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Seeking advice for a Halloween 1-shot.

Seeking advice for a Halloween 1-shot.

So I recently decided it would be fun to invite my d&d friends over for a halloween potluck and 1-shot game.

I have a basic concept for the game down, but I'm still iffy of alot of the details. Please feel free to critique or advize as you feel fit.

I don't know what lvl to start at (thinking 6), but I know for a fact that its gonna be hard for them. I want several chambers culmulating in a boss fight, and I expect several players to die along the way.

Now, the fun part. I want the deceased characters to still be usefull. So when they die, I want them to become ghosts. I was thinking that every room could have traps or triggers only effectable by the ghosts.

For example, 1 room could be layed out like a tic'tac'toe grid, with the ghosts able to raise and lower wall sections within the room. All the while, another ghost is able to trigger penatrating line arrow traps allong the outter walls.

1 room could have a statue the ghosts can possess while the others knock lanterns off the walls onto foes.

Finally, I'm not quite sure what the boss will be, but for the last room, the ghosts can try to tie the BBEG down or something like that, while the living chip away at him. The more ghosts, the weaker he is, but the more living, the more damage done against him. As long as 1 player survives, the game continues.

They could also "ghost grapple" the lower opponents to hinder them in some way.

My regular real world DM does a Halloween one shot every Halloween, but one of our favorites was when he invited everyone (EVERYONE) over without giving them a set time to show up or leave. Lots of them had obligations early or middle or late in the evening, so there was a constantly changing attendance.

In the week prior to the event he made up about 40-50 standard characters, gave them a name, a couple of personal motivations, and then wrote a program that would sound an alarm at a random time interval from 1 minute to 30 minutes, and reset itself after every alarm. We called it the Death Bell.

The scenario was that our world was under magical assault from another dimension, and every time the alarm went off the two dimensions would merge in some sort of reality twisting way and everything for 5 rounds after would become wildly unpredictable, from magic to the more basic physical laws that we take for granted (gravity, the ability to breathe oxygen as opposed to stone, etc) and enemies from this other dimension, a nightmare place, would be able to take physical form. Every time someone died, everyone else could pick over their body for stuff, but eventually their corpse would rise again as some sort of alternate undead that you could never know in advance what kind of terrible things it could do.

If the alarm went off during your turn, while you were still explaining what you wanted to do, or the DM was telling you how it came out, the worst of it happened to YOU. This had the effect of ensuring that people's turns were SHORT, and no one wasn't ready to move the game forward when their turn came even when the group size was 10-15 people.

So the terror was real, you never knew what was going to happen to you, and if you died, you picked up another character, joined the party with a minute or so "Oh thank god, real people, mind if I come with?" and did your best not to be the next casualty.

Everyone had a great time, the best deaths were talked about for most of the next year, and I was sad when the next year's oneshot was a "normal" ravenloft adventure.

I would hesitate to make something ONLY manipulable by ghosts. Then the still living players would be standing around, waiting for the ghosts to do their thing. Or, if the ghosts don't know that they're the only ones who can manipulate it, the PCs will end up wasting time trying to manipulate it until they figure out that there's no way for them to do it.

Perhaps the ghosts can be used as spies, flying through walls and seeing what's on the other side so that the living PCs can plan the assault. The ghosts may be able to manifest and scare the living crap out of the bad-guys, to give the living PCs a bonus or opening to vanquish them.

Perhaps there are clues that only ghosts can see, minor items of coolness that enhance the story. I would also make the ghosts fairly invulnerable, except for a few bad guys who can surprisingly see them and attack them, making it difficult for them to spy and run through walls. That would add some tension to their part of the story and cause them to approach things with a bit more strategy.

Sounds like it could be a fun game. I'm always a fan of the PCs being in situations where death is on the table.

Well the living characters would not be aware of the ghosts. And the effectable items will not be crucial, only helpfull.

I figured a lingering aura would let the ghosts know its effectable.

And finally, the ghosts WILL be invulnerable untill the final fight, were I'm thinking I might add another undead foe to hinder them a bit. Restraining the BBEG will make them sitting ducks to that ghost foe.

I'm thinking, each restraint on the BBEG will lower his Str and Dex by 2. Now I just need to find a big bad feral high str/dex monster that is good against a lvl 6 party.

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