I know I missed something.
Back in 2009, Jason Bulmahn made this ruling.
"The RAW do allow the grappled to make a full attack action, assuming they can do so with only one hand. Since flurry does not require two hands to perform, a monk could flurry."
Now one of my players is telling me it's been ruled than flurry of blows is officially a two-handed attack. What did I miss?
Well, I'm starting a Brand New campaign tonight! It's Golden Suns of Kor Kammor, a gestalt Pathfinder game allowing nearly all official Pathfinder material (there are, like, two feats and three spells I've outlawed until they get errata, and there is no way to detect alignment -- even smiting won't do it, since hp are abstract you can't tell IC if you "did more damage" because you smote evil, or because you crit, or because the bad guy only had 5 hp left), all Super Genius Games material, and a lot of Rite Publishing and Jon Brazer Enterprises material (and more potentially allowed with a GM review).
I hope to run it once a month. (Our gaming schedule is SO stuffed!)
At the end of the last campaign, Silken Sails of Kor Kammor, the heroes managed to reform the Aldean Church, and help the Messaih Reborn ascend to godhood. As a result the world is entering a new Golden Age, as mighty heroes are born who can face off against the vast evils that have taken over much of the known world in the previous ages. All PCs are in their late teens or early twenties, and have been identified as "reborn saints" granted special powers by the new Aldean god (hence the gestalt classes) and in most cases trained in Nuevo Akkador, the City of Heroes (and seat of the newly-restored Aldean Church).
Characters start at 3rd level, and background histories must include 2 noteworthy adventures the character has been on. The characters are:
Kinsen Jelt (Male NG human seer oracle of life/celestial sorcerer) Descended from the sister of the Messiah reborn, Kinsen (Kin's Son) is a scion of divinity, through whom magic flows life blood. As a boy Kinsen foresaw an invasion of his homeland by the Gnargir (flind/gnoll empire with half-demons and godlings common), and his divinely-inspired guidance was instrumental in its defense (resulting in him being taken to the front lines despite his youth). Then he insisted on aiding the enslaved orc shock-troops his people captured during the fighting settle as a (relatively) peaceful folk (though most hire out as mercenaries), resulting in a vast political power he has no interest in exercising.
Brand (Male LG half-orc paladin/inquisitor) One of the previously enslaved shock troopers Kinsen helped re-settle. Brand had no name as a slave, then on day threw himself in front of a scorching ray meant to slay Kinsen. The fire branded with the Holy Tree of the Aldean Church (an acknowledge miracle), and he became a paladin/inquisitor. Originally an orc, he is a half orc because the miracle was caused by a hound archon having itself bound to the orc in order to help guard Kinsen. Brand was taken to Akkador a few years ago for training, where he rooted out several bad elements by the simple expedient of allowing himself to be captured by bigots, tortured, and then rescued.
Hundred-Handed Lui ("loo-oi")(Male LN summer elf magus/monk) Reincarnated champion of the far east, Lui underwent the Gauntlet of a Century of Blows, a training exercise designed to identify reincarnated :Great heroes," and on his sea voyage to Nuevo Akkador helped defend the ship against the Bloodwind Pirates.
Mira Fatesdottir (Female CG dwarf clever godling/summoner) Literally a god born in a mortal body so she can experience mortal life before becoming the dwarven Goddess of Crafts. Her eidolon is The Breaker, an earth element assigned by her pantheon to keep her alive, because if she dies as a mortal, she will never achieve godhood. Mira fought off a pack of wererats as an infant, and then was captured by slavers working for Kaug Blackspear, an evil god also born into mortal form as a result of his immortal form behind killed. However she masterminded a slave revolt (and managed to badly wound Kaug Blackspear, who fled), then marching the survivors to Akkador as the nearest safe city. Though not Aldean herself, she respects the newly-reformed church.
Nenevieve Ravenswing (Female N aellar witch/shadow assassin) Nenevieve is the reincarnation of Dyrienne the Night Queen, a fallen saint who was responsible for the original downfall of the Aldean church. The Messaih reborn is giving her one more life to redeem herself, before she is cast into the Outer Darkness, home of the Elder Gods, forever. She and a number of other girls of her village were nearly killed by a hag who wished to drink their blood to gain power. Then she was captured by Kaug Blackspear who wished to turn her to evil, and instead she was rescued and befriended by Mira Fatesdottir.
