Tell us all about the coolest, most memorable and soon to be legendary game-sessions. What made it unforgettable? Was it the players' reaction to a plot-twist, your pre-fun about what was coming up, spontaneous improvising from players or DM, or special settings?
Let me start with an example:
In the town I used to live in there were several groups that played DnD frequently. A friend and I decided to make a special DnD day, where we would combine the majority of the 3 groups of players.
We wrote a special adventure that would put 2 groups of adventurers on an island. Both groups would go through the same series of places on the island, but in different time-zones. So in one there would be a dragon that one group slayed, in the other time-zone there was a dragon-cemetary where the other group had to save the soul of a good dragon.
In short, the two groups would influence eachother's adventure and sometimes get hints at eachother's existense. After several hints came actual switches, where the groups would switch tables, and DM. This would lead to interesting situations, since one group could be in the middle of a fight, and the other would have just ended one. The consequenses of switching became more drastic each time.
The climax of this adventure (which lasted about 12-13 hours in a row), was a gigantic battle with 13 players combining their strength to kill a high level wizard. It was massive fun! Really great to DM. I will never forget the reactions from the players on the first switch. Priceless.
I'm sure you've had some experiences like this, or other great moments. Share them!
wow, no reaction at all so far. Do you guys have nothing note-worthy in all your gaming days? Surely not all of you play dnd just online... right?
I have another example for you:
One time I was dm-ing an adventure set in a city. The players were hunting a guild of assassins. New as they were in the city they found themselves a city-map. I had actually made a map for them and prepared it specially. At a certain point in the adventure the players had to storm into the royal castle because they thought something bad was going to happen.
The guards questioned them and upon showing the map the guards held it in front of a torch. I actually took a lighter under the real map and on it appeared the image that was the symbol of the assassin guild. (I had drawn it in lemon juice... that really worked.) The effect this had on the players, plus the principle of carrying the map for half an adventure, when it was their biggest lead on how to find the guild, are unforgettable.
Posted on 2006-10-09 at 10:18:48.
t_catt11 Fun is Mandatory RDI Staff Karma: 353/55 6390 Posts
okay, here ya go
Once, I was invited to fill in for a missing player in a regular group. Sometimes that works out, often it does not. This time in particular was great.
The party came upon a deserted town - food still on the tables, dirty dishes in the sink, etc but no people. After a long search for clues, we move to the temple. For some reason, we decided to split up. One group went upstairs, one went into the basement.
Anyway, the group upstairs finds this kid. He runs, despite our asurances that we are friendly. We give chase. We turn the corner to see a hatch in a wall flapping. Being bold (and not so bright) we dive through the hatch, fall down a shaft, and crash into our comrades in the bsement - who were ready to skewer us, thinking we were some sort of monster fromt he racket we made.
As we are picking ourselves up, we hear the sound of laughter filtering down the shaft - the kid had slapped the hatch on his way to a hiding place... the effect was a fun little setup!
Posted on 2006-10-09 at 10:42:24.
Edited on 2006-10-09 at 10:43:32 by t_catt11
Ok, so this story has gotten around locally, with some variations and ebellishments, but the this is the real and true version - I know because I was there.
Back in High School, my best friend had an idea for an interesting twist to spring on a group of PCs. One of the members of the party had actually been hired by the villain to prevent the PCs from stopping him. Of course, smart players always quesion the motives of a DMPC, but they seem to trust implicitly that another player is not in league with the DM. Selfish, deceptive, cruel, evil, backstabbing? Sure. Plotting their demise with the DM? Not likely. Metagaming insures a certain amount of trust implicit in the party dynamic when the DM introduces the PCs to one another.
So the DM gather his players for what seems like your standard "Stop the evil wizard and his army of undead from overunning the town" adventure. They are joined in this by one Cedric BrightBlade, Paladin of Light, claiming to have information as to the whereabouts of a magical medallion capable of stopping the horde... Who is actually a chaotic evil cleric to the god of war, hired by the villain to prevent some plucky group of unlikely heroes from finding the Madallion of Arylon and foiling his plans. The deceptions was elegant and simple. Tall white horse, shining armor, complement of clerical magic to bluff through paladin abilities, and even the acting skill.
The idea is that eventually the PCs will see through the ruse, have to do battle with Cedric, discover the real location of the medallion, and then move on to the ultimate viallain... Well, that was the idea. Maybe letting me play Cedric wasn't the brightest move ever.
The DM threw several clues at the players, growing more an more blatant over time (as planned at the start, with an XP award commensurate with the amount of time it took to figure it out) as well as requiring that I periodically act in a fashion in line with my CE alignment.
With growing concern, he witnessed clue after clue neatly danced around as I manipulated the party into murdering random commoners, helping me to extort money from a gem counterfeiter, and revenging myself on an old rival.
