Friday, July 28, 2006

Ping!

Still looking for inventory, letters home, etc....I *know* y'all like those extra points :)

Tell you what - first person to write and post a summary of the last game gets 2,000 XP. Seriously. Offer expires by the next game. Which reminds me....

Friday, June 09, 2006

Inventory

If you have property in town, please send me an inventory of items that are currently in that property.
Gammy and Drako - this means you! :)

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Beholder haiku

All too many eyes
Spying, peering, watching close
The beholder blinks

Monday, May 22, 2006

The Oracle?

What I owe you now is a expanded map of the known world with Landess. If you go back to Treyjack before continuing, I owe you:
  • Org chart for the Treyjack city government (for Gammy)
  • Any further information from Belina
  • Any further information from the temple of Odin
  • Item descriptions

What I need from you:

  • If you leveled up, new stats please
  • List of items for identification - Gammy gave me some, but I know you have others
Also, I am willing to answer any questions you might have about the temple type thing you were in last night. You have one day to explore it (if you choose to do so), while Gammy gets his identification spell back, you go through the treasure, etc. If you want to spend longer investigating the building, let me know.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Tora writes his father: the Green Dragon II

Father,
Such things as I have seen offer no me rest. As I meditate, the myo of our teachings flees my mind and is replaced by haunting pictures of new truths I have seen. When last I wrote to you, I spoke of Honor and Courage among companions. I felt myself superior to them somehow, perhaps based on our Shinju-Ryu training and tradition. But Father! how many of our monks can jump 10 spars into the air and land on the head of flying dragon? How many could maintain such a footing, much less the courage to attack a flying Dragon from atop its back? How many of our archers would deliver their arrows at such a creature from underneath it?

I have seen mages walk beside Tigers whose eyes know the deaths of many foes. I have seen a magnificent tiger grow to an impossible size by magic. Thus strengthened, it took down a giant man-thing made of the stone from which the sword-makers wring the strongest iron. I have seen men so small that we would step over them without notice, pull artifacts to stay the Hand of Chaos out of the dark iron fist of Evil.

We entered the pit I mentioned in my last letter. I allowed mages to cast spells on my very skin that rendered it like stone. We moved through a long passage to a steep cliff, deep in the ground. While most of us fixed ropes and climbed down laboriously, the monk Drako walked down the cliff as on flat ground. How can such magic be wrong in battle? How can making oneself vulnerable during a long climb, and tired at the end of it, be lacking in honor? Honor? Hah! One man with a sword is not Honor! That truth lies in how that man wields his sword for his companions, his country, and even his world! We teach our young wrong, Father! We do them an injustice!

We found a huge room 20 spars high and more than 100 spars across in every direction. In that room waited a Green Dragon who attacked us from above, with a choking cloud of stinking air, without even sounding his attack! All of the fables, all of the stories – lies! This foul creature fought with no Honor - back-stabbing son of a lizard-whore! He used his magic to turn the tides of battle. We had no choice but to use magic to repel his advance. Never have I seen Nature's forces lash against each other so. No dragon he, this cowardly scum-spawn summoned water of such force as to fill the room with 3' of water nearly instantly! 20 by 100 spars, Father! The roar of water as it entered the cavern was deafening. He sought to drown us rather than face us in combat!

When I think now of the dragon mark I have placed upon my brow – I am sickened to think that such creatures were once revered and even worshipped by our people. Our own school conjures the name of such foulness. I will be quick to assume a new mark – a noble Tiger to vanquish the black wyrm I errantly set upon my own brow.

While the monk crashed his Iron Fist technique into the beast's hide, I fired Grandfather's bow using magical black arrows with silver runes. Their power against Chaos made the wyrm scream as the fletchings disappeared within his chest. The skills you taught me as a child are no lie, Father. I am humbled to think how many times I missed with the arrows from the school's armory, but the shots that needed to count did. As you warned me, I still hurry too much on my second and third shots. Perhaps one day I will be worthy to follow in your foot-steps… forgive me, Father, for my failures in this battle. I will do better, I will practice more fervently… chou ma zhiang etizh no zhou.