Dellen Whitesmith (Female NG human fighter/armiger) Dellen is a smith's apprentice (a whitesmith works in mithral and adamantine, having it as a family name is a note of coming from a long line of master smiths) who thought she was 6 foot 4 inches and able to bench press a horse as a teen because her parents where both big northerners. She refuses to believe she is a "reborn saint" because she (unlike every other character) can't cast spells. She fought off a goblin attack on her father's forge as a child, and ended up being one of the guards of the caravan that brought her to Akkador after a few guards were killed in a Gnargir (flind/gnoll) attack. Fights with a longspear and tower shield (with spear brace armiger talent). She has trained to be in the Ivory Guard, so she can protect the "real" saints reborn, which is the only reason she agrees to go along with the group on its first adventure (to protect them).
Grun Ironhoof (male LE taurian Rog-Kalem/gunslinger) Grun was raised in Lybrittia, a patriarchal, misogynistic minotaur island culture, and was hired out to the Bloodsail Pirates as muscle. When an Aldean Wave Cathderal defeated the ship and captured him, he eventually agreed to give his parole so he would have more freedom to move about. The Aldeans have identified him as a reborn saint, and sentenced him to seven years service to the church, which Grun accepted. He was then sent on an expedition to fight Lybrittian slavers and explicitly given a chance to escape, to see if he could be trusted. Grun takes his seven year sentence seriously, and thus fought his kin with horn and musket as best he was able. It's already been established than Grun and Mira don't get along, but that's largely been chalked up to their racial and cultural differences so far (and actually Mira is more often the one to start trouble).
As far as the players know, their characters are to accompany the elderly Mother Wykka on a short trip up-river to the edge of the Dengdel forrest. There, every year for the past thirty years, Mother Wikka has taken the tribute of the Khek, a powerful tribe of lizardmen who were unwilling to convert to Aldeanism, but were willing to ally themselves to the secular power the Aldean Church represents. In return, Wykka gives them potions and salves for healing, disease removal, and good crops (worth exactly the amount of the tribute to be collected).
It's supposed to be a milk run...
I had a surprising even with a magus PC in the last game, and I wanted to talk about the experience.
The character is an 9th level magus with an 18 Int and Extra Arcane Pool, so he has 10 points in his arcane pool. His normal attack with his +1 Keen falcata is +9/+4 (+6 base, +1 Str, +1 enhancement, +1 Weapon Focus).
It's a 6-character group (oracle of life, universal wizard, alchemist/rogue, paladin, clever godling, and the magus), so I generally challenge them with fights that have 50% more monsters than their level would call for (since there are a lot of PCs), and that's worked well for 6 levels (we started at 3rd). In the last game, they were fighting 6 hill giants. Things went south for the players fast, and a few rounds in only 3 giants were down, and only the magus was left. He hadn't done much, but had cast haste on the group, and shield on himself with spell combat.
Then, he went nova.
One the next round of combat, he spend a point from his pool to add Flaming Burst and Shock to his weapon. His damage is now 1d8+2+2d6 (1d6 fire+1d6 electric) on a regular hit, and 3d8+9+2d6+2d10 on a critical hit (1d8+2, x3 critical multiplier, +3 killer trait, +1d6 fire, +1d6 electric, +2d10 fire burst), and his threat range is 17-20, so 1 in 5 shots fall into that range. Then he cast True Strike as part of spell combat, and used Power Attack and Combat Expertise. And then he did it the next round, and the next round, and...
The routine was spell recall (swift action, recall a prepared spell; True Strike), spell combat (2 attacks, -2 to attack), cast True Strike (+20 to one attack), cast defensively (take -4 to attack for +4 to concentration), Power Attack (-2 attack, +4 damage), Combat Expertise (-2 attack, +2 AC), fight defensively (-4 attack, +2 AC).
So every round, for ten rounds, he got one attack at +15 and one at -10, with no chance to miss his cast defensively, +4 AC, and +4 damage (3d8+21+2d6+2d10 on a critical hit). It took him all ten rounds, but he killed the remaining three hill giants without taking much damage himself.
Has anyone else run into the true-strike-recall-spell-spell-combat-rinse-repeat cycle? The other players cheered him on, and I'm glad to not have had an accidental TPK, but WOW was that surprisingly effective!
In my campaign, an antipaladin PC has taken over a local abandoned keep, and declared himself Baron of Agony.
He initially worked the local farmers and hunters mercilessly to feed his appetites for fine foods and wine, while taking out his pleasures on their wives and daughters and terrorizing their children.
Then he expanded his territories, and found a new farm, which (until his arrival) were producing even more good food and wine. When he conquered them, their productivity went down. When he demanded to know why, the foreman showed him books proving that being worked to exhaustion, beaten, hunted, and ravaged was bad for morale and work hours.
So the anti-paladin stopped abusing his people, and took time to defend them from other local threats, so they can make him more food and wine. And while killing baby orcs may be evil, it does solve the problem of orc raiders growing up in his lands. If he wants to kill, torture or abuse people, he raids outlaying baronies other than his own. He's even set up a people's council to handle most criminal matters.
