Monday, January 4, 2016

Dwimmer Game 4 - The EB's Attack!

Game 4 of our exploration of the legendary Dwimmermount.

As usual, we started the game back in town - in this way, drop in players can always join a session.  At the beginning of this one, a summons appeared from the Curate of Typhon, requiring the presence of the party's cleric, Father Tancrede (a fellow Typhonian).  "It's time I explained why a luminary such as myself was willing to accept a post in such a dismal backwater", the curate began.  From there he explained how a sect within the Great Church has always kept an eye out for rumors that the Termaxians, a cabal dedicated to resurrecting the cult of Termax, might resurface and threaten the church and the true gods once again.  Herynt, the Curate, is convinced Termaxians are behind the opening of Dwimmermount.  He exhorted the party to be ever vigilant for evidence of strange wizards or mages as they explore the ruins.  He also reminded Father Tancrede that the church expects its tithe!

Here is the cast of characters:

Marthanes, a desert sorcerer
Tancrede, a cleric (henchman)
Malgrim, a fighter
Wolfengard, a dwarf fighter (henchman)
Priscus, a paladin
Ploppy and Fluffy - two new mercenaries (real names Bart and Jarvis)

The Curate had heard about a bronze head on the wall that could answer questions like an oracle; the players remembered seeing the head on a previous journey, and accepted the Curate's offer to find the head and try it out on their next delve.  Returning to the dungeon was the next activity, and visiting the bronze head was their first stop; it wasn't hard for them to figure out to oil the joints of the large, rusted fixture (one of the kids said, "like the Tin Man!") in order to get it to work.  I think they asked the head something about whether there were any large treasures (more than 2,000gp)  left on the level.

After visiting the head on the wall, they went to see the orcs that were on guard near the cavern.  It was still in the player's minds that they wanted to find the moon pool somewhere in the caverns.  (This would be a quest stretching over multiple nights).  With the Thulian war masks, and a few high charisma characters that speak Bestial, the players haven't had issues parleying with the orcs and getting insights on the cavern denizens.  They learned that there were many more kobolds, despite the death of the kobold leader a few sessions ago, and the uneasy truce between the kobolds and orcs was over, forcing the orcs to barricade the door into the cavern.  The orcs were only too glad to hear the players would be clearing out the kobold caves.

This session was all kids, no dads, and I've observed that even teenagers don't do a great job with tactics.  For instance, running into a large cavern of kobolds, which were armed with torches and oil flasks, led to a bunch of burning player characters, at least until Marthanes' summoned berserkers showed up and wrecked the place.  Both Priscus and Malgrim were saved from zero hit points or near death.  Meanwhile, the summoned berserkers were given a few torches and sent ahead to slay any additional kobolds, indiscriminately.

By the time the players caught up, the berserkers had already cleared another room of kobolds.  They still didn't discover the moon pool, but they found a spring of oily black silver liquid (unrefined Azoth) which they scooped up into flasks instead.  It was getting late, so they started to leave with a large sack full of unrefined Azoth.

In one of the main corridors on the way out, a patrol of "Eldritch Bones" found them.  EB's are the alpha monsters of Dwimmermount level 1; they have good armor, resistance to edged weapons, they can't be turned, and they have hideous claw attacks.  I picture them like Terminator skeletons, metal and relentless (and they absolutely never will stop, ever, until you are dead.  They can't be bargained with, they don't feel pity, or remorse, or fear).  The last encounter with EB's in the chapel left Grimson maimed, and this one saw the death of Malgrim and Priscus, the two fighters that were injured in the caverns.  Tancrede got knocked out too, and the fight would have turned completely against the party if Marthanes didn't go nuts with the wand of magic missiles, firing double shots at each skeleton.

Back in town, they collected some extra experience due to finishing the Curate's quest (finding the head on the wall) and they sold the Azoth to the Great Porfirio (the Alchemist) for about 200gp; he claimed he'd be able to take it back to the great city Adamas and refine it into pure Azoth.

"Dwimmer Death Count" is now Grimson (killed by a spider), and Malgrim and Priscus, killed by EB's.  They lost a few mooks to spiders, too.  Wolfengard has been promoted to PC for next game.