Dazed and attacked, the vicious beast flew headlong into a wall. Even so, it remained in the air until it's wing was broken by the monk's well-placed blows, and several more arrows pierced its cursed hide. It fell from the air, dead, but landed directly on top of one of our party, and she had been standing in more than half a spar of water! She was trapped underneath and would surely have died there, had not the tiny mage magicked her to the surface. You might call such retreat cowardice, but that's not what I saw, Father. There was no knowing who or what might wait for them on the surface, yet he did not hesitate to take her there. He saved her, even though he has little thought for other than himself outside of battle. Her death would not have served Honor, and it certainly wouldn't have helped in our fight against Chaos. Fara is a powerful warrior-sage. She speaks many languages - more even than Brother Takahashi.

As I stood surveying the battle scene, the other mages attempted to stem the tide of water still rising in the cavern. Drako began telling me that the foul beast was not truly dead – but looking carefully, I could see no movement. Still he was insistent, so I climbed on top of the beast to gain a better striking position. Then it did start to move. More treachery! It reared up to attack the Tiger! Just as in stories of the Beginning of the World – only this time I had a chance to even the battle. As I prepared to strike, I saw something I would never have believed possible. Drako rammed his fist through the Dragon's eye and killed it! He killed the dragon bare-handed, Father. Not even you could manage such a feat. No one from Shinju-Ryu could have done it. How is it that another tradition is more powerful than ours? Is what I have been taught all lies and arrogance?

Drako searched beneath the water's surface and found the beast to be wearing rings and an amulet. Once these were removed, the creature no longer stirred. But to be sure, we wielded the ancient Metal King's power against him and caused his carcass to explode into the filth and muck from which it came. We had now only to swim through a depth of a half-spar of water to the door. But from there was a distance no man would be able to swim underwater. Not unless he were a fish.... It was here we had help of a different sort.

Father, take your ease as you prepare to read this next passage, for I have news for you which will doubtless take you unaware. I have been traveling with us someone you know, and for whom the school has searched in vain. I speak of Birodo, Father. She came into my sight some time ago. She has power the Monks know not, Father, and she is fierce in battle, if but a little of her blood is drawn. I protect her from such injuries as I am able Father, for none were left alive after the first time I calmed her with the flat of my blade.

I know you will think it shameful that I have not executed her for running away. I will not apologize for that. She has a part to play in the war against Chaos, and I would not so willingly cast aside an ally. I have seen some of what is coming, Father, and we need her, and others like her. We are sometimes too harsh on those we feel wrong us, I think. Especially those of our own people. Surely you can see Father, we need all of our people working together, not living in fear of making mistakes. The school MUST ease the ban on women becoming monks. There are many at Shinju-Ryu who ARE qualified and must be allowed to stand the tests – men and women.

I will write more of Birodo later, Father. But understand this, I will not allow her to come to harm. Especially at the hands of those of our people who cannot see past the blinders that Tradition has placed on them!

I have more news of dragons to tell… more treachery and lies and deceit, though I fear it is not all on their part. Know this however, dragons can assume human form and walk among us. They have their own plans for this world, and we do not figure highly in those plans. I would be amazed now to find that any dragon is a noble creature – they so treat their own kind as to be Gortzian Slavers.

Please convey my respects to Mother, and place incense on Grandfather's shrine in the main Dojo. His spirit lives on inside my bow – I am sure of it.

May Peace with Honor favor your sword.
Your attendant son,

Tora

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

The magic identification spell is sputtering...

Just a note guys - still haven't gotten the list of items you wanted IDed. If I don't get it before I log in on May13th (that's this Saturday), an oddity of magical fields will descend upon said objects rendering them unidentifiable.

