Wednesday, December 24, 2008
Monday, December 22, 2008
Not having to listen to you for once.
Besides that. You should let me out to play and I can do some exploring for you. That way, you and your fellow do-gooders will know what is ahead and won’t have to worry so much.
Yeah, and then you can get into trouble and bring a hoard of beasts and monsters down upon the rest of the group while they sleep and make them have to lose sleep to fight some horror they weren’t expecting and then blame it all on me while you squirrel yourself away in my brain somewhere, safe from the repercussions. No thanks.
You know what you need?
Some uninterrupted sleep?
No. You need some worthwhile, visceral experience. You need to get yourself dirty and explore your adventurous side a little.
Oh, you mean by fighting slews of monsters and trying to save a village from an overwhelming evil?
You sure are cranky when you don’t get your sleep.
*Sigh* Fine. Sleep then. Maybe I can take over and get some experience of my own.
You wouldn’t dare… Reik? You wouldn’t do that to us. Would you? Reik? Answer me. Oh gods in the heavens. (and so E has another fitful night of unfulfilling sleep)
Sunday, December 14, 2008
Friday, December 12, 2008
However, even as the restored sunlight begins to burn off the long-standing mists that shrouded the valley below, their evaporating wisps remind you that though driven off in a gaseous cloud, the Master of Ravenloft still dwells in its dark depths, waiting for you, and filled with hate.
(for your part in lifting the fearful curse from the lands of Barovia, you instantly gain 1 level, putting you at 1 xp into your next level.)
Friday, December 05, 2008
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Wednesday, November 05, 2008
Cursing the need to venture to the Material Plane to find suitable specimens for her garden, she again ponders how she might be able to obtain more interesting subjects for her garden, as the villagers provided by Strahd and his minions don't bring out the true beauty of her creations as well as mortals that are a bit more...spirited.
Game continues Saturday night (the 8th) at my place, and the couch is all yours E.
DM (Dominus Maximus)
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
Monday, October 13, 2008
Lemme know your input guys and dolls, things are moving nicely in the castle and now that it will be getting darker and colder outside I'm hoping it will add to the atmosphere and I'd like to keep the crushing, drowning, and possessing of you guys going soon! :)
Your Illustrious DM
Friday, October 10, 2008
Thursday, October 02, 2008
Sooooo...I would assume that this weekend would be too short notice for everyone (unless you all say differently), and Tiger is N/A next weekend, so I'm looking at October 18th as the most likely date for our next game, barring strenous objection?
Saturday, September 20, 2008
Friday, September 19, 2008
Anyone? Anyone? Please?
Sunday, September 07, 2008
Wednesday, September 03, 2008
There's still a *lot* of the castle left (we covered about 5 out of 80ish rooms) so we won't be just ending as soon as Degolar gets back, but I sort of feel bad about not having him with us for 2 in a row so I leave it up to a vote! And don't ask me to do a poll, I have no idea how to do that!
Tuesday, September 02, 2008
The eladrin wizard Vindaris, his tiefling warlock companion Achemenwhatever, and the busty human warrior Gwenn, along with their personality deficient companions, Yasir, half-elf cleric of Pelor, and Nasir, the halfling rogue, set out upon the King's highway from Fallcrest in search of their mentor Douven Stahl, an arcanist and expert on the folklore of the Nentir Vale (a back country area formerly part of the Empire of Nerath). Along the way they encountered many kobold brigands, whom they dispatched with extreme prejudice. Arriving at the small village of Winterhaven, they learned that Douven had set out some time ago for a purported dragon burial ground rich with treasure to the southeast of the village. They also learned that trade to the village had been disrupted by the kobold activity along the King's Highway, and accepted a commission from Lord Padraig of Winterhaven to deal with the Kobold menace, preferably with a high degree of unnecessary violence. The intrepid adventurers set out from Winterhaven in the general direction of the dragon burial ground and the suspected lair of the kobold bandits. Along the King's Highway, however, they were once again ambushed by a kobold raiding party. Easily dispatching the kobold wyrmpriest that led the party (too easily as it turns out), the group returned to Winterhaven to rest, refit, and further plan their foray to the dragon burial ground and kobold hideout.
