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1  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: [PC] Shadowrun Returns (official review on Page 3) on: July 29, 2013, 03:55:19 AM
Just finished up the stock campaign.  Great writing and worth the fifteen bucks I kickstarted.  Looking forward to the user-generated campaigns, too. 

Still, I can't help but comparing this to the recent Xcom game.  If I had to choose my favorite turn-based, rebooted, science-fiction-y, recent release, I'd have to go with Xcom.  I know it's not exactly fair to compare a relatively big release with a smaller, crowdfunded game, though. 
2  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: [D&D 4th Ed.] Official GT Campaign 3: No Business Like Gnome Business on: July 17, 2013, 11:40:34 PM

Quote from: Doopri on July 17, 2013, 11:27:02 PM

Hmm figured I'd check out the site and can't wait to go through this thread + PMs

Wish me luck

Ha!  Good luck!
3  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: [D&D 4th Ed.] Official GT Campaign 3: No Business Like Gnome Business on: June 05, 2013, 12:10:31 AM

Quote from: Arkon on June 04, 2013, 08:53:24 PM

So was there any chance of us actually saving Thraco?  

Oh, yeah.  I believe the assassin that got him was just a slightly reskinned/restatted solo from one of the Free Rpg day things Wizards gave out that year.  It totally wasn't an attempt to screw you guys over or anything. The fight was actually pretty close, too.  The assassin didn't run because I didn't want a TPK.  She ran because she killed her target, was really beat up & still faced a few opponents with magical abilities of unknown capabilities.  

The dude that brought the book about the shardmind and dragons in the post above?  He's in my notes from way back when Thraco was introduced, because I thought the most likely turn of events would be that you guys would end up teaming up with Thraco, then joining up with the remnants of his legion.  

Quote from: Arkon on June 04, 2013, 08:53:24 PM

And what was up with him, why did it seem like we thought he had been polymorphed?

That was basically a Prepotency culture thing, that in retrospect, I probably could've ditched entirely.  I had this idea that all the hobgoblins, bugbears, goblins and barghests were all really the same species.  Everybody started out as hobgoblins, but if you committed some sort of crime, part of your punishment would be that you would get magicked into one of the subspecies.  For example, if you were convicted of something violent that didn't warrant execution, the priests of Bane would magic you into goblin so you'd be small and weak in addition to whatever else the punishment was.  Thraco, who was a pretty suave leader type falsely convicted of cowardice, got magicked into a brutish bugbear.  Legate Suun pushed for this particular punishment, as he saw Thraco as a rival and thought folks would be less likely to follow someone who is basically a furry ogre.  Thraco was on his way to get thrown into a suicide squad when the Mist accidentally freed him when they were attacking the Prepotency prisoner convoy.  

Dumb bonus fact:   Thraco was initially based on real life Roman commander, Maximinius Thrax.  

Quote from: Arkon on June 04, 2013, 08:53:24 PM

And care to share what would have happened if SaRelka had survived?

Probably not much more than a couple of bonus demony-related feats, unless you guys decided to focus on rooting out the Jubilex cult.  I had some notes on where they were hiding, what they were up to, etc., but it was pretty bare bones.  

Quote from: Arkon on June 04, 2013, 08:53:24 PM

Oh and speaking of the dwarves, where they actually mad as the dragon insisted?

Port Silver was a rough place.  I figured if you could have convinced the folks trapped there to serve you, they basically would have been your Sardaukar.

Dumb bonus fact part 2:  I can't believe nobody called bullshit on Kiln the Elf.  
4  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: [D&D 4th Ed.] Official GT Campaign 3: No Business Like Gnome Business on: June 04, 2013, 02:21:16 AM

Quote from: Destructor on June 03, 2013, 06:39:56 AM

So, now I'm curious - any points where we the players really threw you off for a loop, Kadnod? Where we really messed up whatever it was you had planned?

There were lots of times where I wasn't sure what you all would do next, but I can think of two times in particular the party took things in a very different direction than I had anticipated.  The first time was when the group decided to help Boulder.  I had thought that would be a one encounter deal, where the group would either kill Boulder and take his cows for the tribe or they'd try to buy them.  I forget why I even had a backstory for the giant.  Maybe to explain why he was relatively friendly? At any rate, that you guys went after the frost giant that had been slapping him around was unexpected, particularly since you were all pretty low level, and it lead to one of my favorite battles of the campaign. 

The biggest surprise for me, though, was when you sent the dragon Tegarrus to destroy Tiam-Krey.  First, I was surprised you even allied with him.  Those Steelspike dwarves Rangrim was trying to track down were basically in the same prison as Tegarrus, but you all left before you encountered them!  Then, I figured you'd use the dragon to attack Scaleport, but sicking hm on Tiam-Krey took me by surprise. I had a lot of crap written up about Tiam-Krey, but instead you just destroyed the whole city!  More than anything else, that move changed up the campaign.   

I was also really surprised the Deck of Many Things never got used.  And you guys also bypassed a wave of killer modrons by diplomacizing an NPC I thought you might fight!  But those were more side-quest type deals.
5  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: [D&D 4th Ed.] Official GT Campaign 3: No Business Like Gnome Business on: June 03, 2013, 02:32:34 AM

Quote from: kadnod on May 29, 2013, 04:44:52 AM

As for the "whatever happened to?" questions, folks wanted to put resources into finding out what was up with the shardmind and the dragons.  I'd write that up now, but I am totally sleepy! Will try to have that up in a few days. Thanks!  

Spoiler for Hiden:
Some months after the defense of Scaleport, a band of nearly 100 weary humans and hobgoblins requested sanctuary in the city.  Though clearly former Legionnaires, their leader, a tiefling warlock named Zesharhi claims they are rebels.  Swearing they were followers of Thraco, the fallen Legate you freed just before he was slain at the Battle of Misthome, the newcomers eventually win your trust and give you much information about the Prepotency.  Zeshari in particular is exceptionally helpful and gives you a tome written by a powerful heretic he once pursued back when he was a loyal Centurion.   Though much of it discusses the author’s repulsive personal history and how best to summon certain unpleasant creatures, it does address both the shardmind who serve the Prepotency and the madness of the dragons. 
On the shardmind:
The Crystal men called the Opti serve the Emperor because he has agreed to help them locate others of their kind and pieces of the shattered world that birthed them, known in scholarly circles as The Living Gate.  Though some theorize that should this world be restored, it would close a hole in reality that leads to a universe of nightmares called the Far Realm.  Home of such monstrosities as beholders, illithid and the aboleths, denying these aberrants access to the Mortal World would certainly be a worthy goal.  However, there are several flaws in the logic of the Opti when it comes to this matter.

Firstly, reassembling the Gate in the manner proposed by the Opti may be as to attempting to reassemble an aquarium after it has been thrown into the sea and dashed against a rock.  Some pieces of have doubtless been irrevocably lost, some of its inhabitants have long since swam away and the water originally within has been irreversibly absorbed into the sea .   While it appears that the Opti do have a method of causing pieces of The Gate to combine, they are simply hoping that should they combine enough pieces, something will be created equal to that of the original Gate whole and entire.  Could this be true or have the Opti wasted their time, searching the shores for a few stray shards of glass that they can glue together at random, hoping that the aquarium will soon be whole once more?

Secondly, the Opti assert the hole caused by the destruction of The Living Gate is the only way the nightmares of The Far Realm can enter our World.  This too may be a fool’s hope.  Deep beneath the surface of the World, many aberants call the Underdark their home.  The Opti claim these monstrosities simply crawled ever downworld after their arrival on this plane, to the place in our home that most closely resembled their own.  But does this hold up to scrutiny?  The Gate existed in the Astral Plane.  That place was home to a dozen realms of horror, even before The Gate’s destruction.  Would not the creatures of The Far Realm settle their?  Or do so many creep and skulk in the Underdark because there too lie entrances to their blashphemous home.  Be they created by drow or the grey dwarves,  the result of the thrashings of the Tortured God Torog  or simply places where reality naturally frays, I believe there must be other Gates in the deep places of the World. 

