30
Jan
11

D&D: Elderyn – Act 1: Session 5

ACT 1: SESSION 5
PREVIOUS: ACT 1: SESSION 4 – PART 2
NEXT: ACT 1: SESSION 6

Nedda was out the night of this game, so her character was unusually quiet. The players shared control of her character in tactical situations and I occasionally made some suggestions on things she might do to show them some options at their disposal.

Knowing that the party had a long way to travel, Scourage suggests that they should consider buying horses and perhaps even some mules for the trip. They find a farmer near town that has horses for sale and buy four stout horses and pick up two donkeys to help them carry back anything they might find in their travel.

Heading out of town by mid-day, the party travels north towards Old Liam’s Point with Clotor in the lead. Although she hasn’t been there before, the dragonborn has a general idea of the town’s location and leads them through the hills and into the forests.

Even by horse, the trail was long and they anticipated about a day and a half of travel time out. The forest made travel difficult enough that traveling at speed was not an option. By the time the day came to a close, they had covered a good deal of ground. They found a small clearing near a stream and bedded down for the night.

The four took turns on two hour shifts all night. Nedda took the last watch and it was in these wee hours of the morning that the halfling heard some rustling in the woods. Unsure, she tapped Scourage’s foot and the two moved towards the woods edge. Still seeing nothing, Scourage turned and headed back to camp when suddenly eight kobolds burst out of the brush and charged the camp with high pitched war cries.

This was the first time I tried working somewhat with a Wandering Monster Table. I had not decided on including combat for the night scene until I got there and then rolled to determine if, when, and how many would attack the party during the night.

Its something I would like to consider more in a campaign / adventure more focused on travel, as I haven’t ever really used them before. As opposed tot he Wandering Monster Tables of old, I would prefer to custom make the tables based on logical threats the party would be facing given their area. There should, of course, be some room for fudging what monsters show up where (sometimes the swamp monsters wander out of the swamp and could show up in the nearby woods) but generally it should make sense when the party runs into some random band of creatures in their travels.

Nedda met the first two with her blade and crossbow. The bolt flew and caught its target in the chest, knocking him off his feet as a blast of thunder rolled forth from the weapon. Clotor and Harold were immediately woken by the noise and grabbed their weapons as they stood. From her bed rolls near the water’s edge, the dragonborn let forth a battle cry and charged forward between Scourage and Nedda.

Battle was brief and the party escaped largely unharmed. Looking over the kobolds they found light rations and equipment, possibly a scouting patrol, Scourage surmised. Not wanting to hang around for any reinforcements, the party gathered their gear, mounted up and headed out.

By late afternoon, the woods began to thin a bit. A short time later, the party came upon the ruined remains of Old Liam’s Point. All wooden structures had rotted away, but stone foundations and structures still stood. The party dismounted at the edge of town and looked around. The footprints of many small creatures could be seen coming and going from the area, but there didn’t seem to be any present at the moment.

The party let Nedda sneak off on her own to scout further around town. It didn’t take her long to find the old windmill just outside the edge of town. The fans of the mill had long since rotted away in the elements and parts of the stone wall near the top had even fallen in. Outside the mill were a dozen small creatures, mostly kobolds but with a scattered few goblins as well.

The creatures were scattered between small cooking fires, guard positions or other seats where they huddled over their meager supplies. Though only twelve present, there were several dozen more empty beds of torn rags and signs of many more creatures that could not be accounted for.

Nedda carefully picked her way back out of the camp and returned to her party where she reported the news. Talking it over with the others, Scourage suggested a night raid, just after dark. Also, concerned about the empty beds, he suggested they set up positions along likely return routes and ambush any returning patrols before they got back to camp.

Moving quickly, the party found good ambush positions and waited. Nightfall came with no sign that reinforcements would be returning. Concerned, but never the less firm in their plan, the party turned to the windmill and snuck in close. Nedda and Harold moved to the east side of the tower while Clotor and Scourage moved to the west. The warlord and the paladin moved as close as they dared, and then unleashed javelins and crossbow bolts.

Both attacks found their marks in guards standing around the camp. Their bodies had barely hit the ground as the two began moving forward and unleashing a second volley. The surprised kobolds called out to each other and swarmed to meet the threat. As they grouped up, Harold and Nedda unleashed their own ranged attacks. Nedda’s hand crossbow thundered with each shot whilst  Harold’s columns of fire lit up the campsite.

The few kobolds in charge called out frantic orders as they tried to wheel part of the attack force around to meet the new threat. The kobolds broke through the line of fire to close to melee distance where their short, rusty swords would be of use. Nedda moved to protect the wizard as the creatures came close.

On the far side of camp, Clotor and Scourage tried to work together through the mass posed against them so that they could go to the aid of the others, but the kobolds held them there. Several of the small creatures swarmed around Scourage whilst Clotor was distracted, sinking short swords into his exposed flanks.

Calling out for help, Scourage was just barely able to step out of the way as Clotor turned and belched a blast of burning acid from her mouth, turning several of the kobolds into sizzling messes. Scourage stumbled away from the remaining attacks, trying to brush off his wounds as he gathered his wits.

Sometimes the dice just aren’t on the player’s side.

On the other flank, Nedda and Harold were doing little better at eliminating their threats. Nedda had cut down one of the kobolds, but found herself squaring off against one of the larger ones who commanded the minions. Suddenly, having broken away from combat on the other side, Scourage appeared to her aid. The two flanked the large kobold, distracting it from both sides as their blades struck true. The kobold toppled to the ground and they turned on the remaining creatures of the camp.

Finally, the last ringing slash of steel came to a quiet, and the only sounds were that of the crackling camp fires. Breathing heavy, the party turned to the heavy, closed, wooden doorway to the windmill.

We ended this session a little earlier than usual. We could have pushed on into the “boss fight”, but we would have been in danger of running over again. Plus, it let Nedda return for the next session to finish off the boss.

Also, the crew leveled up to level 2. Just in time for the boss fight!

PREVIOUS: ACT 1: SESSION 4 – PART 2
NEXT: ACT 1: SESSION 6
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