The antipaladins' player claims he's doing this because he's greedy,. gluttonous, lazy, and doesn't want to sully his hands with "law" and "justice." That's certainly evil. And he randomly raids nearby baronies, which is certainly chaotic.
But his own lands are becoming a model of well-run, secure, hands-off peasantry. Isn't that a good and lawful act, which should cost him his antipaladin status? Even if he has the worst of intentions, is the end result enough to make him a CE fighter without bonus feats?
I was catching up on blogs and reading geeksdreamgirl, when I ran into a quote from 4 winds Fantasy, that read "Now, with some freelancers, that will fly. If Owen K.C. Stephens comes up to me and says “I’ve got an idea and you should let me write it for you,” I’m going to listen to his idea."
Which made me wonder what writers the 3pp would *like* to work with? I would guess everyone would take Monte Cook and any Paizo staffer, but who else is out there youd love to get to produce something for you?
Pathfinder RPG contributor and Super Genius Games Pathfinder RPG developer Owen C.K. Stephens has returned to his "Municipal Monday" blog posts, that unofficially expand the city of Absalom (which he was the author of).
You can find this week's entry here.
I really appreciate Owen giving us his home campaign notes (and expanding them so they make sense to us). I make sure to say so on his blog. I hope everyone else will to, so he'll keep doing these!
Major rpg author and Pathfinder Contributor Owen "Mr. Absalom" Stephens has put up more free material outlining the City at the Center of the World.
You can see the new material here. And he has an index linking to all these expansions at the bottom of every article!
As always, I beg anyone reading his work to let him know by responding at his blog! (And if you want to see it compiled and made cannon, like a lot of us do, mention it here, or start a new thread about it!)
Guide to Absalom author Owen K.C. Stephens has been putting up more material you can use to expand Absalom (or any fantasy city, really, but this is free and of professional quality). I had been posting his links here as a public service, and to encourage people to give him feedback.
I missed two posts, ‘cause I got really busy. So, here are the links, and another plea from me to ENCOURAGE the author to keep this up at his blog. We have like 8 posts already!
I missed a post on Puddles he did a couple of weeks ago, with a really cool and creepy idea called the Moss Stones. You can find it here.
Just today, he put up another one that gives LOTS of details about how social life works in the Pedals District. You can find it here.
And he now has a link to an index of all his Absalom posts, at the bottom of every article, so you can catch up (or go look something up) really easily.
Owen Stephens, author of the Guide to Absalom, has expanded his weekly every-Friday post with mroe stuff for the city to include new areas. This week, it's more Merchant's Quarter!
Go and enjoy. And be sure to leave some positive feedback. At 2,000 words a week, if we keep him encouraged, we'll have doubles the available Absalom material in less than a year!
Okay folks, I am going to *try* to do another Campaign Chronicle, and only because it's our shiny new Pathfinder RPG, set in Absalom "Gatekeeper Ascendant" . But the posts will be a lot shorter than my Kor Kammor posts were, with much less detail, so it won't take as long to write. And if I go quiet for a long time nothing is wrong, I'm just getting busy. Thne posts *should* hit roughly every two weeks, since that's the game schedule, but I suspect you all know how reliable game schedules are. Or, rather, aren't.
This is the first thing I've run set in a published setting in a long time. All characters start at 1st level, and must be stuck in Puddles when the game starts. They don't have to live there, just be there for the moment with no immediate plans of leaving (or, at least, not plans they have the resources to carry out just yet the game will move to the Foreign Quarter soon).
Since this game is set in Absalom, I'll be using a lot of information from the Guide to Absalom, and additional material provided by its author on his blog. If you want to see me continue to post this Chronicle, go say something nice on his blog about the new Absalom material, so I'll have a good source of information for my games.
The Characters are:
Bayden the Bottomless: Male human cleric of Cayden Cailean (Chaos and Strength domains), and a drunkard. Has a very important mission in the Puddles, revealed to him in a divine vision, but was drunk when it was revealed to him and can't remember what the mission was, just that it's in Puddles
Corporal Lannik: Male human fighter, looking to multiclass rogue later. One of the Muckruckers (local Militia), Lannik is a dirt-poor native of Puddles, who often has to scavenge for food.
Murriel: Female half-elven bard and devout worshipper of Calistria. Intentionally came to Puddles to live as the "wet-foots" do, to be inspired by the poverty and terrible conditions to write a song or poem good enough to draw the attention of a patron who will pay for her continued schooling.
