This is my attempt to start a campaign running through all Wrath of Ashardalon scenarios as single-character solo sessions. I am using components of both Wrath of Ashardalon and Castle Ravenloft and have changed quite a number of rules, some from existing variants (like the living dungeon variant) some original.
For instance, when doing no exploring, the die is rolled and only on 1-5 on a white triangle tile and 1-10 on a black triangle tile an encounter card will be drawn. I did forget to use my dead end rules which I hopefully will remember next time (^_^;;
Monsters don't carry treasure but rather treasure tokens you need to pick up by moving onto the space where they lie - animals and similar monsters leave the treasure on their spawn space (so you could pick it up without defeating the monster) while all others drop them upon death onto their space.
You can explore once during the hero phase for 2 speed points expended and there is no exploration phase.
During exploration, monster tokens are used. I tried to go for a 20 tile matrix using the die to pick a token to apply. The token is then removed and if it was between 1 to 10, the token to its right (in effect its number + 10) or if the slot is empty the nearest token in the second row, feels the gap. Had I been down to 10 tokens, I would have used a d10 instead and no longer removed the tokens (so that if the game started with a lot of 0 monster encounters, the middle and end game would be full of larger encounters and vice versa). However, this scenario did not result in that many explorations (^_^;;
These changes are not meant to increase the challenge, but rather an effort to adapt the game to my tastes as far as the flavour goes (and maybe decreasing the difficulty as I am not really interested in facing a challenge).
I hope you will find this little write-up a pleasant read.
Allisa looked up at the distant peak of Firestorm Peak. She had been called by the cries of the land as Ashardalon, a wicked red dragon, had come here and started devastating the land.
She was not the first to try to stop him, she knew, and none of her predecessors have returned. But this would not deter her. It may be a desperate mission, but if no one tried it, the dragon would never be conquered.
Right now, she was in the woods in the foothills. The small village of Longbridge should be not too far away and she figured she could make her base of operations there. There was a road leading to the village, but because she felt more at home in the woods and also because she had heard rumors of evil controlling the road, Allisa had decided to go through the woods instead.
Firestorm Peak itself was huge, and Allisa had heard rumors that there had been a dwarven civilization in its bowels that had prospered long before she had been born. If the tales were true, then a gigantic system of tunnels and rooms lay beneath the ground here - a maze large enough to hide an army - or a dragon.
As she pondered these things, she noticed a rock outcropping that seemed unnaturally smooth besides the path she was taking. Could it be that it was part of that underground maze?
Intrigued, she approached it.
And then it happened.
With a wet thunder, the floor beneath her gave way and she fell through the ground. Fortunately, it was only a short fall and the heavy earth beneath her softened the impact. Not really hurt but only a bit untidy, Allisa looked around.
She was in a large hall as far as she could see. Besides the light falling into it through the hole she had fallen through, only a feeble glow coming from patches of the floor and the walls behind her illuminated the darkness. The faint glow was probably lunar moss. The opening lay about 3 meters above her, so there was no way for her to leap up. Behind her were the ruins of a stairways, but its upper end was blocked by rubble.
The tales had been right, there must have been a dwarven civilization as the withered ornaments on the floor told her.
But now, this maze was the home to Ashardalon and whatever other evil had gathered around him. Carefully, Allisa readied her magical sword and set out to look for another exit of this underworld.
Allisa decided to explore straight ahead first. To the left side of a column, she found another small hall with a small figure standing in the twilight. As she quietly closed in on it, she recognized a kobold wearing a shield in the shape of a dragon's head and holding a sword.
Before the kobold had time to react, Allisa was upon it and had slashed it with her sword.
But there was no time to rejoice, as a metallic whirr was followed by pain rushing through her thigh. Looking down, she saw a dart protruding from it. And judging from the burning pain, it had been poisoned!
As she was not sure how important this small hall was, Allisa searched and quickly found the mechanism of the trap. Examining it, she found a weak spot and using her sword cut vital parts of it apart.
This settled, she went over to the corpse of the kobold and searched it, but the only useful thing it carried was a pouch with copper coins. Not much, but still worth taking with her.
With her leg still burning, Allisa decided to move back to the stairs and search more to the right. And the pain simply wouldn't ebb.
To the right of the small hall, Allisa found the hall continuing, but then being shut off to the right by a wall. Bones were littering the floor, old and covered in dust, they were of no importance for Allisa at the moment.
As she advanced to see where the hall led, she suddenly felt something touching her face. Wiping her eyes, she found it to be spider webs. And more and more came falling down. Looking up, she saw that the entire ceiling seemed to be alive with tiny shimmering dots.
A rain of spider webs came down upon her before she could react, and Allisa found herself rendered immobile. But at least the pain in her leg had lessened and the worst from that seemed to be over.
Fortunately, the rain of spider webs ended as quickly as it had started, Allisa's tiny antagonists seemingly exhausted by their effort - which forced Allisa to expend a lot of effort herself to clean herself.
Taking a deep breath, Allisa had to cough. The air was putrid and her unconscious motion had filled her lungs with the foul substance, causing her pain that only slowly ebbed.
Looking ahead, Allisa saw a corridor, littered with more bones - and among them a giant spider and another kobold! Maybe the small spiders who had attacked her were this spider's servants. The thought of a network of organized spiders made her shiver. But even without it, things seemed grim as it did not seem as if the kobold and the spider were fighting, so Allisa would have to take care of them herself.
Quickly, she readied her bow and released two arrows - one hit the spider and it quivered, black liquid pulsing from its body, while the second flew away past the kobolds head.
