Friday, September 9, 2011

Lost Colonies Session 39

The last time I did one of these reports, a group of elves representing the Summer King had arrived in Headwaters seeking an audience with Dn. Goram. A story had reached the Summer Court of a hero who had single-handedly (for all intents and purposes) defeated an undead army. The locals had confirmed that Dn. Goram played a vital role in the defense of Headwaters against a large number of skeletons. As a result, these elves were eager to get the deacon's help with their own undead problem.

Dn. Goram interpreted this request as the test he was to take in order to get his brother raised from the dead, so he agreed to come. Ahkmed the Dwarf with his follower Kavella the Elf, Kyron the Illusionist, Dn. Swibish with his follower Ardek the Dwarf, and Gilek the Gnome all agreed to accompany them. In addition, the two giant eagles that had attached themselves to the party insisted on coming along so that they could visit with their old master and their family, since both lived in proximity to the Summer Court.

Thus, the party flew south aboard a flying galleon the elves had hidden from view west of Headwaters. Hidden in the clouds, the journey was rather uneventful and they were soon escorted into the illusory and mysterious Summer Court — disguised as a hill in the middle of a quaint town specializing in raising horses.

The Summer King informed the party that they had been plagued by incursions of undead coming from the sea. Elves were particularly vulnerable because they had no clerics to Turn them. These incursions coincided with the disappearance of the Winter King and his court as well as a rash of kidnapping all along the coast. Given his prowess in defeating the undead, the Summer King was hoping Dn. Goram would be able to help. The party agreed to investigate.

To begin, they set up a watch in the area where the undead had most frequently attacked the elves. The resultant battle was a very near thing for the party. A large group of undead consisting of skeletons, zombies, ghouls, ghasts and a wight emerged from the sea and proved far more challenging than the players expected. While the clerics were able to easily destroy the skeletons and zombies with their Turning ability, they had to burn through all of the lower order undead before they could affect the ghouls, etc. Thus, Dn. Goram, Dn. Swibish and Ahkmed were all paralyzed before any of the ghouls or ghasts had been Turned.

Two things then turned (no pun intended) the battle to the players' favor. First, Kavella's elvish immunity to the ghoul's paralysis allowed her to dive into the fray with a healing potion to free Dn. Goram from his paralysis. Secondly, Gilek earned the moniker "Lucky" because he single-handedly held off the wight without ever being hit.

After nearly seeing the decimation of the whole party, everyone determined that their best course of action was to find the source of these attacks rather than standing on the beach waiting for another attack (and another opportunity to be overwhelmed). They quickly learned that the elves were aware of several city ruins that had been buried beneath the sea in a previous era. Procuring several ways to breath underwater, the party set off to find the nearest of these ruins.

Note to those who think Turning is too powerful: this session is an object lesson in how to get around it. When everyone who plays in my group shows up at the table, the party has three clerics. This makes most encounters with undead a walk in the park — unless I pair more powerful undead types with a large group of skeleton and zombie fodder. Since low HD undead are affected by Turning before higher HD undead, all those ineffectual skeletons and zombies render ghouls, etc. far more dangerous than they normally would be against a group of even mid-to-high-level clerics.

1 comment:

Pat said...

Nice tip on the undead, thanks!