AvocaD&D and Tabletop Gaming Thread: The Sunless Citadel, Session 5

Welcome back to the weekly D&D and Tabletop Gaming thread!  Here’s a place where we can talk about Dungeons & Dragons or any other tabletop games that you nerds might be into.  Tell us about the games you’re playing, speculate about future expansions, recruit your fellow Avocados into new groups, whatever you want.

This time, we’ll take a closer look at the Wild Magic Sorcerer.  A sorcerer with this origin is born with a chaotic power that they can’t fully control.  wildmageWhen they attempt to use their power, there’s a chance that magic will burst forth in unexpected ways.

At first level, whenever you cast a spell (except for cantrips), the DM can have you roll a d20–on a 1 you experience a Wild Magic Surge, and a random magical effect takes place.  These surges can be harmless (like turning your skin blue), beneficial (restoring some hit points or increasing your AC), or potentially devastating (a fireball centered on yourself).  You can also use your Wild Magic to manipulate the laws of chance, using Tides of Chaos.  You can give yourself advantage on any d20 roll once a day.  However, this comes at a cost–after using this feature, the next time you cast a spell, the DM can skip the d20 roll for Wild Magic Surge and just have you automatically experience the surge, with the added bonus of refreshing the Tides of Chaos ability so you can use it again.

At 6th level, you can use your wild magic to affect other creatures’ rolls, using the Bend Luck ability.  You use your reaction and some of your sorcery points to add or substract 1d4 from another creature’s attack roll, ability check, or saving throw.  You can make sure the party Rogue’s sneak attack connects or that the menacing bugbear takes the full brunt of your Fireball.

By the time you make it 14th level, you’l have learned how to control those Wild Magic Surges, at least a little.  Controlled Chaos lets you roll twice on the table whenever a surge happens and choose which of those two results you like better, drastically reducing your chance of blowing yourself up or turning into a potted plant.

Finally, at 18th level, Spell Bombardment increases the damage output of your spells.  If you roll the highest number possible in any damage dice, you can roll 1 extra die of the same size and add that result to the overall damage.

If you like random effects or being at the whim of the dice gods, then this is the Sorcerer you want to play.  However, some folks might take issue with the fact that the Wild Magic Surge rolls happen at the DM’s discretion, so whether you get those effects can depend on the DM.  If I was playing a Wild Sorcerer, I’d be pushing my DM to let me roll with every spell and using Tides of Chaos as much as possible.  Also, the capstone ability is sort of underwhelming as well–adding a single d6 to a high-level Fireball isn’t going to make that much difference in the damage output.  I feel like it’d be better if you could reroll every die that landed on the highest value instead of just one–I feel like that would retain the randomness of it while potentially making that Fireball insanely powerful.

I’m currently running the group through The Sunless Citadel adventure, from Tales from the Yawning Portal.


My players are:

  • Seraphina Lathander, an Aasimar Cleric (The Wasp)
  • Oona Maku, a Half-Elf Ranger (Wafflicious)
  • Gash the Furious, a Half-Orc Barbarian (Otto)
  • Slowclap, a Kenku Monk (Josephus Brown)
  • Finfizzy Tanglethump, a Gnome Warlock (The Hayes Code)

Credit for the recap of the finale goes to Hayes, writing as Fin.

[spoiler title=”The Sunless Citadel”]

Another night in this dank hole. At least the beds were the right size (now that we’ve dispatched their goblin owners), but they were also absolutely disgusting. Why can’t we ever kill anyone with decent bedding?

In the morning, we explored further into this lower floor, discovering more rooms filled with makeshift farms, the plants in them grown by the light of bioluminescent fungi. Then we opened a door into the fungal motherlode, a disgusting mushroom-hole oozing with spores, twig blights, and goblins. bugbearThe bugbear leading them demanded we accompany her to Belak, the man in charge. I provided a counteroffer: she could leave right now and we wouldn’t kill her like we did the goblins upstairs.

She turned the offer down. Pity.

Serafina and Gash did what they do best and stood in the door so the goblins couldn’t rush those of us with a more cerebral bent. Unfortunately, while they held the blights back, the goblins unleashed a volley of arrows, and one of them got me in the shoulder. Me! With an arrow literally piercing my flesh! How dare they!

Well, I lost my composure just a bit and blasted the room with a wave of shattering sound before regaining enough sense to duck into an alcove. Irkey joined me and healed my mortal wound before I could perish. I’m lucky he was here. I managed to duck out long enough to get another good blast of eldritch energy right in the bugbear’s face.

It was a little hard to make out what was going on in the room, but I saw flames silhouetting the doorway scrum; I found out later that Serafina had summoned up a sphere of fire, and was rolling it over the goblins and their crops and everything else in the room. Very effective. I wonder if I can learn that one? Oona, meanwhile, finished off the bugbear with an arrow in the face. That’s what you get for not listening when I make an offer!

Most of the goblins ran as soon as the boss wasn’t watching. The last one, cornered, threw down his weapons and told us right where to find Belak.

Following his directions, we reached another room, this one with a statue of a red dragon and a circle with runes in Draconic – ‘let the sorcerous power illuminate my spirit.’

Well, I’m not sorcerer, and I don’t have any light spells, so I tried hitting the thing with an eldritch blast—apparently the wrong answer, because we found ourselves fighting a living shadow. Hmph. It certainly wasn’t my fault, that’s all I can say—these signs out to be clearer! Serafina chased it away with a blast of holy fire.

BelakWe continued down a long hallway. The goblin from before hid at the end of it, afraid to go any further, but we managed to talk him into accompanying us…for all the good it did. As soon as we took our eyes off of him, he bolted.

Finally we came to an underground cavern filled with trees and briars, which is always a good sign you’re getting close to a druid with too much time on his hands. At the south end was a twisted, blackened tree, and under it was Belak himself. He ranted a little about his experiments in the field of raising arboreal abominations and how no one understood (I could sympathize a bit, here) and then he went and sicced the hostages on us.

sharwynThe shopkeeper’s girl—I forget her name1—and the knight looked a little worse for wear. All gray, with black eyes. Ugh. I’m glad the Mother of Frogs didn’t do anything to my original fetching features.

Speaking of frogs, there was a giant one in that tree. I had a moment of hope that my patron had sent down a champion to help me with the smiting, but I realized that wasn’t the case about the time it started trying to eat me. Meanwhile, Belak summoned up a carpet of entangling vines, the twig blights tried to twig us to death, and BrafordSir Bronwyn2 attempted to bash Gash’s brains in. (Good luck finding them.)

Serafina brought out her trusty sphere of fire – the first time I got a good look at it – and the druid countered with one of his one, which I soon found myself getting entirely TOO good a look at. Fire behind me and a frog in front. I cast the Armor of Agathys. Eat me, you overgrown slimeball, and I’ll freeze you from the inside out.

Gash outbashed Bronwyn, while Slowclap eventually finished off the druid, and the girl came back to her senses. I suppose Bronwyn would have, too, if that orc hadn’t pounded him to putty. At least we brought one of them back unharmed, and we even picked up a healthy reward for those signet rings. Looks like the girl’s tied permanently to the tree now, though. If it dies, she dies. Hope she likes apples…