Monday, September 25, 2023

Session 117: Ill Met in Muppetlantis

Session 117: Ill Met in Muppetlantis

6/28/23-6/30/23, rest 6/31/23, active 07/01/23 PCs:

Billy Billiamson (L1 Lawful Barbarian)

Gront Coldsky (L7 Neutral Barbarian Housecarl Template)

Guvnor (L4 Neutral Beserker)

Proteus (L7 Neutral Mage, Soothsayer Template)

Samson (L4 Lawful Cleric), Silas (L5 Assassin)

Standing Mountain (L3 Neutral Elven Spellsword)

Tuck Starfarer (L6 Barbarian),
Henches: Billy: Jeevs (L0) ... Proteus: Nonus (L2 Fighter), Ziggy (L4 Bard)... Gront: Beavis (L4 Mage), Gudvar (L3 Assassin), Hafgrim (L3 Assassin), #ACKS
XP for Hellhound Fight: Billy, Gront, Proteus, Samson, Silas, Standing Mountain, Tuck were included. Nonus was hench included. 15 cuts
XP Pool Hellhound Fight: 520 XP for
Muppetlantis Delve: Billy, Gront, Proteus, Samson, Silas, Standing Mountain, Tuck were included. Also Ziggy
hench 15 cuts XP Pool for Muppetlantis Delve: 1820 Hench XP Cut: 0%: 156 5%: 164 10% 172 PC
XP Cut: 0% 312 5%: 328 10%: 343
Treasure: 1,500 gp in a hidden chest with contact poison on the money. Coins are stamped with the face of The Count of BROvenloft fame.

DM BDUBS here. Well I'm back in the DM chair after a break of about 5 months. I will likely only be part time for a while but it was nice to be the clockwork god again. It went quite well, I thought. The session started out with players having a bunch of questions about the recent Midsommar Dreams campaign event that I dropped on everyone's head last week. Check out the blog post about it for all the info but the bottom line is there is no sunlight during the day and at night there is Weirding Time which lasts 30 days and only fey/fae can move freely in. So the PCs didn't really know where they wanted to adventure this week. Alot of analysis paralysis and DM time bottlenecking happened with the Weirding Time. Adjudicated 30 days each day for like 4 days is alot, eh? So we had to backdate some overland travel for a few folks, most importantly including Guvnor, Tuck and Jeevs the hench. On their way to Turos Tem on the day before the adventure they were surprised by a very angry nixie. Guv and Jeevs failed their save vs spells and went to jump in the Nixie's pond to Respect Women unto watery death. Tuck was not affected by the Nixie's song, however, and tackled Guv on the shore of the pond and tied him up. Jeevs jumped in and swam to her. Then Tuck jumped in to wrestle Jeevs away from her watery embrace around the time Subotai failed his Swim throw and began drowning. The nixie was angry and was stabbing at Tuck with a serrated dagger to no avail as the Barbarbian pulled his hench away and towards air and freedom. But then Tuck failed his swim check. Under RAW ACKS rules this should have meant he and Subotai both began drowning. Upon which the Nixie would laugh then saunter up onto the shore and cut Guvnor's throat. Sadly I ruined my own campaign with a House Rule about diving! 

Jeffro was right about house rules and I hate when Jeffro is right. 

Instead of all that glorious death occuring and me returning to the DM's chair with a bang, mine house rule stated a Diver could swim around and do things for like 6 minutes per CON bonus. So Billy was in no danger at all and I cursed my softness. The nixie rushed up on the shore to try and kill Guv but Tuck chased her off and she turned into a horse and ran into the wilderness quite perturbed. 

The mini party continued on to Turos Tem to meet up with the rest of the party for the adventure proper. From there the party traveled along Drakon's road which runs alongside the Turos Tem canal which drained the swamp some months back. Said swamp is now known as the New Badlands, a place which many party members and Patrons (most notably Madeye the Venturer and Gaius the Legate) had a hand in building forts in to re-civilize the place. The party came upon one such Auran Fort called Krak de Chevalier (sp?) while the fae stars shined overhead during the hours which SHOULD have been daytime. The party made comment on the mic about their worry of running into more angry fae/fey but arrived at the fort, some 30 or so miles away without incident. As what should have been nighttime hours came, the strange mists of mauve and purple cast across the sky and the stars became shy and the moon dropped behind a black curtain. And Weirding Time began. The party would have 30 days worth of game time in the Krak during the 12 hours of mauve and purple Weirding Time. Silas used this 30 days to attempt a spying hijink on the fort to gain info to sell later but failed; not by enough to get caught by the law however. So no PC or NPC was the wiser. The rest of the party didn't know how to use their Weirding Time and just watched the strange skies for 12 hours which felt like days and days. Around the time the "starshine" had been returning, Ammonar (the sun) began to rise in the east as usual. Samson the Cleric and even unaligned PCs were happy to see sunlight after almost a week of none!

The party thanked Ammonar for his return, in which he could be seen kicking The Man From Another Place upon the hindquarters across the sky. They left Krak to travel north towards Muppetlantis, a short jaunt away of only 6 miles which would only take an hour or so on horseback. During the trek, however, they were ambushed by 8 hellhounds breathing fire and angrily burning the face off many a henchman. This battle took quite a bit of game time. I'll not go into every round and detail but some highlights were as follows:
 -Billy charging his horse against a hound, hurting it badly but not downing it. Being surrounded in short order, burned all about his legs, and withdrawing from battle. 

-Proteus blasting a Wand of Cold (cone of cold) with perfect placement between two hench to leave 2 hounds severely injured but not dead. Gront eradicated them in short order.

 -Tuck cleaving through 3 of the beasts to save a hench from certain doggy death.

 -Silas sneaking around the combat to backstab the last two hounds sending them back to the 9 hells. 

Some hench were down and injured greatly after the battle, though only one died the death. So the party's cleric and the henchs' master(s) deemed they must be taken back to Krak for bed rest. The party spent the night there again so Samson the Cleric could get spells back. On the 30th they set out again for Muppetlantis and skirted some motley looking cavalrymen who didn't appear to notice them in the New Badlands travel. The Caller had gone afk for a moment and the gomers who were still on mic almost ALMOST said "charge the cavalrymen!" much to the Caller (Silas's) chagrin when he returned to belay that order.

Upon arriving at Muppetlantis they entered the massive doors of formerly swamp sunken stone which were trimmed here and there with technologically marvelous white plastics. This is a location that was once a dragon lair to 3 lupus dragons which were downed by a PC elf ranger named Briarwhisper and his compatriots months back; it became a dungeon locale once we realized how big and dangerous such a spot must be to house such a threat. Various parties have delved the place over the months, including even me as a PC. "How is that possible, Dubs?" you ask. Well friendo we can trade off DMs on this dungeon because it is fully generated live in place with the Appendix A from the 1e AD&D "Dungeon Masters Guide" (sic). We have a few house rule overlays on the generation of this dungeon such as there being a 50% chance that treasure found here is actually High Tech Muppetlantis gear. Laser blasters, power armor, lightsabers and the like. 

