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Descent: The Road to Legend» Forums » Sessions

Subject: Against the Spider Queen - Campaign Session 6 rss

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Ralf Schemmann
Germany
Siegen
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Previous sessions:
Session 1
Session 2
Session 3
Session 4&5

6th Session (November 19th, 2008)

Quote:
"Where are these thrice-damned legendary treasures now? We haven't found a single gem, only hoards of stinking beasts!" Silhouette had a bad feeling, and that wasn't helping her mood at all. Nanok hadn't said a word in hours. The promise of hoards of precious gems had retreated in the face of this dangerous trip into the subterranean halls. At this point each of them would have preferred the legendary gemstone dragon to yet another grimy corridor and murderous bane spider. "It can't be far now." Jaes was still hopeful. After all he had spent hours over dusty tomes researching the Caverns of Thuul. "Stop grumbling and let's get on with it then." As always Tahlia marched in front, her stride confident.


Our sixth session found the heroes still exploring the Caverns of Thuul dungeon, on the third level down to the legendary level. It was WEEK 17 of the campaign.

Level 3 - What lies beneath (#16)

My very first action of this session was to draw the last three cards from the Overlord deck and accordingly receive 3 conquest - an auspicious beginning.

And at last here was a level to my taste. Despite being very small it was well-filled with beast type monster, my silver monster category. I had saved up on two Frenzy cards, and with their help the Mantikor boss, the elite Naga and the bane spiders managed to bring down Tahlia with her two Cursed markers. Yay!

After this bad start for the heroes the level became quiet and the players collected their conquest points. The Mantikor went down quickly for 2 (the Naga survived a little longer), one Glyph gave 3, and digging up a treasure chest without any real treasures provided another point.

The level was the first in a long time which provided more conquest to the Overlord than to the heroes. The total was 6 to 9 against the heroes. I hardly dared to hope to it might get even better...

Quote:
Silhoutte bend down and picked up a little stone from the cave floor. As she held it up in the torchlight, it glittered in all colors of the rainbow. "A gem!" All fatigue and despair was blown away in an instant. "Just as I said." Jaes comment was smug. "We got to be very careful now. My sources say these caves are guarded by a very ... peculiar dragon.


Level 4 - The Caverns of Thuul (Copper Legendary Area)

With four separate areas this was by far the largest dungeon of the campaign yet. I knew that the silver gemstone dragon with its special abilities would be a tough surprise for the heroes. That it would become as bad as it did ... I had no idea.

The dungeon areas were only populated by a few razorwings, it was suspiciously quiet. IMO the players made a mistake by opening two areas at once. It gave them some maneuvering room because they could jump between the glyphs, but it also provided me with ample spawning opportunities.

Razorwings are awfully fast at silver level and pretty tough too boot. I made a point of only spawning other beast monsters (bane spiders, hellhounds, blood apes). With their copper equipment the heroes now almost always needed two hits to kill a monster, which in turn allowed me a lot more attacks on my turn. Most of the time the monsters themselves didn't manage to bring down a hero, but they weakened them enough so that I was able to bring them down with a well-placed trap or Dark Charm.

Then came the moment when Silhouette picked up the first gem pile and the dragon rose out of the floor. It cut off Silhouette, Nanok and Tahlia from the glyph behind them, but was also immediately grappled by Tahlia with her bear tatoo and locked into place.

Both Nanok and Jaes immediately used the remaining Power Potions, but both of those attacks missed spectacularly (I think there were 4 Xs on the first 6 attacks on the dragon). Without the potions the heroes could only scratch the dragon due to his high armor and immunity to pierce on missile and melee attacks. Often enough the Fear 2 rating prevented a high-damage attack from going through.

On the other hand the dragon was only able to attack Jaes and Nanok effectively. Silhouette remained at range 5, safely out of reach of the dragon's breath template. Tahlia was relatively safe behind her Skull Shield. But Nanok's armor was mostly negated through the dragon's pierce 4, and Jaes couldn't stay away as far as Silhouette. In addition Jaes magic attacks tended to hurt Tahlia more than the dragon itself.

After I had killed Nanok twice with traps when he tried to withdraw from the dragon, both he and Jaes stayed mostly away from the fight giving only indirect support (leadership). The fight became a grudge match between Tahlia and the dragon, with Silhouette doing the occasional scratch from her bow. The fight took so long that I cycled through the overlord deck two more times before the dragon finally melted back into the ground. And that had been only the first area of the level (after the start area)!

At this point it was almost midnight and we had to cut the session short (it being a weekday). We took a photo of the board and agreed to continue another time.


The heroes managed to collect 8 conquest on this level (2 glyphs and killing the dragon once). I cycled through my deck twice (6 conquest), killed Nanok twice - once with two curses (10), Jaes twice - once with one curse (9), and Silhouette once with one curse (4). The players also let me have a single conquest marker for allowing Silhouette to discard a web token in town, for a whopping conquest gain of 29.

But the dungeon also resulted in 6300 gold for the heroes, providing cash is its function after all. In hindsight I'm glad I upgraded Beasts to silver before this level, it made the dungeon significantly tougher and basically paid for itself. It's nice to have a good amount of XP now, it gives me a lot more options for the rest of the campaign. How the heroes fare in the next dungeons will depend on how quickly they can equip themselves with good silver treasures I suppose.

Until next time, your content spider queen...

Quote:
The dragon was immensely beautiful. The torchlight reflected on its gemstone skin in glorious colors. It sparkled and glittered splendidly. The monster was also deadly and the reek of sulphur and brimstone filled the room. Tahlia had almost vanished beneath the coils of the cruel body, but tirelessly hewed at the shining, iron-hard scales. Silhouette's arrows whistles through the air, striking the wings of the creature in a shower of sparks. The ancient glyph behind the dragon glowed brightly, the battlemage appeared as out of nothingness and hurled a bolt of magic. The dragon's claw drew a deep gash across Nanok's side, bright red blood gushing on the floor. The barbarian leaped back to get out of reach of the gem-tipped claws. Just then a spiked pit openend right beneath his feet...
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Brian Brokaw
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Indiana
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Nice report! I like the use of quote markers for the "flavor text" style vignettes from the heroes' point of view. Very cool.

Sounds like the legendary dungeon was tough on the good guys! I'm looking forward to inflicting it on my own band of pesky heroes soon. Can I get a "Muahahaha?" devil
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Ralf Schemmann
Germany
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*joins in* Muahahaha! devil
 
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