Haunted Memories is a Dungeons and Dragons horror campaign run by Eno Remnant.
Conquering heroes. Battle evil. Save the damsel. Slay dragons. Unlock the secrets of the gods. Wealth beyond measure.
You are a party of adventurers from a humble town in a quiet part of the kingdom. Throughout your five-year career you’ve been met with middling success and average reward. This in mind, you’ve garnered far more wealth and glory than you would have if you’d taken that job as a pumpkin farmer at home.
However, the years have left you weary of cold nights in muddy ditches, musty old tombs and slime. You’re homesick, to make a long story short. So you’ve packed up and headed for home: Amityvale, one of the cheeriest little places the gods’ good earth has ever known.
Or so it was. Now, darkness has moved in, latching at your birthplace and sinking its tendrils deep. Not all is as it appears, and nobody is safe.
Isn’t it fortunate you’re all a bunch of seasoned adventurers who’re used to fighting evil on a regular basis? And of course, there’s that exorcist you picked up to replace poor Andrew as the party healer.
So go on, kid. Go play hero again, protect the ones you love and destroy some wicked forces.
If you can.
Haunted Memories is a first for us—a few firsts, actually. First and foremost, it’s a horror genre campaign. Which means I, as the DM, will be doing my best to make you guys feel… well, malaise, to put it broadly. You will often enter situations where your understanding of Dungeons and Dragons won’t even be applicable, as I may invent new enemies, change the ones you’re familiar with, or sometimes not even show you the enemy; no token, no metaknowledge, eh?
Second, I’m introducing some new systems. The first is taint, which I have adapted from Heroes of Horror to suit my needs. What does this mean? It means that even the slightest contact with evil may leave you permanently disfigured, either mentally or physically. And if you can’t find a cure, you may very easily go from damaged to completely broken, either dead and Raised as an undead horror, or driven to insanity as a gibbering monster. Both of these rather quite nasty ends result in your character becoming an NPC, not a desirable fate. In addition, for every level of taint you accrue from the two forms—corruption which affects your body, depravity which affects your mind—you are inflicted with a disfigurement of some kind. Additionally, you gain a bonus Taint feat at moderate and severe taint levels. So if you’re interested in gaining Taint feats, you can go right ahead. But there comes a point when taint is incurable. I hope your soul is worth it for a couple of feats.
Third is that I’m taking some control out of your hands. This is because I want the campaign to flow naturally, and be more about the roleplaying than the mechanics. You guys will still roll attack and damage and basically anything you do in combat. However, outside of combat, I’ll be rolling skill checks, relevant saves (like reflex for traps, etc.) and the like. While it may irk you to lose that sense of control, that’s kind of the point of the campaign. Also, it means I’ll be rolling checks you might not even have thought to make, which could end up saving your life.
Fourth: No shops. You’re in a small town that only has a general store and the most basic blacksmith, so you’ve not got a lot of options for spending loot. This is why you get 1.5x starting gold. Though it’s not like you can’t get better equipment throughout the course of the campaign—you simply have to take it, whether from the bodies of your enemies, or… somewhere else.
Fifth is a lot of rules-bending. Like I mentioned earlier, I will be tinkering with a lot of the enemies you’ll be facing, either to make them more dangerous, or simply make them do unexpected things. There may even be situations in which the rules you’re used to playing by will change without warning. You’ll need to be flexible to handle these changes.
Sixth, consequences. You’re not likely to find someone who can use Resurrect. On the off chance one of you does die and the others figure out how to Raise you, I wouldn’t look forward to it. In this campaign, Resurrect and spells of its ilk are affected by a malevolent aura in the region, and as such have only a 50% chance of working. And even when they do work, you have a random chance of losing something more than experience: maybe a limb, maybe memories, maybe even part of your soul.
Seventh, I will throw you in the deep end a lot. There’ll be situations you aren’t prepared for, aren’t expecting, even far outside your recommended CR. A lot of times, there will be a solution to the problem, but sometimes there won’t be, and the best option is to run. Just putting it out there.
