NobodysHome's Silly Serpent's Skull Moments [***Spoilers***]


Serpent's Skull

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I'm guessing mud sharks.


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owww...that is just so wrong!

I am going to design one...just when my Pirate Game players think they are safe (the grippli PC in that game seems to attract things that want frog legs for dinner, often!) they encounter...mud sharks!

Thanks for the idea Supperman!


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You can never go wrong with sharks


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Aaaaand... we almost lost Malek for the first time ever (-9 hit points), but a natural 1 by a certain elder mud elemental meant he didn't finish the job...

Details tomorrow, but the party decided not to play in that particular playroom.

Sound tactics? Buffing before fights? Knowing when to leave instead of fighting?

The party's getting downright sensible! Scary!


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But....but....What about Bara and the future tadpoles, they need their croaking Casanova/egg papa darn it...no more broken grippli/froghemoth blended families...NOOOO!!!!


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More Mud Follies
The fight with Khalid-Shah was remarkable in its nigh-unremarkableness. Kwai Chang levitated out of the muck, Malek scurried in along the wall to help him (critting an ooze mephit in the process), and Hooken obliterated the wounded ooze mephit. Khalid-Shah's tremorsense didn't allow him to sense Kwai Chang until he popped out of his mud hole and saw him, so a single attack did a bit of hit point damage, but nothing serious.

The ooze mephit and Khalid-Shah used some good tactics. The mephit used its Stinking Cloud to neutralize Hooken for a round, but of course Voren Dispelled it again. Khalid-Shah put up a Wall of Stone to isolate himself, Malek, and Kwai Chang in the room, but that was after he'd taken a full-round attack from Hooken, so it was too little, too late. Malek's attack of opportunity against his attempt to grab Malek and drag him into the depths was enough to send him into the negatives.

The only really amusing bit was the absolute metagaming going on by all the other players, and the complete cluelessness from Impus Major. Voren used acidic Dragon's Breath to melt most of the way through the wall on one side. Malek raced over to the opposite side (while Khalid-Shah was still conscious, mind you), and proceeded to hit the wrong section of the wall. Everyone else at the table was yelling at him. Impus Major hadn't been paying attention. But how or why would Malek have known which wall to hit? It played out beautifully as Voren breathed his acid, listened for a moment, heard Malek hit the wrong wall, and rolled his eyes.
With Narlock's sonic assistance, Hooken had no trouble opening a hole in the wall. On Malek's section. So Voren's breath had been for naught. With Life Bubble still active, they were able to loot Khalid-Shah's pool, including the crystals they needed.

Moving on, they spotted the Argental Font on the opposite side of the next chamber, and Narlock successfully identified it (I basically told them it was a once-a-year Heal plus Greater Restoration, which is close enough).

After using Detect Magic and scanning for traps, Talky and Impus Major played roshambo (rock-paper-scissors) to determine who would get to step into the room first. Fortunately for the survival of all, Malek stepped in to take the surprise 44-point slam from the elder mud elemental, who had been under the floor waiting the whole time. A massive initiative roll and the elemental went again. Its first blow was a double crit! Another 132 points of damage and Malek was already at -9 hit points. The next slam was... a 1! Malek lived!

Narlock used Jester's Jaunt to get Malek to safety, and the rest of the party retreated. Narlock cast Tongues and spoke with the elemental, learning that it was the fountain's eternal guardian.

I loved the kids' reaction to this news:
"Who needs a fountain?"

They left the cave, only to be ambushed by a squad of the gorilla king's minions. The battle continues next week...


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"Here's mud in your...everything!"

"This mud bath is NOT relaxing me at ALL!"


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GM_Beernorg wrote:

"Here's mud in your...everything!"

"This mud bath is NOT relaxing me at ALL!"

Actual quote from last night's game:

NobodysHome: Well, actually, Malek is OK because he has a watertight anus...


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Just think of it as a sentient colonic.


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The Mad Comrade wrote:
Just think of it as a sentient colonic.