Finally, in order for the Opti to achieve their goals, they must hunt their brothers that do not share their philosophies.  Should not their wayward brothers be apprehended and absorbed, the Opti claim, The Gate may never be whole.  Yet many of these so-called heretics are powerful psychics in their own right.  Most are repulsed by the creatures of The Far Realm and do much to oppose them wherever they can be found.  What is worth more to the World?  A legion of immortal, psionic warriors who would defend it against foul beasts that feast, sometimes literally, on the minds of mortal men? Or a cult of zealots who hunt their brothers today in the name of some unknown better tomorrow?  I know which I would choose, but then of course, I may not be the most unbiased party.

-Mir the Mad, Last Servant of Atropus

On the dragons:

What drove the Old Lords mad?  Can any dragon truly be considered sane by Mortal standards?  Likely not, but they were at least predictable before the troubles started.   Food, wealth, power.  These are the things even the most pleasant of the Old Lords obsessed over.  And though these may sound similar to the goals many mortals hold most high, they mean infinitely different things to dragons.  Well, perhaps not food. They seem to hunger just as we do, though on an obviously greater scale and for much more exotic fare.  But wealth?  Wealth is literally its own goal to a dragon.  They care not what their gold or gems can be used to buy.  They want it because it as to the warmth of the sun or the love one’s children to a dragon.  And power?  They need it because they inherently need to destroy something.  But what?  And why would the gods fill such magnificent creatures with such avarice and rage? 

It is in these questions where I believe the answer to the madness of the dragons lies.  I believe the gods instilled the dragons with their greed and hate for a purpose.  At the dawn of time, when the gods battled the elemental kings known as the Primordials, the dragons were the gods’ greatest weapons.  But early in this Dawn War, many dragons turned against their creators and joined the elemental armies of their enemies or even abandoned the war entirely.   These early defections were never repeated.  Though many a scholar of Old Osradin asserted that the remaining loyalist wyrms were all strong and honorable creatures, I believe this to be a false appeal to their masters’ vanity.   We know the Dawn War was nearly lost on many an occasion.  We know that servants of both sides, and even some gods and primordials themselves, turned on their allies throughout the conflict.   But never another dragon.   Why?

After much research and several fruitful consultations with wyrms both living and dead, I believe I have learned the truth.  The gods, in their wisdom, removed the piece of the dragons’ free will that would have allowed them to refuse their predivined role in the Dawn War again.   There is a signal that the gods could give, one that would send their servants on a warpath against their enemies, even without the wyrms’ consent.  One that would bring the worst of their greed and anger to the forefront of their mind, making surrender and peace unimaginable. 

What proof have I?  Sadly little.  But there are certainly artifacts that control dragons, most notably the Orbs of Dragonkind.  Might they make use of this divine signal?  And why have the dragons that have become separated from the gods, such as those who have abandoned their natural bodies for mechanical, elemental or undead forms, retained their sanity?  Such as they could be called sane in the first place, at any rate.   

Though my theory is certainly in its infancy, I hope to find more subjects to consult soon.   I’ve had several sharp blades and many strong chains constructed for just such a purpose.

-Mir the Mad, Last Servant of Atropus

And they all lived happily ever after.  Until Kavouri came back.  And the giants.  And the dragons.
6  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: [D&D 4th Ed.] Official GT Campaign 3: No Business Like Gnome Business on: May 29, 2013, 04:44:52 AM
Campaign Epilogue!

Spoiler for Hiden:
The old woman trudged wearily through the slushy streets on her way to the temple.  “I’ll say one thing for the Empire,” she sighed, “they always kept the streets clear.”  It had been a year since the natives chased the Prepotency from Scaleport and as the Legions fled, certain comforts she’d grown quite accustomed to fled with them.  Streets were dirtier, skilled craftsmen were hard to find. And the food!  If it couldn’t be grown within a league of the city, it might as well not exist.  Gods, she missed those little gredberry pastries from back home.  

At first, she worried for her safety in the newly occupied city.  What would these barbarians do to a poor old weaver from Querix-Ra?  She’d lost many a friend to rampaging  beastmen shortly after the locals’ initial assault on the city, but after the new rulers kicked out the worst of the lot and repelled the Legion’s counterattack, things had calmed down quickly.    For weeks, she waited in fear for the day when these newly minted kings would round up citizens of the Empire and throw them out into the cold fields beyond the city walls.  Perhaps even over the city walls. But that day never came.  No one came to throw her out of her humble home.  No one came to seize her meager property.  Hells, after a few days, some elfish person, nearly as scared as she was, came knocking at her door, bearing food and promises of safety.  

She thought back on how quickly this first year of independence had passed.  Within weeks after the battle’s end, a sense of calm settled over the city.  Old residents helped acclimate new arrivals to city life.  New arrivals helped old residents to restore buildings damaged in the sieges.  She’d been able to open up her old stall less than a month after the battles had ended. And though she certainly had her complaints about life outside the Empire, this new life had its upsides as well.  No bronze-clad thugs harassing folks just because they didn’t like their looks.  No zealots screeching about penance, punishment and conquest in every square.  “And no more of those poor wyrmlings in chains,” she said to no one in particular as she spied a young dragonborn woman hurrying eagerly through the snow.  No doubt she was heading towards the Celebration as well.

Yes, things had settled down in Scaleport quite nicely, she thought as she caught site of the New Temple.  At its heart, it was really a very old temple, dating back to when Old Osradin was young.  But if the natives wanted to pretend that the central building was never devoted to Tiamat or Bane, who was she to argue?  It certainly did seem like madness to her, having one complex devoted to so many gods.  Was there really anyone who paid fealty to The Platinum Dragon, The Free Lady and The Raven Queen equally in their hearts?  Judging from the crowd out front, she guessed some actually might, but it still seemed like lunacy to her.  Not that she really minded, though.  All religion had always seemed a bit insane to her.  

At she began to lose her footing on an unnoticed patch of ice, she wondered if there was such a thing as internal blasphemy.  Time slowed as she careened towards the slick stone street.  Just as she was about to strike the ground, the weaver felt a grip of steel steadying her by the shoulder.  She looked up.  Then up some more.  Finally, her eyes met those of the grotesque beastman that had saved her from embarrassment, injury or worse.

“Steady!  Steady old grayhair!” bellowed the fat minotaur, half naked and seemingly unbothered by the cold.  “We can’t have the streets clogged with the snow and the elderly both!  Ha!”  

For several uncomfortable moments, the beast man guffawed loudly at his own joke, then slowed and finally stopped once he realized the frail human didn’t seem to appreciate his brand of humor.  Ah well, he thought, the world was sadly filled with the unsophisticated.

“The name is Suhvob, ma’am,” he said as he roughly brushed some snow off the old woman’s frail shoulders.   “Perhaps you’ve heard of me!  I’m one of the famous Giantslayers, after all!”  

“Eh, thank you.  I’m Fiylan Weaver.  Thank you, you can stop now,” she replied as she gently pulled his hand from her shoulders.  “Suhvob?  I know about the wizard and the gith and the holy warriors.  Say, you’re not that Haversham fellow, are you?”

“Winnish?”  he roared incredulously.  “ think I’m Winnish!  Hellfire!  Captain Winnish of the Shadow Sphinx?  Now that is funny.  Nobody’s seen him since him and all those lil’ halflings headed out to sea!  Wish that I’d gone with ‘em.  Hear he’s givin’ the Legions wot for!  Ha! ”  

“Yes, yes,” she responded.  “Well, as long as he doesn’t bring trouble back upon our heads, I suppose they may deserve it.”

“May deserve it?  May deserve it!  Of course they deserve it!  A thousand times worse, they deserve!” he shouted angrily.  Then he noticed the growing fear in the old woman’s eyes.
“Err, maybe tonight’s not the night for politics, aye?” continued a calmer Suhvob in a much softer tone.  “You need a lift to the Celebration?”  

“A lift, what? What!” She cried out as the minotaur gently lifted her over his horns and sat her upon his burly shoulders.  

“Comfortable up there, grayhair?” he asked, not truly waiting for a response.  “Good then!  Off we go!  Ha!”

