Epic Experience: Primed and Ready – Session 1

The new campaign finally got off the ground, with a live stream as well. If you missed the stream you can catch up here or just by reading through this article (less adult language and silliness included in the article). See how the players perform in their first session in my home brew D&D 5e campaign “Prime”.

The night started off with a basic ready check. We had to make sure everyone had control of everything over on Roll20…

Rain poured down the crowded back streets of Union City’s market district. A crowd, well over 100 strong, gathered around a small guild house. The placard read “The Seekers Guild”. It had become known as a guild dedicated to discovery and study of strange things in Prime. An elderly man stepped up onto a stagecoach that had been parked by the building on the crowded street.

“Ahem!” He called for attention. The crowd of ruffians, would be heroes, and whatever lies between continued talking and carrying on in the downpour. The man grimaced and pulled out a small wand. With the flick of his wrist, a bolt of lightning struck down on it, thunder cracked through the over filled alley. The crowd’s attention was gathered.

“You all are here today to participate in a competition. One that will grant you the sponsorship of The Seekers. Should your group be the first to retrieve the wanted items, you shall be granted our sponsorship…”

He continued on giving the players the details they needed, as well as all the others. Then, attempted to randomly assign these ruffians and what-have-yous into groups of six or so. Though that quickly fell apart to arguing and bribery. When he called the players’ names, to his surprise, they formed up and proceeded forward to collect the paperwork.

They caught on that he had a little bit of information and advice, after Rhogarr offered a gold piece for his efforts. The guild wanted 3 twisted hearts, which could be collected from woodlings or “treefolk”, and that the guild was very interested on any research on a particular fungus that was growing at an alarming rate some four days southwest of Prime City. He didn’t have a lot of extra advice, save that those treefolk are often spotted around places like that, and referred to as blights.

With that information, the players were rather eager to move onto prime. They decided not to look for information in the city, and go straight to the source. Lerissa and Fia weren’t exactly excited to be in the same group, it soon became obvious that they knew each other, and Fia wasn’t very happy about that.

After presenting your paperwork to imports and exports, you were escorted through the massive portal. A warm rush fell over you as if you plunged into a hot bath. The smell of soil and earth flooded your senses. It became impossible not to blink through the bright light of the portal. Then, when your eyes opened, you found a city among trees, connected by swinging wood and rope bridges, the city on the ground sprawled out against distant walls. The heads of massive beasts were hung to try atop mighty poles. A loud buzz draws your attention as a person flies by mounted atop a dragonfly as big as two horses, at least.

Rhogarr stole the moment by reciting a bit of an inspirational poem he had written. Fia and Lerissa began walking, but the others listened, and all gave a small applause when he had finished. The sense of wonder was quickly subsided when a half elf struggled to wrangle three massive roli-poli like bugs. The players recognized these as the rumored “Crawlers” a common mount in Prime. These ones reached just over ten feet tall by fifteen feet long. They quickly moved to help bring the insects under control, and helped the half elf tie them off to a large piton that the players helped hammer into the ground.

He offered his thanks and insisted on some form of repayment to them. They asked for information, mostly on blights and the fungus. It turns out, the half elf was actually looking for something out that way anyways. If the players could bring back at least four blue caps, he’d allow them to rent the crawlers at no charge. It was a bit of a gamble on his side, but he figured it’d be worth while. After a bit of questioning about the blue caps, the players agreed to the task. Delvon had heard mention about a tavern, and was quickly distracted by the need to drink before heading off. Fia, Lerissa, and Alderon wanted to press on with their quest, but after a short debate; they allowed the other three an hour before they would leave on their own.

Fourty minutes later, Rhogarr shows up strumming his lute, rather satisfied with himself; albeit a bit wet from some spilled mead. Delvon and Aseir, on the other hand, showed up stumbling and mumbling a bit of a tune; clearly drunk, but not late.

Their buzz was killed quickly when Lerissa, Alderon, and Fia assembled the party up and got on the mounts they had prepared while half their party got drunk. Alas, they were on their way. The first day went by with little issue. Though being drunk hampered some of the handling of the crawlers. Aseir was able to keep Rhogarr in check, as he snuggled up behind the dragonborn and grabbed the reigns for himself.

