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Thread: [DLC] The Companions Are Back!

  1. #1

    Default [DLC] The Companions Are Back!

    Yesterday we started with the first session of our classical DL campaign.

    After running more and more complicated games over the years I longed for the times when the rules could fit inside my head and the players longed for more character development and story instead of complicated character building and a concentration on the tactical side of the game. Therefore, I proposed to run the original DL campaign for them and using the pregens. With six players we are only two short of the full complement of eight. I outlines all characters for them and we decided that Caramon and Riverwind are run as "secondary" characters by two players who felt up to the task (and, boy, were they right!).

    By the way: all players have more than 10 years of experience in gaming, but none of them is a real hobbyist. None has read the novels and only one played through DL1 some 30 years ago. I handed out the Meeting series of novels as well as the "How the Heroes Met" text from DL5. when the campaign gets off the ground, I will give them the Preludes books as well.

    Concerning the rules system I tinkered with Advanced Labyrinth Lord but in the end decided to use AD&D 2e with most of the optional stuff thrown out.

    Okay, so let's look how the heroes fared, yesterday:

    A disturbed meeting

    The heroes' chance meeting on the road near Solace was disturbed by the advent of a group of hobgoblins under the command of an extremely ugly specimen, demanding them to relinquish a certain blue crystal staff. Our heroes don't have the slightest ideas what this hobgoblin is talking about, and a fight ensues.

    The heroes are reacting quicker than their enemies, Tasslehoff first hitting one hobgoblin, and Raistlin casting Sleep and taking three enemies out of combat. Still, the hobgolins don't break and try their luck attacking the characters and only causing a negligible wound on Caramon. After silence has settled, the heroes bind the sleeping hobgoblins, awaken one of them for interrogation, and learn that the monsters were sent out for a certain staff, and only following orders. When asked to lead them to Toede, the captured hobgoblin reaches a state of panic and unsuccessfully tries to break free.

    A Song in Dusk

    Finally, the heroes decide to leave their captives bound and Tanis starts following Toede's pony's tack into the woods. This is very easy until they reach a stream, which the hobgoblin seems to have followed - but in which direction? Considering his options, Tanis suddenly hears music from the wood: Goldmoon's Song.

    Caramon and Tasslehoff are enchanted and approach the singer and her companion. Following the introductions, the group offers protection and support to the Plainsmen and - after Tanis couldn't find Toede's tracks anymore - decide to head for Solace. Only Raistlin isn't happy with this development, arguing that being cast out from their tribe might indicate bad or evil behaviour on part of Goldmoon and Riverwind. Goldmoon is quite open with her story and presents the mysterious staff.

    GM Commentary
    It was refreshing to see that no player had any idea about the blue crystal staff. The only one with DL experience is playing Goldmoon and didn't give a hint during the first encounter.

    Combat went oh so fast! Two rounds or ten minutes of real time against ten hobgoblins is something I can live with. Finally, combat isn't the central element which everything else has to be wrapped around.

    Roleplaying during combat went well, too. Caramon's player immediately focused on protecting Raistlin, while Sturm issued a challenge before starting killing. Killing the captives after the battle was no option at all.

    Letting Tanis follow Toede's tracks without any die roll felt good.

    We don't have any music running in the background in our games, so the impact of hearing the song was quite high. Guess I should start experimenting with some voice acting for transfer scenes.

    There might be some tension between Goldmoon and Raistlin. Raistlin's player plays up the character's position to deceit. Interesting note: Riverwind is run by the same player as Raistlin.

    So much for the first part of my first report. What's happening in Solace will be told in my next post.

    so long

    ---Jan van Leyden

  2. #2

    Default

    Eight Tankards and a Freckled Face

    Back at the Inn of the Last Home after five Long years, the heroes - especially Flint - are overjoyed the Otik Sandath still runs the place. Only Kitiara is missing and Otik Hands Tanis a letter from her delivered by a Messenger some two weeks ago. Kitiara is greeting her friends and familiy and apologises for not being their for the appointet Meeting. She's working for a new master right now and cant't possibly leave to see her friends. Furthermore she asks Tanis to tell Sturm about a surprise Kitiara wll give him when next they meet.

    The Innfellows, waited by Tika, aren't really interested in the other Folks in the Inn, but Focus on the mysterious staff and what to do with it. When Goldmoon Shows the artefact, another guest notices it and muses about the evil lokking fellows asking for such an item and maybe offering steel for it. Another guy tells about the Seekers also looking for a blue staff and asking to deliver it to Haven.

    Wir some three parties hunting for the staff, the Crew decides to remove themselves from the inn and plain view. They are Walking over to Flint's old house. After spending half an hour there, they quietly move out again and pitch up their tents in the vicinity.

    To Boldly Touch what no Man Has Touched Before

    Contrary to their apprehension the night passes without any attack on them or Solace and they use the next day for discussion and experiments. A curious wizard is the first to touch the staff with bare Hands and is shocked - barely surviving the ordeal. Of course, such a development isn't fit shoo away a Kender, so Tas is the next to, let's say, enjoy a new Sensation. Now the heroes hesitate whether another one of them should try and, if so, who might be ... resistant enough to do so. Finally it's Caramon and - lo and behold - he can touch the staff without any ill result. Raistklin now finally remembers that he had prepared Detect Magic for the day and takes a more intellectual Approach. He is overwhelmed by the intensity of the staff's Magic, but doesn't learn more about it.

    After a Long discussion the heroes agree to bring the staff to the New Seeker's prelate in Haven, but not without trying to hide it. So Flint agrees to make some Kind of sheath for it looking like wood and a broad Point. The final result should look like a boar spear. As this will take some time and experimentation, and several of the friends are less than healthy they will spend some more days in Solace.

    GM Commentary

    The boxed text of the Solace section is just terrible. From the outside the characters hear laughter, but inside the inn peopple are subdued. They meet the host again after five years and, having spent many evenngs here in the past, Otik just waves once and without prompt drivels about a blue Crystal staff that must be from Darkwood.

    The players only recieved Haven as lead and no mention from Darkwood, the White Stag or anything else. But that should be no problem because the road to Haven ist plastered with hints.

    Interestnigly, Goldmoon's Player didn't mention a single word about the staff's healing capabilities even though he has the complete text of properties. This in turn in combination with the experimentation leads to some time spend idly in Solace. For the next session I'll have to decide how I want to handle the Information about the Invasion.

    Huldvoll winkend

    ---Jan van Leyden

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