Sunday, May 21, 2017

Road to Kelvin's Cairn 3

The session started off with the party determined to follow Maulnar that night to see what if anything he was up to. They had no reason to suspect he was up to anything, but decided more information was always better. Gareth and Nefresil hid where they could see Maulnar’s house and waited. He eventually emerged, and left. Nefresil stayed to watch the house, while Gareth chose to follow. Gareth was able to stealthily follow behind Maulnar at a safe distance, while he headed down an abandoned mine shaft. After walking down the mine shaft for awhile, Maulnar turned down a smaller passage. This passage ended in a stone door. Maulnar went through the door, and while it was open Gareth heard chanting inside the door, but could not see what was in the the room. After several hours, Maulnar emerged from the room, and Gareth overhead him say, “The time is almost here.” This was followed by some hissing noises, but Gareth was unable to see who or what made those noises. Maulnar then returned to his house, and Gareth related everything to Nefresil.

The next day, Nefresil, Gareth, and Dymar went back to the room and found that the key that Gareth stole from Maulnar earlier opened the door. What they found inside was a large circular stone room about 100 feet in diameter. There were several iron braziers around the room. There were also many dead bodies in various states of decay scattered at the perimeter of the room. In the center were some markings on the floors that the party knew to be a summoning circle. However, they had no idea what was being summoned, but based on the dead bodies, they did not think it was anything good.

Nefresil was able to convince Dymar to help the party the next night. They planned an elaborate trap that would have them break into Maulnar’s house and await his arrival home. They would then surprise him with a non-lethal attack, and tie him up. At this point he would be questioned. The party setup the ambush, and when Maulnar arrived home, they sprung the trap Nefresil and Gareth were able to grapple Maulnar, and instructed Dymar to tie his hands. When Dymar went to tie Maulnar’s hands, he was struck from behind, and rendered unconscious. This is when the party small a small reddish creature with wings and a tail, which they correctly guessed to be an imp. Nefresil took over tying up Maulnar, and holding him at sword point, while Gareth cast Magic Missle, and felled the beast. Once dead, the imp’s corpse turned to ash and vanished. Nefresil healed Dymar, who went to check on King Malagar. His thoughts were that whatever was happening with Maulnar were controlling the king, and that now that the imp was gone, the king would be restored. Nefresil attempted to question Maulnar, but the dwarf chose to take his own life on Nefresil’s blade rather than talk.

Nefresil suggested going to the room where Gareth heard chanting earlier, to see what if anything would happen there that night. They went into the room and hid at the far end. Not too much later 5 dwarves entered the room, and began to light the braziers. Before getting close enough to the party to see Nefresil cast Fog Cloud to obscure themselves. They waited on Dymar to show back up, hopefully with the King and his guards. As the spell was about to end Gareth cast Sleep on the dwarves, and the pair tied them all up. Soon the king arrived, and without much pomp, had his guards execute the traitorous dwarves and left. Dymar assured the party that the king would come around and would stay upset at them. He stated that the king did not take kindly to the meddling in their politics by the party.

The next day Nefresil and Gareth were summoned before the king in an intimate reception chamber. The king thanked the pair for their help. He gave them a key to the dwarves hold and instructed them how to use it. They knew this was the same type of key that Baelnar used to get them into Kelvin’s Cairn in the first place. In addition, he gave Nefresil, an adamantine long bow. Nefresil could tell that this long bow was exceptionally well balanced, and significantly heavier than his current bow. Gareth was gifted with an adamantine light cross bow. The stringing of the bow was masterfully done. Clearly both weapons were masterpieces, and no ordinary weapons. Finally, the king offered to escort the party through the mountains to the dwarf hold in Mirabar. He knew of the fighting at Fireshear and suggested that this might be a safer path home. He stated that Baelnar was welcome to join them.

The group spoke with Baelnar and all agreed to head to Mirabar, with the group’s work for Baelnor ending upon them all reaching Mirabar.

