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D&D General How Was Your Last Session?

THEMNGMNT

Adventurer
I hope the Ranger's player was kinda aware of what was gonna happen. Cuz that kinda sucks if you killed the character totally out of hand.
A little from Column A, a little from Column B.

Having your character die at the hand of a resurrected former PC now in thrall to an evil god trapped in Hell and having your death be the key that releases said god from Hell is always going to suck.

However, the characters are 20th level and at this point death is but a speed bump. The ranger will be back. And he'll be pissed.

I like to think that after almost four years playing together in this campaign there's a little bit of trust.
 

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Zardnaar

Legend
Battle of Sasserine Tonight. 6 level 6 PCs.

Basically the imperialistic elves sent a fleet to invade Sasserine.

Previous sessions they...

Convinced Arkhosia to dispatch a legion plus ships.

Retrieved prism flower artillery.

Convinced Gnomes to send an ironclad with Gnomish fire launchers.

Sasserine was well defended.
They scouted the invasion fleet and ran rings around the opposing scouts. Identified the leaders flags and Vanthus Vanderboren ship.

The council deployed the Dragonborn legion in the landing area the PCs identified as.

Think Omaha Beach.

Waves of aquatic Simic hybrids added to various NPCs. +1 AC and water breathing. 5th wave was actual proper troops.

Used mutated reef sharks as well with legs and a bit of Spellcasters. Mostly CR 2.

AKA cannon fodder.

Each wave only lasted 2 rounds or so and one of them involved running up the beach.

This was deliberate the opposing commander is limited and the waves are mostly to deplete the PCs.

5 waves only lasted 9 rounds or so. Each wave was mostly to suck up spell effects and make them deplete their resources.

Kinda funny seeing them mulch into lightning bolts, fireballs and spirit guardians.

Waves 6-8 will have dispel magic, casters etc available.

No short rests though.

Have to finish up next week. Probably push them off the beach but have them withdraw to Sasserine for Vanthus's final assault.

Or have the Dragonborn win but PCs have to be dispatched to Sasserine.
 

jasper

Rotten DM
My game went full gonzo. They try to feed an egg to a bearded devil name Thoss. I said disadvantage and they still manage to do it. And what is good for the monster is good for the pc. Thoss fed an egg to a pc. PC did not survive. The Egg was from a bag of beans. As we halted the session to discuss, long rest, short rest and what to do with the bodies. The group decided to stop doing AL and do homebrew.
 

RoiC.

Villager
Pretty meh, honestly. My country entered a 3rd lockdown recently, so we got back to online session. We had a few session over Roll20 during the first lockdown, but I hated it, so we took a break for a while. This time, we used only Discord and Owlbear Rodeo for combat, to make it more simple. However, I still felt very constricted, and felt like my improv and acting abilities were stunted. It went ok and the players had a really good time, but I didn't enjoy it as much as I do in fact to face, real life sessions.

I told them we'll take another break, until we can meet face to face again. I want to enjoy playing.
 

THEMNGMNT

Adventurer
Got ya. That's understandable.
To be totally honest, killing a PC always causes me some anxiety. I want the threat of death to be real so players feel like there are meaningful consequences to their actions, but at the same time I want my players to have a great time. It's a tricky balance. That said, I'm hearing positive feedback on this final phase of the campaign.
 

THEMNGMNT

Adventurer
19th session in Dragon Heist/Deck of Many Things mashup set in "my version" of the Realms. Three PCs at 5th level.

Last session, they entered the Margaster Estate (same map as the Cassalanter Villa) to steal/collect several cards from the Deck of Many Things. They soon discovered that a drow team had the same mission. In the secret temple below the estate, the PCs battled the drow and the Margasters. The PCs killed one of the adult children of Lord Margaster. But a drow assassin grabbed the cards and escaped into the sewers. The PCs pursued.

This session began with the PCs capturing the drow. Margaster guards were on their heels. The drow told the PCs the smart play would be to let him go with all the cards. Why? Well, turns out he's the brother of the female drow who is the love interest of the PC wizard. If the drow loses the cards to the PCs, his matron mother will kill both him and his sister in retribution. The PCs agree to let him go. Now that they know who has these cards, the PCs tell themselves, they can always go back and collect them later.

The PCs decide to focus on the Margasters while they have the advantage. The Margasters own a fortress outside of Waterdeep known as Thornhold. There, they keep a silver chalice imbued with the power of Siamorphe, the goddess of the divine right to rule. This chalice gives Lord Margaster his otherworldly charisma. Additionally, it can be used to bring his daughter back from the dead. The PCs fabricate a fake chalice to swap out with the real one.

