Greetings wanderers! What follows is a page I would like all of you to read as a prelude to gaming. Please read this top to bottom and email any questions or concerns you have to me at MY email. Also, you can read all about D&D at Wizards of the Coast and you might also want to peruse (read) the message boards there to get adventure ideas and hints and tips on how to play.
- The Greyhawk Wars - a brief history
- Map of the Flanness - Continent of Oerth (AKA Greyhawk)
- Map of the Wild Coast Region
- Introduction to the Wild Coast Campaign
- Why Greyhawk?*
- History of the Flanness - abbreviated*
- Human and Demihumans - Racial Backgrounds*
- The Gods and YOU!*
- Greyhawk - an outsiders perspective*
* - Denotes material collected from outside sources. References cited where known.
Old 11-13-03, 12:40 AM
Talking The Absolute Beginner's Guide to D&D and the D&D Boards
I wanted to post this because I don't think that these boards have a permanent enough place for new players to come, get help, get their questions answered, and, most of all, get started!
If you are a newcomer, this is the best advice that I can give you, and I sincerely hope that you find it helpful. If you still have problems and questions relating to starting D&D, I encourage you to reply to this thread with any questions that you have (that don't apply to any of the other, more specific message boards).
1) Buy the Player's Handbook. As materialistic as it might seem, this is the very first thing you should do if you want to play D&D. Shell out the 25 bucks at any major book store (Barnes & Noble, Borders Books, Waldenbooks) or any craft store (Hobbytown USA, Wizards of the Coast [store], or It's Your Move), you won't regret it. For any questions relating to it and the rules within it, go to this message board: Player's Handbook. It should answer any questions you have.
2) Get the rest of the materials. Some of the things you will include are: a set of Dice (they're cheap, they're durable, and they will allow you to make and play as many characters as you want, along with countless other rolls), pencil and paper, and maybe a map (optional, some Dungeon Masters want to use a map, some don't). Together, these articles cost about 3 dollars. You shouldn't be too strapped for cash. These articles will probably have to be purchased at an actual hobby store, but they aren't TOO hard to find. You shouldn't have a problem. Order them online, if necessary.
3) Now that the buying is out of the way, STAY WHERE YOU ARE. These boards are absolutely the BEST place to get advice on D&D. Period. If you need help, someone here can (and will) give it to you. Why do you think I'm writing this?
4) Learn the rules. Simple. You don't have to be a walking encyclopedia, but you do have to know enough to get by. Make sure you know at least the very basics when you decide to start. If you don't know what "rule zero" is at the start, don't worry about it. You'll learn most of this as you play.
5) Learn the Lingo. You will benefit most from this forum if you understand and use the common terms and anagrams for things. AC, BAB, WotC, SaF, and any number of other terms will crop up on these boards as ways of cutting down on typing time, so you need to know the basics in order to understand what is going on. Again, if you don't know, ask. If you think you need help on this topic, check out Trollbill's Dictionary of Terminology. This is probably the best resource for terminology this side of the planet. Great place for beginners to start.
6) Keep doing what you're doing. You're doing great if you've gotten this far. You're taking advice, and that's going to make you a top-notch player. They're very hard to find these days, and in high demand due to the fact that everyone wants to play with them. You'll have game offers coming outta the wazzoo.
7) Learn the difference between Roleplaying and Rollplaying. This game does have a high amount of chance, and die rolling is very important, but the people everyone wants in their games, the shining example of a player, are those who do what the character they're playing would do. First you have to think up a character concept. Go beyond "I wanna be a great paladin who hits evil in the face." You play a CHARACTER. This means that he/she has CHARACTER. Who you are playing should be like a person, with quirks, fears, ambitions, moods, and such. You should detach yourself when you play and think only of what that person would do. Sometimes this means walking into a trap, or (even worse) doing something that you know can only end in disaster, because it is undoubtedly what your CHARACTER would do.
This also involves thinking creatively and thinking in terms of consequences. You might want to Put the Gnoll sentry to sleep instead of killing him because the others might think he is sleeping at his post, and you will go unnoticed for just a little while longer. Unconventional tactics, etc. are what makes the game fun.
8) Again, ask questions. If you already know about the Player's Handbook, you know that it is 250 pages of solid rules. That's a lot to comprehend. I would suggest asking if you have a problem. Check the book first, but that's not going to answer all of your questions. Eventually you're going to have something to ask that isn't covered (or you can't find) in the rulebook. That's okay. We're here to help. Ask on the right message board, and if you can't get an answer, here is your last resort. Ask me. I'll be glad to help. This isn't an invitation for everyone who has a question but is too lazy to look first to send me private messages. I highly doubt you will have any questions that someone else won't answer, but I will try to help if you do. Click on the Profile link at the bottom of this post, and then follow the link that says, "Send Uberbanshee a private message!" That should connect you to me, and, hopefully, the help you need.