DM Recap
I thought this session went well. The group explored various paths to figuring out what was happening with Maulnar, and ultimately chose one that did not put them in too great of danger. The imp was able to knock Dymar out in one hit but doing so ended its invisibility. This allowed Gareth to be able to kill it. At the very end of the session the party decided to head to Mirabar as traveling to Fireshear was not appealing without being able to raise an fighting force from Ten Towns.

Loot and XP
The players received the key to Kelvin’s Cairn, an adamantine long bow, and an adamantine light cross bow. In addition, they will collect their XP for the session. Each player earned 137 XP, broken down as follows:
Imp - 200 XP
Maulnar - 25 XP
Acolytes - 10 XP x5

This is enough for both of the players to reach level 4. Leveling up will take place before the next session.

Sunday, March 5, 2017

Road to Kelvin's Cairn 2

After the battle with the second group of Orcs, the party made their way towards the mountains in an attempt to steer clear of Fireshear and the Orcs. They made a several mile arc around the city, and made their way around and back to the coast where the camped for the night. The next day at midday they stopped to burn Morian's body before continuing.

After several days the party stopped about a day outside of Ironmaster. There, Nefresil noticed a rock that seemed out of place, but could not quite figure out why. After racking his brain he remembered that certain Dwarven groups would use this type of marking to signify their territory. The next day not far outside of the town, the group encountered another Dwarf. He asked the group if they had come by way of Fireshear, and if they knew what was happening. The group relayed what they knew to the Dwarf who did not seem surprised. He informed the group that an Orc had managed to unite 4 different tribes (The Black Claw, Bloody Skull, Greenhaven, and Thousand Fist tribes) before ransacking the city. This Orc was said to be extremely blessed by Gruumsh, and had plucked out both of his eyes to show his devotion to Gruumsh. However, being blind does not stop him from being a fearsome warrior. He said that the Dwarves of Ironmaster were going to raise a force, and go meet the Orcs head on. He said that since they were not certain if the Orcs would strike at Ironmaster or Luskan next they would take the fight to Fireshear. In addition, the Dwarven settlements south of the Spine had been notified so they could be prepared should the Orcs decide to move south.

The party was allowed to spend the night in Ironmaster being continuing on to Kelvin's Cairn. The party decided to go to Kelvin's Cairn and perhaps raise a group of fighter's to bring back to Fireshear to help the Dwarves. The remaining trip to Kelvin's Carin went quietly. When they arrived, Baelnar led the group to an unremarkable part of the mountain, at which time he produced a key. He stuck the key into the mountain, turned it, and a door appeared and opened for the group. Baelnar stated that there were other ways to get in that were not hidden, but it would take longer to get to them.

They went to the Golden Hammer to acquire rooms. Baelnar introduced the group to the owner of the inn, Rogath. They talked with Rogath about what they learned in Ironmaster, most of which Rogath was familiar with. He told the party that Kelvin's Cairn would not be sending help to Ironmaster. He stated that these types of problems were what happened to Dwarves when the chose to live on the surface. He also told the party that the Dwarves of Ironmaster are xenophobic, and would rarely help others unless it was in their own benefit. The had dinner, and went to bed for the night. The next morning, Gareth awoke and found a note in his room. He shared it with Nefresil, and it read:

Master Magician,

Time is of the essence so I must be quick. Your help is required to deal with a rather delicate situation. The good King Malagar has become corrupted by something evil. I implore you to help us end this corruption, and see the king brought back to his right mind. If you wish to help speak to Rogath and ask about his iron wine.

The party decided to go to Ten Towns to see if they could raise some interest in an expedition to Fireshear to help the Ironmaster Dwarves. They got a similar story to what Rogath told them. No one seemed willing to go to battle with the Ironmaster Dwarves. With the recruitment being a dead end, the party decided to go back to the Golden Hammer, and see what the cryptic note was about. Gareth went to Rogath alone, and he led him to the back room, and showed him to a tunnel down to a secret meeting room. Gareth stopped and said he would go only if Nefresil came as well. Rogath assented, and bade Gareth to continue to the room. Rogath, then went and got Nefresil, and showed him to the tunnel.

