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Thread: Max's DL1-14 campaign...

  1. #1
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    Default Max's DL1-14 campaign...

    Okay; I'm relatively new to these boards and I'm going to buck the trend and put up a campaign journal of an old-school BECMI version (with plenty of house rules) of the 1st Edition DL1-14 modules.

    A bit of background: One of the players wanted to play a very rules-lite version of D&D and have a small campaign with only a few players. A group of 4 of us came together and after some discussion; we decided to run the Dragonlance adventures since 2 of the players had never played it and had only a slight knowledge of the setting. The remaining player knew the setting well; but had never played any of the adventurers; so the material would be pretty fresh for him as well.

    After some discussion; the players rolled up thier characters and we decided on using the BECMI rules; with more than a few houserules. Since the players wanted to start "at the begining" and be 1st level; I didn't want to throw them right into DL 1. After some time searching; I decided to utilize the adventure in the Mentzer 'red-box' set; call it "Bargle's Keep" for lack of a better name; and tied it into one of the PC's background. Following this adventure; the characters were all 2nd or 3rd level; and I decided I could then proceed to a slightly modified DL1; since they would also have the help of a pair of 5th level NPCs (namely Goldmoon and Riverwind).

    Okay, with that said; here is thier story....hopefully at least a few people out there will be interested!

    -Max

  2. #2
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    Default "Prequel to DL 1; Bargle & the Ruins of Blackflower Keep"

    Our Heroes:

    1. Fergus Quill: Male Half-Elf; 1st level Thief; Alignment: Good

    Fergus never knew his Elf parent and he was soon orphaned into the streets of New Ports. Living on the streets; Quill soon learned the stealthy arts needed to survive; but he may have turned out much for the worse if a kindly old Dwarf hadn't taken him in. He maintained his streetwise skills and knowledge; but soon developed a good nature and became friends with a pair of humans from better walks of life than he; Detlef and Thorne.


    2. Detlef Ironside: Male Solamnic Human; 1st level Fighter; Alignment: Good

    Detlef grew up in New Ports; the son of a Solamnic exile father, and a mother who inherited a general goods store. His father though told Detlef that his father (Detlef's grandfather) had been a well-respected Knight of Solamnia who had been forced to send his son and wife south due to the rebellions and uprisings sweeping thru Solamnia at the time. He gave Detlef's father an amulet with the symbol of the Solamnic Knights as a memento. Detlef's grandmother soon passed away due to an illness; but she managed to get Detlef's father moved to a home in New Ports in Abanassina. Detlef's father grew up and married a store-owner and the two of them had a son several years later. Detlef, growing up, became good friends with the scholarly Thorne and the feisty half-elf; Quill. As a teenager; Detlef feasted on his father's stories of the Knights and when Detlef was 17, his father left him the amulet and told him to help his mother run the store while he took a trip to try and figure out what happened to his father and to try and find the Knights. Detlef never saw his father again; but he carries the amulet to this day and soon apprenticed himself to the town guard; where he learned his skills at arms. Now in his early thirties; Detlef has left the guard and is ready to see where his life might take him next.


    3. Thorne: Male Human; 1st level Magic User; Alignment: Good

    Thorne grew up the son of a scribe and a healer in the town of New Ports and it soon became clear that he was every bit as intelligent and scholarly of mind and had the healing touch of his parents. He also displayed an aptitude for magic as a child and was soon enrolled as an apprentice to a kindly old white-robe mage. Over the years; Thorne did very well and now he is in his early thirties and has his own spell book with several spells in it. When he wasn't studying; Thorne became fast friends with the Solamnic exile Detlef and the orphaned Half-Elf; Quill. Thorne's life would be forever changed the day that an odd red-robed mage named Bargle came to visit his old teacher.


    The Adventure Begins:


    Late Reorxmont (September); 351 AC; Town of New Ports:


    One day; Thorne is visiting his old Mage instructor when a large, bald-headed bearded man in some odd red robes comes to visit. He is rather overbearing as he introduces himself as the Mage "Bargle" and tells Thorne that he wants to speak to his teacher. Thorne notics that Bargle has a silver ring with some odd symbols engraved on it and has two belts wrapped around his robes; one at the waist and another around his chest, just under his arms. Also, his robes are a different shade of Red than any other red-robed Mage that Thorne has ever seen. Nontheless; Thorne brings him in to see his teacher in his study and then goes back to the common room.

    Soon, sounds of arguments can be heard and then a crash. Thorne rushes in and sees that his old teacher has been shoved to the ground. An old roll of scrolls is scattered around his teacher and as Thorne gets to the threshold, Bargle casts a spell and a pair of Magic Missiles fly into his teacher and kill him. Thorne is stunned; but then tries to go into action by casting a spell of his own; Bargle however says a single word of magic and Thorne sees his ring glow once and then Bargle vanishes from sight. Thorne soon hears the sound of running feet and the front door is thrown open; indicating that Bargle has turned himself invisible. Thorne rushes out with a cry of "Murderer! Stop him!” but it is several minutes before some Town Guardsmen respond...

    Later; the guardsmen inform Thorne that they manged to follow some tracks that left the town and headed west towards the Bridge crossing the White-Rage River; where they then turned North and then vanished. Thorne thanks the Guardsmen and is soon joined by his friends Quill and Detlaf. Returning to the scene of the crime; the three companions soon find that the loose scrolls all dealt with the ruins of Blackflower Keep and a Solamnic "Icon" which may be there.

    Blackflower Keep lies at the southern base of the Eastwall mountains and has been in a state of ruin for over a century. Its last known owner was a Solamnic exile and Red Robed Mage who was known to have conducted all manner of strange magical experiments there before vanishing without a trace back in 241 AC. Many adventurers have journeyed to the Keep since and none have returned...

    Thorne, Detlef and Quill decide to try and track down Bargle and bring him to justice for his fell deed; even if it takes them to the ruins of Blackflower Keep. Detlaf is also notably interested in this "Solamnic Icon"; whatever it might be. The three equip themselves with weapons; armor; rations and assorted gear and follow the tracks until they vanish on the other side of the bridge. They then decide to make the four day trip by foot to the ruins.

