D&D Encounters Season 13 – Storm over Neverwinter – Session 7
Due to holidays we only had the early group this week, but with the addition of Adam from the later group and Alan, a new to Encounters player. As it turned out the players at the table were all the ones that had missed the previous 2 sessions for one reason or another and so were “fresh” from the extended rest. The session proved to be action packed and I didnt get a chance to take any photo’s this time 😦
Having recovered from the dragon and made sure that the Prophet Rohini was ok the heroes pursued the masked Tormentor into the towers upper levels. As they reached the first floor a tremendous thunder clap shook the tower, shattering the indows and small group of mini-elementals formed within the room, circling the central staircase that the heroes needed to go up.
The goliath warden and dwarf fighter chose to engage the nearest vortex rather than attempt to sneak through, and soon came to regret their decision. Their attacks enhanced by the storms energy, the vortices and hurlers proved to be quite brutal, though luckily they seemed to only be able to sense when the heroes were close by. Unfortunately when they weren’t attacking the heroes they continued to meander around the central stairs.
The cumbersome dwarf quickly succumbed to the rain of blows (sorry, couldn’t resist the pun) from a pair of vortices that took a dislike to him, and had to be aided by our deva cleric, while the dwarven druid and goliath tackled more of the elementals and the shade mage found a darkened corner from which to fire his arcane powers.
The heroes agreed to focus upon as few of the elementals as possible and let those not attacking them continue to rotate freely, a tactic hich began to pay off gradually reducing the numbers of the lesser hurlers until only a pair of vortices remained.
The combatants were heavily bloodied and the deva had to summon its healing energies once again, but this only delayed the inevitable as the dwarf fighter and goliath both went unconscious from the pumelling they were receiving. The cleric had to risk attracting the attention of the votices to administer aid to the fallen, but eventually the battered and bruised heroes were the only creatures remaining in the storm wracked room.
They took a moment to gather their breath before advancing up the rubble strewn central stairway. The next floor of the tower was also open to the elements, with the storm tossing broken broken furniture and fixtures around like ragdolls, luckily the heroes managed to avoid any collisions and ascended the final the staircase to find the door to the tower roof lying torn open. They realised that although the storm still raged there as no blast of weather through the opening and the area of the roof beyond the doorway seemed quiet…….
This encounter proved extremely brutal for my players as all of the monsters benefitted from the enhanced damage to Thunder or Lightning keyword powers while none of theirs did. As I mentioned above, none of them had played the previous 2 sessions of the lower floors so I as quite happy to drain some of their resources prior to next sessions finale. I did make a conscious decision to enforce the elementals 2-square sensing of the party though and gave the players the chance to avoid detection whenever a hurler or votex moved within range. I also decided that the hurlers would rotate anti-clockise and the vortices clockwise around the staircase.
I half expected some of the party to make a dash for the two bedrooms and then become temporarily trapped once one or two elementals detected them but the party as a whole chose to remain in the section between the small stairs they had come up and the central staircase.
Our FLGS (Tabletop Tyrants) is closed next Wednesday evening so we dont have a game next week but have agreed to run our usual 2 sessions for the series finale the following week on what should be the session 0 of the next season.
We have also decided to try something different next season, by changing to running using the Next playtest ruleset and just run a single session/table per week, this will then allow the players to try out the playtest rules and let some of the others have a chance to run a small ongoing campaign or one-offs in the late group slot – we’ll see how it goes.