There's also a chance for each room to contain an evil lupus altar. But beyond all that the place is just Appendix A. The thinking was always to give players a reason to want to visit this dungeon rather than another. This is how you run true #zeroprepsupremacy and guarantee DMs without #prepaddiction

If you play with a prep addicted Dm please have an intervention before it’s too late. We’ve seen the best minds of our d&d generation destroyed by prep addiction; yards of filled in hex maps and piles of unplayed dungeon stocking held crumpled in tiny fists. Don’t let this happen to you or your bros!

This session the PCs were here because Silas had a rumor of some fancy sword being in the place at a deeper level. Dubzaron worldbuilding house rules state that truly unique items (like artifacts and such) can only be found in dungeons except by DM fiat. This was instituted to assure dungeoneering would be of interest even as players level into being generals and kings and the like. The party trekked into the dungeon and went east to look for a waterfall they recall leading much deeper into the dungeon. Gront and Billy used their superb climbing skills and Billy's Mountaineering skill to rig special rope ladders that went down the edge of the waterfall and to a landing below at about 60 degrees down along the wall. It took about 20 minutes.

Everyone then descended easily except Samson who fell off the side of the ladder into the pool of strange water breathing with gray mists. The mists turned green after he fell into the pool, taking a decent bump on some jagged rocks sticking up from the cave pool. When he swam to shore he used a Cure Light Wounds on himself. The room itself was a natural cavern which some time ago had been carved with bas relief from floor to ceiling of gothic cathedrals topped with degenerate cthonic symbols. Mists appeared to flow eternally from nowhere on this floor of the Muppetlantis dungeon. The party formed up their marching order and traveled down a 20' wide hallway going south out of the waterfall chamber; the only apparent exit. Before long they came upon a giant lizard of black and silver sleeping along a ledge of the hallway about 10' off the ground. Silas attemped to assassinate the thing using our ACKS version of the 1e in session Assassination rules that I'm pretty sure Jeffro got wrong back in 2020 but which I instituted anyway because it's fun. In this Silas made an ACKS version of an assassination check. He failed his check so the giant sleeping lizard was not killed and Proteus pulled out his Wand of Cold, spinning it in his hand like a flashy movie cowboy, before blasting it up into the sky at the lizard; hoping to miss Silas. He didn't miss Silas and Silas failed his Save vs Breath and took 25 damage. 

Recently as of this posting on 09/25/23, Proteus has blasted his own compatriots with his wand of cold like 5 more times and I find it hysterical. That is now his character. He will blast you in the back with wand of cold. 

Somehow the assassin survived much worse for wear and a bit cross with our Mage friend. Thankfully for them, 25 damage was enough to kill the big lizard.

Standing Mountain the elf noticed a portion of the cathedral bas relief near the top of the lizard's ledge appeared loose. Billy climbed up there IIRC and pushed the thing, which fell out to reveal a compartment with a small steel chest. He brought it down and the PCs debated who would open it; certain it was trapped! Guvnor became bold and insulting towards the partys' cowardice and he himself opened it up to see it was filled with gold coins pressed with the profile of The Count of BROvenloft. "I laugh and rifle through it" he mogged the party. "Make a save vs poison" I said to him. Upon failing his save for the CONTACT POISON on the coins he fell onto his back in convulsions and his skin began to turn light purple and felt, and he began to grow fangs.

Silas said to himself "not no but hell no!" and took Guvnor's magic sword to chop of Guvnor's head ASAP. Samson the cleric tried to stop him but the assassin was naturally faster than the cleric so off came Guv's head. The decapitated head began to talk in a ridiculous Transyvanian accent saying "1, 2, 3 PCs who are going to pay! 5, 6, 7 PCs who I will kill! hah hah hah...". Silas drove a stake through Guv's heart and the counting ceased. What kind of poison/place is this?! Guv kept asking "am I dead yet" which greatly confused me. What PC is eager to die? I'll tell you. A PC who back in March made a Wish with a very strange contingency. "When I die I want to ressurrected immediately as a Nobirian Champion". A Nobirion Champion is kind of like ACKSworld's Atlanteans or gods touched folk. Very hard classes to roll. What a weird Wish. Have you seen a contingency based Wish before? It all seemed a little gheee4y4y to me but I ran with it. It was pretty late in the night by now and my creativity was certainly not peak but I did have a few things going for me in my living world. 

-Guv recently, during the Midsommar Dreams event, spoke with The Man From Another Place about wanting some super magic item. The Man agreed but at a price which was a Geas to do something of The Man's bidding later. 

-Wish spells very often have a monkey paw aspect to them. So I considered saying "sure you're back as a nobirion champion... in Vegas!" or "enjoy being a Nobirion Champion on Arrakis! (Dunc for you dilletantes)." Or sending Guv to Twin Peaks in BROvenloft. But the Champion class has no decent 1e parallel so I scrapped all that and kept him on the Dubzaron plane. He was ressurected in the podunk town of Fishton with a Geas to get a rumored to be nearby spaceship for The Man From Another Place. Thus seeding a living world hook for later. The rest of the party, for their part, chose to simply watch The Man's little jazzy dance and not interfere.

Silas ended up with Guv's magic sword since Guv was sent far aflung with all the items on his person; thus not his sword. 

This annoyed Samson who spent much of the session annoyed with the more neutral and shrugging sorts among this very neutral and shrugging party. Discussion and griping continued as the party successfully extracted from Muppetlantis and with no random encounters and back to Krak de Chevalier with no overland random encounters. We ended there.

Class Grade Thoughts:
Billy Billiamson (L1 Lawful Barbarian): He was a bold barbarian. He tried to save people who seemed doomed, which is good for Lawful sort. So E.
Gront Coldsky (L7 Neutral Barbarian Housecarl Template): He was a bold barbarian and a housecarl leader of men. So E.
Guvnor (L4 Neutral Beserker): No grade because he died and was rezzed. If I were to grade him it would be very poor as his Wish is nonsense, character and role wise. A beserker is intrisically Chaotic (see "The Broken Sword") and a Nobirian Champion intrisically Lawful/Good (see Aragorn). So it would be like the Joker making a Wish to be Batman.
Proteus (L7 Neutral Mage, Soothsayer Template): He didn't use many spells but he was ready with his Wand of Cold and never failed to give it a shot when it might help. Since he's Neutral I don't care if he blasted his own compatriot. If Lawful it would hurt his grade. If Chaotic it would hurt his grade if he DIDNT try it.
Samson (L4 Lawful Cleric): Samson was on top of making triage for hurt party members, pointing out the needs of the Lawful gods, and didn't hold back on using healing spells. In short, excellent cleric play. E.
Silas (L5 Assassin): He avoided stand up fights, used backstab successfully, and attempted an assassination. Excellent assassin play. E.
Standing Mountain (L3 Neutral Elven Spellsword): I'm generally going to grade these weird dual classes harder and SM was in danger of catching an S for not using an impactful spell during the hound fight, but he successfully used elf skillz to find the treasure chest, which offsets it in this case. E.
Tuck Starfarer (L6 Barbarian): Tuck was a bold barbarian who did not flee from battle. So E.

