The City of Seven Spears
In which we go on and past the third installment of Serpent’s Skull.
I’ve had to drop the idea of writing up scenes for the campaign. The overly long breaks between sessions, the death of an established character whose replacement didn’t grow into his role, and the third adventure path’s regression to what amounted to little more than dungeon crawling were, in combination, too heavy a load to work with. The breaks were particularly crippling: this is definitely not a student-friendly game for those preferring to take it seriously; it’s for either teenaged kids with all the time in the world, or adults whose homeworkless jobs can go on with unchanged schedules for months on end.
But aside from these tertiary concerns, what of the AP itself?
Can’t say, really. It was more of a pit stop in between going to get what we wanted and… something. The leadup to the next one is less than clearly outlined. If memory serves, the original motivation for most of the characters to go to Saventh-Yhi was, in all possible Platonic purity, to Get Them Treasures. Well, we’ve switched employers now that our first sponsors have packed up their things, and presumably the investigation and looting of the city will proceed for a time until a more pressing concern is unearthed. For our dauntless party, the whole thing about being involved with the excavations and the like was purely a marriage of convenience; to my knowledge, none of the characters really cared about the forgotten secrets half as much as the swag – with, perhaps, the exception of Kuros: I still don’t know what that guy is about, and I play the man. Awkward. Somewhat embarrassing.
I wouldn’t know how to grade this one because I’m not sure we played it the way it was meant to be played. This was partly because of group dynamics (“lol lore, hell yeah geepees”), partly because of out-of-game reasons (them breaks, man… them breaks), and partly because, as the GM admitted, it was mostly just an XP grind to get us into such a level that we won’t all of us get immediately and gruesomely killed come the next phase of the adventure. The whole adventure took four sessions, which makes it the shared second shortest path thus far, along with Sins of the Saviors from Rise of the Runelords. Come to think of it, CSS was quite similar in style to Fortress of the Stone Giants, which we played through in only three sessions.