9) If you want to DM (Dungeon Master, or in other words, run the game), you should buy a copy of the Dungeon Master's Guide and the Monster Manual. I wouldn't buy these if you only plan on being a player. They will teach you all of the DMs and the monsters’ tricks, making play a lot more boring. On the other hand, a DM needs them to survive. Oh, and don't worry about letting someone else DM while you watch, and don't jump right into it without playing a character first. I believe that the best players are those who have at least tried both DMing and playing. The view of the other type of player is a great thing to have, whether you're a DM who has played or a player who has DMed. You'll find the insight invaluable.
10) Finally, if you're ready, find a group. They will teach you all the basics you haven't already picked up, and you can play your first couple of games. You will be on the fast track to becoming an avid gamer, I guarantee it! If you can't find a group, I would suggest going to the RPG Gamer Classifieds If you have trouble finding a group in your physical area, you could try the alternative method of an online game. Wizards of the Coast has it's own site for this at Wizards of the Coast Online Games. You could also try some non official sites such as DnD Online Games Dot Com. Both are great places to play D&D, including dice bots for rolling and other useful resources that allow you to easily play a game over the net that you normally wouldn't be able to. Finally, don't fret if you can't find an experienced group to play with. Build your own from scratch. I did this when first I played, and I believe that it worked out well enough. You might not get the rules perfect the first time, but with the help of this web site and the insights of your group members, you should be able to find the intent of the rules without difficulty.
11) HAVE FUN. This may sound like it's the most obvious piece of advice in the world, but it's one goal that I think everyone needs to keep firmly in mind while they play D&D. Some people lose sight of the fact that D&D is a game, and that everyone should be having fun. This means that whatever you have to do in order to maintain the enjoyment of you and your fellow players, do it. Even if it means bending the rules a little now and then. Even if it means breaking them. This game is designed to follow set rules and story types, but it is first and foremost a means of entertainment. Never let that slip!
12) Jump for joy! You should be able now to play and enjoy D&D. Welcome to a world of heroes, magic, and adventure (sounds cliché, doesn't it? Don't worry, a good DM will remedy that). I welcome you to the world of D&D. Best of luck!
This is the end of my guide to beginning D&D. I hope that it covers most of the things that make D&D such a hard thing to break into. If you don't have any other problems, you should now have all of the basic principles and resources to play this great game!
Any of you veterans out there (or newbies, if you think you have something to add), make sure to tell me if you have anything I should add to this guide!
Stop that and go look for my legs!
Blade of the Immortal
Last edited by UberBanshee : 04-17-04 at 05:29 PM.
Feburary 2005 – Off to the Mine
Traipsing though the woods the party stumbles across the remnants of one of the missing supply trains. And finds some wee greenish folks who have a little ambush set up for them. The mixed goblin fighters are dispatched in short order, with a captain riding a war worg making his escape into the brush.
Moving forward they follow the road carefully to find a tower, clearly showing signs of damage, on a bluff over a shallow, swampy valley. Figuring this is what the mine complex looks like, they surreptitiously start wending their way around the bluff looking for an easy and unguarded way to approach the building complex. Skirting around the southern and western sides along the track they come to a bridge, mostly complete except for some finish work. They manage to forge the river upstream and scout around to what is clearly a charcoal woodlot and then to a place where they can sneak up the bluff unnoticed.
Making it up the bluff, they arrive safely at the base of the tower, which they infiltrate, and wend their way down the stairs to the entrance room. Evidence of a battle is hard not to notice, bloodstains and hack marks on the door give all the evidence they need. They progress further in to find the Dwarves holed up behind makeshift battlement in their own great hall - enough to make any noble dwarf's blood boil at the sight of. After some chit-chat with the trapped dwarves, who would never leave wounded compatriots behind, are summarily abandoned to their fate.
Their job done, the party makes its way up to the tower. Someone decides to try to speak with the goblin guards asleep, er, on lookout on the uppermost floors of the tower. Needless to say, the parties cover is blown and the rooftop goblins start banging on the alarm drum. What will happen next, tune in next time!
December 2005 – Town - I
The rather bedraggled party makes their way to town and is met by the town watch. They pay their 'taxes' and take the sorceress to the only temple in town. Much fuss is made when the druid tries to hit on the half-elven town warden and fails miserably. At the temple, they find out there is a reward for the girl and the gnomish priestess, Corky, in the service of the sun god, Pelor, sends a messenger off to the interested parties house. Irky Timbers takes his leave, preferring to spend time in 'meditation' with the priestess. The matriarch of the town shows up and is treated very poorly by the rescuers of her daughter. She rewards them with some money and a look of scorn and disgust, shooing them from the temple with angry looks from the priestess and offered explanation coming from Irky.
Off to find an inn and some supplies, which they do. The inn is populated by a good number of folks, traveling minor merchants, a cadre or Wee Jas worshipers, a half-orc fighter of rough looks and one arm, etc etc. This being the beginning of the Spring trading season, everyone is waiting for the roads to dry out enough to move further in towards their final destinations. Needless to say the fact that a group of Elves show up in the company of a Dwarf (of all things) And a Gnome carrying the lost child of the town's wealthiest citizen whom they managed to anger within minutes has set the town abuzz. The rude and crass Druid Wolvien is cast out of the inn and escorted to the town outskirts and told not to enter the town proper again.
