Recap: DF Session 6 & 7, Caverns of Chaos 5

Continuing my DF recaps. Looking back this pair of sessions were some of my favorites. There was some real challenges, a chance to get some RP in, and an interesting dungeon design.

February 6th, 2014 (part 1) &
February 13th, 2014 (part 2)

Drog, human barbarian
Farthing, faun wizard
Noide, celestial cleric
Phelix, cat-folk swashbuckler (missed most of part 1)
Calahn, human martial artist (missed half of part 2)

Another week passes and the group is ready to take care of the Lizardmen that have been a raiding nearby farms and travelers. Drog asks around the local taverns, but doesn't discover anything new.

They set out and have an uneventful camp. In the morning they head into the caves and Drog spots a cleverly hidden 5x10x30 pit. After jumping over, the he threw a line to the others and they all jumped. There was one miss (Cal) but Drog was able to pull him up before he fell to the pit below.

Once inside they saw a portcullis with some stairs leading up beyond it, and a wooden door. Checking the door, Drog heard movement of several small or light creatures. He threw open the door and discovered a room with eight gecklings, one who was a shaman.

The group piled in and beat down the gecks with little resistance save for a few stabs to Dogs' legs. After looting the bodies they continued on through the next door.

Here a hall turned a corner then split to some stairs leading up to the south, and a door to the east. They decided to enter the east room which had an old well with several boards scattered around the floor. The boards looked as though they were once used to cover the well. Signs of the gecklings living in this area were seen, and checking the well, sounds came from below of some sort of wet movement.

After lowing a light down, they discovered that an Exploding Slime making its way up the side of the well. A few attacks and spells later it had still managed to get to the top, but was quickly swatted back down by Drog's sword. Farthing then threw several lighting bolts down the well while the others waited. Unfortunately, one of the two Lizard men that were in the refectory heard them and went to check it out. Seeing the humans in the cave, he signaled for the other to join him when Noide caught a glimpse of him.

The group charged the new threat and soon the first lizard man was down. The second decided to go warn others, and ran back and towards the door leading to the kitchen. It was here he was taken down, but the sound was enough to alert the two lizard men and one geckling in the kitchen. As the party started to check the bodies the kitchen door sung open and the fight started again. Once again, one of the lizard men decided to flee back and get assistance and again was struck down before opening the next door.

Not wanting another surprise, the party decided to barricade the door west of the kitchen with a bench. After this, they decide to check the passage south of the kitchen which led to an empty room (really just a wide hall). Here there was a door back to the refectory and a door further south from which Drog heard several lizard men discussing raiding plans. Everyone got ready and then the opened the door.

The leader of this group of Lizard men spotted the door opening, and called for her men to attack. Farthing threw lightning at one of the lizards and stunned him for a moment, the others got their weapons ready and started to form up, while the rest of the party waited at the door to bottleneck the reptiles. When her four consorts made it to the party, the leader moved (unseen by the party) to the other door in her chamber.

Melee between the four lizard men and the party took place at the door with the two lizard men with swords taking up the front positions, and the two with spears behind them. Things were going okay for the group until a (critical) parry by one of the lizard men left Drog's sword broken on the ground. Things might have turned bad then if it were not for a powerful blow by Noide which knocked back the lizard man that had disarmed Drog and sent him into the lizard behind him. Both ended up on the ground and Farthing's ice slick was cast and made it even more difficult for them to get up.

Drog grabbed the Lizard man's dropped broadsword, Noide, and Cal kept attacking, and Farthing readied the wand he had been wanting to try out. During all this the lizard leader throws a key to the green scale lizard man they keep as a slave blacksmith, and tells him that they are under attack. She runs to the door as he unlocks himself, then he grabs a sword and follows as she opens of the door and moved through.

Farthing's wand teleports one of the lizard men further into the room, another zap mind controls a diffrent lizard (wand of random effects!) The group takes care of the remaining consorts, and Cal decides to check out the rear flank. As he moves back the leader and green scale come around the corner. She tells the green scale to get the others, but he instead puts his sword into her back.