    The trip is uneventful; though when they get to hills at the base of the mountains; they can see the ruins of the Keep above them. Moving carefully; they soon see a detachment of 4 goblins; who are not doing a very good job of keeping watch. The gobins are armed with short swords and they are all sporting a red armband high on thier right arms. Slipping around the goblins; the trio soon find that massive double doors that once served as the gates into the Keep have since fallen from thier hinges. One of them is mostly covering what looks like a decent sized pit and Quill soon spots the glint of metal at the bottom of the pit; maybe 8 feet down. Quill decides to go down and inspect the glinting metal and soon finds out that it is a necklace with what looks to be a valuable gem on it. However, he also discovers that he is not alone in the pit as he is attacked by a carrion crawler.

    Quill miraculously manages to avoid being paralyzed by the Crawlers attacks with its tentacles and even manages to get in a quick stab with his shortsword. From above; Thorne manages to hurl a dagger that also connects and Detlef leaps down to go toe to toe with the beast with his one-handed long blade. The crawler manages to paralyze Quill this time and he stiffens into shock at about the same time that Detlaf slices the thing in half. Above them; Thorne anxiously watches the goblins; whose backs are to them a couple hundred yards away; but luckily; then don’t seem to have heard anything. Not knowing exactly what happened to Quill; Detlef and Thorne are a bit scared to move him. Soon though; Quill comes out of his paralysis and part in anger and part in hopes that it might work; he cuts off a pair of the Crawlers’ tentacles; in the hopes that he might be able to use them to paralyze opponents. After that; the necklace is pocketed and the two climb up.

    Moving thru some rubble of the outer wall; the trio try to avoid the notice of the 4 goblins and at this they succeed; though the fail to avoid alerting the two goblins located inside the wall; posted at the entrance to the Keep. One of these goblins is quickly silenced by a crossbow bolt fired by Quill; while the other manages to get out a yell of alarm before being Charmed by Thorne.
    The 4 goblins respond to the alarm and come rushing forward while the trio; now followed by a goblin that adores Thorne; get into position to meet them. Detlaf and Quill employ missile weapons and the Half-Elf drops another with his trusty X-bow. The goblins rush into melee combat; all while Thorne’s Charmed Goblin attempts to reason with them not to attack his new found friend. One of the goblins spares an incredulous look towards his enchanted fellow before being spitted on Detlef’s sword. Detlef and Quill manage to quickly cut down 2 of the 3 remaining goblins and the last runs off into the distance. Quill reloads his crossbow and takes a long range shot and manages to wing the goblin, but not take him down.

    Detlef and Quill had taken some wounds and Thorne uses his medicine pouch and some healing skills he learned growing up to treat their wounds. Thorne and the others proceeded to ask their new Goblin friend what he knew about Bargle and the ruins and the goblin answered that Bargle the mage and a strange “lizard-like-guy” had been jumped by the Goblin band; but then they were all put to sleep by the red-robe’s “powerful” magic. When they had awakened; they were all tied up and Bargle made them a deal; they could work for him or they could die. Naturally; they all agreed to work for the mage. Bargle and the lizard-guy then produced the red armbands and told them they were now part of the “Dragon Armies”; and they were to guard the entrance to the Keep; four down on the main path and two at the front door. He knew nothing more than that; since none of them had been inside.

    Annoyed at the lack of knowledge; the party moved into the ruins and they soon discovered a pit trap by falling prey to it. The fall hurt all of the party and killed their charmed goblin. Thorne used some more of his medicines and skills on the party; though he was now running dangerously low on his supplies. On the positive side; the party did manage to find a scroll with the “Sleep” spell in the pit. Using Quill’s skills and rope; the party managed to get back out of the pit and continued exploring.

    They found much in disarray and almost fell victim to some vicious mold spores in an old pantry. In an old dining hall they found a nondescript ring. They also encountered some skeletons guarding a stairwell down; but they fled from them and were not followed. The trio soon found a small room that had once been an armory; the only useful equipment that remained was a shield bearing the symbol of the Solamnic Knights and a couple of spears. Detlef claimed the shield; but no one wanted the spears. As the room had only one door that trio could find and it could be barred shut; they decided to bed down there for the night. Thorne cast his only remaining spell; “Detect Magic” on their loot and soon found that the Shield and the Ring both glowed; showing that they were enchanted. In addition; Thorne took the time to copy the “Sleep” spell into his spellbook; using up the scroll in the process.

    As the morning dawned; there was a strange flash of light right outside the room and soon a weird sound could be heard at the door. It almost sounded like a large dog scratching at the door; and then inexplicably the door handle on the outside of the door could be heard to fall to the ground and then the sounds of an animal eating were heard. The party was thoroughly confused; and armed with weapons and spells; they thru the door opened and gaped in surprise at the sight of what looked like a large armadillo with two antennae and a tail with a spinner eating a pile of rust that was once the door handle.

    Raising its feeler/antennae towards the group; particularly the well armed and armored Detlef; the creature shuffled towards them with a happy, hungry expression. Remembering some old arcane research; Thorne deduced that this was a Rust monster; though a very small one; and the party quickly dropped some spikes for it to eat while they ran around it and shut the door behind them.

    With that ‘fearsome’ beast behind them; the party moved to the stairs and along the way, they tried to come up with several ways to try and outmaneuver the skeletons. The decided to try and use the fleet-footed Quill to try and draw some of them away; but this plan didn’t work when it became obvious that the Skeletons were not going to move very far from the Stairs. After this plan didn’t work; the group was soon surprised by the return of the rust monster; who had eaten the hinges of the door and thus managed to get out of the room. Thorne cast his new Sleep spell and managed to put the creature to sleep and Quill then killed it; somewhat to the dismay of Thorne and Detlef who thought it was relatively harmless.