In desperation, he threw one last overwhelming clue at them - something so blunt, so obvious, so feindishly difficult to play off, that they were guarnteed to spot me, even though it would hand me an ally for the showdown: He has me run into an old friend... an anti-paladin, no less.
"Cedric? Is that you? I haven't seen you since..."
Crap! Better think fast. Interrupt the DM? No other choice, is there... "Yes! It is I: Cedric BrightBlade - THE PALADIN!"
A lesser DM might have just given up and forced the NPC to explain all, but this one was a stickler for fairness... besides, I was a player, too, right? How is it fair to force me to be killed at the hands of the other players when I was doing so well with the character I was given?
That anti-paladin cost me, though. In the end, I had to "entrust him" to carry back my tithe and the surplus of magic items found as well as a sizeable donation for some poor imaginary orphanage he went on and on about.
As surprised as he was at the turnabout and my ability to hoodwink the other players, he was completely unprepared when, just as he had resigned himself to never being able to actually use the second half of the adventure, I lead the party directly to the medallion.
Bearing the weapon that would save the town, we returned too late, finding that in our absence, the undead had overrun the region, and it was in the hands of the vile necromancer, and the good people were enslaved.
Never fear! Cedric has a daring and heroic plan: He will sneak into town alone, discover the location of the villain's hideout, and return, leading the party directly to him for a final showdown.
It took some talking to persuade the thief not to tag along, but I simply could not allow anyone else to risk themselves so. If another were injured in my place, I could never live with myself.
Of corse, I strolled right in. I was expected. I accepted my pay and marked the defenses of the area. returning to the PCs, I gave them all the information they needed, then personally led the assault against him. "Cedric!? I already paid you, I'll not be extorted for more!" The DM had had it, and had the villain explain it all in a passionate outburst of indignation...
"Your lies will not decieve these fine men and women! We have travelled together for many days, and they know who and what I am. Prepare to pay for your foul deeds, villain!"
We beat the wizard senseless, and I got paid again by the town for saving the day.
Afterwards, the DM explained to the players what was going on. Their reactions were among the funniest things I've ever seen! "I should have known!" "I thought there was something weird about him..." "So THAT'S why he beat my first character to death with his bare hands!"
Those are some nice examples! Wow, a DM-leagued character gone bad. I'm glad that never happened to me before, haha.
I did have a league with a player once. He had died in a Ravenloft campaign by stupidity of another player. Of course I had him come back as a helf-vampire (since they failed to properly burry him). They didn't take the hints either (couldn't bare sunlight well, suddenly wore gloves to hide his claws, had to be invited before entering a building etc). Then one evening he started attacking them in their sleep. They had not seen it coming, but the reactions were like Ryst just described. Lol.
I was in this one campaign in my saturday night gaming. So anyway we were supposed to carry this amulet from one temple to another. To confuse anyone who might attack us we were each given a box with a amulet in it and I beign the best fighter the party had I carried the one that was extra the one that was supposed to be the real one. The priest had told us to switch our amulets around everyday so that no one who spied on us would know which was which. What no one knew was I switched amulets to protect the one better. What I didnt know was that the thief spent all night also switching amulets around. So we get to the temple and no one not even the DM knows who is wearing the real one. So we show the priest all the amulets in the hopes that he can tell. He had never seen it before so he had no idea. Priest tells us that there is one way to know which is the real one and that is to make a wish and it will be granted if it is the real one. So we all sit there making wishes and the thief all of a sudden disappears(DM rolled dice to see who was granted). Well that ended the campaign because no one could find him. lol
first one my group is trying to stop the resuretion of an evil god. the demon dragon. but they get there just as he comes back and they decide to fight him. since he just came back he dosn'r have all his abilities yet. over a course of 5 hours the group just kept hitting him healing and kept going witch was hard considering every hit took them to almost zero. and finally every player puts everything into one atk. and each and every player crits.
the god goes down to 1 hp. and everyplayer is done. just as as the god rears back to finish the group. a swordsman comes down with a spear jamming it in the face. witch didn't kill it but sealed it away.
Not sure if this counts, since all the gamesessions mentioned was what happened in-game, but...
A true geek moment here, one time I was playing at one of my friends who lives in town and there was a small storm outside. Normally not a problem, but the power grid for that town was horrible, and we kept loosing power. So we decided to take a break from our out of game chatter (which is what we usually do more of than playing DnD sadly) and walked over to the local grocery store to buy other light sources, that's when someone mentioned candles...
