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The Tower of Zothar
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TOPIC: The Tower of Zothar
The Tower of Zothar 7 Years, 7 Months ago  
Pretty simple in and out, but it was fun. System was a version of Stormbringer 1e slightly simplified in the direction of OD&D.

The layout:

Last time a wizard had confiscated the party's boat. They decided to go settle the issue. That bottom part is the cavern under the tower, which you can access at low tide via an old dock:

The thief could desolidify so he got right by that portcullis. Then he let everyone through, but they tripped a magic alarm while investigating those vases, alerting the welcoming committee:

The part just barely got back through the portcullis and brought it down before they got there. Of course, the big gorillas knew how to open it, but the slowdown was just enough to throw some molotov cocktails into the corridor and fry the big boys...at least two of them. The third was smart enough to go alert the wizard.

(Plus of playing with DF stuff: for me at least it's easier to keep track of where everyone is and how the dungeon reacts organically over time.)

After rescuing a beautiful sorceress and her familiar from the slave pits in that room with the four-armed gorillas, the gang came into the wizard's underground summoning cavern:

The thief tried to get across the river to the pentagram and the nice goodies stored by it:

which promptly brought a water elemental up. Desolid prevented him from getting instantly killed, but he was caught up in the magical creature's influence nonetheless. The fighter/mage/noble/hunter (Stormbringer background thing, sigh) and the sorceress managed to control the waves and attack the elemental with magic long enough to distract it and then pen it up while the thief finished his work.

Then it was up the stairway

to the garden

where the gardener

as well as the remaining girallon, both made invisible by the now-alert wizard, attacked the party by surprise. One NPC killed and several more wounded. About time!

Then up to the stairs, where I got another NPC kill and one PC at death's door with the old "Only a True Knight Shall Pass to Clasp the Maiden's Hands" trick:

With two characters lightning-fried on the ground they figured it out on the third try. Mermaid was a teleport access to the wizard's home level:

But all the closeups on my camera crapped out so I can't show you the goodies. Then I lost power and couldn't take photos of the actual session.

Comment the second: It occurred to me after doing this basically smallish setup and taking a couple hours on it that another way to use Dwarven Forge stuff would be just to set up a few choice areas to be cool and evocative (and where you think minis are likely to be a plus), use the pieces in those, and run the rest of the dungeon freeform or with battlemats if you absolutely have to. Cost effective, atmospheric, and doesn't cut down on the unknown factors in the dungeon depths nearly so much.

They didn't find a treasure I hid in a cave crevasse though, and didn't spot the secret door even when they knew there was no other way into the wizard's bedroom (which gave him time to send a couple of mezzodaemons after them.... sweet). So that all was pretty cool.
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The Tower of Zothar 7 Years, 7 Months ago  
Really nice stuff! It's always great to see these slightly smaller layouts, just so people don't get the impression that you need an exhorbitant amount of DF to get a good setup going. These look fantastic, and it sounds like the gaming session was a blast.

Minotaur Lord
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"In every real man a child is hidden that wants to play."

-- F. Nietzsche
The Tower of Zothar 7 Years, 7 Months ago  
It sounds like you had a great gaming session. I love your use of minis and extras. This should encourage new collectors. It does not take a lot to enjoy gaming with DF stuff.

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