    Returning to the problem of the skeletons; the trio remembered the spears in the armory and they returned to the room to discover the wooden shafts on the ground; their heads had been eaten by the rust monster. The group picked up the shafts anyway to use in thier plan to try and bull rush their way to the stairs; fighting the skeletons as little as possible. Their plan more or less worked; with Detlef managing to smash a pair of skeletons into piles of bones; but the party all received wounds along the way.

    At the base of the stairs; Thorne used the last of his healing medicines to patch up their wounds the best he could; and the trio pressed on. They soon heard voices coming from a room down a hall; and the three did their best to move closer and figure out what was going on. It was soon obvious that there were two voices; and one of them Thorne recognized as belonging to Bargle. Deciding to confront them; the trio burst in and were rather taken aback at the sight of a human sized reptilian form with organish-brown scales; a humanoid build and a pair of wings on its backs; holding a one-handed sword and speaking with the familiar to Thorne figure of Bargle. The two had clearly been spending the night in this room; and there was a small desk and a chair in one part of the room upon which rested Bargle’s spellbook.

    The party attacked the two; with Thorne attempting to use a “Charm” spell on Bargle and watching the spell fail as Detlef and Quill attacked the lizard-man-figure. Detlef managed to wound it; though it wounded him in return and Bargle threw a pair of magic missiles into Thorne and Quill. Pressing the fight; Thorne hurled a dagger at Bargle but missed and Quill wounded the lizard-man-thing while Detlef killed it; though he almost lost his sword when the body of the creature abruptly turned to stone upon expiring.

    At this; Bargle spoke a word of magic and his ring flashed and with a pop of air; he vanished. The party was instantly alert for any kind of invisibility spell; but they quickly came to realization that Bargle was no longer in the room. He had used a “teleport” or perhaps a “dimension door” spell carried by his ring; deduced Thorne.

    The party took up the spoils; a couple of belt pouches with some Steel coins and a spell book. Detlef was inexplicably drawn to a small, crude statue about a foot tall of a man with a bison’s head. When Detlef picked it up, he suddenly had a vision where the figure told him that he was Kiri-Jolith; the good god of Combat and Courage and one of the founders of the Knights of Solamnia. He then gave Detlef a vision of a pair of Plainsmen; a very tall and stern-faced warrior and a silver-haired, beautiful woman with a distinctive staff, wrapped in leather. The pair were right outside the stairs leading up to the Inn of the Last Home in the Tree-top Town of Solace and Kiri-Jolith told Detlef that he and his companions needed to make haste to the Town and join up with the couple as the very fate of Krynn might depend on it.

    Detlef came back to reality a moment later and told his companions about it. They were more than a little skeptical at first; but seeing the seriousness in his eyes; the trio agreed to take the journey to Solace. Thorne still burned for revenge on Bargle; but he took some satisfaction in knowing that he had obtained one of the mage’s spell books. The trio began to speculate on the strange lizard-man-thing they had fought and where it might have come from as they set out for the tree-top town…
    Last edited by maxvale; 07-18-2011 at 09:41 AM.

  3. #3
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    Default DL 1: Part I; The Adventure begins...

    Our Heroes:


    1. Fergus Quill: Male Half-Elf; 3rd level Thief; Alignment: Good

    Fergus never knew his Elf parent and he was soon orphaned into the streets of New Ports. Living on the streets; Quill soon learned the stealthy arts needed to survive; but he may have turned out much for the worse if a kindly old Dwarf hadn't taken him in. He maintained his streetwise skills and knowledge; but soon developed a good nature and became friends with a pair of humans from better walks of life than he; Detlaf and Thorne.



    2. Detlaf Ironside: Male Solamnic Human; 2nd level Fighter; Alignment: Good

    Detlaf grew up in New Ports; the son of a Solamnic exile father, and a mother who had inherited a general goods store. His father though told Detlaf that his father (Detlef's grandfather) had been a well-respected Knight of Solamnia who had been forced to send his son and wife south due to the rebellions and uprisings sweeping thru Solamnia at the time. He gave Detlaf an amulet with the symbol of the Solamnic Knights as a memento. Detlaf's father moved to New Ports in Abanassina and grew up and married a store-owner and the two of them had a son several years later. Detlaf, growing up, became good friends with the scholarly Thorne and feisty half-elf; Quill. As a teenager; Detlaf feasted on his father's stories of the Knights and when Detlaf was 17, his father left him the amulet and told him to help his mother run the store while he took a trip to try and figure out what happened to his father and to try and find the Knights. Detlaf never saw his father again; but he carries the amulet to this day and soon apprenticed himself to the town guard; where he learned his skills at arms. Now in his early thirties; Detlaf has left the guard and is ready to see where his life might take him next.



    3. Thorne: Male Human; 2nd level Magic User; Alignment: Good

    Thorne grew up the son of a scribe and a healer in the town of New Ports and it soon became clear that he was every bit as intelligent and scholarly of mind and had the healing touch of his parents. He also displayed an aptitude for magic as a child and was soon enrolled as an apprentice to a kindly old white-robe mage. Over the years; Thorne did very well and soon had his own spellbook with several spells in it. When he wasn't studying; Thorne became fast friends with the Solamnic exile Thorne and the orphaned Half-Elf; Quill. Thorne's life would be forever changed the day that and odd red-robed mage named Bargle came to visit his old teacher.



