Pandemonium Megadungeon Session Report #2

Recently, I started an open-table megadungeon campaign using a megadungeon I’m working on, working-titled Pandemonium.”

This report covers session three and four. You can find the report for sessions one and two here.

6th Day of the Month of Grief

Our party consists of:
Sōt III, Fighter 1; a scraggly, sinewy knight, clad in bone mail-and-plate, missing his left ear.
Little Al, Magic-User 1; an old wizard magically de-aged to a teenager, covered in gnarly tattoos.

Just before descending beneath the Forsaken Inn, Little Al located gold, catching a momentary ping somewhere deeper on the first floor, near an area they’d already explored.

The two went below. They tangled with some beaky-brick monsters; marked their bricks with a chisel; found a nest of spark flies; then proceeded to fight many spark flies.

Midway through the fight, a spark fly stung Little Al directly in the forehead, piercing the skull. He collapsed, his forehead swelling unpleasantly as fluid leaked out. Sōt dragged him away from the nest and fought off the last of the spark flies, but the damage was done: Little Al’s brain swelled, killing him quickly. Thus ended Little Al.

Sōt returned to the surface just in time to meet a drunken soldier about to head down. The soldier’s name was One, pronounced own,” and he needed to pay off gambling debts. Lacking other companions, Sōt accepted One’s help and the two descended.

The two nibbled spark fly carcass and found it extremely spicy; slew the last of the spark flies; shattered their nest in search of treasure; discovered an obscured hallway behind the nest; found an altar in a hidden chamber; prayed at the altar then raided it for gold, silver, gemstone rings, and a scroll written in Mycologue, the tongue of fungi. They also discovered a secret passage out of the altar room, leading to a hidden door inside an upright sarcophagus.

After returning to the surface with their loot, both Sōt and One reached Level 2! Sōt assumed the title Butcher of Bugs” and One the title the Only.”

7th Day of the Month of Grief

Sōt and One went below once more. They returned to the secret sarcophagus chamber; activated an obvious trap to lower a giant block in the hallway; ran into some goblins and offered them a spicy spark fly, which was so spicy as to seemingly kill the goblin; fought many goblins in a narrow, gore-filled chokepoint; found a trapdoor descending lower and propped it open; then fled a gelatinous cube that dissolved their weapons.

8th Day of the Month of Grief

With One off drinking away his loot, a new party formed, including faces old and new:
Sōt III, the Butcher of Bugs, Fighter 2; a scraggly and gangly knight clad in bone mail-and-plate, missing a left ear.
Tarkus, Magic-User 1; a tall, broad necromancer in name only, having recently lost all of his gear including the knucklebones that served as his spellbook.
Bonkers, Fighter 1; a quiet, monk-like knight, brother to the still-in-recovery Chonkers.
Shrike, Fighter 1; a sickly, cursed, feather-clad outlander.
Erasmus Karl, Fighter 1; a balding, cheerful tourist.
Mustard, Magic-User 1; a young, muscular, overly peppy conjurer.

After quickly handing all spare gear over to Tarkus, the party headed below. They moved towards the known goblin camp; Erasmus played an increasingly-high-stakes game of Goblin Poker with the guards, requiring a mortarboard-wearing goblin to come adjudicate; a giant hermit crab snuck into Bonker’s pack, who adopted it as a pet; and the party burst in right as Erasmus snapped a photo using his Polaris-demon camera.

After a quick victory over the half-blind goblins, more goblins seemed imminent, so Mustard conjured webs to block the hallways and buy time. Using their bought time, Tarkus dragged away the Goblin Poker winnings, and Mustard drew a circle of holy water, then summoned an angel.

The angel, a six-eyed six-winged being with skin like brass floating upside down, did not share a language with the party. Mustard and Shrike, both speaking the Nine Forked Tongues of daemons, attempted to communicate a little, but this only confused and angered the angel. Mustard stepped into the circle of holy water and was seized by the angel, lightning shooting up their arm, then collapsed into unconsciousness. As the party retreated from the slowly-encroaching goblins, Bonkers broke the circle of holy water, whereupon the angel seized the unconscious Mustard and vanished with both of them in a blaze of light. Thus ended Mustard.

Thinking quickly, the party left a trail of discarded Goblin Poker loot towards the location of several unfriendly skeletons. The goblins took the bait and a battle ensued, leaving the party free to explore. The party took the opportunity to retreat, running afoul of some skeletons, including a black-clad mage, whose knucklebone-spellbook Tarkus reclaimed (after Erasmus took another photo).

After returning to the surface, the party recruited another new arrival, a droopy, brooding translocator named Ketchup. Bonkers dropped off his new hermit crab pack pet with his recovering brother, Chonkers; some re-equipping occured; Sōt prayed for victory; and the party went below.

Tarkus talked to some very friendly skeletons; they met the skeleton underboss, another black-clad mage who wasn’t as nice; a battle ensued. After rushing down the mage, Bonkers, on the front line, proceeded to lose his left middle finger and then his entire left leg, collapsing into unconsciousness. As he collapsed and skeletons burst through the gap, one stabbed Tarkus in the chest, puncturing his lungs.

Dispatching the other skeletons, the party plugged the hole in Tarkus’s lungs with an air bladder, buying precious minutes; they cauterized Bonkers’s leg with a torch. Tarkus, desperate, began casting every spell he had, hoping to get lucky; instead, he accidentally infected Bonkers’s stump with gangrene.

In desperation, Shrike fed Tarkus a strange purple-and-orange potion, at which point Tarkus collapsed, dead, only to have another, different Tarkus step out from nowhere, mostly unharmed. This new Tarkus, largely the same but subtly somehow different, rapidly cauterized Bonkers’s stump, and the party beat a hasty retreat to the surface.

Will this new replacement-Tarkus turn out to be friend or foe? Will anyone but Sōt ever manage to find treasure? Which new third brother will step up as both Bonkers and Chonkers recover from their wounds? Find out next time.

February 9, 2024