Well, it was more "classic Malek" than anything sentient. He saw unconscious guy in the middle of the pool of quicksand. He waded through chest-deep mud to get to the guy. He plunged into the quicksand. He made a Swim check of 32, pretty much ignoring the quicksand and bashing the guy.

Comments were made about sand getting into every orifice. I helpfully provided an example of an exception in Malek's case.

The kids did not thank me.


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NobodysHome wrote:
Aaaaand... we almost lost Malek for the first time ever (-9 hit points), but a natural 1 by a certain elder mud elemental meant he didn't finish the job...

What is Malek's Constitution score? How far he was from an actual death?

Liberty's Edge

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Drejk wrote:
NobodysHome wrote:
Aaaaand... we almost lost Malek for the first time ever (-9 hit points), but a natural 1 by a certain elder mud elemental meant he didn't finish the job...
What is Malek's Constitution score? How far he was from an actual death?

I doubt he was nearly dead at -9 hit points, but I think the point was that the elder mud elemental was finishing the full attack - almost any attack at this level can deal more than the ~9 hit points at most it'd take to kill the barbarian :)


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At the levels they are, 11 hit points of difference between –9 and –20 is nearly dead anyway.


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Well, you had enough vacation!

Back to adventuring for our your entertainment!


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Drejk wrote:

Well, you had enough vacation!

Back to adventuring for our your entertainment!

We'll have to see how much of a quorum we get this week. Summer is an annoyingly-busy time for teenagers.


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Monkey Business
Last night was bizarre in that everyone said they would be available, but as 6:30 pm came and went, we were missing 3 of our 7 players. We sent out texts, made phone calls, and eventually by around 7:20 pm we finally got started.

Unfortunately, with the very late start, almost the entire evening was taken up by the battle with the Gorilla King's derhii scouts. It was a remarkably tough battle for level 12 PCs against CR 6 critters, mainly because they used their flight and reach to great advantage, striking the PCs from above. Unfortunately, while they rolled spectacularly well in their Reflex saves against Athelya's Fireballs, they rolled rather poorly in their attacks on the PCs, so while they reduced Malek and Narlock to under half their hit points each, they really didn't get a chance to truly endanger anyone. Well, maybe Malek, but Bara would have none of that...

Highlights:

  • As the derhii charged in and assailed Hooken and Kwai Chang, they surprised me by recognizing the tactical advantage of retreating back into the cave, so both of them did full withdraws to get out of the front line of combat.
  • Narlock performed and Vanished, but the derhii quite nearly killed her by swinging at the spot she'd been in. 6 hits including a critical, but 3 were negated by the miss chance, including the critical. Had the critical scored, she'd have been reduced to negative hit points.
  • Malek and Bara had their first "lover's quarrel". Malek would run forward and hit a derhii. Bara couldn't make it through the bottleneck, so she'd shoot out her tongue, grab him, and pull him back to her. The yo-yo went on for a couple of rounds before Malek mounted his wife (with the necessary number of jokes; I believe Impus Major said, "I mount my wife and ride her hard") and rode forth into battle. The derhii had flown out of sight once the party was safely in the cave, so Malek and Bara were the "bait" to bring them back into view. They hit Malek for 66 hit points. Bara unloaded on them. It was... ugly. In the first round she dropped two and had a third trapped in a tentacle. In the second round she dropped another two and popped a third into her mouth. Once Bara was among them, the derhii had no chance.
  • Hooken finally used Stoneslayer against the derhii leader. With a natural 1 on his save, he was petrified instantly.
  • Irwin spent the entire fight trying to find a stick in the mud. I set the Survival DC at 15. It took him 3 rounds, and then he spent his time poking dead bodies with sticks. Yay, Irwin?

  • Once the derhii were down, a new derhii in full plate mail with a massive red plume strode forth. The party wisely chose to wait to see what he would do, rolled a few Sense Motives, and ended up in negotiations.

    He was Gork Tang, captain of the Gorilla King's personal guard, and "invited" the PCs to treat with the king. A few missteps later, they had agreed to meet with the king at 2:00 pm on the next day.

    And it was already 9 pm, and time to call it quits...


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    I have so many jokes about a certain grippli riding his lady love, be it hard or not, must resist...screw it.

