Monday, October 15, 2018

The Final Scale

Naoidheamh 35, 6639: Beastnight!

The Party:

  • Rig Bigny, Gnomish Beastmaster
    • Flit, bat familiar
    • Clench, Wardog War-Badger
    • Midnight, Panther
    • Noona, Lion
    • Faufe Yitaw, Dogwere (Badgerwere?)
      • Rawf, Wardog familiar
      • Aroof, Wardog familiar
    • Llarm Paphyra, Elvish Polydoctorate
      • The Metal Man, construct
  • Caranthir, Human Leader of Men
    • Rhea Trueheart, Elvish Nightblade
    • Lucille "Luce" Burwood, Fighter
    • Elenora Garrard, White Mage
    • Gimli Trollriver, Dwarven Fury
  • Gróin of Norston, Dwarven Sapper
    • Laurita Gomez, Priestess
    • Herman Thorpe, Ectomancer
      • Baelnar Grimtor, Dwarven Sapper
  • Crolack, Thrassian Gladiator
    • Kurt Steinbacke, Dwarven Deep Monk
  • Mor Gibs, Wonderworker
  • Saphira Moonstone, Gold Skinscribe
    • Pentzkin Singletossle Pocketspringer, gnomish beastmaster
    • Alun Tsornyl, Sylph Ranger
  • Te'a Tsuki Megumi, Elven Polydoctorate
    • Harvey Usagi, Rabbitwere
  • Fayleen Ross, Darklord
    • Zai-car, Zaharan Ruinguard
  • Aingeal Bàs Eleonara, Witch

Their armies teleported in, the party quickly organized both the battle and the strike team. With Rig Bigny commanding the battle, they launched their attack...

The units under Rig's command destroyed a unit of bloodhounds, a (terrifying) unit of death chargers, a unit of zombies, two skeleton units, and a flight of wyverns. The dwarven troops, a unit of archers, and a unit of infantry were lost.

The units under Ajeela's command destroyed a unit of bloodhouds, a unit of necropedes, a unit of ghouls, a unit of zombies, and a bone dragon (carrying a commander). She lost her barbarian troops.

Fayleen Ross, commanding the lizardmen, destroyed three units of skeletons.

The war raged back and forth, until Herman Thorpe managed to Hold the majority of the skeleton armies. Shortly afterward, the strike team entered the tower, and quickly (through Locate Object, Detect Traps, and a pile of other spells, wands, and magical objects) managed to race through the magical maze with little effort. They arrived at the scale, and quickly dumped more magic (and holy water) onto the black altar holding the evil scale; those on the battlefield felt its powers weaken. After some quick thinking, Te'a cast Remove Curse on the scale, Saphira quickly wrapped it in a temporary Bag of Holding, and Gróin teleported the lot of them to the main temple to Thor, in the Mountain Dwarf capital.

The evil sinkhole removed, the remaining undead were quickly cut down, while the living creatures routed, fleeing to the hills and forests. Even the general and his unit of manticores fled.

XP is a little weird, so bear with me. Hopefully this isn't too unbalanced.

  • XP from destroyed units
    • 1200 Skeletons (15600)
    • 240 Ghouls (6960)
    • 240 Zombies (6960)
    • 120 Chaos-zombies (9600)
    • 120 Wights (9600)
    • 20 Necropedes (16400)
    • 240 Bloodhounds (11280)
    • 60 Death chargers (8100)
    • 1 Bone Dragon (12800)
    • 60 Wraiths (11400)
    • 240 Harpys (75 of the 240 killed, the rest routed: 15600)
    • 20 Wyverns (22800)
    • 60 Manticores (5 killed; the rest routed: 40800)
  • Total XP from units: 187,900
  • XP lost from friendly losses
    • Berserkers (60 died) (2520)
    • Paladins (0 died) (0)
    • Green Men (2 died) (0)
    • Bladedancers (4 died) (0)
    • Clerics (11 died) (0)
    • Heavy Infantry (98 died) (600)
    • Longbowmen (60 died) (600)
    • Dwarven Heavy Infantry (60 died) (1200)
    • Lizardmen (40 died) (0)
    • Gnomes (0 died) (0)
    • Roc Lobbers (1 died) (0)
  • Total XP lost: 4920
  • XP for Rig Bigny (General): 91,490
  • XP for Rig Bigny (Commander): 22,110
  • XP for Fayleen Ross (Commander): 2,340
  • XP for Mor Gibs (independent hero): 5115
  • XP for Llarm, Ffaufe, Alun, Herman (commanders/lieutenants): 2557

Of course, that's not all. There is also treasure! Hooray! The surviving troops collected 1/2 of the battlefield treasure as payment (or final gifts for the family of the dead); the rest, as well as the treasure in the tower proper, will be split up as desired. With a little bartering, I'm sure you can trade items for cash, so I'll just tally it all as if you got 100% gold.

  • 1,231,200 gp worth of supplies, equipment, and other battlefield treasure was recovered
  • The tower contained the following (well-labeled!) treasure:
    • 81,700 gp in silver, electrum, gold, and platinum
    • 12 jasper (600gp)
    • 8 shells (240gp)
    • 6 citrine (300gp)
    • 4 onyx (200gp)
    • 5 wrought silver studded with moonstone (25,000gp)
    • 23 jade carvings of heroes, monsters, and gods (4600gp)
    • 1 wrought gold necklace (100gp)
    • 1 porcelain curio (200gp)
    • 1 Bone curio (24gp)
    • 1 wrought copper curio (110gp)
    • 1 moonstone curio (3000gp)
    • 1 Fine wood curio (600gp)
    • 6 jars of spices (4800 gp, 6 st)
    • 2 vials of rare poison (2200gp)
    • 1 coat of chimera fur (19,000 gp)
    • 4 rolls of silk (1600 gp, 16 st)
    • 33 rugs of wolf hide (990 gp, 6.534 st)
    • 24 pieces of elephant ivory (1152gp, 11.52 st)
    • 1 metamphora of preserved special components (600 gp, 99.6 st)
  • XP from captured/killed commanders:
    • Hakan Soroush, Zaharan Ruinguard/Mummy Lord: 8200
    • Chulcx Bloodbather, Thrassian Assassin/Vampire: 6600
    • Abigail Rojas, Bladedancer: 3900
    • Geoffrey Wells, Mage: 4800
    • Kharajit, Rakshasa: 3650
    • Porco Chefe, Demon Boar: 2000
    • Sisskt, Arane: escaped
  • XP from treasure: 762616
  • XP from enemy heroes: 29150
  • XP for destroying the final scales: 10000
  • Total character XP: 801,766
  • Total gold for Rig, Caranthir, Gróin, Mor Gibs, Saphira, Te'a, and Fayleen: 108,945 gp
  • XP for Rig, Caranthir, Gróin, Mor Gibs, Saphira, Te'a, and Fayleen: 66,814
  • XP for Faufe, Llarm, Rhea, Gimli, Herman, Baelnar, Pentzkin, Alun, Harvey, and Zai-car: 33,407

Also recovered were the following well-labeled items: Leather Armor +1, Potion of Climbing, Oil of Slipperiness, Scroll of Arcane Spells (Written in Old Zaharan): Invisibility (2nd lvl), Scroll of Ward against Elementals, 2 Short Sword +1, Potion of Sweet Water, Ring of Protection +3, 15', Ring of Wishes (1 wish remaining), Scroll of Divine Spells (Written in Old Nobiran): Angelic Choir (1st lvl), and a Treasure Map to 20,000gp. Additionally, the mage's library was rigged to explode if he ever left the area; the dark knowledge within was lost.

Along with the magical items in the tower, there were some found on those killed or captured: Hakan Soroush (captured) was carrying a greatsword, four bone-vials, a crystal ball, and a wand. Chulcx Bloodbather (dead) was wearing chain armor. Abigail Rojas (captured) was wearing a helm, leather armor, and a cloak, and carrying a sword, a knife, and a scroll. Geoffrey Wells (captured) was carrying a staff, a rod, and a wand. The Rakshasa and the Demon Boar had no special items, and were both killed. The only survivor was the arane...