As she steadied herself upon the back of the beast, Fiylan once more considered what a strange year it had been.  But they arrived at the Celebration safely, and though Suhvob's smell left something to be desired, she had to admit her view of the proceedings was quite good.  

The crowd was festive, both native and newcomer.  Burly goliaths told tales of life in the mountains, dodging dragons and hunting ghouls, as awestruck townsfolk kept the drinks flowing.  Apprentice wizards worked mysterious machines powered by captured lightning.   An inebriated young woman loudly proclaimed that her new master had taught her to run up walls, then proceed to prove it at the Southgate as several grey-cloaked guardsmen tried to calm her down.  Strange crystal men entertained with illusory scenes of bizarre lands far beyond those of mortal men while an elvish dancer sang a haunting song of the Feywild.  Chanting priests sought converts as a green-haired gnomish woman snuck up on Suhvob, asked him if he had heard the word of Avandra, then laughed and disappeared into the crowd.

Speaking from the tallest tower of the New Temple, Ryla the Red gave a stirring speech, congratulating the city on a year of peace and praising the brave heroes gathered about her.  Brave Kriv.  Wise Bilon.  Learned Jett.  The deadly Monk.  Even the missing Captain Winnish.   Suhvob cursed loudly as he realized he was not going to be mentioned, but after a brief moment filled with glares and awkward silence, Ryla continued and spoke of the future.  All would be free in Scaleport.  She eagerly looked forward to next month’s elections, joking that being unemployed might be a pleasant change of pace.  The path of Empire would be rejected, though assistance would be provided to those wishing to restore the other cities of Tiam-Krey.  Peace would be paramount.  “But woe be to any tyrant, any fiend who would seek to grasp these lands!  They shall find them forever beyond their reach!  And should they threaten you, Free Citizens of Scaleport, they shall learn once more what folly it is to threaten a land of heroes!”

As the crowd cheered, Fiylan once more considered all the things Scaleport had lost since the Empire had gone.  Then smiled proudly at what it had gained.    

(Edit for NPC name error!)

As for the "whatever happened to?" questions, folks wanted to put resources into finding out what was up with the shardmind and the dragons.  I'd write that up now, but I am totally sleepy! Will try to have that up in a few days. Thanks!  
7  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: [D&D 4th Ed.] Official GT Campaign 3: No Business Like Gnome Business on: May 17, 2013, 02:02:29 AM
OK, just fired off the epilogue-related PMs!  I'm going to try to write this up next weekend, so if anyone wants to get back to me with input, please do so via PM by 5/25.  I'm also happy to answer any other questions you may have had about the game once the epilogue is written up, so please feel free to send those as well. 

I also wanted to say I had a hella good time DMing the game!  Thanks for asking me to do it & thanks for making things so fun!   
8  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: [D&D 4th Ed.] Official GT Campaign 3: No Business Like Gnome Business on: May 13, 2013, 01:09:24 AM

Quote from: Arnir on May 11, 2013, 03:15:45 AM

We don't know of any arcane or religious mojo that he could fire by killing himself, do we?

Not under these circumstances.

Quote from: Arkon on May 11, 2013, 02:15:20 AM

Kriv will brace the pommel of the sword, and allow the legate to impale himself.

The Legate grabs the paladin's shoulder, then impales himself on the blade.  He gasps as the sword pierces his heart, then shudders as he dies, his eyes still glaring at Kriv. 

As Suun's corpse slides off the weapon and onto the ground, Adara steps forward. "And thus is justice done," she mutters as she begins to trace a ritual circle with her staff around the body.   After a few moments, she notices that none of the gathered tribesfolk have departed and shouts up to them, "Well, what are you lot still doing here?  That is all!  No mighty flash of holy power!  No flock of ghostly ravens to devour the body!  Just another necromancer, rotting in the dirt!"   

Then softly, so only the party may hear, she whispers, "May this serve as a lesson to all who would treat the powers of the afterlife as playthings." 

Did she just glare at Jett?

At any rate, she's finished drawing the circle in a few moments, says a few words, then announces that the deed is done.  The Legate's soul has been sent directly to the goddess of death, where She will do with it as her wont.   The Crows and Mist have already resumed drinking.  Kavak order's the Legate's body burned, the ashes scattered, and several shardmind move to comply. 

Does anyone have any immediate plans?  If not, it will be epilogue time in a few days!  Watch your inboxes for some final questions about your characters' future which you can feel free to ignore if you so desire!

9  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: [D&D 4th Ed.] Official GT Campaign 3: No Business Like Gnome Business on: May 11, 2013, 12:33:00 AM

Quote from: Arkon on May 10, 2013, 03:44:26 AM

Kriv will try to scan the face of the Legate, to try and sense if this is one last gasp of trickery.

Quote from: Destructor on May 10, 2013, 11:35:43 PM

Jett will look over the Legate as well, both trying to judge his reasons as well as scanning him via his magical sight. He's heard of strange rituals and such that require one to basically kill themselves to pull off.

The Legate looks to have aged a decade since they first saw him on the battlefield, but neither Jett nor Kriv detect any treachery.  Jett does believe that Adara has grown in magical might since last they met, though. 

Suun lifts the point of the longsword to his heart, stares the paladin in the eyes, and nods. 

Does Kriv allow the Legate to impale himself?  Does anyone else take further action?
10  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: [D&D 4th Ed.] Official GT Campaign 3: No Business Like Gnome Business on: May 10, 2013, 01:09:04 AM

Quote from: Arkon on May 06, 2013, 12:55:19 PM

"Legate Suun, you have been judged, by an impartial judge for your crimes, as was the will of Bahamut.  I have allowed the wheels of justice to churn, and your sentence is death."

Kriv draws his longsword.

"May Bahamut, Avandra, The Raven Queen and any gods you may serve have mercy on your soul. Do you have any last words?"

As Grenus backs away in shock, the Legate slowly stands.  He looks each of our heroes in the eye in turn, then gazes upward and addresses the crowd.  "No grand final speeches," he shouts, "no brilliant pleas for clemency!  I know when I am beaten! I've played a good game! But now, that game is done!  Enjoy your victory!  While it lasts, anyway!"

He approaches Kriv, places his remaining hand over his own heart, and asks with a sneer, "Would you mind terribly if I assisted?  Consider it a sort of last request."    
11  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: [D&D 4th Ed.] Official GT Campaign 3: No Business Like Gnome Business on: May 06, 2013, 12:51:11 AM
Adara listens to the party's final arguments.  The assembled tribesfolk quiet as the sun begins to disappear.  She renders her verdict.

"Suun Valoratus is an enemy of the people of these lands because of his actions as an enemy soldier," says the cleric calmly. "Though he sought to subjugate his enemies in a manner most foul, he did little more than the tribes of Tiam-Krey have often done to each other, albeit on a greater scale.  Can we truly demand more honor from the agents of this new Empire than we do from ourselves?  This has caused me to consider mercy."

The Legate's smile shines in the darkness as Adara continues.  "It must also be reckoned that due to his actions, the fallen city of Tiam-Krey was finally cleansed of the horrid ghouls.  Though we struggled against these horrors for decades, only this invader was able to chase them from their holes.  Had he been successful in restoring the once great city, much knowledge could have been restored to the World.  This has caused me to consider forgiveness."

Grenus pats the Legate on the back, but stops as Adara's voice takes on a harsher tone.  "However, Suun Valoratus has also committed crimes unpardonable. His Empire has declared war on the sons and daughters of Bahamut and sentenced them all to a kind of living death.  Such a punishment is never just.  A man of the Legate's stature in the Prepotency must be held at least partially accountable for the harm done by this foul penance."

"His subjugation of twice-damned Hezterach, may his name be forever cursed, is also inexcusable.  Would he have ended that unholy amalgamation of scale and sorcery when he had the chance? Such honor and glory all would owe him! Instead, he seized the foul lich's power for himself, endangering the World entire in the process.  Such selfishness, such dishonor, is thankfully rare, even in these dark times."

"Mercy and forgiveness I must abandon." 

Adara levels her staff at the Legate and begins to shout.

"Suun Valoratus, I declare you arch-heritic! A threat to those both living and dead!"

