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Looking around
(1/10/03 3:54:14 pm)
My RttToEE Campaign: TAKE TWO!
We just had our first RttToEE campaign tonight with my new group. The last I ran only got to the Moathouse dungeon before we had to split up for various reasons.

Well, I'll post a log here for anyone who cares to listen (and my own enjoyment for recordkeeping). I'll segment this up into several posts for userfriendliness.

Setting: Forgotten Realms.

Basic Location: Chondath/Sespech.

Hommlet: North of the Naga Stream and South of the Southern Chondalwood.

Nulb and the ToEE: located in the fringe areas of the Chondalwood.

Moathouse: I made up a Marsh area where the Naga Flow hits the Golden Plains for the Moathouse.

Verbobonc and Fyryondy (sp?): Elbulder (and to some extent Ormteparr and Arrabar) serve the role of Verbobanc.

Rastor: Replaced with Torsie in the Firestar Mountains Southeast of the Chondalwood.

The Temple of All-Consumption: Placed in the Firestar Mountains.

Emridy Meadows: I kept Emridy Meadows and placed it between the Golden Plains and the place where the River Arran hits the Chondalwood.

Some Reasons of mine for choosing this location:

I wanted to place the campaign in a warmer setting, in relatively uncontrolled borderlands (but borderlands that could muster the necessary forces to overthrow the original Temple) and far away from the Heartlands - too much interruption for older campaign there. My campaigns start in 1398 d.r. - but that's another story.

The Chondalwood seemed perfect to me due to its reputation, size and sinister nature - the Emerald Enclave, and faeries of the forest are interesting plot hooks (and diversions) as well as usable factions for the adventure.

Looking around
(1/10/03 3:59:58 pm)
Party Composition
This party is quite different from the old - only half the size and with quite different members:

Veil "Sunblazer" of the House of Quatraz (Male Sun-elf Wiz6)

Zaphood Oakenshield (Male Human Ftr5/Sor1)

Whodoon Nemo (Male Moon-elf Rog4/Ftr2)

Toldorn, Son of Keldorn, [the one from BGII] "Ironheart" (Male Human Clr4/Pal2) (NPC)

Luckily all the basic expertises are well-represented in this mix.
The adventure was extremely deadly when I ran 8 4th level characters against it the first time around. I expect the buff to 6th level will ease the introductory pain a bit.


Looking around
(1/10/03 4:09:10 pm)
Adventure Hooks
Driving Hook:


Zaphood has descended from a long line of Purple Dragon knights. His life has been rather turbulent, though, as his father - Teregon "Trego" Oakenshield - married a Vistani (exist in my FR) woman and prowled the roads as a travelling knight.

His father did find his fame, though, at Emridy Meadows and returned gloriously to Cormyr and settled with his family, reinstated into the Purple Dragons and the family Hierarchy by the reigning patriarch Angemeth "Angus" Oakenshield, Zaphood grandfather.

After many years on the road, Zaphood and his companion Whodoon, where approached by his grandfather who came with sad tidings.

Teregon travelled back to area of TtoEE with a band of his 10 best knights 8 months ago and nothing has been heard or seen of him ever since. Even worse, he took the family's best heirlooms - the Sword and Armour of Tentilion (family founder) with him. Angemeth has hopes that Zaphood will regain these items (he is convinced Teregon is dead) and return to the family and take his place as rightful heir before his life expires (and get rid of that Vistani name of his in the process).

Zaphood does not intend to disappoint him. The family will attempt to send resources to Hommlet to aid the search, but their only alllies along the long trip is a cleric of the Temple of Helm in Westgate.

Looking around
(1/10/03 4:15:33 pm)
Adventure Hooks II
Driving Hook: Whodoon

Whodoon is on uneasy terms with his wealthy Elven family in Sundanesselar (moon-elves living among wood-elves). Whodoon lost his judgment on a mission in Westgate and lost the friend he was supposed to protect - the son of one of the most influential noble family's of Sundanesselar - in the streets of the city (to what fate is unknown to this day).

Whodoon wandered around Westgate aimlessly and disillusioned and picked up on the trade of the rogue along the way. He found his spirits back and the courage to face his family.

