Thank you! Holiday is a blur of school-work and drama -- I will be back to processing turns as fast as you lazy-bones can crank them out come tuesday evening -- with a full return to obsession with Pathfinder after the 5th.
Thank you everyone for playing with me, and happy holidays. I think y'all are brilliant.
Certainly. In fact, it may be a very tidy way of damage control. If she makes it into the corridor there are too many perception rolls to be sure nobody hears! Since you will move before this round ends, you'll be in place to take a full round action to possess -- but bear in mind her Will save is high.
Mum's copious sweat is practically sleeting on her body as she reels from the sudden and relentless assault. Muttering a Litany, she wrests herself free and creates a single mirror image of herself. Grinning, she makes her gambit to Escape her would-be assassin -- Figuring she can make it out into the hallway and get help!
Tsao: Take an attack of opportunity, but roll a D6 first, to see if you attack the mirror image, or Mum Herself. If you miss, or she survives the attack, she will be in the hall at the start of the next round!
Preet -NS 3.0- wrote:
This host knows another hunting spot -- Cross river, Climb wall to cracks near the ceiling -- some kind of duct. If no food in duct, travel north in it to adjoining cavern -- angular rocks. So many humanoids. Alternatively, what you know of the Cistern, where you first entered this plane -- might make an excellent potential ambush spot... hiding above and snaring creatures that come to, or through, the pool...
Unit 254 wrote:
"A totem animal? A familiar? And such a strange one -- but from the fire..."
He cannot hope to resist your wiles. He unsheaths his longsword, and leaning forward from his throne, bids you scale that metal ramp to his arm...
If it is in-combat, any of the above would kick off your 1-minute hijack clock. (willing or unwilling)
Out of combat, handing off the crystal would not (your choice)
Knocked out of grasp and caught (not your choice, so hijack clock is on)
Same for being stolen (hijack clock on.)
And to answer your question, perhaps a bit -- but the mechanisms are clear enough. In combat or non-electively, 10 rounds or 1 min before you can hijack. Willingly and out of combat, full round action. Just like fascinate is only possible in non-aggressive situations, freely abdicating forms is more favorable out of duress or violent circumstances.
Abrasax walks down the main hall to see one of the other goblins run out of a side forge to quiet down the dogs... "In the stone's name, Hush dogs!" the goblin snaps, then slouches to attention when he sees Mustadook coming. "The dogs are restless, prophet. What do you make of it?"
The dogs calm -- there seems to be nothing but the gloom, the distant sound of the rushing river, the pillars in the great hall, and the cryptic drama depicted in the frescoes...
Going to clarify some of the mechanics of changing hosts before the party levels (first event worthy of advancement should be cementing control of the goblins beyond doubt of resistance, so good luck) --
Good luck guys and happy thanksgiving! I'll be checking my phone and updating turns if anyone has time to post, but feel no pressure to do so!
Unit 254 wrote:
Gorfeen's eyes light up, and widen almost as big as saucers when he hears the voice rising out of the fire -- it casts long shadows all around him, including where 254's former host had been cast off and hidden away. It is quickly obvious that he hoped for a vision or visitation of some kind.
"Ancestor Goblin -- Arms heavy. future uncertain. Omens seem to point the way. Gorfeen always do the obvious and the obvious work, but this time sister counsel otherwise. This time, we trapped underground, and you ancestor tell mustadook we are to found cave-tribe. Seem obvious thing to do when trapped underground... but I need hear voice of best gobbos dead, to tell me the way. Gorfeen tired. Gorfeen on fools errand that look like death, hunting kobolds after they finally decide to leave goblin tribe alone. Gorfeen not thinker. Gorfeen survivor. Tell Gorfeen what to do, and Gorfeen do it. This once, ancestor -- Gorfeen always have counsel, and on night of biggest decision has none. Guide him."
Perception (opposed to 19 stealth) 14+4 = 18.
In the distance, the dogs barked -- and something nearer to him, for a brief second... seemed amiss. But He could brook it no attention -- he waited with baited breath for what the fire had to say...
General Tsao wrote:
At the door to Gorfeen and Mum's quarters, The General prepares to strike. As expected, a strange noise echos in the entrance hallway and the goblin dogs quickly skitter to see, barking a racket as they go. Before anyone can give the all clear, Tsao is through Gorfeen's chambers and into Mum's sanctum.