Raqada Ib-Homun of House Ahnkamen: Male Osirion-themed paladin of the Empyreal Lord Ragathiel. Seeks the bodies of seven members of his house whose ship wrecked in Puddles during a storm, and who have not been properly laid to rest.
Urya, the Living Glacier: Young female half-orc sorcerer. A member of the Astounding Abyss, Urya is a an elemental/water bloodline sorceress with natural tattoos of slowly shifting ice that cover her arms, shoulders, back, butt and outer thighs. She was left at the Abyss as a child, and has no idea what outrageous parentage resulted in a gorgeous (20 Cha) half-orc with ice/water powers.
House Rules: Moving through calf-high water halves your move rate.
Game One: Raqada hires Lannik to help him search for the House Ahnkamen bodies, as that gets the official blessing of the Salvager's Guild in the effort. Bayden the Bottomless hears this and tags along (unasked and unwanted), hoping this is the task he was divinely inspired to perform.
The three go to an old wreck, The Crested Queen, lodged in the courtyard of an old manor. A Knowledge (local) check lets Lannik know The Queen is a common temporary repository for things scavengers hope to ransom, like Osirion bodies. The three approach across rooftops, using long, braced boards to cross alleyways. This keeps them out of the water – Lannik reveals he hates getting wet, despite (or because) living in Puddles.
At The Crested Queen, the three men overhear the sounds of battle and spellcasting. Murriel and Urya, who have become friends, are on the tilted deck of the wrecked ship, fighting off a group of green-hooded thugs trying to subdue them with saps and Lawjacks (leather-covered clubs that deal lethal damage, but it only takes a -2 penalty to cause them to deal nonlethal damage, a typical slaver weapon originally created by gnolls). The old manor is a hollow square, with it's flooded courtyard in the center and the wrecked ship stuck there (having been carried in by a major storm surge years ago).
Lannik, Raqada and Bayden are on the northern roof, Murriel and Urya on the deck of the ship, and a dozen thugs are moving up on them. Urya has already been grappled, and only the fact she used her whip to lasso a mast spar and climb into the rigging has kept Murriel out of reach so far.
Murriel starts a limerick performance to inspire courage. ("The slave taker cracked her verbal whip, rewards of grog would be but a sip, if the slavers didn't start-a, swimming through water, and stop giving her any lip!") Lannik throws Raqada a rope so the paladin can climb down, then shoots the guy holding Urya with a heavy crossbow. (For the whole fight, Lannik never left the roofs - he just loaded and fired each round).
Bayden sees that one of the planks two thugs are standing on is resting on a submerged bolder - essentially a teeter-totter. He casts enlarge person on himself. Next round with a war-cry (Aaaaaaaaaaale!), Bayden jumps down on one end (we used CMB and CMD to settle this) and sends the thugs flying. One hits a mast and dies, the other is catapulted into the wrecked ship's tangled rigging and gets stuck.
Raqada places himself between the thugs and the only route to Murriel, fighting five of them at once, while Urya luanches herself into the water. Using her natural swim speed of 60 she outmaneuvers any thug that tries to get close again, and depends on her cold ray to take out foes.
Bayden takes a while to get to the fight (having gotten tangled up when he jumped down), but manages to replace Raqada as Murriel's defender when the paladin finally falls unconscious. The remaining thugs flee when it is clear they are outmatched, and one green-hooded thug takes the time to throw a dagger at the thug caught in the rigging. The dagger turns out to be poisoned, and the entangled thug dies.
The group do introductions. Bayden heals people up as best he can (though it takes a potion looted off a thug to bring raqada back to consciousness). Murriel discovers the thugs have devil-runes on their chests. A search of the ship does not turn up the missing bodies Raqada is looking for, but does reveal rusting cages with manacles, and other signs of slave-taking. Lannik insists everyone come report to his boss, Topkick, who may be a son-of-a-b!&*#, but won't allow slaves to be taken from Puddles.
Topkick is suspicious of Murriel and Urya, who were the targets of the salvers. He figures they must know something important if slavers risked the wrath of the Absalom Council by taking prisoners in the city. Lannik informs Topkick that people go missing all the time, and Murriel mentions there are rumors of illegal salve sales on ships in the harbor, done out from under the watchful eyes of Absalom's trademasters. Topkick demands proof of this from the group, and dismisses them until they can bring him that proof.
Urya convinces everyone that her boss, the Fish-Head Queen who runs the Astounding Abyss, is a good source for information about anything that happens in Puddles or the Harbor. The group goes there and stays the night on the freakshow's grounds. (Cayden shares a tent with the Two-Headed Girl, and Lannik accepts Urya's offer to share her room. Murriel shares a room with Raqada, but is dissppointed that he sleeps on a bedroll in front of the door, rather than in the cot with her). The fish-Head Queen promises the group she'll look into their questions, but privately warns Urya that if this becomes a threat to the Abyss, Urya will have to either give up the adventure, or give up the Abyss.
