Friday, May 2, 2014

Campaign Diary: DCC in the Wilderlands (Session 5)

Session 5: Victory!

The party encounters another group of tomb raiders in the Barrowmaze. They manage to steal their clueless rivals' gold but then help them against a skeleton attack. The party's two new dwarf characters sniff out some gems and the party returns to the surface, fighting a series of small battles (with giant rats, mysterious skeletons and a lone skeleton, respectively). For the first time, they return from their adventures without casualties. Three PCs reach level 2.

  • KT had studied the combat rules and led the way setting up flanking positions, using Luck and reminding other players of their characters' special powers. 
  • When KT began to describe his new character at the beginning of the session, cries of "One line of background only!" erupted. KT, known for writing pages and pages of backstory, continued unperturbed -- he is used to friendly ribbing in this matter.
  • Players got more cocky with 1st level characters, particularly ones with poor stats.
  • The way back to the exit was again a tense affair but also took up quite a bit of time. I wonder if we should double the movement rate in known and mapped territory...
  • The players were very pleased with their success (and rightly so, I might add).
  • I keep 'revealing' rules from D&D 3.5e that are second nature to me but which I never bothered explaining. This is a bit irritating to the players but I'm not sure if a huge infodump at the beginning would have been better. Ask me about charging enemies, for instance, and you shall be rewarded!
In a nutshell
A very satisfying session - the characters' success nicely counterbalances the bloodbaths behind (and most likely ahead of) them!


  1. Hello Johann,
    as a party member, I do not have any problems with your 'revealing' of rules.
    For me, it calls back to the feeling 20 years ago, as my brand new hero happly started to explore the world of DSA.
    As untried adventurers, we stumble form encounter to encounter and try for the first time, if the things the bards sing about do really work:” I brandish my sword and charge the group of skeletons” or if there are some things working differently in this world.
    Even if we lose painfully party-members, we gain knowledge about dungeon crawling, as the new adventurers get some warnings from the old hands, and so the adventuring know how of the group is increasing, even if some members do not make it home.

  2. That's a great attitude. I'm continually fascinated by the party's evolving tactics. There are developments I expected (e.g. the plan to use 'flaming tennis balls' to light up tunnels, simultaneously developed by you and CD) and stuff that I didn't see coming (e.g. the proposal to give magic armor etc. to those willing to lead the way and walk at the front of the party). I find this interesting for 'historical' reasons (as you are discovering all sorts of classic dungeoneering tactics) and it gives me confidence that you will prevail (as you are getting better and better).