DM Grading the DM! (A through F scale) I was happy with how I ruled on most everything. The nixie was a pain. The hounds were legit insane and random in their attacks. And I liked how the new level of Muppetlantis was coming off and felt. I made two mistakes in Muppetlantis with my random generation. Firstly, all random encounters must first be checked to see if they're undead. Muppetlantis's overlays indicates this done before a normal random encounter is done. So there's a bit higher chance of undead in the place. I missed this. I'm also supposed to check for an altar in each new room. Whiffed on this too. I doubt it seriously changed the complexion of the session but one never knows! Grade: B

Thursday, September 21, 2023

Session 116: VincentLost.gif

Dm BDubs here with another session report from Co-Dm Brigadine. Next week I am back on DMing duties and will deliver the session report for “Ill Met in Muppetlantis”. 

You’ll notice this session the PCs are back in the dungeon. It’s funny that Dubzaron had so many dungeon delves in the summer of 2023 when the primary discussion point in the #BROSR hashtag this summer was about overland campaigns and army battles. As I’ve stated before PCs interests in army stuff seems to wax and wane. And in a few weeks the PCs march a big army on Fishton which I DMed. I hated that session. Was it because ACKS Domains @ War  mass combat is worse than simply scaling up 1e style? Is it because my players let me down in their #desertswamp #zeroprep ? Or perhaps I was just in a bad mood that night? Stay fixed to this website to find out!

But for today, Dm Brig takes the intrepid adventurers into a dwarf dungeon vault. They’ve been there a few times and I’m jealous of them being able to delve it. This is a very cool and evocative dungeon which, it’s my understanding, was made with a random generator before the session and Brig rolled with the punches in session adding flavor, story overlays on monsters, or just saying “yes” to pc ideas of what they were looking for when they delved  

I don’t think this qualifies for #zeroprep but it certainly isn’t #prepaddiction 

Enjoy! -DM Dubs 09/21/23

Session 116: VincentLost.gif 

6/21/23-6/22/23, rest 6/23/23, active 6/24/23 

PCs: Nezra, Aelways, Miles, Standing Mtn Henches: Dwargon, Samwise #ACKS 

 The boys were back after the Uberscroll, suiting up to delve the cursed vault outside of Azen Radokh. During downtime, the statue of Thane that the party brought back after being petrified was emitting a mental racket to everyone around it. At first the public thought it was a novel thing, chuckling over the bad dad jokes or finding some comfort in the sounds of a dinner party in full swing, but after a few days it started to bother them. The party made note of this but took no action to address it. Standing Mountain the elf arrived, having heard late about the adventure but willing to throw in with the party for success. The Spellsword was big for an elf and wore a very fine suit of plate mail. The others picked up a few replacement henches and outfitted them then went for the dungeon. Brolly the Explorer was absent for this session so Miles took over calling duties, leading the party easily back to the dungeon location. They avoided the shelf that housed some unknown threat that overlooked their usual path to the dungeon by catching a lucky roll. Otherwise DOOM AND DESTRUCTION or something.

Into the wide vault entrance they went, with Nezra’s disgusting partially decomposed fungal zombies in tow. They settled into an SOP for doors and things and kept it moving, reaching the second level with ease. Deciding to poke about more on this level rather than descend to the next, the party discovered a lounge style room filled with couches, chaises, chairs, and the like. The thick carpeting on the ground was dusty and mildewy from the gross nature of the dungeon and concealed a hidden trap door that Aelways narrowly escaped while heading to inspect one of the other doors in the room. The next room over had an iron chandelier with eight flames lit and dancing, none of which emitted smoke. The party chose to return to the lounge which had many exits and choose a different path. A portcullis barred the next choice and despite Standing Mountain’s high strength and success in bashing doors so far, he and Miles were unable to lift the obstruction. Aelways the machinist could discover no obvious mechanical solution to the mechanism so again they chose to go another way.

A stone door etched with arcane runes blocked their path at the end of the next corridor. Some inspection and synergy with one of Standing Mountain’s known spells led them to believe it was magically sealed in some way. They tried to bash it open with no luck and retreated. There were plenty of paths to take so they weren’t going to waste much time fiddling with obstructions. The next bit they confirmed an alternate route back to the stairway. The party also discovered a small room filled with fetishes. Miles was able to detect evil and reveal a hidden ouroboros that only glowed to his divine sight. They very cautiously inspected the room and uncovered a hidden compartment. Inside was a five-headed hydra statuette with gemstones for heads. It definitely radiated evil to Miles but inexplicably he allowed the spellsword to scoop it into his backpack.

As the party continued through the dungeon intent on continuing to a lower level, Standing Mountain heard in his mind a chorus of feminine voices impressed with his strength. To the rest of the party the elf’s audible response of “Damn right” was pretty weird and out of the blue. He made a successful saving throw to avoid… something… and was granted the effects of a Commune spell, three yes or no questions to be asked and answered immediately.

The party discussed this for a bit and settled on the following: "Is the scroll on the third level or lower?" Yes "Is there special danger with the door with the runes to the east?" No "Will you attack us if we try to retrieve the scroll?" Laughing no I think this reaffirmed their position to delve deeper since the scroll was the goal after all. Off they went down the stairs, burning some fresh spider webs on the way but finding no spiders. On the third level, a door that was previously scrawled with arcane runes could now be inspected by an arcane caster who determined that the language was more a shorthand for notes in some weird cipher than actual spell material. They noted this and moved on. A lever activated portcullis blocked their way forward, but as the party poked around the room, Standing Mountain discovered a false wall that lifted like a small rolling overhead door. The group proceeded through and into a room that resembled a workshop of sorts, with an old kiln and a coal bin along one wall. To the north was scrawled, “Praise Sinmabi” in common on the wall. Standing Mountain was able to recall that Sinmabi was an orcish warchief that was a footnote in the history of Auran expansion. He should be dead in battle for many hundreds of years.

Again they poked around, again the elf found a secret compartment, this one sliding open to reveal a huge statue of a troll archer set within the wall. The group immediately identified that trolls are not typically archers and found that very strange. Aelways carefully examined the statue and discovered that the arrows in the quiver were freestanding rather than having been carved as part of the whole. By removing one he gained a silver tipped arrow and activated a mechanism that caused the statue to pivot, opening a narrow passage into the room beyond. This room was dominated by a huge pile of broken glass. It also had spiderwebbed cracks all over the ceiling. Some of the group carefully poked through the glass with spears which took quite a long time, but this was one of those sessions where random encounters just would not hit, so eventually they discovered a pile of treasure underneath. One of the satchels was quite heavy so the two henchmen were detailed to tag team it. While trying to open the lock on the next door, Aelways’ picks became stuck and broke when he tried to free them. Standing Mountain was able to force the door open anyway, revealing a corridor and another locked door. Without lockpicks Aelways could offer no solution, so the spellsword again tried to force the door, this time triggering a javelin trap that shot out to inflict a solid hit on him. Miles quickly healed the damage and the party was up one javelin but down one pathway, opting to backtrack and take a different path.

