Dwimmermount Campaign Restart - The Village People

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jojodogboy
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Joined: 2017-09-04 12:05
Dwimmermount Campaign Restart - The Village People

I'm going to try out a campaign blog. After my son went to college, I ended his ACKs Dwimmermount campaign I ran with he and his friends.  I also put our long lasting 5E campaign (which started in C&C) on hiatus.  I had run many of the the players from the 5E campaign in a series of recurring one shots using ACKs and Dwimmermount (in the same continuity as my son and his friends).  Once my son was offf to college, we decided to 'restart' the ACKs campaign.  Instead of wiping out the history, we picked up where the one shots and my son's campign ended.

jojodogboy
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Joined: 2017-09-04 12:05

Prior to the restart of the campaign, there were two groups of PC adventurers adventuring in Dwimmermount; ‘Rufus’s Raiders’ and ‘The Village People’.  They had overlapping excursions and had cleared most of the 1st level. 

Prologue 1 – Rufus’s Raiders

Several forays into the dungeon for the Raiders left them relatively unscathed (although several NPS were dead).  They also had recovered the scarab of death, finished off Guran and the kobolds, and driven the orcs from the 1st level (and extorting Seger to give up his chest of treasure in exchange for a truce).  Two of the Raiders (a Barbarian and Thief) had joined the “Dock Boys’ a criminal syndicate out of Adamas that had settled into Muntburg, and the Assassin had joined the Scarlet Brotherhood, an assassin’s guild out of Adamas.  They had also managed to provide thousands of gold in donations to the churches of Tyche and Zeus (Typhon) and into the coffers of local taverns (building up their reserve xp). 

The Raiders had almost spent as much time out of the dungeon as in.  They travelled to Yethlyreom to sell magic items and to Adamas several time to obtain supplies, identify and sell magic items, and train.  The fighter (gladiator) of the party became enamored with Emilisse Faith of Tyche, which played out over several sessions.

The Raiders never hired any traditional henchmen.  When they started the campaign, I gave them 2 NPC members which joined their band, a thug fighter (who died) and factotum venturer named Isaac Stocker.  They did rescue the dwarf Balfar, who joined their band before dying in combat.  They did have several dogs and horses however.

I normally despise the very concept of a GM NPC, however Isaac served a very specific purpose.  He was there to help the Raiders recognize their ability to shape the world.  He also introduced them to the economic possibilities in the campaign world. Isaac had a goal – to discover the famous Moon Pool of Dwimmermount, and sell it’s magical water to the world, thereby becoming rich.  He also provided the party with discounts and the benefits of a larger market in Muntburg.  While the other party members spent their gold on their xp reserve, Isaac bought a townhouse in town.  He asked the party to join him in a mercantile venture, which they did, resulting in profit for all. 

Isaac was mostly silent in the dungeon.  He had precise shooting, and was given to a PC to run during combats.  When my son went to college and the Raiders campaign ended, Isaac was to become a catalyst to help restart the Village People campaign. 

jojodogboy
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Joined: 2017-09-04 12:05

Prologue 2 – The Village People

The Village People campaign was basically a series of recurring one shots.  The initial session resulted in the 1st meeting between a party and a rival NPC band of adventurers.  The Delvers were victims of the PCs.  They were sure to explain that ‘what happens in the dungeon, stays in the dungeon”.  Their disappearance is still an unsolved mystery in Muntburg. 

They lost several PC characters during several forays. Using ACKs templates it was incredibly easy to roll up new characters and have the PCs playing as soon as they returned to Muntburg.   One of the original PCs was an assassin ‘Cult Deathbringer’, which we defined as a Termaxian cultist.  The party met the NPC party the Fists of Zeus (Typhon) in Muntburg.  The PC decided to retire that character by having him join the Fists in an attempt to assassinate them.  As a result I decided that he succeeded in killing Heloys the fighter while the Fists were in combat with some eldritch bones on level 2b.  The Fists killed him soon after.  The five remaining members of the ‘Fists’ became known henceforth as the five fingers of the newly named “Fist of Zeus”

Their last foray was wildly successful.  3 PCs rolled up new characters: two clerics (Hermit and Undead Slayer) and a mage (Necromancer).  That made for a total of 3 mages in the party.  The clerics included a cleric of Hera (Anesidora - Hermit template) and a cleric of Death (Donn – Undead Slayer template) armed with a silver scythe.   The remaining party member was a Thief – Cat Burglar.  The combination of a lucky pick locks roll, a good turning roll, magic missile, and the silver scythe made short work of the Vault of Spoils and its guardian wight.  The one shot ended with quick trips to Adamas and Yethlyreom to sell the +1 sword, and the rest of the spoils, resulting in lots of gold and levelling for all.  

jojodogboy
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Joined: 2017-09-04 12:05

1st Session – Part 1 (4 hrs)

All of the PCs were given the option of keeping their prior PCs or rolling up new ones.  Only one PC choose to retire their character – a cowardly, but effective mage.  He re-rolled an assassin – Bravo.  I allowed the Player to start with 2,000 XP (from a total of 3500 GP).  The PCs are as follows:

Tariq the Harvester – Lvl 2 Mage-Necromancer – Spells – Choking Grasp (skeletal hand)  & Summon Berserkers (4 undead minions, leaving a skull shaped smoke cloud as they disappear)

Eduardo – Lvl 3 Thief-Cat Burglar (Note: 5 CON) Wears leather

Dave Carrin – Lvl 3 Cleric-Hermit of Hera – Wears plate + large shield (+2 AC and enc.) (Note: 7 DEX and CHA)

Jace – Lvl 2 Mage-Elementalist – Spells – Burning Hands (Breathes fire), Magic Missile (Shoots Flames), Detect Magic – has wand of magic missiles

Illyrio Sicarus – Lvl 2 Assassin-Bravo – Wears leather

The campaign restarted 5 weeks after the last foray into the dungeon.  Here is a quick list of the changes:

  • Castellan Thevenin Verodart of Muntburg now requires that every person must buy an annual license to enter Dwimmermount at a cost of 100 GP.
  • NPC Isaac Stocker had built a warehouse and has obtained from Castellan Verodart the sole right to draw water out of the moon pool.  He offered the party a deal.  He gave them a map to the 1st level (from the scroll case recovered by the Raiders) and promised 1000 GP if the party could rid the 1st level of the Spawn of Arach-Nacha.

 

  • The treasure map from the vault of spoils was replaced with a treasure map to the secret treasure room on lvl 4.  I had decided that the Vault of Spoils, the secret treasury on lvl 2A and the secret treasury on lvl 4 were the spoils of the IXth Thulian Legion.  The general killed by Turms in the secret history, was the general of this legion, headquartered in Dwimmermount.  As most of the Imperial command joined the Termaxians in hope of becoming immortal, the IXth Legion sought to sneak the spoils out bit by bit and leave.  The map also provides a clue to a secret treasury in the armory on lvl 2A.  It was written by Primus Centurian Cheron, the Great-Great Grandfather of Despot Cheron of Adamas, who left for ‘Fort Adamas’ before Dwimmermount was sealed. 

After a brief refresher on what was going on, the party quickly adjusted to the spirit of ACKs play:

  • Dave spent 2500 GP to build for a temple to Hera in Muntburg. He had permission from Revered Mother Hanna of the Adamas Temple of Hera (the highest level cleric of Hera around). He also purchased a donkey. 
  • Eduardo bought a war dog and hired Ukla the Quick, a spear and net using 1st lvl Barbarian-Pit Fighter as a henchman.  He also bought one of the townhouses in town for 1000 GP. 
  • Tariq  hired Barnabus Bannon, a 1st lvl Fighter-Corsair, as a henchman.

Both Eduardo and Illyrio were given the chance to start as a member of one of the area criminal syndicates:

  • The “Dock Boys” – Organized Crime family based in Adamas, Muntburg, and Gloris – Muntburg crew is run by Boss Drake Horner. 
  • The Adamas Theives Guild – Largest syndicate in and around Adamas, (not in Muntburg or Gloris). 
  • The Scarlet Brotherhood – Assassin’s guild out of Adamas.  Looking to expand to Muntburg.
  • The Nightblades are a small guild of elven assassins based in Adamas, so although the PCs are aware of it’s existence, they are not eligible for membership. 

Eduardo and Illyrio decided to remain free agents. 

The party decided the easiest way to reach the area of the caverns with the Spawn of Arach-Nacha was to go through the front door.  They stopped to ask the face a few questions, but since all of the questions were about the Spawn the only answer was ’I don’t know. Go away; I shall not answer you again today’.  They entered a few rooms and avoided a strange dark cylinder and ghost soldiers playing Zatriko.  They entered the main western hallway.  They saw the blood stains from prior combats between the Raiders and the orcs.  They opened a circular room with skeletal remains being picked over by giant centipedes. There was also a 5’ roughly carved corridor leading north from the room.  Unfortunately, they had rolled a wandering monster check the turn before and a group of eldritch bones had been following them. 

Ukla’s pit training and sharpened reflexes paid off; he was the only one not to be surprised.  The front line of bones tried to overrun instead of attacking. They were unsuccessful. Ukla used his net to ensnare one, allowing him to control it. The next round, the party managed to shut the door to the centipede room and focus on the eldritch bones (EBs).  Dave was unable to turn them but the combination of cleaving and poor initiative rolls by the bones provided for a quick recovery and they started to grind down the EBs.

Unfortunately the centipedes started coming out from under the door.  The sound from the combat resulted in a wandering monster check which resulted in not one but two encounters: fire beetles (which had killed two characters previously) and NPC party the ‘Fist of Zeus’.  A quick truce was made and the two partys made short work of the monsters. However Jace ended up ill from a centipede bite.  Illyrio, tripped and fell during combat with the fire beetles (after rolling a 1 and failing a save vs. paralysis)A fire beetle swarmed on top of him.  His arm was severely injured, becoming useless (Dave the hermit’s laying on hands and a roll on the mortality table later). 

While they were tending to the wounds, another wandering monster roll resulted in a gelatinous cube coming from the east, forcing them away from it.  Both parties decided that discretion was the greater part of valor. They went through a separate set of rooms.  That led them right into 2 squads of goblins that had been watching them warily (from the warband that had moved into these rooms of the dungeon – the creators of the passageways).  A series of bad rolls by the goblins resulted in a one-sided fight where Tariq’s undead berserkers and cleaving by the wardog, henchman, and multiple fighters proved too much.  They broke morale and ran. 

Three goblins, unable to run, surrendered.  Yurain the dwarven vaultguard from the Fists killed one of the goblins.  A second goblin promised it would lead the parties to safety if released.  Once he was released, he ran as fast as he could, escaping into the darkness. 

The last surviving goblin, Redfang, led the group out of the dungeon.  Jehan of Zeus, the leader of the  Fists rightfully accused Tariq of necromancy.  Tariq was able to convince him otherwise, stating that it was just a trick to make his summoned berserkers more frightening.  It helped that Genovese of the Fists supported him. 

