View Full Version : [4e] Third Session Overview

2008-08-03, 05:40 PM
So we got together for another session. Once again, the four characters were;

Val, Eladrin Rogue
Clyde, Halfling Rogue
Broderick, Human Cleric
Kanan, Human Ranger

Making sure inventory is up to snuff

Before starting the session, I asked the players if their characters had "come accross" any new equipment in the unspecified time between this adventure and their last. If so, I had them pay for it, and also made them roll to see how much cash they had burned since the last adventure (D20 x10 gp).


We started with our heroes, minus Broderick (whose player was gone for the moment), fleeing from a hobgoblin army, as survivors from a crushed mercenary army which had marched north to sack one of the region's rich cities. Pursued through the desert, the group was attempting to reach a ruin (which they believed was a city, but one character misinterprited the map IRL) where they could take shelter and plan their next move. We opened in the remains of a circle of wagons from a long-dead caravan, with the group surrounded by a flurry of hobgoblin minions and two archers (encounter for 5 characters, we had three). The battle went well, but could have gone better. Kanan and Val were slaughtering minions. Clyde, who was nearest the archers could have closes to give the archers a tough time, but chose to go after minions instead. As a result, the archers nearly decimated the group. Clyde dropped first, as he has in each of our last two sessions. This left Kanan and Val to try and get near to the archers and finish them off. Maneuvering to utilize the old wagons for cover, the two finally converged on the archers and made short work of them once they were near. Val dropped near the end of the combat. Kanan managed to bring back both Val and Clyde (who had rolled really well on his death saving throws) with Heal checks. At this time, Broderick showed up riding a donkey. He had been searching for his friends, as he hadn't signed on with the mercenaries and been caught up in fleeing the hobgoblin army. After checking the bodies for supplies, the group set out for the ruins.

Ardith and it's treasures

So the group reached the ruins. A giant pile of boulders and a large natural cavern greeted our heroes. Outside the cavern were multiple rotted posts with bleached skulls to warn them away. Many of the posts had fallen or broken with time and many skulls were buried (fully or partially) in the sand. Wanting the use the ruins as shelter, the decision was made to explore the cavern first. Clyde volunteered.

Proceeding into the caven, Clyde was greeted by a very large pit that dropped straight down. From within, he could hear the faint sound of running water. Here it took a long time for the group to realize they could use rope to sclae their way down. Clyde was going to free-climb it, but when another character searched the cavern, I mentioned an outcropping that looked like it could be used as an anchor point of some sort, and they caught it. I also mentioned a chipped arrowhead that Val noticed. She must have thought that she was supposed to do something with it or something, because her player got upset when I kept telling her it appeared to be a normal chipped arrowhead.

So anyways, Clyde lights off a sunrod and Kanan slips it into the halfling's plumber's crack so he can descend into the pit. Reaching about halfway down, Clyde needs to secure more rope to reach the bottom, and finally hits bottom at about the 80-foot mark. A large cavern or sparkling gold greets him, as well as a huge pool that seems to flow from a gap in the far wall. The water is exceptionally clear, and another cavern can be seen through the gap in the far wall. Near the edges of the pool, there are many gold and silver coins in the water. Clyde examines the walls to discover that the gold is actually pyrite. He also notices that sections of the sides of the cavern are hewn, and that the cavern is some sort of crypt. Val, who is getting restless, descends to see what is going on, while Clyde begins looting the crypts. Once Val reaches the bottom, Clyde attempts to cover up the fact tht he is looting, to little avail. Val checks out the other burial sites and doesn't loot, but does see what kind of stuff there is. When Clyde attempts to loot the sites that Val is examining they argue for a moment, the echoes of which catch the attention of Broderick, who goes down to admonish Clyde for his looting ways. Clyde will hear none of it, and Val/Broderick leave Clyde to his looting. Eventually, Clyde gets all his loot up to the top of the pit, where Kanan, Val, and Broderick have built a small fire using old skull-posts.

Nobody bothered exploring the second cavern on the other side of the underwater passage. Interestingly enough, nobody bothered to ask why all this treasure, seemingly there for the taking, was still there for the taking after all these years.

The group stay the night, and Clyde has hallucinations of the others trying to steal his treasure while he sleeps. He roleplays it wonderfully, and ends up not resting that night. The group sets out the next day, and travels a few days through the desert, trying to reach a nearby town. Clyde's dreams continue and he still refuses to sleep. Here we notice that there are literally no penalties for not sleeping unless you've had an encounter at some point. You can not sleep for days, and as long as you havn't had an encounter, suffer no penalties. I was disappointed. On the third night out, the group starts to hear the sound of clacking bone. They all arise and keep and eye out, when skeletons emerge seemingly out of the thin air and shadows. I put in one skeleton for each of the burial sites looted, so 6 skeletons in all. I thought this would destroy the group, but this battle goes pretty well, and is very difficult, but the heroes emerge victorious, just barely. As they "die", the skeletons fade into a black mist and disappear. Shortly after, Clyde's dreams stop, and the group makes it to the town.

Here I had a few of them go shopping, and take care of some other business. Broderick (Cleric of Pelor) is disappointed when the only major temple is dedicated to the evil god Bane.

So that was pretty much it. Pretty fun, though in my opinion not as good as last session, but I had literally put this together in the minutes just before the game. Hopefully our next game will be better planned.