The remainder of the party gets a good nights rest in comfy beds. Wolvien sleeps in a brier patch one side too cold the overly warmed from his rather smelly and bony wolf companion.
Next day the party, less Wolvien, sets out back to the Dwarven mine complex. Wolvien catches up in a couple of hours when they meet up with a group of orcs carrying a large chest. Both parties engage the other at range, closing quickly to melee. One bugbear quickly succumbs to Waahroots arrows, the other peppers the party from a distance. An enraged orc barbarian melees with Rodkul, who for whatever reason turns and starts to hightail it out of there. Wolvien steps up, with Wolfie trying to enter the fray, and combats the orc barbarian. However, the lightly armed and armored Druid is struck a mighty blow from the orc's war axe and again is hit, to which there was no survival. Both halves of the bisected Druid quiver a couple of times as he expires. Wolfie howls a note of loss and runs off (like the Dwarf, but with more howling and less wingeing).
The orc fighter and remaining bugbear are soon squashed by the returning Rodkul and the ever present and sneaky Eltsackwan. Arrows from Waahroot fell the archers and all is calm and quiet. Except for the gaseous emanations from the Druids remnants.
The orcs have a crude map and some writing, which it turns out, surprise surprise, Eltsackwen can read. It stay to some extent, and let me paraphase here, "So-and-so the mighty anointed one by Grummushes had demands homage from the XXX tribe. Arrive a Xul-Tur by the such and such date or face So-and-so's wrath." A small map accompanies the note. The party picks up the pieces - literally - and marches back to town.
Upon their arrival there is much sniggering regarding the fate of the cruel and callous Druid and some talk of hunting down the wolf that was seen stalking about. Back at the temple, a serious negotiation for the life of the Druid takes place, with the party unable to come up with the funds to resurrect their companion. Not willing to go to the druid council and risk Wolvien coming back as a goat (DM note: Ohh, the missed opportunities for fun there!) they enter into an agreement with the house of Pelor to resurrect the druid in exchange for unnamed services to be rendered in a timely manor sometime in the future.
Druid gets resurrected with a cool scar.
Then is tossed out of town, again.
November 2005 – Sunless Citadel – V
Ware the memory, it gets a little foggy.
Quick summary: Ensconced in a small room they had just finished rifling through the party decides to take rest and recuperate before traveling further onward. A short time later, rested and recovered, they exit through the southern door and surprise a group of goblins working at sorting and crushing up roots and tubers. The bored goblins go for the party and are quickly cut down. Stretching out before them is a large cavern, the rough roof pulsing with tendrils of glowing purple and violet fungi the floor covered in brambles and tangles of thorn and brier bushes. Off in the distance can be seen some battlement remnants and what looks like a huge tree.
Someone gets the bright idea to toss a dead goblin into the brambles which makes quite a racket. Now fully alerted whatever lives to the south, there is rustling and movement from within the brier patches. Entering cautiously, the party wends its way south to the battlements where they find a large clearing under what looks like a huge black, gnarled old tree. Four creatures stand in front, a man in a robe, an armored gentleman with a very unique looking sword and a vacuous look on his face. They are joined by a young lady in tattered robes clutching a book and what looks like an enormous tree frog.
The robed gentleman speaks, asking the party to revel in the glory that is the Guthias Tree (you know, that large tree thinggy behind him). Obviously a kook in love with his tree, the nut goes on and on, espousing about the glory of the Guthias tree, how it would give him the seeds for which to conquer the upper lighted realms. How once a great vampire was staked to the ground here, forever to rot. But instead a great corrupt tree grew over his body (that is what you get when you use unseasoned, green oak stakes when on a vampire hunt!). Join us, he encourages the party, Join with me and my companions as one with the Guthias tree and revel in his everlasting glory!
The party refuses.
The other side attacks. Fighting is fierce, the warrior scoring early victories sundering the parties weapons and armor. The tree worshiper casts some spells that throughly frighten the Dwarf. Eventually the fighter succumbs to his wounds, the sorceress is knocked unconscious and the robed spellcaster is silenced with a blade through the chest. Oh, yea, somewhere in there there were some little twig creatures that came and attacked too. But they were very easily delt with.
Being rather bored, and now wondering where the tree frog got off to, the party decides to chop down the tree. Unfortunately for the rest of the world, chopping down the tree caused it to wither and shrink, freeing the dessicated corpse of a long 'resting' vampire. After a few minutes the corpse stirs, and rises. Looking about with malevolence and evil intent, the creature bows deeply to the party as they stand agog at what is in front of them - death. "Thank you for releasing me from mine entombment. For thine reward, I will not destroy you. Yet." The stunned party watches as the dusty corpse collapses into a cloud of dust and gas and whips away into the darkness.
Loot the corpses, tie up the sorceress, and bugout time. Since nobody made a map of how they got in, the party started fumbling around for the way out. Eventually they escape into the wrathful arms of the Kobold Queen, who is a bit pissed about losing a couple of warriors to first a group of terrified goblins and second to a particularly nasty vampire who sucked a couple dry. The party tries to talk their way out, and wins their release. The Kobold queen happy to know that they now have complete control over the citadel and can act with impunity. hehe
Party heads to town, meets and pincushions an Owlbear on the way.