While the family is inclined to forgive him, he is barely more than an unwanted refugee in Sundanesselar now and is desperate to redeem his reputation (while enjoying the easy and free life in the meantime).

Whodoon met Toldorn and Zaphood during the Crusade to free Murann from the Sythillisian Empire in Amn and fought during the month-long siege of the city. The three have been inseparable ever since and Whodoon sees great opportunities in Zaphood's quest.

Looking around
(1/10/03 4:23:07 pm)
Adventure Hooks III
Driving Hook: Veil

Veil was born on Evermeet into a neutral-aligned Arcane Order - The House of Quatraz - distrusted by everyone in their homeland.

His father was the greatest of the Orders wizards, but he fell to corruption and the darkness he summoned forth killed himself, Veil's mother and most other members of the family. Only Veil's two grandfathers - great Elven wizards in their own right - and the servant families remain

Veil is the only heir to the tradition of the once proud house and longs to restore it to its former glory (and redeem the soul of his father).

Veil's father's father served with a human named Gerionot Oakenshield (Zaphood great-great-great-grandfather) and these two earned their fame together. He has encouraged Veil to seek the company of the Oakenshield family and uphold the good relations between the two families.

Veil sees the quest as his opportunity to face the darkness his father succumbed to and defeat it....


Looking around
(1/10/03 4:27:27 pm)
Adventure Hooks IV
Driving Hook: Toldorn

Toldorn is very straightforward in his ambitions. He wants to live up to the great example set by his father Keldorn (who fought besides Abdel Adrian and defeated the archmage Joneleth Irenicus). He participated eagerly in the Crusade against the Sythillisian Empire and bonded with both Zaphood and - to a lesser extent - the roguish Whodoon (who he cuts far more slack than he knows his paladinhood should tolerate).

The quest to learn the fate of a great knight and investigate a site of great, great evil alongside his trusted friends could not have been more welcome for Toldorn. If he can finish the quest, then he would surely more than match the accomplishment of his revered father....


Looking around
(1/10/03 4:36:54 pm)
Adventure Hooks V
Smaller Hooks:

(..some of the background info that may and may not come into play...)

- Zaphood will attempt to send resources to the quest (nice way of introducing replacement characters too).

- Whodoon's knowledge of Westgate could come in handy for Zaphood's family and possible other dealings...

- Whodoon's father is secretly planning to monitor his son's progress on the quest, though, he is fully unaware of its magnitude and scope.

- Zaphood's father and his knights DID discover the Temple of All-Consumption 8 months ago through unknown sources. They have not returned.

- The druids of the Emerald Enclave have little sympathy for Jaroo and Hommlet. In the end, however, the would oppose the forces of Elemental Evil.

- The tension between Sespech and Chondath is at an all-time high. A gathering of forces from the city states is unlikely - unless faced with evidence of their total destruction.

- Chatrilon worked in Westgate and knows a bit about the fate of Whodoon's friend as he had a small part to play in the "job".

Those are the one's at the moment, many more will pop up. I want to integrate it all into a broader campaign (at least making it have the feel), so the player's don't drown in Elemental Evil ;) ...

Tomorrow, I'll post the first session log (which was pretty calm except for an encounter with a Breathdrinker). Now, I'm off to bed! :)


Still here? Wow.
(1/11/03 3:37:07 am)
Re: Adventure Hooks V
Did you think in an advance what the local organizations would do with what kind of information? The Emerald Enclave is a very good example. For those without FR knowledge, it is a very powerful druidic organization in the area worshipping Sylvanus the god of wild nature and forests. As you said, they would oppose the temple if they learn that it is going to be ressurected. Was Jaroo a member of the Emerald Enclave and how would they react if they heard he was murdered?

Siopharek once made a list of with what information what political faction in Verbononc would do. In particular how much they can give is important. In my experience I should have done the same for my campaign. It is certainly a question that is going to rise if your players are the type who are not too afraid to ask help.

You did not change any details to the adventure? Tharizdun is easy to keep, but what about Iuz and that fungi demon?

Looking around
(1/11/03 4:16:32 am)
Reply to Madfox
Thanks for the reply Madfox.

