Thursday, August 25, 2011

Gothic Greyhawk - Game 36

Cast of Characters:
Mordecai, a Cleric-5: Adam
Forlorn, an Elf-4: Bo
Mister Moore, Magic User-5: Mike
Soap the Wizard, Magic User-4:  Nogal
Shy, a Fighter-4:  JR
Arden, an Elf-2:  Z

Henchmen:
Phat Kobra, a Dwarf-4
Zeke, a Fighter-4
Starkweather, a Thief-3
Grumble the Smug, Halfling-4
Serge, a Fighter-4

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AD&D 1E, I6 Ravenloft
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As usual, I'm behind on game reports, and since last week's session featured carnage on an unprecedented scale, I need to get caught up - this is from two weeks ago.

Strahd had just been reduced to a smoking pile of ash by the Dispel Evil spell, and the group quickly consulted the divine realm using their Commune scroll to confirm the great vampire was gone.  The matter settled conclusively, they began to explore.  Finding Strahd's treasury and gleefully tossing coins into the air was the primary order of business.

They first visited Gertrude, Strahd's sexy but dumb human moll; she was ignorant of the demise of her lord, but also had no clue regarding the treasury's location.  They convinced her they were joining Strahd's cause and moved on, but Zeke the NPC began to show signs of a crush.  Lipsiege, the accountant, knew the treasury was adjacent to the study, and that convinced the group to keep the search tightly focused.  There was a side encounter with a nasty spectre that led to yet more level draining, and then the group decided they needed to tackle the hearth in the study.  (My list of current character levels up above is a little out of date - I know a bunch of NPC fighters have taken hits...)

Early descriptions of the hearth revealed that it was 'large enough for a man to stand inside'.  The roaring fire was extinguished, and once the stones in the hearth were cool enough, they conducted a search.  I should point out, looming over each of their decisions was the threat of night; the day was still early, but they were fixated on getting off the mountain well before night fall.  How would the many undead react when it was discovered that the lord and master that kept them in line was gone?  They didn't want to be near the coming battle of succession as previously controlled undead became free-willed.  The time pressure was a constant factor.

A search of the hearth revealed a secret door, and a treasure room beyond.  The treasure room was false, and the large chest inside was trapped with a powerful sleep gas that knocked out half of the group!  Yikes.  The few waking characters dragged the sleepers out of the false treasure chamber, and returned to the secret room to search further.  Another secret door was found and "knocked" open by Soap the Wizard.  Beyond the secret door was a long, web-lined corridor.

Soap returned to the study and grabbed the fireball wand off of the sleeping Arden the Elf.  "I've been waiting for this", he gloated.  Accompanied by Shy the Fighter, they blasted a fireball down the webbed passage, clearing it out and revealing a large bronze portal at the end.  "Woohoo!  That felt great!"  Leaving the sleepers and a few guards, they found a webbed tower beyond the bronze portal.

Shy and Soap were joined by Father Donavich and Phat Kobra, leaving Grumble and a few others to guard the sleeping characters out in the study.  They found a secret door in the webbed chamber, but became aware of large spiders descending quickly out of the webs above them.  Why they didn't blast the webs as a matter of course, "just to be sure…", I don't know - but they quickly blasted upwards with the wand, now, while ducking out of the room; a few giant spiders were charred to death by the fireball, and the rest fled into the darkness of the tower high above.

Through the secret door in the side of the tower was Strahd's fantastic treasure vault - a vast pile of coins and an array of weapons, all identified as magic when Soap used his wand of magic detection.  There were 70,000 mixed coins, gems and jewelry - a lordly sum.  Coins were tossed into the air gleefully.

We ended there, as the group had some difficult logistical challenges to ponder.  Daylight is burning, and more than half the group is still asleep in a drugged stupor - creating the very real possibility that they'll be trapped in the castle after dark, unable for the conscious members to get everyone safely down the mountain.  And this is compounded by their desire to claim Strahd's massive treasure for their own and not leave it unguarded through the night.  Muhaha.

Tune in next time to see plenty of character death.  Oh, the humanity (and elfmanity).