Thursday, August 13, 2020

Session Report - Keep on the Borderlands, Strange Game Play

We played outside, until the wind flipped the table and scatter our dice and sheets. 

That's ok. This second session was a building session and since I cleared up the character sheets, I can put names to stats, so to speak. 

Lauren is a human ranger, second level. 
Aleric is a half elven fighter-cleric-magic user. He is the only 1st level character. 
Vandohl or Vandal (spelled two different ways) is the dwarven cleric. 
Belaphon is an elven magic user. 
Solvo is the hobbit thief and the only character injured in the last session. He has 1 hit point left.
Helvani is a human paladin. 

There is an odd PLAYER dynamic happening, I have three players controlling two players each. Ranger is matched to thief, the cleric with the paladin, and C-F-MU with MU. Two people can heal the thief, but no one has offered and it hasn't been asked for. Not sure why. 

So, let's rewind to review session one. The characters got chased off by the kobolds after entering area A. They now know there is a pit trap and at least 8 kobold guards. They knocked two kobolds down to zero hp, but their friends dragged them into their lair. They will heal up. 

Instead of participating with all of the archery, the thief (Solvo) ran into the Ogre's lair. He was struck for 6 points of damage and played dead. The Ogre ran at the party but was driven off by missile fire and spells. When he returned to his lair, Solvo killed him with backstab in the dark. The party dragged the body to their original camp and laid him out like a sleeping camper. In the image below, the red circle is the abandoned campsite, which has the ogre's body and a fire.  


At the start of session 2, the players have posted guards at the entrance to their cave E. They are watching for monsters. They noticed movement above the tree over cave A, marked in orange. These things are too big to be kobolds. They noticed the kobolds seem to appear out the tree, apparently they sneak up there from the entrance. The yellow line is another set of creatures, they are bigger than kobolds but smaller than humans. 

In the morning the party hacked down some branches to sweep out the litter in the cave and promptly discover the treasure. The thief immediately noticed some of the gold pieces are lead. The team formulates a plan. 

Lauren, Belaphon and Helvani will return to the Keep with their found gold pieces and the party's remaining funds for more supplies. 

The according to the map, the keep is about fifty 100 yard squares away. The module says characters can cover 3 squares or 300 yards an hour. I've never bought that one. It's about 3 miles away, they have a map and a ranger. The Keep is 1 to 2 hour away from the Caves, if no mistakes are made. 

While the party is divided, Solvo, Vandal and Aleric discover the magic arrows, the potion and the scroll while cleaning. They debate over the purpose of the gold plated lead coins and count everything else. They take turns cutting firewood with the only hatchet they have.

They have three interesting sightings through out the day. Vandal heard goblin voices from the east. Instead of spotting actual goblins, he spied a mountain lion. Later in the day, Solvo notices three smaller orcs foraging for firewood. They seem to be children and the party retreats deeper into the cave.  

After dinner, the rest of the party returns. They pause at their old camp and notice that an animal has eaten part of the ogre. Mountain Lions. Ick. From there, they make a crazy slow-panicked dash to their new home, with many odd things. 

Back at the Keep, the players were determined to find several dogs. They found two full sized mastiff like dogs and a collie puppy. The mastiffs were used to tow two small wagons. These wagons are children's toys and were lashed to the dogs with two 10 foot poles each. In the wagons were a barrel of water and a large wooden chest packed full of iron rations plus a few implements like shovels, axes and brooms. Each PC was carrying 50' of rope, three wine skins and three waterskins. They have quivers of arrows and slings and an extra pair of bows lashed to their backs. They are dying from the weight. 

They also have 3 books, ink and pens which the ranger bought to write down spells. This sparked a heated conversation with the mage who knew they weren't the right materials. Before leaving, there was a second fight about bankrolling the remaining gold. The weight made the choice easy, but tempers were short.  

It took an hour to get to the keep at a jog, 3 hours to find the dogs and less than an hour to buy all of the rest of the stuff. The return trip was a 4 hour circus, because the dogs aren't draft animals and the alternative was the players leading a dog while pulling a wagon, which left the third PC to keep track of the puppy and items that were dropped. 

The characters all settled in their new hobbit hole. Half the party ate and sacked out immediately. Solvo, Vandal and Alaric straighten up a bit and drew straws for guard duty. Belaphon grumpily pitched in when not pretending to sleep. He spent some time talking about the merits of magic over prayer while examining the found scroll, which is clerical in nature. 

Three times in the night, the guard sighted orcs by the tree and heard both kobolds and goblins. Solvo could swear he heard goblins right in their cave, but could find nothing. 

The players didn't seem interested in experience points, so I didn't award any this time. I have to tabulate the pool, but I think they earned a total 600 from the treasure alone and probably an equal amount as role play and clear thinking awards. By the way, Solvo is up one hit point from natural healing. I'll allow it this time, but he needs magic or rest. 

If you like the character sheets from the image above, you can download them from DriveThruRPG. There are 2 styles, both with 7 stats for AD&D and Unearthed Arcana.  


Character Sheet for AD&D
Character Sheet
Character Sheet for AD&D

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