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Shadow

Storyteller Shadow's page

2,156 posts. Alias of Dennis Harry.




A gorgeous crystal fountain tises in the center of this chamber, fashioned to resemble flowing abstract designs that suggest sunlight sparkling off water. A wide pool surrounds the fountain. The pool's edges have been fashioned into seats, presumably so that guests could relax in the pool and enjoy the spray given off by the fountain.
The view would be idyllic if not for the two bloodied corpses that add a pink tint to the water. A smeared trail of blood leads to a closed door in the far wall. Another door which you already explored led to a stairway to the second floor.
You steel your nerves gripping your weapons tight as Colvin heads to the door...


I am running a V20 campaign and I had a player drop out as a result I have one opening.

I am using the new V20 rules - if you don't have them and only have an old rules set it is not an issue for me - I can update you on any differences. All characters are currently human and the game is still in the prologue stage though we will soon enter full game play. As the game progresses the characters will become embraced. Players may either choose their Clan or have me choose it for them.

The following clans may be chosen if you do not wish me to choose for you:
- Brujah
- Giovanni
- Lasombra, and
- Nosferatu.

The discussion thread explains some of the differences between my world of darkness and canon. Differences will become clear as gameplay continues.

The backdrop is Venice in the Year of Our Lord 1309. The city is feeling the strife between the Pope and the Doge with Nobles picking sides for or against the Doge's current defiance of the Holy See.

I don't need stats at the moment just a simple one paragraph background and a concept.

I will keep Recruitment open until this Friday afternoon August 17 at 3 pm. I will make my decision the next day based on the concept I feel fits best with the current party.

The current party:
Andrew the Hardy - Scottish Nobleman and envoy from Robert the Bruce to the Doge,
Gunther Thesing - Hungarian immigrant and owner of "Greetings" Tavern and Inn,
Dr. Lorenzo Cappelli - Native Venetian and retired physician. Son of a wealthy merchant of Venice,
Michael Santo - Immigrant to Venice and owner of a small Gondola business,
Michele Querini - Native Venetian, Nobleman and member of the Great Council, and
Xing Shi - Asian assassin from the far east.


Venice The Year of Our Lord 1309

While the rest of the Italian City States are ruled by autocratic despots Venice is still an Oligarchy. Currently Doge Pietro Gradenigo and the members of the Great Council guide the city though this turbulent time period. Recent changes to the law have much of the citizens still grumbling about the dangerous turn the city has taken, through deft political maneuvering the Doge has closed the Council to those who have either already sat on the council or who can prove that relatives were on the council in the past. Though there are still plum positions to be sought by those who are not “included” much of the citizenry has been closed off from having an effective voice in the administration of the city.

Current Noble Families: Dandolo (supporters of the Doge), Gradenigo, Soranzos, Querini, Tiepolo, (last two opponents of the Doge), Ca’Grande.

There are people from all walks of life and all cultures in Venice at this time, merchants and skilled laborers hold great prominence in the city not just the Venetian “nobility”.

Traditionally Venice looked to the east and the Mediterranean Sea. Her founding fathers were as much Byzantine Greek as they were Latin. In fact Venice’s Doge was one of the architects of the fall of the Byzantine Empire over 100 years ago. Since that time though, the Latin Kingdom of Constantinople (never much more than the city and its walls) fell to the Palaeologus line which has revived the Byzantine Empire. Relations between that Emperor and the hated Genoans was long established which weakened Venetian Black Sea trading interests. However, the most serious blow came over 15 years ago when the Mameluke Sultan of Egypt swept away the last of the Crusader states in the Outremer. Though the Venetians immediately opened relations with the Sultan their position which was once one of strength has been diminished by unstable relations with an infidel.

