I usually have a policy about never telling gaming stories but there is one that seems to be fairly popular in my circle of friends and Sam asked me to very nicely, so here goes. This was in my first year of university, and was the session of a new campaign with my new gaming group. We rolled our characters, went through some pre-amble to get the plot hook and then jumped into action to save the day.
Then everything went wrong. Terribly wrong.
Every character managed to fail spectacularly with each failure compounding later failures. The one thing all these failures had in common: a Game Master with an intense love of house-ruled critical fumbles and terrible die rolling from the players. It started with a failed spot check, this check led to failed reflex saves, which led to failed initiative rolls and thus half the party was already terribly wounded.
We dusted ourselves off and sauntered forth for more pain. We stumbled through another fight and into the chamber of a dark wizard lit mostly on fire (another failed save), dodged a clumsily swung smite evil (another fumble) and escaped. In the aftermath we found our paladin curled on the ground weeping over the shards of his axe. It was at that point we declared our group name to be the 'Critical Failures' and one of the artistically inclined created a group portrait as we were at our worst for that session. It ended with a monk and fighter looking the wrong way, a mummified sorceror, and a hiding halfling, all fronted by a weeping dwarf in the fetal position.
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