She turns to the party.

"Execute him, and quickly, that I may shepherd his soul into the arms of the Queen."     

What do you do?   
12  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: [D&D 4th Ed.] Official GT Campaign 3: No Business Like Gnome Business on: April 30, 2013, 01:09:22 AM

Quote from: Arkon on April 29, 2013, 11:10:10 AM

It should likely also be pointed out that for years now, the Legate was conquering foes via a weapon that had a dracolich bound inside.  His hunger and thirst for power led him to enslave the dracolich instead of destroying it.

Quote from: Arnir on April 29, 2013, 04:48:24 AM

Bilon will simply pray to Avandra for guidance.

Based thinks Kriv's idea of mentioning the dracolich is a good one, based on what he knows of the faith of the Raven Queen.  When the pair bring it up, Adara frowns and the Legate's eyes get wide, but he quickly regains his composure.

Bilon religion = 23 + 2 from Kriv = 25

At noon, Grenus begins his defense of the Legate.  He attempts no complicated legal arguments, but instead does his best to point out what he perceives to be flaws in the party's arguments:

1) The Legate can not be guilty of genocide, for he has not killed any dragonborn outside of the battlefield.  He has sent dragonborn to be imprisoned, and bound them in such a manner where they could not use their natural abilities to fight back.  "But who would not do this to their enemies?  It's been done here, today, to the very man who is on trial!  Or will you believe his arm simply fell off?"

2) That the Prepotency considers all dragonborn their enemies is not the responsibility of the Legate and neither is the conditions of their imprisonment.  "Did not the Dragon Lords of old imprison their foes, sometimes in terrible conditions?  Did the dragonborn, their servants, rise up against their masters because of how the great wyrms' foes were treated?  No.  Can we reasonably expect more of this man?  No!" 

Grenus then follows a similar line of argument and explains that the Legate can not be held responsible for the Emperor setting his sights upon this region.  "What sort of soldier defies his prince's wishes? Not a loyal one!" 

(This draws a particularly unsympathetic response from the assorted tribesfolk.  Old Hunt of the Mist hurls a rock at Grenus, just missing the advocate's head, but still causing him to stumble to the ground.  The crowd laughs and even the Legate chuckles as he pulls his barrister up out of the mud.)

3) The Legate does admit defiling the corpse of a dragonborn prisoner, but only after the Giantslayers unleashed a terrible beast upon Tiam-Krey, who killed both soldier and civilian alike.  "Not only did this terrible dragon of stone kill many score of legionnaires," says Grenus, "he crushed dozens of merchants, guilty of only seeking a new life. Hoping only to restore the once great city!"  Grenus sighs theatrically.  "What man would not be driven to a rage by this?  And who did he take it out on?  The corpse of one already slain in battle!"

4) Grenus wraps up his argument in about three hours, admitting that the one he represents is indeed an enemy, but simply an enemy soldier, and one who has offered to help negotiate a peace between the people of this region and the Empire.  "What you see before you is a man, not a monster!" shouts Grenus, as he turns and faces the audience. "And one who restored a great city in these lands, a city where you would all have been welcome, if you had chosen to join our people!  But this was not to be.  Perhaps fate herself made us enemies.  But be merciful, be reasonable in your victory!  And the future between our peoples shall be brighter indeed!"

It is about an hour until nightfall.  Does the party have any final statements they would like to make as the sun falls?  If not, stay tuned for Adara's verdict after the commercial break (aka in a few days!)
13  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: [D&D 4th Ed.] Official GT Campaign 3: No Business Like Gnome Business on: April 29, 2013, 12:57:33 AM
The trial begins just before dawn in the heart of the Crater.  The gathered tribesmen, some drunk, most armed, and all eager for the day's events, ring the massive basin at the center of the mines.  A huge slab of roughly hewn green crystal sits near the entrance to the large mineshaft leading to the cavern where the Giantkillers once slew the monstrous spider Taraza the Corrputed.  Before it lies a long onyx table.  At one end sit our heroes.  At the other, the accused and his advocate.

As dawn's first light hits the slab, it reflects off the crystal in a thousand different ways.  The beams strike the crater walls, reflecting again and again off the tiny pieces of ore imbedded therein, until the light grows to a painful intensity.  It culminates in an emerald flash, briefly blinding all those present.  As you blink the sight back into your eyes, you see a cloaked figure walk slowly from the mineshaft behind the crystal slab.  It is Adara, wielding a raven headed staff.   The still-smoking sigil of her goddess, The Raven Queen, has been burnt into the slab. 

"All here know the accusers!" shouts the deva to the assembled crowd. "All here now know the accused! All present know of the war that has wracked these blighted lands!"  She swiftly strikes the slab with her staff. "Now, at the day's dawn, we shall hear the tale of this man's part in it! First, from the accusers!  At noon, he shall respond, and attempt to convince us if the tale they have spun be fact or fancy!  By the sun's fall, a decision will have be made!  For as the light fades, the Queen's power grows!  And when all is darkness, She shall help me to discern this man's proper destiny. I will lead him to it, no matter what it may be!"   

Our heroes list the crimes they have accused the Legate of, describing their various clashes with the Prepotency, and occasionally answering questions from the cleric-turned-judge.  Grenus insists that a more suitable arbitrator must be found when the party begins to discuss dangerous events Adara was actually present for, but the Deva gives him a soul-withering glare and insists that her people's immortal nature and her personal devotion to her goddess means she has no choice but to be impartial.  "My life in peril?" she says with a harsh laugh, "It would have taken more than a little cannon fire to finish me, mortal.   Only the Queen herself may end my story.  Be assured, I'll not risk her wrath by attempting to alter this man's fate, one way or another."   

It is now nearly noon.  The party has succesfully made the points raised above and neither Grenus nor the Legate have vigourously disputed their version of events.  Are there any other points the group would like to make prior to Grenus's response?
14  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: Dungeon Crawl Classic on: April 27, 2013, 12:30:13 AM

Quote from: Arkon on April 19, 2013, 04:28:03 PM

Also the fine folks from Purple Sorceror have a nifty little companion app that has all of the various spell, critical hit and fumble tables in it.

Loaded this up today.  It is pretty sweet!  Even for folks not interested in DCC, the die roller has a nice feel to it and the crit tables could likely be exported to other games with very little effort.
15  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: Dungeon Crawl Classic on: April 25, 2013, 02:23:01 AM

Quote from: Arkon on April 24, 2013, 03:15:18 PM

Quote from: Misguided on April 19, 2013, 09:28:39 PM

As much as I would like to play, I think making a regular time might be problematic.

I completely understand.  I am still looking for players, so I don't have a schedule set yet.

Kadnod, what nights work best for you?

It's looking like Weds is still best for me.  Every other week would probably be best, but I could possibly make it a bit more frequently.
16  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: [D&D 4th Ed.] Official GT Campaign 3: No Business Like Gnome Business on: April 24, 2013, 01:51:02 AM
Ascending the mountain as the sun sets is a cold, arduous task, but you are welcomed warmly upon your return to The Crater.  Both the Crows and the Mist noncombatants congratulate you on your victory, are glad to meet Kriv and are eager to learn more about your adventures.  Many of the Crows are disappointed that you haven't returned with cartloads of loot and nearly everyone is disheartened to learn that Rangrim is no longer accompanying your victorious band.  Still, they are glad to get confirmation that the war is indeed over, at least for now.  With a snarl, Smiler the Gnoll, along with several burly goliath tribesmen, roughly seize the Legate and vow to guard him until the trial begins at dawn tomorrow. 

As the party chats with old allies, they learn of the following events that took place in their absence: 

1) The Crows harassed the local Prepotency garrison as best they were able.  When the legion abandoned the fort they built in Crow lands, they harried the legion troops as they headed East.  They killed many legionnaires and auxiliary troops, but the tribe eventually gave up pursuit once their enemies made it fifty miles away from The Crater. 

2) One evening Kavouri went mad(der) and assaulted her father Kavak in his tent with a knife, screaming about "death from the North" the entire time.  Kavak survived due to some last second intervention from Smiler, who proceeded to throw a screaming, convulsing Kavouri off the mountain. Her body was never found.