Mum's opposed perception to stealth (-2 b/c meditating) : 2
D20: 19+5 = 24.
...And passes, easily. Mum however, has no voice to raise an alarm -- and the racket from the dogs is more than competition for it, if she had. Tsao might wonder if he has time to take this creature down at his leisure -- but he knows it's mind is denied to him.
Initiative: 3 - 1 = 2
Tsao can take another action before Mum can defend herself... from the looks of it she intends to prepare some kind of defense and flee to her brother's side!
POP! enough time had passed that an entity of his intellect could master the secret of the case's lock -- Inside was a roll of papers, spun tight and tied with a cord of fibrous mushrooms.
Breaking the seal and examining it -- it seemed to be a bundle of two scrolls and a letter. The first scroll contained two castings of "Create Pit" and the second "Cure Moderate wounds." The letter is hurriedly scrawled, in what appears to be orcish.
Preet -NS 3.0- wrote:
(I threw the dice to expedite your move in accordance with your direction.)
NS 3.0 pours from the mouth of the goblin Preet, the husk crumpling to the floor as the tiny constructs burst forth. The cave fisher pauses for only a moment, before scuttling towards the corpse -- closing distance between them with a double-move...
...Then, just as quickly as burst forth, NS 3.0 dives into it's new receptacle -- Invading it's maw, the breathing holes along it's back, and the pores at the base of it's antennae. The shift is quick, but not immediate, the power of the host rivals that of the swarm, and some milage is put on the host before it can be brought under control. The creature scuttles up to the body of preet, and consumes the lower half of the goblin before control is fully asserted.
Interestingly enough, the profile of the Cave-fisher is surprisingly similar in many respects to how the swarm moves and conducts itself. While it's vascular system will run hot, in many ways it is a very suitable host -- if NS 3.0 can rise in power to match it. (CR 1 vs. CR 2)
Equally interesting might be the shift from a goblin's psyche to one of an ambush-predator in the seething darkness of the riverbank.
...and the Hunger! The PAIN of the hunger!!
Preet wanders aimlessly for a time, lost in the myriad endless minutiae that compete for the goblin's attention. Moving out into the cave, it is not preet that finds a creature, but instead a creature that finds Preet... shortly upon leaving the barracks and back out into the cave riverside, a filament of sticky fiber shoots it's way toward him!!
1d20 + 3 ⇒ (2) + 3 = 5
Zzzzzzip!!! The filament flies STRAIGHT over preet's head, landing in the riverbed nearby. The CAVE FISHER begins to descend from it's hiding place up on the rocks and hopefully make a quick meal of the goblin.
With the surprise round over, It's time to roll for initiative -- Hunger and survival clash once again in the unforgiving darkness...
1d20 + 1 ⇒ (1) + 1 = 2
Gorfeen is easy to find, but less simple to catch alone. Gorfeen is spending all night tonight at his throne, fire-gazing -- which is a passtime and privilege for a goblin. Still, if you are patient there are times where there may only be a goblin dog skulking about, and if you luck out, a span of time now and then when he is truly alone.
Unit 254 wrote:
You know Gorfeen is REALLY tough by the standards of the average goblin. he's got a spiffy breastplate, and uses a longsword he got off of some kind of Human Constable -- and is a wonder with a shield.
As far as replacing Mum, his disagreeing with her about the prophesy was a pretty novel event... since they are siblings AND goblins they have a propensity to squabble, but it's hard to predict how he'd react to not having her as his counsel, as it's no secret her guidance (and healing) is one of the main reasons he's still alive. Brooding and pragmatic -- Gorfeen is used to setbacks and even considerable losses. Could he lead the warband without Mum? Certainly. Would he ELECT to? There'd have to be a pretty compelling argument.
If people aren't posting because they are uncertain, it will CERTAINLY bog the game down! Difficult situations are bound to arise, and things not go to plan -- but in the grand scheme of things there are bigger fish to fry. To enslave the goblins in a single clear coup would have been convenient -- but small moves and setbacks are what makes the success all the sweeter!
The Abrasax wrote:
While the actual machinery formerly used to operate the forge is long since destroyed, a search around reveals some gantries in a dark corner of the forge that lead up to the crucible. Though the gantries are rather solid, the rigging for the crucible is horribly corroded, and in the "pour" position. You figure that if you lasso the crucible and gently pull it to an upward position, you could cause it to fall from however long a rope you use to secure the lasso -- once the rope is no longer tied/pulled, the heavy pot will slide back into its previous pour, jar the rigging, and it's own inertia would bring it down...
