Well we had quite the session today!http://dungeoncrawlclassics.webs.com/adv7.htm
Shorter version: 1. The heroes looted the tomb. Invisible stalker killed warrior. He was rolled over and got -1 to agility.
2. Ssendam.. Lord of Entropy...! Attacked the dwarf hall! Dwarves died. And then.. the heroes rolled critical after critical, breaking open Ssendam's brain! and he teleported away. More on this below.
3. Patron mini-quest #2 - rescue comical living boulder sidekick from getting stuck high up in a canyon.
4. Patron mini-quest #3 - get an evil sword from a trapped demon lord. The demon lord began possessing the heroes and making them free him, but they were able to keep him contained and they got the sword.
We used the new cleric and the new thief rules, and everyone liked them. The cleric especially liked not having the cumulative -1.
Now as for Ssendam. He's a major entity in the fiend folio. Can't be hit by less than +3 weapon, has 197 hit points, 85% magic resistance. My idea of him attacking is because he wants to test Golila's agents and see if maybe she is worthy. So he starts off by killing dwarves and driving them insane. In my head, I decided that Ssendam could only be hit by criticals.
I planned the fight to go
Round 1: "Good gawd it's Ssendam!" and Ssendam puts symbol of insanity on prominent NPCS.
Round 2: Spirit dwarf guardians of Legion Hall arrive and fight Ssendam while the heroes do whatever.
Round 3: As Boulderloch told them a few sessions ago, he hated Ssendam and if the opportunity arose, he would attack him. So, Boulderloch shows up and makes the save, and both teleport somewhere and continue their battle away from Legion Hall.
Now, Ssendam's main form is that he's a giant golden amoeba-thing with tendrils. Inside him, you can see a floating brain. The heroes all said they were targeting the brain. OK, I thought, let's see what happens.
Here's what happened in about a round and a half:
Critical hit! Chart result: If target doesn't get magical healing, it dies in one hour!
Failed spell... missed attack..
FOUR CRITICALS. It was awesome. Once that second critical rolled in, I thought it would be cool if they maybe did kill Ssendam! So I'm kind of wracking my brain as the crits keep rolling in, and ultimately decided that Ssendam teleported to Limbo (I'm going to make up a limbo-equivalent, and also a slaad-equivalent for next time) and is either dead or in a type of catatonic state.
I know that the PCs shouldn't have been able to touch Ssendam. But because of scheduling and stuff, this campaign will be ending soon. Beating up Ssendam is a nice twist that can fast-forward us to the ending. I could have had Ssendam just beat the bejeezus out of them. The point of this scenario originally was just to get them to hate Ssendam and want to stop Thurfang's Ssendam-fueled plot. He was going to kill some dwarves and be all huge and awesome. But when the crits started rolling in, I decided to go with it, as it felt more interesting to me.
So the whole story of my campaign is that two servants of Ssendam are feuding. One, Thurfang, is creating speel-crypts to give himself enough power to rule the vermilion steppes in the name of Ssendam. Golila also serves Ssendam, but she is not in his favor and had been trapped in her tower. Ssendam has even placed a demon that is preventing Golila from entering her own dungeon to use her magic items.
So... if Ssendam is dead, does that mean these two villains lose their spells? Or power? I don't know. And how would this affect them? Would Golila now be able to leave her tower?
Then I had introduced a third wizard who was involved with Ssendam - Zebulon the venerable. He's actually the one who sicced Ssendam on the heroes, as the heroes had told him of Golila's plans in one of the first sessions.
At the end of this session, my players were discussing rounding up the dwarves and bringing them to Golila's tower in a full-on assault. Which sounds awesome.
The king of legion hall and one character's mother had a symbol of insanity placed on their forehead. A cleric asked his goddess how to cure it, she told him vaguely "when the time is right, you will know". Because I wanted time to decide on that! A lot was happening at once.
Here's my tentative plan:
Session 8: The heroes ride with the dwarves back home and attack Golila's tower! Her lightning skeletons fight back. If the PCs win, her brother begs them to spare her and tells them her pathetic origin. In addition, she's a bit evil and crazy, but she could be a powerful ally.
Session 9: It turns out that the thing they need to cure the insanity symbols is in her dungeon! But the demon is blocking it. The heroes must defeat the demon and maybe claim the magic items for themselves!
Session 10: Thurfang has gone to (Limbo )the "demi-plane" as I am calling it for now) to find what's left of Ssendam... and do some magic to take his place, come back to the Vermilion Steppes with Ssendam's (slaads) "demons" and rule it utterly! The heroes must defeat him in limbo
Session 11: Thurfang retreats to his orange spell-cryot, mortally wounded. He's trying a last ditch spell ritual regain his power. The heroes must at last go to the spell-crypt to finish off Thurfang once and for all.
There's loose ends:
Zebulon - who could be an aid to the heroes or racing against thurfang
The evil sword - they just got it. They will probably give it to the servant of Otiax. I'd like to tie that in to this story somehow.
The elf they saved - I had meant for them to go to her city and meet up with her
So yeah a lot going on here! Any ideas or advice is appreciated!