Game Session – May 17, 2014
Slaugtho – Level 2 human barbarian
Kharl Magneson – Level 2 dwarven cleric
William the Bloody – Level 2 human cleric – NPC
Jorn Orcbane – Level 2 dwarven monk – NPC
Dobin – Level 1 human fighter – NPC
Armass the Archaeologist – Level 1 halfling wizard – NPC
Jimmy the Torchbearer – Halfling NPC
Rat Head the Torchbearer – Human NPC
We were joined this session by DF’s own Invincible Overlord, one of my old gaming buddies from our Empyrea days in Frank’s home campaign. It was great having him at my table and it looks like he will be able to join us more in the future. I started IO’s PC, Karl, at second level so he could keep up with Slaughto and the party’s usual crew of NPCs.
Slaughto started out the session drinking at the Gangly Wench Inn. Kharl joined him for a pint or two while waiting for an adventure hook to arrive. That did not take long as a halfling (Armass the Archaeologist) asked to join them. Armass was seeking out Slaughto for some assistance (Slaughto’s raid of the wicked Pain God temple last session having generated a certain reputation for toughness and general badassery amongst Rotter’s discerning population).
Armass is the president of the Rotter Archaeological Society (the RAS). The RAS has been excavating a site north of Rotter. A wealthy Halfling family was digging an addition to its summer hole and discovered relics from pre-Cataclysmic times. When the RAS found out, it got permission to excavate the site. Everything was going fine for a few weeks until one day the workers showed up to dig and discovered a new tunnel leading down from the dig site to the unknown. One of the workers grabbed a lamp and crawled down the hole. After a period of silence, horrible screams echoed up the tunnel. The workers fled and the excavation was put on hold. Armass and the RAS are seeking someone to find out what created the new tunnel and eliminate anything that would threaten the RAS’s excavation, all for the low-low price of 1,000 gp and any treasure recovered (archaeological relics to be left undisturbed). This sounded like a fine way to spend a few days, so Slaughto and Kharl took the commission.
They invited William the Bloody and Jorn Orcbane along. William suggested the party take a new initiate of the Blood God, Dobin. Dobin agreed to work for blood just like William, so he was quickly welcomed. Jimmy, the surviving torchbearer from the last session came on board and recommended Rat Head as the party’s second torchbearer. Rat Head got his name from the rat pelt he wore as a makeshift hat. Finally, Armass agreed to accompany the party under Slaughto’s leadership. Armass was a first level wizard before abandoning his magical studies to pursue archaeology. He brought sleep, magic missile, shield, and some 0 level spells with him.
The party traveled north for a day and a half, passing through the farmland surrounding Rotter and reaching the foothills at the base of the mountains where Chance Prison is located. Rather than heading straight for the hobbit mansion, the party stopped by a nearby village to see if the locals knew anything interesting. Sadly, they did not, and the party arrived at the hole in the late afternoon/early evening.
The lower level of the hole showed signs of minor ransacking and looting, but the upper floor was intact. The party quickly reached the archaeological dig site and saw the new tunnel leading down. The tunnel itself was approximately 2-3 feet in diameter and smooth. The tunnel opening had some scorch marks. (Armass had told the party about this back in Rotter, so Slaughto purchased a potion of fire protection just in case.)
Jorn Orcbane and Kharl scouted the tunnel. After a considerable drop in elevation, it opened into a dark room. As Jorn started to exit the tunnel, a spear thrust past him. Jorn and Kharl jumped out of the tunnel and made easy work of the frogman who was trying to poke them. (See below for frogman stats.) The room was a cluttered storeroom with a variety of dry goods and supplies. Jorn fetched the rest of the party and the dungeon delve was on.
The storage room had an open exit to the west and another one of the circular 2-3 foot diameter tunnels leading north. The party propped up the dead frogman guard at the western entrance while deciding what to do. The corridor leading west dropped a foot or so and was flooded. The party could hear a multitude of voices approaching and splashing feet. The party hid behind crates and barrels as the voices approached and then quickly receded. Having nothing better to do, the party headed west.