End of session.
Best player exchanges:
Raqada: "I smite the infidel!"
Murriel: "I take one of the bad guy's healing potions and use it on Raqada."
Lannik: "They're probably just typical thugs."
(Bayden's charm attracts the attention of the Two-Headed Girl)
As a new thing, at the end of each game session one player (or me) chooses a way the players must describe their characters. This time, it was "If your character was a street sign, what street sign would they be?"
Answers, in order given, were:
Lannik: "Economic Recovery Zone"
Heya folks. Long time no post!
I just wanted people to know that, at my request, author Owen Stephens (of Guide to Absalom fame) is going to start adding his take on what *else* might be found in Absalom on his blog every friday!
His first post is up at http://owen-stephens.livejournal.com/64816.html
It covers part of the Foreign Qurter, known as Little Korvosa.
If we want to keep getting free ideas from the guy who litterally wrote the book on Absalom, we need to flood his blog with positive feedback, our own ideas, thank-yous, and comments. So come on folks, leave Owen some feedback!
Ok, I've been waiting for this with trepidation, but I figure I should at least put out my $.02
My group hates rage points, and I think it's mostly because they're "points." That feels far too civilized for the barbarian, and my barbarian players don't like erasing and keeping track of a number on their character sheet to track them.
In addition, they find the existing powers all seem "off" from a barbarian reaching down and bring up anger-based powers. Also, they donlt always focus on areas the players want their characters to look to.
While trying to address those issues, for our own games, i developed this system. I dont claim it's perfect, but my players love it and I wanted to put it out there for smarter designers to kick around and consider. The system avoids counting above five by using physical tokens, though you could perfectly well write down the numbers if you prefer, and the small selection of powers I have handle everything *my* players want to do, and seem balanced. Wiser heads may have to rewrite them for other people's games.
(Note: There is a built-in double function for fury deeds. First, they give barbarians some options for impressive acts too powerful to allow characters to use every round. Second, they allow a barbarian to extend an existing fury rage, -and- get a one-shot benefit for doing so.)
Shake it Off
Add your Constitution bonus to your fury tokens/day
I know we're only worrying about rules right now, and that's as it should be. But I have some visual concerns, and I know art and art design can take a long time, especially if you're suggesting an unusual look. So I want to bring some things up now.
Women: There should be pretty close to 50% female representation for any important category. This includes sexy (half the sexy pics should be women), heavily armored, monsters (Grendel had a mom, remember?), and competent-looking. I don't want to argue about other books, I do want to say if a young woman decides she wants to play Joan of Arc in plate mail, and she opens Pathfinder, I would hate for her to decide she has to be a cleavage-baring sorceress or she can;t play.
This happens. You want more girls who understand your paladin stories? Make at least one iconic a heavily armored female. Sexy sorceress are good TOO, but should not be the sole, or even primary representation of women.
Culture: Paizo has some cool non-European cultures out there. Make sure they, in all their multicolored color, get some solid visual representation in the PRPG.
Cartoons: If this book is supposed to boil down the essence of D&D, it needs some funny cartoons. Preferably, like the ones in old 1st edition D&D books. This helps bring the old feel back in places, allows us to poke fun at ourselves, and breaks up the visual look in a way that tells DMs and players they can use these rules to tell THEIR stories, not just Paizo's.
I STRONGLY recommend both Stan! and Rich Burlew for these.
WotC seems to have forgotten D&D can be used for all kinds of stories, and their art shows a single, corporate, unified, intellectually protected, commercially identifiable, homogenized fantasy look. I personally think thyat's a HUGE mistake, and one Paizo is uniquely positioned to correct. A varied, colorful, inclusive art design is a good start for that.
Bestil my black DM's heart. that is an awesom mini, and it is so great as an adventuring fighter or ranger (heavily armored, but actually carrying bags and stuff!).
I think the iconics are going to get the greatest use for me, since I can adpt them to my games most easily.
But I do have to ask, is the lead time from adventure to mini going to be fairly constant? Because I'd much rather the minis be available closer to when the adventure comes out, so I can run the adventure with the minis before all ym players break down and read it. for example, could you jumop on having minis for the NEXt pathfinder comes out at the same time as the adventures that need them?
And when do we get the new dragons?
Okay,m here comes the rant. Everyone who wants to thinik puppy-dog thoughts about 4e are requested to respond to this rant IN ANOTHER THREAD.