3) Kavak lost his one good eye in his daughter's assault, along with much of his will to live.  Amehez was eventually able to convince Kavak to replace his lost eyes with crystal replacements of his own design.  Though his eyesight has returned, in a fashion, little of Kavak's old personality is in evidence.  He meets the party coldly, says little, and quickly tells you he must rest. 

4) Misa the dragonborn tinker takes our heroes aside and informs you that although Kavak still leads the tribe in name, most important decisions have fallen to Amehez.  Kavak generally defers to the shardmind, and even though some among the Crows resent following the orders of the strange crystal construct, his decisions have generally been wise ones. 

5) Adara has been providing spiritual guidance and healing during your absence.  She refuses to meet with the party in advance of the trial as she prepares an impromptu court in a large tent built at the heart of The Crater.

6) Boulder never came back for his cows.

Do you have any other questions about events in Cratertown?  What crimes will you accuse the Legate of at tomorrow's trial?  What evidence do you offer?
17  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: [D&D 4th Ed.] Official GT Campaign 3: No Business Like Gnome Business on: April 21, 2013, 12:26:51 AM
When it becomes clear that he is about to be taken on a journey, The Legate once again argues that you would all be much better off if you simply ransomed him back to the Prepotency.  His protests are abruptly cut short as Ryla gags him with a silken rope.  "Hush, hush now," says the mage, speaking softly as if she were gently admonishing a small child. "You've got a great big journey ahead of you!  New people to meet!  Fun trials to attend!  And if you're very, very good, you may even get to see an execution!"   

Suun's eyes go wide for a moment, but he soon regains his composure and does not struggle as you lead him out of Scaleport.  Your allies wish you a safe journey and Sersha makes you all vow to return to Scaleport as soon as your able. 

Your journey back to the Cratertown region is not a comfortable trip.  Fierce snowstorms, dangerous terrain and the grating Grenus is rarely silent.  When awake, he complains.  About the food.  About the weather.  About your every decision.  About everything.  When he sleeps, he snores.  He snores with such unbelievable gusto, young Ginsreli jests that there is no need to keep watch, as even the fiercest beast of the wilderness will surely flee as fast as their legs will allow.  After a few days, even the Legate seems to wish his self-appointed advocate was left behind. 

Still, the journey isn't a complete misery.  Jett's phantasmal steeds make the leagues fly by, sometimes literally. The Legate attempts neither escape nor sabotage.  Ginsreli is also a surprisingly pleasant traveling companion, often speaking fondly of her childhood in the Prepotency city of Garyx-Fehn.  You get the impression that life was comfortable for her there, but that the blacksmith-turned-firewarden has not completely ignored the harsher, more unjust aspects of life under Imperial rule. 

After nearly a week of travel, you reach the mountain range where Cratertown lies.  The four in your party who are members of the Crow tribe get a telepathic greeting of return from Amehez.  "ADARA HAS LET US KNOW WHAT HAS TRANSPIRED AND WE HAVE PREPARED FOR THE TRIAL AS BEST WE ARE ABLE.  IS THERE ANYTHING ELSE WE SHOULD DO PRIOR TO YOUR ARRIVAL?"

You estimate you are still about an hour away from the town.  Do you instruct the Shardmind to do anything?  Is there anything else you would like to do before you arrive?
18  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: [D&D 4th Ed.] Official GT Campaign 3: No Business Like Gnome Business on: April 19, 2013, 02:48:45 PM
OK, Operation: Prisoner Transport is a go.  Will have a write up of the party's journey back to good ol' Crater town posted in a day or so.  In the meantime, prepare your opening arguments for a very special episode of Law and Order: Special Legates Unit!
19  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: Dungeon Crawl Classic on: April 19, 2013, 02:38:03 PM
Schedule permitting, I'd be up for it.
20  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: [D&D 4th Ed.] Official GT Campaign 3: No Business Like Gnome Business on: April 18, 2013, 12:28:23 AM

Quote from: Arkon on April 17, 2013, 06:27:11 AM

Bahamut believes in Justice, and as such I feel we need to take along both Ginsreli and Grenus.

Does Kriv believe that some magical healing will improve the ability of both to travel, or at least that of Ginsreli?  We will have to deal with slower travel for this trial to have any sense of legitimacy.

Kriv does not think magical healing will allow either of the pair to travel more rapidly, but he does think The Monk may be underestimating just how tough Ginsreli is.  Though she definitely appears a bit fatigued, Kriv believes the young fire warden will get her strength back quickly now that she is no longer running into smoke-filled buildings and dodging incendiary weapons.

 Kriv Healing 1d20 (18) + 18 = 36
21  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: [D&D 4th Ed.] Official GT Campaign 3: No Business Like Gnome Business on: April 17, 2013, 02:05:35 AM

Quote from: Autistic Angel on April 14, 2013, 03:39:15 PM

We should probably spread the word among the townsfolk that we intend to put the Legate on trial for his war crimes so they can provide depositions to the prosecution or defense.  The outcome won't have any legitimacy if the people feel their voices aren't being considered.
-Autistic Angel

Word spreads fast about the Legate's upcoming trial.  Though you hear rumors that some townsfolk are upset he's being tried away from the city and some of your own troops let you know they want you to just execute him, no one actually tries to interfere with your plans.  However, two citizens of Scaleport petition the party regarding the trial.  The first introduces herself as Ginsreli Erbi, the young woman who took informal control of the civilian fire brigade.  The polite, soft-spoken follower of Erathis does not attempt to persuade you of the Legate's guilt or innocence, but expresses concern that if no neutral party from the town is present at the trial, some in Scaleport will never accept whatever verdict is reached.  "I believe someone impartial should witness this, my lords," says Ginsreli, still wearing the charred blacksmith's apron she'd been using as impromptu fire-fighting gear.  "Otherwise, ever shall there be rumors that his verdict was predetermined by his captors or perhaps even that there was no trial at all. "

The Monk thinks Ginsreli is being truthful, but believes that she may be unprepared for a rapid journey to The Crater.  Though she seems muscular enough to have actually been a smith, The Monk thinks the young woman is fatigued from her recent efforts and might slow the party down.

The Monk Insight = 38   Perception =20

The second to petition the party is a middle aged, portly man wearing an expensive looking gray servant's uniform.  He tells you his name is Grenus Freson, a former clerk of the town's magistrate.  He tells you he bears you no ill will for slaying his former master, but wishes to assist the Legate in his defense.  "I know not what passes for law in your homelands, my lord," he says with a barely concealed sneer, "but in civilized realms, a man can traditionally expect legal representation!"  He then goes on at great length to tell you in excruciating detail about how he assisted the magistrate in many very important trials in both Scaleport and in other Prepotency lands.

Though The Monk does believe Grenus genuinely hates the party, he doubts the aging man will be of any real danger to the party.  He seems to be a bit of a buffoon, so perhaps he shall botch the Legate's defense?  He looks to be in horrible physical shape, though, and will very likely slow the journey back to The Crater considerably.

The Monk Insight = 20   Perception = 30

Though you haven't had time to establish a very robust network of contacts among the citizens of Scaleport, the party asks around a bit and both who wish to join you seem to be known in the community.  Winnish does uncover that Grenus had been hiding out at Kraken Hall during the invasion, though, where the party met with the shardmind representative.

Winnish Streetwise = 35

Do you bring one or both of these citizens back with you at this time?

Quote from: Autistic Angel on April 14, 2013, 03:39:15 PM

Of course, we should also leave someone in charge of oppositional research, ferreting out if anyone siding with the defense might have personally benefited from the Legate's rule.  Associates of that trading gnome, for example, or collaborators who gained favor by exposing suspected dissidents to the Prepotency.  They're all welcome to testify, but we'll want someone with a credible Streetwise score to investigate their backgrounds.

Ryla agrees to oversee the city while you are away, though she makes it clear she'll only be a temporary caretaker.  "Yes, yes, very well.  I'll get the place cleaned up for you," she says with an exaggerated sigh  "While you're all off having fun with the Crows, doing your festive tribal dances and executing limbless tyrants, I'll be here. Supervising masons and carpenters and street cleaners. Marking sure fishermen fish and butchers... butch?  No, no, I'm not bitter at all."

