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Thursday, October 30, 2014

25th & 26th October, '14

Saturday-

The party set off into the corrupted Dragon's Spine hyperspace conduit in their  cargo-van-sized craft and almost immediately were found by those pesky Shorrannin (who knew through a precog-scan they would return after first visit).  The nutso pilot, pyromaniac Western Isles Vrun, Silt-blooded but Fire-worshiping Cleric (!) was the first they approached, but she was not to be swayed.  Next came a Monarch-conditioned SRA victim (gun and explosives-freak) mute (backstory: her voxbox had been 'torn out' to silence and punish her after she survived a slaughter of her unit in wartime).  She was told the voice contacting her was that of her Mistress (Abyss?) and she literally jumped out of the craft onto the petrified-wood/bone terrain, and was proptly picked up by the Shorrannin.  The party called it no big loss, and flew on without one descenting opinion.

The transformation over a week's time in the Hiveship had the players a bit grossed out, such as being pulled/pushed through a corridor filled with bugs of every conceivable size, as if flowing through a living fluid.  Subcutaneous chitin beign implanted; as well as the PC beign impregnated with a further buggified clone of herself (reincarnation).  Caressed by the unseen queen in dark chambers with moist breath, slimy tentacles, and tender mandibles comforting her.  As the PC had self-described herself as a Ritual Abused-inducted child, this attention was not unwanted.  The Shorrannin Queen informed the PC that she was aware of a future event in which an egg/device should be retrieved by the PC, allowing time to be transcended.  The PC took this to mean that the present was when the egg would show up, and forced her way upon a ship to be be described now...

The crew of the alien DHL van ;) was overcome by the monotony and vastness of the realm, and the intrusion of the psychic technology of the craft, and tried to gain mastery of its systems outside of combat.  Initial performance during a salvo of torpedoes/missiles during the first encounter was wanting, and so they set about to do some preemptive weapons fire when a contact was made on the sonar-like energy scope sensor.  A craft was detected a long ways off and the group, travelling stealthed, continued to observe it.

This craft was piloted by a Gnome native to this Shorrannin-corrupted Dragonspace realm, only occasionally having exited into that bizarre and frightening black void dotted with distant specks of light.  His craft looks like a metallic green horseshoe with a black 'nucleous' set in the crook of the shoe, bridged only by a Dim-Door.  It is house-sized, mostly used for cargo, with the nucleous as bridge and living quarters for the Gnome.  As a Wizard, he is able to utilise all of his known spells through the craft, and carries a pistol-wand, and a rifle-rod for personal defence.  This craft could detect energy output in the environment, but couldn't pinpoint it (I used the quantum, either speed and not location, or location, but not speed, example), and after hours of approach and scanning and counter-scanning, interacted with the PCs.  First the energy bridge was extended, but the Party docked inside the horseshoe.  Almost immediately, the buggified PC, riding a rolling energy vortex (torroid), tried to enter the ship, only to encounter the ship's Shield.  She used her Void teleport, sacrificing her clone baby to breach the defence, and steamingly appeared in a hold, dripping black baby ichor.

Killing herself through a combination of her exertions and a ricochet, the party members burned her body to spell components and flushed the rest out into Dragonspace.  The player appeared a bit flustered, and no one else spoke of the event; we ended the session there.

TL; DR: PvP = Party versus PC.


Sunday-

The small turnout saw those present travelling through a dead level, encountering and dispatching a Wraith.  The next level had two Wraiths, and one had to sacrifice most of its Dynamic Pool (HPs) to affect the Western Isles Vrun Frost Wizard (now with an apprentice), while the other broke off and disappeared.  Soon thereafter, a flaming skull came and introduced himself as the herald of the Wraith King, and proceeded to F'them up, but was taken down in about three Rounds, after the Frost Wizard had to turn off the Frost-tag on her spells.  The Paly Player joked about dropping a Smite on his canteen to make Holy Water, which I allowed.  The FS was destroyed.  Later, the Shadow Paladin (played in the Saturday sessions, too ... to receive only half-XP in each day's adventures) received a vision of a Wraith King promising his wrath upon them should they not submit to him).  Lady Arctise could barely be contacted, and she seemed very worried her agents were in great peril, mouthing to 'get out of there'.  She flashed ice-blue light in the unpowered lift shaft, and the PCs jumped.  Falling until the Vrun encoutered the working levels' field, the Halbean (WI Vrun) rode an Ice Slide down until they spotted vegetation.

This was the top of a multi-level biodome, and the dippy-hippies welcomed them to go through decontamination before joining the population in the Idyls.  It became clear that these folks worship a dynamism of Lord Worm (Silt), and Pant the It (Steam) as the Greenman and Goddess.  We held it there.

TL; DR: Undead and Deadheads

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

October 18th & 19th


Saturday-
:: 7 Players

The exploration of the mine continued and a startling discovery was made: The Goop dissolves organics, leaving inorganics unharmed.  It also turns rigid when exposed to sub-microwave energy and acts as a filter/cap.  Lowering the Justifier-armoured Paladin below the goopcap exposed travel through an open gateway.  The new place is a pervasive darkness lit with varying degrees of light in the grey tones.  Illuminated are paths of what look to be a combination of bone and calcified wood, going off in long wild coils, or out of sight.  Sensors and samples indicate that this is a Draconic construct corrupted by Shorrannin; and may be a Draconic equivalent to the Human Hyperspace network of pre-Imperial days.  The group had earlier uncovered a vehicle which required Vrun genetic unlock to operate, and was based upon alien technology.  The Kherstic League invited them to explore the place in the hopes of reaching a different star system.  They'll be using the newly uncovered vehicle to explore this space.


Sunday-
:: 6 Players

Now one level lower after having bridged the isolated computer with lower level connectivity, the Party discovered that a population of roughly 600 cannibalistic warriors controls not only this level, but also two further down.  Rather than simply use the automated defence systems with override authorisation to kill them all, the new paladin of Shadow suggested approaching them in peace.  The group compromised by having the AI address the warriors, who complied with the peaceful meeting.  TL; DR: The warriors are the remnants of a the last line of Security forces securing the retreat of the crew and colonists deeper into the ship complex, and had adapted to their unusual role and circumstances by eating their impaired.  The Paladin healed a few of their diseases, but also introduced both fungi and algae to their diet.  The good relations allow the Party to travel through to more civilised areas of the complex.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Urutsk D&D 5th: 11th and 12th of October, '14

Saturday-

The group consisted of three PCs, and they found a hoverbike and watched its operator, off bike, being chased down by thin and lithe tiger-sized wolf-like things.  Recognising the colours as the Kherstic League, the tech-Ranger sniped the figure.  Turned out to be a female Yirinn, likely Void- or Nega-Lightning Blooded by her extensive and dark-themed tattoos covering her body.  They looted her clean and stole the bike, towing a Qemrin flying saucer they had blown up real good earlier, when only two PCs were present.  They were quickly met by the KL drones which they promptly shot down after getting hosed by 3d6 rapidfire guns on the basketball-sized devices.  Captured, one PC dying, they were released into a psychward looking room, and their dying friend wheeled in, head shaved, and speaking in a lower voice.  Psychics or via implants were dismissively insulting them in their minds, and were telling the near-dead female PC she was now a 'he', named Bahb instead of Betti.  Said PC snapped her own neck rather than live in that torment.  The other two climbed into the ventilation shaft and 'escaped' only to realise they were being led up the garden path, as it were.  Asked if they were ready to stop fighting their capture and simply work for the KL doing what they had been scamming, namely recovering Ancient technology from the mine.  They continued to plot revenge, apparently not caring that their thoughts are an open book, as it were.


Sunday-

Four PCs this time, with more expected next (this) week.  Waking up from Cryosleep, Eleis, the Western Isles Frost Wizard, chatted with the AI and started to understand what had transpired in the intervening 873 years (when they were supposed to wake every 50 years or so).  Learnt that a collapse in morale by those Vrun born to the survivors of the destruction of the Sphere of Stars led to Elemental Factionism along Caste lines.  Eleis then learnt how to create a Frost Font, drawing power from the ice and snow as a Temporary Dynamic Pool she can use in all the ways her DP (that is to say in D&D terms, her Hit Points), including to cast at higher level slots.  The first solo fight with a mutated Rhemoraz (sp?) went well, but only because these critters aren't immune to Cold.  Waking up the Monk/Data Tech, and the Barb/Pally/Ship's Superstructure guy and his Assassin/? ward, the group now numbered double digits looking to the PCs to fix their miserably cold situation before they froze to death.  Nearly 600 years ago, the glacier sitting atop the ship complex broke through and this level was completely abandoned, and it was cut off from the mainframe AI.  A series of three or four other combats with the mini-Rhemies went in the Party's favour.  Now everyone is looking to descend to lower levels of the ship complex.  It is believed that these Rhemoraz are Shorrannin sub-species.