The party returned to Muntburg to lick their wounds, allowing Illyrio to become healthy enough for the trip to Adamas to find someone to cast Restore Life and Limb.  During this time Dave the Hermit provided miracles for the peasants in Muntburg.

jojodogboy
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Joined: 2017-09-04 12:05

The Village People:

  • Tariq the Harvester – Lvl 2 Mage (Necromancer) – Black Lore of Zahar, Alchemy (x2), Healing, Soothsaying – INT +3, CON -1, WIS +1, CHA +1. Spells – Choking Grasp (skeletal hand)  & Summon Berserkers (4 undead minions, leaving a skull shaped smoke cloud as they disappear) Extremely short necromancer
    • Barnabus Bannon – Lvl 1 Fighter (Corsair)–Swashbuckling, Seafaring – STR +1, INT -2, WIS -2, DEX -1 – scimitar & dagger wielding ne’er do well.
  • Eduardo – Lvl 3 Thief (Cat Burglar) – Cat Burglary, Gambling, - DEX +2, CON +1, WIS +1, CHA +1 – Budding real estate tycoon and mastermind. Wears leather
    • Ukla the Quick – Lvl 1 Barbarian (Pit Fighter)–Running, Combat Reflexes, Gambling – STR +1, CON +2, CHA -1 – Ex-gladiator turned adventurer – fights with net and trident.
    • Boy – War dog
  • Dave ‘the Hermit’ Carrin – Lvl 3 Cleric (Hermit) of Hera – Laying on Hands, Naturalism – STR +1, DEX -1, INT -1 CON+1, WIS +1, CHA -1. Wears plate + large shield (+2 AC and enc.)  Simple, uneducated, but intuitive.
  • Jace – Lvl 2 Mage (Elementalist) – Elemenatlism, Naturalism, Alchemy, Magical Engineering – STR+1, DEX -1, INT +2. Spells – Burning Hands (Breathes fire), Magic Missile (Shoots Flames), Detect Magic – has wand of magic missiles.  Quiet pyromaniac.
  • Illyrio Sicarus – Lvl 2 Assassin (Bravo) – Fighting Style (two weapons), Intimidation – STR +2, DEX +1, CON +2, CHA +1 - Wears leather

The Village People waited in Muntburg for Illyrio to recover from his injuries.  Both Ukla and Barnabus received major wounds.  Their employers had different responses; Eduardo using an expensive healing potion while Tariq chuckled to himself.  Retention rolls resulted in fanatic loyalty for Ukla (morale +2) and Barnabus not happy, but with no other jobs around he decided to stay where with Tariq.

Dave the Hermit began providing miracles for the citizens and visitors of Muntburg.  The new Chapel of Hera (costing 2500 GP) was also opened in Muntburg.  As a result, his congregation grew from nothing to 12 souls.  Before he left for Muntburg, he hired a peasant caretaker to watch over the new church.  The temples of Zeus (upgrades) and Tyche (adding a casino) were under expansion due in large part to the large prior donations of the Raiders (to build up their XP bank).  Jace was able to trade with Genovese of the fists, obtaining charm person in return for magic missile (which he was able to add to his repertoire after 1 week). Tariq was able to obtain a copy as well.

Eduardo wanted masterwork thieves tools (+1 to rolls, can add Dex bonus to pick locks) but was unable to find them as he was not a member of any criminal guilds.  He turned to Isaac Stocker, who was able to provide them for a extra 20% fee and 2 weeks’ time. 

The travel to Adamas and back was without incident.  In Adamas, the Revered Mother Hanna of Hera agreed to cast restore life and limb on Illyrio’s arm for 500 GP.  There were no ill effects. Jace agreed to cover the costs. While in Adamas, Dave the Hermit began to look for a 0 lvl peasant to learn the ways of Hera.  Trusting his intuition, he looked for someone wise and charismatic.  He hit the jackpot with Julia, a gifted healer and daughter of a herdsman.  She joined him as a henchman, recognizing Hera’s hand on his shoulder.   

The party realized that they knew little about the Spawn of Arach-Nacha, but were unwilling to hire a sage to find out any more.  They grabbed some oil and holy water and figured they were good. They entered the dungeon using the dwarven stairs (which they previously from the dead dwarven character of one of the PCs). 

The party worked their way through the caverns.  They noticed that all of the prior fallen dwarven statues were no longer in the dwarven cemetery.  They did find the rough misshapen piles they recognized as dead kobolds.  They moved cautiously when they got to the part of the map marked by Isaac.  Tariq summoned his undead beserkers and they took on some guardian crab spiders.  Tariq was briefly enticed by the idea of ‘spider powers and strange red and blue tinted magical clothes’, but the party ignored the threats and promises of the spider demon.  Despite summoned spiders and several poision bites, the combination of  flaming oil to burn the webs, multiple berserker spells, and Eduardo and Illyrio backstabs, the party made quick work of the spiders. 

They quickly left after finding the treasure and the stony remains of the kobolds and their leader (the work of the Raiders).  They recognized the cross and circle symbol from some impassible doors they had come upon earlier.  They decided that discretion and 1000 GP was more important, so they cut off the head of the spawn and left the dungeon (avoiding any wandering rolls).  Upon return to Muntburg, they gave the head to Isaac in return for 1000 GP.  Eduardo bought a home near the tavern (1000 GP) and Tariq bought an old warehouse north of town (1500 GP).  Jace moved in with him, planning a joint alchemy lab in Muntburg. 

Isaac was going back in the morning with a group of mercenary solders to secure the cavern of the moon pool.  The party went with them.  Dave the Hermit decided to bring Julia with the party, just in case they found any treasure (to get her to 1st level).  They travelled through many rooms they had previously seen, coming to the impassible doors.  Pressing the circle/cross symbol onto the symbol on the wall, the doors opened.  They came to another set of locked doors in a circular column.  Experimentation resulted in figuring out how to open the doors, revealing a shaft.  By casting light on a rock and counting they were able to estimate the shaft went 200 to 300 ft down and an unknown distance up.  They decided to come back later. 

*** SPOILER ALERT FOR THOSE IN A DWIMMERMOUNT CAMPAIGN ***

The map they found in the vault of spoils mentioned the possibility of a secret vault in the armory on the laboratory level.  They decided to find it.  Finding the stairs on the map, they carefully followed a fading blood trail down the stairs.  Eduardo scouted ahead, finding a dimly lit chamber filled with orcs.  They hailed the orcs coming down. 

The group had previously made a deal with the orcs, however there was only one character who was there when the deal was made.  They did not know the pass phrase, but since the orcs had been decimated by adventurers, a intimidation went a long way.  The orcs agreed to take the group to their king. 

After a long series of negotiations, shows of force, and lots of lucky rolling, Segur, ‘king’ of the orcs, agreed to take them to a nearby armory for a 50/50 split (he know that the orcs would probably win the fight, but that he and many orcs would also probably die ).  He also got a promise to fight the gnolls from the party).  Eduardo, Illyro, and Ukla went with Segur and 2 orcs to look for the vault.  The rest of the party remained as hostages. 

After 20 minutes of playing with stuff in the room, Illyrio managed to describe actions resulting in the door opening.  They found an old desk, a coin counting device, and treasure.  The orcs wanted 4000 SP and a valuable jeweled broach, the party taking the rest.  Suspecting a ring was magical, they made sure NOT to put it on, just in case they wanted to sell it for the gold and XP.

*** SPOILER ALERT OVER  ***

When they got back to Muntburg, Jace was able to cast Detect Magic and determine that the ring was magical.  He was able to identify it with magical engineering – a ring of protection +1 (valued at 25,000 GP).   The party quickly decided to get it to Adamas for sale through Isaac’s company.  Julia became a 1st lvl priestess of Hera setting up shop in the chapel (Dave the Hermit made his loyalty roll, thanking Hera for the fellowship spell).  

jojodogboy
Patreon Supporter
Joined: 2017-09-04 12:05

2nd Session – Part 1

The Village People:

·        Tariq the Harvester – Lvl 2 Mage (Necromancer) – Black Lore of Zahar, Alchemy (x2), Healing, Soothsaying – INT +3, CON -1, WIS +1, CHA +1. Spells – Choking Grasp (skeletal hand), Identify (skull in bag tells him details), Charm Person (blows a kiss and a spirit enters body of target)  & Summon Berserkers (4 undead minions, leaving a skull shaped smoke cloud as they disappear) - Extremely short necromancer

o   Barnabus Bannon – Lvl 1 Fighter (Corsair)–Swashbuckling, Seafaring – STR +1, INT -2, WIS -2, DEX -1 – scimitar & dagger wielding ne’er do well.

·        Eduardo – Lvl 3 Thief (Cat Burglar) – Cat Burglary, Gambling, - DEX +2, CON +1, WIS +1, CHA +1 – Budding real estate tycoon and mastermind. Wears leather

o   Ukla the Quick – Lvl 1 Barbarian (Pit Fighter)–Running, Combat Reflexes, Gambling – STR +1, CON +2, CHA -1 – Ex-gladiator turned adventurer – fights with net and trident.

o   Boy – War dog

·        Dave ‘the Hermit’ Carrin – Lvl 3 Cleric (Hermit) of Hera – Laying on Hands, Naturalism – STR +1, DEX -1, INT -1 CON+1, WIS +1, CHA -1. Wears plate + large shield (+2 AC and enc.)  Simple, uneducated, but intuitive.

o   Julia Feny – Lvl 1 Preistess (Medican) of Hera – Laying on Hands, Healing x2 – WIS +1, CON +1, CHA +2 ambitious, charismatic novice with a good heart

·        Jace – Lvl 2 Mage (Elementalist) – Elemenatlism, Naturalism, Alchemy, Magical Engineering – STR+1, DEX -1, INT +2. Spells – Burning Hands (Breathes fire), Magic Missile (Shoots mini-dragon head shaped flames), Detect Magic (flames of varying colors dance on magic items), Charm Person – has wand of magic missiles.  Quiet pyromaniac.

·        Illyrio Sicarus – Lvl 2 Assassin (Bravo) – Fighting Style (two weapons), Intimidation – STR +2, DEX +1, CON +2, CHA +1 - Wears leather

And featuring a guest PC from Rufus’ Raiders (son visiting home from college)

·        Dante – Lvl3 Assassin (Assassin-For-Hire) – Precise Shooting, Bargaining, Fighting Style (two weapons), Weapon Finesse, Intimidation – STR +1, INT +2 WIS -2, DEX +3, CON -1

o   War dog, Hunting dog, armed wit short sword and +1 war hammer.

