D&D Movie/TV Ravenloft - A Curse of Strahd Campaign Played on Roll20 with Homebrew Elements

Samully203

Villager
Our campaign in the lands of Barovia has begun! I will be including a lot of homebrew elements into this play-through. The open nature of Curse of Strahd also allows for a great amount of impromptu role playing.

I decided with this campaign to start everyone with one on one sessions to further flesh out their characters backstory, and provide them all a reason to be in the fog together. The YouTube playlist is here, starting with the individual “Session 0’s”:

As of right now we all have five individual adventures complete, and the Death House (which I will be using as a means for Strahd to get the characters to Barovia) double session complete. Our play schedule is Saturday, 6-9pm, and I do stream at that time on YouTube, but afterwards add the video to the playlist.

Each player has a fun and interesting backstory, and all are quite different from the other, so I’m excited to see how the group gels. I would also love any input or tips as we aren’t the most experienced with 5e and roll20!
 
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Samully203

Villager
Just to provide some more information on the campaign!:

Gurtok the Gentle, an Orc Barbarian disillusioned with his current tribes apathy, sets out on a journey to find worthy opponents.

Onda, a tiefling pirate captain Storm Sorcerer, seeks to find more information about her parents and where she came from after some mysterious happenings.

Eryn, a Firbolg Druid, finds her home in her enchanted glade corrupted by a blight that is seeping into the forest. With the blessing of her teacher and elders, she begins a journey to find a cure.

Mellow Sound, a Tabaxi Bard, is fleeing from his past; his entire clan decimated at the hands of goblins. He lives a life of leisure when he comes upon a Vistani caravan on the road (and has an epic Bard battle).

Valandras, an Aasimar Monk dedicated to the spear and bow, lives a tranquil life in a quiet monastery where he is the only resident. His celestial comes to him in a dream and guides him to the Reaching Woods where he will find valuable companions against the darkness.

Eryn, the Firbolg Druid, and Onda, the Tiefling Sorceress, stumble upon each other in Fort Morninglord, a haunted and cursed ruin.

The party arrives out of the fog and are immediately set on a quest into a haunted manor mysteriously arising out of the mist in the middle of the reaching woods. Little time for introduction as they explore the “Death Houseupper levels.

Session 1 - Ravenloft - Durst Manor/Death House - Death House Upper Levels

The ghosts of Rose and Thorn provide the party a night of respite before they venture into the dungeons of the Death House. There they confront the monstrosity and then must escape the house.

Session 2 - Ravenloft - Durst Manor/Death House Dungeons - Death House Dungeons

Session 3 sees our party finally in Barovia. They are desperate for water and rest, but still share a moment of roleplaying around the campfire (our resident artist, Valandras, draws on stream and it is BEAUTIFUL). During the night they have some encounters (it IS Barovia after all), and then they make the hilariously bad mistake of heading into the Svallich Woods... I hit em with a few random encounters and mysterious items; but as they finish the session expecting a rest, I can say they will have anything BUT that.

Session 3 - Ravenloft - Into Barovia - One Night in Barovia

Finally: I want to introduce a new playlist/stream that I will be doing on Wednesday nights (for now), from 8 until whenever. It will be a DM only stream, focused on going over what I have prepped for the coming week, thoughts on last weeks session, and some tools I use to DM. If anyone tunes in, feel free to ask me any questions or post any comments or suggestions for what I should throw at my players! We can prep together! I have two videos in this "DM Session" playlist so far, check them out below (one was unfortunately cut short):

- DM Info and Prep
 
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Samully203

Villager
Session 4 is now posted! The party entered the Svalich woods in search of a dire wolf Gurtok took a liking to. After a day of adventuring through the woods in Session 3 they decide to settle down for the night. Unfortunately for them, the Svalich woods (and Strahd), have other plans for them. A LONG night of suffering, constant interruptions, and rain eventually makes them decide they need to head back to the road. When they arrive, they see the gates of Barovia, and none other than Strahd himself welcoming them to his domain. Strahd is, of course, a jerk to the party, and hopefully they get a little angry with him after this one.

Session 4 - The Svalich Woods
 


Samully203

Villager
I'd recommend reading through the Enhancing Curse of Strahd thread from several years ago, as there are a ton of really good ideas for additional things you can add to the campaign, as well as issues to watch out for. If you want tips and treats, this is the thread to read.
Excellent advice! I have been reading this over the weekend and found a TON of stuff I am planning on incorporating. Thank you so much!
 

Samully203

Villager
Our fifth session is uploaded and ready to watch! This one has some extremely hilarious moments (and of course slightly macabre) that are rare in the land of Barovia, I highly suggest you see what happens shortly after arriving in the Village of Barovia.

After a harrowing battle with Strahd to end our last session the group finally makes it to the village of Barovia, beaten, exhausted, tired and wet. They had never been so happy to see a village, until they seen the deserted streets and heard the sobbing of Mad Mary. After meeting Ismark at the Inn they agree to help Ireena, and head to the Burgomasters Mansion. They learn about the fathers passing and agree to bury him, but first a long rest is needed. What happens after is both hilarious, absurd, and macabre! I suggest you tune in and watch the antics of Gurtok the Gentle and Valandras!

Session 5 - The Village of Barovia
 

Samully203

Villager
Session six is on YouTube. The party enjoys(?) their last day and night in Barovia before heading back out on the road. They enjoy a tasty Dream Pastry, receive a hand drawn map of a section of the land from Ismark (to help them navigate to Vallaki), encounter Madame Eva, and finally battle with a horror icon, The Wraith of Camp Tser Lake.

Session 6 - On the Road Again
 

Samully203

Villager
Wow Session seven was an awesome time! Full of laughs and a good ole dungeon crawl. As two of our members weren't able to make it (Eryn and Mellow), we decided to do a "one-shot" little inconsequential dungeon. I spent the week making an adventure inspired by Freddy Kruger/The Upside Down (From Stranger Things), and decided to send the remaining three party members into "dream land". I stuffed every single horror trope I could think of into one dungeon, and filled it with devious awesome monsters. Check it out below!:

Session 7 - Side Story/Dream Land
 

Samully203

Villager
Session eight was a great time! We left the Tser Pool and made our way to Vallaki. Unfortunately they got distracted by how delicious the dream pastries were, seeing Morgantha, and of course Gurtok wanted to challenge the windmill... As we all know, this is a terrible idea, and could spell the parties certain doom. The windmill encounter takes up most of this session, and certainly doesn't have a resolution at the end of this video. We will see the lingering effects from this choice for a long time in this campaign.

Session 8 - Onward, to Vallaki!
 

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