Upon descending the tunnel the party found a group of 6 Dwarves talking. Immediately, Nefresil's presence was questioned, but the leader of the group, named Dyrnar, said that they had voted to have Gareth help, and that if that meant working with Nefresil, then so be it. They told the party the story about how King Malagar had been acting strange of late. One of his councilors has taken control of the council, and is effectively running the kingdom. They learned that these 6 Dwarves used to be on the council, and in fact Dyrnar was next in line to become the king. All of that was before Maulnar took over. He was not always power hungry, but of late it has been getting worse. The party wondered if that was due to some sort of supernatural power. They agreed to help these Dwarves. They suggested breaking into Maulnar's house to see if there was anything odd there. The Dwarves told the party where and when to meet them the next day. At the appointed time, the Dwarves picked the look on Maulnar's door and the party searched his house. Gareth discovered a key in his drawer. It was a typical looking Dwarven key, but with spines on it in various spots. In addition, there were multiple other copies of the key. The party agreed to take a copy, and leave.

That night they told Dyrnar and the group what they found and suggested following Maulnar to see what, if anything, he was up to that might be suspicious. The plan was to set up that night to follow him.

DM Recap
The session seemed to go really well. The players were engaged with the story, and were getting really into it trying to guess what was going to happen. It was as lot of fun.

Loot and XP
The players loaded all of Morian's possessions onto the cart with the rest of their loot. They now have a set of chainmail, a rapier, short bow, 2 daggers, 12 arrows, and a set of thieve's tools. In addition, since the party made it safely to Kelvin's Cairn XP will be awarded for the previous session. Since Morian did not make it to a safe spot, his share of the XP will be awarded to the party. The total XP earned is 950, which is 475 for each player. The breakdown is as follows:

Orc 100 XP x 5 = 500XP
Orog 450 XP

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Road to Kelvin's Cairn 1

The party start out in Neverwinter having had a week pass. They met Baelnar at the north gate to set out. Upon eating him they found him in conversation with someone in all black. This fellow was introduced to them as Morian, a half elf. The half elf was in all black, and the party could see leather armor beneath his cloak, and a rapier at his waist. They left Neverwinter for Ten Towns and Kelvin’s Cairn with the adventurer’s making small talk. The party soon learned that Morian was born in Neverwinter, and really only travelled to make money.

The trip North was unremarkable, until the party stopped in the early afternoon about half a day south of Luskan. Baelnar explained that Luskan has becoem an extremely rough town. It is said that it is run by the 5 High Captains, but that was not entirely true. In reality, they ran their territory, but the rest of the town was run by various gangs. The next morning they ventured into the town. Not long after entering, Morian whispered something to Baelnar and slipped away down an alley. The rest of the group made their way through town, eventually reaching the bridge that spanned the river. A “guard” was there, and told Baelnar it would be 10gp per person to cross. He eyed up the adventurers, wary that they might try to force their way across. Baelnar passed a leather roll of coins to the guard, and then crossed the bridge. While crossing, Baelnar pointed out the Host Tower of the Arcane on an island towards the ocean. He told them that it is said to be haunted by undead, and that no one goes near it anymore. They group made their way through the rest of Luskan, and Morian joined the group just before they all left town again. Camp was made about half a day north of town.

The party stuck close to the shoreline as the biggest dangers lied in the mountains. Gareth spotted some wolves during the night, but was able to chase them away with a torch. The next day Baelnar told the group that wolves were not uncommon here, but that they would not attack a party of this size. That same day the group noticed a large white object pass overhead, and discovered that it was a White Dragon passing by. It seemed to pay the group no mind, but Baelnar said that White Dragons did tend to live in the colder climate, and that they needed to be be wary of them.