The elf, ala 4e, as seen on http://www.wizards.com/default.asp?x=dnd/dramp/20071221&authentic=true& amp;pf=true
So what's so terrifying about this?
All bonuses. There are no drawbacks to being an elf. No penalties, no reductions. Just good stuff. If this has been done at the race level, it has likely been done everywhere. These decisions are largely meaningless, because your no worse than anyone else, you're just better in some places. (If you don't understand my problem here, think The Incredibles. If everyone is special, then no one is. Part of the point of a race is to be better at some things AND WORSE AT OTHERS. That's one reaosn to play a human -- no real weakness. But now, you're just better at stuff as an elf, with no drawback.)
Plus, the racial power worries me. It's very sparese, and very mechanical. I can't see it ever feeling like anything but a game mechanic, not something that models part of a realistic and fantastical world.
Play an elf if section is Combat/Rules Only. There is no social reason to play an elf. There are three scant paragraphs about their background, all tied to a specific setting, but no rules to support it. They are easily moved to laughter, but that has no game mechanical effect,. Because apparently game mechanics are for stabbing things.
So, elves are tall now. All previous art and figures that made them short, as they have been in every other edition of DND ever, is invalid. And they are always creatures of the woods. Your savvy, city-wize, educated empire of elves with ships and trade routes and large urabn areas? Gone.
Movement in squares. We are no longer trsuted to figure out that 35 feet is 7 squares. This is certainly indiciative of a combat-scene only, buy our minatures mentality, and thus bodes well for ROLE-playing.
I continue to feat 4e is going to focus on combat, and not care about social settings. If there are social rules, they'll work like some form of combat. It's all becoming a very complex miniatures game
Things are being changed for the sake of changing them. They want to make it all different, so we have to buy it to get the newest version. Of elves.
Pfah. I'll play 4e for much the same reasons I play Warhammer FRP – because it's fun to play somethign different from time to time. But it is nbot DND to me, and I'm not switching.
This campaign has been going for several months now. (Almost a year -WoW) I have pretty good notes up on the wikia one of the players put together for me, so I should be able to recreate game notes. I enjoy reading other peoples games, so I thought i should but one of ours up. I'll try to do this every week or so-we play once a week. I choose a non=Paizo game, so everyone can read it without spoilers.
Black Days of Kor Kammor
Voronez mother died a few years ago, in a massive forge fire. Though Voronez was not responsible, many of his kindred blame him. This reslted in Voronez being beaten and mistreated constantly. His already swollen face hides bruises well and he never reported his beatings, so elders were able to pretend they did not notice. Recently, a paralyzing disease has affected his kindred, slowing them and turning them gradually to stone. Because of his innate fire powers, Voronez is immune. Wishing to prove himself to his kindred, Vornoez has set out to find a cure for this affliction, and its sorce. An old tome suggested a sage in Freeport might know what's going on.
Voronez is short for a dwarf, and misshapen. His left leg is longer than his right, his face is uneven and set low on his sholders, and he has a hunch back. His fingers on his right hand are too long and thin for a dwarf, and his right hand is swollen. He used to wear a mask of leather and chain armor under lairs of rags. Other members of the party have since worked on finding better atire for him, but so far it all makes him uncomfortable. He depends on his rbeath weapon in combat, but does cary a dagegr and club.
Auriji stands six feet tall. She has mahoganny brown skin, black eyes, and long straight black hair. She wears hide straps tied individually to her body (many now repalced by belts of her fallen foes), which coutns as studded leather armor. She fights with Majah Gada, a longspear, or Phrit Fi, a punch dagger.
Lyssa and Ryssa, "The Twins"
Once they hit younf adult status, LaR realized she was okay with playing fast and loose with laws and taking unneeded funds from the rich, but that the circus was often hurting the innocent. Thus the twins faked their death, and became traveling jesters (attractive twin jester girls being odd enough to get good gigs). They now seek any information about their homeland, which they remember but don't know much about. They are desperately wishing to find a male dvati, so as to have children, beleiving they must both get pregnant on the same night by twin dvati males, so as to give birth to "a" dvati from two bodies. LaR's greatest fear is lonliness, and she thinks without children, her old age will be very lonly.
Lyssa and Ryssa paint their faces with black grease mark, treating their pale skin as if it was already white cake paint. They have suits of green-and-brown motley, which works surprizingly well as camoflage too. Each carries an asortment of small weapons and tool, including two drama masks (one laughing, one crying). Most people don't realize their names, Lyssa and ryssa, refer not to the two dvati bodies, but to the masks. Thus whichever one hold laughing face is Ryssa, and whichever one holds crying face is Luyssa (only Voronmez seems to have worked this out to date).
