The Final Battle Approaches
Our fourth, and final, session of Dungeon Fantasy RPG kicked off with a brief foray to finish exploring the last few rooms from a side passage before the group set off towards the final unexplored route. The adventure was doing a great job of establishing the latent threat, but we were starting to tire of some of the encounters and decided to skip past a few to focus on what had to be the final encounter.
The culmination of the adventure was a solid combat session that tested the limits of the group without pushing things too far into dangerous territory. The Elder Minion’s tactics have continued to evolve and were on full display here as the adventurers were pushed hard to bring their A-game. After a protracted battle which saw our first experience with dropping into negative hit points, victory was achieved and the group returned to the inn to claim their reward.
The group has successfully overcome most of the obstacles the adventure had to offer and returned with quite a few pieces of loot to sell. The build points gained will be used for a number of character refinements (Francesco desperately needs some offensive magic) and the funds will be spent to upgrade everyone’s equipment, perhaps even establishing a base of operations in town. And with that, “I Smell a Rat” and our Dungeon Fantasy RPG mini-campaign comes to a close.
We made it! The Elder Minion and I enjoyed our time with the Dungeon Fantasy RPG ruleset and the “I Smell a Rat” adventure. The original plan was to follow through with the sequel, but by the third session we knew that was being a bit overly ambitious. Our weekly sessions were 2-3 hours and there was far too much combat to get through with in “I Smell a Rat” to make significant progress each game session. I’ll have to keep playtime in mind as we continue to play through future sessions for our Tabletop RPG Sampler project.
This is what we really liked about this playthrough:
- The contents of the DFRPG core box are an excellent value for getting into the game. I do wish that there were counters that more accurately portrayed the pregenerated characters bundled with the Gamemaster’s Screen, but that is a small nitpick.
- The variety of encounters in “I Smell a Rat” always kept us guessing what was next. There were several encounters that had really cool mechanics to keep in mind which was a welcome surprise to us both.
- HP and death is very forgiving in the game. While at first we were a little concerned about how few hit points each character had, once DR was taken into account it really became a non-issue.
- Casting spells was fun and the ability to moderate the spell effect intensity based on how many points you spend to cast really allowed us to get the desired result.
- Sir Yvor the knight is an absolute beast once he gets into combat. An absolute tank.
- The quick rolls used for traps/curses was a really fun way to handle these situations by forcing the gamemaster to make the base skill check plus having to beat the target’s margin on their roll as well. I felt this allows the gamemaster to design traps that contain more credible threats as it becomes more difficult to hit the target.
Here are some of the things that we did not enjoy or had difficulty with:
- Range C really tripped us up at first and became a bit of a point of contention for the Elder Minion. Two figures occupying the same square was a bit of a break from games we’ve played before and I don’t think we ever really got our heads wrapped around it.
- Combat really felt like a chore during some encounters as the party’s capabilities didn’t really line up with the adversaries’ defenses. There were a couple of encounters where only Sir Yvor could hope to get past the creature’s DR and everyone else was just hoping for critical hit rolls.
- We never took combat to the level of using damage modifiers for type and hit locations. While this may have helped speed up certain encounters, I believe it would have just slowed down the rest. To be fair, since we didn’t try it out that assumption could be completely wrong.
- I really feel “I Smell a Rat” would be best played with 5-6 characters. You really want to have two heavy damage dealers, a thief, a cleric, and a wizard at a minimum.
- The story in “I Smell a Rat” didn’t really leave many clues for the adventurer’s to uncover regarding what happened down below. I tried to leave hints for the group, but I feel like a bit of story was left out.
While the Elder Minion and I have wrapped things up for now with DFRPG, we both agree that we want to continue the adventure in the future. This will absolutely be a game we return to once again and I look forward to sharing our experience with “Against the Rat-men”.
Thank you for joining us for our playthrough of Dungeon Fantasy RPG as part of the Tabletop RPG Sampler project. Coming next week…
Dungeon Fantasy RPG