A few more days into the journey the group crested a small hill and found themselves about 80 yards from a group of 3 Orcs. Both sides were surprised, but the Orcs still decided to charge into the battle. The Orcs threw javelins at Gareth, and hit him, but the wounds were minor. Everyone returned fire and eventually Morian and Nefresil engaged the Orcs in melee and finally felled the beasts. Baelnar said this was bad as Orcs almost never ventured this far out. The group concluded that this was a scouting party, and that it was likely that there were more Orcs. Baelnar said they were only about 2 days from Fireshear and that this could only bode ill for that town. The group took the Orc weapons and searched the bodies for anything else of value/use.

Gareth and Nefresil decided to track the Orcs, they spent a coupe of hours tracking the Orcs, but never came across any others. Baelnar informed then that they went directly towards Fireshear. That evening Nefresil healed Gareth, and the group decided to travel through the night, and rest during the day. They followed the path of the Orcs through the night, but lost it the next day. They decided to continue towards the town, as that would be a good place to rest, and get some more information about the Orcs.

As the town became visible the group noticed smoke rising from it, indicating that it had been, at least partially, burned. The group then noticed a party of Orcs moving out as if tracking the previous group. The party decided to try to hide in the rolling valleys and move inland to go around the town. As they did this they found that they had to crest hills from time to time, and that the Orcs noticed them. The group took a stand at the top of the hill and nocked arrows to fire into the Orcs. Nefresil correctly determined that their bow range would be much farther than the javelins the Orcs employed. As the Orcs got within bow range, the party unleashed arrows into the Orcs. The Orcs did their best to move into melee range, and threw javelins, without much success. The party continued to attack Orcs with arrows and spells before using melee weapons. Two Orcs were felled easily, but the 3rd put up a bigger fight. The group noticed that this Orc attacked more frequently and with more deadly blows. Gareth unleashed multiple magic missiles at it, as Nefresil and Morian were in melee combat with it, and suffered greatly for that. Nefresil took 2 hits from the beast’s great and fell. Then it turned on Morian and felled him in 2 hits as well. Baelnar came around and attempted to hit the creature, but missed. It was then that Gareth unleashed a final magic missile, finally killing the beast.

Gareth then went and stabilized Nefresil, and attempted to do the same for Morian, only to discover that Morian was dead. They loaded Morian’s body onto the wagon and decided to continue inland and make their way around Fireshear to head towards Ironmaster, which is only a few days short of Ten Towns. They all had the unspoken hope that Ironmaster and Ten Towns were not overrun by Orcs as well.

DM Recap
This session showed me just how boring travel can be if nothing is happening. Small talk may be interesting, but no one wants to role play several hours of small talk. This caused the session to go father than I expected, however, I don’t think it went off the rails from what I anticipated. I will say though that the second group of Orcs contained an Orog as the leader. I think it was a reasonable decision to have one, but I did not make it clear in the description that this Orc looked different, so the players rightfully assumed it was just another Orc. It was not until it did not go down as easy and started to take out players that they realized this was not a regular Orc. Thankfully, neither of the players died. Having said that an NPC did fall to overflow damage. Morian started with 17 HP then took a 16 point attack dropping him to 1. This was followed with a critical hit causing about 25 points of damage. That dropped him below his max HP in 1 hit causing an instant death. Thankfully, it was an NPC and not a player character as I don’t want my mistake as a DM to cause a player death.

Loot and XP
No XP will be awarded for this session as the players are not currently resting in a safe spot. This will be awarded at a later date. The players were able to recover 12 Javelins and 6 Greataxes from the Orcs. In addition, the player found a couple of gems, specifically an Obsidian, a Star Ruby, and a Jasper.