As far as a direct impact, it could have to be considerable to actually cause the rigging to break without using the weight of the pot against itself. From close range, smashing the rigging (or sawing even a piece of it) would also cause a fall.
"Your help is the help I do not need, like you are words in air, your help is words in air."
"I think you part of this, and once expose mustadook, then we goblins be come for you, voicey!"
General Tsao wrote:
In this case it will make only the sound of the goblin's body crumpling to the floor, dead. If you'd occupied him for a long time, he might "Spill" or "Splash" as you exited which could be more noise.
You do however need to make a second stealth check when you change form.
I, too, am very sorry you had such an experience your first time. And honestly, by those two accounts (starting a player at level 8 and TPKing a party in the first room, in a means inconsistent with their classes being able to deal with the threat) coupled with asking you to create a level EIGHT character by borrowing the book for an HOUR? Your friend is definitely in the running for worst GM ever. You can't have a compelling narrative and compelling adventure if everyone dies instantly at every turn.
Honestly, my vote is never play with that guy again, but DO play the game again in a different group. There are all different kinds of GMs, but the GM who kills an entire party by a means they didn't have a chance in and could not avoid -- is one of the worst types.
the "No you can't do that GM"
the "Railroad GM"
and the "Play your character for you GM"
"destruction from who!? If you not a complete liar as well, You should already know my 'fellow goblins', my own blood - are to be cats paws, fodder for a shaman of false medicine... Offer me a way out of that, and I helpses -- no choice or reason not to!"
"So explain... what you going to do to help? You kill Mustadook, weirdsey one?"
If anyone was lurking before is coming back, This campaign has officially started -- but you can still dot your interest if at some point in the future you still might want to join. If you have checked out the campaign thread, any opinions or constructive criticism of how the game is run is richly appreciated. This is my first Pathfinder PBP!
It's worth noting that both Itzal and Tsao are engaging Mum at the moment, and unless Itzal is using his telepathy to stall her meditation and make her vulnerable, you may have opposing objectives.
I trust I have left enough information to work things out (Itzal can try to stop Tsao IF he can spot him) -- otherwise I'll process as things go.
If either of you have posted later this evening when I get home and the other has not, I'll consider that one person got in before the other, and we'll go from there.
Your hubris ALMOST gets the better of you (Dog rolls 19 and JUST fails opposed perception check) -- you slip into a dark recess in the archway of Gorfeen's quarters, a 5-foot-step will easily close the distance. You see her standing there, as if lost in thought, one hand resting on her temple.
It will be interesting to see whether it is Tsao or Itzal who will act first. (Itzal cannot stay Tsao's hand even if he wants to without making a perception check against DC 19 to spot him)
Because Mum is distracted by the telepathic link, I will give a +2 circ. bonus to an attack roll made against mum -- I might also have required another stealth check to see if you can keep the attack quiet, but since it's established there are no (real) sentries and you've slipped past the dogs this won't be necessary.
Mum continued to linger just within the thresh-hold of Gorfeen's chamber...
(You may make a perception roll against Tsao's stealth to see if you detect him creeping up on Mum, until he makes the stealth roll this will not be processed.)
"Your thoughts lend confidence, but bear nothing in gifts... If you have trade in mind, I hear your give-offer and ask your take-wanting. Be clear, head-song -- my ears are big enough."
The Abrasax wrote:
I'm glad Mum doesn't believe. That would have almost been too easy. Can I sense motive on mum to see if I notice her unbelief?
You don't need to. If you check the running narrative her behavior clearly advertises her skepticism. You're used to dealing with far more politically savvy opponents. Any cleric is a potential danger to your nature as forbidden extra-dimensional beings -- though you cannot discount what a boon any amount of healing could be to the group, if her participation could somehow be acquired.
Mum initially halts in her step, but quickly relaxes when she realizes she can actually "talk" in telepathy, as she has not verbally spoken in what might be a very long time. (+2 circ)
"Not Jealous. Duly fearful. Propagated are vermin that flees the boot, aged say. Everyeach greatness is chaos, crushes the weak. Something is moving here -- and I sense we goblins must get out of the way, and that it may already be too late." -- her voice is particularly less goblin-esque, not that her pantomiming translated by Gorfeen would indicate this level of articulation...