    It would seem...Malak is into...crushing?!

    I R going to special hell...again.


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    Hasn't Irwin gotten his character together, or is he just showing up to drink soda and eat snacks? Is there a cute girl in the vicinity?


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    The Mad Comrade wrote:
    Hasn't Irwin gotten his character together, or is he just showing up to drink soda and eat snacks? Is there a cute girl in the vicinity?

    No cute girls, but he and Impus Minor are good friends, so I think he just likes hanging out, eating cookies, and being silly. He doesn't particularly care one way or another about the game, but I think he likes hanging out.


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    Just going to note, the hilarious newly minted wizard main character in an old TSR novel "Go Quest Young Man" is named Irwin, plus, it is a funny and quick read, and along the lines of a Silly Fantasy novel with hidden brilliance. Just doesn't take itself too seriously. May be hard to find copies however.

    The more you know!


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    GM_Beernorg wrote:

    I have so many jokes about a certain grippli riding his lady love, be it hard or not, must resist...screw it.

    It would seem...Malak is into...crushing?!

    I R going to special hell...again.

    crushing ... ew, so much ew.

    Yes U R going to a special Hell...


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    Well, if Saffron is there...


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    To be fair, water tight anus sets a bar for the thread, though crushin', gross indeed...

    I would say I am at the bar with that one :)


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    GM_Beernorg wrote:

    To be fair, water tight anus sets a bar for the thread, though crushin', gross indeed...

    I would say I am at the bar with that one :)

    crushing is one of those things I could have lived for all eternity without ever having learned of its existence. Were I a for-real Paladin, there'd be a whole lotta Smite Evil going on...


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    Y'know, I'm not even going to Google it, because I don't want to know.

    A possibly even more vile example:
    For example, I never did find out what "two girls and a cup" was, and I think I'm a better man for it.


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    NobodysHome wrote:

    Y'know, I'm not even going to Google it, because I don't want to know.

    ** spoiler omitted **

    I'll, ah, go ahead and say "trust me, you don't want to know". Same way as I won't look up what's in your spoiler.


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    Yep...I am with Mad Comrade, let us just go with, better not knowing. Not enough brain bleach in the state for that one...not by half.


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    This is why they say knowing is half the battle...because the other half is trying to forget certain facts you learn that you wish you hadn't...


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    ... or squashing those who do the Horribles with many, many Smites and rocks from orbit. Makes it easier to forget with knowing much smooshing of evil has been dealt out.


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    LOL

    This is also why I stopped reading stuff from Urban Dictionary...


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    Technical Issues and Monkey Business

    It's always interesting to me to watch a group try to sign on to a weekly meeting, only to be delayed by technical issues every... single... week. It's frustrating at the home game, since we didn't get to start before 7:00 pm again because of audio issues with the remote players, but at least it's just a group of teenagers. At work, every meeting starts 10-15 minutes late because the presenter or one of the listeners can't figure out how to use the exact same tool we've been using for the exact same meeting for the last 6-12 months.

    Yeah, it's a pet peeve.

    So, the group started off discussing long-lasting buffs that they could put up before meeting with the Gorilla King. Thanks to previous sessions, I made them write down every single buff, and mark them all off. So it took a while. They finally decided on "inobvious" buffs such as Darkvision and Magic Circle Against Evil, then proceeded into the camp.

    I described it in all its glory: The wide, flattened area full of darned dirty apes. The naked human slaves scurrying about in service to the apes. The giant pavilion, throne, and feasting table. And they just walked right in, accepted the Gorilla King's hospitality, listened as he proposed a challenge of tests of strength, storytelling, and combat, with the winner taking the city, and the party agreed.

    I was really remarkably surprised at how readily they agreed to the contest, especially after they determined that the Gorilla King, being a servant of a demon lord, must necessarily be chaotic evil, and therefore unlikely to honor any agreements. Nevertheless, they moved to the table to sit down for the feast.