They immediately came to a door on the north wall. The booted the door and rushed into a larder. The only thing inside worth killing was a door leading west. The party booted that door, too, and found themselves in busy kitchen. A crew of frogman chefs stared at the party in shock. The party opted for immediate violence as one of the frogmen fled to the dining room to the west. Thus began one of the party’s most epic fights. 16 frogmen (the party arrived at dinner time) charged the party from two sides to help out the kitchen staff. About the time they had that under control, an oversize frogman riding a giant lizard rolled up on the party. A flask of burning oil took care of that frogman while the party hacked down the lizard. That was when the four troglodytes showed up in front of two frogmen cracking whips to drive them to violence. The party cut the trogs down as the frogman whipmasters ran away.
That was it for this foray into the dungeon. The party limped back up to the hobbit mansion, barricaded themselves into the upper level, and spent a few days healing up and recovering spells.
The party found the dungeon largely deserted as they headed south from the dining area. They eventually reached the frogmen’s audience chamber. Slaughto triggered a pit trap and fell 30 feet into shallow underground lake. A giant carnivorous turtle (see below for stats) tried to eat him as the party lowered a rope, but it was no match for a barbarian with a bastard sword. Once he climbed the rope, the party worked its way around the pit and looted the frogmen’s treasure room. They then explored the southwestern quadrant of the frogman lair and discovered an exit leading to an enormous underground highway. Everyone stared in awe at the vast hallway leading north and south into the darkness.
The party headed back north toward the dining room. A pack of four giant frogs attacked and was quickly wiped out. The party passed a hallway leading up into a dark cavern. A high-pitched, creepy voice called out and invited the party to come up and play. The party went west and then north instead, presumably circling the creepy-voiced cavern. The party took a risk leaving a hostile force behind it and paid the price when a pack of hell hounds charged the party from the rear. Thus began epic fight #2 for the session.
The hell hounds proved to be almost too much for the party. Rat Head was killed and most of the other party members were below 0 hit points at some point during the fight. Jorn Orcbane was dragged off by one of the hell hounds while Slaughto fought off the last two hounds. The battle swung into a new level of epicness – epic badness. Slaughto and the last two hounds went approximately 30 rounds with each combatant hitting once. I have never witnessed such a sad display of bad dice karma. Thank God I roll in the open now – if I hadn’t, my players never would have believed I didn’t fudge the hounds’ rolls. Slaughto finally killed the last hound and the party fled the dungeon, unconscious NPCs slung over their shoulders.
The party ran all the way back to Rotter to regroup. Jorn Orcbane and Rat Head were dead. On the plus side, Slaughto and Kharl gained enough XP to level, so they spent a week training (and having their disposable cash siphoned off).
During the fight with the frogmen diners, Jimmy stepped up and joined the fray. He also joined in the fight versus the hell hounds (rolling considerably better than the PCs). My players cheered Jimmy on enthusiastically as he somehow survived combat as a presumably 0 level meat shield. Upon their return to Rotter, they offered to pay for Jimmy to be trained as a 1st level fighter. This presented me with a quandary. I had originally conceived of Jimmy as a mid-level thief posing as a torch bearer to rip off the party. I wasn’t sure if I wanted to change direction with him, so I told the party Jimmy had to check with his wife before embarking on life as classed adventurer. The players wanted to keep Jimmy around for their return trip to the frogman lair, so they significantly upped his pay. Jimmy agreed to go back with the party and brought along another torchbearer, henceforward known as Jimmy’s Guy.
Slaughto picked up another potion of fire protection and Kharl got a potion of hill giant strength before setting out.