Similarly, if I don't get updated character information before I log in on May 20th (that's next Saturday, the day before the game), your level, equipment, etc. will revert to whatever I have on my last character sheet from you, erasing all experience awards and treasure gathered to date. I don't need the whole hairy deal - just your new level, new treasure/equipment, and anything relevant to leveling up (hit points, etc.) - just the NEW stuff, in other words.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Reminder...

OK, ladies and gentlemen. I'm going to be working on maps this weekend, so if someone would like to send me the list of goods that need identifying, that would be peachy.

Monday, April 10, 2006

Accounting

From my notes, I currently owe everyone:

  • Gammy: Map of the city with locations of the Water Dog and Gammy temple, architectural diagrams of the Water Dog, temple, and riverboats.
  • Drako: Map of the city with location of store front and architectural diagram of the store front, character sheet for Sparky (or whatever name you and he agree on).
  • Party: Map of the known world with locations of Oracle (as indicated by the druids) and mines, descriptions of all the powers of the magic items you have on hand.
Did I forget anything? I seem to remember I owe Ilea and Tora something but I can't remember what.

I need from everyone:
  • Updated character sheets (updated levels, skills, items, etc.)
  • List of items you wanted identified
  • Any back story items you have not provided
  • If you have property in town, any specific improvements/investments you want to make

Talking to the Temple

Artemis casts her Stone Tell spell and asks her questions. A low and rumbling voice grates from the very depths of the rock, rolling over you like molten lava.

Q. Is there a magical bronze long sword or any bronze long sword in the building?
A. There are many things inside the building but whether they are swords is a question for a beater of metal. And I am not sure what this thing is that you call bronze or swords. There are children of stone here - ores that have been heated and shaped and beaten into shapes by such as yourself. Perhaps that is what you call bronze sword.

Q. Is there a magical gold crown inside the building?
A. Gold...yes there is gold here. I do not know if a crown would be the thing that it is, but there is much gold here, enough to make a mighty vein within the living earth. It is all heated and beaten and molded in ways that are not the way it is.

Q. What force or power could destroy the walls of this building?
A. Destroy? You may break this stone or melt it with your fires, but it is only changed not destroyed. You may carry it away, but it is only made distant from its place of uncovering. Nothing can ever be destroyed, only changed and melted or melded into another thing. You can do this with anything if you have enough heat and pressure.

Q. How many levels are there within or below the building?
A. There are empty places encased in stone below this outcrop that reach a finger into the earth. It does not reach more than a little way to the stone heart of this world, but that may be a very great way for such as you.

Q. How many entrances are there to this building?
A. There is a gap in the stone near where you stand. Other gaps are deep within the earth or come from places I cannot see.

Q. Other than smearing blood on the door, what are the other ways to get into the building?
A. You may move through the gap if you are small enough. Perhaps if you break yourself into pebbles, you will be able to move more easily through them.

Q. How many living creatures are inside of this building?
A. There are many things that move rapidly inside my walls, not like the slow steady comfortable speed of stone. They go here and there, in nearly all of the places in the stone. And they go out too.

Q. How many undead creature are inside of this building?
A. All of the things inside seem the same to me.

Q. Are there powerful magic items or artifacts in this building?
A. There are many types of power inside the walls. Some are old and some are young.

Q. Has anyone or anything come into or out of the building in the last day (warmer/colder cycle) or the last 30 warmer/colder cycles?
A. Things go in and out all the time.

Q. Are there protection spells in place to keep people out?
A. I do not know.

Q. Are there protection spells in place to keep people in?
A. I do not know.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

Gammy's Eventual Take Over of Organized Crime in Treyjack and other stories...

I had asked earlier, and you requested that I send you an email to remind you about the following: Gammy want's to do research on the organized crime in Treyjack. He also wants to look into finding a suitable lackey that will help him in this endeavor. I'm looking for information on the hierarchy of the organization, weaknesses, possibilities for blackmail, etc.