    The "naked servants serving as benches for the party" went over rather amusingly. Malek simply asked, "Can I have a taller one?" Everyone else sat down without a word, except for Kwai Chang, who refused to sit on a slave. The Gorilla King and Kwai Chang had a wonderful exchange on respect: Didn't Kwai Chang respect the King's customs? Of course he did, as he respected all living things, including the slaves, so out of respect for them, he would prefer to remain standing.
    The Gorilla King snarled, "Tell me. Have you chosen your champions yet?"
    Kwai Chang admitted that they hadn't.
    "Good. I look forward to watching you not be chosen."

    I read the feast verbatim from the book: Monkey brains with eyeball soup, seared raw hippo with blood sauce, vegepygmy puree with cinammon (to which Hooken responded, "Ooh! Cinnamon is good!"), the whole nine yards.
    Of all people Irwin tried to make a Diplomacy roll to try to avoid having to eat the feast. Since there's no DC, I deemed his 21 "not very good". Narlock intervened, but her 33 was enough that the Gorilla King only insisted that the two of them eat one course each.

    Needless to say, Malek delightedly wolfed down everything that was put in front of him. Hooken and Voren similarly had no issues at all. If memory serves, Kwai Chang managed to roll abysmally, and even as a monk he missed one save and ended up sickened. Irwin and Narlock both failed their single saves and were sickened. And Athelya. Poor Athelya! Her delicate constitution couldn't handle the food at all. Maybe it was just dying once too often, but a grand total Fortitude save of 9 on her first roll meant she was already sickened after the first course. As she hadn't been part of Narlock's diplomatic efforts, the Gorilla King insisted she keep eating. She did better, managing a 12 for the second course to become nauseated. This amused the Gorilla King greatly, and he let Athelya lie under the table, heaving among the naked slaves. And not in a good way.

    As they dined, the Gorilla King asked which challenge they would like to try first. Narlock, although sickened, chose to tell the tale of Harumbe the ape, who was enslaved by evil men and eventually rose up against them, amassing an army and slaughtering every last human. Yes, Talky was on a roll. No, Talky hadn't read the AP. It was just that obvious. Narlock rolled a 36 on her Diplomacy, but her sickened condition dropped it to 34 for a failure. But wait! The content of her story gave her a +2 for success! The apes howled in delight at the story. Even the Gorilla King applauded. The party had won the first challenge.

    For the challenge of strength, they buffed the living daylights out of Malek. Bull's Strength combined with Greater Rage, Good Hope, Enlarge Person, and Auspicious Mark gave him 1d20 + 12 + 1d6. He rolled a 13 + 12 + 1 = 26 on his Strength check, just enough to break the femurs on the first try and win the competition for Team Silly.

    The Gorilla King, knowing he was beaten, gave the order for his army to withdraw, threatening the party that eventually the city would be his.

    The party, being teenagers, gave the enlarged Malek 11 minutes alone with his wife. "It's OK! I'll only need 5!"

    They rested for the evening, returned to their final vault in the morning, buffed the living daylights out of themselves (they really do learn well), and went up the narrow path along the cliff into... an ambush by charau-ka barbarians who swung great spiked logs from across the ravine! Unfortunately, Barkskin, Shield, and Protection from Evil combine to add +11 to Malek's flat-footed armor class, so the spiked logs did little more than irritate Bara.

    She went over, used her tongue to grab one of the charau-ka from across the ravine, and swallowed him. The rest of the fight was going well for the party in spite of the narrow confines, but we had to end for the night in the middle of Round 2.


    NobodysHome wrote:
    The party, being teenagers, gave the enlarged Malek 11 minutes alone with his wife. "It's OK! I'll only need 5!"

    Hah! "Teenagers"...? I'd do the exact same thing, and I'm in my mid-thirties!


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    Good times seeing the same teenagers come so far from their days of an incidental portrayal of a band of goblins in RotRL. ;)


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    Well, Wednesday night ended with a rather interesting, "OK. Talky can't make it, so is everyone OK with running without him?"
    "Sure!"
    Suddenly Mr. Stereotype's dad said, "Oh, we won't be there, either."
    And Voren's player's dad chimed in with, "He can't make it, either."
    So of course Deady McDeaddead said that he couldn't make it.

