Content of the article: "My players may have burnt down The Neverwinter Forest. I need help with some consequences."
Firstly, if you’re Bedwinn, Red, Enzana, or Reggie please close this thread. LMoP spoilers below.
Secondly, I want to preface this with the fact that my party are NOT murder hobos. This was an accident and no one had the ability to extinguish the fire so they fled the scene of the arson-crime. I’m not looking for the advice on table management or how to teach my players on how this game has consequences and is not a video game etc, we’re experienced players, one of us has been playing for 20+ years. I’m looking for ideas on in-game consequences of a fire burning so close to the Neverwinter Wood.
We are playing Lost Mines of Phandelver, and my party was playing in Thundertree tonight. They were only truly interested in grabbing Mirna’s heirloom necklace and checking in with Reidoth. They weren’t enthusiastic about meeting with Venomfang or the cultists so they skirted around town to find the alchemy shop. As they were avoiding the town’s main streets my party stirred up some hiding twig blights and were outnumbered. Our bard had the idea to set the brush on fire to burn a bunch of the blights at once. It worked, but as the fight continued I explained that the foliage was dry and the fire began to spread. The party is composed of a ranger, a rogue, a bard, and a fighter so no one had the ability to extinguish the flames. They ran to Reidoth the Druid’s home quickly to alert him of the danger and got the hell out of town and hid in Phandalin for a night before trekking to Wave Echo Cave.
Reidoth was either able to extinguish the fire or not, the party doesn’t know this at this point. I was candid and told them I wasn’t going to commit to the fallout of the fire tonight, because I wasn’t sure how it would play out.
Here are some of my ideas: please give me some feedback on your favorites, alternatives, or how you’d handle the situation.
1) Reidoth was able to extinguish the fire and save the ruins of Thundertree, but is angry at the party and turns his friend Quelline Alderleaf and many of the townsfolk in Phandalin against them.
2) Reidoth was able to extinguish the fire at the cost of his own life, the cultists and Venomfang fled the area to find greener pastures. My party didn’t seem into fighting them anyway, at least not tonight. They’re split half and half between levels 3 and 4.
3) Reidoth was not able to extinguish the fire and it is now spreading along the Northern sword coast, spurring them to save the town of Phandalin somehow (???) or to quickly move onto the next campaign in Chult (ToA)
4) Reidoth was not able to extinguish the fire and everyone and everything in Thundertree is now ash, and Venomfang will be waiting for them outside of the mine to seek vengeance for destroying his tower, treasures, and cultists. (Hopefully before they’ve had a chance to rest mwahaha)
5) I don’t acknowledge it again without their prompting and it goes down in our party history as a funny bit that’s only referenced later throughout following games as The Great Fire of Neverwinter Wood. This wouldn’t be abnormal for our game’s tone. Many Smokey the Bear memes have already been shared in the group chat.
Thanks in advance!
- 5e Lost Mines of Phandelver Venomfang ideas
- LMoP: Potential TPK and DM Guilt
- A tool that I use to run my campaigns: A spreadsheet organized into a timeline grid. What I use it for: Understanding the motivations of my antagonists, thus ensuring my players can never go “off script.”
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