Monday, October 6, 2014

October 4th & 5th, '14


Saturday-
(7 Players)

     The Ranger with ball droid, and the Technical Rogue in ninja HUD suit are guided by Snow Leopardoids to a location where unpleasant creatures are doing unwanted things on Snow Leopardoid tribal lands; a backwoods Ranger type is there as well.  The big cats go diving into Sneers and munching on Humans, and blow the infiltration plan.  Meanwhile, a mining operation with Sneers uncovers an ancient vehicle, which a Red Sneer illustrates its defences are still active by blowing up.  This explosion is what the prompts unprofessional Vrun guards to open up on the Sneers.  In the crossfire is a Vrun Warlock of Princess Nyx, who should have got hit, and later had holes in her clothes, but showed no injury.  The Champion Fighter had fetched the Gangster Moll who promptly fell unconscious, hitting her head and gone into a light coma.  The Rogue and Ranger infiltrate and fight their way into the CF of a situation, while the Champion brings the bosslady to the mess.  The mess hall has the Khem Warlock who administersw a healing potion bringing her out of hte coma, just before the Ranger blows the Moll's brains out. [...]  A Durnsman takes the party down to a slime or pudding at the bottom of the mine shaft.

TL; DR: Death


Sunday-
(5 Players)

     Lady Arctise gains access to the Emperor's Elevator and she sends the PCs back to First Winter.  There they explain how to save more Vrun, and how they come from the future, meaning the plan succeeds.  They cryosleep for 873 years into mid-First Winter and then crawl out with 3 'Str' and try and figure out what they should do next.  The Barbarian 3 is now Palladin 2; the Rogue Assassin has been de-Nyx'd after he met with Lord Shadow, and can now Alter Self 3x/Day; the Monk is likely going to add K'en Unai (somebody's Jedi/Sith 5e writeup) next level.  The Warlock of Mystress Abyss met his ancestor and together they get 125% more folks in cryo to ride out the hard radiation bath that was riding out ahead of the Starshock.  Ellieis, the Western Isles Frost Wizard Lady, reconciled with Arctise and the little Frost Fox received a damage upgrade.  I've promised them a big combat next time.

TL; DR: Time travel

Monday, September 29, 2014

September 27th and 28th '14

September 27th & 28th

Saturday Game-
(4 Players)

^ I fixed the problem we were having and the Ranger and Rogue hooked up, were given a 'Golden Opportunity' to jump into a con-job dealing with Snow Leopard-like humanoids in the Tshabishan Mountains north of Qerzyk...

^ A clan leader of the Snow Leopard-like humanoids was whisked-off in a Kherstic League Grav Vehicle back to Qerzyk, but it was intercepted hours out by the Ranger and Rogue posing as KL reps who were there to seal the deal of expansion into nearby territory.  Now, the KL is really trying to establish relations, but a criminal syndicate boldly decided to steal the reins and get into the area fast.

^ The KL Diplomat's Military liaison spotted the hinkiness and quietly cut herself in for 50%.

^ The Technical Rogue retrofitted the PC Snow Leopard Barbarian's Great Sword with 1d10 Electrical damage, and a +1 to Edged/Slashing damage overall.


:: TL;DR Playa's got game; kitty's got boltz ::


Sunday Game-
(7 Players)

^ Entered the Demiplane of Death and found treasure, much of which was cursed or very 'dark'

^ The Yaesh Rogue/Assassin no has a dagger that buries itself in his right arm ready to eject at will, and only cost him a permanent loss of 3 HP.  He made out with and was bitten by the Social Media savvy Princess Nyx, the Negative Lightning Patron and leader of vampires, gaining the Spider Climb ability.  He also found three daggers in a thigh sheath that look like resting bats.

^ The Undead Barbarian found an Imperial Era, Truenamed Sword which negates one of his Negative Levels while holding it, and is anchored to the CHAIN galactic network, providing the Khark access with his Astrogation DataSlate.

^ The Vrun Warlock of Mistress Abyss met Her and was levelled up to 4th (gaining roughly 400 XP), and was gifted with an animated Scourge/Bullwhip that Poisons on a Critical.  Th Mistress was seated on a living throne of contorted submissives and the whip was drawn out of one of their mouths.  Abyss gifted the Western Isles Vrun Frost Wizard with, 'Black Ice', a version of Grease that still falls under her Ice/Frost tag, and is the gateway to darkness, obscurement, and other spells.  Abyss shared that all of the Elemental Patrons are related, and that Frosty didn't need to worry about offending Lady Arctise by accepting the spell.  Princess Nyx stopped by to complain that Game of Thrones was disappointing, but Abyss countered that Nyx should keep watching through at least the Red Wedding episode.

^ A Vrun Cleric of Life tied to Prince Donner of the Positive Lightning Plane was freed by the Khark, and has joined the party.  He gained an extra Channel Divinity use per day.

