Posted on December 29, 2010
The Acts of the Lords of Rannick, II
When I started this campaign off there were only three players. I’ve said that I’d run it with as few as two, although thankfully it has never come to that.
Three players is fine at first – slightly underpowered, but at 1st and 2nd level part of winning is just showing up. It seems like at higher levels how the group plays together – tanks up front, support at the rear, healers flitting between is important. Coordinating plans on the fly, as I think the last session shows, can get really awkward with many people.
Last night’s session was a good lesson in how small groups can still be effective. There wasn’t a lot of planning, but everyone knew roughly what the dangers were and stuck to – if not a plan – then an approach.
Part II – Skull Crossing Dam; Team Chaos!
Having seen off the Ogres that had been hacking the dam apart, the party retired to the barely adequate Ettin cave for some recuperation and to get out of the worsening storm.
After resting, Tersplink, Kerplak and Dagfinn set out to investigate the building that straddled the walkway of the dam, with its odd ziggurat of carven stone skulls.
They found the doors propped up in place and secured by a seemingly immovable barricade. Fortunately, all this skull-themed carving wasn’t entirely pointless as the wall-skull closest to them had windows in the eye and nose sockets. Sneaking through, the scouting team found a vine-choked room with nests constructed of moss and creepers.
Proceeding into the next room, but tipped off by Kerplak’s preternaturally good hearing that something may be on the other side, Dagfinn cloaked everyone with his Invisibility Sphere. Cracking the door they found four trolls, covered in vines, waiting.
Tersplink Entangled the room with grasping plant-life, snagging and pulling at the trolls, while Dagfinn chose strategic areas to coat with Grease which were then ignited. Kerplak flooded the air with crossbow bolts and deafened two of the trolls, causing considerable havoc.
One troll burned away, unable to escape the flames, tangling plant life and missile fire; his comrades fled the building as fast as they were able. Reluctant to give up their advantage of terrain just to move forward, the party kept the Grease and Entangle spells up and retreated back the way they came.
Back outside, they climbed onto the roof and were rushed by the remaining trolls. Due to the narrow confines of the ledge the trolls weren’t able to surround the party the way they’d like and could only come after them one at a time. Another well-placed Grease spell slowed the attack down, helping to kill another troll and Tersplink cast Fly on himself and Dagfinn, giving them enough space to engage to trolls with missile attacks. Seeing that they were denied the ability to attack again, the trolls fled again, this time only one escaping.
With three of the trolls dead and burned, the party examined the rest of the building. they found more troll nests amongst the vine-choked ruins and some rooms filled with a harmless fungus. There was evidence of contact with the Kreeg ogres as they found over-sized and gnawed bones amongst the vines and ogre hooks used to help barricade the western doors shut.
They also found two great stone doors. Graffitti scrawled across the door in the crude runes of giants warned that below there was someone called Wet Papa Grazuul. Kerplak tried pushing them open, but they barely budged.
The scouting party left the doors alone and decided to try abseiling further down the dam to examine the massive skulls that decorated the dam’s face… and that’s where we left them.
There wasn’t much progress made, but what there was was safe and successful, which was no mean feat for such a small crew.