Startled the kobold let out a high-pitched shriek that was answered by a grunt farther down the corridor - and an arrow the failed to miss any important part of Allisa's body but still cut her arm.
Figuring that the unknown assailant was the bigger threat, Allisa dashed forward. As she passed the spider's corpse, she noticed a flask lying among the bones. Without stopping, she scooped it up and put it into her pouch.
The corridor led to a dimly lit workshop with various tools and implements hanging from the walls and a sturdy wooden table currently holding a torn piece of metal armor. And beside the table, there was an orc, already readying its longbow for another shot.
But Allisa was prepared, she had already put the arrow on the string and shot another two arrows at her foes - one at the kobold and one at the orc. Once more, its small stature saved the kobold from any harm, but the orc was not that lucky as the arrow lodged firmly in its chest. Dropping its bow, it gripped the shaft of the arrow in disbelief before falling foward with a grugling grunt.
With small, fast steps, the kobold ran up the corridor, towards the workshop and thus Allisa, its sword raised and ready to strike.
Not thinking long about it, Allisa swung her own sword and severed the arm of the kobold. With a final, weak shriek, it collapsed into the heap.
Allisa then proceeded to loot the bodies - the kobold had been carrying a bag of silver coins while the orc only had carried some copper coins - whatever that meant for the relationships in this dark place.
But the orc worried Allisa - she was already hurting a bit and not aware of a good escape route. The orc archer had already shown her vulnerability.
Figuring that she was most likely to find more orcs if she continued beyond the workshop, she decided to retrace her steps.
Allisa carefully walked back through the corridor listening for any sounds betraying that someone had noticed the fights. Fortunately, nothing was to hear except for a low rumble that was coming from deep within the earth, the breath of the volcano.
Turning around the corner, Allisa saw that the small hall (or rather part of the larger hall) led into yet another corridor with two large figures approaching side by side, completely blocking the passage. It were a bear and an orc, walking alongside, obviously determined to seek out any intruder - like Allisa.
Acting immediately, Allisa ran up to them and drawing her sword, sliced both their bellies. Her surprise attack succeeded and her foes crumbled into lifeless heaps before they even had a chance to react.
Examining her foes, Allisa found a pouch of copper coins on the goblin. And another similar bag was hanging at the side of a corpse the bear had been dragging along, it seems. The corpse was already half-eaten and horribly mashed-up, so there was no telling whether it had once been a human, an elf, or an orc. Shivering, Allisa took the bag, saying a small prayer for whoever that corpse had been.
Then, she turned away from the corridor and headed towards the left hand side of the hall. After all, where there had been one bear and one orc, there could be more.
As she moved along the edge, suddenly the floor at her side broke open. Automatically, she jumped to the side as a steam of hot gases shot up to the ceiling. While she was able to avoid the brunt of the assault, she still got burned somewhat and was breathing heavily as the stream of gas ebbed, its pressure depleted.
The corridor Allisa entered now featured a doorway on the left hand side, the stone doors standing ajar. But instead, Allisa decided to move along the corridor when she noticed that something was wrong with her armor.
Look down, she noticed that several of its strings had loosened and parts of it were beginning to swing away.
Thus, Allisa sat down and started mending her armor. She was in the middle of enemy territory, and more monsters could appear at any moment, but she figured that a damaged armor would be more harmful than risking getting found by some stray enemy.
With her armor restored, Allisa moved along the corridor, which continued quite a while.
Finally she saw light ahead. Making haste, she saw that it was daylight streaming down upon a small set of stairs.
But her escape route was blocked by a kobold, somewhat larger and more fierce looking than those she had encountered thus far.
Running up to it, she drew a bloody slash across its chest, but the blow that would have felled its lesser brethren failed to defeat it although it did throw it back, it seemed.
Shouting out loud, it rushed at Allisa and she barely escaped its blow as it raced down into the corridor.
As she turned, she heard something heavy slithering along the floor. To her horror, she saw a mass of putrid flesh coming from beyond the doors she had passed in the corridor. It was a horrid abomination even in the twilight of the underground tunnels.
Seeing herself outnumbered by strong foes, Allisa drank the potion she had found earlier. While she had mended her armor, she had had a look at it and found that it was a potion of rejuvenation that would revigorate her battle powers a little bit.
With the new energy, she rushed past the kobold and against the new menace, swinging her sword through the narrow corridor. The kobold quickly ducked and escaped her onslaught with ease, but the thing took the full force of her attack and sputtering awful-smelling liquids from its many mouths deflated into a rather small heap of flesh in a pool of a foul liquid.
But this attack left her wide open for the attack of the kobold who came upon her from behind. The wounds she suffered sent Allisa to her knees
Breathing heavily, Allisa concentrated and overcame the fatigue and hurt of her body. The kobold had returned towards the stairs and seemingly was waiting to see what she would do - and she decided she needed to deliver.
Running up to it, she brought down her sword in a mighty blow. Again she struck true, but again the kobold refused to fall, although bleeding heavily by now.
Instead, it swung its own blade, cutting her leg and using the chance of the moment to run back up the corridor.
Determined not to let it end like this, Allisa ran after it, her leg hurting but not enough to stop her from moving swiftly up to her foe.
Releasing all her anger, she ran the sword through the kobold, and finally, it fell.
While feeling great relief, Allisa still moved swiftly, fearing that any delay would allow a new menace to appear.
Despite her dread, she moved to the corpse of the monster and sifted through its possession, finding a lucky charm that could definitely help her in her desperate quest.
Then, satisfied that there was no more useful things to be obtained, she ran along the corridor towards the light.
And finally, she reached the steps, and running up back into the world of life and light, Allisa felt how a great burden fell off of her.