The Dead Gate, part one

I forgot to take a photo during the gaming session, but a few of these gnoll witherlings showed up.

After having driven off the marauding horde besieging Fort Kellum, the PC’s decide to follow the gnolls back into the mountains and reconnoiter how big a problem the region is facing. While trailing the retreating army the heroes find themselves tangling with a few patrols and at least one group of badly wounded gnolls who were left behind for ghouls and witherlings to feast upon.

My gaming group continues to feel a bit like two gaming groups; the last session had four players only one of whom was present at the previous session. So the “liberators” didn’t really participate in the follow up, and now it feels like the group that has begun to tail the gnolls won’t be the group that actually sees where the gnolls have holed up in the mountains. This A-B-A-B dynamic makes me feel like I should just split the group and recruit a person or two to round out the numbers for each section.

Player agency also felt a little off, on both sides of the coin, this gaming session, The encounters were basically just thrown at the players by me as they trundled along, with only the occasional “do you want to stop and investigate what is going on, or keep following the army” option posed to them. But on the other hand, the players also completely skipped a fairly obvious thing to do–interrogating the gnolls that they came across, and just plowed their way along through each encounter to the next. In the process they missed out on a lot of potential backstory before they arrive at their destination.

The first problem is my fault, and I need to work on how I am designing these sessions. The other might just be people not really in a “let’s really put ourselves in this situation” mode. I’ll have to see what happens.

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