In the next chamber, the group found a fountain of three dwarven women holding jars over their heads. On the fountain’s basin was scrawled “4, 10, 2, 10”. They didn’t really have anything to go on for what the numbers might mean but took a note anyway. Then Nezra the Sporecaster cemented my hatred of the class by regaling us with a description of how he was “secreting” into the fountain to foul the waters and potentially convert other creatures to fungal zombie thralls. Just disgusting. They rapidly left that room for another that smelled faintly of patchouli which the elf recognized immediately because elves are the closest things to filthy hippies we’ve got. On the northern wall the phrase "Lukhak fell here, her song has ended" was scrawled and another magically sealed door like the one on the level above blocked their passage forward. They turned back to regroup for the next delve, again finding no random encounters while moving out of the dungeon and back to town.

Musings: Weird session with no action, but we abide by the dice. I was surprised that the crew didn’t go directly for the lower level but it led to some interesting discoveries. First time we’ve broken some lockpicks. Had some challenges with mapping. I’ll endeavor to be more clear in my descriptions but without the Mapping proficiency it’s all gotta be verbal and if there’s confusion well, it’s a dark and dangerous place down there. This will be the second blatantly evil item this group has picked up. Starting to wonder about that Paladin. And finally, I hate Sporecasters. Grades: Nezra - Just. Whatever. Gross. He did the thing but I don’t have to like it. E Aelways - Thief-ish role that was played straight E Standing Mountain - Weird dual role of fighter/mage. Upfront and assertive as fighter, curious about arcane stuff, super intrigued by weird statue. E Miles - Only aberrant behavior is abiding the evil item for the sake of greed. Would expect more assertiveness in the future for blatantly chaotic things. Otherwise up front, leader/caller, laid on hands when needed, S.

Friday, September 8, 2023

Session 115: Surgery with Sledgehamers

Happy Friday, gamers. DM Dubs is back with a session report from DM Brigadine. Worry not dear reader, I returned to the DM seat (mostly) full time again at session 120. IRL chilled a bit around that time. So there are only about 5 more of these reports before you’re back to full strength unfiltered DUBS. 

Until then, here’s another cool dungeon delve session from DM Brig. See his Musings below where he notes how this dungeon was started by my running my kids through Appendix A. The dungeon got kind of big since my kids delved it about 4 times. They had a lot of cool memories there and the level 2 or 3 PCs they achieved by going there have since mostly moved on to other dungeons and POIs; primarily adventuring out of Kyle’s lands lately when they beg me to run a session here or there. 

As Jeffro outlined quite a bit this summer when he was running “tournament” session(s) at a game convention, it can really add some great flavor and new regions to your campaign if you run various tables both online and in irl space. There’s really no reason to dream up a new campaign world for every group of players who want you to DM them. If you pick a spot on your ongoing campaign map and plop them down there, they will add concepts and worldbuilding to that area for your legacy players to riff off of. And you, the Dm, don’t have to prep anything because you should be (if you’re running a real campaign with downtime or braunstein actions) extremely acquainted with your campaign world and the elements inside of it that a new party might get excited about. 

You can also just start telling this “tournament” table about your campaign as they are generating characters and the first story or hook or stupid gonzo inside joke (MUPPETLANTIS BAY BAY) that they laugh or are intrigued by can be the session hook. If everything bores them then you tell them “fine [redacted]’s, y’all come up with something better” while you go pour yourself another mixed drink. 

This type of D&D is without limits. All the things you wished you could have done or had happening in your campaign when you skimmed over the rule books in high school or middle school are possible. And it’s so easy. Emancipate yourself from mental d&d slavery. Only yourself can free your own DM mind. With the BROSR patented D&D gaming methods. And kayfabey.* -DM Dubs 09/08/23 


Session 115: Surgery with Sledgehammers 
6/14/23 - 6/15, rest 6/16, active 6/17 
PCs: Samson, Edelweiss, Xanthos Henches: Koite, Potami, Ulysses, Frostweave, Davian, Azalea, Lily #ACKS 

We’re back with another thrilling installment of Dubzaron Does Dungeon Delving, this time deploying some big guns in the hopes of gaining precious resources for our fledgling Domain leaders Prelate Xanthos of Turos Telle and Edelweiss the Mage. With an average level of 5 or 6, the boys were stacked. There were hooks to go around but Edelweiss had done an impressive amount of investigation into the location of a source of power crystals, or a crystal refinery, or some other Visitor related industrial shenanigans over several months, leading him to found his domain in the hex that allegedly held the site. In Dubzaron, everything unique or interesting that gets “memed” into the world must be in a dungeon. Prevents solo players from gettin’ silly, not that they would. Anyway, that’s where they wanted to go and who am I to protest?

The first part of the session was the PCs getting organized and traveling. Generally we encourage that kind of thing to happen in downtime or at least pre-session but schedules were wonky that evening so we powered through. In short order, the crew and a boatload of henchmen were at the yet to be named construction site of Edelweiss’s stronghold. 

They struck out and searched for the site of the dungeon using the lair finding rules from L&E, finding the site around lunch time. It was a small island in a small lake with some kind of fort or structure acting as a pedestal for a very tall statue of an elegant, robed woman holding a torch aloft. The torch did not burn and the statue was covered in a heavy green patina. From the bank they could see a door leading into the structure. ACKS helpfully lists the time it takes to build a crude raft in the equipment section of the core book as 1-3 days, presumably depending on material and expertise. If they could produce from their stable of characters a sufficient proficiency throw I’d rule a day, otherwise it’d be longer. No surprise someone had something, engineering or survival I forget, and they put together a raft by mid morning the next day.

They paddled across the small lake with nothing attacking their precarious position of ten adventurers on a makeshift raft. While the party as a whole was large, there were only three PCs, with Edelweiss being elected as caller and Xanthos volunteering to map. I think Samson’s player needed a break from dungeon responsibility as he does heavy lifting in both Dubzaron and Oberholt so for this delve he was acting as frontline muscle.

There was a wooden door banded with rusty iron that led into the structure. Attempts were made to make level 0’s sacrificial door openers but when prompted to make loyalty rolls the crew thought better of it, rotating door opening responsibilities throughout the session. Coincidentally, Edelweiss never opened a door. A stairwell covered in moss and algae led downwards into a dank tunnel of hard packed soil reinforced with timber, almost like a mine shaft or trench. 