Jaroo was NOT a member of the Emerald Enclave (far to urban for their tastes) even though he is a worshipper of Silvanus. His death his pretty much inconsequental to them (even though, the death of a druid would be a good excuse to pester the civilised people of Hommlet, but it is unlikely that the Emerald Enclave will even hear about his death).

So far, they have no spies in Hommlet, they do, however, check on the Temple and Nulb from time to time (from a distance) and they DO know about the hobgoblins (which they find sustain a bit of balance in an otherwise human-dominated area and generally ignore).

It's likely that they won't act against a plot of Elemental Evil for a while but as soon as they learn about Tharizdun (or anything related to an apocalypse), they will bring their forces to bear on the temple...

For my thoughts about the gods and other details changed, please, refer to the previous and upcoming posts :) ... (I'll try to cover anything eventually)


Looking around
(1/11/03 4:30:01 am)
Deities (Changes and Mods)
This selection suited me best:

St. Cuthbert - Tyr (the best fit IMC. I had other plans for Helm and Torm is already well-represented IMC)

Ehlonna - Mielikki (everyone seems to agree on this one)

Lolth - As active in the Realms as anywhere (a keeper)

Pelor - Lathander (another no-brainer unless, your campaign still features Amaunator or you want a grimmer setting and use Kossuth - which would be an interesting opponent for the forces of EE)

Heironeous - Helm (Torm is a closer match but I like Helm, and the fact that the Watcher would know of this and send visions to one of his servants struck me as fitting)

Imix - Is the Prince of Elemental Evil anywhere (having a priest of Istishia, Akadi, Grumbar og Kossuth in your group would be quite a lot more interesting - and useful - than usual, though)

Zuggtmoy - A general demon from the Abyss with little screen time (a keeper)

Iuz - Shar (a very potent deity with a great feel to her. And we needed that "feminine" touch)

Tharizdun - I kept him as well. The few times he has been active in the Realms are long forgotten and have takne place in areas far from the Heartlands and the North.
IMC, though, Tharizdun is but one aspects of the Primordial Evil - the true source of all evil. 20 years earlier - 1378 d.r. - a great war, known as the War of the Seal, started by the Church of Zarrock, a deity of my own design and likewise manifestation of Primordial Evil, wrecked the Northern parts of Faerűn. I have not have direct intentions on integrating it directly into this campaign yet as the Church of Zarrock has no presence in Chondath/Sespech (and has been a recurring villain for quite a few times.) No player of mine has any knowledge of the fact that Zarrock is more than just a powerful evil deity. Nevertheless, I will probably downplay his involvement in the story and allow Tharizdun to shine alone for awhile ;) ...


Looking around
(1/11/03 4:34:00 am)
More Reasons for Choosing Chondath (also see post 1)

It doesn’t take a whole lot of modification in the Chondath/Sespech area. One reason I chose it is because of its long history of battles and smaller wars. The alliance that thwarted the Temple would have consisted of adventurers, and forces sponsored by various good aligned churches and nobles who felt their interests where threatened.


My main reasons for placing the module in Chondath/Sespech are as follows:
-        I wanted a more exotic location (we had had plenty of campaigns in Amn and the Heartlands)

-        Chondath/Sespech is grittier and less good-aligned (Chondath especially) than more obvious sites for the adventure like the Dalelands.

-        Fewer sources of help (Cormyr and Sembia are too well-organized and too formidable – Cormyr’s current condition unmentioned). My campaign is in 1398 d.r.

-        The impact on canon history will certainly be easier to adapt in this area than if put in the Heartlands.

-        Also the Heartlands are pretty full already: Having Myth Drannor and the ToEE in the same area just seemed too much for me (imagine the evil. The cultists could bowling against each other every weekend!)

Here for a while
(1/11/03 5:00:41 am)
Reply to Madfox II
As for your comment on asking for help and fleshing out factions for help, I will actually be encouraging this for two main reasons:

1. They are only four and getting aid or resources through logical allies is a more elegant solution to me, than travelling back and forth to merchants and "magic shops" (or the like - the players are not very interested in dealings with the Thayvian Enclave in Arrabar).