That's a LOT of XP, so I will remind you that you can only advance one level at a time; if you got enough experience to level up more than once, you must cut it off one XP below the next level. However, the XP for the final scales trumps that, so if you're about to go over, you can keep at most 833 over the next level for PCs, or 417 over the next level for henchmen.

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Beginning Of The End

Naoidheamh 23-34, 6639; tomorrow is Beastnight...

The Party:

  • Rig Bigny, Gnomish Beastmaster
    • Flit, bat familiar
    • Clench, Wardog War-Badger
    • Midnight, Panther
    • Noona, Lion
    • Faufe Yitaw, Dogwere (Badgerwere?)
      • Rawf, Wardog familiar
      • Aroof, Wardog familiar
    • Llarm Paphyra, Elvish Polydoctorate
      • The Metal Man, construct
  • Caranthir, Human Leader of Men
    • Rhea Trueheart, Elvish Nightblade
    • Lucille "Luce" Burwood, Fighter
    • Elenora Garrard, White Mage
    • Gimli Trollriver, Dwarven Fury
  • Gróin of Norston, Dwarven Sapper
    • Laurita Gomez, Priestess
    • Herman Thorpe, Ectomancer
      • Baelnar Grimtor, Dwarven Sapper
  • Crolack, Thrassian Gladiator
    • Kurt Steinbacke, Dwarven Deep Monk
  • Mor Gibs, Wonderworker
  • Saphira Moonstone, Gold Skinscribe
    • Pentzkin Singletossle Pocketspringer, gnomish beastmaster
    • Alun Tsornyl, Sylph Ranger
  • Te'a Tsuki Megumi, Elven Polydoctorate
    • Harvey Usagi, Rabbitwere
  • Fayleen Ross, Darklord
    • Zai-car, Zaharan Ruinguard
  • Aingeal Bàs Eleonara, Witch

Before I start, I'd like the point out that when we started, we had a total of four players. Now, we have nine, plus another three that have retired. That said, the current major story arc is beginning its inevitable turn towards closure. Even so, this world still has a lot of stories left in it. There are still a number of continents to explore; they may not be as detailed as Mor-Thir, but they still have their stories. There are still planes (aka planets) to find; the [REDACTED] homeworld, which will kick off a rather large storyline, and possibly even a journey to the [REDACTED], which (some of?) the players have (maybe?) visited before (or have they?). And then there's the huge planet with 8 moons... And even beyond all that, I have two different "years later..." storylines. Seriously, there is a lot of wear left on these treads.

But enough of that, back to the present! After hanging around a little - and picking up another party member, Aingeal Bàs Eleonara, a witch - the party decided the best next course of action would be to visit all the various countries they had stayed in before, and try to convince the leaders to send a unit or two their way. While they began, Aingeal and Crolack went to hunt down a dangerous thief. After intimidating a group of men, the two headed to the bad part of town. A little more intimidation later, and they found who they were looking for; or rather, where. The Thrassian "knocked" on the door, sending it crashing to the floor, and the two wandered in. Aingeal decided to try to seduce the guard, which sadly didn't work. The thrassian, not to be outdone, roared angrily, scaring the guard enough to fire his arrow down the hall; the Thrassian charged the door, knocking it off its hinges and thumping the guard pretty soundly.

Their target was sitting, terrified, on a soft chair; after discussing how best to torture the man, they killed his companion and dragged the fellow off to claim their reward: a whole 20 gp!

Meanwhile, the various party members were teleporting around all over the place, talking with the Winter and Summer Fae, the True Elves, the king of Mareten, the Hill, Deep, and Mountain Dwarves, the Northern People, and even the Gnomes, as well as a number of other associates they had found along the way. They tried to contact a few old friends, but they seemed... oddly out of touch. They couldn't find the silver dragon they had freed from the tower, for one.