We started with a lot of paperwork.  I presented the players with a map of Muntburg showing their property and a list of the value (in gold and xp) of historical facts from Dwimmermount.  I had previously determined that the Fist of Zeus party had adventured in Dwimmermount during the time they were travelling and had cleared out some of level 2b, resulting in 1 party member being mortally wounded, and leveling for most.  The PCs rolled and it was the leader Jehan, losing both of his legs (to the slayer of adventurers; the dreaded fire beetle).  He was taken to the temple of Zeus in Adamas and had his legs restored, however he ended up a female.  Enjorran, a member of the “Fist” (a female in my campaign) had taken a liking to a cursed broach.  The combination of the curse and Jehan’s sex change resulted in her losing faith in the gods, her cleric status, and her resulting retirement from adventuring.  Symon Cato, from the Temple of Zeus in Muntburg, took her spot on the “Fist”.

In Adamas, the party sold the recovered jewelry (rolling for each piece and achieving 60-70% of value) and some potions.  They deposited the ring of protection +1 with Isaac Stocker’s henchman Murray to sell it (10% roll failed for August).  Dante and Illyrio bought the two guard wolves available for sale in a class II market and Tariq bought a trained hawk. Dante bought a slave, looking for the biggest and dumbest one for 150% of the cost (I let him roll one up with best 3 of 4d6 for STR and he ended up with a 17 STR).   Dave the Hermit used this time to earn 25 GP per day doing miracles in Adamas.  Eduardo made it clear that to the world he was to be called “Kaiser Souse’”, to protect his identity.  Hera’s congregation in Muntburg continued to grow (aided by Julia’s daily free miracles).

Upon return to Muntburg, Illyrio looked to find out which syndicate was involved in the brothel (if any).  He met with Madam Selena Cooper, who offered to make him a silent partner if he wanted to invest.  She refused to identify her other ‘partners’, but it wass clear it was an organized group (probably the “Dock Boys” from Adamas. 

The party had heard of ‘Vareze’ from Segur the king of the orcs.  They planned on killing him to keep their word with the orcs.  They entered the dungeon, stopping by the face to ask about how the water from the moon pool was collected. (They had previously determined that the magic of true water would quickly fade once removed from the moon pool.  They knew that Isaac was looking for a way to transport the water out).  The face told them that true water would only remain pure in flasks of pure adamantium, purified vitreum, or coated in solid azoth.  They made it to the stairway to level 2a, stopping to kill some centipedes feasting on the shells of fire beetles. 

SPOILER

Before they went down the stairs, they took the time use lamp oil to clear the floor and burn off a blood trail from a fleeing orc (from Rufus's Raiders).  Eduardo identified a yellow mold and they were careful not to disturb it, hoping it would remain a trap for the unwary. 

END SPOILER

They met the orcs at the bottom of the stairs, calling out ‘hail Segur’.  The orcs allowed them to clear the newly made barricade enough to get by.  The orcs managed to give them some basic instructions how to reach the ‘pool of life’ so they could kill “Vareeze’. They stopped to investigate a room with metal shelves and some alchemical mixtures and a strange metal fixture.  There were 8 liquids of various colors.  Between Jace and Tariq they were able to identify 1 healing potion and 3 potions of gaseous form.  There were two other colors they were not able to identify.  Tariq tried one and it tasted terrible.  Jace tried the remaining one, started choking, and died.  Although Illyrio and Dante were happy to end up with a poison potion each, the party had to collect the body and haul it out of the dungeon.

jojodogboy
Patreon Supporter
Joined: 2017-09-04 12:05

2nd Session – Part 2

The metal fixture was box shaped on one end, tapering to a tube with a rubber stopper.  There was an empty flask coated with a silvery substance on the shelf next to it.  The party figured out that this might be used with a machine they had seen on the 1st level.   They decided to check it out on the way out.  They made it to the room with the machines on the first level, after finding out that the orcs had avoided the room with the shelves when an orc had died tasting something. 

The metal fixture fit into the slots on the ends of the machine.  When they pushed the button, the steamy metallic mist filed the flask, coating it with a thin layer of material.  They added a second coat on that flask, and used another empty flask to give it a single coat.  The noise attracted a group of dwarves that Isaac had hired to excavate/fortify the area around the moon pool.  (A group of orcs following the party also came close but when quickly fled when the party heard them).  One of the dwarves fetched Sgt. Fabricio Nino, henchman to Isaac and leader of the mercenary force.  The party explained they may have figured out how to get the true water out off the moon pool (Illyrio rolled 11 on the reaction (+1 for CHA making it a 12)), so Fabricio was so elated that he agreed to have some men carry Jace’s body and escort the party back to Muntburg.  They only stopped long enough to fill the two flasks with water from the moon pool. 

When they got back to town, Tariq tried the true water in the double coated flask and it had an effect!  There was a terrible metallic taste, so the party figured that they should’ve have let it set before filling with water.  A single coat was not enough.  Isaac and the Village People struck a deal; the device for a partnership and a 40% interest in the moon pool operation.  They told Isaac to have the local lawyer (Adryen Hernan) have a contract ready by the time they came back from Adamas. 

The party left the henchmen and animals in Muntburg, threw the body on a horse, and travelled lightly and quickly to Adamas.  Jace was brought back at the temple of Hera in Adamas, only slightly worse for wear, his confidence shaken (-10% XP until next level).  A quick sale of 2 of the gaseous form potions resulted in levels for most.  While the party waited two weeks for Jace to recover and train, another month passed.  A roll for sale of the ring of protection (now 20%) barely failed; however a roll for Dante’s prior parties sale of the Scarab of Death was successful, pushing him (and Isaac) to lvl 4.  He celebrated by taking part in a gladiatorial contest.  The entire party decided to watch, betting 100 gp at 1.5:1 odds. 

Dante entered as a traditional 2 weapon fighter, with 2 short swords and a dagger.  He faced a traditional ‘pursuer’ gladiator (18 hp, STR +1, CON +1, combat reflexes) armed with a short sword, shield, dagger, and heavy helmet.  Dante easily won initiative, crossing the sand and striking a viscous slash as his opponent blocked one sword with his shield, while the other slashed open his thigh (causing 12 hp damage).  Dropping to one knee in pain, he quickly responded by smashing Dante’s ear and cheek with his shield, stunning him sufficiently to allow Dante to be run through, killing him (the gladiator crit, with a natural 20, doing 15 damage).  Dante’s body was dragged from the arena and thrown onto the pile of dead for the day.

The party was not only out their hard won gold, they were in a quandary.  Dante had always told everyone he didn’t want to be raised from the dead.  He was a worshiper of death (having previously donated several thousand gp to the temple in Adamas) and often talked of how death was a gift that ended pain.  The player said that he didn’t want to be raised (although weakly).  The party decided “Oh, well.  Let’s take the body to the temple of Death and let them decide”.  Mother Riana of Death (speaking through a male cleric) recognized Dante.  She decided to case restore life and limb for free, relying on Death to decide (all on the roll).  Dante rolled well enough to be raised, speaking with the God of Death before coming back.  He came back marked by death, with a grey pallor and black and red eyes (black sclera, red iris, white pupil)  (-2 to reaction, +1 to intimidation). 

The party remained in Adamas for the 2 weeks Dante needed to heal. By the time the party returned to Muntburg it was October.  During that time the congregation of Hera in Muntburg grew to 38.  While the party was gone several people had come to the Temple of Hera:

o   Louys Hereint, Curate of Zeus,

o   Emilisse Faith, Priestess of Tyche, and

o   Some thugs asking for protection money.

Illyrio spoke to Madam Selena about the threats to the church, while Dante watched from the rooftops.  She indirectly admitted working with the ‘Dock Boys’, explaining that they wouldn’t dare extort the church (the ‘Don’ would never allow it).  Illyrio tried to seduce her w/o success but after some coin, she agreed to have the ‘Boss’ of the crew talk to him next time he was in Muntburg. 

Dave the Hermit spoke to Emilisse of Tyche, who welcomed Hera to the church family with a coupon for the casino.  She valued the aid in delivering miracles to the people.  Louys of Zeus was less gracious, reminding Dave of Hera’s position in the church hierarchy.  The party also took care of other business before a final expedition to the dungeon:

o   Dante freed Murphy, taking him on as a henchman.

o   Eduardo AKA ‘Kaiser Souse’ bought a 40% share (the most allowed by Maycot Felippe) in the Flask and Scroll Tavern for 1000 gp.  To seal the deal, he had to agree to take on Maycot’s eldest son as an apprentice adventurer.  

o   Jace and Tariq built a 2000 gp value library and 2000 gp value laboratory in Tariq’s warehouse.

o   Dave the hermit hired a master sculptor and a team of apprentices to build a 1500 gp statute of Hera in front of the temple. He also planned on commissioning a head of Hera to place on the ‘Termax-Hera’ statute in Dwimmermount.

o   Illyrio began talks of building an orphanage (read ‘assassin training ground’) with Dave in Muntburg.

o   They signed a formal agreement with Stocker Goods re: the moon pool.

o   Tariq let Barnubus go, paying him an extra month’s pay and throwing him a 500 gp retirement party (going to his xp bank)

The next day, the village people traveled to Dwimmermount in search of ‘Vareeze’ and the pool of life. The expedition included 9 men, 6 dogs/wolves, a hawk, and a donkey.

jojodogboy
Patreon Supporter
Joined: 2017-09-04 12:05

2nd Session – Part 3

The search for ‘Vareeze’ and the pool of life.

The Village People:

  • Tariq the Harvester – Lvl 3 Mage (Necromancer) – Black Lore of Zahar, Alchemy (x2), Healing, Soothsaying – INT +3, CON -1, WIS +1, CHA +1. Spells – Necromantic Potence – (Covered w/ spectral bony armor) - Extremely short necromancer
    • Trained Hawk
  • Eduardo – Lvl 4 Thief (Cat Burglar) – Cat Burglary, Gambling, - DEX +2, CON +1, WIS +1, CHA +1 – Budding real estate tycoon and mastermind. Wears leather
    • Ukla the Quick – Lvl 1 Barbarian (Pit Fighter)–Running, Combat Reflexes, Gambling – STR +1, CON +2, CHA -1 – Ex-gladiator turned adventurer – fights with net and trident.
    • ‘Shemp’ Fellippe – Lvl 0 (carouser apprentice) – Labor (cook), Craft (brewer), Eavesdropping – WIS +1, DEX +3, CON -1, CHA +1
    • Boy – War dog
    • Girl – War dog
  • Dave ‘the Hermit’ Carrin – Lvl 3 Cleric (Hermit) of Hera – Laying on Hands, Naturalism – STR +1, DEX -1, INT -1 CON+1, WIS +1, CHA -1. Wears plate + large shield (+2 AC and enc.)  Simple, uneducated, but intuitive.
    • Julia Feny – Lvl 1 Preistess (Medican) of Hera – Laying on Hands, Healing x2 – WIS +1, CON +1, CHA +2 ambitious, charismatic novice with a good heart
  • Jace – Lvl 3 Mage (Elementalist) – Elemenatlism, Naturalism, Alchemy, Magical Engineering – STR+1, DEX -1, INT +2. Spells – Mirror Image (smoke resulting in copies) – has wand of magic missiles.  Quiet pyromaniac.
  • Illyrio Sicarus – Lvl 3 Assassin (Bravo) – Fighting Style (two weapons), Intimidation – STR +2, DEX +1, CON +2, CHA +1 - Wears leather
    • Guard Wolf – white w/ blue eyes.

