Player Antics

Rise of the Runelords

Please share the fun and creative things your friends have done throughout the ROTL campaigns.

I am a DM and wanted to share some of the silly/awesome things my players have done in my ROTL campaign so far without taking the time to write a full campaign journal.

Possible spoilers below

My two players have focused on stealth, observation of enemies before attacking, and capturing prisoners to learn more about what lies ahead for them in dungeons:

Tumiel, the ranger-knight (paladin/ranger with fighter levels later), LG
Arka, a rogue with some levels in sorcerer, CN

==Skinsaw Murders: The Skunk Diversion==

In the Skinsaw Murders, my players discovered the lumbermill in Magnimar and staked it out for several days. Just because they had found a note in Aldren's ledger saying that he had paid the mysterious "Brothers of Seven" was not enough reason to invade a sawmill and possibly kill innocent workers, they decided.

So Arka, equipped with a hat of disguise, followed the person in charge of the mill home one evening after work, and later discovered that this man was none other than High Justice Ironbriar. The two decided to try to find some incriminating evidence of his evil deeds in his large townhouse. So Tumiel set about using his ranger skills to capture and calm several skunks and put them in a box. Then, he acted as a courier and delivered the skunks to Ironbriar's home when they knew he was gone for the day.

The butler who answered the door did not want the stinking box inside the house, so took Tumiel around to the gardens behind the house. Tumiel faked tripping and sprung open the box of skunks, who began dashing around the yard, trying to escape. Tumiel pretended to try to round them up, managed to grab one, and aimed it to spray directly at the butler, who fled back into the house. Some time later, other servants came outside to assist in rounding up the skunks, but none seemed too eager to capture one of the smelly, wild creatures. Tumiel and the skunks caused quite a bit of damage to the yard, tearing up flower beds and knocking over statues.

Meanwhile, the noise and distraction in the back yard allowed Arka to sneak into the second story of the building to find incriminating evidence against Ironbriar. He found that the Justice had nothing incriminating within his house, but the rogue did manage to make off with several valuable paperweights, letter openers, and candlesticks to disguise the entry as a burglary.

After Arka had finished his mission, he signaled Tumiel that he was finished with his mission. Tumiel took some time to round up the remaining skunks, apologized to the servants, and promised to refund them for the damage caused to the yard.

From my perspective as the DM, I ruled that Ironbriar would have nothing incriminating hidden in his house and instead kept it at the sawmill where he would have several cultists to protect it. In all, the adventurers learned nothing from infiltrating Ironbriar's house, but it was quite an amusing side-trek.

===Hook Mountain: There's more than one way to kill an ogre==

I changed much of the Hook Mountain adventure and instead gave the PCs a chance to defend Ft Rannick. They were indeed out on patrol in the forest when the ogres attacked, but hurried back before the fort was entirely taken. The returning patrol used the secret entrance behind the waterfall to enter the keep. The ogres had just entered the courtyard and the Black Arrows who had been at the fort retreated inside to defend the keep itself.

As the ogres pounded at the doors of the keep itself, Tumiel, Arka, and the Black Arrows stacked furniture and other items to block the doorway so that anyone entering would be forced to enter in single-file. They then smeared oil across the floor and planted caltrops and broken glass across the entryway.

A few minutes later, the ogres busted down the door and their commander, Jagraath Kreeg, stood in the doorway. He was badly hurt from battling Commander Lamatar and the rangers outside the fort before they'd retreated to barricade themselves inside. Arka and Tumiel were ready for him and attacked him from range with their bows. Jagraath charged at them, slipped on the oil, and died on shards of glass and caltrops littering the floor.

(Jagraath had very few hit points left and had only 2 hit points remaining after the PCs' barrage of arrows.)

Let's see....

Swallowtail Festival
The group's bard used ghost sound to create the sound of barking dogs and scare off some of the goblins attacking Aldern Foxglove, then spent two days going all over town trying to convince the locals to mobilize a dog patrol. No one was interested until she got a note to come to the Fatman's Feedbag and speak to the [apparent] owner, who said he could round up 8 men with dogs and they'd patrol the eastern and southern riverfront areas.

She doesn't know it, but these are mainly Sczarni with pit bulls used in underground dog fighting, and have agreed to patrol the waterfront to keep the guard and militia out of that area so their illegal activities won't be impacted. Their increased watchfulness along the river may also be beneficial during Skinsaw Murders when Aldern Foxglove is using the waterways to travel from the Sandpoint area to Foxglove Manor.