I'd also like to see about buying into different businesses in Treyjack. I'm looking at pricing and possible weaknesses and possibilities for blackmail to reduce the cost of buying into these businesses. Also, any I can buy outright.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Prep for Sunday April 9th

To save time for fun during the next game on Sunday, I have the following suggestions:

  1. Let’s create a list of questions for the druid to ask of the temple with her stone tell.
  2. Let’s then go to the temple and ask the questions. (Hopefully, this can be done before the game.)
  3. From the temple (unless other information gathered at the temple changes things), let’s go to town using the druid’s wind walk.
    In town, let’s:
  4. Check with Drako’s sage/researcher to see what he has discovered.
    Buy any healing, vampire protection, and other general use stuff that we need.
  5. Find out what the crown that we bought really does.
  6. Find out what this stupid tin foil hat does that I bought.
  7. Find out about these amulets.
  8. Get any other identifications done on the stuff we aren’t sure about (Gami can do some of the identifications if not all).
  9. Get some maps of the continent and see if we can find the area described to us by the “big bad”.
  10. Find the exact location of the mines (if possible) that we “know” to be to the North.

Please add to the list or make any other suggestions.
Thanks,

Mike

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Drako’s Rare Item Recovery Service

Found this flyer that Drako posted around town from last time and thought everyone would enjoy it! I'll post some other bits as I locate them - I love this particular idea :)

Drako’s Rare Item Recovery Service

Are you in need of a rare spell component? Do you need a cockatrice feather or a dragon scale? All out of vampire dust? Drats, that can be a real problem. No challenge too big no monster too fierce.

In the last several months alone, I have recovered many items, including:

  • Giant blood
  • Formian shell
  • Beholder eyes
  • Hydra blood, skin, claws, and fangs
  • Dragon heart, blood, claws, blood, and hide

    Note: Beasts only killed when absolutely necessary. Wildlife conservation is a serious issue which I take seriously.

Are you great at research, but not inspired to trek to Northern Abaronda to scale Mount Nureid, to enter the haunted mines of Khalish to recover that ancient tome? Well, Crikey! That’s what I live for!

Very experienced, honest, highly-skilled, motivated, and professional archaeologist/xenobiologist monk.

Can’t trust anyone to perform the task for you? Tired of rogues and “professional treasure seekers” running off with your items? Do they contaminate your samples? Did they get their gnome’s blood mixed with the troll’s blood? Are they trying to pass-off wolf hairs for werewolf hair? Sleep well, knowing that a dependable lawful-good monk is on the job.

Disclaimer: Legal transactions only; no theft, murder, or criminal activities condoned or performed.

Monday, April 03, 2006

Tora's journal

Father,
We have been out this time for several days. After finding an evil temple, and then riding to a nearby town to talk to the inhabitants about it, we tracked the Iron Golem we killed to a large hole. The monk, Draco, said he believed this to be the lair of a Green Dragon. Can there still be such as this in the world? So many of the dragon-clan were slain! My blood raced to think of joining such a creature in battle-dance.

Alas, however, my companions are somewhat indecisive and we lingered near this pit discussing what to do for quite some time. Eventually, the group decided to return to the remains of the Iron Golem to search for clues as to who sent it, as perhaps it was tracking the amulet carried by the gnome.

I know you disapprove of these kinds of companions, Father, for at times they do not appear to act with proper Courage or Honor. But they do show respect for each other, and they help each other fearlessly in battle. I have learned many things about fighting and tactics watching them work together. Perhaps you will allow me to speak of this in greater detail another time.

