Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Insect Shrine Playtest, Session 4

This is a monster module. :)

Several things happened this session, many of them the result of random rolls and more by way of players screwing up how things were "supposed" to happen.

We're four sessions in, and while they still haven't set eyes on the "Insect Shrine," they have discovered at long last why the place is called "Goblin Hill."

The unpredictability of turning and sleep spells was again highlighted, as several combats could have taken completely different turns if certain rolls were different. TPKs were possible, and perhaps likely at one point, without a certain roll.

I really enjoyed it when one player told me that how everything happening makes the setting feel like things happen on their own, and not just because the PCs are there. To me, that justifies the size and sprawling nature of the adventure, and the wilderness and extra places to explore, rather than simply being the titular dungeon and nothing more.

I also enjoyed that "scripted" events which were "supposed" to go one way, ended up doing completely different things, and revealing overarching "plot lines" happening in the background, entirely due to player action.

I think this was the session where things turn from "randomly exploring" to "let's get a plan together with possible goals in mind."

Depending on what goals the players set for themselves, I told them that it is possible (but not likely, honestly) for them to conclude their adventure next week, but it could be a lot longer if they decide they want to explore every last inch of possible area within the module. It will likely be somewhere in between.


  1. >also enjoyed that "scripted" events which were "supposed" to go one way, ended up doing completely different things<

    I think a lot of that early in a new DM's career is some of the best training they can have. "Going with the flow" chops being developed. Still keeps me on my toes.

    Looking forward to hearing about the bug shrine. In my current Night Below campaign I'm thinking of replacing the Jubilex/Ooze tunnel area with an insect shrine/cult/something or other. I need some inspiration for it.

  2. I'm getting seriously interested in the Shrine now.