Wednesday, June 7, 2017

The Evil Eye: Actual Play 2

Session two just finished up. We were one man down tonight, but that didn't hinder things too much.

We started off with a modified ending to chapter 2. I added in a Temple of Ezra where the party rested, but chapter 2 basically went according to the railroad. The player who's character aged 40 years was a bit disappointed he couldn't get a greater restoration spell to reverse the aging so that by-the-book ghost is pretty nasty, even for 5e.

There are two key flaws in this adventure that I've noticed so far. First off, there's a bit of a lack of direction. I noticed it before we started, and the players have noticed it now. I think I've gotten it through to them that getting home is probably the goal, but also maybe saving some townsfolk. Thus far they haven't latched onto impending executions, murderers, or a stunning series of deaths in town. They've finally got enough clues to get some movement going in Karina (Going to talk to Raul again, possibly work for Matton, then a meet up with Captain Timothy for some dogfights). So they've got some things to do now, but not a lot of direction.

After one player mentioned the lack of direction, I literally had to remind them that they didn't really ask any questions to any of the NPs they've already met about where they are or the like. So they're going to go back to try to get a few more answers, and now I've planted some doubts about whether Niko or Malocchio are the Dukkar. That should be cleared up once they get to chapter 4. Also, I need to be prepared for chapter 5 to happen before chapter 4. While the adventure is written like a bit of a railroad, it could use a bit more advice for moving things around and how to give the right clues without requiring a "right" set of actions.

The second flaw is a lack of combat. I did pick a few random encounters, but so far it was just a noble which meant they had an extra Matton encounter. There are a few combats coming up, and I plan to throw some alley thugs at them in the bad parts of town, but it's been a lot of investigation and roleplaying and not too much combat, which makes for a slightly slower D&D game.

This basically makes me wish I had asked for Slow Natural Healing, where a long rest is a week in town. But I suspect I can hit them with some more combats soon, and I plan on giving them exhaustion as well to keep them weakened as needed.

Because we were a man down tonight, I didn't press them to make a lot of progress, so we went from half-way through chapter 2 to halfway through chapter 3. We've got two games to go, and hopefully a Friday afternoon game, so that should still put us on target to finish, but I might not need my extra final chapter in Castle Loupet.

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