She pauses for a moment.
"Now you, I am guessing you are one of two thing... Deceiver, or Deal-maker. Eederway, do your fing. No way my ears could hold any bigger lies after today... ear FULL of lies! And if you make deal, I at least can hear it... meester "dees-em-boodied voice."
If you speak further you should indicate if you are using diplomacy, bluff or Intimidate, and roll.
The Abrasax wrote:
Perception (26)/Arcana(24) -- Mum is undoubtably a Cleric of her faith, but how powerful is difficult to determine as she wears no particular trappings of office, and you have not seen her cast any spells. The most obvious solution is detecting alignment -- Detecting basic alignment characteristics could reveal you as something other than Chaotic Evil, Which would considerably undermine your credibility - while it is possible Lamashtu might use a Lawful being as a device in bringing chaos -- there is no way you could substantiate Mustadook's sudden change in alignment. Secondly, if Mum can cast or have access to zone of truth... it could be quite damning.
Arcana(12) -- What can you do about it? Not sure what to give you here. There isn't really a page in the playbook for "maintaining the structural integrity for your web of lies as regards the systematic undermining of higher organizational persons in a goblin hierarchy." -- at least not for a 12. :D
Diplomacy (12) -- it is worth noting that the warband still has 8 dogs to it's credit, which significantly increases the fighting power of the band. Beyond that, You learn -- and mustadook knew/knows a little. About a place nearby called "Kesh-Ul-varr" which is "Orcsies" for "Sky Denied" -- not much is known about the area, but one of the reasons your ill-fated patrol was out so far was not only to pick up sight of enemy kobolds, but to leave signs of your habitation nearer to Keshulvarr so the kobolds Gorfeen was hunting would look there, and be seen there. Keshulvarr is apparently a dwarven city ruin... with various blocks or sectors controlled by different factions of humanoids, few if any of which cooperate. If there is another tribe of goblins nearby, it will likely be in some section of Keshulvarr.
As part of your information gathering you could learn more about the area's history by studying the frescoes, but you'd need a separate (know-History) roll, knowledge of the orc language, or an interpreter that does.
General Tsao wrote:
Discipline is Lax. Gorfeen already made an example of somebody today and he couldn't be more distracted. Bunkavore volunteered to watch the perimeter and that is good enough for any goblin here. The real issue is these goblin rat-dogs. There aren't so many of them, but they wander everywhere and you're confident they have been trained to stay out (and keep out Intruders.) but know if you fail to sneak, the dogs won't just bark at you -- your disturbing nature could throw them into an attack, which might not be such a great concern to you save that it will alert Mum! Nobody is watching, but a bad enough sneak fail could cost you.
If you were able to somehow account for the dogs, you are confident you could sneak in unnoticed. (significant circ. bonus as the only person who could detect you enter will likely be deep in thought)
Unit 254 wrote:
I think my Stealth bonus is 4-8pts lower when I'm a goblin, but the size change + Goblin Stealth bonus confused me. If you get it figured out, that would be awesome. :-)
Dex +4, Size +4 (small), Racial Bonus (goblin) +4 = +12 as a goblin unless I'm forgetting something, which you are free to point out. Did you have any ranks put into it (because with your int you should have started with some skill points) that would be something to add as well.
If you took twenty and sat down to open it, you could likely pop it open but it would take a bit of time... I'd look at your INT score and then roll some dice, 1-2 hours tops. If you feel lucky you can take 10 and let it ride and it might just pop right open, though.
However, I strongly urge you to check the main thread for another opportunity before you go do that, you may not want to do anything about the situation, but informed decisions are the best decisions.
Mum scuttled infuriatedly through the dark towards her room. Itzal sees her coming -- He overhears her mumbling to herself. "Mustadook NO AMBITION... why Mustadook ambition now? Find rock, now he prophet? That NOT mustadook! Lamashtu does not speak prophesy of building horse and dog kingdom! Lamashtu break kingdom and feed goblins on the ruins! Maybe this not Chaos god prophesy..." (she wavers at the threshold of gorfeen's chamber where her room lies beyond.) It LAW prophesy. Pretender. Me memorize spell to see this, not surprised if I right. Not first time same brother from foolishness, won't be last..." she throws the curtain barrier to Gorfeen's chamber wide open and pushes into her chamber, lighting incense and laying on a mat in front of another crude shrine, she begins the task of memorizing new spells...
