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Thursday, February 20, 2014

1st Edition AD&D Part V- The Adventures

Throughout this series of posts thus far I've focused on the player characters, the background and parts like the BBEG. Now I'm going to delve into specific adventures/ modules of "THE CAMPAIGN". In a lot of cases Jeff wrote many of his own adventures, but at other times he used Dungeon Magazine as well. I think in this regard he had excellent taste as Dungeon

Magazine had some gob smacking awesome adventures in its hallowed pages. I think this probably affected my own DMing style years later as I tend to use Dungeon a bit, simply modifying the adventures to fit my campaign world.

Immediately, I remember two Dungeon adventures that were pure awesomeness:

- Ward of Witching Ways- Dungeon #11 which was great. I can clearly remember us getting ship wrecked and having to swim to the isle. This was also where I picked up my cloak of the bat and wand of polymorphing. Jeff was making some hints about how my spell books and familiar were going to be toast sooner or later. I thought this odd because I certainly wasn't overpowered. So to thwart him I had my familiar watch my bag of holding containing my spell books several rooms back from the final encounter. I can distinctly remember him being annoyed by it. Score one for player and thumb in the eye of the DM!

I do recall someone in the group got ploymorphed into a bird and I utilized it from time to time to polymorph foes into snails. Since I was the only MU in the party (Neither Daryl's Fire Wizard) not Chris' Illusionist) could use many of the magic items I got most of the goodies. Eventually it dawned on Jeff just how powerful this wand could be and I lost it in an item saving throw (see below). Another odd fact as to why I lost it is that I'm very tactical player. I was even back then. I tend to conserve my resources and loathe to use them unless it's the opportune moment. Certainly was the case as I knew it was low charged, and I used it sparingly.

The second module that stands out in my mind is "The Wounded Worm" from Dungeon #8. I'm my minds eye I can see the approach to the dungeon along with final fight. I can clearly recall the final fight with the red dragon who nuked my afore mentioned wand of polymorhping; this also might be where I lost the cloak of the bat. I don't recall who, but I do remember most of the group being heavily wounded and two other characters being killed. Certainly my dark elf was heavily wounded.

Later in I used some of the red dragon hide to further protect my bag of holding. I had it tanned and cured. Jeff thought it was a good idea and gave it bonuses to item saving throws vs fire in the future.

Those were the two major adventures from Dungeon that I can recall. Aside from that, Jeff ran is through many, many other adventures most of which he created himself. In most cases I recall snippets of some, others are blank, but we played for two years every week reaching around 7/7 level for my F/MU.

Other adventures that stand out in my mind or at least fragments of them:

- my character, as noted previously used a spetum as his primary weapon. We did fight a white dragon when we were fairly low level, so much so I was the only one in the party who needed to make a fear check. We eventually beat it, but the item that stuck in my mind was a magical long sword (later revealed to be +2) sticking out is block of ice, no other powers then it glowed blue on command and illuminated the icy cave of the dragon. I ended up with it in the treasure split and used it on occasion before losing it in a failed item saving throw.

- In one of the (somewhat) warmer lands on the game map we were traipsing across rolling, grassy hills when we came to a small valley, perhaps more of a simple depression in the ground, when we attacked by undead centaurs which was a nice touch. The thing that stands out in my mind was Christian using his illusionist spells ( may have been phantasmal force) to create a long bow which he began firing with, doing illusionary damage. I always thought this was a practical and good example of using illusions in an otherwise flawed part of the rules. Illusions for me have always been a sore spot, and a weak area of the game. As I recall both Dave's halfling and I drew our short bows and joined in firing as the centaurs were at range.

- The infamous Wyvern Migrations! One of the things that made the CAMPAIGN feel more "alive" was this is one of the first campaigns where things happened around is rather the going from module to module, or adventure to adventure. The wyverns of this world were migratory and we would see them nightly over the span of a few months. My character was smart enough to avoid calling attention to us on my part of the nightly watch. This went on for some time until I think it was Tom's half ogre that caused some sort of commotion and brought several of them on us. I'm not sure who exactly died that time... but somebody did.

- Last bit. The overall arcing thing amongst the players was that everyone had died at least once, except my fighter/mu. He had meh hit points, but a really low AC, coupled with the ability to dish out some severe damage being double specialized in spetum with ogre power? I could mix it up with the two primary fighters and do as much damage, just couldn't take the hits in return. I do recollect one instance where we were in a dungeon and I was firing my hand crossbow for some reason and got slapped upside the head and dropped to -9 hp. I think Dave's halfling fighter/thief was right there, he hadn't acted in that round and was able to bandage and stabilize me immediately before going to -10 the next round. So in a way it was only through sheer luck my character didn't die the entire game. This was fortunate as I was the only full elf in the party and raise dead wasn't going to work, nor did our cleric have it on a scroll or a rod of resurrection. I've had plenty of other characters get killed over the years since, but I don't recall any hovering on "death's door" quite like that.

There are plenty more adventures we went on as the coast of the continent was to our south and we traveled by water here and there and via overland vast distances. I know my hand sketched map is long since gone, but I do remember a major river system down the middle. Most of those other adventures are lost in the mist of time, as in 27 years ago, but I do recall a blast we had while playing.

I'm thinking the next post will wrap up the blogging about the CAMPAIGN, and move onto some of our other campaigns like the one shot of the monstrosity that was Ravenloft, no, not the campaign setting, but the original module. The carnage that ensued and a certain DM hanging gray, paper gravestones inscribed with the PC and NPC followed names on them was legendary.

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