They need to get to Thornhold before Lord Margaster. They book a ship -- a rumrunner captained by a connection of the PC rogue. Unfortunately, the PCs previously pissed off the Kraken League (my version of the pirate captains of Luskan with a bit of abolethic mind control in the mix). Halfway to Thornhold they are overtaken by a Kraken League warship. The captain of the rumrunner apologizes for ratting them out to the Kraken League. Nothing personal; just business. "This isn't personal either," says the PC rogue as he stabs the captain, "just business." The PCs quickly dispatch the rumrunner's crew. But the warship is almost upon them.

And that's where we ended things. It was a super fun session where a lot happened in only two hours.

Next session: Boarding actions!
 
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We were very measured and judicious. We did a lot of negotiating, and backed off rather than slaughter a bunch of people, and had a debate about the nature of evil and whether gods were fixed in their nature or could change, and we cast divinations, and assembled old allies to consult and do some long-term strategising - and then an ancient blue dragon kicked down the door (we're level 7...) and we ended the session by rolling initiative.

Next session could be interesting. Or short.
 

Eis

Explorer
we had a very nice weekend of Rise of the Runelords 3.5 style. crossed our DM up by coming at the area we were entering by an alternate route and forced him to improvise quite a bit which he is actually very good at. Personally I used my new fluorite dice that my son got me for Christmas to great effect, rolling quite a few criticals. Easily was the most badass that my dwarven kensai felt since I have created him
 

My kids were both loopy, so we didn't get very far today. Still, our caravan got out of the Fields of the Dead, and a few things of note happened. First, one of our PCs was found dead with a dagger through the heart. (The player had to leave the game.) Without blowing our cover, we discovered that one of the wagons she had talked to the day before had at least one dragon cultist in it. (We already knew the other wagon she had talked to was a cultist wagon.) After a quick burial and discussion about whether to send her possessions back to her family (which happily lived not too far from the caravan's path) or if we should loot them (which I vetoed) the caravan continued on its way.

The other thing of note that happened was that the caravan spotted a herd of deer with a golden stag. My DMPC, who is a ranger, noted that it reminded her of her spirit animal. She went along on the hunting expedition, though, because she wanted to bring some venison back to the caravan -- and she was secretly hoping to save the golden stag. No luck on that latter part. Our dwarf brought it down in two shots, only to discover that it was really a woodelf that he had shot -- naked except for an antler headband. A quick investigation showed that the headband was cursed and had caused the transformation into a stag. (They put it on the dwarf's horse and could barely get it off.) They decided to sell it, with the dwarf getting half the money and the rest split between the other adventurers.

They also decided that it was wisest to just tell the caravan that the stag got away and not to mention the dead elf.
 

Hexmage-EN

Adventurer
After the very combat heavy previous session, this session was almost all RP. Two of the players just wanted to take a long rest but kept running into situations where their normal haunts were unavailable, while the the third wanted to find a friend who was currently visiting a community of unusually peaceful goblins and recruited the aid of a previously-established NPC to help in case something went wrong.

Coming up with sites to see in the common area of a peaceful goblin warren was fun. At one point a young goblin jumped on the NPC ally's back to ride around on him while another goblin tried to pick the distracted NPCs' pocket. There was also a goblin practicing fishing by reeling in and throwing back the same fish in a small basin repeatedly, as well as a goblin trying to read who tore out and threw away pages he got frustrated with. Finally, I foreshadowed a performance where a goblin was going to eat a rock, then as the PC was leaving she observed the goblin with an oversized rock in his mouth using a hammer and chisel to break it into smaller pieces he could swallow (and later regurgitate in private).
 


Last session was one of the most enjoyable I've had. I had very little preparation to do, as the players had spent enough time dicking about that I'd significantly overprepped for previous sessions. Kicked off with an entertaining bit of NPC chatting before they struck off on their plan.

As usual, they approached things completely differently to how I was expecting but, while sometimes that leaves me floundering, this time the consequences of their stupid decisions just seemed to flow naturally from the setup. Very easy to run, and it seemed like everyone had a blast.
 

Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
Most of my games, recently, have been stalled by various people having acute cases of Life. Exhaustion, illness, and the like have led to skipped sessions.

But, this week, a new game looks to be starting up, with an entirely different group of people. I've made up a kobold rogue. Yes, I know mechanically kobolds are unimpressive, but the roleplaying shtick playing off the party dragonborn paladin (played by my wife), is too rich an opportunity to pass up. We'll be going through Rime of the Frost Maiden, which is going to be... interesting.
 


Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
Oh, piffle. Kobold rogue is getting axed. GM was willing to flex, but then had to rein in deviations form the books she's got in Roll20. So, dwarf rogue, instead.
 

THEMNGMNT

Adventurer
Session 116. 20th level player characters with 2 epic boons each. Tiamat has escaped from Hell and intends to slay Bahamut to gain power over all dragons in the multiverse. The player characters are trying to stop her.

In this session, the PCs had their final battle with Malystryx, Tiamat's exarch in Faerun. Malystryx is an ancient red dragon. When they brought her to zero hit points, she transformed into an ancient blue dragon. When they brought her to zero hit points again, she transformed into an ancient green dragon. Then a black dragon. And finally a white dragon. The battle took about 10 rounds. The PCs were aided by two ancient gold dragons and the outcome of the battle was never really in doubt, even though a couple PCs were knocked out.

Yet just as the PCs defeated Malystryx...Tiamat killed Bahamut!

But how? Tiamat was attempting to assemble and reforge the mythical blade that slayed the dragon god Io and spawned Bahamut and Tiamat. Once reforged, the blade has the power to slay either Tiamat or Bahamut. Currently, Tiamat has all but two fragments of the blade -- those two fragments are possessed by the PCs. Without those fragments the blade is incomplete. So how could it be used to kill Bahamut? That's a mystery that will be explained in an upcoming session...

As the death of Bahamut ripples across the multiverse, the good metallic dragons come under Tiamat's thrall. Suddenly, the good dragons that the PCs had recruited to aid their allies now turn on them. Our "camera" flies up and down the Sword Coast, showing the good dragons destroying the towns they are supposed to protect.

And the two ancient gold dragons with the PCs now move to attack to them.

The PCs gained enough experience to gain two more epic boons.

Next session: Good dragons try to kill the PCs!
 

Hexmage-EN

Adventurer
Session 116. 20th level player characters with 2 epic boons each. Tiamat has escaped from Hell and intends to slay Bahamut to gain power over all dragons in the multiverse. The player characters are trying to stop her.

In this session, the PCs had their final battle with Malystryx, Tiamat's exarch in Faerun. Malystryx is an ancient red dragon. When they brought her to zero hit points, she transformed into an ancient blue dragon. When they brought her to zero hit points again, she transformed into an ancient green dragon. Then a black dragon. And finally a white dragon. The battle took about 10 rounds. The PCs were aided by two ancient gold dragons and the outcome of the battle was never really in doubt, even though a couple PCs were knocked out.

Yet just as the PCs defeated Malystryx...Tiamat killed Bahamut!

But how? Tiamat was attempting to assemble and reforge the mythical blade that slayed the dragon god Io and spawned Bahamut and Tiamat. Once reforged, the blade has the power to slay either Tiamat or Bahamut. Currently, Tiamat has all but two fragments of the blade -- those two fragments are possessed by the PCs. Without those fragments the blade is incomplete. So how could it be used to kill Bahamut? That's a mystery that will be explained in an upcoming session...

As the death of Bahamut ripples across the multiverse, the good metallic dragons come under Tiamat's thrall. Suddenly, the good dragons that the PCs had recruited to aid their allies now turn on them. Our "camera" flies up and down the Sword Coast, showing the good dragons destroying the towns they are supposed to protect.

And the two ancient gold dragons with the PCs now move to attack to them.

The PCs gained enough experience to gain two more epic boons.

Next session: Good dragons try to kill the PCs!
I take it this campaign is influenced by the Scales of War adventure path?
 

THEMNGMNT

Adventurer
I take it this campaign is influenced by the Scales of War adventure path?
At this point in the campaign, yes.

It started off as a mashup of the Starter Set adventure with 3E's Forge of Fury with lots and lots of dragons. Then we spent a long time in Storm King's Thunder. And in between there was homebrew intrigue involving the Zhentarim and my version of Manshoon. Oh, and Glasya the archdevil of the sixth layer of Hell is also a major player.

But for the climax of the campaign -- which was always going to feature Tiamat -- I took inspiration from Scales of War. What I like about that adventure path is Tiamat has a clear, sensible goal -- to take out Bahamut. And she does it! So I wanted that structure where the villain actually wins...and then the characters have to work to undo the damage. See also: Avengers: Endgame.
 

ccs

41st lv DM
Amusing, I guess.