As her Mediterranean power has been checked, her power on land has grown. Venetian mercenaries who unlike the mercenaries of the other Italian city states which look for deep pockets, are from the lagoon itself and are loyalt to the "Republic". This however changed just over a year ago when Marquis Azzo VII of Este died at Ferrara leaving no legitimate offspring. It would appear that one of Azzo’s two brothers had a claim to the seat of power in Ferrara. Before his death Azzo had named his grandson Folco, from an illegitimate son, to be his heir in his will. The brothers were furious and Folco’s father Fosco appealed to Venice for help.

Naturally Venice was all too eager to aid Fosco’s son retain the title after all would this not extend the control of her land Empire? The Doge dispatched a military force to prop up the young heir. The Pope though had no intention of seeing Venice gain such a prize and resurrected the papal claim of Suzerainty over the city declaring in favor of the brothers. Doge Gradenigo refused to yield and did not withdraw Venetian troops when ordered to do so by the Pope. After all, Venice had long been outside of the direct influence of the Pope’s influence. Appeals by the Doge fell on deaf ears and Pope Clement threatened to excommunication and interdict on the Republic, its Doge, his councilors and captains and all those who gave advice against the wishes of the Holy See.

Naturally such a threat was poorly received by the Doge who refused to secede to the wishes of the Pope. A delegation was sent to try a diplomatic solution but was rebuked. It is now February of 1309 and the streets and canals of Venice have become a dangerous place. The Great Council debates over the pending excommunication with the enemies of the Doge as well as his supporters out on the streets calling for the support of the people and in many instances coming to blows...


This will be the discussion forum for the Dark Ages Vampire PBP based on V20 rules. I will list essentials here such as Clan availability, Rule Changes from Revised Vampire, etc. etc.


3 people marked this as a favorite.

I playtested D&D Next last night. Obviously with an NDA I can't say a whole lot about it but I wanted to share my initial impressions.

Currently I run a 3.5 Forgotten Realms game (with some Pathfinder tweaks). I have never played 4E because I had so much invested in 3.5 I did not see the point in switching over so I don;t have a handle on what 4E was like. I played 1E (briefly), 2E, and the Basic Red set from the late eighties.

Character creation for D&D Next was very simple and you could get the character up and running very quickly. This early on options are limited and rules are fairly basic so we had few issues where the DM had to step in and house rule things. We played a dungeon crawl classic so a lot of combat and the combat rounds were very fast. We probably had 5 or 6 combats with over 50 different opponents and with a lot of commentary and breaks in between it took about 4 hours.

My opinion a lot of fun to play and it had a very old school feel.


I was in the Complete Strategist (in midtown Manhattan) today just taking a look around and I was a bit surprised to see a big Paizo display where the nWoD books used to be.

Prior to today all Paizo products were lumped in on a shelf across from the 4E D&D books.

I don't know if the amount of Paizo products prompted the Strategist to move the books into a more visible space or if sales have increased for Paizo in NYC but I just thought I would share. :-)


I am playing a Cleric in a PBP on these boards.

At the moment he is 7th level and I have been focusing on Channeling Feats for his build. I downloaded the APG but did not at first glance see any Channeling Feats (I was at work when I scrolled through so maybe I missed something).

Is there another guide that expands on Pathfinder Channeling Feats? Is there a Pathfinder equivalent to 3.5's Quicken Turning? That would be an amazing feat for the build.

Any help is appreciated. Thanks!


I am almost ready to run this adventure after an interlude that has to do with plot which has nothing to do with the adventure as written.

I plan on having Allustan replaced with The Faceless One (the real Aklustan being trapped in the tomb as per the adventure).

Once they arrive and see the devestation, FO will claim that he (and a local adventurer along with the Garrison) forced the Dragon to flee though it did deal a great deal of damage to the town.

He will then lead the PC's back to the Whispering carin claiming that he found a new area to explore. (Which is partly true though he was not the Allustan that discovered it).

Once they arrive near the entrance, he will drop a Wall of Ice in front of the entrance and force a fight between himself, his cronies, Ilthane and the PC's.