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Lost Mines of Phandelver - Session 6

The session started off with the party bidding farewell to Gundren at the base camp. Gundren gave each party member a roll of 50 gp as a start of the mine payments. The party travelled back to Phandalin, and discussed the future with their fighting companions. Anlow said he would got back to his home in Phandalin, and continue to keep the woods outside of the city safe. Feck and Daylen said they would also stay in town, though they had no definitive plans. Nefresil and Gareth offered each of Daylen and Feck 1 pp a day to help them travel to Neverwinter, a 3 day trip. The pair eagerly agreed, as this was more money than they could reasonably earn in 3 months, let alone 3 days. Nefresil and Gareth bedded down for the night, and met the pair in the morning. The group travelled to Neverwinter over the course of 3 days. About an hour outside of the city they ran into a company of mercenaries leaving town. They hailed the leaders and learned that the Lord Protector of Neverwinter was in the process of moving mercenaries out of town after there had been several run ins with the town militia that was starting to form. This was confirmed in the inn at night in a conversation with some of the local militiamen.

Nefresil and Gareth paid for Feck and Daylen’s room and dinner for the night before bidding them farewell in the morning. The pair went to a money changer, and changed their coinage into a more manageable number of coins, opting to carry a handful of platinum. They then went around town looking for some work, but not finding anything that interested them. They went to look for any caravans that needed guards.

They came across a Dwarf named Baelnar that was looking to travel up to Kelvin’s Cairn near Ten Towns in Icewind Dale. After some negotiations they agreed to a price of 150 gp each, along with a 2 week stay in Iceland Dale so the adventurers could investigate anything interesting they found. They would then guard the Dwarf back to Luskan. Baelnar gave each 50 gp up front, and told them to meet him near the North Gate in a week’s time.

With some daylight left they decided to purchase some supplies for the upcoming trip. Then they went to find a Wizard to identify the Spider Staff and pipe that they possessed. They found one in a library who told them that the staff indeed was magical, but the pipe was not. He said he could identify it for 50 gp. The party agreed and the wizard told them that the staff, when wielded as a melee weapon did an extra 1d6 poison damage. In addition, it could be used to cast spells. If 1 charge was expended the caster could cast spider climb, and for 2 charges the spell web could be cast. He said the magic in the staff felt full, but he was unable to tell how many charges the staff contained.

DM Recap
This was an interesting session for me. This marked the first session I ran that was not out of a module. I tried to give the players the freedom to do what they wanted. However, I think I went too far in that direction. I did not give them plot hooks in Neverwinter that they could follow. I realized this the next day, and it is something I will try to fix going forward. There were no fights during the session, but the plot still moved forward.

Loot and XP
The party rested in both Phandalin and Neverwinter so the remaining XP from Wave Echo Cave can be awarded. There is 1300 XP to be split 3 ways (Nefresil, Gareth, and a third share to the hirelings), which is 433 each. There is an additional, 1950 XP to be divided 4 ways (Nefresil, Gareth, Gundren, and the hirelings), which is 487 each. Each player is awarded 920 XP, bringing their total to 2195. Here is the breakdown.

Zombies - 150 XP (50 x3)
Flameskull - 1100 XP
Ghouls - 600 XP (200 x3)
Mormesk the Wraith - 700 XP
Spectator - 700 XP

Friday, August 5, 2016

Lost Mines of Phandelver - Session 5

The group started out at their base camp outside of Wave Echo Cave. Their entered the cave, and decided to go East this time into an unexplored art of the cave. After a bit they turned North, and went up a set of steps. They found themselves in a large room that was raised up on both the East and West ends, with a lower part in the middle. There was a cold brazier in the middle part, a pair of tables, and dozens of skeletons. These skeletons were decades, if not centuries old, and had nothing of value on them. However, at the top of the steps, the party ran into a trio of ghouls that attacked. The party retreated down the steps and blocked the hallway while taking bowshots at the ghouls. They quickly dispatched the ghouls without taking much damage themselves.

