The How Many References can I put in one sub-adventure night
The group got its hero's party and were politely told to please leave before any other calamities hit the village. So they continued up the road to the city of Port D'elhour where everyone in antebellum clothes, suits and top hats, pistols in holsters and blind voodoo witch doctors made them feel fairly unwelcome. Someone even asked them if they were on their way to a themed masquerade dressed in 11th century armor and clothes as they were. They found a witchdoctor named Mrs. Cleo who felt sorry for them and bought the giant bat wings they had been saving for a couple silver, found out that the paladin worships a god that is known here more as the White God( Princess of Wands reference). Missing a cleric I had them meet a Dwarf from Krynn in one of the only semi-welcoming taverns on Bourbon St. He is a 2/2 Cleric Fighter of Reorx. He is waiting for a ship to get him the hell out of here.
Soon enough The Far Wanderer captained by an olive skinned man named Warrev(oh its just starting) arrives at port and takes them on board. Their destination is Sebua in the northern dread land of Sebua and the town of.....Lut Ghulain. They pass through the North South Sea and go from freezing wet cold and rough seas into Nova Vassa and its comfortable climate to Odaire, along the way they pass the medusa Althea's Island and make a note to come back some day to explore it since Warrev flat out said no and he was on a schedule.
Overnight on the 6th night they pass into Sebua and Warrev points out some creatures basking on the shore line and hands the rogue his periscope which brings the giant crocodiles that they continue to call dragons right up close giving us a scene where the rogue waves his sword at them and has Warrev mumbling under his breath asking how these barbarians ever took Jerusalem in the first place--what, nothing.... He kindly informs them that they are crocodiles, not dragons. They pass a giant statue of a jackal-headed human holding out his hand to say stop(old school everquest reference) pass the Blood River who Warrev has to kindly tell the barbarians that it flows through iron rich soils turning it blood red. In the distance they see Lut Ghulain, Gem of the North, with gold shining off its minerets in the distance.
Here their ship is impounded. I begin the more sand box nature of the the campaign at this point. They hang out in towns and over hear stories about treasures in the Valley of Kings, people disappearing in town, the mine suddenly stopping its shipments of minerals, a Vistani camp outside of the walls, and the lighthouse no longer lighting up.
So they first go to the Vistani where Madam Druselia tells them she will give them a reading and answer any question they may have if they find her son who went missing. Through investigations and talking to townies they think there is an evil cult operating out of the sewers. Ever in search of the Black Rose(who the dwarf turned white when Lord Soth was mentioned) they went to ask the Captain of the Guard Hasim(my references only go so far) and he tells them the stories are nonsense thats its just dissatisfied people leaving to go elsewhere. He points them in a direction and they get jumped by so dudes in black cloaks who managed to double crit and almost take out the dwarf. They decide to rest at the tavern over night and everyone heals up from spells, first aid(have I mentioned how awesome the Healing proficiency is in For Gold & Glory?) and the party the next morning goes to the site of the ambush and finds(surprise surprise) the bodies are gone. Ranger tracks them down an alley and they uncover a trap door leading down into the sewers.
Here they wander a bit and find this part of the tunnel is blocked by a portcullis. A good search roll lets them find an easy to find panel in the wall with a winch inside which then raises the portcullis. They follow the increasing smell and avoid someone above dumping their waste "water" down into the sewers and end up in a large room with heaps of trash and crap. The crap jokes never end. No really, they go on for at least a half hour. So the rogue decides to go and check the piles of crap with a non-magical longsword he picked up somewhere and randomly finds the pile where the town's garbage disposal is waiting in ambush and lashes out with a surprise attack. The Otyugh hits with both tentacles and manages to do wuite a bit of damage to the party but no one is ever bit. I got to use the rarely used Force Door stat twice in one battle to escape the grip of its tentacles. They eventually kill it and the party moves on without checking any more piles of crap. They find another two passages leading out, each with their own portcullis blocking it and even find panels to open them on the other side of the gate. Another rarely used stat although they did it wrong in my opinion. Each tried to bend bars/lift gates. All failed until the meek ranger gets in there and rolls a 4% lifting it enough fro the dwarf to run under it and use the winch.
The continue and they pass a secret door that I rolled and the dwarf notices them and has a "you tall-folk are blind" moment where he convinces them there is a secret door there and they refuse to believe him until he opens it. They enter and find its an actual dungeon and not the good kind. A rack sits in the room, shelves line the walls with torture implements, and a dude lies bloody and damaged shackled to the wall. Who they then try to question before once again the dwarf says maybe they should take the guy down first so he doesnt think this is another part of the torture. Paladin face palms and rogue picks the locks. The guy is a trader from the mines who was kidnapped on the street. He thinks they are directly under the jail and it was Captain Hasim and this other thing who locked him here and was torturing him for information about the mines.
And at this point it was 11pm on a work night so we called it here to give them time to think about what to do. What is actually about to happen is the sand box like I said. I also have adapted the adventure Touch of Death for this as well and that will begin once the cult is destroyed and the Vistani child is rescued. The cult is led by something(which shall be revealed later) who sacrifices people and dumps their bodies in the desert for the big baddy in Touch of Death to turn into desert zombies. I am throwing a lot of traditional but optional dungeons into this part of the campaign like the Valley of Kings stuff, the light house, and a complete mummy's tomb under the sewers. We are getting two more players next week in theory so the dwarf will hit the road or get kidnapped. My main reason for playing the cleric was to demonstrate that clerics arent just heal machines and can be useful in combat and then he gets double critted and misses 75% of his attacks with his maul. Oh well. I need to find a dungeon generator so I dont have to write up all these tombs. Having to do each one is going to be time consuming.