Following on from our last session, we continued with our party’s attempts to escape from Zanzer’s Dungeon. You can find the planning for the session here. Unfortunately, some personal issues resulted in a slower pace of play this time, so we failed to reach the end of the planned session in time. This was compounded further by player mistakes and over-cautiousness, that saw the game slow to a crawl for most of the session.
Ouro opted to swap out Hector the cleric for a new party member, this time opting to create a mage with Nuggin. There weren’t too many choices to be made for Nuggin, as mages cannot wear armour, and can only use daggers and staves in combat. This meant that Nuggin was only able to pick up a dagger on his way to the rest of the party.
Once joined with the party, Nuggin examined the suspected magic items that the party had found so far, particularly the books and the stick. He quickly identified the books as a type of spellbook, each with a single spell. Rather than memorising a spell, however, Nuggin tried using the stick, certain that it was a magic wand of some type, and discovered that it was a wand of secret door detection. Unfortunately, in activating the wand, the secret door to room 11 was revealed, from beyond which a low growl could be heard.
Nuggin fled the room, unprepared for any sort of conflict, leaving Axel and Dent to cover the room with their bows. Dent tried firing through the doorway, but only hit a wall, as the cowardly wolf in the room hung back behind the wall, safe from arrow fire. Dent fired another shot, also ineffective, as the wolf refused to leave it’s safety.
Dent passed through the secret door to see what the problem was, and realised that the wolf was, in fact, prevented from escaping the small room, which was essentially a tiny closet. A brief scuffle saw the wolf lose it’s nerve and cower in fear after finally being hit, leaving it open to a couple more shots from Dent trying to put it out of it’s misery, but failing to kill the cowering beast.
Whilst this was going on, Pike grabbed one of the strange books and threw it at Nuggin, who had moved to the rear of the party. Pike had assumed that Nuggin could cast a spell direct from the spellbook, unaware of the long amounts of meditation and memorization a mage needs to prepare their spells. Nuggin failed to catch the book, which sailed past him into greasy pit behind the party.
Eventually, Pike moved into the closet to find out what was happening, and upon hearing the pitiful whining of the wolf, opened the closet door enough for the wolf to escape, which it did so at first opportunity. Pike then closed the door, and returned to the magic room. Dent followed him having found another stick and a pair of heavy leather gloves up on the closet shelves.
The party decided that Nuggin needed to have time to memorise a spell before proceeding. Nuggin recovered the spellbook from the pit with the help of the rest of the party, and Nuggin decided to take the time to memorise sleep, with the entire party having learnt about rushing ahead without letting the mage memorise any spells.
After eight hours, the party decided to bravely enter room 12. They were somewhat confused by the fact that there was only one other door leaving the room, yet the wolf had vanished, leaving only a few spots of blood on the floor.
The room itself seemed like some sort of storage dump for items and treasure, including nearly 6,000 gold pieces in ten bags heaped in the middle of the floor. There were other items stacked amongst the shelves, including more weapons and armour.
Concerned that the gold was some kind of trap, the party were hesitant to touch anything in the room, especially given the disappearance of the wolf. They noticed that the gold seemed to be placed over some sort of wooden flooring, possibly a trapdoor, in such a way that it would be impossible to even examine it without moving the gold.
It is here that the session ended, as player fatigue and personal issues got in the way, and the game had crawled to a halt. They hadn’t quite made it to the end of part 3 of Escape From Zanzer’s Dungeon, but that’s not too much of a problem, given the continued linear nature of the dungeon so far, as the remaining encounters can be included in the planning for next session.