They had no tracker surprisingly, but they could tell that the center of the steps were worn from traffic by the differing thicknesses of moss through the center and along the edges. They descended carefully, some of the scrub hench holding lanterns and torches for light, into a long tunnel with a couple branches. They have a habit of choosing a direction in dungeons and just going, which helps with decision paralysis I think, so here they chose west and kept at that most of the night. They busted open a stuck door, but this one was steel. Unfamiliar to some of the hench and Samson but Edelweiss and Xanthos had seen some shit in Dubzaron’s weird ass dungeons so they knew steel when they saw it. The room was empty though, with more doors leading in each direction. West!

The next room they came to was a bit larger and supported by four heavy wooden posts carved in what Edelweiss recognized as Visitor runes. The mage cast a spell to read the language, learning that it was some kind of manifest or log depicting delivery or production. It was hard to parse in its current format but given a few days he was pretty sure he could recreate it on paper to learn more. I have no doubt the fastidious player made a note of that before they moved on. 

The hench Davian acted as their thief this session, listening at doors and searching for traps. At the next door he heard bubbling water but no threats so they entered, finding a large pool of clear water bubbling away in the center of the room. There was no coping or lip to the pool, the water seemingly right against the dirt, but it wasn’t muddy. They didn’t investigate the pool any further, assuming it to be some kind of ore rinsing installation or something, and carried on. The party traveled through a few dead end hallways, eventually discovering a small room filled with crude stone containers. As the crew started investigating them, they realized they were filled with treasure! We love treasure! Oh and Potami died. Contact poison. But look, silver pieces!

This weren’t Xanthos’ first rodeo, so he calmly cast delay poison and then neutralize poison, curing the henchman and leaving him at 1 hp. High level magic can cover up some blemishes on the session for sure. He might have cast a heal spell too I don’t recall, but he was taking care of business.

They took their loot which was clearly too primitive for Visitors and split it out for weight, continuing on. The next room that they encountered was small, and unlike the rest of the muddy dungeon was walled in red bricks. Seemingly at random, some of the bricks were gilded in Visitor runes, shining golden in the light. Samson chose to touch the runes of two bricks at once, triggering a flash of light that struck through him to his core. It results in raising his dexterity score by 1 point but forcing a roll on the Tampering with Mortality table. This resulted in an affliction that causes him to mutter to himself and impedes his initiative when casting spells (he’s a cleric). While the party collected themselves to continue, Samson muttered to himself about them being cowards for not touching the bricks. They laughed at him, he enjoyed his higher dex score, and a good time was had by all. 

The next room was smallish, with a smelly cot in one corner and a few exit doors. The party poked around for secret doors while Samson checked the cot. Out sprung a startled wolfman ready to fight, biting the cleric despite his high AC. A fight ensued, eventually the summoned hero Mandonio and spiritual weapons puttin’ a whoopin’ on the creature who could only be hit by magic or silver while Samson just kept getting bit. A failed morale check had the creature throw his hands up, surrendering, and he and Samson immediately began to argue, Samson denouncing the fiend for biting him and the wolfman claiming Samson was rummaging for his unmentionables. A few minutes of this and some discussion about what to do with him led to the creature trying to escape. Mandonio the summoned hero pursued but the party was uncertain of the results.

Samson took petty revenge on the creature, pissing all over his cot and breaking his mess kit and various other small embarrassments, while the party finished searching and chose a different door to leave from than the wolf had. Xanthos cast cure disease on his fellow cleric, certain that the creature was a werewolf and concerned about Samson contracting the foul taint of lycanthropy. Running low on session time they chose to investigate one more door before leaving, discovering a small 10x10 room with a little hidden tunnel towards the base. It was very small, such that a female or elf or something would have to attempt to crawl through it. They opted not to risk it and extracted, crossing the lake uneventfully and resting at Fort TBD.

Musings: This session was driven by another of Edelweiss’s goals. The players seem happy to indulge him so hey rock it out. This dungeon was a randomly generated Appendix A dungeon originally discovered by Bdubs and his sons in their own sessions offline, so I had a hand-drawn map and some horrendous scribbles that allegedly were notes of some kind. It was fun to put my take on it and poke fun at the OG for his handwriting on the Discord later on. This is another dungeon that we are able to hand off back and forth because it’s generated live. There’s no fore knowledge to be compromised so multiple DMs can have a hand in it. It also ties in offline games and our Dubzaron games within the same campaign which is pretty interesting. 

Session 115
Xp from Kills:
Xp from Loot: 996
Total XP: 996
Cuts: 13
PC: 0% 153 5% 161 10% 169 Hench: 0% 77 5% 80 10% 84

Wednesday, September 6, 2023

Session 114: The Search Continues

DM Dubs here again with another session ran by DM Brig. I was not here but I’m jealous of the PCs to delve this dungeon. There’s so much going on in this place. A jade Minotaur head which oozes blood when the god of death’s name is spoken aloud, ceilings and floors with strange chaotic Lovecraftian patterns, murder chickens! Great stuff all around. 

Nezra is a weird class indeed called a Dwarven sporecaster. It’s from the new ACKS splatbook all about dwarves called “By This Axe”. I just recently got my physical copy and will start reading about the sporecaster. It’s my understanding the beta test of ACKS 2e has banned the sporecaster for being really dumb I mean overpowered. I think what I like the least about the class is making zombies and undead kind of bland. The sporecasters hench are like plant zombies which does indeed have some Appendix N influences or at least some early dnd influences like “forbidden city” wherein Gygax had some plant zombies attack so they wouldn’t be able to be turned as undead. I think Gary always hated Turn Undead as this is at least the 3rd place where I see he made it less useful in a module (the other being b2) or a splatbook (“monster manual 2” where you’ll find pseudo undead).

I ran as a Pc with nezra once and found the class to be ok. It has decent flavor to play on with its alchemical themes that we riffed on when I created the Baja blast dwarves. However I still think that dwarves and alchemical plant zombies aren’t really themes that mix well. Where is this in Appendix N? Even fantasy written after 1980 (which you most certainly should NOT read)? 

It’s not as if the sporecaster in dubzaron is overpowered or taking over the campaign. It’s more than the power level exceeds the “cool” or “pulp” aspect of the class. The plant zombies don’t detect as evil. Why? That aspect alone makes the whole thing kind of boring and more video gamey. 

I’ll have more thoughts on the class at a later date when I finally read a bit of “By This Axe”. I support Macris and ACKS but as we’ve learned in the BROSR, the more you play the actual game the less interest you have in collecting ttrpg books you don’t actually need or read splatbooks. Who needs splatbooks when I have a dozen or more players trying to break my campaign world in half every few weeks?

So please enjoy this session report from DM Brig wherein the PCs try to find a unique scroll artifact which would break the entire magic system in dubzaron if they were to find it. -DM Dubs 09/06/23

6/7/23, 6/8 rest, 6/9 active
PCs: Brolly, Nezra, Aelways, Miles, Thane 
Henches: Alejandro, Bob #ACKS 

This week the players were back on the search for the Uberscroll, or whatever it’s called, a scroll rumored to never read the same information twice. No one really knows what that means, but Edelweiss the Mage was keen to pay some adventurers to bring it to her so she could find out. We fired off the session in the dwarven vault-city of Azen Radokh. 

