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The E-Team!

Campaign History in Brief:

Our game has been running since November of 2006. The PC's started at class level 3 (ECL 6); 23 sessions and three elemental planes later, the E Team has advanced to level 7 (ECL 10). Check out the original “one sheet” proposing the campaign that I sent to the players!

I only discovered Obsidian Portal recently and I’m engaged in the process of moving over some of my campaign documents.  Over time, I hope to be able to recreate adventure logs from my prep and in-game notes.  Hopefully the players will also help to flesh these out based on their recollections and their own notes.

The E-Team is…

  • Rock Branson, monk of Earth Taciturn and fierce – can be a bit crude – loves to grapple
    • Player: Toby
  • Nift the Quick, rogue of Fire Charming and suave – has an eye for the ladies – stabs with a flaming rapier
    • Player: Terry
  • Mystral, sorceror of Air Whimsical and spacey – quick with a joke – blasts away with cold and electricity spells
    • Player: Mark
  • Snow, archivist of Water Rune-reading scholar – slightly megalomaniacal – wields a frost mace
    • Player: Tim

Each member of the E-Team has a set of unique half elemental powers.


The world of the E-Team is a homebrew setting, created in “pay as you go” style. That is, there is no map of the continent with all the major nations blocked out, no detailed historical timeline, no pantheon covering all the portfolios, etc. Indeed, the world does not even have an official name! (Though some refer to it as “the Garden”, see below.)

For the most part, places are invented and detailed as the players visit them and/or hear about them. Some information about these places can be found on the Locations page.

Cosmology and Lore

The campaign features a nonstandard cosmology known as the Orrery Cosmology, more or less as described in Manual of the Planes. The planes are not fixed into a Great Wheel, but instead move around, in complex paths and orbits. The Inner Planes (Elemental Planes) have a fixed orbital path around the Material plane; at any given time, one of them is closer to the Material plane than the others. This has an effect on elemental magic on the Material plane.

There is plenty more scholarly common knowledge known by characters like Snow. During their adventures, the E-Team has also made a number of discoveries.

The Al-mira tribe of jann, who are the E-Team’s patrons, have their own names for the various planes:

  • The Garden (Material)
  • Sun (Fire)
  • Soil (Earth)
  • Rain (Water)
  • Sky (Air)
  • The Stars (Outer planes)

Al-mira jann refer to fiends and celestials alike as “Creatures of the Stars”. The E-Team often use these terms as well.

Campaign Style

The E-Team is a serious campaign with a long term story arc involving a grand cosmic mystery. Challenges tend to be dynamic rather than static – there are very few dungeon crawls, and usually multiple possible solutions to problems that the players face—often ones that the DM did not expect! Roleplaying/social encounters are about as common as straight-up combat. The E-Team often faces adversaries outside their “weight class” (for example, the group adventured amongst the efreet of the City of Brass at ECL 9), so a kick-in-the-door approach usually doesn’t work. Planning combined with bold action is rewarded!

XP are not explicitly tracked; the DM just decides when it is a good time for the players to level up. Similarly, there’s not a lot of emphasis on treasure and looting. The E-Team’s janni patrons often provide them with equipment or cash to buy magic items in the local markets. (There’s a lot you can find to buy in the City of Brass!)

Though generally serious in tone, the campaign is far from grim and has seen its fair share of comic relief. Real-world anachronisms have been known to surface from time to time…

E-Team != A-Team

The original “one sheet” does reference the A-Team, and certainly, the name “E-Team” is inspired by that old TV show. But the campaign is not merely a tongue-in-cheek effort to recreate the TV show in a D&D game! Some elements of the campaign style perhaps do bear some passing similarity to the style of the A-Team, but overall, I think the game has its own unique feel.

At the start of the campaign, Toby pointed out the following:

You forgot one of the defining characteristics of the A-Team. If my memory serves me correctly…

“In 1976, a crack commando team was unjustly accused of a crime they didn’t commit. These men promptly escaped from a maximum security compound and fled to the Los Angeles underground…”

And indeed, this has not happened to the E-Team. Not yet, anyway…

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