Just finished our first campaign in the Conan 2d20 system yesterday. Three days, about 20 hours of play time. It went very well and everyone had a lot of fun.
This was a three day campaign and the campaign was set up in three parts to accommodate that.
- I wrote a letter to each of the two magic users in our four person group. The two had served under the same master. Both were fleeing the master as the game began. One was fleeing in fear of their life, the other only pretending to be doing the same but secretly was supposed to leave with the other to keep an eye on him and bring him back to be a human sacrifice in three years time to grant both him and his master god like power. It created a delightful bit of paranoia between those two characters even as they tried to work together.
- Two players ran mercenaries who had just signed on to help on a boat sailing north.
- The two magic users did a bit of running around dodging guards before arriving at the ship seeking passage to, . . . pretty much anywhere except where they currently were.
- During the trip, the characters are poisoned, told that they only survive if they cooperate so they can have the antidote at the final destination.
*Ship is attacked and sunk, the player characters and about half of the crew survive by boarding lifeboats and make their way to the island where they are headed.
- Coming to the realization that they are wanted for slave labor, and that the crew of the ship they were were in the exact same situation as them, they choose to cooperate for the time being.
- The characters are assigned to search the jungle ruins, surviving short excursions into the forest and through the labyrinth underground.
- Bit by bit they piece together that something beyond simple looting of ruins is going on. The leader of the group is obsessed with finding SOMETHING in the depths of the ruins.
- Discovering a growing number of runes intended to imprison something, they eventually realize that there is a being of terrible power, possibly a god, buried in the ruins.
- The characters discover the way to the entity’s prison, and the leader of the group that enslaved them arrives to break the wards holding it within.
- As the ruins begin to collapse in all around them, they find themselves in a headlong rush to escape before they are entombed with whatever is just freed.
- Realizing that they did not receive a full cure, only something to prevent the poison’s progression, the more medically inclined magic user decides he needs to find a permanent cure for their condition. Meanwhile, the entire island is plagued by terrible quakes.
- Organizing the remaining slaves, the group makes plans to escape to sea.
*Meanwhile, the leader of the group they are serving, still underground and battling whatever was freed, has used his own magic, and decades of preparation to absorb this incredibly powerful creature’s essence, effectively drawing both the creature, and it’s power within himself.
- The characters discover a series of massive runes around the island, and come to the realization that the one who enslaved them created those runes as a way to both amplify his own power, and to suppress the power of the creature he hoped to possess.
- The one who enslaved them cuts them off at the beach, preventing them from joining the other survivors on the ship to make their escape. An epic battle ensued that lasted until the player characters realized they couldn’t beat him in a stand up fight and retreated. They did however realize that he did not COMPLETELY have the entity under his control. They instead went to the nearest known rune and destroyed it. In doing so they weakened the slaver’s control over it.
- In the confusion that followed, the player characters made their escape. They have no idea who eventually won the fight.
- With extra people on the ship, and few trained sailors to man the ship, it was slow going and it took more than twice the time to arrive in port.
- As the characters all begin to celebrate, a ship comes in to port from the south. They bring tales of a horror, possibly a god, laying waste to entire cities, slaughtering all in it’s path.
- Players decide they want to travel North.
The first day we ended up looking things up quite often, mostly just to make sure we knew what we were doing. This also gave us a chance to help everyone familiarize themselves with the rules. After that, things flowed pretty naturally through the game’s conclusion. It was a fun and complete game, with plot hooks we can use to lay the ground work for future campaigns. Everyone seemed to have a lot of fun, and two people have called me today to ask when the next time we can play will be. I figure that bodes very well.