There was some chatter about trying to improve the margin on the mission by getting the dwarves involved to sell them back their own vault or something, I didn’t really follow, but they decided to chase some diplomatic action in downtime due to the Take Me to Your Leader rules in Dubzaron. You can’t just walk up and talk to important folk, you gotta get on the list. That takes time and 1:1 time is more valuable than gold.

Some small visits to the market for supplies and recruitment added Thane the Vaultguard to the PC group (Welcome!) and they were off, making it back to the cursed vault dungeon with little difficulty. Nezra the Sporecaster retrieved his waiting zombified carcass scavenger from where he had it bury itself nearby and the crew got formed up with marching order and light sources. The party anticipated the giant lizards in the first room of the vault which had been there every previous visit. This time the usually docile creatures lost their minds on seeing the adventurers and immediately attacked but the crew was ready. With the zombie crawler up front throwing paralyzation attacks and solid tactics, it wasn’t much of a fight, most of the damage taken soaked by the disgusting fungus grub. The real swing in the party’s favor was Nezra’s reanimation of several of the lizards into zombie lizards, with Thane commenting to Miles the Paladin, “You’re alright with this?” The spore zombies don’t register as evil so Miles just shrugged it off as weird dwarf shit.

They easily found their way to the portcullis leading to level two which was still staked open from their previous visit. The zombie critters descended in front of the party where they were completely unconcerned by the chaotic labyrinthine pattern carved across the threshold of the landing, but Miles was bothered all over again. Crossing the pattern caused no negative effects and the party kept it moving. A fumbled hear noise check had them jumping at ghosts, swearing there were ogres on the other side of the next door. They plotted an entry and sprung it, finding nothing but some curtains waving suspiciously from their horizontal hanging along the ceiling. They pulled the curtains down with spears, revealing the entire ceiling to be covered in that same chaotic pattern that adorned the threshold to the level. The next chamber had an expertly crafted archway for an entrance, which is standard for this vault, but this one was carved with various jester faces on each block. You can throw demonic runes and undead and whatever else at players but mention clowns and suddenly the dungeon’s too dark and scary.

Behind a portcullis in this room the dwarves were certain there had to be something secret. Now I’m a huge fan of randomized dungeons which often have dead ends and pointless features, but this one actually had something in it. After hearing some murmuring voices like eavesdropping on a dinner party, the dwarves uncovered a small compartment the size of a P.O. box that held a minotaur’s head made of jet.

Much discussion was had about the head, which definitely popped for Miles’ detect evil, until Thane just grabbed it, made his saving throw vs Death, and said, “Ok, let’s go.” A bit of stunned silence followed, then they laughed and ran some theology checks now that they could see it better. It was much heavier than it should have been, Thane with his big guns having trouble holding it for very long comfortably, and reminded Nezra of Nargund, the Cthonic god of the night, predators, and hunting. When Nezra spoke this aloud, fresh warm blood oozed from between the head’s teeth and dripped onto the ground. Thane took this opportunity to run this blood over the blade of his axe in the hopes of increasing the weapon’s combat effectiveness then put the statue in his pack. The party moved on, trailing fresh blood from a dripping axe. At the room where they left the cockatrices staked in the last session they found that their stakes were still in place. Thane was going to open the door and they would rush the room with zombie creatures to soak up petrifications while the second rank and ranged tried to throw oil and shoot at the nasty roosters. Unfortunately, the monsters were alerted to the party and ready, charging at the door as it was opened before Thane had a chance to get behind the lizards.

The crew laid the lumber on the birds in the first few rounds of combat, but unfortunately Thane caught a peck on the cheek and turned to stone, the Nargund statue with him, before they were able to kill the pesky birds. They found several figures in the room with some evidence of wealth on them in jewelry or fancy armor, including a medusa, hobgoblin, and ogre. They broke the medusa’s hand off with a ring on it and failed to chisel free a crown off of her head, instead shattering the head and crown into pieces. The hopes were that they’d be able to get the items restored with magic. Thane was left to decorate the doorway while they searched deeper into the dungeon, finding a room filled with spider webs that of course they burned. The spiders hiding in the webs escaped through a hole in the ceiling, leaving behind a few desiccated corpses that had a bit of treasure on them. Feeling pretty good about themselves, they kept going, descending to the third level of the cursed vault. This level’s archways were not the works of art of the levels above, crafted in uneven jarring angles. It was also darker, more oppressive here, with faint bioluminescent fungus growing along the base of the walls in a dark purplish/blacklight color giving off ominous vibes and causing Nezra to let loose with a manly giggle.

There was a fountain carved into the corner of the landing with a beautiful mountain waterfall scene burbling peacefully. Nezra took a drink from the water, probably inspired by Thane’s bold handling of the definitely not evil minotaur head, and reported the water was cool and clear. The first door they came to was carved with an inverted pentagram of arcane runes filled with the reddish brown of dried blood. With no arcane casters or proficiencies the crew shrugged that off and moved on through a square room lined with fungus and down a long hallway lined with fungus. They tried to enter a door that was stuck but had to force their way in, stumbling into a room with a shrieker in one corner that went berserk with a shrill whine. Nezra tried to commune with the shrieker, touching it gently and cooing in fungal tones or something. He picked up that the shrieker was scared but not a lot of complex thoughts coming off of a big mushroom. Miles chopped it down and the party was eager to be away before something nasty showed up. They chose deeper in, where Aelways the Machinist was able to hear some voices behind the next door calling for help.

They entered to find a human male and female both hanging from some weird contraption of chains and spikes. Suspicious immediately, some members opened a dialogue with the man who was pleading to be let down. He told them there were robed, fanged creatures that came from the door to the northwest, but Miles detected these folks as chaotic and let the team know. Once the creatures heard this exchange they dropped from the contraption, apparently not held at all, and started backing away. The party sprung into action to stop them and the fight was on.

Winning initiative helped the adventurers, with the front line charging to engage the creatures before they could escape. As combat was joined, the monsters changed shape from human into smooth-skinned humanoids with bugged out eyes and sharp claws and teeth. They exchanged blows, with Bob the hench getting brutally bitten and killed before the PCs were able to emerge victorious. There was a cultivated pentagram of the bioluminescent fungus off to the side which was promptly destroyed while the contraption was searched over, Aelways again finding a secret compartment that had some gold and other small personal trinkets. The group packed away their bits of loot and returned to Thane’s statue. Some various plans were tossed around about getting him out, but a solid stone dwarf is a hefty endeavor. Ole Bdubs has a house rule about moving petrified people because it happens so often in Dubzaron. With the manpower that they had, the PCs were able to get Thane out of the dungeon. They then lashed the statue to the back of several zombie lizards and slowly made their way back to Azen Radokh, thankfully having no random encounters, but they did bash Thane’s stoney knee against a rock. That’s gonna sting if he ever gets turned back to flesh.

