OSE × Behind Closed Doors

sean f. smith / he, him
3 min readFeb 5, 2024

My Monday playgroup has spent a ton of time playing a PF2E megadungeon campaign and we’re soon to start Dolmenwood. I’m running some OSE to get us back in the lower power mode.

All but our LV1 magic-user were present for the first chapter, taking the Time Record from the Perpetual Temple of the Pale Falcon for the palace-mage Xigag. They have now been tasked with doing a favour for Brutus Lichen who’s kicking about in Drinshire, so that Xigag can later call on Lichen for a favour. The ways of wizards, man.

  • III:m-u. WALDER HOGGLETHORN … ac10 9hp
  • II:elf. ZELIARD SWIFTWATER … ac17 2hp
  • III:clr. BIG-BEAR JOHNSON … ac12 13hp
  • III:dwf. NOKKIC CRAGMAIL … ac16 15hp
  • I:m-u. FROD HOGESOTH … ac10 5hp

WHAT

  • Party arrives in Drinshire: grim looking fuck of a county. Real Slough vibes
  • Big-bear holds court in the coaching inn whilst the others meet with Brutus Lichen
  • Some hobbits look suspiciously at the cleric as he makes a scene, but nothing comes of it
  • Party agrees to look into a few things for Lichen so his fellawshippe of witch-hunters can get on with witch-hunting. All the magic-users in the party clearly aren’t witches because if Xigag or his aide Evad were to be witchy types, they definitely wouldn’t go about doing favours.
  • The few things being: someone in Althuffe apparently stabbed one of the von Leitens, and there’s this castle up by the mountains who’s never been on our records
  • Party hangs out in the bar, gathering rumours. Apparently there’s a child killer in Althuffe! I mean, a killer who is a child
  • Party sets off for Althuffe the next day and late afternoon come across a beast perching behind some shrubs and eyeing up the mules; Frod recognises it as a chimera. The party set upon it first. Nokkic takes the front and centre while the mules panic and flee. Big-bear works to keep them from getting injured or lost. Zeliard and Frod attack from range. Walder blinks out of visibility.
  • The combat swings a bit here, with Nokkic and Zeliard taking some hefty hits and reaching death’s door. Big-bear loops back round, fuelling Nokkic with a wound curative spell, and the fight goes on, but then ─ Nokkic had been fending off the lion’s head, but the hoof-claws of the beast knocks aside his shield and the lion bites off the dwarf’s head
  • The rest of the party get back on the wagon and rush off away: the chimera is happy to keep on eating the dwarf

HOW

  • Death’s Door: my standard houserule to counterweigh OSE’s low hp. Once you’re out of hp, any further hit could kill you ─ each hit brings a chance of death (death saves). Both Zeliard and Nokkic hit this point and chose not to disengage. It’s very much a case of players being able to be “nope I am more than willing to actually die here” rather than just through sheer bad luck.
  • XP rewards: the chimera was reduced to single digit health and the party mostly got away reasonably, so I awarded 50%xp ((HD9*100)/2). I also gave milestone xp for signing on with Brutus’ mission and gathering a load of useful leads (APL*1000). These numbers are higher than trad OSE. Oh well

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