10 October 2005 – Sunless Citadel – IV
A much battered and bedraggled party is joined quite unexpectedly by Constansious (P3) immediatelly following the battle with the bear-creature and his dire rat minions. Wolvien(D3), Constansious and Poot got a bit worried while ensconsed in thier warm cave after group members did not return in a timely manor from their short excursion to the rift. Besides, they were running out of grub. Wolvien and a healed and repaired Wolfie, who had recently reappeared looking like he had been on a three week bender, tracked them to the great rift where Wolvien and Poot parted ways with Constansious. Wolvien muttering something about a super secret Druid meeting that would keep him busy for a couple of weeks and Poot deciding it was high time to visit civilization again for a bath and to check in with his superiors in the house of Pelor.
Constansious descends and enters the citadel, noting the recently deceased dire rats and goblins, skillfully bypassing the Kobold fortifications completely. Following the trail of bodies, he trailed the party through the goblin fortifications and into the goblin throne room. Seeing the party nowhere to be found, he concludes they descended down into the pit that dominated the center of the throne room. He joins the party not long after they had dispatched the enormous bearlike creature and his dire rat minions. The party stands on a large pile of earthy compost, the room lit by a weak, sickly purple phosphorescent fungus which grows is slimy loops and tendrils from the roof. Sticking up from the compost is all manor of sticks, bones, bits of fungus and a couple of sickly looking mushrooms. Along with a trio of rapidly cooling bodies...
The bear that attacked them appeared from the cleft in the crumbling northern wall and the party decides to explore where the bear had come from. Upon entering the cleft they find the living quarters of the three hunters in a natural cavern that had been modified to fit their needs. Butchering tools and some serviceable weapons are found near a badly scarred and wobbly table. Blood and gore cover the floor around the table, which looks to be where something was slaughtered. A couple of empty, rusty hooks hang from crude pitons along the roof, tufts of flesh adhering to the hooks decaying in the warm, moist air. A quick search turns up a little loot and the serviceable weapons and the party returns back into the compost room uninterested in the single other exit out of the hunters abode.
Two more exits are clearly visible in the compost room; a corridor to the south and a set of doors inset in the eastern wall. A flip on the coin and the party decides to have a look down the southern corridor, lest something sneak up behind them from that direction. I think they were a bit shaken up by the ferocity of the attack of the bear creature.
Eltsackwen scouts out ahead of the group finds a T-junction and calls Waahroot up to her position to check for tracks. He quickly joins her and decides few, if any people or creatures have disturbed the thick dust on the floor in recent times. They retreat back to the main room to relay what they found; the party is not enthusiastic about exploring what is quite obviously an empty area (They think – DM). The only other exit is a well used door inset into the eastern wall. Entering quite boldly, Rodkul is faced with a short corridor and a second door which is rashly opened by the bold dwarf. Of course, on the other side of the door are a couple of goblins who are not too happy in being disturbed at their chores. They pick up their weapons and with a shout of 'Death to the Invaders!” and “Glory to Clan Durbuluk!” Rodkul engages the first, kills one and is soon joined by the remainder of the party. As they enter the columned corridor, more goblins spew from side doors and enter the fray as the noise of combat takes them away from their, boring, mundane tasks.
It was a mostly uneventful fight, with one notable exception. Rodkul slipped on some goblin entrails and almost killed Constansious with a mighty blow to Constansious's chest! Constansious was quite put out by that, Rodkul being a Dwarf and Constansion and Elf. After healing himself Constansious dispatched the last goblin with ease. A short argument between the lofty Constansious and the stout Rodkul about the correct and appropriate use of ones' weapons almost came to blows between the party members! Quite a strange event, which lead many of the party scratching their heads in frustration over the matter. Erky Timbers pointed out that it might be time for everyone to take a rest, as some of the spellcasters are low on spells. Undeterred by the state of the party, Constansious and Eltsacwen pressed for forging on deeper into the dungeon.
After some arguing, Rodkul and Solviless decide to stop here and rest and recuperate before forging on. The remainder of the party shakes their heads at the odd little man and his human friend and proceed to search the surrounding rooms. They settle on an easterly path, out a set of well used doors. Entering into another sickly lit room, this one much larger and extending to the north an south, the party heads north through a second set of doors towards what they think is some noise and activity.
Another sickly lit room with a couple of exits evident lead them into combat with a couple of large skeletons in one of the octagonal side rooms. Again moving northward through a set of doors out of the main gallery they enter another garden tended by a large bear-like creature wielding a scythe. Annoyed at the intrusion, and not seeing the depth of the party arrayed in front of him, the bear shouts some trashy remarks at the presence of the lofty elves and rashly attacks the nearest party member, Constansious. Who quickly puts it to the sword. Rodkul and Solveless now rejoin the party, not wanting to be left out of all the fun!