    And a new member joins the party…



    4. Grackle Silvertongue: Male Kender; 2nd level Handler; Alignment: Good

    Grackle was born and raised in Hylo, on Northern Ergoth. Growing up to be an extremely agile and nimble Kender; Grackle was also quite brawny for a member of his race. Hit with wanderlust like most Kender; Grackle ventured out into the larger world and soon found himself onboard a large ship whose crew were NOT so thrilled to find him there and promptly dumped him off at their first port of call; in a land Grackle found out was called ‘Abanasinia’. Wandering the area; Grackle eventually encountered some Plainsmen; some of whom were quite amused by the Kender at first and taught him their language. There were somewhat less amused with the Kender over time as many of their possessions inexplicably ended up in his pouches; and soon enough; Grackle found himself on the road again. Shrugging his broad-for-a-Kender shoulders; he soon found himself on the outskirts of the tree-top town o f Solace…



    The Adventure Continues:


    Late Reorxmont (September); 351 AC; In and around the town of Solace

    In the ruins of Blackflower Keep on the southern end of the Eastwall Mountains; the three companions decide to head for Solace. Making as much haste as they can; they do their best to stay off the roads and trails and avoid any encounters with anyone or anything. They succeed in this task and three days later; they find themselves on the road just to the East of Solace. They are more than a little surprised to find themselves encountering a patrol of 6 goblins armed with short swords and wearing both the same Red armband that the goblins employed by Bargle wore; AND a tabard of cloth with the symbol of the Seeker Priests who were the closest thing to a Regional Government in this region of Ansalon.

    The goblins were led by an overweight hobgoblin, mounted on a large pony who introduced himself as ‘Fewmaster Toede’. He stated that he and his ‘troops’ were operating with the authority of the Seekers of Haven and demanded to know if the party had possession of a Blue Crystal Staff. When the party stated that they didn’t have any such staff; he gave some orders the party couldn’t hear to the goblins and promptly rode off.
    The goblins drew their swords and demanded that the party pay a ‘road tax’; and when the party refused; they rushed in to attack the trio….

    Meanwhile; on the road at the other end of Solace; Grackle the Kender was wandering into town; astounded at the sight of the buildings high in the massive trees; when there was a flash of blue light and he looked forward and noticed a pair of plainsmen in the road. The man was very tall, muscular and had a rather stony expression. The woman was lovely; had unusual silver hair and seemed quite confused. The man was armed with a bow; sword and shield and had the markings on his leather armor that revealed him to be a warrior of the Que-Shu tribe. The woman was similarly armored and was carrying a staff, wrapped in leather. Always trying to be helpful; though frequently being told his ‘help’ wasn’t wanted; Grackle spoke to them in their own language. Surprised; the woman smiled at him and answered back and soon the three were off to the Inn of the Last Home as the day turned into night….

    Back on the opposite edge of town; the battle began in earnest; though it was over almost as quickly as it began. Rushing the trio; five of the goblins were quickly put to sleep by Thorne’s spell; another was shot in the chest with a crossbow bolt and then somehow, in his staggering, wounded state, managed to avoid a sword stroke by Detlef. Somehow managing to keep his spirits from breaking; the goblin managed to stab out with his little blade and nick Detlef in the leg before being dropped by Detlef’s return strike. At the same time Thorne began breaking out the rope in his pack to begin tying up the sleeping goblins while Quill reloaded his crossbow and moved to get into position to try a long range shot at the retreating Toede.
    Detlef came over to help Thorne and the two quickly managed to loot the goblins of their meager few steel and iron pieces and then woke one up to ask it some questions. Quill’s crossbow shot almost hit Toede; who threw a look over his shoulder and then spurred his poor pony to quickly put some more distance between himself and the party and soon vanished out of sight.

    The goblin was not particularly helpful; saying that he and his fellows had recently been hired by the Fewmaster to serve in the “Red Wing of the Dragonarmies” and just the other day had been given the tabards with the symbol of the Seekers and given their new job to patrol Solace looking for a Blue Crystal Staff and to tax any travelers. The Heroes gave the goblins some stern warnings to never come near Solace again and after disarming them, they untied them and let them go. The goblins all ran off to the North.

    Bundling up the half-dozen short swords; the three once again resumed their journey into Solace. They first stopped at one of the very few buildings on the ground in Solace; the black smithy; run by an Ergothian man by the name of Theros Ironfeld who Detlef had had make him a dagger the last time he was in Solace; some two years before.

    Meanwhile; Grackle and the plainsmen; who had introduced themselves as Goldmoon and Riverwind; made their way into the Inn and had ordered some dinner from the friendly Inn Keeper; Otik Sandeth. Sitting down for a nice dinner; Grackle quickly got bored and decided to wander around the Inn to listen to anything interesting that might be being said by the many patrons. He quickly found a very interesting theological discussion going on between a kindly old man with a big bushy beard and a very drunk, balding man in Seeker robes; going by the name of Hederick….

    Back at the Smithy; Theros remembered Detlef and engaged in some brief conversation with the trio; buying the short swords off of them and giving them some information about the town and recent events. In the last week; things had changed quite a bit. First; one of the Seeker council of Haven had come to town; a balding, blathering man by the name of Hederick; looking for some converts and some strong drink. He had quickly set up shop in the Inn of the Last Home; getting drunk and preaching to any who would listen about the many ‘heresies’ and ‘sins’ most of the Town were committing on a daily basis. Few paid him much mind; though the guards he had come with were the talk of the town.

    Hederick had showed up with not only a platoon of Human soldiers; he had also arrived with a Fat, obnoxious hobgoblin by the name of Toede and a pack of goblins; who quickly set up a ‘patrol’ of the Town’s streets searching for a ‘Blue Crystal Staff’. Theros thought that perhaps the Seekers of Have were all under some evil magical spell or some kind of illness that affected the mind; but he minded his own business and so far; the new arrivals had left him alone to his work. He wished the trio luck and told them that Hederick could almost certainly be found at the Inn of the Last Home if they wanted to take it up with them. The trio gave their thanks to the smith and headed off to the Inn…

    Arriving at the Inn; the trio found themselves a table and ordered some dinner and drinks and a cute young red-haired barmaid by the name of Tika seemed to smile and awful lot at Detlef. The others looked around the Inn and were soon taken in by the increasingly loud theological discussion between the old man and Hederick; the inebriated Seeker. The old man was in a good humor while Hederick was very drunkenly disagreeing with many of the old man’s views; particularly on the ‘Old Gods’ and the cause of the Cataclysm. Suddenly the old man saw Goldmoon and called her over by name. Surprised at this; Goldmoon cautiously walked over, the wrapped up staff in hand.

