The Battle of Woodhurst: Game Report #7

img_8959The Kompanions scheduled a meeting, a parley if you will with Lord Willem, de facto king of all the lands east of the Silver river. It was decided that they would talk, maybe, but they would mostly prepare to ambush and murder him.

The Kompanions flew on their roc to the Fortress of the Hall of Infinite Doors. Rexor, Stilgar and Pompous Maximus took a trip to Nightside to buy potions, commission a carpet of flying and hire some more muscle. Meanwhile, Akbar the grand vizier of the party used a rock to mud spell to sink a couple of large barrels of alchemy fire beneath the road and recharged a couple of wands. Kaladar took the road from Vanessa’s Lament at the head of a zombie dragon (the corpse of Wiliglim animated by Akbar with the Shadow Staff) and one hundred assorted skeletons and zombies. Their henchman, Einarr the Reluctant, took the roc and went on a scouting mission to find out what Lord Willem was doing with his army.

The Kompanions all came together at the Fortress of the Hall of Infinite Doors and began their brief march to the intended ambush site. On their way, the sharp eyed monk, Stilgar noted a couple of hawks taking a peculiar interest in the column. Using the true sight power within the Silver Hand of Ossiam the Black, he became aware that they were being scouted by druids. He waved to them and asked that they come speak to them. There was a brief conversation with one who said Brennos the Great Druid had tasked them with keeping an eye on the doings of Kompanions. Stilgar didn’t like this and said if the druid kept their noses out of the business of the Kompanions then he Stilgar would promise that Woodhurst would remain unmolested. Otherwise…

The party set up camp at the ambush site and waited until morning. As the sun rose, they saw Lord Willem with the sorceress Lavinia and fifty of his cavalry  proceeding toward Woodhurst. Also emerging from the forest, some distance away were, six giant elk each about the size of an elephant with archers mounted a firing platform. Three wolves emerged with them and began running to meet the Kompanions. When the wolves arrived they shape changed and the Great Druid was one of them. Brennos made it clear that he did not want any trouble but he wasn’t going to be punked by the Kompanions. Brennos implied the Stilgar was afraid of the Great Druid and turned to walk up the road and await the arrival of Willem. Taking offense at the haughty druid’s words the party prepared to fight and attacked the druid, in their trademark tactic of massive concentrated force.

Potions were consumed, spells of protection and power were cast, wands brandished. A massive earth elemental appeared to protect the druid and the elk were spurred into action but their arrival would be far too late. Kalador consumed a potion of growth and the might ox grew to massive size. The Great Druid was quickly overwhelmed. Though it did some damage, the elemental was largely ineffective.

Lord Willem and his party had stopped about a half mile away when they saw the elemental take shape. They stayed put until the engagement had ended and sent a messenger forward to see what had happened and to tell the Kompanions that Willem was still willing to meet but only if they kept their forces and the great Kalador at a distance. The party told the messenger that they assented and then hastily made a plan to attack Willem. Seeing that Willem was flanked by his sorceress and a few other of his counselors and staff, the party made a bold move. Using the ability of his magic plate barding Kalador teleported (along with Stilgar, Rexor, twenty zombies and the skeletal dragon) directly above Willem and his wizard. The already massive ox ,grown to giant size by the use of a potion, appeared in mid air and landed upon their foes, trapping the lord and his wizard beneath the great bulk of bovine flesh

Pompous Maximus had become ethereal using his ethereal plate armor and chose this moment to return to the prime material and finish Willem as he was trapped beneath the giant ox. Lavinia was no where to be seen. The Rexor’s demon armor warned him that there were two invisible individuals on either flank of the battlefield. He ran toward one and Stilgar the other. Akbar, who was also ethereal through the use of a potion, called his zombie army to follow the Kompanions but it would take nearly a minute for them to arrive. Quickly after arriving, the haste spell that the companions had previously been using to reek havoc was dispelled. As Pompous’s death blow fell down upon Willem it became clear that the man trapped under the ox was not Willem at all but an imposter polymorphed to look like him. Willem revealed himself as he rode out of the cavalry formation to lead his men against Rexor and the rest of the Kompanions.

The crafty Lavinia, realizing that Rexor was able to detect her, used dimension door to avoid the four armed, beetle winged warrior. Willem, his cavalry backing him up, was hasted and had magically enhanced strength. He dealt powerful blows to Rexor with his long sword and spurred his charger to attack. Stilgar running toward the other invisible foe was struck by a few magic missile from the barrage fired at him. Using his incredible speed and agility as a monk he was able to avoid them as shouted his well know battle cry, “Parkour!” Seeing his foe the monk brought him to and end with a pair of powerful blows from his fists. Activating the dread Shadow Staff, an artifact created by the terrible Chaos god of untimely death, Akbor slew several of Willem’s men with a death spell. 

The rest of the battle was a confused mess of zombies, fireballs, druids showing up and quickly being overwhelmed, the zombies finally arriving to pile on a prone Willem unable to untangle himself from his fallen mount. At the end of the battle the Kompanions had slain all of Willem’s retainers but Lavinia. The elk riders never managed to join the fight and she was able to dimension door herself to their protection. The Kompanions lost a small number of zombies but took a considerable amount of damage themselves. Willem himself was captured alive.

This was the most bizarre and epic battle I’ve ever run as a DM. Even though Swords and Wizardry battles typically run quickly, this one took a little more than two hours to get through. There was so much going on that I had to track and keep straight that it took some time make sure we caught it all. I was wound up all evening after the session. It was truly one of the best game sessions I’ve played in a long time. Thanks to my players for making it memorable. I am grateful for having such a great group of intelligent and imaginative players.

One thought on “The Battle of Woodhurst: Game Report #7

  1. Pingback: A Message to 5E DMs: You Only Have One Ass. – Grumpy Wizard

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