Exploring the room leads to another well used door, which opens into darkness. Creeping forward, Eltsacwen scouts the short corridor which ends in a 30x30' room dominated on the western end by a huge statue of a coiled dragon. The room here is obviously not stable as there is a significant amount of debris on covering the once ornate floor. Skirting around the room, they make their way out to through a door in the northern wall. A short corridor which turns to the right and descends in a set of worn stairs into some standing water. Most of the party is reluctant to enter the water, but Constansious, undeterred by the thought of a little dampness, forges ahead through the short corridor which quickly ascends up a second set of stairs and forges ahead until the corridor makes a turn to the south. He waits for the party to catch up at which time Waahroot and Eltsacwen scout down the corridor towards the far end, which goes on as far as their vision allows.
They come across a locked door on the eastern wall about 100' down the well used corridor. Another door is evident about 20' down the corridor which ends just after the second door.. Undeterred by the lock, Eltsacwen picks the lock with little difficulty and, after waiting for the remainder of the party to join her at the door, enters the room. Crude shelves line the dirt covered floor and a large rough-hewn desk dominates the center of the room. The shelves hold a scattering of books and a cursory search reveals a couple of interesting scrolls and books that may be of use. The only exit from the room is an unlocked door to the south... will the party go through?
28-29 August 2005 – Sunless Citadel – III
The party starts where they left off, in a rapidly warming trophy room, one time home the wyrmling white dragon Calytryx. The party had just slain the dragon by putting the dragon to sleep (DM's note – Dragons are Immune to sleep! Duh!) while it snacked on some Meepo Meat™. Erky Timbers, the recently added gnomish fighter/cleric did the honors with the coup de gras. The party picked itself up from the floor where they had mostly slipped and fallen on the ice and explored the Duranak tribes' trophy room, now warming up due to the disappearance of the cold dragon. While the party was busying itself scrounging through the piles of filth and debris, Waahroot, the party's ranger, took it upon himself to skin and dress the dragon. Being unfamiliar with the anatomy of the dragon, he completely destroyed the skin but managed to collect the horns and teeth.
The walls in the trophy room were festooned with poorly stuffed heads, evidence of the nefarious nature of the goblins. Some were the typical trophies; deer, elk, horse, cow and there were some not so typical ones, kobold, human, lizards of all sorts, two types of rats and a couple of what look like snakes. The room was in total disarray, the iron chain restraining the dragon had not secured him and once free, the now pissed off wyrmling trashed the room looking for loot. A small amount of treasure was found, some jade green dragon idols and a couple of gems but nothing major.
The only other door out of the room was locked. It quickly succumbed to the efforts of the party's lock expert, Eltsacwen. Carefully opening the door revealed a wide corridor extending out at least twenty feet to either side. Twin ranks of ornately carved columns march up the corridor lengthwise and out out sight to the left and right of the door. The air is very thick with smoke from guttering torches mounted in once ornate sconces and copious amounts of trash is scattered throughout the room. Not being able to see very far, the party advances to the left and opens a door found at the end of the corridor, about 10-15 feet away from the tropy room.
Peace does not last long as the dispersed party are soon hit by a small detachment of goblins. It was not much of a fight, more like a slaughter. The goblins evidently emerged from a guard room on the opposite side of the hall and snuck up from behind the party. An abortive attempt at ambushing and a quick death was the end result. The party found and looted the guard room but found nothing more than dirt, muck and smelly socks (B was there, obviously!). They exited the guardroom after picking the lock, out another doorway into a second corridor which ended in a well shored up door. It quickly succumbed to Eltsacwen's wily ways and they entered, umm, yet another corridor. Boringly traipsing down the corridor to yet another door, ho humm... Eltsacwen triggers another pit trap, which she narrowly escapes (again!).
The door at the end of this room proves to be much tougher to open, giving Elt a bit of trouble before it finally gave way to her skilled hands. Quietly opening the door, the party find themselves facing a large number of heavily armed and very ready kobolds, evidently this is one way back to the Kobolds lair. In stunned silence the kobolds looked at the party and the party looked at the kobolds. I am sure it was running through everyone as to the fate of Meepo (who was turned in dragon kibble and left to rot in the hall... long live Meepo!).
Yudrasyl, the kobold chief, soon showed up in a huff, expecting to see the party return with her prized (?) dragon. Quickly she realized that the party neither had the dragon or Meepo. Justifiably out of sorts, she demanded an explanation on why the party had returned without either Meepo or Calytryx (which the party also slaughtered and attempted to skin... unsuccessfully). The party shuffled their feet and loosened their weapons, readying for a fight. Rodkul was looking longingly at the corridor opposite the party, I think he was wishing that he was down there, and not out here having a face off with a bunch of pissed off kobolds.
A successful but very tense negotiation with the kobolds forced the party back to the goblin encampment to return with the head of Durnn, the Duranak tribe's hobgoblin chieftan, in exchange for not having to fight there way through the kobolds. A nights rest in a side corridor and the party soon located the chieftains headquarters in a ruined tower.