Grades: Brolly: Called the session, tracked at every opportunity, E Aelways: Grade on thief curve, stayed clear of danger, used abilities, E Nezra: Idk, weird ass class. Thief progression with weird necromancer kit. Stayed clear, excited about fungus stuff, used abilities, E Miles: Paladin bold, eager to rescue those in need, smiting of evil when discovered, E Thane: New guy, bold, direct, courageous front liner, E. Session 114
Xp from Kills: 1580
Xp from Loot: 4121
Total XP: 5701
Cuts: 9
PC: 0% 1,267 5% 1,330 10% 1,394 Hench: 0% 633 5% 665 10% 697 No xp for Thane due to petrification, no xp for Bob due to death.

Friday, September 1, 2023

Dubzaron Session 112: Wheelin' and Dealin'

Ahoy hoy! DM Dubs here again with another session report from DM Brigadine. In this session I was not even a pc. But I do know a great deal about the hooks and seeds involved as most of them were created during past sessions and downtime actions of which I did have a say. 

The first is Zed the Radiation Dragon. I created this Lair for Kyle O’Conner when he was searching for monsters on his land and he kept rolling Dragons. So he needed a more unique lair. Because dragons were becoming redundant. Imagine that! So I had a couple thoughts when I made this:

-I wanted a location that armies couldn’t approach and just “lair smash”. This was accomplished with the radiation. 

-PCs would be needed to help. I’m very good, when I Patron play, of creating things my PCs want to get involved in. Kyle, not so much. He often reaches out to me for tips on hooking PCs into his stuff. This is necessary skill for Patron Play. If you’re just running solo stuff then say so. You’re not a patron, you’re playing solitaire. Have fun; but that’s not what we’re doing here. Work on these skills, everyone!

-I wanted some tech stuff in the game. At this point my “High Crusade” Patron was out of the game and I still wanted some tech hooks in the game. 

-the hook itself is a mix of “planet of the apes” and “zardoz” which a mutated Sean Connery of zardoz turning into the titular zed the dragon.

Of course my PCs circumvented all the stuff I put above and simply parleyed with Zed and came out one spaceship richer. 

The other points of interest is the Fairy Wood just outside of one of the Lawful towns that can teleport PCs deep into the massive forest far to the north east of the map. This was generated in solo play with MadEye or Briarwhisper (same player) because fey stuff kept hitting when he was exploring the little local forest. He asked me if it could be a fairy wood and it sounded cool. I can’t find it but this was not the first session some PCs used the fairy wood to teleport. 

Lastly Kyle’s Patron play allowed this all to happen and develop the way it did, especially bringing the PCs to the location and giving them army power to bring to it. 

What this session really shows is the PCs will always do something with the elements of your campaign world something you don’t expect at all. They’ll usually look for the low-risk-high-reward option first. But the dice really needed to come through for them in this session for it to worked out as well as it did. 

Enjoy and happy Labor Day weekend! -DM Dubs 09/01/23

Session 112: Wheelin’ and Dealin’ 5/24/23-6/6/23, rest 6/7, active 6/8 

PCs: Tuck (Barbarian), Gront (Barbarian), Samson (Cleric), Proteus (Mage), Edelweiss (Mage)   

Hench: Jeev, Nonus, Ziggy, Gudvar, Hafgrim, Beavis, Frostweave, Davian, Azalea, Gilford, Lily #ACKS 

Tuck picked up some leads in downtime from Kyle O’Conner (Patron Barbarian) and Vince McMaximus (Patron Human Pugilist) about a crashed spaceship somewhere in Kyle’s domain. This crash site was contaminating the surrounding area with radiation and had mutated the ship’s crew into various deformed monsters, most notably Melman the Fire Giant and Zed the Radiation Dragon. Kyle wanted them off his land so that he could expand and would have blitzed them himself but the radiation made it extremely dangerous for low levels to approach, so sending soldiers in wasn’t gonna cut it. Vince had helped broker a deal of sorts with Melman on Zed’s behalf. If they could bring offworld technology to Zed to prove they actually had access to it, then Zed’s crew would train them on how to use the things they found in exchange for leads on a working ship to get them off of the planet. 

Once the PCs got wind of it, they gathered to see what they could leverage. They had a spaceship from a previous session that they didn’t know how to operate. It was stuck way out in the Istrith Forest and guarded by some bandits loyal to Tuck. And by loyal I mean if Tuck returned by the end of the month then they wouldn’t put the spaceship on blocks and pawn the parts for extra arrows kind of loyal. The party chose to hit up Kyle and Zed first, with the former promising to provide escort and introductions. Apparently there was a system for this, with one of Kyle’s men launching an arrow as far as he could in a specific direction and then waiting. After a while, a few gnolls showed up that were mutated with strange growths and deformities. The weird creatures did not behave as the usual beastmen would, moving with jerky motions and clearly not having violent intent. Kyle had apparently seen this before but Samson wanted to kill them on sight.

The Warchief read the message that they delivered and nodded as though it was expected, then led the party to a neutral ground kind of site where they’d had a parley before. The adventurers waited by a big weird rock with a small tree growing from the top of it and eventually the other side arrived, more deformed gnolls kind of scouting ahead. The party this session was huge with tons of henches, which kind of surprised the gnolls so it took them a few minutes to call up reinforcements that menaced the area from the woods to the north. Finally, Melman entered the clearing once he felt like each side was on an equal footing.

He was a fire giant, which many of the PCs had seen before, but he was also deformed, with arms much too long for his body. This gave him an apelike quality, including a habit of sometimes walking on his knuckles. He greeted Kyle respectfully and then spoke with the party for a bit, fighting through some mental issue by shaking his head or knocking over a nearby tree randomly. It was a little off putting but they powered through. At this point I learned that the party had knowledge of a second ship that had crashed somewhere to the south. Apparently they’d visited “the moon” in a previous session, but it was just a desolate spot of land south of Kyle’s domain. They insisted that there was a crashed battleship there, and ok sure whatever you say gents. These kinds of things happen when swapping around DMs and you’ve got to trust that everyone’s playing it straight or your head will explode. (DubsNote: Your head will still explode!)

The group requested an aside to discuss their options, wherein Edelweiss made it clear that she wanted both ships and didn’t gaf about these guys. Most of the party, however, were on board with a plan to trade the abductor ship guarded by Tuck’s bandits for the knowledge to operate and repair the bigger, badder battleship that they knew about. They felt that this resolution would solve most of their problems by getting Zed out of Kyle’s hair, gaining knowledge to operate this future tech, and oh yeah taking the treasure left behind by the dragon and fire giant who made it abundantly clear that they didn’t care about the primitive trinkets of this world. Back with Melman, they asked for the knowledge to fly the ship so that they could retrieve it. Unfortunately, their smooth, monkey brains could not understand the knowledge without the machine itself as a learning tool. What Melman could offer, however, was one of his crew to travel with them. He left and returned with a basilisk with a blindfold on named Orville, much to the consternation of the party who have serious flesh to stone PTSD. Proteus the mage was big into transmogrification magic and spent some time asking questions about Zed’s crew’s afflictions. He even convinced Edelweiss to cast Dispel Magic on them to try to break the spell. Unfortunately it didn’t work out, but he wasn’t done yet. He offered to Polymorph Orville into a human and started to prepare the spell, but Orville panicked and insisted that Melman draw a picture of their race’s original form. “Don’t let them turn me into a monkey!”