    The old man asked to see the staff and for reasons she couldn’t explain; Goldmoon handed it over to him. The old man unwrapped the staff and revealed it to be made out of blue crystal. Declaring it to be an artifact to “Mishakal”; the old man handed it back to Goldmoon and in a gaze that took in the Kender and the trio along with Goldmoon and Riverwind; he mentioned that they were the “Chosen Ones” and that the staff needed to be returned to the Temple of Mishakal in Xax Tsaroth to the East.

    An increasingly agitated and drunken Hederick interrupted at this point and lurching to his feet, he claimed the staff for himself and grabbed it. The staff shocked his hand and Hederick, with a cry of pain stumbled backwards and fell into the open fireplace. Lurching up with his clothes and head on fire; he stumbled about the room while the old man cried out to “hit him with the staff!”. Goldmoon did so; and with a flash of blue light; the Seeker was miraculously healed. The whole room gasped in shock and a long moment of silence was shattered with the old man yelling out that the group had just used “Evil Magic” and that they should be arrested.

    With a wild grin; the old man fled out the front door; calling for Seeker guards to come and arrest the group. The room exploded into fearful action and in the midst of the chaos; Tika slipped a key to Detlef and told him that it was to the front door of her house and she showed the group into the back kitchen where a trap door on the floor was used to lower food up into the Inn and trash down; via pulley system. Tika explained how to get to her house and how the group should go there and get provisions and then set out to wherever they were going. Detlef thanked her awkwardly and the group threw open the hatch and lowered themselves to the ground.

    The group did as Tika asked and went to her house and re-provisioned and they all made hasty introductions to each other along the way. Goldmoon, when asked; touched the staff to Detlef’s minor sword wound and everyone was amazed when it healed him with a flash of blue light. Seeing search parties beginning to go tree house to tree house; the party slipped down and moved off to the north and east of town; into some thick woods. Riverwind used his woods craft to ensure that their trail was obliterated and the group got a short night’s sleep before waking up just before dawn.
    Grackle produced an ancient map of the region that showed Xax Tsaroth to be about 4-5 days walking distance to the East. The group set off as the sun came fully up; staying off the roads and trails for the first couple of days. During that time; Grackle tended to wander off as he got bored or irritated the group too much, but he always came back at night or in the morning. On the third day of the trip; the group encountered a path; that was clearly once an ancient road and it ended off into the Eastwall mountains; which could now been seen on the distant horizon.

    After a couple of hours of walking on the trail; the group encountered a group of 8 heavily bandaged and robed men; carrying a hand-drawn cart; whose contents were covered by blankets. The group stopped and in strangely accented voices; informed the group that they were monks of the “Order of Tsaroth” and that one of their brothers was wasting away due to a fatal disease in their cart. They had hoped to heal him with a powerful relic of their order; a Blue Crystal Staff; but it had recently been stolen from their Temple. They asked if the party had heard anything of it.

    Before anyone could stop her; Goldmoon stepped forward and unwrapped the staff; saying that it had not been stolen; at least not intentionally; but she was happy to try and use it to heal their fellow. All of the monks became quite agitated at hearing this; and one of them escorted her and the ever-close-to-her Riverwind to the cart and pulled back the blanket. Out leaped an armed oranish-brown, reptilian humanoid with wings; swinging a one-handed sword at the surprised Goldmoon. The other 8 monks all tore off their cloaks and wrappings to reveal that they too were the same kind of reptilian humanoids whom the trio had encountered in the dungeons of Blackflower Keep. They moved in with their blades to attack the party….
    Last edited by maxvale; 07-18-2011 at 09:17 AM.

  4. #4
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    Default DL 1: Part II: The adventure continues...

    I have no idea if anyone has bothered reading these session reports; but on the off chance that anyone has and has found them interesting; here's the reports for the past 2 sessions. I have now passed the reporting onto the players (they have to rotate; 1 person will record it one time; then someone else the next time, etc.); so the following reports may vary quite a bit as they are written by different people each time.

    The 4 PCs are all level 2 (except for Fergus Quill, the Half-Elf Thief; who is level 3).

    (The Player of Thorne the Magic User took these notes)

    More background game info on the NPCs

    • Goldman is a 5th level cleric. She carries a blue crystal staff, leather armor and a sling.

    • Riverwind is fifth level fighter and carries a short bow, a one handed sword and a bone handled dagger.


    Session Summary:

    After receiving guidance from the crazy old man at the Inn of the Last Home to travel on to Xak Tsaroth; our intrepid band of adventurers headed off in the direction of the legendary destroyed City. Grackle had a pretty decent map of Abanasinia and the faithful scholarly activities of Thorne allowed the party to tenatively identify the hidden location of the (probably ruined) city.

    During the Course of the long and arduous journey the party ran into an apparent group of pilgrims on the road. Oddly enough the pilgrims were covered in robes and eyed Goldmoon's staff hungrily. The pilgrims claimed to be "Brother Monks, of the Order of Tsaroth". The pilgrims claimed that one of their brothers had fallen prey to a terrible illness; and that only the healing power of their Blue Crystal Staff could cure him; but alas; the Staff had recently been stolen from their Order.

    Being the compassionate person that she is; Goldmoon offered to take a look at the injured individual in the two wheeled cart that the other 8 brothers were pulling; and to help if she could. She claimed that the Staff she carried was not stolen; but rather that it had been given to her care by "fate". Goldmoon then followed one of the pilgrims back to the wagon to see to the wounded individual. After looking in on the "sick monk"; a small shriek was heard from Goldmoon as the "monk" suddenly leaped out of the cart and attacked her...

    Lo and behold it was a trap!

    The pilgrims threw off their robes and eight Lizard men engaged the party. One was in the cart attacking Goldmoon, two engaged Detlef, two engaged Quill, one engaged Grackle and one engaged Thorne. Two more closed on Riverwind. Quill attempted to bewilder his enemies by falling into a false faint. Unfortunately the lizard men were not so easily fooled. Quill had to engage in some masterful combat from the ground. Thorne, Riverwind and Goldmoon quickly dispatched their enemies; watching as they turned to stone when they were killed and one kept Riverwind's sword in its stony wound.
    The PCs then moved to assist the rest of the combatants...

