Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Dyson’s Delve – Session 5 – Manticore!

This session happened Wednesday, December 15, 2010.  This campaign uses the Dyson’s Delve dungeon pages on A Character for Every Game.  We are using the Pathfinder RPG, so some adjustments were made (or so I’ve been told).
Adventuring Group:
Harkaitz of the Red Soul, Cleric of Ra (male human cleric of Ra)
Wednesday (female elf rogue)
Sahar (female human fighter)
Luna (female elf sorcerer)
“Electric” Frankie Hu (male dwarf monk)

SPOILER ALERT: If You Might Play Through Dyson's Delve, Stop Reading

In Aldelle, Frankie and Wednesday were able to learn a few things from the previously captured goblins and hobgoblins.  First, while the goblins did not know Common, the hobgoblins did.  Second, the person who had set the goblins on the path towards attacking Aldelle was none other than Tim the Questgiver, who set us after the goblins!  This went a long way towards explaining why Tim had had a map of the first level of the Delve, but did nothing to explain why he had set the whole conflict up.  Harkaitz was able to locate a handy haversack in town and traded the jeweled crown and 4000 pieces of silver for it.

After some discussion, Super Rat decided their best path was to finish investigating the crypts on level three of the Delve, looking for a sign as to what attacked the ghouls (before they got there).  The group quickly made their way to the crypts, cautiously approaching in case something new had taken up residence in the area.  After verifying they had not missed anything in the stirge chamber, the group continued down the corridor, knocking on coffins to see if anything was active in them.

The corridor ended in a T-intersection, with each branch relatively quickly turning a corner and then coming to an end.  Harkaitz, Luna, and Sahar stayed at the intersection while Wednesday and Frankie checked the branching hallway to the left for anything unusual.  Other than finding the stairs up to the temple room on the second level, this hallway was quiet.  Once out of sight of Harkaitz and satisfied there were no undead in the coffins, Frankie and Wednesday started opening them, looking for treasure.  They found quite the haul in gold coins and gold statuettes, but hid the loot as Harkaitz was against looting tombs of the quiet dead.

Circling back, the duo checked the right-hand passage.  In an empty niche Wednesday discovered a small pressure plate.  After relieving the available coffins of their gold coins (a much smaller haul – apparently the wealthy were buried down the other hallway), Wednesday and Frankie alerted the rest of the adventurers as to their finding.  Wednesday could find no evidence of a trap attached to the pressure plate, but triggered the pressure plate using a quarterstaff just to be safe.  The pressure plate opened a secret door in the back of the alcove but also animated the all the skeletons in the coffins of this passageway – six in all and completely surrounding the adventurers.  A quick but painful fight happened and most of the adventurers took some damage before the skeletons were destroyed.  Harkaitz healed everyone back up to full health.

Behind the secret door was an oval chamber containing a sarcophagus.  While Sahar and Harkaitz were discussing whether or not to open the sarcophagus, Sahar decided to cut to the chase and pushed the lid off the sarcophagus.  This released a blinding flash of light, blinding Harkaitz and Sahar.  After determining the effects would last an hour or so, Wednesday and Frankie suggested checking the coffins the skeletons animated from.  Harkaitz had no issues with this as animated dead were not sanctified burials.  Luna stayed to keep an eye on the two blinded adventurers while Wednesday and Frankie proceeded to loot all the coffins they had not been able to loot while Harkaitz was watching.  Luna took advantage of Sahar and Harkaitz by drawing mustaches and big eyebrows on the two human with chalk, claiming she was using “elven magic” to shorten the duration of the blindness.  Meanwhile, Wednesday and Frankie found more stirges, but were able to kill them with minimal trouble.

Once the blindness eventually wore off (and the chalk was dealt with), the adventurers decided to follow the stairs down to the fourth level of the Delve.  The stairs ended in an empty room with stairs leading further down and a damaged door to this new level.  Investigating the door, Wednesday was able to determine that the door had been damaged by the claws of some powerful beast on the other side and barely held.  Peering through punctures and utilizing his darkvision, Frankie was able to see a narrow corridor beyond this door, with a door and two side passages along the right wall.  The adventurers decided to explore beyond the scarred door.