They crossed the room, and exited to the North where they found a set of bellows and a giant waterwheel. There was also a floating skull wreathed in green flames. The skull told the party to turn back as it was tasked with keeping intruders out. Nefresil and Gareth attempted to convince the skull that they were not intruders, but the skull refused to believe them. The party was able to carefully go along the wall to get to an exit to the East. Here they found a room with gems in the ceiling that glittered in the light. There were also 2 built buildings here. They entered the northernmost building and found a spectator, a giant floating eye with 4 eyestalks. This being spoke to the group telling them that they would not pass it. It was summoned by a wizard that used to operate in the cave, and set to guard the forge of spells. The players tried to convince this being that that mine was no longer in operation. However, the being would not believe the group, ignoring all evidence that did not agree with its story. At this point Nefresil and Gareth decided that maybe bringing Gundren in would help to convince both of these beings to not attack.

Gundren attempted to convince the flaming skull that he was now the rightful owner of the mine, but the skull did not believe him. In the end they made a deal, that if Gundren re-opened the mine and forge of spells the skull would work for Gundren and protect the mine. Once that was taken care of, they moved on to the spectator. This was harder as the spectator refused to accept any evidence that the mine was not operational and that its previous master no longer lived. However after some more talking and persuasion by the group, the spectator disappeared and left the group alone. Nefresil suggested looking into the next room before escorting Gundren back out of the cave. Upon entering that room a wraith appeared and named itself Mormesk. It threatened the group, and after a bit of talk it attacked the group. Nefresil had the party fan out and begin attacking the wraith. Gundren backed out of the room to avoid the fight. The group soon found that while arrows could harm the wraith, they were not as effective as they could be. The wraith hit Nefresil with a life drain attack and dropped him to negative HP. He failed the subsequent CON saving throw, but Gareth used his wild magic to give him a re-roll, which he succeeded on. Cale, the bar, stabilized Nefresil, but was the recipient of the next life drain attack by the wraith. This attack dropped Cale to 0 HP, and Cale failed his save, causing his max HP to drop to 0, and thus cause an instant death. Gareth used magic missile twice, and a few more bowshots from the rest of the group eventually brought down the wraith.

The group decided to rest long enough for Nefresil to regain consciousness, at which point he healed himself with his magic. During this time the rest of the group searched the room for anything of value. They found some coins, a couple of gems, a spell scroll, and a very nice pipe. They moved back to the room that the spectator inhabited, and searched it. After some time, they came away with a war hammer, short sword, metal rod, and a wand. With all of this gear in hand, they left the cave to rest back at the base camp for rest.

DM Recap
The session seemed to go well, though we got started a little late. The players made good decisions throughout the session, and attempted to talk instead of fighting everything that moved. They were successful a couple of times. The fight with the wraith was pretty tense especially with a PC going down during the fight. When an NPC was killed with a single hit of the life drain, everyone was shocked. It was a pretty memorable moment in the game.

Loot and XP
The party picked up 1100 cp, 160 sp, and 50 ep as far as coins. They also found 2 diamonds and a wooden pipe with platinum filigree. The spell scroll was a scroll of Greater Invisibility. The war hammer was magical, and Gundren claimed it for himself as it was clearly made for Dwarves. The iron rod is an immovable rod that can be placed anywhere and when a button is pressed it stays there and will hold up to 8000 pounds. The wand is a wand of Lightning Bolt with 7 charges. Finally the short sword is a Short Sword +1. Gundren looked at it and told Nefresil that it is one of the mirror swords that were wielded by Ilthuryn Urilar, an Elf famous for his fighting prowess, but dead now for hundreds years. It is part of a matched set, however, the swords were never known to be separated from each other, and were thought to be buried with the Elf, somewhere far to the East. No XP was awarded for this session. I will award it when the group finishes with Wave Echo Cave.