The others arrive and finish off the leader. The green scale dropped his sword and put his hands in front of him in an attempted calming gesture. Drog charges for the green scale and Cal tackles him sending them both to the ground (crit on attack, but hitting a giant mass of muscle still sent him down). Noide makes an attack, misses then notices that this lizard has different colored scales than the rest that they have fought. Eventually Drog also calms down and the green scale tells the party to come with him before others find them.

He takes them back to the armory where he works and explained that he did not belong to this tribe of lizard men. His tribe and these had an exchange of sons in order to create peace between them, but the brown scale son betrayed the bargain killing the green scale leader. He, the green scale son, was kepted as a slave, made to work as a blacksmith. He offered to help them if they assisted in his escape and did not harm him. Then he gave them a key to a secret door found in the kitchen that he had hidden under the hot coals. Then he warned that even with the leader dead, a giant lizard man and many other guards still remained and would be coming. The group got ready for another fight.

A pounding sound then a crash came from the door they barricaded, so they all ran that way. When they arrived at the door, it was open with a geck and a couple of lizard men standing on the other side. The group fought them down, while another geck and a geck shaman joined the fight.

These didn't take to much work (and the extra geck decided to run back. As most of the party decided to peruse, Farthing went to shut the door to the kitchen, and saw that another group had been approaching from behind.

In total there were two more gecks and a lizard men. They tried to flank the group, and ended up severely injuring Farthing, who started to play dead, but later tried to grab a healing potion and passed out.

Meanwhile the group fight the geckling two lizard men and the giant lizard man in the barracks. Most went down quick, but the giant was brutal. He had a stack of hit points and a giant greatsword. With a powerful blow he took a chunk out of Drog which sent him to the ground stunned.

Phelix jumped in  and slashed away, using lots of feigns, strikes to the arm and vitals (the later doing some pretty heavy damage). Still the brute stayed up.

The flanking group had entered the room behind Noide who had at first tried to heal Farthing, but then seeing how he was outnumbered fled.

Drog now took the roll of assisting these targets and sliced them down. Once only one geck remained he took off running.

Phelix eventually crippled the giant's hand forcing him to drop his sword and go to using his claws in close combat. Drog got behind him and took a chunk out of the lizard's neck. The next turn the lizard man offered to surrender, but Phelix and Drog both attacked. Drogs slice split the monster's skull.

They healed Farthing and looted the bodies, Drog taking the giant (fine) lizard man greatsword. After this they checked the chests in the barracks and found a chest in the commander's room under a giant bed. Last they found and opened the door to the storage room where they found a new shield for Noide a bunch of catnip and other various supplies. Then they found some jewelry which the decided to take, sell, but give the proceeds to the town [still no idea why].

Then Noide did a run through and they found hidden doors that lead to other caves. One they could not operate and the other they thought better to not try. On the way out they had a short chat with a couple of goblins that were on a smoke break. They got some info on the caves on either side of the Lizard man cave. Learning that there was a human summoner in one, and giant spiders in the other.

During that night's camp, a Arakun approached Drog (quite stealthily) and delivered an invite from the hill giant that lives with him and his kind in one of the caverns. It requested that the party visit him next time they were out, as he had a mission for them.

The party returned to town, sold their loot and rested up. Soon they would head back....

XP: (base 5, +1 full exploration, +2 Leader, +2 Giant Lizard Man, +1 secrets): 11

Good run, but again took 2 sessions to complete. Biggest lesson from this one is don't separate or leave a man behind, especially when the layout has lots of halls that circle back to other areas, allowing for the enemy to flank.

The split dungeon didn't work well this time. One player had to leave early from the first game, and another was late to the second. At this point I am wondering if the group can only do very small dungeons, or if we find another way to deal with mid-dungeon breaks.

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