IF they make it into the Cairn I may get rid of a few of the enemies in the tomb itself. I have seen a lot of ideas about what villians to use and not to use in past threads. Anyone recently running the adventure do anything different inside the tomb?


I am starting this module tonight! :-)

I have made some significant modifications to the adventure so I am really looking forward to this one.

My PC's may not opt to compete in the games which would be a shame as Kullen's Gang (an expanded version) has entered with backing from Balabar Smenk. I am looking forward to that fight.

Did anyone's PC's actually destroy the Urgustala (SP?) before the games began?


I should be finishing TFoE in the next session or two. I am looking to change up the next installment a bit. Here are my ideas I would love to hear how others approached it.

Tying in the party
1) One of the characters is awaiting a shipment from the south (that shipment is slaves). That caravan will be traveling along a northern route (close to Blackwall Keep) and will be raided by the Lizard Folk.
2) Allustan will have already been near the keep when the attack took place. (In fact he was with the caravan). He went to a town nearby Blackwall Keep to meet with Marzena who will be a Sage that has knowledge of the Ebon Triad. When the Lizard Folk raid the caravan Allustan and the NPC merchant (Draths) will have escaped from the ambush via a teleport scroll.
3) Returning to Diamond Lake Allustan and this NPC will request that the PC’s go to the Keep to rescue (the hopefully kidnapped and not dead) Marzena as well as the other merchants that were taken into the swamps. The Garrison in Diamond Lake in my game is only responsible for guarding Diamond Lake so they have no association with the Keep.
4) The characters have a very good rapport with Allustan and will want to help him, also Draths has information the characters want so this hook will convince them to go. Allustan will tell them to go to Blackwall Keep to get help and information on the swamp (he does not realize the Keep is about to be seiged).

Details of the Seige
5) I plan on having about 90 instead of 30 Lizard Folk seiging the Keep.

Implementing the Spawn of Kyuss
6) I am removing the Spawn of Kyuss from the Keep.
7) I plan on having Marzena be implanted with a worm. Presumably they will rescue her and bring her back to the Keep. Overnight she will turn and start attacking the soldiers and the PC’s will have to deal with her (and perhaps whatever other spawn she creates).


I was reading a thread by Armnaxis over in the AoW area where after a TPK his group stopped playing the AoW campaign (though he is DMing it now).

I have as a DM never had a TPK in one of my groups nor have I as a player ever been in a group that has been TPK'ed. As DM I don't like them. They shake up the storyline and can clearly end a campaign. I would hate to have to start over completely and I don't think it is good for player morale. At the VERY end of a campaign I will show no mercy but I don't do the same thing during the rest of the campaign. When we get down to one PC alive I do admit I fudge rolls to allow that last character to get away and regroup.

How does everyone feel about them? From a DM and a player perspective I would like to hear opinions.


I finally started running the adventure last week. They cleared out the main chamber, the lair of the laborers and most of the lair of the architect. They loved it so far and with the modified origin of the Cairn they really got a sense of how amazing the adventure is. They are veteran gamers so they figured out that they needed to light the lanterns to make "something" happen. This Friday I finish it up. No deaths so far but a few bumps and bruises for sure :-)


Now that it has been out for a while is it doing what it is supposed to do or did it not live up to expectations? Just curious about how it actually turned out.

I have not and will not be using 4E. If I had the time I would consider trying the game as a player. Bottom line is I am neutral about the system, I neither think it is the greatest system ever nor do I think it is terrible. I just have sooo much 2E and 3.5 material I do not see the need to spend more money on RPG supplements. The friends that I do know who are using 4E think it is enjoyable. They also believe that DDI is very useful and adds a LOT to the game.

DDI Moving Forward into 5E-

The issue I see on the upside is when 5E is released with online support from DDI, Wizards could at low cost support both versions of the game in a way that would just not be feasible when the switch from 3.5 to 4E was made (or 1st to 2nd, 2nd to 3.0).