"Just hurry back," smiles the mage. "My patience is boundless, but I'm easily distracted."

"Barger, as the magnificent-but-temporary steward of Scaleport, I hereby place you and your diminutive-but-dashing crew in charge of flushing out any who would stand in the way of our glorious new order!"  The halfling appears ready to protest, but Ryla doesn't give him the opportunity.  "Yes, I know you likely had plans to return to river piracy or establishing a thieves guild of your very own or perhaps even emptying the vaults of a merchant or two dozen.  Those will have to wait.  We've got a city to hold and I don't have the patience to be dealing with assassins, spies, saboteurs or even the mildly disgruntled.  Now off with you!  And no leg-breaking!  That's what I have Gruhef for!" 

A defeated Barger skulks out of the chamber, muttering curses as he leaves. 

Does the party leave Ryla any instructions before departing?

22  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: [D&D 4th Ed.] Official GT Campaign 3: No Business Like Gnome Business on: April 14, 2013, 01:57:44 AM

Quote from: Arkon on April 12, 2013, 02:04:30 AM

After praying, Kriv will assist the acolytes in passing out food and blankets, and offering healing to those in need.

Some turn their backs on Kriv as he approaches with aid, but most of the refugees accept his assistance and are grateful for the help.  All of the wounded refugees have already seen their injuries tended to, but Kriv uses his vast knowledge of battlefield medicine, his divine healing abilities and the assistance of his arcane accomplice to improve on the work of the temple's acolytes.  By the time the paladin is finished, he is sure everyone within the temple will make a full recovery with just a day or two of rest.

Heal = 37 + 2 Jett helper check = 39

Quote from: Destructor on April 13, 2013, 02:55:27 AM


So now we have a way to get back to Scaleport quickly. Once Jett has taken an extended rest somewhere down the line (as the ritual needs 5 healing surges to cast, and Jett doesn't have that if memory serves), and 4 hours to cast, he'll create a Teleportation Circle (2x2 area, unless there's a good reason why to risk making it larger) in a good spot somewhere in the Fort (more than likely at the Circle he shut down way back when). And then he'll start maintaining it.

And thanks to his new Planar Portal Ritual, he'll be ready to leave whenever on summoned mounts. Just as soon as the rest of the crew decide what to do.

This is all fine.  

Does the party have any other business in Scaleport?
23  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: [D&D 4th Ed.] Official GT Campaign 3: No Business Like Gnome Business on: April 12, 2013, 01:50:15 AM

Quote from: Destructor on April 11, 2013, 02:09:36 PM

After Jett's last attempt at using his Arcana powers to mess around with things he didn't fully understand (the dragon's necromantic powers) nearly causing a TPK, he's not interested in doing anything that could cause A Very Bad Thing if the dice are against him. biggrin

That said, while the rest of the group chat with the Legate over what exactly they have in mind, Jett will go wandering. Perhaps there's a good magical library somewhere, or maybe the Temple of Ioun & Erathis might have what he needs - but either way, Jett would like to have access to being able to port back to Scaleport at a moment's notice.

Especially since getting the camp at Cratertown (assuming they want to come) back to Scaleport is going to take -forever-. Even more so during winter.

Quote from: Arkon on April 11, 2013, 02:35:55 PM

Kriv has a "decent" working relationship with the priestess of Ioun (Can't remember her name, but the one in the old temple of Bahamut).  He will go an speak with her, to let her know the outcome of the recent battles, and to ask for permission to pray in the temple.  Kriv would like to seek guidance from Bahamut, beyond what to do with the Legate, but the larger ongoing war, as Kriv wishes to see the end of the enslavement of the dragonborn.

Jett and Kriv visit Lorna of Ioun at the temple.  Beleaguered townsfolk huddle throughout the main hall as Lorna's acolytes scurry about distributing food and blankets.  As the two adventurers enter, the elderly Lorna walks slowly towards them through the crowd, occasionally pushing someone who tarries in her path aside a bit too forcefully with her staff.  "Ah," she says with a disturbing cackle, "I was wondering when our victorious new overlords would get here!"  She steps between the wizard and paladin and leans heavily on them both.  "Well, let us get going! I certainly hope my cell won't be drafty!"

When it becomes obvious you do not mean to apprehend her, she eagerly discusses current events with the pair.  She's surprisingly well informed about what has transpired, though you're not sure how she could already know about the capture of the Legate or the battle with the dracolich.  She is able to share the Planar Portal ritual with Jett and does not wish gold in return.  Her price, however, is that she wishes Jett to lend him his own ritual book for a week.  "No rush, mage.  Whenever you've a few days with no dragon slaying or hydra baiting or whatever it is you people do for fun.  Adding whatever knowledge you've accumulated to our own archives will surely please Ioun!"

She also has no objection to Kriv praying in the temple, though it appears his presence is disconcerting to some of the refugees in the temple.  Still, they eventually stop murmuring and gawking at the dragonborn and return to their warm porridge and well worn blankets. Some even give Kriv a respectful nod as he begins his prayers.

The paladin communes with his god and comes away feeling he has behaved in a manner worthy of Mighty Bahamut.  Creating a place of sanctuary for his brothers and sisters would surely be most pleasing to the Platinum Dragon, though he receives no particular insight into how he should go about it.

Kriv diplomacy = 33 + 2 helper check from Jett = 35.
Kriv religion = 29

Does Jett agree to Lorna's terms?  And what does the group do next?
24  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: [D&D 4th Ed.] Official GT Campaign 3: No Business Like Gnome Business on: April 11, 2013, 12:26:27 AM

Quote from: Destructor on April 09, 2013, 08:40:28 PM

Quote from: Arkon on April 09, 2013, 11:33:57 AM

Well we either need to somehow transport all of Cratertown to Scaleport, or we need to have Ryla become the new ruler of Scaleport (If she is agreeable to it) and our band of misfits needs to transport the Legate to Cratertown.

Misfits indeed. But Jett would be up for Ryla becoming the ruler of Scaleport (again, if she wants it), unless someone else has a better ruler in mind.

Jett can also easily create up to 8 Phantom Steeds, so it's not like we'll have issues heading back to Cratertown. At least we won't be walking. And if he gets a lucky dice roll, they'll fly in style. biggrin

Although if Jett knew Linked Portal or Planar Portal, he could create a Teleportation Circle inside of Scaleport somewhere and then the whole party could easily get back to Scaleport at nearly a moment's notice if something went horribly wrong. Or it could be used to port all of Cratertown to Scaleport once the crew gets there.

Jett does not believe Ryla or her apprentices could share these rituals with him.  Does he attempt to locate either of them elsewhere?

Also, Jett does recall there being something close to a teleportation circle in the dark temple Lairdala the Vampire was using as her home, which was not very far from Cratertown.  Jett could try to use it, but consequences could be dire if he stumbled across some sort of safeguard or curse left upon it by the vanquished vampire (aka if he botches the arcana roll to use it, something very bad could happen.)
25  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: So what would ya say.....ya do here? on: April 09, 2013, 02:52:09 AM
Work for a nonprofit that publishes corporate training materials and business books.
26  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: on: April 09, 2013, 02:42:21 AM

Quote from: Arnir on April 08, 2013, 05:10:40 AM

Quote from: kadnod on April 08, 2013, 12:07:09 AM

Quote from: Arnir on April 06, 2013, 02:36:25 AM

Tell her Bilon says, "hi, there."

Would Bilon like to say it himself via a Sending ritual?  Then he could also summon her to Scaleport.   Last Bilon heard, she was still at Crater Town with the rest of the Crows and the Mist noncombatants.

Bilon is game.

Adara agrees, saying she will judge the Legate based on the teachings of her goddess, the Raven Queen, the customs of the Crow tribe and the laws of old Osradin.  Given that Adara, a deva, can remember some of her own past lives, she likely has more firsthand knowledge of the culture and history of Osradin than most.  