Friday, August 22, 2008
Saturday, August 16, 2008
In other exciting news, Pathfinder is now in Beta release, so waste no time in heading over to Paizo and downloading your free, that's right-- free .pdf. One year of play testing of the rules before the final edition is released in August of 09. Check it out and see what you think of version 3.75. (which, as I'm sure I mentioned before is the likely rules set for our future Ptolus campaign). Also new from the folks at Paizo is the Pathfinder Chronicles campaign setting, which I can't wait to get my hands on. Ok, I may wait to get my hands on it since I'm investing myself in 4e for the moment, but I really like the world of Golarion (I think of it as "the new Greyhawk"), and am looking forward to reading the book.
Wow, I really need to get a life.
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
However, I do think the new rules are simpler, and that might be a refreshing change. So, I’m going to forge ahead with my original plan of running a 4e game. I’ve got the first two 4e modules, and I’ll be looking at working them into a homebrew campaign setting. As far as Ptolus goes, well, that can wait until I’m back in KC permanently, and it can also wait until the Pathfinder rules are playtested and finalized sometime next year (ditto for Rise of the Runelords, and besides the Captain© has expressed an interest in running some Golarion adventures as well...). So, the question becomes—when?
Here’s my plan. If anyone is available the night before Sake and Samurai, I thought we might get together to just play with the 4e system—just run through some basic combat, probably the encounters in the DMG—not start an adventure or campaign. Then, on some weekend TBD, I can come into town and start the adventure, and maybe we can schedule a time over Christmas to get in a couple of games. Of course, we need to figure out exactly who will be playing (we need to keep it manageable).
Sunday, August 10, 2008
As to next time we talked around the table and everyone seems cool with September 6th, the weekend after S&S. Does this work for you Degolar? The weekend before S&S is a no go for a lot of folks so this would be the best date if it works for you, just let me know.
Good night all,
Saturday, August 09, 2008
So, how upset would everyone be if I backed out on my pledge to DM the first 4e game? Not that I've definitely decided to, but honestly, I'm more excited about Rise of the Runelords and Ptolus. I have the first two 4e modules which I could pass on to someone else if they wanted to run a 4e game.
Thursday, August 07, 2008
Now on to the blurb. A quick note about it. As we broke last time we (me) were pretty sleepy so I sort of spat out some stuff about the Ecatarine Husk that while technically true, wasn't complete or roleplayed in the slightest; mostly so you would have a stopping point to start at the castle this game, but I think it would behoove you to see a bit more of the action after the hag/saint died, to prepare you, and to give you some clue as to the future.
This presumes that you returned to down and asked after what the hag hinted at with her dying words, that you would need to take their combined heartstones to the 'Ecatarine Husk' in order to break Strahd's hold on the land for good. After asking about you make your way to Raerin, the blind priest of St Cuthbert, who relates the following:
The aged cleric leans back in his seat, brow furrowing over closed, sightless eyes, "Madam Eva...was one of the hags that blighted our land. I would not have guessed it. We all had thought she was one of the Vistani, come from outside lands to Barovia, but it turns out she had been here all along, eh? The more I consider it, the more the truth of the matter becomes more clear. Were I a psychic of the notable power that the villagers granted her, I certainly would not have come to so dark a land as ours! Plus, living on the outskirts of the Vistani encampment would have allowed her easy access to slip away in the night to haunt the land or return to her former shrine."
"It is just another crime Strahd has to answer for, corrupting those three poor souls who's existence was dedicated to the protection of this region's lands. The more I consider her final words the more my old memory dredges up. The library over in the temple of the Raven had been the most extensive in the area, excepting the one I presume Strahd keeps in the castle. Before the light left my eyes, I had read through the bulk of the temple's collection, and I seem to recall there being something...the phrase 'Ecatarine' stirs a mote in my mind. Unfortunately, with Danovich's madness, I'm afraid he destroyed or allowed to fall to ruin most of the tomes in his possession. I had the remainder brought here by my acolytes after you dealt with poor Danovich and the twisted abomination he had made of his son's body. You are all welcome to go through it if you choose for more clues regarding the saint's final words."
Wednesday, August 06, 2008
On a related note, our following game falls on Labor Day weekend. I also have plans for the weekend that will prevent my participation that night. I'm thinking for that one we have enough time to reschedule, though.