We purchased a group of candles, set them around the battlemat and lit them, everything changed then, what was once a normal BS session became one of our best, most productive DnD sessions ever, with a group of level 3's almost getting wiped out by a sizable force of Kobolds ("Aw man." "What?" "We're level 3, we're way too high to fight against kobolds" "Oh really?"), and the paladin almost getting killed the next day by your average mountain lion (The starving creature finally had enough of getting punched and broke grapple, running away as the paladin yelled at the samurai...monk... like person for botching his rolls and stabbing him instead of the mountain lion).
So if you ever find yourself in a group that talks more than play, try changing the lighting and see if that helps.
I was the dungeon master of a game where my girlfriend was the only player (she is now my fiance). She chose to be a male gnome bard. The setting was one of my favourite cities in the land of Drakenhorde; a self made campaign setting, the city being called Drydock. It was a city build on planks of wood a hundred feet above the sands of the desert, which was called the Eye of the Dragon because it lay in the middle of three connecting mountain ridges that ran across the island continent of Drakenhorde. The reason for this was the Purple worms that inhabited the sands and devoured any other living thing in sight. At the beginning of the campaign we see Zook getting of a gnomish airship - the only method of travelling to the city, and witnessing the persecution of a young boy for theft; the punishment of such being that his hand is cleaved off. She immediately begins to fight with the guard of the city, who are fortunately generous enough to let Zook live. Temporarily stopping the persecution of the boy, Zook is nevertheless brought to prison, where charges of attempted murder are laid upon him. Well, another, older gnome confronts him in his cell, offering freedom in return for Zook's services. The older gnome's name was Grimlock, and his apparent reasoning for the generosity was due to the little boy being a servant of his. Suffice to say Zook warily agrees, and they begin a trade of services. Grimlock is powerful enough in the political spectrum of the city to wipe the bard's slate clean, and the bard is eager to discover the treasures hidden within the desert sands... On the way out of Grimlock's mansion, Zook discovers the child, locked in a cage, feeding on raw scraps of meat. He rescues him, and asks his name, which he replies is "filthy rat"... Deciding that this will simply not do, he renames the boy "Pin". Which seems oddly appropriate.
To shorten this up, because it would be drastically long otherwise... Pin has a secret. He is actually a wererat, born with disease, he is a natural shifter, who becomes a very powerful ally to the gnomish bard.
I had a lot of fun mixing races in this campaign, and decidedly gave her a multitude of npc's to help her as allies on her journey to find the Dragon Relics, as Grimlock had called them. There was Five in all, The eye, The Tooth, The Claw, The Scale, and The Breathe. After acquiring the first, the eye, Grimlock let Zook in on a little secret... Zook had within him the blood of a dragon, somewhere down the line, and with Grimlock's guidance, he would unlock the powers within. Much to Grimlock's secret dismay, the ancestor was a Gold Dragon, but nevertheless, Zook was becoming a Dragon Disciple.
By now, Pin's secret was known to Zook, and they ventured into a temple, where they met Grins, the Half Goblin, Half Gnome, who literally hated himself, and was a self-destructive Chaotic Neutral Cleric who was quite insane, and fought with nothing but his armour, spiked as it were. He fought quite well in fact. So the party was coming together... After retrieving yet another artifact, Zook was given an additional level in Dragon Disciple, and was now allowed to learn on his own accord thereafter, granted he had the experience.
They met up with a female halfling/dwarf, who had black eyes and red hair, and was a practicing sorceress. She had been assaulted by a guard who had taken a fancy to her, and unfairly ceased, so Zook with his high morality attempted to save her, only to have most of the party, as well as the guards consumed by a fireball. They escaped into the sewers, where they found an underground grotto of kobolds and goblins, who were plotting against the city, attempting to destroy the foundation and plunge it into the sands. After thwarting that scheme, they continued on their quest for Dragon artifacts, until clues led to the revelation that Grimlock was a lich, who was once a powerful Black Dragon, that had been robbed of his form when a powerful wizard trapped him as a gnome, and placed separate parts of a Dragon's body all over the desert. These were in fact Phylacteries of the now Lich Grimlock, that when returned to him, would resurrect the Dragon spirit from within, and allow him to rain destruction upon the land. Zook, thinking fast destroyed the last remaining artifact, which put Grimlock in a frenzy. He had much of his power restored however, and began to command the armies of the undead and led them on an assault of the city. However, The full extent of Zook's Dragon Lineage had been discovered by then, and I ended the campaign with a powerful cliff hanger, that showed the Half-Dragon Zook Turen with his entourage, staring down an army of undead, whilst the lich Grimlock oversaw the end battle between good and evil...
Posted on 2007-08-02 at 16:29:42.
Skari-dono Icelanders! Roll Out Karma: 102/11 1514 Posts
Man, that was exciting, Philo. A very good plot it seems. Would have liked to be in that game, or at least know how the battle was fought and how it ended. Very exciting, very good
Should have included this small story:
I was DMing my rather normal group of 5 female players and one male player. As a note, the guy is much of a kill-kill kind of player while the girls are more of a think-kill kind. That caused some problems which are described later.