Eighth. This campaign is going to be a lot more freeform than our usual campaigns. There’s a long way to do this, and a short way to do this, as well as bonus events that are not necessarily conducive to completing the campaign but may reward you with an item or with backstory or just with cold, hard XP.
Lastly of note is that there’ll be some gameplay that we’re not accustomed to playing. At times, when I feel the situation would benefit from a lack of the detail provided by Roll 20, I’ll fall back to the traditional tabletop D&D. After all, what’s scarier? Being faced by a dragon, or some unnamed horror you can’t see, in a room you can’t see, under conditions that aren’t visibly apparent?
1.5x starting gold
Cannot take the Pure Soul feat
All immunities are replaced with a +4 bonus to save against what the immunity originally covered. Exceptions in cases where it’s infeasible to remove the immunity, such as immunity to gaze attacks granted by being blind, or the immunity of undead to Fortitude saves.
Fairly straightforward. Whenever you get too close to the corrupting power of evil, you’ll be forced to make a save (some powerful evils won’t even give you that). Fortitude saves are made against corruption, and Will saves are made against depravity. If you fail to make the save, you accrue taint. There are different levels of taint (from mild through to severe), and each adds a new disfigurement and a new feat (Taint feats can be found in the Taint feat category on DnD Tools) (and no, you cannot gain mild taint, cure it and then repeat. Taint feats require a minimum amount of taint to function, and start at moderate). What makes this whole system mechanically uncertain for you guys is that it varies from player to player. Everyone has a decent chance of failing their saves, and each player has a different upper limit on each level of taint, based on their abilities.
If you allow your taint to pass the severe range, you either go irreparably insane or die. No save, and it’s not a death effect. You will be warned each time your level increases, but I won’t be telling you which level of taint that is, or even how many levels of taint there are. I’d appreciate it if you didn’t look it up yourselves, because it adds to the serious nature of taint.
Yep, possession. At any time, an Outsider might decide he wants to take over your body (you get a Will save, but won't know about it). Of course, it would seem rude to just take your character out for a spin. As such, I will be informing you via PM when you have been possessed, and allow you to play your character straight until the possessing Outsider decides to show its hand, and even then I’ll probably still let you play as the Outsider. Which of course gives you a chance to play the bad guy. And I know you’ll enjoy that.
In this campaign, we will be adopting Rich Burlew's homerules on Diplomacy to prevent Magery from abusing his powers (half-joking).
The homerules can be found at this link: http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showsinglepost.php?p=9606632&postcount=2
Heroes of Horror makes it very clear that, due to the nature of a horror campaign, there needs to be certain agreements between the DM and the players. As such, I will be doing so.
1. As players, you need to trust me. I’m not an opponent trying my utmost to kill you, I’m not going to DM Fiat anything just to make things difficult for you. In that same vein, I’m trusting you to avoid breaking my campaign, be it through over-optimised characters or exploiting loopholes in my rules or some other form of abuse.
2. While I may not be your enemy, I am going to push you. Whole point of the campaign is to make you feel pushed and desperate, and you may even find that all your hard work was for nothing in the end. If you’re going to ragequit when I unravel all your efforts or when I do something that seems to merely be an attempt to spite you, you shouldn’t play. Conversely, I will do my best to not push too far, and refrain from abusing my power.
3. If you have a problem with something in the campaign, for whatever reason, tell me. If I can’t fix that problem for whatever reason, there’s nothing stopping you from leaving the campaign. As such, I’ve tried to describe, without giving away too much, the things that can go wrong or stymy you.
4. I ask that all players take these agreements in the spirit of which they were written, not based upon personal interpretations contrary to the intent behind each agreement.
This is unfamiliar ground for all of us, but with any luck that’ll just make it even more fun. I’ve put a lot of work in on my end to make this as good as it can possibly be. I look forward to seeing you guys enjoy all the trouble I went to.