2008-08-03, 07:06 PM
Sounds like it worked out well for a quick plan game. Will there be some recurring theme from the robbed dead? Since the nightmares have stopped maybe it's time to step it up a notch (nightmares/minor undead/slightly greater undead (maybe a stalking mummy if they stay in one place to long)). Depending on what sort of loot there was, this could turn into a long term theme with the party getting a reputation for brining ill fortune wherever they go (sickness related to the mummy attacks maybe?).

2008-08-03, 07:14 PM
An interesting read. Sounds like things are going well. Do you have links back to the second and first sessions? I don't recall seeing them.

2008-08-03, 08:38 PM
I'm sorry I don't write these in a more flowing, reader-friendly style, but I usually have to belt them out quickly at work. The first one isn't a very good read at all, but the second one is more like this one. Anyways, here are the previous ones:

First Session (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=83179)

Second Session (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=85288)

I probably won't make the cursed dead thing a recurring theme. I am running a Conan-esque series of adventures, so the players have just a vague idea how long has passed between sessions, where they will be starting out, or what adventures they will run accross. What I was considering was having a cult come after the characters some time in the future for robbing the crypt of their ancestors. Probably in a few sessions, after they have forgotten :smallwink:

2008-08-03, 08:48 PM
Thanks, I will give these a read tomorrow (the hour grows late here). Sounds like you have a good premise going for an episodic campaign.

2008-08-04, 01:05 AM
Just because there are no rules covering "don't sleep for 3 days", doesn't mean there is no penalty. :-)

There is even a skill -- endurance -- which would cover attempting to stay up for days a time.

As a quick attempt, I might use:
Endurance Check DC 20+2 per night without sleep. Characters may "take 10" at this roll.

Success: Your next extended rest requires 1 more hour for it to recover daily powers/healing surges.

Failure: Take a -2 penalty to all rolls until you take an extended rest (this accumulates with more failures), and lose a healing surge. Your next extended rest requires 2 more hours for it to recover daily powers/healing surges.


At Level 30, a "super endurance" character might have 20 Con, Trained Endurance, Skill Focus Endurance. That's a +28 modifier to a roll.

This passes the "stay up all night" roll for 38-20 = 9 days in a row without penalty (other than +9 hours of sleep required for their next extended rest). Which is reasonably super-heroic. Beyond that, the character has a 50% chance to get drowsy.

And, at the Heroic tier, not sleeping a night is likely to make you less effective the next day, unless you are a mid-heroic endurance bad-ass.

2008-08-04, 01:46 AM
Yeah, I realize there should have been another penalty, but as a personal preference I don't like to add in house rules mid-session unless the issue is completely game-breaking. You get away with it this time, but next time I will have something in place to prevent you from abusing it. Usually this involves running the new houserule by everyone at the beginning of the next session and the other players approving it, or modifying it.

2008-08-04, 08:07 AM
Cheers for these Crow a good read, keep it up my good man.

I will endeavour to do a write up of the D6 starwars from GitP meet up (or steal one if one of the other players posts one) at some point, as I enjoy reading these it only seems fair to contribute every now and then.

Oh and Matt, Gen con.

2008-08-04, 06:06 PM
Okay, read the other session reports a little earlier on; sounds like things are steadily improving with the rules and all that. Are you implementing the "marked" stuff now, or have you totally thrown that out?

I will endeavour to do a write up of the D6 starwars from GitP meet up (or steal one if one of the other players posts one) at some point, as I enjoy reading these it only seems fair to contribute every now and then.

Excellent. I look forward to reading that. D6 Star Wars has a special place in my heart. :smallbiggrin:

Oh and Matt, Gen con.

Yeah, yeah... I will definitely be down in London, but I am having trouble scraping together some of the other guys... looking like maybe Thursday at this point.

2008-08-04, 07:13 PM
Crow, saying "If you stay up 3 days strait, you are going to be not at tip-top performance" is not house ruling, so much as describing common sense.

4e presumes common sense. If you do something that would require endurance, it requires an endurance check to do it without penalty. If you do something that requires strength, etc.

I'd advise describing the stakes before hand, but...

If you want a flexible house rule:

Stressful Behavior:
When engaged in stressful behavior not covered by other Endurance rules, make a DC 20 Endurance Check. This increases by 2 for every "unit" of stressful behavior you engage in without a sufficient rest.

Failure on this check gives you a cumulative -2 penalty to all rolls, and costs you a healing surge.

In addition, every failure adds 2 hours to the next extended rest to recover healing surges/daily powers.

A "unit" is of a given stressful behavior is defined as an amount of the behavior that would tire/weaken/etc. A night without sleep, a day of marching, etc.

2008-08-05, 01:42 AM
Okay, read the other session reports a little earlier on; sounds like things are steadily improving with the rules and all that. Are you implementing the "marked" stuff now, or have you totally thrown that out?

I've completely ignored the "marked" stuff for monsters. If you have six monsters capable of marking party members it just becomes a huge book-keeping pain. Especially since the marks can change from round to round.

2008-08-05, 02:06 AM
I've completely ignored the "marked" stuff for monsters. If you have six monsters capable of marking party members it just becomes a huge book-keeping pain. Especially since the marks can change from round to round.

If you have 6 monsters in an encounter that can mark, then it's unlikely that any of them need to mark.

Marking is usually implemented as a means for a brute or soldier to stop the PCs picking on the artillery and controllers.

If all the monsters are brutes and soldiers, there's no real need for marking and it makes the DM's job easier just to ignore it.