28 Sep

The Side Quest Session 4

Due to scheduling issues where we’ll be missing at least one player for the next few sessions, it looks like The Side Quest is going to be our regular game for a bit. We picked up with it again in our last session after taking a couple of weeks off. When we last left our heroes, they had gained employment with Rowena Greyraven, a mysterious woman seeking a topaz that was beyond one of the valley’s magical doors. She had provided a key to the “Moon Door” and the party had found the door. Passed through it, they found themselves in a whole new place (presumably a different plane) and discovered a town, albeit with no one on the streets. At the Silvery Eel Inn, they learned a little about this town and new place and acquired rooms for the night. As we ended the last session, they were settling down for the night.

For this session, we had all but one of the same players from the last session. Unfortunately, Jeremy’s schedule is going to keep him from playing anymore. So Muse, Rachel, and RJ picked up where they had left off with Callie and Grim, Morgraen and Riordan, and Ander and Lavinia respectively. There are potential spoilers for the adventure, “Rats in the Walls,” from Knockspell #4 but, to be honest, it was more inspirational for this session than run by the book so to speak. Of course, not having really looked at the adventure in almost a month was a big contributor to that. My GM comments, as usual, are in [italics and brackets].

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09 Sep

The Side Quest Session 3 (Part 2)

When we last left our, um, heroes, they had spent a fine evening at Hell’s Haven and had gained something of a patron in Rowena Greyraven. With something of a little quest to perform, they had set off to visit Chumley in the hopes of learning more about the valley’s special doors and thus getting a step closer to recovering the topaz, behind the Moon Door, that Rowena was seeking.

As they strolled through the valley towards the ogre’s cave, those who had already met Chumley and promised to keep the secret of his alter ego. Entering the cave, the noise of their interactions got the ogre’s attention and he came out as Crunch. However, upon seeing who was visiting, he invited everyone in for tea but refused to serve scones as Callie, Riordan, and company had led to more learning of his secret life.

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08 Sep

The Side Quest Session 3 (Part 1)

Because of scheduling in the prior week and upcoming weeks, we played The Side Quest campaign in our last session even though we had a nearly full table. Jeremy played his first session with us and had a nice little backstory for his character, Ulfgar, that fit well with the game. Essentially, Ulfgar was seeking a book about his clan’s genealogy that had been stolen by some adventures and had, or so it was rumored, ended up in a secret library at Hell’s Haven. It is so nice to have players who work a new character right into the ongoing story and premise! As has been the pattern with our other sessions with The Side Quest (all two of them), the first half of the session was dominated by interaction and roleplaying while the second half was dominated by combat and dungeon-crawling.

This was also our first session with The Side Quest where I had to deal with the coming and going of the characters. In our first session, RJ, Theo, and Todd played. In our second session, Muse, Rachel, and Theo played. In our third session, Jeremy, Muse, Rachel, and RJ played. In the future, we’ll probably just handwave a lot of this but I tried to have it all make sense in this session.

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06 Sep

House Rules for 5th Edition and Some Changes

We had a break from gaming last week as too many people had other plans for the long holiday weekend (Labor Day in the US). So no session recap. Instead, here’s the house rules that we’ve been using for our 5e game…all subject to change of course. But first…a bit of news.

We won’t be playing next week so tonight, even though we’ll have almost a full table, we’re going to play the Side Quest again. We also will have a new player, Jeremy, joining us. He’ll be playing Ulfgar Ironfist, a dwarven fighter. It also sounds like Todd may have to bow out from playing on a regular basis. We might have another person interested in joining as well.

We’re also going to be dropping the Starter Set campaign and the Lost Mines of Phandelver adventure. To be honest, if we don’t play a campaign for awhile, I start to lose interest in it…especially if it is one that I’m not heavily invested in in terms of time and effort. Lost Mines kind of falls into that category as–other than the beginning at Crellar’s Trading Post–I really hadn’t done much to change or flesh it out yet.

Instead, we’ll continue with The Side Quest when we don’t have a “quorum” of players (the minimum number to be determined later) and we’ll be starting a new campaign soon. It’ll will be based on the excellent little mini-setting, The Lonely Coast, from Raging Swan Press. I’ll, of course, be changing, adding, and subtracting to make it my own. After a little “poll” on our forums this week, it looks like the campaign will be a heroic fantasy campaign with multiple locales to explore and intrigue to get caught up in with a pinch of ancient civilizations, a dash of swaggering-mercenary attitude, a splash of humor, and a subtle hint of good old-fashioned swords and sorcery.

Damn…I started to ramble. Better get back on topic. Our house rules are below the break.

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