Saturday, August 02, 2008
Tuesday, July 29, 2008
The faint, repetitive clank of metal tapping against metal rang through the dervish’s head as he staggered blindly through the dark, muggy forest. He had no recollection of how he got there, or what had happened to his clothing and equipment. He wore practically nothing, yet his scarred body dripped with burning sweat in that suffocating forest air. There had been a bright, white flash, he knew, but that was it - the flash - then prickly bushes, trees, and heat. The dervish’s mind was spinning far too much for him to even begin to understand what had happened or where he was. He did, however, manage to have one coherent thought. As he collapsed to the ground, his left hand clutched the worn padlock that fastened his newly fitted chastity belt.
“This,” he mused, “could be a problem.”
Friday, July 18, 2008
No, really. I think I can benefit your search for the last stone, or whatever it is you are trying to find.
"I said, shut up."
Come on. You have to admit, I, meaning you, have some skills that can come in handy. Remember how you, or I. or whatever... Remember how we used to go around taking what we needed to live? How we would escape capture? We could do that again, but this time, lawfully.
"Is it the 'shut' or the 'up' that you can't hear. I'm putting my money on the 'shut.' Let me try another tactic. If you do not stop talking while I am trying to meditate, I am going to hit you. Hard."
You mean hit us. No matter what you try, I am always going to be here, one way or another.
"Do you see the crossed legs? Do you see how I am trying to breathe deeply? See the whole clearing my mind so I can learn to control my thoughts and emotions? Meditation. I need to do it."
Maybe you should pick up knife, just in case you need me.
"It's conversations like this that makes me wonder who the imaginary one really is."
Sunday, July 13, 2008
If you have any contemplations, letters, journal entries, or inner monologue conversations you wish to share as Naaran has, please do so, there will be rewards are to be had for the effort!
Tuesday, July 08, 2008
To: Elessar Kennyrghymn
Keeper of Lore
My dearest Elessar,
Your advice will be the death of me. On your words, I took to the land to see what I could learn outside of the "musty confines" of our library. I have found nothing but anguish. Our world is filled with monsters, and only the best of them have the decency to appear as such.
I met up with a diverse group of travelers and decided to join them in their efforts to free a town under assault by the undead. I've been nothing but cordial and helpful, yet I'm constantly rebuffed by them all. Still, the cause is noble, and at least one of them has made some attempt at conversation, albeit highly confusing conversation.
My "companions", as such, are an extremely elderly elf who has no evident pleasures beyond burning things and chess, a quiet young human from the village we came to save who joined with us after we suffered a loss, a lovely young woman that we found along the way, a perplexing halfling—the one I mentioned before, most amoral—and a perfectly nasty human whose behavior has gone from merely rude to positively cruel.
You see, my friend, I've discovered that the evils plaguing this town all stem from a villainous vampire lord, and I am beholden to fight him. It is this fight that cost me something precious. I write this letter—this coarse and terrible letter—with my left hand, as my right has been taken from me. There is no one here capable of healing my injury, and my own studies have not progressed so far yet, either. I am crippled, miserable, and mocked by those I travel with. Was this the lesson you intended me to learn? The world is harsh and callous, and I cannot expect anyone to help those in need. I would rather have stayed and mouldered along with my books than learn this.
I weep alone, my friend. My only true companion is Gladys, and even she is incapable of truly understanding what has befallen me. I would give anything to be safe at home with you and the others once again.
Grey Archive (formerly, and hopefully again)
P.S. E, the human I complained of, has apologized for his insensitive words and offered to pay half the cost of the prosthetic arm I've arranged to have made. It may take some time to get used to, once it arrives, but I'm sure the mythril will look absolutely stunning with my hair. -Regards, Naaran
Thursday, June 12, 2008
Monday, June 09, 2008
Sunday, June 08, 2008
I'm also not sure how I feel about the "Warlord" class. It basically takes the combat role of a bard (i.e. inspiration) , since bards aren't one of the core classes, and combines it with the fighter/paladin melee powers. Seems a little much.
The books themselves are--at first glance--the same quality as previous editions. At. First. Glance. The covers are the same high-quality abuse absorbing covers we've come to expect from D&D books, but the interior pages are of an inferior paper stock than that used in 3e, or at least so it seems to me.
Friday, June 06, 2008
I stood there, watching the struggles of the three women I had bound to the altars surrounding me grow weaker and weaker as I watched their lifeblood drained from their necks. As I watched the blood flow down carefully cut flutes to fill an intricate channel on the floor I licked my bloody lips, savoring the holy blood that stained them. The blood of these three women was as holy as one might expect from a saint, and stung my undead lips faintly in a subtle ecstasy that almost reminded me of some of the delicacies I enjoyed in life.
One by one the saints of this land stilled in death; their blood continuing to flow out of their lifeless forms, shriveling them and desiccating their corpses, transforming them into hideous disfigured husks. Continuing with the ritual, I began to chant, and the pattern at my feet started to pulse and glow with an unholy light and I could feel power crackle in the air. Faint lines of smoke began to trail from the corpses of the women toward me, encircling me, twining about my form like a lovers caress. Small arcs of electricity began to flash in the thickening haze, causing my weak minded servants to cower against the walls in fear. But their fear was not shared by their Master! No, I could feel my powers strengthening as I sapped the very powers these women sought to protect to further bolster the might that I gained through my dark pact that led to my undeath!
With an unexpected suddenness, powerful bolts of lightning arced out from my body to strike each woman full in the chest! The shriveled bodies of the three saints began to jerk and convulse as though still alive, simultaneously arching their backs against the altars they were bound to and letting loose pain and hate filled shrieks that echoed around the chamber. I watched, rapt, as their chest cracked open with a horrible snapping noise, prune-like lumps of darkest red emerging from the holes to hover in the air above each figure. With newfound insight taken from the land I realized that what I had just witnessed, what I had just been the impetus for, was the creation of three creatures, not of undeath, but of the underworld. I watched as one by one the hate and malice filled eyes of the three newly created hags slid open to fasten on the blood red stones that had once been their hearts, hovering inches above them.
It was then that I forced oaths, bound by the powers of Barovia, from them to serve me as stewards to the fanes of this land that I had twisted to my own designs. I know they loathe me and seek my death at any cost, but I know too that they are bound to me, and to this land, and cannot stand against my power, even combined as one. I regret only that the ritual was flawed; I control the powers of the land of Barovia, but my keys to that power are tied up in the shriveled hardened hearts of those three disgusting wretches. I do gain some pleasure however, knowing that the hags who hate me so will defend my power to their deaths just to protect their once blessed hearts…
Wednesday, June 04, 2008
Thursday, May 29, 2008
Just wanted to give the subject a bump.
Monday, May 26, 2008
Thursday, May 22, 2008
But I'm going to be out of town June 28. Do we want to reschedule that one session and leave the rest? Skip the session? Play without me? Alter the pattern?
Do the rest of the dates work for everyone else? Do we have any other dates to worry about?
And once we figure all of that out, when will we slot in Hadrian's 4E game(s)?
Wednesday, May 21, 2008
Friday, May 16, 2008
I am the Ancient, I am the Land. My beginning sare lost in the darkness of the past. I was the warrior, I was good and just. I thundered across the land like the wrath of a just god, but the war years and the killing years wore down my soul as the wind wears stone into sand.
All goodness slipped from my life; I found my youth and strength gone, and all I had left was death. My army settled in the valley of Barovia and took power over the people in the name of a just god, but with none of a god’s grace or justice.
I called for my family, long unseated from their ancient thrones, and brought them here to settle in the castle Ravenloft. They came with a younger brother of mine, Sergei. He was handsome and youthful. I hated him for both.
From the families of the valley, one spirit shone above all others. A rare beauty, who was called “perfection,” “joy,” and “treasure.” Her name was Tatyana, and I longed for her to be mine.
I loved her with all my heart. I loved her for her youth. I loved her for her joy. But she spurned me! “Old One” was my name to her – “elder” and “brother” also. Her heart went to Sergi. They were betrothed. The date was set.
With words she called me “brother,” but when I looked into her eyes they reflected another name – “death.” It was the death of the aged that she saw in me. She loved her youth and enjoyed it. I had squandered mine.
The death she saw in me turned her from me. And so I came to heat death, my death. My hate is very strong; I would not be called “death” so soon.
I made a pact with death, a pact of blood. On the day of the wedding, I killed Sergei, my brother. My pact was sealed with is blood.
I found Tatyana weeping in the garden east of the chapel. She fled from me. She would not let me explain, and a great anger swelled within me. She had to understand the pact I made for her. I pursued her. Finally, in despair, she flung herself from the walls of Ravenloft, and I watched everything I ever wanted fall from my grasp forever.
It was a thousand feet through the mists. No trace of her was ever found. Not even I know her final fate.
Arrows from the castle guards pierced me to my soul, but I did not die. Nor did I live. I became frozen, became “Vampyr,” forever.
- Excerpt from The Tome of Strahd
Tuesday, May 13, 2008
Friday, May 09, 2008
Tuesday, April 29, 2008
And if Maro doesn't read this blog, would you please pass the word onto him, Aerin? We can make him a blog contributor, too, if he wants.
Lummox spun his tale to his children, a mug of ale at his side, nearly empty. His wife noticed it and filled it for him, but before giving it back to him, took a long pull of it, leaving foam on her upper lip. Lummox noticed this and stood up and grabbed her in a deep embrace, dipping her low.
"You missed a bit." He leaned in and kissed her deeply.
As they stood straight again, their children moaned. "Awwww. Come one. That's gross. finish the story. What happened next?"
Lummox stood, eyes wide, staring at the vision of beauty and ferocity that stood before him.
Laura waved her hand in front of his face.
"Hey!" She shouted, a wry grin on her face. "Snap out of it. What's wrong? Never seen a real woman before?"
Lummox shook his head a little as his thoughts cleared. "Apparently not. Where did you learn to fight like that?"
Laura started cleaning her blade, "I had brothers and didn't want to do the house work. I fought them for it and I guess, after a while, I just got really good at it. It was a pain when they started using weapons, but I soon found my skill with a sword and it just grew from there."
"You-" Lummox stammered, "you have no formal training?"
"Not really," Laura said absently, cleaning off the gore from her armor. "I mean, I have picked some stuff up as I traveled with other warriors. I learned some from observing them and their enemies as they fought. I learned a lot from fighting on my own. It just seems to come pretty natural to me. By the way, your griffon is choking on something."
Lummox looked over his shoulder at Fluffy. It was perfect timing, as the griffon had just gotten up a piece femur that was stuck in his throat, along with a wad of hair and gore. Lummox sighed and turned back to Laura. "That would be Fluffy," he said, a little embarrassed. "He isn't the most refined of beasts, but he is my friend and a good and loyal companion." More hacking noises and some wet, thudding sounds came from behind Lummox. He grinned, turning a bit red.
Laura tried not to look at the griffon. She noticed Lummox blushing and did a bit herself. "You're kind of cute for an older dwarf."
Lummox sat back in his chair pulling Laura onto his lap and into a tight embrace.
"So you little brats want some more story do you? Well, you will have to wait until tomorrow night. It is past your bedtime."
He rose and let Laura gracefully to the ground and shooed the children off to bed. As the children trudged off he turned to Laura, "and I am very sure it is time for you to get into bed as well."
From up the hall he heard the children groan a disgusted "ewwwwww."
Laura rolled her eyes and stared into his.
"You know," she said with a mischievous smile, "You're kind of cute for an older dwarf."
He grinned. "So are you." He ducked the blow deftly and rushed to get to beat her to the bedroom.
"You know," Reik said with a wry smile, "you are really are terrible at this whole Monk business. You should really think about quitting and coming back to me. Think of how much fun we had: snatching purses, stealing food, running through the streets..."
"Running from the guard or the shop owners or angry victims you mean." Entrasta said with a grimace. "Why would I want to give up that life? Always starving. No discipline. No place to call home. No friends."
"We had friends," Reik protested..
"No friends we could trust. Having to live life in a shadow of fear and suspicion. Heaven on earth. Now let me meditate."
"Fine. Meditate," Reik sulked. "Just remember where you came from. Oh and good job keeping your vow of silence. What was that? 2 years this time? You know, most 'disciplined' disciples can pull off 10 easy."
"Most disciples don't have to go out on redemption quests for not following the code of the monastery. Most disciples," Entasta's tone became darker, "can control their anger and human urges, and don't have a ghost of their former self pestering them every time they turn around."
"Most disciples can hone their minds to avoid such distractions." Reik was grinning wryly again. Entrasta punched out and hit Reik in the eye. Reik's head snapped back with the blow. When he recovered, he rubbed at the now swelling eye. "Good one. I'm guessing you want me to go away so you can meditate."
Entrasta didn't move. He just sat, eyes closed.
"I'm just going to go now." Reik said, rising. "but don't worry. I'll be back. I know how you worry so."
Entrasta just sat, and only the barest hint of a grin curved the edge of his lips.
Reik was gone. Entrasta tried to regain his focus and began to relax again. It would be made all the more difficult with the newly forming black eye throbbing under his left eye, but he would get there eventually.
We found the village of Borovia to be a town under siege by its own dead and nearly destroyed. It took a bit of investigative work and a few additional deaths, but we rooted out the source of the scourge and brought it to an end. Unfortunately, the town has little wealth and a offered a negligible reward for our help beyond relief and gratitude. I was glad to help, but there was little gain.
I suspect my adventure has just begun, however. We may have defeated the immediate threat, but a far greater evil (and, I believe, treasure) looms over the valley in the form of Castle Ravenloft and what appears to be a vampire lord. My companions have made it their quest to hunt and destroy this Strahd. I know it is beyond the scope of my mission, but I feel joining them provides the only possibility of making this venture worthwhile. We have gained the assistance of a fortune teller and are beginning to gather what tools may be available to us.
I am extremely puzzled by my companions, unfortunately. We normally think of the big people as loud, slow, and brutish, but this entire group lacks their usual boisterousness. So far I have been trying to remain in the shadows and escape much notice, but I fear we are destined to fail if something doesn't change. I honestly can't figure out what reason any of them have for being here and taking on this fight, for they have expressed no motivation or reason for their actions. In fact, if we weren't interacting with our actions, we might not interact at all. Conversation is non-existent, so all I know about them is a few simple traits each. The old elven mage is angry, withdrawn, and likes to burn. The young elven caster is mothering (and sometimes smothering) and considers herself knowledgeable, but lacks assertiveness. The monk is rigid--although he didn't even have the discipline to maintain his holy vows--and says little. The fighter fights. All of them are quiet and uncommunicative and no one seems willing to take the lead and make decisions.
I know I am but a warrior, would rather not draw attention to myself, and lack the wisdom and intelligence for the task, but I think it may be necessary for me to take charge of the situation in the absence of anyone else willing to take on the role. It is not our way, but I am going to allow myself to be known by my companions in an effort to draw them out of their shells. We need to gain knowledge of each other and build trust, or I fear we are doomed to fail.
I do not know when I will have another chance to report, but I will attempt to do so as the opportunity presents itself. I hope to make the Caravan proud and return with at least a worthy tale.
Thursday, April 24, 2008
Or maybe not
Thursday, April 03, 2008
Sunday, March 30, 2008
See ya in a week!
Friday, March 28, 2008
Like I've said in the past, I think in the future we should really keep track of our games so that the story is not lost. And obviously, blogs are a great way to do that. Thus the creation of this site, and this one, and hell... this one. I assume Leelu is still faithfully chronicling the new Ravenloft campaign?
Of course, as Leelu and I discussed the other night, one of the great, yet wholly irrational appeals of the d20 system is the dice. All those lovely polyhedrals just make it so much fun. Which is the problem with GURPS (a system I haven't yet bought, but just might still)-- it only uses d6... which is kinda boring. Savage Worlds uses different dice, and in fact may give you more opportunities to use a variety of dice than d20 does. Hollow Earth Expedition introduces the Ubiquity system which is based on an even/odd "success" roll, so you can use any dice you want.
I want to try all of these rules at one time or another, for one game or another, but we'll probably always find our way back to d20. Why? Familiarity, investment of time, and last but certainly not least-- investment of money. I've got way too many d20 books to simply forsake the system. Which of course raises the question-- Fourth Edition or no? Let's be honest... we all know I'm going to buy the new set when it comes out (Happy Birthday to me!), but is it going to be the system I use? I don't know. It might not be the system I use when I DM-- which I really am planning on doing some day, honest. You might have to wait until after the Bar exam... but that is getting closer and closer all the time. Quite frankly, I've been buying so much RPG stuff and have so many games I want to run I don't know how I'll ever have time for it all. Maybe I'll leave all the 4.0 game mastering to Scott and Jason. I really do want to do a Hollow Earth Expedition campaign, and maybe a Savage Worlds pirate-themed campaign (with high fantasy already covered by d20 I think the other systems could be better used for something else). I also wouldn't mind tackling a couple of old school games... and when I say old school, I do mean old (not Chainmail old, but still...), Basic and Expert. Who wouldn't like to play Keep on the Borderlands using the old rules?
But then, I've got 3.5 modules, adventures, and resources out the yin-yang. Which brings us to...
Ptolus. Ptolus was written for and with the 3rd edition rules. By the time it came out, everything was adapted for 3.5, so it only makes sense to use the 3.5 rules to play it. I'm not sure how difficult 4.0 conversion would be for Ptolus, but why bother? I know a lot of you are really excited about the prospect of visiting the city by the spire, and so am I, but there is another adventure I'm also pumped about running: Rise of the Runelords (Tiger-- don't read these! You've already read or played the Hook Mountain Massacre, haven't you?).
Paizo has really stepped up to the plate with the Pathfinder series. Bigtime. I was blown away when I read the first chapter of Rise of the Runelords-- Burnt Offerings. It is one hell of an adventure, and the Pathfinder setting is simply awesome. We will definitely be playing it-- maybe before Ptolus. While the Ptolus setting is amazing and meticulously detailed, I wasn't as impressed by the adventures. The material is there to make some really in-depth and exciting stories, sure, but the "Welcome to Ptolus" modules pale in comparison to the Pathfinder adventures. I've been so impressed by all of the Pathfinder stuff I've read, that I might just make it the default setting for my Dm'ing. Which just makes recent events in the gaming world more interesting. Paizo recently announced that they will not convert Pathfinder to 4.0. In fact, they are spinning off Pathfinder as a new RPG under the Open Game License. Basically, Paizo decided it was going to release 3.75. For the next year Paizo is doing open play testing on the new system (not really new, it's just a major tweak of 3.5). The alpha version is available as a .pdf here. The beta version will be for sale as a paperback, or available as a free .pdf in August. Next August they plan on releasing the fully playtested version in hardback. Unless 4.0 completely blows me away... I think there is a very good chance that Pathfinder might be my game of choice in the future.
Tuesday, March 25, 2008
Remember, this is a real rule being explored. No pun intended.
Make sure to read the comments. It's where the true genius lies. Such as this stat working:
I can get to +96 with Take 10 by 20th-level.
23 skill ranks
+13 Dexterity (36 dexterity: 18 base, +2 halfling, +5 stat boosts, +5 stat tomes, +5 gloves of dexterity)
+23 item familiar (69 skill ranks placed into item familiar)
+30 custom ring
+2 Llira's Blessing (Player's Guide to Faerun, page 176)
+3 Skill Focus (escape artist)
Total = +96 Escape Artist bonus (with Take 10 assuming you have levels in Exemplar)
Future DMs, quake with fear! And mild to moderate revulsion. I'll just be giggling my sick little butt off in the corner.
Saturday, March 15, 2008
Unfortunately, there is no bard class in WoW, so I thought Druid was the most appropriate available class for the Night Elves.
Friday, March 14, 2008
A gaunt man in priest robes stands behind an altar, addressing his congregation. His robes are stained and disheveled and his eyes are glassy, and unfocused. In a shrill, breathless voice he calls out, “My children, a true miracle has occurred! As you know, my poor son was struck down by evil a short time ago, but with the blessings of the heavens he has returned to me! Rejoice my brethren! Doru, come, join us!"
A door in the entry hall of the small church swings open and a barely recognizable monstrosity of stitched together limbs shambles out, carrying with it the charnel reek of decay and ruin. The monster lumbers forward several steps as women scream in terror and men recoil in horror. “No, do not be alarmed my children, look upon my dear, sweet Doru…do you not all recognize the miracle that stands before you?!” the man shouts the last out, flecks of spittle flying from his mouth. One parishioner, desperate to escape, charges the unholy creation and thrusts a dagger into its belly, causing the monstrous creation to open its mouth. However, rather than emitting a shout of pain, a noxious black cloud spews forth, filling the air. The screams intensify as people inhale the fumes, clawing at their necks as dark lines start to streak under their skins where their veins trace paths. The screams fade as the congregation begins to slide lifelessly to the ground.
“Doru…Doru…what have they done! Oh, oh my poor son, what did they do to you, did they frighten you? Are you hurt?” the crazed man shambles forward, oblivious to the groans of the dying around him. “Demons, foul evil were they, to not praise such a miracle. Its ok my dear boy, no reason to be mournful, they were not righteous, and so they were cast down. Now come, let us go and see about that wound…” The priest shuffles forward, propelling the decaying monstrosity back through the door it emerged from, leaving the corpse-strewn nave behind him.
Saturday, March 08, 2008
Friday, March 07, 2008
Also, please email me if you haven't and let me know an email address you check every day or two so we can communicate more easily and don't have a snafu like last time (I apologize, that was my fault, my organizational skills are covered in dust).
Tiger, if you have it finished, could you shoot me a run down of your character just so I know what to expect and can figure out how to kill all of your characters mercilessly in unique and twisted ways?
Wednesday, February 27, 2008
Monday, February 18, 2008
Let me know!
El DM Nuevo [Jason]
Monday, February 11, 2008
Sunday, February 10, 2008
Kudos to Jeral for making an excellent roleplaying choice when you 'went bear' and landed on that fish-man. That's the stuff of legend. There were a few other memorable nuggets of roleplaying goodness from the session, but that's the one that stands out the most.
Reklann, I had intended for you to track the BBEG back to the lighthouse, but we just ran out of time. Sorry about that.
I really enjoyed having Finn with us. I hope we might pick up these characters at some later point. But it'll be a while.
And the rest of you, Gal-VOR-an, Vadanya (the little russian girl), and (t)Hestral, you were all great as usual.
I'm glad that most of you decided to change up your character types from the ToEE campaign. The Tharizdunian link wasn't anticipated, but after I saw that adventure, I thought it would be a nice tie-in.
Thursday, February 07, 2008
Wednesday, February 06, 2008
I've heard from only two of you about enhancing your characters. Thanks to you both. I don't see a problem with implementing the suggestions you've given me. I'm hoping that these characters will be used again in the future, if I (or another) has time to run a Greyhawk adventure.
Here's a little tease for Saturday.
The ancient ship's prow justs up from the nasty waters, its surface a hopeless tangle of ruin, driftwood, and refuse of the worst kind.
Oh, and last time, you uncovered some scribbles in the asylum cell of the alleged Lantern Man. Those might be important.
Friday, February 01, 2008
Saturday, January 19, 2008
Friday, January 18, 2008
Thursday, January 17, 2008
Tuesday, January 15, 2008
The green robed stranger stands by the group of travelers, gripping tightly to a letter that bears the seal easily recognized by those before him. From his neck hangs a wooden pendant of an intricately carved horizon.
"My name is Hestral. I am a follower of He who Wanders. I have traveled far to be here. May I take a seat?"
Monday, January 14, 2008
But the violence and poverty of the Greyhawk Wars wrecked much of the former Great Kingdom, Ahlissa and Prymp included. What now remains is a rotten husk of the debaucherous, indolent city. Prymp's outlandish income stream is all but dried up. The rich stopped coming. A new population found a home in the city's four districts. Refugees, poor and desperate. And another group, alchemists. Free from restrictions on their experimentation, alchemists set up shop in Prymp and proceeded to pollute the air and water with their craft. Toxic clouds and sludge poured from their factories. Tanners and butchers practice their trades without conscience, dumping their byproducts into the water outside their workplaces.
The port, a natural shelter from the rough weather of Relmor Bay, is now perpetually shrouded with a dirty miasma of smoke and vapor. The walls and roofs of buildings are covered with a greasy film, and the waters under the Isle are now befouled with sludge and sewage. In the eastern part of the city, the sludge has become so thick that the water doesn't flow, leaving that quarter's buildings hovering over rancid mud.
A band of adventurers has gathered at the Seven Knaves Tavern, a dank, mildew-laden alehouse in the High Quarter. The tavern is located in the once-prosperous seaside city of Prymp, in the Kingdom of Ahlissa.
The only thing tying the adventurers together is an urgent summons, delivered individually, only days ago. The summons author sits among the group. He is a swarthy, well groomed man, dressed in black and red leather armor. Except for the armor and his accent, the man looks singularly out of place in this now-squalid city.
Note. Please post something about your characters as soon as you can. (either in the comments, or as a new post). I want to know what you guys are planning!
Thursday, January 10, 2008
And, are you planning on playing? So far, I've got commitments from Degolar and Aerin, and a tenuous commitment from Leelu/Lummox. Kilminsk is out, and I'm assuming Hadrian is, too. What about Torias? Also, I'm thinking of inviting a new (to us) player.
Tell me what you think.
Tuesday, January 08, 2008
First, we'll be playing d+d 3.5 (big surprise).
Second, if you're making a new character, the party seems to have need of a healer-type.
Third. If you're making a new character, classes and races are restricted to those in the PH. Unless you've got a really good argument.
Fourth. Run your new character by me *before* the day of the game.
I'm hoping to post a little background in the next couple of days. But I can tell you that your characters will be in another part of the world, near Relmor Bay. And at least some of the adventure will take part in an urban setting.
Saturday, January 05, 2008
I haven't decided which adventure we're going to be playing yet, but it'll be a one-time shot. Hopefully you can come!