As they pressed deeper in to the primal jungle on the second day, the party was surprised when they suddenly found themselves under attack by two pesky cockatrices. Fia took the brunt of the attack, being incapacitated while steering a crawler (and after being pushed off by Lerissa thanks to a snide comment Fia made), while Delvon wrought pain with his two handaxes. Rhogarr slung spells along with Alderon, and as soon as the fight started, it was over. The party decided to let the crawlers eat here rather than find food for them later. Though, they kept the heads of the birds just in case they prove valuable, or at the very least good decor for their gear. Later that day they set up camp, unknowingly, near the nest that the birds were protecting. Out of a clutch of six eggs, four remained unbroken and still pulsing with life. With a bit of careful handling, the party decided to keep the eggs for themselves as well; who knows what value they could bring back in Prime City.

Day three brought the players deep into fungus infected, swampy, jungle. Large spores and mushrooms loomed bleakly all about, and about mid-day they spotted what they were looking for. Fia had been taking notes, when the party spotted six bluecaps. Delvon and Rhogarr hopped off their mounts and treaded the muddy water. Delvon picked his up, and Rhogarr used a glaive he borrowed from Aseir to carefully pluck the bluecap up.

-SCREEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE- Several small mushrooms began shrieking as the bluecap was cut near them. A six foot tall mushroom near the bluecap writhed and four tentacles unfurled from its stem. Three of them lashed out towards Rhogarr. The fourth hit something, it wasn’t Rhogarr. It yanked, and Rhogarr felt a tug. The tentacle had wrapped around the glaive. It yanked again and Rhogarr was overpowered. The mushroom was now, unknowingly, armed and continued to flail. Rhogarr’s natural instinct “flight or flight” kicked in as he spent his turn getting out of dodge. The rest of the party launched ranged attacks where they could. That is until Lerissa instructed Fia to move their crawler forward.

With a failed handle animal check the crawler went directly forward, rather than around a ten foot tall dome shapes mushroom that was ahead of them. It hit with such force that the fungus toppled over. A cloud of gas spurred forth from it as it crashed. It wasn’t gas. It was deadly spores. Lerissa fell over unconscious. Fia and the crawler were hurt a bit, but not poisoned. Delvon had attempted to gather more spores, but upon seeing this; and a coughing hacking Lerissa, had to stop to help. Quickly the party moved to aid Lerissa. No healing could help her unless they had a way to cure poison. In their rush to get on with the quest, no one purchased anti-toxins or anything of the such. Healing topped her off, but only awoke her to agonizing pain.

The party determined that she had at best, 18 hours to live… Civilization was three days away. She asked for privacy and a word with Fia… Where Fia learned a secret that I cannot share with you right now, for prying eyes may be upon us. The party tried to feed Lerissa some of the bluecap, but it only made her more perceptive to the pain she felt. She was more aware and alert than she had ever been. She struggled to stay conscious now, but wanted to try and fight this.

The party went to gather the other caps. Perhaps from the shock that Lerissa was dying, Fia made a foolish move and picked up a blue cap near a much larger mushroom. Four tentacles lashed out at her, three hit, nearly fatally wounding her. The quick snap grabbed the party’s attention as the mud around Fia began to flow red at an alarming rate. A bit of healing and a few ranged attacks later and all was well, but there was still no help for Lerissa. Alderon let loose an elderitch blast at a large mushroom and gathered a bluecap that was near it… The party continued onward to find a place to setup camp and we found ourselves at the end of the first session.

One hell of a session.

Things I forgot, the terrain is difficult, always. I didn’t enforce this during combat situations which accidentally made some things a tad bit easier. Being more descriptive and a little bit more questioning when asking the players what to do next. It is something I want to be more keen on. I am very discriptive through text, but for some reason; in person, I tend to forget all the cool details because I’m so involved in what happens now and next. It’s already in my head, I need to make sure it’s in my player’s heads as well!

Let me know what you thought of our first session! I look forward to next time!
~Vexar

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