Thursday, January 12, 2012

Thoughts on the Session

As you no doubt read in great detail, the first Deepest Sea session ultimately went well.  Here are a few thoughts from my point of view:

  • I had a player interested in playing a Druid and a havling cleric, so I had to come up with information on both.  Druids are based on the Advanced companion rules, and havling clerics are worshipers of the elvish pantheon. Both players did quite well with their choices.
  • Players were confused about the "lines" thing with equipment and encumbrance. They were also somewhat confused about how to generate the various bonuses based on stats.  Both need to be better explained in the players guide, possibly with examples.
  • Buying equipment takes some time, and may need to be simplified for beginners with a "kit".
  • I rolled the motivations of the retainers using the NPC motivation table created by Rolang, but the results were not as random as expected.  Drop tables may have a bias due to methodology [I was dropping with my left hand, and most results went to dull and torpid].  As it happened, they only hired two retainers and a dog, so it did not matter much.
  • The players did not go quickly to the village, which meant that they missed out on seeing the zombies and skeletons burn down the village, and also meant that the necromancer was encountered only at the end, and not as a reoccurring villain.
  • The players never searched the ruins of the church, missing a large part of the potential loot.
  • The first combat went pretty poorly, and the orc fighter went down as quickly as would be expected in a 3:1 situation.  I was willing to let the character die, but the other players pointed out that having the character of the guy who flew 3000 miles to be in the game (not wholly for the game) die might not be the most fun.  So apparently now we need to get to -10 to actually die. Ah, house rules!
  • Instead of attacking the skeletons in the well, the players looked around for "healing potions".
  • Spider and ghoul in the tower died very easily, showing the combat power of such a large party.
  • The players never looked through the stables or the workers huts, instead hurrying off to the quarry.
  • Once they recovered spells, they did not go back to the well, or to the previously found hole in the ground, but instead went to the cave with the slime trail (!).  Might have to use that against them next time as a chance to introduce a TPK, or as I like to think about it "a life lesson".
  • Cavern Crawler was weaker than I thought, and got spanked in one round by the massed firepower of the group, and then slain as it tried to flee.
  • Entangle was very very powerful... when the DM forgets to roll a magic resistance for those hit by it.  
  • Players put down the necromancer very quickly, ending combat in three rounds.  She also failed her blood sustenance spell because she missed her attack on the dog ripping her apart. This was disappointing, since I had hoped that this combat would be sort of the capstone of the session.  Another instance of misjudging the power level of the party.
  • Players are now going to carouse to ensure that they all make it to level 2... which gives me evil glee.

No comments: