Wednesday, March 16, 2022

Dubzaron Session 47: Voices in the Dark (and Mummy Cats)

This session was played on 02/23/22 with PCs adventuring until 02/26/22. Needing one day of rest as per ACKS rules the PCs can adventured and make downtime requests on and after 02/27/22.

Session Report

The Party was delving the Nethercity megadungeon beneath the city of Dubzaron yet again. In the first room in the dungeon the party decided to expend some manpower and spells to try and clear the first room so it might be claimed later as part of Rapunzel's (PC Priestess level 4) shrine. The first big room was full full of swarming bugs so it wasn't the easiest fight to clear them out. 

The auto damage that ACKS "swarm" monsters do was enough to knock down Carina (hench Mage of Rapunzel Level 2) despite everyone else in the battle fairing fine. The party healed her up but she'd need an evening of bed rest due to her mortal wound of "becoming sterile" (not going into description details there... ugh). They decided to go topside, rest for the night, and simply do a second delve. Before escaping the dungeon they cast Purify Water and Create Water on the sewer sludge filling the room hoping in time such efforts would clear out the grossness and the room could be claimed as a sort of guard room for Team A.

Next day the second delve took the Party back to the Great Temple inside the megadungeon. The one where, last week, Daria (PC Bladedancer Level 6) killed about 9,000 skeletons. There were no random encounters on the way to the Gallery despite it being pretty deep into the dungeon. The Party set fire to the skeletons in the hope that, if they were all burned up, the room and the surrounding rooms would no longer be a Sinkhole of Evil.

Sinkholes are an ACKS mechanic wherein a massive graveyard or an evil altar makes the area around it empower undead and evil creatures. Turn Undead becomes much harder in these areas. It's like the necklaces Gygax put in the Caves of Chaos that zombies and skeletons wear so PCs wouldn't turn them too easily and make the fight with the Evil Cleric pointless. You know, except it's better worldbuilding and not cheap and stupid. (Gonna spend a couple thousand gp to make 12 of your zombies harder to turn? Dumb.)

So anyway the fire was going to have to burn a long time since the party started exploring new areas past the grand gallery while the skeletons burned all up. To the south hallway from the gallery they came to a heavy stone crypt door. Once again The Doors proved to be their toughest opponent and despite taking about 5 minutes pushing at the thing, they couldn't get it open. (It was found opened later on... stay tuned!)

They gave up on the heavy door and went deeper into the Great Temple complex raiding graves and such for a bit of gold. Eventually they circled around the Gallery and were on the opposite balcony from where they stood their ground with 9000 skeletons last session. Here they found a weird hologram thing in the center of the balcony room of a dancing skeleton made of shiny lights. Some of the PCs succumbed to a hypnotic stupid looking at the image, Kortes (PC Explorer level 3) is the one I remember specifically since he played up the scene ("that was pretty cool man!"). But enough of the PCs were not hypnotized and snapped their pals out of it.

South from there they found an ancient embalmers room with the corpse of the embalmer dead and decayed on the floor. A wraith rose from the corpse when they tried to loot the room. The embalmer wraith complained about them destroying his filing system as he gripped Brian (Hench to Rapunzel Thief Level 1) and melted the henchman's eyes, leaving him screaming on the floor.

Rapunzel successfully Turned Undead and then the party beat the embalmer wraith down and looted the room. Pretty solid haul.

One the way back past the balcony something weird happened again! There were two mummy cats on the railing of the balcony and a hissing voice was inside Korte's head telling him to "stop desecrating the nethercity and maybe you all won't be killed".

Kortes was pretty spooked out by this point. The Party left the mummy cats alone, despite their cheshire smiles, and began to go back the way they came and exit the dungeon. I rolled a Wight random encounter and the party was in danger of someone in the front line losing a level(s) because it surprised them. Everyone except Kortes who was able to kill it with one shot from a silver bolt (or arrow? i dont remember) before it could attack the Party.

Further along the party come across another random encounter of a wraith which looked like BOB. Rapunzel did Turn Undead again and it was beat down.

By now you can see this is a dangerous place indeed. A bit of luck and good play was keeping the PCs from taking some serious level drain damage, or even a TPK. Kortes's player was getting antsy by this point but Rapunzel's was feeling gung-ho. 

So when the party noticed the stone crypt they failed to open was NOW OPEN. Each player became more so. Kortes was all "lets run!" and Rapunzel was thinking "the room past that door is flush with treasure I'm sure of it!"

When the party was about to loot the crypt room Kortes noticed just behind them (because he was "watching their back" and looking directly into said Gallery room) that it was magically dark. Their torchlight wasn't piercing into that room.

He told the party (and perhaps had fear in his voice) when the voice he heard in his head was now laughing from the magic darkness. Telling the party to leave immediately or they'd all be killed. The voice chat filled with crosstalk as every player had some idea of what they should do. Kortes: "run away!" Rapunzel: "screw that voice" and everything in between. The Caller eventually decided they'd leave with haste and the hissing voice from the darkness insulted them, insulted their gods, and declared the supremacy of the chaos gods as the Party left (fled).

Sadly I can't really tell you what was in the darkness or what was happening behind the scenes as my Players read this. Suffice it to say it was mostly born out of random encounter rolls, checking the various spell charts, and using reaction rolls on what the "voice" might do in the circumstances of tomb raiders.

The party did pretty well on loot and Kortes's henchman Obseye (now renamed as Yeezy) leveled up.


These delves are starting to run together a bit, as the player of the last few Thieves and Dwarves said recently. Don't worry, something quite a bit different happens next session.

You may think "it doesn't seem like Jeffrogaxian Timekeeping is having much impact on the campaign; these are just delves!" Oh how wrong you'd be.

Gaius (PC Fighter Level 5) wasn't available this session because, during downtime, he joined up with Legate Nitherian (Patron Fighter Legate level ???) to help lead a military campaign against the Scaled King (Patron Insane Lizardman Warlord level ???). BriarWhisper (PC Elven Ranger Level 5) was also unavailable because he was doing a scouting mission for Nitherian to find the Scaled King's location and then, during downtime, head off to the Istrith Forest for Elf Reasons.

So the Braunstein effect has continued in the background, often with PC involvement in downtime rather than session time. It's my understanding this is different than what's happening with Trollopulous wherein PCs are mostly hanging out in Macho Mandalf's realm (Patron Magic User and Cream of the Crop) and doing stuff for him IN SESSION. The difference in approach likely coming less from best practices or the divergent rule-sets but from the personality of the Players. My players (generally) are a bit more cautious and want to stay closer to a major city. I'm also, probably, a bit stingier on my rulings. Trollopulous is a more wide open place and, in my experience (I was a PC for a while), the Players are more interested in doing the wackiest most meme-able stuff they can most of the time. Both group personalities are awesome and a Real D&D campaign will likely have a mix of both.

BROSR style Real Time timekeeping will pay dividends in your campaign even if you're just doing dungeon delves and have a Patron or two on the side. 

Even the gross weird dnd yootoobers are figuring this out! Check here (no I'm not providing a link) where some grifting dnd yootuber talks about Real Time Keeping as if he stumbled on the concept on his own. Doesn't name the #BROSR at all, despite our 2+ years of work on this stuff, involving many men, many DMs and PCs, and many loooong form campaigns.

Wow! Look at his big bookshelf of gaming books! So cool! So organized! So un-played!

Apparently this guy even says "always on campaign" without crediting the trailblazers of the #BROSR. Pathetic. 

Don't be a grifter nerd like question beast. Be a BRO like Adam. Give the BROSR credit. Thanks Adam!

Surviving PCs Present

Daria (0% XP bonus) Level 6 BladeDancer. 888 XP gained. Total: 27,352

Kortes (0% XP bonus) Level 3 Explorer. 888 XP gained. Total: 6,671

Olivier (5% XP bonus) Level 2 Paladin. 932 XP gained. Total: 3,572

Rapunzel (10% xp bonus) Level 4 Priestess. 976 xp gained. Total: 12,516


Dama (L1 Venturer) played by RR.  Current total xp: 75. DECEASED. Poison gas in Session 3.

Darius LeVay (L1 Assassin) played by JB. Current Total XP:451. DECEASED. Poison gas in Session 3.

Donald the Guardsman (L1 Fighter) played by MP. Current Total XP:570. DECEASED. Intra-party justice in Session 3.

Felix (L1 Thief) played by Nicholas. Current Total XP:431. DECEASED. Poison gas in Session 3.

Hektor (L1 Paladin) played by Moai. DECEASED. Cause of Death: goblin warg rider throat removal surgery in Session 2

Leonidas the Inquisitor (L1 Cleric) played by RR.Current Total XP:498  DECEASED. Frozen undead blistering cold aura left his skin frostbitten and broken in Session 6. Body not recovered.

Mard the Mage (L1 Mage) played by Nicholas. DECEASED. Frozen undead blistering cold aura left his skin frostbitten and broken in Session 6. Body not recovered.

Yolo Baggins "My friends call me Swaggins" (L1 Gnomish Trickster) played by J. DECEASED. Paralyzed and eaten by ghouls in Session 12. Body not recovered.

Jack Filcher (L1 Thief) played by C. DECEASED. Shot full of arrows by Inthorn's brigands in Session 12. Body not recovered.

Swoleous Maximus (L1 Paladin). DECEASED. Captured then drawn and quartered by Inthorn the Brigand warlord in Session 12. Posthumously named "Petty Hero of Turos Tem" by Legate Valerian. Ashes offered a place of pride in the Hospital.

Damianus (L1 Cleric). DECEASED. Captured and beheaded by Inthorn the Brigand warlord in Session 12. Posthumously named "Petty Hero of Turos Tem" by Legate Valerian. Ashes offered a place of pride in the Hospital.

Bucky (L1 Barbarian). DECEASED. Became a illegal pit fighter during his downtime. Had two bouts to the death, winning the first and losing the second. Was killed by Young Jack Sparrow who sashayed into the ring, drank rum, and mogged on Bucky before putting a dagger into his ribs, killing him. This happened during downtime between Session 17 and 18.

Broll Wolf-Eater (L1 Barbarian). Current total XP: 1079. DECEASED. Carried off by harpies after falling for their enchanting song in Session 19.

Brother Franklin (L1 Cleric). DECEASED. Decapitated by a mad cultist of a Lovecraftian slime thing in Session 19.

Felix the Elder (L1 Bard). Total XP 825. DECEASED. Captured by mad cultists and fed to a Lovecraftian slime monster in Session 19.

Templar Flavius Africanus (L1 Cleric). Total XP 7. Killed by the claws and beak of mad harpies in Session 19.

Xendi (L1 Explorer). Total XP 6. DECEASED. Carried off by harpies after falling for their enchanting song in Session 19.

Yllmeeton (L3 Shaman). Total XP 4,563. Bludgeoned by the corpse of a bowmen by Rosie Odonnel hag in Session 21.

Longinus (L2 Assassin). Total XP 2,036. Had his face ripped off by Rosie Odonnel hag in Session 21.

Mandonio (L3 Fighter). Total XP 4,779. Charred to a leprous crisp by diseased Dragon breath in Session 22.

Corydon (L1 Joker). Total XP: 0. Burnt to a crisp by chimera breath so thoroughly his corpse wasn't even fit for the crows. Died with a smile on his face and a song in his heart. that's life and as funny as it seems... some people get their kicks, stomping on a dream... In Session 25.

Donny Keebler (L1 Elven Spellsword). Total XP 2,238. Had his legs burned completely off by chimera fire breath in Session 25.

Marina (L2 Fighter). Total XP: 2,204. Burnt into ash by a chimera fire breath in Session 25.

Gundro (L2 Gnomish Trickster). Total XP: 2,575. Had his mouth and tongue bitten off by a lizardman ambusher in the dank sewers below Cyfaraun in Session 26.

Polydoros (L1 Fighter). Total XP: 0. Had his legs ripped off and eaten by Akira monsters in the dark canopy of the Viaspen Forest in Session 28.

Odrum (L1 Explorer). Total XP: 287. Javelin to the heart from the hands of weird vine goblins hidden in the walls of Ferigno's lair in Session 30.

Garvin the Nutless Wonder (L1 Mage). Total XP: 0. Fell off the side of Ferigno's lair 20 feet to his death in Session 30.

Blackmoon (L1 Assassin). Total XP: 768. Choked to death by BOB from Twin Peaks while stealing treasure from Ferigno's dragon horde in Session 30.

Xanthus (L2 Cleric). Total XP: 2,364. Choked to death by BOB from Twin Peaks while hanging out on the roof of Ferigno's lair in Session 30.

Lord Zyklon (L1 Elven Spellsword). Total XP: 0. LORD ZYKLON DISEMBOWLED LORD ZYKLON upon finding himself on the losing side of the Desolation of Turos Tem.

Turin (L1 Cleric). Total XP: 0. Eaten by Wargs in Session 32.

Rat Face (L2 Thief) Total XP: 1,577. Seemingly grabbed in the dark by a Xenomorph in Session 36. In a sinkhole your party can hear you scream! 

Smarticus (L1 Mage) Total XP: 0. Captured by a Xenomorph in Session 36 for all the party to witness. Taken deep into a sinkhole.

Hearticus (L1 Cleric) Total XP: 0. Gored to death by giant horned beetles in Session 39 after projectile vomiting all over himself from the stink of sewer sludge.

Mickey Mouser (L1 Thief) Total XP: 0. Gored to death by giant horned beetles in Session 39 in the happiest place on earth: the Cyfaraun sewer!

Aenes (Level 1 Paladin) Total XP: 62. Swarmed by giant flies in the sewer beneath Cyfaraun in Session 40.

Acianus (Level 1 Mage) Total XP: 0. Chopped to pieces in Session 42 by a six armed demon statue from behind and quickly forgotten about by his compatriots who saved MadEye and lamented Hardar instead. But I'll never forget you Acinanu nanu...nanite... nananaa...

Hardar (Level 2 Mage) Total XP: 2,832. Chopped up in Session 42 by a six armed demon statue as he held his Darth Vader Choking Grip spell long enough for his compatriots to escape an unwinnable battle. His dream to become the most evil being in the universe suffers eternally the indignity of being remembered for self sacrifice and laying his life down for his friends.

Nubbs (Level 3 Thief) Total XP: 4,017. Swarmed by scarabs which bored into his ears and brain in Session 45.

Grummz (Level 1 Dwarven Vaultgard) Total XP: 0. Ripped limb from limb by a throng of skeletons and their undead golem leaders in Session 46.

Alexa this is so sad play "she blinded me with science" by thomas dolby


  1. Just FYI, said youtuber is deleting comments that link to your and Jeffro’s blogs. I’ve had it happen twice now.

  2. thank you for the heads up. Very sad the gross nerds trying to steal brosr valor


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