The dreaded Giant Ants, and my first campaign.

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The dreaded Giant Ants, and my first campaign.

Post by Skywatcher on Tue Sep 09, 2008 1:32 pm

OK, I told Jay I would post about my first campaign and how I gained an entirely undeserved reputation as the "killer DM".

It was a long time ago. We had just started playing, even learning, the game. AD&D was new and fresh, we were still awaiting the DM Guide, but we had the Players Handbook and the Monster Manual. We had bought the "Dungeon Masters Screen" because it had all the saving throw and to hit progression tables on it, and so we started our first campaign. I was DM because I had actually played the game a few times in Ft. Riley Kansas and at least knew a little bit.

Back then, AC went down as you got better armor, and THAC0 was the big number, the number required to hit an Armor Class of zero (hmm, zero would have been Plate +1, Shield +1, No other adjustments if I remember right).

Anyway, the characters went on the big quest, killed the mini-boss, looted the treasure, and were on their way back to town when I rolled for a encounter. They hit the jackpot and GOT an encounter. Now remember, these characters (3 players, 6 characters) were all between 4 and 6 level). They had just killed the small dragon (easily, I was still learning and didn't use all the abilities well, and should have used one higher age in dragonhood) who had been terrorizing the village, and were feeling pretty cocky.

Well, I was new, so when the encounter table listed rolled out 5 Giant Ants I popped em out on the table and said roll for iniative. (Pretty sure we had to use dice for miniatures, as giant ants was not something we had bought and painted up.). Nobody panicked, they had after all just killed a dragon, what were a few lousy ants going to do?

Well. Well Well Well. Remember, these guys were still very low level and still gearing up. AC ran from 2 to 8 or so. And THAC0 ran from 15 to 20 or so.

Giant Ants were AC3, 2-3 HD monster (which meant they had both better AC and better rolls,with the same HPs as the PCs, and there were FIVE of them. The other thing to remember is that back then, movement was in inches. PC in clothes or leather 12 inches, banded or chain 9 inches, plate 6 inches). Giant Ants of course were 12 inches. They got slaughtered. To a man. I mean, when the two fighters went down, it was just a matter of time, they couldnt kill them, they couldnt out run them, and I was not experienced enough to let them out alive.

Anyway, ever since then, I had this entirely undeserved reputation as the killer DM. It was only the one time I killed everyone. And the occasional death is to be expected right? If there is no danger, then it would be boring, right? Right?
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Re: The dreaded Giant Ants, and my first campaign.

Post by RayvenNightkind on Tue Sep 09, 2008 3:11 pm

Gotta love the "evil" DM's doncha?
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Re: The dreaded Giant Ants, and my first campaign.

Post by Eric of Atrophy on Tue Sep 09, 2008 4:23 pm

Absolutely, RayvenNightkind, absolutely! Evil or Very Mad

Wow ... hey, skywatcher, don't forget that The Amethyst Dragon is still looking for killer ... i mean assistant DMs ... sorry, did i say that out loud? Embarassed

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