White Box dungeon adventure!
Mammatus – The Coast Explodes (pregame)
Oophoi & Tau Ceti – Subterranea
Rapoon – From Shadows Sleep
Mac the Fighter, Andalar Vijg the Elf, and Auriane the Rogue met in the village of Humbelton, a waypoint for adventurers seeking gold and glory. Questioning the tavernkeeper, Brother Arl at the Church of Iluvatar, and a local alchemist cryptically named “the Magister,” they gleaned some information about their chosen adventure destination, the ruined monastery in the nearby hills.
The Order of St. Finlay, an group of warrior-monks dedicated to the preservation and triumph of Law, built this monastery over a cave complex tainted by Chaos and strove valiantly to contain the evils therein. The vigilant monks lapsed into complacency as their wealth amassed, and their stronghold was ultimately sacked and razed to the ground by greedy warlords. Now the place is rumored to be home to bandits, goblins, demons, the ghosts of murdered monks, or other nasties depending on who was telling the tale…
Rather than bore you with a blow-by-blow account, here are a few bits:
- The PCs were assisted by two hirelings: Durel Blackthumbs, a failed farmer-turned-lantern bearer, and his brother-in-law Pilut the Bowman.
- The PCs found a strange, softball-sized, gold-flecked blue egg in a nest in the ruins, and opted not to take it with them underground but to collect it on their way back to town. Above ground, they also observed the passage of a group of bandits, who were in possession of a large sack, in which something roughly-human-sized wriggled and made muffled sounds. Outnumbered and not wanting to expose themselves to unnecessary risk, the party did not intervene.
- As they explored the subterranean rooms they encountered (in no particular order) large spiders, goblins, a room full of green slime, a tunnel wolf, yellow mold, a mysterious trail of breadcrumbs, pit and arrow traps, some phantom noises, two ghouls, and several groups of giant rats.
- There a few near-death experiences but at the end of the session the ruins had only claimed a single casualty: Mac the Fighter, who was laid low by a particularly nasty giant rat.
- The party explored most of the level, and found a crevasse in the chapel that looked to provide a point of entry into the crypts below. Having already lost one comrade, our would-be heroes wisely opted to return to town with their loot and regroup before proceeding any deeper…
- Loose ends: the wriggling Sack, a signet ring marked with a stylized letter “R,” the mysterious Blue Egg, alchemical-ingredient-hunting for the Magister.
- Several tables and resources culled from around the Old School community proved to go over well with the group: Michael Curtis’ “Random Hireling Generator” (from Knockspell #1, which spawned Durel and Pilut), Paul Vermeren’s “Dungeon Motivations” (Fight On! #5), Jeff Rients’ “Carousing Mishaps” (Fight On! #4), and Lord Kilgore’s poker-chip method for keeping track of time in the dungeon. Special thanks as well to James Maliszewski, whose “Ruined Monastery” (Fight On! #1) provided the dungeon map and many details for this adventure. Thanks for contributing to our fun, guys!
- At the close of the session, I wasn’t sure if we would be continuing. The game was intended to be a one-shot, so I gave the group the option to use the “Dungeon Escapes” table from the Miscellaneum of Cinder. The players declined, and instead chose to travel back to Humbelton as a group with the possibility of continuing this game on a future Sunday evening. Sounds good to me!