Monday, May 30, 2016

Lost Mines of Phandelver - Session 4

The session started with Nefresil and Gareth making sure they were properly geared up before heading into the mountains for Wave Echo Cave. Nefresil had copied Gundren’s map, so there was little chance they would get lost. The party made it to Gundren’s base camp in the early afternoon. The base camp had sharpened stakes on the outside and walls around it to ward off anything that may wander by. Nefresil suggested the go ahead and go into the cave. They filed into the opening single file, and after a short walk there was an open cavern with a pit in the northeast. Here the party came across the dead body of a Dwarf. There were no physical signs to explain the death. The body was taken back to the base camp while Nefresil made his way down into the pit to explore.

The pit contained a tunnel to the East, and another to the Northwest. After conferring with Gareth the decision was made to follow the path to the Northwest. They followed the path until it hit some hallways that were clearly carved by the Dwarves that previously lived here. These did not immediately lead anywhere, so the party decided to continue heading Northwest. They finally came to a room with a still pool of water in the Northwest part of the room. There was a stairway to the East that led to a hallway and a door. There was also a river flowing out of the pool to the Northeast, that could be followed, but would required walking/crawling in the water. The group decided to listen at the door, where gruff voices were heard, but no words could be understood. They could also tell there was a flickering light in the room.

The party continued down the hallway, and up another flight of steps. Nefresil looked around the corner and saw a tall bipedal creature that was occasionally looking down into a pit. He hurried back to the rest of the party, and relayed what he saw. He then stealthily went back up the stairs, and fired an arrow at the creature. It turned on him and as it began to walk over, yelled into the pit. in Goblin, “Get up here!” As it got closer the party recognized the creature as a doppelganger. They surrounded the creature, and slaughtered it. While this happened Nefresil went around the doppelganger, and over to the pit where a rope was tied off. He cut the rope as a bugbear was climbing up it. Once the party finished off the doppelganger, they made their way to the pit, and killed the bugbear before it was able to climb out.

They then made their way back to the door, and set a trap. Four people were on one side of the door with bows and crossbows ready. The other two party members were on the other side of the door ready with swords. The sword wielding adventurers threw rocks at the door until a pair of bugbears emerged. As the first got into the intersection. it was fired upon by 2 longbows and 2 hand crossbows. At the same time it was hit with 2 swords. This bug bear went down quickly, and the second bugbear then became the target and did not fare any better. A third bugbear was in the room, but thought better of running out. Instead it went to the other door in the room, and began to move the various wood and objects that were blocking it. However, the party got to it, and swiftly ended its life. At this point, they decided to take a short rest in this room as it was relatively defensible.

With health returned, the group continued exploring, and near where the doppelganger was killed, they found an ornate set of double doors. They heard a voice inside speaking as if to a pet. They threw open the doors and entered but quickly spread out. A single Drow was in the room, and he looked up and began to speak. Nefresil cut it off with an arrow, and the party took to its task with brutal efficiency. The Drow was mercilessly killed along with a giant spider that lurked in the room. The party found an iron key on the Drow’s body and it worked the lock to the next room over. Inside that room was a bound and unconscious Dwarf. This turned out to be Gundren’s other brother Nundro. He was helped out of the cave, and back to the base camp, where the group chose to rest for the night.

DM Recap
I felt like the session went well. Once again the players made good tactical decisions, and that proved to be a big deal. Each player controlled 1 of the level 0 Fighters, while I controlled the Classed NPCs. I felt like this went well except that the NPCs I controlled were not able to shine because I tried not to hog the spotlight. During 2 of the battles, I stopped them with a single bugbear alive, but with nowhere for it to escape. I felt like the party was going to kill it anyway, so there was no point in playing out another round or 2. I tried to only do it where it made sense. The Drow was supposed to be a harder fight, but 5 of the PCs/NPCs went first in initiative and focus fired on the Drow. If it were not for a bad damage roll on a Critical Hit, the Drow may not have even gotten a turn. The players will be going back in to the cave in the next session, but we are pretty close to wrapping up The Lost Mine of Phandelver.

