Technically, Wednesday’s game was the second session of Encounters, since we ran Launch Day on Saturday. We had a good group of players, including about 5 new folks, though most of the newbies had played D&D or D&D Next before.
My table had a cleric, a barbarian, a rogue, a druid, and a monk. They started at the Abyssal Prison entry point, which meant they’re in a place of demons and undead. In fact, their “welcome party” at the entry point included a couple of vampire spawn, some wights, and some zombies. They bluffed and negotiated with them, making a wager that the warriors of the party couldn’t defeat the demon in the pit arena, putting their victory up against the halfling rogue’s freedom. If they won, the spawn would give them her companion’s greatsword (which is a +1 weapon, unbeknownst to them).
They did well against the pit demon, but the really stellar moment was when the monk scored a critical hit and used “Stunning Fist” on the thing. Stunned, it hung in the air until the party just tore it apart, with the finishing move being another crit from the monk.
The vampire spawn slow-clapped, then made good on her bargain. The party rescued Shalendra and some prisoners, who went back to the gatehouse to rest and possibly be released.
Meanwhile, Issem the vampire has been watching this, warns them not to enter the stairs to the south, and makes a bargain with them. He is convinced to cover their tracks (reducing the dungeon alert level) in exchange for a taste of one of their blood. The monk gets testy and insists that he not actually bite (“or I’ll take those fangs out of your mouth,”) and eventually the barbarian offers up his arm to be cut. He loses 8 hp from his maximum, and the vampire is pleased.
Mike’s table, meanwhile, started in the Far Realm Cysts and enjoyed a merry role-playing encounter with a beholder and its floating eye traps. I wasn’t in that table, so I’m not sure if they ever had to fight anything, but he wrapped up at about 7:30 after they’d done some investigating.
It was a quick, not-too-onerous night of game. I almost wanted to keep going into the next zone, and probably would have done so without noticing if Mike’s table wasn’t packing up.