Rushing the tower room, the party quickly dispatched a couple of goblin guards while Durnn ordered his remaining goblins and hobgoblins to fight to the death. Soveless puts a couple to sleep with his magic hands while Durnn entered the fray bathed in a sickly purple glow eminating from a hole in the center of the towers' floor. Even backed up by a goblin cleric, Durnn succumbed rather quickly to ranged fire from the ranger and smashing blows from Rodkul's mace. The tide turning on the now leaderless, the goblin cleric chooses to flee, leaving the remaining Duranak tribesmen to fend for themselves. Out the door in a swirl of filthy robes she screamed for reinforcements and for the women and children to flee from the invaders! General chaos ensued in the next room, as the goblin tribe flees thier longtime encampment.
Shortly thereafter, the party dispatches the last goblin in the tower and starts towards the main room where the robed cleric fled. Rodkul, the first on through the door, gets peppered with javelins from a couple of goblins taking cover behind an overturned table. Soon surrounded by hobgoblins and goblins, Waahroot and Rodkul start smacking them down, making slow but steady headway through the throng. Meanwhile, Eltsacwen and Erky Timbers headed back down the way they came in. Attempting to cut off the fleeing goblins or to head off any reinforcements. Rounding a corner, Eltsacwen runs smack into a small contingent of goblins attempting to flank the party. Stunned looks all around, a quick potshot and a retreat from Eltsacwen. Fortunately for Elt, who is more of a sneaker than a head buster, Erky Timbers was not far behind and took the brunt of the goblin attackers. The battle was joined, hard fought but ultimately futile for the goblins.
Meanwhile, Rodkul and Waahroot along with Soveless were mopping up the remaining goblins. A couple goblin warriors escaped, covering the retreating noncombatants and cleric. The battered party decided it was better to not pursue the retreating goblins in their diminished state, something a certain Paladin could take a lesson from!
A cursory search of the filthy, rank, disgusting goblin encampment turned up a little loot; gold, statues, a chainmail shirt and a couple of rings, scrolls and a very high quality mace. With the successful destruction of the goblins, attention was turned to the glowing purple pit in the center of the tower/throne room. Vines growing up through the hole from below were easily scaled by Eltsacwen. The remainder of the party followed after Elt. gave the all clear from the purple glowing room from which the vines grow out of. 80' down the pit, they entered clanked their way into a large, square, high domed room. The square room was filled by an enormous pile of moldering plants and compost and smelled deeply of decaying vegitation. Sleketons of various creatures can be seen in the decaying mass and there is a considerable amount of plantmaterial. The purple glow is emitted from fungus and lichen carpeting the ceilings and walls of the room. Two robed figures were methodically turn over the enormous pile of compost in one corner. Quickly, out of the un-magic missled darkness, rushes a pair of twig-like creatures, which silently lay into the party with needlelike claws. The robed figures turn and attack with their farming implements. Twelve seconds later, it was all over.
Gloating over the easy success, the party is smacked hard by an enormous bear-like creature with a massive morningstar and a pair of huge trained rats. Charging into battle, the invader yells 'More for the cookpot! Yum!' and attacks, weilding his dirt encrusted weapon in a fierce two handed grip. The sorcerer Soveless is on the receiving end of the first mighty blow and falls unconsious and bleeding in the rush (that is -3 hp = dead!). Rodkul, Eltsacwn, Erky and Waahroot engage the invaders and after a hard fight emerge victorious but a little battered. Solveless is revived by Erky Timbers and relates a tale of a long tunnel with a white light at the end. The party decides to rest and that is where we leave off!
Will they find where the errant paladin dissapeared to? Who was the source of the apples, what are these twig like creatures... who is controlling all of this.... Answers soon! 4 Sept 2005 (edited 19 Sept 2005)
9 July 2005 – Sunless Citadel – II
Party of Soleviss (E Sorc1), Rodkul (Dwf F2), Waahroot (E Rgr2) and Eltsacwen (E Rog3) are accompanied by Meepo - kobold - trying to rescue the kobold tribe's mascot, a tiny white dragon, Caytryx. The party had negotiated safe passage through the kobold lair to the goblin encampment. The goblins made off with the dragon a week or two ago in a raid on the kobold camp and Meepo had been despondent and inconsolable ever since (Poor Meepo!).
A couple of goblin guards behind a handmade wall were encountered, encamped at the end of a short corridor. After a couple of sleep spells, some hand to hand and arrow slinging, the party proved victorious, but a little hammered. A 48 h break to rest and recuperate was in order. Proceeding through the vanquished goblin outpost to a second room. Much larger than the previous here too the goblins had prepared a surprise. A second wall across the north end of the room hid a bunch of goblins and hobgoblins. This time the floor in front of the wall was covered in caltrops to slow the party down. This worked to good effect as goblin sergeants accompanied by a pair of hulking hobgoblins and a squad of javalineers started taking potshots at the party as soon as they entered the room since they could not move fast to close the gap.
Rodkul was almost an early casualty, taking two heavy x-bow bolts on the first round, not good! After struggling mightily and incapacitating many of the weaker goblins with multiple sleep spells, the party finally closed to melee range. Rodkul tried no less than four times to climb over the wall, failing each time. That darn scale mail! Anyway, with arrows and Waahroot jumping the wall to finish off the last of the goblins the encounter ended. Exploring the room revealed a dungeon through the SW door, where Meepo let a couple of his kobold buddies out and the party meets a Cleric of Pelor, Erky Tymbers who joins the party to heal and smite the ones who captured, tortured and kept him imprisoned for the past year (he is a little bit pissed off). Exiting the room into a filthy corridor, they surprised a squad of goblin guards in a side room and quickly dispatched the lot of them.
Resuming explorations, a frustrated Eltsackwan jumped the crossbow and tripped a trap. A miraculous one handed save kept her from falling into the dank pit that opened underneath her feet. The door in front of the party was locked and Elt, unlike herself, had a little trouble with the [easy] lock. Finally getting the door open, they were hit by a blast of cold from the room beyond and noticed what was obviously the goblins trophy room in visible disarray. Evidently the goblins has lost control of their 'prize' and just locked it in. The dragon Caytryx was ensconced under a table in the corner, admiring his horde. But upon seeing his hated (former) keeper, Meepo, Caytryx literally flew to a rage. Soaring over the party on his tiny wings, Caytryx landed on Meepo and chomped him nearly in half. Meepo was no more.... Long Live Meepo!. Both Rodkul and Waahroot ran into the room to engage the dragon before it made its flying escape, and promptly slipped on the ice and fell on their bums! Eltsackwan took a shot at Caytryx as he flew overhead, wounding him slightly, and Erky Timbers tried to get a whack in with his mace but missed (too short!).
Caytryx, spitting out a large chunk of Meepo MeatTM©® puffed a cloud of ice at exposed party members only succeeding in covering the floor in ice (he was really just wanting a Meeposicle snack, but the party got in the way). Forgotten and behind Calytryx was sorcerer Soveliss, who quietly took a step back and put the dragon to sleep - Erky performing the coup de gras soon afterwards. Rest and recuperation were then in order after a quick reconnoiter of the trophy room... and that is were we left it. Will the party continue, who is the mysterious Belak, where do the magical apples come from? Will Meepo be avenged? Who killed (shot) JR?
2 July 2005 – Sunless Citadel – I
– The entire group (seven now! - Rodkull Dwf F2, Waahroot Elf Rgr2, Constansious Elf Pal3, Eltsackwen Elf Rge3, Poot Hum Clr2, Soveliss Elf Sor1, Wolvien Elf Drd3) is sheltering in the cave beyond the last dungeon crawl, recuperating from their recent ordeal with the sorcerer. Poot and his former party, it is revealed, were on their way to investigate what happened to friends who disappeared investigating a mystery for the Church of Pelor. They had a map showing where their friends went, but had lost their taste for adventure. They gave the map to Eltsackwan, Rodkul, Waahroot and the new sorcerer, Soveliss.
Setting out, the party journey overland for a day and a half south to what is locally known as The Rift; a large gash in the ground that extends roughly north-south for 2-3 miles, varying in width from 10-300', depth unknown. At one point, the rift approaches an old caravan route to Celene and there are numerous pillars set into the ground on both sides of the rift to marking the site. Some of these pillars lie broken on the ground, all are covered in graffiti. The party approached the pillars carefully and discovered remnants of many old campfires and signs of habitation going back many years. The graffiti is written in Dwarven characters and covers many of the pillars, but the actual language eluded the party. A rope suspended from one of the pillars descends into the darkness.
Eltsacwen, being the most capable climber, scaled down the rope to a ledge some 30' down. Crude stairs hacked into the side of the cavern and descend out of sight from the rubble covered ledge. The signs of many campfires and (unsanitary) habitation of the ledge was evident. The rest of the party carefully made their way down the rope (no one fell this time, although it was close), arranged themselves in order and marched off down the damp rubble strewn stairs into the darkness (hi ho, hi ho... it off to kill we go...).
Encountering a second ledge, the party cautiously approached looking or traps and critters. Not to be disappointed, they stumble upon a group of dire rats scrounging in the darkness. Seeing fresh meat, aka the party members, the rats attacked en masse but were quickly cut down under the party's blades and arrows. Proceeding down the stairs, a second ledge and third ledge, both empty, loom out of the darkness before them. Finally, trooping down the stairs they come to the bottom.....
... and find themselves in a small courtyard surrounded by the ruins and rubble of a fallen citadel. A large ruined tower looms before them, a wooden door inset into the side of the tower the only clear way to go anywhere from here. Searching the door shows no signs of trapping and the party forces it open. Inside the tower lie the corpses of five goblins, all of whom met a rather violent death and were looted by someone. Two doors, one to the NW, an the the other to the SW exit the rooms.
The SW door opens onto a corridor that falls into ruin about 30' down, but a stone door stands along the western wall. Eltsacwen attempts to pick the lock, but gives up in frustration after 5 minute; the door must be magically sealed. Casting dispel magic, the sorcerer Soveliss erases the wards and Eltsacwen picks the lock.
Beyond the door is a room 30x20', with niches containing pedestals along the N and S walls. Only one pedestal was occupied, and the party turned to investigate the glowing orb that rested on top. Unfortunately, as they got close, the orb started playing music, VERY LOUDLY! Rodkull and Waahroot could not stand the sound and retreated to the safety and silence of the courtyard, where they proceeded to stuff cotton in their ears.
