Last night I had a couple friends over, they ran 2 characters each, and the understrength party took on the challenges of Devilmount.
After being sealed for 200 years, the doors to Devilmount just… drifted open. The government is worried. They posted soldiers “on maneuvers” to cover the entrance, and scooped up some local riff raff who is expendable to map the thing for them so when they get some real adventurers they can focus their efforts.
The party was a fighter, a martial artist, a gray man, and a wizard. They headed down, cautiously poked around, and mapped quite a bit. They clashed with a few blackened skeletons, defeated a pack of big rats, and dispatched a number of hog men. They mapped, a new activity for one of the players, but he was delighted when his map matched what I portrayed on the white board.
They got out while they could, and decided after a rest and some healing to focus on one quadrant, guessing the level was divided into quarters. This time they got some more exploring done, but they got cocky when they faced off with more hogmen–especially when even more reinforced them during the fight.
They tried to run, but when not everyone could get away they stuck it out to save their friends–until three of them fell and the fighter was the only one to make it out.
Last night was the first live test of my new Crumbling Epoch system. I like how it went. One of my players would try it again, the other prefers systems with more options for building and growing characters than what the simplicity of Crumbling Epoch offers.
I think it would go better with a stronger party. Ironically, as a corner game at my game table it is unlikely to GET a big group going in. I will likely need to continue testing it on my own. Still, a great test and experience.
One player said it reintroduced fear of monsters in dungeons, something that fades when you have tough characters from level one. So that’s something! =)