And featuring a guest PC from Rufus’ Raiders (son visiting home from college)

  • Dante – Lvl 4 Assassin (Assassin-For-Hire) – Precise Shooting, Bargaining, Fighting Style (two weapons), Weapon Finesse, Intimidation – STR +1, INT +2 WIS -2, DEX +3, CON -1, wearing plate, custom helmet, short sword and war hammer +1.
    • War dog, Hunting dog, Guard Wolf
    • Murphy – 0 lvl freed slave – Labor, (others TBD), STR +2, WIS -2, CON +1

On their way to the 2nd level the party ignored what was probably another adventuring party they sighted in the distance.  Dante and Jace investigated a room with giant tanks of liquid while the rest of the party stood watch in the hallway.  They noticed a floating dagger surrounded by a green haze approaching in the torchlight.  Tariq sent his hawk to grab the dagger and watched in horror as it smacked right into a gelatinous cube.  At the same time Dante ordered Murphy to open a special tank -  releasing a giant ooze, which hit Murphy.  Murphy choose to sunder his shield, allowing him to ignore the hit.  During the fight the party found out that the ooze was immune to magic fire, several weapons were destroyed, Dante wasted a poison arrow to a high rolling ooze, and everyone realized that a cube was no match for 4 berserk undead minions. 

They party managed to find a room with unhealthy roses (the ones nearest the door seeming to perk up when Dante pricked his finger and dropped blood on one).  Eduardo scouted ahead and was able to sneak up on a human male working at a strange metal box, while 5 gnolls stood guard near a pool filled with white ectoplasm.  The party started by parlaying, discovering that this was the old leader of the orcs - “Var-eeze”.  He had a strange accent and a pompous air.  The party and he were unable to reach an accord and combat broke out.  Winning initiative they were able to wipe out the gnolls and subdue the mage. 

During the fight the mage managed to cause a gnoll warrior to form and crawl out of the ectoplasmic pool by manipulating controls on the machine.  They party forced Varazes (his real name) to explain how he did so.  He showed them how, creating a gnoll (which the party slew).  Jace and Tariq paid careful attention and took notes.  He also explained that the ectoplasmic pool was known as the ‘Pool of Life’ due to its wonderous properties.   Varazes said he was unsure if it would bring the dead back to life. Not waiting, Dante slit his throat and pushed the body into the pool (before Illyrio could react to stop him).  Varazes crawled, choking out of the pit, initially disoriented, brought back to life!

The party began to plan what to do next, and the session ended in the dungeon.  

Party loot from Varazes included:

Fear wand ('cretin' command word), ring of protection +2 (another trinket for sale in Adamas), and a strange metal symbol, identified as a 'Termaxian passkey' by Varazes.

Alex
The Autarch
Joined: 2011-06-30 18:10

I love the spell signatures you or your players have come up with. I've only had one player ever really use the spell signature rules, even though I would write them up for my NPCs.

 

jojodogboy
Patreon Supporter
Joined: 2017-09-04 12:05

I love the spell signatures you or your players have come up with. I've only had one player ever really use the spell signature rules, even though I would write them up for my NPCs.

 


-Alex

Spell signatures are one of the coolest parts of the ACKs magic system.  Along with the templates in the Player's Companion, it really helps to differentiate between mages.  I think there are 2 main reasons they continue to come up with them:

  1. The mages are played by brothers, and there is a sense of competition to see who can come up with the best one.
  2. Before they can cast the spell for the first time, I make them explain what the signature is.  The whole table pauses until we figure it out as a group.  Play does not continue until we do.

The pcs also know that they will be able to use the signature creatively to their advantage - kind of like 'special effects' of the Hero/Champions system.  The fire mages magic missiles can catch things on fire.  The spectral armor of the necromancer's Necromantic Potence may help scare some peasants, etc.  It also causes add'l complications - the necromancer has to explain to the town militia that he shouldn't be burned at the stake when he summons undead berserkers. 

jojodogboy
Patreon Supporter
Joined: 2017-09-04 12:05

The party began the session in the dungeon.  They wanted to take out the orcs, and came up with several alternative plans, all of which included turning Varazes over to the orcs and throwing him in the pool of life if he was killed.  After several minutes the decision was made to just have Tariq summon some berserkers and wing it. 

They returned to some orc guards rebuilding their barricade.  They stated they were coming to see Segur (the orc leader) and one of them ran ahead.  The party pushed past to the door of Segur’s makeshift throne room, finding the door barred from the other side.  After several minutes of pounding the door opened. 

The orcs were lined up in formation in the room, with Segur on his throne and a shield wall of orcs with swords in the front line and a row of orcs w/ spears directly behind.  There were 6 orc archers in the back of the room.  Segur was wearing the platinum earrings, and jeweled broach from the treasures of the IX legion. Most of the party couldn’t fit in the room, so the zombie berserkers, Illyrio, Dave, and Tariq went in the room. Negotiations for treasure in return for Varazes began in earnest.  During negotiations, Tariq lost his patience and began casting, and combat broke out.

Dante won initiative and quickly wiped out 4 orcs, cutting his was through to the line of archers. Illyrio was able to kill a few as well.  Then it was the orcs’ turn and the party realized why Segur was king.  He carved through 3 berserkers before hitting Illyrio with a natural ‘20’, doing 25 points of damage in a single blow and reducing him to zero HP (crits = max damage + weapon damage, re-roll all max rolls, weapon focus roll 1 more extra die).  Luckily Tariq hit Segur with a skeletal choking grasp, which didn’t really hurt him much but prevented him from reeking any more havoc. 

The hallway orc guards, and a large remaining group came around the corner to attack the party in the hallway.  After a few rounds of combat, Ukla, Jace, Eduardo, and the dogs managed to take them out.  A group of giant rats, attracted by the noise, was satisfied eating orc carcasses and were picked off one by one by Shemp.

Inside the throne room, Dave rushed to heal Illyrio.  He was alive, but had suffered severe head trauma and was a little adle-brained.  The orcs morale held strong, despite continuing losses, and Segur eventually broke free of the skeletal grasp.  He started to attack Dave, when Tariq unleashed the fear wand.

Dave, Dante, and Segur fled.  Dave and Dante were subdued by the other party members.  Segur had to force his way through the war dogs (made a successful overrun) to get away.  Tariq and Dante’s dogs followed after him.  Segur managed to have some of the guards still watching the halls delay the dogs long enough to run past the final guards.  The last surviving orcs poured oil on the floor and lit it on fire, doing some damage to Tariq and the dogs.  The dogs were unwilling to  chase the orcs through the fire and they returned without their prey. 

All in all the party had killed 26 orcs in the battle.  They began to pile up the bodies when Shemp and Eduardo noticed someone coming down the stairs to the guardroom.  It was the rival adventurer party the ‘Fist of Zeus’.  As they started their greetings, Tariq quickly killed Varazes to make sure he didn’t talk to them.  The party directed the Fist towards the pool of life.  The PCs burned all of the bodies and made it out of the dungeon and back to Muntburg without any further encounters.

jojodogboy
Patreon Supporter
Joined: 2017-09-04 12:05

Session 3 part 2  - The Mayor of “Mudburg”

The party returned to Muntburg on Saturday, October 7th.  Eduardo made sure to give Peiru Danthan, the Corporal of the Watch who greeted visitors to Muntburg, a little cash to direct visitors to his tavern.  Illyrio was still under the effects of his head injury (-10% xp), and needed 2 weeks bed rest.  Unfortunately, he received notice from Madam Selena that the meeting with Boss Horner of the Dock Boys was scheduled within a week, before he was fully recovered. 

Illyrio, Dave the Hermit, Tariq came to the meeting in the brothel.  The caretaker of Hera’s temple, Jimmy, came along to see if he could identify the person who extorted the church.  Boss Drake Horner started by asking about Illyrio’s interest in part ownership of the brothel, explaining that Muntburg was an ‘open’ town, but that the Dock Boys were moving in and always had room for a new crew of ‘earners’.  It wouldn’t stay an open town for long.  Illyrio stated that the Boss must have misunderstood a simple interest in a business opportunity.

They were taken to a torture room in the basement of the brothel.  Two hooded men were strapped in heavy chairs.  Boss Horner removed their hoods, and Jimmy identified them as the men who extorted the church.  The Boss apologized profusely on behalf of ‘Don’ Othon LeFeyd, offering 500 gp worth of silver and gold candelabras for use in the Temple of Hera.  The two men, black and blue, later delivered the goods to the Temple of Hera.  Dave healed them, but failed to persuade them to join his congregation.

After Illyrio rested, the party traveled to Adamas.  Jace paid for Illyrio to be cured of his head injury resulting in him becoming infertile.  While they waited for Illyrio to be heathy enough to travel, Eduardo earned some money gambling, Dave earned some money providing miracles, and both Tariq and Jace both found hawks.  The mages also exchanged spells and wands. 

Before leaving Adamas, the party rolled well and Isaac’s man Murray was able to find a buyer for the Ring of Protection +1 for 30K GP.   Tariq sought, and found, a large henchman, an ex-legionnaire from Adamas named Lenny.  He wasn’t bright or wise, but was immensely strong and towered over him.  He equipped him with plate armor and commissioned a special backpack he could use to ride on his back.    David commissioned custom Plate mail and a shield with Hera embossed on them, and a staff with Hera’s face for his henchman Julia; Tariq commissioned expensive (with a cloak to cover the skulls on the shoulders) and an expensive staff. 

The XP helped everyone except the mages gain a level.  Luckily for them the party came across a 5 headed hydra on the way back from Adams.  There were able to surprise it while it was snacking on some cows, and it was no match for 4 sets of summoned berserkers. 

The party returned to Muntburg (with 2K GP each worth of lab and library materials for the mages being delivered). The henchmen were given raises and bonuses and remained with their employers.  The party gathered supplies for their next expedition to recover the treasures of the IXth Thulian Legion.

The fist of Zeus had been successful, bringing back thousands of GP worth of crystal.  There were also two additional adventuring parties in town, both from Adamas: the “Crimson Band’ and the “Seekers”.  The Village People did not have any contact with them prior to going into the dungeon.

Muntburg was outgrowing its original walls.  Illyrio arranged to meet with the Bailiff Lambert Cooper of Muntburg about obtaining land for the building of an orphanage outside of the walls.  He rolled poorly during his negotiations and the bailiff wouldn’t let him build a walled compound close to the walls unless he would be willing to have the entire party join the Muntburg militia. Illyrio became frustrated with the negotiations and left after making an enemy of the bailiff.  He moved outside of the gates into a neighborhood of mud huts outside of the town gates.  Illyrio promised that he would see Muntburg burn to the ground. 

