positions, hoping that what they expect to be coming next does not happen. Karl casts his sleep spell, snoozing a small swathe through the goblin lines and the Elf lets fly with an arrow.

Then, the rear goblins rank advances to take up defensive positions in front of what was the front rank, and the front rank goblins now throw THEIR daggers from the rear. Most of these are targeted at the obviously dangerous-looking Severa and Edgar. Edgar is protected by his shield but Severa is not so lucky.

Angry and not fancying another volley, Severa charges the right most flank of the goblin lines, swiftly followed by Edgar. While Severa hacks her way through the massing goblins, Edgar works to protect her flanks. Meanwhile, the Elf shoots down any goblins who get too close or who try to flank the two warriors while Karl sets about sleeping the goblin left under the protection of Woreck. Although the fight is by no means easy, it soon becomes clear that the badly bleeding Severa and the barely scratched Edgar have the upper hand as they (mostly Severa actually) cleave down goblin after goblin. The last unengaged goblins try a desperate dash towards Karl, but not before he sleeps them all, and, as the battle on the right flank gradually winds down, the Elf, Karl and Woreck gradually set about slitting sleeping throats. As the last goblin jugular parts from the surrounding membrane, the last fighting goblin finally drops.

Karl is near-exhaustion from the strain of wielding so many spells so quickly. Edgar is only mildly wounded but Severa has taken many minor wounds which, though not dangerous alone, have together left her very weakened and sick. Edgar proposes barricading the secret door and leaving the door into the long corridor open, leaving someone to stand guard while the others rest. He is loathe to give up this ground they have sweated and bled for twice. The others talk him down however, despite his protests that they may very well have to go through this very same battle tomorrow. In the end, he assents and the party leave.

They run into another goblin party on the way. These six goblins fall even more easily and the return to the town is otherwise uneventful. It is at this point that the Bill announces that the party, having just taken down an Challenge rating 5 encounter (considered an average encounter for four 5th level characters) with surprising ease given their fate at the hands of mere dire rats, are deserving of a level increase. Or at least, everyone but the Elf (whose name, btw, is Otter Hunts Alone, although he has yet to introduce himself to the others characters).

It is at this point that a little revisionist history (story-editing, we calls it!) takes place and it is decided that Edgar shall become a second level "White Wizard" (Cleric). Severa toys with the idea of taking a barbarian level (but just the one though) but settles for a second level of fighter and a new feat while Karl advances as a wizard and learns some cool new spells.

Next: Part II of last nights session: Retribution (and that doesn't mean what you might think).

The Party (currently):

Edgar: Human male Lawful Good Cleric level 2. War and Strength Domains.

Karl: Human male WIzard 2 of undisclosed alignment.

Otter-Hunts-Alone: Elf male Ranger 2 of undisclosed alignment. (By the way, Andy did change the stats round slightly. Otter is even uglier than his cousin was.)

Severa: Half-Orc female Fighter 2 of undisclosed alignment.

Woreck (NPC): Human Rogue of undisclosed level and undisclosed alignment.

1 comment:

Andrew Paul said...

It's 'Saphira'. Not Servila (wasn't that Caesar's mistress?) or Severa.

Oh, and Otter ain't that ugly. Cha 10 is only a +0 mod, after all :P