2. Having allies who know parts of the plot, makes the inclusion of new players and replacement characters easier. For instance:

- The parties roguish contacts in Westgate may take interest in the whole thing
- Zaphood's family will attempt to send aid in the form of family heirlooms and young able adventurers (so a cousin or the like could be a replacement character - this could turn into a family quest of epic proportions if many of its young warriors are slain looking for their greatest hero).
- Veil's family is an Arcane Order of some might, but also one that is very reluctant to deal with the forces of evil. They do wish to support Veil's quest to restore the families power and reputation.
- Toldorn, as the son of Keldorn, has numerous contacts in Amn among the ranks of The Most Noble Order of the Radiant Heart, the Church of Torm and Churches of Helm and Ilmater.
- Whodoon's father has a secret agenda to aid his son. He may even send some of his young wood-elf henchmen to the parties aid (who dislike Whodoon)

On the negative side:

- Chatrilon has contacts in Westgate too (and much more powerful).
- Arrabar and the other city states are in turmoil. War with Sespech is brewing and mistrust is the order of the day.
- The Emerald Enclave will be difficult to get involved
- The travel distance from Cormyr, Sundanesselar and Athkatla (where most of the parties allies are) is very long and the journey is dangerous.
- The Church of Shar and the Order of the Dark Moon -could still get involved (through Telna).

And more will show up I'm sure....


Still here? Wow.
(1/11/03 5:17:35 am)
Re: Reply to Madfox II
Zuggtmoy - A general demon from the Abyss with little screen time (a keeper)

Ever thought of using Moander? Moander is dead, but he/it was the god of corruption, rot and plants. He would fit Zuggtmoy quite well. Besides Zuggtmoy is dead in RttToEE as well.

Here for a while
(1/11/03 5:48:25 am)
Reply to Madfox II
I did actually. But Zuggtmoy is a generic demon (also as opposed to Moander who was an Intermediate Deity in the times of Netheril and later - at the time of his final destruction - a Demigod) and I saw no reason for not using her.

Also, Moander is so heavily involved in anything concerning Myth Drannor that I wanted to avoid him (and the first rising of my Temple of Elemental Evil is somewhere between 1370-1378 dr. at which time Moander was long dead, as far as I recollect).


Here for a while
(1/11/03 1:09:41 pm)
Log: Session 1
Mirtul 1st 1398 d.r.: Angemeth "Angus" Oakenshield, Veil, and 6 Purple Dragons meet with Zaphood, Toldorn and Whodoon in Amn. Zaphood learns about the fate of his father. Veil joins the group.

02.05.1398: Angemeth and his knights leave in the morning to scour up the remaining family members outside Cormyr. The party's departure from Amn.

21.05.1398: Arrival at Elbulder. Visit to the Temple of Helm. Last supplies collected. Toldorn prevents fight between Whodoon and local thugs. The party learns that conflict is brewing between Elbulder and Arrabar. The are warned to enter the Chondalwood and learn about the Emerald Enclave.

22.05.1398: Arrival at the rim of the Chondalwood. The party set up camp for the night protected by an alarm spell (and the regular guard).

23.05.1398: An invisible Breathdrinker penetrates the alarm spell in the morning and attack the party. Three party members are paralyzed but the party emerges victorious.
Travel towards Hommlet along the rim of the Chondalwood begins.

25.05.1398: Arrival in Hommlet. Basic contact is made with Elmo, and Chatrilon, at the Inn of the Welcome Wench. The party tours the town and learns the basic history of the area especially from Canoness Y'Dey. They try to get a meeting with Jaroo, but Yundi informs them that he is old and ill and currently meditating about important affairs. He instructs them to return tomorrow.

Yeneth the Keen, cleric of Tyr, puts great trust in the paryt (mainly because of Toldorn) and asks them to investigate the Moathouse if it suits their plans.
The party hear no news about Zaphood's father and his companions. No one has seen or heard about them.

26.05.1398: The party pickup a boozing Xaod just after midnight at Terrigans'. After mumbling about "damn visions" he passes out on the floor - dead-drunk. Toldorn recognizes his symbol and status and the paryt decides to carry him back to the Inn of the Welcome Wench and sober him up.