Illyrio convinced Dave that the bailiff was corrupt and asked for something he couldn’t possibly deliver.  Dave reached out to meet with the Legate to discuss the issue, but was unable to meet prior to the next planned expedition. They left for Dwimmermount the morning of November 3rd

Hardrada
Patreon SupporterSinister Stone of Sakkara BackerLairs And Encounters Backer
Joined: 2015-06-28 02:40
I _love_ how good reaction rolls are always "situation normal" while bad reaction rolls indicate some sort of corruption, defect, or nefarious purpose. This is true even when all rolls are in the open.
Alex
The Autarch
Joined: 2011-06-30 18:10

I hadn't noticed that, but that's hilarious.

jojodogboy
Patreon Supporter
Joined: 2017-09-04 12:05

Session 3 Part 3 -Dwimmermount Expedition 3 - search for the spoils of the IXth legion

Village People:

  • Tariq the Harvester – Lvl 4 Mage (Necromancer) – Black Lore of Zahar, Alchemy (x2), Healing, Soothsaying – INT +3, CON -1, WIS +1, CHA +1. New Spells – Magic missile – (Cackling skull of force) - Extremely short necromancer wearing expensive black robes with skull on the shoulders (covered by a cloak in town) – has wand of magic missiles.
    • Trained Hawk #2
    • Lenny Davos – Lvl 1 Fighter – (Legionary) – FS (Weapon +Shield), Siege Engineering – STR+2, INT -1, WIS -1, DEX +1, CON +1, CHA +1 – Heavily muscled former soldier from Adamas, wears Plate +Shield, fighting w/ spear or a silver short sword. 
  • Eduardo aka ‘Keyser Soze’ – Lvl 5 Thief (Cat Burglar) – Cat Burglary, Gambling, Precise Shooting, Lip Reading - DEX +2, CON -2, WIS +1, CHA +1 – Budding real estate tycoon and mastermind. Wears leather and armed with Imperial Legion X-Bow
    • Ukla the Quick – Lvl 2 Barbarian (Pit Fighter)–Running, Combat Reflexes, Gambling – STR +1, CON +2, CHA -1 – Ex-gladiator turned adventurer – fights with net and trident.
    • ‘Shemp’ Fellippe – Lvl 1 Thief (carouser apprentice) – Labor (cook), Craft (brewer), Eavesdropping – WIS +1, DEX +3, CON -1, CHA +1
    • Boy – War dog
    • Girl – War dog
  • Dave ‘the Hermit’ Carrin – Lvl 5 Cleric (Hermit) of Hera – Laying on Hands, Naturalism, Command – STR +1, DEX -1, INT -1 CON+1, WIS +1, CHA -1. Wears custom made plate (with symbol of Hera) + large shield with Embossing of Hera on the front (+2 AC and enc.)  Simple, uneducated, but intuitive.
    • Julia Feny – Lvl 2 Priestess (Medican) of Hera – Laying on Hands, Healing x2 – WIS +1, CON +1, CHA +2, ambitious, charismatic novice with a good heart (in town)
    • Jimmy Bakerson – lvl 0 Laborer – Endurance, Labor (janitor), Animal Husbandry, Labor (farmer), caretaker of the temple of Hera (in town)
  • Jace – Lvl 4 Mage (Elementalist) – Elementalism (fire), Naturalism, Alchemy, Magical Engineering – STR+1, DEX -1, INT +2. Spells – New spell -  Mirror Image (smoke resulting in copies) – has wand of fear and wears flame red robes with a ruby tipped staff.  Quiet pyromaniac.
    • Red Hawk
  • Illyrio Sicarus – Lvl 4 Assassin (Bravo) – Fighting Style (two weapons), Intimidation, Acrobatics – STR +2, DEX +1, CON +2, CHA +1 - Wears leather
    • ‘Ghost’ - Guard Wolf – white w/ blue eyes.

Armed with 500 ft. of rope, the party decided to tackle the elevator shaft in to find the remains of the spoils of the IXth Legion.  The party soon found out that although the treasure was good, the dangers were signiciantly increased in the Halls of Lesser Secrets.  

They made it to the elevator shaft without any problem.  Eduardo managed to scout at the base of the elevator before helping everyone except for Shemp and the donkey climb down.  They opened the door to find 3 giant tropical spiders approaching down a 20’ wide hallway.  They were able to dispatch them, but the noise attracted a minotaur patrol, who opened a nearby door and attacked.  The party took them down as well (Illyrio managing to successfully tumble behind one for a backstab), stopping to remove the minotaur horns.

The party hit a wall when they were unable to decipher the meaning of notes on the map near an area that turned out to be part of a teleportation maze/trap.  They backtracked and explored a corner of the level.  They discovered:

  • The frog like Ranine - Jace charmed one,  the party was scared  away by the threats of a Ranine Priest
  • Strange floating blue spheres
  •  A Termaxian mummy, the sight of which struck Eduardo and Ukla dumb with fear.  
  • A magically dark/lit  room with writing all over the walls.
  • Conufsion causing frescos - causing Illyrio to speak gibberish before attacking the party
  • shadows drawn by the sounds of intra-party conflict; a significant problem as they were immune to normal weapons.

Only the combination of Jace's desperate last stand with his fear wand and bad rolls by the shadows avoided a total team wipe.  They managed to get back to town with a decent haul (6K EP, +1 ring of protection, a treasure map, and a high quality shield), but with Ukla and Eduardo down for the count.  They also learned the extent of the face's knowledge, which should be helpful in crafting questions in the future.  

The Village People finally realized the importance of magical weapons.  The value of a skilled thief was also magnified when the mummy's curse took him away.  We ended the session as they walked into town.  

 

 

jojodogboy
Patreon Supporter
Joined: 2017-09-04 12:05

Yeah,bad rolls = omg unfair, good rolls = business as usual.  In this case the PC rolled.  In fairness to the pcs, they knew that it was fair, but Dave the Hermit is gullible, and Illyrio was exaggerating " in  character."

 

jojodogboy
Patreon Supporter
Joined: 2017-09-04 12:05

Interlude – Rufus’ Raiders Spring Break Mission

  • Rufus Hypnol– Lvl 3 Barbarian Death Dealer – Ambushing, Survival, Running, Armor Training STR +2, CHA -1, Switching to plate mail and armed with a two handed sword – Would be gangster
  • Dante – Lvl 4 Assassin (Assassin-For-Hire) – Precise Shooting, Bargaining, Fighting Style (two weapons), Weapon Finesse, Intimidation – STR +1, INT +2 WIS -2, DEX +3, CON -1, wearing custom skull helmet, Plate mail, short sword, war hammer +1, unearthly appearance (corpselike skin, black and red eyes) – death worshipping assassin.
    • War dog - Finn, Hunting dog - Scout, Guard Wolf - Balto
    • Murphy aka Telemachus – 1st lvl freed slave fighter – Labor, (others TBD), STR +2, WIS -2, CON +1
  • Lazarus Deathbrood – Lvl 1 Cleric Exorcist – Sensing Evil, and Intimidation, INT -1, WIS +1, DEX +2, CON +1 CHA +1 Wears Banded Plate under a black cassock, armed with shield and sickle or a scythe, Budding Cleric of Death.

The session began with character creation for a new player.  For the first time, both characters rolled by a player had over -3 or more total attribute bonuses.  I allowed him to re-roll.  He choose a cleric and rolled up the exorcist template. 

Since it had been a while since Rufus had played and Rufus had not yet received his share of the sale of a +1 ring of protection, we ret-conned what he had been doing.  Rufus met with Boss Horner of the Dock Boys, who praised him as a good earner.  Boss Horner agreed to talk to his Capo into allowing Rufus to invest 1800 gp in one of his casinos in Adamas (for a 200 gp ‘finder’s fee).  Rufus also spent some time in Adamas learning how to be a gangster (spent days towards learning Profession-Gangster).

Meanwhile Dante and Lazarus wanted to build a temple/fortress of Death in Muntburg.  They arranged a meeting with Bailiff Cooper with Corporal Peiru.  However Lazarus rolled a 3 on his reaction roll, and the Bailiff (probably tired of adventurers bugging him), immediately threw them out of his office.  Lazarus urged Dante to try to intimidate him, but Dante thought better of starting a fight with the entire town. 

The Raiders prepared to enter the mountain.  Isaac told them of a need to investigate a stairway near the moon pool operation, as there were undead coming up from below.  Despite Rufus and Dante having skills geared towards being lightly armored, they both decided to go into the dungeon heavily armored.  (Dante forgot he had a wolf, so the wolf remained outside.)

       The Raiders decided to use the main entrance into the mountain (to ask the stone head a question).  When they entered they found a mercenary company, the Crimson Band, led by the Chandler brothers (and their adventuring group).  Daniau Chandler demanded proof of a permit to enter the dungeon, which they provided.  They found out that the Crimson Band received their authorization from the Despot of Adamas, not the local legate from Muntburg.  The party tried to hire some additional men to travel with them, but the smallest group he would hire out (10 men and a member of the Crimson Band), were more meat shields then the party wanted to handle.  Additional questions from Daniau were cut short from a growling intimidation check from the red-eyed, death mask wearing Dante (total intimidation roll of 13). 

They travelled to the stone head and asked about the current residents of level 2b (by showing the head their map of the stairs).  The head replied that it didn’t know.  They made it to the unexplored portion of the 1st level without any wandering monsters.  They ended up at a door where they heard voices complaining about guard duty.  They opened the door to find spirit guards talking.  They ignored them and found their bones.   Lazarus left the bones instead of collecting them for burial. 

They entered the next room and found several marble pedestals. In front of each were metal plates.  There was also a stairway going down and many fire beetles. As combat ensued, it was clear what a difference a few levels make.   The one-time party killer beetles was merely a speed bump for the party.  After experimenting a little, they were able to figure out that the pedestals contained visions of the past, telling a story of the taking of Dwimmermount by the Thulians, later showing mages commanding armies and a group standing around a giant metal head of Terms Termax and speaking. 

The party found the stairs to the Reliquary (as the head called the level).  They found the scene of an old battle at the bottom of the stairs.  Lazarus used his sense evil power and sensed an evil presence WSW from their location.  The party agreed to head that way.  They travelled through a room filled with six columns, each covered with a letter or symbol and an abstract sculpture at the end.  Dante pressed the letters in sequence, spelling out a word.  As he pressed each letter, it lit up. As he completed the word he felt divine energy flow through his body.  Luckily, he was able to handle the energy (rolled a 17 on his save vs. spells) and found himself imbued with the power to cast detect magic 1x daily.  Lazarus tried the same and found himself with the ability to cast sanctuary 1x daily.  Rufus decided not to press his luck and didn’t touch anything. 