The PCs are now lv.6 & are in the early stages of CoS. They've had the card reading from the Vistani, they've completed on of the readings & gained an ally - a Vistani who has a way out of Barovia! They also know they are not on the Prime Material & have cut a deal with the ally to get them back there.
So they've arrived in the village of Barrovia late in the day heading to the Eastern gate, intending to leave asap.
They would have tried to leave right then but the Vistani tells them he has some business to conduct at the general store. Suggests they go hang out in the Blood on the Vine tavern, have a drink, & he'll join them in a bit. They take him up on that.

In the tavern they meet Ismaark, win his trust, & learn his sad plight. That after he & his sister (Ireena) bury their father in the morning they're headed as far away as they can get as Ireena's been bitten by a vampire. Their plan is the Abby in Krezk. The PCs though offer to take the pair even further away - out of Barovia! Afterall, what's further away than another world??
Ismaark tries to keep his voice down & tries to get the PCs to do likewise as there's several Vistani, a hooded man at the far end of the bar, & the barkeep present and he doesn't really want them to overhear.
The PCs are not so careful. Especially one of them. Perception & stealth checks are made. The Vistani overhear but the PCs don't notice.
They also don't realize that the hooded guy was listening in.


The PCs agree to help Ismaark defend his house & sister that night and to help them bury their father at dawn.
Their Visatini ally comes in to get a drink & collect the PCs before leaving. They inform him of the change of plans.
"OK...."

So they go off to Ismaarks to meet Ireena & stand guard all night. They've got a few hours to rest/prep.

Of course the Vistani who were eves dropping on their conversations promptly report this info back to Strahd as soon as the PCs are out of site.
And the hooded guy rides out as well.

They find Ismaark's all boarded up & warded vs vampires. Ismaark tells them (again) that the house has been attacked every night since Ireena's wounds were discovered & that the attacks have become near constant all night long.
As the sun sets they take up their defensive positions..... The PCs guarding various windows/doors, Ismaark, a restrained Ireena (Ismaark knows she's under the vampires influance), & one PC who's player couldn't make it in a bedroom.
This is going to be a combat session of attrition. Survive 12 fights (6pm - 6am), don't let the monsters get to Ireena.
The first 4 fights will be single rolls on the chart of what creatures Strahd has aiding him in an encounter.
The next 4 fights will be 2 rolls per fight on the chart.
The last 4 will be single rolls.
Good luck.

And because the Vistani were able to able to alert Strahd? He gets to makes an appearance to. :)
I rolled randomly to see wich attack he'd show up in. Attack #4 (9pm).

So they fight some bats. And then some wolves. And Strahd Zombies. Attack 4 is ghouls + Strahd.
Attack 4 leads off with Strahd, polymorphed into a little villager girl, barely "fleeing" a ghoul, beating on the barred door & screaming for help....
I was surprised by what happened next.
This is Barovia. At night. In a house that's specifically warded vs vampires because the problem is a vampire.... With players who're all aware of standard vampire lore.
One PC opens the door, grabs the little girl, orders her to "get in here!" , and hands her off to a 2nd PC while he takes care of the "pursuing" ghoul.
"Why yes" thinks Strahd, I WILL come in. Thank you very much for the invite. :)"
I never thought that ploy would work. I fully expected the players to be like "Oh no, I'm not stupid."

PC#2? Takes little girl Strahd & shoves her into the bedroom with the other NPCs, closes the door & returns to fighting ghouls.
I roll some initiatives for what's going on in the bedroom. Strahd wins. Ismaark & the absent PC fail their saves* & are now charmed etc. (Ireenas already a thrall).
{we play missing PCs as little as possible. They get reduced to modifiers on others attacks/saves etc. So they pass/fail/etc as per whoever they're helping}
Now Strahds just going to have some fun before eventually escaping with his prize. :)

Over the next several hours/attacks he feeds on Ireena/Ismaark/absent PC, summons monsters to specifically attack the bedroom, gets info out of both charmed & uncharmed characters alike, observes the other PCs in combat action....
Re-upping his polymorph....
Meanwhile the PCs keep failing both in and out of character perception checks to notice things.
Finally, once Strahd had had his fill, he chose to leave with Ireena while the characters were dealing with vampire spawn (the players didn't even wonder why vampires were able to enter the house) & bat swarms.
He jumps out a window clutching Ireena & flies off to his castle on his Nightmare.

The players were utterly surprised by this. While checking on Ismaark & the absent PC (both left alive) one actually asked where the little girl was. He STILL hadn't realized that she was the monster.
 

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