Adam has started playing Dungeons and Dragons with some friends in London. Here is his account of their first epic journey.
For this third night, and all sessions from now onwards, the Dungeon Master instigated ‘inspiration points’ as a reward for decisions and gameplay made that he considered true to our characters, and told us there would be punishments for ‘meta-gaming’, so any information gained by us that our characters would not know could not be acted upon. This way, if one of us (Tiny) found some loot and didn’t want to share it, none of us could use the fact that we clearly just heard about it to make him share. The bastard. In addition to this, players were encouraged to message the GM or pass notes for anything they wanted to do and keep secret from the rest of us. Some have used this facility more than others. Like Deano. The bastard.
As with the second night, and the busy schedules of everyone involved, the line up for this session changed again. This time it was Varm who couldn’t make it, written out as having just wandered off by himself. Lordi and Samuel, absent last time as they went off on their own quest, were discovered captured and chained up (presumably by the redbrands) in the room adjacent to where we left our adventurers last time battling a small group of skeletons. After the group saw them off (and Tiny managed to finally extract himself from the hole he was stuck in), Rick ninja-rolled (rickrolled?) through the unlocked door, freeing Sam and Lordi along with a few other hostages. The group found some red cloaks nearby, putting them all on to fool any other redbrands they came across in the rest of the dungeon. Proceeding through a door in the storeroom, we all came to a large cavern with a dark crevasse in the middle and a few small bridges crossing to stairs the other side.
As we entered the cavern, everyone was suddenly stuck by different telepathic messages. King Roberto’s was “Not as good at stabbing as you think you are”, but while he ignored the sentiment as ridiculous, was heartened to find out that for once everyone else was hearing voices in their heads too. Further into the cave, everyone received a second, but this time identical, telepathic message – “Feed me and I will let you live”. Rick used his magic to enchant one of the many beaver pelts he had taken from the storeroom, turning it basically into a glowstick, before throwing it into the darkness to light the way. We then dropped Francis’ corpse (the man Roberto tormented and murdered last time) into the hole, allowing a quick glimpse of the creature communicating with us as it tore apart the carcass. Lordi, the most impulsive player in the group, decided he/she/they were bored of this and fired at the creature. Tiny also tried to steal from a treasure chest hidden under the bridge, and so the creature, revealed to be a Nothic (see the title image!) attacked. Deano placated him by dropping in another body.
Meanwhile, King Roberto, Rick and Sam all headed down some stairs to investigate the rest of the cavern. In one room, they found four drunken redbrands sitting round a table. Thanks to the red cloaks and some quick talking they managed to convince them that they are just new recruits and join them in a drink. Not long after this, Roberto decided to use the disappearing pencil trick from ‘The Dark Knight‘ with his dagger on the nearest redbrand, killing him instantly before slashing at the next nearest. Bubbles takes out one, Rick melons another in the head with a mallet. Bloody combat.
In the room opposite this, Tiny and Bubbles crept inside to find a lab. Seeing a rat, Tiny scored possibly his first kill of the entire adventure. With a ranged attack. On a defenceless rat. This rat turns out to be Glass-staff’s (the guy we are looking for), who was asleep next door and psychically linked to the rodent. Now awake and in agony, he retreated through a secret door and escaped.
During this session Roberto developed an obsession with getting hold of an eyepatch, and continued his distrust of Deano. Mainly because he was feeding every corpse we created to the Nothic down the hole. On the plus side, he developed a friendship with it and scored plenty of information about Glass-Staff, Black Spider and their plans. However, as this has all been telepathically communicated to Deano, he chose to lie and says he got the information from Glass-staff’s desk. Filthy lies. After finding some nifty loot, we headed back to town, ready to head out for the next part of the adventure.
Finally, we all recently started another new campaign, this time a dungeon run by a very senior member of our lab using the 1st Edition of the Advanced Monster Manual – nearly 40 years old! My character in this game is Texas BBQ (pronounced ‘Tehas Beh Beh Que’), a female half-elf thief. The rules are far less forgiving than the 5th edition, plunging deep into a decades-old dungeon full of zombies, rogues, wizards, orcs and teleporters. While it will be a less frequent game, it is also pretty interesting comparing how different the 1st and 5th edition games are. I think the chances of me dying horribly are much higher though, having barely avoided death by the skin of my teeth already.
Check out part 4 here!