They entered an empty chamber with exits to the north, where they assumed the evil sensed by Lazarus was waiting behind a closed door, and the west.  They checked the passage to the west to clear it before battling the evil and found a room filled with many ruined books.  They spent several turns searching and found a book in surprisingly good condition on one of the shelves lining the wall.  Pulling on the book caused the entire bookshelf to open revealing a small room containing several ancient books and scrolls in good shape.  Dante used his newly found power and found that one of the books was magical; a book that explained a way to gain inner wisdom.  They snatched it up.  They decided that the remaining 300 lbs of books were valuable but decided to come back after they took care of whatever evil lay near. 

As they backtracked to face the evil to the north, several members of the party (other than the Rufus, whose barbarian instincts served him well) were surprised by 2 horse sized segmented worms.  They attacked, paralyzing Dante and Lazarus.  Rufus and the dogs attacked.  Murphy dragged Dante’s body to safety before attacking.  The worms moved on to Murphy and one of the dogs, paralyzing them as well.  Rufus briefly thought of fleeing (he was almost 4th level after all and didn’t want to start over) but changed his mind when he realized he would not be able to get past the worms.  Rufus and the last dog became paralyzed, but not before killing one of the worms.  Luckily Lazarus was able to beat the worm’s initiative roll and his paralysis wore off before the worm could ingest anyone.  Lazarus was able to survive long enough for Dante to awaken and they killed the last worm. 

Shaken but unhurt from the encounter, they rested for a turn before opening the door to the north to find a winged demonic statue on a large pedestal in the middle of the room.  As they approached the statue, it came to life (a gargoyle) and they attacked.  It was able to fly, making it difficult to fight.  They also found that it was unaffected by their missile weapons (they bounced off).  Dante had Murphy use his shield to boost his jump, leapt up, and attacked the monster with his magical hammer.  It worked, injuring the beast.  Unable to affect it with weapons, Rufus changed tactics as well.  He jumped up and grabbed the creature, throwing it to the ground.  After taking a few blows, he and Lazarus were able to hold it down for Dante to smash it with his magical hammer.  

Finding no treasure, the party decided to get some help from Issac’s men near the moon pool to bring the books back to town.  They made it back up to the first level, but on the way through the hallways they barely escaped a falling patch of green slime.  They threw a flask of lit oil on it and turned away, making it safely through a series of rooms to Fabricio, the leader of Issac’s moon pool garrison.  He agreed to lend a few men to carry the books for a small fee.  They retrieved the books and made it back to Muntburg without any trouble. 

The Raiders took the books, along with the first season’s shipment of moon pool water and azoth lined flasks to Adamas for Issac’s henchman Murray to sell.  The sale of the recovered books resulted in enough XP for everyone to raise in level.  The party also decided to sell the magical book, which was valued at 25,000 gp, but they were not able to sell it the first month. 

 

jojodogboy
Patreon Supporter
Joined: 2017-09-04 12:05

(For the first 2 hours, all we did was non-combat, non-exploration, campaign activities.  I never imagined that the players and I would remain engaged, but it was awesome.  I must figure out how to better address multiple player interactions and include everyone. I might move some of the campaign stuff to email or forums.) 

Session 4 – Part 1

Village People:

  • Tariq the Harvester – Lvl 4 Mage (Necromancer) – Black Lore of Zahar, Alchemy (x2), Healing, Soothsaying – INT +3, CON -1, WIS +1, CHA +1. Extremely short necromancer wearing expensive black robes with skull on the shoulders (covered by a cloak in town) – has wand of magic missiles. New Spell – Deathless Minion – (no spell signature yet)
    • Trained Hawk #2
    • Lenny Davos – Lvl 1 Fighter – (Legionary) – FS (Weapon +Shield), Siege Engineering – STR+2, INT -1, WIS -1, DEX +1, CON +1, CHA +1 – Heavily muscled former soldier from Adamas, wears Plate +Shield, fighting w/ spear or a silver short sword. 

 

  • Eduardo aka ‘Keyser Soze’ – Lvl 5 Thief (Cat Burglar) – Cat Burglary, Gambling, Precise Shooting, Lip Reading - DEX +2, CON -2, WIS +1, CHA +1 – Budding real estate tycoon and mastermind. Wears leather and armed with Imperial Legion X-Bow
    • Ukla the Quick – Lvl 2 Barbarian (Pit Fighter)–Running, Combat Reflexes, Gambling – STR +1, CON +2, CHA -1 – Ex-gladiator turned adventurer – fights with net and trident.
    • ‘Shemp’ Fellippe – Lvl 1 Thief (carouser apprentice) – Labor (cook), Craft (brewer), Eavesdropping – WIS +1, DEX +3, CON -1, CHA +1
    • Boy – War dog
    • Girl – War dog

 

  • Dave ‘the Hermit’ Carrin – Lvl 5 Cleric (Hermit) of Hera – Laying on Hands, Naturalism, Command – STR +1, DEX -1, INT -1 CON+1, WIS +1, CHA -1. Wears custom made plate (with symbol of Hera) + large shield with Embossing of Hera on the front (+2 AC and enc.)  Simple, uneducated, but intuitive.
    • Julia Feny – Lvl 2 Priestess (Medican) of Hera – Laying on Hands, Healing x2 – WIS +1, CON +1, CHA +2, ambitious, charismatic novice with a good heart (in town)
    • Jimmy Bakerson – lvl 0 Laborer – Endurance, Labor (janitor), Animal Husbandry, Labor (farmer), caretaker of the temple of Hera (in town)

 

  • Jace – Lvl 4 Mage (Elementalist) – Elementalism (fire), Naturalism, Alchemy, Magical Engineering – STR+1, DEX -1, INT +2. has wand of fear and wears flame red robes with a ruby tipped staff.  Quiet pyromaniac. New Spell – Hands of Stone Strength (Ogre Power) – Target becomes imbued with the power of an earth elemental – Skin hardening and turning the color of polished granite and hands becoming stone.  
    • Red Hawk

 

  • Illyrio Sicarus – Lvl 4 Assassin (Bravo) – Fighting Style (two weapons), Intimidation, Acrobatics – STR +2, DEX +1, CON +2, CHA +1 - Wears leather
    • ‘Ghost’ - Guard Wolf – white w/ blue eyes.

The Village People ended the last session with two of their members struck dumb with terror.  Their first priority was to travel to Adamas to return them to normal and spend their hard earned treasure. 

After planning how they were going to lead the dumbstruck Ukla and Eduardo to Adamas, they took it slow and sure.  After a quick trip to the Temple of Hera, both were returned to their senses.  Ukla briefly considered leaving Eduardo’s service, but he remained loyal. 

Eduardo’s first act was to look for a dwarven brewer to hire to improve his tavern’s business in Muntburg.  Lucky for him it was Dwarven Beerfest in Adamas (had him roll % to see how many dwarven brewmasters were in town.  He rolled in the 90s, hence Beerfest!).  He was able to secure a long time contract with a prominent Dwarven Brewing Clan from the dwarven city of Vol Darul  to the south.  This deal provides him with a permanent +10% to his profit roll every month! (a 3d6 roll).  He and Ukla spent most of their time gambling, although he did find out the potential cost of commissioning living panther statues with true seeing to serve as silent guardians for the tavern. 

The two mages had never studied after advancing to 4th level.  Jace went to the leader of his the Elemntalist College in Adamas, Mage Angelica Ancel.  After making arrangements to purchase additional books and lab materials for shipment to Muntburg, Tariq travelled with Lenny to Yethylreom to study with his teacher, a necromancer Enchanter.  

Dave was busy.  He had business back in Muntburg with Legate Verodart, but that wasn’t for a few weeks.  Before Dave left Muntburg, he had spoken with his henchperson Julia about expanding his church to the neighboring villages near Muntburg.  She travelled with him to Adamas to try to recruit 3 priests/priestesses of Hera to join his church.  She was successful, and 3 preistesses joined the growing church.  He also hired every free engineer in Adamas to quickly build small chapels in all 7 villages under the authority of the Legate of Muntburg.  He only had 3 weeks before the harvest festival of Hera.  He spent extra gold, but was able to have them finished in time.  The plan was that the 4 priestesses would rotate to cover the various chapels around the area. 

Meanwhile Illyrio decided to invest some money into a trading venture.  He did a little market research and decided to trade between Adamas and Yethlereom.  He spent 3 weeks finding merchants, renting barges/wagons, and travelling.  Making only approx. 150 gp profit, he decided to hire a smuggler, merchant, or venturer henchman before his next venture.

Dave travelled back to Muntburg to meet with the Legate on behalf of Illyrio.  He also brought back Julia and her 3 new henchwomen priestesses.   Legate Verodart welcomed Dave, thanked him for the free miracles for the town, and apologized for his Bailiff’s paranoia (‘it’s his job to be suspicious’).   He agreed to let Illyrio and Dave build their orphanage (AKA Illyrio’s school for wayward assassins) and they could have the land for free.  He had 2 conditions, 1) they had to agree to come to Muntburg’s defense if attacked, and 2) they had to pay 500 to 1000 gp towards improvements to the area outside of the gates, which he would match out of his personal funds.  The money would be used to pave roads, build wells, etc.  Dave agreed.    Finally, Dave arranged to provide plenty of food and drink for the harvest festival (using Eduardo’s tavern to cater the event).    He travelled back to Adamas to meet the rest of the party.

              The party had planned to give the (likely magical) shield to the Despot of Adamas as a gift to gain favor.  Unfortunately, they had no direct connection.   Illyrio spent a week and 80 gp (we did a single roll determining the time and the cost) and managed to get a spot in line while the despot was holding court.  Despot Cheron was attended by Bishop Saidon of Zeus and Mage General Renfred Fidlo. They presented not only a shield from the fabled IXth Legion, but also a Thulian crossbow.  The party (minus Tariq, who was still studying in Yethlrreom) made a favorable impression.  The despot was interested in their tale of the dungeon (although they left out the part about their treasure map).  As a result, they received payment for their gift (5,000 GP).   The despot told them of another party that had purchased the right to plunder the dungeon and form a mercenary company, the Crimson Band.  The party told them of Isaac’s deal with the Legate and the Despot made it clear that he approved the Village People’s exploration of the dungron and recognized Isaac’s deal with the Legate of Muntburg (both in writing). 

              Bishop Saidon spoke briefly of his days as an adventurer before asking about any spoons they may have found.  Brother Dave also talked to him of the friction between the church of Hera in Muntburg and Curate Louys of Zeus.  The bishop assured them that he would talk to the Curate and the party was invited to a royal feast later that night (at a table in the back of course). Eduardo managed to use his skill in reading lips to pick up some valuable information regarding an illicit affair between a (female) senator and another senator’s adult son.  Eduardo decidide to keep the secret in reserve to use at a later time. 