    Goldmoon quickly dispatched her foe with the Blue Crystal staff which brightly glowed and crackled with energy as she crushed her enemy with it. Riverwind dispatched a second foe and temporarily lost his dagger into this statue as Detlef gleefully plunged his ancestral sword into the internals of his enemy. Detlef was quick enough to get his sword out before his fallen foe captured his weapon though. Thorne proved his battlefield prowess by slinging a fleeing lizard man to death. Goldmoon was "deeply impressed"; at least, she was according to Thorne....

    A few minutes later; the various stone statues of the bodies of the lizard men turned to dust; freeing Riverwind's captured weapons. After defeating the odd lizard men the party chose to make camp at the cart. Goldmoon healed everyone's wounds and a peaceful evening ensued. Grackle chose to chop off one of the wheels of the cart and use it for his entertainment. All the next day he rolled it along merrily. The rest of the party wondered if he experienced a head wound during combat...

    Once the Eastwall mountains were reached, Riverwind was able to lead the party through a pass (which the map labelled as "Forsaken Path"); taking another day of travel and then the land gave way to dank swampland. Riverwind recommended that the party rest for the night before continuing on through the treacherous terrain.

    Grackle asked Riverwind about the bad place where he acquired the blue crystal staff. He was not forthcoming with many details. Detlef scouted the area and discovered a well-traveled path. Goblin traffic most likely....

    During Grackle's watch a vile creature that resembled a huge bloated buffalo with a head like a wart hog, a snake like tail and legs like a hippopotamus. The creature was 6' high and 15' long with tusks as long as Grackle's arm. At the beginning of the encounter Grackle made a saving throw vs. life drain when the hideous creature locked its red eyed glare with the Kender's eyes. The Kender was fascinated by the experience...

    The Creature then attacked. Its club-like tail hit and Stunned Grackle but Riverwind was able to shout and wake the rest of the party. Riverwind attacked the creature and Thorne attempted to spell the creature asleep but the attempt failed. Thorne was then stunned from a tail blow and he joined Grackle on the ground. watching the stars wheel by even though neither was moving. Working in concert, Quill, Riverwind and Goldmoon finally put the creature down as Detlef missed the creature with several sword swings.

    The next morning the party continued its journey and came to a rope bridge connecting soggy 'islands' of earth in the thick swamp waters. While crossing the bridge; the party ran into two more of the strange lizard man creatures in addition to 6 goblins. These were different than those encountered before; they were larger and ended up being spell Casters. To sum up events, the entire party was rendered unconscious due to poisoned javelins hurled by the Goblins and Sleep Spells cast by the lizard men. They later awoke in a cage...

    Upon waking the party discovered a Black dragon nearby but the creature was strangely unmoving. Around the dragon were a dozen goblins, two large lizard men and four of the smaller ones that had disguised themselves as Monks. The party was then informed that they would be in trouble when "Onyx" arrives….

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    Default DL 1: Part III: Prisoners, a Dragon, Finding Lost Gods, and into the Dungeons...

    The PCs are all level 3 now, except for Quill, the Half-Elf Thief, who is level 4.

    These notes are from Quill the Thief's Player:

    Finding themselves imprisoned in a strange cage made of bamboo bars and surrounded by ruins, the PCs noticed that they were guarded by three goblins who seemed drowsy and about to fall asleep. They learned during this time that the smaller lizardman-like creatures were called Baaz, which were about 5.5 feet tall, had small, batlike wings, and were orange-yellow in color. They also learned that the larger, spell-casting lizardman-like creatures were called Bozaks. They had larger wings, were brownish-yellow in color and seemed to be the leaders.

    Not far away—about sixty feet—lay what looked like a black dragon that was absolutely motionless. It was too far away, though, to tell whether it was real or some kind of statue.

    Just out of reach lay their equipment in another bamboo cage. The party decided to take a chance at breaking or bending one of the bamboo bars. Detlef managed to break one, but the snapping sound woke up one of the goblin guards, who immediately shouted out an alarm. Grackle immediately rushed out, followed by Thorne. The kender proved himself skillful at throwing stones, for he deftly struck one of the goblins in the head with one, felling it on the spot. Fergus Quill decided to leave his equipment in the other cage for now, taking a direct approach as well. He rushed one of the other goblin guards and successfully tackled it to the ground. He then quickly jabbed both his thumbs into the creature’s eyes, causing it to scream out in pain. Meanwhile, the rest of the party engaged a group of other goblins, and Grackle and Detlaf took on a Bozak who had just emerged from his quarters. Grackle attempted unsuccessfully to taunt the creature, but they did manage to weaken it, and Grackle decided to explore inside the Bozak’s quarters while it was busy with Detlaf. The kender found a large cloak in a foot locker. The cloak was black with a symbol of a dark crescent moon on a dark blue background. He then donned the cloak and returned outside, almost tripping over the cloak, as it was designed for a six and a half foot tall Bozak.

    During this time Fergus snatched the goblin’s sword from its sheath and attempted to stab it while it was blinded, but he failed to land a telling blow. The goblin, still shouting in pain and unable to see, ran off. Letting it go, Fergus then attacked the Bozak, but the crafty reptilian thing used a spell to charm Detlaf, who then tried to protect it from Fergus. Knowing this fight was not for him, the reptilian wretch took advantage of the situation, running off and using its large wings to speed up its ground movement. Fergus immediately pursued it, while Detlaf unsuccessfully tried to keep him from doing so, and Thorne Greywarden slung a stone at the creature. That was enough to kill it, but it did not die a pleasant death. Its skin fell off, revealing the skeleton underneath, which then exploded. Fortunately, nobody was close enough to the dying creature to be struck by any skeletal shrapnel.