Trip three into the dungeon was clearly going to be the big final battle in the creepy-voiced cavern to the north. They walked up the ramp leading into a very large cavern with a glowing 10-foot diameter pit in the middle. Frogmen were playing bongos while more frogmen cavorted in vile dances and two frogmen priests chanted. A sleep spell took out the priests, but the drumming and dancing appeared to be summoning something from the depths of the pit as a hot glow rose up the shaft. Salamander time. Four salamanders, in fact. I sent them up individually which made them manageable. Probably too manageable. The party was never in too much danger from them, although they were pushed to the limits of their resources by the end. Slaughto’s potion of fire protection probably saved the party. One of the salamanders managed to coil around him, but was unable to inflict fire damage. Any of the other party members would have been quickly killed by the attack. As the last salamander appeared, a tavis wyrm burrowed up from the floor of the cavern. It also focused on the barbarian, but was unable to do much damage due to his fire resistance. The party killed off the last of the salamanders and the wyrm, then proceeded to try to loot the priests’ quarters. Sadly for them, the priests had no treasure. They did find a secret door leading out of the massive cavern. Opening that door unleashed the hell hound that had dragged off poor Jorn Orcbane. The hound quickly fell to the exhausted party.
With the hostiles all destroyed and the source of the mysterious tunnels (the tavis wyrm) eliminated, Armass declared the expedition a success. The party headed back to Rotter to cash in and mourn the fallen dead.
Kills: 21 frogmen, 1 frogman chieftan, two frogmen priests, frogman dancers and drummers, 4 giant frogs, 1 giant lizard, 4 troglodytes, 1 carnivorous turtle, 8 hell hounds, 4 salamanders, and 1 tavis wyrm.
Gains: 3rd level for Slaughto and Kharl, ring of violent hindsight (see below) (unknown number of charges), bejeweled hand axe, ankle chain worth 1,000 gp, tuxedo worth 200 gp, golden harp with jade and platinum accents worth 2,000 gp, a gold frog figurine worth 1,000 gp, and oil of bless.
Losses: Jorn Orcbane, Rat Head, and Slaughto's bastard sword (irretrievably melted by striking the tavis wyrm)
Ring of Violent Hindsight: Allows wearer to turn back time after trying to resolve an encounter through talk/negotiation. Once the ring is activated, the time-space continuum is restored to the moment when talk/negotiation was attempted. The wearer must immediately attack.
AC: 16 (due to speed and flexibility), 18 versus melee opponents when fighting from the ceiling
Movement: 30 ft, 20 ft on ceilings, 15 ft on walls, 30 ft swimming. Jump 15 ft vertically or 30 ft horizontally.
Attack: 1 spear (1d6) or 2 claws (1d3 each) or 1 bite (1d4)
Special: Walk on walls and ceilings. Infravision. Jump charge.
XP: 13 + 1
Frogmen are man-sized humanoids with long frog-feet, fully functional hands with short claws, a frog-like head and mouth, and green skin. They disdain armor and clothing. They prefer to fight with spears or their natural weapons. They can walk on ceilings or crawl along walls. Their armor class increases to 18 when they fight from a ceiling due to their opponents’ inexperience fighting in that orientation. They are adept swimmers and can hold their breaths for extraordinary lengths of time. Their strong legs allow them to jump vertically 15 feet or 30 feet horizontally. Frogmen can jump onto a 10 foot ceiling and attack in the same round.
Frogmen can engage in a leaping charge versus opponents at least 5 feet away. Doing so grants a +2 to hit due and +2 to damage due to surprise and momentum.
Frogmen speak common, lizardman, troglodyte, duckman, and kobold.
AC: shell 18, head 14, torso 12
Movement: 40 feet, swim 30 feet
Attacks: 1 bite (1d8)
XP: 15 + 2
Carnivorous turtles are quite large (typically 5-7 feet long) and shockingly fast. Their heads have a good AC despite being unprotected when attacking due to their ability to quickly duck and weave. Their soft torsos are normally unexposed, but carnivorous turtles are quite vulnerable should they be flipped over or somehow attacked from below.
Carnivorous turtles are rapacious hunters that only eat fresh meat. They are indiscriminate killers, but seem to particularly enjoy a frogman diet.
tylermo wrote:Your efforts are greatly appreciated, Buttmonkey. Can't believe I said that with a straight face.