Loot and XP
The group found a total of 15 pp, 130 gp, 203 ep, and 15 cp in their adventures. They also have a potion of healing (2d4+2), a potion of vitality (removes exhausted, cures poison and disease, maximizes Hit Dice for 1 day), and Nezznar’s staff. The staff is a black adamantine staff with a black spider at the top of it. A stack of papers showing where Nezznar had already explored and what he had found was also recovered by the party. The papers show that there are undead forces in the cave, and that thus far Nezznar had not been able to defeat them to find what he had been seeking. The XP will be broken down into 3 equal shares. That is 1 share for Gareth, 1 share for Nefresil, and 1 share split by Cale, Anlow, Daylen, and Feck. Each group gets 800 XP. The breakdown is:

4 Bugbears @ 200 XP - 800 XP
Doppelganger - 700 XP
Giant Spider - 200 XP
Nezznar the Black Spider (Drow) - 450 XP
Rescuing Nundro - 250 XP

Nefresil and Gareth have now attained 3rd level. They must spend 24 hours in the base camp for this to take effect, though this can be considered to have happened between sessions. Players should spend some time considering the options for this.

Friday, April 8, 2016

Lost Mines of Phandelver - Session 3

We picked back up about half a day outside of Phandalin after clearing out the Cragmaw Cave. The party awoke in the morning and decided that they needed to discuss the plan going forward with Gundren. The 3 went off on their own to discuss. Gareth and Nefresil wanted to know what Gundren's plans were for the mine, and if he was going to need them for anything. Gundren told them that he and his brothers would need help clearing the cave out based on their last venture into the cave. Gundren's two brothers are supposed to be at the cave guarding it, lest someone else discover it and attempt to claim it. Gundren offered the Nefresil and Gareth a 10% share of the wealth produced by the cave (5% each) in perpetuity. The party decided that they would need help to go into the cave and sweep it clean, based on observations from Gundren's previous ventures into the cave. Gundren offered to fully fund a base camp outside of the cave, and to fund the provisions they needed, but insisted that the party pay anyone they were going to hire to help with the cave. Nefresil and Gareth agreed to this after some discussion.

The party made its way back to Phandalin with no troubles. Connal, Dhugal, and Nigel left the party and went their own way. Gareth and Nefresil made their way to Barthen's Provisions to collect payment for taking Gundren's goods to the town. They then moved on to the Lionshield Coster to sell a jade statue they recovered from the Cragmaw Cave. The owner, Linene Graywind, told them it was worth 40gp. Gareth was able to persuade her to pay 50gp for him, and the party left happy. Upon returning to the inn, Gundren gave each party member 25gp for rescuing him. By the evening they noticed that the people in town that know Gundren, had a lot more respect for the PCs.

The party decided to recruit some fighters, and, in addition, see if anyone approached them hoping to gain some renown by helping. During this time they were approached by Anlow, a woodsman in the area that was willing to help in order to help remove any threats from the area. The bard, Cale, that was in the Stonehill Inn performing approached the party saying he wished to join the venture as it would make a good story. Finally, a young woman approached the party, sneaking up on them, and expressed an interest in joining. Nefresil expressed his interest in not hiring her. She was unwilling to give a reason for wanting to join the party other than for gold, and that did not sit well with him. Gareth agreed and they politely declined her services. In addition to Anlow and Cale, the players were able to hire 2 fighters; Daylen and Feck.

DM Recap
This session started out with a discussion about the world change that I sprung on the players last session. I won't get into that, see the previous post entitled Change and New Worlds for more information. Once it was decided to move back to Forgotten Realms and retcon the previous session away things went smoothly. I was not really prepared to run anything, but since it was mostly planning that occurred, I decided to go ahead and wing it. Once again the players have decided to employ hirelings to help them clear out Wave Echo Cave. After some discussion, we decided to have the players each run 1 of the hirelings, specifically the 2 fighters. This was to prevent my as the DM monopolizing the combat.

Loot and XP
No loot or XP was awarded for this session. The players were awarded some loot in game for clearing out the cave. The received 600cp, 110sp, and a Jade statue.