Sunday, October 11, 2009

Tantris - Session 9 (Final)

Game Date 10/10/09
Rolan Daan (Bryan) - Elf Rogue
Rhogar Burnscale (Rick) - Dragonborn Fighter
Nara Cavell (Matt) - Human Cleric of Pelor
Lia Moon (Misty) - Elf Wizard

Nara's Journal:
I have been given the opportunity to serve Pelor in many new ways. Soon I will leave Tantris, bound for other lands, representing my temple on a variety of missions of mercy. It's funny, just a few months ago I was satisfied with my life in the temple, doing minor tasks for the honor of serving my god. But now that I've seen the world, I find the temple stifling.

I appreciate the simple life I was given. I have nothing but the highest love for the priests who took me in as a poor orphan, and turned me into the loyal servant of Pelor I am today. But I have outgrown those temple walls, and I must find grander ways to serve my god. I can no longer be contained; I must see what else is out there. I wish to spread the Light to other places - darker places where I am needed more.

I will miss my companions.
Lia, my newest friend... still learning of your potential, I regret I won't be around to discover it with you. There is no question that you are destined for something special, and I can't wait to learn what Mystra has in store for you.

Rolan... your tongue is ever-deceptive, but I believe your heart is pure. You have been called both thief and hero, but
whichever side of the law you happen to be on at the time, you will always be my friend. If you ever overcome the darkness in your soul, I know you will do great things.

And I'll miss you most of all, Rhogar! You are truly the bravest of us, always willing to stand between us and danger, without a thought to your own safety. Truly, your courage has saved our lives many times.

May the light of Pelor... and the blessings of Mystra... continue to shine on all of us.

- Nara

We had originally intended our final session to be a one-shot high-level slugfest using new characters. But with a shortened schedule, we also had the option of running one last session with our regular characters instead. We took a vote, and decided to go with the latter.

Recap - Last time, Rolan finally severed his ties with the Dark Fang Guild, and we ran full speed back to Tantris, in fear of retribution.

We rode the horses hard all the way back to town, unfortunately running a couple of them to death. Upon arriving in town, we went our separate ways - Nara checked in with High Priest Josel, Lia looked into the local Wizard resources, and R&R went back to the seedy side of town to hunt for rumors. We asked around to find out if we were being pursued by the Dark Fang Guild, but didn't hear anything.

However, we did hear rumors about a kidnapping. Apparently a noblewoman had been captured by gypsies. Further details were difficult to find, as noble Lords tend to suppress the spread of such information.

In our last session, Lia encountered an avatar of Mystra, who hinted that something special was in store for her. Now, in the wealthy part of town, Lia searched for information. She asked anyone she could find, and scoured the libraries, learning whatever she could about her master Thordius, and "Silverfire" (a rare blessing of Mystra).

Through a bit of misunderstanding (or divine manipulation), Lia accidentally attended a meeting of the "Righteous Conspiracy", a group planning to radically change the political face of Tantris using any means necessary. After leaving (or rather escaping) the meeting, she went to rejoin our party. Soon after leaving the gates to the inner city, there was an explosion behind her. The official story involved a clumsy alchemist, but we suspected that to be false.

We reported to High Priest Josel, who believed the explosion to have been the will of Mystra. Later that night, Lia was studying in the library when she saw a shadow. It turned out to be an assassin, who threw a dagger at her before stepping through a portal. Lia and Nara went straight to Josel's quarters, which had been ransacked. They then went to find Aeron Cloudmore, the head Paladin. They found him with troubles of his own, in combat with an assassin. They quickly defeated the evil killer.

During the aftermath, Nara ran into Lord De Winter, an old friend of ours from a previous quest. It was his wife who had been kidnapped, and Nara offered to help. Nara and Lia needed to stay at the temple to help sort things out, so Lia sent a message to Rolan and Rhogar requesting they help De Winter.

R&R accompanied De Winter out of town to find the gypsy caravan. The three obliterated the gypsies and rescued the Lady De Winter. The Lord De Winter requested the presence of Rolan and Rhogar at his home, where they were given a generous reward.

Lia and Nara were sent to the temple of Mystra for more information. Afterwards, they encountered an enemy named Darkspell, but Lia's Silverfire manifested itself, allowing Lia to absorb Darkspell's attacks and redirect them in the form of a powerful blast of energy, disintegrating him.