And that was it for the first night (we only had 3˝ hours). Tomorrow we'll continue and I expect a bit more actionpacked session now that many of the main characters have been introduced.


Here for a while
(1/12/03 1:12:52 pm)
Log: Session 2
Well, the PCs had an EXTREMELY busy day

- Whodoon blows it with the elven maid from the leatherwork shop and drinks himself senseless while the rest carry Xaod upstairs.

- Xaod joins the group in the morning. Whodoon sleeps the first part of the day away and has a nightmare about his fatal mission to Westgate (where he lost his friend to negligence).

- The party decides to head to the Moathouse and investigate on Yeneth's behalf.

- Whodoon wakes up and remembers Chatrilon's face from the fateful day in Westgate. He asks Maridosen if he has seen him (Maridosen picks up quickly and tells that she may have seen him earlier around the mill). While the party prepares to search in the Inn, she contacts Jaroo and asks him to have Dunrat set up an ambush for the party (completely underestimating their strength in the process).

- Whodoon second-guesses Maridosen's motives (sense motive) and as the party leaves, he makes his way back to the Inn over the rooftops of the town to stalk her.

- Whodoon overhears Maridosen talking to Chatrilon from one of the rooms. Chatrilon is calm and says he'll deal with the party should anyone escape from the mill. Whodoon returns to the party.

- Xaod, Toldorn, Veil and Zaphood arrive at the mill and are ambushed by the cultists in the basement (acting with surprise on their side and expecting an easy victory). The cultists end up being virtually slaughtered, even though Zaphood is sent running by a Cause Fear and Toldorn neutralized by Tharizdun's Touch.

- The party report the incident to Elmo whose militia starts a search of the mill. Elmo asks the party to fare easier in the future but easily believes their explanation.

- The party leaves for the Moathouse. The encounter Ol' Del on the way who warns them about the dragon.

- The party enter the Moathouse and confront Utreshimon. A long fight ensues in which a devastating spell/sword combo by Toldorn and Veil kill U before he has a chance to escape.

- The party search the rooms of the Moathouse and the bodies but miss the ooze. They discover the secret entrance but decide to go down through the main stairs. Alerted by the noise from above the two gnolls lie in ambush with two ghouls and a ghast. The party overcome them with little difficulty. Sessions ends...

As expected, the party has it a little easy in the beginning (due to them being 6th level). I'm sure this will even out quite soon...

The Moathouse cultists will now have to rally their defenses and Maridosen, Chatrilon and Jaroo are left to plan the party's demise alone in Hommlet. Should be an interesting session ahead.


Here for a while
(1/14/03 8:13:36 am)
Adventure Hooks I Update
Driving Hooks: Zaphood (Update - how I wish there was an edit function)

After reading through the entire adventure again, I've finally decided to replace Thrommel with Teregon Oakenshield, veteran of Emridy Meadows and Purple Dragon High Knight. I'll probably redo the stats completely (Teregon is more formidable than Thrommel). The emotionaly impact of having the party fighting Zaphood's own father - a warrior of such nobility and renown - should be massive and the psychological play interesting (Zaphood's secondary objective was to retrieve the family sword - a sword that cannot be wielded by an evil creature. So it must also be hidden somewhere).

I might redo that whole section quite a bit. It's likely that the 6 Purple Dragons that accompanied Teregon, have been killed, turned into undead, driven insane by demon appendages, or otherwise turned to the dark forces (or escaped - I may have one hiding somewhere in the IF or CRM).

Another idea I'm toying with is having Teregon play a much more active role in the adventure. Teregon could even have returned as a Death Knight instead.. The others would be dread force - six vampire knights - prowling the area around the ToAC during the nights, hunting down the enemies of the cult (just a bit of Nazgűl feel to that). Imagine the player's joy when they finally hear rumours of people who have seen the knights - only to learn that they are now undeads in the service of the cult.

I'll be putting more thought into this - but it's definitely down that road that I want to go...


