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Dungeons & Dragons (5th Edition)» Forums » Sessions

Subject: Polemar open table adventure 2 rss

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Danny Stevens
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Danny's big session index
Previous Session


I am preparing an open table campaign as set out in the article Constructing an Open Table Campaign for D&D 5e. I nearly have a second article ready to publish, wherin I have fleshed out the lifestyle and lifecycle of the dragons, set up some random encounter tables and fleshed out the major content of all the hexes. That will leave some detail yet to be done for the dungeon delve style places.

However Phaedra and Tara were once again at a loose end so we played on with half elf Gudrid Irenmundottir and her cousin and full elf, Katrali.

Under my open table rules they needed to work out what had happened to their characters during the 16 days since last seen in two blocks of 5 and a final block of 6 days. At the end of each block they rolled D20 and modified by their lifestyle for that block to determine life events.

They both chose a poor life style to try and preserve what little cash they have, and they didn't spend any on converting their experience so they just had 5 * 16 = 80 experience converted from raw to gained.

As it turned out Katrali had no special life events happen to her but Gudrid had two. One was to gain a friend, a young elf man named Lelith, who is on his way to becoming a first level fighter. Lelith is a hero worshipper. Further a human cleric who has become charitable toward the poor elves gave Gudrid 29gp for being such a saviour of elf kind.

So now we were ready to play. I rolled dice to pick a source for a "bang" and cane up with the lizard folk who live in the swampy river gullies in hex G9, 20 miles from the elf village where the girls live in hex H8. The lizardfolk like to eat other humanoids so I decided that a group of lizardfolk had raided the elves living in hex G8 only 10 miles south of the girls village. There are only 10 elf adults living there and I decided the lizardfolk have captured them all and dragged them of to their lair to have as live dinner, a couple a night for the next five nights. Lelith runs up to Gudrid all out of breath yelling "their gone, the villagers are gone!"

So Gudrid and Katrali head off to investigate. They take from 7am to 10am to make their way through the woods to the other village, where they cautiously investigate. They find that only the villagers and general food stocks are missing. They see a trail suggesting the villagers have been marched off by a group of human sized creatures with reptilian feet. They begin to follow the trail.

By about 1pm the trail leads into a shallow river gully that gets deeper and wider as it progresses. The heroines stay out of the gully on the southern rim. At one point the gully opens into a pond about 10' below the rim and in it is an abandoned canoe covered in moss on the far shore. Then they come to an even wider section, about 100' across and the edges are broken by other rivulet gullies feeding into it. They can still see the tracks but they head off to a wider tributary flowing into the large basin. The tributary is boggy and the tracks are lost in the mud.

Our heroines backtrack a way and by 2pm are on the opposite bank and clambering down to get across the tributary where the mud appears shallowest and less treacherous. Far up the tributary they can hear log drums being beaten and a thin ribbon of smoke rises above the forest in that direction.

A fair bit of scrabbling, climbing, and jumping 15' chasms gets the girls to the edge of a 300' wide, swampy valley by 4pm. The valley floor is covered in stagnant ponds, bullrushes and willow trees. On their side of the valley they see the lizard folk, 15 of them, celebrating around a fire. There are nesting holes in the valley walls and a crude hut where the elves are held prisoner. Beyond the hut is a fallen tree that could act as a ladder down to the valley floor.

They hatch a plan. Katrali will go to the opposite rim of the valley. When the lizards are mostly asleep then Katrali will use fairy lights to distract the guards while Gudrid frees the elves and they all make a run for it.

At 5pm they are ready, but unfortunately so are the lizardfolk, ready for their first elf dinner. They bring two of the bedraggled elves out of the hut and drag them towards an obvious chopping block where a butcher stands ready with a cleaver. Katrali decides she can't wait for the lizard folk to sleep so she casts her fairy fire on the willow tree below her. It lights up with wondrous blue sparkles and alarms the lizardfolk.

The folk in the tribe speak Draconic and so does Gudrid so she hears the leader giving directions. 12 of the lizardfolk have grabbed javelins and head across the valley, fanning out while 3 drag the food back to the shed and close them in with a bar across the door.

Unfortunately Katrali had really flubbed her stealth skill, so the lizardfolk spotted her quickly. The leader ordered a group to each side to climb to the top and find how many other elves were attacking. As the three lizardfolk back at the hut dashed across to join the main group the ones with the leader threw javelins up at Katrali 40' away. Despite having disadvantage 3 javelins hit, almost killing Katrali out right. She fell unconscious out of her tree.

Meanwhile Gudrid had clambered down to the valley and run to the shack. She unbarred the door and began untying the prisoners. "Gudrid the hero has saved us" is the whisper going around the shack. "typical" says Tara, commenting that Katrali does the work and Gudrid gets the glory.

So we got into a tense round by round situation. Katrali is making death saves, and has passed 2 and failed 2. The lizard folk are probing the forest to find more elves, Gudrid has freed all the elves after four rounds and they are running for the tree when they are spotted.

A chase ensues with the lizardfolk a fair distance behind. Meanwhile Katrali just makes her last save and becomes conscious, and casts healing word to bring herself back to reasonable strength, though with three exhaustion she is going slow.

Gudrid helps the elves evade pursuit and the lizardfolk return to their lair, angry and hungry. Then the only random encounter for the session calls for a thunder storm. Katrali makes it back home, wet, bruised and bedraggled to find Gudrid an the freed elves all enjoying a nice dry time in the feasting hut.

Next Session (3)
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Danny Stevens
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Part 2 of the construction blog now published.
 
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