The door beyond was also heavily clawed and Frankie could peer though to the room beyond.  It was mostly empty, so the adventurers pushed on.  The first side passage was a corridor leading to a door on the left and a T-intersection at its end.  The group decided to pause here while Frankie stealthed forward to check the final side passage.  It opened to a small room containing a monster with a lion body, a human head (with sharp teeth), and a long tail with spikes – a manticore!  The manticore noticed Frankie at the same time and roared a challenge at Frankie.  Frankie immediately fled back to the party, calling out, “It’s a manticore!”  Luckily, the corridor was too narrow for the manticore to easily move through and it had to squeeze in to get at the adventurers.  Harkaitz and Sahar took positions at the first intersection so they could both attack the monster with their swords while Luna and Wednesday fled back to the landing room to provide ranged attack support.  Frankie, thinking he might be able to flank the manticore ran down the unexplored corridor.

The manticore flicked its tail at the adventurers, sending two spikes each at Harkaitz and Wednesday (who had wounded it with her crossbow).  It then advanced towards the adventurers, but stopped short outside of Harkaitz’s reach.  This changed the adventurers' battle plans significantly.  Wednesday had taken two spikes and dropped to the floor unconscious while Harkaitz was heavily wounded and unable to attack or heal without inviting an attack from the manticore.  Sahar yelled at Harkaitz to fall back as she attacked the manticore around the corner from the side passage and then stepped right in front of it.  Harkaitz threw a fire bolt at the manticore and fell back to the landing room.  This left Frankie now cut off from the rest of the party and the only known exit from the dungeon.

Back in the landing room, Luna pulled Wednesday out of the manticore’s line of fire while Harkaitz channeled a sunlit burst of healing positive energy.  Due to his position, this burst healed all the adventurers (except Frankie), but stopped short of the manticore.  This (and the healing potion Luna fed her) brought Wednesday back into the fight.  She, Luna, and Harkaitz used ranged attacks to harry the manticore while Sahar held it in place and carved it with her sword.  Frankie, blocked by locked doors, returned to the fight and was able to deliver the killing blow on the manticore with a flurry of martial arts attacks.

Spending some time to catch their breath, the adventurers took stock of themselves and passed out the healing where necessary [and it was necessary].  The adventurers forced the manticore body back into its lair where Frankie proceeded to skin it.  The rest of the adventurers searched the area and found the valuables the manticore had scavenged from its prey.  This included a small chest of gold coins and three magic items: a sword [+1, +3 vs. spellcasters], a wand [of hold person], and a potion [of invisibility].  After Luna identified the magic items, they were dispersed to those who could best put them to use: Sahar got the sword, Luna the want, and Wednesday the potion.

Once Frankie was done with his bloody work, the manticore pelt was packed away in the handy haversack and the adventurers continued exploring.  Ready to head back to the surface, the adventurers followed the T-intersection in the direction of the landing platform.  They found it connected to the back side of the first room Frankie had peered into.  Wednesday checked and opened the door and the adventurers peered in.  The room was mostly bare, except for four statues, one in each corner.

The adventurers fell to discussing what to do next, when the door suddenly closed in front of them.  Frankie peered in through the clawed door and saw clouds of gas start filling the room.  Realizing the manticore-damaged doors would not hold the gas in and suspecting it of being unhealthy, the adventurers hotfooted it around the outside of the room using the corridors and fled up the stairs towards the surface, pausing only long enough to destroy a trio of ghouls that wandered into their way.  The adventurers tired but wealthier returned to Aldelle to discuss their further plans over drinks at the inn.

*End of Session*


  1. Awesome battle with the Manticore!

  2. It was a nail-biter! Wednesday was in the negatives, I (Harkaitz) was at 4 hp, and Sahar was slowly losing to the manticore when Frankie rejoined the fight we finally took it down. If the passage had been wider so the manticore did not have to squeeze to get to us (and taken the AC penalty), the fight would have likely gone the other way.

    I really liked this level of the dungeon, especially the things that happened in the next adventure log (to be posted soon).