Play Report: Decent into the Vaults of Pahvelorn
by Ramanan Sivaranjan on September 11, 2012
My friends and I have been a bit disorganized with our regular D&D 4e game. This meant I was free to play in Brendan’s OD&D campaign, the Vaults of Pahvelorn. He’s been writing about his campaign and OD&D for the last few months and it all sounded pretty fantasitc, so it was nice to participate in a game.
As i’ve said before, rolling up a character in older editions of D&D is pretty quick. For this game things felt even quicker: 3d6 in order for my stats suggested I play a wizard. From there it was random equipment, random spell books, a random retainer and a random background. The only thing that isn’t random about this character is his name, Satyavati. Removing almost every choice from character creation makes the process painless. The whole experience was very stress free.
With that I was ready to game. The other players were regulars in the campaign. As things got going I felt a little bit lost. I had read play reports and Brendan’s own posts about the game, but I didn’t feel like I had my bearings till we were found a section of Pahvelorn that was new to everyone. In our session we explored some old row houses accros the street from a mansion.
The first room we examined was full of bodies in various states of butchery. That’s just not pleasent. From here we found a room containing an empty chest, presumably already looted. I’m always a bit suspicious of empty chests, so I decided to investigate futher. Brendan asked how exactly I do so. Now, at this point I thought my character was going to die in a firey inferno. Thankfully, this wasn’t the case. We found a secret room and an apparently elven magic sword. We call that, “loot.” In hindsight I probably should have devised a safer scheme for examining the chest, but it was late at night and sometimes it’s good to not be so timid.
It’s always funny watching the push and pull between the cautious and the not so cautious. We alternated between busting heads and hiding in alleyways and dark corners. We killed some cultists, some giant rats–of course–and some good for nothing demons. In Brendan’s game you only get XP for finding and spending gold so these fights were purely for our own satisfaciton.
We explored the mansion a little bit, and it was an interesting scene. I had memorized Read Magic for the delve: it’s the only first level spell I know. Seriously. In all our previous fights I had joked about how I had prepared Read Magic and then promptly hid in a corner till the carnage was over. When we enterd the mansion we came upon a room divided in two by runes, presumably of a magic nature. That’s what i’m talking about! A Read Magic later and we learned they were probably sealing some sort of evil inside the mansion.
In the next room we discovered a giant demon frozen in place with a sword through its chest. I’m going to guess it’s evil. It was a tough and anguished decision, but it was decided that pulling the sword out should probably wait.
Till next time.
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