Lia has learned some evil rumors about her master Thordius. She returns to his tutelage, but she plans to remove herself from his influence soon. She knows she has a rare gift from Mystra, and wishes to learn more about it.

Nara has been chosen to represent the Temple of Pelor on many future missions, which will give her the opportunity to visit other towns and perform good deeds in the name of Pelor.

Rhogar has learned of more pit fighting opportunities in Tantris. It remains to be seen whether he still finds this a fulfilling activity, or now desires more from life. And will Rolan continue to act as a pretty boy con artist, or did he prefer the title of hero? Only time will tell.

But for now, all of us go our separate ways. Perhaps one day the fates will conspire to bring us back together, but that's a tale for another time.

Note: This was the final Tantris session, as Matt2 is preparing to move out of state. From here on I will stop with the Matt1/Matt2 thing, unless another Matt joins our group.

XP Rewards:
Rhogar - 650 XP (100+250+300) - Total XP now 2849 (Level 3)
Rolan - 620 XP (100+220+300) - Total XP now 2938 (Level 3)
Nara - 600 XP (100+200+300) - Total XP now 2828 (Level 3)
Lia - 650 XP (100+250+300) - Total XP now 1120 (Level 2)

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Hogsmeade - A Cautious Start...

Game Date 10/3/09

Trask Razorwing (Bryan) - Dragonborn Paladin (Defending Style)
Barakas (Rick) - Tiefling Bard (Virtue of Cunning)
Lynnia Krynn (Matt) - Half-Elf Warlock (Fey Pact)

Misty is learning to DM, and we are more than happy to be her guinea pigs. For our first session, she is starting with a small adventure from the Dungeons and Dragons Roleplaying Game Starter Set. We only managed to get through the first two encounters before it got too late to continue. Being low on healing surges, we went back to town, and will hopefully resume the adventure at a later date.

All three of us are playing classes we've never played before. And oddly, all three of us are playing Charisma-based characters. Trask is going to be the tank, and the rest of us will be ranged support. We're not very tough so far, but on the plus side, all three of us have at least one healing spell. Nevertheless, we all have a lot of learning to do before we're an effective party.

But we're having fun, and that's what counts.

XP Rewards:
Encounter 1 - 500/3= 167
Encounter 2 - 550/3= 183
Total - 350 each

Praktas - Violence, Robots, and Lust

Game Date: 10/3/09

Drew Baker (Bryan) - Human Fighter (Tempest style)
Damakos Redhorn (Rick) - Tiefling Rogue (Brutal style)
Tirah (Misty) - Deva Wizard (Wand Style)

I'm still working on the next actual plot/dungeon adventure. But for this session, I just had them go through three bounties:

Bounty 1: Throk One-Tusk

Throk is a large Half-Orc who was entrusted to guard the home of one of Trasa's wealthiest citizens. But first chance he got, he grabbed the most expensive item he could - a golden egg - and left town. There was an additional bonus if our bounty hunters could recover the missing egg.

(DM Secret: Why did I make it an egg? In my Itropa module for NeverWinter Nights, there is a quest where you are supposed to retrieve an item called the "Golden MacGuffin". In-game, the MacGuffin looked like a golden egg.)

Throk was last seen in the town of Fist, and another guild member offered to teleport the party there. Built in the mountains, Fist is a very brutish town, where might equals right and the weak seldom survive. Their economy is almost entirely built around their arena. Anyone defeated in the arena becomes the slave of the victor (for various amounts of time), so most labor in Fist is done for free.

Since escaping to Fist, Throk had made a fairly big name for himself as an arena fighter, but he practically lived in his fighting cell. The only way the players found to see him was to enter the next fighting tournament. In order to maximize the chances that at least one of them would reach and defeat Throk, all three players entered the tournament. The tourney had 16 fighters, which meant 4 rounds total. The first two rounds were in the morning, and were fairly easy battles. Then there was a six-hour break, so that everyone could get an extended rest, making the final three fights that much more exciting.

After the break, the first match of round three was Drew vs Damakos. This was a good, long battle, but Drew eventually won. The next match was Throk vs Tirah. I fully expected Throk to win this one, and go on to face Drew. Low-level wizards don't usually fare well in one-on-one battles against melee monsters. But to my surprise, Tirah defeated Throk, and he was hers to command.