    Free and victorious, the party looked around. Thorne found a parchment in the Bozak’s quarters that indicated a hatch under the black dragon, which actually was made of wicker. Grackle jumped at the chance and climbed up inside, where he found a long, tube-like device. He spoke through it, and those outside heard a loud, screechy voice. The kender then worked some levers and caused the wings to move up and down.

    On a fallen obelisk, they found the following inscription:

    “The great city of Xak Tsaroth, whose beauty surrounds you, speaks to the good of its people and their generous deeds. The gods reward us in the grace of our home.”

    Leaving the area and entering the swamp nearby, everyone noticed a sense of stillness and fear around them, while Goldmoon walked to a structure nearby, nonchalantly opened the door and entered. At that point a black dragon—the real one—flew overhead. Everyone except Grackle was overcome with fear, finding it difficult to battle the wyrm. Riverwind was struck by the creature’s vile, acid-like breath weapon and killed. The dragon then called out to them, identifying herself as Onyx (whom the goblins had mentioned by name earlier) and warned the party to leave. After some ineffectual missile fire by the party and some magic-missiles cast by the Dragon at several members of the party; the Dragon laughed at them again and dove back down the well she had flown out of.

    Everyone then went into the structure into which Goldmoon had disappeared earlier during the fighting; and found her in a chamber, kneeling down and speaking to a statue of a woman. A feeling of warmth and love filled the room. Goldmoon placed the staff in the statue’s hands, causing it to come to life and speak. The party instinctively knew they were in the presence of divinity and the statue identified herself as the Goddess of Healing; Mishakal. She said that people have turned away from the true gods but the darkness is coming to an end. She charged Goldmoon to find some platinum disks below the chamber, disks that will make clerics genuine clerics once again. She then charged the party to search for a true leader of the people. During this time everyone was healed of all their wounds, and Riverwind was brought back to life, in perfect health.

    Finding their way to a level below, the party found rooms whose floors had caved in, leaving gaping, impassable holes with vapors steaming up through them. At the opposite end of one of these chambers they saw a box with an exit nearby, but they could not reach it due to the holes in the floor. Exploring farther, they found a room in which a line of gully dwarves was slowly moving forward. The sound of a whip cracking could be heard along with a bellowing voice. Grackle went forward to investigate and saw two Baaz cracking whips and forcing the dwarves into a large pot that was suspended over a hole. The pot lowered as more dwarves got into it. ...

  6. #6
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    Hi Max,
    just wanted to note that this is very interesting!
    Which house rules did you use? I see half-elf and kender, are you using racial classes? What level limits?

    Thanks!
    Antonio
    see you on rpol!
    It is the spirit of the game, not the letter of the rules, which is important. Never hold to the letter written, nor allow some barracks room lawyer to force quotations from the rule book upon you [...] YOU ARE CREATOR AND FINAL ARBITER.
    E. G. Gygax, Dungeon Masters Guide, 1979.

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    Hey Antonio! Glad to hear that someone is following along and finding it interesting!

    I have a fair number of house rules....many inspired by 2nd Edition AD&D (my favorite version of AD&D...I know, I'm the only one! ).....so in essence; we're playing BECMI 2nd Edition; if you will!

    I have my alignment scale read: Good, Neutral or Evil.....I tend to think of DL as being much more obviously definied by Good vs. Evil with Neutral as the balance than many other Campaign worlds.....the Orders of High Sorcery; the 3 groups of 7 Gods each; etc.

    I give Fighters Weapon Specialization and earlier multiple attacks (2 a round at level 7; all other classes get this at level 9); Thieves have points to spend on thier Skills a la 2nd Edition AD&D; and I use Weapon Skills (weapon proficiencies) and a single; broad "Background Skill" for each character.....which starts at an "11" and can be increased with XP expenditure. (These skills are really broad like: "Woodscraft"; which could be used for hunting or knowledge of animals/plants or tracking; etc.). Mages and Clerics can get bonus spells for high INT/WIS scores respectively (this is from C&C; a bonus 1st for a score of 13-15; a bonus 2nd for a score of 16-17; and a bonus 3rd for a score of 18).

    The Half-Elf I rule as just being a human with Infravison (no other bonuses; can play any of the 4 "core" classes)....he does have a lower level limit than Humans though. The Kender is my replacement for Halflings; they have all Thief Skills except for Climb Walls and Read Languages; they are Fearless (no need for Saving Throws vs. Dragon Fear or Magical Kinds of Fear, etc.); they have the "Taunt" ability (takes 1 round; any intelligent creature that can understand the Kender and is listening has to make a Saving Throw; if they fail; they concentrate on attacking the Kender only to the exclusion of all else ...i.e. they have an AC penalty); and Large Creatures are -2 to hit the Kender if the Kender is aware of thier attacks. They only get 1d4 Hit Points due to thier small size and stature and they advance as Dwarves.

    Dwarves and Elves are thier own classes; though this doesn't necessarily apply for NPCs of those races.....i.e. they might meet a Dwarf NPC Cleric or an Elf NPC mage.

    There ARE level limits; though they are different than the books; in my version; the highest possible level for ANYONE is Level 17; Humans have a normal level limit of 14; with a bonus level possible for each + from thier Prime Attribute (i.e. a Mage with an Intelligence of 17 could make it to Level 16). Half-Elves have a level limit of 11; with a bonus per attribute +; Dwarves and Kender have a level limit of 9 (up to a max of 12); and Elves have a level limit of 8 (up to max of 11).

    I also utilize THAC0; more weapons and armor (on the AC 10 thru -10 scale) and individual iniatative; modified by weapon speed and DEX scores and Spell casting times; I use the MU spell list from the 2nd Edition Player's Handbook for effects; and the Clerical Spell list from 1st Edition PHB (with a few minor changes; such as combining Endure Heat (or Cold) and Resist Fire (or Cold) as a 1st level Spell; and making the Basic/Expert Clerical Spell 'Striking' a 2nd level spell.

    These are the main changes....there are some more minor ones; if you're interested; let me know!