^ The party exited via an elevator the Emperor installed traversing the 16 Elemental Planes.  The railroady stop they took was to 'Basement 1', an artificial Plane that had many doors leading elsewhere; while there all Elemental Patron powers were cut-off or suppressed.  The exit they chose opened to a stone floored but metal walled corridor.

:: TL; DR: Awesomness ::

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Weekend of 20th and 21st, September '14



Saturday Evening-

^ Eastern Vrun Ranger with the Soldier background having fought in the Abbekqorru and Sneer campaign a few years back, now working in besieged Qerzyk City attempted to hook up with the other PCs, but had the most difficult time.  His animal companion is instead, an AI Drone with a glitchy unspeaking personality/temperament.

^ Yaesh Rogue Thief who is on the sh!itlist of a gangster was supposed to hook up with the Ranger, but instead hid, evaded the drone, and left to wait in a lair in the city.  A rumour about an indirect fire weapon battle fought north of town was overheard.

^ Western Isles Ranger who seemed ambivalent about a strange situation she noted in the wilds about two days north of Qerzyk.  Apparently two vehicles were in a battle, and one destroyed the other.

===

Sunday Evening-

7 Players around the table:

^ Western Isles Frost Lady Wizard
^ Khark Fighter
^ Yaesh Rogue Assassin
^ Vrun Barbarian
^ Vrun Warlock of Mistress Abyss (Blade Pact) with the worst dice
^ Drow Ranger Outrider with Sniper Rifle
^ Yaesh Monk

TL; DR: An encouter with vicious racoonoids turned into a battle with two undead Clerics and an Eldritch Knight/Wizard Skeletal Warrior resulting in the opening of a Demiplane of Death via rift in the forest of a former golf course.  The Barbarian became undead and is now a modified  Paladin of Lord Worm, down inside the Demiplane filled with awesome, glittering treasure.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

LINK to the WotC D&D 5e forum where this entire discussion is being held.

Hi,

I've been remembering my old 1e AD&D days, where gaining Ability Score increases were only rare [occurrences] of magic item or through Wish spells. I think the effect on the game was that one stopped worrying about what one didn't have and concentrated on how to maximise the strengths of the PC, as well as more lateral thinking about how to be better prepared for contingencies, as well as group dynamics (not to mention using 10' poles to check for traps).

Imagine, if you will, 5e without Ability Score boosts, and instead, every four levels being only Feats. Whatever one's stats are will be the way barring [generosity] of the GM in magic item selection, or luck of the dice on the MI lists granting Manuals of Gainful whatsit, or the like.

Everything else works the same as RAW 5e, just without the [escalation] of, 'I think it is more important to get your Stats to 20 as fast as possible.'

Sound interesting to any of the old timers? The OSR crowd? New D&D players?

--I think I'm going that route with my gaming group.

[snip]

Karnos wrote:

I hope you are prepared for a party of 5 wizards.

Weapon attacking classes are very [dependent] on main stat. For example, a fighter with 20 strength does an incredible double the damage of a fighter with 12 strength with a longsword.

Casters, not so much. While some features may allow them to add ability score bonus, and spell saves are based on casting ability score, a failed save often still does some damage and the overall effect of +5 damage on a 8d6 damage spell is very small compared to that same +5 damage when applied to a 1d8 damage attack.


[snip]

How many players who wanted to play anything but a Caster will go Caster simply [because] it makes more numerical sense for them to capitalise on the factors you have stated?

Very few, I think, but, I could be wrong. Funny, that. It was often said that Wizards or (Magic-Users in days of yore) completely out-performed Fighters at high levels, but the ironic thing about that was an all Wizard party likely never reached those levels due to only having d4 HD. ;) Once PF raised HD from d4s to d6, things got a little better, but then Sorcs got their d8s and the race was off to have Wizards compete in Melee [with] the d6-d8s and the Fighters then had to go Feat-happy to retain their edge, again. lol.

Part of the charm of Old School is that it is a long term play strategy with very little payoff at lower levels for even a 'balanced' party of the big 4 classes (wait, I hear old grognards complaining about the inclusion of d4 HD Thieves and d6 Clerics with a spell at 1st level!). It became/becomes a chess [game of] opportunities and unexpected increases of power when a rare spell (let alone magic item) came into the party's hands. Once a party started to include more than one of a the classes, or in AD&D, the sub-classes, then it got a little easier to pull things off.

I don't know of too many parties that cons[is]ted only of Assassins, Druids, Illusionists, and Barbarians, but, there were each of those accessorising Big 4 parties for added effectiveness.

It is a multi-piece machine that can be reconfigured in thousands of base ways, taken to exponential [manifestations] through Player styles and strategies. The obvious Power Gamer [strategies] in CharOp are the most superficial ones this game of ours offers.