Catacombs of Wrath
The group's barbarian had his two-handed sword shattered by Erylium. He went into a rage and decided to go trash the pool of wrath figuring it was some sort of unholy altar or shrine, and arrived just as a sinspawn was emerging. He killed it and then entered the pool to drag out the body to cut it into pieces. Entering the pool hit him for 10 points of cold damage and made him "wrathful", which the rest of his group could not distinguish from ordinary barbarian rage -- until he started attacking his own party members. They were forced to take him down while Erylium just laughed and threw bleed cantrips at anyone who dropped below zero hp.

The 6'8" Ulfen barbarian is generally not having a good time. At the Glassworks he tried a running leap over the glass-covered Lonjiku, trying to come down on Tsuto with his sword (Tsuto was taking cover behind Lonjiku's glass-covered body) and rolled a '1' on Acrobatics so that he missed Tsuto and slipped on landing.

In the catacombs, the round before his greatsword was shattered he'd tried a running leap off the raised dais hoping to slice Erylium in midair -- and rolled a '1' to hit. Then he decided to attack the runewell and ended up causing lots of damage to his own party before they dropped him.

After leaving the catacombs he went to the garrison to try and utterly failed to intimidate Tsuto into giving any information.

On Thistletop the group found the warhorse and he made like 5 consecutive failed attempts to calm the animal -- even after the +10 bonus to Handle Animal for feeding it -- until NPC ranger Hosk finally tapped him on the shoulder and said "how about you give the stable owner a shot?" So he's feeling like a total failure in and out of combat. Poor guy just has no luck at all.

Liberty's Edge

After the confrontation between Lonjiku and Ameiko, I had a player follow Lonjiku home. He waited until it was real late and insisted on breaking into the house. I didn't want to railroad with a "you can't do this because I say so." So he did manage to finally get in despite me making it tough, hoping he'd get the hint to go back to the tavern. He seemed intent on just trying to rob him, but wound up killing him and ransacking the house. So now I'm torn on what to do. I don't necessarily want to have him arrested immediately and taken to Magnimar for trial, but I also don't want to encourage this by simply rewarding him and having no consequences. Of course his character was perfectly fine with murder "because he's chaotic neutral".

So I have two questions, how much gold/loot do you think is appropriate for him to have found in his manor, and how should I handle the sheriff's investigation into Lonjiku's death? The player used magic to kill him, so I feel like there won't be a ton of people in town that could be suspects.

I did write a campaign journal but most of the memorable scenes there are basically ridiculously overpowered PCs casually turning the opposition to paste.

The most ridiculous thing would be the sorcerer, whose player had several years previously stated was working her way from CN to LG, utterly failing to understand the G part of LG. I wish this was intentional on the player's part but it wasn't. Basically, in the Sihedron catacombs under Sandpoint she talks to the trapped glabrezu and is more than willing to free him and send him home because 'he was polite and asked nicely'. Never mind that demons are literally evil incarnate. This was just one of a series of issues that proves that neither the PC or the player has much understanding of 'good', at least in D&D terms.
Enough similar things happened during RotR and the Return of the Runelords game I ran that a refrain developed: "This is why Arly is not Good yet."

ADrake333 wrote:

"because he's chaotic neutral".

"I'm not evil, I'm Chaotic Neutral!"

Been there, done that. I was 13 at the time. If he keeps this up you should change his alignment to evil. Neutral is looking out for yourself, Evil is doing so at the expense of others and having no remorse.

ADrake333 wrote:

So I have two questions, how much gold/loot do you think is appropriate for him to have found in his manor,

Unhelpful answer: How much loot do you want the PC to have? That is the most important question.

Slightly more helpful: how big a percentage of the town's wealth is concentrated in Lonjiku's hands? How much of that is not tied up in various business vetnures? How much of what is left is in gold and how much is in easily transported stuff life jewels or small works of art?
You could easily say that Lonjiku has got very little actual gold lying around, perhaps no more than a couple 100, but has some rather precious objets d'art that many people including the sheriff will recognize as his. If the PC is caught with them he will have some 'splainin' to do.

As for the sheriff's investigation, outsiders are obvious suspects no matter what, especially if they have seemed suspicious or unfriendly in their stay so far. It's been a while since I read the AP but IIRC most people would at least be aware of Lonjiku's strained relationship with Tsuto, so the sheriff could easily start there with his inquiries, giving the PC a chance to cover his tracks better or get away.

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