              The entire party managed to make it back to Muntburg in time for the harvest fest (Tariq having no encounters on the road).  The festival was a big success, except for a suspicious fire and a few fights that broke out.  The party prepared to head into the dungeon two days later. 

bobloblah
Patreon SupporterDomains At War BackerDomains At War ContributorSinister Stone of Sakkara BackerSinister Stone of Sakkara ContributorLairs And Encounters BackerLairs And Encounters Contributor
Joined: 2013-03-22 16:16

I love how you've managed to really get the party embedded in the world around them - that's awesome! My own group has (sort of) two main parties, affectionately known as the A-team and the B-team (they're a creative lot). A-team was the first group chronologically, with the highest level characters as a result, and they've mostly been a wandering (often fleeing) band of deadly vagrants. Admittedly, they pissed off some pretty nasty people, which has required the ability to relocate on short notice, but I'm seeing the far newer B-team (which includes some new players) getting much more involved in the surrounding world, even going so far as trying to set up shop in a bandit stronghold they captured. There's something deeply satisfying about one's players buying in enough to put down roots, and your party appears to be doing so in spades...anyway, your campaign sounds great! Really enjoying the write-ups. Thanks for taking the time to post them.

jojodogboy
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Joined: 2017-09-04 12:05

Really enjoying the write-ups. Thanks for taking the time to post them.


-bobloblah

Thanks.  I was inspired by the other campaign write-ups here (yours included).  It also helps to remember what happened if there is a gap between sessions (and in my attempts to weave all of the random stufff into some kind of narrative).

BTW are both your parties actually seperate groups of players, or the same core of players choosing to play a different group depending on who shows up that night?

bobloblah
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Joined: 2013-03-22 16:16
More the latter, although until recently there were players who were really only in one or the other. Unfortunately, the group has experienced a real-world rupture for a variety of reasons, so for the recent past it has basically been the same players. On the plus side, it means I'm recruiting again. :-)
jojodogboy
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Joined: 2017-09-04 12:05

Session 4 – Part 2

On their way out of town, Peiru Danthan of the watch told Eduardo that there was a white haired adventurer who came back from the mountain who had symptoms like Eduardo and Ukla had when they exited the dungeon.  The party entered the dungeon with their animals, Ukla, Lenny, and Shemp.  They entered the mountain through the front door and ran into the Crimson Band.  When confronted, they showed them the order from the Despot of Adamas.  They also offered to sell their map of the first level to the band once they got a chance to make a copy. 

They made it to the elevator without issue.  They used the key to lock the door after entereing, leaving the animals and Shemp to guard the door and went down the shaft.  They finally figured out the teleportation traps.  On the way to the hidden treasure room on the map they found a room filled with webs (avoided), a temple to death, and a room with a giant Terms statue.  Right before they reached their destination, Tariq waited at a door to see what happened if they waited in a teleporting trap room.  They were actually surprised when they were teleported to a strange room.  By amazing luck, they were all teleported to the same room (that’s my story, and I’m sticking to it.  Not DM error, nope, just luck). 

They heard battle to the west.  They found minotaurs fighting a group of short sword wielding humans.  They choose to aid the humans.   During the fight, a summoned zombie struck a human figure, seemingly with no effect.  Fearing they made the wrong decision, they helped finish off the minotaurs anyway. 

After the fight, the party discovered that the leader of the group, Kriska, was willing to meet them and ask for assistance against the minotaurs.  They also found out that they could see in the dark and had lived their entire life in the dungeon.  A second group appeared, however they were ratmen!  The party realized that the ‘humans’ were actually wererats.  They told them they would meet later.  They waited for the teleportation room reset and ended up in 3 groups all over the level.  By tracking light sources, and yelling, they were able to meet.  As they neared  their goal, Ukla noticed a group approaching from a side hallway. (Despite raising chance of a random encounter to 3 in 6 and several rolls, the party eas lucky and had NO encounters during this perios).

There was a group of 2 armed men, a lightly armored woman in the back, and two men and a woman dressed in clothing in the middle (apparently mages). One of the fighters matched the description of the person Corpoal Danthan of the Muntburg Watch identified as the person struck dumb with terror.  A red headed female mage was the apparent leader, who introduced the group as the Heralds of the Silver Dawn.  With them was Shemp. 

Seeing Shemp, the party knew that their animals were unlikely to have survived.  The mage identified herself as Alina.  After some initial parley, she goaded her party to attack, but Shemp begged her not to fight.  As they settled down and agreed to go their separate ways, one of the mages suddenly cast a spell without making a sound!  (silent casting) The party was surprised and several members, including some casters, went down (I had decided at the beginning of the campaign to allow saves vs. sleep (-1 per lvl of caster) when the party cast it against monsters, so I used the same rules here).  Luckily Tariq made his save and managed to win initiative for the next round.  He summoned undead berserkers which kept the fighters from slaying the sleeping party members.   

The Heralds rolled incredibly badly (all in the open), and the party rolled well.  The party managed to awaken before anyone was slain.  Making things worse for the Heralds, Tariq was able to summon a ghostly spirit which possessed one of the mages (charm person spell).  The fighters were slain, Shemp was wrestled down, and the remaining 3 heralds fled (in the middle of the battle). 

The sounds of the battle attracted the attention of many frog men in a nearby room, who immediately attacked, surprising some.  The party handled those creatures relatively easily, as there were several elemental and undead berserkers remaining from the last fight.  Although Lenny was hit with a fear spell, the party ended up wounded but victorious with two shaman frogman prisoners.  (We ended the session there, but the next session immediately picked up the round after the frog-man fight).

bobloblah
Patreon SupporterDomains At War BackerDomains At War ContributorSinister Stone of Sakkara BackerSinister Stone of Sakkara ContributorLairs And Encounters BackerLairs And Encounters Contributor
Joined: 2013-03-22 16:16

Interesting that you added a saving throw for Sleep. What made you decide to do so (other than it being the "tactical nuke" of old-school play)?

My own players are utterly terrified (and rightly so!) of that spell.

jojodogboy
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Joined: 2017-09-04 12:05

Interesting that you added a saving throw for Sleep. What made you decide to do so (other than it being the "tactical nuke" of old-school play)?


-bobloblah

I ran ACKs as a series of one-shots.  There were 3 mages in the party.  At first it was for a sense of balance netween spells.  It was o.k. that 1st level spells had different strenths, but sleep was SO much more effective. (Spells based on templates or random rolls).   I felt bad for the mages who DIDN'T have sleep, so I decided to give it a save mechanic - save vs. spell - caster level. 

I figured that the most common foe that sleep was used on (1 hd creatures who save as fighters) had only a 10% chance of a save.  The players, coming from 5e and Castles and Crusades, didn't know any better.  Sleep still was a tactical nuke, but now maybe 1 foe would save.   It was the spell of choice, until one of the players managed to learn summon beserkers . . .

bobloblah
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Joined: 2013-03-22 16:16

Indeed! Kudos to Alex for coming up with a spell comparable to Sleep, i.e. Summon Berserkers (I actually think Charm Person is in the same ballpark).

GMJoe
Joined: 2013-01-04 12:56

I'm guessing making wererats immune to attacks in human form was to give the players an early tell that something was up?

jojodogboy
Patreon Supporter
Joined: 2017-09-04 12:05

I didn't remember exactly (I'm a little behind in my summaries) but I 'm pretty sure one of the mages intentionally had a berserker attack one of the 'humans' for one round, in case they decided to wipe everyone out.  

As for weapon immunity in human form, that's just a house rule (all lycanthropes have weapon immunity in human form).  The players assumed they were all undead until after the fight.  

jojodogboy
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Joined: 2017-09-04 12:05

Session 5 – part 1

The session began with the party still in the dungeon.  After a round spent talking, Illyrio, Jace, and Ukla tried to head off the Heralds before they made it out of the dungeon, Jace taking Tariq’s wand.  They ran to the elevator, taking a different route than the path of the Herald’s retreat.  While they were gone, Tariq spoke to the charmed mage.  His name was Nantier, and he made it clear that there was no love lost between he and Alina, the leader of the Heralds that Illyrio was hunting.

Illyrio’s group made it to the elevator and could see 3 figures climbing up the rope; about 60 feet up.  The lead climber, the thief, had a hooded lantern hanging from her waist.  Alina was next and the remaining mage followed up the rear.  Jace targeted Alina, she was struck, and she fell.  (I used the climbing rules from Veins of the Earth).  She also caused Betan (the mage beneath her) have to roll.  He didn’t fall, but slid 10 feet down and was frozen in fear at 50 ft. up.  After initiative was rolled, before the party could act, Betan suddenly fell as the rope was cut by the thief, who managed to climb to safety in the dark (after dousing her lantern).  Rolling damage (1d6 x 1d10) for the fall for both mages resulted in vastly different results.  Alina landed on her head, her brains splattering all over the floor (48 damage), while Betan’s fall was cushioned by landing on the corpse of Alina (6 damage).  (this severly limited Illyrio’s plans to bring Alina back to life using the pool of life on the second level, only to repeatedly kill her for vengeance for his dead wolf).  Betan immediately surrendered.

The party tied up the mage, searched him, and striped Alina’s body.  They asked Betan what everything did, which matched Jace’s Magical Engineering rolls. The loot included a ring of protection, a cloak of protection, a magical demon headed dagger, and a potion of ESP.  They made it back to the party.

Meanwhile Tariq and Eduardo found out from Shemp and the charmed mage (Nantier) more about the Heralds and their equipment:

  • One of the fighters and the thief were just mercenaries, the other fighter was a true believer in the vision of Terms Termax. 
  • The merc fighter (Philippe) had a very strange broad sword without a point and a split in the middle.  Per Nantier it was apparently a magical sword called ‘Swordbreaker’ (which Illyrio claimed).
  • The fire in the church of Hera during the harvest festival was set by Alina.
  • They used magic to open the door to the elevator, put the animals to sleep, and killing the dogs, wolf and hawks. 
  • Nantier was looking for his opportunity to get rid of Alina anyway.
  • There were 2 magical shields (Dave got one), magical chain (Ukla), and Nantier’s scroll of Clairvoyance (which they let him keep).

The party went into the room where the frog men were, finding 4 pools of water.  The water was potable but tasted bad.

*** Spoilers ahead *****

 They opened the secret door marked on their map and found the remains of the treasures of the IXth Legion. There were various trinkets, some chests with gold silver and copper, several empty chests, and a smaller coffer containing a humanoid reptilian skull.  When the box the opened, the skull turned in its velvet lined box to face Eduardo.   He immediately closed it and gave it to Jace. 

The party spoke to the frogmen shaman they had captured.  They spoke rough common.  They explained that the party had already met their leader.  The party released them, telling them to return to their group and let them know they would agree to non-aggression.  The larger shaman demanded some of the treasure in return.  The party gave them some silver in a small chest and they agreed to leave (their luck continued as rolls went their way and the ranine didn’t come back in force to take it all). 