Once we regained the Iron Golem's death-ground, the gnome Gammicus began to examine it closely. His concentration was much like the monk acolytes as they sit their first vigil. He then reached inside the body and removed two green and glowing spheres - surely something magical and powerful. Some members of our group then removed an Iron Axe from the heart of the great beast. I did not see what led them to it. But their find was most fortuitous. Another of the ancient artifacts that will stay the Hand of Chaos in our world! Hieronymous' Own hand must be in this! There were other things, an amulet matching one the illusionist had, but that is most important to maintaining Law in these times.

The druid, Artemis, scried the Iron Axe to find who sent the mishapen man-thing after us. Scrying is a magical spell that allows the user to see through eyes and hear through the ears of another person. She used water to view an interview with a man who is surely right Law's true enemey. In a dark room lit only with torches, we watched him question his retainer, who had a voice most strange. Low, like Brother Kinji in the chant, yet high at the same time, like the performers in the old style Operas we watched when I was a child. We saw, through his eyes, a montain range and rock formations lit by the Zen moon. They feel they will recognize them again, if and when we see them.

We returned to this so-called dragon's lair. We camped some distance away, and some of the party were too worried about the dark to go in right away. No, not cowards, Father, for if they had been, I would certainly have enacted the Shinju-Ryu's normal price. But as these are magic folk, they needed time to learn more from their strange books, and to rest for the coming battle. I myself settled into the Cha Yu Dae Ryun Muk Nyum. Meditating before battle is never ill-advised, regardless of the foe you face. I doubted there would be a real dragon - they are so few in this Age.

I know, Father, that you disdain the use of magic in battle. But... the things I have seen! We would do well to allow our Monks to pursue some of this learning, lest the old times come again. In the time of your Father's Grandfather, the Shinju-Ryu protected the people from brigands... and worse! Should the footfalls of Chaos echo again across our land, what good will be our Swords and Bows and Honor alone? I beg you to reconsider your decision, and to allow me to return home with what I can learn. I have a number of items I have acquired - you will be amazed at their uses, in and out of battle!

I will add more of our tale to another letter. The hour is late, and I must meditate, and perform the Haman-takeishi. Only after so thorough a cleansing will I be prepared for rest.

Your faithful son,

Tora

End of Sunday's Game

Okay, sorry I had to run out. My daughter fell on the hard wood floor and banged up a tooth pretty bad. It bled extensively; thus, my wife's worry.

That being said, what happened to our intrepid band of adventurers after I left?

Current Party Location (start of game for 4/2/06)

Currently, our adventurers are standing around a large pit in the ground which they suspect strongly leads to a green dragon, with whom they have tangled often. Assuming it's the same green dragon. Assuming it's actually a green dragon and not something else.

Behind them, a temple with a door that will not open. An evil temple. And a missing village. And an iron golem, that lays rusting in the snow. Did I mention that it was snowing? It's snowing alright. Yep...snow in summer...

Tips from Mike

The following information is not a series of questions, but a series of conclusions (and some assumptions) and/or answers that I gleaned from the DM or other sources. I ask one question at the end. We did not search or investigate the iron golem after defeating it and we should have. There is something about it that is important. It could be something it is carrying or is inside it. It could be something about the actual material or composition of the creature. It could be the mission it was on. Remember that it was coming for or to the amulet - which should not be destroyed! It may be that investigating it could give us clues about the council, the dragon, or one of the artifacts (the iron axe most likely. Perhaps it could be reanimated and used to approach the dragon. Perhaps it could be used to spy on the dragon.

This is more of a clarification and assumption. We had asked (and had been informed before) that we need all 6 of the items to defeat the council's plans. But it has never been stated (one way or another) as to whether or not we can defeat individual members of the council without all of the items. However, from speaking with the DM and by communing with rocks and a nice mixture of tea leaves, I have determined that the individual members of the council (however formidable) are not unbeatable without all of the artifacts.

Warning: When the party found the mithril hammer, it was in an abandoned temple. The markings on the temple were similar in origin (Ancient Ones of Chaos type) to the symbols on the round and mysterious temple a stone's throw through the forest (assuming a clear line of site and one hell of an arm). The important bit to know is that entering the other temple caused a temporary insanity on all party members (who entered). The insanities ended upon leaving the building. Oh joy! Heeeeeere's Drako!

