Character Count For Adventures

There are over 50 DCC Adventures in print, including the main line (DCC #66.5 and up), the Holiday adventures, the Free RPG Day adventures, the new Horror line, and more! Suss them all out here!

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Jeff White
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Character Count For Adventures

Post by Jeff White »

So, my group is having some fun with this game. It's really brought me back to rpgs in a back way, so thanks!

However, we're finding that a lot of these modules are for a much higher number of characters than our table seats. It's a surprise to order a module to find out that it's for 8-10 characters when we only have 4 players in the group...

The Adventure Finder has been a great resource to help us determine which adventures to buy, but would it be possible to maybe also include the suggested character count on this page? It would go a long way for us when determining if a module is appropriate for our group.

I suppose we could all double or triple up characters, or have the GM nerf the encounters, but part of the allure of buying a pre-canned adventure is having to do little work on our end.

Anyway, this is a small thing, and the only knock we have with the line.

Great stuff here guys! Looking forward to more adventures!
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DM Cojo
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Re: Character Count For Adventures

Post by DM Cojo »

My group is usually 4-5 players. We have found that everyone playing 2 characters works pretty well. They are used to it, since you run 4 characters in a funnel adventure anyway.
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Rick
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Re: Character Count For Adventures

Post by Rick »

I have (a) all these adventures, & (b) some time on my hands today, so:

DCC#66.5 Doom of the Savage Kings: 6-12 1st level characters (also can be attempted by zeroes, but players should anticipate grim, lethal game & Judges should provide opportunities to introduce new zeroes as needed. PCs that survive key areas should advance to level 1).
DCC#67 Sailors of the Starless Sea: 10-15 zero level characters; each player playing 3 characters (also can be enjoyed by a party of 1st-2nd level characters aided by hirelings).
DCC#68 People of the Pit: 8-10 level 1 characters - all classes required for success.
DCC#69 The Emerald Enchanter: 8-10 2nd level characters.
DCC#70 Jewels of the Carnifex: 6-10 3rd level characters aided by stout-hearted hirelings (also can be attempted by a smaller party of 4th-5th level characters & will prove no less challenging. Requires a balanced mix of warriors, wizards, thieves, & clerics).
DCC#71 The 13th Skull: Short adventure for a party of level 4 characters; requires a mix of character types, a thief, cleric, wizard, & multiple warriors are essential to success. Playtests used parties of 6 4th level characters w/ 4 retainers; mortality rates varied.
Bonus Adventure - The Balance Blade: Short adventure for a party of 2nd level characters. Wizard w/ a Patron absolutely required. Also requires party of mixed alignments.
DCC#72 Beyond the Black Gate: 6-10 5th level characters (also can be attempted by a smaller party of 6th-7th level characters & will prove no less challenging).
DCC#73 Emirikol was Framed!: 6 4th level characters.
DCC#74 Blades against Death: 6-10 4th level characters aided by stout-hearted hirelings (also can be attempted by a smaller party of 5th level characters & will prove no less challenging).
DCC#75 The Sea Queen Escapes!: 6 3rd level characters. Helpful for the party to have access to an ocean-going ship.
DCC#76 Colossus, Arise!: 8th level characters (My (Rick) personal playtest had thirteen players plus various men-at-arms, exotic mounts, & intelligent weapons - not recommended!)
DCC#76.5 Well of the Worm: 4-6 1st level characters - parties lacking clerics or strong warriors in their place will be at a disadvantage.
DCC#77 The Croaking Fane: 6-8 3rd level characters.
DCC#77.5 The Tower Out of Time: 6 2nd level PCs.
DCC#78 Fate's Fell Hand: 4-8 2nd level characters aided by stout-hearted hirelings. Any classes but "wizards & their kith" will likely benefit most from the adventure's rewards.
DCC#79 Frozen in Time: 6 1st level characters (can also be run as a zero level funnel).
DCC#79.5 Tower of the Black Pearl: 4-6 1st level characters. Well rounded parties recommended, thieves in particular "will find their talents in high demand".
DCC#80 Intrigue at the Court of Chaos: 6 1st level characters.
DCC#80.5 Glipkerio's Gambit: Party of 2nd level characters including one or more w/ a Patron. Party would be "well served by climbing gear & a retainer or two".
DCC#81 The One Who Watches from Below: 6-8 level 1 characters. "To even have the faintest chance of survival, the adventuring party must consist of a well-rounded team learned in the arts of warfare, thievery, wizardry, & holy might. Otherwise they are certain to meet their doom."
DCC#82 Bride of the Black Manse: 4-8 3rd level characters. Running it w/ higher level characters requires little work, not so much w/ lower levels. Parties should include at least one thief & one cleric.
DCC#82.5 Dragora's Dungeon: 5 1st level PCs - Caution: Not recommended for 1st time Judges or players.
DCC#83 The Chained Coffin: 6 5th level characters, at least some possessing enchanted weapons.
Bonus Adventure - The Rat King's River of Death: 1st level characters.
DCC#83A Sour Spring Hollow: 6 players running 3-4 zeroes each.
DCC#83B The Woeful Caves Under Yander Mountain: 4-6 3rd level PCs.
DCC#84 Peril on the Purple Planet: 4th level PCs (The playtest I ran had 9 PCs, I'd ideally trim that down to more like 7)
FREE RPG DAY 2012 The Undulating Corruption: 4 5th level characters w/ at least one being a wizard suffering from corruption. The Jeweler That Dealt in Stardust: Level 3 PCs, can be played by a party entirely composed of thieves, but "if things go awry - as they should, in any good heist - the respective skills of the wizard, warrior, & cleric will be in high demand."
FREE RPG DAY 2013 The Imperishable Sorceress: 1st level PCs
FREE RPG DAY 2014 Elzemon & The Blood-Drinking Box: 7-9 1st level PCs. At least one cleric & one Lawful PC recommended. Mix of alignments a plus.
2013 HOLIDAY MODULE The Old Gods Return: 6 1st level PCs.
2014 HOLIDAY MODULE Trials of the Toy Makers: 6-8 2nd level PCs. Helpful to have a cleric & a wizard.
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beermotor
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Re: Character Count For Adventures