    So yeah, the game is fine this next week...
    ...other than the fact that only Impus Major and Impus Minor are available...


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    Side quests?


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    LOL

    To be fair, it is hard to be goodly and zen-like when sitting on a human couch. Comfortable...I dunno, dignified and or nice...likely no.


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    Wait...using people as furniture is now considered slavery? When did this start?! Why didn't I get the memo?!?


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    Uhh...we sort of sent those out via human skin TPS reports...


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    So, just so's everyone's aware, I'm worried about this game in August:

    August 2: Unlikely. Kwai Chang and Narlock are already out. One more departure and I'll have to cancel.

    August 9: Probable. I *think* we're good, with only Narlock's player out, but it's the week before my trips start so I may be impacted.

    August 15: No. I'll be in the Desolation Wilderness.

    August 22: Unlikely. It's the week that school starts, and they LOVE to have orientation meetings on Wednesday nights just to mess up my game.

    August 29: We should finally be back to our regularly-scheduled game.

    Anyway, time will tell.


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    Wow, school starts here this week...


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    Pathfinder Adventure, Adventure Path Subscriber

    As an aside: I find it comforting that it's not just myself and my gaming group that gets schedules derailed by life. It can get frustrating at times, and I appreciate knowing that other groups have various issues getting together at regular schedules. Really enjoying the recaps of the sessions, and look forward to whenever the next one occurs!


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    School starting in August? What kind of perverted heresy is that?

    The reign of terror should not start before the 1st of September!

    Liberty's Edge

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    Drejk wrote:

    School starting in August? What kind of perverted heresy is that?

    The reign of terror should not start before the 1st of September!

    I was pleasantly surprised to learn the Oregon university system typically starts in the last week of September. Now that's some good stuff.


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    I was speaking of Elementary/High School level... University year starts in October here. Though the September is the month of retries of failed June exams. Also known as the September Campaign.


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    Drejk wrote:

    School starting in August? What kind of perverted heresy is that?

    The reign of terror should not start before the 1st of September!

    *

    Remember, remember
    The fifth of September
    Chalk powder treason and plot ...

    or something. ;)


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    owww, good one Comrade!


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    Well, I assume that school gets out a lot earlier here as well then. Everyone still has to put the same 180 days in. :)


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    When I was a kid, we went from the fourth Monday in September to the second Friday in June or so. Other than the "standard" holidays and a 2-3 week winter break, that was it.

    So they basically added 4 weeks to the school year to start it a month earlier (because working parents didn't want to leave their kids alone and didn't want to pay for day care -- look it up. Grr) and shortened the winter break to 2 weeks.

    To make up for adding 5 weeks to the school year, there are now THREE weeklong breaks in the middle of the school year (talk about day care nightmares), plus another 5 "teacher days" the kids get off. And I suspect there's more shady day-shuffling in there, but I'm pretty sure justaworm is right -- I probably did close to 180 days back in the 1970's, and my kids are doing 180 days now. (I'm guessing my "missing week" is a change from 175 to 180 days somewhere along the line, but my Google Fu isn't working well right now.)


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    Most Illinois schools go back during the 2nd or 3rd week of August. It isn't uniform across the state. Two-ish weeks off for Christmas/New Years, 3-7 days off around Easter or thereabouts, and most of the kids are out around Memorial Day. Yeah, they all put in the same number of days, but it's sometimes hard to get the kids to look at the year-long totals rather than "But Jason gets 12 days off for Christmas and I only get 9!" Or whatever. Of course, then you have the fun of factoring in the snow days.

    This year it's an open question if the kids will be able to go back at all, and if they do, how long the schools will be able to afford to stay open for political reasons that I shall not openly discuss, because I don't want to apologize to Chris. I'm still holding out to make it something special.


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    OK, we just got a third cancellation for tonight (Irwin's player), so with 3 of 7 already gone, and a 4th MIA (Athelya's player was traveling around Germany all week and hasn't reappeared yet), I decided to cancel rather than have Malek, Hooken, and Voren try to take on the final vault on their own.

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