Upon being waved away by Gorfeen to fire-gaze, you subtly make your way to the coal bin and when the moment is right, tug the boots out of the Jamb. walking behind a pillar you examine them more carefully. Inside, you find not just a large amount of bone dust, but a pair of gloves, likewise filled with dust and bits of twine. It is only then you realize that the likely reason these boots and gloves wound up where they are was that the former wearer, hands bound to feet, had his extremities smashed in the hinge of that coal bin until they were severed.
The gloves and boots themselves are in fine condition such is the quality of their craft, and they are make for a small creature so fit well enough. They are bristly to the touch and you realize them for what they are -- some kind of sharkskin. Sharkskin gloves give a +2 circ. bonus to climb rolls and rolls to prevent being disarmed because of their gripping properties. Sharkskin boots give a +2 circ bonus to acrobatics, for their sure-footedness.
Result of Prophesy:
Two goblins have absolutely "drunk the koolaid" -- you are quite convinced that you could order them to do anything now. You have woven a fiction so real and reinforced by their faith that they would be martyrs to it. the other four of the rank and file are either true believers or too scared to doubt.
Gorfeen, squinting -- relents and nods. But you can tell Mum does not believe, at least not yet. You can tell. Mum hops around and begins to gesticulate, but Gorfeen waves her off... "Mum saying perhaps we discuss the prophesy in more depth later... perhaps." Mum is flabberghasted, but she falls in line. Nobody else can understand her, and for perhaps the first time in their entire lives, they are not of one mind. Mum gets up from the fire, and makes towards her quarters...
Gorfeen speaks again: "You take us this place, and rock better be there. If rock there, and you still alive, maybe we Undergloom tribe. 13 goblins fair start for tribe, and Gorfeen think perhaps it time to be bigger boss. Leave Mum to sulk. She fall in line -- has to. She used to being sole eye of god-power, but this time I overrule. She come round. Not first time brother and sister fight. Is it?" You can tell he is deeply distracted. "We sleep some time -- tonight I watch fire and see if Lamashtu talks to me, this time." Tommorow we will march to find the rock, it will be the symbol of our tribe power!"
Gob: 1d20 - 2 ⇒ (1) - 2 = -1
Gob: 1d20 - 2 ⇒ (20) - 2 = 18
Gob: 1d20 - 2 ⇒ (10) - 2 = 8
Gob: 1d20 - 2 ⇒ (1) - 2 = -1
Gob: 1d20 - 5 ⇒ (13) - 5 = 8
Gob: 1d20 - 5 ⇒ (13) - 5 = 8
Gorfeen: 1d20 + 7 ⇒ (12) + 7 = 19 (While perhaps not as skeptical, gorfeen clings to the idea of being the sole power)
Mum: 1d20 + 12 ⇒ (18) + 12 = 30 (also less skeptical, it is however a mean feat to convince a cleric of a farcical prophesy in her own faith)
Itzal slips away and you find yourself akin to a fox in a henhouse -- the entire goblin barracks is essentially unguarded, and you quickly skulk around and take stock of the layout... though you find nothing particularly interesting. The outside hall bends in a circle around the forgeworks, with a ladder on the opposite side as the wooden doors you entered from -- the ladder's trap door on the ceiling looks like it was recently jammed with a door spike. The trap door below looks like it was melted shut with extreme heat.
Along the outside wall you see various smaller workshops, but all of them are either burned out, or utterly in shambles. The work benches are now being used as sleeping racks by the goblins, the stone plinths piled with filthy blankets, hair?, spongy dried mushroom threaded together into some manner of cushion, the like. A couple of the larger doorways are utterly collapsed, it would seem as a result of flammable support material giving way during the fire.
of particular note there is a large workshop that has been converted into a kennel, the "dogs" are allowed to wander free and so now it is empty, but most of the dogs go here to sleep unless posted.
There is also the frescoes in the main part of the great hall, but much of the meaning will be lost on you if you do not speak orc.
Besides that there is Mum's room, and Gorfeen's room, which ajoin each other. from a common entrance -- to get to mum's room you must both enter and leave by Gorfeens.
Any particular area mentioned can be examined further.
As you slink around, you quietly tug at the puzzle on the scroll case, with little success. You are sure that once you know the trick you'll be able to open it consistently, but something inside keeps slipping and resetting it.