With a reasonable idea of what they were supposed to look like, Proteus advised Orville to picture his true form to help. Idk if this was bullshit or not but it sounded good so Orville the basilisk tried to relax and picture his actual self. The spell fired off and there stood a little gray man, big bulbous head and big eyes and all. The barbarians in the group snickered at his tiny alien junk and no one offered him any clothes. They did show him how to mount a horse though so they weren’t complete animals I guess. They left Melman and hustled back to Kyle’s capital city of Claymore Crossing, which for some reason I kept calling Cavalier Crossing and I still don’t know why that stuck in my mind all night. Edelweiss stayed in CC with her mercs that needed rest, apparently too good to run errands with the rest of the party. The plan was to head towards a portal that they had a vague idea of somewhere northeast of Siadanos that was under the supervision of the elves of the Istrith. This fairy portal is what brought Tuck and Samson, among others, home from the Istrith the first time. They knew it worked, they just didn’t know where it was exactly.

Proteus hired a scout to help them find the portal and they got to searching. They were on a real tight deadline to get back with the bandits. They did not want their spaceship to get chopped up into spare parts. It didn’t take them long to find the portal spot, where they were stopped by two elves who demanded to know why they were there. After a short conversation, they convinced the elves to let them through in order to get rid of the bandit problem. One of the elves took a dance around the fairy ring to engage it and they sent the party through. I may have used the phrase, “The portal will take you where you deserve to be.” Maybe the elves were fucking with them. Maybe it was lost in translation. But it made me laugh and the group a little nervous, enough that Samson cast Augury with a blinding flash of Ammonar’s holy light and a giant thumbs up emoji setting them at ease. I think Proteus’s player commented “Man the Empyrean in Dubzaron are way more laid back than those Olympians.” Fortunately the portal let out into a forested glen that was guarded by many more elves, all of whom were a little sour at the intrusion. One of them recognized Tuck and Samson from their previous trip and called off the goons. The elves insisted on blindfolding the party before leading them away from the area, releasing them and indicating that their bandit camp was a ways to the southeast. The group found it easily enough and got to work. Queue training montage.

Tuck convinced the bandits to help dig the ship out of the mud while the crew was taking tutoring from Orville. I forgot to roll the days it was supposed to take for this training, but the bandits were gonna take a few days to dig the ship out so we’ll pretend I did it right. Shh, don’t tell anyone. They learned that Proteus could pilot the ship, Gront could act as gunner, and Tuck or Samson could act as engineer. What they didn’t have was anyone that could be a navigator because it required the Navigation proficiency. Orville filled in for that role and they were in business. Now to get the bandits out. Their camp was deeeep in the Istrith. The shortest distance to freedom was towards Turos Veren to the northwest, so the ship took off with Tuck leading the bandits out. It took a little while but fortunately there were no crazy encounters and they were able to land back in human civilization. It had been a minute for the bandits, but the merry men were game for whatever Tuck had planned due to a massive loyalty roll. Turns out Tuck chartered them as a mercenary company and promptly hired them out to Turos Veren’s captain of the guard due to some recent trouble out of the forest north of the fort. That’ll serve to keep them busy and cushion some of the cost while the boss deals with adventurer stuff.

The group flew the spaceship back towards Kyle’s domain with some pretty tame random encounters. This was one of those nights where nothing much of significance was hitting in that regard, but that’s ok. We’ve seen the alternative a few times. They arrived and parked outside of CC, where Kyle looked askance at the ship’s goofy bright green paint job that the bandits had applied. Kyle had been on this ship before for Operation Musclethunder and was not impressed with the new appearance. They also picked up the well-rested Edelweiss.
The Warchief agreed to escort them back to Melman, where they met again and concluded their business. True to their agreement, Melman, Orville, and their crew taught the boys the basics of alien technology. As they taught, more and more of them showed up, deformed creatures straight out of the random encounter tables, all able to talk and all carrying portions of the treasure which they called “useless monkey trinkets”. By the time Future Talk with Melman was concluded, all the treasure had been delivered. The monsters started piling on the craft, apparently unconcerned with their deformities, until they realized that Zed, the huge brownish dragon, couldn’t fit on the ship. Never fear, Proteus the Transmogrificationer was on the scene. He offered to ensorcel Zed the same that he did for Orville, which the offworlders agreed to. Zed landed a ways off so as not to kill everyone with radiation aura and Proteus poofed him into a little gray dude. He thanked them in Sean Connery’s voice that I simply cannot do an impression of so I was blessedly saved from that indignity. “Your asshishtance was invaluable, monkeysh. Well done, and please take this garbage, I mean these valuablesh as reward.” The offworlders boarded the ship and took off, their mutated gnoll thralls just kind of standing around and watching them go. It was at this point that the party realized this could be a problem. They furtively discussed some options while Samson sharpened his blade and muttered, “Kill them all.” There were over a hundred of them and they looked a bit tougher than normal gnolls. As they started to regain control of their minds, Kyle’s cavalry charged and rode them down, suffering some losses but not nearly as many had they waited. Wiping green mutant blood from his greatsword, Kyle asked them, “20% seems fair, doesn’t it?” The group agreed. The weird green glowing core piece was left behind, but the PCs asked Kyle to pull some mules in to help them dump it into the dungeon entrance that was gaping open from the abandoned dragon’s fort and then pull down the entrance and cave it in. They had some environmental suits and power armor that they used to protect themselves, but unfortunately they had to put down the sick mules. Some kind member of the party fed them apples and things before doing the deed. Ole Yeller vibes. They packed up and bounced, returning to rest and figure out loot splits with Kyle.

5/24/23-6/6/23, rest 6/7, active 6/8 PCs: Tuck (Barbarian), Gront (Barbarian), Samson (Cleric), Proteus (Mage), Edelweiss (Mage) Henches: Jeev, Nonus, Ziggy, Gudvar, Hafgrim, Beavis, Frostweave, Davian, Azalea, Gilford, Lily Session 112
Xp from Kills: 0
Xp from Loot: 99375
Total XP: 99375
Cuts: 21
PC: 0% 9,464 5% 9,938 10% 10,411 Hench: 0% 4,732 5% 4,969 10% 5,205

Dubzaron Session 152: Hole Lotta Adventure

During this session I was actually a PC! DM Vince McMaximus was the referee and I had a blast. If you’re stuck as the foreverDM at your d&am...