Because of her innate talents, she was turned over to the Redcaps, goblin shamans. She was trained to wroship Hyarl the bugbear god of war. She does, but discovered soemthing the bugbears forgot – Hyarl is not originalyl a bugbear deity. In fact, Hyarl is an old giant god who values leadership and planning in warfare over personal combat abilities. He is neutral, and doesn't mind his bugbear followers, but also grants good clerics abilities. In a dream, Hyarl warned Mhyssa that "black days of endless blood war" are coming to Kor Kammor, and if she doesn't prepare a "golden hoard" of warriors, the entire land will die. Mhyssa secretly kept working for the bugbears because she thoguht they were the only hope for such an army. Now, she knos better.
Mhyssi is lithe, sad-looking and auburn-headed. Her eyes are split -- one gold and one green, and she has a tattoo of a greatsword on her left cheek. Oringally encountered wearing nothing but a set of manacles and a brand (of ownership by goblins, across her lower back), Mhyssi has no sense of possession. This often drives her allies nuts, as Mhyssi will give away things of value, or forget them, because they don't seem like hers. She is fond of the colors green and gold, and more likely to keep things in that pallet. (In current game time she's wearing a goldwashed chain shirt and carrying a emerald-hilted greatsword, but that all comes later).
A trained squire, Quince couldn't find a permanent place because of his family background. He became a knight errant, seeking a cause to commit to, that could accept him and let him prove his worth.
Glidda is buxom, blond and creamy-skinned. She is normally bedecked in a velvet dress with jewelry (both real and soulmelded). She rarely carries a weapon. She only travels on adventures occasionally, spending the rest of her time working and gathering intelligence. (Her player isn;t always free)
Other characters to be introduced as they show up.
The Secret Venture is a wandering tavern ship, sailing along the Gaunt River, through the Unclaimed Lands, serving overpriced drinks, bad stew, and bedtime companionship for hire to anyone with coin. It mostly settles along seasonal trade routes at places where caravans pick up goods from shipping barges. On this night, it sits moored by the town of Nightspring,an independt community that gives lip service to the White Kings, but does little to enforce their laws.
The past few years, the Blood Host has taken ladns closer and closer to Nightspring, and bought more and more goods from traders. As a result, bugbears and hobgoblins are grudingly accepted here, and though slaver is outlawed the goblinoids practice of it is overlooked. Thus, Svurg Bloodbeard, a young bugbear commander, and his hobgoblin troops are enj0oying a night of revelry aborad the Secret venture while Svurg waits for a merchant with a hundred crossbows for sale. Svurg is advised by Kittul Godlick, a redcap shaman and owner of the slave Mhyssi.
Also present this cold night are Voronez (who couldn't get served in town), the Twins (paid to perform a commedy routine in the tavern decks), Auriji (hired as a guard for the venture), and Glidda (working the boat for free passage). Outside near the boat is Quince (seeking a murderer who fled this way). There are a half-dozen townies in the tavern deck, and perhaps three dozen employees and sailors scattered across the boat.
Because they know it angers the humans, but they believe no one will do anything about it, the hobgoblins are actively abusing Mhyssi in the tavern deck, while drinking, eating, and loaudly talking about how weak non-goblin races are. Kittul doesn't care as long as she isn't made unable to learn, cast spells or serve, and Bloodbeard wants to see if the region is so cowed it could be easily conquered. Mhyssi's cries of shame and pain are too muffled to be heard outside, but no one in the tavern deck can miss it. However, most know that doing anything about it will get them killed.
Moved by the girls' suffering, voronez decides he must get involved. Seeing he is outnumbered, the lumpy dwarf realizes hell need help to free her. Spying Auriji, half-asleep with drink, in the corner, he starts muttering to himself in gaint hoping (correctly) she speaks tha language. Voronez talks to himself so Auriji can overhear, but sounds like he thinks no one else will understand him. He complains that bugbears and hobgoblins act like they rule the whole world now, and are even so bold as to take free travelers as slaves. It's sad, he comments to himself, that the big, dark spear-woman is going to be enslaved during the night while she sleeps, and the ship's captain paid for letting her be taken.
Auriji is enraged by the bluff, and grabs up her spear. Before the hobgoblins who what has hit them, Auriji has killed one with her mighty Majah Gada. Voronez is right behind her, and wounds more than half of the rest with a well-placed breath weapon. He also catches the tavern deck on fire, and panics everyone left. Quince sees the fire and commotion from outside and heads that way, hoping to find a small draogn to slay heroically.
The hobgoblins quickly surround Auriji and Voronez, who look doomed. Auriji swears to be Voronez's blood-sister, so they can see each other in the afterlife. Lyssa and ryssa start working against the hobgoblins in subtle ways (knocking one out by breaking two mugs on its head when no one is looking, screaming "look out" at one trying to sneak up on Voronez), but aren't willing to put their employer at risk by actively opposing them.