The issue I see on the downside is that in the eventual conversion to 5E Wizards no longer supports 4E. Sort of the equivalent of WoTC coming into your house and taking all of your supplements off of your bookshelf. So much of 4E is online based if they do not support it after a switch over it could be the equivalent of a wipe of 4E.

Anyone else have any thoughts on this?


Heh I just thought of one, Poltergeist (the first one).


My Age of Worms campaign stared two weeks ago. The characters met one another at the Council Hills meeting in the Eastern Shaar. The Shaar has been relatively peaceful for the past few years except for reports of strange undead raiding the outlying areas of the plains (especially near Sharawood). In fact with the relative peace even the civilized humans of the area have decided to come to the Moot in order to trade with the tribes. All races except for the Thri Kreen have gathered in the shadows of Council Hill.

The most surprising visit was a delegation from the Old Empire of Unther. Gilgeam sent his priests to assist the "Free City" arena manager and legendary gladiator Loris Raknian to gather teams for the 500th year of the Champion's Belt games which will be attended by Gilgeam and his priests this year. In order to attract attention to this event among the savage tribes, Raknian is holding a Contest of Champions event allowing the best teams free admission (or at least admission at reduced prices).

The characters are from all parts of the Shinig South and beyond.

Beta a Warforged Warblade claims he was created by a Gnome from the mysterious Lantan Islands of the west. Beta along with Scorpius Gorger Human Necromancer and Spellcasting Prodigy, journeyed to the Moot from Halruaa to assist their Mentor Severus Septimus in his search for a Spirit Shaman that can cure his teenage sons horrible nightmares. Scorpius does not come just to aid his mentor but to escape an investigation as to his part in a necromantic ritual that caused the disappearance of many Halruaan citizens. Scorpius does not remember much of that night or at least what he does remember he is trying to forget. Beta has his secrets as well, he has memories he knows are not his though he cannot unravel these mysteries with his childlike mind.

Dakkon the Githzerai Monk from Limbo traveled to Faerun from his native plane sent by his parents to sate his wanderlust in a safer locale than Limbo itself. He journeys with Aldon the Elan of the Grand Duchy of the Border Kingdoms a Psion (whose past is a mystery even to him) who seeks a meeting with a dangerous bandit leader Furifax the Half Elf. He believes that Furifax can assist him in purging the Untherite influence over a small but prosperous mining community, Diamond Lake on the eastern border of the Derlusk Forest. Aldon seeks to usurp this community for himself and the secretive cabal of Elan which rules the Grand Duchy. Dakkon mixed himself up with an evil Monk Idim until his mentor Tilbury the Halfling saved him from her evil clutches. Dakkon hides from Tilbury the curse this woman passed to him, his craving for the flesh of living humanoids!

Boris Lockhem Shield Dwarf and devout follower of the Dwarven deity Sharindlar has also come to the Moot to sell his alchemical wares. His main concern is the concern of all dwarves how to increase his wealth in this mortal coil.

Hamar of the Hyena tribe a Sendasti Barbarian born of human has come with his tribe to the Moot. He seeks the answer to the riddle what am I if I am not human and how was I born to woman? He and his childhood friend, also a non-human, have had nightmares of death, crawling and writhing death since puberty though they are not sure what these dreams represent.

Caelquash the Wild Elf Fighter of the Chondalwood also comes to the Moot accompanied by his Mentor Ethes. He was accused of a heinous crime against a young elf maiden and exiled (unfairly he believes) despite proving his innocence under truth telling magic.

Lastly, Mao the Human Rogue acolyte of the Tyrant God Gilgeam has come to the Shaar to purchase more slaves for his harem. Mao is haunted by the spirit of his dead sister who he believes he violently slew in a drunken rage though his memories of that night are lost to the blackouts of dwarven spirits.

Unknown to these adventurers, they have all have some connection to the the Age of Worms. Will they be able to prevent the coming of this black age or will they aid in its usherance into Faerun?


I probably should ask this at Pied-Piper but...

Is Rob going to write and release the Crypt level anytime soon?


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