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Old 05-28-2021, 10:31 PM   #1
Tymathee's Avatar
Join Date: May 2021
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Default [DF] A Portal Fantasy within a Dungeon Fantasy: Where's Alice?

Somewhere along the timeline within the DnD setting of Greyhawk, young Alice ventured from that land into a portal that led her to an alternate plane of existence, an alternate version of Lewis Carroll’s Wonderland known within the Greyhawk setting as “Dungeonland”. Just like in the original stories of Wonderland this alternate reality version of Alice had her own adventures in Dungeonland. The two modules, Dungeonland and The Land Beyond the Magic Mirror, appear to take place sometime after Alice’s own adventures; she never makes an appearance within the modules and is only mentioned in the text read by the GM to inform them of the premise of the modules. Anyone who has read these modules would also know that they are… well, deadly. The Wonderland of Lewis Carroll’s imagination was never a very nice place to begin with, but Gary Gygax’s interpretation of it for the dungeon fantasy genre just turns all the dials all the way up. Which begs the question: how on earth did Alice survive through the perilous encounters she experienced in Dungeonland? I naturally concluded that just like Wonderland was dungeon-fantasified into Dungeonland, so to was Alice.

I figured I might make her an NPC within my future campaign and adapt Gygax’s Dungeonland and The Land Beyond the Magic Mirror modules to have her included. Say, the PCs are wrangled into tracking down a noble’s runaway daughter (Alice!) and must bring her back. Now hot in pursuit of her, the PCs track her into the nearby dense woodland. They are right on her heels as she suddenly plummets down what appears to be a bottomless pit! They peer down only to see her floating down into the darkness and out of sight… what follows is the PCs always being one step behind as they track her through Dungeonland. They serendipitously catch up just in time for her trial at the palace after the prince has planted the tarts on Alice and the queen screams “Off with her head!”. Alice witnesses the prince snatch up the tarts off a nearby table and runoff during the ensuing chaos, as do the PCs. This is no doubt a good time to mention that there’s the possibility of a TPK that could occur here as the Dungeonlandians present and the royal guards will be all over… Alice, up till that point surviving on her own is likely at least a 250 point character. If things work out like I would hope the PCs are just short of that (it’s looking like these modules will be taking place just before the finale of my campaign, Tomb of Horrors).

So… what does Alice’s character sheet look like? I am thinking she could be built with the Swashbuckler template (so she can later wield the Vorpal Blade… with style!), with the Swashbuckler-Wizard Lense. Or she could possibly be built off-template using the advise in DF’s Adventurers? I’m open to any suggestions. She might not make the final cut for when I run the modules as I otherwise want it to be faithful to the material Gygax wrote, but I'd like to entertain the idea anyways.
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