Eltsacwan and Soviless, in an effort to make the orb shut up, pick the orb up, which only caused it to play music LOUDER! They too were forced to retreat to the courtyard with Rodkull and Waahroot.
Deciding it would be best to avoid that corridor, they open the NW tower door and enter a long corridor stretches before them, a door at the end and couple more along the N wall. The rooms that the doors open onto all prove to be empty and a search of the door at the end of the hall revealed nothing unusual but behind could be heard noises of snuffling and crying. They open the door to find what used to be a chapel, a large firepit at one end and a huge iron cage at the other. A small table covered with green cloth sits with a few items arrayed on it. On the ground next to the cage is a blanket from which the crying and snuffling is coming from. Taking off the blanket reveals the Kobold Meepo, who is crying and carrying on about the loss of his dragon, stolen away by the nasty goblins.
Turns out the kobold tribe that inhabits this part of the citadel had a pet white dragon as a mascot, thus the designs on their shields being a white dragon. Meepo was the keeper, but the goblins raided the encampment and stole the mascot. Meepo is desperate to get his 'pet' back (it could be argued who is who's pet) and takes the party to the leader of the tribe, Yurdrasyl. Yurdrasyl and the party negotiate for safe passage through their lands and for three scrolls as reward for the return of their dragon. They will 'let' Meepo go with the party to act as a guide and to control the dragon once the party finds it.
Off they go, back out through the cage room into corridors beyond, eventually coming to the entrance of the goblin controlled area of the citadel (you can tell from the stench and the crude goblin faces drawn on the walls). A group of goblins erected a wall at the end of a corridor from behind which they shoot bolts and throw javelins at the party. Meepo cowers in a corner. The party has some difficulty with the goblins, as they are well entrenched behind their wall, making them hard to hit. Judicious use of sleep spells soon knocks most of them out, the party gains the wall but not without damage and the use of a lot of spells.
Deciding that rest is better than dying, the party recovers spells and repairs some damage the proceeds on past the first wall. A door and the corridor beyond prove untapped, so the party advances to the end of a corridor which opens to the right (W) through an archway. A large room with multiple exits, the floor strewn with caltrops and a second wall built all the way across the far end of the room greets the party.
Rodkul leads the attack, but gets hammered in the first round with some crossbow bolts. Soviless steps in and puts some to sleep as the party makes ranged attacks over the wall. But they do little damage to the arrayed goblins and hobgoblins behind the wall and decide to courageously creep towards the wall, cowering behind their shields. Of course the caltrops all over the floor slow their approach. They finally make the wall and proceed to engage the awake goblins in melee. One rather tough and smart goblin decides it would be better to wake some of his buddies up, which he does, and the battle is on again.... to be continued....
- Critical Hits: On a natural, unmodified roll in the threat range of your weapon, your hit threatens a critical hit. You then roll again, if the modified roll is again enough to beat the AC and circumstances bonus of the defender then you score a critical hit and roll damage accordingly. This is just like the rules in the PHB for critial hits. It also means that if you can make a critial hit, the monsters can also critically hit you!
- Fumbles: If you roll a natural 1 this is a fumble and most likely you will not hit your intended target. A fumble is making a critical mistake in the use of your weapon. A natural one, which always misses the indended target, is the indiaction of a threat of a critical miss. To see if you indeed fumble, you roll a DC10 reflex save. If you make the save, you avoid fumbling the weapon and there is no detrimenal consequences. However, if you fail your save then you have fumbled your attack and the DM will determine the effect of your bumbling. This will be done out of sight and the effect of the fumble related to you. A natural 1 is always a miss, even if you are trying to hit a passed out dragon with a sledgehammer.
- Identifying items: In town there are many ways to have weapons/armor/items identified - take them to the local wizards guild, shrine, enchanter etc which will always part you with your money. Both arcane and divine spellcasters have indentification skills available to them, but they are costly in time and effort to cast and are generally only useful in town where downtime is available. As an alternative, you can use the spellcraft skill to identify items. If you have five(5) or more ranks in apprase, you will gain a +2 to identifying magical items for skill synergy. Assistance with this spellcraft check is possible as long as the assister has at least 1/2 the ranks of the identifier and a successfull assistance check will give a +2 circumstance bonus. Items will follow the following general rules for identification and the DC may be modified by DM determined circumstance bonuses: Potions - DC25, Scrolls - DC20+spell level, arms, armor and wands - DC30+, rods - DC35, rings and staves - DC40. Wonderous items come in three classes of magic: minor DC25, medium DC30 and major DC35. To identify these items you can use your trained spellcraft skill to identify these items with an identification time of 3 minutes per item with the exception of scrolls, which take 5 rounds. You can only take 20 if you are willing to spend one full hour idenifying the item.
- Cursed Items: Yes, they do exist in this mielu. Sorry. Identifying them as cursed will add at least 10 to the DC check for identifying the magic item as being cursed. (hehe)
Cast of Characters - the PC's - Ones in blue are downloadable pdf's.
Wolfie PCGEn Character
Eltsacwen PCGEn Character