Summary of Campaign

In another place, in another world, an ill-bred, young lady, was given an armed escort of women to take her across the mountains to meet with the prince of that land, in the hopes that he would be pleased with her countenance and take her hand in marriage.
He wasn't.
He didn't.
Point in fact, the bonny prince Herschel is an evil wizard/fighter, whose plans extend far beyond this world. With the help of a number of like minded fellows of varying races, he intends to bring chaos back to it's rightful place on top. The women barely escape his dungeon, stumbly through a series of misadventures until.....


Our brave adventurers lay huddled in the musty library as Estefan, their host, swirls his brandy absently. Brandy that he hasn't touched since he is, afterall, a vampire. Vargoyles circle outside the castle windows, no more than a rustle of bat wings against the dirty panes, a scrabble of claws, a hiss. The night stretches before them, and dawn, and its safety, an eternity away. Estefan offers them a choice - sacrifice one of their party and leave the castle immediately to fight the vargoyles and wolves that roam the grounds or...accept a quest from thier host, a quest he will not describe until they have promised to take it.
They have had better days.
Deciding to take on the quest, they find themselves pawns in an ugly game between the forces of chaos and law - with evil on both sides. To fulfill their oath, they must travel to the southern continent and destroy a portal to another plane - or die trying. Transported far to the south by a portal stone, they find themselves in forbidding surroundings. Dwarven slaves, forced to mine a strange ore by beholders, trudge through the valley below them. A dark jungle beckons to the east. The sea rages at their backs. And a road leads south to a foreign city.


After finding thier feet, the intrepid party strikes off in an attempt to close the portal before *something* get through. But it never seems as simple as all that.


A gnome that looks like an orc.
An orc that looks like an elf, then an orc, then an elf, then an orc.
Two elves that might make the summer Olympic track team.
One really nasty city.
Exploding temples.
The medieval mafia.
A Godfather with a Deliverance accent.
And a tournament that delivered more damage to one poor spectator than to the participants.
Gammy “the made man” and the lovely, unpredictable Sam trick poor slobs into loosening their purse strings, the magic users immolate monsters (and party member), and the party handles a persistently annoying green dragon.


After many adventures, the party discovers that there is more to this wicked chess game than simple politics. The prince and his "counsel" intend to bring one of the Old Ones into the world, misguided in their belief that they can control this awesome power. As they bring in minions from other planes in the form of Slaadi, the repercussions of their actions is already main plain in sweeping weather changes. The only way to stop them and close the portal is to gather ancient weapons - those forged by the metal kings.

A silver ring
A golden crown
A mithril hammer
A copper sword
An iron axe
A bronze long sword
And....

Seperately, each artifact is powerful, but together they can close the portal and send the Old Ones back...if they can be found. And the counsel....who are they? The prince and his lady Mira are simple enough but the rest remain a mystery. And how do the mines tie in to all of it?

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Notes on game play

  • To move the battles along quicker, spell casters must have their spells ready and fighters must have their chosen weapons ready when their initiative is called. If you're not ready, you lose your turn and I still get to hit you. Then the monsters get to hit you.
  • I award a 10% experience point bonus to anyone who writes AND THEN GIVES TO ME a drawing, diary entry, letter home, figurine, diorama, flyer you are having your lacky post, or any other creative piece relating to/about the previous game. I will even accept cakes, assuming they are decorated to depict something that happened in the previous game.
  • Let me know at least 24 hours before the game whether you are going to make it. This is an important courtesy - I do not want end up with one poor soul on my doorstep, 20-sider clutched desperately in a sweaty palm, squeaking “What do you mean I get to finish the bone ooze battle all by myself?!??!?!”

Saturday, March 18, 2006