However, her acceptance comes with a condition.  She will not leave the Crows and the Mist refugees at Crater Town.  She states they need her healing abilities and she does not have the time or inclination to train a replacement.  She asks that you bring the Legate to her.

What do you do?
27  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: on: April 08, 2013, 12:07:09 AM

Quote from: Arnir on April 06, 2013, 02:36:25 AM

Tell her Bilon says, "hi, there."

Would Bilon like to say it himself via a Sending ritual?  Then he could also summon her to Scaleport.   Last Bilon heard, she was still at Crater Town with the rest of the Crows and the Mist noncombatants.
28  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: [D&D 4th Ed.] Official GT Campaign 3: No Business Like Gnome Business on: April 06, 2013, 12:47:09 AM

Quote from: Autistic Angel on April 05, 2013, 08:54:52 PM

I was thinking Adara could preside.  The people of Scaleport might balk at the notion of an outsider running the trial, but I think once we explain how little interest kadnod's wife has had in the events of the campaign, they'll agree she would be the epitome of an impartial jurist.

-Autistic Angel

Aww man, this made my day.  I can't get the smile off my face! 

FWIW, she says she'll play Adara as judge as long as she can tell me what to write and doesn't actually have to talk into the Internet.  If you guys actually want to play it that way, that works on this end!

29  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: [D&D 4th Ed.] Official GT Campaign 3: No Business Like Gnome Business on: April 05, 2013, 12:06:42 AM
OK, so we have two votes for trial, one vote for let 'em go if it can bring about a greater peace.

Anyone else want a say?
30  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: on: April 03, 2013, 11:14:20 PM
No game session tonight or next week.   Since it is unlikely the party is going to run into a battlemat worthy combat again, we could probably handle the campaign wrap-up on the forums.  I may send a questions around via PM about characters' plans and goals once you decide what to do with the Legate.

Of course, if folks want to get the band back together for one last session, just let me know and we can schedule something later in the month.
31  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: [D&D 4th Ed.] Official GT Campaign 3: No Business Like Gnome Business on: April 01, 2013, 11:16:25 PM

Quote from: Arnir on March 31, 2013, 04:42:57 AM

Bilon will check things out, insight, whatever if it helps.  I do suggest a long rest soon, though.  Just in case.

Bilon is also unsure if the Legate is being honest or not. Insight = 29.

Also, how much XP is that total?

Uh, a billion?  I have totally lost track.  Sorry.

Quote from: Destructor on March 31, 2013, 05:08:11 AM

Quote from: kadnod on March 31, 2013, 01:58:09 AM

"So what will it be?  Ransom me for untold riches?  Or have you given further thought to one of my more ambitious suggestions?

"I don't know about the rest of you, but I know what I want - peace and quiet after this. No more invasions, no more armies, no more fighting on a daily basis just to survive."

"You are a wise djinni, sir!" responds the Legate.  "I would listen to him!  Though, I am at a lost on why he just doesn't wish himself peace or a harem or a castle made of gold..."

The Legate looks to each of you, then begins to laugh.  "Oh, I jest, I jest!  I know well that noble Jett is not that sort of elemental!"  He begins to tear up a bit at his joke.  "But yes, peace, a noble ambition!  But shall it be the Pax Imperial, the peace of good neighbors, or perhaps something more risky?"
32  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: [D&D 4th Ed.] Official GT Campaign 3: No Business Like Gnome Business on: March 31, 2013, 01:58:09 AM

Quote from: Arkon on March 29, 2013, 12:31:25 PM

Kriv would like to go check on the Legate...

"Hello Legate, I hope that your wound is healing nicely.  I wanted to let you know that Hezterach the dracolich, has been destroyed.  The last lord of Osradin exists no more and the battle for Scaleport is over.  Your troops have abandoned their camp.  I am sure there is still much to do to bring peace, but a large step has been taken today."

The Legate stares blankly at Kriv for a long moment, then smiles.  "Ah, good show!  Dispatched the beast once and for all, eh?  Well, that's one more remnant of the old Osradin destroyed! And now, on to a better future!  For all of us!"  

"So what will it be?  Ransom me for untold riches?  Or have you given further thought to one of my more ambitious suggestions?"

Kriv is unsure of the Legate  -  Insight 19
33  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: [D&D 4th Ed.] Official GT Campaign 3: No Business Like Gnome Business on: March 29, 2013, 02:34:59 AM
Recap of how the final fight played out for those who left early and for anyone else who might take the occasional look at this thread: 

Spoiler for Hiden:
The eldritch monstrosity lumbered through the darkened streets of Scaleport, a growing army of frenzied undead minions surrounding him.  Intercepted by our heroes, they made short work of the dracolich's slaves and engaged the beast itself.   Seeking higher ground, Hezterach launched himself into the air and landed on a nearby building, hoping to exhale his poisonous breath upon the party from a safe distance.  Little did he know the heroes were prepared for such a contingency! After some quick potion-quaffing, the beast was soon confronted by a flying paladin, monk and rogue!

Casting his soulless eyes upon the warriors, he overwhelmed their wills, causing them to battle each other while harrying them with fang and claw.  The cleric and mage provided support from a distance, but were unable to heal their allies' wounds due to the dark energies surrounding foul Hezterach.  Using his eldritch senses, Jett the Wizard found a way to draw some of this power away from the dragon and channeled it into the ever-dashing rogue Winnish Haversham.  Filled with necrotic energies ripped from the lich, Winnish struck with supernatural speed.   Encouraged by this turn of events, Jett tried to channel further power from the beast, but was tragically unsuccessful!  The dark power was too much for him to control and the entire battlefield was plunged into the Shadowfell, The Land of the Dead!

Things were looking grim for the warriors directly engaging the beast.  Though Kriv the Dragonborn Paladin had not suffered many injuries, the dracolich continued to warp his perception.  Kriv could not tell the difference between friend and foe and struck out at both!  The Nameless Monk struck out at Hezterach and was having some success, but the beast was still lashing out.  Their healing magics neutralized in the nightmare realm, it appeared as if Hezterach would simply outlast the warriors before him, then deal with Jett and Bilon the Cleric at his leisure. 

Jett and Bilon continued to pour arcane and divine power into the beast, while their reluctant minotaur sidekick Suhvob protected them from any undead minions who got to close.  The force of Jett's lightning half-destroyed the building Hezterach was standing on, causing the dracolich to crash to the ground.  As the creature struggled to free itself from the rubble, the warriors repositioned and Suhvob moved to engage the beast.  Our heroes shouted for help from any allies that might be within earshot and continued their assault.  Bilon, preparing for the worst, grabbed a mad artifact he'd been carrying for months.  If it appeared they would not win the day, he would unleash the chaotic power of The Deck of Many Things.

Praying to his goddess, the fair Avandra, the cleric noticed that she seemed closer in this place than she had in the Mortal World.  It would seem that the energies that tore this place into the Shadowfell had weakened the walls between all the planes.  Bilon attempted to open a portal of his own...

Meanwhile, the rest of the heroes took the battle directly to the dracolich.  Blow after blow rained down upon it, but still it stood, still it made friend battle friend, and it appeared to be readying it's poisonous breath once more.  Shouting curses, a former enemy and ally of the cursed Imperial Legate, a gith psion, arrived and struck out at the lich with waves of psychic power, but to no avail. 

Sensing victory was near, Hezterach was unprepared as the skies began to lighten, the chill fled from the air and the faint sound of a young woman laughing drifted through the air.  "IMPOSSIBLE!  IMPOSSSSIBLE!" it hissed as Avandra's warmth filled the battlefield.  Bilon had succeeded and the power of his goddess filled the heroes with much needed strength and healing. They redoubled their efforts and soon other defenders of Scaleport arrived to help destroy the creature.  Gruhef, half-mad satyr barbarian and occasional henchman of the party, came crashing onto the scene with a group of tribal archers in tow.  Slamming into the lich with a primal battlecry, he knocked Hezterach off his feet and the assembled heroes proceeded to unleash their full might upon the villain.  Still, the day was not won as the dragon's fangs sunk deep into Winnish.  Falling to the ground, the dragon's vile venom continued to ravage his body.  If this battle could not be won soon, the rogue would surely die.