    As for changes to the modules/plot....there aren't that many that are significant....just a few things here and there; such as replacing the camp full of Draconians worshipping a wicker-dragon with a camp full of goblins with a few Draconian leaders. I always thought it didn't make any sense to have the Baaz in Dragons of Autumn Twilight/DL 1 worshipping a fake stature when they CLEARLY have a close relationship with real dragons; but that's just my take on it.

    The next session is scheduled for next week; so another session report should be fortcoming soon!

    -Max

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    That's interesting! With all the house rules you have imported, wouldn't it have been easier to just play AD&D 2e without the optional rules?
    If there is a thing in 2e that I love (and I love the game; it has been my favoured version of D&D for most of my gaming career,) is that all optional rules are clearly marked. In fact, I have run more than one campaign with only the basic four classes and races, and with most of the optional stuff removed, and the play experience was definitely close to Mentzer D&D.
    I also found C&C to be quite good, but the lack of decent DM-only campaign stuff is irking.
    It is the spirit of the game, not the letter of the rules, which is important. Never hold to the letter written, nor allow some barracks room lawyer to force quotations from the rule book upon you [...] YOU ARE CREATOR AND FINAL ARBITER.
    E. G. Gygax, Dungeon Masters Guide, 1979.

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    Hey there Turambar;

    Whoo-hoo, a 2nd person actually reading these posts!

    In essence; one of my players really wanted as rules-lite a version of D&D as possible; and yet with enough options to keep it interesting. He suggested OD&D or one of its "clones"; but as I don't own any of those; I came up with my BECMI/AD&D 2nd combo. So far, it seems to be doing well; no major issues yet. One of the players kinda wanted to play a martial-artist Monk-type....which, in my opinion didn't really fit well with the DL setting; but I could have worked something out (I was thinking of some ancient order that followed the tenets of some old religious/philosophy book of the God Majere).....but the player decided to play a different class instead.

    On a related, but different note: Am I the only one who reads a lot of these 3.5 or 4th Edition game threads of DL adventures set in the War of the Lance period and thinks that all of these Dark Elves/Centaur/Tiefling/Shape-changing Ogres/Tinker Gome/Minotaur parties of adventurers just don't really fit this setting? I mean; to each thier own and I might allow ONE player in a party to be one of the above; but instead it seems the MAJORITY of PC parties are characters likes those mentioned above! I guess I'm just the old crumudgeon!

    Nice to know there's a few other 2nd Edition fans out there! We're a rare breed; as I'm sure you allready know!

    Thanks for reading and the comments; keep 'em coming!

    -Max

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    Quote Originally Posted by maxvale View Post
    Hey there Turambar;

    Whoo-hoo, a 2nd person actually reading these posts!

    In essence; one of my players really wanted as rules-lite a version of D&D as possible; and yet with enough options to keep it interesting. He suggested OD&D or one of its "clones"; but as I don't own any of those; I came up with my BECMI/AD&D 2nd combo. So far, it seems to be doing well; no major issues yet. One of the players kinda wanted to play a martial-artist Monk-type....which, in my opinion didn't really fit well with the DL setting; but I could have worked something out (I was thinking of some ancient order that followed the tenets of some old religious/philosophy book of the God Majere).....but the player decided to play a different class instead.

    On a related, but different note: Am I the only one who reads a lot of these 3.5 or 4th Edition game threads of DL adventures set in the War of the Lance period and thinks that all of these Dark Elves/Centaur/Tiefling/Shape-changing Ogres/Tinker Gome/Minotaur parties of adventurers just don't really fit this setting? I mean; to each thier own and I might allow ONE player in a party to be one of the above; but instead it seems the MAJORITY of PC parties are characters likes those mentioned above! I guess I'm just the old curmudgeon!

    Nice to know there's a few other 2nd Edition fans out there! We're a rare breed; as I'm sure you allready know!

    Thanks for reading and the comments; keep 'em coming!

    -Max
    Hi Max,
    that's not a 2nd person, sorry; it's always me, Antonio
    I see the need to accommodate a player's wishes...but I am also the type of person who prefers to tinker as little as possible with the rules (I am basically lazy, and I hate writing down house rule documents )
    I think monks could fit quite well in Dragonlance; after all, the old 1e stuff posits Majere as the god of monks; and it fits quite well. In Dragonlance monks can come from the small enclave of Claren Elian.
    RE: monstrous races...I don't like them very much, regardless of editions. The reason being, as Gygax said, that all said and done, we are essentially humans. And if you must roleplay an elf or minotaur just as a human with point ears or horns...well, you are perhaps better served by playing a human straight away. As a side note, this is also why I prefer Sword & Sorcery w.r.t. High Fantasy, since the former tends to focus over humans. And as Ron Edwards states in his essay on sword & sorcery, it's perhaps true that more modern authors have used non-human races as a more politically correct proxy to racial differentiation.
    Anyway, in 25 years of DMing, I have had one hobgoblin, one swanmay, one halfling, two dwarves and two or three elves as PCs. And I must say my games have not suffered at all.
    I also have always strictly enforced level limits, both as a balancing element (and I am quite the gamist on this point: if you have a benefit in-game, you must pay for it) and also to drive home the point, as also suggested in 1e and 2e DMGs, that adventuring is first and foremost a human activity.
    I have recently come to appreciate 1e more and more, since it took an even more radical approach to level limits and race/class combinations than 2e, which was much more liberal, and wherein level limits kicked in quite late in a character career; considering that most of my campaigns never last into the mid-high levels, this would essentially grant a "free-lunch" for players of demi humans.
    Beside the Dragonlance game we are playing online (which is going quite well IMO; a pity that the half-orc and gnome players left!) I am definitely looking forward to run a AD&D 2e game of Birthright or Dark Sun.
    It is the spirit of the game, not the letter of the rules, which is important. Never hold to the letter written, nor allow some barracks room lawyer to force quotations from the rule book upon you [...] YOU ARE CREATOR AND FINAL ARBITER.
    E. G. Gygax, Dungeon Masters Guide, 1979.

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