Of course, Tirah and Drew still had to face each other. They considered just "play fighting", but there was an additional 200 gp prize for the tournament winner, so they fought. Drew won. Since Throk was officially property of Tirah, she ordered him to take her to his cell, where the bounty hunters found the missing egg.

Bounty 2: Alas Mek

Mek was once a highly-respected wizard in the town of Alta. Until one day he was in a horrible accident, which nearly destroyed his body. The other wizards transferred his mind into the body of an Iron Golem. Unfortunately, they didn't realize that this Golem was already inhabited by an evil spirit, and the two minds fought for control of the body. The Golem went on a mindless rampage, finally leaving Alta and heading off into the forest.

Getting to Alta meant buying horses, so now each character owns a horse. Once in Alta, they found it to be a rather snooty town, full of wealthy snobs who looked down on poorly-dressed out-of-towners.

Mek left an easy-to-follow trail, and our heroes found him pretty quickly. They had been given instructions for driving the evil spirit out of the Golem, but of course they had to tire him out first. After the fight, Mek's mind returned to normal, and they led him back to Alta to claim their reward.

Bounty 3: Victoria Vixen

As long as they were in Alta, they stopped by the Guardsman's Guild to look for work. They spoke to Captain Horn, who needed help looking for a con artist. Victoria Vixen had made a living by seducing wealthy men and stealing their life savings. However, no one could prove anything, and the guards sent to investigate had come back with empty pockets and missing memories.

Captain Horn knew exactly where Victoria was - she had taken over a nearby mansion, having charmed the original owner, who had since disappeared. Horn sent a female member of the Alta Guard - Helena Klash - to accompany our heroes. They sent her in first, while Damakos watched through the windows. Unfortunately, the servant who answered the door led Klash into a room that couldn't be seen from the outside.

Damakos continued to peek into each of the mansion's windows, and saw a few servants working in the kitchen, but the rooms they really wanted to see didn't have windows. Damakos then snuck inside and kidnapped a servant, and found her to be under a charm spell. Finally the party decided to all sneak into the house together, and search the remaining rooms. They finally found Victoria in the master bedroom, along with two charmed servants and the newly-charmed Helena Klash.

Victoria fought by using short-term charm spells. She would blow a kiss (CHA vs Will), and her target would attack one of their own allies. Once in melee range, she kissed one of the characters on the lips, causing him to burn an encounter power on a teammate. When she was bloodied, she revealed her true form - a winged succubus. In this form, she still had access to her charm spells, as well as a few fire-related abilities.

When she was finally defeated, the succubus vanished through a planar gate, unable to return for 100 years. With her gone, all her charmed subjects returned to normal.

XP Rewards:
Drew Baker
Tournament Round 1 (vs Brax "The Axe" Clovenhoof) - 125/2=62
Tournament Round 2 (vs Killian Krag) - 150/2=75
Tournament Round 3 (vs Damakos Redhorn) - 175
Tournament Round 4 (vs Tirah) - 150/2=75
Throk One-Tusk (Bounty/Story) - 300/3=100
Alas Mek (Encounter) - 200/5=40
Alas Mek (Bounty/Story) - 300/3=100
Victoria Vixen (Encounter) - 200/5=40
Victoria Vixen (Bounty/Story) - 300/3=100
Total XP: 767 (Total now 4959)

Damakos Redhorn
Tournament Round 1 (vs Kren Starblaze) - 125/2=62
Tournament Round 2 (vs Tarn Gulag) - 150/2=75
Tournament Round 3 (Lost to Drew Baker) - 25
Throk One-Tusk (Bounty/Story) - 300/3=100
Alas Mek (Encounter) - 200/5=40
Alas Mek (Bounty/Story) - 300/3=100
Victoria Vixen (Encounter) - 200/5=40
Victoria Vixen (Bounty/Story) - 300/3=100
Total XP: 542 (Total now 4734)

Tournament Round 1 (vs Mordik Morte) - 125/2=62
Tournament Round 2 (vs Skar Redscale) - 150/2=75
Tournament Round 3 (vs Throk One-Tusk) - 250/2=125
Tournament Round 4 (Lost to Drew Baker) - 25/2=12
Throk One-Tusk (Bounty/Story) - 300/3=100
Alas Mek (Encounter) - 200/5=40
Alas Mek (Bounty/Story) - 300/3=100
Victoria Vixen (Encounter) - 200/5=40
Victoria Vixen (Bounty/Story) - 300/3=100
Total XP: 654 (Total now 2944)