Post by beermotor »

10 PCs = not much challenge from any module. I vastly prefer one character per player. I even made them play with one zero level in the funnel, although I did use my rules hack for the 0 hit points / wounds thing, so none of them died (one was permanently wounded). Part of that was they were supposed to flee, and they caught on to that pretty quickly and worked together (mostly) to accomplish the goal.

If you've got 8-10 PCs I would imagine that you could pretty much plow through every module without much problem, unless the DM was factoring in more/bigger HD or #s of monsters, adding some Grimtooth traps, etc. I played several GG modules with my group and when I was letting them run multiple characters they tended to just overwhelm the modules as written. When I pared it down to one per player, it was a bit more balanced.
Jeff White
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Re: Character Count For Adventures

Post by Jeff White »

Rick, thanks for putting that list together. Perfect!

I do have a question an these high player counts.

So, we've run a funnel and starting with about 10-12 characters we ended up with 3-4. If we have to generate some other first (or second, or third) level characters (to have enough to play a high player count adventure)...what was the point of the funnel?

I mean if we have to roll up more characters after playing the funnel to have enough to play a scenario...why funnel?

I thought the idea of the funnel was to throw about 10 or so characters into the meat grinder then whoever survives becomes the PC's adventuring party (1:1).
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Re: Character Count For Adventures

Post by Stonedog »

I have my two kiddos run 4 PCs each. Usually they have 3-5 survive...but they have learned to play VERY smart!
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GnomeBoy
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Re: Character Count For Adventures

Post by GnomeBoy »

I thought the higher counts were to be filled in with hirelings and henchmen and hangers-on...

You've got your four players and their one-character-each -- now hit page 310 and fill out the ranks!
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beermotor
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Re: Character Count For Adventures

Post by beermotor »

GnomeBoy wrote:I thought the higher counts were to be filled in with hirelings and henchmen and hangers-on...

You've got your four players and their one-character-each -- now hit page 310 and fill out the ranks!
Yep. This is the way the original game was meant to be played. I think the mistake is allowing hirelings and henchmen to have classes / gain XP / level up. I think that was done in every game I've ever played in (not run), and it just ends up as having too many PCs, in my opinion. I think a better option is to MAYBE allow minor hitpoint or attack bonus gains for hirelings/henchmen that have survived for a good long while, or done something extraordinary. But that's about it, I think.
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GnomeBoy
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Re: Character Count For Adventures

Post by GnomeBoy »

beermotor wrote:...I think the mistake is allowing hirelings and henchmen to have classes / gain XP / level up...
Spitballing here; What if they get 1d6 "Bonus" points for surviving an adventure? Usable like Luck, but only for themselves. That way they get more of a chance to survive, by spending them on a Save or pushing up an attack roll, but it's not leveling them up. Maybe they can even use them to "push" up their Ac against an attack that would kill them...? Maybe the die goes up, based on the average Level of the party?

1 : 1d6
2 : 1d7
3 : 1d8
4 : 1d10
5 : 1d12
6 : 1d14
7 : 1d16
8 : 1d20
9 : 1d24
10 : 1d30

?
...
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King of Elfland
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Re: Character Count For Adventures

Post by King of Elfland »

What we do is have a larger pool of potential characters as an adventuring company or whatever, but then the DM (me) finds a way to determine how many might be needed for a given adventure and the players choose who will go, roleplaying that. There are often a hireling or two as well. And in true old school fashion, rescued NPCs often become PCs in the course of events. The coolest such incident in our Labyrinth Lord game involved a Clockwork paladin the party rescued from stasis in a wizard's tower. A few adventures later he was turned to stone my a medusa. The enterprising players pushed the statue into a portable hole, took him back to the town, paid big coin to a wizard and had him restored to his original fleshly state, the clockwork arrangement having been the result of a curse centuries before....
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