Hezterach righted himself and attacked with renewed fury. Though shaken, it appeared as if he would soon muster the strength to use his dragon's breath once more.  Rearing back, the beast did not even see The Monk as he leapt into the air. Moving so fast he appeared to surround the beast, he struck its skeletal form with the flat of his spear in several places nigh-simultaneously, shattering bones into dust! The rest of the dracolich soon followed as the power sustaining its undead form fled back into the Shadowfell. 

Thus fell the Last Lord of Osradin, his mockery of life ended for all time.

10000 xp each!
250000 gp worth of residuum/dracolich dust

A thankfully natural night falls over Scaleport as both the power of Avandra and The Shadowfell retreats.  It's cold as Kriv uses his healing prowess to save the life of Winnish and the gith psion retreatst.  Gruhef runs off in search of other prey, a disturbing smile on his face as the satyr click-clacks through the streets.  Sensing no immediate danger, the party returns to Fort Scale to try to better gauge the state of the city.

By morning, it becomes apparent that the battle has been won.  No Prepotency foes are at the gates and your scouts say their camp has been abandoned.  The barghests that made it into the city are found slain, their ravaged remains piled up outside the abandoned temple of Tiamat.  None of your allies take credit for the grisly kill, but a young merchant's child swears she saw wolves being chased through streets by massive hell-hounds. "The wolves wa' really, really fast! But the other doggies were faster," recounts the astonished child, nose running freely in the chill morning air. ' YARK YARK YARK!' was how the scary doggies sounded."

Gruhef and your other allies seem to have been successful in scouring the streets of the few leftover undead minions of Hezterach. Though over thirty townsfolk were killed, it does not appear that everyone slain by one of the horrors rose again to fight by the dracolich's side.  Ryla theorizes that it was only the manticores that could spread the curse of undeath.  Unfortunately, she has some first-hand evidence that seems to support this theory. 

As the party nears the Southgate,it is readily apparent that the druid Lesh's defenses have fallen. The massive wall of living wood that sealed the gate is no more.  In it's place, a small, thin-trunked tree has sprouted from the ground.  As you get closer, you are surprised to see Lesh's face frozen in it's bark.  "She fought bravely, but was overrun and bitten by one of the damned manticores," explains a somber Ryla. "We arrived in time to destroy the creature, and those who had already succumbed to its foul power, but not in time to save her.'

"She told me she could feel what was coming.  Could feel her heart slowing and her mind going red."  The wizard leans wearily on her ivory staff.  "Then she told me not to worry, thanked me for being her friend, and cast her final spell."

What are the group's immediate plans?     
34  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: [D&D 4th Ed.] Official GT Campaign 3: No Business Like Gnome Business on: March 28, 2013, 04:02:22 AM
And our heroes, pulled into the Realm of the Dead itself, defeat the unholy monstrosity that was the Last of the Dragon Lords of Osradin, with a slight assist from some barbaric allies and the Goddess of Luck herself!

Aftermath of the the final battle and post campaign Q&A over the next few days!

35  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: [D&D 4th Ed.] Official GT Campaign 3: No Business Like Gnome Business on: March 27, 2013, 09:22:25 PM
Server up @8 for Escape from the Empire: Gratuitous Boss Battle Edition!

"Cry for Aid" actions still available, though successful results may produce effects other than those listed!  Muahahaha and stuff!
36  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: [D&D 4th Ed.] Official GT Campaign 3: No Business Like Gnome Business on: March 20, 2013, 10:04:26 PM
Server up at 8 EST.
37  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: [D&D 4th Ed.] Official GT Campaign 3: No Business Like Gnome Business on: March 20, 2013, 12:30:50 AM

Quote from: Destructor on March 19, 2013, 01:18:52 AM

Jett watches as the party (apparently) leaps down to engage the thing in melee. He's going to stay right where he is, just slightly (a lot) out of melee range of the giant iron golem whatever it is thing.

Ah, the joys of being a ranged class. Tongue

As their gnomish ally hurls herself off the wall and onto the golem's head, our heroes rappel down, jump off or remain atop the wall and engage the iron automaton.  Preparing for a tough battle, they are pleasantly surprised when the golem turns out to be relatively easy prey.  It makes no move to defend itself as it continues to pound the gate with its one free arm.  A few arcane blasts, mighty blows and divine strikes later, the battered golem falls to one knee, then topples on its side, nearly crushing Kiln.  Sersha nimbly rolls to safety, her pickaxe still imbedded in the creature's head.  A disconcerting hiss and quick puff of acrid smoke shoot from the puncture wound her weapon has caused.  The gate is damaged, but still holds.  As the Mist on the wall cheer, Jett scans the creature with his arcane senses and believes your assault has destroyed the enchantments powering the construct.

A weary and still somewhat singed Kiln slowly walks over to the group.  "Have I mentioned that I hate this city?  Struck down taking it.  Burnt to a crisp defending it.  Now almost crushed by a damned walking statue.  I was safer in the Feywild."  He kicks the golem, coughs violently, then continues. "Still, I surely thank you for the timely save." 

A panting Sersha, struggling to pull her weapon free shouts her agreement.  "Aye, thanks!  And I hate this place as well!"

The archers on the wall laugh at the gnome's jest, but not loud enough to keep Jett from hearing a crash in the distance behind him. He turns just in time to see a burning warehouse near the docks crumble violently to the ground. 

What do you do?

Jett Arcana check = 26

38  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: [360/PS3/PC]Saints Row 4 on: March 15, 2013, 07:50:21 PM

Quote from: CeeKay on March 15, 2013, 04:18:53 PM


Me too.  I was hoping they would go for a world conquest thing next.  The Saints have more in common with Hydra or SPECTRE than a street gang as of Part 3, anyway.   

Totally did not see aliens or superpowers coming, though.
39  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: [D&D 4th Ed.] Official GT Campaign 3: No Business Like Gnome Business on: March 15, 2013, 12:06:38 PM

Quote from: Arkon on March 15, 2013, 11:46:38 AM

We need to get down there and keep it from breaking through the gate, any easy way down?

Nearby notched rope seems the safest way.   Jumping + deep snowbank seems the quickest.
40  Gaming / Analog Gaming / Re: Re: [D&D 4th Ed.] Official GT Campaign 3: No Business Like Gnome Business on: March 15, 2013, 02:25:44 AM

Quote from: Destructor on March 15, 2013, 01:05:18 AM

Quote from: kadnod on March 14, 2013, 03:59:32 PM

Does Jett send forces from the Fort to assist elsewhere?  And if so, where?

Jett's thinking to just concentrate our reserves on the Barghests. Let Ryla's apprentices deal with #1 and Suhvob deal with #3. Once the reserves deal with #4 for good, we can reassign them into figuring out what's up with #3. No doubt we'll need to patch up 1 and 2 ourselves.

"Death!  Death to the wolflings!" shouts Gruhef as he storms out the front gate, hooves clacking loudly on the courtyard's cobblestones.  After a moment's hesitation, about half of the Fort's remaining guards reluctantly chase after the half-mad satyr as he disappears into the alleys of Scaleport.

Soon thereafter, our heroes depart to assist at the Northgate.  A loud, rhythmic pounding echoes through the snowy streets as they near their destination.  They climb the city wall near the gatehouse to get a better view, as Mist Archers frantically loose ineffective arrows at one of the iron golems the party fled from earlier.  The massive construct has torn apart the portcullis, but the gate itself still holds.  Kiln the elf dances nimbly between the statue's legs, scoring them over and over again with a glowing white longsword.  Undeterred, the golem continues to batter the gate.  Sersha lets out an ear-piercing battlecry as she fires the last bolt from the repeater ballista the party recovered earlier.  A hit!  The massive projectile embeds itself deep into the golem's right bicep, giving the automaton pause as it struggles to move an arm now pinned to its side. 

Cursing the now useless ballista, a frenzied Sersha, seemingly oblivious to your presence, picks up a pick-axe nearly as tall as herself and appears ready to hurl herself off the wall and onto the golem.

What do you do?


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