Twenty-third Session (10 page pdf) – “The Baneful Depths” – Jaren the Jinx wants his arm back, so the party accompanies him to a dungeon his pirate father sometimes used to stash treasure. Random encounter chart – 01-25: serpent chickens; 26-50: rape bugs; 51-75: bad dogs; 76-00 women!
We’re closing in on the finale of the first plot arc of the Reavers on the Seas of Fate campaign. I comboed up three major things for this session. First, the cultists, including the halfling riding the easy-chair-headed zombie, were from the adventure I used last time, Green Ronin’s “A Dreadful Dawn,” from their Bleeding Edge line of d20 adventures. Then for the “arm recovery” plot, I was using Goodman Games’ “Throwdown with the Arm-Ripper,” from their Wicked Fantasy Factory line. Finally, for the meat of the dungeon, I used a randomly generated dungeon, courtesy of Dizzy Dragon Games’ awesome online Adventure Generator.
I really enjoyed using the random dungeon generator. The process of taking a completely random dungeon and turning it into something that seems ‘real’ is something I’ll post about separately because it’s a big topic, but I was very happy how it did most of the heavy lifting for me, and I just had to edit it and come up with the whys and wherefores. It turned into a pretty organic interconnected area, and since it was super old and all the doors had fallen down and everything, there was an interesting effect; instead of the “open a door, deal with that threat, open another door, deal with that threat” syndrome, there were a lot of locations with critters that could detect or be detected by the PCs at varying ranges. The hell hound mass rush, the rust monsters attacking when the PCs were investigating a pit, the rust monsters attacking while the group was ambushing some more hell hounds, and Sindawe running across the women adventurers while chasing a hell hound all contributed to a very free-roaming and dynamic environment. It was unlike an organized force, though, like attacking a castle where all the guards and stuff communicate and come after you with coherence. So, for example, the hell hounds ended up attacking some of the rust monsters as well.
The illusion of the adventuring party was entertaining. I use picture printouts clipped to my DM screen as visual aids for many NPCs and critters. For this one, I removed all the printouts and indicated the big raft of iconics that adorn the screen itself – Valeros, Seoni, Merisel, et cetera. it kinda tipped Sindawe off that the whole thing was an illusion, but the players’ initial reaction of “Really?!?” was worth it.