Let's Talk About the Fable


Kingmaker


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Spoilers for Sound of a Thousand Screams, of course.

While prepping the last half of book 6 for my campaign, I was struck at how odd the setup of the Fable was.

It has 4 levels, with each level being reachable through a different gateway placed somewhere in the House. The first two layers are normally infinite spaces, but if the realm is uprooted, they become 20′ wide circular rooms. The other two layers are always 20′ wide circular rooms, which is an insultingly-sized area to fight an epic battle in. There doesn’t seem to be any method to move between the levels, though presumably Nyrissa can do so at will. Or does she have to exit the Fable and re-enter from a different portal? The adventure doesn’t say, or not that I can find.

The levels of the Fable are all pretty boring. There’s a pleasant field, an infinitely tall tree whose branches the PCs could fall from if they weren’t capable of flight for some bizarre reason, a room with a statue of Nyrissa and a scrying pool, and another room that’s her bedchamber. It’s not really clear what the purpose of the separate levels is in the published setting – Nyrissa is said to avoid the PCs, so they will have to hop in and out of the different areas of the Fable, as there’s apparently no way to progress through them, until they find the one that she is in. And the levels that are empty of Nyrissa are also empty of obstacles.

When Nyrissa is encountered – probably on the third level, from which she can scry upon anyone in the House – there’s not enough room to have a proper battle. She’s has druid spells and could theoretically summon gigantic allies – but there’s not enough space for that. She can fly – but the ceiling is 20′ high. She has area of effect spells – but she will be caught in their area along with the PCs. All in all, I find the whole design of this area very puzzling. What is the point of the different areas if the players are just going to pop into them, see there’s nothing there, and then leave? Why such a small area for the final confrontation?

I ended up making a bunch of changes for my game so that it would make sense to me (see the above link) but I’d be curious to hear how this played out for other groups, or how DMs changed around the Fable for their own campaigns.


I'm still far away from Book 6, but the setup immediately struck me as odd every time I went through the AP. It's just... uninspired. And I couldn't work out the sense behind it, either.

While I haven't made any concrete plans for the final battle yet, I'm envisioning the different levels of the Fable more as different "mini-realms" with a lot more space, than actual rooms in a house.


Canarr wrote:

I'm still far away from Book 6, but the setup immediately struck me as odd every time I went through the AP. It's just... uninspired. And I couldn't work out the sense behind it, either.

While I haven't made any concrete plans for the final battle yet, I'm envisioning the different levels of the Fable more as different "mini-realms" with a lot more space, than actual rooms in a house.

Agree with both of you. For me, I think I will likely use the different levels as stages of the Boss fight. Defeating N in one level merely forces her to abandon it, until there's nothing left to go to. Each stage she will have different abilities/allies so as not to be completely repetitive. I'm only just starting Book 4 now (after a detour through Courts of the Shadowfey) so I have time, but that's how I plan to do it. Also, yeah, a 20 foot room for a boss fight, even a phase of one, ain't gonna cut it.

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