Glidda runs in to see what the commotion is, and is immediately attacked by hobgoblins,. While she tries to calm every9ne, or at least lure a few into another room to reduce the confusion in the tavern deck, her lesser soulspark barely manages to keep a hobgoblin off her. Lyssa and Ryssa move to assist her directly, since she's currently also an employee.
Vornoez tries to get to Mhyssi, so she can be freed at least before he and Auriji are killed. Kittul puts an end to that. Bloodbeard decides to end the fight, but is surprised when Auriji goes into rage, and seems much less close to falling down. Still, things are going badly for the heroes.
Then, Quince swings in through a window on a rope from above decks. He slams into Kittul on an "uncontrolled-Erool-Flynn-on-a-rope" charge, and scors a crit, killing the Redcap. Suddenly Bloodbeard is flanked between Auriji and Quince.Suddenly low on both hp and morale, Bloodbeard flees to the deck of the ship.
The hobgoblins rush to help their commander, and the Twins and Glidda can't stop them fast enough. Mhyssi has flung herself protectively over Voronez, who is the only person to ever try to help her. A hobgoblin begins a coup-de-gras on the dwarf, while the Twins and Glidda urge Myssi to run to them, and flee the ship. Instead, Mhyssi grabs Kittur's spell component pouch. Suddnely able to cast spells, she nails the hobgoblin with a deific vengeance, calling out to the hobgoblins own deity and killing him.
On the deck, the fighting spills over crates and rollign barrels. Sailors rush up to take down Auriji and Qunice, for fear of angering the Blood Host if the bugbear is killed. Fresher than the other combatants, Quince keeps hammering on Bloodbeard, while Auriji stands behind him with her longspear and keeps sailrs off him. The two drive Bloodbeard the length of the ship.
Inside, the remaining hobgoblins are killed off by the twins, glidda, Mhyssi and Voronex. It's worth noting Quince doesn't see any of that. Mhyssi heals Voronex, and asks why he risked himself for her. The twins rush up on deck, and tell sailors to evacuate. They claim the hobogblins are actually undead ("do you think they smell like that normally?", scaring the crew into fleeing.
Bloodbeard leaps onto one of the ship's catepults to hurl it's barrel fo alchemist's fire at his attackers. He hits and they take fire damage, but keep attacking him. He rants about the inevitability of the Blod Hosts' success, and how they'll burn forever in the end. Auriji fires the catapult he's standing on, killing him.
Since the venture is burning down, the group must escape. Voronex braves the flames to grab out people who have fallen uncosncious, while Quince swings off the ship with both Glidda and Mhyssa. The twins talk about how great an exit this is, and somehow sneak off the ship. (Lyssa has one end of her jester cap smoldering a think line of smoke for the rest of the night).
The captain fo the venture is pissed, but not willing to take on the people who took on the hobgoblins. The townsfol seem pissed, but also treat the Pces with respect. They are told to loot the bodies of the hobgoblins "the the Host knows we took nothing from their fallen."
On the bodies they discover the plan to buy crossbows for "a second expedition into the Bullette Peaks." No reason for the Host to do this isgiven, but the plan also calls for a visit to a major deamon-worshiopper in the Pirate City of Freeport, (in the Unclaimed Lands) and hiring Unjohn the Ugly as a scout, who just happens to be the murderer Quince is seeking. The group decides to investigate all this together, starting with freeport, which they must now walk to.
The group sets out, and do a lot of talking to get to know each other. Quince seems bothered he may not be in with :the right crowd," but glidda convinces him staying if for the greater good. Mhyssi spends a lot of time talking to the twins. Voronex quietly admits to Auriji he tricked her, and explains why. She laughs, telling him she'd kill a stranger for that, but he is her brother now and she's pleased by how clever he is.
That night, goblin scouts on wolf steeds attack the camp. The players slaughter them in three rounds. They discover Bloodbeard's brother 9who has the same write-up) came to join up with his brother and is furious the heroes killed him. He has sworn to track them down, and sacrifice them to the Host.
voronez (ooc): Why is there a slave girl figure on ths ship?
(After voronez uses his breath weapon for the first time)
quince: "I'm Sir Whiteblade!"
quince (ooc): "I want to challenge the bugbear. How do I do that?"
(Once Mhyssi asks Varonex why he risked his life for her.)
(As Bloodbeard is losing to Auriji and Quince)
(Blodbeard ends his rant.)
(As Vrononez tries to create an adventuring partyy)
Comments on this adventure, its characters or the world it is set in are welcome.