I previously posted some warts-and-all email summaries of the ‘Curse of Strahd’ campaign I ran in 2017. It was the first campaign I sent summaries to players by email after each game (I was a bit lazy prior to that). Here’s the follow up campaign – 2018’s ‘Tomb of Annihilation’. We used experience points rather than milestones/level-based progression, which led to some ‘xp grinding’ along the way. Each session was 4 hours long. Some of the summaries may be amusing; don’t forget these are unedited emails, so please forgive their somewhat chaotic nature and poor sentence structure/grammar. If you’re a D&D fan you may enjoy them. And maybe even if you aren’t.
OMU! And the gang’s all here (well, most of ‘em—the rain was pretty bad in the real world…)
First up: Nang Nang’s shrine, where the rescued Grung was reunited with his dad, who happened to be Chief of the local Grung tribe. The party members, unaccustomed to not killing everything, were a little out of their element, but after some fancy persuasion by Daniel’s surprisingly less-than-psychopathic Bard, Dan’s laid back Warlock/Sorcerer and Jake’s unusually non-violent Warlock, the party got access to the shrine and finally worked out how to get the inner doors open. And there was the puzzle cube, ripe for the taking. Which they did. A long rest and lots of treasure later (which became worthless when they left the shrine—no wonder the chief was so blasé), the party traveled to the next shrine, on a column over a lake of lava.
Jake’s Warlock flew over, almost fell prey to some Jaculi (or “ejakuli”, as the party preferred to refer to them), and took a rubbing (get your mind out of the gutter!) of the saying conveniently carved into the door so that Orvex Ogglebutt, local translator for hire, could read it. Then William’s Druid accompanied Jake’s Warlock as a portable velociraptor and they looked in some arrow slits. After working out the dumb puzzle (yeah, it was pretty simple), another cube was claimed!
Next up, some wandering Kobolds. Morgan’s Rogue decided to sit out the combat (how unusual), and chat with Orvex Scratchyabutt, instead. A reasonably quick fight and some vicious interrogation later (ah, there’s the party we know and love) and the Kobold leader spilled the beans about Acererak (who used to be bullied at school a lot because of his name), the dude who built the big tomb that everyone is trying to get into. Apparently, the Kobolds are a work crew who repair the shrines once stupid adventurers set off the traps.
OMU! Come on down to Shrine’s Galore – we have so many shrines, we’re giving them away!
Obo’Laka’s Shrine – just around the corner, through the dark corridor, teleport through the sun pool to the moon pool, Jake’s Aasimar Warlock gets stoned (and Daniel’s Bard gives his statue makeup to help him look nice in retirement), lots of faffing about with lit torches going out in water, a battle with six cuddly Zorbos (Dan’s Warlock intends to stuff one for later…), Mark’s Kenku Monk turns to stone (“DOH!” could have been his last word), the party finally finds the secret passage to transport the lit torches through (yep, the building’s shaped that way for a reason…), and another puzzle cube comes their way. Everyone’s happy! Except for Jake and Mark.
Wongo’s Shrine – just down the road, check out the wall masks, big monkey statue, sh&*-easy puzzle, fight the Su Monsters, get the puzzle cube!
Long Rest! Along comes Mark’s Human War Cleric, who just happens to be brother of Mark’s petrified character at Nangalore. Nice!
Papazotl’s Shrine – through the flooded city, make friends with the Giant Crocodile at the door (thanks, Daniel’s Bard’s Mask of Beasts!), find a riddle, use all sorts of lighting tricks to discover the secret crawl space, rope up Dan’s Warlock as he gets to the secret room and discovers the grid on the wall, eventually work out that the riddle needs to be applied to the grid to reveal the secret, another puzzle cube!
The party now has seven puzzle cubes! Two to go!
Next week: Two more cubes! Or not!
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