Here for a while
(1/14/03 8:38:39 am)
Re: Adventure Hooks I Update
There is an edit function, but you have to log-in first. from time to time, IE forgets you were here

And here is the proof ;) look below and see Edited by

Edited by: Killiak  at: 1/14/03 8:40:05 am
Here for a while
(1/20/03 5:05:48 am)
Log: Session 3
With little (actually no) respite the PCs continued their tour of the Moathouse in the evening hours of the 26.05.1398:

- The party find Spugnoir and heal him. He explains to them the locations of the secret doors and entrances. He then leaves, worried about his little girl.

- Gren, two gnolls and the skeletons lie in waiting as the party enter area 23 and put up a good fight. Veil manages to drop a fireball behind their lines, though, wasting most of the skeletons before taking out Gren with his last offensive spell of the day: a flaming sphere.

- Garrik and the remaining clerics reorganise with the gnolls in area 28. The cultists are now quite convinced that the party is too powerful and forget the iron shrine in their hurry.

- The party detect the double-secret door and proceed down the hallway before turning right towards the bedchamber.

- The cultists take the opportunity to escape, dropping the portcullis behind the party on their way out (the party is unknowing of this at the time, however.)

- Nemo unlocks the iron chest and evades the Glyph of Warding. The party are puzzled by Geynor Ton's maniacal journal.

- On their way down towards the well-room, the party are ambushed by a max-hp Kurge (I replaced the ghast). The monstrosity manages to give the party a good knocking including several strength drains on the party's fighters.

- In their hurry the cultists didn't cover up the shaft and the party investigates the design and decides to explore the remaining dungeons to the east and west before proceeding into the deep.

- Short battle with the ghouls. Cleave/Great Cleave combo from Zaphood, pretty much does the job.

- The party manages to guide their way through the tunnels to the black altar. Nemo finds the secret compartments and the ritual items. Curious - as always - the party decides to just take the things and thereby prevent anyone else from using the altar.

- Back in the east-part of the dungeon, Veil identifies the Wall of Stone and dispels it with an amazing Dispel Magic roll. The party goes in and clears out the cockatrice lairs.

- In Lareth's bedroom, Toldorn identifies the symbol of Lolth and a few succesful heal checks reveal that the person in the bed cannot have been the temple's commander - as this man died of the plague.

- The party - now aware of the secret entrance in the east - decide to descend into the darkness. As they land on the obelisk and attempt to walk to the next platform, they all take minor damage from it's surface.

- Xaod and Zaphood pull the ropes as the party continue their descend. Enter the grell. Everyone - except the two lucky blokes holding the rope - are surprised. Zaphood is immediately paralyzed. Xaod struggles to stop the platforms descend.
A few wild swings are traded. Veil and Nemo are also paralyzed. Xaod manages to stop the descend, while Toldorn has a bad run of hits. The grell grabs Zaphood with two tentacles and flies off into the darkness.
As the paralysis wears off, Veil casts fly on Nemo and hopes the rogue and his bow can find and catch the monstrosity before it tears Zaphood apart.
Zaphood - haven fought of the paralysis - struggles with the grell as it lands on a small outcropping in the cliff. He is quickly subdued, and paralyzed again. The grell pounds and bites him into negative hit points, then decides to begins to rest a few minutes before devouring him completely.
Nemo arrives at the outcropping, dropping the grell with a few fabulous shots. Miraculously, Zaphood has managed to stabilise (rolled 01 on the percentile) at -5. Nemo pours a potion in him and flies him back to the platform.

- The rather shocked party hit the bottom of the cave. Festrath hides as the party scours the cave, refusing to touch ANYTHING (damn them!).

27.05.1398: The party rests with guard rotation at the bottom of the cave.
Nemo spots Festrath lurking around the pillar and wakes up Xaod. He then sneaks up to the pillar and manages to get a surprise sneak-attack in on the priest before he is "held" and then infected with slimy doom disease from a "contagion" spell. Xaod arrives and cuts the priest down.


- The party heals up and Toldorn spends 24 hours tending to Nemo before he manages to cure him of the Slimy Doom disease.

Session ends....

So the party are on top now and have collected many informative items. Chatrilon and Jaroo still have a surprise in store for them, though, and most of the gnolls and all clerics but Gren and Festrath have escaped the Moathouse....


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