Linwe (Mary's Elf 2) and Macheon (my Cleric 1) make their way to the old goblin temple, cutting through thick overgrowth (which was magically enhanced by the elves to bury the temple so it would be lost), tracking the spiders to their lair. They investigate the top of the old goblin temple, attacked by five stirges. Macheon is knocked unconscious in the fight, and (after defeating the stirges and finding a gemstone in their nest), Linwe retreats to a tree hammock she makes where she and Macheon can rest.
Within a few hours, a small spider leaves the temple (coming up through the altar at its peak, after activating the device) and immediately picks up their trail. After a short battle, Linwe defeats the spider and hides its body.
In the middle of the night, a scout party of twelve goblins arrives to re-claim the temple, and they use fresh blood to activate the altar, opening a secret door inside. Seeing how the entrance works, Linwe uses blood from the spider to activate the altar a few hours later (after she and Macheon fully recover) and they descend. They find the secret door off of the entry, and the signs of a battle between goblins and a spider, which they killed. In the spider’s web, they find the remains of a gnome and a scroll case with mirror image inside. In the next chamber, they find 4 dead goblins and 2 dead spiders, the scene of another battle between these forces.
Investigating further, they come upon a ransacked barracks once held by goblins. Linwe discovers a hiding spot beneath a stone, and recovers a bag with 100 silver coins and a potion of healing.
On the next level, they come across three spiders that have backed the eight remaining goblins into a tomb to the temple’s shaman. They fight the spiders, and the goblins (seeing their opportunity) jump into the fight. After a three-way battle, Macheon is again unconscious, Linwe hurt (but not as bad as she could be after using the healing potion) and only two goblins live, quickly surrendering after the final spider falls.
They spend a day and a half recovering within the burial chamber of the shaman, at the foot of his sarcophagus (which freaks the goblins out to no end…). Once they recover, they open the sarcophagus to fight a wight, which they manage to defeat using magic missile and a magical spear they find within its sarcophagus. After this victory, they return to the elves to report on what they have found, purchase new gear, and turn over their prisoners.
All in all, a successful session! Macheon (my level 1 cleric) is well on his way to level 2 (now having 277 xp) while Linwe will be level 2 for some time (since she has 4387 towards the 8000 she needs for level 3). She started at level 2, and did the first few encounters solo, so she's a bit ahead of the young cleric who accompanies her.
Play Testing Notes:
- Experience progression is slow (which is by design), and they are earning money at a relatively slow pace; both characters were able to upgrade to scale armor (+5) which is better than chain but not quite plate mail. That's pretty good for only 1/4 of the way through level 1.
- So far, the treasure tables I've worked out have yielded reasonable results. Mary rolled really well for a level 3 treasure, and ended up with a spear +1 that was buried with the corpse of the goblin shaman (who was now a wight). She dug the spear out of his sarcophagus while Macheon used his turn undead ability to drive the creature backwards, so I gave the monster an instant upgrade from a ghoul since they now had a +1 weapon with which to attack it...
- I am playing with level drain, and for the time being at least am allowing a save vs. level drain. I don't want to nerf the game, but level drain is a bit out of balance as written....
- One of the rules for the second book is a Fate mechanic. Here's how it's play testing right now; you get d4 fate points each level, and you also can earn fate for significant achievements. You can use a fate point to either take the maximum result on a die, or to add d6 to a die (I'm toying with both options right now). I don't know what the final rule is going to be, but we'll keep playing with it.