Caranthir sent Rhea to investigate the Spire; she and Gróin teleported there, and she spent some time creeping through the area. She managed to learn some about their troops, and found that there was at least one living person there, likely a mage. She explored the first two levels of the tower, then left, safely.

After returning, Gróin again teleported away, this time to speak with the gnomes, taking his henchmen, Aingeal, Crolack, and Saphira and her henchmen. Aingeal was suitably freaked out by being turned into a gnome, and Gróin quickly lead them to sample the GodBrew. Baelnar and Alun managed to stave off its effects long enough to reach the god's pub. It was empty, save for a barkeep and a single drunk. The drunk happily sloshed over to them, burbling stories and trying to offer them a drink; he mentioned that all the gods were off planning "shomeshing shooper mmmmportant," which is why they weren't there. As the two felt themselves being pulled back to Mor-Thir, he called after them, "Come back shum time wi' shum frens! An' tell'm Bacchus sent ya!"

Once recovered, the group approached the judge-of-the-day. It was a younger gnome; Aingeal once again attempted to seduce him - not her finest seduction, but... well, this gnome was easy. He fell in love with her immediately, and began gushing sweet nothings to her. When she asked if he'd get her an army, he agreed: the Queen's Guard had returned just a few days ago, and he would be just the right man for the job! Irritated at the prospect of only a single gnome, Aingeal attempted to intimidate the gnome. As it turned out, the gnome was into that sort of thing, and offered his Furry Handcuffs. Not fuzzy handcuffs, oh no. Handcuffs for furries. Aingeal, repulsed, took the advice of the nearby scribe, and quickly left to visit the queen. The queen treated them to tea, and listened serenely to their story. Afterwards, the party decided it was probably best to leave town immediately... before the judge ended his shift!

The gnomes, and everyone else who volunteered to send units, were told to collect their men at a central location, where Gróin could teleport them a unit at a time to a staging ground, then from there... directly to the tower.

Speaking of volunteered units, the results table for the diplomatic unit requisition looks like this:

  • 2-: Hostility: lose favor
  • 3-5: Apathy: no troops, but at least you don't lose favor
  • 6-8: Grudging Support: lose favor, but gain units anyway (melee/ranged)
  • 9-11: Support: gain units (melee/ranged, plus leaders for each)
  • 12+: Enthusiastic Support: gain units, (melee/ranged/special), plus leaders

Each faction had different numbers and types of units; some had no melee and/or ranged (the mages, for instance). Diplomatically speaking, most factions have a -2 modifier, because... well... they don't want to get involved. The Northern People and the people of Grove are especially anti-evil and anti-undead, so they didn't have that modifier. Due to being physically near, the Northern People and the True Elves had a slight positive bonus; the Gnomes, Mountain Dwarves, Hill Dwarves, and jungle lizardmen got a positive bonus from talking with people of their own race. However, the Hill dwarves are trying to build up their army, and the Mountain Dwarves, Deep Dwarves, True Elves, and Gnomes are somewhat insular, so they all got slight negative bonuses. Adding it all up...

The Northern People (rolled 11, modified to 12), the Summer Fae (rolled 17, modified to 15), and the Grove (rolled 11, modified to 12), and the Gnomes (rolled 12, modified to same) all pledged Enthusiastic Support. The Mage College of Riverbend (rolled 12, modified to 10) and the jungle lizardmen (rolled 11, modified to same) both pledged Support. The King of Mareten (rolled 10, modified to 8) and the Hill Dwarves (rolled 11, modified to 7) pledged Grudging Support, though the party's reputation with both kingdoms has dwindled. The Church of Alehim, under Ajeela's efforts (rolled 9, modified to 5) had an Apathetic reaction, as did the True Elves (rolled 7, modified to 4), the Dark Dwarves (rolled 9, modified to 5), and the Northern Dwarves (rolled 9, modified to 5). The Winter Fae, who already hate you... still hate you (rolled 8, modified to 2).

The resulting units you've been given loaned are as follows:

  • Northern People
    • 120 Berserkers (1 unit), lead by a 5th level barbarian, Forest Leaf
    • 120 (lvl 1) Paladins (1 unit), lead by a 5th level paladin, Johan Gustafsson
  • Summer Fae
    • 30 Green Men (heavy melee), lead by a sylph, Bryn Silveroak
  • Grove
    • 120 (level 2) Bladedancers (1 unit), lead by a 5th level bladedancer, Lori Grove
    • 120 (level 2) Clerics (1 unit), lead by a 5th level priestess, Julia Williams
  • Mareten
    • 240 heavy infantry (2 units), unlead
    • 240 longbowmen (2 units), unlead
  • Riverbend Mages
    • 2 lieutenants (5th level mages), Herbert White and Rees Haley
  • Hill Dwarves
    • 120 Vaultguards (1 unit), unlead
  • Jungle Lizardmen
    • 240 Lizardmen (2 units), lead by two sub-chieftans, Bas Mnosh and Ra'kaka Portann
  • Gnomes
    • 120 gnomes (1 unit), lead by the Commander of the Queen's Guard
    • 5 Roc Lobbers (1 unit consisting of 5 sets of 4 level 2 Gnomish Tricksters and a level 2 Gnomish Beastmaster driver, all mounted on a Roc), lead by the eldest of the Roc Prepper Sisters, Gnomish Beastmaster Marakkalani Twistspackle Torqueslip. Her other four sisters drive the other four Rocs.

I will, of course, print off all the information for the armies, the leaders, and some info for how these large-scale battles go, so everyone can pick-and-choose who controls what. While you don't need a lieutenant for each unit, it may help. PCs can take part as officers or independent heroes, if they are able. This is a battalion scale battle, so an average unit is 120 men.

Finally, you know from Rhea's recon that the tower has one, possibly more, living creatures. Rhea saw skeletons, zombies, wights, necropedes, death chargers, bloodhounds (the undead ones), wraiths, harpies, wyverns, and manticore in the area - over 2,000 individuals - as well as a huge bone dragon. Chances are, there are more troops elsewhere, if for no other reason than undead are easy to store. Knowing about the harpies allows you to equip friendly units with earplugs. That will allow the units to ignore the effects of the harpies' singing, but each unit costs an extra activation point to activate. You also know a foul darkness lays over the area, blanketing the skies with clouds, and darkening the hearts of any who dare tread that unholy ground; most likely a Forsaken Sinkhole of Evil. That means Turn Undead will not work! Additionally, reversed/necromantic spells cast 2 levels higher, while lawful divine spells cast 2 levels lower, and the undead will be tougher...

XP from encounters: Aingeal and Crolack each got 113 XP, from taking down a vile thief and his accomplice.

Thursday, October 4, 2018

Golem Gala

Naoidheamh 23, 6639; next holiday is Beastnight, 9/35 (only 12 days away!)

The Party:

  • Rig Bigny, Gnomish Beastmaster
    • Flit, bat familiar
    • Clench, Wardog War-Badger
    • Midnight, Panther
    • Noona, Lion
    • Faufe Yitaw, Dogwere (Badgerwere?)
      • Rawf, Wardog familiar
      • Aroof, Wardog familiar
    • Llarm Paphyra, Elvish Polydoctorate
      • The Metal Man, construct
  • Caranthir, Human Leader of Men
    • Rhea Trueheart, Elvish Nightblade
    • Lucille "Luce" Burwood, Fighter
    • Elenora Garrard, White Mage
    • Gimli Trollriver, Dwarven Fury
  • Gróin of Norston, Dwarven Sapper
    • Laurita Gomez, Priestess
    • Herman Thorpe, Ectomancer
      • Baelnar Grimtor, Dwarven Sapper
  • (As-yet-unnnamed), Thrassian Gladiator
    • Kurt Steinbacke, Dwarven Deep Monk
  • Mor Gibs, Wonderworker
  • Craydos Silverskin Saphira Moonstone, Gold Skinscribe
    • Pentzkin Singletossle Pocketspringer, gnomish beastmaster
    • Alun Tsornyl, Sylph Ranger
  • Te'a Tsuki Megumi, Elven Polydoctorate
    • Harvey Usagi, Rabbitwere
  • Fayleen Ross, Darklord
    • Zai-car, Zaharan Ruinguard

After much debate, the party finally decided to go take on the great golem, protector of the Hill Dwarf kingdom. They spent nine days researching, building, and entrapping the golem: a hole 60x40 feet, 480' deep, and perfectly square; above, layers of hovering 60x40 iron plates, 6' thick; a stone wall, 40' high, 10' thick, and packed with loose dirt; and, finally, 4 berserkers standing nearby, with bags of devouring full of dirt, who will jump in and dispel themselves to fill in any loose cracks. Whew. Additionally, they made some bets, at 10 to 1 odds, and paid the 10,000 gp deposit the city required before their battle with the golem.

On the morning of the battle, a crowd had gathered, and an almost carnival atmosphere permeated the place. The battle began with Gróin and Baelnor, who removed the last 20' of stone holding up the golem. As the earth crumbled, a summoned berserker, standing on the top of the pile leapt down, slashing at a knob of metal designed to cause the plate to begin falling, then pushed off, screaming "Blood and glory!" on his way down. He was, technically, the first strike against the golem, as it crashed into the pit. Next, the iron plates and the stone and earth slammed into it, and finally the remaining berserkers jumped in, causing a massive blast of earth as the contents of their sacks were suddenly released.

The blast of dust took over a round to clear; just as everyone was beginning to wonder if maybe, just maybe, that had worked, there was a sudden tremble, and the ground began to smoke. As the dust and smoke swirled into the air, the ground began to glow red - something was melting it from underneath! A moment later, a massive hand reached out of the rubble, and the golem drug itself to the surface! It sported three shallow gashes on its arm, where the iron plates had hit it.

Saphira (once Craydos) sent her summoned pet to attack, but its claws only threw up sparks on the tough golem (because, as they later learned, only +2 or better weapons could damage it). She also fired a lightning bolt - which seemed to heal it! Gróin and his priestess, of course, threw earth spells at it, but it seemed it was only taking half damage at best from them. Caranthir blasted it with ice breath, but the third blast seemed to do no damage - the golem had raised a shield! The next round, it dropped its shield and blasted a laser beam of destruction, instantly dropping Rhea, and severely injuring Caranthir, as well as setting a swath of grass on fire. It turned to go after Rig, stomping his crab-apparatus, and nearly upending the few not flying. It swatted at the flying beasts nearby, but missed. Finally, the damaged golem was blasted, and fell into nothing but earth. The great green eye toppled out of place, shattering on the ground.

All was, finally, quiet. Until something crawled out of the rubble... a dwarf! "Ehhh... ¿Dónde estoy?"

The dwarf had, it seemed, touched scale long, long ago, and had been trapped within, powering the hulking creature until it was destroyed. He introduced himself as Grop Beardson (a lvl 8 dwarven vaultguard: 16 (+2) str, 6 (-2) int, 8 (-1) wis, 14 (+1) dex, 17 (+2) con, and 11 (+0) cha).

After a little drama, Te'a collected their winnings (a tidy sum!), and the party sold off the pieces of the eye - 61 emerals, worth 2,000 gp each! Normally, it would take a while to sell all that, but with the huge crowd, they were able to easily sell it all in a short period of time.

  • XP from Encounters:
    • Scale Golem (1800)
  • XP from Treasure:
    • 61 emeralds = 122,000
  • Total XP: 123,800
  • XP per PC (Rig, Caranthir, Gróin, Saphira, Te'a, Fayleen): 11,791
  • XP per Henchthing (Noona, Midnight, Rhea, Laurita, Herman, Pentzkin, Alun, Harvey, Zai-car): 5895
  • Gold per PC, not counting winnings: 20,333gp, 3 sp, 3 cp

Also of note, Saphira wanted to hire some mage-types to come and work for her. There were a surprising number of mage-types found who were willing to join up, from level 1 to level 4. I can show off their stats in person, because I can't be bothered to actually copy all the information and format it all today.

Starting experience: 143,564