Campaign Diary Part 24
The Ruins of Alderwach, Session 4
With the party reunited (kind of) in the lower level storage area adjacent to the underground river, the group devised a plan to use some strategically placed castings of dispel magic. This allowed the Brilgar and Lilith to pull their party members out of the time bubble. A bit of role-play followed as the two groups fill one another in on their individual pieces of the adventure.
With the magical device on level one disabled and the two wizard guardians out of the way, the party entered into the large central chamber. Wisdom rolls all-around and Pure Wonder had the highest score… What followed was a series of nightmares come to life. The huge chamber shifted and reformed around the characters as they fought off their characters’ worst fears.
Each round the players would roll again, the person who was currently in control rolled with advantage. Each time a new character took control, the player would describe how the setting changed and what form their worst fear took.
Before the game, I had decided that there were four ways through this part of the adventure:
- If three characters tied for control at once, it would overload the illusion. (0.25% chance)
- All of the characters were able to defeat their fears.
- Casting Dispel Magic at 4th level or higher.
- Once the characters’ trials were complete, the Lae Tree would judge them. If they were worthy, they could speak with the tree, if not, they would find themselves in the lower section of the cave with iron bars blocking their return path.
So… 4 rounds into the encounter Pure Wonder, Dhasia and Lilith had a 3 way tie and the illusion broke. Yup… it was over that fast. I was expecting that to be the bulk of the gameplay, but I have learned to never underestimate my players’ ability to derail my carefully made plans. No, seriously, it was like 1/3 of a page of info in my notes, so no big deal. But, I really was expecting it to take longer.
What followed was a long role-play with the sentient Lae Tree (had to fill out the session somehow). The party explained how the elves had been using the tree for an evil plot. They described the world outside the cave and convinced the tree to free itself using its powerful magic. Impressed with the characters’ selflessness and description of the world, the tree channeled the energy it had stored and the top of the mountain exploded like a volcano. When the dust cleared, the sun shined down on the tree for the first time and our heroes set out on the next leg of their adventure.
Next time on DMingDAD… It’s A Flying Volcanic Island!
…oh, and what happened to the last wizard on the lower level? Nobody knows.
If you were paying close attention, the names in my notes don’t match the NPC character sheets I provided for the wizards. SURPRISE!
As for the mimics and the wizards in the portable hole? Well, the mimics helped the wizards out of their ropes. The wizards went rummaging through the party’s treasure and stole some stuff. Then they managed to open the portable hole from inside and Mysty Step Out. I am sure we will see them in a future game.
*NOTE: I am dyslexic and these notes are handwritten. I know there are spelling and grammar issues. All of these notes came straight out of my head and onto paper. Please don’t email me with complaints or corrections.