Living Forgotten Realms – third time’s a charm

Last night I returned to Enchanted Grounds (my friendly local game store) for a third session of Living Forgotten Realms (LFR).  This was the first session I’ve played with my half-elf Paladin, Rhogar, at second level.  Before heading off to the store to play, I leveled Rhogar up in the Character Builder.  Going to second level meant that I got to choose a utility power and a feat.  For my feat I took Versatile Expertise – Heavy Blades (he wields a longsword) and Holy Symbols (since he could use one of those, potentially).  In the process I discovered a bug in the Character Builder.  Apparently if you are a half-elf, your dilettante power (in my case a Cleric power) doesn’t appropriately include the holy symbol, whether for expertise or for a magic holy symbol.  I tried equipping it in every available place, and it made no difference.  Oh well, so I have to manually modify one power card.  I’ll live.

The adventure last night was actually kind of dull.  The party makeup was two dwarven Clerics, two Fighters and my Paladin (who has a healing bent).  So no strikers and no controllers.  Hm.  Fortunately the Fighters were built for dishing out damage.

Our party was hired by an innkeeper (I’m noticing a pattern here…) to escort him to the home of a minor noble to return a ring that had been found in a fish that the innkeeper had served to a customer.  We ran into a cart driver being ambushed by a gang of halflings, an elf and a gnome, so we helped the driver out.  It was a little annoying to try to chase down so many halfling minions without a controller – some of them got away with the cart driver’s goods, so we didn’t get a real reward from him.

The minor noble was happy to get his ring and told us that it had belonged to his parents who had died in a shipwreck.  Their bodies had washed ashore but the ring hadn’t.  He wanted to speak with his parents’ ghosts, but he needed some wood from the wrecked ship.  Off to the wharves we went to hire a boat to take us out to the wreck.  Getting the wood was easy, and we returned to the noble to escort him to the graveyard for the ritual.

On the way to the graveyard our party was attacked – and I never did get the story reason for the attack, frankly.  The battle was interesting in that it involved a tiefling spellcaster who teleported all over the place, two dwarves in heavy armor, a human brute of some sort and a bunch of elven archers on the surrounding roofs.  My Paladin spent pretty much the whole battle trading shots at one of the dwarves, who apparently had an armor class of 25!  Man, was he hard to hit.  We eventually killed off the rest of the bad guys, and it was assumed that we would eventually finish off the dwarf.

With that, the noble performed his ritual and we were done.  I’m not quite sure why, but I just found this session to be pretty unsatisfying.  My character did get to do some interesting things in combat, and a little bit of role playing too, but it just didn’t “pop” for me.  The DM was only so-so.  Maybe the fact that we had only defenders and leaders in the party was a drag.  Maybe I just wasn’t in top D&D form.

I did get a better understanding of some of the LFR rules.  First, I learned that gold that people give you along the way (“The noble offers you 30 gp if you will escort him to the graveyard…”) is irrelevant.  At the end of the session you get 100 gp, period. (I assume this would be higher for higher-level adventures, of course.)  If you decide to take one of the magic items that were found during the session, fine, but you can only accumulate one per level (I currently have my two already).  If you don’t take a magic item, you can have an extra 75 gp.  Also, you can only use magic items of up to your level +4, so the two seventh-level items Rhogar has must stay in his backpack until he gets to level 3.

This does bring up a question: Since Rhogar has over 360 gp now, he could buy a first-level magic item, such as +1 Magic Plate Mail Armor.  Alternatively, if he waits a session he’ll have enough money to buy a second-level magic item.  I’m leaning toward waiting – what do you think?  Should I keep saving up indefinitely and finally splurge on a high-level item someday?

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