So the group arrived in a small town. The group included a half-orc barbarian/bard, an elf wizard, a minotaur favored soul, a kender rogue, a human samurai and a human fighter (the male player was the human fighter). The town seemed completely empty, not a single person in sight. The group entered an inn where they saw an ad from the local scholars or the like who needed assistance in exploring a mysterious tower that had suddenly appeared close to the town. The group naturally assumed that the tower was the cause for the disappearance of the townsfolk and headed that way. The tower seemed huge, taller than they could see, and outside stood an old blind man who said nothing but "in the tower is what you seek". They decided to enter and after only a short while they noticed that this tower had more twists than turns (one cast a detect magic spell and saw that the whole tower was extremely magical in nature) and after meeting the chess playing minotaur, the two vampires and Bob who simply was nothing but what he was (existed in a paper), and after the death and departure of the fighter (the guy gladly left the group of girls, who were also glad he left, to meet up with his girlfriend [they just didn't mix well into a group]), the group finally arrived to the top of the tower. Up there was a single door that lead to what seemed to be an extra small room hanging from the one side of the tower. They went through that door and into a much bigger room down in the town where there was in fact day (it was night-time in the tower) and the old man was sitting there. Each of the characters got one powerful wish fulfilled (plot-devisely) from the old man who couldn't remember if he was the one who had constructed the tower or not. After the wishes, the group looked outside where they saw the streets filled with life, like they had always been there, and looking back they saw the old man gone, leaving nothing but dust.
It was a great game since the players never knew exactly what would happen next. The best part however was that I had no idea what would happen next, I was just making the storyline as we went along, listening to what they expected and either doing exactly that or the opposite. This is my favorite adventure yet.
Being the DM of a group of how many female gamers? nice!
Sounds like a lot of fun and the way I normally DM, which involves me thinking of a general goal (Small kingdom under attack having to defend themselves with the PC's help until help comes, only to find out the help wasn't for them while the Shadowbane Inquisitor worked solo to find a very sick, twisted murderer.) And imagine the rest, how it's going to be done, what's happening now and how to counter/react to that. In other words, think of the setting, what's the general goal (whether or not it's known to the PC's) and come up with the rest when needed.
Continuing on with the discussion though, as I mentioned before, I was DMing a group that consisted of a Stonechild... ranger I believe, a human Necromancer/Spellsword a human Shadowbane Inquisitor, and... something else, I can't remember for the life of me right now. They came to a small kingdom that was preparing for a desperate war against a much larger kingdom and needed help, the PC's decided to assist when Whitefire (the inquisitor) found out that a series of gruesome murders were happening and the local guard was completely stumped. So the group split everyone went out and fought while Whitefire stayed and investigated the crimes (with some help of a NPC Shadowbane Stalker)
To make a long story short, the battle was to last until the allied kingdom Baron came to help, but instead Baron came to help the hostile army. What was the best part was my annoying switches between groups ("You guys hear the commander shout, "Retreat! Baron's turned and is fighting against us! Fall back to the castle!" and everyone starts retreating, now to Whitefire, you-" "Oh goddammit Greg!") ("Alright Whitefire, you sneak into the murderer's house and suddenly the door slams shut, you sprung a trap!. Now to the guys in the field" "Oh Goddammit!")
Needless to say, it was a blast, and the PC's all survived, the murderer was put to justice and the kingdom won, but only just.
Posted on 2007-08-10 at 10:00:37.
Edited on 2007-08-10 at 10:09:50 by Tri
Pretty much the first bought adventure I ever played was "The Silver Key".
In that adventure players are turned into orcs via a polymorph spell, but with a little twist. Every time a player had his PC do something orcish (curse, burp, sexual remarks etc etc) the other players and DM could nominate that player for an 'orc point', by raising their hand. If more than half of the players agreed, an orc point was given.
The more orc points you had, the more orcish you became, to a maximum equal to your constitution score, after which you became an orc, and thus an NPC.
We had SO much fun nominating eachother for orc-points.
Now, years and years later, I play dnd with a group of people of which only the DM has played 'the Silver Key' with me that time. Every time somebody does something 'orcish', we both raise our hand and crack up, while the rest doesn't understand what's going on. It's fun!
another habit we have in our group comes from that same adventure, where one of the players was a wizard. In pretty much every possible situation, that player used to say: "I wonder if my unseen servant can be of any use."
Now, if we're in a situation that we have difficulty dealing with, that phrase is always good for a hardy laugh.
Anyway... it's probably not all that funny when you read it, but if you're there, it's hilarious.