Jace had to use up an elemental strength spell (ogre power) but the party managed to get the treasure to the elevator.  They had to figure out how to get it up the elevator shaft. (Forgot to mention in the past summary, the PCs found a secret room near the elevator with instructions in a strange language.  Unable to read them, they took some paper and charcoal to make a rubbing of the raised letters, planning to take it to Adamas for translation.)

*** End spoilers

Eduardo took his time and was able to climb back up without a problem.  Luckily most of the rope was still there at the top (another lucky roll).  One more spell later resulted in everyone getting up safely. 

In Muntburg, the party went to the local lawyer to draft a non-compete/peace accord between the Village People and Rufus’s Raiders.  They also met Richal, a member of the Seekers, one of the competing adventurer bands.  They asked him to translate the rubbing from the elevator.  He could not, but suggested that they take it to the Azure tower in Adamas, where they could find someone to cast read languages. Richal did ask about the dungeon and inquired about maps or other info.  Dave also asked a young mage working as a scribe to make a couple of copies of their map of the first level (one to sell to the crimson band and one to sell to the seekers).

The end of the month resulted end of month expenses and income.  They Village People each received their share of Isaac’s Moon Pool operation.  Eduardo had a lot of bonuses to his roll and rolled well.  The Dwarven ale contract with the paid off in a major way, as taverns and Inns on nearby towns of Gloris and Duros set up purchasing agreements for the basic dwarven ale, effectively doubling his investment value in the business.

Legate Verodart asked to meet with Dave.  He offered his thanks for the miracles provided by the church of Hera for free.  He also told of his appreciation for the Harvest festival.  As a result, the Legate offered the church of Hera a 25% share of the tithe from his personal lands.  Dave thanked the Legate for his generosity. 

Eduardo asked Madam Selena Cooper to set up a meeting with Boss Drake Horner of the Dock Boys.  One was set for Friday December 1st.  The party delivered the maps for a fine fee.  On Friday, Eduardo met with Boss Horner, agreeing that the Dock Boys would leave the inn alone in return for a valuable secret that Eduardo had learned in Adamas (one worth a fair amount of gold).  He agreed to give the Dock Boys any info in the future for a share of the return.  Boss Horner agreed. 

Jace and Tariq identified the magic items (100 gp gem, identify spell, and a roll), finding out that the skull was an ancient lizard man descendant imbued with the spirit of an ancestor.  It spoke an unknown tongue, but had knowledge of certain facts.  It also could indicate directions to a certain location.  The sword was “Swordbreaker”, a +2 sword that gave the user the sunder proficiency for free, and a bonus to break swords and daggers.

In Adamas, Illyrio interviewed Charles Waverman (aka Chucky Wave) a Venturer, but ended up hiring Leo Geotz, a merchant traveler Venturer instead.  Jace purchased a black furred guard wolf with custom barding named ‘Cinder’ and Tariq purchased yet another hawk.  Tariq took on Nantier as a henchman, and Tariq and Jace traded spells with him to obtain sleep (a gas) and knock (hands of force appear to force open check or door).  Tariq agreed to pay for the cost for Nantier to change his repitoire to add choking grasp.  

The party bought some horses and travelled to Adamas to resupply and sell their gains.  They met with the Despot in a much more relaxed setting of an office in his palace.  There they gave him the gifts of the IXth Legion they had recovered.  He paid them the value and invited them to a state dinner on Sunday.  The party attended, however Eduardo was unable to turn up any rumors. 

The Village People made it back to Muntburg.  The prepared for a trip back into the dungeon with the intent to get the elevator to work.

 

jojodogboy
Patreon Supporter
Joined: 2017-09-04 12:05

Moss Massacre

Session 5 Part 2 - Expedition 5

Village People:

  • Tariq the Harvester – Lvl 4 Mage (Necromancer) – Black Lore of Zahar, Alchemy (x2), Healing, Soothsaying – INT +3, CON -1, WIS +1, CHA +1. Extremely short necromancer wearing expensive black robes with skull on the shoulders (covered by a cloak in town) – has wand of magic missiles. New Spell – Sleep – (shoot gas into area). Wears Ring of Protection +1.
    • Nantier – Lvl 3 mage – Quiet Magic, Collegiate Wizardry, Leadership – INT +1, CON +1, DEX +1.  Former member of the Heralds looking for power and prestige. 
    • Trained Hawk #3
    • Lenny Davos – Lvl 2 Fighter – (Legionary) – FS (Weapon +Shield), Siege Engineering – STR+2, INT -1, WIS -1, DEX +1, CON +1, CHA +1 – Heavily muscled former soldier from Adamas, wears Plate + Shield, fighting w/ spear or a silver short sword. 
  • Eduardo aka ‘Keyser Soze’ – Lvl 5 Thief (Cat Burglar) – Cat Burglary, Gambling, Precise Shooting, Lip Reading - DEX +2, CON -2, WIS +1, CHA +1 – Budding real estate tycoon and mastermind. Wears leather and armed with Imperial Legion X-Bow
    • Ukla the Quick – Lvl 2 Barbarian (Pit Fighter)–Running, Combat Reflexes, Gambling – STR +1, CON +2, CHA -1 – Ex-gladiator turned adventurer – fights with net and trident.
  • Dave ‘the Hermit’ Carrin – Lvl 5 Cleric (Hermit) of Hera – Laying on Hands, Naturalism, Command – STR +1, DEX -1, INT -1 CON+1, WIS +1, CHA -1. Wears custom made plate (with symbol of Hera) + large shield with Embossing of Hera on the front (+2 AC and enc.)  Simple, uneducated, but intuitive.
  • Jace – Lvl 4 Mage (Elementalist) – Elementalism (fire), Naturalism, Alchemy, Magical Engineering – STR+1, DEX -1, INT +2. has wand of fear and wears flame red robes with a ruby tipped staff.  Quiet pyromaniac.
    • Cinder – Black guard wolf with custom red leather barding.
  • Illyrio Sicarus – Lvl 4 Assassin (Bravo) – Fighting Style (two weapons), Intimidation, Acrobatics – STR +2, DEX +1, CON +2, CHA +1 - Wears leather
    • Leo Getz – Lvl 1 Venturer – Merchant Traveler – Animal Husbandry, Alertness, Riding. Budding tycoon looking for profit.

The Village People planned a quick trip into the mountain to get the elevator working.  All of the other henchman and hirelings were left in town.  (Shemp was busy with hijinks, Julia with performing miracles. Illyrio wanted to bring Leo into the dungeon to try to get him up to 2nd level ASAP). 

The party made it to the elevator without a problem.  They managed to use the translated rubbings from the metal plates near the elevator to make the elevator work.  After some experimentation they managed to take the elevator platform back up to the 1st level.  They decided to take it up from there.  Using their elevator key to open the strange circular doors, they were hit with a wave of damp fetid air.  The entire level was dimly lit from slowly blinking panels glowing with red light. 

The party reached a door.  Opening it, they found an oddly shaped room with patches of black moss.  The patch of moss nearest the door formed a humanoid shaped and pointed toward Lenny.  He suddenly charged into the room, drawing his weapon.  Ukla was also affected, standing still, speaking gibberish.  one of the mold patches formed a humanoid shape and cast a magic missile spell!  As combat ensued, the party contemplated just closing the door, but Tariq did not want to leave Lenny behind, so Dave and Illyrio entered the room. Ukla, confused, also moved in to attack.  The party found that the mold were easy to kill, but only made an effort to kill the patches near the door, fearful of being attacked and losing their mind.

That was a fatal error, as one of the patches formed a humanoid shape and cast a fireball, killing everyone except for Illyrio, Jace (who made his save), and Tariq (who rolled well on his mortal wounds chart and ended up with his genitals burned off, but with one HP).  They slammed the door.  Tariq and Jace summoned some berserkers who managed to go in, cleared out the room and collected the bodies.  In order to get everyone back to the elevator, Jace cast Elemental Strength on himself and Tariq, and the standing members of the party took the fallen members back to the elevator (except for poor Leo who was incinerated).  They took the time to use the elevator key to reseal the level as they left. Luckily they did not run into any wandering monsters on the way.

Getting back to the 1st floor, they managed to get help from the troops in the moon pool operation and managed to get back into Muntburg.  They quickly healed up at the temple of Hera, got a wagon, and headed over the snowy roads to Adamas.  There they headed to the temples for some quick restore life and limb spells.  Unfortunately, there were only 4 spells available, and they choose to wait a week to raise Nantier.   None of the risen party members were unscathed:

  • Ukla found that his sword arm was possessed with an evil spirit.
  • Eduardo needed a long recovery but awakened to find a small imp whispering dark secrets into his ear.
  • Lenny also needed a long recovery, and other noticed him speaking to an invisible friend (a mischievous sprite familiar).
  • Dave found that all of his hair (including body hair) turned stark white.  Whenever Dave speaks to someone, he inspires a feeling of discomfort as sentient beings feel shame for their past wrongs, hence the -2 to reaction roles.  As I ruled with Dante, there is also a corresponding +1 reaction roll in certain situations (dealing with those of pure heart (e.g. unicorns, virgins, true innocents, certain other members of the clergy, etc.)).
  • Nantier’s spirit did not respond to the call from the mortal plane.  Tariq decided not to try again. 

While they waited for Eduardo to heal, they received great news.  The Ring of Protection +2 for sale in Adamas finally sold on December 24th, 4th months after being offered for sale!  Most of the party leveled up and we ended the session there.

(I had initially ruled that Dave his ears covered with fine white hair (like a horse) and a long flowing mane (as a unicorn) resulting in a -2 to reaction rolls.  I also offered the chance for him to gain feathers around his eye (as an owl) and a slightly beaklike mouth.  He choose the horse option. As I was writing the summary I looked over the tampering with mortality chart and decided that the effect I originally ruled didn’t match the chart listing. I amended my ruling to match the chart and to ensure consistency between parties.)

bobloblah
Patreon SupporterDomains At War BackerDomains At War ContributorSinister Stone of Sakkara BackerSinister Stone of Sakkara ContributorLairs And Encounters BackerLairs And Encounters Contributor
Joined: 2013-03-22 16:16
Ouch! It can all go so very wrong so very quickly - as my group discovered last night. I love the Mortal Wounds results! Should be very interesting.
jojodogboy
Patreon Supporter
Joined: 2017-09-04 12:05

Ouch! It can all go so very wrong so very quickly - as my group discovered last night. I love the Mortal Wounds results! Should be very interesting.

-bobloblah

After your last post I wasn't sure your party was going to get to a town to restore life and limb!

Almost every PC has contributed something to reserve XP, but I include every GP spent on getting drunk, charity, or just looking cool (custom armor or weapons) to add to reserve XP.

The worst part of the team wipe is that they had just started actually USING some magic items when I made them roll saves for hem after the fireball.  Eduardo lost a cloak of protection +1 and Tariq lost a ring of protection +1.  That was 50K XP gone right there.

They'd have been even worse off if they actually had gained any XP that delve, as my rule is that if you die in the dungeon you don't get XP from the delve unless you get back to town alive.