You may have read my series documenting my full dungeon process, the results of which were the mid-size dungeon 'Slime Baroness and the Lady of Unterbranch Keep.'
I am now running two friends through this dungeon, and so far we're having lots of fun!
**Update: click here to see the other session reports. **
|This is how evil Unterbranch Keep seems if you listen to the tales of the villagers.|
Here are some highlights from play so far, including some reflections on my dungeon design and the formatting/processes:
- They started off immediately surprising me, by entering the Keep via climbing ivy through an upper window instead of walking through the front door. This was a delight, and they spent the whole first session on the upper level and roof.
- Also almost immediately I found myself flipping back and forth in my printed copy to get to the encounter table.
- This was a bit of a drag -- I think I might try having a truncated version reprinted as a running footer on each page.
- They were so wary of traps/curses that they deliberately left some treasure sitting untouched. But in the Chapel the magician found a pot of poison which they later used to kill a goblin (by dipping a piece of jerky in the poison and bargaining for information), so that was very cool.
- I almost always referee games using 'theatre of the mind.' I.e. if I'm playing online there is no Virtual Table Top (VTT), and if I'm playing IRL there is no battlemat or minis.
- Neither of my players were mapping as they went, and I found it a bit difficult to relay the geography verbally.
- Maybe next time I will request that somebody maps on graph paper as we go, as it might make things easier for everyone.
- They found the Slime Baroness in her bath during the first session.
- They were desperate to get some water (which they needed in order to take a rest) and the baths were the only place they had found it so far, so they were willing to fight.
- The martial character Routed her minion slimes and made them flee, leaving only the Baroness. A couple of rounds of lucky/unlucky rolls in the players' favour, a clever use of the Weave spell to animate a rope in order to pull the magician unstuck from the wall, and a terrible Morale save for the Baroness, and she surrendered.
- I was honestly shocked. I thought her high HP and the minions would have made it one of the most difficult fights in the dungeon, but they ended things confidently.
- It really worked out though, because she gave them tons of information on the dungeon background (The Baroness came 33 years ago to slay the Lady in revenge for the death of her son, but got cursed by the Lady's magic breastplate and has been slimed).
- They agreed to find and kill the Lady Unterbranch, as long as the Slime Baroness called off all her slimes. She agreed, but warned that her psychic slime connection did not extend throughout the whole Keep; certain slimes far away may not obey her.
|This is how I picture the Slime Baroness' minions. The ones in the Slime Bath are wearing towels instead of waiter clothes. Art by eloh.|
- They cleared out a couple more rooms and took some books from the library, as well as relieving Robert Fish the skeleton librarian of his magic items.
- We ended the first session with them resting for a bit in one of the bedchambers, before they heading downstairs to try to find some more goblins or the rumoured brigands.
- My one major disappointment for this session was that nobody got bitten by the toilet eels.